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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 10:47 am 
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Nalates said:-

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Democracies do NOT breed harmony
.

Churchill said that "Democracy was the worst form of Government, except for...all the rest." and it pretty much fits the circumstances so lucidly defined above, IMHO. However, this is'nt about government (Proposers and "loyal" (?) Oppositionists, say) its about Team Building, with a certain checks and balances (Standards, and Processes lets call them)

I hesitate to throw my two cents in here, given the high quality of the discussion, but I couldn't help noticing an awful lot of violent agreement....and what might be missing is a recognition of the fundamental frustration of any Fan seeking to realise a creative ambition and not knowing how to start, participate, or finding much support of any kind, without having their own private pre-arranged network. What seems to be missing is a formal Process Definition, perhaps (although I have seen some...). which brings me to the point; it's tough to find them when they are scattered around and may even contradict each other. I interpret the original plea as a call for a single point Standards and Process Definitions across all activities. Unfortunately, without a little autocratic leadership, these too will fall prey to all of the previous dicussion, and Fans know and see that, so they look for any kind of Organization chart which defines the authority and responsibilities of each Group (Guild), whether it's autocratically or communally derived doesnt matter, as long as we know where to go to find it.. All this may be a luxury we don't get to enjoy....in which case Nalates summary still rules. So perhaps there should be a Virtual (no Power ?) Guild (of Archives?) which overarches the others with Standards and Processes, say. That Ought to relieve all the other guilds too, you would think.......? ; it's a place to park the Gold, like Kadishes Vault, And why wouldn't that be the first order of doing business ?

At this point I would love to invite all parties to take a break for High Tea down by the Fountain in Delin, say..There is a table spread with linen and silver, and there are Sardine Sandwiches, Cakes, Crumpets, and Clotted Cream and Strawberry jam.....Now, what was it we were talking about ? .....(Food fight commences almost immediately...... :roll: )

I love it....

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 5:02 pm 
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Many people see challenge and confrontation as strictly emotional engagements. There are multiple levels from full intellectual detachment with no emotional energy to full emotional engagement with intellect serving the emotions. In written material it is difficult to tell where a person is. People’s responses usually say more about them than the one they respond to.

However, I will not be surprised if a good food fight breaks out…

I’m always festinated that people want to build a system to ‘help’ those new to a system figure it out and ignore people’s natural abilities and the things that are already in place. Education is needed. But the Uru community does not need to reinvent the wheel. We have several. There are a massive number of tutorials and ‘how to’s’ for gamers on the net. Plus massive amounts of information on forming and running clubs. We have a good number of our own. We have about everything in place that is being suggested.

Any fan wanting help in a creative effort has but one step to take. Ask for help. Look at posts here. People ask and get custom support and up to date information from the community. How do you improve on that?

We have an ‘Important Links’ thread. People have trouble finding it but it is easy to point them to it and it is a rich source of reference material. We have forum search tools (a bit lame they may be) and Internet search tools made just for the Uru community (Google Uru Search).

A ‘Process Definition’ … why not allow people to use their knowledge and ability to find what they want? After all, these are ‘creative’ people with ideas. If their mind is creative in one area they are likely to use whatever quirk it is in the brain that makes that so in other areas and quickly figure out our community. Plus how does one, especially a new person, the find the Process Definition and how do you teach the fan base to use it? How many fans have actually looked for an organization chart? People only look for what they have an interest in. The dozen or so of us in this thread might hear of it. May be 100 to 200 of the boards members might read a new thread. But, what about the other 90+% of the members?

It is not that the community does not have the tools or organization or even that the community is so fragmented in to factions… it is simply most people are not aware of what is available and we are using no good way to make them aware. There are tremendous resources available in the community. The guilds serve their purposes and members well. But what is there to do that is not being done?

I don’t see the contributing members doing the complaining. They are busy doing. If they see something that needs to be changed, they get it changed. If the group does not want to change, they are free to start their own group or travel their own path. The groups & guilds can’t control them. It is when someone wants to insist on imposing their ideas on the group and the group does not like the idea that problems and flame wars break out.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 5:12 pm 
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Nalates wrote:
So, just like we have doctors that are specialists, because the knowledge base of medicine is too great for anyone person to contain, so too we have specialized groups of fans. It is a good thing.


Actually, if Jahmen, as I suspect, and a fellow by the nick "ZeroCool", who came by the GoW IRC channel the other day, are one and the same,it would seem he wants the guilds to be MORE specialised.

He came on, griping about maintainers writing ages. "Why shouldn't they?", we asked. "Well,", he responded, "..they can, of course, but they should do it in the right place, not talk about it on the maintainers forum."
We argued with him for a while , pointing out that we at the GoW have no monopoly on age writing and that people, who individually can have many interests, should be free to do whatever they please, together with whatever people whose company they enjoy.

ZeroCool's points DOES have some validity: he felt that the blurring of the lines had two major downsides:

A) Unclarity. A newly arrived person would have a harder time finding her/his way around, if there are no clear demarkation between the guilds.

B) Duplication of work. Both ages and teaching, taking place in parallel, without coordination and, again, a single repository of skills and knowledge.

I maintain that these problems does not have nearly the proportions he perceives and that the upsides of diversity well outweighs the minuses and even that the very perceived downsides could be strengths, delivering several equally valid approaches to a given situation.

Now it looks like Jahmen is about to head his own guild structure, with clearly defined areas of interest and possibly some degree of top-down command chain and rank system (something the GoW has, to my great relief, managed to avoid).

I really hope he walks away from my "Amiga community" splinter group example with the right lessons learned, rather than repeating their mistakes.
Their actions resulted in the opposite of their stated intentions (which was obvious to others). While everybody else were inclusive and happy to coexist together, these people were exclusive, handpicking who could join their cadre of "true amigans" and perpetrating heavyhanded...scratch that: "hamfisted" moderation. The division there is deep.

So, given the number of guilds, I can see how Jahmen's actions, if done wrongly, could lead to both his point A and B *becoming* a problem that it is not today, increasing their impact exponentially.

Here's hoping not.


@pappou:

Hmm, I must say that any situation with yapping dogs and working ones, within the GoW, has passed me by completely. I was speaking on a larger scale.

I am not privy to whatever words people exchange in private, of course, but I always guessed that you left because you didn't see a lot of things happening. You presented lots of imaginative and well fleshed out concept work, but there was just not enough available and eager hands to get the project going.

Would you mind, in a rather dry language, decribing the problems with the GoW, as you see them?



EDIT: Ok, so the post Nalates wrote while I wrote this one, said pretty much the same thing. I just can't make myself believe that most people will just stand there, with their hands hanging loose at their sides, unless there is someone to unasked take their hand and guide them along the clearly marked path ahead of them...

...and that's me speaking as a child-eating communist, whereas Nalates is a mother-selling libertarian... :9


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 7:26 pm 
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...and that's me speaking as a child-eating communist, whereas Nalates is a mother-selling libertarian... :9

ROFLMAO :lol: :lol: :lol:

Somewhere in one of these posts I was pointing out that while guilds are specialized, the members are not. There is lots of overlap. Some see that as 'a guild trying to be everything to everyone.' I just see it as the members having diverse interests.

While Zero Cool's points may have validity... what would he do to improve the situation and did anyone think it workable?

Basically Jojon, your statement, "I maintain that these problems does not have nearly the proportions he perceives and that the upsides of diversity well outweighs the minuses and even that the very perceived downsides could be strengths, delivering several equally valid approaches to a given situation." is my thought too.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:37 pm 
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Interesting.

So what's been done so far?

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 10:56 pm 
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/me takes a deep breath and begins writing another post which will likely be ignored...

Well, first a decision must be made on which direction to take. There are a few options:

a.) Waste time trying to change the make-up of the guilds to suit your vision;
b.) Give up on the current guilds and start your own;
c.) Find a way to bring the guilds & other groups together to work as a cohesive unit to prepare for Open Uru;
d.) Leave things as they are and let the chips fall where they may...

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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:06 pm 
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@Nalates:

I never did manage to get my head around how Jahmen would like to tackle the things he sees as a problem. I can only surmise it involves a more rigid structure, gathering tightly defined guilds under a common roof, unlike the current more-or-less egalitarian independent groups.

We'll see once he's got something up, I suppose. :7


@JWPlatt:

If you are referring to Jahmen's stated intentions, he mentioned, over at the GoW, that he is currently learning webdesign and forum management, which suggests he does not exactly begin from a position of strength. Maybe he could thrive under your wing? :7


@Tai'lahr:

Why is it that so many people (well, some few in this thread anyway) assume that the guilds are somehow striving in different directions, or even working against eachother? Are you sure you are passing judgement on valid grounds?


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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 1:35 pm 
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Jojon wrote:
@Tai'lahr:

Why is it that so many people (well, some few in this thread anyway) assume that the guilds are somehow striving in different directions, or even working against each other? Are you sure you are passing judgement on valid grounds?

How was my post passing judgement? I was merely offering options - to someone who has passed judgement on the guilds. IMO, the guilds - and other groups - are doing just fine.

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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 9:32 pm 
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Tai'lahr wrote:
How was my post passing judgement? I was merely offering options - to someone who has passed judgement on the guilds. IMO, the guilds - and other groups - are doing just fine.


Ah, please accept my apologies, then.

That "..chips fall where they may." line sounded rather... "sceptical", but I can see how both my lacking language skills and a phrasing of empathy could be at work.

I never should have come by the forums - I seem to be getting oversensitive.. :7


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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 9:53 pm 
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Yes, I see what Tai'lahr means about 'suggesting' rather than 'judging', when she offered the four options:

a.) Waste time trying to change the make-up of the guilds to suit your vision;
b.) Give up on the current guilds and start your own;
c.) Find a way to bring the guilds & other groups together to work as a cohesive unit to prepare for Open Uru;
d.) Leave things as they are and let the chips fall where they may...

My own option would be a fifth one:
e.) For GoW to rise above its original dedication to breaking code (which did indeed serve GoW programmers in the beginning) to a better balanced vision of what it takes to make new ages.

That was the purpose of every one of my messages on the GoW, up to the time, a few months ago, when I was pretty well ridden out of town on a rail.

What? Do I hear bystanders thinking that I must be too delicate and could not take the heat of legitimate debate?
I don't see it that way. And I do not feel like arguing the issue again – although, for a time I kept all the messages and re-read them to see if my own vision of things had become clouded. The re-read proved to me that there were expletive on many fronts, some of them mine, but what dominated was that those who control the speech of the GoW (and several other forums) were sending protests to the GoW mods about my improprieties. Almost every other message they were attacking behind the scenes. I think the last protest against me was for a message of mine re Bob the Builder. I nicknamed him 'ReBar' in my post, a post which was applauding his work. It was entirely friendly and joking on my part. But to the witch hunting crew, it was taken as another example of breaking their rules. The mod said he thought it was wrong to do so, but he would have to censure me (again; there were many). His hands were tied by the crew behind the scenes.

That much is, more or less, a normal picture of human nature. And truly, all it means to me is that GoW is determined to reject any talents I might offer -- unless I stopped criticizing their operation. Again, that is just the way things work.
However – and this is the point – it is this very same attitude which rejected D'eau's (sp?) superb work. Several people will remember that when D'eau presented his highly refined graphics, it enraged several members of the GoW. They drove D'eau off too. Yes. That is the truth, for those who have not heard.
The real problem at the time was, I do believe, that D'eau's work was so much better than GoW's age work, that certain childish minds could not accept the comparison. Very childish minds. But they were able to run off someone who really was doing high quality – Riven quality – graphics.

I am sure you can see where this leads.

In actuality, it was such an egregious example of bad thinking, that those with a bit of maturity had to back off this super protectionist stance – but only a little. Probably, someone apologized to D'eau. I do not know. I corresponded with him a couple of times after the rejection, and he was quite disappointed.

THE POINT
What this event really illustrates is not so much that the mind set of code writing controls the thinking of the GoW, but really, it is that a great deal more is involved in Age Writing than just the engines.
To be sure, the mechanics of the game engines are essential, difficult, and expensive to produce. But please do not resort to the sophomoric remark that, without the code you can't have a game.
There is, however, a real point in believing and acting like a true Age requires more than an engine running ugly graphics.
Everyone knows this. It has been mentioned on the GoW forum many times.
But as of the time I was asked to leave town (for defending beautiful graphics), this frigid set of mind still had control over the hard working programmers and there was no understanding at all of how graphics and storyline were going to be brought into the locked shower room of code breaking.

PS
I have heard that the GoW ages are getting better. I truly hope so.
As a comparison, for those who may wonder what I mean by good graphics, I would say that at the top of the graphics chain, D'eau's work was as good as Cyan's (graphics only). I never saw D'eau's developed story with characters and a plan for engaging explorers.
Way below the top there are the graphics of something like Rhem. I have heard people exclaim over it, but probably even the satisfied ones would not say it was as good as Myst – although, if you ignore Rhem's lack of story line, it was not far below the original Myst graphics.
But of course, Rhem is not in the same league with Riven at any level.
Riven is tops.
That is the quick summary of what I mean by graphic quality.

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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 11:17 am 
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...

I am very confused now.
I think you and I may observe the GoW with two different preconceptions.

First, I can't say I have ever noticed any moderation, other than the splitting/moving of threads, as topics diverge. Ok, it's not like I refresh every forum page every five minutes 24/7, nor do I know what people say in private, but still, I can't recall seeing censorship taking place.

I see the guild as what you might call a collective of artists - everybody are equal in every way other than that each person has her/his own track records, to show for themselves.

There is no such thing as a GoW age - only ages from people, who happen to be posting at the GoW forum, which, in conjunction with the wiki, is simply a place where we can discuss, share and help eachother. One individual, Johnee, has been posting some quite stunning shots from his age Breldur, recently. Breldur is HIS age, not the GoW's and the GoW (which is all of us, not some shadowy formal governing body) does not lay claims to any ages, that I know of.

Given the above, I fail to see how it is in anybody's power to reject anything.
Are you under the impression that you have to get an age concept approved by some sort of council, which will then take active hand in its conception? That is just not the case (for all that there was early talk about a "showcase" age and such). Jahmen's guilds may come to work that way, I don't know, but "in" the GoW, if I have an idea for an age and want a team to work on that; then it's up to me to get people interested in joining the project (..and project management is just as delegateable as any other task).
If one want to handpick, rather than thowing out an open request for applications, there is a wiki page, listing members, with info on what skills they have and whether they are available.

What I saw in Deux's case, was him presenting screenshots and other images, that wowed everybody and mentioning that some help would be nice, with other elements of agebuilding than the visuals -- I think, however, he phrased it as a suggestion that it would be impossible for one person to singlehandedly do an age, rather than a request for interested team members to apply, which rightfully drew some responses. Nobody that I know of believe a team of skilled specialists would be somehow inferior to any lone wolf - it's just that when it appears the imperative /is/ being issued, there is bound to be repercussions. That discussion for some unfathomable reason escalated, circling around the semantic-ish misunderstanding at its heart, without anyone ever noticing it.

Any negative jealousy, however, must have whooshed right over my head. There was one fellow who somewhat impolitely called for a release of the age so far -- that would be the closest I can recall.

Does anyone know what became of Deux? I hope he's still into Uru and agebuilding and that we get to visit Eh'ko one of these days.


As for yourself; you *did* have a little bit of a team going, didn't you? As I recall, your work expanded greatly on an age idea from another member, taking the bay and industry he'd envisioned and adding a huge migration from an old city to a new one, following a disaster. Can't recall the connection to the temple on an atoll between, with some sort of line-of-sight based puzzle. We were following in the footsteps of a visiting architect student, weren't we?
I am assuming you and the other guy were working together on the concept and story and you also had one modeller on board...?
Are you still working on it? (I hope so)

At any rate, I think it's safe to say that nobody ever thought agebuilding was only about programming.


EDIT: I am adding a link to ReBar's brilliant "Turning ideas into ages" WIKI article. It also links to the personell roster, I mentioned. (..in which, by the way, you, pappou, still have an entry :). I, myself, don't though, seing as I have no skills.)

http://www.guildofwriters.com/wiki/Turn ... _Into_Ages

I'd also like to invite you and everybody else to join a little experimental agewriting thing that I have kicked off, requiring just as much or little effort from each participant, as they feel like. Contributions can be ANYthing - certainly not just modelling:

http://forum.guildofwriters.com/viewtop ... =11&t=2881

Let's all try to turn this into a coherent beautiful age, together... or an explosion in a tropical bird shop -who knows... :)


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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2009 5:16 pm 
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The posted points following my last post are at the heart of some of the problems I was trying to express needed fixing.
Apologies if my points were unclear and hard to follow, as has been related to me about how others posted in other threads. :oops:
Democratic running of Guilds/ Forums, Admins i.e. few to help monitor and control, not understanding forum tools use, etc... These are but a few things I have seen posted of what has been mentioned that I was trying to express as to the problem(s) I was seeing as a whole. It is the confusion, misdirection, controlling of and lack of control associated with all the Guilds and how they function individually and together. Therefore, I see a need to design a System to help address and over come as many of these problems as can be accomplished. To this end I am working to later show all the ideas and solutions I thought could help. I might be wrong and way off base. That wouldn’t be the first time either. But I am not discouraged from trying never the less.
If it helps, Great! :D
If not, then nothing but my own time and effort is lost. :cry:

I can "Quote" from all posts of what I thought mentioned was relevant to what I was trying to express as the problems and elaborate on them to what specifics needed to be addressed and fixed. I will spare us all such a lengthy post to which end would only serve to confuse and make me less understood. :idea: I will continue to focus on the doing!

P.S. Abjab's post has best expressed what I was trying to say and was going on about.


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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2009 6:42 pm 
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Your solution needs to be attractive to the current guilds such that they want to collaborate and use it - if they are your aim. But failing to persuade them, you need only to persuade some significant collection of like-minded folk from the worldwide pool. If you don't, someone else might.

But if Cyan gives official status (read: authority) to any entity, all bets are off. I would hope if they do that ... oops, nevermind... that could be part of the "spark of an idea" I mentioned on page 1. I'm not ready to go there. You almost got me, you stinker.

;)

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