Adopt-a-newbie? Based on actual experience


#1

Hello all,

Remember Samantha? She dropped by the list a while ago and was given the
idea to develop a Rails resume generator…

Anyway, yesterday she happened to email me about the Haifa RUG post
(only
reply this far and it was a false :confused: ) and I happened to remember her
project and give her a bit of advice, and it developed into a
conversation
reminding a bit of a chat about her project, that seems to have pulled
her
out of a stuck position (I hope).

Well, she told me she’s glad she can email me those questions since
sending
them to the list would be overkill and uncomfortable…

Now, remember the recent discussion about newbie questions plaguing the
list?

All of this has brought me to think of an Adopt-a-newbie model. Somehow,
every newbie that wants would get an email address of a volunteer from
ruby-talk, with whom he can correspond personally and who will answer
his
basic questions and serve to also encourage him to keep learning.

I could manage two-three active newbies at a time, I think, and they
would
greatly benefit from it if they are anything like me.

What do you think? Would you consider it a good idea? Would you
volunteer?
Is anyone up for infrastructure (preferrably on ruby-lang.org, though
anywhere is good)?

Aur S.


#2

On 2/14/07, SonOfLilit removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

out of a stuck position (I hope).
ruby-talk, with whom he can correspond personally and who will answer his

Aur S.

As a newbie, I think that would be awesome. I’ve emailed off-list with
two
people so far, and the help has been tremendous. I think that it’s an
awesome idea. Personally, I don’t like putting stuff out there and
possibly
sounding like a moron :wink: so, I get shy asking specific questions when I
know
that so many people are out there on the list. It’s a bit intimidating.

So, you get my newbie-vote.


Samantha

http://www.babygeek.org/

“Beware when the great God lets loose a thinker on this planet. Then all
things are at risk.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson


#3

On Thu, Feb 15, 2007 at 05:03:16AM +0900, SonOfLilit wrote:

I could manage two-three active newbies at a time, I think, and they would
greatly benefit from it if they are anything like me.

What do you think? Would you consider it a good idea? Would you volunteer?
Is anyone up for infrastructure (preferrably on ruby-lang.org, though
anywhere is good)?

I would be interested, but I think it would depend on the adoptee not
just the adopter. I would not want to end up being the fount of
knowledge and turn into a crutch for the adopted person.


#4

Well, to potential adoptees we can only offer the service…

But I think many would gladly accept.

Aur S.


#5

Well, until further notice (and please read this thread to the end to
check
that further notice wasn’t issued), I will coordinate this personally.

Any newbie who thinks he would benefit from such tutorship should mail
me
and will probably get ME as a tutor.

If I’m too swamped I’ll ask Logan, and anyone else who volunteers, to
take
some new ones (and redirect them by email).

Just a very temporary solution.

Aur S.


#6

Well, it sound like apprenticeship or something like a pupil to a
teacher.

I guess mentors have the responsibility of being patient and newbies
have
the responsibility of being eager to learn.


#7

SonOfLilit wrote:

Well, until further notice (and please read this thread to the end to check
that further notice wasn’t issued), I will coordinate this personally.

Any newbie who thinks he would benefit from such tutorship should mail me
and will probably get ME as a tutor.

If I’m too swamped I’ll ask Logan, and anyone else who volunteers, to take
some new ones (and redirect them by email).

I think this is a fabulous idea.

OK, I am also in if Logan will get swamped, too :slight_smile: I am far from being
a Ruby pro myself, but I guess I know enough (and still learning
everyday) to show the way to newbies…
I have learned a lot by answering some simple to semi-advanced questions
on the ML so I guess to have a ‘personal newbie’ could help a lot
(because of similar reasons)

We (the adopters) could maybe even share our experience and pull out the
most frequently asked questions and compile them into a ‘newbie kickoff
FAQ’ or something.

Cheers,
Peter
__
http://www.rubyrailways.com :: Ruby and Web2.0 blog
http://scrubyt.org :: Ruby web scraping framework
http://rubykitchensink.ca/ :: The indexed archive of all things Ruby.


#8

Hmm.

I’ve just received private email from a volunteer, who is (self
proclaimed)
good enough to cover the basics (which is great and what we need here),
but
would also like it if someone would adopt /him/.

First, please send these mails to the list. That is what will generate
interest and hopefully turn this into more than an email-coordinated
project.

Second, when I think about it, I’d also be glad to be adopted (once
Calculus
is over and I have time for my Ruby project again). Tutoring is
something
that would work even better for those who know their stuff but aren’t
too
strong on code foo.

Would any of the Ruby masters on this list be interested in mentoring
more
advanced users on their projects?

Here, by the way, I can think of perhaps demanding that those projects
are
open-source and benefit the community (also I hope not, since mine isn’t
and
won’t be for now).

Aur S.


#9

You don’t need to be a pro.

I’m not.

The questions these… adopters… shoudl answer are those too
simplistic to
have the whole list look at them, and giving a direction on implementing
something.

If there’s interest, I have permision from Semantha to quote the
discussion
that led to this. It was mainly showing her a lighter way to do
something
she was going, IMHO, too heavy about. In the process she learned stuff
about
YAML and that Hash is general (it turns out too many Hash examples are
only
symbol => symbol).

Aur S.


#10

On Feb 14, 2007, at 3:31 PM, SonOfLilit wrote:

First, please send these mails to the list. That is what will generate
interest and hopefully turn this into more than an email-coordinated
project.

I like this movement and want to see it be successful, but I think
swamping the list with a match-up service is the wrong idea. I
believe it’s time to consider providing an external where parties on
both sides can express interest.

James Edward G. II


#11

Indeed.

I asked for the volunteers to post to-list. That is also temporary.

Newbies should post directly to me (until someone sets up a matching
service).

Unfortunately, I do not have the resources to set up such a service and
that’s why I asked in the first post if someone volunteers to.

In the meantime, I am your humble neighborhood match-up service.

James, do you have time to adopt a more experienced user or two
yourself?
It’s not a very active position, just an email of advice once in a
while.

Aur S.


#12

On Feb 14, 2007, at 3:47 PM, SonOfLilit wrote:

James, do you have time to adopt a more experienced user or two
yourself?
It’s not a very active position, just an email of advice once in a
while.

I will consider it.

James Edward G. II


#13

On 2/14/07, SonOfLilit removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

All of this has brought me to think of an Adopt-a-newbie model. Somehow,
every newbie that wants would get an email address of a volunteer from
ruby-talk, with whom he can correspond personally and who will answer his
basic questions and serve to also encourage him to keep learning.

OOH! I want a newbie!!

Seriously, this sounds pretty cool. I’m lucky enough to write Ruby
all day long for my day job, and I could probably help some other
people out quite a bit I think.

Pat


#14

Thank you.


#15

On Feb 14, 12:54 pm, “Pat M.” removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

all day long for my day job, and I could probably help some other
people out quite a bit I think.

Pat

I’m a newbie willing to be beaten …ahh…helped by a more
experienced user. :slight_smile:

I’d also willing provide time to a super brand new person wanting
install help and ruby basics.

What do we do next?

James’ idea about moving this offlist has merit.

Mike B.


#16

I’m currently hand-spamming a few users at ruby-talk that lately started
a
thread that I think any of the regulars here could answer easily, about
this
thread.

I hope they don’t regard it as what it is - spam - but instead think -
like
me - that it’s an opportunity for a more fun and more straightforward
learning experience.

I also hope I’m not insulting anybody by calling them a newbie when it
is
undeserved (also I see no harm in this name myself).

Aur S.


#17

Sign me up!
Anyone who wants to email me with questions feel free.
removed_email_address@domain.invalid


#18

SonOfLilit wrote:

All of this has brought me to think of an Adopt-a-newbie model. […]
What do you think? Would you consider it a good idea? Would you volunteer?
Is anyone up for infrastructure (preferrably on ruby-lang.org, though
anywhere is good)?

I very much like the idea, but I would like to mitigate a little the
points of view given so far. True enough, some newbie questions are
recurring and sometimes a little heavy on the list. But it often happens
that a newbie question triggers a whole bunch of completely different
answers on the list - and I’ve learned many tricks from ‘newbie’
questions, though I hardly consider myself a newbie anymore. That would
be a pity to deprive ruby-talk reader from this interesting threads.

To prevent that, why not change slightly the role of the ‘mentor’ : if
I understand right, an important part of the problem is about
self-censorship. So if the ‘mentor’ could act as a ‘censor’ (sorry, my
English is not that great and I can’t come up with a more neutral term)
and redirect the newbie to the list when he/she thinks that it is likely
to trigger a rich thread ?

Just my 2 cents…

Vince


#19

But of course!

This doesn’t come to rid the list of discussions.

This comes to allow discussion on smaller details in a more comfortable
manner.

You know… Like when you ask the programmer next to you something over
his
shoulder while he is programming.

It also comes to have someone the newb can discuss program design with,
as
that is something that is hard to embody in a single list question.

Having one person familiar with what you are doing is sometimes superior
to
having ten experts, especially if they have other things to do.

Of course, interesting discussions should still go to ruby-talk. And if
I’m
predicting correctly, this will spawn MANY interesting discussions (as
that
is what cognitive resonance does).


#20

As a newb wishing to be helped, please email me directly. That would
take
load off the list.

I still prefer volunteers to post on-list so we can see the scale of
this.

Aur S.