Apparently the more you engage, the further you are from the Sun.
Thanks for this, Bill. I hadn't noticed this. I thought I'd been a bit more vocal here than that, but I just checked and apparently I'm stuck on the surface of the Sun. Loser! (If this were the Airtable subreddit I'd be much more competitive.) Anyway, I agree with you: It's dumb. Not just meaningless, but actually *misleading*.
Reddit has a "karma" score. I don't understand the word "karma" but I do understand that, the more times you post, the higher your score — and you can also get a higher score if people thank you for your posts, etc. Much better system.
I think the new Community is a little more attractive than the old but I'm underwhelmed with it.
I think the number to the left of the solar system object is an indicator of engagement meaning. I have a 17; you have a 9. But one might argue that your posts are all twice as literate as mine. Perhaps twice as likely to help someone with real issues. This is the false promise of rankings; they can be misleading and certainly meaningless.
Without lots of observation and some data digging, I would have assumed that you (as a "Sun") were central to community engagement. Loser. 😉
Per this topic, "User ranks are awarded based on combinations of various types of user activity in the community." However, the exact algorithm is not published.
I think that user ranks have their place, but I agree that the current system could use some adjusting.
The whole structure is designed for little purpose other than creating a warm and fuzzy. User ranks are of little importance to me. Someone once posted the most succinct and, to be honest, most beautiful regex formula I have ever seen to do a particular task. I don't think that contributor had made many comments so a ranking system would not be indicative of quality. Even the Kudos system is +ve biased. I much prefer recognising someone's input to my problem by assigning them a 'solved by' tag... but that doesn't reward folks like @Bill_French who has posted many 'big picture' articles that don't fit neatly into a tactical scenario.
I'm writing this response on an iPad and just looked at the posts above and the little rank icons assigned to you good folks. I see a couple of blue smudges and a couple of yellow smudges. I wonder if this is really what the Airtable and Khoros folks had in mind.