Moving help to StackOverflow.

I think helping the users in the issues section has been good for a while but at this point I think is seriously affecting the development. For a long while I’ve found myself spending way too much time answering (sometimes repeating) questions instead of spending that time improving the lib itself. There is still a lot for me to do here so I better focus on that.

I’ve seen other projects relying on StackOverflow and after a quick check I see that there is already some kind people answering questions over there:

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/three.js

I think that it’s best if we use both websites like this:

github issues

  • feature requests (ex. “Could CanvasRenderer support Vertex Colors?”)
  • bug reports (ex. “SkeletalAnimation is broken”)
  • suggestions (ex. “Renaming .__dirty* to .*NeedsUpdate?”)

stackoverflow

  • help (ex. “How can I rotate an object using quaternions?”, “My object is not showing the textures”, …)

I understand that sometimes it’ll be hard to know what type of issue you’re having, but I think that would be the exception.

Of course, the IRC channel is also a good place for getting help.

Author: Fantashit

1 thought on “Moving help to StackOverflow.

  1. @mrdoob – I very much agree that the more time you can spend coding and the less time you spend you spend helping dummies like me the sooner the world will get the next release of Three.js

    @Huck – I agree with your thought that you have to be extremely precise and careful in StackOverflow – which is one reason why it is so useful when people do follow the model. But it is a difficult standard to achieve. I have had answers seriously downgraded for adding a teensy bit more flavor to answer than was asked for.

    So much as I respect StackOverflow I don’t see it being that helpful for dummies.

    I also think that a Google Group might be a good response. The benefit of a Google Group is that the Three.js Authors could turn off receiving emails from the Group and just visit its web page when they felt the urge for a good laugh.

    But:

    The issue with a split between the GitHub Issues page for the advanced and Google Group for the learners is that the Advanced tend to feel that they are learners and the Learners know that they are advanced so messages end up in the wrong place. And then the authors would start having two places to check (and StackOverflow as well since it is also becoming a question magnet.)

    And:

    What would really help is a good FAQ. All it will take is snagging the text from the messages Mr.doob has kindly pulled into this thread and adding it to the existing text on the Wiki.

    This FAQ work is on my list of things to do, but at the moment my spare, spare time is being spent on the Three.js Wikipedia entry.

    Wait. Wait. There’s more:

    An interim measure might be to add more moderators to the Issues page. The job of the moderators would be to get to new messages before the Authors do and tag the relevant material as “How-To” queries. The author class of people could then go on and just read important messages while the moderator class of people could deal with the newbs. 😉

    In order to enable more moderators on GitGub, the Three.js repository might have to be cloned to a GitHub Organization. And for Three.js to become a GitHub Organization might not be a bad thing either.

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