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Gurus: Now with Extra Points Inside

As we approach the Memorial Day holiday weekend here in the US, I didn't want to leave without mentioning some additions to our Guru Points system.

When we started the site, it was clear that there were many untapped opportunities for gaining points on that did not have earnable points assigned to them. It was, essentially, a simple case of not wanting to delay the launch of the site--we have such a list of things to implement on that if we'd waited to complete them all, we'd still be in beta. Better, it was decided, to get things kicked off early and release changes as we go. 

Sound familiar?

The changes we made this week are to the Guru system. We are going to start adding point values to items on the site that deal more with content, as well as the social aspects. To that end, registered users will now gain points for participating in our Answers section.  If you ask a question, you will receive three points. If you can answer a question, you will be rewarded five points. Keep in mind, questions and answers are moderated, so they need to be solid Q&As.

You can also earn points now for adding items to the Directory (3 pts) and reviewing a Directory item (2 pts). Again, the Directory entries are moderated, so check first for the item you want to enter to avoid duplicates.

In keeping with the social side of the Guru Points system, registered users will now receive five points for inviting unique friends to

I've updated the points listings throughout the site, but here is the current list, too:

Ask a Question: 3 pts
Answer a Question: 5 pts
Add an Item to the Directory: 3 pts
Review an Item in the Directory: 2 pts
Add New Group: 3 pts
Add New Group Discussion: 2 pts
Leave Group: -3 pts
Invite Friends: 5 pts
Approve Friend Request: 1 pt
Add New Photo Album: 1 pt
Post Group Wall: 1 pt
Join Group: 1 pt
Reply Group's Discussion: 1 pt
Post Wall: 1 pt
Profile Update: 1 pt
Update group: 1 pt 

I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable weekend!


It Starts Small...

Even launching something as big as, it's the little things that mean the most as the site enters its second full week of operation. Late last week, we received the first community contributed article on

The article was a well-done, brief tutorial on installing openSUSE 11.1 on a desktop system, from TGodfrey. It's simple, direct, and walks readers through the basic steps of openSUSE installation. In short, it was exactly the kind of tutorial wanted for There is method behind this constant state of article acquisitiveness; the more content built into, the better resource the site becomes for the community--both new and veteran users.

Of course, there is the question of how to get your article on Right now, the answer is simple: e-mail your submission to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Eventually, we will have a direct article submission form on the site, where you can enter and format your tutorial with minimum hassle. At that time, Guru points will rewarded for each published article. (Don't worry, early folks, we're keeping track of user-contributed articles, and we'll add your points retroactively.)

I've been asked what kind of tutorials are needed. Again, a simple answer: basically any aspect of Linux operation is wanted. The site has great content now, but there's plently of opportunity to provide help on topics such as installation, configuration, and troubleshooting for applications, environments, shells, development, and distributions. They don't have to be long treatises; they just need to be clear and factual guides to getting things done with Linux.

Which is something we're all interested in.


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