Talk:Instructions For Wiki Editors
Discussion Page for Instructions for Wiki Editors
These are useful instructions, thanks. I just have one point of contention: Should the reference paragraph you mention under "CREATING WIKI PAGES FROM FORUM POSTS:" for an article based on the forum always be at the beginning? I understand that it can provide context to the information, but I feel it might be better suited as a paragraph or section nearer the bottom (grouped with the reference links or otherwise). Especially since some pages will likely end up being an amalgamation of forum references, book references, external site references, new material etc. A reader may become lost or bored when trying to find information on a topic and all they see is the meta-information at the beginning. This is just my opinion though. --Michael Saganski 11:13, 2 June 2011 (CDT)
Fine at top or bottom. I just thought it would be good to reference contributors in some way and provide a context. --Ted Vollers 11:18, 2 June 2011 (CDT)
This page needs a bit of clarification on how to use the OO Wiki Extension, since it is not a "cut and paste" from an exported file (for which you do not need the Wiki Extension). We can add that when someone has experimented with the extension. --Darryl W. Rogers 21:36, 8 June 2011 (CDT)
Darryl, I have used the OO program for several pages now. You do have to export with the Wiki extension just as it says to get a formatted file to paste into the Wiki editor as your page. Then you will have to do some final editing to get it just right. The extension does not do a perfect job. Turn off the line formatting so you don't get the wrong length of lines and just copy and paste as a block of long lines. --Ted Vollers 03:46, 9 June 2011 (CDT)
Oops, sorry Ted. I was speaking without having the experience of actually creating an article on a new page yet. I don't have the extension yet, either. I thought that the "Export" function was available in Open Office Writer without the extension -- and it required a "cut and paste". I thought I read somewhere that when you installed the extension, you could "Send" a file directly to the Wiki out of Writer, without exporting, and it would even create a page in the Wiki for itself. Since I have done neither, I should not have commented until I was more familiar with the conversion process. --Darryl W. Rogers 11:24, 9 June 2011 (CDT)
I added some revision smarts to this page for you so that you don't have to keep changing the revision date. Might save you some time if you like it. Else revert back to what you had before. Saw this on http://wiki.my-big-toe.com/index.php/Help:Variables --David Mathis 13:42, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
I like it. Let the robot do as much of the work for us as possible -- it doesn't forget to update dates. Thanks, Big Dave. --Darryl W. Rogers 13:54, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
Something else I noticed. Especially on this page: http://wiki.my-big-toe.com/index.php/Category:MBT_Model
I think we should start using "Sort Keys" so that pages aren't being sorted by "The". Take a look at sort keys here: http://wiki.my-big-toe.com/index.php/Help:Categories . Basically when adding a category to the bottom of a page, a pipe is added with the sort key behind it. So if we were to edit the Page "The Beginning of Time" we might change the category at the bottom from [[Category:MBT_Model]] to [[Category:MBT_Model|Beginning of Time]] so that it falls under the letter B rather than T. This makes more sense to me. If there were much more pages in the category and I was looking for Beginning of Time, B would B where I would look. What do you think? --David Mathis 14:11, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
Absolutely right! Makes no sense to sort on a non-essential word. No one should object because they can leave their title alone, if they prefer, and force the sort with a "Sort Key". Either myself or Ted will add in the "Sort Key" instructions to this "Instructions for Wiki Editors" page shortly. I'll let "The Man" know first. Thanks for catching all these things that may not be so noticeable with a small size Wiki right now, but could be a headache for us later on. --Darryl W. Rogers 14:58, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
Nice catch with the sort keys, right on! I agree with implementing them - it will improve wiki usability in the future. I love how flexible and powerful wiki's are, there is a lot of potential for evolution. :)
As for the revision date - it's already automatically added to the footer of a page so I don't imagine we'll be using it all that often (this page being an exception). --Michael Saganski 23:13, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
O.K., Mike. I see that I didn't need to send the email after all. Since we're all agreed that this makes all kinds of sense, we'll go with it. --Darryl W. Rogers 23:32, 14 June 2011 (CDT)
Guys, I added a new section at the bottom of this page, "Indexing New Wiki Pages", plus a few clarifyng remarks in other areas. Please take a look and make sure I described things clearly and correctly. Tweak it,if it needs it. No pride of ownership here. --Darryl W. Rogers 18:22, 15 June 2011 (CDT)
It looks good. Should we allow people to create new categories or should we brain storm and decide what predefined categories people should choose from? Also, depending on the answer to my first question, should we instruct folks on how to group categories into categories? Right now we just have mostly all categories grouped within the home category, but as I have mentioned to Ted many times, at any point we can start branching out on categories. For example under MBT Model category we can easily add sub categories under it that further defines the structure of the model. This nesting of categories into categories is limitless, but should make sense if we decide to do it. Thoughts?
Examples of simple and complex category trees are listed here: http://wiki.my-big-toe.com/index.php/My_Big_TOE_Wiki_talk:Community_portal .--David Mathis 20:22, 15 June 2011 (CDT)
David, my thought is that "pre-planning" nearly always pays off -- not only does it help prevent "painting yourself into a corner" and having to back up and fix that, but it also gives people new ideas. People that are just browsing the categories we have set up may think of articles just by reading the category names. So, yes, I think your idea of a basic set of pre-planned categories is a good one. I say we go for it. Mike will chime in when he sees this.
"Us guys" could come up with the best category organization tree that we can think of, to start with, then new categories that pop up would be easy enough to tie into the existing "Org Chart". Our first Org Chart doesn't have to be perfect -- just all we can think of for now, organized into a logical structure. Others will jump in with ideas once they have something to look at and work with. Getting started is the hard part. I wish Tom could start us off with suggestions for the first layer of categories under "Home", but it sounds like he doesn't want to be disturbed right now -- per what Ted says.
And yes, I think we should instruct people about how to nest categories.
Matter-of-fact, I wish we had some sort of "Org Chart Builder" software to build our "upside-down tree" of categories. Something we could all get to on the computer to work with and flesh out. Is there anything in the Wiki software that could simulate a business "Org Chart" structure -- you know, "President, Vice-President, Division Heads, etc."??? Something we all can get to for editing? It would then be easy to set up the category pages with a completed visual chart to look at for tie-ins.
Yes, this is definitely worth doing early-on -- now, what's the best way to do it? We all need to be able to get at the model and work on it, like we do these discussion or edit pages. --Darryl W. Rogers 21:36, 15 June 2011 (CDT)
I think adding a few categories based on what the current "Planned Pages" are makes sense, but I wouldn't go much farther than that. The categories will evolve over time - there is no way to get around that or perfectly plan it out. As more and more pages are added, general categories will have to be broken down into more specific ones in order to keep everything manageable in size. At the start, we don't want too many categories because it becomes difficult to find what a person is looking for. Lots of categories with no content is a little discouraging as well.
I honestly wouldn't add too many more categories than what we have already - just the basic and obvious ones. If you're adding content pages and don't like the available categories, I think it makes sense to feel free and add your own into the mix. Doing too many categories beforehand is basically trying to predict what future writers (who have free will :) ) will write about. The Planned Pages page is enough to spark plenty of ideas for now, in my opinion. Linking to potential new pages on pages you're currently writing (like I did on the Free Will and Intent pages) are also sparks to give me and other people ideas on what to write about, and what pages need to be created to fill the gaps in knowledge. --Michael Saganski 22:00, 15 June 2011 (CDT)
Yeah, I wasn't thinking right away, just as we go, to give it some thought. Pages can always be re-categorized, old categories removed, new added, etc.
Regarding your question about the org chart thing Darryl, I work for a HR software company LOL. That hit really close to home. I did install category tree a few weeks ago: http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:CategoryTree
By using the tag <categorytree mode=pages>Home</categorytree> we can place a kinda org chart on any page / category the branches off from any part of the tree we desire. For example I am adding a category tree below starting at the Home category:
--David Mathis 22:18, 15 June 2011 (CDT)
Thought this might be of use at some point (http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:VideoFlash):
With size specified: <videoflash>RTk4r-2c8m0&start=120|640|480</videoflash>
Great idea, David! It had not occurred to me that we would have the capability of embedding videos. For some folks, this is a much more interesting way of getting information than reading. Guess this is why we keep you around and pay you the big bucks. :) --Darryl Rogers 22:38, 18 June 2011 (CDT)
Two things I've noticed with the video embedding: 1. Tom seems to have disabled video embedding with some of his videos. 2. With an external link, I can specify the time to go to in the video, like: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDVtxvvRGQI&#t=20m22s -> this is good for long videos that discuss many topics. That link goes straight to where Tom talks about Free Will. Can this plugin do that? I didn't see it and my best guess at just copying everything after the "v=" into the <videoflash> tag didn't work.--Michael Saganski 13:02, 19 June 2011 (CDT)
Michael, I embedded one of Tom's videos this morning in an article and it worked great -- however, no fancy stuff. I used the entire video -- it was one part of eight parts. I know you can specify video size and it's the second example under the YouTube instructions in the Extension Help link. I have no idea how to skip to a specific point in time in the video. Maybe David will chime in shortly. Cowards way out, if no joy, would be to add a note beside the link, such as "Free Will discussion begins at 5:42 in video" --Darryl Rogers 13:20, 19 June 2011 (CDT)
Hi Micheal & Darryl, you both have a great eye for detail. I completely overlooked this. You will want to use syntax such as <videoflash>RTk4r-2c8m0&start=120|640|480</videoflash> which will start 2 minutes into it for example.
This is useful: http://code.google.com/apis/youtube/player_parameters.html
Let me know if this helps. --David Mathis 14:48, 19 June 2011 (CDT)
I have a question about Videos on the Wiki for all of you. How reliable into the future are these various videos likely to be? When we talk about Tom's videos, should we be hosting them here on the Wiki? Can videos on YouTube be expected to be available long term? While it is clearly to Tom's advantage for present purposes and before we started this Wiki to post them on YouTube and to continue to do so, should we reference them there or host and reference them here? We may need Tom's or Keith and Donna's input on this as well. --Ted Vollers 15:42, 19 June 2011 (CDT)
I will go ahead and give my input. I would say that youtube is about as reliable as it gets. :). I See no long term issues linking to youtube. This did get me thinking though. Perhaps we should add some wiki text / links to youtube videos that are on topic with some of the pages here on the wiki. This might help the wiki move up in the search engines faster.--David Mathis 15:51, 19 June 2011 (CDT)
I think it's "convenient" for the reader to have the video embedded in the Wiki page because he doesn't have to leave the Wiki page to see the video. It also adds some "look and interest" to the Wiki page itself -- more than a plain text page with a text link does. Videos posted by the "unwashed masses" on YouTube can come and go, but I would expect Tom's videos to stay put. However, the final decision on how to handle video references is up to Tom. I do think David's idea of supplementing the embedded video with Search Engine fodder text is a good one. --Darryl Rogers 23:25, 20 June 2011 (CDT)