[Foundation-l] Why is the software out of reach of the community?
gerard.meijssen at gmail.com
Mon Jan 19 18:04:59 UTC 2009
I think it is correct. There is also nothing in there stopping Semantic
MediaWiki from going live.
2009/1/19 Brian <Brian.Mingus at colorado.edu>
> This community, which takes quite a bit of effort to communicate with,
> effort which I have not seen from the development team:
> > Any changes to the software must be gradual and reversible. We need to
> > sure that any changes contribute positively to the community, as
> > determined by everybody in Wikipedia, in full consultation with the
> > community consensus. -- Jimbo Wales<
> I've been told by a volunteer developer in that this quote is irrelevant. I
> wonder how many people believe that is true.
> On Mon, Jan 19, 2009 at 7:31 AM, Domas Mituzas <midom.lists at gmail.com
> > Hello Brian,
> > thanks for all your insights, bashing and vocal support of your pet
> > ideas.
> > I understand, that SMW is academically interesting concept (though
> > there're contradicting ideas in academia too, suggesting natural
> > language processing as an alternative, and this seems where currently
> > research tries to go too), and it provides "usability" in niche cases
> > (academic data crunching).
> > I fail to see why you associate SMW with general usability we're
> > trying to think about? Is that something we simple mortals cannot
> > understand, or are you simply out of touch from reality?
> > See, our project is special.
> > a) We have mass collaboration at large
> > b) We end up having mass collaboration on individual articles and topics
> > c) We have mega-mass readership
> > d) We have massive scope and depth
> > And, oh well, we have to run software development to facilitate all
> > that. As you may notice, the above list puts quite some huge
> > constraints on what we can do.
> > All our features end up being incremental, and even though in theory
> > they are easy to revert, it is the mass collaboration that picks it up
> > and moves to a stage where it is not that easy (and that happens
> > everywhere, where lots of work is being done).
> > So, you are attacking templates, which have helped to deal with nearly
> > everything we do (and are tiny, compared to overall content they
> > facilitate), and were part of incremental development of the site and
> > where editing community was going. Of course, there are ways to make
> > some of our template management way better (template catalogues, more
> > visual editing of parameters, less special characters for casual
> > editors), but they generally are how we imagine and do information
> > management.
> > Now, if you want to come up with academic attitudes, and start telling
> > how ontology is important, and all the semantic meanings have to be
> > highlighted, sure, go on, talk to community, they can do it without
> > software support too - by normalizing templates, using templates for
> > tagging relations, then use various external tools to build
> > information overlays on top of that. Make us believe stuff like that
> > has to be deployed by showing initiative in the communities, not by
> > showing initiative by external parties.
> > Once it comes to actual software engineering, we have quite limited
> > resources, and quite important mandate and cause.
> > We have to make sure, that readers will be able to read, editors will
> > be able to edit, and foundation will still be able to support the
> > project.
> > We may not always try to be exceptionally perfect (Tim does ;-), but
> > that is because we do not want to be too stressed either.
> > So, when it comes to reader community, software is doing work for
> > them. Some of readers end up engineering software to make it better.
> > When it comes to editing community, software does the work for them.
> > Some of editors end up engineering software to make it better.
> > Which community are you talking about?
> > BR,
> > --
> > Domas Mituzas -- http://dammit.lt/ -- [[user:midom]]
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