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Re: Setting up a wiki for GNU Project volunteers?

From: Brandon Invergo
Subject: Re: Setting up a wiki for GNU Project volunteers?
Date: Fri, 13 Dec 2019 16:00:27 +0000
User-agent: mu4e 1.2.0; emacs 26.3

In the interest of public transparency and honesty, you should have
mentioned that Richard has already explicitly and unequivocally rejected
the proposal for a public, project-wide wiki.  Therefore, the following
question must be emphasized:

> Where could we host a wiki like this without causing confusion with
> official project content?

Unless that decision changes, any wiki discussed here is necessarily
unofficial and any proposed content is in no way implicitly endorsed or
supported by the GNU Project.

Personally, I've found that in most cases wikis are an inefficient means
of active collaboration and discussion, that they accumulate outdated
cruft too quickly for casual documentation to be anything more than
ephemerally useful, and that they're too mutable for maintaining
important documents.  Any best practices, advice, etc. would be better
placed in the coding standards or maintainers documents.  Active
collaboration of small teams does not need a project-wide wiki and can
be more efficiently achieved by ad hoc methods.  Core documentation of
the project should only be on the main website, and by definition it
should not be easy to change.

Gnome's wiki is a perfect example of why it's a bad idea.  It's filled
with outdated information, half-baked ideas, etc that, to the user, look
like official documentation.  E.g., a user might be disappointed by the
choice of email clients in GNOME ("outdated" Evolution or "limited"
Geary...(not my actual opinions!)) and will find this nice page[1]
describing the design of "a simple, streamlined, and beautiful email
client designed for GNOME3", whose "design is in progress".  They scroll
through all the great mock-ups only to get to the bottom to see that the
last-edited date was 2013 and that the software is vaporware.  Or
there's the misleading design notes for a nominal Gnome Shell 4[2] from
2017 that, as far as I can tell, isn't official and is in no way
indicative of actual development.  All this makes finding current and
correct information about any details about Gnome to be too difficult
without having to carefully vet everything against other sources.




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