It's called "Google", people!

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Squidbait, Feb 18, 2007.

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  1. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    Ok, this is probably going to get me labelled as a miserable, crotchety curmudgeon, and I'll admit to being pretty cranky, lately...

    <Rant Mode ON>

    ...but I'm getting really tired of seeing people post questions that they could easily answer themselves by doing a simple Google search.

    I can understand being newb-ish about the internet, but come on! If you can find The Gauge and post a question here, you must be able to use Google, or Yahoo!, or MSN for pete's sake!

    And never mind the internet search engines... do people not realize you can search the forums here? That little link in the header bar that says "Search"? Why do people seem to think they're the first person to have their particular question in a hobby that's been around for over 50 years?

    I'm all for asking other people for help, and I'm glad to offer whatever advice I can on things I know about (and lots of opinion on things I don't! :p ). But I feel much better about helping someone who's obviously tried to help themselves first, rather than someone who's apparently too lazy to do their own legwork. Especially when it's something simple like "How do I hammer nails?", or "How do I saw wood?".

    Maybe it's just me, but I try to find answers to my questions by myself first, before I start asking other people. That way it looks like I've actually tried to understand what I'm asking about, and don't look like a helpless kitten.

    I guess this stems from my opinion that we never value anything we're given, only what we've earned... the same goes for knowledge. I can tell you the answer to something, but you're less likely to retain and appreciate it than if you researched it and figured it out on your own.

    <Rant Mode OFF>

    OK, now I feel better. :)
  2. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    I'm glad you were able to get that off your chest Squidbait, you miserable, crotchety curmudgeon! :) Encouragement for people to do some work themselves is a good thing. Keep in mind that some of our members are young or completely new to the hobby and may be having their first experiences with some of the technology of model railroading. I'm glad you mentioned the SEARCH function up at the top of the page. It really is a great resource for finding information quickly...much more quickly than waiting for repiles to a thread depending on the topic you're looking for.
  3. Torpedo

    Torpedo Member

    Sometimes people have already Googled without success, but fail to mention that fact when they post their question. On some lists, failing to demonstrate that you have searched all public and list archives prior to posting will get the poster boiled in virtual oil. :)

    It's always nice when someone starts with, "I've Googled and searched the list but can't find anything on.........."
  4. scubadude

    scubadude Member

    Get over it!! The point of this forum is to allow people from all over the world with varying degrees of ability to learn from others. The impersonal nature of the internet is somewhat of a turn-off for some folks, (especially us older pre-computer generation). I have been a member of The Gauge for just a few months, but it is obvious there are many friendships born here. I agree there are many repetitive, simple questions asked, but for that particular person on that particular day, it is important. If we all had your attitude, then many members, especially new ones, would not participate for fear of asking a stupid question. When I ask a dumb question, please just ignore it and don't make me feel stupid.
  5. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

    I don't mind those who haven't done a bit of prior searching - what drives me crazy is the vast number of postings with grammatical and spelling mistakes! I know when one types fast, typing slips are easy to make - but there is a preview feature, and you can edit after posting (what you can't do - however - is correct a topic heading as far as I can tell). Sometimes the typos and weird grammar are so pervasive it's actually difficult to understand what the person means!
    Come on folks - let's show we're not a bunch of semi-literates, and that we can tell our its from our it's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  6. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Yeah, letting off steam is a good thing now and then for some, helping others is just as satisfactory for others.:D Now if we all relied on Google for answers, there wouldn't be much need for a forum like this, would there? Throw in a dose of interaction and first-hand experience and you find that Google ain't all that it's cracked up to be. Now I grant you, it would be helpful from time to time to have some people do a search here before opening a new thread on the same subject that's been covered several times before... like maybe last week:rolleyes:.. But even then, it's that personal touch and individual answer that makes asking an obvious question rewarding both by the one that asked and the one that answered. :wave:
  7. Play-Doh

    Play-Doh Member

    I agree and disagree

    When I got started with this hobby about a year ago, I knew NOTHING about model railroading. I drowned myself in reading, internet research, and forum archives to the point where I felt I had learned alot, but was even more confused than when I started. Lets be honest, there are alot of ways to do alot of diferent things in this hobby and many people think theirs is the correct way. So I came in with many standard questions simply because I was confused on how to determine what works best for me.

    I recall calling a hobby shop and saying "I want to build a model railroad but I know nothing about it...where do I start?" If he had told me of his disgust of how he hears that question every day (which im sure he does) I probably would have never stepped foot in a hobby store. But he didnt. In fact he stayed on the phone with me and asked me the fundamental questions, talked to me about track, asked about what I had in mind for a layout. He took the time to nurture a future model railroader.

    And the moment we stop helping those who are interested, no matter how elementary it may be, is the moment our hobby begins to die.
  8. scubadude

    scubadude Member

    Amen, Play-Doh!!!
  9. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    According to the settings, you have ten minutes to change a topic heading. If you're ever in need beyond that, just as one of the mods or admins and we'll be glad to make to corrections. Once in a while we'll make the change on our own, but usually not without the member asking us first.

    As far as spelling, I have two thoughts about that. First of all, this is a universal forum, we have all kinds of members for different backgrounds and different countries. Many of which don't use English as their primary language. Some others are physically not able to use the keyboard like most of us, and remember, we have a diverse spread of age as well. It would be great if we all had a good command of the English language, but that's not always the case and we accept that. Spelling is a problem even with a spell checker if you're not use to the language. The same goes for grammar. :) Secondly, I never knew how bad my spelling was until someone invented the spell checker. :oops: I was still at a marked disadvantage, spelling-challenged and typo-prone :rolleyes: when using the Internet, until recently when they added a spell checker to Firefox 2.0. If you don't have a spell checker, and you're using IE, you can download IEspell and use the icon at the top right of the composition box to spell check your post before it goes out. I use Firefox 2.0 and the spell checker is a right-click menu option.

    Yes, there are excuses for those that don't know or struggle to do what they can, but there should be none for those that do know better and could take a few seconds to use a readily available spell checker.
  10. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    I'm glad to see that at least one of the moderators (EZ) has a level head on his shoulders. I'd rather post a question here, among friends, than search (which I've done MANY times) all over the I'net. There are as many (or more) knowledgeable folks here than there are contributing to the Wikipedias of the I'net.

    I figure (please correct me if I'm wrong...) that one of the MISSIONS of the Gauge would be to share experiences, KNOWLEDGE, anecdotes, concerns, etc.

    Also, many questions pop up when someone reads a post here, and scratches his head and thinks "What the that?" Who better to enlighten than the person who gave rise to the question in the first place...

    Just my 2 cents...
  11. ejen34

    ejen34 Member

    A sense of Community means different things to folks. Some have a certain comfort level in asking folks (peers) of a like interest questions. The concept of a forum encompasses discussion of many types. The really neat thing about it, one can bypass or pass over any thread you like :thumb:
  12. Relic

    Relic Member

    I also be happy that peeples on the gage have cents of humer
  13. Herc Driver

    Herc Driver Active Member

    If I had two cents for every word I misspelled, I'd have the largest diesels collection in the known world. Relic - that was too funny...LOL!

    But I do confess...Sometimes I've posted a question without doing much research because I have become used to the high quality of opinions and knowledge this forum offers and I needed to make a purchasing decision where time was critical. Other times, I've searched and searched and searched...only to find that - I couldn't find my answer no matter how many "key words" I used. So again, I turned to this forum and had my answer usually in a few hours - and the answer even corrected my wrong assumptions (which I very much appreciated). And that is the biggest advantage the members on this forum offer over a book or internet search result...that personal experience, knowledge, and understanding that I do not have in this hobby related in a personal way.

    OK, let my turn off the cabin "rant" PA switch and go back to my duties.
  14. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member


    My turn for the soapbox. I see the side of those saying do more search, but: I have been playing on computers for about 10 years and Firefox and Wikopedia (or whatever it is) has absolutely no meaning to me.

    Heart attacks have a side effect of reducing (removing) memory, and I have to write everything or it is forgotten. I have tried to find things in The-Gauge search and found nothing. It may be utterly stupid to many, but I have asked questions here on the use of the computer and got answers straightening me out. WHY? This group on this forum are like family to me, and tho it is sticking my neck out at times, there is no place I trust more for answers than here.

    There is also the possibility that those noobies don't know about the search box. Also, changing titles, or deleting something is like overhauling a turbo-diesel as far as I am concerned.

    So I request patiece with old men and noobies.

    Thank you (step down from box)

  15. Why me

    Why me Member

    Well i must be one of the worse offenders asking the same question in two differant ways my inane drollings and moronic ways thease guys have suffered from day one of me joining my short term memeror is so bad i need to repeat myself some times do you think i and many others on heare like doing it no we dont but i count my lucky stars and blessings for the guys on here who have give there help to all comers depite there illnesses or repeats if it wast for the guys on here and other forum help have no track = no layout = no fun = no life.mike
  16. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    Oh, I should add that when I do respond to these annoying questions, I may be blunt, but I do my best not to be condescending. I know what it's like starting out and not knowing much, so I will (if I can) provide an answer that's helpful, not hurtful.
  17. Why me

    Why me Member

    I'm willing to help anyone who's willing to make the effort to try to help themselves rather fight two crocodiles than ask not on your pearls of wisdom level sorry just a humble nutter.mike
  18. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic


    I actually enjoy the shop. I like seeing people get turned on to the hobby - all hobbies, actually. If I can show someone something new to them, and they say "That's cool!", it's a great feeling.

    The reason I get frustrated here is that it would be like me showing someone something in the store, and there were three other people standing next to him, listening as I explain it, and then each one of them asks me exactly the same question as the first guy.

    Actually, if that happened in the store, I'd probably snap there, too. :)
  19. scubadude

    scubadude Member

    I have been in the scuba industry for nearly 20 years. An industry similar to MRR in that it depends on discretionary income and word of mouth referrals. Do you know how many times I have had to answer the same questions over and over, talk about diving in Mexico or any one of a million other repetitive conversations? I have had to pull back once or twice over the years to not allow my frustration to come across to even one customer. Once your frustration makes someone else feel dumb or stupid or whatever you want to call it, that person will influence 12 others, and so on, and so on. At some point you might find yourself wondering why no one is asking you questons anymore.
  20. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic


    In person, I don't have a problem. I enjoy the one-on-one, and don't mind hearing the same question from different people. It's also part of the job.

    I have no problem with honest ignorance. It's willful ignorance that drives me up the wall.
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