[Mailman-Users] Integrating mailman with joomla/mambo

David Southwell david at vizion2000.net
Tue Apr 24 12:58:52 CEST 2007

On Monday 23 April 2007 17:22:00 Brad Knowles wrote:
> At 10:55 AM -0700 4/23/07, David Southwell wrote:
> >  There was a interesting aside about some work done by Scot Harris but no
> > link to  him e or to the software mentioned or even an indication that
> > the results of his work are available in the public domain.
> What I put in the FAQ is still the last word I heard from Curtis, and
> my understanding is that he helped fund an important step forward in
> the area of integrating Joomla! and Mailman.  I have not heard of any
> new information on this front.
> If you have more recent information in this area, or know of someone
> who does, please feel free to update the FAQ and let us know.
> If you've got better contact with Curtis than I do, and you can drag
> out of him more detail than I've been able to get so far, then please
> do go ahead and update the FAQ entry.
> >                                                  The implication of the
> > FAQ was a need to look elsewhere for a generic solution for providing a
> > module giving a full integration for Joomla and mailman. What the FAQ did
> > do was to reinforce what I knew.. that such integration was possible..
> > but took me no further towards actually doing it.
> My understanding is that this is still a pretty raw area.  Mailman
> itself does not provide any hooks to assist with this process, so
> there's a limit to how much we can help.  If there are any tools out
> there to help integrate CMSes with Mailman, the unfortunate fact is
> that the authors of those tools have not coordinated well with the
> Mailman project, and they have not let us know about the work they've
> done.
> >  Unfortunately, as in many other places, the FAQ, whilst providing many
> >  apparently hopeful mentions, which can be very useful in some instances,
> > it seems that there have not been enough informed contributions.
> We've done the best we can based on what anecdotal information we can
> gather, but that's always going to be a hit-or-miss proposition.  If
> the authors of the tools don't coordinate with us, there's not much
> we can do about that.
> >                                                                This means
> > the work does not, in many places, have sufficient specific follow ups.
> > Perhaps this is an indication that those of us who are new to mailman
> > might perhaps pay more attention to turning the results of our learning
> > experience into well written contributions that  improve the quality of
> > the  FAQ over time.
> That would certainly be a good step forward, yes.  However, it is a
> community-supported document, and if the community does not choose to
> put the effort into doing the work necessary to keep it up-to-date
> and filled with as much useful information as possible, then we will
> all suffer.

I agree - you do a lot -  I think it helps encourage people to make positive 
contributions to the FAQ when your contributions regret the lack of 
specificity in a particular FAQ. 
> I've certainly done as much as I can to contribute to the FAQ Wizard,
> both in terms of generating content itself as well as providing
> editorial assistance to try to make things as easy to understand as I
> can.  But I'm only one person.  We need more people to do the same
> kind of thing, or the FAQ will die -- probably a slow death, but
> perhaps much faster than would otherwise be expected.

I agree -- and have also noted that responses are more positive when you quote  
extracts from particular FAQ's on the lines of "you might find this useful 
[extract] - it is from FAQ [#]".
> >  Do not get me wrong-- I have found the FAQ can be really useful at
> > times, but the Mailman FAQ is a bit of a curates egg. Sometimes it seems
> > like an FAQ but it often seems more like a personal blog rather than a
> > well focused piece of work, written to a consistent, disciplined
> > standard,  giving comprehensive step by step instructions  in response to
> > very specific and well crafted questions.
> Yeah, well -- you get what you pay for.

Well we all contribute a bit in this open source world and the success of open 
source is IMHO largely due to the fact we are able to be openly critical 
about the results while being simultaneously encouraging to other 
contributors within the community.
> Pay tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, and maybe you
> can get a good professional author to spend their entire life to make
> the FAQ a world-class document, the equal to which cannot be found
> anywhere else in the world.
> Otherwise, this is the kind of thing you can expect to get.

IMHO some of the best FAQ's are to be found in the Open Source World and many 
of the worst come from over highly paid professionals with too much attention 
to hype and too little devotion to meeting end user requirements. The 
advantage of  open source world is that the best contributions are crafted 
with care and passion and not with a focus on self interest.
my 2 pennorth

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