Revisiting the TechBase situation (2 proposals)

Juan Carlos Torres jucato at
Tue Apr 2 15:20:42 BST 2019


I won't be going into history but right now we have two developer-facing
wikis: TechBase and Community. On paper, the division between the two is
clear: "external" vs "community". In addition to still being in transition,
the distinction doesn't always work well in practice:

- Tutorials and information for external developers (a.k.a. users of our
libraries/software) are pretty much the same tutorials new internal
developers would use.
- Readers are led to jump back and forth between the two wikis, which may
make them lose context.
- There is also a risk that documentation gets duplicated, put in the wrong
wiki, forgotten, etc.

On the non-technical side, it also creates this "them vs us" division. Of
course, we do have hard rules on projects that get hosted on our
infrastructure as an official part of the KDE community. But putting up
that fence there might not be a good way to encourage "users of our
libraries" to eventually become part of the community and help develop
those libraries.

That said, I am also playing my own devil's advocate here. "TechBase" is
admittedly a catchier name than "Community Wiki" and is symmetrical to
"UserBase". Searching for tutorials on Google shows more TechBase results
due to a longer history, page ranking, and stuff. So if I may, I'd like to
propose two somewhat opposing options on how to move forward with these two

OPTION 1: Sunset TechBase, put everything in Community Wiki

- All-inclusive, all-welcoming place for any kind and any level of developer
- Everything is one place, easier to search, easier to see duplicates, no
jumping back and forth

- Could make the Community Wiki crowded
- Lose search ranking, lose a catchy name

OPTION 2: Redefine TechBase - make it really only about technical stuff:
tutorials, architecture/infrastructure, overviews. Remove the "external
developers" distinction. This will also be where projects will put their
technical docs for contributors.

- Keeps the TechBase name (and SEO stuff) without the external vs. internal
- Better defined purpose. Community Wiki will just be for the "human" side
of documentation: planning, minutes, project notes, etc.

- Still jumping back and forth between two wikis
- Some technical information have already been migrated to Community Wiki

In addition to some material being outdated or irrelevant, having some in
one place but others in another doesn't help give new and current
developers clear path. I'd love to hear thoughts on the matter and other
options we might have with regards to the wikis.

(Apologies for the rather long email. Please be sure to keep both kde-devel
and kde-www in the replies as I'm not subscribed to the latter.)


Juan Carlos Torres
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