I don't think we should outsource the personal help somewhere else directly. This new web site is forum based now, so we should just encourage beginners to freely start new topics on any subjects they need help with with ease it was provided by the former mailing list.
Some of my observations (not all yet):
1. I hope there is no any restrictions imposed on the beginners for starting new topics? Sometimes admins may use such a setting to fight spammers (you cannot start a new thread if you have less than 10-20 posts in threads of others).
2. I see the Captcha below my post right now, that's understandable to me, but definitely not very inviting for beginners as some may not understand why their posts are bouncing back. And trust me that's overly annoying, thus discouraging to post often. Honestly, I often cannot even decipher what I need to enter there (and "Listen to the letters" not working at all, needless to say not everyone knows answers to "astronomy questions").
3. Looking at the Topic Summary I see the very tiny font size there, as compared to the text I'm editing - quite tough even on my not so old eyes looking at not so high resolution monitor (on a modern HD monitor they will be even smaller).
4. New user registration must be instant, with registration mail, but automatic, no confirmation required. Forum moderators should hunt any "bad guys" infiltration manually instead.
I understand, that will allow a lot of spammers on the forum, but we can effectively amend that giving a limited moderator status to every member of TAC, so if someone noticed a mess - he or she could take care of it right away.
Then, the front page. I believe it's not just optional for such a resource. It seems to me there are plenty of Portal mods for SMF available: http://custom.simplemachines.org/mods/index.php?action=search;type=17
for that. The default forum start page as it is now may look too overwhelming for a first comer. Also I remember cool "widgets" John placed at the top once with weather maps and such - it was truly great...
Tried enter Captcha 4 times for this message before it was accepted - not friendly to anyone at all.