Portal ComparisonsBy Peter Naulls. Published: 17th Apr 2003, 12:10:08 | Permalink | Printable
You realise, dat dis means war
Here at drobe.co.uk, we always like to try our best, and fan mail that we receive suggests we are indeed the best RISC†OS news website by a long way. Some of this can be attributed to substantial behind-the-scenes work by Ian Hawkins to improve Drobe features, and Chris' one-a-day article regiment occasionally supplemented by myself.
But really, we aren't trying to blow our own trumpet (honest), and we realise that much of the reason is that we're the best is because we don't really have that much competition.
So, we'd like to make an open list of suggestions to the other "competing" RISC†OS news portals. This is meant to be positive critisism, and it's also meant to be a helpful PR exercise for RISC OS. We find it disappointing that an outsider looking at one of the other news portals might think there's so little happening, when the sheer content of news on Drobe reveals otherwise.
The Hit List
Nice effort, but it would be good to see some consistency. Mad updates at the beginning of the month by one or two of the multitude of editors often peters out by the middle of the second week. There's no denying the enthusiasm of editors like John Hoare, but you guys really need some kind of plan.
Firstly, I would suggest not posting multiple articles on one day - if you do, you'll run out, and the Iconbar quickly becomes the Iconbore when it's not updated for 2 weeks. And how about some kind of roster to ensure that editors do an item occasionally, and allow for when people are away (as John is presently).
TIB's saving grace is its very popular forums, and its comments system, which is a touch better than drobe's.
We appreciate that news only forms a portion of RISCOS.org's content (but nevertheless an important one on the front page), and most of the items are intentionally short in nature to cover big items. And they do manage to update about once a week, which is consistent, if nothing else.
However, the occasional repeated headlines (as you can see on their front page presently), and items wrongly placed in the World section (which, incidentally, we think you should drop - you can find World news in numerous other places), detract somewhat. No specific advice, but things RISCOS.org might consider.
My RISC OS
Yawn. And more Yawn. Home of user group postings, occasional verbatim press releases, and er, that's about it.
Guys, get a clue. If people want to read verbatim press releases, they'll do so on comp.sys.acorn.announce. If you want people to visit My RISC OS, then you'll have to make an effort. If you don't care, then please direct them to one of the other portals. My RISC OS as it is isn't a good representative to people outside of RISC OS.
A one person effort, so the number of updates it gets is reasonable enough, but Stuart does seem to pick some unusal items to list. He also oddly claimed one month last year that there was little RISC OS news (drobe had 20 items that month) - Stu, if you want RISC OS news, then look no further ;-).
We do like that you're now covering items in a more editoral style with commentary, but I don't think the layout really works for this. Items are squashed together, and it's all the same font. Perhaps you might give some thought to this.
Well, it would be unfair to let ourselves escape. We don't have any specific advice for ourselves, but we continue to experiment with various features, and are always looking for ways to improve, and of course, comments are always welcome.
All we'd like is a bit more competition.
Finally, you're welcome to list Drobe news items on your website, via our RSS feed. All that we ask is that you carry a suitable link back to drobe.co.uk.
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