How can we have great discussions about interesting topics?

Hi all,

It was marvelous to see how an initial “innocent” post/tutorial developed into an engaging discussion where many gave their points of view and participated actively.
If you did not read it yet, I invite you to do that now.
I wish we could have more of those, perhaps every two weeks, so we can learn about things like that, and maybe nerd out while we are at it.

What would you say the recipe for success at that event was?
What are the elements to inspire such things in the future?
Would it be possible to create a list and tackle it one by one?

Please reply below!
New users/advanced users/all welcome.


I’m less involved here in the forum than I was a few years ago, so I really try pick and choose topics that interest me to comment on. This one caught my eye because I thought there was good info there already, but maybe a more advanced perspective would help people.

I’m not sure how to replicate that but it was a fun little thread.


Love the enthusiasm and initiative, @gusgonnet!

I think it would be great to have posts like this every two weeks or even more often. To encourage this, how about a little incentive? I have some extra sensors/other hardware components collecting dust in my garage (alas, no boards that I can part with). I can also scrounge up some Particle swag with the new logo on it and can create a new badge for the forums. When there’s a post this cool that leads to community engagement it should get some recognition, be it parts, swag, or a “Standout Post” badge. How does that sound?


I think anything could help to instill this.
We could also rally together to help students build their projects, build remote sensors for communities, etc, etc.

Anyhow, the spectrum is large. I wish I knew how to inspire such topics to happen more often around the community.


I’d love to work with the community on a Particle for Good sort of project! Let’s meet up and talk about this. Anyone who is interested is invited!

@gusgonnet ,

One thought I am on is that our projects tend to get more specialized and therefore more unique as they mature. I am going to try to share things and float questions earlier so they might be of a more general and more broadly applicable nature. Like the garden watering project.

Thanks, Chip


I personally don’t think that incentives are needed (free hardware/swag/etc).
I actually feel a little guilty when I’m involved with a Thread that gets deep into the bushes.
I never knew if these situations were “frowned upon”, or not… since they tend to deviate from Programming/Coding.

One idea might be a structure where people could mention projects without needing to write a full how-to article. Maybe a “Safe” Place where nobody is expected to field dozens of support questions

The Particle Ecosystem (and especially the forum) have allowed me to accomplish some pretty neat things over the years as a consultant.

The trick is that I was usually compensated by my Clients for the work, so I can’t ethically share the exact design and code base for those projects. I’m sure there are many others here in the same situation.

Another thought is a BrainStorming Section, as Chip eludes to. Those are the threads that I enjoy the most. Everyone gets to share their unique perspective on a subject. There are no Right or Wrong answers when spit-balling… and that freedom promotes conversation, which generally leads to education (for myself atleast).


They are awesome to read and follow.

I see. I know what you mean by full how-to articles, they take a long time to write.

From my point of view, I declare the whole Particle community a safe place.
If someone gets a question that they can’t answer (for whatever reason that might be, secrets, NDAs, lack of time, knowledge, or interest) then a simple “sorry, I can’t answer that one” is perfectly fine.
We all address each other with respect. I think that happens 99.999% of the tim, that is great and keeps me involved here.

I like the brainstorming section. @Colleen what are the chances of you creating such a category here in Discourse?

Ryan, I enjoy what you write a lot, and learn tons from it. Same goes for the many folks that write here about their joys and troubles. That’s what this “quest” to find what a good recipe for inspiring those is all about. I know it’s… tricky.

Oh, and my last comment would be this:
I know the community is a place for asking questions and receiving answers on Particle devices, but I see it also (and would like everyone to see it like that as well) as a place to hang out and socialize with others, “like-minded” (professionals or not).
In other words, we can come here to help each other and socialize, and maybe every now and then we can deviate from the usual Particle question to dig on other aspects of a community, sharing, brainstorming, educating, inspiring others and such.



@gusgonnet , Thanks for creating this Topic. I hope this works out.


Not frowned upon in the slightest! They make the forum a more fun and interesting place.


Definitely possible but is there overlap between that and the Social category?

1 Like

well, this is how I see it:
social → we talk about whatever we want, party, rock and roll, and maybe some Particle
brainstorming → you have an idea and post it there for feedback from the community

You make a compelling argument! Want to talk further about this in tomorrow’s call?

of course! :wink:

1 Like

What if instead of calling it brainstorming we call it “Fun Projects”?


I think the intent is different, and I really really like brainstorming as a category. It’s… inviting to post something there… right now…

Fun projects could be another one!


You’ve convinced me! I’ll make it happen soon.



@jgskarda would you like Colleen to move your current topic about LoRa to this new category?
It would make a great inaugural topic.

1 Like

@gusgonnet, @Colleen - Yeah I’m good with that. I was struggling with where to put it. It had mostly to do with firmware/libraries and firmware to manage LoRa so it was a good starting point but the Brainstorming category seems to be a better fit now that we have it.

Edit: Looks like I have the power to move it myself. Either since I’m the author of it or I have enough Discourse “Credit”. It’s moved.