You do not need one. You can participate via text chat or with a microphone.
Exactly this; you can just talk, just type, talk and type, or have video, audio, and text (or video and text and no audio!). It's really entirely up to you. I should also note that this past Wednesday was the best and most on-topic HCWP in a long time, so I am hopeful about HCWP in the coming months.
Anyway, we're getting way off-topic. The bottom line is that I'm hesitant to have a single subforum just for hardware swapping, but I hear the reasons for it as well, and I also like some of graphmastur's ideas. Additional thoughts?
I would suggest that if we added a "hardware swap" subforum, it was restricted to users with postcounts over a certain threshold, to reduce the likelihood of scammy activity.
Absolutely agreed, which is related to one of the reasons why I'm not in favor of a purely-swap-related forum in the first place. I don't want anything egregiously commercial or monetary going on with it, more just friends with spare hardware they're willing to trade or give away helping out friends. I hesitate to take it beyond informal chatting in the IRC channel, but if we did, I'd want it couched among the general discussion of also trading knowledge and expertise.
So here is my current proposal (Note, that this applies to all members with post count 100+ or so. Maybe more. Then again, high post counts can reward small sill posts with no content. The number is obviously negotiable. Also note that I don't know if this will be done through threads or some other means like the projects or archives things. ie, a separate tab for a separate type of section. That way, normal forum goers don't have to see or care about it in their post stream)
1. Anyone can post that they have something that they currently don't have any use for. They can label their intentions for it with something like hack, sell, or give away. I don't know how selling would work, and I would really appreciate Cemetech being an intermediary, but that's a great way to make this NOT work, so I'll leave that alone for now. Also, we're small enough, that if someone rips someone else off by selling them a defective product, then we can handle it in-house.
2. I don't think we should have a list of "wants". With our size, this does very little good. Maybe one thread or section that you can add stuff too. The idea is, if someone wants to give something away, then they would have already said so. Now, of course, if I want to get a powered USB cable from someone, then I can post in this one thread. (Note, that it should be the responsibility of the user to edit their post if they got what they needed, so they don't keep getting offers) Also, there should be a limit to what you can ask for. This way, we won't have a problem where too many people try and leech off each other, and give nothing back. (Technically, it could still be a problem with section 1, but I don't think it will be as bad since they're trying to get rid of it in the first place)
3. This should be fairly autonomous. Ie, it shouldn't require cemetech intervention. It's should kind of be like that shady deal over in the corner that no one really pays attention to unless they're interested. By that, I mean that normally, people don't really see anything to do with it, unless they want to. (Another reason I feel it should be separate from the main forums, and from the new posts page)
4. We need to define a clear set goal. Unless you're hacking the hardware, you probably won't learn much from just giving hardware away, so our normal goal of pure education isn't going to entirely cut it here. Instead, I think the goal should be to have a place where people can give away or trade their old electronics. I think the goal will be accomplished if any/all of the following things happen: A) It doesn't interfere with normal cemetech stuff. B) It doesn't have any major conflicts like KermM sending me a shoe instead of a calculator. (Or a bobcat) C) We grow closer as a community because we're willing to share/give away some of our own technology that we no longer need. D) Someone creates a project or shows how they used the "given away" hardware.
I still think this is a particularly good idea. Many times I have wished to sell something (like a TI-83+ case with no innards) that would mostly be of interest only to Cemetech. Then, I try to sell it on eBay, but the people who would be most interested in such a thing are not there. Also, of course, I wish to benefit the buyer, if they are a Cemetechian, with a lower price than someone else.
Caleb, what's wrong with just posting it on eBay and then letting Cemetechians know about it in SAX or in the eBay topic that tifreak8x (or was it you?) started? We definitely wouldn't want to have to handle financial transactions on the server (security, liability, and SSL spring to mind immediately, for instance)
I think he's asking for more of a "For Sale" forum rather than a Shop. Transactions would take place through PayPal between two private parties.
Honestly, I think it'd just rot. We'll get topics but no one will want them. Maybe a post here and there about details or an actual buy. But until then, I recommend creating an eBay listing and maybe taking off the cost of shipping or something if they are a Cemetechian (or a community member).
The lack of a proper category is because there is no real market on the forum for it. We're also all about post quality over quantity, which extends to our topics as well; The fewer topics we have with no or a few posts, the better.
There are two types of people in the world: those who can extrapolate data from incomplete data
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