1 2 3 4 Previous Next 46 Replies Latest reply on Jun 27, 2014 6:06 AM by Noah Salvaterra

    Where Have All the Power Users Gone?

    Matt Lutton

      Well, maybe not ALL, but you get my point--which I make both light-heartedly and with a grain of seriousness.  I know there is a natural progression, in terms of using this Forum to gain knowledge and share with others.  I have just noticed that this Forum has had a LOT less activity from some great users.  I won't name names, but PLEASE COME BACK!


      I say this, as I have begun to notice quite a lot of misinformation being posted on this Forum.  For a while, it seemed there were several power users that were answering questions, posting comments and helpful information, etc. -- and most importantly, I think, these users were correcting us when we made mistakes or mislead someone on the Forum (or they provided better, or alternate solutions, which are often my favorite threads).


      I'm not going to Ping anyone, but I really hope some of you continue to contribute to this Forum.  Just think of all the newcomers who are lost in the (seemingly) endless amount of information (sometimes conflicting, depending on where you look) on Tableau.  I know some users are frustrated with Jive.  I am, at times, as well.  I don't feel that's a reason to stop contributing.


      I suppose new folks will learn the tool, and become power users, and help others, etc. and the circle of life will continue, with or without my comments or interference.  I'm just a bit worried at the moment, with the amount of misinformation I've seen in just the past 2 days.


      I know that once I got a few correct answers, I started to go haywire, trying to answer a lot of questions that were over my head.  I sometimes still do.  But typically, there was someone there to correct my mistakes.


      Zen Masters, power users, etc--PLEASE keep coming back (even if only for momentary glimpses of your Tableau awesomeness)

        • 1. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
          Noah Salvaterra

          The forum is run by volunteers, so nobody is under any obligation. If you see misinformation and recognize it as such, ask a question, or make a correction. Be the power user you seek. When I'm guessing or offering a partial solution, I try to make a caveat that it is such, but even when I think I'm saying something obvious there have been a couple times where I've been called out either for saying something in a misleading way or just being wrong outright. I really appreciate being corrected and embrace the opportunity to learn.


          Compared to some of the folks who have been answering questions on the Tableau forum for years, we are both relative newcomers, but even in this short time I've occasionally gotten frustrated or otherwise busy enough by it that I sometimes need to step away, this may be for a few days, or a few weeks if I have an idea for a blog post. I could imagine a longer hiatus being needed, maybe even stepping down entirely, so it is hard for me to fault others who have done so. Even Zen Masters have day jobs.


          If you see something you think is wrong or misleading, but you have some doubt, feel free to ping my private email with a link. If I think there is something misleading I'm happy to jump in to make a correction or clarification, maybe a little too happy sometimes.



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          • 2. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
            Matt Lutton

            I think we're on different wavelengths here.  But that's OK. I don't believe anyone has any obligation, that is not my intent.  I simply hope some of these users don't give up on this Forum.  I have no issue with stepping away--I didn't use the Forum for a week or so a couple weeks back because I was moving.  That is not my issue.  I'm simply hoping that those who have something awesome to share, will continue to do so on this Forum.


            I would also like to see Tableau community personnel step it up a notch, which has started to happen a bit.  We all have day jobs and a variety of other obligations--I'm not expecting everyone to contribute every day; I'd just like to see some users who have stopped sharing here continue to do so.

            • 3. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
              Joshua Milligan

              For me, it's mostly just a matter of going through a busy season. I even have a really cool spare-time Tableau project (inspired by noahsalvaterra0) that I'm really excited about which I just can't get to as much as I'd like -- not to mention the forums (and a blog, and twitter, and reading other blogs, and....)


              Still, I have every intent to return to active engagement on the forums.  Furthermore, I will usually try to respond to pings and appreciate it when I get them.  So always feel free to ping me on anything. (Having said that, I'm teaching a Tableau class most of next week, which I love, but it means I won't be able to spend much or any time on the forums - still send the pings)


              I'd imagine that many others are in the same boat.  Not to mention that many are a little preoccupied with the imminent release of 8.2 and related exciting activities.  So, it may yet pick back up once things settle down.




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              • 4. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                Matt Lutton

                Yeah, I am with you on that--its a slow season.  Just thought I'd see what others had to say on the topic.  There are a few guys we don't see at all anymore, and I'm saddened a bit by that.


                Cheers everyone.

                • 5. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                  Jonathan Drummey

                  Hi Matthew,

                  You're not alone - at least in time. I remember Shawn Wallwork starting a thread maybe 2 years ago asking much the same questions.

                  My observation from being involved for almost 3 years now is that is that historically the forums have been "carried" by few to several users at a time, and who those users are changes over time. When I started, it was Joe Mako, Richard Leeke, James Baker, Alex Kerin, and Dimitri Blyumin, and none of them are posting that often anymore. I'd say that Shawn Wallwork and I were in the next wave, and Tableau assigned Tracy Fitzgerald to answer posts not too long after, and all three of us now come and go in terms of posting frequency, and other folks have taken their place.


                  It seems to me that the volume of threads on the forums has increased, and so has the number of people answering, and yet I really have to take any observations about the "quality" of responses with a grain of salt because a) I'm wicked (meaning "very", it's a Maine-ism) judgmental, b) I haven't seen enough to have any quantitative data in mind and c) I believe the ultimate arbiter of what's a good/useful/quality response or not is the questioner. I have a strong preference for answers that solve the problem and explain *how* and *why* the solution works, but not everyone needs that.


                  I really like Noah's statement "Be the power user you seek." If you're seeing misinformation, please correct it, or question it, or even ping some longtime forum person(s) by email to ask them to take a look. Even though some of us might not be on the forums so much, xkcd: Duty Calls is still a motivator for many of us, I think!



                  • 6. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                    Matt Lutton

                    Thanks for your input, Jonathan.  I think your points are valid, and I agree with Noah as well--I'm on my way, at least.


                    I will start emailing/pinging more to notify others when I see questionable content--mostly, I'm referring to solutions being offered.  And the all too common "it can't be done".  I worry, sometimes, about bothering you guys when you're not as active on the Forum, as I do assume all of you have many other things going on.


                    Cheers, once again. I love this place.

                    • 7. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                      Noah Salvaterra

                      Best comic ever Jonathan! I'm going to have to get that framed.


                      Do ping the cavalry when you see an "it can't be done" reply. The only thing more fun than being right is when someone else is wicked wrong first. Plus, those can end up being great starting points for a blog post.


                      Wow, Joshua! I'm inspiring a blog post? Was it one of my posts that inspired it or just my swagger? My email is in my profile if there is anything you'd like to collaborate on (Unless it is a 4 wheel naval Enigma Machine, in that case you're on your own).


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                      • 8. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                        Jonathan Drummey

                        One more thought on this thread...it's up to us forum users to set the standards. If the responses aren't of the desired quality, it's up to us to raise the bar.



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                        • 9. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                          Matt Lutton

                          I agree. I just love this place and hate to see anyone "fall off" for whatever reason.


                          Thanks everyone for sharing your opinions.

                          • 10. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                            Noah Salvaterra

                            Some may have stepped away to serve this community in other ways, but even if it was to advance their careers, other projects or just spend time with their family, I don't think that should make you too sad. These things, particularly the family one, will make them stronger in the long run. I wager you'll see most of them at the conference, so I don't think they have regressed back to working in Excel or Microstrategy (that really would be sad).

                            Impermanence is one of the few things in life that you can consistently expect (safe to say Jonathan might agree with me on that point as well). The community is worthy of love, but from what I can tell it is in good hands, even if those hands change from time to time. As sad as it is to see less of those folks who have carried this forum in the past, isn't it exciting to think of a new class stepping up to fill the void?

                            Don't panic.

                            • 11. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                              Matt Lutton

                              No panic, just a discussion. I'm all for new users contributing and even "running" the forum and this does excite me as well. Cheers and thanks for your thoughts and opinions.

                              • 12. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                                Richard Leeke

                                Just stopped by for one of my infrequent visits and happened to spot this thread.


                                In my case it's not really loss of interest - just overloaded on other things.


                                Still happy to contribute when I can and quite happy for you to ping me or email me if you see a question you think is on one of my specialist subjects (you know what they are Matthew).

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                                • 13. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                                  Matt Lutton

                                  Thanks Richard, will do!

                                  • 14. Re: Where Have All the Power Users Gone?
                                    Shawn Wallwork

                                    OK I'm way late to this party, but I do have a few comments:


                                    • I soooo love the xkcd guy, and the link you posted Jonathan was especially delightful. Literally LOL'ed.
                                    • Matthew you've coined a phrase I have been looking for: "power-user"; not Zen Master (they push back on the use of that one) and not "Jedi" (again some don't like the implied class distinction). But power-user works, I'll be stealing it.
                                    • What Jonathan said (mostly), but I was a half a wave behind him (not many James Baker posts when I started).


                                    Finally: If all the Forum questions were well asked, included a twbx, a desired result, and weren't marked URGENT, then the Jive frictions would probably be easier to overlook. I burned myself out just trying to help folks re-ask/reshape their questions in a way that we could answer them. And now that the question volume is up, and the quality of the 'ask' hasn't improved (probably gone down in my estimation) I just have to close my eyes and move on.


                                    Matthew, while I share your concerns about the quality of the answers, I think improving the quality of questions would go a lot farther toward improving the forums and attracting some/more of the power-users back.






                                    PS: I have a slight disagreement with Jonathan about 'correcting' other's answers. That can be a difficult/touchy task, requiring way more energy and deference than I personally find worth it; especially since the error will most likely be swallowed up by the increased forum noise. [And unlikely to be found by the Jive search engine. ]

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