Wiki Usage Guide

About the XRNL Wiki - WikiStructure - Wiki Page Format Guide - WikiRolesAndResps

This Page

This page provides a set of guidelines about the XRNL wiki - such as what its governance, what it should contain, how it should be edited.

The purpose of this Wiki is to provide basic information about XRNL to its volunteers and activists - so an internal focus. Contrast that with the XRNL main website which is intended to engage the general public.

It is possible for an organisation to have more than one Wiki. This proposal is focussed on a "public" wiki with read access for all - rather than one which is internal to a particular team or project. Private wikis can be set up, but they are not addressed in this current page

There was a useful set of discussions on this topic on Discourse. You can view that discussion here.

Page owned by the XRNL Tech Team

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What is a Wiki?

A set of simple web pages providing information about a set of topics. Topics are linked to each other, so that the enduser can navigate to the information they need without needing much guidance or instruction up front. Pages are kept quite short in order that they can be updated easily. With this sort of usage there is no additional benefit in lots of branding, themes, fancy graphics etc - and that helps to KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid.

The public Wikipedia is probably the most well-known Wiki. What follows is some examples of how the XRNL Public wiki will be similar, and where it diifers from WIkipeda.
  • The wiki for XRNL will be similar to Wikipedia in that:
    • Presentation style is simple and functional
    • Extensive cross-referencing is done to internal and external sources
    • Pages are usually easy to create and edit
    • No read access restrictions
  • It will be different in that:-
    • Only individuals nominated by their Circle (etc) will be able to update content (Wikipedia lets anyone update most pages)
    • Certain classes of information will not go onto the XRNL wiki (people's names, certain plans)

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  • Questions??
    • Do we need a TAR document for the wiki ?
    • Which Circle should own the Wiki ?
  • Mission statement
    • To act as an internal website providing basic information about XRNL, how it works, how organised & co. The main website ( remains the route to engage with the general public, for campaigning etc. The Wiki is for internal use within XRNL only.
  • Access to the Wiki
    • There will be no Read restrictions on the Wiki, it will be kept open to all (so for sure all XR volunteers and activists, but the general public too)
    • All pages will show which Circle or other XRNL organisational unit owns the page. Nominated individuals from XRNL Circles (& co) will be responsible for content - they can be given read/write access if wanted, else there will be some central help to create and update pages. Circles who own Pages will state which Circle is responsible for the page content. Each Circle with pages will be asked to nominmate a small number of named inding will be done by named individuals nominated.
    • There will no users with Editor rights identified as a "functional" mailbox - so no user called "XR_SomeCircle".
    • Users can self-create accounts on the Wiki, but these only give read/write for the "Sandbox" Wiki for testing etc. Only once a user is approved as an updater for a particular Circle will the user be added to the editors Group. A list of current members of the Editors group, with their associated Circle will be available in the Wiki,
  • Audit trail
    • On every page the revision history, along with who made the changes. Such logging is useful in encouraging personal accountability.
    • Each page will state the National Circle or Local Group responsible for that page

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Content for the XRNL Public Wiki

What to include
  • Static information that was previously held in "Overview" documents (eg to replace existing Overview of Circles and Meetings Document which is linked from the XRNL Town square channel in MM. It is nearly 20 pages long, hard to navigate and messy to update.
  • Onboarding information for new recruits to XR, and to a particular circle.
  • For each Circle, include list of office holders (Rep, Integrator etc), purpose documents (much of that can be generated first time from the "Overview" documents).
  • Mattermost links to individuals and channels.
  • Some online resources are (correctly) not available to everyone - they may need to set up acounts, get access granted, registered etc. If your page includes links to such resources, include a note like "This link will only work for members of the xyz steering group - contact @FredUser on Mattermost if you need access".

What not to include
  • Real world names, phone numbers etc of individuals - use Mattermost IDs only.
  • Information which changes rapidly. Start with more static information, there is a lot of value in that.
  • Info sent out on broadcast channels, blogs etc - those are fine as they are.
  • Detailed information about certain types of event which must be kept confidential
  • If existing external documents are quite short (eg in NextCloud) then don't link to them, rather convert smaller documents into one or more linked wiki pages. But for a more substantial document, or one whose content is confidential, provide a link to it.

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Access rights

Access Level Typical Users Note
Read only The site will be open to everyone on the Internet Given number of people with access to Mattermost, we should treat all Public Mattermost channels as being fully open.
Write Content creation will be done mostly by nominated individuals from Circles or other XR groups who need to have a Wiki page. The revision control and logging mechanism in the Wiki will be configured to require users to log in via an account.Users will be identified via an ID linked to individuals - so no editing by generic "XYZ Circle" account.
Administration Admin tasks will be undertaken by suitable Tech team members.  

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Style, Appearance

  • Wikis are meant to be quick to both read and write, via most types of devices. Styling is kept lightweight - so no work need to go into creation of themes, branding etc - KISS rules - *Keep It Simple Stupid*.
  • At top of each page there should be:-
    • A This Page section describing purpose of the page, the circle that owns it, relevant info for a user so they know if the info they want is on the page.
    • A back link to the page's parent, and to related pages
    • A table of contents of the page itself (that is auto generated provided headings in the page are tagged as level 1, level 2, etc
  • After each main section include a horizontal rule, and a "Go to Top" link
  • Language - many pages will only be in English (eg list of XRNL Applications etc). Circles should make a judgment about how much content needs to be in both English and Dutch. Where both languages needed, keep both English and Dutch content on the same page ("here Dutch, English follows"). That would be appropriate for text about missions, visions, recommendations on style of person interaction - anywher it is easy to get lost in translation.

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Topic revision: r6 - 18 Jun 2020, JohnITDH
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