[ros-users] answers.ros.org is the hell

Thibault Kruse kruset at in.tum.de
Wed Feb 20 12:34:36 UTC 2013

I also prefer answers to forum for the purpose of community driven support.

However I am not too happy with the split-up of mailing lists. Searching 
Google for "ros mailing list" I get this:

https://code.ros.org/mailman/listinfo (This seems to be an reduced 
version of the next link)
https://code.ros.org/gf/project/ros/mailman/ (Some lists seem to be 
dead, other still active, but no overview)

And then looking for SIGs as well, I get to:
with google groups for most sigs, some of which never had any activity.

The splitup makes it difficult to track activity and to search all 
archives, it also discourages users from following activity at a glance.
A page listing those groups would help fetching the interest of people 
to hot topics.

I don't know though whether any great solution exists that combines the 
convenience of a mailing list with the cohesive properties of a forum. 
Googl groups have categories, so e.g. all ROS SIGs could communicate 
within the same google group but in different categories, not sure how 
well that works via email. Else there are online offerings such as

http://doc.tiki.org/Forum+and+Mailing+List+Synchronization (open source)
https://github.com/CyberShadow/DFeed (opensource)
and probably more.

The last in the list looks like phpBB, but seems to be quite fast and 
written in D (whatever that is):
see the dlang homepage for the forum: http://forum.dlang.org/

If there was forums.ros.org that looked like the dlang page interms of 
getting an overview of current activity, I think that would be much 
better than our current mailman/Google-groups combination.


On 20.02.2013 10:54, William Woodall wrote:
> This is just my opinion, but I feel that QA systems like askbot and 
> stackexchange are far superior for this type of community effort than 
> a forum like phpbb.  Case in point, I almost never find the answer to 
> my programming or system administration problems on a forum anymore, I 
> instead find them on *.stackexchange.com <http://stackexchange.com>.
> I don't think it has to do with owning the data as much as the arduous 
> process of getting a stackexchange instance.  The 
> http://robotics.stackexchange.com/ has been working towards getting 
> vetted for a long time now, perhaps ROS questions/answers could live 
> there in the future, but having a dedicated ROS stackexchange is not 
> feasible IMHO.
> --
> On Wed, Feb 20, 2013 at 1:48 AM, Claudio Carbone 
> <cla_carbone at tiscali.it <mailto:cla_carbone at tiscali.it>> wrote:
>     On 20/02/13 10:24, Claudio Carbone wrote:
>>     you can have subforums tailored to the specific argument (eg:
>>     building which would cover build systems and package/stack
>>     structures; transformations which would cover urdf models,
>>     joints, publishers; Communications which would cover the ROS API,
>>     topics, services, etc...)
>     I just remembered that the phpbb.org <http://phpbb.org> support
>     forum (phpbb being one of the widest spread free forum platforms)
>     even has sub-sub-<...>-forums for each and every
>     plugin/modification where the creator of the plugin/mod can answer
>     users questions far from the main busy discussion areas keeping
>     them clean.
>     I can't but think this would be much more useful to the community.
>     Although I acknowledge that it's ultimately a management decision
>     from WG or whoever will guide ROS in the future.
>     Best regards
>     -- 
>     *Eng. Claudio Carbone
>     Embedded Systems Design*
>     P.IVA: 11688471009
>     tel: +393809017424 <tel:%2B393809017424>
>     email: Send email
>     <mailto:cla_carbone at tiscali.it>My linkedin profile
>     <http://it.linkedin.com/in/embeddedesign/en>
>     My Portfolio
>     My portfolio site <http://www.fusioncoredesign.it/>
>     _______________________________________________
>     ros-users mailing list
>     ros-users at code.ros.org <mailto:ros-users at code.ros.org>
>     https://code.ros.org/mailman/listinfo/ros-users
> -- 
> William Woodall
> Willow Garage - Software Engineer
> wwoodall at willowgarage.com <mailto:wwoodall at willowgarage.com>
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