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Newbie or Beginner Forum

Discussion in 'Off Topic and Chat' started by elemkar, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. elemkar

    elemkar Junior Poster

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    When in doubt search the Barr Report forums. Today I was searching through the forums looking for information that I thought I had learned in some of my earlier posts and research of the forums (newbie/beginner information). Behold, I found the information I was looking for after much searching and posting another redundant thread. My suggestion: Create a Beginner/Newbie forum that addresses common themes, issues, problems, etc...... Heck, create a forum that addresses the keeping of fish and related issues but do not display this forum as new posts since the primary purpose of the Barr Report is to provide information on planted aquariums. This may entice fish only aquarists into the wonderful world of Barr.
    Elwin

    P.S. I stumbled into the wonderful world of Barr as a fish only guy. Now I am hooked!!! :)
     
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Newbie or Beginner Forum

    You bring up a good point.

    This Report is a bit over the head in many cases of some newbies.
    My rational for that is due to so many articles already out there for newbies and not such in depth analysis and background on the science part that I provide here.

    So with this in mind, a newbie forum is a good idea. Stickies of good starter articles etc are good, I use to use Dan Reslar's for getting folks into plants years ago.

    I'd even consider giving a "plant guru" title to someone willing to help them routinely etc and perhaps some other favor/benefit, free subscription etc for the help.

    Newbies are what grow into experts and winning scapers later on..........it is the only way the hobby will grow also.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  3. Simpte

    Simpte Prolific Poster

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    Re: Newbie or Beginner Forum

    So what do you call us people who are not newbies but obviously realize the more we learn, the more we realize we don't know much? (And be nice, I will see you soon!) lol
     
  4. elemkar

    elemkar Junior Poster

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    Re: Newbie or Beginner Forum

    I believe your answer my be found in the article, "Stages of the Aquascaper", written by Tom. Tom indicates the stages can be interwoven and if I understand the article correctly, you can be in any number of the stages at the same time. Deep!!!
     
  5. kazooless

    kazooless Junior Poster

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    Did anything happen on this?


    I just want to agree that it might be nice to have one forum entitled something like: Beginners! Start Here

    And then have a couple sticky articles such as "The Basics," "Fertilization," "CO2," etc.

    And then have in them stuff like: "Many people including books on planted aquariums suggest but they're wrong. Here's how you do it...

    Just my 2 cents... I'd be willing to help if I weren't still a newbie. ;)
     
  6. reiverix

    reiverix Lifetime Members
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    I've been away for a while (engrossed in another hobby) but I like this idea as well. I have a Co2 article to finish and it shouldn't be hard for us to come up with other articles to post in a Beginner's Forum. Even if we don't add another forum, I think it'd be a good idea to get these kinds of articles finished and up in the articles section under a Beginner's heading.
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Any and all newbie type articles are welcomed.

    Note, I am happy to edit or add, delete things out for folks in the process, I think a group effort is useful and to get many opinions about the article.

    This is more critical than the nutty stuff I write because the folks than get that, already are hooked in the hobby.

    Generally, the EI light article fulfills many of the basics obligation.
    But many are scared of the nutrients and chemicals.

    I try and make things easy and use terms they are use to, NPK, the # of the sides of fertilizer bags etc, Epsom salt, add 1/2 teaspoon of this, add a bit more CO2 etc.

    Add basically 2-4 things a few times a week etc.
    Have enough light etc.

    Many of these things are covered, but a simple resource for the newbie walking in here would be useful. I like Dan Resler's article.

    I'll post that one and folks can go from there.
    I'll also mention and few things to Greg on the site, he's busy and so am I this next few weeks, but hopefully he can get enough time to work on it.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    In the meantime, here's a list of the simpler articles for new folks:

    Welcome to Rec.Aquaria.*

    Old but still highly useful.
    [The Krib] Aquatic Plants

    The 10 Gallon Plant Tank

    Balancing Lights, CO2 and Fertilization

    George's site:

    Aquatic Concepts

    Scott's articles are geared for newbies:

    AquariumFish.com :: Aquarium Fish International :: The monthly magazine for both novice and expert aquarium hobbyists.

    Rhonda's site is also geared to ther lower tech method, although some heresey has been noted there, she's hooked on the gas now.

    Natural Aquariums

    We can draw from the elements we like the most from such past information and synthesize a useful series or set of articles for the newbie.

    The EI article is really just that but for the nutrient and the other confusing elements in the hobby.

    Still, many read it many times to get the gist of it.
    I think that many have issues due to the notion that much of it is basic common sense and not based on the dogma that we often hear.

    That bothers folks.
    It's also deceptively simple.
    That is what bugs folks the most I think.

    DFW Aquatic Plant Club Articles-- Beginner Basics: Introduction

    Ben is a nice guy and writes a good article.

    Introduction to the Cryptocoryne Genus, by Xema

    Xema's Crypt article is a goodie

    Steve has a good article up at APR's:
    Aquatic Plant Resources - Articles - View topic - A Beginner’s Guide to Fertilizer & Basic KH/GH/CO2 Chemi

    Like I said, there are many places that a newbie can find information, some of it might conflict with what the author/owner believes or might be a myth, but these are generally good articles that give a good overview about most elements in the a tank.

    Most FAQ's, and sites have plenty such articles that answer most questions folks have.

    The more advanced questions are where things get trickier.
    Plenty of general articles, far less specific in depth supported articles.

    That's why the Barr Report was started, to focus on the latter, but...........
    That does not imply the BarrReport should not also focus on the basic newbie type of articles.

    Read the above articles, think about it, then start writing some outlines and ideas down.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  9. BHornsey

    BHornsey Lifetime Charter Member
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    For me, it would be more about correcting the misleading advice / assumptions touted so often in many other sources. And, boy, is there a lot of it :(

    PO4 is bad, excess NO3 is bad etc, etc, etc.

    When I first became interested in fishkeeping, and later planting, I spent a long time touring around various websites, reading books spouting all these scientifically proven 'myths' but with no evidence to support any of it. Even when I found the Barr Report, I found it hard to accept this one lone voice stating the opposite to everyone else. Some of it is still way over my head (and I don't feel the need to pursue the hobby such an advanced level) but after following many of the threads Tom has a way of breaking it down into easier terms that I have found useful, with the proof to back it up. And it works ;)

    Something that said 'Newbie? start here' would save a lot of people a lot of problem. All the info is here, it's just you have to dig around to find it.
     
  10. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, that is addressed in several articles, you cannot address each criticism in one short little article.

    I do not approach any argument that way. I address each issue and go into depth and discuss both how and why, not just do thius and some quaint BS about why we should.

    That is what the other myths did.............I'm not planning on doing that.
    Others are welcomed to and draw from my articles etc, but I just do not do partial dicussions, I want the folks to walk away knowing that it works and how and why they should try it an dprove it to themselves.

    Even a newbie 6-8 months have trounce on hacks and authors with 50+ years in this hobby. I've seen it and they offered back some hodge podge BS, the newbies where not convince and knew he was wrong, blatantly so.........if I just told them to do somethign without backing it up and testing and thinking about it, both the how anmd why, they would/might not have gotten to that point.

    Today's mighty oak was yesterday's nut that stood it's ground.
    I'm not sure I'm at all alone either these days.

    Few are willing to argue with me on the topic, not one has ever prove me wrong on many issues and perhaps rightly so, they know if they test their own hypothesis, they will be a large helping of crow.

    I find it very bad for the hobby and for those making such claims to not even had done the test to verify if they where right or not, it does not technical skill, just common sense.

    I get/got all sorts of excuses for not trying the test, their own hypothesis they refuse to test themselves. It is entertaining to listen the most lauded folks squirm and try and talk their way out of it rather than just going, "opps, yes, you are right and I did not test and I over looked this, now let's make a new hypothesis and see what we might learn"

    They never say that oddly.
    Too much ego/pride, not enough true curiosity.

    Yes, I think I and Greg Watson are going to redo a number of things, we both are in Graduate school and he's thinking about doingf a PhD in Business, I'm about 1 or so away from my defense.

    So we are thinking and scheming when we have time, which is not a lot, I post in between my work because I cannot do any one thing for too long without a distraction.

    But the more suggestions and things that you liked that you have seen here or anywhere is very useful.

    I get around and so does Greg to many sites, so we see what works etc.
    But all feedback is good feedback. Look at it as helping the hobby.
    I do.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  11. edacsac

    edacsac Prolific Poster

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    I would hate to see any newbie or beginner forum become too general though. I think if people come here and actually stick around long enough to participate, they know why they've come here. Tom's site and the methods he trys to teach here, fills a niche in the fishkeeping hobby and is a great contrast to the other sites I spend time at - including other planted tank sites. I appreciate the focus here. Although I've asked some general questions of my own, sometimes they are born out of just digging in with an enjoyable community.

    I'd suggest keeping anything begginer related threads (or faqs) stickied and locked, to be modified under supervision so to speak. There nothing worse than doing a search at a site and comming up way more irrelevant results than useful, then having to pick through them.

    It's also very easy to loose control of a websites focus to the community through mere popularity, and that would be a detriment here.

    Maybe have some links to the supervised begginer threads displayed during registration, and there is still room for another link on the top bar to take you to beginner articles :-D

    Just my $.02 from a web guy perspective.
     
  12. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    There will be some changes in the next few weeks, I want the site to be more user friendly as well.

    We did some neat changes, then we need to keep at it.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  13. gupp

    gupp Junior Poster

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    Now I've only converted a few tanks to CO2. ;) But yes I have gotten a little flack about it. I was kind of a hard sell. I was very concerned about my fish and CO2. When I finally had specific information that higher CO2 levels did occur naturally I felt better about giving it a try. It is nice to be able to grow a wider variety of plants than my hard water usually allows.
     
  14. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, it's not really a hard sell, the CO2 is a hard sell truth be told if you are actually fair about it.

    But I think yourself and any aquarist will have a better a broader understanding using both methods. None of that " only my one method " business.

    Jeeze, I hate people like that.
    There are several methods.
    Most folks focus only on one method unfornately and then when a newbie is trying to decide, they can only offer their one method and do not know the trade offs with the other methods nor are able to help them with the various other methods.

    Some are some blinded by their own full of themself attitude to try anything new to learn and expand their knowledge. They cannot possibly be wrong about anything.

    Crap, I've been wrong about many things, but I went back and make sure I got it right rather than believing my own lie and digging myself and ego in a deeper pit which there is no return. I think it just starts with being honest with yourself.

    Simply doing the work is one thing, but making sure what you did was right is a wiser approach.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  15. Steve Hampton

    Steve Hampton Lifetime Members
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    Woohoo, I can't wait to see some of Rhonda's CO2 injected tanks. For me at least, the hobby is doubly enjoyable having planted tanks at both ends...low light non CO2 injected and high light pressurized CO2 injected...I just can't do the DIY CO2 tank well though.
     

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