Why this article? I'm trying to isolate topics and clarify terms, add what is missing in Franks post, as it might be helpful to get more ideas how to get some working model that can be improved later.
1. Finding information
What we are facing here is IMHO a general (Media)Wiki problem. MediaWiki is developed for an encyclopedia. Users coming to wikipedia usually want to know something about a very specific topic. They type in an appropriate keyword and end up with the _one_ article containing the information they are searching for. There is simply no need for a sophisticated navigation.
People coming to openSUSE.org IMHO have got more general interest, such as finding information about the installation or about how to set up WLAN. To satisfy these customers, structure and navigation is needed.
The same idea as here: http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:Flat_namespace Note: We use subpages very often because automatic generated link to the root article. I'm not sure that is good idea, and I was considering to move Portal to something like: http://en.opensuse.org/Download which gives overview of all articles that belong to group on every visited page. That will change somewhat with Portal namespace.
Generally the focus of a wiki is on collaboration and content and not on structure and navigation. Therefore organizing content on a wiki is a very challenging task.
So what tools does the wiki offer to organize stuff:
- Portal pages
- index of subtopics like on disambiguation pages, - group of articles tied with menu, like: http://en.opensuse.org/Download or http://en.opensuse.org/MiniSUSE#MiniSUSE%20Index. ...
- search can be limited to namespace
- namespaces can only be added by sysops, therefore the number of namespaces will not constantly grow
- Standard Wiki tool
- Pages need to be moved from the general namespace to a specific one Foo -> Bar:Foo
- namespaces can only be added by sysops ;)
- default namespaces are almost useless for average openSUSE user (Talk, Election, MediaWiki,...)
- a document can only belong to one namespace
It can be linked from any using redirects, if it is necessary.
I didn't checked is redirect listed in: - search, - generated listings like http://en.opensuse.org/ Special:Allpageas
References to namespace: General: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Namespace Mediawiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Namespace Computing: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Namespace_%28programming%29
We are missing articles like: http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Namespaces http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Project:Namespaces that will be here: http://en.opensuse.org/Help:Namespaces http://en.opensuse.org/OpenSUSE:Namespaces
- everybody can invent new categories
- it's easy to assign a document to a category
- a document can belong to several categories
- standard Wiki tool
- search cannot be limited to categories
- since everybody can invent new categories, their number is constantly growing
- it is tedious task to keep them current, - wiki editors have to agree on standard namespace schema or whole effort is neverending chain of corrections,
- everybody can invent new portal pages
- can target different audiences
- no layout / content restrictions
- since everybody can invent new portal pages, their number is constantly growing
- it's difficult to get an overview of all portal pages
==> Conclusions / Action Items:
- discuss creating of new Namespaces
- create a Namespace for portal pages
Besides Portal the major patterns names can be used as source of names that we need: GNOME KDE X11 Server Development etc. The question is for the first 3 is that what we want, to isolate them from default search, or we can come up with search engine that supports, for instance: KDE:KMail if user asked for "kmail". How that will fit in schema where we should have: Mail - Servers Mail - Clients - Kmail Mail - Clients - Gmail
- clean up categories
- continue working on the portal pages
Before we touch both we have to agree on standard namespace schema. How to organize branches in the naming tree? Mail - Server Mail - Client or Server - Mail Client - Mail What would be the top of this tree: Applications Software or something else.
It will the best to have both with crosslinks, but than we need the tree to see where we have to put crosslinks?
The next question is where to collaborate on naming? Is it good and would be that enough to use: http://en.opensuse.org/openSUSE:Namespace_Development for instance, or we need another server where, all that have interest in, can experiment with? I guess that it should be replica of the active one.