Re: Wiki as a documentation delivery system? (take II)

Subject: Re: Wiki as a documentation delivery system? (take II)
From: "Char James-Tanny" <charjtf -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 1 Aug 2006 11:40:57 -0400


Unlike the Wikipedia, you can bet that people won't be accessing the
wiki regularly (nobody reads docs for pleasure), and that means errors
may endure for quite a long time before someone catches them. That's
particularly true if the errors are subtle, which many of them will be.
And if you think it's hard to get technical reviewers to do their
reviews with documentation that you control and that they only have to
review once (see the current thread on this topic), do you imagine
they'll be happy to add a daily check of the wiki to their list of
responsibilities? Not bloody likely.

So to reiterate: The concept is a good one, but there are some
significant pitfalls you have to overcome if you want to keep the wiki
quality high and protect your employer.

Just FYI...some wikis include administrative software that fires off a
message every time someone a) registers and b) modifies a page. (This
is part of how we keep the MSHelpWiki from being spammed like it used
to be...a change of software and the addition of permissions mean that
I get an email for both of those events.) We've also implemented a
challenge email system for registration, which means that spammers can
register...but they can't post until they respond to the challenge
email. Amazingly enough, no one seems to want to do that ;-)

I've also added the MSHelpWiki to my RSS Aggregator.

So, depending on the software being used, it might not be all that
hard to keep up with the quality of the wiki.

Char James-Tanny ~ JTF Associates, Inc. ~
Please send follow-up questions to the list.
Contact me directly (CharJT at helpstuff dot com) with business inquiries.
2005-2006 Microsoft Help MVP ~ MSHelpWiki
AuthorIT Certified Consultant, Development, and Training
Moderator, HATT and MSHelp2
STC Secretary, 2006-2008
STC Online Information SIG: Online Help Lead
Web site Hosting and Design ~

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RE: Wiki as a documentation delivery system?: From: Matt Horn
Wiki as a documentation delivery system? (take II): From: Geoff Hart

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