Hello Nerdfighters and other creatures,


This is your Maintenance NM speaking! We've heard that a lot of you are unaware of the changes that are about to be made, therefore we shall brighten up your minds. I present to you, an interview with the one and only programmer Dan (commonly known as The Lone Wanderer - you can go stalk him here) who is programming a brand new Nerdfighter website for us to frollick around. 

Are you all ready? Great, here we go!


  ! DISCLAIMER: The site isn't final yet. Changes can still be made; some of these ideas may not be executed in the end.


Q: Will we be able to keep the profile we have now?

A: Yes, profile data's exportable through an external ning interface so everything should migrate to the new site. I have yet to implement customizations though, so you'll all be the same colour and font for now.


Q: What will the ningmasters be called, now that it's not on the ning anymore?

A: At the moment they’re just called Admins and Mods.


Q: Are there new things added, that we didn't have on the ning?

A: There are a few new things:

- World Map and Calendar: We're getting a world map and calendar, onto which we can drop event information. If a user consents, the map will center in on their current location.

Facts of the Day: On any given day when you visit the website's front page you'll be presented with events that occurred on said day in history. User submissions will be possible: the site maintenance admin can add to the records, to allow for something happening post-launch.

Social Feed: You can add your accounts on other sites to your nerdfighters profile; Anyone you're friends with will have their recent activity listed out on the homepage for your viewing pleasure.

Mobile Function: The new site will be fully accessible by mobile devices.

- Polls: There will be an option to attach polls to blogs and forum posts.

 Automated vlogbrothers videos: That’s right: until now, the newest video has been posted in a blog post; as of now we can see them automatically on the front page.



Q: Will the new forum work in the same way?

A: The forum's getting a facelift, because it kind of looks like a blog on the ning – it’s being modeled on a threaded hierarchy with proper flow between entities. You'll also be getting signature abilities, and ranks assigned based on post count and rating (don’t spam us or flame each other, or your rating drops).


Q: What about the old forum posts, will they be exported, or will we get a cleaned up shiny new forum?

A: I can export the most recent 10,000 discussions from the ning, but the exact number I'll take across isn’t decided yet.


Q: How will flaming, spamming etc. be avoided?

A: The new admin system for the forums contains all your basic thread management and removal, and I’ve got a parser designed to recognize certain language constructs. The aim is to detect when someone's being attacked in a vicious way.



Q: What will change to the Blogs?

A: Blogs can be followed, and the bloggers will also have ratings, but this time based on popularity and quality of content. Blog posts can also be shared to external sources such as facebook and twitter.


Q: Will the old blog posts still exist on the new site?

A: Same as the forums, I can export the most recent 10,000 posts.


Q:  What about languages?

A: You can blog in any language, but bear in mind the profanity filter is multi-lingual.


Q: Will the blog layout change a lot?

A: No, visibly it isn’t changing much.



Q: Will the chat be the same, and if not, what changes are made?

A: In chat, there will be a link checker to make sure nobody posts you off to bad places, and the admin system has been overhauled; you can now input a manual number of hours to suspend for, you can also permanently exclude somebody, there’s a button to call for assistance, and there will be a "Report User" button to make sure things don't get out of hand even when no admin is around.


Q: Will we still be able to pop-out the chat?

A: Yes, full-screen is still possible.


Q:  Right now in chat, it show every user online, even if they're not actually there. Will that be the same on the new site?

A: Yes, but you'll be able to see who has it open or not, and the number at the top will only reflect those that do. Another new thing: chat will also store logs and (this goes for the whole site) admins will be able to view a history of a given user's sanctions awarded.



Q:  Will the current 10,000 groups be exported?

A: I wasn’t planning on it, because (as far as I’m aware), most of them aren’t exactly serious. Also, I want chat and the forums to be the main place for discussion, and I want groups to have goals, objectives, purposes..  For example to use for meetings, or you might be a group of people who all work together on some web-based project, where the forums would perhaps be too public a place to discuss things.


Q: Will there be additional changes?

A: You can add an optional headquarters location, and whether or not you want to appear on the world map. A group can have its own event calendar, and a group creator can promote members of that group into moderators of that group. Said moderators fall below the rank of site-wide mods. Also the visibility of group content can be controlled by the creator and their moderators.


Q: What do we use projects for?

A: Projects are activities external to the website, but still run by its members. Currently, the vast majority of them are other people's vlogs, but I’m looking to drum up interest in doing things perhaps more constructive, such as fundraisers or charity-events.



Q: What happened to the books section?

A: Not much of a change there, I just tidied it up a little, and implement a left-right arrow cycle allowing you to scroll through the book history.  A possible future implementation would be to have each book act as a link to amazon for buying that book.


Q: What will the new site look like?

A: Like this!

 Looks good, doesn't it?

Well, that was it, ladies and gentlemen. Now there's really just one question left - when will we be able to enjoy this Nerdvana? Well, that's not exactly sure yet - there are still some changes to be made, and John and Hank will want to see it before everyone else does. But it will be there very soon!

With love from Belgium,


PS: Still questions left? Don't be afraid to post them, answers will be provided ;)


Tags: change, giraffes, important, interview, lone, new, ning, site, the, wanderer

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I haven't been on long, and ... I too would miss the groups.  maybe we are just not understanding how forums would take the place of groups... but to me Groups are SubCommunities... Yes we are all nerdfighters... but that's a SEA of nerdfighters... when you have a subgroup "Sherlock" you know a thing other than awesome that you have in common, and it's nice to see there are a number of you, and you can express that part of you and receive it from others, and expand it. Forums.... feel more like ... debates sometimes... and less like communities. 

Will the ning still be around for those of us who do have things on here that won't be transferred to the new site?

Also, about the book buying link-to-Amazon feature, would it be possible to have each book link to a morally acceptable website, such as, where we could find our own independent, locally-owned bookstore to support, instead of supporting an enormous and seemingly heartless corporate behemoth?  :^P

I promise I'm not that bitter toward Amazon in real life.  It's just hard to convey tone in text.  I do think we should support our local bookstores, though.  Amazon doesn't need Nerdfighteria, but Nerdfighteria needs local, independent bookstores.

Would that sort of linking be possible instead?  Thanks for all your amazing work, it looks and sounds smashing!!!

A link tweeted from our own J-Scribble on the severity of the Amazon V. Actual Good Bookstores Situation:

Help! Want Groups to remain existing! I don't understand how forums can build subcommunities, with a subcommunity identity.  Its because of the Sherlock group that I learned Season 2 was coming, and when, Its not because I went looking, it's because I KNEW I cared about what they cared about... How can forums equate? help!


Check the front page, there's a possibility to transfer some of the groups to the new site, if it's really important or functional for you. Unfortunately we can't transfer all of them, because the groups have to be transferred manually and it takes us a lot of work (there's 16 admins on this website, for over 70,000 members) 
Anyway, not everything that will be happening is listed in this interview either, you'll see how it is when the new site goes live. So just keep in mind, it might not be what you expect of it now (:

Just a note that I just made an account and for the question about when did you start watching brotherhood 2.0, 2012 is not an option so I had to say December 2011 even though that's not accurate. 2012 needs to be added as an option

Well spotted. Another flaw of the Ning is that time inputs don't auto-scale. I've corrected this now.

So essentially there'll be a forum on here and on YourPants? Or will they be drawn together? 

Will group content be laid out similar to the ning or similar to the new Your Pants site?

Finally, do you even have a rough idea of when the site launches publicly? The guy who runs the Nerdfighter IRC thing (Joshua or something) mentioned something about February for the closed beta of sorts, which would imply that soon after the site would be opened to the rest of us. So was he right in saying this or does he have no idea and was just guessing?

out of curiosity, when exactly are these changes going to be put into place?

Hi, Caroline. Thanks for the hard work.

I thought about why forums don't work as well as groups for serving subcommunities, so maybe you can help me see how the new site will meet this need that I perceive.

It sounds like you expect to only support groups that exist to complete a project, not groups to support NF subcommunities.

Q1) Are groups going to be easily createable for NF subcommunities, or discouraged for same?

Assuming disregard:

This is all about Subcommunities, and about my doubts that forums can facilitate their creation and well-being.

(((((Yes, I think there are maintenance challenges with groups, but I think they should be handled)))))

Fact 1) Key differences. When you look at a group, you know how many people are  in it. 2) when you look hard you know Who is in it 3) They do these things in ways that are VERY fast, and require no typing or reading... which take up TIME.   The infinitely un-renewable resource.

The first fact result in these consequences

3) By being in it, they... without a lot of typing and reading on anybodies parts, can express A LOT about themselves 4) Key among those expressions:  4a) This many of us are like you in THIS (group topic ) way. 4b) This many (group count) of us are very likely to read what you say or ask, and that will 4c) affect your decisions about what to post, and 4d) affect your interpretation of the replies you get.

The second fact results in this:

5) People can recognize people from their other subcommunities, and realize how much they both have in common. Forging friendships through first recognizign commonality, without either having to type a lot or read a lot.


Q2) Do you want subcommunities to be supported by the site, or "they should go find another way to express facets of themselves, and other places, like FB to find each other"?

Q3) If you do want to support subcommunities, do you want groups to do that work, even if the groups are not Mission driven but rather community driven?

Q4) Do you have a way that forums (your stated method for community interaction) will efficiently allow :

Q4a) Allow subcommunities to form quickly and easily

Q4b) Allow duplicate subcommunties to easily identify the larger, and merge

Q5c) To allow, without spending typing time, and without demanding of others reading time:   To let them know you are part of their community, and that they are part of define an audience with large defined commonalities, and a known size at any point, which empowers its members to know... a) How many are like them b) How many will read their words if they ask a question or make a statement c) To make them feel they are part of a subcommunity....All without typing or making people read you, and without taking a poll, and counting.

Again thanks for the hard work, but I'm trying to see how the site will deliver on the need for subcommunities (wthout projects), or if the site mangement wants those to occur elsewhere.


Issues I see with groups...

1) duplicates: get ignored but not removed, as people move to the larger duplicate

2) stale: groups that are less relevant "My favorite buggy whip is..." ... don't age into oblivion,

3) lasting: Just because the who world goes quiet the Who group shouldn't disappear. Ssomeone on FB said " What's Doctor Who?" it'd be good the gruop was still there (This happened in FB, for realsies, btw).

but you haven't asked for my input on those. ciao!


Did the move happen yet? I'm not sure where it is...maybe a link in a notice when it does?


Youtube Links!

Here are some YT links to channels related to Nerdfighteria and educational content!

*Can you think of any more? Pass along any suggestions to an Admin who will then add it to this list should it fit!

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