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Receiving alerts for messages that do not appear in the forums RRS feed

  • Question

  • In the last couple of days I have received a small number of Alerts from groups in social.msdn and social.answers, but when I have gone to the conversations in the groups, the messages are not there (and they do not appear to turn up later, or appear as deleted). I've checked the threads with a couple of different browsers on different systems. Plenty of other alerts have also arrived as usual without this problem appearing.

    I don't remember this happening before but maybe it is quite common?


    Peter Jamieson
    Monday, October 4, 2010 9:00 AM

Answers

  • > So what do you recommend for Mac Office users?

    Roughly what I suggested elsewhere.

    1. My comments are mainly to do with the Word IT Pros group. I can only speak about Word. Excel/PowerPoint/Outlook/Entourage may need different treatment.

    2. Change the Word IT Pro's scope text so that it explicitly directs Mac Word users to the relevant Answers forum (http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/mac/forum/macword). 

    That at least gives people a chance to search/post in a more appropriate group in the first place, and something for mods to point to if necessary.

    The general coverage there is probably better than anywhere else in Answers/Technet/MSDN. Yes, there's a good group for more heavyweight programming Word questions in MSDN, but I'm not sure anyone in there currently can do much with the Mac side of things.

    3. Precisely what to put in the scope text really depends on whether Mac Word questions should be regarded as out of scope, period - which is what Max's move message in the thread that started this for me suggested:

    "Off-Topic (Office for Mac)"

    Unfortunately, in that case, there was no suggestion about where to go, whereas I get the impression that Max (and other mods) normally do reply with a suggestion.

    4. Ideally, be more relaxed about leaving Mac-oriented posts in the group, particularly once they have attracted a response, maximally suggesting a better place to take the question. 

    In high-volume topic areas where each group may have more precise focus and there are more choices for the poster, it's arguably more important for everyone to discourage off-topic posts. In low-volume groups where there's no obvious alternative, I don't think a "rules-oriented" approach is so helpful. Leaving Mac stuff in the group might even encourage a bit more attention from people with Mac expertise who happen to hang out in the Technet groups, perhaps with a different focus and experience than the people in Answers. You never know!

    Send them to you? =^)

    :-) It's interesting that there are so few participants willing or able to take on Mac/programming-oriented questions. I could toss some possible "explanations" in the air, e.g.

     - the Mac Office market/Mac user base is doubtless still small compared to the Windows Office market/user base

     - people with Applescript + Office expertise may typically be "Mac users who also use Office" rather than "Office users with Macs" 

     - the number of people with technical expertise across Mac and Windows Office is probably quite small - it's hard to maintain a foot in each camp.

     - the disappearance of VBA in Office 2008 might have had an impact on VBA-capable people on the Mac side

     - the transition from the Usenet NNTP groups to Mactopia forums to Answers may have resulted in some attrition

    But actually I suspect think there are one or two other more important factors, which I will try to communicate to you if you are interested.

    Best regards,


    Peter Jamieson


    • Proposed as answer by Naomi N Thursday, November 8, 2012 4:47 PM
    • Edited by Peter Jamieson Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:31 PM typos and similar
    • Marked as answer by Naomi N Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:44 PM
    Thursday, November 8, 2012 11:50 AM

All replies

  • Not common. To troubleshoot, we will need examples including the content of the alert and the urls to where the messages. Thanks.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Monday, October 4, 2010 4:51 PM
    Answerer
  • 1. Thanks.

    2. My most recent example is in the following thread:

    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com:80/Forums/en-GB/worddev/thread/4a6feb7d-2c72-48e2-b29d-d922fa2181fe

    3. This is the body text of the alert, omitting the header lines down to the "To:" line and the generic stuff about "You are receiving this message because" at the bottom.

    <<

    Another user, Ehsan Mohammadi, has replied to a thread you have subscribed to in the Word for Developers Forum.

    Thread Title How to convert Word Equation to an Image !!
    Started by: DavidMore

    Reply:

    Thanks Genius,

     

    I use below code but does not work for me. I need to save each equation to a image file.

     

     

    Please help me,

    Thanks in Advance,


    Any fool can know. The point is to understand.(Albert Einstein)

    The Microsoft Developer Network

    >>

    4. And this is the equivalent source code:

    <<

    Date: 3 Oct 2010 17:52:48 -0700
    Subject: [Forums] How to convert Word Equation to an Image !!
    Content-Type: text/html; charset=us-ascii
    Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
    Return-Path: forumsup@microsoft.com
    Message-ID: <BY2MSFTVSMTP01xeYio00004bf1@by2msftvsmtp03.phx.gbl>
    X-OriginalArrivalTime: 04 Oct 2010 00:52:48.0483 (UTC) FILETIME=[77012330:01CB635E]
    
    Another user, <a href=3D"http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Profile=
    /en-US?user=3DEhsan+Mohammadi">Ehsan Mohammadi</a>, has replied t=
    o a thread you have subscribed to in the <a href=3D"http://social=
    .msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/worddev/threads/"> Word for Deve=
    lopers</a> Forum.<br><br>Thread Title<a href=3D"http://social.msd=
    n.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/worddev/thread/4a6feb7d-2c72-48e2-b2=
    9d-d922fa2181fe/"> How to convert Word Equation to an Image !!</=
    a><br> Started by: <a href=3D"http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Pr=
    ofile/en-US?user=3DDavidMore">DavidMore<a/><br><br>Reply:<br><br>=
    
    <p>Thanks Genius,</p>=0D=0A<p>&nbsp;</p>=0D=0A<p>I use below code=
     but does not work for me. I need to save each equation to a imag=
    e file.</p>=0D=0A<p></p>=0D=0A<div style=3D"color:Black;backgroun=
    d-color:White;"><pre>=0D=0A    <span style=3D"color:Blue;">us=
    ing</span>(MemoryStream memoryStream =3D (MemoryStream)dataObject=
    .GetData(DataFormats.MetafilePict))=0A    {=0A     Image=
     image =3D Image.FromStream(memoryStream);=0A=0A     image.S=
    ave(fileName, ImageFormat.Jpeg);=0A=0A    }=0D=0A</pre></div>=
    =0D=0A<p></p>=0D=0A<p>Please help me,</p>=0D=0A<p>Thanks in Advan=
    ce,</p><hr class=3D"sig">Any fool can know. The point is to under=
    stand.(Albert Einstein)<br><br>The Microsoft Developer Network<p>=
    

    >>

    5. I do not see this message (or a deleted version of it) in the appropriate group.

    6. I have seen this in one other thread in the social.answers group. Both are in the last few days. I can provide copies of that material as well if you want it.

     


    Peter Jamieson
    Monday, October 4, 2010 5:10 PM
  • We don't maintain the social.answers forums, that would be another team. The only thing I can think of here is that there is some weird bug that only repro's under certain conditions OR the user posted the reply and then quickly edited it. If they edited it before someone replied within a certain amount of time, we wouldn't append the edit history to the post. The reply content in the alert starts off as "thanks genius" perhaps something the user didn't want to send or something. I guess I suspect an edit happened, but we do already have a bug around this issue, but it will take a while to look into because we cannot easily consistently reproduce the problem. Thanks for the report.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Monday, October 4, 2010 6:20 PM
    Answerer
  • Scratch that edit idea, this most likely looks like a bug, my 'edit' seemed to be logged so I suspect this is some weird bug or something.
    Community Forums Program Manager
    Monday, October 4, 2010 6:22 PM
    Answerer
  • Thanks Brent - from the info available to me the poster would have had to have /deleted/ their post very quickly after submitting it, as it does not seem to me to appear in the thread at all.

    "weird bug or something"

    Well, that really pins it down :-)


     


    Peter Jamieson
    Monday, October 4, 2010 6:52 PM
  • It was likely an edit or deleted post. I've seen it happen a lot. It often happens very quickly.

    Please avoid attacking the Moderators of this forum.

    Thanks!


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)


    Saturday, November 3, 2012 11:14 AM
  • Peter, you unmarked, you replied, I answered.

    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012 8:51 PM
  • Ed, my mistake. I had no recollection of unmarking but can see now why I probably did so.

    I am not interested in "attacking moderators of this forum," nor do I believe I have done so. If it seems that way, my apologies.


    Peter Jamieson

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012 10:02 PM
  • Understood. It was the comment about MVP moderators trying to help. They're good people with good intentions.

    The truth is that forums are not officially supported. That's the nature of the outlet (a social, community-driven form of assistance). The only exception is with the TechNet/MSDN subscriptions.

    So it's no one's job to help in these Using Forums forums. Including me. So my help is appreciated by the forums team, as is the help of each of our specially-selected community moderators.

    Thanks!


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012 11:00 PM
  • OK, thanks for the clarification.

    I know the MVP was trying to help & in fact I didn't reply again in the original thread primarily to avoid getting deeper into "futile argument" territory. I probably put my point badly in the first place.

    That said, there is no reason why you would be in a position to realise this, but a slight problem for Mac Word programming-oriented questions (e.g. in Word IT Pros on Technet) is that, in addition to the fact that there seem to be no Mac-capable "regulars" in the Word Technet groups (perhaps only me, as I haven't seen Rich Michaels for a while), referring people to the Answers Mac Word group is not necessarily helpful because just about the only person who currently takes on programming-related questions in that particular group is also me :-) So once a credible reply has been posted in Technet there seems little point in moving the thread anywhere. But maybe it's impossible for a mod. to evaluate the reply and, for that and other reasons, better to refer anyway. Not that the questions I've seen moved by Max are quite in that category.


    Peter Jamieson

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012 11:49 PM
  • I was following you about half way through. This is a good topic for me, because I get this question in the "Where Is" forum.

    So what do you recommend for Mac Office users? Anything out there for them? Send them to you? =^)

    And it sounds like you have a question with "maybe it's impossible for a mod" and "little point to moving the thread anywhere". But I can't understand it. Maybe on the moving thread topic, the answer is to remove the content from the wrong forum. But in the case of Mac Word content in the Word forum, there is no where else to move it, right? We cannot move anything into Answers, so that "solution" means moving a thread to "Where Is" where we recommend they go ask in the Answers forum.  

    Thanks!


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)


    Thursday, November 8, 2012 1:20 AM
  • > So what do you recommend for Mac Office users?

    Roughly what I suggested elsewhere.

    1. My comments are mainly to do with the Word IT Pros group. I can only speak about Word. Excel/PowerPoint/Outlook/Entourage may need different treatment.

    2. Change the Word IT Pro's scope text so that it explicitly directs Mac Word users to the relevant Answers forum (http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/mac/forum/macword). 

    That at least gives people a chance to search/post in a more appropriate group in the first place, and something for mods to point to if necessary.

    The general coverage there is probably better than anywhere else in Answers/Technet/MSDN. Yes, there's a good group for more heavyweight programming Word questions in MSDN, but I'm not sure anyone in there currently can do much with the Mac side of things.

    3. Precisely what to put in the scope text really depends on whether Mac Word questions should be regarded as out of scope, period - which is what Max's move message in the thread that started this for me suggested:

    "Off-Topic (Office for Mac)"

    Unfortunately, in that case, there was no suggestion about where to go, whereas I get the impression that Max (and other mods) normally do reply with a suggestion.

    4. Ideally, be more relaxed about leaving Mac-oriented posts in the group, particularly once they have attracted a response, maximally suggesting a better place to take the question. 

    In high-volume topic areas where each group may have more precise focus and there are more choices for the poster, it's arguably more important for everyone to discourage off-topic posts. In low-volume groups where there's no obvious alternative, I don't think a "rules-oriented" approach is so helpful. Leaving Mac stuff in the group might even encourage a bit more attention from people with Mac expertise who happen to hang out in the Technet groups, perhaps with a different focus and experience than the people in Answers. You never know!

    Send them to you? =^)

    :-) It's interesting that there are so few participants willing or able to take on Mac/programming-oriented questions. I could toss some possible "explanations" in the air, e.g.

     - the Mac Office market/Mac user base is doubtless still small compared to the Windows Office market/user base

     - people with Applescript + Office expertise may typically be "Mac users who also use Office" rather than "Office users with Macs" 

     - the number of people with technical expertise across Mac and Windows Office is probably quite small - it's hard to maintain a foot in each camp.

     - the disappearance of VBA in Office 2008 might have had an impact on VBA-capable people on the Mac side

     - the transition from the Usenet NNTP groups to Mactopia forums to Answers may have resulted in some attrition

    But actually I suspect think there are one or two other more important factors, which I will try to communicate to you if you are interested.

    Best regards,


    Peter Jamieson


    • Proposed as answer by Naomi N Thursday, November 8, 2012 4:47 PM
    • Edited by Peter Jamieson Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:31 PM typos and similar
    • Marked as answer by Naomi N Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:44 PM
    Thursday, November 8, 2012 11:50 AM
  • This is awesome! Thank you very much, Peter! I didn't even know about that Mac forum on Answers yet, so this helps a lot!

    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)

    Thursday, November 8, 2012 6:09 PM
  • Peter can you link to the Max thread you mentioned? I want to check it out and make sure the best response was made.

    Thanks!


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)

    Thursday, November 8, 2012 6:21 PM
  • Ed,

    Glad you found the post useful.

    > can you link to the Max thread you mentioned?

    It's here:

    http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/Offtopic/thread/9edb9853-3ef6-4b53-a966-d457d6a5ccad/

    I was probably unlucky on that occasion :-)


    Peter Jamieson

    Thursday, November 8, 2012 6:27 PM
  • Okay. I submitted a request to Cindy to include a Mac Word sticky FAQ. That seems like a good solution that fits into her existing system.

    And I sent Max a note to sync on whether the Office IT forums support Mac. I think they should clearly say that they do, but the support will be limited, and to link to the proper Microsoft Community Office Mac forums.

    Thanks!


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)


    Thursday, November 8, 2012 6:33 PM
  • Wow, I see you've had a real blitz around the groups! 

    Anything that works for Cindy is OK by me.

    I really appreciate your efforts on this one - in fact, it has made my day.

    I'd even mark your post as an Answer if what we were discussing had anything to do with the original question in this thread :-))


    Peter Jamieson

    Thursday, November 8, 2012 6:49 PM
  • Wow, I see you've had a real blitz around the groups! 

    Anything that works for Cindy is OK by me.

    I really appreciate your efforts on this one - in fact, it has made my day.

    I'd even mark your post as an Answer if what we were discussing had anything to do with the original question in this thread :-))


    Peter Jamieson

    Ha! No answer marks needed. I have a few of those already. =^)

    Good. Making your day is the least I can do to show our appreciation for your contributions. Plus you're right, so that helps. =^)


    Ed Price (a.k.a User Ed), SQL Server Customer Program Manager (Blog, Twitter, Wiki)


    Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:09 PM