Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The JPK Experience : Announcing a new collaborative project

I've just had some input that says Microsoft will be killing off all NNTP support over the next three years. Thus all those wonderful NNTP based Newsgroups will go away. In its place will be web forums. In a related vein, I also read an interesting article by a MS guy: The JPK Experience : Announcing a new collaborative project.

I've been using NNTP newsgroups for around 20 years, and have achieved my MVP status as a result of my postings in various groups over the years. I've found NNTP to be lightweight, relatively ad free, and most importantly available off line via a powerful client (in my case Turnpike). The client (and there are a bunch if you don't like my choice!) makes NNTP very easy to use, although there is a bit of a learning curve (learning how to kill threads or posters, etc).

By comparison, the web forums are slow (60+ seconds to render a page is unacceptable), and very hard to navigate. To skim read a thread of say 20 articles could take 20 or more minutes (compared to seconds with Turnpike).  Each time I try MS's latest attempts to move NNTP to the web, I feel ill. The latest attempts are just as bad.

Jonathan says this time it's going to work. Sadly, he may be right, but only because MS is taking away the option to use NNTP. He also says that as the business owner he can't deal with NNTP. What the heck? I though business owners actually owned things. Unless the mandate to kill NNTP has been delivered from on-high. I note the reaction to JK's post has been just about entirely negative.

While I'm just one MVP, I am unlikely to place much content on web forums. I use them from time to time, when I can afford to wait for the contents to trickle down. But if you really want answers to questions, then use the newsgroups as long as you can. And in the mean time, why not tell Microsoft what you think?

If you believe NNTP should remain, why not email Steve Ballmer ( and tell him just how much you want NNTP.

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