This is not something new and we are facing this issue every day! Even sometimes we also do this as well. It can be a message in a chat app such as WhatsApp, Telegram or your LinkedIn inbox, what will be your feeling when a stranger messages you with “Hi”? Yes, just a “Hi”!
Then you reply and wait for the response from the other end, most of the time you get a response the next day or later!
Let us try to learn and share some best practices for asking questions in community groups and forums.
Someone in the Ansible group: “Anyone knows about the Ansible Jinja2 template?”
(Me to myself: What the….! the group name is Ansible, what else we are discussing here then?)
Me/other group members: “Please ask your question ?” (See, still we have patience and we asked nicely)
The same someone: “Anyone can help me on Jinja2 loops?” (Again!!!)
Me/other group members: “Please post your question here!”
Do you think this is effective communication?
What if the person asks the question as follows?
Hello, my name is John. I am trying to develop a Jinja2 template in which I want to loop multiple dictionary values (as given in the following screenshots). I facing some issues when I use the dictionary values and I am not getting the correct output. Please see the playbook, template and sample variables below. Could anyone assist with this?”
Wow! If I read that chat, I will spend 5 minutes reading and understanding the issue and reply to whatever I know!
Everyone saves the time
Try to avoid the following introductions and questions as those are waste of time, be straight to the point.
Google (or any other search engine) is our best friend to find resources and answers to our questions. Try yourself first before you post the questions in a group or forum blindly; searching and finding answers is a skill, learn it.
Avoid calling “Bro”, “Sis” and so on, if the person is not close to you. Use the names or mention his/her username in the forum/group.
Avoid asking questions in other languages since 99.99% of the time, the members are from all over the world! You are free to use your mother tongue or local languages if the group is based on local languages.
It will help to understand what is your problem at a high level and also be useful for other group members to learn and understand the scenario.
How to install Ansible Automation Platform in a disconnected environment?
For the best result, learn how to ask a question in clear language and read it before you send it.
Hello, this is Sarah. I have deployed Kubernetes cluster in my personal laptop (Fedora 35) using VirtualBox and Vagrant. I am able to spinup the VMs and clusters but I am not able to connect to the cluster API from my host machine (which is my laptop). I have googled and tried some configurations but nothing helped to solve the issue.
Below is my Vagranfile and the guide/document I followed to deploy the Kubernetes cluster. Also see the error message (screenshot) shared for refernce. Could you please help with this?
For the best result,
If you have already tried some troubleshooting steps or workarounds, then mention that in the questions. The group members might be googling (on your behalf!) and sharing the link, which you might already test. So both of you can save a lot of time. If possible, explain which step of the document or guide you are facing the issue and it will help the guy a lot to focus and find answers for you.
Make sure the code snippets and error messages are included inside the question as no one can guess or assume what you are trying to achieve! Include the code, playbook, configurations or whatever stuff you are working on. When you are using instant messaging platforms, then learn how to format the snippets in the chat such as WhatsApp, Telegram etc as the formatting code will help the group members to understand the snippet well if they are reading it from mobile devices.
Cannot copy-paste the code snippets or error messages? Take a screenshot and post it! DO NOT crop the screenshots so tight as the reading will not be easy on mobile devices. Also, make sure the screenshots are clear enough for the readers to read and understand.
Warning: Remember to mask the text if there is any sensitive information such as IP address, passwords or tokens.
When someone responds to your questions, do not send a direct message to him/her! That is not the purpose of community groups and forums. Continue your chat in the group so that other members can benefit from the conversations. Also, it is not a good idea to initiate direct chat without seeking permission.
When someone asked for clarifications on your questions or when someone answers questions, remember to respond and confirm if the solution working for you. This will help the person answered (and other group members) to understand the correct solution for the scenario.
Use a human-readable and meaningful name for your account (Telegram, WhatsApp, Forums or any community group).
Instead of hearing unwanted questions, we all prefer to listen to the actual problems and details! I am trying to explain how you can ask questions in community groups or forums and some of the best practices. This is purely opinionated and based on my experience in community activities.
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