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locked Calendar is live


 

Hi All,

I pushed the calendar to the live site. The default for every group is that moderators/owners can edit the calendar and members can view it. You can change this in Settings.

Calendars are tricky beasts; no doubt there will be bugs. Please let me know if you find anything or have suggestions. I'll announce it on updates some time next week.

Thanks!
Mark


 

Nerdy technical information here:

Forgot to mention how timezones are handled. Timezones only matter for displaying the calendar and for reminders. Every user has a timezone setting now, in their profile. We auto detect what timezone a user's browser is in when they register or when they login, and automatically set their timezone if it isn't already set. When calendar events are created, we store the timezone of the person creating the event as the event's timezone. There is no group timezone.

So, if we're emailing a calendar reminder to someone who's timezone we don't know (because they registered through email, haven't logged into the site since we rolled out the calendar, etc), we use the event's timezone to figure out a time to show in the reminder. Every event reminder email is customized to the particular subscriber's timezone.


Mark

On Fri, Nov 7, 2014 at 10:10 AM, Mark Fletcher <markf@corp.groups.io> wrote:
Hi All,

I pushed the calendar to the live site. The default for every group is that moderators/owners can edit the calendar and members can view it. You can change this in Settings.

Calendars are tricky beasts; no doubt there will be bugs. Please let me know if you find anything or have suggestions. I'll announce it on updates some time next week.

Thanks!
Mark


 

Mark,

When calendar events are created, we store the timezone of the person
creating the event as the event's timezone.
That's an excellent default, but in a geographically dispersed group the member creating the calendar event may not be at the location of the physical event - such users may need a way to specify the event's timezone independent of their own.

Every event reminder email is customized to the particular
subscriber's timezone.
Wow. I'm not sure how many unique time-zone jurisdictions there are (many more than 24 I know) so that's a lot of custom engraving on the outbound reminders. And what happens to the reminder in the archive? Use the event's time zone?

I had been thinking about whether that would be a good idea or not. The problem I see is there are two distinct use cases. One kind of event happens everywhere at once (a conference call, a webinar, a comet touchdown) and so for those having the date/time adjusted to each member's local time makes sense. And in this day and age you may not be wrong to assume that most events discussed in an email list will be of this type.

The other kind of event is tied to a place (a concert, a seminar, a flash mob) where the members are supposed to be in physical attendance. For those one would not expect the event reminder to be adjusted - just as one's airline ticket always shows your departure and arrival times in the local time of the relevant airport -- you will be there, then, in that local time.

And then I suppose there are hybrid events: where one might attend physically or via telecommunications. Meh. I guess as long as the text of the reminder message says what time zone was used to express the time then one can always figure it out.

--Shal


 

Hi Shal,

On Fri, Nov 7, 2014 at 11:36 AM, Shal Farley <shal@...> wrote:
Mark,

> When calendar events are created, we store the timezone of the person
> creating the event as the event's timezone.

That's an excellent default, but in a geographically dispersed group the member creating the calendar event may not be at the location of the physical event - such users may need a way to specify the event's timezone independent of their own.


The way I thought about it was that the most important timezone is the one that a given user is in, and I should always try to show them dates and times in their own timezone. If they're going to a physical event, it seems like they'd be in the timezone for that event anyways. And I really wanted to avoid having a second, group timezone, because I think that'd be totally confusing. Actually, I didn't want a user timezone either, I wanted it all to be automatic, but I think this is an ok compromise.

 
> Every event reminder email is customized to the particular
> subscriber's timezone.

Wow. I'm not sure how many unique time-zone jurisdictions there are (many more than 24 I know) so that's a lot of custom engraving on the outbound reminders. And what happens to the reminder in the archive? Use the event's time zone?

Event reminders are not added to the archive. They're treated as notifications, like when moderators are notified of pending messages. Reminders didn't feel like the type of message that should be in the archives. Plus you have the varying timezone issue, as you pointed out. Do you think they should be added to the archives?

Also, I don't send out a message when an event is created. Should I add that feature?


And then I suppose there are hybrid events: where one might attend physically or via telecommunications. Meh. I guess as long as the text of the reminder message says what time zone was used to express the time then one can always figure it out.

Reminders do include the timezone that the dates are in.

Thanks!
Mark 


 

Mark,

And I really wanted to avoid having a second, group timezone, because
I think that'd be totally confusing.
I think the experience with Yahoo Groups' calendar proves you right on that. Of course they failed every opportunity to explain it clearly, so there was likely more confusion than needed be.

Event reminders are not added to the archive. They're treated as
notifications, like when moderators are notified of pending messages.
Reminders didn't feel like the type of message that should be in the
archives. Plus you have the varying timezone issue, as you pointed
out. Do you think they should be added to the archives?
I do. Or if not actually in the archives, then prominently displayed somehow when a member looks at the archive.

One of the common use cases in Yahoo Groups are members that elect to have no email delivery, who read the group's archives instead. They've been clamoring for Yahoo to track which messages they've read and be able to show them "new" messages, just as many forums do, but that's a whole other issue.

Also, I don't send out a message when an event is created. Should I
add that feature?
That could be a sort of a special case of a reminder, one with "now" as its set time. I haven't looked yet to see how your reminders are set up, but if the user can set up more than one or two of them perhaps "now" could be just another choice. In any case, I'd make it optional.

-- Shal


 

Hi Mark!

Calendars are tricky beasts; no doubt there will be bugs. Please let me
know if you find anything or have suggestions.
Neither the calendar nor the event editor show me the time zone I'm in. I think at least the calendar ought to. The display of the time zone in the calendar may as well be an affordance (drop list) to adjust it without having to switch to the Profile Edit page and back (that's not saying to remove it from the Profile).

Adjusting the Start time does not cause the End time to adjust by the same amount. That's a common and handy feature.

The rich text formatting tools are absent a color picker.

There is no attachment tool, but then there isn't for messages either.

Because events can generate reminders, and reminders go out as email, the group manager must be able to moderate the events (otherwise the option to allow subscribers to edit events is a means to bypass message moderation). Because the "Moderated" and "New Users Moderated" group settings are described with the generic "posts" it may be adequate to tie the moderation of events to those same controls (including the individual member's posting override, if any). A pending event should not be shown on the calendar to other members, and should not generate any reminders. Approval of the event would implicitly approve any reminders it generates.

-- Shal


 

Perhaps the ability to subscribe to the calendar on other apps such as Google Calendar?

Option to make calendar visible to people outside of the group?

Eventually, events might become more like Facebook events where you can RSVP and mods can send messages to all members of an event.


 

On Sat, Nov 8, 2014 at 1:21 AM, Shal Farley <shal@...> wrote:

Neither the calendar nor the event editor show me the time zone I'm in. I think at least the calendar ought to. The display of the time zone in the calendar may as well be an affordance (drop list) to adjust it without having to switch to the Profile Edit page and back (that's not saying to remove it from the Profile).

Good idea. There's now a timezone picker in the calendar view, which when changed, sets your profile timezone as well.

 
Adjusting the Start time does not cause the End time to adjust by the same amount. That's a common and handy feature.

Also a good idea, and fixed.

 
The rich text formatting tools are absent a color picker.

Fixed!

 
 
Because events can generate reminders, and reminders go out as email, the group manager must be able to moderate the events (otherwise the option to allow subscribers to edit events is a means to bypass message moderation). Because the "Moderated" and "New Users Moderated" group settings are described with the generic "posts" it may be adequate to tie the moderation of events to those same controls (including the individual member's posting override, if any). A pending event should not be shown on the calendar to other members, and should not generate any reminders. Approval of the event would implicitly approve any reminders it generates.

Excellent idea, and I've added it to the todo list.

Thanks!
Mark 


 

On Sun, Nov 9, 2014 at 5:03 AM, Chris Leong <walkraft@...> wrote:

Perhaps the ability to subscribe to the calendar on other apps such as Google Calendar?


In keeping with the whole integrations thing, this is definitely on the todo list.

Thanks,
Mark 


 

Oh, I just came up with another integration idea. Maybe the ability to import specific events from Facebook into the group. Or the ability to import all events from a Facebook group into the Groups.io calendar?


Judy F.
 

Just curious here, will Groups.io be Facebook 2 in disguise or a much better Yahoo Groups?  I ask this because members on a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social media.  If all of the various Facebook features are added, why not just join Facebook?

 

I’m sure there will be a lot of nasty comments, but some people don’t join Facebook because they didn’t like it and now it looks as if another Facebook is being created.   

 

Judy F.

SW Florida - USA

 

From: Chris Leong [mailto:walkraft@...]
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2014 1:18 AM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: [beta] Re: Calendar is live

 

Oh, I just came up with another integration idea. Maybe the ability to import specific events from Facebook into the group. Or the ability to import all events from a Facebook group into the Groups.io calendar?


 


On 10 November 2014 07:39, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:
I ask this because members on a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social media. 

​Dear Judy,

"What was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups?" - well, even those totally devoted to the old UI must concede that the old Yahoo Groups was so full of patched and buggy heritage code that it needed rewriting. It's a pity that Melissa's lot went about the way they did, instead of a consultative phase that listened to people and incorporated the better features​ of the old groups and other groups such as Google Groups and FB, together with the introduction of new killer features that perhaps people didn't realise they wanted.

I personally am very encouraged by the approach that Mark is taking toward Groups IO. He's clearly got the expertise to create a sympathetic alternative to Yahoo but is using a lot of time that could otherwise be spent coding in listening and replying to people like us who have suffered under Yahoo. I wish him every success in the creation of a group server that can be easily sold even to those most resistant to change.

regards,
Ian




--


 

Dear Judy,

If you wish to critique Facebook/the new Yahoo groups, it might be helpful to focus on the aspects of them you don't like. Like, is it the complexity? 

- Chris


 


On 10 November 2014 13:06, Ian Gillis <tessel.bas@...> wrote:
It's a pity that Melissa's lot went about the way they did

​should read​
 

It's a pity that M
​ar​
issa's lot went about
​it ​
the way they did

​I beg Mrs Meyer's pardon…​
 


​Oh, and with FB you can edit a post when you spot an error…​


David P. Dillard
 

I completely disagree that the IO Groups service now present is a Facebook clone. The aspects that I am using for the group that I have on this server is very much like Yahoo Groups in the way it works. The archive of group messages is searchable and the links to the links to the search are persistent (they can be reused by anyone at any time). Facebook is a search nigbtmare. Yahoo Groups archives are also searchable, just very glitchy and unpredictable in Neo. The archives are arranged in reverse chronological order from the most recent post in both Groups IO and Yahoo Groups. Features beyond posting to the group by email and viewing and using archives in a group service are optional and based on the needs of the user and owners as well as the functionality of the application. These are my views on this matter.


..


Sincerely,
David Dillard
Temple University
(215) 204 - 4584
jwne@...

On Mon, 10 Nov 2014, J. Faulkner wrote:

Just curious here, will Groups.io be Facebook 2 in disguise or a much better Yahoo Groups?  I ask this because members on
a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint
on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social
media.  If all of the various Facebook features are added, why not just join Facebook?
 
I’m sure there will be a lot of nasty comments, but some people don’t join Facebook because they didn’t like it and now it
looks as if another Facebook is being created.   
 
Judy F.
SW Florida - USA
 
From: Chris Leong [mailto:@casebash]
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2014 1:18 AM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: [beta] Re: Calendar is live
 
Oh, I just came up with another integration idea. Maybe the ability to import specific events from Facebook into the
group. Or the ability to import all events from a Facebook group into the Groups.io calendar?


David P. Dillard
 

There is also another matter to consider here when making comparisons with Yahoo Groups, Google Groups and Facebook. When is the last time you saw the owner of any of these corporations posting how to use these groups information daily, answering questions and so forth. This is not duplicated in any other group service. The user is basically on their own.



Sincerely,
David Dillard
Temple University
(215) 204 - 4584
jwne@...

On Mon, 10 Nov 2014, Ian Gillis wrote:

On 10 November 2014 07:39, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:
I ask this because members on a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of
Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo
Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social media. 
​Dear Judy,
"What was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups?" - well, even those totally devoted to the old UI must concede that the old
Yahoo Groups was so full of patched and buggy heritage code that it needed rewriting. It's a pity that Melissa's lot
went about the way they did, instead of a consultative phase that listened to people and incorporated the better
features​ of the old groups and other groups such as Google Groups and FB, together with the introduction of new killer
features that perhaps people didn't realise they wanted.
I personally am very encouraged by the approach that Mark is taking toward Groups IO. He's clearly got the expertise to
create a sympathetic alternative to Yahoo but is using a lot of time that could otherwise be spent coding in listening
and replying to people like us who have suffered under Yahoo. I wish him every success in the creation of a group
server that can be easily sold even to those most resistant to change.
regards,
Ian
--
______________________________________________________
@Ian or iangillis@...
Site Web http://www.notrevieenfrance.net
Blog http://stecolombedevilleneuve.wordpress.com
Facebook http://www.facebook.com/ian.gillis


Laurence Taylor
 

On 10/11/2014 14:38, Ian Gillis wrote:

​Oh, and with FB you can edit a post when you spot an error…​
I suspect it's only thee and me that knows this, judging by the number
of FB posts correcting previous typos.


--
rgds
LAurence
<><


Judy F.
 

Ian and others, I don’t want to turn this into a debate, but I don’t think you really understood what I said.  I have commented several times what a great job Mark is doing with Groups.io and also mentioned that doing the beta was great and smart.   I have said many times if Yahoo Groups had done a beta with users from various types of groups, it would be a lot better than it is now.

 

I didn’t say there wasn’t anything wrong with the old Yahoo Group, I learned a lot by being a member of the Group Owners group that Shal has  and there I learned that it was being kept together in bits and pieces.  What I said others were saying is why make the new Yahoo Groups, i.e. Neo look like other social media. 

 

I am not very technical so I probably look at things from a different perspective.  I understand that with Neo, some members have a hard time using their phones, tablets, even their computers in some cases,  and it’s good that groups.io will allow them to use these devices.  So don’t make it sound as if I am putting groups.io  down because that is far from being true.   I am just asking that it not be a Facebook or Google Groups 2, especially with the likes, etc.    

 

If those of us that don’t agree with something that is being discussed can’t offer our opinion without being chastised, then we are in trouble.   

 

Thanks,

Judy F.

SW Florida - USA

 

From: Ian Gillis [mailto:tessel.bas@...]
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2014 7:06 AM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: Re: [beta] Re: Calendar is live

 

 

On 10 November 2014 07:39, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:

I ask this because members on a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social media. 

 

Dear Judy,

"What was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups?" - well, even those totally devoted to the old UI must concede that the old Yahoo Groups was so full of patched and buggy heritage code that it needed rewriting. It's a pity that Melissa's lot went about the way they did, instead of a consultative phase that listened to people and incorporated the better features of the old groups and other groups such as Google Groups and FB, together with the introduction of new killer features that perhaps people didn't realise they wanted.

 

I personally am very encouraged by the approach that Mark is taking toward Groups IO. He's clearly got the expertise to create a sympathetic alternative to Yahoo but is using a lot of time that could otherwise be spent coding in listening and replying to people like us who have suffered under Yahoo. I wish him every success in the creation of a group server that can be easily sold even to those most resistant to change.

regards,

Ian

 




--


 

Hi Judy,

I didn't read what Ian and the others said as chastising and I'm sure they didn't mean it to be taken that way. I absolutely want discussion about what should and shouldn't be added to Groups.io to take place, especially about what _shouldn't_ be added. So I would very much like to know what you think should not be in Groups.io and why. When you say that Groups.io not be turned into Facebook 2, I'm not sure I understand. Is that because you don't think there should be likes, or is it something more? And if it is likes, can you explain why?

Thanks,
Mark

On Mon, Nov 10, 2014 at 11:14 AM, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:

Ian and others, I don’t want to turn this into a debate, but I don’t think you really understood what I said.  I have commented several times what a great job Mark is doing with Groups.io and also mentioned that doing the beta was great and smart.   I have said many times if Yahoo Groups had done a beta with users from various types of groups, it would be a lot better than it is now..

 

I didn’t say there wasn’t anything wrong with the old Yahoo Group, I learned a lot by being a member of the Group Owners group that Shal has  and there I learned that it was being kept together in bits and pieces.  What I said others were saying is why make the new Yahoo Groups, i.e. Neo look like other social media. 

 

I am not very technical so I probably look at things from a different perspective.  I understand that with Neo, some members have a hard time using their phones, tablets, even their computers in some cases,  and it’s good that groups.io will allow them to use these devices.  So don’t make it sound as if I am putting groups.io  down because that is far from being true.   I am just asking that it not be a Facebook or Google Groups 2, especially with the likes, etc.    

 

If those of us that don’t agree with something that is being discussed can’t offer our opinion without being chastised, then we are in trouble.   

 

Thanks,

Judy F.

SW Florida - USA

 

From: Ian Gillis [mailto:tessel.bas@...]
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2014 7:06 AM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: Re: [beta] Re: Calendar is live

 

 

On 10 November 2014 07:39, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:

I ask this because members on a lot of the groups that I belong to feel that Neo is sort of a copy of Google Groups/Facebook.  That’s the big complaint on the groups now, ‘what was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups’ that it had to be changed to look like the other social media. 

 

Dear Judy,

"What was wrong with the old Yahoo Groups?" - well, even those totally devoted to the old UI must concede that the old Yahoo Groups was so full of patched and buggy heritage code that it needed rewriting. It's a pity that Melissa's lot went about the way they did, instead of a consultative phase that listened to people and incorporated the better features of the old groups and other groups such as Google Groups and FB, together with the introduction of new killer features that perhaps people didn't realise they wanted.

 

I personally am very encouraged by the approach that Mark is taking toward Groups IO. He's clearly got the expertise to create a sympathetic alternative to Yahoo but is using a lot of time that could otherwise be spent coding in listening and replying to people like us who have suffered under Yahoo. I wish him every success in the creation of a group server that can be easily sold even to those most resistant to change..

regards,

Ian

 




--



Laurence Taylor
 

On 10/11/2014 19:27, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Hi Judy,

I didn't read what Ian and the others said as chastising and I'm sure they
didn't mean it to be taken that way. I absolutely want discussion about
what should and shouldn't be added to Groups.io to take place, especially
about what _shouldn't_ be added. So I would very much like to know what you
think should not be in Groups.io and why.
What shouldn't be added is anything that makes life more dificult for
the users. I'm thinking of things like ambiguous and ineffective search
engines, non-intuitive user profiles (if it's thought useful to have
them at all), user interfaces that depend on heavy use of Javascript (or
CSS) when it can be done easily without.

When you say that Groups.io not
be turned into Facebook 2, I'm not sure I understand. Is that because you
don't think there should be likes, or is it something more? And if it is
likes, can you explain why?
The "like" function can be part of it, but more importantly, there is a
significant difference between a Facebook-like setup (I'm inlcuding
Myspace, Twitter, Tumbler, &c), which is designed round short messages
and usually even sorter responses and only function when connected to
the respective web site, and discussion groups (Yahoo Groups, Google
Groups, MLM, &c), which are intended for long posts and equally long
replies, which may be read and written offline.

While it is possible to combine the two to an extent (by allowing email
acces to the site posts), the result isn't gnerally useful.

--
rgds
LAurence
<><