New website ?

Tim Parkin tim at
Thu Jan 19 09:55:31 EST 2006

Fredrik Lundh wrote:

>Steve Holden wrote
>>As you indicated, there are other priorities just at the moment.
>you're complaining about the lack of manpower, and still think that lowering
>the threshold for contributions is not a priority ?  at this point, this should
>be your *only* priority.
If you want to contribute, then do so.. If we had more people offering
to contribute then this would be a priority.  However despite trying to
get people to contribute for over two years, I still ended up doing
pretty much everything myself. And despite continued calls for people to
help and offers of optimising the install process and writing additional
documentation if they wanted to, we've only had four offers of help, of
which only myself, Steve Holden and Andrew Kuchling have been doing
anything significant.

It would be loveley to have a large team of volunteers producing a
consensus on approach to the website build. It would also be greate to
have lots of people to put the effort into it. I think the same can be
said for any open source project. However, just like open source
projects, you have to choose based more on who is willing to do anything
than on who is offering the ideal solution. (there are normally a lot
more of the latter than of the former)

>I mean, getting this from a long-time python contributor that decided to
>help out
>    My first attempt ended almost immediately.  Too much software
>    to download and install for anything like casual use.
>should be a rather strong indicator that the project isn't on the right track.
I think the follow on post saying "maybe I misread the directions" and
the fact that you can edit/contribute content without having to use the
full build tool should be noted (you can use a text editor if you
like... how 1976). The project is on the right track as it's the only
track that anybody was bothered to lay.

>(and it sure isn't the only indicator; I still claim that the analysis is flawed,
>and that the front-page asset shouldn't be reserved for a
>target audience that doesn't exist.  but that's a separate problem; if you
>solve the threshold problem, we can deal with that later.  if you don't, we
>might get stuck with the new design for as long as we've had the old one).
I don't think the front page is reserved for an audience that doesn't exist.

The front page is trying to serve many purposes for many audiences. If
you had read the documents that had been available online during the
extensive initial discussions, you would know what the estimated split
in the audience was and also know why the balance of content on the home
page is the way it is. The 'threshold problem' I think you are talking
about (it would help if you could be more specific about what a
'threshold problem' really is) is more relevant to managing content than
design and templating.

>>Once the new documentation site is up and running, that is :-)
>that's an interesting comparision: it took me about 30 minutes to convert
>10+ megabytes of reference material into a usable (X)HTML infoset (that
>is, with isolated content and structural information derived from the source
>material), and a few hours to get old source->new source->render tool-
>chain to a state where most conversion bugs turns out to be typos in the
>original documents (aka "the 80% of the remaining 20%" level).
>if converting the old content is and has been the biggest problem in the
> project, it seems to me as if you might not be doing things
>in the easiest possible way...
Good and congratulations, it shows that the source code is well
formatted/consistent - I wish the rest of the website html/data were so.
If you are suggesting that your skills can do this with the rest of the
site content then please, please help!!

In fact I will ask you now, publicly, if you are willing to offer your
services to help convert the documentation and exsiting content over to
the new website?

If you are then your services will be greatly appreciated and I'm sure
we can take the discussion of the balance of the home page and future
web based management of the content elsewhere and invite anyone who
wishes to participate to join us. We can then post our conclusions once
we've reached some consensus.

If we can get the rest of the content (which doesn't include fancy
pictures) over to the new site then we'll have a great foundation for
making further additions and I'd really like a few  more people to help
get us there.

I really can't afford a lot of time to discuss issues that have already
been discussed far too many times. If we can get down to specifics of
what you are offering and what you expect other people to do to help
you, then we should be able to keep conversations a lot shorter.


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