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We’re at the end of Day 5 of the new SAP Community Network (SCN), and it’s been a wild, productive, exhausting, exhilarating, and increasingly positive week.

So, What Did You Do This Week?

We achieved a major milestone in the 9-year history of SCN by migrating — after a year of planning, restructuring content, redesigning, user- and infrastructure testing — to a new, more-powerful, more-flexible, modern community platform.

The migration in the first two or three days was hairy: tons of platform performance (speed) and stability (uptime) issues, users booted-out when the system overloaded, high “user experience” challenges as everyone was simultaneously learning where’s my stuff? due to a dramatic change in navigation and labeling, and much more.  The feedback and reaction from the community members was quick, far-reaching, coming in high volumes, and devolved from curiosity to frustration to anger, with some raw emotions expressed pretty harshly.

The team was prepared for much of this, and was fully engaged from the moment we flipped the switch, working 24-hours-a-day to address questions and issues from online virtual and geographic support hubs around the world, sharing “how to” documents, recording suggestions and issues, and responding to the flood of input.

By mid-week, we saw dramatic improvements in platform performance and stability (big shout-out to our IT colleagues/partners and to our core platform vendor and consultants), and the correction of those foundational issues caused a dramatic mood shift in a positive direction, so comments and suggestions turned away from performance to labeling, navigation, and features. 

 
Extraordinary Support, Responsiveness, and Forward Progress From An Amazing Cross-Functional Team

Throughout all of this, the SCN business and IT teams continued working around-the-clock to respond to SCN member questions, concerns, comments, and suggestions.  (I’m most proud of this; our people performed admirably and reflect the affinity we have for our members and the commitment we have to this community, not through empty words and platitudes but through helpful action and selfless sacrifice delivered in a professional way.) 

Augmenting this SCN core team were hundreds of moderators, topic experts, space (topic) owners, mentors, hundreds of helpful community members, and many others.  

Now, while we have a long way to go, the underlying platform has been performing pretty well.  In addition, many, many people see the potential of new social capabilities and are excited about our future on this new modern platform and design.  (There are some, of course, who want the old, familiar SCN despite its now-forgotten flaws.)  We are moving forward!

The Challenges Were Real — And Real Ugly

I fully acknowledge, however, that we had significant problems this week.  I know that these have negatively impacted many members, and I personally apologize for the bumpy start you may have experienced in our new beginning together on a modernized platform hosting the new SCN.

The performance of the site was painfully slow at times, and some members discovered that some content (mainly discussion threads and blog images) was missing from the migration. Many members were logged out repeatedly when the system hit overload thresholds.  A variety of bugs were discovered by members (thank you for reporting them).  In general, we expected some bumps, but the experience thus far has not been as smooth as we had hoped, and this has made for a difficult transition.

twitter volume week 1 new SCN.gifThis is not acceptable, and I’m sorry for the way these issues may have impacted you. We recognize that for some, the last few days have been frustrating and your productivity has been hampered.

On SCN itself, we had a flood of comments expressing disappointment (or worse).  Here’s what the volume looked like on Twitter from influentials, from Sunday through early Friday (today), peaking with about 90 comments on Monday and calming on Wednesday (Friday is partial).

twitter sentiment week 1 new SCN.gifAnd the sentiment — while passionate throughout the week — was skewing negative on Monday/Tuesday, then took a turn for the better mid-Wednesday, and stayed relatively positive Thursday/Friday.  Overall, it leaned neutral-to-positive about the change overall, as you can see. We had 32 negative or very negative comments during the week, more than double that: 77 positive or very positive comments, and 130 neutral or informational comments.

The Teams Are Fully Engaged and Completely Committed

The SCN team has been listening to you and others from the community in our discussion forums, in blog comments, and through social media channels. We certainly heard your voices loud and clear from Sunday evening on, and fortunately the mood turned for the better on Wednesday.  After some harsh criticism, many of you are now reporting success with getting accustomed to the new site.

I’ve been known to advise colleagues, “You’ll know whether what you do really matters when you stop doing it… If no one notices, it wasn’t that important after all; however, if people scream and object and escalate, you know that what you’re doing is critical.”  We got our answer: SCN is critically important to hundreds of thousands of passionate, vocal, and outspoken members. 

And while the early-week comments stung a bit, the constructive ones are extremely helpful to us, as they highlight specific issues and bugs we didn’t find through three months of user testing with 1000 sneak-preview members, and they inform us about how you navigate, what you expect, and what you’re experiencing. This allows us to be smarter about prioritizing improvements and rectifying problems so you can use SCN as you always have — as a destination for intelligent content and a connection point to collaborate with other vibrant community members about SAP products and solutions.

Our Current Laser-Focus

We’re focused right now on fixing these issues as our highest priority big-ticket items:

  • Overall System Performance: People are coming to the site in huge numbers, and as a result, the load on the site is massive, and some user elements (search, browsing, page rendering) are suffering. We’re changing the way background tasks are performed by tuning database and caching servers. This has already shown positive results, and we are continuing to explore system enhancements.
  • Member logout: A side effect of system performance issues mentioned above, as the load on the system increases, user sessions may get switched to other systems resulting in a logged-out state.  This problem has nearly been rectified, and we are chasing down some final issues.
  • Site stability and speed: On launch day we had several unplanned outages and system restarts mainly due to poor performance.  Now that the system performance has improved, we are investigating remaining system errors which we believe may impact overall site stability.  This will likely be an ongoing task for the next several weeks.

Note: our colleague Oliver Kohl wrote a brilliant blog called “Anatomy of a Go-Live” yesterday which gives blow-by-blow account of the go-live from his perspective as IT architect watching and tuning the platform.  Be sure to read it. (And read between the lines to note the dedication he and the rest of our IT colleagues demonstrate.)

These fixes are a collaborative effort among the SCN content and collaboration teams, our internal SAP IT team, and platform partners, and at the risk of sounding like a cliché, we truly are working around the clock to identify causes and implement solutions.

The amazing support teams are also continuously engaged to aid, assist, guide.  And as more community members get comfortable in the newly upgraded site, they are helping fellow colleagues and members to find their way, access really cool features, personalize their experience, and get productive again.

getting started scroll.gif

Don’t Wait! … Help Yourself to “Getting Started” Guides and Crib-Sheets

I encourage you to take advantage of the resources we’ve created to help you use the new platform and find the content and tools you’re accustomed to using.

These were created with the notion that user behavior is an individual thing; some members are very task-oriented in how they find things on SCN, and others are more inclined to browse; some are interested in the operation and optimization of core technology, and others in broader forward-looking ideas and thought leadership. 

Irrespective of how you use the site, these videos, blogs and documents will help you find what you’re looking for:

  • IDs, passwords: our ID/password FAQ will help users who have forgotten their log-in information.
  • Get started: the documents in the Getting Started space provide everything you need to know about using the new SCN.
  • Quick tips: our “Tip In A Minute” video series will get you up and running with all the different actions you can do on the new platform – blogging, discussions, documents, your personal profile, etc. And yes, these truly are only one-minute each.
  • The essentials: the “What You Need To Know” document is a great cheat-sheet for getting most of your questions answered.
  • Accessing SCN: our FAQs on logging in and registration should be helpful for accessing the site.
  • Can’t find my stuff: if you encounter people having problems navigating around the site, it may be helpful to direct them to the discussion forum finder, the homepage locator, and the list of blog categories.
  • General support: a variety of other good support resources are in the Support space. If users have questions they can’t answer, they should start a discussion there.
  • Bugs: when a user encounters a bug (some aspect of site functionality that just doesn’t work, versus one they simply don’t like or one they’d like to put on a “wish list”), then we ask that you direct them to the Bug Reporting space. Users can log a bug by starting a new discussion thread.
  • Site operations: the “Site Operations FAQ” provides information on internal processes for stakeholders and the SCN team.
Thanks, Again, For Your Understanding, and For Your Passion, Engagement, Confidence, Support, Encouragement

I also want to note those community members who have taken the initiative to respond in discussions, blog comments, and on Twitter. Your supportive comments to the behind-the-scenes team members, and your willingness to help other SCN members is precisely why we have SCN in the first place: collaborative, helpful, engaged, collective success.

We may experience challenges of change and disruption, but we continue to be a strong, engaged community — we’re helping one another and with each step in the direction of progress, we further validate what SCN is all about. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished so far, the speed of improvement, the engagement level of the community, the professionalism and dedication of the team, and the support of our SCN community members.

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51 Comments

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  1. Paul Hardy

    Mr.Mark,

    I do not doubt how hard you are your team have been working round the clock to try and get this new site working properly. I wish you nall the best, because, as a gentleman posted nthe other day “your success is our success”. It’s so easy to say “this new thing is rubbish” – as Henry Ford once said “if I asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said ‘a faster horse’ ” – just because it is different. I once made the mistake of saying on SCN that I thought the idea of ABAP in Eclipse was good, and what a lot of personal abuse I got because of that. So, I am going to try and use constructive criticism about the new look SCN. What it needs is to be more intutive. Most of your users are SAP experts and thus good at solving puzzles and thus can most likely find what they are looking for, but does it have to be like finding the villian in a whodunnit novel? I spend most of my life writing software for people who – far from being idiots – find using computers difficult at the best of time, and are really busy, and so want to just look at the screen and work out what to do straight away. OK, you might say, it is easy to criticise, give me some pointers. Luckily there are so many good examples around. Look at any Microsoft product, and say Amazon / Facebook / LinkedIn / Skype – all these are incredibly easy to use. As a negative example look at any standard SAP transaction. At my company we spend a lot of time coding custom front ends for SAP transactions as they are far too complicated for an average person. SAP itself has belatedly realised this. That may seem a digression, but the point is the same – you have all the pieces in place for a game changing website, it is just a case of designing the launch pad such that – for want of a better word – an idiot like me can use it. Sorry if I seem negative, as I said again, I want you to succeed, then everyone wins.

    Cheersy Cheeers

    Paul

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    1. Anton Wenzelhuemer

      Paul,

      allow me one remark on your comment. We have been given such a nice editor now, which supports

      paragraphs

      and all the fancy stuff. Try to use it, it’s simple and your comments become much more readable in an instant.

      anton

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      1. Paul Hardy

        The new editor has finally started working for me. I think it is great.

        It certainly was not working when I made the above post … I did in fact split evrything into paragaphs and had even put some things in italics like the quote from Henry Ford, and some text in bold also…

        I posted this lovely formatted thing…

        BANG – all the formatting was gone and then…

        ..,. I get abuse for not formatting my post…

        …. in some senses that is rather unfair, in other senses it is hilariously funny  😆

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        1. Mark Yolton Post author

          Thanks for that, Paul. I was frustrated with the blog editor, too, as my beautiful formatting was lost. I’m glad to hear it’s back and working so we can all be more efficient and create compelling content to share here. I haven’t tried it for a week or so, but I look forward to a better experience when I do.  (Sounds like a theme… we did proclaim the new SCN ‘not the end of a journey, but a new beginning,’ and the daily improvements and adjustments are proving this true; I’m glad to see it happening in so many ways.)

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    2. Vivek Seelin

      Paul,

      Not sure what is the link being drawn between SAP transaction screens not being user friendly to the new SCN site. For all the glory being sung about Microsoft / Amazon / Facebook etc. trust me in a few months / years time there will be another write up which will say just how rigid n outdated these sites are.

      I guess the word ‘Change’ brings out strange things from people. I myself am trying to get a hang of the new site and believe a fair comparison would be between the new SCN site vis.a.vis the old one, not with some other sites. Comparing different sites would be akin to saying I compared apple to orange, but found mangoes tastier.

      And yes the SAP GUI screens may not make it to the “Miss Universe” pageant, but I believe if it is able to deliver the value n insight to business to unlock its potential, it would have done what it was designed for.

      P.S: Me no “SAPanantic”  

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    3. Mark Yolton Post author

      Hi Paul:

      Thanks for your comments. We’ve done 3 or 4 rounds of user testing, from SAP TechEd (in the clubhouse in Las Vegas and Madrid in October / November ’11), then in December, and in Jan/Feb in our usability lab. We got alot of good feedback, some of which we implemented (other not possible or not advisable, other contradictory) in this first version of the new SCN.  We will keep doing testing and refining as we go. You’ll see the UI and navigation evolve from here as the first baseline as we balance the needs of a large and diverse membership. 

      Regards,

      Mark Y.

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      1. Rick Bakker

        Forums:

        Before:

        – worked in Chrome and IE

        – showed a list of the 50 latest threads

        – showed me which threads I had already read

        – correctly showed the last person to update a thread

        – gave recognition to active contrinutors by showing a top 3 across the top

        Now:

        – does not work well in Chrome (garbled mess) or older versions of IE

        – keeps switching me back to thumbnail so that I can only see a few threads

        – keeps putting blogs amongst the threads, even when I tell it not to

        – does not tell me if I have already read a thread

        – does not correctly show who last updated a thread

        – no recognition of active contributors on the page with the threads

         

        Did someone skip the testing stage in the rush to get this “out there”?

        regards
        Rick Bakker

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        1. Eli Klovski

          Hello,

          In addition to this:

          a) locked threads are not marked as such in the list: there is no possibility to see if the thread is locked or not without entering

          b) despite of locking the threads, granting points is still operational

          c) thread deletion does not work properly

          I launched a poll last week asking the users whether they are satisfied with the new design when they work in forums and received so far 87% (sic!) of negative reactions. Over 70 people have voted for the moment. http://scn.sap.com/polls/1095

          I do hope that this trend will be noticed by SCN team.

          Regards,

          Eli

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          1. Mark Yolton Post author

            I hope Rick and Eli and others have added their comments to the bug database and are not just ranting here and hoping someone somewhere will do something.  It’s cathartic to get frustrations or complaints off your chest, I’m sure, but putting bugs or issues into the bug reporting db will actually get them attention and action; that’s why I and the team have linked to it repeatedly.  Maybe those issues are already on the list?

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            1. Eli Klovski

              Dear Mark,

              It’s not about ranting. The bugs described are already communicated via bug reporting. What causes the frustration is not the presence of bugs, but their diminution in official reports/blogs of SCN. So, I and many others try to bring to your attention that users community reaction to the recent changes is not painted with rainbow colours; there are some significant glitches in the new site (comparing to the old version), which make a significant obstacle for working in Forums domain.

              Best regards,

              Eli

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              1. Ravi Sankar Venna

                I will agree with Eli’s comments.

                Bugs can be rectified, but not the design. Unfortunately, I got couple of web page errors and logged out 4 times in a span of 10 minutes. Then, I could not log out, it is showing SSO error. I tried couple of times and then waited for 15 minutes to re log in. We are not trying to show a finger on the new design, but to inform SAP, user community is not at all happy with this. This is not my opinion, all the forum members are echoed.

                I would like to ask a simple question to SAP? How would you realise that this new design is successful? Please take the statistics after three month and compare the productivity between old and new forums, you will find the answer, whether the new design is successful or disgusting.

                I know change is part of life, but, change should for good, but should not ruin the basics. SAP should have taken some of the regular contributors opinion on this before making it live. When the Beta version is released by Yahoo or any other mail companies, there is always an option fall back to old classical view by the viewers. But, there is no such option available with this new SCN. Bear with the new design and contribute with pain. If this is the case, my gut feeling is 90% of the User Community will drop out from SCN. Unfortunate, but this is the truth.

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            2. Rick Bakker

              Hi Mark,

              It does indeed feel good to vent. I shall follow your advice and haunt the Bug Reporting Space for a while. A question though: if a very useful feature has been removed (e.g. the indicator that showed whether you had read a thread already) does that count as a bug or part of the “wish list”?

              cheers

              Rick

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              1. Mark Yolton Post author

                Hi Rick:

                I think, in the interest of gathering all those sorts of things (great features that seem to be missing), I suggest adding this to the bug tracking list and then we’ll sort it out on the back end. I’d rather capture those things than lose them.

                Thanks,

                M.

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    1. Narasimhulu Konnipati

      Hi Mark / Benjamin,

      I need to appreciate you for all your efforts to get this done in real time.

      But where as some issues are really bothering users to post their queries.

      They are not able to find the track list of queries which they have posted, and distinguish the correct answers from all replies.

      At least we would have brought the main feature of SDN that user can see 50 Queries and their status at a time.

      The user participation has come down compare to SDN, may not be continued for a long time.

      I hope you consider the user concerns and workaround to build the SCN more user friendly.

      Thanks,

      Narasimhulu

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  2. Break Point

    Performance of the site was better late last week the on go-live day.  However, this morning I get errors attempting to log in, repeated attempts to change to the content view in forum don’t work, and once in content list format, I cannot navigate past page 1.   There was some sort of error message, then navigation attempts are just ignored.  There are things I miss from the old forum, like seeing that a post is locked by moderator without having to open it, a clear indicator for “answered” posts,  filtering for posts with no replies, etc.  Usability needs improvement in these areas, too.

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  3. G Lakshmipathi

    While congratulating the entire team to make this happen, I also wish to record the following on my part.

    1)  Lot of confusions are there for the members on thread / blog where to post.  Many members have created their thread as a blog and we (Moderators) have to advice them to open a new thread.  Here my suggestions would be as like SDN, the text may be (a) Open a New Thread and (b) Post a Blog so that this will be clear to all new members

    2)  Earlier I could see whether a member is a newbie or a old member by seeing their points / date of registration, in the same thread.  This is missing now

    3)  Moderator logo is missing in the thread when a Moderators are posting

    4)  When a thread is locked in SDN, before opening the thread, one could see that it is locked but now, only after opening the thread, one could see whether it is locked or not

    5)  After adding some comments in original post, if I click “Update” button at the bottom left, system is throwing some error and after clicking the “Back to original message” on top left, I could see my comments added to the original thread.  Earlier, if I click “Edit” it will be added.

    6)  Going to a particular forum was so easy but now each and every time, I need to drill down from top “Solutions” which makes my life tough

    7)  Without opening a thread, I could see whether an old thread is pushed to top of the forum but now, I am unable to see like this

    Hope the above points will also be taken into consideration and necessary enhancements are going on.

    Thanks
    G. Lakshmipathi

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  4. Jyoti Prakash

    I believe there is a need to have look on Processing memory usage. As new SDN consuming very high memory usage.

    Apart from that thing seems good and fine. We are adopting the change.

    Nice work and all the very best to all of us.

    Best wishes…

    Thanks & Regards
    JP

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  5. Andy Silvey

    I love the new blogs over layout from today, much better than on the old sdn, more blogs per page, more info like comments and feedback and of course the cream of the pudding is that we can open and download blogs as pdf’s

    what more could we ask for ?

    Petr.

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  6. Carsten Grafflage

    I’m sorry, but in my opinion the current state of usability is much degraded comparing to the old version. To get somewhere simply needs to many clicks, and the information, detail and visibility is reduced. Yes, there are some good new features, like this text editor, but overall I wish you would try to get the basics covered first.

    For example: One thing which really bothers me (even in the old version), is the login. I’ve a client certificate installed, but every time I open this site it doesn’t recognize me, and I’ve to click somewhere to get logged in. You really should add the option to remember a logged in user via a cookie, or at least automatically sign in users with client certificates.

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  7. Thomas Bezak

    This is unequivocally the worst re-design and site update I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing.

    Everything is multiple clicks away. Did you perform any user experience testing? Having half your landing page and this blog dedicated to “how do I do what I had no problem doing before” should have been a major red flag.

    I have been clicking through and (when it loads without bombing out) have not come across a single thing in the UI that makes sense. It’s like you hired an alien to design this thing.

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    1. Jelena Perfiljeva

      I have the same exact feeling that the new site UI is not designed for humans.

      Mr. Yolton, can you please clarify which users tested the web site before the go live? Was there any UI expert or at least input from the ordinary users involved in making the design decisions?

      You’ve mentioned this was somehow showcased at the SAP events. If this was the only user feedback, I feel it may not have been the best choice. From what I’ve observed specifically in the old forums, most users are likely to be in the same boat as I am – in a recession-hit business with expense cuts (i.e. no TechEd etc. for us), hiring freeze, humongous ticket backlogs and SAP support that most frequently tells us that “this is by design”.

      Yet we still carve out 20-30 minutes of our schedule to educate ourselves or to help our colleagues. In the “old SDN” I could be very productive even in those 20 minutes. Now by the time I get just to a list of forum threads half of this time is gone.

      Was there a reason you didn’t reach to the users that were actively involved in the old “suggestions” forum? You have our emails (and likely much more than that). If someone asked me to help test-drive new SCN, I would’ve found time (and, as you can probably see, I speak up my mind very clearly).

      In the link list at the end of your post you’re urging us to report the bugs, unless it’s something we need to put on a “wish list”. But where is the “wish list” then? Ideas place? Since this is still “Beta”, should the “bug report” and “wish list” links be posted prominently on the home page?

      As an IT professional, I can appreciate the effort of your team to move this project forward and would like to thank them for their work. As an SCN “customer”, I have some conflicting feelings right now.

      P.S. The new design is obviously targeted towards the Facebook, Twitter, etc. “social media” lovers. So when gaging user feedback through the same social media, wouldn’t it likely to be more positive? It’s like voting on dangers of alcohol in a bar. Just wanted to point this out.

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      1. Andy Silvey

        Hi Jelena,

        none of us are SCN/SDN Customers

        SCN is a community

        We are all part of the community

        It is down to all of us to make the community a success

        All the best,

        Petr.

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        1. Jelena Perfiljeva

          Petr, I put “customer” in the quotation marks for a reason. You can check my profile to see how much I have contributed to the community on the “old SDN” (hope that information is still there), so please spare the “ask what you can do” speach.

          SAP chose not to involve ordinary community members in designing the new web site. As I have mentioned, new design makes me a less productive community member. I’m really struggling to feel positive about this.

          I hope that improvements will continue, although “beta” has already been removed from the site yet this morning I still see the same issues (logout, “server error”, “unexpected error”) as on the first few days.

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          1. Andy Silvey

            Jelena,

            with the greatest of respect it is very nice to hear that you are standing member of the community.

            I am sure however, that at least during the last six months there have been blogs and banners saying, SDN is going to change, click on this link to see what’s happening and prepare yourself.

            I am one of those who didn’t click the links.

            I was very upset last Monday/Tuesday, but now I think this is the best thing that could have happened to SDN and admire the leadership shown by the SDN Team.

            Everything will get fixed that’s for sure, and look at what a great platform we now have.

            There are sooooo many great new features here, blogs as pdf’s !!! that’s a revelation, for the last nine years I’ve been copying and pasting interesting blogs into word documents, and that was painful.

            Look at other architectural strengths of the new User experience, in the top right of the screen we have these Activity | Communications | Actions these things are wonderful and give you an automatic notification if anything is waiting for you, no clicking here and there blindly etc etc etc

            The platform should be good for the next couple of years – by which time it will be out of date again 🙂

            All the best to you on your journey of enlightenment to find your inner peace with the new SCN and appreciation there of.

            Petr.

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            1. Craig S

              Wow!  From the first post of yours that I saw where you were excited cause it was so bad and would make all consultants more valuable that you were going to go look at new Porsches to your recent postings is really mind-boggling!  I’m begining to think you drank some Kool-Aid somewhere along the way Petr!!! LOL

              I’m glad you really like the new format and of course the blogs as a PDF thingy.  That is nice, I admit.

              I’m supportive of the change. I really am. But every AM this week the system becomes practically unusable.  Working across multiple forums is challenging to say the least.  I know we have some nice added features and having content and the blogs in together wasn’t a bad idea.  But the discussion forums are what the VAST majority of outside, non-sap employee people come here for.  I’d love to know the numbers but I bet 80% of new users come here first with a question.  They don’t come here first to jump start their carreers, make connections and network with people, say hi to folks and have coffee in the morning.  I feel like a nexus of folks who ARE here for that are the ones that had a primary influence on the development of the new site and so social networking was a primary objective of the new site.

              Without improvements to how you interact with the discussions and technical data here,  and if the performance isn’t soon improved, many of us that answer questions will spend less and less time answering questions and helping people.  Frankly, we can’t spare the extra time and in the process get frustrated. With that loss, new users will get more frustrated, fewer GOOD answers,  and in time, the site usage will drop and drop.

              I’m seriously thinking of just taking a month off from this entirely until it gets straightenned out.  But I do like trying to be part of the solution so I’ll probably continue to hang around.  I know they’ll get it right eventually but can we all stop pretending that this is the greatest thing since sliced bread?  It might eventually be.  But right now, today, this week, and probably next week too, it’s not good.

              FF

              Your thoughts that the SAP system should become more “facebook like” is an interesting thought.  And I’m sure we’ll see aspects of it drift in.  But a wholesale change over is very unlikely any time soon.

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            2. Jyoti Prakash

              Petr Solberg wrote:
              for the last nine years I’ve been copying and pasting interesting blogs into word documents, and that was painful.

              I believe this PAIN is b’coz of your ignorance. I believe many people like me were able to download contents as PDF from SCN with the help of ADOBE Printer or Bullzip Printer.

              Petr Solberg wrote:
              There are sooooo many great new features here, blogs as pdf’s !!!

              With due respect, SCN is not all about Blogs…there are forum, wiki also.

              I hope in the new SCN, might motivate you to contribute in forum or let us have feel how you contribute through Blogs.

              All the best.

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          2. Mark Yolton Post author

            Hi Jelena:

            I’m not sure where you heard that “SAP chose not to involve ordinary community members in designing the new web site,” but whoever it was told you wrong. In one of my recent blog posts I detailed several ways we involved a wide variety of community members, from initial designs based on feedback, to in-person at TechEd Las Vegas and Madrid in October and November 2011, to beta testing from mid-December until mid-March 2012 with over 1000 community members, and two in-depth rounds of testing, refining, and testing again in a usability lab.

            Also, the “beta” label has not been removed… is see it right up there at the top of every page, and it’ll remain that way for months. 

            You’re obviously getting some bad info from someone you shouldn’t trust for reliable info…

            I hope you’ll gain increased comfort with the new SCN over time, as we improve performance and UX.

            M.

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            1. Jelena Perfiljeva

              Mark,

              Thank you for a response.

              On the very first page, if you type scn.sap.com in the browser it does not say “beta”. I do see though that it says “beta” on other pages – my bad.

              I know that new SCN was presented on TechEd and that SAP Mentors were somehow involved. Also I did see the announcements on SDN that there were changes coming, but have not noticed an invitation to participate in the design review. Maybe I “didn’t get a memo” (unfortunately the timeline you’ve mentioned coincided with the holidays and unusually large workload for me). If I overlooked an invite on the web site, I apologize. If I had received an email saying “we want your opinion / action regarding major changes in SCN design”, I would’ve certainly found time to act upon it.

              Also I was talking specifically about involving ordinary members (not Mentors and not those who can afford to go to TechEd) on the design stage, not beta testing.

              I would really like for someone outside of SAP to step out and say “yes, I was involved in the design and thought it was great” (note that “design” here includes basic navigation and site layout). It would also be nice to hear from the SAP Mentors who did participate in this project. In fact, if any of those 1000+ members mentioned in your response could share their opinion (similar to excellent and very open “Oliver’s blog” on the go-live process), that would be very interesting.

              I’m trying to keep up with the blogs (despite the performance issues and site errors), but have not seen such information so far.

              Thank you.

              Jelena

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    1. Craig S

      Mark,

      Actually every morning this week from about 8 EST to noon EST. I guess us east coast users muck it up when we join in each morning. 🙁

      Seems to get better in the afternoon.  Maybe as the EU folks start rolling off?

      I know your team is trying and will get it all fixed soon.

      FF

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  8. Alexandre Carvalho

    Hi Mr. Yolton and SCN Team!

    at first, congrats for the great job. As a consultant of many projects, all the issues you pointed sound very familiar! rsrsr.. But, with all the passion you mentioned and the capacity we feel in your Team, all of them will fade with time.

    I’ll try to improve my use of SCN the same amount it has improved. 😉

    Thanks for all the benefits!

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  9. Ravi Chandra

    Hi all,

    I think this new GUI is not like a user friend, till now i did not get clear idea regarding this site . What i think is the OLD SDN forums is the best  i have ever seen. And i think the number of peoples using this site has been dropped very low , Previously , when a question is posted we used to get the reply with in 1 min but now the reply is very late.

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    1. atul pansare

      The new SCN look is fresh and gives more features; but what you say is true, in the last week I asked two questions and today I got  the reply today for one question. I am afraid that lot of SCN users are still not getting the user interface of the new SCN.

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  10. Trond Stroemme

    I would like to see some metrics; how many users are posting in the forums on a daily basis since the new SCN was unveiled? For my own part, I have refrained from usign SCN much in the last week. I fear that there will be a migration of us “techies” from this site elsewhere, provided there are still alternatives out there. Surely, this was not the intentions?

    Let me reiterate my former “demands”:

    1. A link to “Forums” on the main page

    2. Similarly, a link to “Blogs”.

    Those are my two primary areas of interest, and I don’t really want to fumble my way through a jungle of incomprehensive features in order to get there.

    Regards,

    Trond

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              1. Andy Silvey

                Trond,

                I can see you are not allowing yourself to feel the force and you are slowly turning to the dark side

                come back before it’s too late

                now, write a blog on how great the new SCN is and you will have repented your sins and exorcised any existence of the dark side within you

                you will be free again to use the force

                it’s up to you now Trond Walker

                Petr.

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  11. Paul Hardy
    • Mr.Mark,

    Today I wen to the blog posts and saw saw that the latest one – accordiing to the screen – was from today from Thomas Jung. on BSP. I thought – “Great, I want to read everthing he writes:,

    It turned out’

    The blog was from 2004 – not that that is bad the content is as good today as it ever was, thought the fact that it LOOKED like it was from today seemed to have confused some people

    Every comment to the blog was reapeated three times

    Evidently the links in the blog to other “chapters” of the blog posts did not work at all., at least that is what the complaint was.

    I viewed some other blogs from “today” ranging from in fact today to several year back, and the formatting was all over the place. And people have the audacity to excuse me of this, beacuse I submitted a post in which SCN rremoved all the formatting I had done…

    Please tell me, I am missing something obvious here?

    Or do all the faults I mention only occur when you save the blog as a PDF i.e. the major new feature?

    Maybe I am old, In only liked the “first” Star Wars” Trilogy “A New Hope / The Empire Strikes Back / The Return of The Jedi”. Subsequent films seemed to have nothing else to offer. You may wonder why I mention this, but I did not start it… start it I did not…

    Cheersy Cheers

    Paul

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  12. Aamir Suhail

    Mark,

    There are 2 issues which i have noticed recently.

    1. How to perform a forum specific search?

    There was an option to search on the “Contents” area of a specific forum, now i only see the option to “Filter by Tags” .

    2. The links to blogs from threads are all messed up. for e.g. if you look at thread (http://scn.sap.com/thread/1990944), you will notice that the links to blogs start with /people, which is wrong.

    May be these issue have already been discussed and are worked upon but just thought i will bring it to your attention.

    Thanks

    Aamir

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    1. Audrey Stevenson

      Hello Aamir,

      Regarding the forum-specific search: IT had to disable that for the moment to help improve performance. See Oliver’s release notes document: http://scn.sap.com/docs/DOC-25403. I know they’re working to restore this as soon as possible.

      Regarding the links to blogs posts with /people in the URL, this is actually not a bug. When we migrated the blog posts, since the old blog categories did not map one-to-one with the new spaces, we migrated them into everybody’s personal blogs. That way they (the authors) could determine themselves which space each blog post should be moved to. Please see Pat Flanders’ blog post on this subject: The New SCN: Move your blogs to make them findable

      Regards,
      Audrey

      Regards,
      Audrey

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      1. Ravi Sankar Venna

        Hi Audrey,

        There is noway to save the draft. In earlier version, if I typed something in the forum, that used to be saved as draft automatically. Even if I close the session, I can still go back and continue with the draft version, which was saved by the system automatically. Now, everything gone out and I had to type everything from scratch. It is a bit frustrating 😥 Hope you may please able to incorporate this draft facility.

        Thanks and Regards,

        Ravi

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  13. RAHEEM BAKSH

    Hi SCN Team,

    Congrats for the great job. From last so many days i have seen that SCN is first choice of all SAP Expert and beginner. Through SCN where beginners gain their Knowledge and preparing Great career and expert is sharing their experience. I am very excited to see regular such a improvement.

    I am very thanks full to SCN.

    Regards

    Raheem

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