NOTICE!

The Weatherzone forum has now closed and is in read-only mode until the 1st of November when it will close permanently. We would like to thank everyone who has contributed over the past 18 years.

If you would like to continue the discussion you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter or participate in discussions at AusWeather or Ski.com.au forums.

Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >
Topic Options
#937771 - 26/01/2011 22:38 site down?
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
is the weatherzone non forum site down atm? havent been able to connect for atleast 2 hours now.
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#937776 - 26/01/2011 22:42 Re: site down? [Re: TC Poncho]
KevD Offline
Occasional Visitor

Registered: 23/09/2001
Posts: 5236
Loc: Bellingen NSW 2454
All good for me smile

Top
#937789 - 26/01/2011 22:49 Re: site down? [Re: KevD]
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
lol you guys trying to lock me out:)
every other site is fine except this one? cant get to the models page or home page??
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#937813 - 26/01/2011 23:13 Re: site down? [Re: TC Poncho]
!SCHUMMY! Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 22/04/2008
Posts: 2915
Loc: Jimboomba, SEQ
works faster then ever for me, maybe because its not working for you at the moment poke

probably something to do with your firewall etc....

Top
#937828 - 26/01/2011 23:30 Re: site down? [Re: !SCHUMMY!]
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
laugh might do a reboot. i turned my firewall off and tried it before... still a no go.


Edited by TC Poncho (26/01/2011 23:30)
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#937843 - 26/01/2011 23:44 Re: site down? [Re: TC Poncho]
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
yip that fixed it.....weird
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#937850 - 26/01/2011 23:51 Re: site down? [Re: TC Poncho]
!SCHUMMY! Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 22/04/2008
Posts: 2915
Loc: Jimboomba, SEQ
damm now mine is going really slow poke

nah mines fine haha

sometimes to smallest things fix it, it was probably a cookie problem....

Top
#937873 - 27/01/2011 00:27 Re: site down? [Re: !SCHUMMY!]
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
you've made me hungry now
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#954624 - 03/02/2011 09:49 Re: site down? [Re: TC Poncho]
davidg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/06/2008
Posts: 2248
Loc: Glenbrook/Penrith
Ah finally back online. The number of posts in the tropical forum was ridiculous. Needs to be something in place to stop that happening as the forums become more popular and more widely known. I dont know what but some sort of restriction on posting or for people who have been members for less than 24hs. Its a shame because noone was able to discuss the largest event in decades.

Top
#954653 - 03/02/2011 10:06 Re: site down? [Re: davidg]
markj23 Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 22/11/2006
Posts: 38
Loc: Redlynch
Originally Posted By: davidg
I dont know what but some sort of restriction on posting or for people who have been members for less than 24hs. Its a shame because noone was able to discuss the largest event in decades.


couldnt agree more - some of the "rubbish" posted has been unbelievable, along with the attitude of some the users (new and old)

The "community feel" seems to have gone

Top
#954712 - 03/02/2011 10:35 Re: site down? [Re: markj23]
kymm Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 05/04/2008
Posts: 2261
Loc: Emerald, QLD
Couldnt agree more with the above 2 posts. It was really disappointing that us loyal members were not able to access the site, during such a significant event.

Top
#954724 - 03/02/2011 10:43 Re: site down? [Re: kymm]
davidg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/06/2008
Posts: 2248
Loc: Glenbrook/Penrith
Yeah absolutely. I should clarify that I no way blame the operators of the forum as I doubt they could have forecast the shear number of posts last night, but it's clear there needs to be some sort of improvements to make sure that it cannot happen again.

Top
#954743 - 03/02/2011 10:51 Re: site down? [Re: kymm]
ozone doug Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 06/11/2006
Posts: 1928
Loc: Roma SW QLD Eye to the West...
Yes it is a shame we lost a lot of real time infomation that we could have gone back over . People had the best infomation on what was happening ,Not sure what we can do to improve quality here .
Needs a rethink ,shear number of people was unreal , Just wanting to know what was happening .cheers doug
_________________________
Cheers Doug. 491 Doug/ uhf ch40 When severe weather
BOM Stormspotter G0388 Roma S W Queensland Formerly Redcliffe.

Top
#954798 - 03/02/2011 11:40 Re: site down? [Re: markj23]
RC Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 29/09/2007
Posts: 2601
Loc: near Rockhampton, Qld
So was the forum taken off air deliberately because of misinformation as some people suggest?

Top
#954814 - 03/02/2011 11:53 Re: site down? [Re: RC]
Island viewer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 01/04/2010
Posts: 247
Loc: Eimeo Qld 4740
Last year before Ului I registered but never got approval until well after....perhaps instant log on approvals are not the best system when a crises is unfolding
_________________________
Eimeo Point, Mackay, Qld

Top
#954823 - 03/02/2011 11:59 Re: site down? [Re: Island viewer]
Island viewer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 01/04/2010
Posts: 247
Loc: Eimeo Qld 4740
One other thing I noticed (reminded by a Yasi post re: Window..WAters rising fast)...many of the profiles have nothing recorded in them. Surely genuine weatherzone posters don't mind having at least some information about themselves in their profiles
_________________________
Eimeo Point, Mackay, Qld

Top
#954841 - 03/02/2011 12:13 Re: site down? [Re: RC]
pkgjmg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/01/2009
Posts: 2955
Loc: Mt Warren Park
To be honest if the forum was taken down deliberately due to mis-information then it's serves EVERYONE right !

I have been a member of this forum since about 2009 and I have been totally disgusted by the behaviour and attitude by "some" members over the past week or so .. because of this in the middle of a catastrophic situation the MOST knowledgeable and in fact some who ARE/WERE meteorologists left the forum when we needed them the most and refused to come back ..

The forum had approx 2,000 people floating around last night - and the mod's would have been almost run off their feet trying to keep the situation under control .. there were so many reminders to keep on topic, keep on topic ............

I am NO way experienced in reading charts etc - so I kept pretty well quiet and was more interested in reading along and offering support if someone appeared to be scared or frightened .. but what I was reading was TOTAL AND UTTER CRAP ! the personal attacks, snipes and rude comments were totally uncalled for an should have been done in PM ..

I really hope that this hasn't damaged WZ's reputation - but once again if it has the only people to blame are yourselves ! ..

Now can we PLEASE go back to the happy, supportive community that I know we can be !

RANT OVER .......................
_________________________
** sunshine and lollipops and rainbows every where **

Top
#954844 - 03/02/2011 12:16 Re: site down? [Re: Island viewer]
Scottie A Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 23/09/2009
Posts: 2050
Loc: Spring Mountain, Greenbank
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


Edited by Scottie A (03/02/2011 12:22)
_________________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/MrScottieA

Top
#954857 - 03/02/2011 12:24 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
KevD Offline
Occasional Visitor

Registered: 23/09/2001
Posts: 5236
Loc: Bellingen NSW 2454
Hi guys

Server got overloaded and thus the forum stopped working. The site was not deliberately taken down. There were close to 3000 people on the site when it stopped working - quite simply the server ran out of memory.

Last big cyclone we were amazed to get over 1000 on the site - this time was just SO much bigger!

There are lessons to be learnt and please trust that the Site Admins and Moderators will be working to learn lessons to try to make it work better for all next time. This is an ongoing learning experience for us all.

Cheers

Kev

Top
#954859 - 03/02/2011 12:26 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
CivEngSean Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/10/2008
Posts: 242
Loc: Indooroopilly
Although it wouldn't surpise me if the forum was shut down last night due to the BS going on, the simple fact is that you would have been able to fry and egg on the server last night due to the load on it.

I dont know about you guys but I know I was refreshing a couple of times a minute

Top
#954862 - 03/02/2011 12:27 Re: site down? [Re: CivEngSean]
KevD Offline
Occasional Visitor

Registered: 23/09/2001
Posts: 5236
Loc: Bellingen NSW 2454
Should add that all constructive comments in this thread will be taken on board smile

Cheers

Kev

Top
#954865 - 03/02/2011 12:29 Re: site down? [Re: KevD]
whirlygirl Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 28/01/2011
Posts: 46
Loc: Rocky,Qld
Morning all, glad the server is back up and working again. Very glad to hear that there are no fatalities reported as yet too.

Top
#954873 - 03/02/2011 12:35 Re: site down? [Re: whirlygirl]
CivEngSean Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/10/2008
Posts: 242
Loc: Indooroopilly
Perhaps Black Nor,' a new Level of membership can be created like 'mods' etc, which could be called professional or expert. These people would have a different colour in their post and their profession is displayed so that general viewers know they can be trusted. If the volume of posts is an issue maybe some kind of flood control is needed.

Whether the amount of posts you can make is universal, or goes by status would need to be debated

Top
#954875 - 03/02/2011 12:36 Re: site down? [Re: whirlygirl]
Kman Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 03/02/2011
Posts: 3
Loc: Brisbane
Thank you for the update Kev. Conspiracy theorists can now stand down. The amount of of traffic that WZ experienced last night, regularly causes problems for even government websites with large amounts of infrastructure. A recent example being the Brisbane City Council website during the recent flood event. To combat this type of traffic can be an expensive exercise. Thank you to all contributors in the last few days with their experienced weather knowledge. It was a great learning experience for me and glad there are no reports of injuries thus far.

Top
#954878 - 03/02/2011 12:37 Re: site down? [Re: CivEngSean]
whirlygirl Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 28/01/2011
Posts: 46
Loc: Rocky,Qld
Perhaps, with new members joining it's read only for 24hrs? Still gaining information just not able to post.

Top
#954883 - 03/02/2011 12:40 Re: site down? [Re: KevD]
pkgjmg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/01/2009
Posts: 2955
Loc: Mt Warren Park
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


they sound like good idea's scottie - the better your reputation the more you can post - simple !
_________________________
** sunshine and lollipops and rainbows every where **

Top
#954885 - 03/02/2011 12:41 Re: site down? [Re: CivEngSean]
Richey Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 24/11/2006
Posts: 89
Loc: was Grafton, NSW....now Brisba...
Originally Posted By: CivEngSean
Perhaps Black Nor,' a new Level of membership can be created like 'mods' etc, which could be called professional or expert. These people would have a different colour in their post and their profession is displayed so that general viewers know they can be trusted. If the volume of posts is an issue maybe some kind of flood control is needed.

Whether the amount of posts you can make is universal, or goes by status would need to be debated


Agree something to distinguish the users who "know more" (for lack of a better word) would be great. Also the idea of an embargo before a large event, say preventing people to create an account 2-3 days before and during a severe weather event. or limithing the amount of posts a non-expert can make during these events.

Top
#954890 - 03/02/2011 12:43 Re: site down? [Re: pkgjmg]
Scottie A Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 23/09/2009
Posts: 2050
Loc: Spring Mountain, Greenbank
Originally Posted By: pkgjmg
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


they sound like good idea's scottie - the better your reputation the more you can post - simple !


Ive done my fair share of web design for the last few years and yeh this would be possible but it really depends what forum software they are running here, it actually looks like some kind of embedded CMS type software which may actually be alot harder to implement such a system if so than using open source or standalone software phpbb, Vbulletin, IPB and so forth.


Edited by Scottie A (03/02/2011 12:45)
_________________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/MrScottieA

Top
#954895 - 03/02/2011 12:46 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
windjammer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/08/2006
Posts: 948
Loc: Nowra, NSW
Speaking of server overload, didn't the BoM website do well last night? I wonder if they had use of defence servers, if that's possible?

Top
#954897 - 03/02/2011 12:48 Re: site down? [Re: windjammer]
Kman Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 03/02/2011
Posts: 3
Loc: Brisbane
Agree windjammer. BOM site was as fast as usual. Particularly the Cairns radar.

Top
#954900 - 03/02/2011 12:52 Re: site down? [Re: windjammer]
Drought Relief Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 18/03/2006
Posts: 186
Just a suggestion taken from the ipswich city council. During the flood they were contactable but it was impossible to download anything from the site but after some time they introduced a cut down version of the site with only the flood info and nothing else and then it started working ok. I am wondering if the same thing could be done with a forum. Shut down all the threads other then emergency info ones until the load subsides

Also I would emagine a lot of load would be people refreshing... so I wonder if make the number of pages in a thread smaller would help. I have no clue as to how this software works so forgive my ignorance but if perhaps thread were closed and a new one opened sooner it might help... (like have part 1. 2 etc threads)


Edited by Drought Relief (03/02/2011 12:55)
_________________________
Be Safe

Top
#954908 - 03/02/2011 12:56 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
RoadkillNZ Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 19/01/2011
Posts: 362
Loc: Jimboomba, Qld
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
Originally Posted By: pkgjmg
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


they sound like good idea's scottie - the better your reputation the more you can post - simple !


Ive done my fair share of web design for the last few years and yeh this would be possible but it really depends what forum software they are running here, it actually looks like some kind of embedded CMS type software which may actually be alot harder to implement such a system if so than using open source or standalone software phpbb, Vbulletin, IPB and so forth.


There is a possiable problem with this theory if the new user actually has valuable information about any current weather events and happen to live in the middle of it while it is happening, they are then restricted to what they can post about it, especially in the tech threads, or they have been posting in the lounge and they have a thunderstorm with 50 cent hail just pass overhead, but they can't warn people because htey have hit thier limit. We also have to remember that last night was unprecedented in Queensland history, coming after another unusual event which made the awareness of this forum higher than would of been if it had not of been for the earlier floods. I would hate to see people to have restrictions based on 1 event. It is better to have modding in the forums, with the mods having private words to offenders if need be, with individual suspensions/bans for behavior. IMHO
_________________________
Weather at Jimboomba from the place opposite mine (So I don't have to fix my weather gauges) -
www.jimboombaweather.com.au

Wind is under reported because it is sheltered by trees.

Top
#954910 - 03/02/2011 12:57 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
Nino :0) Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 24/01/2006
Posts: 358
Loc: Batchelor NT
This was a very predictable cyclone, hate to see a future thread with a unpredictable one (30 pages / minute with landfall guesses??)
mmmm once you could read 90% good information and 10% irrelevant
plus the odd fight
now its 90% irrelevant and 10% good information and multiple fights
Newbies need to learn to lurk, learn who has relevant accurate info
After a few years one soon learns who to trust and now its not worth trawling through all the rubbish to find it
I think a thread for members with 2 years or longer would be appropriate in such events along side a chit chat one for newbies who could cut and paste from the other thread
A lot of people turned up over the couple of days and were very opinionated
Anyway this newbie shall shut up and go back to lurking and watching

Top
#954917 - 03/02/2011 13:07 Re: site down? [Re: Nino :0)]
CivEngSean Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/10/2008
Posts: 242
Loc: Indooroopilly
Originally Posted By: Nino :0)
This was a very predictable cyclone, hate to see a future thread with a unpredictable one (30 pages / minute with landfall guesses??)
mmmm once you could read 90% good information and 10% irrelevant
plus the odd fight
now its 90% irrelevant and 10% good information and multiple fights
Newbies need to learn to lurk, learn who has relevant accurate info
After a few years one soon learns who to trust and now its not worth trawling through all the rubbish to find it
I think a thread for members with 2 years or longer would be appropriate in such events along side a chit chat one for newbies who could cut and paste from the other thread
A lot of people turned up over the couple of days and were very opinionated
Anyway this newbie shall shut up and go back to lurking and watching


This is the problem. When I joined in 2005 (with an account I forgot the password to) the WZ forums used to be a niche' forum where only the passionate weather watchers and experts used to chat. However now they are moving into a mainstream source of information due to the above fact. As they become more popular this problem will occurr more.

In the case of newbies having really good info but being limited by posting restrictions, they could always PM one of the 'oldies' with the info?

Top
#954920 - 03/02/2011 13:09 Re: site down? [Re: Kman]
davidg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/06/2008
Posts: 2248
Loc: Glenbrook/Penrith
The ideas put forth so far (including my own) would help solve the server overload issue and definately clean up the threads so that long term members can actually discuss the event. Unfortunately it would also limit the number of real time obs from new members that have jumped on here to let the world know whats happening. Having said that though, 99% of the posts last night were not from those on the ground in the region where the cyclone crossed as communications were lost during that period. Most were from "TBA" or elsewhere in the state. Whilst there were a lot of good posts they were simply lost in the shear volume of one liners and misinformation. I enjoyed reading the tech thread but when the site went down that was lost too lol. Its unfortunate but hopefully the next event can be better handled.


Edited by davidg (03/02/2011 13:13)

Top
#954921 - 03/02/2011 13:09 Re: site down? [Re: Nino :0)]
Jax Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 16/12/2009
Posts: 744
The final two posts in the tech section before it crashed lends some credence to the "it was taken down" supporters ...

Top
#954926 - 03/02/2011 13:12 Re: site down? [Re: CivEngSean]
windjammer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/08/2006
Posts: 948
Loc: Nowra, NSW
Unfortunatly, there's one or two 'oldies' who talk up a good pile of poop too.

I agree that things were not always like this. I remember lurking in this forum during Larry, and the amount of informed, educational and technical information was amazing, and I joined shortly after.

I thought WZ regularly split threads to reduce server load. Is there a reason this wasn't done this time, or do I have it wrong?

Top
#954927 - 03/02/2011 13:13 Re: site down? [Re: Jax]
Richey Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 24/11/2006
Posts: 89
Loc: was Grafton, NSW....now Brisba...
how about just a simple rating system in threads (thumbs up/thumbs down), too many negative hits and the post is minimised, not compleatly removed so people can still look at the post if they wish but just out of the way leaving valuable info easier to see? it seems to work on other forums..

Top
#954934 - 03/02/2011 13:18 Re: site down? [Re: Nino :0)]
sydstorm Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 21/03/2010
Posts: 9
Im still a newbie and have learnt to read instead of just posting for the sake of it. A couple things I have thought of would be to prevent the posting of images by guest or new members. Perhaps using facebook twitter a little more during major events. As long as visitors can read info on these forums then dont allow new memberships during major events, but allow a pm system to moderators with information. Train members (with a min 2 years on this forum or after determining suitablility) as emergency moderators during peek times to help out with processing large volumes of posts.

One final suggestion would be to post a message on the home page of WZ that the forum is down and will be for approximately x amount of time. This would prevent people trying to access the servers just to get error messages. This would have to give the servers a break and the tecs a chance to restart or whatever.

Thanks for a great site.

Top
#954937 - 03/02/2011 13:21 Re: site down? [Re: Jax]
OverDrive Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 20/11/2003
Posts: 101
Loc: Stafford, QLD
Host ALL resources (images/js/css) on a content distribution network (CDN) and change the cache expiry on the aforementioned filetypes (assuming they do not change often) to 7 days (for example).

You'll get a massive reduction in both traffic and load, as your server will only serve text content (ie: the data that is always changing).

Here is what I use on a large vBulletin forum:

Code:
<ifModule mod_expires.c>
  ExpiresActive On
  ExpiresDefault "access plus 1 seconds"
  ExpiresByType text/html "access plus 1 seconds"
  ExpiresByType image/gif "access plus 604800 seconds"
  ExpiresByType image/jpeg "access plus 604800 seconds"
  ExpiresByType image/png "access plus 604800 seconds"
  ExpiresByType text/css "access plus 604800 seconds"
  ExpiresByType text/javascript "access plus 604800 seconds"
  ExpiresByType application/x-javascript "access plus 604800 seconds"
</ifModule>
<ifModule mod_headers.c>
  <filesMatch "\\.(ico|pdf|flv|jpg|jpeg|png|gif|swf)$">
    Header set Cache-Control "max-age=604800, public"
  </filesMatch>
  <filesMatch "\\.(css)$">
    Header set Cache-Control "max-age=604800, public"
  </filesMatch>
  <filesMatch "\\.(js)$">
    Header set Cache-Control "max-age=604800, private"
  </filesMatch>
  <filesMatch "\\.(xml|txt)$">
    Header set Cache-Control "max-age=21600, public, must-revalidate"
  </filesMatch>
  <filesMatch "\\.(html|htm|php)$">
    Header set Cache-Control "max-age=1, private, must-revalidate"
  </filesMatch>
</ifModule>
<ifModule mod_headers.c>
  Header unset ETag
</ifModule>
FileETag None
<ifModule mod_headers.c>
  Header unset Last-Modified
</ifModule>

Top
#954943 - 03/02/2011 13:25 Re: site down? [Re: RoadkillNZ]
Scottie A Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 23/09/2009
Posts: 2050
Loc: Spring Mountain, Greenbank
Originally Posted By: RoadkillNZ
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
Originally Posted By: pkgjmg
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


they sound like good idea's scottie - the better your reputation the more you can post - simple !


Ive done my fair share of web design for the last few years and yeh this would be possible but it really depends what forum software they are running here, it actually looks like some kind of embedded CMS type software which may actually be alot harder to implement such a system if so than using open source or standalone software phpbb, Vbulletin, IPB and so forth.


There is a possiable problem with this theory if the new user actually has valuable information about any current weather events and happen to live in the middle of it while it is happening, they are then restricted to what they can post about it, especially in the tech threads, or they have been posting in the lounge and they have a thunderstorm with 50 cent hail just pass overhead, but they can't warn people because htey have hit thier limit. We also have to remember that last night was unprecedented in Queensland history, coming after another unusual event which made the awareness of this forum higher than would of been if it had not of been for the earlier floods. I would hate to see people to have restrictions based on 1 event. It is better to have modding in the forums, with the mods having private words to offenders if need be, with individual suspensions/bans for behavior. IMHO


As Ive heard many of the MODS say here lots of times is that this forum is not a gospel all information on here should be taken with caution and that everyone needs to listen for warnings from the authorities as these are confirmed and trusted sources of information. I don't know how many posts that I and many others have read on here that you can just read/feel the adrenaline/excitement in the posting which does alot of the time leads to over exaggeration of the situation.

A limit on posting p/h (per hour) would allow for a better quality of posting hopefully as people would have more time to put that adrenaline filled thoughts aside (as we all get in severe weather events) and post decent thought through information here.

The other thing is if you are posting here to warn people yes it is a reasonably good idea it does seem to travel as we saw with the "MONSTER" term being used by the media which was given birth to here on the boards. Just think of how many people are actually watching this forum in your area at the time of a severe weather event I would guesstimate 5% max, time would be better spent calling authorities BOM, Emergency services and so forth as they have to power to send out broadcasts over Radio TV other Formal Internet sources which many more people would listening/watching.

A reputation system whether interlinked with how many post you can make per hour or just in it self would be a good idea as people who consistently post great information would be able to be rated and there for you get an idea of how valued the source of info truly is. This is a good thing for guests and new members who have not been with this board for long as they would have the insight into who is more reliable than others.

My account says that I have registered my sometime in 2009, which really is not a long time but certainly I have got know who is the more reliable sources of information poking around in here. I have also been lurking around this board for a much longer time just as a guest as many of the members here have done and finally went that extra step to contribute to the board.



Edited by Scottie A (03/02/2011 13:29)
_________________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/MrScottieA

Top
#954963 - 03/02/2011 13:44 Re: site down? [Re: Scottie A]
!SCHUMMY! Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 22/04/2008
Posts: 2915
Loc: Jimboomba, SEQ
Scottie - I like your idea on time limits between each post, 2-4 each hour would be sufficient. As you get more recognised and people see that you know what you are talking about and always give accurate information (observations/proper forecasts) and have been a member for a while 1-2yrs+ maybe the time limit between posts can be waived or even reduced significantly to allow the knowledgeable posters to post more detailed information regularly.

Also one way to get rid of one liners being posted is having a "minimum" of what you have to post...maybe 50 words or somewhere close to that, so then people are forced to post longer posts and more detailed information, unlike "It raining", "getting very windy here now", "just had a huge gust come through" etc. These only have a few words in them so it could work.

Splitting threads is a great idea when they start to get over 100 pages (20 posts per page) long and when a new page in created every few minutes. This was down with the flood disaster down here in SEQ where the main thread was closed and 3 others were opened to split the vital information up. I think this should have been done with the YASI chit-chat thread at around the 150 page mark and then started fresh or split into multiple threads like I stated above.

Having more server can help in the short term but wont necessarily help in the long term with more and more people watching/posting in the future as this Forum gets well known around Australia.

When people sign up it should be mandatory to put your location in your profile aswell because there were a lot of people saying this in the thread. Then we would know where they are posting from and wont have to ask "Where abouts are you?" and this would save posts aswell.

There are a lot of great ideas in here but i find these one are the most important.


Edited by !SCHUMMY! (03/02/2011 13:46)

Top
#954971 - 03/02/2011 13:50 Re: site down? [Re: pkgjmg]
Island viewer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 01/04/2010
Posts: 247
Loc: Eimeo Qld 4740
Originally Posted By: pkgjmg
Originally Posted By: Scottie A
I think that there needs to be a limitation placed on how many times a user can post within a certain period say 1-2 post per hour max especially for new users so that they can get a feel for how this forum 'Community' runs and behaves. It would not be hard with the forum software/extension/plugins available these days. This way we would hopefully get more bulk informative postings hopefully and less one liners. A reputation system would not go astray either...


they sound like good idea's scottie - the better your reputation the more you can post - simple !
I would agree with that, it became almost impossible to keep up with valid info because there was so much drivel being posted
_________________________
Eimeo Point, Mackay, Qld

Top
#954988 - 03/02/2011 14:04 Re: site down? [Re: !SCHUMMY!]
windjammer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/08/2006
Posts: 948
Loc: Nowra, NSW
I'm not sure I like the idea of limiting posts, especially in a thread designed to chat about the event. People, especially noobs, have a lot of questions and there's nothing wrong with an honest inquiry, nor do I think there's anything wrong with statements like "It's getting very gusty now"

I do think there's been a problem with some individuals making statements like "My gut feeling says this cyclone will hit Yeppoon" and other such tripe. Perhaps posters making sweeping statements that deviate wildly from official advice should be required to post a link or cite a source?

The mods do a great job, but I believe, on this occasion, the continual bickering and snark jammed up the thread a lot (to the point many stopped reading and contributing) as do comments made by non-mods who feel they need to police other members. Perhaps next time these individuals could PM the real mods and volunteer their time, because god knows they could probably use a break!




Edited by windjammer (03/02/2011 14:04)

Top
#954989 - 03/02/2011 14:04 Re: site down? [Re: Island viewer]
99wazza Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 27/01/2011
Posts: 59
Loc: Bundaberg
Dear Weatherzone enthusiasts,

I can now confirm that this site was taken down last night by the secret government organisation responsible for ensuring that conspiracy theorists have something to talk about. In fact, the person who was ultimately responsible for flicking the switch was Elvis, who managed to do it from his office on board the cloaked spaceship hovering in orbit over Australia.

Sincerely yours,

Harold Holt

Get a grip people...this site in all likelihood was experiencing extraordinarily large volumes of traffic last night and the servers just most likely couldn't cope.
_________________________
"For the man sound in body and serene of mind there is no such thing as bad weather; every sky has its beauty, and storms which whip the blood do but make it pulse more vigorously."

Top
#955002 - 03/02/2011 14:17 Re: site down? [Re: 99wazza]
Kman Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 03/02/2011
Posts: 3
Loc: Brisbane
I don't think the problem this time would have been too many people posting (regardless of whether or not the posts were of valid information), moreover the problem was that so many people were accessing the site and refreshing the thread at one time. The server would have had a certain threshold and this was obviously exceeded.
I do not disagree that limiting content from each user / hour etc would provide better information for all forum users to digest.

Top
#955005 - 03/02/2011 14:19 Re: site down? [Re: Island viewer]
weather stalker Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 12/01/2011
Posts: 240
Loc: Sarina, QLD
I have lurked for a while now but decided to join when I had questions about TC ANthony.

As a new member I certainly had my fair share of questions to ask for sure, otherwise I would have remained an onlooker, when someone asked how the weather was in my area, I was happy to answer them.

Until yesterday I found the forum a wonderful place for information, people willing to help you learn and very quickly it became obvious who the members were with enough knowledge and experience to take heed of what they were saying.

However as everyone has noted yesterday things seem to go down hill. People got very narky, I'm sure a lot of the horrible comments and useless ones were trolls, but that wasn't ALL of them, some were coming from genuine members.

I do believe it should be mandatory to supply a location on your profile, not sure how this can be 'policed' as being correct, but I did notice that most of the 'crap' being posted came from people without locations and when asked they didn't divulge.

It's really sad that there are people that make up part of the human race that are like this but clearly there are. The guessing competition of land fall and the ensuing 'point' scoring that was ensued with the 'I told you that yesterday' crap is childish and I if they are adults they should be appalled at their own behaviour.

The suggestion of a 'thumb up/down' system is awesome, this weeds a lot of crap off other general forums I use, if you choose to look you can but it is hidden after so many thumbs down.

The limit on posts per x(time frame) is not a bad idea, but if you are having a discussion with one or members in regards to something it can sometimes require more than say 3 posts an hour.... just something to keep in mind.

For those that were very helpful in my first experience as a participating member of the forum thanks.... it wasn't all bad!
_________________________
Aleesha

Avid weather stalker, so much to learn

Top
#955023 - 03/02/2011 14:33 Re: site down? [Re: weather stalker]
weather stalker Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 12/01/2011
Posts: 240
Loc: Sarina, QLD
Also can I just add, on another forum I am a member of we have a 'thanks' button on each thread, this allows a member to acknowledge the usefullness of the post and appreciation for the time the other member took, without adding an unnecessary oneliner saying 'thanks'.
_________________________
Aleesha

Avid weather stalker, so much to learn

Top
#955027 - 03/02/2011 14:42 Re: site down? [Re: weather stalker]
stormboy70 Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 01/02/2011
Posts: 11
Loc: Moorooka Qld
I have been reading these forums for over five years and almost never post as I did not feel I had anything useful to contribute.

I realise some of the newer members are under the age of 21 and are of the facebook/twitter generation and have a very different idea of how the internet is used. I feel some of this may contribute to the clashes we are seeing on this site. Since the media blitz which followed the Brisbane Floods many new people discovered this site. I understand from many of the young people (I am an old man at 41) that they only believe what is on the internet and are very skeptical of the mainstream media. My point is that many younger members and a few older ones have little respect for others opinion unless they know who they are. I notice much snapping and shortness with long term members as they did not have the trust cred young people seem to need.

Having said that I did notice a few older members being rude or short and I just think the older members tend to be weather enthusiasts and less tolerant of new blood until they prove themselves. Hence a bit of a generation and experience clash. The older guys have to note they will not have the respect of the newer members until they prove they know what they are talking about. The new members will not have the respect of the older guys until they prove themselves (less arguementative etc). It is going to take time and a little bit of tolerance on both sides.

I hope that trolling, something I loathe, on many other sites I go to is not going to become an issue on this site, however it seems this is the future of all websites.

Lecture over you may go now.
_________________________
D1

Not the first but definitely the best.

Top
#955048 - 03/02/2011 15:02 Re: site down? [Re: stormboy70]
Jax Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 16/12/2009
Posts: 744
I'm not technically minded at all, so can someone please explain why the rest of the WZ was working perfectly after the forum crashed - is the forum hosted separately to the rest of the site?

Two suggestions: maybe a compulsory "forum etiquette" thread for new users that is linked to a prior cyclone event that shows the usual standard of input in the forum, i.e., calm, respectful and informative content.

Maybe a message clearly displayed on each page reminding people that if they have nothing useful to contribute that lurking is the best option to enhance ease of information gathering for those who need it . I noticed similar comments being regularly posted in threads by both mods and regulars in the past few days, but they were quickly lost.

Top
#955051 - 03/02/2011 15:04 Re: site down? [Re: weather stalker]
BowKat Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 03/02/2011
Posts: 1
Loc: Mackay, QLD
As a long time lurker, and after spending a lot of time observing the forum especially in the last week or so, I would just like to contribute to this discussion.

I, too, do not agree with limiting posts from newly registered members. Not only does it appear a little elitist, it does not give the members a voice, which is the whole purpose of a forum.

I do agree with many of the suggestions for improvement, though, such as giving well "qualified" and experienced members a special status. This might be given at the choice of the moderators and/or by private poll of selected members. Just a thought. It is such a shame that such knowledgeable and valuable contributors have started to find the forum too irksome to continuing passing on their advice.

Yes, definitely need to split the large threads - filtering through 300 pages of posts (on default setting) is just something people won't do so, of course, repetitive questions will be asked. Maybe "sticky" posts at the top of each new thread page with links to bom website, relative radars, mtsat or other relevant thread info might help. The use of hyperlinks in the forum has been really handy.

I found when the Cardwell - Bowen and Cardwell and north threads were set up, posts were a lot more easier to read - leaving a lot of the rubbish in the general chat area. So that was great.

Reporting abuse, consistent bickering etc to the mods rather than joining in the bickering is probably the best system. The thumbs up & down idea is great, too. Having filters to allow the most popular posts to be viewed/sorted/toggled first might be good.

The last couple of days were quite emotion-fueled as is expected from such a spectacular event in our weather history. It's not something that happens everyday and this forum supply a lot of wonderful information for people in their time of need and fear. That is something to be really proud of! It wasn't only new post-ers that got caught up in it all - some experienced weather watchers did, too. It's just human nature.

Moderators did a great job. Some of them, too, would have had to prepare their own homes and families for this cyclone.

Overall, though, this forum was an awesome array of knowledge and information. Many important websites crashed under the circumstances of heavy usage. I guess just trying to filter the 'rubbish' posts to chat-kind of threads is the best option. It's such a hard balance and we don't want to be over-moderated.

I really enjoyed hearing from you all and look forward to hearing from everyone who experienced this cyclone firsthand in the coming days.

Sorry, if I've mentioned a lot of things that others have posted. It took me such a long time to write this smile

Top
#955061 - 03/02/2011 15:19 Re: site down? [Re: BowKat]
Blondie72 Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 17/03/2010
Posts: 197
Loc: Between Marian and Mirani
I also am a new member, joining when concerned that Ului was coming our way, I found the ability to ask stupid questions, such as "when will this end" and have them answered by one of the long time members or weather enthusists, such a valuable thing. I think its a shame that the thread for yasi turned into a personal insult thread for some people. Most people, do also use BOM's information and warnings and the ABC radio as well,I think most of us were well enough informed to know it wasn't going to do a sharp turn and head for yepoon and such. I know for myself, I love having the access to the learned people on here to help me with questions, and to learn more about severe weather systems that could possibly impact on my area of the country. Really, keep up the good work everyone.

Top
#955067 - 03/02/2011 15:24 Re: site down? [Re: BowKat]
flash999 Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/12/2005
Posts: 140
Loc: Sydney
Just like BowKat ... I've been a lurker member on the forums for a few years now. Also spend quite a bit of time lurking on other large forums here and there.

I've found that information is lot more palatable in smaller chunks. Having a General thread to cover large events is a one way ticket to disaster imho.

Much better to have a number of smaller focused threads. The system permits users to watch multiple threads at once. This makes everything a lot more manageable for Moderators and users while confining the spread of superfluous riff-raff. Most can't be bothered posting the same thing to many threads and in any case cross-posting can be banned to prevent such things.

For example, in the case of TC Yasi event, someone living in Townsville might focus on a Townsville thread. Out of interest, they may keep an eye on a Cairns thread, or one or two other threads of nearby locations, but they are unlikely to post to these threads. Others, who are interested in what is going on in Townsville might post q's on the Townsville thread, and they can be answered by locals who have focus.

Anyone making predictions (unsubstantiated or otherwise) about Townsville will most probably head for the Townsville thread. If they post a Townsville related prediction on the Cairns thread, it can be instantly Moderated etc.

The key to smooth info flow is to make the info relevant and to permit the user of the info to filter it with a large degree of discrimination.

On most internet forums, this is easily handled by using multiple threads.


Top
#955069 - 03/02/2011 15:26 Re: site down? [Re: BowKat]
pkgjmg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/01/2009
Posts: 2955
Loc: Mt Warren Park
all very suggestions - now let's hope that WZ have a meeting and put some into place ! grin
_________________________
** sunshine and lollipops and rainbows every where **

Top
#955076 - 03/02/2011 15:32 Re: site down? [Re: flash999]
windjammer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/08/2006
Posts: 948
Loc: Nowra, NSW
Good ideas there, I think, flash999, especially breaking the threads down into smaller, geographically based more managable chunks.

I also have noticed people cross-posting to multiple threads (in some forums this is considered spamming and is banned)

Bowcat mentioned stickies...maybe we could have a FAQ sticky pertinent to the current thread to cut back on the amount of repetitive questions?

Someone else mentioned that the problem may well have not been the volume of posts but the sheer load of people refreshing their pages at once. If this is the case, is there a simple solution? (I'm tech retarded)


Edited by windjammer (03/02/2011 15:34)

Top
#955079 - 03/02/2011 15:34 Re: site down? [Re: Blondie72]
jocelyn Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/01/2011
Posts: 90
Lurking Newbie reporting in.

I love the idea of the "thumbs up/thumbs down" thing, especially if too many negative votes minimises the window - lets all users give feedback without having to say anything.

The only other suggestions I can make would be:

1. Side links to other related/newly created threads. Because of the volume of posts, it can be easy to miss the "Just created a thread for *airborne cows* (or whatever) here" posts, so people keep posting for a while on that topic. Maybe whenever a thread is referenced in a post, it could automatically pop up on a floating list to the right - thus posters would have a good idea of active threads. (No idea of the technical side of it though.)

2. Join Facebook.
If you can't beat them, join them. I love loitering here to read amazing factual info and links to maps etc, as posted in the tech threads. I feel it helps me understand. But lots of people like to auto-respond to everything they see (like *liking.*) If "weatherzone" had a well publicised facebook page, plugged prominently on the home page, most people would probably just *like* the facebook page and make all the inane comments there. The mods could have access to the log in page, thus posting occasional information they deem interesting, and the plebs could reply themselves silly (much as we see on Qld Police's facebook.) I honestly think a lot of people would just hang out on facebook if they had the option of interacting there. Thus preserving forums for people who want a good read.

Top
#955087 - 03/02/2011 15:40 Re: site down? [Re: pkgjmg]
!SCHUMMY! Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 22/04/2008
Posts: 2915
Loc: Jimboomba, SEQ
I'll elaborate more on the time restrictions a bit more as more comes to my mind....

Maybe only have time restrictions in these sort of events (Cyclone/Flood) and during any other time the restriction can be lifted to allow normal discussion. Just something to think about. The restriction would only be in place for that specific thread not the entire site, I don't know if thats possible but could be looked into.

Another thing that has come to mind is that the "Tropical & Central Australia" thread covers such a vast area (half the country). Maybe this could be slip up, have a tropic thread for each state (WA/NT/QLD) and one separate one for Central Australia. At any one time there are at least 10 different threads running within the tropics. This also could slow down server load because everyone is focussed on the one section which covers half the country.

It is also very overwhelming for the new members seeing all of these threads and not knowing where to post and where to go to look for information.

One last thing that was mentioned before, limit new registrations. Before a major event is about to unfold (maybe 1-3 days) people can join but not get approved until after the event has passed.

And I love the idea of a "Thumb Up/Down, Thanks" button.

Top
#955101 - 03/02/2011 15:51 Re: site down? [Re: !SCHUMMY!]
Sherdz Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 17/09/2009
Posts: 82
Loc: West Warwick QLD
My two bobs worth...

1. Great idea being able to easily identify qualified / experienced experts, not only weather experts, but also other callings such as engineering etc.
2. Would it be possible to put post / time limits on specific threads only, so that the restrictions are only on the critical threads?
3. I agree that it is difficult to find specific info in one huge thread, it would be better split into multiple, more focussed threads.
4. Thumb up/down, button a great idea.
_________________________
Darling Downs... ST generator country...
http://westwarwickweather.com.au

Top
#955142 - 03/02/2011 16:25 Re: site down? [Re: Sherdz]
jocelyn Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/01/2011
Posts: 90
Facebook elaboration.

I only just realised weatherzone has a facebook "app" - apparently the icon is hidden waaaay down the bottom of the home page.... where as the "forum" button is right in the top right corner. I went and had a look at the WZ fb, and note it's not really frequently updated, thus didn't fill the niche that these forums did last night.

The best example of a model that worked, I'd suggest "Cyclone Yasi Update," which is where I went to watch when wz went down. It was run by multiple people, updated constantly and people keep commenting. I think it went from 0 to 60 000+ people in 48hrs?

I realise one facebook for everything might be too overwhelming, but maybe fb pages could be created in response to big weather events.
eg) "weatherzone Brisbane Floods" or "Weatherzone cyclone Yasi"

If you put a nice big button to the "Weatherzone crisis of the moment" fb page in the top right, it would draw people straight there.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not stupidly pro-facebook, and I don't for a second want the forums replaced by facebook. But I just think it's the perfect way to guide people without much to contribute away from the forums, especially in times of major events, thus preserving sanity of forum members and the health of weatherzone servers. Think of it as "trojan facebook"... except you put all the troublemakers inside the wooden horse and push it out of the city.

Top
#955202 - 03/02/2011 17:52 Re: site down? [Re: jocelyn]
Arnost Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 10/02/2007
Posts: 3909
If the moderators are going to have think about this - then if I may...

The open thread should be left exactly as it is. Whilst it does contain a lot of dross, it allows people to post up observations, ask questions, make comments, indulge in a bit of humour and - probably most importantly - prevent the "technical thread" to get clogged up with this.

Let's face reality... whenever there is a significant event there will be hundreds (if not thousands) people viewing and hundreds contributing. Given the positive media coverage that "Weatherzone" as a brand is recently getting (kudos to the mets and experts here!), this will only increase. And you can't disenfranchise the newbies - it is actually a responsibility to make them welcome and eventually even to "educate them".

So you will inevitably have fun "general" threads which will be nigh on impossible to moderate.

But you also will have the serious "technical thread". And this one should be much easier to moderate. The rules there should be such that factual / supported content only allowed - with limmited chat. And any breach can be quickly corrected... a post can be reported and actioned by the mods quickly.

Soon people will learn that unless it is the tech thread - then any opinions / predictions etc are "amateur" and should be taken with a grain of salt.

It'll be a win win for all... So please, no knee-jerk reactions like banning newbies from posting etc.

my two bits...
_________________________
“No. Not even in the face of Armageddon. Never compromise” ...

And this of course applies to scientific principles. Never compromise these. Never! [Follow the science and you will be shown correct in the end...]

Top
#955203 - 03/02/2011 17:57 Re: site down? [Re: jocelyn]
mArV Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 08/11/2010
Posts: 19
Loc: Dapto
While it would be great to have the perfect forum during events like Yasi, I find it hard to see that happening, short of becoming web nazis. The main thread was a chat thread and the technical thread mods did a great job of minimising chat on the tech thread. If its a chat thread, then surely we all have to tolerate some nonsense, although abuse should not be tolerated. While there was criticism of the "guess ground zero" game, I bet for a lot of watchers, this was an issue. It was for me, with my parents believed to be dug in at Taylors Beach (at 11 I learned they had been forcibly evacuated - yes that did happen despite the media reports). So I was keen to hear on the ground reports to supplement the BOM data. A better solution is just to find a way to bring extra capacity online during peak periods. A big well done to WZ for being a source of choice for so many.

Top
#955222 - 03/02/2011 18:19 Re: site down? [Re: Arnost]
molly8 Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 10/07/2008
Posts: 2
Loc: Craigmore SA
we find the forum excellent for up to date info that is often ahead of media reports.
this was particularly true during the victorian bushfires. posts were accurate and current.
valuable during a major weather event.
disappointed when the site went down last night but understand the overload issue.

would not like to think it was ever taken down for other reasons.

Top
#955240 - 03/02/2011 18:41 Re: site down? [Re: molly8]
markm9 Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 09/03/2009
Posts: 1354
Loc: bris
So it was a server overload, mmm.

I had a feeling it was the wave heights that Jeff noticed in Townsville. They showed a massive wave, soon after that the site went down. Then shortly after the premier said the equipment failed. People were reporting on the data that we could see.

Moderators censor the site so why wouldn't the government if it thought fit.

So the tech heads have done the analysis and found a server went down, you really got to examine the errors to find out why.

Top
#955248 - 03/02/2011 18:51 Re: site down? [Re: markm9]
markm9 Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 09/03/2009
Posts: 1354
Loc: bris
A bit more technical information.

There is a thing you can do called a Denial of Service Attack.

This involves sending so much data to a server to bring it down.

It masquerades itself as an overload. It is common and experienced people can do it quite easily.

Top
#955261 - 03/02/2011 19:18 Re: site down? [Re: markm9]
HolySmoke Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 01/02/2011
Posts: 19
Loc: Mackay Q
I"m an on and off lurker cool
I first came when Hamish was on the doorstep, then Ului, Anthony and now Yasi.

I just registered a few days ago. I only turn up when I want to see what the WZ experts think of the current threat. Hahah grin (what a user)

Be great to see some sort of rating system to see at a glance who knows their stuff and has a valuable opinion.

I walked away from this website many times over the last week after reading so many opinions / alarmist posts.

Thx

Top
#955271 - 03/02/2011 19:32 Re: site down? [Re: markm9]
Jax Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 16/12/2009
Posts: 744
There's a lot of intelligent people frequent this forum, hopefully some of you might do the following and get somewhere with it.

1. Check in the Cardwell to Bowen thread to see what the last comment was before the site crashed?
2. Note the comments from Dodo and Xavo.
3. Go back to that last comment before the site crash and start doing some serious research.
4. Try and explain the odd radar "anomaly" if you can access it somewhere from up at Wyndham/Darwin at crossing time.

Even the media is wondering about why measurements taken at Willis Island don't correspond with the actual severity of what unfolded...

Top
#955274 - 03/02/2011 19:35 Re: site down? [Re: Arnost]
Andy Double U Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 28/10/2006
Posts: 1829
Loc: Mundoolun, SE QLD, 129m ASL
Apologies for the Ultra long post smile

I tend to agree Arnost.

I think you can separate users into the following categories:

> Newbies who are new to the weather, have little to no background but are seeking information either for general knowledge OR because there is an impending event that they are trying to garner more knowledge on.

> Casual observers who tend to have a bit of a handle on things and are more likely to be able to interpret more technical comments or know where to research it.

> Moderate to experienced observers who have a pretty good idea on what is happening/going to happen based on their own experiences and being able to interpret modelling and forecasts as they come to hand.

> Mets or the gurus who obviously have a very good handle on things and have a pool of resources and experience to draw upon. These guys are probably this forum's most valuable resource for obvious reasons and inevitably have a lot of questioning thrown at them. It might pay to keep in mind that some of these guys derive their primary source of income from their knowledge and any info they give here is because they are passionate about the weather and we shouldn't abuse their generosity!

> Pests or trolls, self explanatory really.

To background, when I first found the WZ forums via google search I found the forum a little intimidating at first, I sure as heck wasn't about to post much as I saw some of the other newer people getting hounded pretty hard by some of the more experienced people. Having said that, I believe it made me brush up on my weather knowledge a little more and when I finally felt comfortable to make a few small forecasts of my own, I was inclined to try and explain my reasoning. In retrospect I feel this was a good thing for me and the quality of the forum.

To be honest I think things started to change when the forum was upgraded and as soon as things became less clunky and cumbersome it seemed that more and more new users were finding us. For me I've always struggled a bit with the new layout and it doesn't feel as homely as it has in the past, but hey, that's my issue, not anyone else's. I do like the multimedia features as they offer a lot more flexibility over the old style.

Many moons ago I was a volunteer moderator in a chat program, helping new users get a handle on things, solving technical issues and by far the most important job was maintaining a G rated environment as it was an area where users from all backgrounds and age groups congregated. By far the biggest challenge we had as moderators was ensuring each user's experience was a positive and rewarding one and the way we did this as a team was to apply the rules and guidelines as consistently as we could.

We operated on a three strikes principle, although if someone was being particularly offensive/disruptive they were ejected without notice. Ejections would vary from a 5 minute time out to a permanent ban. For each shift we supervised we were required to a submit a moderation report as a way of disseminating information amongst the other mods. Ejections needed to be sited against a rule or guideline that had been broken and an explanation given.

In the chat room we had two levels of people, non-registered users and registered paying users. Non-registered members received less functionality which actually kept the disruptive behaviour confined to spamming text more or less. Registered users have put their money where the mouth is and obviously value their hard earned so would play nicely. Something to consider might be offering silver members something extra in the forums compared to non registered users. Maybe their should be a cap on the number of non-registered users who can login and post at any one time?

Which brings me to my next point. As far as I am concerned, it is an absolute privilege that WZ offers this forum for people with a common interest in weather to get together and congregate. For a company there are many potential headaches which lie in the legal field as well as the obvious logistical issues of actually maintaining and delivering this site to internet users. WZ, doesn't have to offer this service, but I am glad they do and really hope they continue to into the future.

Mods -- To be brutally honest, I don't think there is enough consistency amongst the moderators in applying the rules and guidelines to maintain a positive environment in the forums. I myself have been a bit surprised by some of my own comments that haven't been moderated, compared to the ones that have. They leave me scratching my head! In my opinion, snide and narky comments should be deleted [b]with explanation[b]. If mods decide that a particular line of conversation has taken that route than I believe the entire exchange needs to be deleted, not just one or two comments that can sometimes be from the one person as I've noticed the initial comment that lead to the flare up can be left on the board. Ok, so this could be a bit time consuming to moderate but I am sure if the rules are applied quickly, fairly and dealt with in a very timely manner than the overall 'vibe' of the forum will improve and the workload could ultimately decrease. Relaxing the rules now to ease the burden on the moderators at this point in time can and often will come back and bite you leading to increased moderator workload in the future... the end result of that is possibly a closing of the forum. Is there any particular reason why we have different moderators for different sections? Why can't all mods moderate all sections? Perhaps some mods can be assigned as a section expert for other mods to contact in case of a moderating issue?

So some things to consider?

Maybe we could have a 'Weather School' section of the forum broken up into regions and areas like the weather section? This is the place for inexperienced people to ask questions. Perhaps experienced users could be encouraged to visit to answer the more benign questions to ensure it is utilised properly. Not sure how one would encourage this though.

A 'General Chat' area separated up into regions where users can engage in general convo and obs.

A 'Technical & Reports' section for users to do pre, during and post event analysis, again separated into the regions.

I know this dramatically increases the number of sections in the forums but sometimes what is good for the computer isn't necessarily good for the user! wink

Perhaps a two tier user system along the unregistered / registered guideline too help keep a cap on server traffic and workload. I think it is important that as many users as possible can view the forum during events because there is often some pretty good information contained within them that can make a meaningful difference to the outcome of an event, be it chasing or riding out a cyclone.

Perhaps all of us need to remind ourselves that this area is designed to be used as a forum and not as a live chat room. SWXC has the chat area below the chase feed which I think is a really good idea, although it definitely needs moderating to keep the crap to a minimum. Perhaps IRC could be utilised in some way for events as users see fit? That way idle chit chat can be confined to one area whilst the forums can be used as kind of a weather archive / knowledge base that can assist users now and into the future.

Anyway, that's my $2 worth. grin

Top
#955299 - 03/02/2011 20:07 Re: site down? [Re: Andy Double U]
mArV Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 08/11/2010
Posts: 19
Loc: Dapto
The wave heights were reported on Facebook and TV with far bigger audiences. Neither of those were "taken down" so while not outside the realms of possibility, I find a DOS attack hard to believe.

Also I know nothing about web servers, but what precipitated a total crash, rather than difficulty connecting?

Top
#955308 - 03/02/2011 20:16 Re: site down? [Re: Andy Double U]
markm9 Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 09/03/2009
Posts: 1354
Loc: bris
It is in no way an official forecasting forum, the problem is with the experienced people here we see obs well before the media or BOM issue, it is trumping the BOM.

There always has to be freedom of speech, .

Why didn't twitter or facebook come down, less security here, rest of site worked but not forum.

I hope we don't head towards some countries with much information censored.

Top
#955322 - 03/02/2011 20:37 Re: site down? [Re: markm9]
markm9 Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 09/03/2009
Posts: 1354
Loc: bris
This has really pissed me off.

The mods would have no idea of the CEO's in charge of the WeatherZone site run by big corporations, it is not a backyard site.

I threw the denial of service attack out there, but having more a think a decision may have been made to shut forum down due to rumors.

THIS IS NOT GOOD MAY AS WELL NOT EVEN HAVE IT.

Top
#955324 - 03/02/2011 20:40 Re: site down? [Re: CivEngSean]
Moonstruck Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 30/12/2010
Posts: 755
pkgjmg I totally agree with all your comments I was a long time lurker ( about two years) while I developed an interest in learning more weather and all its intricasies( hope thats spelt right) and have only just registered. I was frustrated by the constant twitter like comments/conversations that I had to get through to read any worthwhile posts. I wonder if perhaps a more detailed registering procedure might be the answer. i.e. as some suggest a 24 / 48 waiting period, more boxes to be ticked so that new members understand that this is a weather forum and not a social network such as facebook and twitter, another thing that greatly annoys me is the constant asking of questions answered on the previous page or questions that are totally irrelevant to the thread. For god sake can't people read back! Anyway that's my twelve months worth. To all regulars please keep posting some of us really enjoy being part of it without massive worthless contributions. The end.

PS. I am very dissappointed that the likes of RWM are no longer frequent participants on this forum.
_________________________
W


Top
#955335 - 03/02/2011 20:47 Re: site down? [Re: Andy Double U]
davidg Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 01/06/2008
Posts: 2248
Loc: Glenbrook/Penrith
Originally Posted By: Andy Double U
Perhaps IRC could be utilised in some way for events as users see fit? That way idle chit chat can be confined to one area whilst the forums can be used as kind of a weather archive / knowledge base that can assist users now and into the future.

Anyway, that's my $2 worth. grin


I think thats an excellent idea but moderating such a chat function with 100's of users all posting every minute or so would be near impossible. The current setup where the tech thread is seperate from the general chat thread is perfect. It's just that the chat thread got out of control and crashed the site. This then meant that no technical discussion was possible at all as well as no real time obs. Its difficult to find the balance between moderated control and censorship/exclusion.

Top
#955375 - 03/02/2011 21:23 Re: site down? [Re: davidg]
KevD Offline
Occasional Visitor

Registered: 23/09/2001
Posts: 5236
Loc: Bellingen NSW 2454
Hi all

Just wanted to let you know that I've gone through and cut and pasted the most useful comments from this thread so they can be incorporated into ongoing discussions on how to make it all work all the better next time.

Thanks for the huge effort many have gone to to put forward ideas for the future

Cheers

Kev

Top
#955385 - 03/02/2011 21:35 Re: site down? [Re: davidg]
WelloMeteo Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 05/01/2006
Posts: 1488
Loc: Wellington Point SEQ (30km eas...
I am constantly lurking in the forums, but don't contribute much because I rarely have anything to add that hasn't already been said by those with more knowledge. If I don't understand something I look it up, but due to the media exposure the WZ site has had, the type of people it is attracting now are not inclined to do that. My one comment last night was to a new member who had typed out a list of obs - I suggested that also providing a link to the BOM obs page (which I provided) would allow people to get that information in a more up to date way - I was shot down in flames by that person because "after all this is a chat forum, so what would be the point?" - and therein lies the problem - most of these very new members do see it as entirely a chat forum, and have very little interest in learning about the weather (of course many of the new members are here to learn, but I fear they are the minority). Last night, I gave up in disgust and frustration and simply closed my WZ tab (but left open the other 9 weather-related ones I had going ... grin ). I've been reading some of the suggestions here thinking of the pros and cons of what is suggested. It's true that the tech thread sorts the wheat from the chaff (so to speak) but in the past the chat thread provided really valuable on the ground, immediate info about a situation - and that is what I really missed last night


There are two issues here - the crashing of the server, and the perceived fall in quality of the forums. Not sure what can be done about the former - but would it be possible to simply have the option of a filter, like in facebook? You get an idea pretty quickly about who are the trolls, who are the drama queens and who are simply simpletons and to be honest they are probably the minority, but unfortunately post the most - if it were facebook, you could simply "hide" them - is that a possibility here? It might even help with server loads because there would be less refreshing of pages to keep up, and less temptation to respond to moronic comments.

Edit: just realised I contradicted myself about minorities and majorities, but I'm sure you know what i mean ...


Edited by WelloMeteo (03/02/2011 21:37)

Top
#955387 - 03/02/2011 21:40 Re: site down? [Re: markm9]
whynot Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 01/10/2001
Posts: 550
Loc: Brisbane
Originally Posted By: markm9
This has really pissed me off.

The mods would have no idea of the CEO's in charge of the WeatherZone site run by big corporations, it is not a backyard site.

I threw the denial of service attack out there, but having more a think a decision may have been made to shut forum down due to rumors.

THIS IS NOT GOOD MAY AS WELL NOT EVEN HAVE IT.


markm9,

Mate, I think you need to get a grip. You are confusing free speech rights with private property rights. For example, you have a right to stand inside your property and say whatever you like. However, you have no rights to come onto my property and say whatever you like. As the Weatherzone web site is like private property, the “owners” can censor whatever they like. If you want true free speech, go post on the Usenet group aus.weather. The “free speech” that was prevalent in the late 1990’s on Usenet is what drove the older members across to private forums in the first place. Living under a benevolent dictator was better than anarchy of Usenet.

I agree the Forum is not without its faults. Indeed, when I recently privately chided another forum user for their posts, the first thing they did was run off to a moderator to complain about me (a new first for me). Unlike Usenet, least there was an adjudicator who could settle the matter. If I didn’t like the result, I can always go find another forum.

In response to some of the other comments posted;

I think that Weatherzone has been remarkably tolerant of the various conversations held over the years. Considering the resources it consumes and the potential legal minefield that forums are, I am surprised that Mark has persevered so long.

I have seen reputation points work well on some forums and not well on others.

I think that the conspiracy theorists who believe that the information posted here is “better” that what is supplied by the BoM for the public is just plain wrong. Public weather forecasting is a completely different ball game than forums. I posted about this recently here … http://forum.weatherzone.com.au/ubbthrea...ASTE#Post922864
To put the BoM’s problems into even sharper relief, just look at the TV footage of people leaving it to the last minute because they did not “believe” the forecast.

One final point, it is readily apparent that the Facebook/Twitter users have a completely different form of communicating. It never struck me how different until I read some of the utter garbage posted over the last few days. The screams of “elitism” really stung when all we are trying to do is hold a rational, sensible, and above all scientific discussion about the weather. But, apparently, that is too difficult for some to comprehend …

Top
#955400 - 03/02/2011 21:51 Re: site down? [Re: whynot]
WelloMeteo Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 05/01/2006
Posts: 1488
Loc: Wellington Point SEQ (30km eas...
Originally Posted By: whynot

One final point, it is readily apparent that the Facebook/Twitter users have a completely different form of communicating. It never struck me how different until I read some of the utter garbage posted over the last few days. The screams of “elitism” really stung when all we are trying to do is hold a rational, sensible, and above all scientific discussion about the weather. But, apparently, that is too difficult for some to comprehend


Exactly! That's what I was referring to with my reference to a 'different kind of user' - hell, I'm on facebook all the time, but at least I can differentiate between what kind of comment is appropriate for each forum - the comments in the Yasi chat last night resembled the average of 60 odd found after every Facebook QLD Police Service post. I really do think that differentiation needs to be made clear - and enforced where possible. Maybe even lose the word "chat" altogether ....?

Top
#955404 - 03/02/2011 21:54 Re: site down? [Re: KevD]
Mark Hardy Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 23/01/2001
Posts: 2881
Loc: North Sydney, NSW
There have been a lot of issues raised in this thread and I won't address them all here. Other than to say two things. One, a forum structured as this one is will never cope well with the type of extreme event and influx of new members as we saw last night. We saw a very similar situation on the day of TC Larry 5 years ago. On nights like last night we can only ask that regular members become a little more tolerant of the needs of the new members who join in events like this.

Regarding the unavailability of the forums last night. The forum crashed, it was really was as simple as that. The forum part of weatherzone is not supported by hardware or personnel nearly as well as the rest of the site. The main weatherzone site can handle enormous traffic loads due to multiple load balanced servers and a distributed caching system. The forums are still run from a single server with nothing to protect it from large traffic loads. And this is fine 99.9% of the time because on a typical day the forum requires very little hardware and bandwidth resources to run. It's only on days like yesterday when demand spirals out of control that this set up is unable to cope with demand. When it crashed late last night we had no one able to get it going again till this morning. We apologise for this inconvenience and understand that a lot of people were using the forum as a medium to communicate with others equally as anxious about the impending cyclone.

We will look at our options for making the forums more load tolerant in time for the next major weather event.

And one last thing; a massive thanks to the moderators who put in a huge effort yesterday to keep some semblance of order to the forum in what was an extremely anxious time for many people. Without you guys the forum would not be the place it is. Thanks again. MH.


Edited by Mark Hardy (03/02/2011 22:15)

Top
#955431 - 03/02/2011 22:27 Re: site down? [Re: Mark Hardy]
Arnost Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 10/02/2007
Posts: 3909
No need to apologise Mark... Further I second whynot's
Quote:
I think that Weatherzone has been remarkably tolerant of the various conversations held over the years. Considering the resources it consumes and the potential legal minefield that forums are, I am surprised that Mark has persevered so long.


I also stress whynot's final point that WM has also picked up. Language and communication is alway evolving and the FB/Twitter/SMS style one liners are here to stay. But here's another suggestion - if it's technically possible - anyone who's not a silver member is limmited to one post each half hour (or pick a better ratio)... Maybe that way the people who want to post will post more meanigful things. And maybe that way you will get a smidgin more revenue...

And taking Andy UU's & WM's last point a bit further - maybe the "chat" page on the event should be in the lounge. Have three threads associated with major events: the technical, the reports & observations, and the general/chat.

I would also [thinking a bit out of the square] like to have the moderators (or designates) able to "elevate posts". So when someone makes what would be a possibly throw away comment like "it's been drizzling here for the last hour but there's nothing on the radar" in chat page, that could then be auto-transferred to the obs thread as that may be interesting to someone subsequently doing analysis on an event.

Thank you all for taking the time to put down your thoughts so making these forums more enjoyable!
_________________________
“No. Not even in the face of Armageddon. Never compromise” ...

And this of course applies to scientific principles. Never compromise these. Never! [Follow the science and you will be shown correct in the end...]

Top
#955448 - 03/02/2011 22:39 Re: site down? [Re: Arnost]
Island viewer Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 01/04/2010
Posts: 247
Loc: Eimeo Qld 4740
Perhaps (and I say this hoping not to be pedantic) for major events: 3 threads (Tech, contributor obs & chat) which would still allow contributions at all levels and allow those seeking information to find it without scrolling though so very many messages.
_________________________
Eimeo Point, Mackay, Qld

Top
#955455 - 03/02/2011 22:46 Re: site down? [Re: Andy Double U]
TC Poncho Offline
Weatherzone Addict

Registered: 07/01/2010
Posts: 2199
Loc: Point Cartwright, Sunny Coast,...
Originally Posted By: Andy Double U
Apologies for the Ultra long post smile

I tend to agree Arnost.

I think you can separate users into the following categories:

> Newbies who are new to the weather, have little to no background but are seeking information either for general knowledge OR because there is an impending event that they are trying to garner more knowledge on.

> Casual observers who tend to have a bit of a handle on things and are more likely to be able to interpret more technical comments or know where to research it.

> Moderate to experienced observers who have a pretty good idea on what is happening/going to happen based on their own experiences and being able to interpret modelling and forecasts as they come to hand.

> Mets or the gurus who obviously have a very good handle on things and have a pool of resources and experience to draw upon. These guys are probably this forum's most valuable resource for obvious reasons and inevitably have a lot of questioning thrown at them. It might pay to keep in mind that some of these guys derive their primary source of income from their knowledge and any info they give here is because they are passionate about the weather and we shouldn't abuse their generosity!

> Pests or trolls, self explanatory really.

In the chat room we had two levels of people, non-registered users and registered paying users. Non-registered members received less functionality which actually kept the disruptive behaviour confined to spamming text more or less. Registered users have put their money where the mouth is and obviously value their hard earned so would play nicely. Something to consider might be offering silver members something extra in the forums compared to non registered users. Maybe their should be a cap on the number of non-registered users who can login and post at any one time?

Maybe we could have a 'Weather School' section of the forum broken up into regions and areas like the weather section? This is the place for inexperienced people to ask questions. Perhaps experienced users could be encouraged to visit to answer the more benign questions to ensure it is utilised properly. Not sure how one would encourage this though.

A 'General Chat' area separated up into regions where users can engage in general convo and obs.

A 'Technical & Reports' section for users to do pre, during and post event analysis, again separated into the regions.

I know this dramatically increases the number of sections in the forums but sometimes what is good for the computer isn't necessarily good for the user! wink

Perhaps a two tier user system along the unregistered / registered guideline too help keep a cap on server traffic and workload. I think it is important that as many users as possible can view the forum during events because there is often some pretty good information contained within them that can make a meaningful difference to the outcome of an event, be it chasing or riding out a cyclone.

Anyway, that's my $2 worth. grin


Hey everyone. Jeeezzzz what happened last night... things were out of control at times and then.... nothing? couldnt connect to the forum? thought it was my chrome browser but i tried on exploder and still couldnt get on to the forums, so i figured the plug had been pulled.

Anyway. Im glad everyone is safe:)

comments on the quoted above:

what i have cut and left from Andy Double U (which by the way was a awesome write up) is the 3 basics i feel that are required to change and they all tie in together (which is helpful)

Firstly i will start with the forum structure. I am apart of another forum (surfphotographersunited). We have the same type of system as mentioned above with the payment/privilege option and i feel it works really well. We also have a minimum post policy where, if you dont have over a certain number of posts then you cant access certain parts of the forum.(which probably wouldnt be a problem here though)

Now, weather school is a excellent idea, but, i think, when you join, you go straight to weather school then sit a little test(this gives you the basic knowledge of weather info that you would need to not ask "those" questions) and once passed, you gain your newbie licence etc. Then, same again but, you have to post a certain number of posts and do another test before moving up...and so on and so forth.

Also, maybe if your a unregistered(nonpaying) user, then you have a max number of posts before you need to join.

thats me:)
_________________________
To purchase fine photographic art please visit my website http://peterperreauxphoto.silhouetteapp.com

Top
#955462 - 03/02/2011 22:58 Re: site down? [Re: Andy Double U]
Tales Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 31/01/2011
Posts: 46
Loc: Springbrook, GC Hinterland. Fo...
Originally Posted By: Andy Double U
I think you can separate users into the following categories:
> Newbies who are new to the weather, have little to no background but are seeking information either for general knowledge OR because there is an impending event that they are trying to garner more knowledge on.

Hi guys. I believe I fall into this ^ category. I found it because I was hunting for technical and broader info on the development of Yasi behind TCA, and over and over my searches led me to WZ forums. So I hung around, made an application to join, and stayed. What I found in the General Chat thread was a FB-esque situation, but not knowing any different, figured that it was usually like that. For a little while, anyway. A number of posts from mods cleared it up pretty quick, at least for me. The screams of 'elitism' from some (which I don't share, personally) could possibly be explained as a reaction from people who thought as I did, initially. They wandered into a general chat forum teeming with life, and figured it was always like that. I'm not excusing the behaviour, but I do think that a general misunderstanding of the nature of the forum was prevalent - despite the best efforts of our mods. Plus some people simply don't read, which is frustrating to say the least. That said, I didn't find it overly difficult to navigate through the rubbish to find the gold. Time consuming, certainly. The fact the forums went down at the most critical point in the crossing was very unfortunate.

As a newb, I really like the Weather School idea. I know a great majority of us would try hard to make meaningful contributions, ask worthwhile questions, and do some background research. I am somewhat poor at math/physics (which is why I'm a lawyer instead lol), so much of the tech will go over my head indefinitely. But it interests me nonetheless. I love nature, and love weather, and would really love to stay and learn. If I'm afforded a read-only status, that's cool. But being able to ask the odd question, in some form or another, would be useful.

Top
#955495 - 03/02/2011 23:57 Re: site down? [Re: Tales]
dlcat1 Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 31/01/2011
Posts: 901
Loc: Melbourne (NE burbs)
I think you could put me in the same category as Tales, joining for more or less the same reason. One of the first things I noticed reading the Yasi chat thread was that it rapidly became a "one stop shop" for anyone interested in anything remotely STCY related, and the sheer volume of posts meant pertinent information was rapidly lost several pages back, the same questions where being asked over and over again, seemingly by those who may be conditioned to an instant answer, and I believe the vast majority of users would have had difficulty differentiating between posts containing valid information, educated guesses, and the wildy spurious. I also feel that stressed people not getting the information they wanted instantly, may have contributed to some of the heated posts.

I believe that as a general chat thread, it might have been fine, but as a source of important information it became pretty useless in the 24 hours or so before landfall. I also think that the technical thread, while a source of verified information, would have been of limited use to many of the users of the general chat thread, who apparently had trouble interpeting it or misinterpreted it. I got the distinct impression most people just wanted to see where the cyclone were the cycloen was at, and really didn't have a clue what the difference between the IR, WV and Vis images were or that they didn't show the same thing.

I have a couple of ideas.

1) introduction of another level thread between the technical and the general containing a plain english explanation of the technical thread, discussing what you can see on the various images, what the technical reports mean and so forth, enabling people to expand their knowledge almost lecture style, maybe even a podcast, although that may run into bandwidth issues for some users. This could also be done on the technical thread, but I've suggested it as a seperate thread as I think you've got two distinct audiences there. This leaves the general thread chat as just that.

2) Introduction of groups. I can see pretty colors for mods and admin, but I'm wondering if the introduction of say "community leaders" or "technical experts" might help. If as a new user I want to know whether Joe Blow is someone I can trust, I can look at their username and see whether WZ trusts them. An idea similar to this has been implemented on the X-Plane.org forum here http://forums.x-plane.org/index.php?showtopic=50310. Currently I believe the "cloud gazer". "WZ Addict" etc just relate to the number of posts, not the content?

Cheers.




Edited by dlcat1 (03/02/2011 23:58)

Top
#956142 - 04/02/2011 22:32 Re: site down? [Re: dlcat1]
Prettymillielovestorms Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 11/09/2008
Posts: 95
Loc: Banora Point - Tweed Coast
Hi Everyone, I certainly agree with most of the points that Tales, dlcat1 & TC poncho. I have been a member since September 2008. I joined with an interest in weather, but specifically, I wanted to learn and understand why, when we lived in Tasmania, there was there very few thunderstorms lol.

I wanted to learn from educated weather watchers what really goes on in extreme weather scenario's, and learn from their experiences. I had a look at the amount of posts that I have made, a total of 37 in that time. I don't feel that I contribute a whole lot, but I'm on here all the time. I can now tell you why we didn't have very many Storms in Southern Tasmania, and I can state, that compared to most of the general population, that I know quite a lot about the weather.

I can attribute this by sitting back, reading, learning and observing and researching. I have even brought a decent Canon, so that I can record view and maybe soon possibly share my experiences. I believe that is the essence of what this forum is about. It is a wealth of information, some from experience, technical knowledge, professional knowledge and on the ground observations. All this information is what makes this forum, such a great place to be.

I understand and feel the frustration of members who are genuinely either trying to contribute, or get important information across, and it is lost in ridiculous one line assumptions or useless banter. I guess we can't censor, because at the end of the day, some people were just looking for advice and comforting answers and this forum provided that need.

Hey, I made my 38th post, only 12 to go.... just watch me fly.. lol

Top
#956245 - 05/02/2011 00:19 Re: site down? [Re: Prettymillielovestorms]
Horizon Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 27/12/2008
Posts: 128
Loc: Mermaid Beach GC
This issue comes up again and again. At one stage someone told JEFF.H. he was talking crap, little wonder a lot of the more knowledgeable people are/have moved on which is a big loss to everyone on this forum. Ive read RWM doesn't post anymore now either, something isn't right when you start losing your best contributors.

Now I know its a balancing act, Quality vs Quantity. I just hope the powers that be chose Quality as its the very reason I stuck around in the first place. If we lose all our top contributors what's the point coming here in the first place ?

Top
#956382 - 05/02/2011 09:49 Re: site down? [Re: Horizon]
Sara B Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 30/01/2011
Posts: 318
Loc: Dugandan
i know this thread is specific to 'site down?'...so just slap me on the wrist if I am posting out of place.

one thing I can see is that the forum is evolving, a social dynamic is at play... it is unavoidable really... like any natural phenomena subject to a complexity of variables, chat forums are subject to dynamic change. Consider an analogy between the east coast of Australia and WZ Chat forum (longstanding users & their threads = environment; new users = a weather event). Both environment's have suffered an impact from Yasi, one is a physical impact and the other is a socio-psychological (maybe there is a better word?) type of impact. And theres the technical stuff… server overload or whatever…

So following along with my analogy, I think that some seasoned members of WZ will be resistant to change, because they have an established place in the hierarchy of their environment, due to good reason, having proven that their opinion is worth consideration. Look at any ecological system and you will see that succession is natural. The seasoned reputable members are firmly rooted in place, I believe?! But may be wrong?

The newbies posting ‘inane’ comments could be analogous to… Yasi’s weather event… lots of debris being thrown around, a battering of winds, trees being uprooted… the winds of change? seems to have blown over now though

Well as a newby, the whole reason I am here is to learn from the seasoned, experienced weather people, I don’t mind the conflicting predictions of landfall, I am happy to consider others opinions and decide for myself how worthwhile they are. I am also interested in the subjective comments of others who are physically located in other areas around the country and experiencing localised conditions – these people are in the best position to report back (weather to me - is not all about wind shear, direction, speed, vertices, data, radar, it’s also about the people and how they perceive what is happening around them), I also like to consider viewpoints coming from outside the mainstream media –because these viewpoints are real, not constructed, edited and contrived for the masses!
So I hope that this can all sort itself out because I like this forum, I can overlook inane comments and in turn hope that anyone who considers my comment inane has the capacity to just flick their eyes down to the next post… that seems to be working for me

ps. agreeing with a lot of the thinking on this thread

Top
#956395 - 05/02/2011 10:10 Re: site down? [Re: Sara B]
jemima Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 31/01/2011
Posts: 5
Loc: Toowoomba Qld
Hi Everyone, Have been following forum since Xmas with family in flood affected areas SEQ and watched in horror the predicted & unfolding events that occurred here in Toowoomba/Lock Valley.
I registered before Yasi crossing as have immediate family in Townsville & wanted to be able to ask questions if necessary, but I found enough info from BOM, ABC radio, Tech discussion & NE Qld folks chats so this is first post for me. Sadly during this Yasi event some people behaved badly on this forum particularly people nowhere near affected areas.
I don't know how you fix the problems you have discussed but as in anything in life you have to educate the newbies. A small group of these people may oneday go on to be the weather experts we look to in the future.
Mods I wonder if newbies should be starting new threads also.
Thankyou to all the longtime posters from SEQ & Tropical Threads most have been very informative during these times.

Top
#956401 - 05/02/2011 10:22 Re: site down? [Re: jemima]
99wazza Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 27/01/2011
Posts: 59
Loc: Bundaberg
Having been a watcher for quite a while, I finally decided to register and join in the discussion during the build up to Anthony. What I think has happened is that with a major event builing, many people were drawn to the forums and many new people, who were unfamiliar with who is a regular poster and who is not, were getting conflicting information and also because emotions were high at the time some people were being super-sensitive and took things to heart that they shouldn't have.

Most likely, now that (for the moment) the event is over, many of these people will drift away and the forum will go back to normal. I'm sure this isn't the first time this sort of thing has happened on here and it won't be the last.

People also need to understand that the general chat forums are exactly that. They are for general chat based around a specific topic. Due to the high volume of newbies there was bound to be confusion and repetition of questions, especially given the lighning speed at which the forum was moving the other day. There is no point getting upset if someone didmisses your opinion because for everyone that does, someone else will listen closely.

In a nustshell, this type of forum will always swell during a weather event and there probably isn't really much of a need to change too much about it.
_________________________
"For the man sound in body and serene of mind there is no such thing as bad weather; every sky has its beauty, and storms which whip the blood do but make it pulse more vigorously."

Top
#956513 - 05/02/2011 12:47 Re: site down? [Re: 99wazza]
Curiouser Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 22/01/2011
Posts: 174
Loc: Brisbane Qld
My apologies if this has been brought up, I skimmed some of the posts in here, but tried to read most. Some great ideas, especially a 'voting' system where it is easy enough to see members whom other members deem credible. If experienced members only could 'vote' on a member on a post by post basis, then it would be all the more credible.

Thread splitting is a great idea but rather than restrict individual members, is it possible to restrict the number of posts on each thread? Eg. General Chat thread has no limit to number of posts, Tech thread each member can post only 1 every few hours etc (with ability to edit post in the meantime?)etc...

Went to another forum on Wednesday night after WZ forum crashed, noticed that the moderator there had recognised the influx of new guests and announced they would approve applications to become members on a case by case basis, depending on whether or not the person genuinely needed info. I realise that this may have had more to do with server capacity than anything else, but I thought it was a good idea nonetheless.

I love the idea of Weather School! Where do I enrol? grin

Other than all that (was going to be a short post) great job WZ forum mods and admins! Thanks smile

Top
#957148 - 06/02/2011 09:50 Re: site down? [Re: Curiouser]
red1 Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 03/01/2011
Posts: 62
Loc: Dunoon 2480 nsw
I got a bit narky during the event when people posted stuff like "getting windier" and they didnt show their location. I realised today that i have not got my location on my info so have updated that.

Maybe during extreme events new memberships are postponed.

I dont like the idea of limiting posts because new relevant info might no get thru.
I have actually been a member for about ten years but lost my previous password and had to re register




Edited by red1 (06/02/2011 09:52)

Top
#957526 - 06/02/2011 16:55 Re: site down? [Re: red1]
cheekeymonkey Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 30/01/2011
Posts: 176
Loc: Yorkeys Knob, Cairns
I think there is a slight issue with both postponing new memberships and also restricting numbers of posts for new memberships for the simple reason that on the Cardwell- Bowen, Coral sea tropical cyclone season 2010-11, FNQ wet season Feb 2011 etc., there have been a lot of postings post cyclone offering help to others. They then may get questioned about the type of help they can offer etc. and could then quickly use up their allocated posts just by trying to help others out.

I still think that the site is incredibly informative and the best place to get the most up to date information on a weather event. Thank you to all who have given your time and expertise to both educate and inform us all.

Top
#958137 - 07/02/2011 20:13 Re: site down? [Re: cheekeymonkey]
cheekeymonkey Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 30/01/2011
Posts: 176
Loc: Yorkeys Knob, Cairns
Another thought.
How about a 'search' area at the top (which is in a very obvious place) so people can put in a keyword & get all posts relevant to their question?
Perhaps next to the 'glossary' tab


Edited by cheekeymonkey (07/02/2011 20:13)

Top
#958138 - 07/02/2011 20:16 Re: site down? [Re: cheekeymonkey]
crookie Offline
Cloud Gazer

Registered: 11/01/2011
Posts: 8
Loc: Crows Nest Qld
Umm...have you looked a few tabs to the left of the 'glossary' tab?

Top
#958141 - 07/02/2011 20:20 Re: site down? [Re: crookie]
cheekeymonkey Offline
Weather Freak

Registered: 30/01/2011
Posts: 176
Loc: Yorkeys Knob, Cairns
Oops- just spotted it.
Well, I guess that means it's not obvious enough- maybe the space to type in should not be on a drop down, but sitting there ready- just a thought

Top
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >


Who's Online
0 registered (), 38 Guests and 3 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Today's Birthdays
No Birthdays
Forum Stats
29947 Members
32 Forums
24194 Topics
1529243 Posts

Max Online: 2985 @ 26/01/2019 12:05
Satellite Image