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What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 8:39 AM

I recently asked what you thought about an education support area on CR4. That post received a lot of great feedback. So now I'm asking... what else would you like to see here on CR4? What features would help you? What do you want to see here? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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#1

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 9:06 AM

I don't know of any forum that has a LaTeX equation editor and I think it would be pretty cool.

http://www.sciweavers.org/free-online-latex-equation-editor

The result would be something like this:

Using our current tools that would look like:\

Π=√12∑((-1/3)^-k/(2k+1)) (summation from k=0 to ∞)

Also, if possible, autodetecting links (like gmail does) rather than having to insert links when writing comments would be cool.

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The Engineer
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#2

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 9:14 AM

Also, we have the ability to insert pictures and videos now. I'd also love to have the ability to insert dashboards / interactive graphics.

For instance the kind found on this website:

http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/worlds-biggest-data-breaches-hacks/

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#12
In reply to #2

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 10:03 AM

The resolution of the graphic images posted here is just plain awful.

If there's text in the image, it is frequently unreadable.

Given that a picture is worth a thousand words, improving the resolution of posted graphic images would contribute to the clarity of the discussion.

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#3

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 10:38 AM

Would anyone be interested in an engineering and public policy forum -- a place to talk about the application of scientific and technical knowledge to policy decisions, the impact of science and engineering advances on society, other stuff.

Here's a general description of the area from the MIT Technology and Policy Program: "Research and education at the intersection of technology and policy. Our goal is to mobilize science and engineering to inform intelligent, responsible strategies and policies to benefit communities from local to global." Engineering 360 is publishing articles in this area, for example, new products that provide improved quality of life in developing countries. A related CR4 forum would give us a good place to discuss these articles as well as current policy issues.

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#5
In reply to #3

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 4:32 PM

Yes, and "free" mathcad? Maybe even some free software on your site that makes standard CAD style drawings? I am all for the free "stuff" as you can see.

We need a place to blow off steam, take each other a lot less seriously, and discuss politics, because I suspect most of us lack a good cigar and brandy at the end of the day.

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#7
In reply to #5

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 8:04 PM

Pssst... tell them Solar sent you....

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#13
In reply to #7

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 10:30 AM

Where did you find that one? Have you found the strong box yet? Yo-ho matey, did a little bird tell you?

How come you have all the cool stuff, and I got this lousy tee-shirt?

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#15
In reply to #13

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 12:21 PM

You have to click on the key....ssshh

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#16
In reply to #15

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 12:24 PM

I tried, and it tells me that is not permitted...

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#59
In reply to #7

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 12:12 AM

Didn't work.

Problem!

You are attempting to do (or view) something that is not permitted.

Don't you hate it when there is a problem and there is no hammer in reach!

BAB

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#63
In reply to #59

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 11:02 AM

The 'hammer' is 'joining the CR4 Fans user group.'

Then you get access to the breakroom and all the hot water from the coffeepot that you want. There used to be actual coffee in the coffeepot, but funding for the replacement beans was on the honor system, a nickel a cup, and when some coffee-obsessed eagle comes in with a mug that takes three pots to fill, somehow the coffee fund just cannot keep up with the demand. Someone should really teach that bird a lesson. (All this said while standing next to a 'wanted' poster with his face on it, and the crime listed as 'drinking ALL the coffee')

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#11
In reply to #5

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 9:40 AM

The current thread about phasing out use of coal is a perfect example of a discussion for a technology and policy forum ... and that would also be a place to enjoy the virtual cigar and brandy. Everyone would still need to agree to be civil. I see such a forum as distinct from the watercooler, more focused on policy debate than schmoozing about stuff.

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#17
In reply to #5

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 2:31 PM

You can join the CR4 Fans user group. Once you are a member, you can post any off topic conversation you'd like in the Break Room forum.

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#50
In reply to #5

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 3:49 PM

"We need a place to blow off steam, take each other a lot less seriously, and discuss politics, because I suspect most of us lack a good cigar and brandy at the end of the day."

After talking politics with you, there is not enough brandy in the WORLD to help me relax.

...or enough rum, after the brandy's finished off.

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#52
In reply to #50

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:13 PM

Well I am sorry if the truth is so bothersome!

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#54
In reply to #52

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:30 PM

I'm sorry, but once Politics enters the room, Truth jumps out the window and into a wood chipper. After that it's just Politics and Arguing, with Headaches showing up later.

(Facts heard Politics on the way in and fled for the next state even before Politics had his hand on the doorknob.)

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#55
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:37 PM

So basically, now you are saying if I have an opinion about some current event or historical event, that is politics? Really? And on top of that, since truth has left the building as you state, this also means you are calling me out as a liar.

Why, I am surprised at you.

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#56
In reply to #55

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:51 PM

Perhaps my analogy was too simple in my attempt to paint a visual picture.

What I meant was that once someone's 'political hot button' (of which they may have many, and they can change over time) has been pressed, they cease looking at the issues as they are, and get very defensive about their position, to the point of irrationality.

I also have fallen into that trap myself on this site, more times than I care to mention.

The 'problem' (for lack of a better word) between us is that we share a few political hot buttons, however, our stances on those issues are in opposition. We end up both in the unenviable and unpleasant position of sharing a room with 'someone who can't change their mind and won't change the subject.'

I'm working hard to 'detox' myself from the past few decades(1) of the campaigns surrounding Election 2016, so that I should be my old, comedic self after Super Tuesday.

Unless they start the Election 2020 campaigning in mid-November.... (cringe)

Notes:

  1. It sure FEELS like decades, with all the nonsense going on. Hopefully it won't feel like centuries when we're in mid-October.
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#57
In reply to #56

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:55 PM

Well, there is one chord that strikes up harmony between us. I think the election cycle should last about as long as court with a hanging judge. You get your 30 minutes to make your point, no money on advertisements, and one character witness also gets 30 minutes. No character, or actual assassination allowed, then everyone goes out right then and votes (or not), and the results pop up in the morning with no pundits talking about it all night or ad nauseum, whichever comes first.

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#60
In reply to #57

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 10:47 AM

Ah, much like Canada's campaign system, which had an record campaign season last year: it went on for a whole eleven weeks! The Canadians are still astounded that it took so long.

Of course, campaign financing runs a little different than in the US:

  1. Every Canadian chooses whether to pitch in to the Election fund (just like that checkbox at the top of your 1040 form), or the Election fund is part of the general taxation (like Social Security is for us).
  2. When election season rolls around, every declared candidate gets X amount of maple leaves(1) to spend on their campaign. Everyone gets the same amount, regardless of party affiliation; you got enough signatures to get on the ballot? "Good on you, here's your CaBucks for your campaign. Good luck."
  3. There is NO fundraising allowed, and NO use of personal money on the campaign. Account books are heavily audited, so remember to get a receipt for those signs you had printed.
  4. After the campaigning, there's the voting, and may the best moose win. Second place gets a year's supply of maple syrup.

Notes:

  1. I'm being deliberately lighthearted here (if not lightheaded), so please to not take anything as an insult to our Much-Better-Mannered friends to the North. Remember, the US-Canada border is the longest unguarded national border in the world. It takes a lot of mutual trust to have something like that, and I go to bed every night wondering why the Canadians still like us enough to keep the arraignment going?
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#62
In reply to #60

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 10:56 AM

Nah, the Cannuks leave the border that way so they can sneak in at night on a beer run without having to go around 100 miles through Muskeg to get to their local.

On the other hand, it also leaves their border unprotected from us land-grabbing, evil Texans. There it is, lads, the Pearl of the North, waiting like a ripe plum for the picking.

Texas could invade Canada and win, maybe. They are pretty serious if you break up a good drunk, trying on women's panties, or a hockey game. Cheers Cannuks! Have a Molson, and chill out, and doon't drieve back to the hoose looded.

No fundraising at all? And no personal money (all their money really belongs to the Queen anyway)? How are they supposed to buy the political yard signs, bumper stickers, etc.?

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#64
In reply to #62

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 11:13 AM

"No fundraising at all? And no personal money (all their money really belongs to the Queen anyway)? How are they supposed to buy the political yard signs, bumper stickers, etc.?"

As stated, they each get an equal amount of CaBucks to spend. The campaign is as much about showing 'fiscal responsibility with Other People's Money' as it is getting name recognition and voter support. Spend too much early on and you run out of funds, and cannot campaign any more. Spend too little and your message gets drowned out by the other candidates and you don't get the votes.

Also, 'no fundraising' includes 'no donations from Special Interest Groups.' During the campaign, at least, Canadian Politicians are Not For Sale. The MacKoch(1) brothers can't TOUCH the election, no matter how many beaver pelts they want to throw in. Outside money is Not Allowed, period, end of statement, pass the maple syrup(2).

Notes

  1. Not sure if that fusion of the the Kochs and the macKenzie Brothers really comes across right.
  2. I know, I already did a maple syrup joke. I just don't have a lot of material for Canadians standing firm on an issue.
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#25
In reply to #3

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/14/2016 11:27 AM

Politicians are afraid of science and engineering. They want to be able to establish policy by selling it to the highest bidder.

If you do the research, you will see that most laws are written by lobbyists and staffers, not the elected officials. They are far too busy fund raising (50%+ of their time in office) to be bothered by working for their constituency.

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#39
In reply to #25

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 10:34 AM

Science, Engineering or facts in general is to politicians like Kryptonite is to Superman.

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#40
In reply to #39

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 11:15 AM

Green, red, yellow, gold, or silver? I am sure there must be at least one kind that helps politicians. It must be poll colored.

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#41
In reply to #40

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 11:22 AM

When it come to that, I don't think it matters, as long as its hard to trace where it came from and where its going.

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#4

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 11:28 AM

A picture search for parts would be great, like google image search....this would make finding parts much quicker...and the easier you can make it, the more traffic you generate....Oh wait I guess that would be more GlobalSpec...anyway a lot of time is spent looking for parts and products and materials that are not easy to link back to GlobalSpec....The ability to post video has added a lot of content, I think anything that expands posting ability would be good...Expanding the emoticons would seem to be something that could be done easily....my iphone now has like a million...Expanding special characters would be good too....If you could open a window at the bottom of the message box that stayed open with mathematical or chemical or electronic nomenclatures so that you could write equations and formulas faster, that would help...

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#6
In reply to #4

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 4:33 PM

What a nifty idea! You keep this, you will amount to something. (Like you have not already).

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#8

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/11/2016 10:47 PM

I like the (recently mentioned in some thread) idea of a library of engineering tools, hopefully with some form of rating system.

But my biggest wish is to be able to post graphics (or links thereto) with much higher resolution. PDF would be one possible format.

Finally, some method of announcing when something has been upgraded. I've been using Firefox for around 10 years, because there was no toolbar in Safari. I just recently discovered (quite by accident) that Safari does now have the toolbar.

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#18
In reply to #8

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 2:34 PM

I announced the rollout of the new toolbar back in June. It was in the Daily Digest email several times as well as pinned to the top of the homepage for a while.

We also released a mobile responsive version of CR4 around that time -- so there is a much better CR4 experience on your smartphone.

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#24
In reply to #18

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 4:56 PM

OK, thanks. I missed that...

Even though I have the iPhone 6S+, the text is still too small for these eyes to read comfortably. I only do CR4 on my MacBook Pro.

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#9

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 8:33 AM

When we reply to one of the posts, say #10, it would be nice if it would return to #10 after the post is completed, instead of to the beginning. I, and maybe others, tend to forget to note the post we are replying to, so can't go directly to it.

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#65
In reply to #9

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/25/2016 3:00 PM

In the meantime, you are able to click over to the post you are replying to from the link in the upper right of your own reply:

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#66
In reply to #65

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/25/2016 3:21 PM

I'll find out when I submit this reply...

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#67
In reply to #66

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/25/2016 5:01 PM

Well, that time it worked, but it may not have been a fair test, as I got called away just as I pressed the "Submit" button...

...as I thought, after submitting the reply and clicking on the "return to the ..."button, it returns to the original post, not to the one to which I am replying. In this case, your original post was short enough that I could see just the top of the list of recent posts, and scroll down to see my latest post; I could then click on that to see my latest post, and then click on the button on the top right of that.

I still have the frustration of clicking on "Reply", and then typing 5 or 10 characters before I realize that my typing is going nowhere, until i use the mouse/trackpad to click in the text box.

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#68
In reply to #67

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/29/2016 11:17 AM

I still have the frustration of clicking on "Reply", and then typing 5 or 10 characters before I realize that my typing is going nowhere, until i use the mouse/trackpad to click in the text box.

This problem will be fixed by the end of the day.

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#69
In reply to #68

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/29/2016 11:22 AM

I am to the point that I believe no one can "fix" my problem. Maybe I should just eat a persimmon and "pucker up". LOL

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#72
In reply to #69

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/29/2016 7:25 PM

The fix got pushed to tomorrow, but should be ready by noon Eastern.

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#70
In reply to #68

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/29/2016 11:40 AM

It's not the end of the day yet...

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#71
In reply to #70

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/29/2016 1:24 PM

Gee thanks. Oh smack! You were replying to Savvy, not me. I was worried there for a minute.

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#10

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 9:27 AM

Since so many members seem to get upset when a controversial subject turns to a very nasty political debate, perhaps we need a separate CR4 Section called "Controversial", where anything goes. Want to talk Climate Change, Fracking, Fire Arms, and so on, post it here and expect as well as accept the criticism you will receive. Why maybe even add another section called "Not PC." Of course, there would be warnings and disclaimers posted before you enter one of these CR4 Sections. And, when a subject in General or Sustainable Engineering, or what ever, goes too far into a political debate, the post would be sent to one of these CR4 Sections and keep the existing CR4 Sections free of such problems. (not saying I never went too political as my majority of reply posts lie squarely in the Climate Change/Fracking realm) Then we could keep the engineering in a proper place, and the anger and frustration in another.

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#14
In reply to #10

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 10:33 AM

Then I would get banished to the island of Controversial.

Sort of like Napoleon at Elba, except I didn't conquer much of anything. Nobody has ever conquered Russia in winter, any takers? LOL, you'll be sorry.

Lubbock, not so much. I still would not want to have to march out in the cold from Lubbock to Roswell to fight aliens, though.

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#51
In reply to #14

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:03 PM

"Sort of like Napoleon at Elba, except I didn't conquer much of anything. Nobody has ever conquered Russia in winter, any takers? LOL, you'll be sorry."

But you have to remember WHY Napoleon was exiled to Elba instead of beheaded; he was too powerful to keep in France, but too useful a weapon to NOT keep in reserve to trounce enemies with.

So you would be 'banished' to Controversial, and sentenced to hang around and party with your drinking buddies, until such time as you are needed to whoop in and obliterate some clueless newbie who JUST. WILL. NOT. LEARN. CR4. ETIQUETTE.

You'd be our very own Sealed Badass in a Can.

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#53
In reply to #51

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 4:14 PM

I take that as one of the highest compliments ever received by me! Usually when I open the can of Whupaz, someone else stuffed me in it, and crams the lid shut.

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#19
In reply to #10

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 2:36 PM

We do have something like this, but it lacks the ability to move threads to it from other parts of CR4. I'm working on getting that functionality.

Join the CR4 Fans user group. Once you are a member, you can post any off topic conversation you'd like in the Break Room forum.

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#20
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 2:46 PM

Actually I do belong - I just forget to check there.

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#21
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 2:56 PM

I am working on getting more visibility, so posts would show up on the homepage for group members.

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#23
In reply to #21

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 4:44 PM

...also a good idea...perhaps just on the side bar?

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#22
In reply to #19

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/12/2016 3:01 PM

Being able to move conversations to the break room would be great idea....good alternative action....but would probably need a link from the original place in forum to work well...ie: without explanation...

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#26
In reply to #10

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/14/2016 11:42 AM

NO, NO, NO a thousand times NO to politics!

Politics is no longer a civil discussion between two opposing political views.

The current election debacle is a perfect example.

Lies, hatred, more lies, inciting to violence, insult after insult after insult heaped on innocent Muslims, Mexicans, women and children day after day after day by one candidate, solicitation of treasonous acts by foreign agents, bold faced lies repeated day after day and now voter intimidation and the list goes on and on.

We can all readily find daily examples of outright lies and insults spewed in this election cycle.

No politics, please!

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#27
In reply to #26

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/14/2016 12:35 PM

One will no doubt notice that Bozo's red nose has slid down to his chin, where it gives the effect of a bulbous bow on a ship.

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#28
In reply to #26

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/14/2016 8:28 PM

Present presidential nominees excepted, politicians sure do stretch the truth and "cherry pick" the statistics!

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#29
In reply to #26

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 8:59 AM

But, Lyn, isn't that what you just engaged in. Not everyone agrees with what you just spewed out there.

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#30
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 10:12 AM

Exactly.

Got the point across, didn't it!

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#31
In reply to #26

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 11:28 AM

You are looking at this all wrong. I want to get the politics off the main Sections and into a separate Section, so the main Sections stay engineering oriented. It is not uncommon for someone to submit a post and have it take off into rants by opposing ideals, quite unexpectedly to the original poster. Let's have a Section that we can send our posts to if that happens. And, if you know your post is going to cause such a division, and there are those who intentionally try to achieve this, then place it there to begin with and let the ranting run its course.

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#32
In reply to #31

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 3:27 PM

Such a site already exists, which was the point of my rant.

It's the Break Room. #17

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#33
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 3:35 PM

Yeah - but we can't dump posts gone astray to it at this time.

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#34
In reply to #33

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 4:06 PM

Phys, no one has suggested that feature until now. I'd suggest posting it as a new thread so the idea won't get buried. I don't know how do-able it would be but it's worth looking into.

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#35
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 4:13 PM

Yeah - we need a "self policing" policy, whereby general participants in a post can suggest to "warring parties" that they move onto another Section with the discussion. It would be on the honor system, so such requests could be ignored, but it would help to curtail some of the posts that get up to 100 replies, where 50% are just 3 or 4 parties. This requires the ability to move a post, which is not my area of expertise.

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#37
In reply to #35

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 5:22 PM

What is necessarily wrong with, "posts that get up to 100 replies, where 50% are just 3 or 4 parties"

Especially if requests to move the post could just be ignored.

This service is provided by our host, free of charge, and I think that any changes made should be well reasoned and mindful of the fact that someone has to write code to satisfy our requests for warring parties to move.

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#36
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 5:02 PM

Maybe instead of "Off-Topic" and "Good Answer", the third rating could be either the B.S. rating (of which I would get a lot), or "Get a room".

Or there could be a check mark flagging posts that need to move over to the politi side.

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#38
In reply to #36

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/15/2016 5:30 PM

I think the rating system is fine the way it is.

OT's are not tabulated or published (there's an idea) and GA totals, to me, just mean that member is not a total idiot, and sometimes has a good idea.

Posts can be flagged with the "Report" button.

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#42
In reply to #34

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 2:24 PM

You could enable a feature that allows the reader to minimize a post to a single line ...that way a participant can tailor their own experience with blinder's on....and not effect the thread for others....I personally think the present system works well enough as it is...

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#43
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 2:57 PM

Yes, with a small button that says read more.

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#45
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 3:56 PM

So what you are saying is we need a B.S. filter, even if "On-Topic"?

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#47
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 5:35 PM

Yes, A B.S. button that .....

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#48
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 5:36 PM

Stop tha.....

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#49
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 5:37 PM

That's not funny any mor....

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#46
In reply to #26

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 4:17 PM

I was using a much broader meaning of "politics" than just Liar Clinton and Never PC Trump. Anytime we get into environmental issues (yes - Climate Change and Fracking) we also get into a political issue in a much broader sense than just fat mammals and whining donkeys. Sometimes the same party has split views, but it is a "political" issue none the less, as laws and government regulations must be involved, and unfortunately it takes politics to develop them.

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#44

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/16/2016 3:23 PM

We have a topic that has generated multiple replies, but many of them are severely off-topic. I think I failed to mark mine OT in a couple posts. Therefore, maybe we need a stronger reminder to designate posts as off-topic since many threads have OT remarks.

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#58

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/17/2016 5:06 PM

Note to self: Watch out for people from Illinois. They are even crazier than the people from Texas!

...................................................................

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#61
In reply to #58

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

08/18/2016 10:51 AM

Hey! I resemble that remark! (Then again, I've never claimed to be sane in the first place.)

We Urban Folk are fine, it's those loonies from the Country you have to watch out for.

(Note, if you want the Rural viewpoint from Illinois, just swap the underlined words.)

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#73

Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

09/24/2016 1:10 AM

Less spam, and faster elimination of any that arises.

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#74
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Re: What Do You Want CR4 to Be?

09/26/2016 8:29 AM

You and me both, buddy.

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