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02:00 - 18:0018:00 - 23:00

6:05 PM
Ok, I tried to handle that, we'll see how that goes
6:15 PM
15 minutes to go
Tavern on the Town Hall
6:30 PM
Hey everyone! We’re just about ready to start up today’s Town Hall Chat. I’m going to put this room in timeout, go over the plan and the guidelines, and then give the floor to our hosts. Here we go!
This room was placed in timeout for 5 minutes; Town Hall Chat. Opening discussion: Channels
We’re keeping the format of this chat pretty informal, in the hope that we’ll be able to keep setup easy and low-pressure so we can have these chats more regularly. We’ll start with 5 minutes of chat between our illustrious hosts (@Shog9, @bluefeet, @Pops, @Gabe) on today’s topic and then open the floor to y’all to react and respond. After that, we’ll open the conversation up to whatever you folks want.
If we want to keep going on the topic, that’s cool; if there are other subjects you’d like to hear from us about, that’s cool too. Second half of the chat will be the time to bring those up.
As with last time, please keep the meta-chat to a minimum; we'll welcome feedback on the format and such on MSE after the show. We're going to do our level best to maintain a reasonable signal-to-noise ratio here, so if you're going to type words and hit enter, please keep them on topic.
Just a note that we’re not going to talk about Net Neutrality here today, since there’s already a lot of conversation going on about this already, and we have a dedicated chat room for it - feel free to jump in now or later if you want to weigh in.
So what are we going to talk about? First up: Channels. Take it away, folks!
First, I'm really happy to be able to talk about this.
There's been a lot of discussion and... changes... in terms of what channels is intended to be, and who it was intended to serve, and... I think the folks building it have managed to hash out something that addresses a compelling need.
Now... Something I think is worth emphasizing here: we’re building this primarily as a way to make money, but moreover as a way to make money in a way that focuses dev resources back on the core engine.
A lot of the features needed to make Channels a successful product are also features that have been long-requested for our public Q&A - by bringing focus on this as a revenue source, we hope to be able to fund the sorts of spit-polishing of our core functionality that, let’s be honest, we’ve been neglecting a bit of late.
cough, search, cough
Not that we don't all want to spend more time on it, but... There are a lot of conflicting priorities :)
I also want to observe that the actual target audience for this is… Still very much in flux. Hence the announcement, the signup page, etc. We’re very interested in finding out who is actually interested in something like this, and perhaps more importantly why.
It's been fun watching this come to fruition behind the scenes.
6:35 PM
@bluefeet agreed! but it hasn't been very long coming, unlike previous Big Announcements like this that we've tried to work with. i first heard about Channels almost exactly a month ago, actually.
so i'm really excited that we've opened it up to community & public discussion this early in the product development process
...and, yeah... Given I was just fuming about search earlier today - as I do every day - I'm very excited to hear that we're gonna be putting some work into that soon.
oh crap, the room's unfrozen and other people can talk now.
@Shog9 Does this mean that Channels and core Q/A share a code base and improvements made for Channels will be automatically applied to Q/A? Or will it still take development time to port these requested improvements over?
Yeah, the discussion was very fast and I'm glad it's out for everyone to talk about.
it's definitely something we lost sight of for a while, and i'm excited that we were able to come back to the roots on this one
(mod note: 10 minutes of free-form Channels discussion starts now; stay on topic, but feel free to ask questions of staff or discuss amongst yourselves.)
@Andy Nick Craver already noted something re that on the main announcement... IIUC that's part-part for things
6:37 PM
@Andy It won't necessarily be automatic - channels are gonna need features that only make sense for channels, or can only be performant in channels... But for stuff that can be applied to both, there's no reason to put it behind a flag permanently.
... And how does that affect/relate to the newly announced "DAG"?
I'm kinda still waiting on an actual discussion topic. A lot of what seems appropriate has already been discussed in the answers on the announcement...
That's a question for our Australian friends DAG is primarily concerned with the public-facing side of things
I wonder if we could eventually have public product support channels
y'all could charge people to make product channels
@Magisch I'd love to see that, and I'm not the only one.
And we could take all the pesky OT support questions ... and push them somewhere else
Product support was one of the first use-cases we envisioned for this, but after some discussion it was felt that we needed to focus on the "private teams" aspect first, if for no other reason than that it's likely a much bigger market.
@JonClements Channels has its own product team right now, primarily concerned with figuring out all the back-end stuff (10,000 schemas!). assuming this thing looks like it can get off the ground, DAG will work in conjunction with them to make sure they integrate with everything else we do they way they should
Somewhat silly question, but is there any reason I should care about Channels if I'm an SE user that doesn't really care about SO or software development?
it's all a little murky right now because one of the Channels team's current research questions is "can we even do this? SHOULD we even do this?"
6:40 PM
I think i've seen it mentioned that you're dog-fooding Channels. Besides onboarding questions, what are you finding it used for internally?
@GeorgeDuckett nothing - doesn't exist yet :)
We're dog-fooding the Enterprise edition, which is an entirely separate installation with no integration into the public SO whatsoever
That experience has been... Pretty good, honestly
I wonder, when you start charging for channels, will there still be a free version
we do have an internal instance of SO Enterprise that's used for internal code questions, some onboarding stuff, etc, but that's not what Channels will be
what shog said
So... OSS not being the typical moneymaker, I take it that Channels isn't going to be OSS dev team -friendly?
6:41 PM
@GeorgeDuckett we have a version on Enterprise that we are dog-fooding on
@hairboat judging by NCraver's twitter feed the "can we do this" is a yes until now...
Ahh I see must've got wires crossed about that, thanks for the clarification.
@hairboat ok. My impression was the DAG team were (hopefully) going to fix up and sort out long standing issues raised. Is that still going to happen regardless of the Channels team being able to monetize first?
@Magisch unclear, but it's definitely on the table. the conversations are ongoing, and i know there are folks who want to maintain a perma-free tier
Like if people in small companies start building their channel bases now
6:42 PM
We're a much smaller team - heck, smaller company - than what Enterprise was envisioned to serve. One of the big challenges (for private and public sites) is always scaling down - making this system work for small "mailing-list-sized" groups of people.
@ACuriousMind Not likely to affect you in the short or even medium term. In a very vague sense, it affects the company as a whole, which means it indirectly impacts Stack Exchange, but... basically, not really.
And suddenly it's like "this is 100$/month now"
Would probably be percieved as pretty bad
yeah, that would be a huge bummer @Magisch
@JonClements yes
In what way would public channels be meaningfully different from proper tagging? (thanks to @Kaz for bringing that up elsewhere)
6:42 PM
I hope if it ever comes to that we could at least get a data dump of the content
@Vogel612'sShadow permissions would be a big one
@JonClements Yes, that's still going to happen.
@JonClements DAG team's roadmap is totally unaffected by Channels at this time
A great example of that is the classic "close votes in tiny tag don't do much" problem
@Shog9 when/what can we expect the DAG team to be announcing soon?
6:43 PM
FWIW I wouldn't mind throwing my money at SO for using this with my OSS project. Say ~$100/yr
But there are a bunch of other pain-points: hard to get full editing rights, hard to even see who else is involved
What is DAG for again
I'm out of the loop
@JonClements They have a bunch of things, part of it being the monthly features the Community team sends over each month
@Magisch "Developer Affinity and Growth"; public-facing Q&A product stuff
6:44 PM
No, seriously though, I've learned my lesson on promising stuff before the code is written. We have a ton of things in queue for DAG to look at, we'll see 'em when DAG nabs it.
announced on MSO on Jul 5th by Tim Post
Mod note! OK, folks - we’re at the 15 minute mark, so now you can feel free to bring up any other topics you have in mind (other than Net Neutrality - see above), or continue this discussion here.
@Shog9 how do you want to prevent public channels becoming their own nuclear subcommunities, essentially "mini SOs" of their own?
6:46 PM
@Vogel612'sShadow this is why we're starting with private channels ;-)
It's... a hard problem
@Vogel612'sShadow isn't every language tag already a "mini-SO community"?
That said... There's a certain natural tendency for communities to grow outward over time, forming subcommunities that further and further differentiate themselves.
...like a fairy ring
@Meta'sMug no, because Mods and domain knowledge
Ooh fairies
On a note
reviews and the topbar change
is anything coming?
6:48 PM
goodness knows when
6 to 8 months
Other then getting more SO mods
but yes, we have a list of things we want to do, and DAG has 'em in their list
hopefully not that long
I know! 6-8 ...fgitw'd
6:49 PM
Ooooh...look at those lines.
@Shog9 I was alluring to the upcoming SO election
@Shog9 Quit handling flags.
That contrasts NAA + VLQ flags handled by mods and Low Quality review tasks handled by review
I wager that is influenced by the topbar change
You know my opinion on other review improvements
maybe someday
6:50 PM
on the note of review queue... Are there any plans to allow a more effective use of review queue like keyboard shortcuts?
You'll note that they intersect dramatically at two times: when the new top-bar rolled out and when I did a week of featuring the request to make review a text link.
I type slow...
Sorry if I'm out of the loop, but are there currently plans to propagate the topbar changes on SO to other sites in the network?
@DavidZ yup
I'm not aware of an exact timeline, but that is the eventual goal
Ooh yes gimme gimme
6:51 PM
Hopefully, uh, after we fix the review thing
Fair ;-)
@Vogel612'sShadow like the US for the Close Queue: github.com/SO-Close-Vote-Reviewers/UserScripts/blob/master/…
@Shog9 or we live dangerously and do it before :P
good lord no
how many mods can we stand?
6:52 PM
@Shog9 Naw, SO had to suffer, so everyone else should too.
@rene except not a userscript, because that isn't properly integrated in the system, so it can only apply to other sites with some migration work
assigns all other review-heavy sites to @Pops
@Vogel612'sShadow yeah, I can understand that.
@Vogel612'sShadow I would love more keyboard shortcuts, but no immediate plans for that; userscript actually works pretty well
@Shog9 Good question
6:55 PM
@Shog9 sure... for so. Because it's handcrafted to there...
Is the moderation situation a softcap for scaling of SO
@Vogel612'sShadow so submit a patch
@Magisch a little bit
Oooh a thought: have you considered that some of the small-community insights you get from Channels might benefit the smaller Q&A sites on the network? Not so much in terms of site functionality, I'm thinking of community management and the specific needs of smaller groups. I mean, you probably have considered this, but I just want to make sure it's being thought of.
6:56 PM
I'd actually suggest that the ability of folks to find questions they can (and should) answer is the effective cap
Though moderation effects this
Any plans on adding some incentives to review?
@DavidZ Yeah. Like... If we'd had this a little while back maybe we wouldn't have needed a Vi site.
@DavidZ of course, we considered it. ;P
or maybe we will now
After 1000 per queue there really isn't anything besides "Because I want to" to review
@DavidZ there's definitely going to be a lot to learn from channels that we might be able to bring to SE, and there's a lot we've learned from SE that we can bring to Channels. going to be a loooot of learning and research in all of our futures
6:57 PM
I kinda feel like folks should burn out on review after a while. Or, preferably, stop reviewing slightly before that point.
And SO is a prime example of how extrinsic motivation like rep can bring out intrinsic motivation in people
I see it in myself
Cool. When the Channels people are looking at things that might be useful to port over to Q&A sites, I would hate to think they get tunnel vision for Stack Overflow.
I can hardly muster the willpower to review these days
Extrinsic motivation kinda sucks if you've no intrinsic motivation.
But yeah, like I said, I figured you had thought of this already.
6:58 PM
@DavidZ You should post that as an answer on the announcement (if something similar isn't already there)
I mean, look at the folks who chase rep to 1000, 10000, 20000 - and then stop.
@Shog9 Really though? I thought as a company your interest is in as many people reviewing as possible
2 minute warning!
@Magisch which doesn't require the same people to keep reviewing forever
@bluefeet OK, I'll do that when I get a chance to formulate it
6:59 PM
Nice thing about people is, there's more being born all the time
(6-8 weeks :-P)
if you need more, just wait a few years.
@Shog9 I should have stopped, I knew it ...
@Shog9 bit dark, but review is extremely ungrateful IMO ...
Damn, I did the math wrong and joined at the end
6:59 PM
@rene glutton for punishment
@Shog9 Are any of the new nav initiatives still being worked on that were supposed to help find good questions?
@Vogel612'sShadow I'd argue that moderation tends to be ungrateful. You can't entirely paper over that.
@BhargavRao You're just two weeks early for the next one!
@BhargavRao timezones are terrible
That just about does it for time today. Thanks everyone for coming! If you have feedback on the format, please leave it on the meta post. It wasn’t a huge amount of time, but we’re trying to keep these short and lightweight so we can do them more often, since it’s important that we get this time to talk to each other directly. Next one in two weeks - watch meta for details. Thanks for town-hall-chatting, y’all!
7:00 PM
I should be reviewing more on SO (probably shouldn't be saying this here)
@Shog9 what would you think of displaying some review stats on the profile page, for people to boast?
@Pops true that.
I don't know if I burnt out, or if it's just my company is doubling in size this year. I suspect the latter.
Either way, SE is to blame ^^
Hey, thanks everyone for being a part of this - ain't every day I can get random people to listen to my fevered ramblings in real time
Hope to see you again in a couple weeks!
@Vogel612'sShadow I'd like to do that. It's on my list of TODOs to look at
7:01 PM
Yeah, stats - success stats especially - would be really nice to have.
@Shog9 of course, you're a responsible person. ;)
It's on my list, I Promise!!
Wait, is this Town Hall now?
Focus folks on doing something that has a long-term effect - that feeds intrinsic motivation.
@Shog9 there's Twitter for that, too :-)
7:01 PM

Town Hall #3 - 12 July 2017

31 mins ago, 30 minutes total – 172 messages, 16 users, 37 stars

Bookmarked 6 secs ago by hairboat

@ShadowWizard aaaaand you missed it. ..
@Meta'sMug how much do I ever write that's under 140 characters?
I know I keep harping on this, but I feel that many complaints about review audits being too punishing would be removed by the ability to dispute individual audits. Has there been any interest internally for implementing this?
@ShadowWizard you missed it, or you're early for the next one
@Vogel612'sShadow well, had dinner with wife.... can't miss that. :D
7:02 PM
@Meta'sMug you're welcome in SOCVR if you want company while reviewing
@Shog9 good point!
Q: Can we shorten Stack Exchange URLs by using .se domains?

KrednsI have encountered a problem when trying to introduce new people to the SE network: they can't remember Stack Exchange. So, for example, I might tell a non-tech user: "You should ask your question on this cooking website, it's called cooking.stackexchange.com." They remember the cooking part ver...

@bluefeet surely there will be next one in 6-8 weeks.
Q: Can StackOverflow Inc. purchase the .se top-level domain?

uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐNI was reading the following article: http://www.canon.com/news/2010/mar16e.html It seems Canon is the first company to spring for ICANN's new policy, allowing corporations and businesses to purchase their own TLD (Top Level Domain). I began to think... wouldn't this be the perfect thing for the...

hmm ... it seems that 30 minutes is just too short for open-ended discussion
7:03 PM
@ShadowWizard 2 weeks
(Which I remember because I answered them both.)
@bluefeet we'll see in 2 weeks, I guess. ;)
@ShadowWizard you're always here, how did you miss this?
@Vogel612'sShadow it seems the discussion still goes on. :)
2 mins ago, by Shadow Wizard
@Vogel612'sShadow well, had dinner with wife.... can't miss that. :D
I'm not here when I have other things to do. ;)
Don't worry, I missed it too
7:05 PM
@ShadowWizard this explains why I wasn't pinged from the Den earlier when I clicked "join favorite rooms"
If I'll tell my wife "listen honey, I have to go attend Town Hall in the Tavern" she'll just slap me. :P
Plus, I was hungry.
@BradLarson It's on the backlog of stuff we want to do. We need some bandwidth to get someone in there to do some major review work. It definitely has merit and we'd like it done.
@Vogel612'sShadow hehe, well, the pingers are away these days... you're safe. Kind of. :D
@bluefeet Good to hear. While the code / interface might take a little work, I feel it would be a strong source of goodwill and could bring a few people back to review.
Are audits being failed at some increased rate? It seemed to me like the issue with the increasing backlog was the change in workflow to get to them.
It is possible that the ease of the edit review queue, and the easy accessibility created a sort of gateway experience to reviewing.
7:10 PM
@bluefeet Pardon my cynicism but isn't that SE speak for "probably never"?
youch ... that's harsh ...
@Magisch Um, no but thanks :)
hmm ... proposal for next townhall: power user tools and why they take so long to get implemented
@TravisJ now that you're here can you delete vote this: meta.stackexchange.com/q/298267/158100
I should prefix more of my messages with "hmm ... "
it seems to give me stars...
7:15 PM
hmmm ... not sure
@rene I try to get them when you link em, I managed to delete one last night, but they do tend to get removed prior to me getting there.
OK, thanks for handling this one ;)
@Vogel612'sShadow Two weeks from now, we'll be discussing band saws, the Jaws of Life and drill presses.
@Pops why not unicorns and their affect on the world? ;)
7:17 PM
count me in ...
Unicorns aren't power tools.
Also, one doesn't just implement unicorns. balpha is the miraculous exception who proves the rule.
@Pops of course they are, @JonSkeet rides on one, did you forget already?!
@Pops not anymore :(
12 hours ago, by Shadow Wizard
@balpha hey, Unicornify is dead (giving "Python 2.5 is no longer available. Please refer to https://goo.gl/aESk5L for more information." error), any chance to resurrect it?
Python killed all dem unicornz
Clearly this is room 6's fault - go blame them.
@Shog9 room 6?
@BhargavRao oh lol
@StevenVascellaro yup, retagged now to reflect this.
Might also be on purpose, hence also feature request.
No idea what's going on there, I did try to look into it back then.
@ShadowWizard My question is asking how I can display more than 5 sites, but still have it sorted by reputation
@ShadowWizard Can the question be re-opened?
@StevenVascellaro hmm... well..
On a side note, I have been resisting the urge to add to large batches of questions missing the tag
@StevenVascellaro good. Get to 2K so you can make those edits without flooding the queue
7:34 PM
@rene From what I call, the issue was more about flooding the front page
Getting to 2k rep would not fix that
that is also a fair point
I'm planning on spreading it out across a few days
Or, more accurately, limiting myself to 1 or 2 retags on a specific topic per day
@rene I can see the whole home page, 50 qustions, retagged. :D
I'm already at 1,939, so it's not far off
7:41 PM
I still need my gold badge for editing 500 posts. Maybe we can combine that ...
I used to have a similar pattern of small edits on the TF2 wiki. I kept making redirects for common shorthand item names.
I jokingly added a fake redirect on my user page.
7:54 PM
@Telkitty Not more than I already am, it’ll be another year.
8:13 PM
Shog9 has added an event to this room's schedule.
You got it right the first time?
is the wording here meta.stackexchange.com/a/298325/158100 rude? I'm not sure if voting or flagging is wise. I left my last comment there
checks to make sure he isn't the author of whatever rene's looking at, sighs in relief
Not sure; depends on your cultural background, I suspect.
Guy is kinda clueless; I just feel a bit sad.
Sure. Sad will work for me
Disengaged then
Can a userscript suppress inbox notifications from a particular post / user?
Sounds complicated.
8:25 PM
It'd be nice to have no inbox notifications from users with rep less than X.
@Alex a quick inspection of the html shows the comment link so you could with that reachout to the API to get the user that posted the comment and then hide based on their rep
and then when you click yout inbox an XHR request for meta.stackexchange.com/topbar/inbox is made which delivers earlier mentioned html. With jQuery you can intercept the result and then process it before returning it to the caller
I see, thanks. On second thought though, rep is probably not the best filter for this purpose.
tl;dr; yes, you can ...
8:41 PM
Define R-index as the largest number N such that the site has at least R users who earned at least R points [in a period of time].
The R-index of SO in 2016 was 4025
And 2009? How do you combat R-index inflation?
It grows slowly, was 3963 in 2015.
Apparently I am no longer a top 1000 user at SO :(
#1222       -240
year rank  change
For comparison, Math had R-index of 1089 in 2016. Not that bad.
8:46 PM
It's also a neat number. 1089 * 9 = 9801, same number backward.
And also the square of 99
1089 = 33^2, 9801 = 99^2
@TravisJ The R-index was 2170 in 2009.
8:49 PM
Inflation is good. More people doing more things.
9:05 PM
It doesn't necessarily indicate that more people are doing things on SO. If you mean more people in general developing who are then browsing, that would perhaps be accurate. Views naturally increase over time, and as votes are to some degree a function of views, it only makes sense that there would be inflation.
ExpressionEngine® Answers has R-index of 56 in 2016, down from 124 in 2012.
(A standard example of a ghost town on SE platform)
9:24 PM
Hello World! :) (It's been 26 days since I last posted here.)
@HenryWHHackv2.0 Nice stats
I really came here to say:
Shog9 your awesome! :)
I always wanted to say that.
I don't speak English very well.
Bye! :)
Infact I can stay here and chat a lot but I tend to get annoying.
After being suspended 5 times I am taking no chances.
10:00 PM
pt.SO had its own Town Hall today, the summary is at Assembleia Overflow #001 (JuanM) - Compilação
10:10 PM
So I noticed the shoutout for neutrality.
Almost made me go out and get a monetary account.
This place is the closest I've seen to fulfilling the promise of disclosure = tolerance.
The only way to contain full disclosure is with complete tolerance.
I am truly impressed/grateful how SE/SO has gotten so far in that direction.
... as if anyone asked, and as if I'm going out for a walk to share the news ...
02:00 - 18:0018:00 - 23:00

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