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We currently CANNOT accept bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:55 am
by Rachael
A lot of people seem to want to report bugs via Discord.

The reason why this is actively discouraged and why we direct people to the forum every time this happens is because of the ephemeral nature of what appears in Discord. To put it simply: It disappears, and is long forgotten about, before a dev has a chance to address it. And then we have to deal with the age-old complaint "but I reported it via Discord but you guys ignored me!" - no, we didn't ignore you, it was you who insisted on a medium where your message would scroll off and get forgotten.

That's not even counting the fact that the majority of GZDoom's devs do not use Discord at all.

Sure, you can scroll back, but then you're scrolling back through VERY long logs of conversations in order to get to what you want - and honestly, no dev is going to do that.

So please, report your bugs on the forum here. It's been opened to guest posting for a reason - you do not need an account to post here.

If there is enough interest, I would not be against creating a Discord bot that can create bug reports on the forum for you. But that's going to require at least a couple developers and a pretty strong communication among them - we need a developer who's able to safely manipulate phpBB's SQL database backend, and we need a developer who's familiar with Discord's API, or are able to use third-party API's to make their job easier.

Also - for practicality, if such a bot is made, I'm likely to restrict the languages it can be created in, simply so that I don't have to install extra utilities to make it work. Valid languages would be PHP, Lua, or Python. If you have an idea for another language, let us know, and we'll see about the feasibility of getting a server that supports that language working.

I'm leaving this topic unlocked, in case you guys have ideas on how you want to handle this in the future. The major problem MUST be addressed in order for this to work: There needs to be a way to put the bug reports on the forum here - period - firstly so they're all in one place, and secondly so that they don't get lost.

And lastly - because I know someone will inevitably suggest it - I am vehemently against asking a volunteer to manually do the work of the bot I proposed above, due to the fact that it creates a dependency and a void when they decide to quit. I will gladly accept the help of a volunteer who will help create the bot - but not a volunteer to do the actual bug reports on everyone else's behalf.

Re: Reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:37 am
by Graf Zahl
Another thing you did not mention:

One of the most crucial aspects of bug reporting is to be able to request feedback. The lack of feedback was the main reason to discontinue the real bug tracker and go back to the forum.
Equally important, this feedback needs to be stored close to the actual report so that it doesn't get lost if no developer finds the time to check it for several day or weeks.

Any instant messenger is the absolute antithesis to organized bug reporting. Everything gets lost in a long stream of unrelated. chatter and if you want to go back to a specific one you have to track down all the follow-ups (that is, if there were some before the message got lost.) No developer is ever going to bother with this, it costs far, far too much time and there is no guarantee that the message will even reach the person it was intended for.

Essentially it's shouting into the room "xyz does not work" hoping that you are lucky that someone who can do something about it will hear it. Chances are, nobody will hear it, for those who are there it is irrelevant so it won't even get passed on.

Even at work I have to constantly remind some colleagues to write a report in our ticketing system because just telling me is pointless, chances are I am busy with something else entirely and once that other thing is done, the 'report' is long forgotten.

Re: Reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:28 am
by Rachael
Yes, I did forget about that. To address that with the bot, the bot would also need to be able to keep track of who originally reported the bugs and send them a message anytime someone replies to their topic.

Re: Reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 10:25 am
by Major Cooke
I think it might help if this was titled "Do NOT report bugs via Discord!"

Those who take it at face value without reading it... might be encouraged to do the opposite. That's just my thoughts though. I know, we shouldn't be compensating or even need to consider that but... Let's just say my egotistical side's first reaction is "...was this inviting people to report on discord?" from the title alone.

Re: The issue with reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 10:29 am
by Rachael
Is this better?

I don't want to set in stone "don't report bugs via Discord" - that is the rule, yes, but I detailed a possible out for that rule if the problems for doing so are addressed (by a bot).

Re: The issue with reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:21 pm
by Major Cooke
Yep that's better.

Re: The issue with reporting bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:40 am
by Xaser
I think the title should straight-up say "Don't". "Maybe Later" still means "Not now" -- the title can be changed later if that bot ever happens.

Re: We currently CANNOT accept bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 2:22 pm
by printz
Rachael wrote:The reason why this is actively discouraged and why we direct people to the forum every time this happens is because of the ephemeral nature of what appears in Discord. To put it simply: It disappears, and is long forgotten about, before a dev has a chance to address it. And then we have to deal with the age-old complaint "but I reported it via Discord but you guys ignored me!" - no, we didn't ignore you, it was you who insisted on a medium where your message would scroll off and get forgotten.

That's not even counting the fact that the majority of GZDoom's devs do not use Discord at all.

Sure, you can scroll back, but then you're scrolling back through VERY long logs of conversations in order to get to what you want - and honestly, no dev is going to do that.

Isn't pinning Discord posts a solution? This is how I deal with it on Eternity; rather than telling people to keep their thoughts and move their reports to GitHub, I just pin their posts so I can revisit them later (usually months later).

Re: We currently CANNOT accept bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 2:36 pm
by Major Cooke
No one will check them. Also the server's population will make it a complete hassle and just not worth it. Furthermore, Graf doesn't go there so it especially does no one any good.

Re: We currently CANNOT accept bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 2:47 pm
by Rachael
Yeah that simply won't work for us partly for the reasons Cooke already illustrated.

The nature of our dev team serves the ideology well that everything should be in one place. It's much more organized and efficient that way.

There's another issue too, that requires us to use the forum instead: We tried a ticket tracker and what ended up happening was people would hit-and-run their reports - so they'd say something extremely vague like "renderer broken! renderer stopped working!" and then we'd never hear from them again - no vital details as to why, their hardware setups, what mods they are loading, or their settings. We're not mind readers. Yes, that happens on the forum too, but way less than it did on the tracker.

Re: We currently CANNOT accept bugs via Discord

PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2020 2:50 pm
by wildweasel
Also, one of my other Discord servers discovered that there is a limit to how many pinned messages you can have in a channel, so something with as many reports as we get on ZDoom Forums would hit that limit very quickly.