Author Topic: Ideas and brainfarts about forum redesign  (Read 255 times)

Walter Schulz

  • Contributor
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7797
Ideas and brainfarts about forum redesign
« on: January 27, 2021, 05:56:47 PM »
[We started a discussion about forum redesign on Discord but I think Discord is not well designed for structured discussions. Therefore this post.]

I cannot stress this enough: ATM ML homepage and forum offer a bad user experience. Information is outdated, found in various places and differ in quality. (Incomplete but you get the idea).

IMO www.magiclantern.fm needs a major redo and this will not happen overnight. What we have is some flexibility in forum structure and some control about the way user access information from here.

I think we should have some form of info counter/forum where user with "standard" questions/issues/requests should be able to use a shortcut. Something related has been tried here https://magiclantern.fandom.com/wiki/New_to_Magic_Lantern%3F_Read_me_first! but didn't catch.

Could be structured as a TOC but this is open to discussion.

Some of the main topics that should/could be adressed today:
Streaming. Linked to other keywords like HDMI, USB streaming, vlogging.
Users looking for this topic will be guided/linked to a short write-up containing what ML offers: clean HDMI, lua_fix, unlimited HDMI streaming, USB streaming via EOS Utility+OBS, USB streaming via EOS Webcam and limitations (no resolution of your choice (apart from forced VGA) ... etc.). Link to lua_fix as recommended build, list of supported cams, installation instructions.
Errors and mishaps
I think of some sort of flowchart: Specify error/mishap to tell candidates for emergency department from those just having troubles to shoot some freaky RAW resolution they saw on youtube. And of course installation errors. Broken cards ...
The all dreaded owner of a 999D asking for a build
Frankly, the method "If your camera is not listed ..." doesn't work well. I suggest to have a section listing each and every EOS digital camera (+Powershots in ML realm) which is linked to a short and clear description what is going on. EOS M3, M5, M6, M10, M100 should be guided to CHDK with disclaimer we have no authority about the things happening there.
Donations Status report about why ATM only bitcoins are accepted.

Okay, you get the idea! More of a brainstorm, not complete, open to discussion.

Further things I think should be changed: A short listing which information sources are used/useable for which purpose.
Above there is a line with twitter, discord, reddit and irc.
Example: There is no hint reddit is no official communication channel and reddit mods have no interaction with ML team and - apart from around two people there - have no affiliation with ML team. And one of them gets pretty tired at times ...
Missing: Statement about inofficial facebook groups with Magic Lantern in their name.
Missing: Absence of any official youtube channel or even entries.
Add other social medias if wanted but I'm convinced we confuse people by being unclear about official channels and their use cases.

natschil

  • New to the forum
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Ideas and brainfarts about forum redesign
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2021, 11:49:22 PM »
I would suggest you use something like github pages for the webpage.  If I'm not mistaken, this essentially treats the webpage as a git repository, which means that multiple people editing things etc... works like you want it to. If someone notices a mistake, they make a pull-request with the correction, people can comment on it, and to merge it just requires the click of a button from an administrator.  I know that a number of developers prefer mercurial, but I think something like a mirror to github would also have some advantages such as the ease of setting up more of an "ecosystem" around the project.

That said, I think the current webpage is fine for 99% of users, i.e. those who just want to run magic lantern to get some of the standard features. However, the information for those interested in development or cutting-edge features is a different story. I'm not sure what the best way of doing this is. Most importantly, I think there should be a landing page for those who want to compile the project from source, together with detailed instructions on how to write a simple "Hello-World" program. Just figuring out how to run code on the camera isn't easy. Maybe this exists somewhere, but I'm having trouble finding it and I've compiled magic lantern from source before so am not a complete newbie.


Edit: https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=19232.0 looks like the kind of "Hello World" thing I mentioned, is it up to date?
 I think a lot of magic lantern grew somewhat "organically", which means that there is little formal documentation. But documenting things in a wiki on a per-camera basis as opposed to random forum posts here and there is what I would vote for.   That said something like the "Issues" on Heptapod/github/gitlab are are also nice because it is easier to reference (a) other issues and (b) code that fixes things. Of course, this is a lot of work but just having a single place where people can contribute via pull-requests would be a nice Schelling point for people to add information that I feel currently doesn't exist.