I’ve been dabbling with Bubble for about 18 months now, and in that time its popularity has grown significantly.
There is now a lot more activity on the Forum, but it seems to me like there are more and more “technical” questions that go unanswered. I also often find that when I Google search a Bubble problem, the Google result leads me to a fairly recent answered Forum post with the same issue.
Obviously in a peer-supported community like this, Bubble is dependent on volunteers who offer advice “for free”. Nevertheless, this means that Bubble’s own growth is dependent on these advice-seeking Bubble users getting answers to their questions, otherwise they get stuck, demotivated and stop.
So after receiving the recent Bubble update email, with stats for bugs solved and support queries, I wondered if Bubble keep a similarly close eye on the Forum?
I’d be interested to see:
Number of topics/posts per day
Average replies per topic over time
% of Help posts that are marked resolved over time
If, in particular, the latter of these stats showed a decline, that would suggest there are more people out there who are stuck. Do Bubble staff in general engage in the Forum and answer regular questions? Of course, I have seen the founders in the Forum, but usually only for posts from years ago, or more major recent issues. Seems to me like it would not be a bad investment to have someone full-time answering queries here.
That’s because 99% of people’s doubts have already been answered, over and over, often with several ways of solving the same thing. So today things are more about one’s ability to search than they are about repeating answers here.
Even this that I say has already been said over and over already.
Your case over there can be solved via database or via the use of a plugin of mine called “Relative positioner”. And possibly other ways too.
With this plugin I currently don’t have its documentation publicly ready, so you’ll tinker with it for a little, but here’s some short and quick instruction:
Just show the group, position it near any element inside the clicked repeating group cell and that’ll be it. Also use the plugin’s blur detector to make the context menu go away if a click outside of it happens.
And about the stats, I don’t think they monitor like that, but they do read a lot of what’s posted in here.
Not answering for everyone, but personally, I try to answer on the forum as much as I can. I have been getting very busy with one-on-one sessions but I still try to answer in between sessions. I even try to look at older posts that haven’t been answered sometimes just to check if they still need help. There definitely has been an increase in demand on the forum and a limited supply of bubblers who can answer the posts. I think that is why my business is doing so well, it’s like having paid tech support. My clients get one-on-one attention during their session, focused on their specific project. Saves them hours and days searching on the forum for answers.
Indeed, when I have a problem I solve 90% of them by Googling, then using the “search only results from forum.bubble.io” option then opening the 5 or so results in tabs and flipping through them. Between them, I usually manage to solve my problem.
Sometimes though, I just can’t work it out myself, and I need to put the question again in my own words and for my own situation. Like the above issue I mentioned that had no replies (@NigelG has since posted there. Thanks!) - the topic is discussed frequently, which shows to me it is a tricky problem for many people - but i could not get it to work.
But the broader problem is that the number of people who are capable of answering such questions probably does not grow linearly in propotion with the beginners who are asking such questions. Plus, I would say there are a lot more of the… “general” questions… (e.g. “Can I build a Apple Watch app using Bubble” type things). Arguably, Bubble should not let any question go unanswered.
In my opinion, you’ve hit the nail on the head on all fronts, @major_groove. Every question is at least a little bit different to the person who is asking it, even if they just need to ask it in their own words or make it specific to their situation.
Oh, and definitely this…
With regard to your post that went unanswered, how many people out here (including the experienced folks) have ever used a reusable element in a repeating group to get a group focus to work that also contains a repeating group? The number of folks who can answer that kind of question has to be pretty small, and then you have to wonder how many of them even had a chance to see your question before it was buried under an avalanche of the general questions that come in fast and furious these days.
Something I’ve never understood, though, is why Bubble doesn’t have someone manning the forum on a pretty regular basis. I mean, aside from the occasional post from Eve or an engineer when there is a critical issue going on, you never see anyone from Bubble answer a question. Heck, a good amount of the stuff I have learned about Bubble over the years was learned by reading questions in the forum and then trying to answer them with examples. It should be all but required for Bubble support folks to do that from time to time. Don’t get me wrong… I know they are busy addressing thousands of bug reports and answering even more messages, but still, it’s their forum, and it’s super useful from a learning perspective.