Thanks for this Tim.

In reply to your questions:

1) Would you be interested in using StackOverflow for DSpace Q&A?

YES

2) Would you take part (i.e. help answer questions) on StackOverflow?
(NOTE: you can easily "subscribe" to the 'dspace' tag there to get
email/RSS notifications for new DSpace questions, see [2] below)

YES - I would personally feel more motivated compared to replying only on the mailing list.

3) Are there major concerns you would have with using StackOverflow?

The one concern I would have is "what if stackoverflow ever goes away"? But if all questions & replies could be sent somewhere for archiving, just like we're archving the emails on this list, this shouldn't be a problem.

4) Any other/alternative brainstorms or ideas for how you feel DSpace Q&A could be improved?

I think a great benefit of stackoverflow is that we can very easily reach out to other technology communities, giving them an incentive to help.
For example, if you have an XSL or CSS questions that relates to DSpace, you can easily also tag it with XSL or CSS and tap into thousands of developers who are working with those technologies.

For me, this is a huge difference compared to the current isolation we have on the mailing lists.

rgds

Bram

PS: should we also copy this discussion to DSpace-tech, since that's the main Q&A channel?

-- 
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Bram Luyten +1 202 684 6365
2888 Loker Avenue East, Suite 315, Carlsbad, CA. 92010
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www.atmire.com 


On Wed, Jul 16, 2014 at 6:36 PM, Tim Donohue <tdonohue@duraspace.org> wrote:
DSpace Developers,

Since the OR14 Conference, several of the DSpace Committers have been
brainstorming whether we should attempt to encourage more DSpace Q&A to
occur on StackOverflow instead of just on mailing lists (like this one
and dspace-tech). Specifically, encouraging others to use the existing
'dspace' tag on StackOverflow more often:

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/dspace

While we do NOT plan to do away with our mailing lists anytime soon,
we've been noticing some common problems with Q&A on our mailing lists
(both dspace-tech and dspace-devel):

   A) There are certain questions which seem to be asked over and over
(FAQs).
   B) Sometimes the "best answer" to a question is difficult to find
later on. It gets "buried" in the mailing list and may not be as easy to
re-locate when asked again (which may result in repeating FAQs)

So, we've been brainstorming whether StackOverflow might be a good place
to encourage DSpace Q&A. With it's awesome SEO (very high rankings in
Google) and the ability to vote up the "best answer" (or multiple best
answers), it seems like a venue which could help resolve both of these
common issues.

However, the big difficulty is that StackOverflow without many
questions/answers is not very useful. It is possible & even recommended
(see [1] below) to "pre-seed" StackOverflow with common
questions/answers. But even then, we'd need others to help take part.

So, that is where you, as developers interested in DSpace, could help.
Specifically:

1) Would you be interested in using StackOverflow for DSpace Q&A?

2) Would you take part (i.e. help answer questions) on StackOverflow?
(NOTE: you can easily "subscribe" to the 'dspace' tag there to get
email/RSS notifications for new DSpace questions, see [2] below)

3) Are there major concerns you would have with using StackOverflow?

4) Any other/alternative brainstorms or ideas for how you feel DSpace
Q&A could be improved?

Again, we have no plans to do away with the mailing lists. There are
also some types of questions (e.g. subjective, "which option is best..")
which are not fit for StackOverflow. But we wonder if using
StackOverflow could improve the DSpace Q&A process overall (and make
answers easier to find via Google, etc).

I'd appreciate your honest feedback, either on this list or off it. We
honestly want to find ways to enhance the Q&A experience for DSpace --
so any ideas you may have are worth considering!

Thanks,

Tim


[Referenced Links:]

[1] StackOverflow encourages you to answer your own questions, or even
pose questions you know the answer to:
http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2011/07/its-ok-to-ask-and-answer-your-own-questions/

[2] How to subscribe to receive email or RSS notifications on a tag in
StackOverflow:
http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2011/01/tag-favorites-and-tag-subscriptions/


--
Tim Donohue
Technical Lead for DSpace & DSpaceDirect
DuraSpace.org | DSpace.org | DSpaceDirect.org

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