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1  Community / Website and Forum / Re: can we force new posters to read forum stickies? on: May 14, 2013, 09:16:46 pm
Is it feasible to MAKE new posters read the 'how to use this forum' stickies before they are allowed to open a new topic?

There are ways to do this, yes. But they'd have to upgrade the forum (which they aren't interested in doing) and even if they did upgrade it, they wouldn't listen to me.  smiley-cry

So I'm afraid nothing will change here, as the powers that be seem to know it all already.  smiley-confuse
2  Community / Website and Forum / Re: Website needs prominent links to Atmel datasheets on: May 14, 2013, 09:09:06 pm
Why do so many people seem opposed to being helpful? It's not as if a link to 2 or 3 key datasheets on the Reference page would be difficult to implement.

...R

As you can now see, as I did Robin, there is a strange mindset here. If it's a problem with a project or the Arduino, all comments are welcome. But if it's regarding the forum itself, it's off limits to criticism. That's really too bad.
3  Community / Website and Forum / Re: The Forum is Buggy on: May 14, 2013, 09:06:06 pm
Maybe it is high time they look into another forum software. I am starting to think that SMF isn't that reliable.

They need to upgrade the forum software (for free). The version they are using is way out of date, it's 1.1.18 and the latest version of SMF is several years advanced - 2.0.4.

But what the hell do I know right?  smiley-confuse
4  Community / Website and Forum / Re: Forum is popular and stuff gets lost on: April 20, 2013, 08:21:24 pm
If you want/need an Arduino forum just for toy trains, start one, but don't stunt the growth of this one.

You don't have a clue what you are talking about do you?  smiley-slim
5  Community / Website and Forum / Re: Forum is popular and stuff gets lost on: April 10, 2013, 07:27:18 am
Here's prime examples of over-boarding -

This is a topic for an entire forum -

Robotics
Platforms, motors, algorithms and sensors to conform robotics projects


This is a topic for an entire forum -

Education and Teaching
Course curriculum, links to existing courses, discussions about experiences at different locations


This is a topic for an entire forum -

Interactive Art
Art installations, wearable objects, music instruments, projects from the arts field interactive Art


This is a topic for an entire forum -

Product Design
Creating interactive prototypes of future devices


This is a topic for an entire forum -

General Electronics
Resistors, capacitors, breadboards, soldering, etc.


Not only is "general electronics" a topic for an entire forum, there are already resources and forums that exist that are as good or better than this one for general electrons support. The internet is flooded with that kind of help. There is no logical reason for this support forum to help people with general electronics when it's being covered in a hundred other forums and websites. I just looked at the recent general elec. posts - pull-down resistors, transistors, breadboards, schematic symbols, relays, yada, yada, yada - same things day-in and day-out, all too much and off- topic for an Arduino support forum.

^^^ Why are they interested in adding all that burden and traffic to a support forum for the Arduino? It detracts from the core purpose here - helping people understand how the Arduino works - not how to solve any and every possible thing anyone can dream up.

If those boards were removed, and there was a need for that type of support community, I guarantee people will start those forums, and concentrate on those specific topics.

Now will anything change here. Probably not. It's too late, it's like a large corporation - too big to turn and I see no open mindset for improvement or change here.
6  Community / Website and Forum / Re: Forum is popular and stuff gets lost on: April 09, 2013, 09:08:05 pm
I think what the support staff is trying to do is admirable. But it's just too much for one forum.

When I got my Arduino, I joined this forum like I do other forums for other interests, to follow along with the posts and so on. I soon found out this was a futile effort here. If I checked in at 0800, by the end of the day there would be 15 - 20 PAGES of posts. Impossible to "follow along" with members, get to know them, and their interests. It's not so much a small community as a giant airport terminal with strangers every day I've never seen before. I don't do it anymore. I am over the hump now as far as the Arduino goes for what I need it for - I can use it for what I need for my model railroad. If I need to learn a new function I just teach myself or try to search the forum. But as far as trying to keep up with the community members - it can't be done. And that's a shame.

My analogy for this place would be this -

You are the producer of a certain popular model of cordless drill. You set up a forum for it to answer questions regarding it's capabilities. Except before you know it you are not just helping people learn how to properly use it to drill holes and drive screws, and how to properly charge it's batteries, you suddenly have boards set up for help with constructing dog houses, multi-level outdoor decks, summer cottages, and complete two-story homes.

Not only that, you are getting questions about how to use the drill to power go-carts and how to remove the motor from the drill to use in a home made blender. Also questions about how much current the helper LED light takes and how one could convert and connect a gas generator to drive the motor of the drill directly for more power, and how to mod it for use in space travel to the Space Station and beyond.

And what about nuclear power for it? Oh and don't forget the joke board too.

Too much, too much ...

It's a drill. Support the drill. Leave the projects the drill can be used for to other venues.
7  Community / Website and Forum / Re: Forum is popular and stuff gets lost on: April 09, 2013, 07:52:46 pm
I'm new to Arduino but I have programmed PICs and PCs in the past so I have reasonable experience.

In contrast to some other Forums I follow (JRuby programming and model railways) this Forum is really busy. That means that a question I asked yesterday morning is now on page 4. I did get some helpful information in response but I suspect there may be more available from some other forum readers. However I'd be very surprised if it is is ever seen again. It has been completely swamped (just like every other question) by dozens of newer different questions. ...

Robin,

The problems are -

A. Too many of the same questions get asked over and over. And over. They need to come up with a way to screen these same questions because most new members will not search for answers. Answering how transistors work and so on can best be left to the myriad of other very good resources that already exist.

B. The forum is over-boarded - this is a classic case study of trying to take on way too much for one forum. They are trying for a be-all and end all for any and every possible type of project anyone can imagine (and school assignments for students). They should support the Arduino, it's intrinsic capabilities, and the software. They should leave to other forums the support of the myriad and sundry projects that people might want to build.

8  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 19, 2013, 07:41:19 am
@modeller: What I see here is argument ad hominem, mainly from you and in most of your posts.

Of course that's what you see. That's because you cannot answer my refutations, so you try to find a way of not having to do it.

Quote
I'm going to move this to Bar Sport. I think you are time-wasting, trolling or both.

I protest this. This action proves  you are not serious about any suggestions. I posted a serious topic and if people are posting silly and/or short responses that have nothing to do with the point, what am I do do but try to get it back on track?

For example, I answered your reply but you didn't even respond.

Here's your reply and my answer. Does that sound like I'm trolling? Why don't you moderate the people who are trolling, instead of accusing me of it?

My guess is, that since the device is aimed at the hobby market, they expect that the first thing the new owner will do is open it up and hold it in their hands. The ESD bag would just slow that process down slightly. In the absence of warnings about "only use at an ESD-safe workstation", which would go against the whole hobbyist approach, there isn't much point about worrying about ESD.


Hello Nick,

I a little shocked (no pun intended) that I'm even having this ESD packaging debate with some of the people here who are obviously highly skilled in electronics, so instead of quoting the sources I was going to quote, let's take the argument in your "hobbyist" direction.

Every single card I've ever bought for my computer hobby over the years, as far as I can remember, has been shipped in an ESD protective bag. I open it's box and it's sitting there in an ESD bag. Video cards, USB cards, Firewire cards, memory sticks, Wireless PCI cards, network adapters, and so on.

Why, if these computer items are meant for hobbyists, as your line of reasoning goes, were they then shipped in ESD bags? These manufacturers seem to agree with my logic - the industriy's logic and ESD standards.

How do you think are they different from the Arduino circuit board?
9  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 08:16:04 pm
Yup, pure logic... Plastic bags vs paper. 

eried,

Are you pressed for time?

Do you have a hard time expressing complex points?

I've written quite a bit and posted pictures to bolster my position.

If you cannot muster more than a few short quips of the vast intellect behind your short phrases, then why even bother responding?
10  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 07:50:47 pm
Well even if I am ``quoting scripture'' at least I'm not pretending I have ``evidence'' I do not.

OK, so you have no evidence to support that it's safe to ship Arduino boards without ESD protective bags. I don't think anyone has that evidence. But, that's not the way the world operates in this area. Like I said, I've got lots of computer boards over the years and they were all shipped in ESD bags. Do you really think each manufacturer did a specific test to make sure the bag was needed, or do you think they followed general safe ESD shipping guidelines?

Now be honest.

Do you really think such very specific evidence exists, for the Arduino, or any other electronics board? Or, on the other hand, don't you really think that guidelines coming from the people who realize the effects of, and have studied ESD, put down general safe procedures for shipment, and that responsible shippers of electronics products should follow these guidelines? Do you really want me to Google the hundreds of sites that recommend ESD safe packaging, or would you rather just concede and fight some other battle you might win?

Quote
Furthermore, I do agree that the packaging in the picture you showed is somewhat excessive, but not as excessive as a lot of other things I see.

Thanks. You know, when we meet each other with rational and logical responses, we can all have a better conversation. I used to watch Star Trek as a kid. Remember Spock - the logical Vulcan? It may seem silly, but sometimes I actually make myself act like Spock, because I am human and have certain things I like to stand behind. But sometimes it's better to shed human biases and just act like Spock. Just approach the issue with logic and no emotions, like this one.
11  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 06:54:23 pm
I'd be interested in seeing the export sources who are trusted experts in the field of AVR microcontrollers shipped in paper boxes that have devoted research and engineering to the issue.

Why are you interested in seeing it? Because you have some deep insight to contribute? Why not do so now?

You are trolling the topic. Unless you have some qualitative substance to add them I suggest you read along. Until then you are nothing more than another religious devotee quoting scripture.
12  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 06:21:27 pm
You need to work on your Karma count.  smiley-wink

On my forum we have both plus and minus karma, but it's been re-named "IQ".

As far as negative karma (which isn't available here) the way I look at it, the more negative I get, the more I know my points are getting through. I don't go for the "we all deserve medals and everyone's a winner" baloney.

I wear negative karma like a badge of honor Lefty.  smiley
13  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 05:51:40 pm

Yep, feel free to quote me.


What I see in this thread is mainly an irrational and sometimes hostile resistance to any type of suggestions that the Arduino packaging, or shipment methods, are not the best. Either it's the guy who claims the boxes shed a certain type refreshing drink-on-the-go, or it's you and others who have a greater knowledge of ESD protection than experts who work in this specific field and design these protection methods, and who's expertise, if quoted, would not be acknowledged.

So the reaction is not one of logic, science, or rational thinking. This is more like a kind of cultish or dogmatic reaction, almost a type of religious mindset. Our religion (the Arduino) and it's pastors and Pope (the company owners) can't be doing anything wrong, otherwise our belief would be false, but we know it to be true, because that's what we believe.

All hail the cardboard box!

Interesting, very interesting.

14  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 05:08:13 pm
Quote
How do you think are they different from the Arduino circuit board?

Because they were designed to be used by artist and creative people and not dull stuffy engineers.  smiley-wink

So ... they aren't different from the Arduino.

Quote
Actually the arduino micros on board all have clamping protection diodes on their I/O pins to protect from all but the most dramatic of ESD sources. I worked in digital field service for decades starting in the late 60s before ESD packaging was even invented and never had a problem handling PCB without such protection. It wasn't until later with the use of early CMOS logic chips where ESD damage became a bigger issue. Later it became more standard for CMOS manufactures to install internal clamping diode protection on their device pins to help deal with ESD vulnerability. The use of wrist straps and conductive bags is mostly over kill for completed boards, but people will always fall back on 'think of the children' we must all use grounded wrist straps and such.

So it is your avowed position that ESD protective bags are not required for shipment of completed electronic boards, and if I quote you expert sources that say you're mistaken, that you will just tell us that you are the trusted expert on this subject and that the experts in the industry that have devoted research and engineering to this issue are all wrong.

Do have that about right Lefty?
15  General Category / General Discussion / Re: Arduino Packaging Strategy is Wasting Paper Products on: March 18, 2013, 04:37:15 pm
My guess is, that since the device is aimed at the hobby market, they expect that the first thing the new owner will do is open it up and hold it in their hands. The ESD bag would just slow that process down slightly. In the absence of warnings about "only use at an ESD-safe workstation", which would go against the whole hobbyist approach, there isn't much point about worrying about ESD.

Hello Nick,

I a little shocked (no pun intended) that I'm even having this ESD packaging debate with some of the people here who are obviously highly skilled in electronics, so instead of quoting the sources I was going to quote, let's take the argument in your "hobbyist" direction.

Every single card I've ever bought for my computer hobby over the years, as far as I can remember, has been shipped in an ESD protective bag. I open it's box and it's sitting there in an ESD bag. Video cards, USB cards, Firewire cards, memory sticks, Wireless PCI cards, network adapters, and so on.

Why, if these computer items are meant for hobbyists, as your line of reasoning goes, were they then shipped in ESD bags? These manufacturers seem to agree with my logic - the industriy's logic and ESD standards.

How do you think are they different from the Arduino circuit board?
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