Well I understand why we had all the forum catagories but now I think it is causing less people to post especially with slower internet connections. I think if we were to slim down the catagories people would have less of a problem searching for topics. I usually just look in General chat because that is the easiest place. I don't have a lot of time to post and can't go looking for an interesting topic all over the place.
I dunno, there's a lot on here that I have zero interest in. Having the categories means that I can check what I want and never have to deal with all the categories I'm not interested in; oddly enough, it actually reduces clutter.
All the topics in the entertainment and sports categories could be put into one single category called entertainment and sport. (Apart from Vehicles and Transportation,that could be placed elsewhere)
We could have it so we have just like a Science forum and not all these types of sub forums. That would take 6 down to 1. You could have a businness forum that would add Jobs and learning economics and marketing These are just a few ideas I could think of a bunch more.
Okay... get this...
Suppose we keep the categories, but add a mouse-over effect on each one.
Hovering the mouse over it will bring up a list of the, say, 10 most recently posted-in threads (the first ten in the section, not counting stickies and announcements).
Then, you can quickly look through the various sections without having to open each one.
Honestly I think its just time to get rid of some forums...I'm not gonna put my mouse over each catagorie either. That would be just as annoying
I kinda like the mouse-over thing.
Really, I don't quite understand the aversion to sub-forums; there are a lot of subjects that each of us have no interest in, and they're different for each of us. Having the categories means that we don't need to bother with entire sections of the board to find what we want. I can understand some sub-forums being combined, particularly where certain forums get almost no traffic... in this case, the separation doesn't really serve much purpose.
I also don't understand the time argument that you're putting forward, Blaster. I find that the sub-forums speed things up quite nicely for me. I come to the forum index and run a quick scroll down, noting whether or not there are updates in the sub-forums that interest me... if there's activity, I check them, if there's not, I don't. I know with a single scroll swipe whether or not there might be something of interest on the forum. Without the separation, I'd have to pay more attention to actual thread titles within buckets of topics, rather than a quick orange or white scan of the whole thing. Frequently I'm here and gone within 15 seconds, and I spend a little longer if it looks like there's something of interest on the go. Removing, for example, the Science sub-forums would slow me down dramatically.
EDIT - I do agree with some need for revision of the sub-forum categories themselves, but I'm not sure the number of sub-forums is an issue, so much as the usefulness of certain distinctions, or lack or distinctions.
There is really no need to cut down on the forums. Most of them are there because there is/was a demand for it and is/was active.
Deleting some of the forums would give users less of an option to post about. Years ago I would have agreed with you. But you have to look at the big picture. This is a post to host website. We basically need to cover every subject so every person has an area that interest them that they can go to and post in. Other than general chat.
Reorganizing the forums is different though and highly needed. It might cut down 2 or 3 forums if done correctly as there are some duplicates that aren't needed in my opinion (I.e filmmaking and personal photos, your photos can basically be posted in filmmaking, as a lot of users do).
Removing forums I dont think is an option, I think that is how bondings sees it.
There is always a solution to everything though. What I recommend, is doing a little technical work to make Frihost "smart." We should have our own user area (keep forum page how it is, add new area to site). In this area, we should be able to select our interests from a lot of categories. Depending on what things you choose that interest you should determine what shows up in your user dashboard. For example, I like design. I also like cars. Checking these two subjects (you would probably choose a lot more), posts from the design forums and the vehicles forums (maybe it could even be more broad, grabbing keywords as well from thread titles) would show up in my dashboard.
This way we would have our own area in which posts we are more likely to have interest in will display. However we would still have the option to visit the current forum page this way we aren't limited.
I've had this idea for a while and I have even more I could add to it to make it extremely user friendly, but I'll save the rest to myself and perhaps bondings if he ever chimes in.
This would take a little coding work, part of the reason I never really brought it up. But it really would solve the issue about a large amount of forum categories. I think it would even increase our chances in replying to a post as well be seeing nearly every thread on Frihost that would interest us.
Ghost I like the dashboard idea. I hope bondings would have the time to code something like this. I could see this being a good advancement for frihost.
If there will ever be a time when bondings modifies something so heavily, he may as well make it extremely sophisticated.
Allowing users to hide forums could possibly leave some forums useless. So allowing to display likely interested topics and view the current forum page would allow for maximum posting capabilities from the users.
Otherwise, if you hide a forum, you're likely to never enter it again. We wouldn't want people forgetting what's there.
allthough that would be awesome ocalhoun. I agree with ghost. Every now and again I look in some forum catagories I don't tend to go into.