Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Reuben Rissler

To introduce myself, I only am using Gtk for 3 years, but really like
the infrastructure / people / open source surrounding Gtk. I am
sometimes seen as 'theGtknerd'.


On 02/06/2019 06:46 AM, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list wrote:
>
> The GTK project would have various sub-topics, mostly around
> development with and of GTK. Having a better archive search, a better
> moderation system, and a decent web UI are the major selling points
> for switching to Discourse. The fact that the project is also open
> source is neatly aligned with our values.
Let me ask a poignant question, was moderation ever a problem with
mailing lists?
>
> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and
> has opinions about it that they want to share with the community?
I have a computer that is email only for work (no web browser for
several personal reasons). I could no longer be a part of the Gtk
responders as far as I can see. Now, I am not objecting, I am just
stating one scenario to consider before switching.
>
> Ciao,
>  Emmanuele.
> --
> _______________________________________________
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> [hidden email]
> https://mail.gnome.org/mailman/listinfo/gtk-devel-list

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
Hi;

On Wed, 6 Feb 2019 at 13:10, Reuben Rissler <[hidden email]> wrote:

To introduce myself, I only am using Gtk for 3 years, but really like
the infrastructure / people / open source surrounding Gtk. I am
sometimes seen as 'theGtknerd'.


On 02/06/2019 06:46 AM, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list wrote:
>
> The GTK project would have various sub-topics, mostly around
> development with and of GTK. Having a better archive search, a better
> moderation system, and a decent web UI are the major selling points
> for switching to Discourse. The fact that the project is also open
> source is neatly aligned with our values.
Let me ask a poignant question, was moderation ever a problem with
mailing lists?

As the person that moderates two out of the three GTK mailing lists, yes: it’s somewhat annoying the amount of spam going on every day. Not terrible, but it’d be nice not to have to deal with it. Additionally, Discourse would allow us to deal with code of conduct violations in a much better way than mailman currently lets us.



>
> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and
> has opinions about it that they want to share with the community?
I have a computer that is email only for work (no web browser for
several personal reasons). I could no longer be a part of the Gtk
responders as far as I can see.

That’s not accurate: Discourse also works with email, so you’d receive email messages and you’d be able to reply to email messages.

The main differences are that you’d need a different subscription account than the existing one, and that you wouldn’t have the weekly digests, as far as I can see.

Ciao,
 Emmanuele.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list composed on 2019-02-06 12:46 (UTC+0100):

> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has
> opinions about it that they want to share with the community?

As happened when various mozilla dev mailing lists moved to discourse, I ceased having anything to
do with those subjects. The same will happen if gtk mailing lists move to discourse. Web sites and
all their CSS and JS interference and bandwidth overhead are no substitute for plain legible text
email lists.
--
Evolution as taught in public schools is religion, not science.

 Team OS/2 ** Reg. Linux User #211409 ** a11y rocks!

Felix Miata  ***  http://fm.no-ip.com/
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Charles Lindsey
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler


On 06/02/2019 11:46, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list wrote:

> [Cross-posted to various relevant mailing lists; please, reply to
> gtk-devel-list]
>
> As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and other
> core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from the current
> mailman installation to Discourse:
>
>    https://discourse.org/
>
> Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the
> requirements for our sysadmins.

> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has
> opinions about it that they want to share with the community?

Does that mean I have to log in to Discourse every day just to check whether
some new message has arrived? If so, then no thank you. This is a low volume
list, often with two or more weeks between messages.

--
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Tel: +44 161 488 1845                    Web: http://www.cs.man.ac.uk/~chl
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
On Wed, 6 Feb 2019 at 15:11, Charles Lindsey <[hidden email]> wrote:


On 06/02/2019 11:46, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list wrote:
> [Cross-posted to various relevant mailing lists; please, reply to
> gtk-devel-list]
>
> As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and other
> core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from the current
> mailman installation to Discourse:
>
>    https://discourse.org/
>
> Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the
> requirements for our sysadmins.

> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has
> opinions about it that they want to share with the community?

Does that mean I have to log in to Discourse every day just to check whether
some new message has arrived? If so, then no thank you.

No, you could still get email notifications for messages, and you could still send email replies; that's supported on Discourse, as you could easily check on their website.
 
This is a low volume
list, often with two or more weeks between messages.

Yes, the *gtk-devel-list* mailing list is low volume, compared to gtk-app-devel-list and gtk-list. Did you ever wonder why it is? Mostly because mailing lists are kind of terrible. The idea behind switching to Discourse is to improve the communication channels available to GTK developers and users to something more useful than email.

Ciao,
 Emmanuele.

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
Hi all,

I'm very much in favor! Being able to still use e-mail while also
having a convenient and pretty-looking interface is something I look
*really* forward to.

My only question is: what happens to the old archives? Do we keep them
online as-is, or is there a plan to also migrate them? The former
means of course less effort, but the latter would keep everything
unified in one UI for example.
I'm fine with whatever you choose :-)

Thanks in any case for taking this up, Emmanuele!

Cheers,
nielsdg

On Wed, Feb 6, 2019 at 3:42 PM Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list
<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> More information on Discourse:
>
>   - About: https://www.discourse.org/about
>   - Features: https://www.discourse.org/features
>
> Discourse is a forum software that has multiple ways to access it: web, native apps, and email. It's not a mailing list software with a web frontend.
>
> The interesting (to me) parts are:
>
>  - 2FA instead of Mailman's plaintext password
>  - real moderation tools, that can scale with the community and encourage civility and code of conduct compliant behaviour
>  - anti-spam measures
>  - open source software (kind of a pre-requisite)
>  - good UI for reading and replying to topics
>
> The Fedora (Silverblue) and Ubuntu communities already use Discourse, for instance; the SDL community also does.
>
> Ciao,
>  Emmanuele.
>
>
> On Wed, 6 Feb 2019 at 12:46, Emmanuele Bassi <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> [Cross-posted to various relevant mailing lists; please, reply to gtk-devel-list]
>>
>> As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and other core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from the current mailman installation to Discourse:
>>
>>   https://discourse.org/
>>
>> Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the requirements for our sysadmins.
>>
>> The GTK project would have various sub-topics, mostly around development with and of GTK. Having a better archive search, a better moderation system, and a decent web UI are the major selling points for switching to Discourse. The fact that the project is also open source is neatly aligned with our values.
>>
>> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has opinions about it that they want to share with the community?
>>
>> Ciao,
>>  Emmanuele.
>> --
>> https://www.bassi.io
>> [@] ebassi [@gmail.com]
>
>
>
> --
> https://www.bassi.io
> [@] ebassi [@gmail.com]
> _______________________________________________
> gtk-devel-list mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://mail.gnome.org/mailman/listinfo/gtk-devel-list
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
As a side note, Python has also opened a Discourse instance (in addition to their Zulip experiment), and the results have pretty much been positive. I've also been on Fedora's for quite some time, and it's great.

On Wed, Feb 6, 2019 at 5:46 AM Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list <[hidden email]> wrote:
[Cross-posted to various relevant mailing lists; please, reply to gtk-devel-list]

As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and other core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from the current mailman installation to Discourse:

  https://discourse.org/

Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the requirements for our sysadmins.

The GTK project would have various sub-topics, mostly around development with and of GTK. Having a better archive search, a better moderation system, and a decent web UI are the major selling points for switching to Discourse. The fact that the project is also open source is neatly aligned with our values.

Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has opinions about it that they want to share with the community?

Ciao,
 Emmanuele.
--
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Yoko Shimomura, ryo (supercell/EGOIST), Hiroyuki Sawano >> everyone else
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Sriram Ramkrishna
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
On Wed, 2019-02-06 at 12:46 +0100, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list
wrote:
> [Cross-posted to various relevant mailing lists; please, reply to
> gtk-devel-list]
>
> As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and
> other core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from
> the current mailman installation to Discourse:

I'm 100% onboard.  I'd like to align this with the rest of the GNOME
mailing list starting with engagement list.  If it is going to be on
the GNOME infrastructure, if there is some opt-in for the other mailing
list that will just help popularize this for the rest of us on the
GNOME infrastructure.

Cheers,
sri

>
>   https://discourse.org/
>
> Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the
> requirements for our sysadmins.
>
> The GTK project would have various sub-topics, mostly around
> development with and of GTK. Having a better archive search, a better
> moderation system, and a decent web UI are the major selling points
> for switching to Discourse. The fact that the project is also open
> source is neatly aligned with our values.
>
> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and
> has opinions about it that they want to share with the community?
>
> Ciao,
>  Emmanuele.
> --
> https://www.bassi.io
> [@] ebassi [@gmail.com]
> _______________________________________________
> gtk-devel-list mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://mail.gnome.org/mailman/listinfo/gtk-devel-list

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

makepost
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
> We already looked at Hyperkitty, and found it fairly limited in
> functionality. Avoiding Hyperkitty is what led us to Discourse in the
> first place.
Can you link that discussion please? I'm interested what newcomers want
to do such that Hyperkitty doesn't let. Negatives of Discourse: loads
slower, broken without evergreen CSS and JS, huge blank margins. Fedora
uses Hyperkitty on its other, non-Silverblue lists.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
I know someone who set up HyperKitty, it was a nightmare and still is a nightmare. 

--
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https://refi64.com/

On Wed, Feb 6, 2019, 6:54 PM <[hidden email]> wrote:
> We already looked at Hyperkitty, and found it fairly limited in
> functionality. Avoiding Hyperkitty is what led us to Discourse in the
> first place.
Can you link that discussion please? I'm interested what newcomers want
to do such that Hyperkitty doesn't let. Negatives of Discourse: loads
slower, broken without evergreen CSS and JS, huge blank margins. Fedora
uses Hyperkitty on its other, non-Silverblue lists.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

makepost
> I know someone who set up HyperKitty, it was a nightmare

How so? Can you link their blog post? I'm not its user or developer, I
want to better understand the software choice.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Michael Gratton
In reply to this post by Reuben Rissler
On Wed, 6 Feb, 2019 at 10:46 PM, Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-list
<[hidden email]> wrote:
> As part of an attempt at making GTK more friendly to newcomers, I and
> other core developers were thinking of moving the mailing lists from
> the current mailman installation to Discourse:
>
>   <https://discourse.org/>
>
> Possibly still hosted on GNOME infrastructure, depending on the
> requirements for our sysadmins.

Sounds great! Can we get this for other GNOME projects as well? I'd
like to use it for Geary.

//Mike

--
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⚙ <http://mjog.vee.net/>


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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by makepost
Hmm, unfortunately it was over some scattered IRC messages, I can try and find them in the logs if you like. 

--
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On Wed, Feb 6, 2019, 8:38 PM <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I know someone who set up HyperKitty, it was a nightmare

How so? Can you link their blog post? I'm not its user or developer, I
want to better understand the software choice.

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by makepost
[hidden email] composed on 2019-02-07 02:54 (UTC+0200):

>> We already looked at Hyperkitty, and found it fairly limited in
>> functionality. Avoiding Hyperkitty is what led us to Discourse in the
>> first place.

> Can you link that discussion please? I'm interested what newcomers want
> to do such that Hyperkitty doesn't let. Negatives of Discourse: loads
> slower, broken without evergreen CSS and JS, huge blank margins. Fedora
> uses Hyperkitty on its other, non-Silverblue lists.

Hyperkitty made Fedora mailing lists a displeasure, like most of the rest of the web, scripts
hiding things that previously were obvious and made inaccessible without scripting overhead
enabled, overabundant whitespace, tiny gray text, short lists where 5X as many would otherwise fit.
I avoid it as much as possible, trying to get answers from bugzilla.redhat.com or IRC or the
archlinux wiki whenever possible instead.
--
Evolution as taught in public schools is religion, not science.

 Team OS/2 ** Reg. Linux User #211409 ** a11y rocks!

Felix Miata  ***  http://fm.no-ip.com/
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
As has been mentioned, Discourse allows you to receive and via email, you would largely only use the web UI to sign up or change your settings. 

--
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On Wed, Feb 6, 2019, 11:25 PM Felix Miata via gtk-devel-list <[hidden email]> wrote:
Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list composed on 2019-02-06 12:46 (UTC+0100):

> Are there any objections? Did somebody already try out Discourse and has
> opinions about it that they want to share with the community?

As happened when various mozilla dev mailing lists moved to discourse, I ceased having anything to
do with those subjects. The same will happen if gtk mailing lists move to discourse. Web sites and
all their CSS and JS interference and bandwidth overhead are no substitute for plain legible text
email lists.
--
Evolution as taught in public schools is religion, not science.

 Team OS/2 ** Reg. Linux User #211409 ** a11y rocks!

Felix Miata  ***  http://fm.no-ip.com/
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

makepost
In reply to this post by Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list

> hiding things that previously were obvious and made inaccessible without scripting overhead
> enabled, overabundant whitespace, tiny gray text, short lists where 5X as many would otherwise fit.

All these points that you make apply to Discourse. Its client side seems entirely JS and doesn't work on an older phone and often won't load in WebKit-GTK. I'm able to read Fedora mailing lists on both of these and even in a text browser, so it means at least this drawback HyperKitty doesn't have.

> I avoid it as much as possible, trying to get answers from bugzilla.redhat.com or IRC or the
> archlinux wiki whenever possible instead.

Well one should search wikis and bugzilla before writing to a mailing list so they aren't really alternatives. IRC is, yes.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

makepost
In reply to this post by Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list

> you would largely only use the web UI to sign up or change your settings.

What about reading the history? I mostly end up on mailing lists web UI by following links from web searches and bug trackers.
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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by makepost


On Thu, 7 Feb 2019 at 00:54, <[hidden email]> wrote:
> We already looked at Hyperkitty, and found it fairly limited in
> functionality. Avoiding Hyperkitty is what led us to Discourse in the
> first place.
Can you link that discussion please?

It was on IRC and in person discussions, and private emails between various people.
 
I'm interested what newcomers want
to do such that Hyperkitty doesn't let. Negatives of Discourse: loads
slower, broken without evergreen CSS and JS, huge blank margins. Fedora
uses Hyperkitty on its other, non-Silverblue lists.

We asked Fedora developers for their experiences, and they weren't overly impressed with it.

Off the top of my head (and after using Hyperkitty to browse Fedora desktop and devel mailing lists for the last couple of years):

 - Hyperkitty's UX is confusing, cluttered to the point of being unhelpful
 - navigating through recent discussions never makes it clear which emails are newer, and the fake threading makes it visually harder to scan
 - searching is a disaster, with results returned without any sense of what's relevant or not
 - mobile access is pretty much not supported
 - it's all just a front to a mailman, instead of being a whole packaged software; this means:
  - harder to set up and upgrade
  - no moderation tools
  - no categories, sub-categories, or tagging to organise email
  - no integration with services or additional plugins

In general, mailman3 + hyperkitty is a somewhat good upgrade on mailman2 (even though I still prefer the old archive pages compared to hyperkitty; I've been going through those *a lot* for my "History of GNOME" project), but it does not compare to other platforms like Discourse.

Ciao,
 Emmanuele.

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
In reply to this post by Gtk+ - Dev - General mailing list
On Wed, 6 Feb 2019 at 12:19, Emmanuele Bassi <[hidden email]> wrote:

The main differences are that you’d need a different subscription account than the existing one, and that you wouldn’t have the weekly digests, as far as I can see.

It turns out I was wrong: Discourse has "weekly summaries" as well.

As for the subscription: Discourse supports multiple identity providers—Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Yahoo, and GitHub are all supported, and there's a plugin available for GitLab authentication as well, so we might be able to automatically authenticate existing GTK contributors with an account on gitlab.gnome.org.

Ciao,
 Emmanuele.

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Re: Moving from mailing lists to Discourse

Paul Davis


On Fri, Feb 8, 2019 at 7:33 AM Emmanuele Bassi via gtk-devel-list <[hidden email]> wrote:

As for the subscription: Discourse supports multiple identity providers—Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Yahoo, and GitHub are all supported, and there's a plugin available for GitLab authentication as well, so we might be able to automatically authenticate existing GTK contributors with an account on gitlab.gnome.org.

It took one of ardour's (amazing) devs not much more than several hours of work to use Discourse's SSO capabilities to integrate with Drupal authentication, so even if the plugin doesn't work as you want, making something that does will be simple for someone who understands this stuff.

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