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A Wiki


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Good day folks, I know in the past, we've tossed around the idea of a wiki included in core software. And it gains speed and drops off for various reasons. But I sure would like to see a wiki somehow.

I have an idea, I have been using wiki software for years, Mediawiki, Dokuwiki, TikiWiki are the main three. I have a wiki built off the Tikiwiki software and it's wonderful, but not user friendly. I have tested Mediawiki to great extent, and it's more streamlined that Tikiwiki, and the user interface is now much more friendly, specially since they added WYSIWYG for the less brave of users, eliminating the need for using wiki syntax made Wikipedia and all it's sister sites much more friendly, and open the door to a whole new user experience.

I am working on transferring all my wiki research from my current software Tikiwiki, to Dokuwiki. Dokuwiki is the easiest of wiki softwares for users, plus it requires no database, all the information is stored directly in folders, so transferring a Dokuwiki is easy as copy pasting folders to another server, no database worries or woes.

Why am I going into all this? Well, I have been playing with Dokuwiki and getting more serious about transferring all my wiki article off the Tikiwiki sofware and over to Dokuwiki. And to make things more consistent and more pleasant to the eye, I embedded my Dokuwiki instance into a page in our Invision community.

If you are interested to take a look see here: https://thepatriotwoodworker.com/research/

My current wiki is here: https://thepatriotwoodwiki.org/HomePage This is the Tikiwiki software.

I sure like the idea of having a wiki that is clean, simple to use, and has a vibrant support group. Again, one of the attractions of using Dokuwiki, is that all the data is stored in folders, so if the Dokuwiki team decided to not maintain anymore, you can easily move your information. But it's hardly likely that Dokuwiki would have an end, there are plenty of folks to carry the torch, and because it is so popular, its future is bright.

So, my proposal, finally, perhaps the devs here could integrate the Open Source Dokuwiki, into core? It would be an optional feature, and why should the devs create a wiki feature from scratch when they can integrate a wonderful simple easy to use wiki platform like Dokuwiki?

My Dokuwiki is embedded in a page titled "Research", so that looks nice. I loaded the software into a folder named "wiki" in the same public_html directory as my Invision community, so the appearance is that the wiki is fully integrated, but really it's not. Here is the true url of my Dokuwiki https://thepatriotwoodworker.com/wiki/start

So in reality I have the same instance running, but two different places, I don't like that so much, thus my plea for integration.

So, my proposal, finally, perhaps the devs here could integrate the Open Source Dokuwiki, into core? It would be an optional feature, and why should the devs create a wiki feature from scratch when they can integrate a wonderful simple easy to use wiki platform like Dokuwiki?

There is one developer who has done just that, glFusion creator Mark successfully integrated Dokuwiki into their software as a feature option. You can see his wiki integration at: https://www.glfusion.org/wiki/doku.php

He uses it for their main documentation portal.

Thanks for hearing me out 🙂

Edited by JohnCourt
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I would rather see the existing Wiki functionality improved. I used MediaWiki(-like) software for years, but it remans niche software with a very weird approach (stuffing content and structure into one big article field) that editors first need to learn. The way that IPS does it, is actually superior for most communities. You aren’t collection any sort of content. You collect specific content around your community topic. So you just set up databases for each type of content. Then you set up custom fields and then users just fill them in. If it’s a date, you use a date picker. It’s an URL, you use an URL field. And so on. And you create templates to style the custom fields however you like it. Ever since I switched from MediaWiki-like software to IPS’ implementation, people actually started to create and improve records. And I stay in full control of how it works and looks. It’s extremely powerful in that regard. Just the options to track and approve edits are lacking in comparison to MediaWiki. 

I once had a vBulletin site with a third-party solution to implement a MediaWiki functionality and it was so annoying to maintain. Two independent pieces of software with their own code, their own updates, their own CSS, all crammed into one. Yes, it can be done, but can it be done well? And would IPS or anyone want to maintain that for many years to come?

Edited by opentype
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Great points all opentype.

I really need to learn to use templates. I'd like some direction here, ultimately I would love to have a wiki using Invision. But I think my own ignorance and limitations of our software is holding me back.

If I can ask for advice here in order to accomplish a goal. My goal, to have forms to use in order to create a page, within a category.

The page created would have custom areas that are populated by the form that is used. If you know Mediawiki, you know the popular infobox style on every page. I love that feature. For an example, see this page for my favorite woodworker Sam Maloof. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sam_Maloof

I would like to have a form that will populate the infobox. So my form would have elements such as you see:








And so on and so on. The page would be created with the infobox populated, and displayed, and the rest of the page would be open for freestyle editing away from the form.

Is this possible? Or any variant thereof?

Thanks in advance 🙂

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1 hour ago, JohnCourt said:

Is this possible? 

Yeah, definitely. It easier to do with Pages than with MediaWiki as the users just fill in individual form fields – and they are of the right type, like “text”, “integer value”, “date picker” …

You just need to have a template set up once which outputs those fields in the right way. 

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9 minutes ago, opentype said:

“text”, “integer value”, “date picker”

Can these values be extrapolated? Semantically? Such as I have a form for automobile, eventually there are 200 automobiles entered into the database and one of the values is Engine Type. Would I be able to extrapolate Engine Type and display elsewhere?

Thanks for your help Open.

Edited by JohnCourt
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By the default it’s a flat table like an Excel file. For more complex setups, there is special field (“database relationship”) to link different databases. For example, a book database might not use a text field for “book publisher” but instead just link an entry in a separate publisher database. 

There are also categories, filters, ratings, reviews, comments … 

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