View Full Version : [SOLVED] Knowledge Base management discussion

J McKalling
2012-09-26, 12:01
How to manage the Knowledge Base

Firstly, one man cannot possibly maintain all of the information we're putting in this knowledge base. It couldn't, and it shouldn't. So for the purpose of a great knowledge base we all can use and is up-to-date, we need to have a group of people who share the ability to edit eachother's posts, so all information is accessible by all. Because what good is knowledge if beyond some point, no one can change it anymore?

This is why I think we need multiple moderators for the knowledge base, besides the globals and admins. They are too busy with the rest of the forums as it is, we don't want anyone to become stressed out. This place should be fun to use and easy to read, and that loosely translates to as little as responsibility for anyone as possible.

Destiny of the Knowledge base
This forum is just one of the options we could choose for a "knowledge base". We could also try to set up a wiki website or something for instance. But for the sake of urgence, I suggested a forum with two subforums for the time being. Any suggestion about how to improve this with the purpose to make management easier, is also very welcome. Please note I cannot change the forums myself, this is something only admins can do. Also remember, any information that we want to manage through the MBN, must be hosted by the MBN aswell. If it were a different website hosted by a different domain, we'd be dependent on that domain and you should never want that.

New Ideas
If it were for me, I'd like to give every member on this forum who has been a member for some time and has contributed to the forums at least some, all the moderator status I currently have. But unfortunately, this isn't possible and wouldn't be feasible. So, I've been thinking about the problem. So far, I have found no fair solution.

We could just select the few members who actually like to help out. In this case, I'd like to suggest LtDemolition and Zeelichian, because they have so far helped me with the KB tremendously, and I'm very greatful for that. We make a great team guys! If there are others who like to help out, I welcome you to come in. I'm no one's boss; this knowledge base is for you all as well!

So, if you have an idea on how to moderate the KB, please tell us here!

Now that we've got the Twinsuniverse server running, and the forum content is now maintained there, managing the forums isn't an issue anymore.

J McKalling
2012-10-02, 14:37
Just a quick note;

We have recently set up a Knowledge Base Team usergroup, which you can join here (http://forum.magicball.net/profile.php?do=editusergroups).
If you don't understand how to join a group, follow the steps in this thread (http://forum.magicball.net/showthread.php?t=13254) about the Roofles Den group.
I'll have to approve any requests for the KB Team, but it gives you more abilities to post/edit in the Knowledge Base if I'm not mistaken.

Unfortunately, it is still impossible to edit eachothers posts, even if you're in that usergroup, but we're still discussing this.

2012-10-04, 02:52
Continuing the discussion from here: http://forum.magicball.net/showthread.php?t=16410&page=2

Wikia is a very large host. It has thousands of wikis. The form of a wiki makes the creation and the whole navigation a lot better. I just think being in the form of a forum takes a lot of potential out of it

But it just seems that you prefer that way, and I prefer the other way, and the only thing that's left is to keep at it until something new gets done

J McKalling
2012-10-04, 09:38
I do like wikis. They have a general design, are easy to edit, can be managed by multiple people, introduce a lot of automation, have systems in place to manage metadata like history and roles etc, it's just far better than manual posts on a forum.

Though the problem is that the MBN should host the information, so that it will never occur that the MBN loses access to its own information like what happened before with the Encyclopedia Twinsunica.

Is it possible to setup a wiki here on the server of the MBN, and possibly integrate it's pages into the post parsing mechanism of the board? It would be awesome if we could type like Twinsen for instance, and that it would result automatically in http://forum.magicball.net/images/icons/takam/twinsen.gifTwinsen (http://forum.magicball.net/showpost.php?p=418023&postcount=2). This would really help, as linking between all of the posts is a huge efford right now. But at least the wiki should be here on the MBN, so we won't loose access unless the whole MBN is down or something.

That is what I think :)

2012-10-04, 23:33
Theres always the possibility of a mod or a forum upgrade might provide these features, but thats really Els department.

2012-10-04, 23:39
Unfortunately, El is rarely around anymore.

Darkflame, as the only currently available admin, you don't have access to build a wiki on the MBN I take it?
Or can you get ahold of, El with more success than the rest of us to share the possibility of a Knowledgebase wiki hosted here?

J McKalling
2012-10-05, 09:32
Because that would be so easier than managing permissions on the forum...
You know yourself how long it took to get it to work like this. :)

2012-10-05, 14:36
I have no access to the "guts" of the forum software, no ftp or file level access which is needed for mods. (and quite right too...its easy to mess up a forum by making changes, at least on my phpBB board Ive screwed it up a few times...)

The best bet might be indeed some independent wiki system merely hosted here.

http://tiddlywiki.com/ is a very easy to use wiki, but it might be far too simple for what you need.

J McKalling
2012-10-05, 18:37
That's right, I'm not too fond on installing mods either. Shouldn't be necessary.

For me, if the wiki is easier to use than the forums in terms of moderation, it doesn't need to be easy to use. I'm a programmer myself, and if really necessary I could mod the forums personally aswell. But for the purpose of a multi-editable KB, this is irrelevant. :)

I'm familiar with wikipedia, isn't it possible to just use that one? Sure they have some public version or something? I saw lots of them on the net.

2012-10-20, 11:44
I can setup on my server a wiki page so you could test it. Just let me know if you need it.

J McKalling
2012-10-20, 12:10
Thanks, that would be nice.

So far, I've come up with the folowing wishes.

Readability for everyone
Maintainability for multiple people
Ability for the editers to edit eachother's work
Ability for an editer to setup pages under construction (like closed threads)
Multiple Table of Contents per subject (or sorting options)
Table of Contents three levels deep
Multiple columns for horizontal TOCs
Multiple floating columns for all entries
Spoiler buttons for explicit plot/event/puzzle revealers
Easy linking between entries of same or different kinds
Attaching automatic icons to an entry's link
Custom headers for entries
But most of all: Easy to use and customizable templates

2012-10-20, 13:55
Just sent you a PM regarding this.

J McKalling
2012-10-21, 11:14
Thank you AF,

I've been learning the wikilanguage all day yesterday, and it seems very powerful for our purpose.
But I just couldn't find out how to get a new template to actually list in the Templates, rather than simply in (main). I guess I'm not too familiar with the categorize mechanic there. I did read most of the guide about it though I just can't find it.

Tonight I'm going to have a look again and will try to start importing Twinsunica when I figured it out. I'm very amazed about it's templates, very useful. There's also a lot more I previously thought :)

But I know I can improve the templates, and I know I can put in even more information in them.

2012-10-21, 17:50
Has anyone been able to contact El about hosting a wiki?

J McKalling
2012-10-21, 21:58
I've messaged him about setting up the knowledge base, twice, and he hasn't even come back to the board to read them yet, this is how long it's been.

His profile also says he hasn't been here for some time now. september 19th was his last post. I guess something else has his attention right now, and I don't want to flood his message box or anything just for his attention.

J McKalling
2012-10-25, 12:51
There is news about the topic!

Alexfont has offered me on his server, a MediaWiki setup, that we can use to setup the Knowledge Base in wiki format. When ready, or when Elmuerte is available for the MBN server, we could easily move the software with contents to this server. I'm still working on the basic setup, and I'll post a link when I think that's done.

This is great news, as I've been figuring out how MediaWiki works, and it is perfect for our cause. I've already begun importing Twinsunica pages, and I have stumbled upon a question.

So I'd like to design a new logo and a new name for this project. What do you think of this:

Because the Encyclopedia Twinsunica (http://twinsunica.waxo.nl/index.php/Main_Page) is by far the biggest (I think) in terms of content, as opposed to the current Knowledge Base (this) and Salvatoor's Wikia, it should be the best choice to use the Twinsunica base to build up the KB, right? So I've closely resembled the Twinsunica logo (this is of cource discussable). And because this project now is not exclusively an encyclopedia anymore, and with a new name, I think of: Knowledge Base Twinsuniverse :D

We could of cource go with some other image, like a combination of the three planets in one, or something else. And as for the name, there's also "LBA Universe", but that one is already taken by some old site. This is all just a suggestion.

What'd you think?

2012-10-25, 17:52
Twinsuniverse is great imho. Fun name that flows.

2012-10-26, 16:04
Twinsuniverse itself since indeed a great choice. I will call it "Twinsuniverse - Knowledge Base" where Knowledge Base is the subtitle and not the main title.

As for the logo, if this project is a sequel to Twinsunica its nice to use the same. Newcomers can always recognize that logo.

J McKalling
2012-10-26, 20:52
You're right, Twinsuniverse should be the main title. I just kept the same format as "Encyclopedia Twinsunica", which may contribute to the familiarity.

2012-10-28, 13:21
I generally like the wiki project. Long ago I found out that the wiki engine is almost perfect for all kinds of 'live information bases' - that must be easy to read, browse, maintain and update. Some time ago I started a project of conversion the old File Information page (anyone remembers it?) to the wiki engine, and I was amazed of how flexible it was. A bit complicated for this kind of data, but when done right it will just work. I have withheld the conversion in favour of the Prequel Demo, but when the demo is done, I will continue it. I just got an idea that we could use a similar logo (maybe coloured differently for easy recognition), that would share the same base: "Twinsuniverse - File Info".

For the technical aspects, you may be interested in the following wiki add-ons:
Parser Functions (http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:ParserFunctions) - this one is a must. Many other extensions require it.
DynamicPageList (http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:Intersection) - for easier page grouping.
Semantic MediaWiki (http://semantic-mediawiki.org/) - for supplying pages with data that can be browsed and re-used like a database (sounds complicated, but provides huge amount of new possibilities)
Flagged Revisions (http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:FlaggedRevs) - for distinguishing high quality information from low quality.
Discussion (http://en.wikicaptions.org/wiki/Extensions:Discussion) - for quick page comments.

J McKalling
2012-10-28, 13:58
Hi Zink!
I've heard you know a lot about MediaWiki, that's very convenient.

Currently I'm importing Twinsunica help pages, and updating their text to fit the Twinsuniverse. There's a lot I also need to do, like getting all categories right (Twinsunica had some issues I want to solve) and setting up all templates (Twinsunica hadn't taken as much advantage of templates as I have in mind). Before I can actually import and improve content pages...

But I'm enthusiastic, and I like to work on this. The plan is importing all Twinsunica and Salvatoor's Wikia content into the Twinsuniverse, combine it with the current Knowledge Base content as well, and call that the new Twinsuniverse.

So far I am aware of it, ParserFunctions are already installed there, as the mediawiki version is 1.19, and it's bundled at >1.18. The other extensions I don't know, maybe something interesting to look at later?

What project do you mean, that you're converting? Is there more than the Twinsunica, Wikia and our KB? I know the Twinsunica is currently on hold because of it's database problem, which is actually great because it avoids inconsistancies between that and the new Twinsuniverse.

Also, could you explain this "Twinsuniverse - File Info" thing? :)

2012-10-28, 14:22
"A lot" is too much to say :). I didn't work with it for some time and my knowledge is partially outdated. But if you have specific questions, feel free to ask - I will try to help as much as I can.

I mean this: http://lba.fishos.cc/fileinfo/ (just as I thought, no one remembers :D)

It is a knowledge base too, but focused on technical aspects - file formats, modifications, software, etc. That's why I think it would fit perfectly into this Twinsuniverse namespace as a complementary to your KB.

J McKalling
2012-10-28, 14:45
Well, certainly I'd like to incorporate that project as well.

But I'm not sure how it would affect the scope of the Twinsuniverse.
By demand, the knowledge base was an idea to complement the Twinsunica with information that has never been publicized before. Like post-finish challenges and in-depth bug analysis. Because the Twinsunica is only an encycplopedia, and can only contain official information, the scope needed widening. A knowledge base obviously doesn't care about whether certain information is official or not, it just contains everything we know. So that was the first thing I thought of. But the idea was still limited to in-game content. Does "Twinsuniverse" imply it can contain information about File-Info, which is beyond in-game content?

Eventhough the Twinsuniverse would be a knowledge base, and File-Info is one as well, their scope is different.

2012-10-28, 15:19
Well, I'm not English-native, so I may be wrong on this, but to me the "-universe" suffix means "everything", not limited to official content, and not limited to content that a regular player needs. I see it similarly to the Wikipedia project. You know it's not only wikipedia, but also commons, sources, wiktionary, and more? They have different scopes but all fit into the 'Wikipedia' name space (this is how I call it, not an official name).

But I'm not here to force this. You created that name, and it's up to you what scopes you want it to include.

J McKalling
2012-10-28, 15:41
Well, I'm not English-native, so I may be wrong on this, but to me the "-universe" suffix means "everything", not limited to official content, and not limited to content that a regular player needs. I see it similarly to the Wikipedia project. You know it's not only wikipedia, but also commons, sources, wiktionary, and more? They have different scopes but all fit into the 'Wikipedia' name space (this is how I call it, not an official name).

But I'm not here to force this. You created that name, and it's up to you what scopes you want it to include.

Actually, Commons and Wiktionary are not part of the Wikipedia project, they are their own project under the namespace of wikimedia. There is still a lof of confusion between "mediawiki", "wikimedia", "wikipedia", and some others. Understandably.

I understand you mean the overall project could contain different namespaces, and I agree, but I'm saying I'm not too sure whether I think your definition of the "-universe" suffix is clear. In my opinion, "universe" should be interpreted storywise, like the void of space around the three planets in LBA2. "Twinsuniverse" thus explains everything about the universe these planets are in.

You on the other hand, make me think "universe" is also about the CD, and the software the game uses. But this is totally outside the universe, like, the universe outside of that universe. I wouldn't say it isn't universe, but it's a different one. Do you see what I mean? It is ambiguous.

Of cource it was my idea, and it's me who should decide the scope, but sue me for asking your opinion :p

Maybe it doesn't matter, and I should just keep "Twinsuniverse" and have it define the widest of scope you're talking about.

2012-10-28, 16:32
It's like saying the physics and chemistry are outside of our universe, that is made solely of experience :p. There is no imposed borderline between those two universes, but you can put one wherever you wish. For a game though there is a borderline - where creators have put it. But there you can ignore or move it, which you are already doing.

So as I said, it's up to you. I don't even want it eagerly. That was just an idea :)

J McKalling
2012-10-28, 17:00
It's like saying the physics and chemistry are outside of our universe, that is made solely of experience :p. There is no imposed borderline between those two universes, but you can put one wherever you wish.

I don't quite understand what you're saying here.
At least this is what I mean:

I differentiate between the real life universe we live in, and the fictitious universe Twinsen lives in. The latter has nothing to do with the CDs we put in our computer, no matter what one might think. And originally, Twinsuniverse is all about the universe Twinsen lives in. This is a direct consequence of the Twinsunica. So it doesn't know of computer games or CDs, it doesn't know LBAwin, it doesn't know dosbox. But it does know all about Twinsun and Zeelich, and their inhabitants.

But I've made a decision. From now on, "Twinsuniverse" applies to both the "universe" within the games themselves, and anything real life related concerning the games outside of that fictitious universe. This is to be able to add additional namespaces to it in the future, like your file info, software packages, how to setup the games on different platforms or newer systems.

However, I want to make a very clear line between the different scopes on the Twinsuniverse. I want to make it very clear how text should be phrased in different places, so to keep real world stuff from in-game stuff.

2012-10-28, 19:44
Both of you are seeing Fringe (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1119644/)too much :)

I agree having Twinsuniverse with a bigger scope than Twinsunica. I would prefer to see everything about the games there, story-related, technical, trivia, etc.. If we correctly organize the project everything can fit together.

I'm imagine seeing a story-related location description and have an option to view technical detail information about that location.
Taking the example of known bugs, it will be amazing to have bug description linked to the technical scene the bug is produced. We can even patch that scene to fix the bug and let people download it.

There was always a weak point on this community and it is the fact that most of the LBA related information is spread in many places. Most of us had websites back than, some still active, others were shut-down and content loosed, I think we have a great chance here to do the things right and merge all the content wisely.

J McKalling
2012-10-28, 20:01
Absolutely my thoughts indeed.

The first moment when I really experienced myself everything is so spreadout, was when Lt.Demolition and I were arguing about what solves the Money-Monkey Bug a few weeks ago. We thought we had solved the thing a long time ago, but forgot how and now it's unsolved once again. We just can't get the overview of anything anymore. So many different runthroughs to figure it out, everyone with different solutions. Suddenly it snapped, and I said, this and no more, and now I'm doing what no one else did, and what should have been done a long time ago.

Merge everything MBN into one info base, and heck, lets increase the scope even more. Why not use it as the overall repository of images and icons and all media with their related history for the entire MBN website aswell?:lol: Once we do this, I write history. We write history. :)

Let's not forget to improve this website along with it, to integrate the Twinsuniverse with the website, as was done with the forums a long time ago. This would introduce a new level of history to the frontwebsite.

2012-10-29, 07:29
Both of you are seeing Fringe (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1119644/)too much :)

Never heard of it :)

Thanks J for your consent. All together we will change the World (even if it's only LBA World) :D

J McKalling
2012-10-29, 09:45
Now then, lets continue to import the Twinsunica.

Hmm wait, why did I choose to start anew again?:lol:

2012-10-29, 23:25
Is the name really that important? It's just the content what really matters. I realize it's better that it has a good name, but it doesn't matter if the name is not exactly accurate. I like Twinsuniverse but it could be any name really.

That thing you said last is what I was thinking... Whay are we starting a new one instead of continuing the Twinsunica or something like that?

J McKalling
2012-10-29, 23:29
I think, because - no screw it, I don't know.
All of Twinsunica will have to be refactored anyway, and rewritten to reflect the new name and scope. I'm not sure, but it might take the same amout of time and efford. Do note I'm already utilizing the built in feature to export and import, which is pretty darn badass.

While I'm currently spending time on rewriting meta pages, real content pages won't take as much time. I guess it'd be a matter of changing the template once, and filling in some more parameters in the articles where known.