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Why do our community projects fall-through?

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  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Anyone remember the idea for "CrashNot" we had back in 2004?

    Or the competition me and Dahat attempted before it fell through? (The one Zeo headed up, the winners got two MSDN Subscriptions)

    Or the various people promised free gear from Microsoft over the years who never got it

    Or that "NinersWithMicrophones"/"Minute with Minh" thing me and Minh did a few months ago.

    At least we did have some success with changing the outcome of that dramatic affair.

    Discuss.

  • User profile image
    Angus

    To answer the question, I think that it is because of the team element of any community project. I think that any community project (of the type you have mentioned) requires a strong team that effectively communicates and works together, it is often difficult to acheive this if one cannot physically talk (in a face-to-face manner) with other members of the team, and also, a lot of the time there is no specific reward for the person running the project other than the respect of others. I have found personally that if I don't have a reason to do something (or if the reason is not that good) then I am less likely to put effort in. If people are busy with work they are bound to give priority to that, and often people will have things that they want to do more than simply serve a community.

    Angus Higgins

  • User profile image
    Rossj

    W3bbo wrote:
    Anyone remember the idea for "CrashNot" we had back in 2004?

    Or the competition me and Dahat attempted before it fell through? (The one Zeo headed up, the winners got two MSDN Subscriptions)

    Or the various people promised free gear from Microsoft over the years who never got it

    Or that "NinersWithMicrophones"/"Minute with Minh" thing me and Minh did a few months ago.

    At least we did have some success with changing the outcome of that dramatic affair.


    I even promised a few hundred dollars worth of storage devices (from my own pocket) in an attempt to get our own contest going, and maybe to get others to follow up on the idea.

    We all talk the talk, but rarely do many of us have the time of inclination to walk the walk - which is a shame.

    Alternatively maybe everybody is just worried that my code might stomp all over theirs [6]

  • User profile image
    Cannot​Resolve​Symbol

    I propose a community project:  who can come up with the best community project?  Tongue Out

  • User profile image
    dahat

    CannotResolveSymbol wrote:
    I propose a community project:  who can come up with the best community project? 


    ... best community project that doesn't fall-through you mean.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    W3bbo wrote:
    Or the competition me and Dahat attempted before it fell through? (The one Zeo headed up, the winners got two MSDN Subscriptions)


    You did get the msdn subscription, right?

  • User profile image
    dahat

    ZippyV wrote:
    
    W3bbo wrote: Or the competition me and Dahat attempted before it fell through? (The one Zeo headed up, the winners got two MSDN Subscriptions)


    You did get the msdn subscription, right?


    No, midway through he Zeo called off the competition and said he'd be replacing it with a non coding one... that never happend.

  • User profile image
    eagle

    I had a game coding competition on my blog for an XBOX 360 and not a single 9'er entered.

  • User profile image
    blowdart

    eagle wrote:
    I had a game coding competition on my blog for an XBOX 360 and not a single 9'er entered.


    You assume that C9ers read your blog, as opposed to avoiding it due to the constant link-whoring you do here

  • User profile image
    eagle

    There's your answer W3bbo.

  • User profile image
    Dr Herbie

    I'm a professional developer.  Developing in my spare time doesn't happen very often any more.  I expect a lot of 9ers are the same. Perhaps we're just the wrong demographic?


    Herbie

  • User profile image
    BlackTiger

    Each project needs a strong sceleton or a backbone at least (team+money, team+idea).

    10 fingers is enough to count successful OSS projects (each of them has strong "internal" team)...

     Tongue Out

    If you stumbled and fell down, it doesn't mean yet, that you're going in the wrong direction.
    Last modified
  • User profile image
    AndyC

    I think you're looking too hard for a connection where one doesn't exist. Things failed for varying reasons.

    CrashNot was a solution to a problem nobody has.

    Zeo's competition was overly complex and time demanding. It was a lot to ask of one person and far too much when you essentially had to rely on someone else having the free time to invest too.

    The Niners with Mics thing was self destructive. By keeping it secret people who might have taken part ignored it, whilst people who did sign up did so just to find out what it was. Community projects need community to survive.

    I don't ever remember people being promised free stuff from Microsoft and not getting it. Maybe I just missed that one.

  • User profile image
    Xaero_​Vincent

    CannotResolveSymbol,

    How much capacity does your USB Goblin flash drive have? Tongue Out

  • User profile image
    JohnAskew

    foxbar wrote:
    "No, midway through he Zeo called off the competition and said he'd be replacing it with a non coding one... that never happend." - Had you not fallen for it and simply taken the time to do regular coding work, you would have had enough money to simply purchase the MSDN subscription anyway. That is probably another reason why these commercial based community projects don't work.


    It's shameful, Zeo. Sad

    I agree with Herbie, I don't have time either.

    These 'code for reward' contests are for students, imho, not sole providers for families. Remember the big winner for another contest was a school's effort - the robots. Made in Express I think it was.

    I suggested a pure and simple raffle among 9ers, but Zeo must not like that idea.

    It would be the most fair way to reward 9ers imho. No one with an advantage.

  • User profile image
    Cannot​Resolve​Symbol

    Xaero_Vincent wrote:
    

    CannotResolveSymbol,

    How much capacity does your USB Goblin flash drive have?



    Erm...  2 TB.  Tongue Out  Available now at fine office stores everywhere, but they have a tendency to fly away when not in use, so it can get expensive really fast.  Wink

    Graphic 100% stolen from Homestarrunner.com Wink

  • User profile image
    Angus

    JohnAskew wrote:
    
    It would be the most fair way to reward 9ers imho. No one with an advantage.


    I suppose this is how TV shows give things away. To make sure you get enough entrants to a competition it is a good idea to ensure that the task is easy enough for a lot of people to do it. Most, if not all of the coding competitions that I have seen are far, far beyond my abilities, so I generally am not interested in them as the work required to get up to standard would be way too much.

    If you operate a competition that has a very easy task (such as simply signing up, or a very easy question) you are likely to get a lot of people entering, and thus the competition will stay alive.

    I suppose that if a competition wants to continue it must have more than just a few teams/people in it. It may be more interesting having a difficult task that requires a lot of knowledge, but it does close up the competition somewhat.

    Angus Higgins

  • User profile image
    Minh

    The 8 Stages of Online Community Projects

    Stage 1. Unbridal enthusiasm.
    (That's such a cool idea. It could really change the world)

    Stage 2. Design
    (You can do the database, and I'll do the UI)

    Stage 3. Realization
    (Wait a minute, what do you mean that's not in VB?)

    Stage 4. Procrastination
    (I can't start on this 'til I re-sort my closet)

    Stage 5. Thrashing
    (I can't do that until you give me this. Look I don't have the time to chat right now...)

    Stage 6. Avoidance
    (Tools -> Options -> Privace -> Blocked Users -> Add...)

    Stage 7. Misdirection
    (Your e-mails must've gone into the spam bucket, let me look.)

    Stage 8. Name calling
    (That's what I told your mom last night!)

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