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15Jul2014

I have the same problem …

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654 hits Updated: 06 December 2016

Learn to be resourceful instead of relying on someone else to do all your work for you!

It is more likely that your problems are not the same as someone else’s

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve read the phrase in a support forum, “I have the same problem …”, I would be rich beyond my wildest dreams!

“I have a problem,” someone writes. “My car won’t go! Please help!”

“Have you checked that your car has fuel?” comes the helpful response.

“Oh, sorry, I forgot to fill the car with fuel. Problem solved.”

So you think that’s the end of the discussion until someone else writes in, “I have the same problem, too. My car won’t go. Please help!”

“Have you checked that your car has fuel?” comes the helpful response again.

“No, the car has plenty of fuel, but when I turn the key nothing happens.”

“Maybe your battery is flat. Have it checked and get it replaced”

So, they check the battery and, sure enough, it’s dead. They replace the battery and they report that their problem is fixed.

Again, you think that is the end of the discussion until someone else writes in, “I have the same problem, too. My car won’t go. Please help!”

You ask if they’ve checked the fuel and checked the battery and they swear that they have plenty of fuel and that the battery works. So you think about it for a while and suggest that maybe the starter motor needs to be looked at. They replace the starter motor and they’re fixed. Sure enough, 10 minutes later someone else writes in with—you guessed it —“I have the exact same problem as everyone else. My car won’t go, too. I’ve checked the fuel, the battery, the starter motor …”

So this is the thing. How do you fix everyone’s “same” problem? I read the following in a book the other day:

Ever heard the saying “If all else fails, read the instructions?” It’s sarcastic, of course. But it’s also somewhat profound, because it touches on our natural desire for immediate gratification. Believe me, when it comes to wanting and expecting immediate gratification, I’m as guilty as the next person.

Unfortunately, there are no one-size-fits-all instructions for using a computer. If all instructions for all types of computers and programs were gathered into one set, it would be bigger than multiple sets of the Encyclopedia Britannica—actually, probably big enough to fill a decent-sized public library. Truth is, you can do so many things with a computer, and such a huge volume of information is available, that no single source of information could possibly exist.

To survive in the digital world these days, you have to be resourceful. And being resourceful means having enough skills to find the information you need, when you need it, wherever that information might be. But being resourceful isn’t a skill anyone is born with. You have to learn to be resourceful.

And that’s what this article is all about. This website doesn’t attempt to cover everything about any specific product in great depth. But it does cover the main features with a focus on the tasks most people want to perform when they setup their web-based forums. If I haven’t covered a specific subject then ask questions and learn from others or learn from your own experimentation. If you make a discovery that you think others will benefit from, then do what I have done and write an article about it to help others.

And, by the way, have you checked your car lately?

This article is based on the author's previously published work written for the Kunena website. A French-language version of this article was published in the Joomla Community Magazine.

About the author:

is a Joomla professional and former member of the Kunena project for more than 8 years—a substantial contributor to the original Kunena documentation project with over twenty thousand messages posted at the Kunena forum. The opinions expressed in this article are entirely those of the author. View his profile here.


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