birmingham.io

Come join us in our slack channel

Just a very quick message to let you know that The Tech Scene in Birmingham now has it’s very own Slack channel:

http://slack.birmingham.io/

The channel was started by @Jess a few weeks ago, but was limited to invite only (because that’s just how Slack works), but now, thanks to @maxehmookau and Slackin, it’s possible to invite yourself.

Hit the link above (or in the main site navigation up top) and enter your email address to get started.

We look forward to chatting with you soon.

Is that the slack on Brumtech?

Yes it is. :birminghamio:

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What are the advantages and disadvantages of moving ‘the conversation’ to Slack?

Aside from seeming a little like a solution in search of a problem, from memory, one of the achilles heels of slack was the difficulty in bring a member of more than one organisation simultaneously. Has this been fixed, or Is there a client one can use?

There’s an Android client but you need an ID for each team and you swap between them.

I’m in 5 now but I still haven’t worked out why. I struggle to understand why it isn’t much better designed, architecturally but that didn’t stop LinkedIn.

I’m not sure I’d class it as moving the conversation, but rather allowing a different kind of conversation.

Forums are good for the bigger discussions in which you want lots of participants. This is because the threads last longer (forever) and give people plenty of opportunity to contribute.

Chat rooms like slack are better suited for the in the moment chats, and are a lot more casual (and dare I say it, fun). It’s good for home workers such as myself, so I don’t go insane looking at the same four walls day-in-day-out.

IMO, the slack channel is like a water cooler, where you can pop in to grab the latest gossip. It’s mostly just fun, and another channel which people can use.

If I understand it correctly, the way this works is each organisation has it’s own user management, meaning that users don’t have a single Slack login, but rather a login for each of the different organisations they wish to join. There’s nothing stopping you from using the same email address for each of these organisations, but they won’t be connected in any way.

I know that HipChat used to have the problem you’ve mentioned, where you’re only allowed to sign up with an email address once, which gets permanently locked in with the organisation you sign up with, and isn’t able to be used for any others. Although this was a few years ago, so it might be fixed now.

I think the basic idea is that each slack organisation is it’s own independent thing. Sure, they all use slack, but each instance of slack is it’s own individual instance, and as such has no contact with the outside world.

Think of is the same as Discourse (the software which powers this forum). You’d not expect to be able to use your login details from birmingham.io to log in over at https://meta.discourse.org/, and it’s the same with Slack.

I know this is different in that slack hosts all of the instances, but so can discourse, and again, you’d not expect to be able to use the same login for all the instances of discourse hosted by discourse.

I don’t think the issue here is design, but rather communication of intent, or education in the use of the system. I agree that it’s confusing, seeing as they’re all called Slack, but once you understand the principle above, it should make more sense.

Whilst I respect those who are, I’m not in the target user group - I’ve signed up and had a graze and it seems all too familiar to IRC when I was at Uni - never really got on with that either - i’m a luddite at heart and I find disembodied conversations tricky.

I may pop in from time to time as circumstances can always change and what’s not right for me now shouldn’t be inferred to be wrong for me forever. Be interesting to see if it sustains critical mass.

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I should imagine that for people who use Slack on a daily basis, such as for work (like me), it’ll be there by default along with their other organisations, and will show activity when activity is there, so if nothing else, I think it’ll have a small core audience of members.

I should add that I hope it goes well for you all - hope my mehness didn’t come across as too negative…

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We couldn’t run our business the way we do without Slack. It’s excellent for a remote team. Best I’ve ever used by far, for sure. The clincher, though, is having our customers in some channels too. Ditto bots – we are informed about production issues before our customers know there’s a problem. Relationships are formed, information is shared, everything is immediate. Brilliant.

However, the sign up to new Slack channels is like ordering a phone from BT. Not that I’ve had one for a decade, which tells the story. Absolutely, bogging awful.

Anyway, I’m in. At last.

Any suggestions on how to improve it? Although @maxehmookau is using Slackin, I’m sure there must be some levels of customisation (even if that means forking it and doing your own thing).

Sorry, no I don’t. I use the desktop app, and adding a channel ends up opening a browser, followed by an email dance, and then, through a series of seemingly random events, the channel appears :-/ I guess they are providing features for folk who want to use multiple identities, but when you only use one, the process get in the way.

It could be an option to share identities between teams but they didn’t bother. They went for security by random segmentation.

One day someone will do Google Circles properly.

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