Sure, but one of those two groups should know from experience to expect those kinds of questions by now. And I think there’s a implicit expectation of frequent contributors not to be dicks to newbies. Not to mention, established users have a lot more to lose if the community trends downhill. For new users who don’t even have a working setup, a low effort question costs almost nothing. If they get a hostile response it’s no loss to move on to something else.
Expect them, sure. Accept those kind of questions with open arms, not so much.
I can’t speak for others but when I see an individual has made little to no effort, or writes more about why they know nothing than describing the actual issue, I don’t get involved.
I think there’s a implicit expectation of frequent contributors not to be dicks to newbies
I agree. I also think there’s an implicit expectation of newcomers to show some effort. It’s very apparent when someone has not even bothered to learn basic concepts and terminology. The conversation degrades rapidly if the individual doesn’t know their entity from their elbow.
established users have a lot more to lose if the community trends downhill
Another way of looking at it is that the community grows stronger because it only retains those who are willing to roll up their sleeves and make an effort.
I do believe Paulus’ goal is to make Home Assistant easy to use for everyone. However, current Home Assistant users know that, although it is making progress towards that goal, it isn’t there yet. In other words, the software requires the user to have a certain amount of patience and persistence. Some people have none of the above so this software is not for them.
True, it’s not there yet.
I totally agree. I was really frustrated at first, but I stuck with it. And posted here trying to get help.
And my response was
Wow. Dude, you need to go get a job in corporate america. Open Source is not your bag at all… “Any question about Home Assistant, and about using things with Home Assistant, is welcome here.” Yup… Read my question again about Home Assistant above… ok, other than this totally useless response, does anyone have any suggestions on what I can try?
I’ve had 100’s of mostly positive interactions on these forums since, but we should all keep in mind that there is a pretty steep learning curve here despite all the great work by the devs and other really helpful folks here on this forum.
I only bring this up now to remind folks of just how far this platform has come and remember, We were all beginners at one time… I’ve seen a few snarky responses to newbies lately and without being a dick and calling them out In-thread, I thought I’d go way back to my humble beginnings over a year ago and share my own personal experience in this regard.
I admit I did this quite often lately, as there are so many newbies that don’t do anything at all by themselves, they don’t read any docs, don’t search the forum, don’t read the community guidelines. Then they post screenshots of their code, ask questions that have been answered 1000 tines already in the forum or ask questions that 1 min of reading the docs would have solved it. In addition lots of them feel entitled to get support and rant about the HA when they don’t get help in 2 hours.
Almost every time I come across a snarky post, it’s by one particular user. He’s a regular, so no one seems to say anything about it.
I hope you don’t mean me
no, not you!
How about rewording the opening sentence of the link we all post to try to help?
"Before we begin…
This forum is not a helpdesk
The people here don’t work for Home Assistant, that’s an open source project. We are volunteering our free time to help others. Not all topics may get an answer, never mind one that helps you solve your problem."
This last line set me off a year ago, and mind you, I’m the furthest thing from a snowflake you can get. I’m OLD (56). I started with DOS 2.1 and assembly language. So I’m already a gluten for punishment. Hell I had to put a reset button on my home-built 8086 PC and boot from a 360k assembler compiler floppy disk each time I had to debug my code. But that response put me over the top, especially given I was having a newbie moment and frustrated beyond belief after already spending dozens of hours getting started.
Just a suggestion. Start off and Welcome the user to the platform, say we’re All friendly and as a community we will do our best but…
And then set expectations
This is corporate support 101, but it might serve us all well…
OK, I’m stealing that line! I’m not a big fan of the anti-gluten movement myself. Making dinner rolls for our Thanksgiving dinner, I just added a bit of gluten to the dough…
I’m also older than you, and DOS 2.1 came along well into my career. I can’t count the number of different assembler languages I’ve coded in.
Still, HA is a HUGE learning curve. I’ve really only dabbled in what I call “CPL” (Children’s Programming Languages) like C and Python, although I have written production systems in them. I’ve always wanted to branch out from business computing to more process control stuff, and HA is dragging me, kicking and screaming, into areas I’d never explored before.
So, first, Thanks to all the HA developers!
And, second, I’ve learned that none of us is anywhere near as brilliant as we think we are when we’re talking down to a beginner who just hasn’t happened to have been exposed to the exact languages and concepts we have. Things which are “obvious” to us may be totally foreign to someone else. That doesn’t make them stupid, or a snowflake. Granted, some are. But let’s not start with that assumption.
CPL… yup, that’s me. I stealing THAT line! I used to write code in my company when I started it, then I hired a CTO and he now has a staff of coders. Reviewing the code He’s written, it’s littered with
#“Jeff, stay the fuc& OUT of this section of code.
#For that matter, why are you even looking at this code?”
Guilty as charged, and home assistant was certainly daunting at first. The best advice I now give to folks who PM me for advice after I answer their questions is to just stick with it. Keep experimenting, keep asking questions, search google for the error you’re getting. Reddit has tons of solutions, as do individual blogs, not just this forum. Buy a few Node MCU ESPs and play with ESPHome. Talk about elegant code and an elegant integration. Then try and tackle Tasmota and reprogramming SmartLife plugs, not vice versa. And be patient and persistent. It pays off.
And when someone tries to help you THANK them and don’t disappear for a week before responding. Common courtesy. If someone helps you solve your problem, Mark the issue as solved (and not on your own post because you thought you were so clever working it out after much help pointing you in the right direction)
Over the past year or so I’ve learned more from your prolific posting David than just about anyone! Thank You!
This thread reinforces my view an option to block either /both threads and members will make it more useful for me and, I venture to say, for many others.
The only reason I open these sorts of threads is to see who not to view in the future. This forum is so full of fantastic, helpful contributors, I feel sullied to read wasteful, unproductive threads when so much gracious assistance is so readily available.
Finally, thank you to all of those selfless contributors, without whom this great open source project might stagnate.
Can we please let this thread die? Hateful replies are always littered throughout these types of threads. I can even see posts of mine before I became a moderator. Please don’t do what I did. Do not get sucked into these hate filled threads and move on. Thanks.
That really shows a problem in development culture. I mean it’s the same in most projects.
Developers don’t want to test. But testing is the most important part. BDD / TDD, Write tests first, then Code, automate your tests, etc.
I know this is a hobby project for most, so they do what’s fun to them. Coding. Not testing.
Personally I think it shows more of a problem with the user base… they expect everything for nothing and contribute nothing and expect everyone else to do the beta testing while expecting everything in every release is fully tested by someone else and then want to complain when something breaks.
Betas used to be a nightmare but for some time dev has been stable enough to run in production. I get sick of people still saying to never run the first .0 release of a new version… it’s not like it’s hard rolling back if there is an issue anyway.
I completely agree. The big pain is that users do not read and do not look for their problem in the posts, they just create another thread. The saddest thing is that they do not even read the posts and solve the problem in the thread they come across and ask again. no one will change it, we are just people.
Please close this thread?
This seems to be a problem for you who don’t know that this phenomenon is common for all forums. it’s not specific to HA. On every forum, long lasting members have feeling that newcomers ask the same questions again and again.
Reasons why it does happen should be obvious for everybody.
In addition to that, HA is changing so fast causing the forum is full of outdated information. Docs are not helpful everytime too.
You are repeating to death you are volunteers. So give help if you are willing to. this is the role of a volunteer. not evaluating if a necessitous deserves it.
You can do that by answering questions or by pointing to already existent answers. After time It will improve the process of seeking for the infornation. Or don’t answer at all (especially in snarky way).
Some one suggested disclaimer “this is not helpdesk” But this is support forum. The forum is not for you. It’s mainly for those who struggles with HA and expects to get answer here.
What I’m missing are answers/help from developers. From time to time there are serious issues with HA, which are obviously caused by devs.but none of them is trying to help (supposingly devs know a nature of the problem better so could give optimal way how to solve it). In turn other forum users are trying to help by guess, often giving contradictory or useless information. it leaves traces on the forum, which are indexed by google, which makes finding correct answers even less possible.