Guidelines for new forum participants

Forums Forum construction and development Terms and guide Guidelines for new forum participants

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    Changyue Song

    1. Welcome!

    Dear friends, welcome to IERA! IERA is a non-profit website serving as a platform to share ideas, questions, knowledge, and experience particular to IE society. Please refer to the about page for more information about our website. If you are an author or editor, or you want to write and publish an article in our main site, please also refer to our guidelines on writing articles in the main site. This topic is prepared for new forum participants as guidelines to create topics and reply to topics.

    2. Creating topics

    Before raising a question in the forum, please search the related forums for the same question. All the forums are listed in our forum page. Duplicate topics should be avoided when the question has been solved.

    The title of a topic should be informative. Please avoid using non-informative sentences, such as “I need some help”, as topic titles. A topic title should briefly summarize the main content of the topic.

    If a user raises a question in the forum, he should show that plenty of efforts have been devoted, as forum users who answer the question share the solution for free.

    3. Edit topics and replies

    After entering a forum, you can create new topics. After entering a topic, you can create new replies. The text area is like this:

    In the text area, one may choose to write as normal text in “Visual” tab, or as HTML in “Text” tab. The tabs are at the right-top of the text area. A user who is familiar with HTML may find it convenient to write the topic or reply in HTML format. Here I concentrate on editing the topic or reply in “Visual” tab.

    By default, only the upper toolbar is shown. Please click the  “Toolbar Toggle” button, which is the one located at the right end of the upper toolbar, to find the second toolbar. The functions of the buttons in the toolbar are clearly described. With the help of the buttons, one can easily format the text as list, hyperlink, or other format. Currently, tables are not supported in “Visual” tab. If you want to insert tables, please go to “Text” tab and use the <table> tag in HTML format. Please refer to an HTML tutorial for more information. It is worth stating that the title of each section should be formatted as “Heading 1″, which can be chosen from a style list on the left end of the second toolbar. The title of each subsection should be formatted as “Heading 2″, and so on. It is recommended to number the title of each section and subsection, and the total levels of section should not exceed 3.

    You may find a topic can have topic tags. They are like the key word of a topic. Please use comma(,) to separate multiple tags.

    4. How to type equations

    Equations in the forum can be typed using Latex syntax. Specifically, an inline equation should be embraced between $ and $, or between \( and \). For example, $E=m c^2$ will produce the result \(E=m c^2\). A display equation should be embraced between $$ and$$, or between\[and\]. For example,$$E=m c^2$$ will produce the result \[ E=m c^2 \] If you want to number your equations, please embrace your equation between \begin{equation} and \end{equation}, and label the equation using \label{your-label}. For example, if you type \begin{equation} \label{mass-energy-equation} E=m c^2 \end{equation}, you will get \begin{equation} \label{mass-energy-equation} E=m c^2 \end{equation} And you can refer to this equation with \eqref{your-label}. For example, I can refer to the previous equation with \eqref{mass-energy-equation}, which produces \eqref{mass-energy-equation}.

    5. Including images and attachments

    Every participant is allowed to upload attachments. Due to the limited storage space of our server, attachments are restricted to no more than 5 for each topic and each reply, and the size of each attachment cannot exceed 5 MB. If you want to attach some files exceeding the limit, you may upload your files to some Internet hard disk service such as Google drive, Dropbox and give the link in your topic/reply.

    Images can be uploaded as attachments. If you upload an image and submit the topic/reply, you will find the image in the “Attachments” section of your post. If you want to include it in the text, please click the attachment and copy its URL. For example, this topic has one attachment, you may click it and you will find its URL Click “EDIT” to edit your post. In “Text” tab, move to the place where you want to insert the image. Click “img” button and paste the URL of the image. Then give the image a description or leave it blank. You will find the HTML code <img src="" alt="" />. You may also embrace this code by <a> and </a> like this <a href=""><img src="" alt="" /></a> so that when a visitor click on the image, he will open the URL of the image. You may now change to “Visual” tab to edit the image or submit your post.

    However, a better way to include image is to upload it to another place (e.g. and and include its URL using the img tag. It is better to learn some basic knowledge about HTML.

    6. Forum management

    Unauthorized content from a third party cannot be posted in the forum. For more information with regard to copyright, please refer to our website use statement. Forum moderators and keymasters have the authority to set up additional rules or guidelines for specific forums. They also have the authority to delete any topics or replies, or ban an account if the previous guidelines or our website use statement is violated.

    7. Anonymous posting and post deletion

    From April 2015, anonymous posting is enabled in the forums. Please note that once a topic/reply is marked as anonymous, you can never unmark it.

    By default, a participant cannot delete his topic/reply. If you want to delete your own topic or reply, please contact moderators or keymasters by in-site messages. If you mark the title of your topic as “[delete]”, we will delete the topic for you.

    8. Some links

    At last, hope you enjoy the forum!

    update 2015-04-22

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