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This is the first of a series of pages that will document and provide the medium of correspondence for the installation of WikiLearn on SourceForge. It is very rough at this point, and mostly just a copy of the last reply I sent.

I may add more notes to this page later, and or reorganize it, or move content elsewhere as seems appropriate.

See:

Mark,

To deal with the most important thing first:

> Well...Randy, I'm sorry to say, but I think I can help you there.

Wonderful!!!

I then started to digress into some details, below. But, mainly, this email is to say Wonderful, Thank You!! and then give you a pointer on how and where to download TWiki:

Go to http://twiki.org, read over some of that, and then click the "Request" link (in the body of the page, in a bulleted item "Request the source code to download", about 80% of the way down the page -- it will take you to http://twiki.org/download.html. (You could go there directly, but I think it would be useful for you to at least skim the first page.)

There is a form that Peter Thoeny requires (requests) you to fill out to get the code. I think it is all quite straighforward, I'd suggest you mention that you intend to help with the installation of WikiLearn at wikilearn.sf.net. I think he then sends you the URL where you can actually download the code. I would suggest that you print out the installation instructions, follow them step by step, checking off each step, and then adding clarifying notes to whatever is wrong or confusing. (I ran into some of that when I did my install, I have the beginning of some revised instructions on my private TWiki, and I don't mind making them available to you, but since they are for an older version, and someone has worked on improving them since then, they may just be misleading -- if you'd like to see them let me know.)

I'd like to move most of our correspondence to Wikilearn, if you have no objection. See these pages:

I will move most of this letter to http://twiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Wikilearn/WlsC0005. If you have any comments or questions to add, just edit the page. Eventually I would expect to refactor those pages to provide a learning record of what we do to set up WikiLearn. As new subjects come up, I'd consider moving them to the next numbered page, or to some page with a title that reflects the subject, prefixed by Wls. (As appropriate we can rename or delete useless pages, or move the useful content to another page, or whatever.)

I have a few more notes below, but I mainly wanted to let you know how / where to download the software so that you could get started. I will start digging through old notes, my personal TWiki, and so forth to feed you additional information, primarily via WikiLearn pages. At first, I'll send you an email to let you know when I've got something significant there.

regards, Randy Kramer

daRcmaTTeR wrote: > well...sort of. its just a little hard to get stopped now that I've got
> a good head of steam going.

More power to you -- storm forward!!

> Ok...now I'm beginning to see what Wikilearn is all about. It took a
> little while but I'm seeing it. Wow! could I have used something like
> this when I was first starting out.

This may be a little late, but if this didn't come across earlier, maybe we need to have a short bulleted list of the most important features, which, IMHO, are:

  • Nice looking(1) web pages that anyone can create or add to
  • A reasonable(2) ability to easily search those pages

I guess I could sound a little more enthusiastic, but:

  1. I think the base TWiki look is quite cluttered -- the templates I created for my home TWiki (for use on WikiLearn) are much less cluttered -- I will work on getting some samples for you.
  2. The built in TWiki search has some nice features, but lacks some important ones also. (They recently added an "and" feature for the regular expression search, but until then it did not exist -- you'll learn more as time goes on or I dig out some old notes.) I sometimes search WikiLearn using Google, but since Google only indexes the site every 3 to 8 weeks, it doesn't find the most recent stuff -- again, more later. I would like to install a dedicated search engine on WikiLearn, with most of the features of Google but dedicated to WikiLearn only. There is a candidate with a Japanese name that begins with n -- I'll have to find that at some point. (It is referenced on TWiki, and probably long enough ago that it is indexed on Google. I'll probably try a Google search on something like [twiki.org search engine Codev] -- oops, that didn't work (I didn't search all the hits, I'll search some more later).

> Well...Randy, I'm sorry to say, but I think I can help you there.

Wonderful!!!

> So...Lets get the ball rolling. Since you're doing the driving and I'm
> still learning the ropes. How's about you assigning me something to do
> that needs doing. Don't worry about whether or not you think it might be
> to hard. If it is I'll let you know and ask LOTS of questions.

Ok! First assignments:

  • Download the TWiki software and make a trial installation at home. Keep notes, or rather, markup the installation instructions in pen/pencil with any problems / suggestions you have for improving them. (There are some alternate / additional instructions on TWiki which can be helpful -- I'll try to point out some of those pages.) (Note that the installation on SourceForge will be more difficult as we will not have root privileges. Also, I'd like to make the permissions as "tight" as possible -- the recommendations in the installation instructions, last time I looked, took some shortcuts by making the permissions rather liberal.)
  • Register at SourceForge -- let me know when you have a user ID and I'll assign you to (i.e., give you privileges on) the WikiLearn project.
  • I'll work on getting some other stuff off my home TWiki, including something to show you the look and feel I was aiming for -- worst case I'll make some screen shots. Unfortunately, IIUC, the templates I created for the version of TWiki I installed will not work with the current version.
  • After (if, see aside below) you get your home TWiki up and start using it, pay attention to some things -- specifically, there is a fair amount of functionality that does not come with the base TWiki installation but must be added by "plugins" or "addons". I don't think I want to install all the "plugins" / "addons", so we need to start a list of what we want to add and what we don't want to add:

  • Functionality I don't want to add:
    • CommentPlugin (might have the name wrong) -- this provides more ability for people to comment on a page, but, IIUC, without registering and without any attempt at inserting the comments at different appropriate points on the page. We can (will) discuss philosophies at some point, but I'd like to have contributor's to WikiLearn register for various reasons. Then they can use the standard edit feature and insert comments at various locations on the page, as appropriate.

Aside: I and at least one other person have made a TWiki installation on SourceForge by "cheating" -- that is, going to the twiki.org site (as a SourceForge user) and copying the site from twiki.sf.net to wikilearn.sf.net, and then customizing and deleting as appropriate. This might still be the most appropriate approach, but I just think we'll learn more if we make a more "traditional" installation. But, I'm not opposed to this approach, and, AFAIK, neither is Peter. Let me know what you think as you work on your trial installation or whatever -- we can start in one direction and change directions later.

> You mentioned something about getting this thing setup at Sourceforge.
> If you want we can start there. Is there somewhere I can pick up the
> Wikilearn package, install it on my home machine and workout how
> everything is put together and how it sets up? I will have to take a run
> over to Sourceforge and sign up for a membership account so that is
> done.

Covered above, I hope! Ask questions wink

> >
> > So there are three levels of collaboration possible:
> > * A casual user, who "collaborates" when he spots a need
> > * A more dedicated collaborator, who intentionally uses WikiLearn
> as
> > his "learning notepad" to help build up the content of WikiLearn
> > * One or more people who want to help administer TWiki (including
> > making the permanent installation, writing scripts for things like
> > backup, new templates, etc., etc., etc.) -- someone could attempt the
> > entire task, or portions of it. The entire task would probably
> require
> > some knowledge of Linux, bash, Apache, cgi, html, ssh, Perl, etc. I
> > started a few pages on WikiLearn listing some of the specific tasks,
> but
> > have not tried to really keep them up to date because I seemed to keep
> > scaring off anybody that expressed interest. wink (Do a TWiki search
> in
> > the Wikilearn web for any topic names containing "ToDo".)
>
> I think I want to be one of the #3's. Thats pretty much where I live and
> will help to further sharpen my Linux programming skills. I intend
> starting this weekend to make a pointed effort to immerse myself in
> WikiLearn to get a real good feel for what is and what isn't. Also to
> become familiar with what is needed and how it works.

Wonderful!!

> > Maybe there are some things you learned while setting up your Mandrake
> > server (as described above) that weren't covered in the documentation,
>
> I've noticed a few things and to tell you the truth thats what turned
> the light on for me and helped me to see what WikiLearn was all about.
> Thats when I really started to see the incredible potential for this
> project. Awesome stuff!
>
> Ok...I've got to get going for now...but I will write more later.

Me too (both)!

> I'm
> sure as I start through things I'll have lots of questions.

Just ask, anything, anytime!

regards, Randy Kramer

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  • () RandyKramer - 19 May 2002
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Topic revision: r1 - 2002-05-19 - RandyKramer
 
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