David Alan Black wrote:

On Thu, 11 Jan 2001, John Rubinubi wrote:

> I brought this up in the first place to find out if there were people 
who
> felt the same as I do. They haven't exactly been coming out of the
> woodwook. I don't think that there are a significant number of
> people who are unhappy with the list/usenet situation just as it is. I
> don't think you guys should change things yet.
> 
> However, there should be some means for beginners to ask their stupid
> questions without having to get all this email or post on usenet. Maybe 
a
> web-based message board where people can post questions and answers 
would
> be a good alternative.

Isn't that what Usenet is for?  Ummm, I don't mean stupid questions,
specifically :-)  but (among other things) questions and answers. 

Absolutely!

Look at comp.lang.perl.misc or comp.lang.tcl. These are for *everyone's* 
questions, not just for experts. 

Part of what makes newsgroups useful bootstrapping tools is that they 
cater to questions at *all* levels of expertise, from a wide range of 
programming perspectives. Also in modern and comparatively large 
languages, people may be beginners in some areas of the language, but not 
in others, so there is no convenient division, and so most people would 
rapidly need to follow at least 2 newsgroups in that case anyway. 
Moreover, even experts can learn by seeing how other experts answer 
beginner questions. So you would undermine much of the utility and synergy 
of newsgroups (or whatever) by trying to divide them up by beginner / 
expert (versus technical interest area, e.g. application-level development 
/ language internals development).

Conrad Schneiker
(This note is unofficial and subject to improvement without notice.)