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Speculative biology is simultaneously a science and form of art in which one speculates on the possibilities of life and evolution. What could the world look like if dinosaurs had never gone extinct? What could alien lifeforms look like? What kinds of plants and animals might exist in the far future? These questions and more are tackled by speculative biologists, and the Speculative Evolution welcomes all relevant ideas, inquiries, and world-building projects alike. With a member base comprising users from across the world, our community is the largest and longest-running place of gathering for speculative biologists on the web.

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Speculative Evolution Glossary

Speculative Evolution Glossary
Speculative Evolution Glossary.
If you can't find the word you are looking for, find it here with words compiled from our members in this topic.

Welcome to Speculative Evolution

Happy 10th Anniversary, SE!

Posted by Holben (Admin) at May 24 2018, 04:00 AM. 23 comments

On the 24th May 2008, metanthropic (currently known as Livyatan) founded SE. That's 10 years ago today, and while there's been a lot of change since then, I think that we are still the best discussion forum for speculative evolution anywhere on the internet.

The last decade has been pretty rough for forums, which I think is a shame because they are the best model for encouraging deeper conversation outside face-to-face contact. One of SE's main functions, in my view, is as a hub for information sharing, and tens of thousands of posts by people utilising knowledge about real-world organisms, evolutionary patterns, and more are sure to be. But we're still going strong, and I'm very happy with SE's community and energy.

I really look forward to seeing what our community produces in the future!

Changes in Staff Policy

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Mar 7 2018, 01:16 AM. 9 comments

Recently the staff has felt that there is a growing frustration with us among the membership of the forum. There is some confusion about how we decide policy, how policy is enforced, and what exactly we do and why. Currently there is very little transparency about actions taken by the staff and why it was taken, and we hope to remedy this issue soon with changes to some of our policies. Currently our moderators act more or less autonomously, often discussing potential actions with the rest of the staff until a consensus is reached, but sometimes circumstances call for a moderator to take immediate action in which case they must utilize their own discretion. This can cause confusion among members as different moderators will have different ideas about the severity of a situation and how best to handle it. Some are quicker to dole out punishment, others are more lenient and give warnings, and some forego such action entirely in favor of changing the topic. The lack of consistent enforcement of rules has caused some frustration, we believe, and while we will attempt to remedy this to the best of our ability we should mention that in order for the staff to be at all effective they must have the ability to operate autonomously and react to situations as they develop, so there will always be some level of inconsistency. The staff is currently considering policy changes to help the membership better understand our actions with the following changes:

Firstly, we are discussing a system in which actions taken by the staff against members are logged and displayed for the public to see whenever possible. This increase in transparency should help alleviate some of the confusion surrounding what we do. The idea is that any time a thread is closed, a member is banned, or other serious enforcement action taken by a moderator the specific action taken and the reasons for doing so will be available for everybody to see.

Secondly, we have set up a system by which members may anonymously--or at least privately--offer the staff suggestions, criticism, and appeal action taken against them or others that they feel was unjust or premature. You may utilize this system here. The idea here is that many times when there are disagreements between members and moderators about action taken by the staff, expressing these opinions quickly turns into heated arguments between members or is otherwise shut down by the staff to avoid such arguments occurring. With this system people may express these opinions via PM or email without having to post them publicly and with the assurance that the entire staff will get to see their message. This also offers anonymity for those who, for whatever reason, do not wish to have their identity attached to their message.

Finally, the staff intends to discuss potentially implementing more concise guidelines about appropriate punishments. Currently there is little consensus about what constitutes a "harsh" punishment and what is "light." For instance some feel that a three day ban is a perfectly appropriate punishment for some infractions while others feel that it is too light. The use of warnings and warning levels is also rather inconsistent. On this topic we will make no guarantees because in order for the staff to be at all effective they must be able to act on their own, and its impractical to attempt to categorize every situation and assign an appropriate course of action when by necessity nearly every situation the staff must take action on must be considered on a case by case basis. We feel that the issue is important enough that it at least warrants some discussion, however.

We certainly hope that any changes we do implement help clear up any frustrations and misunderstandings between the membership and the staff. Please feel free to use the new SEHR system, linked to above in the second point, at any time to let us know your thoughts on this subject or any other relating to staff-membership relations.

Little Known Features

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Feb 1 2018, 03:19 AM. 5 comments

Lately I've answered some questions about adding various functions to the forum (which I can't really do, for the record). Many times these requests are things that the forum already has, or at least has a function similar to, so I thought I would go over some of the forum's lesser known features.




TOPIC TRACKING

While the forum does not currently support subscribing to topics (zetaboards premium actually has this functionality but we are not paying money to support an outdated platform that has not been updated in four years), it does have a topic tracking system that can make it easier for users to, well, keep track of topics. Unfortunately the placement of the button to track a topic and the lack of use of the preferences page in general makes this feature easily overlooked.

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The first step is to choose a topic you would like to subscribe to. You can subscribe to any thread, but I highly recommend only subscribing to those you either check frequently or want to keep tabs on, to avoid your subscriptions becoming cluttered.

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Next scroll down to the very bottom of the page. It's way at the bottom, so keep scrolling until you can't scroll no more. It doesn't matter what page you choose be it first, last, or middling. Click the link that says "Track Topic," outlined in red in the image above. There is also the option to email the topic, though why you would do this is beyond me.

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Finally you can check your tracked topics by clicking on the preferences tab at the top of the page. Unfortunately it will not alert you when new posts are made, but you can very clearly see who made the last post and when on the right-hand side. This way you can keep track of topics you want to follow without having to rely on the portal or digging through subforums until you find the one you want. Never lose a topic again with Topic TrackingTM.




BLOGS

Did you know that you can run a blog right here on the forum? Most people don't! You can use it to talk about your projects, your life, or even blog about your other blogs. The world is your bivalve, you merely have to seize it using our handy blog feature.

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First go to your preferences by clicking on the preferences tag at the top of the page. From there click the My Blog button, outlined in red.

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Now this is the confusing bit: you have to set up your blog and then click the Save Changes button to access your blog. So far as I know you must do this every time you want to make a new post, and you can only run one blog at a time.

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Finally you should see this page, where you have all the options available to you to run your blog.




MULTI-QUOTING

You can quote multiple posts--even across multiple pages--simply and easily if you didn't know! Next to the quote button you will see a little check box, just tick it for every post you wish to quote and hit the quote button on the last post after checking it! Now you've done it, you've multi-quoth. I'm not sure if this feature is particularly unknown, but newer members may not have been around when it was introduced and I thought I would mention it in case they didn't know what the little checkboxes were for.




NOTES

You can add footnotes[1] to your posts[2] by using the note code. To do so add--with no space afterwards--the note tag after the word or phrase you'd like to have a footnote, and write what you'd like that footnote to say enclosed in the note tags. For example: This is an example(note)And this is the footnote(/note). Simply replace the parentheses with brackets, as is standard with BBCode. Don't worry about numbers, each note you create is automatically numbered chronologically with no need for any additional effort on your part[3]




PROFILE FEATURES

There are a couple other small details I thought I would bring up relating to members' profiles. If you click on a member's username you will be taken to their profile. Hover over profile options and you will see several options:

  • List Member's Posts will open a page with months and years, showing each post that member made in the month you've chosen. They will be in chronological order and have no context, but you will find a link to the thread each post is in on the page as well.
  • List Member's Topics lists all the topics a user has made in chronological order, though without the division by month that the posts option has.
  • Ignore Member does just that: adds the member to your personal ignore list. If you find a certain user particularly annoying you can use this option to hide their posts from your sight.
  • Add Contact will add the member in question to your personal address book, accessible in the preferences page. This can be used to more easily send PMs to people you frequently communicate with privately.



    I think that just about covers it. I hope this post has been enlightening and that you all might get some use out of these little known features.

[1] It's true!
[2] Literally any post!
[3] How convenient!

2017 Annual Activity Report

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Jan 4 2018, 07:30 PM. 0 comments

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NEW MEMBERS
Monthly Average: 24
Record High: 37 in February
Total: 289

Despite a steady drop near the end of the year, membership is up by 69% from last year. Looking at the member groups, however, reveals that only around 25% of our nearly 2000 members have more than ten posts and that the vast majority of visitors to the forum continue to be unregistered guests.

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TOPICS CREATED
Monthly Average: 75
Record High: 152 in February
Total: 897

Seems like despite having a higher monthly record in topic creation, overall creation of new topics dropped by 12% in 2017.

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POSTS CREATED
Monthly Average: 3197
Record High: 4307 in February
Total: 38,367

Total posts are down across the board, with a 22% reduction in posts in 2017.

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Hall of Fame: 118,008
2. Evolutionary Continuum: 99,846
3. General Discussion: 81,433
4. Official Competitions: 69,889
5. Alternative Evolution: 64,408

It looks like we peaked in February of 2017 and have been going downhill the rest of the year. It was a pretty trying year though, and I can't really blame anybody for having other things on their mind than the forum. We got a lot of new members, but less activity, likely from the growth of the Speculative Evolution tumblr blog, which went from having only a few hundred followers to 14,756 by the end of 2017, as well as the growing popularity of the SE Discord server (PM Flisch for an invite), where you can find a lot of members and usually some staff online at any given time. For 2018 I would like to make a new, updated default theme based on Estuary and get the activity level on the forum to a more consistent level. If you have any suggestions for changes you would like to see made to the forum you can post them here. Although I am a few days late on behalf of the SE staff I would like to wish you all a happy new year, and the best of luck in achieving your goals in 2018!

Some End-of-2017 Staff Changes

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Dec 29 2017, 01:56 PM. 18 comments

As you may have seen, several of our members are now in different user groups as of today. We have made the following promotions:



While DT and Little have been with us for a while, Icthy and Sphen are new to the staff team and we look forward greatly to having them with us. You might notice that the Forum Moderator group is much reduced now; it was set up when conditions on the forum were quite different and a lot of its original intent is no longer relevant to the forum as it stands.

We have also done some housekeeping with some older and inactive staff members, moving:


I'd also like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy New Year and a thoroughly good 2018.

What is necroposting?

Posted by Zorcuspine (Global Mods) at Jun 25 2017, 06:54 PM. 12 comments

To put it simply, necroposting, also known as necroing, is posting on a thread that has been dead for many months or even years, “reviving” it from the grave. While not technically against the rules, necroposting is widely frowned upon, and repeated necroposting can get you warned for spamming. Some examples of necroposting are;

  • Asking someone if there project is going to update again after it’s been inactive for a substantial amount of time. IE. “Is this active?” “Are you still working on this?” etc.
  • Giving suggestions to a project that has been inactive for a substantial amount of time IE. “You should add more arthropods” “Why is this animal scaly?” etc.
  • Posts with little substance on a thread that has been inactive for a substantial amount of time. IE. “This” “I agree” “I like this” etc.

But necroposting, at least on this forum, is a bit more complicated than reviving long dead threads, there are a few exceptions to the rule where bumping up a long-dead thread is considered acceptable.

  • If it is a project you made and you have new information to add. It doesn't matter if you last worked on the project in 2008, if you made it and you want to add to it, go for it!
  • If, in a science thread, either new information has been discovered or you find some information relevant to the thread that had not been previously discussed.
  • If, in a discussion thread, you have quality and relevant information to add

These are the biggest examples, but there may be other instances where it’s okay to post on an old thread. If you are unsure whether or not what you want to post would be considered necroing, feel free to ask in the shoutbox on the bottom of the forum before you post. You can also pm me, and I will do my best to provide a quick response.

I hope this helps clarify what necroing is and how to avoid it. If you still have questions on the subject, you are welcome to post them in this thread!

The SE 2017 Survey - Results

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Apr 23 2017, 12:25 PM. 6 comments

Thank you to everyone who submitted their responses for the Survey. It was up for three days, and forty-six different people took part. I'll summarise what we found here, including a few of the interesting remarks we saw along the way.

How frequently do people visit SE?

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Over three quarters of responders here said that they visited the forums almost every day, and no-one responding said that they visited less than once per week. Perhaps we simply didn't cast our net wide enough, and the irregulars would have shown up over next week? Nevertheless, I think this is a sign of a very strong core to the community here.

What do people come to SE for?

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If you need a reminder of the options


By a little way, the strongest showing here was for people taking part in or viewing projects by individuals. That makes a lot of sense to me- many of our most-replied-to topics are just that kind of thread, and they also seem to attract dedicated lurkers too. Discussion and presentation threads weren't too far behind, and after them chat threads and community happenings were tied. The other three options all saw strong showings too. Some examples of the things people put in 'other' includes browsing old projects and posting/reading creative content in Cafe Cosmisque.

Which forums are most visited?

Of all the forums, General Discussion is in the lead here, with Cafe Cosmique also being highly visited. Among the Speculative Biology areas, Evolutionary Continuum was in the lead shortly followed by Alternative Evolution. There was a fair showing among the habitable zone crew, and of the five forums in that section alternate universes was the least mentioned with only two respondents mentioning it.

The Staff

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Generally, respondents seem to view staff activities quite favourably. Effectiveness and fairness were consistently at the high end of the scale. There was more variability with approachability and organisation, and most people seem to think we have about the right number of staff, with the skew being towards us having too many. The least consistent of these was transparency, with a positive general trend but a significant number of people choosing central positions.

Interesting remarks when asked for suggestions for improvements:
"I feel that Away Staff is an unnecessary grouping."
"Clarification what what each role means."
"I think there are certainly more staff members than required to keep the forum functioning, but I think it's great to have a large and active staff body. I don't think there's really anything wrong with the way the forum has been functioning in the time I've been here, but if there was fewer staff members there wouldn't be too much a difference in efficiency (however, discussion on moving forward with ideas in staff discussions might be compromised)."
"Staff introductions."
"As said in the Discord, try to fresh up the Mod list, some of them aren't approachable in any way as they aren't on often enough and don't really participate in any forum activity, be it discussion, chatting or actual speccing."
"A slightly more objective way of moderating would be nice. We should want to keep rules somewhat loose to prevent people from exploiting loopholes, but I feel too often whether someone gets punished or not depends on how popular they are."
"Maybe a pinned topic explaining what it is the mods do? (Or something similar.)"


Understanding of Staff Roles

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Ten of the 46 respondents didn't feel like they understand the role of a Global Moderator. People were even less sure about the Forum Moderator and Away Staff positions, with 13 and 16 leaving those two positions respectively blank. Respondents were all over the place regarding forum-specific moderators, with a tendency towards the centre- not being entirely sure.

Interesting feedback remarks:
"Better definitions of when a member is/isn't away staff, and clarification of what forum moderators do and where they do it."
"Forum and global moderators are a needless split. Second, Away Staff is utterly useless. Nobody needs that."
"I'd like to see minor tweaks - more specialization, clarity on the functions and roles of each member of staff."
"I personally feel like there are one or two Global Moderators who don't effectively use their position and who's responsibilities could probably be better handled by forum moderators if they were given the mantle instead."
"Why is there so many forum moderators if there's only a few community projects? For COMs sure, but it feels a bit odd that even though for some community projects that either completely die or never come into existence, the mods continue to persist. What are they doing? Are they putting stuff in the water and turning the frogs homosexual?"
"Good enough."


Do people feel able to give feedback?

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Most respondents feel able to give feedback about the way things are done with SE, though the modal group is the central position. Seven respondents chose the lower two responses.

SE Community Overlap

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The majority of people taking the survey put themselves down as members of the SE discord. The other three options had weaker but significant results. Only one other SE community was mentioned, which was the SE subreddit on reddit.

Use of SE features

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Relatively high usage of the active topics feature, and low usage of the affiliates page. However, active topics was still only used by 19 respondents, and only 32 survey-submitters gave an answer to this question, so we can assume the 14 left out do not use any of these features.

COMs and Community Projects

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The majority of respondents here have taken part in a COM and a Community Project, but submitters were more likely to have taken part in the former (for the interested, the Other option was explained as "An April Fools COM, but that's it.").

Interesting feedback on COMs:
"Have a consistent schedule on when COMs should be chosen and when they should be taken down. It's confusing to see COMs remain up two weeks after they were supposed to end."
"It's good and has improved in comparison in the last year."
"Better time management. It really isn't that hard to pick a new theme and do a short writeup in the timespan of 30 days."
"There could be more, and an allowance for regular member-based COMs, rather than staff-only."
"A clearly explained and closely followed schedule (competition starts on the first, polls open so many days before the end of the month, etc.)."
"The April Fools COM was really lame and out stayed its welcome. In all seriousness, sometimes the competitions take way too long to close."
"COMs appear to be decided far more a Moderator's whim than almost any of the suggestions provided. Public opinion is often not taken when deciding the COM subject, and often the voting process is hard to participate and monitor."


Interesting feedback on community projects:
"Personally I think it's really a hit and miss thing with projects. Sometimes they're managed great, other times not so much. (Compare Bygone World to something like the Future Evolution community project)"
"The library is the only one I am aware of. Little does not spend nearly enough time moderating and running it. Not sure if that really belongs in this question though."
"Community projects tend to die constantly, and I don't know if this is a staff issue or a lack of organisation from all parties."
"Personally I'm not sure why we need a strict separation between community projects and personal projects, but other than that, no."
"It is okay, it was good that finally the dead projects were archived in a special area."
"As far as I can see, I think the management of this area is done as well as the current situation permits. The most active community project run by mod (The Great Library) is a bit slow to update, but given the nature of that project I don't think it would be tactful to suggest any alterations be made there. "
"I think they would be less likely to die if one or two people leads the project like a GM (as in DnD) would, rather than the fully democratic process that tends to slow progress to a crawl."
"Community Projects can be overly selective and not adaptable enough to suit the audience. They appear to frequently turn into simply projects of the founding members rather an anything inclusive or friendly to new members."
"Properly organised before they are started"


Member Projects

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A lot of people weren't sure what the survey meant by member projects. However, there were fairly high results for all levels of understanding here. People's opinions of member projects trended very highly indeed.

Forum Management

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This may have seemed like an odd question to many- the majority of respondents didn't think this was a problem at all.

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Mostly people think SE has about the right number of forums, with equal numbers on both sides of the centre.

Interesting feedback on missing/unnecessary forums and subforums:
"General discussion/news and articles and Science central seem to be the same thing."
"News and Articles should be merged with Science Central, Forum Games should be made a subforum of the RP Sector."
"Spec Guides hasn't been used in over a year, and it never saw much use to begin with."
"I think you guys have it all covered, especially with the new RP forum."
"I think there should be a "pop-culture spec" forum, for speculation about the biology of organisms from works of fiction."


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Generally people are glad that the RP forum has been added, though a number don't mind much either way.

SE's Purpose

Here are some submissions from this section:

Quote:
 
"People talk about topics relating to speculative evolution, and end up talking and sharing other things as well."
"Scientific discussion and generally fun activities with a group of like-minded but different people"
"A place for all interested in speculative evolution to take part and share in their hobby. And having the ability to better themselves through interaction with other experienced members."
"Sharing ideas and information on evolution, both speculative and real as well as biology in general. It is both creative and informative."
"To teach people what we know about our world and to show and nurture imagination and creativity."
"It is a special space on the internet that provides help and home for creativity and the development of different activities related to the topic of speculative biology using always constructive methods, instilling and cultivating the development of projects and ideas, and allowing the healthy interaction of members of different countries and cultures."
"The goal is to give people an area to speculate on potential biota given any host of scenarios, and to review, collaborate on, and put to peer review their writings. Of course, with any small community set up with a specific purpose, there will be more than one shared interest, and people will want to talk about things with similar minds they might not have anywhere else to do so. I think this can distract people from the original purpose of the forum, but it's integral to the workings of the forum and in moderation, a lot of fun."
"A place for creative people with an interest in science, biology, and worldbuilding to share their ideas, worlds, creatures, and to talk and connect through our shared interests. Also hang out and talk about our days sometimes."
"Thoughts and fun, with science!"
"A place in which speculative evolution and related fields may be discussed, and related content created. The forum also possesses non-spec oriented features to allow it to more effectively host its distinct community."
"A nice place to look at interesting thought experiments, great artwork, and to meet decent people. Most of them anyway."
"The discussion of evolution applied to hypothetical scenarios."

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Most respondents here feel strongly that the forum is proving successful at its purpose.

Misc Comments

"A single collection of all non-pinned, more than average effort put into, long forgotten projects would be nice."
"I believe that the SE community has kind of moved beyond speculative evolution to an extent. It's hard to treat the forum as just a place for SE when the community is now more of a friend group."
"Seriously, what are member projects?"
"Everyone go read my stuff and like it."


novus ordo seclorum

Much to my shame, there was an error in the original survey that was not corrected for several hours. Monster was not included in this staff list, and therefore "all results are invalid, even the good ones." It's common knowledge that she would have won had she been on the survey from the beginning, so in naming the three 'coolest' - as chosen by the community- staff, we'll start with 2nd and go to 4th.

With 31 votes - dragonthunders flew ahead into the pole position.

Coming up only a vote behind, Sheather received 30 commendations.

But horror of horrors- there was a tie for the next place. Both Holben and someone called Troll Man both received 29 votes from the community.

Interesting responses to the desert island question:
"Whichever one is best at surviving on a desert island."
"Monster, so all the bad stuff will happen to her instead of me."
"A little bit of all of them so that they can be stitched together to form the ultimate moderator."
"Whichever one is quietest."
"Holben, so I wouldn't feel bad about having to kill and eat him for sustenance."
"Seascorpion, because he already lives in Australia so he could treat it like home."


And finally;

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In a wonderful display of positivity, the committal and non-sarcastic answer was victorious.

Thank you again all those who took part, and I hope these results give you something to think about!

The Inaugural SE Survey

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Apr 20 2017, 08:50 AM. 8 comments

In order to get an idea of community opinions about the way things are done on SE we've constructed a survey that should cover most of the major topics. It's not too long and not all questions are compulsory, so if you have a few minutes, the more people who respond the better! :)

Once we've had a few days of responses I'll be looking through the data and will update you on what we've found.

Click here for the survey.

A New Forum and a bit of Administration

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Apr 18 2017, 04:49 AM. 13 comments

You might have noticed that just below Cafe Cosmique a new forum has appeared, and it does what it says on the tin: RPGs now have a home, rather than competing for space in the Cafe, which has long had a little bit of a crisis of identity. We hope that dividing it up into the Cafe (for stories, art threads, and other creative works like that) and the new RPG Sector both will profit. We should see whether that bears out in the weeks to come!

Another small change is that following Livyatan's long period of inactivity, we have acquired the root admin position for the forum, which I now carry. What does this mean for you? Well, probably not much, but there are certain obscure scenarios where it's better to have a root admin who can rapidly respond if an issue arises.

2016 Annual Activity Report

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Feb 18 2017, 01:06 AM. One comment

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NEW MEMBERS
Monthly Average: 17
Record High: 26 in January
Total: 200

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TOPICS CREATED
Monthly Average: 84
Record High: 150 in April
Total: 1012

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POSTS CREATED
Monthly Average: 4071
Record High: 5382 in November
Total: 48,850

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Hall of Fame: 165,614
2. Evolutionary Continuum: 89,337
3. Alternative Evolution: 79,113
4. General Spec: 78,524
5. Alternate Universes: 71,859

A drop in new members hit in 2016, but we almost doubled our production of topics and the number of posts made has gone up significantly as well, showing that despite slow growth over the last year activity has remained pretty consistent.

SE 2015 Annual Activity Report

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Jan 31 2016, 02:03 AM. 0 comments

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NEW MEMBERS
Monthly Average: 19
Record High: 27 in November
Total: 225

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TOPICS CREATED
Monthly Average: 57
Record High: 87 in December
Total: 683

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POSTS CREATED
Monthly Average: 2606
Record High: 3632 in December
Total: 31,266

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Hall of Fame: 95,406 views
2. General Discussion: 87,574 views
3. Evolutionary Continuum: 69,376 views
4. Alternative Evolution: 55,649 views
5. General Spec: 41,915 views

Stats of the month was a cool idea but I don't have time to do it every month, so I decided to review our activity on a yearly basis instead. I think things looked pretty good for us in 2015 and here's hoping 2016 is an even better year for SE!

The Shoutbox

Posted by Zorcuspine (Global Mods) at Feb 1 2015, 12:44 PM. 18 comments

As you no doubt have noticed, our forum now has a shoutbox at the bottom of the page. This is a feature we had previously, but was removed a few years back after a series of really glaring rule-breaking behavior. I want you all to note that the shoutbox is a privilege we are granting against the advice of several staff members, if we see a ton of rule-breaking behavior going on down there we will remove the shoutbox again, this time likely for good. The shoutbox, like the rest of the forum, is subject to the TOS. A general rule of thumb to follow when using the shoutbox is that if what you are about to type would get you warned had you posted it in General Discussion, it'll probably get you warned here. That means no dick picks, seriously calling people bad names et cetera, et cetera, keep that stuff to the Skype chat folks. Now, the one major exception to this rule is spam or useless posts, the very nature of the shoutbox allows more casual things such as one-word responces and picspam to be more acceptable. That doesn't give you carte blanche to post whatever spam and gibberish you wish, and flooding the shoutbox with random letters or some such nonsense will likely still get you warned, but it does mean that spam rules will be more loosely enforced than they are on the forum.

Now, with all that being said, I personally have no doubts that this forum has matured enough to handle the shoutbox. This is just a reminder that there are rules to the shoutbox, and stuff posted there can get you in trouble if it breaks the rules.

Staff Announcements

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Jan 9 2015, 04:29 PM. 34 comments

I am very pleased to inform you of several promotions, which you may have noted in advance. These were agreed on during staff discussion and we all believe they a very fit for their new role:

Global Moderator to Administrator - Sheather

Forum Moderator to Global Moderator - Monster

User to Forum Moderator - Richard

The former 'Community Project Moderator' has been re-titled 'Forum Moderator' due to the role we would like to recognise them as having on the forum. A spiffy pip is surely incoming.

On another note, I will no longer be active as a staff member on this forum and will move myself into the Away Staff group. I will leave with fond memories of my time on the forum and have great confidence in its management, for whose discussion and support during my time as Staff I am very grateful.

Staff Changes

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Nov 15 2014, 06:02 PM. 7 comments

  • Hybrid promoted to Global Mod
  • Monster promoted to Community Project Mod
  • Community Project Mods now have moderator abilities in the Official Competitions forum.


These promotions were agreed on unanimously during a staff discussion and we're very happy to have them on board/advanced in power level!

Stats of the Month: October 2014

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Nov 14 2014, 11:19 PM. 0 comments

*Chart not included due to poor quality
NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 2
Record High: 3 on 8 October 2014
Total: 24

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TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 4
Record High: 11 on 6 October 2014
Total: 107

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POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 106
Record High: 193 on 12 October 2014
Total: 3383

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Accepted Species - 9,662 views
2. Alternative Evolution - 4,656 views
3. Evolutionary Continuum - 2,895 views
4. Official Competitions - 2,774 views
5. General Spec - 2,243 views

Other Changes
 




Stats of the Month: August/September 2014

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Oct 1 2014, 04:05 PM. 5 comments

I forgot to do the stats of the month for August, so I'll just group it with September's post to avoid clutter.

AUGUST:

*Chart not included due to poor quality
NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 1
Record High: 3 on 24 August 2014
Total: 25

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TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 3
Record High: 7 on 7 August 2014
Total: 79

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POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 137
Record High: 262 on 5 August 2014
Total: 4384

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. General Discussion - 28,272 views
2. Evolutionary Continuum - 8,369 views
3. Alternative Evolution - 7,359 views
4. General Spec - 3,482 views
5. The Habitable Zone - 2,929 views

Other Changes
 


  • Images updated for Red Fire theme



August is when school starts for most people, so the drop in activity was expected. General Discussion getting nearly 30,000 views is also expected, as most people usually hang around there during the early school year when time for keeping up with other threads is at a premium and most of them experience a lull in updates anyways.

SEPTEMBER:

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NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 2
Record High: 8 on 11 September 2014
Total: 32

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TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 2
Record High: 6 on 7 September 2014
Total: 63

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POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 107
Record High: 210 on 28 September 2014
Total: 3328

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. General Discussion - 2,346 views
2. The Habitable Zone - 1,968 views
3. Alternative Evolution - 1,962 views
4. Official Competitions - 1,819 views
5. Evolutionary Continuum - 1,728 views

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Other Changes
 






Activity continued to decline somewhat though it seems to be equalizing as people adjust to the school year schedule. Strangely we seemed to have gotten a lot of new members this month: perhaps interest generated by school-induced boredom?

Speculative Evolution Staff List

Posted by Holben (Admin) at Aug 11 2014, 01:12 PM. 13 comments

(Old thread here: SE Staff List.)

Livyatan is the founder of Speculative Evolution. Though he is no longer active here, his legacy will remain.

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Administrators are the highest level staff members on SE. They manage all forums, topics, and members due to their access to the Admin Control Panel.

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Global Moderators are the second echelon of SE staff. They have moderator abilities in all forums and are important in the management of topics and the settlement of disputes, especially when administrators are not available.

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Away Staff represent the previous Global Moderators who are sadly no longer active on the forum.

Stats of the Month: July 2014

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Aug 1 2014, 06:21 PM. 15 comments

*Chart not included due to poor quality
NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 1
Record High: 2 on 5 July 2014
Total: 24

Posted Image
TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 4
Record High: 9 on 25 July 2014
Total: 126

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POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 158
Record High: 313 on 29 July 2014
Total: 5067

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Evolutionary Continuum 8,749 views
2. General Discussion - 6,717 views
3. Science Central - 3,924 views
4. Alternative Evolution - 3,256 views
5. Official Competitions - 3,049 views

Other Changes
 




Stats of the Month: June 2014

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Jul 5 2014, 03:05 PM. 0 comments

*Chart not included due to poor quality
NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 1
Record High: 3 on 9 June 2014
Total: 20

Posted Image
TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 4
Record High: 10 on 21 June 2014
Total: 104

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POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 124
Record High: 197 on 19 June 2014
Total: 3837

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. Evolutionary Continuum - 6,304 views
2. Alternative Evolution - 5,460 views
3. General Spec - 3,423 views
4. The Habitable Zone - 3,232 views
5. Member Introductions - 2,532 views

Other Changes
 






Activity has picked up across the board from last month.

Stats of the Month: May 2014

Posted by Ànraich (Admin) at Jun 2 2014, 08:40 PM. 0 comments

*Chart not included due to poor quality
NEW MEMBERS
Daily Average: 1
Record High: 2 on 1 May 2014
Total: 27

Posted Image
TOPICS CREATED
Daily Average: 3
Record High: 7 on 27 May 2014
Total: 75

Posted Image
POSTS CREATED
Daily Average: 106
Record High: 189 on 25 May 2014
Total: 3271

MOST VIEWED FORUMS
1. General Discussion - 5,291 views
2. Evolutionary Continuum - 4,873 views
3. Official Competitions - 2,117 views
4. General Spec - 2,018 views
5. The Habitable Zone - 1,454 views

Other Changes
 






Activity has remained fairly unchanged from last month. Hopefully it will begin to pick up as summer starts.
 

Board Statistics

Total Forum Posts: 395,942
Total Members: 2,085 (The newest member is tom90)
Jul 21 2014, 03:39 PM, a record 259 users were online.