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Forum, Wiki, Twitter, Blog...?

ChrisDaniels

Well-Known Member
#1
We could probably do with a note on the firmware downloads page explaining what the webif is and how to access it so that new users who dive in headfirst without reading at least have at least a little heads up as to how to add new packages..

A newcomer is not necessarily going to know what a webif or web interface is.
 
#2
We could probably do with a note on the firmware downloads page explaining what the webif is and how to access it so that new users who dive in headfirst without reading at least have at least a little heads up as to how to add new packages..

A newcomer is not necessarily going to know what a webif or web interface is.
Absolutely!
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
#3
From a managerial point of view, information repeated all over the place becomes unmaintainable. I hate it. Even some question answered in the dim and distant past that has become inaccurate in the process of development can still come back to haunt when a search engine jockey picks it up and believes it without further investigation. I would much prefer obvious links to the relevant information, kept all in one place* and updated when required (even that isn't easy, but it's a lot easier than the alternative).

Unfortunately there is nothing we can do about human nature, there will always be people who can't be bothered to read up - however it is presented. The best we can do is make the signposts as conspicuous as possible, embarrass them into reading it, and if all else fails answer the dumb questions. I still ask dumb questions from time to time.

* We have broken that already by having the forum and the wiki. In my opinion, the forum discusses current topics and arrives at information (which then becomes frozen) whereas the wiki should be written to capture and summarise the information once it has frozen. I don't have time to support both, which is why you find me on the forum and not the wiki (which I only use occasionally for reference). However, the wiki entries should signpost back to the sources of information, and the forum entries should signpost to the wiki wherever appropriate. By maintaining a web of links, it is possible to traverse them, review and update burried information when necessary, if anybody can be bothered (which I do, when I am looking for something, and spot a problem).
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
#5
* We have broken that already by having the forum and the wiki.
Have a read of this (short) article (which I think I first saw by following a link on myhumax.org - can't find it there now though)

http://idratherbewriting.com/2010/11/24/forum-wiki-blog-workflow/

You seem to be broadly in accord with what's written there. Ezra does a great job of summarising threads and features into Wiki articles but if more people got involved it could be so much better. There is an FAQ on the Wiki too which people can add to whenever they want which, if it were populated, would be the obvious place to point people who ask really basic questions. Mind you, how hard is it to post something more useful than 'look at the FAQ'? As someone new to this, which response would you prefer?

Unfortunately, all recordings are encrypted by default - have a look at http://wiki.hummy.tv/wiki/Encryption for more details and your options.
as opposed to:

Please read the FAQ before posting.
I've seen many forums where the second example is the normal response to the first post in any thread. It's unfriendly and puts people off (and, to be clear, isn't what happens here in general!).

I would really like to move all of the pinned thread content to the Wiki so that everyone can just point people there. At least then I wouldn't have to scroll halfway down a page to find the interesting threads! - the trail guide thread is a probable exception that the Wiki should just point back to but it too could be re-factored as an article on the Wiki; we don't have a blog.... yet.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
#7
I am in broad agreement, the only problem being that I don't have the time to split between the two, and I have (yet) to get used to the formatting options available in the wiki to write a tidy article (and, while I don't want to decry the efforts people have put into the wiki, either the wiki software is very lacking in presentation skills, or the authors are - sorry, not my intention to appear unkind, but that is how it seems to me).

It also seems to me that people look at what's available, glaze over, and post a question hoping to have it spelt out (again).

While I have been away washing up I more-or-less decided to post a new topic "Custom Software - Start-Up Guide" or words to that effect, explaining very briefly what it is, what it will do for you, the steps required to get up and running, and what to do if it all goes wrong - with links to information that explains each item in greater detail. I don't have the time to do this right now, and only later if I bump some other stuff I should be doing (which is basically what happens every time). You're right, the wiki is the right place for this though I would naturally gravitate to doing it on the forum. Perhaps I'll use it to cut my teeth on wiki formatting.

I know one of the stengths of a wiki is that (almost) anyone can contribute to it so it does not hinge on the output of one or a few people, but I also find it inhibiting that I might create a finely-crafted article only to have somebody else come along and balls it up. I would be much happier if it can be locked and only unlocked for editing by the original author or a supervising authority. Hence another factor which keeps me embedded in the forum.

Something that has inhibited me so far, and I know I keep banging on about this, is how to refer to the custom software project. I see the lack of a name as a problem. It's like calling a dog "Dog". If you want to write about something you have to know what to call it. I have pipe dreams of writing a manual in pdf that people could print out and refer to.

Have a read of this (short) article (which I think I first saw by following a link on myhumax.org - can't find it there now though)

http://idratherbewriting.com/2010/11/24/forum-wiki-blog-workflow/

You seem to be broadly in accord with what's written there.
I'll take your word for it.

Unfortunately, all recordings are encrypted by default - have a look at http://wiki.hummy.tv/wiki/Encryption for more details and your options.​

as opposed to:

Please read the FAQ before posting.​
I might have become a little bit more irritable recently, but I hope the vast majority of my responses fall into the former category rather than the latter.
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
#8
either the wiki software is very lacking in presentation skills, or the authors are
It's the same Wiki software as used on Wikipedia so...

I know one of the stengths of a wiki is that (almost) anyone can contribute to it so it does not hinge on the output of one or a few people, but I also find it inhibiting that I might create a finely-crafted article only to have somebody else come along and balls it up. I would be much happier if it can be locked and only unlocked for editing by the original author or a supervising authority. Hence another factor which keeps me embedded in the forum.
Yes, it is a strange concept to embrace and it took me a while. I'd prefer not to generally lock pages but I'm more than happy to look at whether we can implement some sort of solution that allows key pages to be locked (I already lock the firmware downloads to protect the hashes on there).

I might have become a little bit more irritable recently, but I hope the vast majority of my responses fall into the former category rather than the latter.
Yes, they do. I very rarely see anything like the latter here.
 

fenlander

Active Member
#10
I know one of the stengths of a wiki is that (almost) anyone can contribute to it so it does not hinge on the output of one or a few people, but I also find it inhibiting that I might create a finely-crafted article only to have somebody else come along and balls it up. I would be much happier if it can be locked and only unlocked for editing by the original author or a supervising authority. Hence another factor which keeps me embedded in the forum.
Not sure how that works. I have created an account on the Wiki, but every page I look at tells me that edit access is restricted to approved members. I can't find any info on the Wiki telling me how to get approval to edit the Wiki!
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
#13
Not sure how that works. I have created an account on the Wiki, but every page I look at tells me that edit access is restricted to approved members. I can't find any info on the Wiki telling me how to get approval to edit the Wiki!
Yes, unfortunately the wiki is the target of people wanting to post adverts and other spam so we have had to require manual approval. Even requiring email address validation and a Captcha was not enough!

I've approved your account now.
 

fenlander

Active Member
#14
Thanks for that. I don't know how much original material I might have to contribute, but having spent some years as a technical author, I may at least be able to add a little of the spit and polish that BH doesn't much care for.;)

Something that has inhibited me so far, and I know I keep banging on about this, is how to refer to the custom software project. I see the lack of a name as a problem. It's like calling a dog "Dog". If you want to write about something you have to know what to call it. I have pipe dreams of writing a manual in pdf that people could print out and refer to.
A lot of software projects have a name even before they have a line of code. This one, which has come so far in such a short time, could do with a name and a proper definition. For me, the indivisible core of the project is what is referred to as the 'customised firmware' plus the webif , which is not technically firmware. The firmware/software distinction creates unnecessary confusion and whatever the name might be, I suggest it should denote both of these core elements. All the other bits could be regarded as optional components, rather like Foobar2000's optional add-ons. As a technical author, I would find it much easier to structure a manual (or a Wiki) if there had first been a proper 'naming of parts', and a well structured document is much easier for the user.

How about a grand Spring competition to decide a name for the core?
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
#15
To be fair, BH has been trying to get me to discuss names for a while now or at least to come up with a shortlist so we could have a more public discussion. I haven't been terribly forthcoming...

Maybe we should just do it publicly then have a vote and with any luck we will have some photoshop gurus lurking somewhere who can help brand the whole thing...
 

fenlander

Active Member
#17
Well, what can you expect of someone with two pencils up their nose?:rolleyes:

I was looking for something more elegant...

NINETAILS

A pokemon species derived from the Japanese kitsuni - the fox god. In Japanese mythology, foxes (and racoons) have a special talent for transforming themselves. In Pokemon, the ninetails is itself evolved from the Vulpix, which has only(!) six tails. In Korean mythology, a nine-tailed fox is a kumiho - rather like a fairy - which can transform into, among other things, a beautiful girl who sets out to seduce men (and eat their liver, but we can forget that part..).
There're a lot of cues there: fox, transformation, seduction, Korea... So, a transforming Korean Fox with seductive beauty. I would have suggested Firefox, but it seems that's already taken.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
#19
OK then, let's initiate a search for branding in the form of a competition. I suggest everyone pitches in ONE suggestion (you can use the post edit to change your idea before we freeze them), and then the project elders draw up a short-list for a general vote.

The name has to be applicable in a variety of circumstances. Despite some feelings about the confusion between firmware and software, I am sure there are situations where we will need to distinguish between them - especially as they have to be loaded in different ways. Therefore, each entry should list the following:
  1. What the overall project should be called
  2. How do we refer to the complete set of firmware/software/packages
  3. How we identify the firmware specifically
  4. How we identify the software specifically
  5. How we refer to the optional packages
Once we have settled on a name, there may be some further discussion about the sub-references.

Alright chaps?