One of the things we saw in the forums was people asking questions and people, other than F5 employees, answering the question based on REAL WORLD experience. We wanted to make it easier for people to share their real world experience, both on our site and in the real world. We decided to make the site more social. Not social in the Facebook sense, you can’t play “Router Wars” or grow a WebFarmVille” and poke people on DevCentral. But we wanted you to be able to connect with other people and find out what they are looking at and what they find interesting. We also wanted a place for the regional and local user groups to post information.

 

Your profile

Your Devcentral profile has been expanded and allows you to share more information with other users if you choose too. Does that mean you need to start posting pictures of your kids? Not unless you want to. But say you have a diagram of your network you want to share, now you can post it to your profile. Have you come up with a new way of keeping your datacenter cool? Post about it in your profile. You can also “microblog”. Did you answer a question on serverfault.com about iControl or ASM? Post a link. You can connect with other users by adding them as a friend. Whenever one of your friends posts something you’ll get notified. You can also send messages to each other through the system.

 

Topic Groups

The idea behind topic groups is to have a common place for people to talk about, and post about, common themes. So questions about iRules, links to good information about  iRules, and reference. We wanted them to be one-stop shops for information about certain things as well as a way for people to show their common interest. Now you can connect a share information in places other than the forum. Did you write a great blog post about an iRule you wrote? Post a link to it in the group.

 

User Groups

Sometimes it helps to talk face to face with people about problems you are having or to share a cool new idea you have for a configuration. User groups are also great places to find people if your employer is hiring. By providing a place for regional and local user groups to post information, we giving you a leg up to form your own local user group and letting you know if their is a user group in your area.

 

It’s about you

The social aspect of the site is the driving point of this release. It truly is all about you. We’ve created several tutorial videos showing how you can contribute. We wanted to create a highly visible area where you can share your knowledge with the world. So link to your technical blog. Post in the forums. Post status updates. Add people as friends. Comment on activity in your stream or in others streams.