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Re: RFOR: Is LGDC really crap?

Chris wrote:

> Internet Survival Rule #56: Online polls are about as accurate as a one eyed,
> drunk archer.

(Don't you close one eye when you shoot?  Eh - whatever.)

> - - visibility. How many people are there on the mailing list, compared to the
>   number of authors and teams/team members on happypenguin? And is
>   happypenguin a good indicator of how many linux games there are? I'm
>   working on two and neither of them are on happypenguin and won't be until
>   I'm good and ready to release demos.

Yes - but as a snapshot, it shouldn't be a bad estimate...I mean, yes it misses
people who have yet to announce - but then it includes all the abandoned ones
too.  It would at least give us an order of magnitude answer for the ratio
of games writers to LGDC list subscribers.
> - - content scope. The list description is ambiguous about this "Helping people
>   new to Linux game programming.", "Generally discussing game development
>   problems / ideas etc" do not really help define the subjects that are
>   permitted. For example, yesterday I was having a load of gdk related
>   problems but I didn't ask for help here...

No - because you *should* ask those questions on the GDK list.

But questions that don't relate to particular software (like my keyboard
question) don't have anywhere else to go.

>   because the problems were in one
>   of the game support programs (a texture file editor) rather than in a game
>   itself. I wasn't at all sure how the list members would react to me asking
>   questions about texture formats, Imlib and GdkRGB widgets. I doubt I'm the
>   only person here who has run into a problem but not asked here because I
>   wasn't sure if it would be taken as too off-topic.

I don't think a question about GDK would be taken as "off topic" - just
that you could find better places to get a good answer.

A question about texture formats would be *exactly* on-topic here.  "Use PNG,
avoid JPEG", etc.

>   Perhaps a document
>   describing in more detail just how far from pure "game developmet" the
>   subject can get would encourage people to post about such problems.

I think that has to evolve over time.  I don't think it's good to stifle
a particular subject area until/unless it becomes a PITA for the readership.
> - - poor integration with the website. For example, there was no mention of
>   Steve posting the keyboard issue document on the site (although that's
>   probably as much my fault as anyone's :/) Important "problem fixes" like
>   that need to appear on the site and make it plain that they came from the
>   mailing list - that's the only way to get osme people to join.

Yes - absolutely.  Milking the mailing list for content for the website
makes a lot of sense - especially for people who don't want to subscribe
for some reason.  Also, web site indexing is better than mailing list
archiving.  Someone looking for information about keyboard lockouts in
a year from now would stand a better chance of finding it if it's in the
LGDC site somewhere.

I don't think you can automate that though - many threads are not suitable
as news items.

> Hmm.. I would suggest something closer to Freshmeat. As Steve said, most of
> freshmeat is useless to a game developer BUT the way they do things - each
> project has a page where all the details, comments and links to the homepage
> and files are collected in one place and users can "subscribe" to projects
> they are interested in - would be a very valuable way to handle developer
> resources. Of course, this would mean getting authors to actually add their
> projects to the system, or have someone do it for them, but from then on
> it would be a "developer's freshmeat": and with the subscribe option
> developers with little time on their hands could flag specific libraries or
> tools they are interested in and only hear about updates to them.

It's not just the volume of projects on Freshmeat - but the lack of filtering
of the updates.  Many changes to (say) GCC are of no interest to developers -
but if something major were to be added that *does* matter, we'd like to be
alerted to it.
> This will mean that all submissions would need to be moderated - we don't
> want to have games themselves listed, just the tools and librarires needed to
> make them.

Yes.  Unless it's something like Quake's recent OpenSourcing where we might
want to go and rummage through the sources looking for (ehem) "inspiration".

HappyPenguin is the right place for game announcements.  You could always
put HappyPenguin's headlines into a side-bar so we don't have to look at
it until something interesting comes up.
> > * I think it would be useful to have (optional) "verbose" descriptions
> > for news items and resources - just have a look at these CrystalSpace
> > announcements :)
> This is a bit redundant IMO - the short description can link to the full text
> anyway, which avoids the text storage/maintenance problem anyway.

----------------------------- Steve Baker -------------------------------
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