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Re: VOLUNTEER: Port dev docs to a wiki

From: Julian Foad <julianfoad_at_btopenworld.com>
Date: 2005-10-24 00:57:27 CEST

Jay Levitt wrote:
> Max Bowsher wrote:
>> I'm sorry, but I personally do not support the idea of putting either
>> svn-design or webdav-usage in a Wiki. Both are quite technical
>> documents - assuming that newbies will be able to usefully contribute
>> to them seems unrealistic to me. The people who can work on these
>> documents are the kind that have made significant study of the code -
>> this kind of person should not find sending a patch any sort of
>> barrier. Add to that, that these documents are ones where peer review
>> of changes is especially valuable, to ensure that misunderstandings do
>> not propagate into the documentation. Therefore, I do not think a Wiki
>> is a useful tool in this case.

I infer that Max has not used a Wiki for technical documentation. Nor have I
used one (for any purpose), and I can see his point of view. I have also seen
one that was intended to be but was obliterated by spam. But ...

> I can see why you would think that, but I must respectfully disagree -
> I've seen it work. (http://wiki.rubyonrails.com is a great example.)
> No, a brand-new svn developer is not going to be able to rewrite the
> whole doc. But they'll be able to point out things that seem unclear,
> and make suggested changes, comments, ask inline questions, etc.

... you, Jay, make a very convincing case, and I am inclined to believe you.
The best thing to would be to set it up, encourage people to use it a bit, and
see what happens. We can't possibly lose anything since we are into version
control. The only thing that can go wrong is that errors start to be
propagated, and so we need to keep a close eye on it for a while and make sure
we prevent that by one means or another. In the worst case we simply shut it
down; in the best case we evolve some sort of auditable review process.

Please do show us.

- Julian

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Received on Mon Oct 24 00:58:13 2005

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