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Re: [IP] Question for Brad



> "In a perfect world, I'd really like to see IP switch over to a Forum
> type discussion system."
> 
> I know that Michael has discussed this issue before, but I'd love to
> hear an update.
> 

There are a couple of man years of work in the software automation 
behind the IP list and web site. The listserv and a (if there was a) 
replacement forum are the easy parts. At the moment I don't have 
another couple of man years available to completely re-write the 
automation to accommodate a switch to another format so this will 
have to do for the time being.

> I think that the people and information on this site are fabulous, but
> I hate the email format.  (I hope that doesn't mean you're going to
> run me off.)
> 
> I would also prefer a forum discussion system for the following
> reasons:
> 
> 1)  I don't like putting my email address out on the web.  Therefore I

Your email address is not on the web. The list and its archives are 
protected from robots and the like. We've never had a spammer grab 
our list addresses (they are seeded with traps so I would know).

> use a secondary email address that makes it  tougher to participate in
> discussions. 2)  I get tired of the repetitive replies to questions
> because most of us reply to a question before reading every other
> reply that may have already been emailed into the system. 3)  I get
> tired of people not cropping posts before replying, so that we see the
> same thing over and over again. 4)  It is less time-consuming to read
> posts in a Forum rather than having to click forward to another email
> message. 5)  I feel as though we would get to know each other better
> if it was easier to have more timely back-and-forth discussions.
> 

There are no forums I'm on that are as busy as this list. I believe 
all the same issues will/would come up. It is simply a matter of 
preference.... and as I said above, it is not a trivial matter to 
switch as it involves multiple integrated systems and a lot of 
software that runs well now and is "not broken". A major update is a 
big deal and the resources are not really available to undertake the 
task. Drop a couple of hundred K on it and that might be a different 
matter. As it is now, IP runs 50-75k below a resonable budget now and 
that has to be resolved before any major projects are undertaken.

Michael
.
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