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Maptalk Upgrades

Show Profile  addison Posted: 28 April 2009, 4:30 PM  
This is your chance to get involved with how Maptalk works.

At the moment, there are things that are a bit funny (not as funny as they used to be before we did quite a bit of site work in 2007).


The focus of the site at present is still on the forum. Is this the way YOU as users want the site? Would you prefer it if the forum was better categorised, ie 'technical', 'lounge' etc like it used to be?

Keen to hear some comments and suggestions. Some things that I might think are stupid, you guys might like. Some things I like, you guys might think are stupid. But no idea is stupid! Any serious recommendation will be looked into on its merits!


Suggestions can be anything ranging from recommendations for new features, changes to how things work, you might even recommend to ban Greg Flynn! Would you prefer it if you could only write comments if you were logged in (therefore would need a better log in functionality!) for example?

Show Profile  Jamie Posted: 29 April 2009, 6:52 AM  
I would like it if the forum was a smaller part of the Maptalk homepage allowing photos and news more exposure and hopefully more use.

It would also be cool if you could include images in your forum posts, allows for a bit more creativity and humour....eg www.vorb.org.nz

Show Profile  Bryan Posted: 29 April 2009, 7:32 AM  
Some threads get too big - eg the mapping thread at the moment contains 253 replies. Maybe we could split the forum up and have a separate one just for mapping topics.

Another 'nice to have' feature would be a Google like search where you could search all forum topics for the presence of text (eg 'Latvia' would bring back any threads and posts that contain the word 'Latvia')

Show Profile  rhigham Posted: 29 April 2009, 9:18 AM  
I feel the home page should now be centred on Events rather than the original forum concept, or have equal space on the home page for a forum list and say a brief list by region of events within a week of the present date.
I also think Bryan's idea of search for forum topics would be great for the occasional user like myself.

Show Profile  onemanfanclub Posted: 29 April 2009, 12:04 PM  
Howabout: Keep the current CONTENT of the front page but maybe change the ORDER (eg photos, events, news, forum - I'd put news higher if it was more active). In each section have just the most recently added/active/most immediately upcoming (so the photos, news and events list stay the same but the forum list could be shorter) BUT with a nice big clear "More photos"/"More events"/"More news"/"More topics" button at the end of each section to take you to the relevant devoted page.

Logging in to comment as per attackpoint would probably reduce the number of short off the cuff and sometimes very amusing (but sometimes not) contributions. Which could either be a good or bad thing!

Show Profile  thomasr Posted: 29 April 2009, 5:15 PM  
I like the idea of making the forum a smaller part, sort of its there if you know about it, with news and events as the main part.

Maybe transfer some of the what is orienteering stuff from the nzof website because its so average. Could run a feed from there to maptalk for nzof news (this might be harder than it sounds). Make maptalk the primary orienteering website for nz.

Show Profile  Alistair Posted: 29 April 2009, 8:13 PM  
Why to the forum pages have to be restricted to 15 posts per page? The performance issues which we prevalent a few years ago aren't so relevant nowadays or?

Their shood bee a speling and gramer checker in the forum so that som users hear can lern how to spel and wot the difrens between your and you're is etc!

Show Profile  nick Posted: 30 April 2009, 2:45 PM  
Nice one Simon - maptalk is already a real asset and its a great idea to see if we can squeeze more value out of it. Its nice to be offerred the chance to contribute ideas for changes/improvements.

I reckon it'd be good if maptalk offerred (and gave prominence to) what orienteers want most...

results & photos from recent events (& arguably routegadget?)
info on upcoming events
news
forum
photos
links etc

The forum is great, but maybe not the best public face for the sport? I'd be inclined to move it off the front page. As for adding categories, I can't see that improving behaviour greatly, but it might make searching easier? Does anyone search for old discussions? I don't...

I expect there'll be issues with offerring results, photos and routegadget (like being reliant on club's to provide links?)... but I reckon it'd attract more new people to maptalk and provide a more useful and professional public face for orienteering.

The aussies have mutated their forum - using for posting maps and discussing events... pretty cool, constructive use of their site...

Show Profile  SJ Posted: 30 April 2009, 3:51 PM  
I'm surprised no one has taken up the offer to ban Greg Flynn. Although personally I enjoy getting to read the ideas of someone who sees the world from a different perspective - half a metre closer to the ground that is.

Show Profile  addison Posted: 30 April 2009, 4:09 PM  
Hi guys, some great recommendations coming through. I have deliberately not replied yet as didn't want to mould any of the discussion!

But, as Bryan points out there is a place for technical discussion and learning. I would probably be quite keen to actually bring back topics, in particular around the technical area of mapping, maybe software use and things (ocad, sportident, condes etc etc). At present these topics are getting 'lost' in the forum to a certain extent.

Searching is harder than you think. I recommend just putting "site:maptalk.co.nz" into your google searches - works a treat.


Reality is, Maptalk started as a Forum and it will likely die as a forum. In the short term it has covered areas which would in an ideal world be covered by the federations own website. This hasn't happened so far and who knows what will happen going forward?

For those that are interested, I will post some files regarding the statistics of Maptalk for the previous calendar year. Makes for some interesting reading! You will see the forum absolutely dominates the site, with Events second. Photos doesn't get the service it deserves - which is really annoying (well to me anyway)! You spend all this time making something and people can't be bothered posting photos... yet everyone loves seeing them?


One of the hardest things I find is ensuring that content is kept up to date. I haven't got my head around it yet, but somehow for events having a reporting of out-of-date content? Really need some regional moderators! But people post events at the start of the year and never take another look... makes it really hard for new people when content which is so easily updateable isn't updated.

Anyways... keep it flowing

Show Profile  Greg Posted: 30 April 2009, 4:40 PM  
This isn't the public face of NZ orienteering, thats what the NZOF website is for, this is a forum, to discuss, argue, abuse and generally stir shit - leave it this way, as Fraser designed!

Show Profile  idiot Posted: 30 April 2009, 7:04 PM  
I agree with Greg. Does that make him an idiot too? Wheres my disclaimer?

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 30 April 2009, 10:42 PM  
I think Greg is right. I would expect the NZOF website to provide news, events, a photo repository for NZO and other media, and the latest Superseries news. I would hope that as well as looking good it was constantly being updated, the vital thing that would draw me there day after day. Unfortunately this has not been the case.

Maptalk has filled a vacuum for the above things. But I see its essential value as being the forum. And I've got used to the minimal structure of thread title only.

Show Profile  nick Posted: 1 May 2009, 9:19 AM  
How many different discussion threads have we read where people argue that we can't rely on NZOF to do anything - we have to do it for ourselves? NZOF *should* be the public face of orienteering, but it is not. Is it? Maptalk fills that role by default. Where are you now, all the "anti-season" crowd, all you "take responsibility" people? Maptalk has stepped up where NZOF has not, to provide photos, and an event calendar... why stop now?

Show Profile  addison Posted: 1 May 2009, 9:37 AM  
The funny thing is everone talks about the "NZOF" this, "NZOF" that. The NZOF is 7 people, representing you. There is paid positions for specific roles, but what people must realise is that if you want things to happen you have to make it happen. Sitting around saying what the NZOF should do is much too easy, making it happen is where the challenge lies.

But back to the forum title please :-) Michael perhaps I should make it so inappropriate posts can be moved to their correct thread?

Show Profile  addison Posted: 1 May 2009, 9:39 AM  
And what I mean by saying Maptalk will die a forum, is that the ideal situation is everything that has been added here on Maptalk is ideally on the nzorienteering.com site, so that Maptalk can be the place of informal discussion it has always been designed to be.


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