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jonmoore

Feature Request - A separate Feature Request forum

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I'm pretty certain that this has been brought up before and probably on numerous occasions, but I find the manner in which Feature Request threads occur on an ad hoc basis in the main forum to be haphazard, nebulous and hard to track.

 

The new forum software has a voting/like mechanism built in so it would make more sense that feature requests had their own forum section and each feature request would be a single thread. This makes things far more trackable for both AutoDesSys and it's customers and puts a stop to the ever expanding nebulous threads that we get at the moment in the main forum.

 

I think this Feature Request forum should be paired with a '"Small Irritations to Fix' forum (in much the same manner that's it's done by other vendors in the CAD/DCC space).

 

The reason I believe this is vital is that whenever I'm researching a workflow issue or a bug; a search of this Forum (and more importantly the old Forum archive) throws up numerous requests for similar features or numerous reports of a similar bug. These are all answered by a polite but frankly meaningless "we'll look at implementing/fixing your request/problem in the future". Whilst this is good technique for managing the expectations of your users it's very frustrating for those that have been reporting the same issues/requests repeatedly over many years.

 

FormZ started on a new journey with v7 and this has matured to a great product offering with v8.5. I'm hoping that going forward AutoDesSys will allow it's customers/users to help improve the product still further with increased openness, trackability and transparency.

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Hi Jon,

 

In our old forums we had a separate section, but no one used it and they just posted in the general discussion section anyway.  We have also created a Tutorials By Users forum section but that is also rarely used.  Should we try again with a suggestions section, and if so, why do you think it will be any more effective this time?

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I think it's about teaching new habits. Every time a Feature Request crops up in the main section, move it to the specialised section. And let people know via fixed posts that a single feature request per thread is more useful from a tracking perspective. If you set up a new forum I'll get the ball rolling by splitting out many of the feature requests we've seen in the v8 lifecycle into separate threads in the new forum. It won't take me long but I think it will be beneficial in the long run.

 

The same principle applies to 'Small Irritations', 'User Gallery' and 'User Tutorials' sections. Just creating the just sections isn't enough, users need to be encouraged to use the forum in an effective manner. I remember a time when most Maxwell support questions popped up in the main section but because of Pylon's dedicated efforts, Maxwell questions mainly happen in the correct section now.

 

Most user communities break down loosely as follows:

 

1% active creators/instigators

9% active participants

90% consumers

 

Use the 1% to make the 9% more active, and this in turn will ensure there's better content for the 90% to consume. It's a simplistic model but it works (as can be seen in any specialist user community). 

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