Joined: 29 Aug 05
Earlier tonight I proposed a Karma system for the BOINC forums to Dr. Anderson. I have since thought this over and have changed some of the proposal.
This is a proposal for a Technical Kudos system on the BOINC forums, to show others that a person's nickname is good at giving technical help where needed. It has always nagged me that there's no real method of showing people asking for help that the person that is trying to help shows as being trustworthy. Post counts don't help as for all you know I've amassed my post count in one of the Last to Post threads before helping once in the Help Desk. Custom tags could help, but tags are cumbersome and need to be put in place by Admin, who does not always have time.
So I propose to use a Tech Kudos system, in the sense of the post rating system that we used a couple of years ago. But with some conditions attached:
1. Everyone gets a set amount of Kudos points to use per month, for positive and negative Kudos ratings.
2. Each person can only vote once against anyone else; perhaps only once every 6 months to a year before we can vote for or against this person again. It does not stop groups of people ganging up on another person, perhaps that we need some security for that, like a counter that stops Karma being added when too many people vote for or against one person at the same time.
2a. You cannot vote for yourself. Voting options do not show on your own posts.
3. Kudos, be it positive or negative, does not affect the way a person's posts are shown to others. In the old days, enough negative ratings would stop a post from being shown. My proposal has nothing to do with that, if people do not want to read a person's posts, let them use the ignore function.
4. Kudos can only be given in specific forums, like the Help Desk forums and Number Crunching. This to stop people from gaining lots of Kudos just because they're Cafe-dwellers. You want positive Kudos? Be helpful.
4a. For this to be implemented, I suppose Admin has to add whichever other forum number he wants to be included in the specific .php file. Default forums will only be the ones given and hopefully their numbers are the same as on your forums. ;-)
5. Ways to give out Kudos:
-- a button system showing "This helped me" / "This didn't help me" ?
-- a button system with Kudos plus / Kudos min ?
-- The Plus / Minus signs at the bottom of posts ? They are still available, just about everywhere, they just don't work. A simple "Karma vote" in front of it would do wonders.
The Kudos are given from a separate screen which clearly states what you are trying to do and to whome your are trying to do this, has two radio buttons for the choice of Kudos and the normal Go ahead and Cancel buttons.
5a. Whichever buttons are used will be showing only in the forums where they're active and they stop showing in the whole thread for the person you've voted for already, or they'll be completely gone once your votes are used up.
6. The way to show a level of technical ability is by adding "Tech Level" to a person's statistics under his name. Then a star system for easy checking. Everyone starts at 1 star, there are a maximum of 8 stars to be had. With 10 positive Kudos, you reach Level 2, another 25 Kudos and you reach level 3 etc.
7. This Tech Level only shows in the forums that matter. They do not show in the forums where there's no Tech Level to be made, so there's no bragging for that one person with his 25 accounts, who will give his main account 'an upgrade' just to be showing to others 'how cool he is'. Although you'll always have one person who thinks otherwise anyway, but short of implementing an IP or MAC address block, I don't think there's an easy way to stop this anyway.
As for coding and database entries, it could possibly be put in place of the defunct Rating system. For really, who (besides Pirates@Home) still uses the rating system on the BOINC forums?
Should it show who sent you Kudos? Should an email be sent each times you get Kudos, or just a message in your Account, showing who gave you positive and negative Kudos?
I understand from David that possibly, eventually, the forums go over to Drupal, which will probably have such a system included already. Yet before the decision on that's made and everyone wants to use yet another forum, nothing said about incompatibility issues between the present and what's next, this may be an easy upgrade.
Comments and/or additions?
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