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posted by mattie_p on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:35AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the not-kim-jung-un dept.

I can no longer sustain the level of activity needed to run SoylentNews, and so I have resigned as leader.

In the end, I was literally begging people to step back and let the site "just run" for a few days while I caught up... alas, to no effect. Issues must be resolved "right here and right now" continuously throughout my day with no end in sight.

NCommander has taken over as project lead - he has access to everything from the registrar down. I understand he has a different vision for the project, which will soon be revealed.

I'm sorry to leave like this, but there's really nothing for it. I'm going back to my AI studies, which happen at a more leisurely pace.

John Barrabas

(And yes, this was an amicable transfer of power. There's no hard feelings on my side.)

[Ed. Note: this is a word for word article based on Barrabas's journal entry.]

Related Stories

On John's Departure ... 152 comments

As many of you have already read, John Barrabas resigned as head of SoylentNews, and I've taken over in his place. Many people who are not involved in Staff were likely blindsided on this, and the community itself deserves to have an understanding of the reasons and events leading up to this. This post exists to set the record straight.

I would like to make it clear, especially in hindsight, that the events leading up to this were not pretty, and that no one involved came out smelling like roses. Mistakes were made all around, tempers were lost, and to be frank, at times, I've conducted myself in a way that was not professional.

In the end, the changeover was amicable, and John and I are still on speaking terms with each other. This isn't intended as a bashfest, but rather as explanation to the community (along with those staff who were not directly involved) of why and how this change came about.

NCommander Adds: Staff logs and copies of the email have been posted to my journal. Links included below.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by wjwlsn on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM

    by wjwlsn (171) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM (#11670) Homepage Journal

    Here we go. This kind of thing just a few weeks in is not really confidence-inspiring. Please don't fuck this up, people.

    Sorry to see you go, Barrabas.

    --
    I am a traveler of both time and space. Duh.
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Popeidol on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:23AM

      by Popeidol (35) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:23AM (#11708) Journal

      Ncommander is a switched on guy. I don't know what he's planning on doing differently, but I'm confident he'll be making good choices.

      It's sad to see you go, Barrabas. It's hard to see everything going on from here, but the last few weeks must have been hectic. If you can, call this a 'sabbatical' rather than leaving, and maybe come back in a quieter role when things have calmed down?

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by NCommander on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:41AM

      by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:41AM (#11717) Homepage Journal

      The situation was somewhat more complicated, and I had hoped to have a post already up about the change before Jon's resignation went up. Unfortunately, due to the fact that I'm current in China for work for the next week, timezones are working against me. I'm planning on using my lunch break to get something drafted, and posted by my end of day today (which will be close to morning for the states, and afternoon for Europe).

      The community needs to be able to clearly see what's going on behind the scenes, and up until now, various issues have prevented that from happening. While I won't go into detail here, please note that the hand over was indeed amicable, and I hope to have a full post with a proposed mission statement, future steps, and our future coming by this weekend. While Jon and I have differing ideas on how specific aspects were handled, the underlying goal remains the same: to be the best news site for technical news on the internet, who's run by the community and not simply another site with an "audience".

      I had hoped Jon had remained with the project, and I wish him the best.

      --
      Still always moving
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by dyingtolive on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:19AM

        by dyingtolive (952) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:19AM (#11766)

        It's a very worrying thing to read, but (I hope) we all still hope the best for you and the site. I know I'll still be logging in a week from now.

        Don't cock it up then. :P

        --
        Don't blame me, I voted for moose wang!
      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by omoc on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:16AM

        by omoc (39) on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:16AM (#11829)

        Please dial down on the community fragmentation that was discussed elsewhere (youtube, forums and so on). In order to get the /. feeling right we need a more consistent interaction.

        Let me know when you're in Shenzhen or Hong Kong, I'll invite you for a beer ;)

        • (Score: 2) by Open4D on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:00PM

          by Open4D (371) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:00PM (#12128) Journal

          My take [soylentnews.org] on the fragmentation claims is that we have to bear in mind the difference between this and the old site. Both have a main community of readers & commenters. The difference comes in the people who are giving up their time to take care of the running of the site.

          On Slashdot there were just a handful of people (Taco, CowboyNeal, Timmy, Samzenpus, etc.) doing that job, and the main community had little visibility of what was going on between them. Private IRC? Maybe even telephone calls!

          Here there are far more people involved behind the scenes. I like the fact that I could get involved if I had time. But I don't. It doesn't bother me that they organize themselves using phpBB forums, IRC, etc.. Because I know that the stories and the comments will always be here on the main site.

          (And the You Tube thing was just a marketing/feedback exercise. I have no interest in it, but there's no reason it should detract from the stories and comments on the main site.)

      • (Score: 1) by CoolHand on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:48PM

        by CoolHand (438) on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:48PM (#11884) Journal

        Thanks for the info NCommander! It sounds like we are still in good hands.

        --
        Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job-Douglas Adams
    • (Score: 0, Troll) by TWiTfan on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:48PM

      by TWiTfan (2428) on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:48PM (#11920)

      Here we go. This kind of thing just a few weeks in is not really confidence-inspiring.

      It's the Linux distro bullshit all over again. Some thin-skinned pussy gets all pissed-off about some bullshit little thing and does a fork. Then, being a thin-skinned pussy, he immediately gives up on the fork the second someone criticizes him or doesn't sing his praises.

      Let's hope that we eventually get to someone running this who isn't a thin-skinned pussy who gives up the first time someone questions his genius. Otherwise it WILL fail.

      --
      If real life were like D&D, my Charisma score would be a negative number
      • (Score: 1, Flamebait) by TWiTfan on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:54PM

        by TWiTfan (2428) on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:54PM (#11925)

        BTW, I put that first line in quote tags. But Soylent, unlike Slashdot, doesn't recognize html tags if you choose the plain old text option. And if you choose html, you have to put in goddamned paragraph tags because it doesn't recognize returns. The number of little annoyances like this (along with the missing D2 options), are also not exactly confidence-inspiring.

        --
        If real life were like D&D, my Charisma score would be a negative number
        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:03PM

          by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:03PM (#12167) Journal

          But Soylent, unlike Slashdot, doesn't recognize html tags if you choose the plain old text option.

          I'm posting this using the Plain Old Text option, and I thing my post conclusively proves that your claim is wrong.

          --
          The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by unitron on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:43PM

        by unitron (70) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:43PM (#11954) Journal

        I've got mod points right now, but unfortunately there's no -5, Jerk rating available to apply to the above.

        --
        something something Slashcott something something Beta something something
        • (Score: 1, Troll) by TWiTfan on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25PM

          by TWiTfan (2428) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25PM (#11982)

          Turns out there isn't one for "Man up, pussy!" either.

          --
          If real life were like D&D, my Charisma score would be a negative number
          • (Score: 2, Insightful) by etherscythe on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:35PM

            by etherscythe (937) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:35PM (#12034) Journal

            I will just note that your sig is particularly apt right now.

            --
            "Fake News: anything reported outside of my own personally chosen echo chamber"
      • (Score: 1) by marcello_dl on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:51PM

        by marcello_dl (2685) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:51PM (#12077)

        Your comment sucks.

        Now, don't give this thread up in perpetuity, or you're a thin-skinned pussy, according to the criterion you set yourself.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Reziac on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM

    by Reziac (2489) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM (#11671) Homepage

    ...and hope we'll see you around.

    I think that's a good point, tho: Guys, just step back and let the site develop at its own pace. Fix bugs when you can, but don't stress over 'em. There's no rush. Don't burn yourselves out fixing shit instantly if not sooner.

    And please don't burn us, the so-far happy contributors, with a bunch of changes. Obviously nothing is TOO terribly wrong or the site wouldn't be growing at such an astonishing pace.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by edIII on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:50AM

      by edIII (791) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:50AM (#11676)

      Maybe it was that guy complaining about the 90's print icon? We should find him and drag him into the street ;)

      Yes, I think you are correct. I'm sure there are a lot of bugs, and many improvements we can make. However, maybe it's time for all the developers and those involved to take a break?

      You've earned it guys, and for one am extremely happy with the site so far. Bugs and all.

      Don't burn out. We're happy. Go party.

      --
      Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
      • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:43AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:43AM (#11823)

        Perhaps the AI project is to build self aware slashcode...

      • (Score: 1) by enharmonix on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:48PM

        by enharmonix (1891) <enharmonix+soylentnews@gmail.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:48PM (#11958)

        I'm sure there are a lot of bugs, and many improvements we can make.

        Considering most of the new users came from /., there should be a fair number of programmers here. I've seen other sites that closely resemble /. come and go, and given the emphasis on FOSS on that site, I can only conclude the code is open source. SN could always make the code more prominent and try to get the community involved. This early in the game, I'm sure people would be happy to help.

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by blackpaw on Friday March 07 2014, @02:17AM

      by blackpaw (2554) on Friday March 07 2014, @02:17AM (#12402) Journal

      Word. As far as I'm concerned the site is perfectly functional now - sure there are always improvements that could be made, but nothing that couldn't wait indefinitely.

      • (Score: 1) by Reziac on Friday March 07 2014, @04:09AM

        by Reziac (2489) on Friday March 07 2014, @04:09AM (#12476) Homepage

        Yeah, in fact I'm hard pressed to point at anything that's a critical bug, or even a proper nuisance (trivial bug is the best I can do). I'm rather impressed considering the sordid tale of beating slashcode into submission.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by edIII on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM

    by edIII (791) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:46AM (#11672)

    Well I for one am sincerely grateful for what you have done so far.

    Without you, I would be relegated to being an audience member on some scum sucking corporate site, forced to use an interface wholly designed to shove more marketing down my throat.

    Your efforts have allowed me to enjoy everything that Slashdot was, and indeed, we may experience everything it was all over again. Rarely do you get to relive something like that, and it's appreciated.

    Thank You.

    --
    Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by Ethanol-fueled on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:16AM

      by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:16AM (#11698) Homepage

      Seconded. This place is doing fine, and all bitchers and moaners can do is complain that somebody offered them a far superior alternative to what they were bitching about before this place even existed. Fuck the bitchers, they will be troll-bombed relentlessly.

      I will avenge you!

      • (Score: 4, Funny) by Common Joe on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:17AM

        by Common Joe (33) Subscriber Badge <common.joe.0101NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:17AM (#11764) Journal

        By Grabthar's Hammer, I will avenge you!

        FTFY.

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by dj245 on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:29PM

        by dj245 (1530) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:29PM (#12225)

        In my line of work, complaints are common and customers ask for a lot of things they will never get. Heck, if we gave them everything they wanted, we would sell industrial equipment for $1 with a 100 year warranty and 24/7 support. There comes a point when the thing your doing is basically good enough, it works fine. When that happens you have to weigh the cost of doing X against the cost (in goodwill or loyalty) of not doing X. Take it easy, the site basically works and things can be fixed in due time.

    • (Score: 2) by EvilJim on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:27AM

      by EvilJim (2501) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:27AM (#11712) Journal

      hear hear, Thanks Barrabas

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by zeigerpuppy on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:44AM

      by zeigerpuppy (1298) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:44AM (#11850)

      I second that, thank you for all the hard work. I am sure that this site will develop and shift over time but that's actually part of a viable community of contributors.
      To the new lead... Keep it real!

    • (Score: 2) by tfbb on Thursday March 06 2014, @10:51AM

      by tfbb (3060) on Thursday March 06 2014, @10:51AM (#11866)

      +1 from my side. good luck with your ai project, hope to see you around.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by EventH0rizon on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:48AM

    by EventH0rizon (936) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:48AM (#11673) Journal

    Thanks for your hard work John. Very much appreciate the site.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:50AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:50AM (#11677)

    Thank you for your hard work, Barrabas. Good luck with your studies.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by mcgrew on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:51AM

    by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:51AM (#11679) Homepage Journal

    I certainly hop you remain part of the S/N community. something special has been started here, please stay part of it.

    --
    Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by jt on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:12AM

      by jt (2890) on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:12AM (#11811)

      Agreed. A number of competing Slashdot alternatives have started, but this one seems to have taken off and reached the critical mass needed to sustain a community, so must have been doing _something_ right!

      Maybe taking a break before getting involved again is the best thing. Taking a broader view helps too. One thing that experience teaches is that users are often whining pricks who never appreciate what others do for them, and that issues which 'must be dealt with immediately' can usually wait indefinitely.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by fleg on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:53AM

    by fleg (128) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:53AM (#11681)

    "Issues must be resolved "right here and right now" continuously throughout my day with no end in sight."

    examples, of these issues, would be interesting.

    were they of the form "if this doesnt happen now, the site goes down"?

    or more like "so which colour is it? red or green!"?

    and also, thanks for getting things this far.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:11AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:11AM (#11696)

      People have jobs, maybe school, children, other responsibilities.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by ancientt on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:53AM

      by ancientt (40) <ancientt@yahoo.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:53AM (#11724) Homepage Journal

      There is a chance that the parent comment could be construed to mean "I question whether this decision was justified" but I think we all respect how much effort, passion and time John has poured into this project. I absolutely trust that he put a lot of thought into this decision and I think we can all respect what he has done. I think we can also still hope that it doesn't need to happen again. Kudos to John for being able to handle this transition smoothly without demanding his ball and just going home.

      Earlier today I had typed a comment into my IRC client but decided not to post it to the room in the end, but perhaps this is the place and now is the appropriate time to share it.

      Delegation of work is critical to a project of this size. There are so many people who have input and needs, I think it may be too much to handle even for a dozen project leads. I propose that delegation be pushed further down to teams. I would like to see teams created by each of the project leads so that groups of 10 to 30 people have a place to contribute input for discussion and that each team leader submit no more than a couple of recommendations per day. We can have teams reporting to teams if necessary so that the project leaders at the top only get a few well thought out things to work on at a time.

      I'd be happy to be on a team that reports to a team that reports to the team that reports to the lead developers. That would put me at a level with 1,000 to 27,000 other people who are coming up with 30 or so discussion points per day. Those results could then be limited to maybe 3 suggestions per lead developer per day. If that's still too much, add another level so that we have 270,000 potential contributors who are resulting in only a few issues for the lead developers per day.

      1. Lead - 3 ideas to discuss per day (Say 10 people)
      2. Alpha team - invite only team created by each lead developer (100 people, 10 groups, each reporting to one lead)
      3. Beta teams - invite only by Alpha team members (1000 people in 100 more teams, each reporting to one Alpha)
      4. Gamma teams - invite only teams by Beta members (10,000 people, 1000 teams each reporting to a Beta
      5. Delta teams - open to anyone to join where teams aren't full (100,000 people, 10,000 teams reporting to Gammas)

      That accounts for 111,110 contributors resulting in 3 ideas per lead developer per day. Maybe we don't need that many layers, maybe we need more. I'm just trying to get the idea out there for a way to give everyone a place for input without overwhelming the people doing the critical work.

      If it would be a better system than IRC, I'd also be open to checking in on team1411.soylentnews.org to participate in the discussions of my particular team in the format we all came here for.

      If we need the developers to have more time to work on each idea, then let them solicit two apprentices each to assign work to. I'm not really picky about exactly how the work gets filtered or who handles the decisions, I just hope that we can find methods of making progress at a pace the people doing the work are comfortable handling.

      --
      This post brought to you by Database Barbie
      • (Score: 1) by fleg on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:24AM

        by fleg (128) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:24AM (#11740)

        "There is a chance that the parent comment could be construed to mean "I question whether this decision was justified""

        just to be clear then, that was not at all my intention.

        just curious as to what the issues were.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM (#11757)

        Great idea. Straight out of history.

        Exodus 18:14 - 26 And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to the people, he said, What is this thing that thou doest to the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even? And Moses said unto his father in law, Because the people come unto me to enquire of God: When they have a matter, they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws. And Moses' father in law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone. Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God: And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do. Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens: And let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee. If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace. So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father in law, and did all that he had said. And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves.

        I feel confident this comment will not be taken well, but the idea is a good one.

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:33AM

          by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:33AM (#11817) Journal

          I feel confident this comment will not be taken well

          Why? Just because it quotes the bible? Note that the quoted text does not even claim the idea being coming from god, but from Moses' father in law. So yes, independent of what you think of the bible or religion, the text documents that people had that idea already in ancient times (I think there's no question that the bible texts are old), because someone must have had the idea back then, or it could not have been written down.

          --
          The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by gringer on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:31AM

        by gringer (962) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:31AM (#11792)

        A social news website doesn't need 100,000 people for the day-to-day running and operation.

        • (Score: 1) by ancientt on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:32PM

          by ancientt (40) <ancientt@yahoo.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:32PM (#12065) Homepage Journal

          It certainly doesn't, but if you have 100,000 people trying to contribute everyday, and you care about their opinions then you need to have a way to give them a place to be listened to. Hopefully it doesn't take measures as exaggerated as what I described, but I wanted to describe something that could handle even that level of input.

          --
          This post brought to you by Database Barbie
      • (Score: 2, Informative) by gottabeme on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:01PM

        by gottabeme (1531) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:01PM (#12005)

        SN doesn't need more ideas. It needs time for people with the know-how to do their thing.

        What do we need ideas for? We have Slashcode. We have stories. We have comments. We have a long list of minor improvements to make.

        We certainly don't need a 5-level pyramid with 111,110 people submitting ideas. Good grief.

        We don't need more ideas! What we need is for people to stop sending ideas and just shut up and use the site!

        • (Score: 1) by ancientt on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:47PM

          by ancientt (40) <ancientt@yahoo.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:47PM (#12076) Homepage Journal

          Whether SN needs more ideas or not, it has them and along with demands from people who want to be listened to.

          We do need ideas though, ideas about how to fix the issues that necessarily come with the level of use it is already seeing. Ideas about how to fix dependencies on Mod_Perl for example or how to modify the code to allow customized styles without breaking the existing preferences. Maybe they don't need them at this particular moment, and maybe some of them aren't best addressed by the developers doing the work right now, but that's kind of the point. There are ways to give people a way to contribute successfully to something they care about without getting in the way.

          I certainly doubt that we need a 5 level pyramid, but using an exaggerated example sometimes makes it easy to see a benefit when the real numbers aren't handy.

          Like it or not, this site wasn't created to serve an audience. It is all about interactive discussion and with the community that has formed around it comes the problem of giving that community the outlet for discussion they crave, even if it means doing something a little differently than traditional sites have done. After all, that's kind of the point.

          --
          This post brought to you by Database Barbie
    • (Score: 1) by neagix on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:46AM

      by neagix (25) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:46AM (#11801)
      Good point.

      In the beginning I was proposing to use a tracker for project-level issues; although more paperwork would be needed to get stuff done, the benefit is that as a project manager one can set priorities, group them by their dependencies and milestones and have a better peace of mind at tracking the status of them.

      Any tool can be abused, but without tools like this - this is what you get!
      I am really sorry to see Barrabas go, I hope he will join back in due time
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by tomp on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:56AM

    by tomp (996) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:56AM (#11684)

    Sorry to hear this. Nothing needs to be fixed *right now*. Some people just need to hear that. I'm sad that some squeaky wheels made this not fun for you. Those people are not what makes a community strong and following their wishes will not make us stronger.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:38AM

      by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:38AM (#11819) Journal

      Sorry to hear this. Nothing needs to be fixed *right now*.

      Well, whatever made John Barrabas resign probably should be fixed *right now*.

      But other than that, I agree. There are certainly many things at the site which could be improved. But there is very little which really needs to be improved, and absolutely nothing which needs to be improved right now.

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by gottabeme on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:06PM

        by gottabeme (1531) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:06PM (#12010)

        "Well, whatever made John Barrabas resign probably should be fixed *right now*."

        Unfortunately, you can't fix stupid. (I don't mean him, I mean the people who wouldn't just shut up and be patient. Sometimes the Internet really just stinks. It's so dehumanizing that people treat others like slaves.)

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by TheRaven on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:22PM

      by TheRaven (270) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:22PM (#11943) Journal

      Nothing needs to be fixed *right now*.

      This can't be repeated enough. Is Soylent perfect? No. Will it become perfect as a result of anyone working themselves to death? Definitely not. Most of us put up with the kind of bugs in this version of Slashcode in the other place for about a decade. Yes, we bitched and moaned about it, but we kept coming back because it's the community, not the horrible pile of unmaintainable Perl with some really crappy CSS that made us visit TOP and makes us visit here.

      --
      sudo mod me up
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by qwade on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:57AM

    by qwade (1006) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:57AM (#11686)

    As said above, echoing the same thanks for the hard work - the current site is truly an awesome achievement. And agree about not trying to fix everything all at once - Rom wasn't built in a day.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:18AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:18AM (#11701)

      Rom is built at a rate of thousands of units per day, so I'm not sure what your point is.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:23AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:23AM (#11739)

        Maybe he means ROM [wikipedia.org] wasn't built in a day?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:33AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:33AM (#11794)

        The first ROM took ages to build

        Take it as a subtle pun :-)

        • (Score: 1) by qwade on Friday March 07 2014, @01:30AM

          by qwade (1006) on Friday March 07 2014, @01:30AM (#12374)


          The first ROM took ages to build

          Take it as a subtle pun :-)

          We have a winner! ;)

          If I wanted to be pedantic it would have been "ROM wasn't designed in a day", but then it moves a bit too far from the original to be easily recognised.

    • (Score: 2) by marcello_dl on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:41AM

      by marcello_dl (2685) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:41AM (#11846)

      I suspect some of you do not actually know, so it is:
      Rome wasn't built in a day [wikipedia.org].
      Except that, as tradition goes, technically it was.

    • (Score: 2) by Grishnakh on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:19PM

      by Grishnakh (2831) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:19PM (#11978)

      What are you talking about? Rom is a Ferengi; he wasn't "built".

  • (Score: 3) by chebucto on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:11AM

    by chebucto (36) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:11AM (#11697) Journal

    Thanks for your work in setting this up. You were successful in launching the site and running the site, and I'm sorry that you are leaving. In the end though there are only so many hours in the day, and I sympathize with the choice you had to make. All the best.

    • (Score: 1) by carguy on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:21AM

      by carguy (568) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:21AM (#11704)

      Echo all of the thanks above. I've enjoyed every minute of SoylentNews from the announcement on that other news site. Hopefully, after a break you come back to bask in the fruits of your labor--perhaps as "fearless leader emeritus"? Meanwhile, the site is running fine, no urgent need to muck with any of the code.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by bucc5062 on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:16AM

    by bucc5062 (699) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:16AM (#11699)

    John,

    As a /.'er since 1999, your effort to bring back the foundation that made that site good, while keeping it fresh in today's world is something to acknowledge. So thank you.

    Now, I am confused. Just two days ago I read these great statements from you about your direction, your view of the future for S/N. Today you just walk away. Not that it matters, but that pisses me off. Leaders, innovators just don't walk way with little more then "you ask to much of me". Of course we do, that is why we follow. You started a revolt and just as it starts to catch fire you say "dude's, I can't handle the truth, take care". Bull. You knew what you were getting into, so do we, so your journal entry is lacking in being open.

    So glad you can just retreat back to your AI project, so glad you can just walk away. Better then you said nothing and faded away for being so honest you betray those who followed.

    I'll stay on. I'll help support this new site, but so close to the beginning...this was a disappointment.

    --
    The more things change, the more they look the same
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:22AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:22AM (#11705)

      He didn't start the revolt, we did when we boycotted the first stories.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Kilo110 on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25AM

      by Kilo110 (2853) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25AM (#11709)

      If he quit so early on, do you really want him to stay in a leadership position?

      • (Score: 1) by DNied on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:23PM

        by DNied (3409) on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:23PM (#11879)

        Cynical, but you do have a point.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Iskender on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:22AM

      by Iskender (470) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:22AM (#11789)

      Why does he have to throw away his life just because you call him a leader? If it doesn't work out with his life, he has no obligations to you. You're getting the service you paid for.

      Also, his task wasn't to "help support" the site. It was to support it, and that makes a big difference. I don't think we really know what he was getting into - starting a site from scratch with a lot of users in your free time requires luck at the best of times.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by bucc5062 on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:45PM

        by bucc5062 (699) on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:45PM (#11918)

        I only point out that he was a leader, in his own statements her indicated that he was "leading" this project. He had a vision, he set out goals that were defined and established by him. Those are typical traits of a leader.

        I respect what John set out to accomplish. I truly thank him for it, but my point was expressing a sense of betrayal and frankly I am sick and tired of one day reading rosy reports from on high, hearing blue birds sing from the mouth of leaders (be the CEOs, business owners, politicians, and Project Managers of start up, forked discussions sites) then the next day the same person says "I'm changing" or "we're shooting the birds" or some other shoe that drops without warning. It's like having your wife say "I love you honey" one day, then the next say "but I'm leaving you". Hits you in the gut.

        Other's, while thankful for his efforts also feel like something is missing and yes, perhaps we do have a need (if not right) to know why. John's a big boy and obviously makes his own decisions, but when you make them in the context of effecting others, it requires more then so long and thanks for all the fish.

        As to NCommander, my comment at the end was mainly to him and the others to say, I'll help support this site by continuing on with it through posting, reading, and contributing. I enjoy coming to S/N even though I feel like its a way back machine to when I started with /. back in 1999. I believe in what John did, I am just disappointed in how he abdicated his responsibilities.

        --
        The more things change, the more they look the same
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by hubie on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:12PM

      by hubie (1068) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:12PM (#11975) Journal

      Just two days ago I read these great statements from you about your direction, your view of the future for S/N.

      I think that is what has made this so jarring to some people. I don't know if there had been hints or comments on IRC or in journals (myself, I only hang out on the main page), but at least from only looking at things from the main site, this seems to have come completely out of the blue and seems very unexpected (and thus leaves one with many questions and much speculation as to what happened and why). I don't think most people can begrudge him anything because the only thing that most of us have invested over here is hope for a new community site.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:20AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:20AM (#11702)

    Put a little meat on the bone. What were the areas/things that sucked up so much of your time and energy? Was it, because you're the sole funder, every little detail/issue came your way? Didn't have enough time to promote/delegate to others running this site? Again, any specific areas that wore you down?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:38AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:38AM (#11750)

      I'll put in a guess - the guys running the site, endlessly bickering, constantly came to him to arbitrate their disputes.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by stormwyrm on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25AM

    by stormwyrm (717) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:25AM (#11710) Journal

    Frankly, I don't get why so many people out there are complaining. The site is already miles better than where most of us came from after all the misguided "improvements" that were being pushed on us, and I'm not sure what people felt they had a right to complain about. My only real personal gripe is Unicode support, but that's minor and I've managed to work around it if I really need it. Anyway, best of luck to you, John Barrabas, and I do hope you'll stick around to see how this is all going.

    いろいろお世話になってありがとうございます、バラッバスさん!またあとでよ!

    (By the way, posting Unicode text directly still does not work correctly. Apparently the only way to do it is to escape Unicode text into HTML entities, which I did with this [online-toolz.com]).

    --
    Numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate.
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by tftp on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:42AM

      by tftp (806) on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:42AM (#11821) Homepage

      Does not work with Cyrillic alphabet, unfortunately. The whole comment body disappears.

      But this is not something that I would want a project leader to burn out for. Please relax, John and everyone - the site is alive enough as it is! Thanks for the effort!

      • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:15PM

        by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:15PM (#12175) Journal

        Does not work with Cyrillic alphabet, unfortunately. The whole comment body disappears.

        БДЖ

        Seems to work quite fine with numeric entities (&#x0411;&#x0414;&#x0416;)

        --
        The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
        • (Score: 1) by tftp on Friday March 07 2014, @09:51AM

          by tftp (806) on Friday March 07 2014, @09:51AM (#12578) Homepage

          OK, thank you for the help - I figured out what the bug is. Perhaps someone should look into this, but please don't try too hard :-) Sleeping once every few days is recommended :-)

          How to recreate the bug

          Enter the following comment:
          xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx "&#1041;&#1044;&#1046;"
          It will not render in preview. Nothing will be seen at all - blank comment.

          Enter the following comment:
          xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxX "&#1041;&#1044;&#1046;"
          It will render correctly in preview.

          Note that if you use digits instead of 'x', they do not count.

          Without examining the code, it looks like there is some function that counts the characters in the comment, and it counts them incorrectly. It is wrong to not display the text in preview, even if that text (for some reason) is considered to be too short to post.

    • (Score: 1) by marcello_dl on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:02PM

      by marcello_dl (2685) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:02PM (#12210)

      XXIII litterae oportent sufficere omnibvs

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by TrumpetPower! on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:27AM

    by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:27AM (#11711) Homepage

    NCommander,

    First, thanks for stepping in front of the buzzsaw. I know we all appreciate the insane amount of work John has already done, especially the foundation he laid. Those'll be some good-sized boots to fill, and it won't be easy.

    But I'd also ask of you that now, as you pick up the reigns, you also give some attention to your own exit. If the Fates smile upon us, that won't be for quite some time, but the day will come. Best to prepare for it now so that it's not yet one element of stress at will surely be a chaotic time.

    George Washington did America a great favor when he declined the opportunity to be President for Life. Here's hoping John and you are following his model, even if only informally.

    Thanks to all,

    b&

    --
    All but God can prove this sentence true.
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by NCommander on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:16AM

      by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:16AM (#11735) Homepage Journal

      Thanks for your words of confidence. I know I'm stepping into some huge shoes, and my TODO list is large enough to crush small children. I step into this role knowing that at some point I will step out, and that others will have to take my place.

      As for matters of succession, and my eventual replacement, I hope to have a formal bylaw drafted on this for when I get the not-for-profit established.

      --
      Still always moving
  • (Score: 1) by Yog-Yogguth on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:30AM

    by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:30AM (#11713) Journal

    You have done what many wished they could do. Please come back when things calm down a little and if you feel like it, and best of luck with such a challenging study.

    I once looked at Slashcode, it looked like an abomination far beyond my comprehension. To me what you and the SoylentNews team have done is the mental (and possibly also physical) equivalent of running continuous marathons up and down Mount Everest.

    You've spent your own money, would you be comfortable with the rest of us trying to compensate you? Only if it didn't stop you from coming back in the future.

    --
    Bite harder Ouroboros, bite! tails.boum.org/ linux USB CD secure desktop IRC *crypt tor (not endorsements (XKeyScore))
    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by NCommander on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:10AM

      by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:10AM (#11732) Homepage Journal

      Novels can be written about getting slashcode up and running. We've had some contact with one of the original slashcode guys and got an apology about it :-).

      In all honestly, Slashcode is *good* at what it does, and the damn thing scales to absurd levels. If we used most other CMS systems, the hardware we're running on would have already soyled itself in ten different ways. Its a pretty damn compelling argument on *not* replacing it.

      The problem is that the other site ran on a private branch of slashcode, and the public repo was in miserable shape when we got it. For the most part, what we have now works well, but stuff that was added towards the end of the slashcode public code is in bad shape. I did a writeup about it a few weeks ago on where we stand. We've got a couple more CSS/look-and-feel fixes coming, but we're at roughly 95% of stock functionality working.

      --
      Still always moving
      • (Score: 2) by captain normal on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:49AM

        by captain normal (2205) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:49AM (#11778)

        I think what you guys have done in such a short time is awesome. I can also understand how the many hours of work and attention put in by John have led to burn-out. I do hope after he recovers from the madness that sleep deprivation causes, he will find a bit of time to stay with us and join the conversion from time to time.
        I have nothing but the deepest respect not only for John (mattie p), but all the lead team.
        Let us all take it easy on NCommander and the crew from now on. We have years to fix small bugs and add improvements. This site is up and running and already I don't miss whatever that old site was/is. We are finding nerdy stuff to post and carrying on (to me) a much more intelligent and fun conversion than I have seen in a long time.
        John, Thank you. Thank you.

        --
        “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
        • (Score: 1) by captain normal on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:44AM

          by captain normal (2205) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:44AM (#11800)

          This is a correction. Don't know why I mixed up mattie p for Barrabas (Must be over consumption of IPA), But if there is any offence, please accept my sincere apology.

          --
          “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
          • (Score: 3, Informative) by mattie_p on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:07PM

            by mattie_p (13) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:07PM (#12012) Journal

            Its cool. Mattie_p (that's me) is still involved and I will continue to do so.

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by bill_mcgonigle on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:52PM

        by bill_mcgonigle (1105) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:52PM (#11961)

        I'd encourage you guys to formally fork and put all the code up on github or similar. If it needs documentation, that can be done, but if you've implemented code fixes to obviate the need for baroque documentation, all the better.

        One of the things that let the other site go off in bad ways was how hard it was to get a competitor going on slashcode (I tried a few years ago and gave up after two evenings of little progress). It looks like you guys have finally cracked that nut, so let's not lose the knowledge. None of can say where SN will be in five years, but we have learned some structural lessons about how to keep a community news site from being taken over and destroyed. Or the converse, really.

        The biggest beneficiaries wouldn't be SN competitors, of course, but niche sites (I'm thinking of the old SlashFood, etc.) and a large community contributing code is the best an open source project can hope for.

      • (Score: 1) by Reziac on Friday March 07 2014, @02:07AM

        by Reziac (2489) on Friday March 07 2014, @02:07AM (#12397) Homepage

        I imagine the public version of slashcode was much the same as /. was some 10 or 12 years ago... and ya know what? it didn't drive anyone away. People bitched and moaned but they were still there.

        Myself, I *like* how SN looks and feels right now. I like the candy-red bars, and the way the text looks, and even with colors turned off, I wouldn't mistake SN for any other site. Everything works well enough for all practical purposes, and it works without JS or CSS and any shit browser. In fact, I think you've managed to fix something that had been lost... once again slashcode works perfectly in a browser as old as Netscape 3 (1997). I just checked.

        So no worries, man. The bugs I've seen so far have been really trivial, with no effect on functionality.

  • (Score: 1) by velex on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:31AM

    by velex (2068) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:31AM (#11714) Journal

    Just wanted to chime in and say thank you, Barrabas, for all the hard work getting the site up and running. It's sad to see you go already, and I hope you remain part of the community.

    Also a thank you to the whole team. Fwiw, everything's seemed very smooth so far from out here in the peanut gallery.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by EQ on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:35AM

    by EQ (1716) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:35AM (#11715)

    Thanks for getting things up and running - it takes a different kind of mindset to start things than it does to maintain/increase momentum from something already rolling - go rest up.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by anubi on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:39AM

    by anubi (2828) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:39AM (#11716) Journal

    I would like to express my gratitude for the work you have done to give us an alternative watering hole to jump to as the one we had for years got shanghai'd by corporate interests.

    For now, I still read and post "over there", but I know those days are numbered. One day I will try to logon over there and I will be blocked. I see it coming clear as day. Corporate people play for the buck, not for the joy of being. You ( and all the other founders of this site ) are obviously doing this as a passion for what you love, just as the rest of us provide content for the very same reason. No-one here is running around trying to nickel and dime everyone else and trying to hold everyone hostage to some law we had some bought-and-paid-for Congressman sign for us.

    I think I speak for all of us when I say "thank you" for the effort you have put in to making this site a reality, and like the others posters say, I also hope you hang around. Its nice having decent folk to talk to which share our visions of open communication and sharing. You know it as well as anyone... we techie types are in a very small minority, as most people shun techie talk like the plague, while us techies find the mass-media hyped by marketing businesses boring as hell, completely irrelevant, and a terrible waste of time.

    --
    "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:50PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:50PM (#11922)

      For now, I still read and post "over there"

      JUDAS!!

      • (Score: 2) by song-of-the-pogo on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:40PM

        by song-of-the-pogo (1315) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:40PM (#12109) Homepage Journal

        Hah, I just posted something "over there" for the first time in ages, today, and I did feel a twinge of guilt. The fact is, though, since SN has such a great community I've felt more inclined to contribute than simply observe, and that feeling has apparently spilled over into other areas. So, thanks to Barrabas and the other founders for creating something that's actually gotten me a bit out of my shell.

        Barrabas, I feel neither disappointed nor betrayed. I wish you luck in your future endeavors (the lone AI course I took was challenging enough) and I thank you for all you did to ensure the kick-off of what is, so far, a pretty nice place to be. NCommander, based on what I've "seen" of you so far both here and on IRC, I am comfortable having you take over the lead. If there's anything us lesser beasts of the community can do to aid in the continuing development of the site, let us know.

        --
        "We have met the enemy and he is us."
  • (Score: 1) by breakitdown1 on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:43AM

    by breakitdown1 (3645) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:43AM (#11720)

    Thank you for your great work. You and your team have built a beautiful website.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by prospectacle on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:49AM

    by prospectacle (3422) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:49AM (#11721) Journal

    Nothing that hasn't been said already, but for the record: I'm grateful for the all work done to get it to this point. I hope you enjoy whatever you do next.

    --
    If a plan isn't flexible it isn't realistic
  • (Score: 1) by mister_playboy on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:50AM

    by mister_playboy (2664) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:50AM (#11722)

    Thanks for what you have done for us and best wishes in the future!

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by dereismdave on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:55AM

    by dereismdave (897) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:55AM (#11725)

    You are a Firestarter. You provided the spark of motivation when we needed it most. You stoked the spark into one helluva fire. Your decision was to do this for all of us. I thank you for that. I wish you the best on all your future endeavors.

    --
    "If you aren't gonna say exactly how and what you feel, you might as well not say anything at all." - Johnny Cash
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:02AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:02AM (#11729)

    My only friend the end.

  • (Score: 1) by Hell_Rok on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:06AM

    by Hell_Rok (2527) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:06AM (#11731) Homepage

    If I ever meet you I'll make sure to buy you a beer for your hard work!

    • (Score: 2) by linsane on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:40AM

      by linsane (633) on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:40AM (#11820)

      I second that. Good luck with the project and you can be proud of what you have achieved here!

  • (Score: 2) by Appalbarry on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:18AM

    by Appalbarry (66) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:18AM (#11737) Journal

    ...that Barrabas has been hired away by Dice... or is there?? Hmmm....

    One of the truths of organizational work is that it takes a specific kind of person to jump in and launch something big. That's John, in spades.

    And how.

    It's entirely possible that the best people to move us on to the next stage are an entirely different group, with different skills and ideas.

    And if that doesn't work we'll just burn them out too!

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by demonlapin on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:28AM

    by demonlapin (925) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:28AM (#11741) Journal
    Thank you for all your hard work in making this a reality.

    I'm just a user, but I've noticed that 20 comments here has about the same insight value as 200 comments at the original site. That's a serious sign of quality.
  • (Score: 1) by AnythingGoes on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:28AM

    by AnythingGoes (3345) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:28AM (#11742)

    Thank you for getting all this setup, and really hoped that you will keep on at it, but I think we can all understand burnout ...I guess it is now up to each of us to either make this a better site or go down like other sites that shall not be named...

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by regift_of_the_gods on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:39AM

    by regift_of_the_gods (138) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:39AM (#11751)

    It's better to burn out than fade away.

    Happy trails and sar logs, John.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:47AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:47AM (#11752)

    The NSA got to him! He's fleeing for his life! We're all doomed! DOOOOOOOOMED!

    (cue the wailing and gnashing of teeth)

    Seriously, thanks for getting this started, and it takes a wise man to see that a path forward may not, after all, be for him.

    Alas, I am only a wise ass, so I will wantonly start the rumor that the exodus is due to the discovery of an order for a stone statue of Natalie Portman, nude, to be placed under an eternal waterfall of hot grits. (No, the meme will never die! It lives on! Muhahahahhahahaha!)

    Well, you had to have something to down vote amid all these comments of reasonableness and good cheer.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:23AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:23AM (#11767)
      A veritable beowulf cluster of comments of reasonableness and good cheer.
  • (Score: 1) by pbnjoe on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:49AM

    by pbnjoe (313) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:49AM (#11753) Journal

    Thank you for putting the action to the words and getting this thing going. I know I'll be doing my part to ensure SoylentNews keeps going strong and to see that your burnout is not in vain.

    Thanks Barrabas.

  • (Score: 2) by mrbluze on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM

    by mrbluze (49) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM (#11755) Journal

    Cheers John, many thanks for all the hard work you put in, and giving us all the opportunity to climb aboard this awesome project.

    --
    Do it yourself, 'cause no one else will do it yourself.
  • (Score: 1) by sea on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM

    by sea (86) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:58AM (#11756) Homepage Journal

    I and other SN community members thank you tremendously for your massive contribution! I do hope that you remain a part of the community, though. Perhaps you should take a vacation instead.

    Also, I wish you good luck in your AI studies.

  • (Score: 5, Funny) by treeves on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:08AM

    by treeves (1536) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:08AM (#11760)

    John 18:40
    They shouted back, "No, not him! Give us Barabbas!" Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.

  • (Score: 1) by Bob9113 on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:13AM

    by Bob9113 (1967) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:13AM (#11762)

    Thanks for taking a run at it, and good luck in your AI studies. I've spent some time in that realm, very fun stuff. Endless fascination and we've only scratched the surface.

  • (Score: 1) by fotonix on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:14AM

    by fotonix (2922) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:14AM (#11763) Homepage

    Getting something like this hatched and then up as an active site, virtually perfect (to the end user) from the start - is a huge achievement! Thank you Jon and the whole team! I can understand the strain such a huge project can place on one, and I second/third/Nth that studies are a priority and wish you all success in them. I hope the team take this forward one step / fix at a time. It is already awesome.

    --
    Over-thought solutions get over-engineered and miss the user's requirements.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by istartedi on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:26AM

    by istartedi (123) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:26AM (#11768) Journal

    Thank-you for your service. Barrabas and *all* of you who helped get the ball rolling, well done. Shake-ups are an inevitable consequence when something like this takes off. I don't think it's a bad sign at all. It reminds me of things like... when one of the earliest stand-up video arcade games broke down, and the owner was called in to fix it. Problem? The coin box was jammed.

  • (Score: 1) by acapulco on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:30AM

    by acapulco (1873) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:30AM (#11769)

    Well, it seems like however all of us take this event, there's no doubt it's still "an event". Good or bad, it's a call each of us have to make, but nonetheless something happened.

    I think it's good because in a sense, it means we are already a community, no? I mean, if there's this amount of comment for any event it means it's something important to a lot of people. That's cool!

    Let this be the beginning of many more hot topics to come.

    In any case, great job to everyone involved in creating this. Good bye and farewell Mr. Barrabas.

    Cheers!

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by maxim on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:31AM

    by maxim (2543) <maximlevitsky@gmail.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:31AM (#11770)

    Maximum there is always pipedot around :-)
    One thing we had proved that we won't stand our overlords fucking things around, so if for some reason something happens to soylent news (and I really hope that it won't) we can always move on.

    Best wishes and good luck to everybody, I really enjoy this site, an too will try to do some submissions when I have time.

  • (Score: 1) by internetguy on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:32AM

    by internetguy (235) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:32AM (#11771)

    Thank you Barabbas for all your hard work!
    I hope you continue to be a part of this great site which you helped get off the ground.

    --
    Sig: I must be new here.
  • (Score: 2, Informative) by SuperCharlie on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:50AM

    by SuperCharlie (2939) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:50AM (#11781)

    Having developed websites since there was websites, it is very easy to underestimate the time it takes for even 1/10th of this size project. I imagine this one is like drinking from the firehose while running a marathon. I hope the new crew keep the vision going. Godspeed and good luck.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Common Joe on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:25AM

    by Common Joe (33) Subscriber Badge <common.joe.0101NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:25AM (#11791) Journal

    Barrabas, it's sad to see you go, but (even without the full details), I can also understand. I wish you luck in your endeavors and hope to see you around both on Soylent News and the 'Net. You're a pretty good guy.

    Those who don't know me can look at my UID and know I was involved early on in Soylent News, but sometimes life and personal things get in the way. I wanted to be more involved with Soylent News than I was. I actually spoke with a friend about forking Slashdot back in October, but I knew I didn't have the energy and time reserves to do so.

    When Barrabas came along and did what he did, I was fully on board. There were and are hiccups for sure, but overall, I am pleased with what I have seen and think there is great potential here and a lot of enthusiasm to do so.

    I chatted several people up a good bit before Soylent News went live and I am impressed with NCommander. He's seems to be a pretty good guy with a good head on his shoulders and I encourage everyone to give him a fair chance. I look forward to hearing what he has to say and contributing in any way I can. I don't want to put words in his mouth, but I believe NCommander has the same concerns we all have and his intentions were to make a site superior to Beta... and he has. NCommander has been instrumental in making this site what it is, both from a technological point of view and from a leadership point of view. I am impressed with his skills and tenacity.

    There are those who are expressing concerns about the leadership and direction of the site. I think we're in good hands despite what has transpired. There are legitimate concerns about burnout. I'm sure NCommander is taking heed as to what is transpiring and keeping that in mind.

    I'm quite sure this has been a learning experience for everyone who is intimately involved with this project. It's not easy to take Slash code, fix it, and turn it into a what Slashdot was back "in the ol' days" without running into a few major snags. (Frankly, I'm surprised there haven't been more major snags because of the sudden success.) There has always been the very real possibility that it could collapse, but amazingly, it hasn't.

    I kindly suggest everyone look at the emblem in the top left corner of the page. "Soylent News is people." Barrabas was our first leader, but you and I and the thousands of other users on this site make it what it is. Even though I'm just a Common Joe, I was there a few weeks ago at the start and I watched this site come together. There was another "common joe" who put in a lot of time and effort to turn this site from an idea into reality. I look forward to working with NCommander.

  • (Score: 2) by nobbis on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:39AM

    by nobbis (62) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:39AM (#11796) Homepage Journal

    I'm very sorry to see you go, you did a difficult job with skill and wisdom, it was obvious from IRC and the comments that you were held in high esteem.
    I wish all the best with your studies, and hope you will get some time to comment or join in the chats in #Soylent.

    --
    It's easy to look up when your mind's in the gutter
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Khyber on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:58AM

    by Khyber (54) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:58AM (#11807) Journal

    Till then, we'll keep things up and running for ya! Thanks for setting it up and giving us a new home!

    --
    Destroying Semiconductors With Style Since 2008, and scaring you ill-educated fools since 2013.
  • (Score: 2) by AnonTechie on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:02AM

    by AnonTechie (2275) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:02AM (#11840) Journal

    I agree with most of the comments already posted and there is no need to repeat the things already said. I understand the pressures you were under and I am really sorry to see you leave. I have often heard that no good deed ever goes unpunished . This is a new site and it needs some time to get the kinks out of the system. So far, I am amazed at the way things have been working with all the dedicated volunteers. I sincerely hope that S/N continues to grow and become of the most influential tech forum on the Internet. John, it would be great if you would reconsider your resignation.

    Remember: A new friend is as new wine, when it is old thou shall drink it with pleasure !! Cheers to all you new friends with the hope that we will all grow old together ...

    --
    Albert Einstein - "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by bryan on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:13AM

    by bryan (29) <bryan@pipedot.org> on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:13AM (#11842) Homepage Journal

    Let's all do our best to make sure NCommander doesn't get burned out.

  • (Score: 5, Funny) by zafiro17 on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:43PM

    by zafiro17 (234) on Thursday March 06 2014, @12:43PM (#11882) Homepage

    Hi, Zafiro17 here. Barrabas and Ncommander asked me to say a word about the new vision, so here it is:

    1. There is now an IQ test administered when you sign up for an account. Below a threshold, all your posts will have the expression, "but what do I know? I'm a moron." appended to them.

    2. Henceforth, if you try to post too many things too quickly, instead of the stupid "slow down, cowboy" message, you will receive a mild, electric shock to your gonads (new technology, courtesy of jnads.js).

    3. We've decided to standardize on a color scheme somewhere in the "baby puke-old spinach" range. It helps us to pro-actively brand our site using win-win customer retention strategies by defining sectoral niches that cross-pend established paradigms and web frameworks.

    4. Starting March 15th, there will be a daily "hour of hate" in which a major tech company will be profiled and in the comments you will shower that company with abuse and expletives. We'll be starting with Oracle, because why the hell not?

    5. Monetization: all user accounts will have credit card info attached. How much we charge you per post depends on its final score. Hint: "Flamebait = $25" and "Troll = $100."

    6. No more anonymous cowards. Technology provided by the NSA (a bunch of wicked awesome perl scripts, actually - you'd be surprised what they're working with) allows us to identify you by the frequency of words you use. We'll be automatically signing your posts with links to your Facebook account, and if we don't get it 100% correct each time, hey, nice to meet you! ...

    This post is all a joke, obviously, but the "vision to be announced" thing does sound a little anonymous. Best wishes for a better lifestyle, Barrabas - I'm grateful for you getting this place on its feet. And NCommander, good luck to you! Remember, we're behind you all the way, unless you choose the wrong color scheme, in which case we will hunt you down and probably kill you, or at least drown you in a vat of mayonnaise.

    --
    Dad always thought laughter was the best medicine, which I guess is why several of us died of tuberculosis - Jack Handey
    • (Score: 2) by wjwlsn on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:44PM

      by wjwlsn (171) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:44PM (#11955) Homepage Journal

      Let' suggest these to tdk!

      --
      I am a traveler of both time and space. Duh.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:39PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:39PM (#11916)

    I greatly appreciate all you have done. Take a break, take a looong break, but please don't leave. You are part of this site, and should remain so, even if at a less stressful role.

  • (Score: 1) by Serial_Priest on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:52PM

    by Serial_Priest (2493) <accusingangelNO@SPAMautistici.org> on Thursday March 06 2014, @01:52PM (#11924)

    Even though such volunteer work might seem thankless, please rest assured that you have made many, many people happy with your efforts. The world is genuinely a better place thanks to people like you. Now go feed Natalie Portman some hot grits.

  • (Score: 2, Funny) by tempest on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:02PM

    by tempest (3050) on Thursday March 06 2014, @02:02PM (#11929)

    Thanks for your work in helping get all this off the ground.

    Also, can I have your UID?

  • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:26PM

    by Phoenix666 (552) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:26PM (#11983) Journal

    Many of us consider the risks of failure when we begin projects. Few of us consider the risks of success. It can break you as neatly as failure can. Burn out is one manifestation. But you have begun something important, something we all have been missing for some years, it having been hollowed out and scraped down at the other site. And you're doing the right thing--moving on before you collapse. Thanks for starting it, thanks for handing us the reins. We got it from here. Don't be a stranger, amigo!

    --
    Washington DC delenda est.
  • (Score: 2) by weeds on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:45PM

    by weeds (611) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:45PM (#11994) Journal

    Thank you for taking the lead on this project. How often it is said, "You don't like it, then do it yourself." You took the initiative, pulled the resources together, and made it happen. Congratulations on what you have created here. Don't stray too far and we expect to see you in the dialogs. Keep your blog going and keep us up to date. Good luck in your studies.

    Thank You,

    Jeff

  • (Score: 1) by calmond on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:57PM

    by calmond (1826) on Thursday March 06 2014, @03:57PM (#12002)

    Well, I for one welcome our new (old) supreme overlord.

    Seriously though, thanks for all the hard work - we've all gotten burned out before, so I am sure we all understand all too well what you are going through. Thanks!

  • (Score: 1) by WanderCat on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:17PM

    by WanderCat (1270) on Thursday March 06 2014, @04:17PM (#12020)

    Here's a thought:

    Write your replacement and send it back to take your place. If we can't tell it isn't you, you win!

  • (Score: 1) by resignator on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:12PM

    by resignator (3126) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:12PM (#12056)

    Best of luck Barrabas.

  • (Score: 1) by darnkitten on Friday March 07 2014, @12:01AM

    by darnkitten (1912) on Friday March 07 2014, @12:01AM (#12325)

    Thanks for all your work, and may we prosper under the new leadership.

    ---I just received notification that a sew delivery of Soylent Green is imminent.

    Coincidence?