04-27-2012 08:11 PM - edited 04-28-2012 02:11 AM
I mentioned the following idea to Mark_Lenovo, and he asked me to show it to you folks.
Imagine yourself reading a message in a forum, and wondering whether there's a Knowledge Base article covering that topic. I propose simply ADDING ONE BUTTON, an "ADD & SEARCH KNOWLEDGE BASE" button, to the forums' existing user interface:
With the above interface, you simply type in some tags that describe the message's topic, and press the "ADD & SEARCH KNOWLEDGE BASE" button. The tags are then automatically assigned to the message, and a web page appears (preferably in a new browser tab) showing you the search results for those tags in the Knowledge Base. You can then immediately see whether a Knowledge Base article exists which covers the topic.
If tags have already been assigned to the message, then the search includes those tags as well. If you don't specify any tags, then the search uses only the tags that users have already assigned to the message.
The above change would accomplish four things:
- First, it would encourage people to assign tags to messages. In other words, people will get better search results when searching the forums, as a side-effect of this change.
- Second, it would allow readers of the forum to solve many users' problems almost instantly. I often encounter threads about problems that stymie the folks in a forum, and which already have solutions in the Knowledge Base. Right now, it's much more cumbersome to search the Knowledge Base while reading messages, to find those solutions. So this change more tightly integrates the Knowledge Base with the forums.
- Third, it would make people more aware of the Knowledge Base. I know Mark has personally put a lot of work into the Knowledge Base, I think it's a very useful resource, and it would be good to see it utilized more thoroughly by more users.
- Fourth, it would encourage users to add articles to the Knowledge Base. It's much faster to find a solution that's been condensed, vetted, and placed in the Knowledge Base, than to read through page after page of wandering discussions spanning multiple threads. And faster solutions mean happier customers.
05-02-2012 02:46 AM
Very good idea. The links to the knowledgebase is too discreetly in the main menu of the forum but not visible in the sub-forums except you click "Board options".
Clicking the banner "Learn Community Knowledgebase" overwhelms anybody, because it is not filtered by language (english, spanish, german) and you first will need time to sort out, what you are looking for.
05-02-2012 12:58 PM
Jimbo, definitely a great idea and worth the kudos you've received so far and more. I particularily like the points you make on making people more aware of and therefore adding more articles to the knowledgebase. :thumbsup:
Being able to search in the KB directly from a post using tags as you suggest would definitely be an improvement on what we have, maybe it could be tweeked to involve more options
Just in case some members reading this thread don't know about the options of the forum's search function I'd like to take the opportunity to point out that when using the forum's search option, at the top of the page in case you missed it, there is the option in the drop down menu to search the knowledgebase as well as community, category, board and users. Searching on the community, category and board will include KB articles in the results.
Thanks again for the inspiring idea Jimbo.
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05-02-2012 10:12 PM
05-02-2012 10:40 PM
Thanks everyone, especially for the great comments!
If you implement the above button, then whenever describing it to users, it would probably be worthwhile to also mention how users can "nominate" a thread's solution for inclusion in the KB (i.e., via the thread's "Topic Options" menu, while logged into the forums).
Also, we often see that a solution implements something that engineering could potentially release in the next version of a driver, etc. That would then solve the problem for all users, whether they're aware of the forums or not. So hopefully there's a way to flag such items for the attention of the engineering team.
For example, one user has just come up with a way to perhaps dramatically improve display quality for W510/W520 users who have the high-gamut display. His procedure is understandably complex, because he has no ability to alter the machine's software. But engineering should be able provide the same ability as a default option via software updates for those machines.
Also, we've had another user who has tried to provide similar results using the built-in color calibrator of those machines. But she needs a small amount of information from engineering to continue that work. Perhaps there's a way to arrange to provide that information to her?
05-03-2012 07:07 AM
Kudoes to you!
Have a nice day!
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