Proposal: 3D Graphics, Modeling & Animation

I think this proposal is sane in the sense that 3d questions get asked and they have no home. However i'm a bit worried about scoping of the questions.

Lets face the facts. 3D Graphics, Modeling & Animation is a topic that is at least as many of the other special sites combined. 3D generates a LOT of really basic questions. I have some experience in the matter as I have posted about > 10,000 (this was way back so the number is bigger by a factor of 2 or 3, but I've stopped doing statistics at 10,000 posts). You can intuitively see this if you consider that Maya alone had 653 menu-items back in 2009. Nearly everything you want to do combines about 2-3 actions.

So how do we draw the line? Do we really want to answer every basic question from how do I connect vertices to rendering.

Even just choosing language level is hard. It becomes tedious if one has to point out every step without abstraction. The average animation rig uses about 50 or so intermediate techniques that require several different tools to accomplish, so discussing the rig on lowest possible levels fills a book.

Auxiliary question What is the expertise level we aim for?

How do we ensure the person asking has node his homework? So for example this question shows no effort on the part of the poster. But to be inclusive this should be handled. Again its a bit basic, you can solve this problem by reading the names of all menu items in the edit polygon menu. Worse, of the top of my head I can think of 16 different ways of doing this. If i could be bothered to think a bit deeper I'm sure i could come up with a hundred (and so while i typed the number just jumped to 18, better stop this before its too much... Yeah it is now 28).

So how do we:

  • Recruit the talent to answer the questions.
  • Keep the talent interested.
  • Keep the answers from not devolving into a A-B problem game where the biggest problem is figuring out the posters base level.
  • Make sure the site can function by having a big enough pool of different talent.

Addressing this is paramount as I suspect is why the 3d suggestions keep dying... Personally i think its the ratio between those who can and those who do not.

PS: As for blender, i think they could be included. BUT i suspect even they would fail if forced to cooperate this way. I mean personally I am not interested in answering blender, 3dsmax or Lightwave questions. Not because I can not, but because I couldn't be bothered to do so. I need to have some artificial scope creep filtering going on. So should the site.

Blender.SE has handled these kinds of questions just fine... Its a bit complicated to explain, but yes the basic questions do get answered.... I doubt such a proposal will be totally overwhelmed with lazy noob questions. – GiantCowFilms Apr 28 '15 at 21:34
@GiantCowFilms Yes obviously it is easier when you have a tight scope like only one app. Its easier for intermediate users to jump in. – joojaa Apr 29 '15 at 5:46
up vote 4 down vote accepted

This information is useful

StackExchange sites are there so that when I google how do I do x in y, there is a quick, easy and well written answer. Many basic questions on SO are the most viewed/appreciated. "How do I get the last element in an array in JavaScript?" sounds pretty lazy, but it has nearly 200k views! These simple problems are encountered by thousands of users, and why shouldn't 3D.stackexchange be there to help?

Now you do have a point about requiring to many steps, and any content that would require a full blown tutorial is off topic, just like How do I write a tick tack toe game would be off topic on stack overflow. The scope should be anything that is 3D, not overly complicated, and that future users would find helpful on a 3D information database.

I do agree that its useful. Just not something im willing to answer day in. And yes the most voted for questions in most places are also simple and easily comprehensible issues. This just goes to show that there are wastly more beginner problems than expert ones. The most heroic of answers are in my mind the long answers in complicated niche areas where you can not expect more than 1 or 2 votes. – joojaa Apr 29 '15 at 5:48
@joojaa, Yes you may not want to answer them, but some people will be delighted to handle these questions, for the extra internet points. I think they are a valuable part of our site. – GiantCowFilms Apr 29 '15 at 13:41
Sure, but we have to survive the cull. So in the beginning one should expect a bit of effort on the part of the resident experts so one gets off the ground. On the other hand one needs entry points too. – joojaa Apr 29 '15 at 15:28

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