Standing in the street trying to hear yourself think

C de-Avillez hggdh2 at
Wed Jul 8 17:28:33 UTC 2009

On Wed, 2009-07-08 at 12:47 -0400, Evan wrote:

>         The only issue I can find with this approach is that many new
>         users are
>         coming from windows. Have you tried using windows "help"? It
>         does use
>         an approach similar to this, and I would be afraid that many
>         of those
>         users will dismiss this as soon as it starts. Everytime I have
>         attempted to use the help in windows, the Q & A ends with
>         frustration
>         on my part when it says basically "can't figure out what is
>         wrong".
>         If those new users can be convinced this will not be the
>         results every
>         time in Ubuntu, this could be an excellent help system.
> You have a point. Hopefully the addition of a "Get Live Help" button
> will mitigate the problem though. Even if the automated help doesn't
> give any useful suggestions, it should be able to reliably determine
> where it ought to put you in IRC. How bad would it be for it to say
> "Sorry, the automated system couldn't solve your problem. Please wait
> while I connect you to a human who should be able fix it." ? 

I can see something like this working -- as long as the requester gets
paired with one single person, in a PVT IRC session (or something
similar). If we just drop the requester into, say, the #ubuntu channel,
then we will not have accomplished anything.

But... for this to work we will need to create a group of responders;
this group would have to accept being available to answer questions
during some time every so often, etc, etc. This *is* volunteer work, but
the success of such an approach depends on *always* having people

The logistics are most certainly going to be complex, and should be

Again, as commented on this thread some times already, we at least need
some basic requirements as far as *documnetation* is concerned:

(a) comb through the forums, bugs, answer.launchpad, and others for
issues worth being cataloged; 
(b) organise them in a more user-friendly search structure (subject
matter, keywords, version, level of expertise required, etc, etc).
(c) re-word and clean up (including adding a reference to the original

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