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Old   May 18, 2011, 19:16
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Marco A. Turcios
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In recently perusing the forums (fora?) it seems like some questions keep cropping up with the same answers. I don't mind helping anyone out, but it seems like a lot of unnecessary threads get started, which makes it harder to find the information we're all looking for.

It seems like a lot of this could be avoided by setting up a "sticky" thread that always shows up at the top of the forum, that at least summarizes some important ways of getting information, including:

1) Using the search functions of the forum
2) Searching the wiki
3) Checking the documentation (maybe point out sections that are often overlooked, or whose titles are not intuitive)
4) Guidelines for posting (though we'd need to have admins to enforce these) etc...

If visitors and new members to the community had a better idea of where to find information, we might see a reduction of unnecessary posts. I'd be willing to help put some time into this, but only if it is possible and desirable by the community.

So how about it eh?
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Old   May 19, 2011, 05:21
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I second this idea! It should contain a link to the OpenFoam wiki, which itself could use a bit of a cleanup of the FAQ article (http://openfoamwiki.net/index.php/Main_FAQ). I can imagine a lot of the experienced users are getting bored with some of the constantly recurring questions.

- Anton
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Old   May 19, 2011, 12:26
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Marco A. Turcios
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After reading the FAQ, it appears that I need one of the forum moderators to make a thread sticky. I will begin drafting what the post will look like next week and submit to this thread so there can be discussion on content and tone, before seeking approval.

Who are the forum moderators?
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Old   May 20, 2011, 05:23
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You can see a list of all moderators here:

http://www.cfd-online.com/Forums/showgroups.php

Encouraging people to search for answers is good. But please also remember that one of the main benefits of a forum is to help newbies to get help from more experienced people. We must be forgiving and not try to change the forums as our own experience develops.

Strictly speaking, all kinds of support could be said to be unnecessary for a GPL code since the answer is just in the source code files, but few people would agree with that. In the same way, I do not think questions that are already answered in a Wiki or in a manual are something we should forbid on the forums.
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Old   May 20, 2011, 13:51
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We definitely don't want to discourage anyone from asking questions; there will always be questions about implementation and of course there is the issue of how complete the documentation of the source code is (a whole other topic).

Hopefully, this is a way to let people know about the resources available, including how to make more effective use of the forum. I would love to include a section of how to ask effective questions on the forum so that we get fewer 0 reply threads which lead to people feeling frustrated when their question isn't answered.

Again, I won't have time for this until next week, so I'm still mapping this out in my head. Once I have something written I'll post and will be open to corrections/suggestions.
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Old   May 20, 2011, 14:55
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Something like this already exists (you just have to search for it).

http://openfoamwiki.net/index.php/Ho..._Message_Board
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Old   May 20, 2011, 15:20
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Marco A. Turcios
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See this is good. I think I remember reading back when I got started and it helped immensely. We'll definitely be linking this...Thanks!
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Old   May 23, 2011, 03:12
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That is also pretty much what I had in mind for the sticky thread. I'd just add two lines about what to look for when posting about compilation errors (i.e. the very first error message, not the last one!).
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Old   June 3, 2011, 11:57
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I regret to inform you all that I haven't been able to get to that Sticky Thread (need to get the first draft of my thesis done in 2 weeks). If anyone has more time, or feels they can do a better job feel free to take over
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