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Black Knobs - new forum about modulars
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Modular Synth General Discussion  
Author Black Knobs - new forum about modulars
Sugarfree
Hi everybody.

I’ve just launched Black Knobs, a new forum dedicated to modular synthesizers. It's fast, social-media and mobile-friendly and based on an advanced, modern forum engine.
One of the main goals is education. I encourage all advanced users to write tutorials and wikis on their topic of choice. If you know a lot about modulars, write it down and share it!
I believe this will make this knowledge more accessible and easier to find. I also hope it will create stronger bonds between different generations of modular artists.

I don’t want you to quit MW, I invite you to join www.blackknobs.com to build a new, vibrant community. Check it out and I hope to meet you there!
Seaweed Sound
Another forum that sounds vaguely like a porn site hihi

It's only a matter of time before someone gets called in by HR for visiting "Muff Wiggler", "Gear Slutz", and "Black Knobs" on a work computer
attacca
Yeah...black knobs is a horrible name. Sorry.
Sugarfree
but this IS a porn site for modular addicts wink

seriously though, the new platform (Discourse) makes it much easier to post pictures and multimedia, so we will have plenty of that.
JohnLRice
Seaweed Sound wrote:
Another forum that sounds vaguely like a porn site hihi

It's only a matter of time before someone gets called in by HR for visiting "Muff Wiggler", "Gear Slutz", and "Black Knobs" on a work computer
I don't think that the name is particularly bad, a good majority of names/titles can be turned into something "naughty" with a little imagination . . . .but, I did literally burst out laughing when I noticed Sugarfree's tagline
Quote:
Black Knobs are coming!
eek! lol
umma gumma
yeah, maybe

KNOBGOBBLER

would be a better name?
Parnelli
Seaweed Sound wrote:
Another forum that sounds vaguely like a porn site hihi

It's only a matter of time before someone gets called in by HR for visiting "Muff Wiggler", "Gear Slutz", and "Black Knobs" on a work computer


Yes I have had to explain the whole "muff wiggler" site concept to the boss a month or so ago! I went on vacation in August and when I got back they had fired the janitor for surfing porn; they didn't question me but I showed them the site and told them what it is about as they were poking about in computers.

I told them it helps with my electronics research.... thumbs up

Which is does!
Sugarfree
or the alternate script:

Your boss: Hey are you browsing modular synth websites again instead of working?

You: oh no boss, it's just porn, BlackKnobs.com.

Your boss: al' right then, I don't want to hear about it, to each his own.
sduck
Signed up. I wish you the best of luck.
sloth713
well I'm now a knobber Ninja
Dcramer
Cool
Rex Coil 7
not this shit again

Seaweed Sound wrote:
Another forum that sounds vaguely like a porn site hihi


umma gumma wrote:
yeah, maybe

KNOBGOBBLER

would be a better name?


sloth713 wrote:
well I'm now a knobber Ninja


batch
Sorry to say this, but is this necessary? Agree that the MW name is frankly embarrassing at this point. But efforts like “all the Synths” seem to have fallen flat.

The issue is that MW has such amazing content that has been built up over years. Unless there is a concerted effort to move all that content and then it’s not going to work. Other forums that do seem to work seem focused on specific manufacturers or have expanded out from one (eg. |||||)
pugix
The site looks very nice. Well designed. But my wife (a web developer) looked at the home page and said there's no About link to tell you what the site is about. We found About under the 'hamburger' button. The advanced search looks great.

I don't do much social media, but I will lurk Black Knobs for a while. It does seem to have a lot of crossover with MW. Even some of the same questions posted in both places.
Rex Coil 7
Armstrb wrote:
... the MW name is frankly embarrassing at this point...
Oh c'mon ... embarrassing? Really? And "frankly embarrassing" at that?

It's a shit ton less crass than "gear sluts" (and vagina hats). I'd guess the only people that think Muffwigglers is something offensive are people with their minds perpetually in the gutter, or folks looking to sit upon their high horse of superior morality. It's only crass if it is used in a crass context .... just like Black Knobs.

I mean, if one is gonna go Beavis And Butthead on it, then anything can be made into something offensive. But as long as folks don't go into the 14 year old pubescent boy territory (where everything has some sexual connotation) MUFFWIGGLERS is fine.

People need to take life (and themselves) less seriously. Seriously!

lol

To the point of ~do we need another modular synth forum~ .... No. We do not. We've nearly 50k members here, many of whom offer a LOT of solid help and those types far outnumber the "look at my fake modular ~rack~ I put together on Modular Grid!!" types (thank the gods). If at some point for some reason Miffwugglers goes ~poof~ and it's gone for good, then clearly another venue would be required. But I can't see how a redundant modular synth forum will produce anything that isn't already covered here.

The thing is, it's up and running (and has been since May). So I suppose we'll see if two camps form now. Time will tell, that's certain.

seriously, i just don't get it
hamildad
Seems we are moving away from a slightly problematic web forum name to... black knobs??

Like the idea of a new forum on Discourse. dont like the fact that its still an embarrassing and non gender neutral name.
corpusjonsey
Sugarfree wrote:
I encourage all advanced users to write tutorials and wikis on their topic of choice. If you know a lot about modulars, write it down and share it!


"Come do a bunch of work and make my site great!"
Bartelby
Of course this is the thread I'm reading when a work colleague wanders over for a chat...

specifically the post with KNOBGOBBLER in large letter bang centre of the screen not this shit again
matthewjuran
I wasn’t able to find the age policy, is Black Knobs intended for minors too?
Joe.
matthewjuran wrote:
I wasn’t able to find the age policy, is Black Knobs intended for minors too?


Can I argue about politics, with children, on blackknobs?

Its the only reason I'd join a forum these days.
nurbivore
Unfortunately, so much of the value in MW is the accumulated content. An interface from this century is nice, but given how small the wider synth community is (much less specific sub-groups like DIY or Buchla or whatever), fragmentation just makes everything less useful.

also, the name is bad, and actively contributes to exclusion

Rex Coil 7 wrote:

I'd guess the only people that think Muffwigglers is something offensive are people with their minds perpetually in the gutter, or folks looking to sit upon their high horse of superior morality.


no. it's bad
euxine
Conversation about names aside, it looks like a shill site to sell ad space on mobile at present. Don't get me wrong, I'd really love more resources on modular, but UX/UI can't be underestimated these days when trying to grow a community.

If you're serious, hire a designer?? help
Carrousel
One of my threads has been 'reimagined' for this new site by one of the creators. hmmm.....

I have no problem with it obviously, it just made me chuckle a little. Like, if you're literally going to move stuff across bit by bit then why not just stick to using Muffs? haha

Here's the thread I mean:

https://www.blackknobs.com/t/patching-a-phase-comparator-circuit-from- basic-stuff/134

And this was my original:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=162994&highlight=
Navs
Raven_Martin wrote:
One of my threads has been 'reimagined' for this new site by one of the creators. hmmm.....

I have no problem with it obviously, it just made me chuckle a little. Like, if you're literally going to move stuff across bit by bit then why not just stick to using Muffs? haha

Here's the thread I mean:

https://www.blackknobs.com/t/patching-a-phase-comparator-circuit-from- basic-stuff/134

And this was my original:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=162994&highlight=


I got a similar feeling, without the chuckle.

I'm sure it's just because it's new and there's a need for content. But if you want some form of Wiki, it would be great if from the outset you encouraged users to source or attribute, where relevant or possible.

Sure, at some stage, ideas pass into folklore, and you don't always want a history lesson. But this is a specific case where some links would have been in order, rather than filleting and presenting patch tips without the discourse and user input that led to them.

So, for example:

the phase comparator patch … using a min/max:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=53142

dougcl’s original PLL patches from 2008/9 that served as inspiration:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6608

the use of a ring modulator:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=77119

discussion of why you’d even want a PLL, centred on Buchla’s 259, Make Noise’s at-the-time ’new’ VCO, the DPO, and The Harvestman’s Hertz Donut:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=23121

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=162994

Lots of Wiggler history and knowledge for the searching SlayerBadger!
mskala
Joe. wrote:
Can I argue about politics, with children, on blackknobs?

Its the only reason I'd join a forum these days.


Luckily, it's the only thing you can do on forums these days.
Sugarfree
lots of tough love guys smile

Let me address the name first. The first thing that comes to my mind when I think about modulars is the knobs. I use an MU system myself, so here you have "black knobs". I've never heard the word "knob" being used in a sexual context, but then, English is my second language, so I just wasn't aware of the double meaning. I am open to changing the name once the new forum takes off. I will let the community to pick whatever name it wants, as long as a domain name is available.

Now, is a new forum necessary if we already have MW? You can ask the same question about almost anything. Do we need another synthesizer, another VCO module, another guitar? No, we don't, but we'll make it anyway, because every new generation develops its own instruments to express itself.
The question should really be, what the new forum offers and how is it different, even though the subject of the discussion remains the same.
I could make a long list here, but I'll give you just some of my favorite highlights:

- community moderation
- infinit scroll
- contextual replies and quotes
- excellent formatting for mobile devices
- drag'n'drop images
- link previews

And there are hundreds of little features which make online community experience much more enjoyable.

And lastly. The forum is free and there are no ads. I pay for all the resources myself as a contribution to our community.
I hope you'll give it a try. We can discuss changing a name once we have a community.
dkcg
Can't join, I only have blue and white knobs on my modular...
Sugarfree
Raven_Martin wrote:
One of my threads has been 'reimagined' for this new site by one of the creators. hmmm.....

I have no problem with it obviously, it just made me chuckle a little. Like, if you're literally going to move stuff across bit by bit then why not just stick to using Muffs? haha

Here's the thread I mean:

https://www.blackknobs.com/t/patching-a-phase-comparator-circuit-from- basic-stuff/134

And this was my original:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=162994&highlight=


I didn't write the post you mention. I don't intend to censor or evaluate other members' posts unless there is a clear TOS violation.
Sugarfree
dkcg wrote:
Can't join, I only have blue and white knobs on my modular...


our Trust Level 3 is called "White Knob", so you're good wink
Karabekian
There's some really good content up here. I haven't been around MW for long enough to debate where it came from.

I'd agree that some kind of modernisastion with forums is good (for what it's worth, I'm 33). Something that works with my mobile suits me better.

Being on a forum that doesn't have these 1997 emoji's is also helpful when I'm at work, cause they blatantly don't look like work applause Rockin' Banana! applause screaming goo yo

I'm not sure the VCO/Synthesiser analogy is entirely apt though - A synth only needs to be one person, but only communities need numbers to survive.

I'd love to see more lengthly posts on mid to advanced techniques or theory discussion such as this one:

https://www.blackknobs.com/t/sequencing-your-sequencers/109

If you can keep the quality control up, this could turn into a good site. About a year and a half into owning a modular (and three years playing around with stuff with soft synths) I'm really keen to find information that sets out clear advanced ideas.

And, yeah, for what it's worth 'knob' is a British colloquialism for penis, dick, cock, pecker, Johnson, willy, meat and two veg, phallus, tool, wood, schlong, tadger, member, manhood, dong or whatever you wanna call it. thumbs up
EPTC
Edit to post to mention I checked out the site tonight and it's fun as hell to navigate through. Ignore my juvenile jokes prior, ha. This is cool.
Futuresound
The name is fine. Are we 12 year olds?
Carrousel
Sugarfree wrote:
Raven_Martin wrote:
One of my threads has been 'reimagined' for this new site by one of the creators. hmmm.....

I have no problem with it obviously, it just made me chuckle a little. Like, if you're literally going to move stuff across bit by bit then why not just stick to using Muffs? haha

Here's the thread I mean:

https://www.blackknobs.com/t/patching-a-phase-comparator-circuit-from- basic-stuff/134

And this was my original:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=162994&highlight=


I didn't write the post you mention. I don't intend to censor or evaluate other members' posts unless there is a clear TOS violation.


Apologies, I misunderstood what 'founding member' meant.
Sugarfree
no worries. The "founding members" are our beta testing members, who joined before we went public. You know, before we had any content. I agree with you that if a post is based on someone else's a credit is the right thing to do.

Why don't you give it a try and see how the new platform feels like. We need experienced users and you may even enjoy it wink
JohnLRice
It looks interesting and I might lurk from time to time but I've found that trying to be apart of multiple forums on the same topic doesn't work so well for me personally. I tried it in the past and it because annoying because I either had to decide which forum got which bit of information I wanted to share or I had to share the same thing in multiple places which was a lot of work and too much to keep track of.
Carrousel
^That pretty much sums it up for me too I'm afraid; I spend too much time on Muffs as it is.
JohnLRice
Raven_Martin wrote:
^That pretty much sums it up for me too I'm afraid; I spend too much time on Muffs as it is.
Agreed. I know it's up to me to limit my own time but I do have some obsessive/compuslive issues and I can't seem to stay away for long. Dead Banana I've even requested a couple times that Mike delete my account or set it to "Guest" etc but he has never honored my requests. sad banana
umma gumma
yes, apologies if I offended anyone with KNOBGOBBLERS...I was trying to convey ( my opinion of ) the ridiculousness of the name BLACK KNOBS by way of comparison

I also think it's a waste of time to create another forum with the same content as MW, as it dilutes an already niche community & there is plenty of content *here* already

" hey everybody, come join my forum and give me free content so I can make money from ads/hits!!" pretty much sums up what appears to be happening

but good luck with it
Sugarfree
umma gumma wrote:

" hey everybody, come join my forum and give me free content so I can make money from ads/hits!!" pretty much sums up what appears to be happening

but good luck with it



Blackknobs.com is a non-profit website, there are no ads and there will be no ads in the future. I hope you'll give it a try.
MindMachine
attacca wrote:
Yeah...black knobs is a horrible name. Sorry.


Maybe Metasonix can help him with something more user friendly or at least do some graphics.
electricanada
Why? This Muffwigglers site is good. I like it. The name is weird but sufficient. The interface works well. (Why would you want to look at it on a phone, ya frickin cellphone junkies? Get help for your depraved addiction.) I'm not coming to the new site unless something I want shows up on it in a google search.
hermbot
Every other thread:

- Mike doesn’t provide enough support for the site
- The name is problematic
- It doesn’t work great on mobile
- There are a lot of missing features from modern forums and no way to upgrade
- Someone should really do something

Someone actually does something:

- The site we have now is fine
- There’s no need for a new forum
- The new forum will somehow make the accumulated knowledge here disappear into the ether
- Get off my lawn
witchbutter
This site is where years of information lives for sure, but it would be really nice if it was upgraded from the clunky BB nonsense. I get the desire for a new forum like they did on allthesynths.info and now blackknobs, but I don't know that discourse is much of an improvement.

I don't think we need a new forum though, I'd rather some stuff just get fixed here, such as:
-The huge delay in time between someone sending you a PM and you receive an email
-The locking of those insane threads that get to 40+ pages that you can't effectively search or follow
-mobile friendly would be nice
Sugarfree
witchbutter wrote:
I don't think we need a new forum though, I'd rather some stuff just get fixed here, such as:
-The huge delay in time between someone sending you a PM and you receive an email
-The locking of those insane threads that get to 40+ pages that you can't effectively search or follow
-mobile friendly would be nice


Everything you mentioned is supported by Discourse. It even has summaries of extra long topics.
Moving a large forum to a different platform is a huge and expensive undertaking. Sometimes it's easier to start over from scratch, rather than attempt a transition.

BTW I've just discovered, I can start writing a Black Knobs post on desktop and pick up where I left off on mobile. Very handy.
sduck
It's gone. What happened?
thetwlo
Sugarfree wrote:
,social-media and mobile-friendly

Well fuck that! I don't like those Socialist mediums, nor those that aren't mobile. Differently abled, my ass.
Sugarfree
Unfortunately, I had to admit a failure and moved on. People weren't interested, so I couldn't justify supporting it any longer. I apologize to those who had hopes for it. My intention was to do something for our community. Maybe someone else can be more successful.
hawkfuzz
Bummer. I do like the updated format and mobile abilities.


Really the ideal situation would be to move this to a new forum, like the MI or Intellijel forum. Lots of good info stored here.
umma gumma
muffwiggler loads and displays fine, and fast, on all my devices

what is everyone complaining about?

not enough emoji's, "likes" and other GUI crap that slows everything down?
hawkfuzz
...have you used MI on your mobile device? It's just streamlined. Not saying MW doesn't work, but I have to zoom in to click links and sometimes the screen jumps and I click the wrong link. Sometimes I have to log in 3 times for it to stay logged in.

I get it, a flip phone still works, but a smartphone works better.
umma gumma
hawkfuzz wrote:
...have you used MI on your mobile device? It's just streamlined. Not saying MW doesn't work, but I have to zoom in to click links and sometimes the screen jumps and I click the wrong link. Sometimes I have to log in 3 times for it to stay logged in.

I get it, a flip phone still works, but a smartphone works better.


yes, I often use my phone to browse & post on muffs when I'm out of town. it works just fine for me, and I even have an older Samsung phone. it's not the "latest and greatest".

-->unlike the new MOOG website for example: which *is* the latest & greatest, and is a huge pain in the ass for me to use. it often freezes my browser
flippantminister
umma gumma wrote:
-->unlike the new MOOG website for example: which *is* the latest & greatest, and is a huge pain in the ass for me to use. it often freezes my browser


That new Moog site is an atrocity.
hawkfuzz
umma gumma wrote:
hawkfuzz wrote:
...have you used MI on your mobile device? It's just streamlined. Not saying MW doesn't work, but I have to zoom in to click links and sometimes the screen jumps and I click the wrong link. Sometimes I have to log in 3 times for it to stay logged in.

I get it, a flip phone still works, but a smartphone works better.


yes, I often use my phone to browse & post on muffs when I'm out of town. it works just fine for me, and I even have an older Samsung phone. it's not the "latest and greatest".

-->unlike the new MOOG website for example: which *is* the latest & greatest, and is a huge pain in the ass for me to use. it often freezes my browser


It is faulty af for me. Again, not saying it doesn't function but who doesn't love an update? It's no one's fault and the resources to do it aren't there, but I can't see how it would be a bad thing to have a board that is optimized for mobile browsing, doesn't log you out, and doesn't jump when you click links...
sduck
There's a thread in forum discussions about this - use that for further comments regarding MW usage
https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=206966
BenA718
“Server cannot be found.”
That was quick!
sduck
Read back a few posts for the explanation.
motorhead412
umma gumma wrote:
yeah, maybe

KNOBGOBBLER



can't wait to earn my Knobgobbling with Experience tag.
Shledge
Knob Fondlers is a good name for it, if you want to make it extra greasy.

Fun fact, Nobber and Muff are towns in Ireland.
BenA718
sduck wrote:
Read back a few posts for the explanation.

Thanks!
exper
Too bad. I forgot all about it, and saw the link today. Went to check and it's gone.

I thinks its just too difficult to have anything that will really take off outside of MW. The best thing Mike could do, would be to crowd source the developers here, and write some content migration code to get everything from the old MW to a new, modern MW. It would be hard work to get it all right, but it would so be worth it.
hawkfuzz
This is what I suggest as well. I’d definitely chip in if there was a fund opened for that cause. I bet someone would.
BenA718
Building a community takes time! I wonder if there were very unrealistic expectations at play here.
cycad73
BenA718 wrote:
Building a community takes time! I wonder if there were very unrealistic expectations at play here.


It can work if you 1) fill an unmet need, 2) already have a core community who can sustain discussion on their own before getting the word out publicly, and 3) spread the word absolutely everywhere and on a frequent basis, until you see others taking up that role. I don't think the OP's venture met any of these criteria.

Also, underlying technology makes very little difference. While I prefer Discourse, I belong to several thriving communities that are doing just fine with Proboards and phpBB.
cptnal
The fact is there are loads of alternatives to Muff's out there, but have you ever read them? They're creepy! Like the Stepford Wigglers. (hides)

Everyone's super nice and everyone agrees with each other. Muff's might be the scene of the odd fight here and there, but if nothing else that reflects the diversity of the board and that people feel passionate about what they do. Hard to replicate by design.
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