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RE: RFOR: Is LGDC really crap?

oops, nm on the affiliation, I see the link now.

> ----------
> From: 	Steve Baker[SMTP:sjbaker1@airmail.net]
> Reply To: 	linuxgames@sunsite.dk
> Sent: 	Wednesday, January 02, 2002 6:51 PM
> To: 	linuxgames@sunsite.dk
> Subject: 	Re: RFOR: Is LGDC really crap?
> Christian Reiniger wrote:
> > So - is it really that bad? What is missing, what needs to be improved,
> > what would be nice to have?
> I don't think it's bad - there just isn't much happening to make it good.
> There is an issue with "know your audience".  Much of the content seems
> directed towards games *players* rather than *developers*.  I don't think
> you should aim at the players - HappyPenguin already has that covered IMHO.
> What we don't know (and this is a major flaw of the survey) is whether
> the people who were dissatisfied with LGDC were game developers, game
> players or some other audience group.  If games players visiting the
> site are dissatisfied with it, you may not care - so long as your core
> audience of designers are ecstatic about it.
> I'd like to see news about tools that games developers are interested
> in ("New release of GDB - Has these great features" - for example).  I
> don't have the time to look at Freshmeat and 99% of the things it covers
> are useless to me.  When a bug is discovered in something that I care
> about (Mesa for example) - it would be great to see a report of it and
> it's eventual resolution or work-around.
> I like to read game design post-mortems (of the kind posted on
> OpenGL-Gamedev recently about how we think HALO does some of it's
> tricks - or the kind of thing you see in the Game Developer magazine
> "We wrote it like this - but we would have written it like that if
> we'd had the time").
> > * The site content is almost static currently - no new news items, no new
> > articles, no new/updated links. I know that's my duty but, well, I simply
> > won't ever do this as much as I should. By a far shot. These tasks simply
> > aren't something I enjoy, and since I work on lgdc in my spare time I'll
> > concentrate on the "fun" stuff. And of course there's the thing that I
> > never ever developed a game :)
> I think you should go the slashdot route and have a number (say three or
> four) people whom you get on with and trust who can each contribute items -
> then put up a mailing list where anyone can send ideas and news snippets to
> those people for posting.  This divides the workload of posting items by
> a factor of four or five - and increases the volume of news by some larger
> factor.
> If you manage to put up enough interesting items that don't duplicate other
> news sources (or at least scoop them so you tend to be first with the news)
> then your readership (and hence contributors) will grow.  However, without
> readership you won't get contributors and hence you won't get readers.
> To get past the initial 'bootstrap' period, you and your trusted co-editors
> may have to hunt for news yourselves.
> > * The poll clearly lists the mailing list as the least valuable part of
> > lgdc (14 votes, with the others at 35, 38, 39 and 41), and the mailing
> > list traffic also indicates that.
> When you need it - it's there for you.  My thread about keyboard problems
> for example - was promptly and accurately answered by people who knew what
> they were talking about.  I don't know where else I could have asked that.
> However, one doesn't have questions like that on a daily basis.
> Mailing lists don't have to be high traffic to be utterly invaluable.
> Quite the reverse in fact.
> I like the traffic on the OpenGL-Gamedev list - but it's very narrowly
> focussed.
> > There's a group of 10-15 people who
> > know each other (partly got to know each other via lgdc, granted) and
> > post to the list from time to time, but that's about it. So lgdc's
> > original goal of building a (and serving as common "communication> 
> > platform" for) a Linux game development community has not been reached.
> Just how many active game developers do you think there are?
> It would be interesting to do some kind of a search on the named authors
> in the HappyPenguin database to get some kind of an idea.
> Once again though, content is king.  More people would subscribe if there
> was more good stuff on the list - if more people subscribed there would
> be more good stuff (unfortunately, there would probably also be MUCH more
> junk - but that's life).
> > Not even remotely.
> > I don't think I can do much about that. As I said before I'm no game
> > developer...
> Perhaps a mailshot to every author in the HappyPenguin database asking
> if they'd like to join in?  That's perilously close to SPAMming them
> though. 
> A mailing list is not like a newspaper.  It's somewhere where you can
> ask a question and stand a good chance of getting a correct answer -
> and somewhere where you can return the favor on the odd occasion where
> you know the answer.  If there is no traffic it's because everyone
> knows what they are doing and have no questions right now - that's
> **GOOD**!
> If the list was full of off-topic posts and flames, the people who
> could give good answers would stop reading it.
> > * I have some plans to allow everyone (well, everyone with a valid site
> > account) to post, edit and delete news and resources. Of course all
> > changes only take effect after someone trusted has reviewed them, but it
> > allows everyone spotting an error, a missing thing etc to simply "fix it
> > on the spot" (using the nice web forms that are currently reserved for
> > maintainers) and it simplifies the maintainer(s'|'s) job of handling such
> > changes.
> You risk lowering the quality by doing that.  I think that would perhaps
> be worse than having too little content.
> > Well, I don't really know. It would be nice if a big, friendly and active
> > community could grow around lgdc, if the mailing list would have
> > (non-noise) traffic worth mentioning, if our (admittedly way
> > underadvertized) irc channel (#lgdc on irc.openprojects.net) wouldn't
> > have to be held open by bots etc. But I don't see that happening and I
> > don't think I can do anything about that.
> (I hate IRC and will never use it - as for the mailing list, I said before,
> I can stand low quantity if the quality is there...which IMHO, it generally
> is).
> > Side note: The poll lists the resources section *after* articles. IMHO
> > resources are *more* important than local articles, simply because it's
> > much easier to link to many good articles than to write many good
> > articles anew (and the ones we have are a bit dated..).
> Yes - the articles section seems a little redundant.  Anyone who is writing
> games will almost certainly have a place to post articles of that sort
> (mine is at http://www.sjbaker.org/steve/omniv BTW).  I don't see the point
> in placing the actual text into the LGDC site - although it might be good to
> mention the arrival of a new article there, maintain a link to it, and give
> people a place to comment on it.
> Content I create goes on my site because I can control it that way.  Making
> a correction is as easy as firing up 'vi'.  Unless the traffic from LGDC
> readers directed towards my site became *really* high - I can see no reason
> to have them stored on your disk drive instead of mine.  It would be
> different if a posting about (say) my keyboard article generated a
> Slashdotesque deluge of readers - but I don't think that's ever likely
> for the simple reason that there just aren't that many Linux games
> developers on the planet.
> > Perhaps the
> > situation would be a bit different if there were a big community with
> > several good writer-gamedevelopers around lgdc - and even then it's much
> > easier (and better) to link to e.g. Steve Baker's ramblings> 
> > (http://www.sjbaker.org/steve/omniv/index.html) than to convince him to
> > write them on lgdc ;)
> Er - yes - it is. ("ramblings"? **RAMBLINGS**!! Humph! :-)
> ----------------------------- Steve Baker -------------------------------
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