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7:58 AM
@BrettWhite None of the SE chats are filled with lots of active people. No matter how popular the site itself is.
Some may have people in there talking every day, but even so you can count them without having to resort to counting with your toes. Chat is by no means the reason why people go to these SE sites.
 
 
2 hours later…
9:54 AM
@Joonas same here doing great twice :D
@yisela I am a front end developer/designer I claim so :D
 
 
4 hours later…
2:06 PM
@Joonas Maybe, but both Gaming and Sci-Fi had very healthy chats when I was working with them. Gaming especially.
But there's a difference between "some may have people in there talking every day" and what GD has, which is people sending a message to another user, 11+ hours after they got a message.
Of course chat is not why people use SE. I think chat can be a great tool to help forge a solid community, and I think chat is a good way to get the ball rolling on ideas.
 
 
3 hours later…
5:06 PM
Did I miss ya, @Pearsonartphoto?
 
5:31 PM
@BrettWhite: What's going on?
 
@Pearsonartphoto Just chatting! Look, chatting.
I saw you had dropped in the chat room and I wanted to say a good ol-fashioned, internet hello.
 
6:07 PM
@BrettWhite: Well, I poke my head in here occasionally, but rarely actually say anything.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Yeah, that seems to be the general practice.
I'm fully aware that chat is not something that people come to SE for, nor is it really that important, but I do think an active chat is indicative of a solid community. At least that's what I've gathered after working here.
 
6:56 PM
Anybody lend a hand with exporting PDF from InDesign? I am 'placing' 72dpi images from Photoshop into the InDesign document but no matter how I export it as PDF the jpgs are always blurred and uncrisp.
Is it a DPI problem or?
It is not for print... just for viewing on a computer.
 
@BrettWhite: I agree, even without having worked at SE.
It seems like a few people from any community like to come and talk to other like minded people. It tends to keep them coming back. Chat isn't why people come here, but it keeps some of the people who would be more active active.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Yeah, totally. And honestly, it lends itself to a lot more types of conversation than the Q&A format. Especially stuff like site maintenance.
Like site improvements and all that.
 
7:12 PM
Yep. One of the things that got me hooked on SE was the chatroom on Photo.SE.
 
@Pearsonartphoto That's good to know! I would like for the same to be done here. I think this can be a great site, there's no reason it can't be.
 
The chat room here has been hit and miss, from the beginning.
It worked well for about 2 weeks, then this site hit kind of a slump. Somewhere in the middle of it, I got made a moderator...
 
What do you think caused the slump? The newness wore off?
 
It went on that way for almost a year, then had a kind of peak in some activity.
Well, honestly, I think this site still needs to figure out what it is, that just never happened...
Sites that figure out what they are tend to get going fairly quickly. Otherwise, it can take a while...
 
Yeah, I read a LOT of posts in Meta from a while ago to recently about the scope of the site and changing the name to just Design. Where did that land?
I mean I guess it landed with "not changing it" since it hasn't been changed.
 
7:21 PM
Well, another big problem with this site is there isn't a group of users who are willing to run it.
 
@Pearsonartphoto There are a lot of drive-by users and not enough dedicated ones, who visit frequently and help guide the site?
 
It takes something like 10 people to be active and willing to run it. Here, there's hardly anyone aside from the mods, and I wouldn't always even count them.
Pretty much. At least, that's been my impression.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Right. That's really peculiar. I think you're right about that, at least it is consistent with what has been said on Meta.
 
I haven't been an active participant on this site though in over a year, and barely a moderator...
 
@Pearsonartphoto I PLACE ALL BLAME ON YOU :)
 
7:23 PM
LOL.
 
But also I don't blame you for not being an active participant on a site that has no active participants.
That's not rewarding for anyone.
 
There was about 2 months where I was the only moderator, during which I had to take a week long vacation.
 
Yiiiiikes
 
Well, the thing is, I just have found that I'm not really in to graphic design.
Once in a while, I have a question, but it's just not my thing, so...
 
This is a very chicken or the egg dilemma. On one hand we can focus on getting just a handful of awesome dedicated users to produce great content. However, we need great content in order to convince new users to actually focus and spend time on the site.
@Pearsonartphoto Yep, I think that's another problem, the site doesn't have a focus on graphic design pros, in the business.
 
7:24 PM
Well, the other way to attract people here would be to do give aways, if the right thing could be found.
@BrettWhite: Exactly.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Yeah, it might help to just try to do as many giveaways as possible. Perhaps newbies, one or two, will see the potential in a site like this.
And then dedicate some time to it.
 
Perhaps something could be done with the upcoming or recent launch of Adobe CS6...
The problem I see is, it's really hard to ask questions about design, at least for me.
 
@Pearsonartphoto I like the sound of that! Yeah, I'm sure I could orchestrate something with that.
 
What has happened is this has become a kind of how to site...
 
@Pearsonartphoto They tend to involve opinions and need critiquing?
 
7:27 PM
Right, both of which is difficult to do with Stack Exchange...
The other idea that has been tossed around is hosting Q&A sessions, perhaps in chat, with real designers.
Start with the Stack Exchange ones, and then work out to others.
 
Yeah. I also don't know if the site has the right people in it to really define the scope. Like, we need to actually get a lot of particpating, high-rep, highly involved users. THOSE are the ones that should define the scope. Right now we have a few really good-hearted people trying to make that call, but I don't know if they are representative of the people who will, in a perfect world, end up benefitting and using this site daily.
@Pearsonartphoto I like that idea a lot, I think that can be done after we got those elusive 10-12 committed users. I'd hate to throw a party for a Guest of Honor and have no one show up, especially in this chat room :)
 
Well, you could send out an email and see if you can drum up some interest.
Ask @Jin. Maybe then we could figure out how to make this site successful...
 
@Pearsonartphoto I should have a sit down (virtual sit down) with ol' Jin.
 
It would be a good idea.
 
I also like the idea of giving away CS6. Maybe to the first user or users who earn the Announcer badge?
 
7:34 PM
As for the scope, as you've no doubt seen, it's varied anywhere from a fairly small focus on just graphics, to including web design, artwork, 3D animation, etc.
Announcer isn't what will help the site, unfortunately.
 
Er, well, 21 people already have the Announcer badge.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Yeah, what would draw power users to this site? I thought announcer badge because hopefully, the more eyes on this site, the more likely an interested party would see the site.
 
So, come up with some grand contest relating to CS6. A free trial can be downloaded for 30 days, which could be enough for someone to learn about the site and come here.
What this site needs is new users. To my knowledge, there isn't a metric of drawing new users to the site...
Short of that, the best metric there is now is the votes on questions/answers.
 
And there aren't a lot of votes on the site, which is indicative of quality, as I have learned from my initial crusade to figure out why the stie has such low voting.
 
7:37 PM
Adobe products are quite expensive, so just be warned...
 
@Pearsonartphoto Oh yeah, I know. That's what our budget is for! And then I spend all of the budget on one event..... .....
 
There are only 5 good answers, and 6 good questions, so...
Any chance that we could partner with Adobe?
 
@Pearsonartphoto Well, maybe. It's tricky trying to partner with big companies like that. It helps if you have name recognition. Like, it's easy for Stack Overflow to partner with internet and tech companies, SO is the big dog.
 
Actually, the upgrade prices aren't too bad. It would also attract more serious people if you limit it to upgrade.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Oh yeah, that means that they already have CS5, right? So therefore we're attracting people who are serious enough about GD to have already had Adobe
Instead of the potential "oh sure, i'll take a new free copy"
 
7:42 PM
Exactly.
Depends on what suite they have, but the price is around $300 for the upgrade.
Could go up to $525, depending on the suite...
 
@Pearsonartphoto I think that works. Now to devise a proper contest. I don't think it should be based on a random drawing. I think it should be based on being a good, engaged, dedicated user.
Since that's what the site needs.
 
Perhaps you could say SE will pay for the upgrade of Design Standard ($275), but the rest of the cost is up to the user if they want to get a better suite.
 
And any combination that includes getting new users and attention, that's great.
 
Exactly. Have it at the minimum be limited to nice questions/answers.
 
@Pearsonartphoto That could work, depending on how the payment goes. We have a lot of weird rules about what we can and can't give away, just for tax purposes.
 
7:45 PM
Perhaps a random nice question/answer will get it. That seems like a nice goal to work.
I'll leave the business things up to you;-)
 
Yeah, leave all the business up to me! I'm the business man!
This business man has a loooot of toys on his desk. Aaaanyway.
Yeah, I like this. See, this is what chat can be used for!
 
Good luck! I sure would like to see this site figure out what it is, and be successful.
Besides, when this site launches, I can finally step down from my moderatorship here;-)
You know, you just gave me the talkative badge on this site...
 
Oh yeah, you have a vested interest in its success! Heh!
@Pearsonartphoto Oh wow, great! I should include that in my pitch to get users to come to chat. YOU CAN GET BADGES.
 
If only badges could be traded in for chocolate candy.
 
7:53 PM
SE wide, I have 8 gold, 124 silver, and 505 bronze. I'd be buried...
 
I mean, in chocolate, which is great.
You have a LOT more than I do. About 5 times more.
So, I would gladly take some of that hypothetical chocolate.
 
I've been involved with SE for almost 2 years, not to mention I have a large reputation (1000+) on 9 sites. I've been around;-)
 
Yeah, of those 9, where do you rank GD? Be like, super harsh!
I only ask because my involvement in SE has been limited to under 5 sites.
 
Well, not the best for sure, but perhaps not the worst.
 
Good to hear.
 
7:59 PM
GD has a fair number of users at any one time, the problem is that none of them seem to stay. This is better than some site for sure.
 
@Pearsonartphoto Right.
 
I would definitely take it over, say, mechanics, smugmug, and probably at a similar level to the great outdoors, money, and signal processing.
 
Ah yeah. It's good to put it all in perspective then.
 
8:32 PM
Finally made it in here between deadlines. :) Now, what were we talking about?
 
@AlanGilbertson Was chatting with @Pearsonartphoto about the site, general stuff. Mostly the idea of giving away an upgrade to CS6 as a promo event
Some sort of promo, to get more eyes on the site
 
That could be a compelling prize. I'm sure it would get attention!
 
Yeah, I'm not sure right now which makes more sense, to try to rally the existing users OR try to do that and get some new users.
Probably start with trying to get the users we already have excited and posting.
Any contest would, most likely, hopefully, reward prolonged, continued excellence on the site, and not just a random award given to someone who got lucky
 
The best contests are the ones where everyone wins... something. If SE could scare up a few sponsors, that might be a useful way to encourage more participation. I agree, though, that something more than a raffle is needed.
 
I think everyone would win, in that a contest that encourages and creates quality content and excitement for a week gives everyone quality content and excitement (and one person adobe CS6)
I hesitate basing any contest on sponsorships and partnerships just because those are incredibly...unreliable. They're not guaranteed and could very well take a while to make happen, and I don't really know if any big sites would be interested in partnering with the site as it is right now.
 
8:39 PM
Hello there!
 
That's true, and more or less the lines I was thinking on, but my experience with contest/prizes has been that a lone first prize doesn't pull as many participants as one that has a few.
 
I would be inclined to try and do some cool, internal stuff dependent on SE and its users first, to get the site a little healthier. THEN try to get some big names on board. I could be going about this wrong.
 
Good point.
 
@AlanGilbertson Oh yeah, that is true. Then yeah, there should be a grand prize and, well, I may have to get the community to suggest something for the remaining prizes.
 
Wow, are we actually having a real chat in the chatroom?
 
8:40 PM
CS6 is so pricey, those other prizes would have to be under $50 most likely.
@yisela Hello!
 
@Pearsonartphoto Wonders will never cease, eh?
 
@Pearsonartphoto Four people at once!? This is going to overload something somewhere
 
Well, not to ruin the chat, but I've got to run, so...
 
I'm catching up with what's been talked, be with you in a minute
 
@Pearsonartphoto Hey, we had 4 people talking in here for a hot second, so that's good enough :)
 
8:44 PM
:D
 
@BrettWhite CS6 perpetual licenses are certainly up there. The problem with that is more that not everyone here is a Design Standard or Web Standard or Production Premium user. Some of us are Master Collection, and some are open source users. Something more general, like fonts, or stock photos might be more broadly appealing. Lynda.com hands out free months like there's no tomorrow, but there's also the fact that a year's subscription is only $375 and that would be useful for anybody.
 
about the adobe discussion, can't you buy a couple of month's subscription?
say, 3 months? A Lynda subscription would be great, anyone would find it useful
 
I like both of those ideas. This is giving me a lot to work with.
Despite it's kinda narrow base, does a CS6 giveaway have name value? Like is that attention grabbing?
I also like the idea of doing something like stock photos or something usuable by a greater number of people. I'm up for trying both.
 
@BrettWhite this must be some kind of record!
(hi GD crowd, I just popped in to see this happenin' chat with my own eyes)
 
@AbbyT.Miller hi!
this chat room right now 'represents' 5% of all the chat rooms in SE. Not bad!
 
8:53 PM
@yisela Is there a PIE CHART?
 
@BrettWhite in my mind
 
Niiice
 
stock photos are good, but maybe it'd be better if it were other resources like vectors, templates, things like that
not too many people need photos
 
I think these are some good ideas for giveaways. I'll try to hammer out the details of it over the next week.
 
I'd also consider Balsamiq
I'd love a subscription to Balsamiq :P
 
8:54 PM
@yisela Right. This is probably the type of thing I can make a Meta post about. Asking people for their suggestions, and hopefully people would respond in droves at the chance of getting free stuff :)
@yisela Noted, I am making a list o these suggestions. For sure.
 
@yisela A Creative Cloud subscription is sure a possibility. For a point product, it's not that much for an entire year.
@BrettWhite I've yet to see any droves of people in meta. :-/ Most of the users don't seem to know it's there.
 
@AlanGilbertson Yeah, yep, that's a problem a LOT of sites have, and it's really frustrating.
 
@yisela Vectors and templates, yes, or one of those DVD sets with After Effects templates or from companies like Juice Drops (digitaljuice.com)
 
Oh yeah, I like suggestions!
I'll try to research these early next week, it would be good to figure out which of these prizes is most likely to attract the types of users we don't have or don't have enough of
 
@BrettWhite It's not just sites, Brett. In any group, the number of participants who want to take responsibility for the group, as opposed to people who want to benefit from it, are always a small minority. It's how things are.
 
9:04 PM
@AlanGilbertson Such is the way of life.
 
But SE exists because there is a strong altruism nonetheless
and because its gamification is great!
at least that's what dragged me in the first place, when I posted a question in SO and got my first badge :D
 
@BrettWhite Anyone who's tried to get a neighborhood association going, or get committee members together for a user group, has run into the same issue. Meta is great in theory, but you can't ever expect it to be a highly populated forum (other than troll-infestations, which are sadly all too common).
@yisela "Gamification" is right up there with "User Experience" in my list of useful but hideous terms. :)
 
@AlanGilbertson hey! What's wrong with user experience? xD
 
Ha, gamification forever will sound like a made up word. Well, it IS a made up word.
 
I like interaction design rather than user experience, as terms, but in practice they are the same
gamification sounds so postmodern it freaks me out a little, but "game theory" is too serious
 
9:10 PM
@yisela It's so... psychological. I hated it on sight the first time I came across it. UX thinking leads to animations in OS X and Windows that do nothing but slow things down. Don't get me started on "The Video Game as UI" -- one of my pet hates.
 
Okay, I have to skedaddle, ready for a nice vacation and I'll be back in action on Monday. Don't forget to turn the lights off when you leave!
 
@BrettWhite have a good time!
@AlanGilbertson well.. I kind of like the feeling of making something easier for someone, that's why I'm ok with the term
it's the moral justification of why I do what I do... because we all interact with technology, it should be a simpler and more gratifying process
but I DO hate animations, I prefer to think os UX more as in... navigation and forms
 
 
2 hours later…
11:15 PM
@yisela (sorry for the lag. phone calls and deadlines...) Interaction Design is a much more useful term, imho. It's when the "experience" part gets away from the basic need to get useful work done that I started to froth at the mouth, chew the rug, and generally go bazonga...
 
11:25 PM
@AlanGilbertson :)
 
I recall the first time I came across "user experience" as a term, on some Microsoft website, all about how they were going to improve the user experience in [random version, I forget which] of Windows. I was appalled at the thought that engineers would concentrate on the "experience" rather than making the thing more useful. With 7, I have to say, they did get a lot of things right. Office 2007, otoh, was a usability disaster in the name of "improving the user experience."
btw: What the heck time is it in Auckland? Wee hours of the morning?
 
@AlanGilbertson it's 11:30 am now (Friday)
I guess windows tends to see "experience" as "we'll make the user have a fun fun time!" (which they terribly fail at, of course. Can't help thinking of poor old Clippo). Not sure they see it as interaction + accessibility enhacements, like google does
 
11:40 PM
@yisela Friday, eh? Well, I'm chasing you at 60 mins/hr, but based on years of experience, I'm pretty sure I'll never catch up... I have a Kiwi neighbor, who just got back from Christchurch a week ago. She's still jet-lagged.
 
where in the world are you Alan?
 
Los Angeles, in sunny California. :)
Where it is currently 4:41 pm on Thursday.
 
sound nice :)
sounds*
spring is coming here, little by little. First time I'll have the beach at only 200mts from the office
 
And here, we'll be quite glad to see things cool down a bit. Where I live, in the foothills, it gets over 40 C too often to be comfortable.
 
wooow
I can't imagine winter in California
but I've never been (it's a future must)
 
11:48 PM
Winter is somewhat Mediterranean (in theory). Cold, rain but not enough in the last 10 years or so. Funny that I consider it cold. I grew up in Scotland where the winters are bitter. I don't think I'd survive an Edinburgh winter these days. Too many years in Florida and California.
 
I don't mind the cold, although I don't know if I could handle the darkness for tooo long. Edinburgh is one of my favourite places, I'd definitely spend a season there. Scoland is amazing. Have you been in Los Angeles long?
 
Is it snowing outside? 2 active users in GD chat......
 
:D
hi Farray
 
Hiya.
 
you won't believe it, but some time ago we were 4!
 
11:52 PM
& wutup, SoCal.
 
and we actually had a conversation
 
Yeah... I just did a little skimming.
Hm... trying not to be pessimistic, but might as well leave some nuggets here for Brett whenever he returns.
Introducing people to GD.SE won't do a damn thing for the site until the site has something better to offer. I realize that's a bit of a chicken-and-egg scenario, but unless the level of discourse is raised to an interesting level for mid/high-skill designers, I don't anticipate a sudden influx of users with quality content to offer.
Having a contest with CS6 as a prize... I just don't see it. Skilled craftsmen own their own tools already. Surely some are interested in upgrades, but IMHO that's not going to be a driving force for anyone new to do something interesting. And if the contest is for existing users, we can probably guess who the top 2 contestants will be.
 
Note on the side: I was surprised by how many great answers I had for my question about 1/2+ monitors. Every active user participated. Maybe somehow content could be directed to less-technical, more experience-based questions
 
A useful question about tools should always be welcome.
Questions about how to be more productive in a meaningful way (e.g., are multiple monitors a worthwhile investment) has actual value.
 
I realise this has probably been discussed, but what do we understand by a succesful SE site?
 
11:59 PM
Pardon my lack of understanding (it's been a long day). Can you please rephrase the question? I'm not quite getting what you're asking...
 

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