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The Quality of Our Archives
Posted by Michael on 4 March 2004, 22:29 GMT

You may have noticed the low numbers of new files added to our archives. We're having a debate about what to do with a growing problem: Programs that simply aren't very useful to anyone. There are more quadratic solvers in our archives than should ever exist, notwithstanding the fact that most models have this as a built-in feature. Our possible solutions are:

Currently, all files that meet the site policies are processed and uploaded to our archives. Since this doesn't seem to be working well, here are the ideas under consideration:

  • The file archivers could manually screen programs for those deemed "junk", in the sense that they lower the signal-to-noise ratio of our archives rather than increase it. Authors would have to e-mail an appeal for rejected programs. This would cause a longer waiting time for processing files.
  • We could implement a rating system and organize programs by rating. This allows all programs to remain on the site, but the most useless could be filtered out. A method of dealing with new programs and low/high numbers of votes would have to be developed.
  • Our current folder system stops at games, programs, math, et cetera. For ease of browsing, this could be expanded to sub-categories like games/board, games/shooter, and games/guessthenumber. This doesn't limit the number of files added, it only categorizes them so folders are more concise and relevant.
  • Lastly, we could just leave everything as it is now.

We're asking for your input on what to do. There is a survey posted in conjunction with this article where you can vote on this issue. Thank you.

Update (Archiver): We will not be deleting files (at least not this time around), that was never one of the options. If you do want some of your programs deleted e-mail filearchive@ticalc.org.

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The comments below are written by ticalc.org visitors. Their views are not necessarily those of ticalc.org, and ticalc.org takes no responsibility for their content.

Re: The Quality of Our Archives
Ben Cherry  Account Info
(Web Page)

I noticed that there has been a very quick influx of new programs. Good job on getting through that large-ish mess of new programs Morgan and Joey. I wonder though, does this mean that a decision has been reached on what to do? As I understand it, this debate is what caused the back-up in the first place (I assume that this is the "internal debate" Morgan mentioned earlier as backing up the archives, although I cant seem to find that post anywhere...)

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 06:57 GMT

Re: Re: The Quality of Our Archives
Morgan Davies  Account Info
(Web Page)

I was quoted in saying that I would not be adding files until a decision was reached. Largely due to the fact that its hard sometimes to get the staff moving on some things thus I stopped adding files.

To my surprise Joey started adding files again. And all those you see out there have been done by him. Currently I am taking a break rom archiving, most likely until the actual concept we have chosen is implemented into our system, but you guys won't have a lack of programs, Joey is doing an awesome job! Just needed a harsh booster to get him going.

I am still taking care of my regular duties for the time being. That pst you were looking for was removed, see an reply I added a few posts above.

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 16:02 GMT

Re: Re: Re: The Quality of Our Archives
coinmanz  Account Info
(Web Page)

Gee, hope that doesn't mean my 86 asm shell will be overlooked. It does soooo much now with formatted strings and the "extended Basic" library is AWESOME. I'm programming in an ebook reader and my own animation player (not Levi's) at the moment, so it's no big deal if overlooked. Morgan, YOU DA MAN!

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 18:04 GMT

Not only the archives, but...
qbman  Account Info

Does anyone else notice the problems with the news and message boards. I have a really hard time trying to find information and sort through old info. Sometimes my posts end up at the beginning, sometimes at the end, or even better, somewher lost in the middle. While we're looking at quality issues, why don't we try to make a more logical message board (like order threads by date).

This isn't bad for some of the small boards, but if you look at this one (well over 400 replies), You will find that times and dates posted for the threads are way out of order. I've made posts before, then spent minutes trying to find where it went. I just want to see if anyone else has problems with the current message boards.

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 17:40 GMT

nicklaszlo Account Info
(Web Page)

I also have a lot of trouble with it. TICalc.org should move to slashcode (http://slashcode.com). It would need some work to integrate with the old new files code (if that's even written in Perl), but I think it would be worth it to improve the signal/noise ratio. If we could do that, there might be even more good users.
I think this is post 440.

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 22:13 GMT

Re: Not only the archives, but...
Eugene Talagrand Account Info
(Web Page)

Are you viewing the formus split by page? They seem to be working well for me all on one page -- older posts at the bottom and threads grouped together. Page splitting might be a bit confusing thread-wise.

Aslo: Add my vote to add post-moderation and date-ordering of posts.

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 23:11 GMT

Other Sites Section
Eugene Talagrand Account Info
(Web Page)

How about Reviews/Comment Boards/Rankings for the "Other Sites" section? If the solution is already going to be implemented for files, it shouldn't be too hard to add...
Maybe also a browseable index?

I know some of these sites might be competing with ticalc, but there are a lot of other useful resources on TIs out there, which have a different goal than ticalc (ti-cas, ti-fr ?)

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 23:07 GMT

Re: Other Sites Section
Ben Cherry  Account Info
(Web Page)

I think that at this point its near impossible to compete with ticalc. It has become the dominant site. I like your idea for rating those sites, and we should implement it for the "columns and tutorials" stuff too. Off-topic: I'm just beginning to learn z80 asm, and want a good tutorial or source code for it. I already use asmguru, which is great, but i would like more. Another off-topic: Right below your post is another copy of the page, that wierd error again. I dont feel like screenshotting again, but it was wierd clicking "reply" above the ticalc logo and header.

Reply to this comment    9 March 2004, 23:58 GMT

Re: Re: Other Sites Section
ET Account Info

I know ... opensource the ticalc.org CGI's! :)
That way you could have all the other TI sites (like TI.com) swipe the design

Reply to this comment    12 March 2004, 20:11 GMT

Re: The Quality of Our Archives
Charlemagne  Account Info
(Web Page)

Heck, do all of it! Make new folders... make a rating system.... either way, new folders would be a great idea and very useful. *shrug* just my opinion!

Reply to this comment    10 March 2004, 23:16 GMT

Re: The Quality of Our Archives
Nick_S  Account Info

It's funny that this article complains about how bad are archives are and then three very good games come out.

Reply to this comment    14 March 2004, 06:35 GMT

Re: The Quality of Our Archives
darkhydra21 Account Info

Actually, I think that many of the programs in the archive are uneccesary. Take the quadratic equations solvers, for example. On a normal TI-83+, there is a Solver (under the [MATH] menu) that can solve for quadratic equations.

Reply to this comment    13 April 2004, 18:11 GMT

Re: The Quality of Our Archives
drfishopoulis Account Info

I think there should be a separate DEMO folder for games. All files in the game folders should be fully working, playable games. That may help to filter out the games folder a little bit. And, people could still post their demos without wasting people's time.

Reply to this comment    26 April 2004, 19:23 GMT
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