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Phalcon community seems not very "enthusiastic"about the new users or am I wrong?

I like Phalcon and I think it's the future of PHP frameworks, but right now the community and the forum sucks.

I mean, check how many unanswered questions are there and some of them are very good and interesting questions.

My question is (if it will be answered, of course) why is that?

Is it because most of the people who work with Phalcon are not good at using English? If that's the case, I think that's not a problem at all and it could be solved. My English is very bad too and people still try to help me no matter how many errors I do. So, I would rather appreciate very bad English in the answer than no answer at all.

However, if the problem is that there is no willingness to help less experienced users than that's a problem and it should be addressed and worked on.

I hope that the shame to answer in bad English and not the unwillingness to help the newcomers is the problem of this community. So, please stop being afraid of writing bad English, because what is important is the message and not your English ;)

Other thing I have noticed is the difficult orientation in this forum. That's something you should consider to improve too.

edited Oct '14

I think this question is hard to answer, I would not say that english is the only problem, in most cases, nobody will going to correct your english grammar, and if the message is enough understandable you will get an answer. But, I would classify 'unanswered' questions in the following groups:

  • Questions that are actually asking for new features: These are mostly kept unanswered because Github is the real place for new feature requests
  • Questions reporting bugs: These are mostly kept unanswered because Github is the real place for reporting bugs
  • Questions like: Why the framework wasn't designed this way? or Why do I need to use X feature if I don't like it? or Why the framework does not have X feature I need?. These questions are hard to answer because every possible scenario and every possible feature cannot be provided by the framework, once a feature is released it's hard that it be changed in the soon time because of our backwards compatibility philosophy
  • Questions asking how to install Phalcon on X platform are also hard to answer, if nobody in the community has used that platform or if the forum message has not delivered to those who have the experience with it, there's a high probability that these questions remain unanswered
  • Questions with complains on current features or complains asking for new features or complains about documentation, etc: These aren't real questions but this is OK if you need to give peace to your heart. Someone in the community could provide you some workaround or alternative solution. Not every tool is designed the way we expect, people that is ok with a feature never will open a thread or a new issue complaining so how do we know if the complain makes sense or not?

Another types of questions/scenarios:

  • Most of the people are busy with their jobs or daily activities, a hard-to-replicate scenario + poor descriptions of problems lead to 'unanswered' questions, for example, you see a lot of them on StackOverflow. Posting good questions is very important to get good answers.
  • Bad Karma: People that are always asking for help but they never help others. This is a very common case too, people have to grow some kind of karma, if you help others and collaborate with the community, people will be more willing to help you. Most of newcomers obviously don't have any karma when starting to post on the forum, but there are things that don't help, for example, their Github profiles are recently created or does not have any activity, their names are strange (or no name at all), no profile photo, excessive aggressiveness, excess of anonymity, excessive negativity, etc. all of this reduces the empathy with current community members.
  • Higher/Unrealistic expectations: It's hard to handle high or unrealistic expectations, sometimes people prefer not to answer a thread to respond "hey, this is not supported", this allows others to find a solution.

To summarize, Phalcon is an open source project, from core developers to community members, from the core framework, passing from the website to the documentation, all you see here is voluntary effort that someone did before. More people are required to put hands on current problems instead of complain expecting others to change things don't like, this is the way that open source works and that every open source project has evolved.

Hey, just to pick up on a suggestion on @bpmvrzsf post. "difficult orientation in this forum" nice englado ... jk Having an old school forum structure with topics, and having a sticky in the feature requests, bugs, ... topics, pointing people to github would help streamline the process.

Some people (like me) are new to this framework. I'm still in the process of learning. So, I try hard to help others if a question arise with the same issues that I'm having and that I already solved.

Phalcon has proven enough to be a great framework that unfortunately is not really known as it should be.

Thank you all for the feedback. We do appreciate it :)

The question you guys have to ask yourselves is what is Phalcon?

Phalcon is an open source project. One day some members of the core team woke up and had this really crazy idea that was way beyond the norm - to create a PHP framework as a C extension. Yes it had been tried before but that project lacked a lot of things and as a result was not a viable option.

Here comes Phalcon. After a lot of versions, a lot of work and sleepless nights, we managed this year to get the word out as much as possible and still growing.

What is Phalcon lacking right now in comparison to other frameworks is contributions. People don't know C (like myself) or are intimidated to try and contribute to it. That is fine - we knew this from the beginning and this is why we are creating a brand new language for version 2.0 called Zephir which aims to bridge the gap between C and PHP development.

Now after this history lesson, comes another question. What can you do to help Phalcon. If you (and I use you meaning anyone) can translate some documents, go for it. If you can help with answering questions in the forum, again more than welcome. If you like the forum software but something is not right, something needs to change to make it better, the repo is in Github, open sourced and it is PHP so all you have to do is issue a pull request.

The community is what makes a project great. We can all work together to make this project even better!


Thank you guys for for your answers. I really like the concept of Phalcon, Simple things like that you don't need another folder on your ftp with system files and just loading it automatically with PHP is good enough and other things like he speed of the framework, volt and other stuff as well. So, I hope that after a year there will be at least 2 or 3 times more people on board willing to help. Maybe myself included, if I get to the level of helping others with my "Phalcon" knowledge, of course ;).