Author Topic: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!  (Read 10856 times)

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cornicione54

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #60 on: July 05, 2012, 01:27:39 PM »
@cornicione54

@ carter has a question in the "newbies topic" section about dough sticking to the peel. Why haven't you given hin some advice?

Funny...I don't remember seeing your contribution there either . The guy's using a formula I have no experience with but fortunately it seems there are several members already on the case.  ::)


cornicione54

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #61 on: July 05, 2012, 02:11:16 PM »
I hate to leave my last comment on such a negative note, so to bring back the conversation to the topic at hand:

Thinking about the sorts of queries/aims that a newcomer might have regarding pizzamaking. Would it be beneficial to have some sort of flowchart/wizard to "make a pizza from scratch"?  

I don't know how that might go and I have no idea how to implement such a thing via the forums  but I wonder if it might address the aims/desires of a large proportion of firsttime pizzamakers? How would you feel about this. Would such a thing even be possible or would it be over-simplifying things?
« Last Edit: July 05, 2012, 02:16:29 PM by cornicione54 »

Offline BrickStoneOven

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #62 on: July 05, 2012, 02:14:59 PM »
For all those criticizing newcomers for asking broad questions, implying it is somehow a sign of "laziness" - you might want to consider whether a large proportion of those newbies don't yet have the requisite knowledge or experience to make more specific enquiries.
It definitely is laziness. That first post Peter linked of mine was out of pure laziness and I have even admitted that a few times. I didn't want to do some of the stuff own my own, 1; because I couldn't but 2; because I didn't want to. But I still came back and its been almost 3 years since I've been here.

Like when you go into the oven section of the forum you see the same question all the time, "What oven should I get?". That's it. Not one bit of info on what they want to achieve. How are people supposed to answer that question. Or people asking questions about ovens that have been mentioned on here a bunch of times but they don't want to take the time to search first. There's a reason that there is a "Newbs Read This First" thread on every single forum on this planet. And every single one says use the search function before posting a topic because chances are that there are thread/posts about it.

I hate to leave my last comment on such a negative note, so to bring back the conversation to the topic at hand:

Thinking about the sorts of queries/aims that a newcomer might have regarding pizzamaking. Would it be beneficial to have some sort of flowchart/wizard to "make a pizza from scratch"? 

I don't know how that might go and I have no idea how to implement such a thing via the forums  but I wonder if it might address the aims/desires of a large proportion of firsttime pizzamakers? How would you feel about this. Would such a thing even be possible or would it be over-simplifying things?

There kind of is already and I think Peter gets angry when people don't take advantage of it because it took him a long time to collect all the links. They can click on the link that goes to that specific post or they can start from the beginning with the first post. http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8297.0.html
« Last Edit: July 05, 2012, 02:18:48 PM by BrickStoneOven »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #63 on: July 05, 2012, 02:17:41 PM »
Among the most popular threads on the forum are for clones, or copycats, of well known pizzeria pizzas. We have many members who register with the forum just for clone or copycat recipes. I have been involved in over thirty reverse engineering/clone projects. I do them because I have found that I learn more from those types of projects than I can learn from just about any other way. I believe that a lot of the work I have done on these projects, either alone or with others, is good enough for someone to start pizza businesses with from a recipe standpoint and, hence, could have significant economic value. These reverse engineering/cloning projects represent the hardest thing that I do on the forum, and can consume weeks, months and sometimes even longer. If I am going to spend that amount of time, and maybe some of my own money in the process, I don't want to just post final recipes for someone to find through a Google or forum search and print them out, and then leave as soon as they have the recipes. They will have to work for their supper and read entire threads, even if it is 87 pages long, as is the case with the Mellow Mushroom thread. We have had several new members join the forum in the past few months just to find a Mellow Mushroom recipe and left as soon as they see how long the thread is. Members like that almost never return to the forum.

Peter
« Last Edit: July 05, 2012, 02:19:31 PM by Pete-zza »

cornicione54

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #64 on: July 05, 2012, 02:26:32 PM »
Among the most popular threads on the forum are for clones, or copycats, of well known pizzeria pizzas. We have many members who register with the forum just for clone or copycat recipes. I have been involved in over thirty reverse engineering/clone projects. I do them because I have found that I learn more from those types of projects than I can learn from just about any other way. I believe that a lot of the work I have done on these projects, either alone or with others, is good enough for someone to start pizza businesses with from a recipe standpoint and, hence, could have significant economic value. These reverse engineering/cloning projects represent the hardest thing that I do on the forum, and can consume weeks, months and sometimes even longer. If I am going to spend that amount of time, and maybe some of my own money in the process, I don't want to just post final recipes for someone to find through a Google or forum search and print them out, and then leave as soon as they have the recipes. They will have to work for their supper and read entire threads, even if it is 87 pages long, as is the case with the Mellow Mushroom thread. We have had several new members join the forum in the past few months just to find a Mellow Mushroom recipe and left as soon as they see how long the thread is. Members like that almost never return to the forum.

Peter

A Pete-zza/Pizzamaking iPhone app would totally ROCK  :) but yeah I understand what you're saying re: taking the time to read all the info.

Online Chicago Bob

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #65 on: July 05, 2012, 03:40:20 PM »
These reverse engineering/cloning projects represent the hardest thing that I do on the forum, and can consume weeks, months and sometimes even longer. If I am going to spend that amount of time, and maybe some of my own money in the process, I don't want to just post final recipes for someone to find through a Google or forum search and print them out, and then leave as soon as they have the recipes.
Peter
And well you shouldn't!
What about a sticky right there in the newb section saying something like "easiest pizzas to make'"and give the link to the "emergency doughs' ?
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Online Tscarborough

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #66 on: July 05, 2012, 04:14:31 PM »
This is a forum on a pizza making site.  On the front page of the site are recipes for the most common types of pizza.  They are easy to find, easy to read, and easy to use.  A forum needs participation to work, otherwise you get this:

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/bricks-masonry-asphalt-concrete-3/

Note the number of replies to each thread, most are 1 or 2 with a few getting up to ten.  Compare that to this one:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/board,5.0.html

The difference is communication, back and forth.


cornicione54

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #67 on: July 05, 2012, 04:28:44 PM »
This is a forum on a pizza making site.  On the front page of the site are recipes for the most common types of pizza.  They are easy to find, easy to read, and easy to use.  A forum needs participation to work, otherwise you get this:

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/bricks-masonry-asphalt-concrete-3/

Note the number of replies to each thread, most are 1 or 2 with a few getting up to ten.  Compare that to this one:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/board,5.0.html

The difference is communication, back and forth.



Why does it have to be either/or?
 I don't think the level of participation in this forum was ever in  jeopardy but should we really be trying to establish a hierarchy on this forum based on degree of interaction? I dread to think where that would leave me! :D

 You say "communication, back and forth" but at the same time folks here are advocating no communication at all with those whose commitment does not match their own.

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #68 on: July 05, 2012, 04:35:03 PM »
The hierarchy is between those who stay and those who get their question answered (or not) and are never heard from again. 

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #69 on: July 05, 2012, 04:58:08 PM »
 
folks here are advocating no communication at all with those whose commitment does not match their own.

I hope that is not how you have interpreted what has been said here. I don't see that at all. It's certainly not what I'm suggesting. Itís not about commitment; itís about respect for peopleís time.

What I'm saying is that when someone comes here, they need to help themselves first. They need to figure out what questions they need to ask before they ask questions. 

It's not right to come here and ask wide open questions that basically amount to asking what questions they should be asking. That shows a lack of respect for the time of the people here kind enough to help.

CL
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Offline pizzaneer

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #70 on: July 05, 2012, 05:01:06 PM »
I think I asked a question once (dough-related, Peter got it)... long after I had read and understood everything I could, and made many attempts, and tried to understand the results in terms of what I had learned from reading about other people's experiences.   I posted about those attempts, and the feedback was always encouraging and helpful in tweaking my further efforts.  

No one likes a selfish person, and how selfish do you have to be to treat this forum as if it were a drive-thru window? I bet the ones who had simplistic questions, showing their lack of effort, that got answered, never reached success and gave up.  Maybe they were too embarrassed to post their fails, and invite comment.  

Making pizza can be a humbling experience.  I've eaten many a humble pie while looking at pictures of Omid's, Craig's, Chau's, et al.  But never once did I feel I should give up.

Perhaps a general introduction page for those coming to the forum who are not yet registered, along the lines of a welcome, warning and how-to is in order.  If you're already registered, you get to skip it.
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #71 on: July 05, 2012, 05:37:58 PM »
Why does it have to be either/or?
 I don't think the level of participation in this forum was ever in  jeopardy but should we really be trying to establish a hierarchy on this forum based on degree of interaction? I dread to think where that would leave me! :D

 
All that has been said is "you show me you're willing to try just a little an I'll help you a lot"
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

Online Chicago Bob

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #72 on: July 05, 2012, 05:39:38 PM »


 You say "communication, back and forth" but at the same time folks here are advocating no communication at all with those whose commitment does not match their own.
'cmon man, really?
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

Online Pete-zza

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #73 on: July 05, 2012, 06:05:01 PM »
What about a sticky right there in the newb section saying something like "easiest pizzas to make'"and give the link to the "emergency doughs' ?

Bob,

Actually, the emergency dough thread (at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8297.msg71576.html#msg71576) has been somewhat a disappointment to me. I thought at the time I created that thread that it would be much more popular than it has been. But, from what I can tell, it hasn't gained much traction from either our skilled members or our newbies. And if a thread does not offer much appeal to skilled members, it is not likely to appeal to newbies. And I now think I know the reason why. It is that people who are interested in recipes want those recipes to be completely self-contained and with instructions much like you would get in a cookbook, and preferably with volume measurements and using standard ingredients as might be found in supermarkets. They might be willing to scan a thread to see if there is such a recipe in there but they do not want to construct the recipe from separate disconnected pieces in the thread. The closest that I have come to satisfying what I think most recipe seekers want is the Papa John's thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6758.msg58195.html#msg58195. That thread is somewhat unique because I pretty much controlled it since I did all of the basic research and I devised all of the basic recipes. And I didn't post the recipes until I was satisfied with the results. There was little of an evolutionary nature spanning many posts in the thread. I then wrote up the recipes cookbook style but with much more detail and instructions than one might find in a cookbook. I think the proof of the pudding is that the Papa John's thread is #7 in the list of the top ten threads on the forum by pageview, with over 107,000 page views and little current activity. Unfortunately, the people who like the PJ recipes are not interested in much beyond the recipes.

I think it is important that the members keep in mind that this is a free and open, not-for-profit forum. Everything that is on the forum is available to everyone, without obligation or limitation. I once joked to someone that the best type of member to be on this forum is a lurker. Lurkers have access to everthing without having to lift a finger other than to use a keyboard and a mouse (or, better yet, an iPad). They have access to the best recipes, for free and without limitation, they can use the recipes and other information commercially if they want, and they don't have to post anything except maybe in an emergency, and they don't have to support the forum in any way, either through useful posts or monetary donations. They don't even have to say thank you to anyone.

Peter

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #74 on: July 05, 2012, 06:18:44 PM »
Peter,

OK thanks, I know exactly where you are coming from....before you went on vacation last week you mentioned you might have an idea to work on to address this issue and it seems like there really isn't any easy answer or way around on this deal. You do too much already....an I've got an idea of my own that I will soon propose to everyone. Thanks again.

Bob
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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #75 on: July 05, 2012, 06:19:21 PM »
BTW, Thank you.

Offline petef

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #76 on: July 05, 2012, 10:49:55 PM »
......These reverse engineering/cloning projects represent the hardest thing that I do on the forum, and can consume weeks, months and sometimes even longer. If I am going to spend that amount of time, and maybe some of my own money in the process, I don't want to just post final recipes for someone to find through a Google or forum search and print them out, and then leave as soon as they have the recipes. They will have to work for their supper and read entire threads, even if it is 87 pages long, as is the case with the Mellow Mushroom thread.....

Excelllent point! I totally agree. If we ever do wind up creating more sticky posts they should probably serve more as FAQs to answer those routine and very basic questions that come up over and over again without giving away the secrets or the really valuable info that is contained amongst those very long and complex threads.

That way, when anyone asks a basic question any member could direct the person to the corresponding sticky post. Hopefully the newcomers will learn by example and naturally gravitate towards the sticky posts before asking very basic questions.

Peter, as a compliment to our "Challenge of the month", what do you think about a  "FAQ of the month challenge" where YOU  post a request for members to write a FAQ based upon a particular thread of a specific topic. Members could then take the best parts of that thread and condense it or add to it, to create a more consise FAQ which could then become a sticky post. You could be the final judge/editor. Then give credit to the person who wrote it. Anyone with good writing skills could probably meet the challenge.

---pete----



Offline pizzaneer

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #77 on: July 05, 2012, 10:57:59 PM »
I like the idea, but I'd like to see an example even more.

Sounds like you are suggesting summaries of particular threads - judged by popularity. Is that it, or did I misunderstand?
« Last Edit: July 05, 2012, 11:00:59 PM by pizzaneer »
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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #78 on: July 06, 2012, 07:50:21 AM »
This morning I did a couple of things that might help alleviate the problem of new members not doing anything before posing their questions or requests for help to the membership.

First, I updated the existing "sticky" on how to best use the forum's Advanced search feature. That sticky is at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3101.msg26282.html#msg26282.

Second, I added a new post to the ATTENTION NEW USERS thread that Steve created at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,13789.msg138493.html#msg138493 by which new members are required to introduce themselves before entering the active part of the forum. My post serves to introduce new members to the Pizza Glossary and to the forum's search features, and especially the Advanced search feature. With only two posts in the ATTENTION NEW USERS thread, it will be hard for new members to miss my post.

Of course, I have no way of knowing whether new members will choose to bypass our recommendations that they use the Pizza Glossary and search features before posing their questions or requests for help to the membership. As the old saying goes, we can lead a horse to water but we can't make it drink. If new members choose not to help themselves first by using the forum's tools, and it is obvious, maybe they can be referred to my new post in the ATTENTION NEW USERS thread. That would put the onus to do something back on the new members.

Peter
« Last Edit: July 06, 2012, 07:51:58 AM by Pete-zza »

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Re: A Word to the Wise for Newbies!
« Reply #79 on: July 06, 2012, 08:11:13 AM »

 If new members choose not to help themselves first by using the forum's tools, and it is obvious, maybe they can be referred to my new post in the ATTENTION NEW USERS thread. That would put the onus to do something back on the new members.

Peter
Ha! That is exactly what my next suggestion was going to be.... ;D

I've recently noticed that there are several members here that regularly canvass the New Members posts offering help or just a quick "welcome"....I do it a little bit.  Now we'll have a sort of polite form letter/note that we can easily paste in as a reply to an open/lazy question.

Thank you Peter....well done as usual!
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