How to start a Discussion

Version 10
    Discussions allow you to ask a question to find a specific solution or start a conversation to get feedback or make decisions.  Members of your community can contribute by posting replies.

    To start a discussion:

     

    First, navigate to the place where you want to post your discussion

    • Maintenance, troubleshooting, operation, administration issue? Find the best Space in: Technical Areas
    • Question about how to conduct your analysis or interpret data? Find the most appropriate Space in Applications Areas

     

    Second, pick one of two equivalent ways to start creating your discussion:

    Actions_menu_discussion.pngIn the lower navigation bar, click Actions > Create > Discussion:Create_menu_discussion.pngOR, use the main navigation bar's "create" icon, which looks like a pencil, and click Create > Discussion:

    Third, enter a title for your discussion in the field at the top.

    03_Discussion_title.png
    We've found that is is very important to make your title as meaningful as possible so it will attract necessary attention. Please save details for the body of the post. Here are some examples of discussion titles:

    • NOT SO GOOD: "Pesticides"
    • ONLY A LITTLE BETTER: "Help with pesticide analysis"
    • GOOD: "How do I detect pesticides in raw soy?"
    • VERY GOOD: "What's the best way to resolve atrazine from other compounds in raw soy samples?

    Fourth, determine whether your discussion is "open" or is a question needing one best answer

    Your discussion will be automatically marked as a question to encourage people to answer. For questions, authors and Community admins may mark one reply as the "Correct" one, and the Question appears in special "Unanswered Questions" areas of the Community areas.

     

    If your discussion is open-ended, and will not be resolved with a single "correct" answer, uncheck the box toward the top that reads "Mark this discussion as a question":
    04_Discussion_unmarking.jpg
    Example of an open-ended Discussion: "Have you been affected by disruptions in the helium supply in the last couple of years?"

    Fifth, write your discussion in the main editor

    We have found that it helps everyone if you include a description of your instrumentation and software so we can all see the tools you're using. For example, it's virtually always a good idea to describe:

      1. Your instrument type and model: "GC/MS 5975C"
      2. The software you're using to operate the instrument: "MassHunter"
      3. If you're discussing an application, describe your sample and the object of your work: "quantifying atrazine in apples"

    05_Discussion_Editing.JPG

    Optional: add images

    See: How to insert an image in a post or comment

    Optional: attach data, files, scripts

    This is very quick and easy. See How to attach files to a discussion, question, document, or blog
    SUGGESTION: If you're asking a question like "What does this artifact in my data mean?", attaching your data will enable others to process it, which helps diagnose problems
    08_Discussion_PostPlace.JPG

    CHECK: Make sure your are posting in the place you want

    Scroll down and find the "In a Place" area, which specifies where your Discussion will be posted. If this is NOT the place you intended, click "Change" and locate the appropriate community area.

    IMPORTANT: Add tags

    Adding tags is easy and help people find your post by searching. Think of three to five and start typing. The software will suggest tags that are already in the system, but feel free to make new ones.
    09_addingtags.jpg

    IMPORTANT: Place it in Categories

    When people browse the community, they use the Category folders to locate important items. If you don't assign Categories to your Discussion, they can't see it when browsing. These can be assigned later, but this does weird things to authorship and apparent post date; it's best to not do that.
    10_Discussion_Categories.png

    Click Post!11_Discussion_Post.png

    THAT'S ALL!

     

    When people reply to your post, you should be getting alerts emailed to you. If you aren't getting them, please edit your email preferences by clicking your avatar in the main navigation bar and selecting "Preferences".