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If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it

by ysth (Canon)
on Jan 25, 2004 at 12:45 UTC ( #323964=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

Note: this is not a criticism of the recent proposed voting changes. Those are the kind of fine tunings after long consideration that are reasonable.

I've gone through a period where I questioned large parts of how the monestary works. Why are node reputations hidden, why XP, why limited votes, etc.

There may be reasonable arguments for changing many things; the problem with following reason is that human nature is not so easily predicted. Much of how people use perlmonks is driven by a complex combination of everything :) to do with the site. To introduce major changes (e.g. allowing a user to see all node reputations upon request) would require a real conviction, not just that that would rationally seem better, but that overall things are not working as they are.

And things are working. Somehow, our founders have got things right. But how do you validate that assertion empirically? One metric is how prone to returning to the site experienced monks are. A quick sort through Saints in our Book shows:

Last here# of Saints
> 52 weeks ago2
26-52 weeks ago8
13-25 weeks ago7
5-12 weeks ago20
3-4 weeks ago9
1-2 weeks ago20
< 1 week ago186

I find those numbers extremely impressive.

janitored by ybiC: Retitle to improve searchability - s/it/(the PM XP system)/, properly balanced <p> and <tr> tags to avoid breaking intitial tests of "Proper nesting of HTML to be enforced"

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it
by jdtoronto (Prior) on Jan 25, 2004 at 14:54 UTC
    vsth, I too read the post from theorbtwo about potential changes to the XP/Voting system and I wondered, why?

    Periodically we here about how bad/discriminatory/discouraging our XP and Voting system is. But it seems to me that is usually in response to something inflamatory that has just happened and not in response to a long felt and deep conviction that something is inherently wrong. In fact I would suggest that our XP system right now is pretty gentle, non-intrusive and works well. After a brief period of 'training' the neophyte monk gets the ability to vote, he progresses, but what does that offer him? Nothing really! Well, nothing much more than a sense of belonging and the knowledge that help is at hand.

    Those who find the Monastery a place of value show their appreciation by their continued activity here. To me the monastery has been like lurking on the campus of Perl University. Reading the threads is a bit like sticking your head into a lecture theatre and catching a dissertation on a single topic. To read the CB is like walking around the common room and listening in to the conversations between the dons. I enjoy this place and the helpful advice, the admonition to do better and the generally supportive nature of the monks.

    I don't think it is broken, so I hope our gods don't try to fix it.


Re: If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it
by blue_cowdawg (Monsignor) on Jan 25, 2004 at 14:59 UTC

    At first when I saw the subject of this node I had an entirely different idea about what it was about before I read it. When I hear the phrase "if it ain't broke don't fix it" in my profession I get my dander up just a tad. Why?

    First off lots of folks live with broken "things" such as slow computers, applications that crash all the time etc. and don't even realize that it's broke. They just just accept the status quo and reload the application or put up with delays etc.

    I am a Unix Engineer by title and my job is to point out to such folks that it's broke and how to fix it. That's what I get the medium sized bucks for and when we as engineers figure out how to fix it and life gets better for the end user they are happy and I go on to the next thing that might be broke and on it goes.

    Is the XP system broke? Dunno. ysth makes the statement that

        Somehow, our founders have got things right.
    Probably right, but how can I say? What yardstick do I have to measure "right" with in this case? What right do I have to measure it? I'm not one of the gods anyway!

    Part of why I hesitate one way or another to say if the XP system is broke or not is the simple fact that I don't know what our founders had in mind and in my not-so-humble opinion they are the only ones who can say definitively if it's broke or not.

    Closing thought: XP is probably the least important facet of PM to me anyway. This could be one reason I don't see the system as being broke.

    Peter L. Berghold -- Unix Professional
    Peter at Berghold dot Net
       Dog trainer, dog agility exhibitor, brewer of fine Belgian style ales. Happiness is a warm, tired, contented dog curled up at your side and a good Belgian ale in your chalice.
Re: If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it
by Abigail-II (Bishop) on Jan 26, 2004 at 01:07 UTC
    Somehow, our founders have got things right.
    They got what right? What were the goals? To get a bunch of people postings things on a website? That's happening, but that's also happening on other sites, some of them who are looked to in disdain. Or is it to attract Perl people? Well, there are Perl people here, but you could have gotten Perl people in lots of other ways too. And there are a lot of Perl people who are active on about any other Perl forum I know, but who don't want to touch Perlmonks with a 10 foot-pole.

    So, what exactly did the "founders" get right?


      And there are a lot of Perl people who are active on about any other Perl forum I know, but who don't want to touch Perlmonks with a 10 foot-pole.
      I'd be interested to know what most bothers those people, and why you (apparently) don't agree.
        It seems to be focussed on two issues. First, the snobbish attitude (our founders have got things right), second, the klunky interface.


Re: If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it
by Anonymous Monk on Jan 26, 2004 at 02:10 UTC
    Somehow, our founders have got things right.

    I give you couple wrongs:

    • You got more political stuff here than it should be
    • The thought that reputation can be used to indicate the quality of a post.
    • Too much commentary
      Can you give examples of 1 and 3? And I disagree on reputation (though it may be only max(min(int($rep/25),5),-5) that's a pretty reliable (with of course a few exceptions)). :)

        Give you an example?

        If you are not projected to get XP points from this stream, will you still waste time to start this thread?

        One more example of politics:

        Everybody screams that the XP point is wrong, once a while, but nobody dare to remove it? why? the consequence.

      The thought that reputation can be used to indicate the quality of a post.
      You're laying responsibility for a thougt (in your head) on the founders of perlmonks?

      Too much commentary
      You are a stupid a***ole. Shut the f*** up.

        So you demonstrated what an asshole is. A very typical one, huh?

        You know what, you don't see this kind of behavior on other tech forums. LOL! This has said all about the defects you people have here.

Re: If (the PM XP system) ain't broke, don't fix it
by Anonymous Monk on Jan 26, 2004 at 02:36 UTC

    I second your numbers.

    I logged in, but for what?

    Simply to vote? Simply to chat? Maintain my personal node, as web hosting? actively ask questions? actively provide answers?

    You appears to unreasonablly simplify the meaning of those numbers. If you cannot give those numbers a more meaningful analysis, let's don't quote them to mislead people.

      They logged in to do something, and have presumably done so other times as well. I agree that the data is not that detailed, but that's what I had to work with. My point was that perlmonks appears to have a pretty good addiction rate, and I think that is a good thing.

      Other statistics I thought of gathering, that perhaps someone else will take up:

      • Number of monks who joined and shortly thereafter asked a question who stuck around and contributed more (to see if perlmonks offers more than just a one-time help desk to these folk). Obviously, not having AM's included in this is a flaw.
      • Some kind of evidence of progression from asking questions to also answering them.

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