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Final Kingdom

An Observation about OCR

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It's very interesting to hear about some of the challenges -- I have no technical insight to contribute, but I would like to offer a suggestion about the more human challenges facing OCR. I think certain aspects of the site's functioning could benefit from revised visibility/accessibility. I am not suggesting more visibility simply to satisfy the curiosity of outsiders like me -- I have faith in OCR's staff and deeply appreciate the time everyone puts into the site. I suggest this because I think, from reading this thread, that the staff might feel more appreciated and effectual if their efforts were more . . . socially permeable -- both in visibility and, in some cases, feedback. As a rule, if you want volunteers/donors to be more active, turn the lights on, let the cameras roll, let the actors be seen -- lauded, heckled, loved, and hated.

In truth, though, you can stop reading here because, as has been pointed out, we've got no shortage of ideas in this thread, and I personally don't have any skills to actually get some of this done. It looks like you guys have more pressing things on your to-do list than what I might suggest, but -- I'll outline a few ideas in case it's helpful in any way.

• I'm not a judge, so I can't speak from experience, but the Judges Queue seems like a very lonely, de-motivational place to me. As a judge you post feedback, it may be weeks before anyone in the community sees it, and you don't get interaction with the artist or see how other people in the community might feel. Sure, a lot of that feedback would probably be hate, but . . . maybe a contentious atmosphere would be conducive to activity. Maybe not. I can't think of specific suggestions that don't cause worse problems, but there's got to be a way to make the Judges panel feel more live -- for the judges' sake.

• I'm sure nobody needs a lecture on this, but web design is like architecture; it's about giving certain spaces the right human weight and interrelation as much as it is about navigability. Placing the following areas in a visible left-to-right progression might ease some problems:

Workshop --> Inbox --> Judges Panel --> Showcase

More than anything, I think this would make the workshop feel more valuable to people. There could be some nice symmetry there with the Workshop and the Showcase as clickable lists on each side. Maybe the 'submit' button on the arrow/boundary between workshop and inbox, a 'view decisions' button on the arrow/boundary between the judges panel and the showcase. (Of course, the Showcase should continue to dominate everything at the end of the day).

• This would take a lot of work, but have simple, elegant stats visible next to each area: how full each area is, how many were passed/denied at each step in the past 6 months, average wait time for the entire progression, etc -- submitters will immediately get a better sense of what is at stake (and hopefully utilize the workshop more), community members will appreciate how much fluff there is to sort.

• Allow other people in addition to djp -- judges or designated mods -- to post write-ups. Dave posts an Overclocked Week In Review. This both speeds up posting, allows the masses to stay in-touch with the guy at the helm, offers mixes another chance to be in the spotlight . . .

Anyway, those are my thoughts. A big thank-you to the people (read: pretzel) who actually get the stuff coded around here.

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As others have said, by looking at the Judges Decision thread, it would appear that the bottleneck lies with the "to be posted" list and not necessarily the "to be judged" list. Sure judging can take a few months, but when the song gets posted tends to be over a year later. Logically, having DJP do individual write-ups for each mixpost would seem to be the most time-consuming aspect of posting a new song. I agree, it might be helpful to have a panel of mods and judges do write-ups and post songs too, which should definitely help speed up the posting process. Unless some of djp's other site responsibilities can be delegated to others so he can spend more time doing write-ups.

One thing I don't think others have mentioned though is that there is something really special about reading each of djp's posts. When I one day (hopefully) get a mix passed, I know what I'll be looking forward to most is seeing what Dave writes about it. I'm not sure how others feel, but I think that's special. So if write-up duties do get delegated, maybe it's some hybrid where Dave always does the write-ups for "first-time remixer posts" and any songs he direct-posts (bypasses the judges panel), but for "repeat mixers" maybe some other mods could do those write-ups? I also like the idea someone wrote below about having Dave do an "Overclocked of the Week" post that would briefly highlight each of the mixes posted that week, but leave a lot of the more technical mix details to the individual mixpost blogs that would be done by the judges/mods. I think that would work well, especially if we ever got to a point where songs were being posted daily or every-other-day.

Just my thoughts! Thanks to all the OCR staff - I don't think people realize all the time you guys spend keeping the site running (I know I can only imagine).

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As others have said, by looking at the Judges Decision thread, it would appear that the bottleneck lies with the "to be posted" list and not necessarily the "to be judged" list.

To Be Judged is also somewhat problematic right now. If you consider they get 100+ submissions per month, probably considerably more, and they're 2 and a half months behind... that's a lot. But they've really sped up over the last few days and the TBJ list is getting shorter and shorter, so hopefully things can pick up quite a bit.

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I know Ari has mentioned wanting to make some sort of submission software for you guys for a long while. He's pretty busy nowadays though, but I think he might still be willing to help if it was needed.

Also that app we made too (or partially made).

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One thing that I've noticed that makes things easier for Dave and his write-ups is when the submitter has more to say about his mix. This helps give Dave some inspiration on what to write about, and overall makes his job easier. Sometimes being over-wordy is a detriment, but I would say for a lot of submissions more would be good.

Similarly, if people want to make the judges lives a little easier: breakdowns, breakdowns, breakdowns! Source usage may be obvious to you, but we may not be able to hear it, or it takes us a lot longer to figure it out. The more specific you can be about what source is used where, the easier we can identify it. This doesn't always mean we will agree with your breakdown in terms of how viable it is as source, but it certainly gives us a diving point. Linking the source (youtube, preferably) in your write-ups also makes things easier, especially when it's an obscure source.

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To make judging faster, the number of NOs and/or YES's needed to pass/reject a mix could be lowered.

Doing that could affect the quality of the posted mixes, but I don't think it'd be a HUGE factor. It could be tested...

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To make judging faster, the number of NOs and/or YES's needed to pass/reject a mix could be lowered.

Doing that could affect the quality of the posted mixes, but I don't think it'd be a HUGE factor. It could be tested...

I actually think the number of required votes is low. The issue there is getting the judges to vote on submissions.

It's at 3 No's or 4 Yes's right now. It's worked for a long time.

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To make judging faster, the number of NOs and/or YES's needed to pass/reject a mix could be lowered.

Doing that could affect the quality of the posted mixes, but I don't think it'd be a HUGE factor. It could be tested...

The judging isn't a huge problem - we're only about 3-4 months behind based on a quick look at the Currently Judging thread, and the other mixes that are listed are probably those that require more votes (borderline YES/NO or whatnot).

It also is at 4 YESes for most songs.

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We may need to do some themed mixfloods to catch up. While this gives a little less "homepage time" to the included mixes, I think we can make it work as long as we can come up with a good grouping/concept. Newcomer floods, secondary album mixfloods, game series floods, etc. Thoughts?

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We may need to do some themed mixfloods to catch up. While this gives a little less "homepage time" to the included mixes, I think we can make it work as long as we can come up with a good grouping/concept. Newcomer floods, secondary album mixfloods, game series floods, etc. Thoughts?

Yes please. Special games flood for an anniversary, etc?

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We may need to do some themed mixfloods to catch up. While this gives a little less "homepage time" to the included mixes, I think we can make it work as long as we can come up with a good grouping/concept. Newcomer floods, secondary album mixfloods, game series floods, etc. Thoughts?

Some random themes to work from, from my previous post::

Mixflood from album x, a couple of Pendulum-style mixes, some 80s synth rock/electronic stuff, vocals, orchestral, jazz, collabs, competition mixes, n00bfl00d, oldtimers' new mixes, Zelda, Kikuta, DoD, Finnish-made games, whatever.

So... album, style, content, genre, origin, remixer status, game, composer, nation...

Soundtracks made by ocr folks is a theme that might also work, if we have mixes of those.

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Compo floods would help relieve a lot of the mixes in there. Mixes from the various MM compos, the Street Fight compos, the Sonic Compo (when those get into the radar, that is - they're probably not on the panel yet)... A lot of mixes queued are a part of these compos, so floods based on those would be feasible.

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I think a "newcomer" flood would be a good concept. Kinda like -bam, here's a bunch of new talent-

Game series/Compo's would work as well, for the reasons Gario pointed out.

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secondary album mixfloods

I think it'd be more effective if the initial album floods either include everything, or the additional tracks follow particularly close to the initial flood with maybe just a short break. That could get crazy with albums like DKC3 that have probably 30 songs passed, but if you had a 5 song flood say, every Monday, that would work. People would know it was coming because it would adhere to a basic schedule which would also be helpful for the songs to get noticed. When you post multiple songs at once, it's a popularity contest -- people will listen to the game they recognize... If it's 5 mixposts from the SAME game/album, the only "popularity bias" would be people listening to their favorite remixer over other ones, but I think peoples' taste in remixers can be a bit more diverse than their taste in games, if that makes sense. Like if you're posting Chrono Trigger and Big Nose the Caveman at the same time, I can almost guarantee you people are gonna go for CT. But if you post 2 CTs there's a solid chance people will listen to both mixes, even if one is durth murtul. I could be wrong but I've seen songs posted from an album much, much later, and I never thought it was really that effective in getting people to check out the album. 'Omerta' was just posted to the OCR Youtube and someone there hadn't heard it and didn't know about the album. On Youtube there's no obvious information that informs people about albums. You guys used to have special album posts in addition to any mixposts on youtube, but that is also not effective because you usually flood the entire album at once. To quote a wise prophet of the digital age, tumblr_m8wun39HNY1rwj1tgo2_500.gif. It would probably be more effective to simply upload the entire album as a SINGLE youtube video, and use the same template for any mixposts that come out -- it'd be different from the template used for other mixposts, but that's the point. It'd let people know it is DIFFERENT, it's from an album, and there's more where that came from. Here's a good way that I've seen an entire album on youtube, with time stamps for each song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOBZjUHTibw

OCR's youtube is probably already sms verified for videos over 15 minutes

Just some suggestions for some observations I guess :tomatoface: Hope any of these ideas help.

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I could be wrong but I've seen songs posted from an album much, much later, and I never thought it was really that effective in getting people to check out the album.

Usually, if mixes from an album get posted long after the release, it's because they were submitted later, not because we just felt like spacing it out. Anyway, isn't that pretty off-topic? We don't have any problems promoting albums. We do a ton of PR work for most every release, showcase albums at conventions, etc. The problem is day-to-day mix post backlog, not album promotion.

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I think a "newcomer" flood would be a good concept. Kinda like -bam, here's a bunch of new talent-

Plus, I think it'd be nice for a lot of the unposted people waiting on the list to be able to finally call themselves OCRemixers. :-P

I could also see compo mixfloods being a good option. Another idea: you could also do something along the lines of an RPG-origin mixflood, or FPS mixflood, which would allow a more varied gamut of genres getting posted at one time (I doubt every song remixed from RPGs in the TBP queue right now is trance, for example) so listeners don't get burnt out from having too much orchestral, or piano solo, or death metal injected into their ears all at once. :-D Of course, that could just happen to me....

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Well it started as an idea for posting all of the album tracks (5 each monday for example) then it kinda evolved into an idea for how to do albums on youtube. I kinda went off of a tangential rant. Sorry. :-)

I also think it would be good to space out mixposts by about 2 or 3 hours instead of posting them all at once. I know djp can write the writeups in advance and then just flip a switch on each one after the previous has had a couple hours of time on its own. :-)

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One thing I don't think others have mentioned though is that there is something really special about reading each of djp's posts. When I one day (hopefully) get a mix passed, I know what I'll be looking forward to most is seeing what Dave writes about it. I'm not sure how others feel, but I think that's special.

I wanted to echo this. Also, as mentioned before, "newcomer" and "compos" floods would be really good ideas to go with.

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I wanted to echo this. Also, as mentioned before, "newcomer" and "compos" floods would be really good ideas to go with.

There was a "n00bflood" back in 2008 that was pretty cool. Another of those would be nice.

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i wanna echo 3 things that i agree with so far

1.) a noobflood would be nice *wink wink*

2.) a compo flood is an absolutely awesome idea!

3.)

One thing I don't think others have mentioned though is that there is something really special about reading each of djp's posts. When I one day (hopefully) get a mix passed, I know what I'll be looking forward to most is seeing what Dave writes about it. I'm not sure how others feel, but I think that's special.

This.

Not trying to say that it wouldn't matter what a judge or somebody would have to say (because i love reading judges decisions threads), but when mixes are posted, the coolest part about the post other than the song is the writeup, and djpretzel not only does them super good and in-depth, it's also super cool to hear what the big man himself has to say. hopefully the tradition of djpretzel writeups never has to change. they themselves make the entire process worth the wait. : D (including songs that have yet to be posted on OCR too, not just my own :P)

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Just wanted to chime in and say thanks to Dave for making an extra effort to get so many mixes posted in the last few days, you've been doing great :-) Your work has not gone unnoticed.

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didthatseriouslyflyoveryourhead

Nobody can hear your tone of voice in a forum post. Nobody except yourself.

OK I've been thinking about it and I have a very real suggestion that I'd like to think at the very least could inspire a spin-off idea that works. Here goes.

What if OCR had a "submission season". Basically just have a set period of time during the year in which OCR accepts submissions. I personally think that the site could reduce that period to a single month out of the year but if that sounds way too drastic then how about OCR accepts submissions from January through June. Then the remaining 6 months is just posting.

Advantages of this system:

+The flood of remixes won't seem to be endless

+People would enthusiastically prepare that ONE remix they plan to submit that year.

+People can participate in the many remix projects on the site while not working on stand-alone remixes.

Disadvantages of this system:

-The number of remixes submitted might diminish (I think it's a good thing)

-Some people might feel inconvenienced (screw 'em :D)

-Rejectees may be frustrated because they have to wait a year to resubmit.

Final Sales Pitch:

I think it would be a great system. I think that OCR is popular enough now that if you only accepted remixes during the month of January, you'd receive enough to keep you busy throughout the year. If the queue ever runs out, then you can increase the submission time frame.

What do you think of this strategy? Are there tons of fatal flaws?

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