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Stack Exchange has historically distinguished itself from forums by following a very matter-of-fact philosophy: questions, answers, comments, and no chit-chat. While this helps folks get answers to their questions, it can limit the site's efficacy in other areas: free-flowing discussions, informal talks, and general socializing -- all things that keep a corner of the internet healthy and build a community but fall outside the strict question-and-answer format. And so, after a couple of years, chat.stackexchange.com was introduced, as "a third place" for the denizens of the network (for info on how to use chat, check out the FAQ).

Each Stack Exchange site has its own room. Ours is The Factory Floor; in Olden Times, it thrived, but these days it's a shell of its former self. This meta post is, in essence, an advertisement for The Factory Floor. On behalf of the chat regulars who remain, I'd like to encourage folks to use it: to ask for advice about building your world, to talk about interesting facets of worldbuilding -- cartography, constructed languages, terrain design, etc. -- or to just interact with the other folks who makes this site more than just a repository of knowledge, but a community.

Going forward, we might try for specific events in chat, depending on what people are interested in: maybe a day for discussions about creature design, or for folks to promote projects they've been working on. Depends entirely on what people want to do. Chat's a helpful tool, but it doesn't have the visibility it deserves. I hope that we can turn it back into the valuable resource it used to be for this site.

Anyway, feel free to step (or take an air car) into The Factory Floor anytime you like. Everyone's always welcome.1


1Just don't touch that planet in the corner. It's the Earth Mark Two, and we're still working on the fjords.

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  • $\begingroup$ The advertisement might be more effective if it included a brief introductory guide to how to use the chat room. I did click on the link, and it showed me a complex user interface very unlike any kind of chat thingy I have ever seen. After a few seconds of puzzlement I decided that it was not actually a chat room, but rather a sort of directory of chat rooms, with a particularly bizarre layout. And it wanted me to "join" it. While I was already logged on. I thought, whatever, then I left. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Aug 23, 2023 at 23:59
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexP Ah, I see what you mean -- I'll think on that idea of a short guide; for now I've linked to the dedicated FAQ. I've also changed the Factory Floor link to take the user inside the room -- I originally had it go to the room's info page because some folks might not want to be immediately taken into the room, but I see how that was confusing; my bad. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    Aug 24, 2023 at 1:07
  • $\begingroup$ "Going forward, we might try for specific events in chat" This sounds really fun, as the main reason I haven't said "hi" in there yet is not knowing what to say. It might encourage people to start participating more :) $\endgroup$ Aug 24, 2023 at 15:04
  • $\begingroup$ @MediocreFantasy It's pretty open ended. You can talk about any worldbuilding you're doing, ideas, random thoughts, or just about anything. Hopefully if enough people start using chat again then it will get the the olden days where people were on at all hours, but until then you may have to pop in, say something, and then wait a little while for someone to reply if no one else is paying attention. We can bring it back $\endgroup$
    – AndyD273
    Aug 24, 2023 at 16:08

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