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Ken Fox wrote:Of course the other thing that happens is that someone will ask a repetitive question, and the more experienced site members either won't bother to read it, or if they do, won't respond to it. A common reaction, which I have frequently as do many others, is not to bother expending the time or effort to respond because the topic has already been covered ad infinitum, plus it has become "boring." Often, all it takes is to see the subject line to know you don't want to click on the thread. Then what happens sometimes is that people who don't really know much will respond, often with misinformation. Since the regular participants have already written off that thread, they don't even read the responses, which can be full of errors. So the person asking the question, who did not take the initiative to read the FAQs or use the search function, actually ends up getting misinformation.
Under the circumstances, the OP would have been better off with either no responses, which might have motivated him or her to look over the FAQs or to do a search, or, if someone is kind enough to point them to earlier threads discussing the issues raised.
The worse possible outcome for that new poster is to get misinformation, however that happens here and elsewhere with some frequency. The person posing the question can then think that this is a very friendly place, which it is, however they would have been better off getting the right answers to their questions, however given, than to be coddled with misinformation.
mitch236 wrote:I agree that it is far worse to get mis-information than no answer at all. I know Dan goes to great lengths to point querries to the appropriate threads which helps offset mis-information. There are also enough knowlegable users that can "correct" mis-information so even if you skip the thread, hopefully someone else will catch it. Ultimately, I think we can all agree that there is no perfect solution. This forum is much like school. We newbies are like the clueless freshman asking where the bathroom is and hoping you upperclass give the right answer. Its hard for someone capable of teaching differential equations to teach someone how to add but if nobody takes the time to teach new students (or worse if some clueless person teaches incorrectly), we would run out of scholars eventually. We need to continue to invest in the newbies because one of them may become a pioneer someday.
I was about to post this when I read Jim's post above. Jim said what I tried to say, although much more efficiently!
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I am grateful for this board. It's quite an education. And, so far at least, my ignorance has been met with patience and gracious instruction and advice. I've felt comfortable just jumping in and asking because of what I perceive to be a "kind" tone here. I'd also add that this thread is indicative of this. And I'm grateful as well that I have missed the more aggressive posts so far.
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As someone very new to this site, I have found it very helpful and have not been put off by people expressing dissenting opinions in the threads. As others have said before me, the overall tone has been far more pleasant than several other places I have been. My initial query was regarding an issue covered elsewhere, that I had not found, and no one implied that I was somewhat lower than pond scum and needed to wake up and smell the coffee. I appreciate the opinions expressed on this site and the wealth of technical information offered. While some things are covered in far more detail than I have use for now, it is nice to know that if the need arises home-barista is a reliable resource.
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Somewhat like espresso itself, I have become addicted to this site. Rarely a day goes by without my spending some time here. The things I have learned here have certainly contributed to my growing fascination with espresso. But I don't contribute much to HB. I guess I don't yet have the confidence to do so. When I have a question, I ask it and almost always get an answer that is helpful. Only once, when I was new to roasting and thought my coffee smelled bad did I get a response that set me back a bit. But, I stuck with it - tried to be more specific and use terms that others use and I got a better sense of what might be wrong. In the end, I think I must have had a cold or something because the coffee ended up pretty good. And, I think my roasts compare very favorably with the coffees I get from the pros. My journey has been a pretty fast one. A year ago, I was still using a steam espresso maker. I progressed to a Gaggia Baby Twin (which, by the way I am very satisfied with and now use as my travel machine) with a Gaggia MDF grinder. I had such a hard time convincing myself to spend all that money on a grinder. But, it wasn't long before my readings here and at CG convinced me to get a much bigger grinder on e-bay This Pietro T-80 was actually cheaper than the Gaggia - I know, I should have started there. The folks here helped me figure out how to clean it up and replace the 63mm burrs. Then, 6 months after buying the Gaggia, I sprang for a Mini-Vivaldi. I love it. And, of course, I couldn't be satisfied with the very good coffee I could get from the many roasters available on line. I bought from Paradise, Metropolis, Intelligentsia, Counter Culture, PT's, to name a few. But I also started a journey on home roasting. I have a rotisserie basket that I use on my Weber gas grill, 2 popcorn poppers, and I just roasted a pound of Sweet Maria's Costa Rica Herbazu Yellow Honey in a copper lamp on my Weber charcoal kettle. Actually, my wife had this lamp that was made from an old copper kettle, but the lamp was always a little unsteady. The kettle wasn't really made to be a lamp. It was destined to be a coffee roaster. So, I bought a piece of copper and had a friend cut 3 pieces for me and bend them for stirring vanes inside the pot. I secured the lid with springs , drilled holes to accommodate the spit and, voila! - an excellent coffee roaster. No one could have convinced me a year ago that I would be spending this much time and money on coffee. One last thing, yesterday, I visited Theta Ridge in South Bend. I was so pleased to find a local supplier of green beans. They gave me a tour of their warehouse and I was quite impressed. They have a nice big selection and good prices. I picked up several Brazils, some espresso blends and some Costa Rican while there. I seem to have got a little off track, but my point is, I have learned much from HB. Without all of you, I would still be drinking an expensive coffee from the supermarket, made in a steam espresso maker. I'm happy with that. As for my wife, she misses her lamp.
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This is one for husbands to remember -- "it was destiny, honey"bean2friends wrote:Actually, my wife had this lamp that was made from an old copper kettle, but the lamp was always a little unsteady. The kettle wasn't really made to be a lamp. It was destined to be a coffee roaster ...