By Shamus Posted Sunday Feb 28, 2010

Filed under: Random 17 comments

I love the idea of Formspring. Or at least, I’d love to be able to co-opt it for my use. People ask questions. You answer them. Looks like fun.

I get a lot of questions in email. Not simple, easy questions like, “Have you played Explodious 2: The Explodening?” No, it’s usually complex stuff about procedural content or DRM. Sometimes I convert the longer answers into posts here on the blog, but it’s always a little awkward to get permission to quote a private email in a public post and then to figure out which details of the email need to be edited. It also feels odd to take bits of text I sent as an email and post them here on the blog. I don’t know why, but it feels unseemly.

Formspring gives a way for people to ask publicly visible questions, but then the system sort of expects the person being questioned to put their answer on Formspring. Which, I have to admit, isn’t unreasonable. But I’d rather my answers become part of this site. What I really need – and just realized this while typing the previous sentence – is a way for people to post questions publicly. Hang on…

Okay. Done.

I made this page. I have no idea if it will help shift some of the private questions into public posts. If people find it useful, it’ll stay. If they don’t, I’ll take it down. Further suggestions welcome.


From The Archives:

17 thoughts on “Formspring

  1. Zak McKracken says:

    That is one great Idea, Shamus.

    It’s also great that you don’t outsource this stuff to Formspring, because then people’d probably have to create Formspring accounts to ask questions (haven’t quite read through the Formspring page…)


    … now I need to think of a good question to ask you :)

    PS: Damn, you can’t even get past the welcome screen without an account!

    PPS: first post, yay!

    1. Chris says:

      “Damn, you can't even get past the welcome screen without an account!”

      I think this is a deal breaker at the moment, is the site crawlable? If not it won’t get off the ground as no one will know if their questions/answers are there from Google results for example.

  2. Vladius says:

    Have you played Explodious 2: the Explodening?

    1. Shamus says:

      It wasn’t as good as the original. Not explody enough.

      1. SiliconScout says:

        true it was less explody but damn you gotta admit the explodes in there were a heck of a lot more detailed!

        AND prettier!

        AND Purple.

        1. Goliathvv says:

          But their DRM forced you to connect to the Xplà¶dsoft servers every time something exploded.

          SPOILER WARNING: My router overheated in that last nuclear explosion.

          1. ClearWater says:

            Mine exploded.

            1. Bret says:

              Explodius 3: This Time It’s Exploding. was a real step back towards quality, though.

              Shame it was a console exclusive.

              1. Explodius 3:TTIE was for PC, too, but they obviously designed it for the 360 and then ported it backwards.

                Rather like Unreal Tourney 3, COD:MW2, etc. There was no dev console, no FOV adjustment, no PC-users-take-this-for-granted features like EVERY OTHER PC FPS out there. Console-to-PC ports aren’t good. It was very explody, though, with enough explosions to make up for Explodius 2:TE.

  3. WoodenTable says:

    I just want to say that I think it’s absolutely hilarious that the first question on the question page is asking why you didn’t create a forum instead. And now I can’t stop chuckling. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a reasonable question, but that’s why it’s so funny. Well done, internet, well done.

  4. Bobknight says:

    have YOU licked a lamppost in winter?

  5. JoshR says:

    So you actually get people who want to hear MORE about DRM?

    Mean sarcastic question pointing out things you have already acknowledged aside, Is your tf2 server still running?
    I’d be tempted to give it a go, even though it may mean getting rid of this annoying trojan I have. Which would in itself involve me going to the PC repair store. My life is beginning to feel like a Bioware quest.

    1. Telas says:

      Going to the PC repair store, are ye? Can ye fetch me some mouse skins? Mine are all worn out. I’ll pay ye 20 CP for five of ’em.

    2. Jabor says:

      Unfortunately, Twenty Sided: Lawful was offline last I checked.

      Which was a shame, because it had an awesome community even when I was running around on there with 300+ ping.

  6. Brendan says:

    While you’re fiddling with site design, you could update the About The Author thing from 2007. And Best Posts, the contents of which pale in comparison to your current writing – understandable after 3 years of blogging.

  7. someboringguy says:

    Explodius: the explodening 2 doesn’t have a very good story, though.Too bad, the explosion making skill tree is cool.

  8. Nick says:

    Another site that I have to register on? No thanks.

    I like how you have to register to send ANONYMOUS questions. Maybe someone should ask them if they have a dictionary.

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