Milliways regulars include society members from both past and present, and some who just like to use Milliways but have never been part of the society. There is a unique sense of community, and you will often find passionate debate on all sorts of subjects from programming to politics, plus the odd pun.
It can be a little daunting when first joining Milliways as the community is so well established, but stick around and get to know how things work and you'll soon find out how to get the most out of Milliways. If you find any way that Milliways can be improved, let us know. Milliways is an open source project developed by SUCS members since 1992 and it changes regularly!
Below are a few guidelines that every user should follow so that Milliways can be a place where people want to hang out and tell their friends about.
You're Talking To Humans
It's important to keep in mind that there are real people behind the usernames and that they all have their own backgrounds and experiences, and perhaps some of them are even having a bad day. Use good judgement as to your familiarity with other users and the power dynamic between you before choosing your words, especially when using light hearted banter.Asking Questions
It is tempting to ask if you can ask a question on Milliways, or if anyone is around who knows about a certain subject, but if you have a question or something that you require help with, the best thing to do is to ask that question straight away. Provide as much context as you can. You may have to wait for an answer outside of busy hours and if you do not get an answer it can be useful to other users to report back when you've found the answer elsewhere. If the question is likely to be answered with a quick web search, try that first to save time. Note that students asking for coursework solutions will likely encounter silence but asking very specific questions to help you understand the concepts you need is highly encouraged.
Particularly with newcomers, it's important to appreciate that asking a question may be a difficult thing to do. We were all new students and new to Milliways at one point. If you think the answer is obvious or simple, it's best to keep that to yourself to avoid belittling the asker. Not everybody has the same knowledge in their head.
Don't Flood the Talker
If you have anything that you wish to share on Milliways that is more than a line or two of text then you should make use of a pastebin, such as the SUCS PasteBin and there is also a SUCS URI shortener for posting very long links without flooding, although many long URIs can be shortened greatly just by trimming the ad tracking elements from them.