Find the answer to your Linux question:
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13
Like Tree5Likes
I have noticed this before but never asked about it. I realize that a ton of posts in the newbie section aren't actually from newbies and aren't "newbie" questions (ie, ...
Enjoy an ad free experience by logging in. Not a member yet? Register.
  1. #1
    Linux Guru jmadero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,998

    Is Newbie Really Newbie??


    I have noticed this before but never asked about it. I realize that a ton of posts in the newbie section aren't actually from newbies and aren't "newbie" questions (ie, basic). I'm just as guilty posting there, my rationale,

    1. It's the most looked at section, therefore I get the quickest feedback

    2. I'm not positive it fits somewhere else

    3. Laziness


    Not sure if there is a solution, but wanted to see other people's input.

    The reason this came up is because I have seen times when there are a ton of posts that I can't answer that supposedly are "newbie" questions. I'm a relatively experienced user, so either I'm not as experienced as I thought (could be the case), or the questions belong somewhere outside of newbie


    Edit: this may belong in feedback/suggestions. I accidentally put it in coffee lounge
    Last edited by jmadero; 02-14-2012 at 07:29 PM. Reason: Possibly Wrong Section
    Bodhi 1.3 & Bodhi 1.4 using E17
    Dell Studio 17, Intel Graphics card, 4 gigs of RAM, E17

    "The beauty in life can only be found by moving past the materialism which defines human nature and into the higher realm of thought and knowledge"

  2. #2
    Linux User
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    264
    From a kind of stupid point of view:
    Someone telling he understands computer hasn't got the complexity yet.
    So we are all noobs in one way or another.

    From a more serious point of view:
    I don't understand something means I'm a noob at it.
    I wouldn't need to ask for help if I understand it.

  3. #3
    Linux Guru jmadero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,998
    Quote Originally Posted by zombykillah View Post
    From a kind of stupid point of view:
    Someone telling he understands computer hasn't got the complexity yet.
    So we are all noobs in one way or another.

    From a more serious point of view:
    I don't understand something means I'm a noob at it.
    I wouldn't need to ask for help if I understand it.
    By that logic every single section of the forum should actually be called "Newbie". I understand what you're saying but to make the forum more functional, I was just curious if newbie should mean something other than "I don't understand this really complex thing but I have ten years of Linux experience". For me a "newbie" question is one that someone in their first year of basic linux use would ask -- or some other similar definition
    Bodhi 1.3 & Bodhi 1.4 using E17
    Dell Studio 17, Intel Graphics card, 4 gigs of RAM, E17

    "The beauty in life can only be found by moving past the materialism which defines human nature and into the higher realm of thought and knowledge"

  4. $spacer_open
    $spacer_close
  5. #4
    Linux Guru
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    4,170
    I guess it depends on what your strengths are when it comes to replying to posts. I am considered proficient enough to be a mod and get credit as a team member for a couple of Linux Distros.

    But, I am essentially a Biker who is self taught to code a little but serious coding and networking is not something I need to know so I pass up a lot of threads who delve into things that I don't have a need to do being a Linux using Biker.

    I usually don't start threads. I search and search till I finally understand what I need to do. This I think comes from having to fix scooters on the side of the road on a army blanket with limited resources available. I have fixed a broken spring in a Bike transmission with a bunch of empty beer bottles to capture the oil. Coiled up paper to make a funnel. Made a new spring from a ball point pen. Made the new gaskets from a empty 12 pack beer carton (using the pen to draw the gaskets). All at a picnic rest stop here in Texas for a bro riding with me. We were able to make/complete our trip to town to pick up the correct parts later to fix this right.

    I approach my Linux trouble shooting the same way when I can, I guess. If his bike would have been not repairable/ I would have road back to my place and would have shown up with truck and trailer to tow him back to my shop or used a old biker trick of pushing him in neutral with my foot on his back peg , (I have done this on a H.A. run to 4 corners for a bro that ran out of gas) .

    With scooters I am a old salty guru. With Linux. Let's say I just don't crash.

  6. #5
    Just Joined! Randicus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    China
    Posts
    74
    Quote Originally Posted by jmadero View Post
    For me a "newbie" question is one that someone in their first year of basic linux use would ask -- or some other similar definition
    I agree that Newbie should be for questions of a basic (beginner) nature. One thing that confuses the matter though, is that most fora, including this one, have several specific sub-fora. There are separate sections for installation, applications, desktop, multi-media, hardware, et cetera. (I am including categories used on other fora to help demonstrate my point.)

    First; should a beginner question be posted in Beginner or in a sub-forum dedicated to that issue?
    At what level of difficulty does a question stop being basic and become intermediate?

    Second; although having many sub-fora is good for clarity when searching for information, they can also cause confusion regarding placement. What is the difference between an application problem, software problem and desktop problem? Often it is clear or even obvious, but occasionally is not clear at all.

    I believe you have raised an interesting question. Unfortunately, it does not have an easy answer that is realistic. The only easy solution I can think of is for a forum to have several sub-fora for specific issues and eliminate the Newbie section. The problem I see with that approach is that many newbies will probably be too frightened to ask "stupid" questions when they see the high level of many existing questions.

    Perhaps fewer sub-fora?

  7. #6
    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Nottingham, England
    Posts
    3,906
    I think that, as one grows into the knowledge that inevitably comes with working through your system config issues in Linux, the point will come where, when something breaks, you'll think 'that's something to do with the networking' or 'that's a problem with installing' or maybe you'll be coming in with a scripting question.

    If you've not reached that point - if it's all still so confusing that you don't know how to work out what's failing - then the Beginners section is the place to put your question.

    I don't think it's true that the newbie section gets the most eyes - it might appear to, because that's where the questions are (or, at least, should be) easiest to answer. But I, like many of the TP's, use the 'unanswered posts' link at the top to find questions that haven't been dealt with yet, and that shows the questions whatever forum they appear in.
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

  8. #7
    Guest
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    312
    A beginners/newbie section, simply isn't needed on any technical forum, except for a forum which wants to keep the clueless away from the clued up...

    By having a newbie section you're segregating the user base unnecessarily - in effect creating the newbies and a quite potentially a "two tier system" to boot. If a question is so simple that it warrants posting in the newbie section then chances are it's something that's been covered multiple times in the past so a forum search should provide the best resolution. If searching does not provide the resolution, then it's probably going to need a new thread - the new thread does not need to be in a section labelled as "newbie" or "beginner", it can be in one of the main support forums.

    My philosophy is: There are no newbies, we all have huge gaps in our knowledge, some know more than others - mainly due to experience, not intelligence. For the newbies to learn they need to mix with the non newbies, otherwise they may be taking bad or incomplete advice from other "newbies" (happens). The only reason for a newbie section is if there is reason to believe that newbies are not being helped in the main support forums.

    0.02

  9. #8
    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Mason Texas
    Posts
    934
    One thing you may have overlooked. A newbie may not realize the complexity of the question he is asking. He may have read a little on google, or had some linux person tell him that "such and such" is possible, and he wants to know how, but doesn't realize that he is getting into a complicated area.
    Randicus likes this.
    Registered Linux user #526930

  10. #9
    Just Joined! Randicus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    China
    Posts
    74
    Quote Originally Posted by MASONTX View Post
    One thing you may have overlooked. A newbie may not realize the complexity of the question he is asking. He may have read a little on google, or had some linux person tell him that "such and such" is possible, and he wants to know how, but doesn't realize that he is getting into a complicated area.
    Good point.
    Such as; Configuring Openbox is a simple matter of adding "these lines" to the statup.sh. Sounds easy enough, but as an upper level beginner/lower intermediate in my level of knowledge, I needed more than a little help to figure it out. Or, a beginner reading about dual and triple-booting. Ah, that sounds nice!

  11. #10
    Just Joined! Sidekick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Gotham City
    Posts
    51
    Quote Originally Posted by caravel View Post
    A beginners/newbie section, simply isn't needed on any technical forum, except for a forum which wants to keep the clueless away from the clued up...

    By having a newbie section you're segregating the user base unnecessarily - in effect creating the newbies and a quite potentially a "two tier system" to boot. If a question is so simple that it warrants posting in the newbie section then chances are it's something that's been covered multiple times in the past so a forum search should provide the best resolution. If searching does not provide the resolution, then it's probably going to need a new thread - the new thread does not need to be in a section labelled as "newbie" or "beginner", it can be in one of the main support forums.
    I respectfully disagree. As a newbie I might not know how to ask a question. I may only be able to describe the result I want or the problem I'm having and what I have tried. A search of terms related to installing software, for example, might lead me to a confusing maze of unrelated posts to wade through. I don't know the Linux terminology, for example, and I might not discover "package management" in a search of the site using a newbie-familiar search term like "installing Seamonkey."

    A "newbie" section is a non-threatening, not so intimidating place for me to admit my ignorance.

    Or at least it should be. But when I open the "newbie section" link and see all kinds of gobbledegook technical terms in the thread titles, I tend to think, "Oh, no, what have I got myself into? Even the newbies are way over my head!" Frankly the non-newbie posts in the newbie section kept me away for a time. I was a "lurker" until today, and I still feel intimidated even in the newbie section because of all the hi-tech language in questions asked by supposed "newbies."

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •