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Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"
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Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/01/2008 18:54:11 MST Print View

[Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"]

Yes, I am talking about this site.

There is a lot of really good stuff here and I am not just talking about the MYOG area of the Forums. The big problem is trying to find it and new folks don't even know enough to look for it. They don't even know it is out there hiding someplace.

This place needs a REAL and Complete overhaul if they are going to keep charging a membership fee. The free sites have a much better organized forums section and that is about all I ever look at anymore.

The weekly articles have not interested me much for some time and the last Pod Cast I tried to listen to was so bad I stopped it.

The list of links to my MYOG threads here - that I made is just that, I list I made with active links so I can find them. I have thought about starting a thread with just links to my stuff but never got around to it. I havn't because it would just get buried like everything else here in a couple of weeks.

My Blog has a lot of the same projects but not all of them. I havn't transfered all of them. I am busy doing other things.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/01/2008 19:03:25 MST Print View

I couldn't agree more.

I don't think the forums are all that hard to search for something but where you begin and what comes out of the searches when you are really trying to dig something up becomes next to impossible.

There is so much information here though that's it's hard to even begin to start the processing of how to make it more simple.

The recent changes have made it easier to navigate for someone like you and I, but yes, I can see it being quite hard for a new person at the site.

Maybe this can be a forum on suggestions on how to do just that.

Edited by awsorensen on 01/01/2008 19:04:29 MST.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
"Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/01/2008 20:12:04 MST Print View

Hi Aaron,

I agree that there is a lot here that keeps me, not as happy as I could be about it but still here.

The really old articles were the most important for me when I first joined. That old stuff is what the new folks should be reading. But finding it like you say is next to impossible for them. The new articles don't come close to the old articles by Ryan and gang. They all seem to be gone. All those old articles could be updated and reposted with current thinking and gear. Most are 3 years old or maybe older.

We can search and usually find stuff since we know it is out there and remember reading it.

I don't expect to see the kind of changes I would like. This is a "Make Your Own Web Site" (MYOWS) and changes seem to be beyond the current skill level of anyone here. I don't know how to do it or I would have had what this place needs long ago.

Had to go do a copy / paste and run this through spell check. Some forums I am on now even have a spell check and a preview funtion.

David King
(CoyoteWhips) - F
Re: "Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/01/2008 20:22:27 MST Print View

Forums overhaul has been the bulk of my web projects in the last few years. The fastest way to get all those forum features we enjoy on other sites is to install one of the popular forums and import the posts. Where it gets tricky is dealing with login and membership details. It's not trivial, but it's worth the effort to stay relevant.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/01/2008 20:48:10 MST Print View

Well Bill,

Still couldn't agree with you more, but don't go away just because of this.

BLP is always interested in making things better for the community.

You were also the pinnacle person for me to be as SUL as I am today.
That and you were the one who first got me started in MYOG.

You also made me see the "Bill Way" instead of the "Ray Way".

Frank Perkins

Locale: North East
Re: Re: "Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/01/2008 20:51:29 MST Print View

I agree with David. The websites I work on get over a million page views a day and we partner with another company to host and moderate the forums. This is what just did, although, I'm not sure if the new software is that much better.

Edited by fperkins on 01/01/2008 20:52:14 MST.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
"Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/02/2008 01:42:29 MST Print View

I am not ready to go anywhere - there is nowhere else.

I have been thinking about a name for a new web site.

"Your Ultralight Gear Online" or YUGO for short.

george carr
(hammer-one) - F - MLife

Locale: Walking With The Son
Re: "Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/02/2008 04:20:03 MST Print View


YUGO just screams small, no frills, and short lived. If your going to use a foriegn car acronym at least come up with something for Audi or Mercedes, or at the very least Hyundai or Toyota :P !

Sam Haraldson
(sharalds) - MLife

Locale: Gallatin Range
Why Are We Even Still Here? on 01/02/2008 06:57:02 MST Print View

I like to hear the constructive criticism coming from this thread. I too find myself stumbling through much of the functionality of BPL and it is obvious the site's technology is from times gone by.

It is a very daunting task to successfully transfer a forums database from one piece of software to another so keep on reminding yourself what it is about BPL that you like and reassure yourself that when the overhaul does take place it will bring all those things you like into a more manageable package.

The recent update to the site's look and feel was a welcome change and an overhaul to the forums, article database and e-commerce will be a change I welcome with very open arms.

Graham Sims
(Jenner) - F
two words on 01/02/2008 07:42:40 MST Print View

sticky threads.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: "Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site"" on 01/02/2008 08:21:03 MST Print View

Bill, much like you (though I don't go back nearly so far as you I have a list of links I particularly like.

PS - for everyone, I find that googling "search term(s)" is far superior to the built in site search...

Douglas Frick
(Otter) - MLife

Locale: Wyoming
Good site but... on 01/02/2008 10:13:21 MST Print View

I'm _not_ still here. I left for a two-week trip last summer, came back to 500+ new posts, left for another two weeks, and when faced with the nearly 1000 new posts and no truly easy way to read them all (by the time I get half-way through, all the other new posts are no longer 'new'; you know how it is) I just couldn't get through them. So I left.

I now just look for interesting threads in the Forum Heat in the newsletter (that's how I found this one). Otherwise I only come back to BPL for the occasional new article. It's a bit of a drag, but I'm getting almost an hour a day back in my life.

The post volume on BPL is fairly high, but the biggest problem is the effort and time needed to work through the BPL forum interface. Several things could be improved: keeping "show all posts" as a global preference, so I don't have to keep paging to somewhere near the last page to see new posts; automatically going to the first new post when I view a thread; being able to hide threads I'm not interested in following, leaving only the threads of interest and new threads; etc. Good forum software isn't rocket science, but it's not easy, either.

I miss the community, and I miss the learning. But I got some of my life back. It's unfortunate that the BPL forum software itself is what forced the choice.

Ron Bell
(mountainlaureldesigns) - F - M

Locale: USA
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/02/2008 11:06:33 MST Print View

One thing BPL forum users can do to make it this unique resource even more useful is to name the first post with a clear descriptive title and for all replys to use the exact same title when possible.

That could make it easier to scan and then to view the ones you are interested in.

Anyone have any other ideas users could do?

Frank Perkins

Locale: North East
Re: two words on 01/02/2008 11:33:05 MST Print View

I 2nd Grahamn. Sticky threads would make a world of difference. Then, each forum category could have it's own FAQ.

Maybe we would call them Carbon Fiber Threads though.

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Re: Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/02/2008 11:53:35 MST Print View

If you look at the number of posts by forum, then you see the issue. Of the 33 forums, G Spot has about 35,000 posts. None of the other forums come close.

The G Spot forum relies on thread titles. I'd like to see specific forums under G Spot. For example, one for MLD. Then someone like me could start a thread about MLD poncho tarps. Experienced users and Ron could easily spot my thread and post answers or additional related questions.

Siegmund Beimfohr
(SigBeimfohr) - M
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/02/2008 12:20:12 MST Print View

As Ron said (and I proposed a long time ago) if the listing of "New Posts Since Your Last Visit" included the original, descriptive title of the thread subject, it would be much easier to view threads of interest. When I look at the list of unviewed posts, I go down the list and open new tabs for each post that appears to belong to a different thread (using Firefox), then read. Because the user-furnished heading for each thread varies wildly relative to the thread subject, I end up with many duplicate tabs.

This is one place where Practical Backpacking forums are superior (although I agree with most that the rules there are very restrictive and unfortunately also somewhat mysterious). When the "new Posts" link is clicked, the result is a list of THREADS with unviewed posts, not individual posts; this makes it easy to go to threads of interest. There are some problems in that you are not immediately taken to the first unread post and, if you don't view a thread, it remains on a lengthening list of unviewed threads with unread posts. However, this list is much shorter than BPL's (thread titles only, not individual posts) and is subject-defined through the thread title, not the user-provided heading.

A totally different problem here is the off-topic wanderings that frequently provide very useful info but are very difficult to find later. I use the "Scrapbook" Firefox extension to catagorize info I find on the web and either capture pages or store links to them (as with many BPL forum threads) under appropriate category folders so I can return to them without the problems of searching.

I've other thoughts but this is long enough; I agree that BPL's forum structure needs upgrading.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/02/2008 12:52:51 MST Print View

Is this a case of the phenomenon Yogi Berra was thinking of when he said Nobody goes there any more, it's too crowded. ??

Ryan Faulkner
(ryanf) - F

Locale: Mid atlantic, No. Cal
Re: Why Are We Even Still Here? was "A Very Thorough MYOG Site" on 01/02/2008 17:14:06 MST Print View

Too true Bill, I am glad I found BPL when I did, I have read through all the old articles, and they have done much in teaching me about UL backpacking.

In addition, a few years ago, these forums were used by a much smaller crowd of people... very intelligent, and enlightened backpackers, who, including myself, have been posting less and less on the site. In my case, I have still been active in reading through the forums and articles, but like bill said, they have not interested me enough lately to comment. There seems there is not much left I can learn here, and with so many other posters, my opinions and suggestions will be repeated, so I dont even bother.

Even the great, and now old articles, on which this site were originally based, have now become outdated, new gear and gear advances have changed once accepted ultralight methods.

I am calling for a revival of some of the old, now outdated articles, of which we are seeing less and less. I think the reason for this is because, since most of the topics have already been written on, there seems no reason to write another.

however... Like I said before.. they are old, and at the bottom of lists of article pages, so... unless you know they are there, like myself, and long time BPL posters, you wont find them, and it is the new site members that really need to read them

so.. RJ.. do you mind getting out the old Pen, and writing some more articles and gearlists in keeping with your current views, techniques, and UL style????

Im sure some of your peer reveiwers, and long time site members would not mind helping with this project
Being a member of this site for a few years, It is hard to avoid being exposed to alot of different ideas and views in these forums and articles. Alot of people would be prepared to write solid articles, covering many view points.

a new Lightweight Backpacking and camping book may bee in order as well...

Edited by ryanf on 01/02/2008 17:50:05 MST.

mark henley
(flash582) - F
I couldn't agree more on 01/03/2008 08:32:52 MST Print View

Once you hit that 5 lb baseweight and/or below 5lbs .... then the fun kinda goes out of this site.

I mean ... I already own too many stoves, too many shelters, too many packs ... etc.

I've gone off in a different direction these days .... I'm working more on simplification of my kit. How few items can I carry and be comfortable with? How much stuff do I really need to haul around?

At what point does carrying more stuff become counterproductive to my outdoors experience?

I've found that my enjoyment of the outdoors goes up with each piece of gear I can leave at home.

David T
(DaveT) - F
. on 01/03/2008 10:12:18 MST Print View


Edited by DaveT on 11/19/2014 22:10:33 MST.