I mentioned this in another thread, and Anonymous Monk kindly suggested I float it in its own thread - so here we go.
The problem at hand re anonymous users is that some people really really love Anonymous Monk, and others really really don't. There are certainly folks who are very vocal about this both ways and who continue to be; the consensus has always been either anonymous posting must completely stop forever and the Anonymous Monk be eliminated, or anonymous posting must be left as it is because it is too difficult to do anything about it.
I'd like to propose a possibility that might let both sides of this discussion have what they want - it it obvious that there is at least some dissatisfaction with anonymous posting as-is, and it's also obvious that we're not going to eliminate a feature which is very popular with many.
(Those who understand the internals of the Perlmonks engine, bear with me; I've not seen the code, so I do not yet know if this is feasible. If I'm incorrect, let's talk it over and see if the concept is something we can work with, even if my specific implementation guesses are not.)
We keep the Anonymous Monk. This is, from much reading here, not negotiable.
There are, from time to time, personality conflicts among the members of this site. This is simply a fact.
At times, some people may not want to see postings from others, either selectively, or at all.
Any proposed solution must not alter the current functionality's default operation.
Any suggestion must be as small as possible a change.
This seems like a difficult set of criteria to meet without altering the most basic characteristics of the users - but let's look at this from a different angle. What if we made "allow anonymous users to respond" to be a characteristic of a node instead?
We'd default this characteristic to be on unless turned off. If turned off, all child nodes of this node would inherit the characteristic (whether by data inheritance or plain old copying is an implementation detail - suffice it to say that the characteristic would be added to each node, and only the first node in a new thread would have the option of setting this characteristic - for simplicity, if you started out open, you don't get to "take it back"). All child nodes would retain the parent's characteristic, and would not be allowed to alter it. However, if node characteristics are truly inheritable from a root-of-thread node, then "taking it back" is possible (what is my root node's current "allow anonymous" setting?), and a nice thing to permit. I do not think nodes should be pruned if this setting is changed; that adds too much complication.
Alternatively, each top node could have a pointer to the originator's "block list". Checking a "no anonymous replies" checkbox in your home node adds the Anonymous Monk to this list; a secondary input field/page in the user's home node settings would allow them to add other ids to the block list (probably stored as home node IDs). Each new thread would copy/inherit the block list from the user to the root node - probably copy, as we don't want the changes to propagate across large swaths of the database if someone posts a lot then alters their block list. Each subsequent child node would continue to receive this block list.
Users who did not want to block the anonymous monk would leave the box unchecked (and if the block list exists, would have an empty block list); this allows them to use Perlmonks in the style to which they are accustomed.
Users who want to block other monks (whoever this might be) would add them to their block list (or check the box), and they would no longer have to see posts from those monks. Blocked monks would receive a polite "monk prefers not to see your posts, sorry" message when trying to post to a node/thread on which they are blocked.
Considerations should not be blockable; I'm on the fence about votes. Needs discussion to tease out the positives and negatives here.
Let's please not simply say declare it impossible; let's think about it and see if we can partly do it if the whole idea doesn't work. If there are architectural issues, let's look at them and see if there are any further ideas that might let us move forward in a different way with the same kind of function.
It just comes down to each monk being allowed to control what they wish to read, which is a reasonable goal. Let's see if we can find a way to meet it. I am more than happy to do (and capable of doing) work to make this happen.
Recently I was asked by another monk for a Twitter to PerlMonks user handle decoder. I would love to be able to store my social network user names by my avatar instead of mixing it in with the text of my profile. Also, if a Monk fills in those fields, it might also be nice for a meta page with a list like Monks with Twitter accounts.
I certainly doubt that the loss of monks or votes in the last years represents a decline of quality.
My suggestion (IFF easily realized!) is to select the nodes after multiplying a antiproportional weight factor which is derived from either average votes or maximum votes in the corresponding year.
This is far from being urgent, I just thought it might be worth noting, that ATM "selected best nodes" only represents the far past of the community.
( addicted to the Perl Programming Language)
PS: another factor could be that old posts had more time collecting votes, I don't have the necessary statistical data to check. Anyway it's still strange if this only applies to nodes written prior to 2006.
Recent discussion in the CB has turned to the topic of Anonymous Monks, and the utility of anonymity on this site. Arguing against anonymity, Jim said, "... you can't distinguish one [Anonymous Monk] from another [Anonymous Monk] in any given thread. You can't have a reasoned argument with someone when that someone is an amorphous blob that can't be differentiated from other instances of the same amorphous blob."
As an answer to this, what about differentiating AM's in a given thread by calling them "Anonymous Monk 1", "Anonymous Monk 2", etc.? I.E., in a given thread, we'd assign a unique identifier to each distinct anonymous commenter. That would preserve the anonymity of the commenter, both within the PM website and to the outside world, while at the same time allowing commenters (both anonymous and otherwise) to distinguish between and cogently reply to different AM's in a thread.
I won't go into the details of implementation here; that's up to the maintainers.
I just happened upon a node that was recycled into a different context. I have no Idea how, or why it happened. But in it's current context/format; reads like a --
Things to ask yourself before posting a question on PerlMonks
As such. I think it's a perfect candidate for a section in the PerlMonks FAQ. Titled, as I've done so here, in this post. For reference, see have synax error in this coding?. Which I, and an Anonymous Monk, also show where the original post lives.
Thank you for your consideration.
UPDATE: I reversed the reference to the post I intended to point, with the reference to the original post -- thanks jdporter
Greetings, Monks. I recently had a "shoot out" with marto. I think we both had valid points. It all stemmed from the shortcut link to the FreeBSD man pages (note I didn't just link man to the man pages ;)
Point(s) were. I assumed, that because the link was to the FreeBSD man pages, that the returned results would be from the FreeBSD commands. But (counter intuitively) they are to SuSE Linux. This came as a bit of a shock to me. As the link to the PerlMonks short cuts page What shortcuts can I use for linking to other information?
Unix man pages:
A specific command: [man://command name]
Search form: [man://] (no args)
Just a thought. But I wondered how it might be received to have announcements in the nodelets area,. That scrolled up, much like the CB does. But with announcements of the PerlMonks users that have just graduated to a higher level. It seems fitting of the theme, and times; hoisting a tankard to a fellow Monk who has just graduated to a higher level. I dunno. Just a thought. I thought it might attract people, or possibly be well received.
use Perl::Always or die;
my $perl_version = (5.12.5);
I think I'm missing something: I can't seem to link into the middle of a document on CPAN as I would expect to be able to do. So I expect that either: (a) Someone may need to tap me with a cluebat, or (b) we may be missing a documentation shortcut.
Context: While answering a question (Re: Is it possible to run SQL select in Oracle ... tl;dr), I wanted to link to the fetchrow_hashref function in the DBI docs in CPAN. I expected that we would have a shortcut that could do so, but I wasn't able to figure out how to do it nicely.
For more than three hours yesterday, the Perlmonks website was broken: it was impossible to post any new writeup. It was me who caused this downtime by urging Corion to apply a particular pmdev patch I wrote, when that patch had a bug. I hereby apologize to all monks.
The details. The downtime lasted between approximately 2013-11-15 15:00 UTC to 2013-11-15 18:45 UTC. The patch was looksLikeSpam - (patch).
A few nights ago, I went looking to find other options in the way of editors to try out. I found links to Code Editors and Development Environments and Perl Development Tools, and began opening links to see what each was about. I found several links, however, that appear to have suffered bit-rot, and thought I should bring it to someone's attention. Where I could, I have tried also to find or suggest updated or possibly better links.