Sunday, April 9, 2017

Optimizing Server Chat Groups

Since the beginning of the Superstes Noctis server, we've been using a single group chat to communicate. This worked just fine at first, mainly because there were only three people in that group and discussion unrelated to the server itself was separated into a different chat group... but as the server began to grow toward our current number of twelve whitelisted members, things got out of control again and recently it was decided that a change needed to happen.

Superstes Noctis member chat is now divided into two groups to fix these issues we had been facing with group discussion:
  1. "Superstes Noctis" is a new chat group that is restricted to discussion directly related to the Superstes Noctis Minecraft Server and special group gaming activities that happen from time to time away from the main server. This includes chat about activity on the server and sharing ideas regarding it, server maintenance tasks such as server crashes or other issues, scheduling time to play together, and various other topics that may come up with the day-to-day running of the server.
  2. "Off-Topic Superstes Noctis Discussion" is the existing chat group, renamed from what is now the name of the new chat group, that is open to off-topic discussion for the group. Server discussion is not banned from this chat group, but is encouraged to be posted in the new chat group for increased clarity and less confusion.
These changes were mostly necessary because I had found out that at least half of the group that uses the chat has muted it indefinitely due to the immense amount of messages causing countless notifications on their smartphones. (I was one of those people) Because of this, and the abundance of other discussions in the same chat, messages regarding the server were going unseen... either buried in a ton of missed messages, or missed because notifications were off for the group. With the new setup, members should be able to mute the off-topic discussion group and keep the main one's notifications on without experiencing a huge volume of notifications; if needed, members can temporarily mute the main group, and mentioning members directly (for example, @Timothy) can notify users despite the group itself being muted.

This is how I plan on doing things personally, and I hope this works for the other members as well. If there are any issues, or if any members have questions regarding this new system, it can be brought up in the main chat or sent directly to me alone for discussion. Hopefully separating out discussion into two chat groups in this manner will enhance member experience with the chat groups and the server in general, and make it easier to continue surviving the night.