[FM Discuss] wikimania '08 report
adam at flossmanuals.net
Sun Jul 20 14:52:29 PDT 2008
> Quicly, when you speak about professionnal writers wrote with
> non-professionnal writers. My feeling.
> Just because i have write a book printed in house of editor copyright i was
> considered like a professional ? And what about people who wrote every day
> good articles on their blog or on Wikipedia or on FM ? ;)
I agree with you about quality - the Inkscape Book Sprint produced
outstanding quality material. All the other manuals in FM also are of
When I say 'professional documentation writers' it is not a comment on
the quality of the material produced, but a re-iteration of the
distinction between 'volunteers' and 'professionals' used by WikiTravel.
Its not a distinction I agree with and you are right to question my use
of it in relation to FM :) My apologies.
> Writing with others is more rich than writing alone, and faster. I'm actually
> writting a new book (in house of editor standard) with a professional author,
> is rich and faster than writting alone. But i don't have see the difference
> with the booksprint, a part, obviously, the deadline.
> I think documents by community is more rich, reflecting more point of view.
> For manual is obviously more rich and give to the reader a good estimation
> for the quality of the document.
Its great to hear you presenting this argument in favour of community
> If the document writing by several people it's about psicology or etnologia or
> history, the pb is another : each point of view by professional people or non
> professionnal people can be in conflict and if some content was deleted
> because it no receive the agreement by all. I think you see the danger.
> Common vision are just keep. But this problem can found an issue in
> administration the group.
> Here is my first reaction.
and a good one :)
> Le Sunday 20 July 2008 18:43:49 adam hyde, vous avez écrit :
> > hi,
> > [note: this is a draft, I will check URLs etc when I return to Amsterdam
> > and resend to the list. I thought it was of interest to sent his now in
> > any case]
> > So, Wikimania '08. It has been an interesting event. Held in the New
> > Great Library of Alexandria on the sea front of the beautiful
> > Mediterranean. The site is infront of the old Great Library which is now
> > under the sea.
> > I was here to represent FM and the good work we have all done, and learn
> > as much as I can from as many people as I can to further assist FMs
> > growth and development
> > I attended last years event in Taiwan so its interesting to compare. On
> > the whole I'd say this event has a taint more formality, due pretty much
> > to the venue. It is a prestigious housing for this event and while
> > impressive it does lessen the ebb and flow of casual meetings which was
> > a little easier last year in a more relaxed space.
> > Each days events were held across 5 parallel streams. There was no
> > attempt to harmonize streams, rather it seemed a little bit muddled with
> > no conscious emphasis on any specific themes. It felt a little bit like
> > a grab bag of ideas rather than a curated symposium. This feeling is
> > also enhanced given that each block is only 45 minutes which doesn't
> > give much time for discussion or in-depth investigation so I left many
> > presentations feeling that I got only a sampling of the promised topic.
> > Even so, there has been some interesting stuff, so below is a short
> > report of what I found of interest.
> > First up, I missed the opening presentations as Brianna and I had to
> > prepare for a workshop later in the day, so the first thing I got to see
> > was Ruediger Glott and Rishab Ghosh (in the 3rd session) talking about
> > the forthcoming survey about motivations of Wikipedia contributors. I
> > have read many articles from Rishab Ghosh as he is one of the few clear
> > voices commenting on the motivations of free software developers and
> > free content contributors. You can find some of his work on the
> > excellent opensource.mit.edu resource for academic writings on open
> > source/open content.
> > Unfortunately however, the survey has not taken place yet so we did not
> > get the presentation of the results. This would have been OK, but
> > instead of an interesting drill-down into the issues at hand (motivation
> > etc) we got a brief overview of the survey itself, how it was formatted,
> > who should fill it out, and what it is trying to explore. The
> > presentation contained a disappointing lack of real substance.
> > Next up I attended the "Wikipedia Offline" presentation by Manual
> > Schneider. Manuel is working on the development of offline distributions
> > of Wikipedia on CD/DVD/USB drives etc. It was perhaps a little too dense
> > on the technical detail. I was also left with a nagging lack of
> > understanding for real world use for such a system. The work is quite
> > advanced, essentially focusing on optimising a usable (searchable)
> > offline snap shot of Wikipedia. However, there is no real work (as far
> > as I could see) into how to update the snapshots (eg writing to a flash
> > drive) or how to contribute and synchronise content written offline.
> > These two issues seemed to me to be the most interesting but were
> > entirely unattended to by the project.
> > Then we broke for lunch and afterwards Brianna and I lead a workshop on
> > using Inkscape with SVG and Wikimedia Commons. We had the joy of
> > competing with Jimmy Wales in his keynote. This fact was announced over
> > the intercom twice in Arabic and twice in English during the first 15
> > minutes of our workshop - but we weren't deterred! Brianna did the bulk
> > of the workshop, I demonstrated FM and introduced our series of Book
> > Sprints with special emphasis on the Inkscape Book Sprint and the
> > results, and then demo'ed Inkscape for tracing a bitmap. Brianna talked
> > about SVG, demo'ed the svgtranslate online service (more on this later)
> > and Wikimedia Commons. I was pleased Brianna and I had been slotted an
> > hour and a half (the only session to have such a generous allocation) so
> > we could get into some detail and discuss issues.
> > I think Brianna did a fabulous job and we maintained an audience of
> > about 40 people - most returning after the coffee break in the middle
> > which was a very good sign :) Congrats to Brianna, she did the vast
> > majority of the work and I think the audience was very impressed and
> > satisfied.
> > Incidentally - my room mate at the hotel (Carlos) is also part of the
> > organising committee for the next Wikimania (to be held in Argentina)
> > and I discussed the possibility of having more free software workshops
> > next year - it would be good to have workshops not only on free
> > softwares but on some of Wikimedia Foundation projects. Lets see if they
> > come back to us.
> > Next...the Wikimedia Foundation Board Panel. Seated like Egyptian
> > Pharaohs in a semi circle (remembering the legacy of the venue...) the
> > Board were actually pretty down to Earth. Its pretty great to see that
> > there can be an open panel discussion where the agenda is for the board
> > to update everyone on what has happened since the last Wikimania and
> > then open the mic for any questions on any topic. Remarkably egalitarian
> > in appearance although I am not close enough to the internal dynamics to
> > know how this is in reality. Still, its a good look.
> > Large on the discussion agenda was the question of a Volunteer Council.
> > This was explored in (sampled) detail in a panel the following day which
> > I also attended.
> > I left the first day feeling like I really didn't get much out of it
> > although a highlight was the workshop and meeting some friends I hadn't
> > seen for a while. However the content of the presentations seemed a
> > little superficial because of curation and the short length of each
> > session.
> > I did have a great felafal (1 Egyptian pound, or about 15 euro cents).
> > and a few beers with Shunling Chen (FM Advisory Board) and a nice walk
> > along the stony storm break.
> > The next day it was back into it with an opening panel entitled
> > 'Wikipedia Lectures'...the blurb read that it had something to do with
> > the organisation of lectures on all-things-wiki to be held in
> > irc...sounded good to me (I am involved in organising a 'sustainable
> > immobility' festival in Amsterdam in 2009 so I thought it might also be
> > interesting from this point of view). However, the topic advertised had
> > no relationship to the panel, although the panel was still very
> > interesting.
> > 4 old timers (Andrew Liu, Cat, Christopher Mathews + ?) presented their
> > point of views on the challenges facing Wikipedia due to the scale of
> > the project. One nice quote from a post (I think) from a wikipedian
> > named 'Durova' was put up on the beamer and seemed salient (the
> > following is paraphrased):
> > "At the beginning an organisation is based on relationships, as it grows
> > it develops policies until the point that these become too complex and
> > unsustainable, then the organisation reverts back to relationships"...
> > one of the panel suggested the last phrase should be "reverts to
> > politics"...an interesting point and it summed up a lot of the
> > frustration inherent in the points the panel was making.
> > The topic quickly narrowed itself down to the problems of becoming an
> > 'Admin' in Wikipedia (there are 1500 Admins for Wikipedia English) and
> > how it is necessary to retain some kind of sane filtering process for
> > appointing admins but at the same time the sheer scale of the
> > organisation means the filtering process is now much more formal and not
> > as cosy as some would like. One panel member went as far as to say the
> > application process for Admins was emotionally traumatic and he would
> > not recommend anyone for an Admin because he didn't want them to go
> > through this process. Eeek! I don't see how these issues can be
> > harmonised, but once again (as per the board panel) it was refreshing to
> > see these issues discussed openly with no defensiveness apparent and a
> > short but good input from the audience.
> > So, I was thinking - at last some interesting stuff! The rest of the day
> > built on this and I was very pleased in general with this day.
> > The next session was for Lightning Talks. These are a series of 5 minute
> > presentations on any topic. I got there early looking forward to seeing
> > something unexpected, and unexpectedly I was asked if I wanted to
> > present FM. I jumped at the chance and did a quick 5 minute presentation
> > on FM, an overview of the manuals, FM Farsi, and our Xchange (the tool
> > we use to transfer manuals between FM language sites) and Objavi (our
> > beta print on demand tool) tools. Afterwards I had a lot of good
> > feedback about FM so I was pleased to have had the opportunity. Of the
> > talks by other presenters I was most interested in points raised by an
> > Arabic speaker (I think he was Egyptian) about the need to grow the
> > Arabic Wikipedia and take pride in Arabic as the language (many Arabic
> > writers for Wikipedia prefer to contribute to the English site
> > apparently). It was very interesting discussion and great to see local
> > voices taking the floor - it turned into a passionate discussion that I
> > believe was followed up in another session.
> > After lunch I attended "Is the law an ally?" by French Wikipedia lawyer
> > Olivier Hugot. A very interesting presentation. His greatest piece of
> > advice is that if you receive a legal letter asking you to remove
> > content don't take it down until you have talked to a lawyer. This is
> > mainly because if you make efforts to remove the content this may
> > actually be seen as an 'admission' of culpability if the matter goes to
> > court. He also said the most common legal issues were misuse of
> > trademarks within Wikipedia, copyright infringement withing Wikipedia,
> > and defamatory comments within Wikipedia.
> > Olivier believes the main threat to the WMF (he was talking mainly on
> > behalf of French law but was making a general point) would be a case
> > setting a precedent that considers the Wikimedia Foundation to be a
> > publisher. This is because publishers _can_ be held liable for the
> > content of their publications. He believes if this happened then it
> > would probably be a burden that could bring about the end of Wikipedia
> > as it would require unsustainable processes to filter content before it
> > made the public web.
> > He likes to argue that the WMF is not a publisher but more of a channel
> > for other peoples content. The analogy he used was of talk radio or a
> > speaker in a venue. If a speaker says something defamatory then the
> > venue is not held liable. He believes this is the argument to make - to
> > classify Wikimedia Foundation projects as custodians of a channel, and
> > hence having no (or very little) responsibility or culpability for the
> > content posted.
> > In this way he tries to drive a wedge between 'channel' and
> > 'publisher'.
> > I asked him, but perhaps not in the most eloquent manner, at what point
> > might Wikipedia be considered a publisher. Specifically I was interested
> > in the new PDF creation tools wikipedia is experimenting with. The tools
> > are supplied by Wikipedia and enable users to create 'collections' of
> > pages that are then rendered as PDF. These tools, as far as I can tell
> > through talking with Eric Moeller (involved with developing these
> > tools), is to tie Wikipedia into print on demand services. Given that
> > ebook readers are on the rise (some read PDF) and PDF is the source
> > format for print on demand - does this tip Wikipedia over this fine line
> > into the role of a publisher?
> > However I don't think he understood my question so I can't report any
> > interesting conclusion on this. ugh. Maybe Shunling would like to
> > comment on this?
> > Next...Brion Vibber - lead developer for MediaWiki (the software that
> > drives all Wikimedia Foundation projects). His presentation was weirdly
> > similar in feel to a Steve Jobs MacWorld presentation (although
> > possibly a little geekier). Brion is something of a star in this arena.
> > First up some very interesting stats:
> > * across all WMF projects there are 10,000,000,000 page requests a month
> > * there are 50,000 http object requests per second
> > * hardware for hosting costs 1.5 million (USD)
> > * 25,000 USD is spent on bandwidth per month
> > * hosting (housing) costs $10,000 a month
> > * there are 4 paid programmers/system administrators and 3 volunteers (a
> > herculean ratio)
> > * all servers are standard x86 (64 bit) servers running Ubuntu
> > The presentation was, once again, rather upfront. His summary is that
> > Wikimedia Foundation is now out of the 'panic mode' and is now a
> > sustainable technical enterprise. He outlined some of the most recent
> > achievements as being:
> > * single user login (you can create one account which can log you in
> > across all WMF projects).
> > * an experimental mobile version (you can see it at
> > http://mobile.wikipedia.org)
> > * a new localisation service for WMF projects
> > (http://translatewiki.net). I believe Wikimedia projects use 'gettext'
> > for localisation which is a unix tool that creates a specific kind of
> > format for translation strings (sometimes called the 'gettext
> > standard'). FM uses the same syntax and I was cornered by one of people
> > involved in this translatewiki project to see if FM would use the
> > service...no need as we have our own very nice tools (see the
> > localisation chapters in the FM manual)
> > Things that are not on the cards for MediaWiki include:
> > * no WYSIWYG editor. this is largely due to the fact that WMF syntax
> > (mark up) is also used for formatting templates and it is hard to break
> > the two issues apart.
> > * no p2p wikipedia (an ongoing, old, issue)
> > In the pipeline:
> > * the PDF generation is still in the works but in beta mode. Largely due
> > to syntax rendering as far as I can see. I believe the developers are
> > called 'PediaPress' and they have some information on their site
> > although I haven't checked it yet.
> > * bulk upload and simplified meta data entry for Wikimedia Commons
> > * possibility of embedded ogg theora in wikipedia articles. They are
> > working closely with Metavid (http://www.metavid.org) on this.
> > Next was the Volunteer Council meeting. This is largely about the
> > internal workings of Wikipedia. The Wikimedia Foundation has a board,
> > which is soon to have two chapter members (a 'chapter' is a language
> > project) and two community members. It also has some other elected
> > members including a chair and the 'honorary' position for Jimmy Wales.
> > The board promote themselves as outside of the daily operations of
> > Wikimedia Foundation projects and say they actively try to 'get out of
> > the way' of Wikipedia et al. I can't comment on whether this is actually
> > the case. However there seems to be murmurings within the
> > 'community' (the nature of this in itself is hard to define) towards the
> > establishment of some kind of Volunteer Council (VC) that will represent
> > concerns to the programmers (who are mostly paid staff) and the board
> > etc.
> > What the mandate is for the VC, what it should do, how it is
> > appointed/elected, and how it operates is all in the air. So this
> > meeting was really a realspace catch up and attempt to synthesize
> > discussions that have occurred online.
> > Brianna may wish to comment on this further. I found that the discussion
> > was interesting but it was pretty much impossible for it to get very
> > far.
> > Lastly I attended a split presentation about 'the wikisation of images'
> > by Nikola Smolenski and 'metavid' by Michael Dale. Both were technical
> > presentations. Nikola spoke about the need to develop a wiki syntax for
> > image creation. The idea is that images could be augmented/scaled etc
> > which as defined by the wiki mark up. In addition he spoke about the
> > ideas Brianna has been discussing in our workshop about how SVG is the
> > most 'wiki-like' image format in that it is a editable text file and so
> > its easy to manipulate programmatically.
> > Nikola developed his svgtranslate script which is online and it enables
> > you to enter a url for a svg, it then parses the svg for text components
> > (these are stored as plain text in the file) and then creates empty form
> > fields for each text block. You then can enter new texts and the script
> > will replace the old text with the new. The final result being an SVG
> > with the new text. Great for translations etc. Brianna had previously
> > demonstrated this during our workshop but it was great to see the guy
> > that made it present the rationale etc.
> > Nikola had also worked on scripts that will take regional maps and add
> > highlighting to specific areas according to the mark up used. For
> > example you can produce a map of europe with any country highlighted,
> > all created in the fly and all done via SVG templates and wiki mark up.
> > It was a great presentation and really opened my mind to the
> > possibilities for SVG.
> > Next was Michael and Metavid. Metavid started as a US Congressional
> > video archive with very sophisticated indexing and searching.
> > However metavid is now a content agnostic video 'cms' (wiki) of sorts.
> > It is based on Mediawiki and Semantic Mediawiki but it has really taken
> > it to a whole new level.
> > The feature set is extensive but some highlights include:
> > * inbrowser video editing
> > * potential for integrating speech -> text transcripts
> > * inbrowser subtitle (transcript) editing
> > * huge list of supported codecs
> > * smart plugin detection and manipulation
> > * time based url syntax
> > * ability to embed 'snippets' using their url syntax and embed api
> > and more...
> > A hugely impressive project. My only, and minor criticism, is
> > that it lacks good design. Infact it falls into the category of bad
> > interface design. This is really a shame and I hope they address it as
> > Metavid is a fantastically extensive and sophisticated approach to video
> > hosting.
> > In the evening I met with Samuel Klein from OLPC about the documentation
> > of OLPC and Sugar in FM. It was an interesting discussion, more about
> > this in another email. Also I received an email from Lotte saying the
> > book Brianna wrote during the sprint (see the new Wikimedia Commons
> > manual linked from the front page of the English FM) arrived and looks
> > beautiful. This is the first book made using our Objavi automated
> > FM->print pdf generator. Cool! Can't wait to see it :))))) With luck one
> > might arrive before we leave Wikimania but its unlikely...
> > So! Day two, was done. Much more interesting than day one but still
> > needed more time in each of the sessions.
> > Next day (day 3)...Mako (FSF) started with a presentation about free
> > network culture. A short introduction into the issue of network services
> > and what 'free' means in this context. What does 'free' mean for network
> > services like Google, Facebook etc...do we talk about privacy, free
> > code, free information, transparency? The GPL v3 does not address this
> > critical issue although there is the AGPL which is considered by some to
> > go someway towards addressing the issue but not far enough. It was a
> > great presentation but no time for questions.
> > Then there was a (hohum) Creative Commons panel. ra ra ...CC is a dull
> > topic these days if not given some critique. The panel focused just on
> > what CC is, and Mako introduced how CC applies to Wikipedia. In short,
> > CC doesn't apply as Wikipedia is covered by the FDL (which is a License
> > that masquerades as 'free' but is infact a jail for content). Its an old
> > story but essentially Wikipedia want out of the FDL so they are trying
> > to get the FSF to make the new draft of the FDL compatible with the
> > CC-BY-SA license. This would mean Wikipedia could slip out of the FDL
> > and into CC. Questions remain - should the nature of a license be
> > influenced by the needs of one user of that license? NO is my answer.
> > They have done this kind of stupid thing before with the FDL. The
> > rationale for the license includes a paragraph about how the license was
> > originally written to protect the business interests of small publishers
> > that wanted to publish manuals on free software. It is silly, if you ask
> > me, to write a free license to such a specific context. It looks like
> > the FSF is about to do the same thing again by changing the FDL to suit
> > the interests of the Wikimedia Foundation.
> > I believe the FSF should just think of the license and its needs. What
> > constitutes a free license in this context? In my opinion a really free
> > license for documentation (and I actually don't think there should be a
> > special license at all for documentation) is the GPL. It does the
> > job..whats the problem? By having a non-free license paraded as free in
> > the FSF license stable just weakens the trust in the FSF. If something
> > isn't free, and the FDL does not preserve freedom, then two things need
> > to be done: first - don't call it free, second - dump it.
> > What the FDL needs is to be written so that it is scheduled for being
> > outmoded and give anyone that uses it the opportunity to stay with the
> > old outmoded license, or move to the GPL. But...no...no time for
> > questions...time taken up by someone asking if they should use a
> > CC-BY-SA-NC or CC-BY-SA license...note to next programming committee :
> > hold intro courses on all WMF projects and free licenses so that panels
> > don't get stuck on the basics.
> > Next....Brianna on Wikimedia Commons. You may not know Wikimedia
> > Commons. If you don't then read Briannas manual
> > (http://www.flossmanuals.net/wikimediacommons) Essentially Wikimedia
> > Commons is a media library for Wikimedia projects. It has a special
> > focus on images but also extends to audio and video.
> > Some interesting notes:
> > * 5000 files are uploaded to Wikimedia Commons daily.
> > * 3 million files are in WC as of the day before the conference began
> > * the contributions are growing faster than new articles in the english
> > wikipedia
> > * the single user login is expected to accelerate this uptake even more
> > Brianna gave an overview of WC and where it is going. The point I noted
> > most of all was that WC is the only WMF project that works with all
> > other WMF projects. This is because many of the WC images get used in
> > the WMF projects.
> > It seemed to be that next to Wikipedia english (arguably the flagship
> > project) Wikimedia Commons is pretty much the next most important
> > project on the table. Although this may or may not be the case
> > (interested in Briannas thoughts on this) it certainly seems that its
> > importance is not reflected in the attention accorded to it by the WMF
> > or its programmers. As I understand it, from the bug list presented by
> > Brianna, the project has some severe usability issues that hinder its
> > uptake and usefulness. Most notable are:
> > * you cant rename/move images
> > * there isn't a workflow management system for classifying/clearing
> > images
> > * the upload process is just too hard to use
> > * there needs to be clean batch uploading
> > * it isn't really usable in many languages other than english
> > Also, it seems the default set-up for all new WMF projects enables users
> > to upload images etc to the 'local' project and hence many images are
> > being uploaded to each projects repository instead of to the shared WC
> > repository. It would seem reasonable to require new projects to have
> > this 'local uploads' feature turned off by default so that all projects
> > upload to WC and share images etc.
> > They seem like pretty critical issues to me. On the up side is that
> > despite all of this, WC is still being used by a tremendous number of
> > people.
> > Ok...moving on...WikiTravel presentation...WikiTravel are a wiki
> > (mediawiki) for travel guides that dovetails into a print on demand
> > process. Interesting interesting. Very similar themes raised to those
> > here at FM...
> > First...WT pay editors to write and edit documents. As I understand it
> > anyone can contribute but the editors get paid to maintain the bulk of
> > the content and ensure its clean and ready to print. Paying people for
> > content goes against the flow in the WMF world (at the moment at least,
> > although there was some mention of grants from the WMF for developing
> > people etc but I'm not sure that is the same thing).
> > The received wisdom in this is that paying people decreases motivation
> > and increases discontent within those that don't get paid. WT believe
> > there is no problem paying people (and I agree). WT believe the role of
> > the paid contributors is clear and specific. It is WTs belief that this
> > is enough to justify paying them and not others. I don't think I quite
> > agree with this. My feeling is that it is a matter of organisational
> > culture. If its clear from the beginning some people might be paid (and
> > it could be anyone) for some task, but volunteering is also encouraged,
> > then I believe this can work well. We have been doing this within FM and
> > so far I haven't heard any grumbles...(speak up if there are!)
> > Next WT investigated what do 'real travel writers' think of contributing
> > to WT. Answer : they hate it. Well, that's upfront I guess. According to
> > WT professional travel writers hate using a wiki. They think the mark up
> > is too hard and would prefer WYSIWYG editors or, preferably, to write
> > material offline in word processors. WYSIWYG is too difficult to
> > implement in MediaWiki (as per Brion Vibbers comments) so that's not
> > going to be solved early. Also, travel writers apparently feel a loss of
> > ownership of the content (ie. their perceived authorship is diminished
> > if the document is written collaboratively).
> > So WT don't worry about the professionals but choose to work with 'non
> > professionals' that are comfortable in wiki-space. Interestingly,
> > professional documentation writers do use FM - how do you feel about
> > this issue Anne/Elisa/Cedric (and others)?
> > Next...how does the commercial book market react to print on demand?
> > Answer : not very well. According to WT, book sellers do not recognize
> > 'wiki output' as 'books'. I am not sure I agree. There are some computer
> > book publishers (PAKT) that write (closed source) manuals and publish
> > via print on demand. Book sellers buy them...seems to be no problem. I
> > also asked one book seller in Amsterdam about the fact FM produces
> > content in a wiki, he had no problem with it and would consider buying
> > books produced this way.
> > One issue however is that of ISBN. These are the numbers that identify
> > each book. An ISBN costs $225 (USD). If you release a new edition you
> > need a new ISBN. ISBN is used by all book buyers and distributors for
> > inventory control and ordering.
> > The big hang-up here is that content produced in a wiki and delivered
> > via print on demand doesn't really hold with the idea of 'editions'. If
> > you are editing in a wiki and updating the print source constantly, then
> > what on earth is an 'edition'?
> > So...is there an alternative? Well...ISSN exists. Which is ISBN but for
> > serial publications like magazines. So is this ok to use? It seems,
> > according to WT, that book sellers think magazines are magazines and
> > books are books, and books cannot share the same identification system
> > that magazines have. That would be just too confusing for the poor book
> > buyer.
> > So..it could work, but might have some resistance by some book buyers...
> > There is also the Amazon Standard ID Number (ASIN). But this is only for
> > distribution via Amazon partners, hence if you use this you will never
> > get your book in Barnes and Noble (etc).
> > WT advocates a free ISBN/ISSN/ASIN alternative. Sounds good.
> > I asked them in question time about their PDF rendering process. They
> > need to get from MediaWiki to Print and PDF is the intermediary format.
> > Ok...is it open source? No. Ok...is there plans to make it open source?
> > Sort of. (right). I don't think this is a good look.
> > Then later the PediaPress chap stood up and said they provide the tech
> > for WT and it is open source. I asked him afterwards for a demo and the
> > source url and he delivered both. Goodo (->http://code.pediapress.com)
> > Ours is better ;) (yay Objavi!)
> > Ok...last up - end of event pat on the back to everyone (literally), group
> > party and final goodbyes.
> > So...my impression overall..it was a good event. I enjoy Wikimania
> > mainly for the people. You learn more talking to the person sitting next
> > to you at lunch than from most presentations. With regard to FM - if I
> > can at all talk on behalf of others I met then I would say that people
> > are impressed by FM and what we have done. I met many that love the what
> > we do and some that have used our manuals and benefited from it :) I
> > feel very proud representing the project here and I learned a great deal
> > which will I believe will help us improve what we do.
> > As for Wikimania improvements.....I think that WM could certainly be
> > improved. Mainly I would say :
> > * longer sessions
> > * workshops on WMF projects and licensing
> > * clearer classification of sessions (you would have thought that the
> > WMF of all ppl might have got this right...)
> > * ensuring all presentations were about the subjects advertised
> > * a better communal hang out space
> > * power plugs for all
> > Ok..those are the bugs. On the whole, a very worthwhile and enjoyable
> > event. As last year, I enjoyed the openness of everyone and the
> > generosity of spirit. Its a pity more projects don't come that are
> > interested in Wikis in general as I found that while the event is
> > obviously WMF-centric I found everyone willing to talk about other
> > projects outside this scope and free culture in general.
> > On a note about the people...the event was great for meeting people as
> > it was last year. However I have to say, the local Egyptian people are
> > incredible. Very open and generous and very very kind.
> > all for now :)
> > adam
> > _______________________________________________
> > Discuss mailing list
> > Discuss at lists.flossmanuals.net
> > http://lists.flossmanuals.net/listinfo.cgi/discuss-flossmanuals.net
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