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seems like not much has changed

since the latest upgrade.

content is hard to find, tags are top-down and too long, people are still frustrated and venting in the coffee corner, blogs are mainly marketing with no community engagement, and even wiki pages are still disconnected and having a lot of dead ends.

is it only me?

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May 29, 2017 at 12:37 PM edited May 29, 2017 at 12:38 PM
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No, it's not only you. Being pessimistic (realistic) I'd say give it another year or so and let's hope not all of SCN's "hard core" (does that translate?) has abandoned ship by then.

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Hi Lukas,

Glad to see you are still involved, though like most of us, probably not as much as you would prefer due to the inefficient environment.

As one of the hard cores, it does translate. Our frustration levels are high, but we are hoping recent high level visibility into the issues here will address long standing and unaddressed/poorly fixed issues from Open Beta and since.

Time will tell whether the corrective action will address what most of us have identified as the major issues. Very cautiously optimistic. Very cautiously... Fingers and toes are crossed but so are my eyes at this point.

Cheers, Mike
SAP Technology RIG

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To some extent yes indeed, it remains problematic and it doesn't feel like before

I hope they can change that over time. Not sure if the "hardcore" has left, I would say, just less engaged and less active as an effect.

Generating content, quality content, takes time and effort and only makes sense if consumed by enough community members. I'm not a fan of the marketing content either.

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No, it's not just you. I've been mostly avoiding it shortly after launch because it's ... just ... too ... much ... hassle for the amount of time I had to spend on it. I have recently started to make a concerted effort for the last month or two to engage more. Been hoping I'll get used to it, but unfortunately have to say I still hate it.

Community engagement is still below lacklustre, some of the quieter 2-10 questions/day forums have dropped to less than that per month.

My reasons for disliking it: It's visually awful (can we waste any more screen space with big fonts and empty spaces?), functionality annoying as heck (flashing menus, constant authentication/certificate popups), content representation a pain in the *** (who likes looking really closely at the light grey 'comments' links underneath each answer to see if a new hidden comment has been added).

I hate to sound purely critical, but the reason I haven't contributed much in the 'what should be done better' direction is because many comments and suggestions echoing mine have already been said.

Simple example on the visual and usability aspect: On SAPFans I can see 20 questions per page, here I can see 7 (or 2-4 in the Coffee Corner!). My scroll finger is getting RSI.

Scrolling around also makes things harder to read. It doesn't take a psychology degree to work out that that translates into a less pleasant experience and thus makes people less interested in spending time on the site.

There is a time and place for sparse, clean interfaces, but in an information-dense site I want my screen estate put to as much use as possible. The original post contains 5 lines of writing plus a header and takes up half the page! (15" laptop screen)

Edit: I've just pulled out a ruler to check my own claim: the 5 line post above takes up 13cm out of 20cm of vertical screen space. That's 65% of the screen dedicated to showing off 5 lines of writing.

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I try to participate but for all the reasons you mentioned, the design is actively fighting me to do that.

At the most I can check the posts that were made in the last 5 hours and answer a couple a week.

I used to be able to see a big overview of all the questions and then CTRL+Click the ones where I might be of assistance.

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I don't use the Activity stream anymore for this, but the Q&A stream itself and then filter tag by tag to do just that.

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Just like Rob, I try to participate but it can feel like swimming upstream.

Unless it's reading a joke in CC, visiting SCN is just not a pleasant experience these days. It's turning into 50 shades of grey quite literally. I guess whoever still left on SCN is either a very dedicated member or is into some kinky stuff (no judgement, whatever floats your boat! :) ).

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Why can't you be both? :D

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Of course you can. Sorry, I didn't think about the SCN moderators. :)

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no one thinks of SCN moderators :(

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Wait, there was an "upgrade"?

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ಠ_ಠ

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Venting does not make me feel better anymore :)
Instead, I made a few subtle CSS changes on my end: now I read without much eye strain, I even scroll less.
Of course, this does not fix the delightful design completely (you need JS for fundamental changes), but I know, that if I were using the default site display, I would have given up already.
*** I am mainly lurking, it is still too much hassle to use the site for helping others. ***

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Hi Veselina,

If you are mainly lurking, I can't imagine that your Karma points would be as high as they are. :D

On your other comments, venting does get old after a while, especially when the specific issues mentioned don't even get acknowledged. I am hoping that the recent energy shown in evaluating Ideas in Idea Place is an indication of good things to come along with including the active members in the solutions.

Remember if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the precipitate!

Cheers, Mike (Moderator)

SAP Technology RIG

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Heheh, most of these points are from CC likes, I guess, not from answering questions in the last few months...

Now, before commenting or answering a question, I ask myself if I could follow-up and actively check the question for updates. In most cases the answer is 'no', so unless the matter could be clarified and solved in 2 replies at most, I prefer not to participate. :)

I suppose, that some issues will be fixed - eventually. Unfortunately, I needed a working solution in a shorter time-frame than the team could deliver (if it agrees to deliver).

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Apparently one of the Epics is going to eliminate Karma points from Coffee Corner. Wonder who thought that one up? I know it did not come from the Strategic Advisory Council or the Moderators. Perhaps the Reputation Advisory Group or the SAP Mentors?

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I am not a member of Reputation Advisory Group, I can't remember a discussion in SAP Mentors Space about it (which does not mean that it did not take place, most of the time I get lost in Jam). If I were to prioritize this item, I would have placed it below a .sarcasm implementation in the forum editor and much after all possible spinners have been designed, documented and thoroughly tested, but this is just me... :)

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I suspect if it came from anywhere, it would have been the Reputation Advisory Group (RAG) as they are most heavily involved in Karma points and gamification.

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Apparently one of the Epics is going to eliminate Karma points from Coffee Corner.

That's not really a new decision, because that's like it was in the old SCN. This is just more going back to the old ways. So yeah, it's from the Reputation Group, but was/is on hold for the known reasons. :)

PS: Mike, stop hiding your replies in the comment depth of hell! :P Sometimes it takes more time to actually find the new content than to reply to it.

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PS: Mike, stop hiding your replies in the comment depth of hell! :P Sometimes it takes more time to actually find the new content than to reply to it.

Welcome to the new and improved SCN.
Comments are expanded here, which makes it far too easy. Try finding the latest updates in a thread like ABAP OO interfaces VS Class methods

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Steffi is correct. It was never intended that CC activity should accrue karma credits. It came as a surprise to us when we saw it start happening. Turned out it was a platform issue. We discussed what to do about it with the Reputation Advisory Group, where we came to the agreement that it doesn't make sense to earn reputation in the Coffee Corner, and we should address it. So that's what you see in the roadmap. Plain and simple.

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Who even cares about those Karma points? What are they good for? [Uh! Ah! Absolutely nooothing]

When we had those silver / gold / unobtanium levels at least one had something to look forward to and to be proud of. Now I certainly won't be crying that Jelena2 won't inherit karma from Jelena1. Previously I would've been super mad if all my progress towards diamond got lost.

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Now that you mention it... this is from today:

points.jpg (34.2 kB)
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Regarding the eye straining part, they are not planning any colour changes:

https://ideas.sap.com/D37830

As I have mentioned before they have to change to a different strategy regarding 1DX and not use mobile accessability as the focal point.

The starting point has to be desktop/laptop because I use a desktop/laptop when I'm working and I use and participate to SCN when I'm working.

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People, for the most part, are not using a cell phone to answer a technical question or write an in-depth blog. Exactly!!

It seems their focus was on making it easy for mobile apps and social media stuff to look things up and make quick little pithy comments.

They failed to realize that without quality content, developed on a laptop/desktop, there is nothing to look up. So they made it painful for the foundation of the site.

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Not just you. I check one tag out now. I've kind of given up at looking for other content or in other areas. Just to painful to even try and quickly scan, (I think SAP banned the word quickly from any of their design docs), any other tags.

Either nothing there or too painful to look at more than two pages of content.

And when are the editors going to be fixed? I hate hitting RETURN and then having to type before it puts in the line feed. In the coffee corner it works. Why not when I'm replying to a question?

And still no spell check? You'd think this was Covfefe or something. 21st century folks. Online spell checkers are supposed to be old school stuff now!

And I haven't even considered writing any BLOGS. Why would I? No one sees it, and after the last go round there's no guarantee that in the future it will get linked right when they move to the next great thing.

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and issues that do get solved, are likely to appear again after an '"upgrade". For example, the Mark as read in the notifications list. In the beginning clicking on the link didn't mark it as read, you actually had to click on the mark as read button. After a while this was corrected, and now the issues is back (at least in my case).

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The issue is, that you may not open the content in a new tab from the notifications, because that does not mark the content as read. You need to left-click the links and jump to the content, therefor leave the notification stream.

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click -> I read; seems simple, no....

complicated.jpg (39.8 kB)
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SCN went live without the email notifications that many (if not most) members got used to. If the emails were working as they were since the SDN times then I don't think online notifications would've been of much concern.

The whole deal with the "upgrades" in the notifications is like a poster child for a "wrong solution to a wrong problem" IMHO.

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funny that you should mention it, but i can't edit my email in my profile anymore and since previously i had a dummy one to keep me away from unwanted mailings, now i'm stuck with it, even if i do want to be notified.

could also be a case of user error as the platform was getting too many bounced emails if there were more participants like myself.

i keep my fingers crossed for a smart email solution to come soon as i think it would steer the traffic back to here.

just a dream, though.

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Yeah, SCN access is just FUBAR at this point. As mentioned here, it's not feasible to change the email for P-user.

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i just realized i'm starting to sound like my users: we want one-click reports :).

but really, it becomes such a pain if every time you want to know/do something you need to read a how-to or blog or whatever. there is almost nothing intuitive. Like how can i see where my karma points come from? or in my profile i can see the answers i have given but not the comments?

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Or, for example, any basic php forum has "search this forum" button. But if I open, say, "Using SAP.com" Q&A page and then use Search button there it just sends me to "1DX search" that searches all over SAP. Is it so hard to figure out that I want to search in the place where I'm in and not in SAP notes? "Powered by HANA" is hardly an advertising in such case...

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Personally, I don't mind kba notes results appearing in searches... I wish there was support for special characters in search terms or that the fuzzy search produced better results, though.

You can create a custom search engine, filtering results by type (discussion, blog, question) and add it to your browser - it takes a couple of minutes.

If only everything, which is wrong with the site could be that easy to get around...

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and is there a workaround to sort comments/answers on date/time? Especially here in coffee corner there are threads with a lot of answers/comments. you get a notification, but then you spend ages to find the last post....

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Thank you Greg!

If it helps, and I don't pretend it should, many folks inside SAP hear this and many of us are in the same boat -- but hopefully our collective efforts to raise visibility and reflect the sorts of posts that are happening here ultimately will make the difference. So I'm glad to see this engagement -- even if it's engagingly frustrated feedback! -- because what I see is that there is still a lot of passion and great need for this community to be here.

There's some quote I remember from years ago from some Web 2.0 conference that, paraphrased badly, said "Your users are mad - but that's because they are passionate about your product!"

Meahwhile be assured that folks like Mike (Hi Mike!) are relentless in reflecting the issues and that many of us all the way across the company know this place, though broken in many ways, is still crucial.

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Do you really think this can all get better?

It makes me especially sad that SAP develops best practices for implementing ERP systems around the world and has not been able to fulfill even a simple KISS method to implement on its own website.

I already gave up; I have reported errors, I have created ideas, and I have had patience. But it does not work ... it hurts because it is "SAP". The official website about SAP.

Everywhere I read news about innovation, and investments of millions in iOT, big data, and many more. But on their own website ... (?)

I do not know if to speak because every time I get into these debates I get depressed.

We were a community with excellent support, and documentation about everything SAP. Now even the "SAP help" is being destroyed.

ಠ_ಠ

Bye

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Hi Osvaldo,

It will get better, it just won't ever get good. I've mentioned before that you first focus user experience on mobile and then you find out that the majority of your user base consumes your products using laptop/desktop, so what do you do?

Do you take your losses and begin designing all new products with a new emphasis on user friendly overviews, scrolling without clicking and a beatiful and not straining to the eyes colour scheme, or do you use scotch tape and plywood and somehow try to fix things by catering to both worlds. So far the decision is clear, SAP is trying hard (poor developers I feel for you) to go the latter route.

Cheers, Rob.

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Are you telling me that SAP did not do any "research" before implementing all this?

Come on my friend. It's SAP!!!

Take one site out there, anyone... all web-site has analytics. It's free!

How SAP didn't know if they users use more mobile or laptop/desktop experience.

If you tell me you focused on the mobile experience.
How do you explain that make a user choose between more than a thousand tags to open a topic through your mobile?

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"It's SAP!!!"...the same company that has required a duplicate login since OSS came to the web (around 15 years ago?) and still hasn't managed to get authentication working properly.

To give them a bit of a break, it is third party software that they are trying to make work. I think a large part of the issue is the choice of platform, which does not seem to be 'compatible' with existing SCN users and culture.

I have no specific cost information, but my feeling is that for the amount of licensing paid and resources to make it work, they could probably have developed a HANA-based platform from scratch at the same cost that would have been much better.

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Rejected slogan: "SAP Community – Simply run away"

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Replying to Steffi's comment:

My main issue with the collapsed comments is, that you can't jump to them from notifications, even if someone replies directly to you. You have to go on a "schnitzeljagd". Eeeeeverytime. So many little issues making the user experience meh.

Yes, this is also a problem. In these cases I expand everything and type part of my own comment in the browser search box (CTRL+F).

Sorry for not replying directly, but there is still no solution for regular users to reply on nested comments.

On the other hand, entering manually a quote in html can produce nice outcomes.

And I learned a new German word, cool :)

quote.jpg (25.8 kB)
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It looks so pretty! And with spellcheck, too! *_*

I wasn't sure if "schnitzeljagd" was already a known word in English, like kindergarten oder kaput(t). :D

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I am not a native English speaker, or maybe the word is popular among younger people :)
The spell-check is what I get in my browser by default, if you see no spell-check for US-English, maybe you have a localized browser version and need to install it additionally, or you have multiple dictionaries and you need to switch between them.

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I still guess that's why SAP calls it "one digital experience" - it's like in real life: You learn to go, stumple, fall, get hurt, stand up again, go on, and by this learn to cope with a lot of pitfalls and limitations... - and you keep growing, and after a while, you may even be proud of your scars...

-----

Well, I've always thought that software should be as usable as possible and should "work as expected" (and tried to reach that within my own projects) - but now I feel soo old-school, because SAP really teaches me that their "let users get real experiences" approach is so much more sophisticated:)

I'm still trying to understand at least a little bit of that philosophical approach, and thinking: "Woooooooooowww – it's that great!" (And franky, I'm usually a modest person.)

----

Just think of all the discussions here about issues and workarounds: doesn't that build a community compared to a platform where everything works as expected? And that SAP voluntarily takes the role of the "big bad company" us user have to struggle against, and thereby have to unite?

Wow. I'm still impressed.

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FWIW, I guess that will spawn another SCN meme soon:)

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@Veselina maybe because you disabled JS? The links to comments on Q&A contain an ending similar to this (?childToView=202217#comment-202217), which then opens the respective comment. This doesn't work for you?

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Sadly, not - even in a completely different browser on default settings and no add-ons installed I cannot navigate, for example, to Sajid's comment by clicking the link from my notifications stream.

The link becomes: https://answers.sap.com/articles/210331/sems-like-not-much-has-changed.html?childToView=226633#comment-226633, but it does not point to the comment, instead, the opening post by Gregory is displayed. I suppose, that it does not work, because Sajid's comment is hidden under a further 'show more comments' link.

So far I have tried this in Google Chrome (several versions, Windows), Firefox (several versions, including beta and nightly - Windows, Linux), Firefox ESR (45+ and 52+ channel, Windows), Pale Moon (several versions - Windows, Linux) and IE11. I have tested these also with disabled add-ons and without any add-ons and tweaks. I experience the same behavior both on my personal devices and on my work laptop, which probably eliminates mis-configuration as a possible root cause.

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Veselina, in my understanding, following nested comments should work within Q&A and does not work here in CC, see Sajid's reply to Steffi here (another schnitzeljagd). The sample you have given here with nested comments within CC does not work for me, either, I'm also presented with the OP.

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I seriously doubt that the comments links will work in the Q&A part of the site, if you get too deep in the nested comments there.

I already tried a direct comment to a question (after show more comments) and it does not work, which is not surprising. I could test sub-comments to an answer in a specific question by posting replies to myself, but I really prefer not to pollute a productive environment. :)

Edit: my reply to Oliver was just a brief explanation why I consider misconfiguration on client side as unlikely. I did this, because when someone claims, that something works or not without providing sufficient details on how the test was performed, this is not very useful for troubleshooting purposes.

Edit2: No need to post dummy comments. I found an old comment to me by Vadim, which is under an answer: https://answers.sap.com/comments/144917/view.html . The content type: kbentry or question is not related to how the comment link functions, the number of nested levels is what makes a difference.

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OK, that one is also not displayed(with FF54.0) when copying the full URL:

https://answers.sap.com/questions/144485/bug-actions-are-not-where-they-used-to-be-comments.html?childToView=144917#comment-144917

So yeah, seems not to be a CC-only bug.

(And re-reading that old FAQ confirms the current topic, unfortunately.)

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Thanks for reporting this. I'll bring this to the team.

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Hello Veselina,

Apologies first hand that you will have to CTRL+F this first to find my reply. But you were correct in your assessment that it does not in Q&A either when the comment is nested under "Show More Comments".

Thank you for reporting.

Best regards,

Sajid Amir

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Just a quick note to let you know that the issue of a link to a comment (for example, a link in a notification) not leading to the actual specific comment when it is in a collapsed section has been resolved. Should work as one would expect now.

Veselina Peykova Steffi Warnecke Volker Barth

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No Karma

@Volker: you can hardly call it a game, gamification in the new platform is in its infancy, maybe the team will come up with something good...

arrow.jpg (4.5 kB)
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I don't care, either, I just wanted to point out that one usually does not change the game's rules during the game.

----

FWIW: I'm not sure whether your new approach to respond to those "all-too-nested comments" with a first-level response makes it easier to follow the discussion. Or are you starting your own schnitzeljagd?

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FWIW: I'm not sure whether your new approach to respond to those "all-too-nested comments" with a first-level response makes it easier to follow the discussion. Or are you starting your own schnitzeljagd?

Probably it does not, but we all reached high level of Schnitzeljagd here.

Not that I had much of a choice for replying - only moderators are authorized to reply on other people's comments after a certain level of nesting is reached:

You can probably see a reply option there, because it is your own comment.

reply.jpg (33.7 kB)
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Sorry Steffi, I feel especially guilty about burying my replies since I was silently (believe it or not) voicing the same complaint just an hour or so ago. Commenting at the top level.

Cheers, Mike

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Responding to the unrespondable comment from Veselina

"By the way, the thread, which you linked, is one of the best reads, that I have encountered here in a long time. Maybe the community is not dead (yet)."

Indeed, and the ironic thing is that the more interesting a thread becomes the more frustrating it is to engage in.

Another thing I wish for on the new platform that I haven't seen mentioned:

Being able to copy a link to a thread/person/blog/wiki and it's title appears as a hyperlink, instead of having to open in separate tab and copy and paste title and link as two operations to insert a link into a conversation. I seriously think we've gone a few years backwards here.

And how about simple way to quote what I'm responding to when answering/commenting?

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There is an idea posted about this (Provide improved/expanded editor for Q&A/blogs/answers/comments), unfortunately, after reading the latest comment by Jamie there, I don't have much hopes that we will get any of this in the foreseeable future. In some forums you just select the text, a 'quote' option appears and the code gets added automatically along with a link to the comment and who commented in a nice small colored box... makes you wanna cry...

Most members now use the code box for quoting. Probably, if you add also a link to the comment, it will be almost OK. There is this problem, that the default code box formatting can make the text harder to read, because of break-word setting, which means it will be good if you split longer lines.

For me, the biggest annoyance with the editor is deleting new lines after pasting texts. Come on, even in the official AnswerHub forum, which utilizes the same editor, I don't need to delete new lines! I suppose, that this editor is either very outdated or problematic, because the few sites I encountered, which use the same Q&A software, have replaced it with something else. Does anybody here know what this editor is? I was unable to find out, otherwise I would have read the documentation.

I prefer typing html directly in this forum, because it produces (for most of the time) predictable results. Memorizing a few tags is not a big deal, although it would be easier if we had markdown enabled, but I guess, that this does not fit the 1dx concepts. The majority of forum members will not be willing to learn how to use it, anyway.

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"the biggest annoyance with the editor is deleting new lines after pasting texts" - 100% agree! I have posted this bug in December https://answers.sap.com/questions/75167/bug-with-paste-using-firefox.html but nothing changed.

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You know what is really weird? There is a second comment box (hidden), where pasting text does not result in appending a new line. My assumption is that this behavior is either a bug or misconfiguration - either way, I find it hard to believe, that a response from the vendor would take more than seven months at least to get some information on the issue.

The last time I tried Google Chrome, pasting text did not add a <br> at the end, but I don't wish to switch to it. Reading the comments by members, who use it as a primary browser, Chrome is probably a worse alternative than typing everything in notepad++ or deleting lines one by one.

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By the way, pasting text inside code block don't add new lines :)

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I use the code block for pasting a template answer/comment to keep the formatting (all the LFCRs get deleted when pasting). Using the code blog adds doubles the LFCRs, but still leaves it more legible than without line feeds and carriage returns (such ancient terms from a typewriter). I use Chrome and have not tested with FF or IE.

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Fascinating! Maybe we should be using code instead of paragraphs. It adds a bit more grayness, but I can change that to white with a thin border on my end and adjust the font... :)

Thanks for the tip!

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If you format or paste code at the end of your text, it's nearly impossible to un-code it and write normal text. Unless I'm missing something obvious?

E.g. I add some code:

100010010010100100010100100010 and format it as code
I can't write normal text anymore.... Clicking the code button again to 'switch it off' has no effect. I'm stuck in code. 
(I did find a little silly workaround was to add a few lines, format them as numbered list and back)
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I know copy-pasting-formatting a comment is a bit of a first world problem, but it really irks me that we're going backwards and failing on such basics. Bulletin boards from the 90's had a quote feature, and it's standard on just about any forum on the planet can do it. All previous incarnations of SCN have been able to quote. Stackexchange has a quoting system of sorts (not quite as nice as some of the others), so it's definitely possible. Who decided it's not needed?

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I have to reply to my comment because I can't reply to Vadim.

Yes, no, sometimes it works, not always. I haven't figured out all the rules, but I have gotten caught out by this many times and try never to write or paste code at the end of my text.

If you press down as you describe and you get to the extra blank line, and then backspace, you end up in the setup I was describing.

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"you get to the extra blank line" - and you can type normal text here...

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I know, but it's not always there. My comment was meant to show how to replicate the issue: if you get the extra blank line do a backspace until you're in the code block. From here there is no escape.

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Replying as a header-level comment due to missing reply option :)

Sajid Amir wrote:

Veselina,

The notification bug you mention in this thread: Bug: Activity stream shows non-existing comments beeing liked has been fixed. The known issues page will be updated accordingly.

Thanks,
Sajid Amir


Thank you, Sajid, for the update. I was merely referring to the thread as a challenging to read one. I understand, that the difficult to read threads and the missing reply option are subject to prioritization just like anything else, but could you share some approximate time-frame when these will be addressed? The inability to use the reply functionality by non-moderators directly affects the solution, for which you are the main point of contact, so I hope, that you have this information already.

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There is a lot of ground to cover here. I see colleagues already jumping in and responding to the comments about their topics. I'll do what I can to get others involved as appropriate.

--Jerry

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Adding a header level comment due to missing reply options for both Volker's and Jelena's comments...

Jelena Perfiljeva wrote:

Some poor soul did not notice the departure of the reputation system? Or some misguided manager quickly adjusted the annual review metrics to "karma points"?

Would be curious to know the story...

Or an employee sensing a last-minute adjustment to his annual review metrics... :)
Any attribute - name it as you wish: points, badges, levels, expertise score or karma, can be used for comparisons. It does not matter how well it is hidden from plain view, there are always ways to obtain the data and (mis)use it for performance reviews.

Volker Barth wrote:

Well, I'd think we should introduce "Patience points" and collect those for the effort and time needed to find another nested new comment.

You know, when playing "schnitzeljagd" in old-school (German) outdoor fashion, i.e. following (possibly false) trails of sawdust (*) to find the group that has laid those trails, it's also common to be rewarded once they have been found:)

I know about Schnitzeljagd only from American movies. I don't think that we had anything similar in Bulgaria when I was a kid... which is sad, it looks fun.
I am getting better in comments hunting in CC (my HOB helps a lot), but preparing replies is still tedious. Do we get a bonus for nice formatting?

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