How many of you really use the wiki?

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neptronix   100 GW

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How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by neptronix » Jun 25 2018 11:48am

Hi all.
The wiki has been a major headache for me in the last year. Just a few months ago, i had to manually reconstruct some database tables because wikimedia's database upgrader had so many bugs, it wouldn't run. Being a php programmer, i tried fixing wikimedia's code, but it was just way too borked up to salvage. So i spent ~5 hours fixing the database by hand.

And just a few days ago, someone was attacking the wiki and managed to lock up the server into a constant apache restart loop. When i disabled the wiki, the system was finally stable again and the load on our server is now down to 1/10th of what it was on average, ever since!
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This was due to a vulnerability in their code that has only recently been patched.
I made a quick attempt to install the updated wiki software, but it looks like the attack corrupted the data, and i wondered if it would be worth the effort to reconstruct things.

From my logs, it seems like the main users of the wiki are bots trying to attack it :lol: ... so i'm trying to gauge if it is even worth it to continue with this software.

So what i'm asking.. is how important is the wiki to you guys?
My first major build: 8T MAC motor on a Trek 4500.
The new all-arounder: Leafmotor 1500w on a Turner O2 full suspension.
The wheelie machine: 20" Rear Magic Pie II on a Trek 4300 MTB

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Icewrench   10 kW

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by Icewrench » Jun 25 2018 12:10pm

The wiki is not something i even look at.
So not important at all.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by amberwolf » Jun 25 2018 12:21pm

Well, it had been an important resource, that various members spent a fair bit of time writing and organizing, and which is used as a link reference to send people to for troubleshooting/learning, so if there's any way to import that data into the Technical Reference section as posts, rather than having it just disappear, that'd be helpful.

Then the info can still be used to help noobs, etc., that need to learn something to do what they want to do.

Much of it came from the forum, but finding that same info here can be a lot harder, because the PHPBB search engine won't even look for a number of things, because they are too common or not enough letters, or have nonalphabetic characters in them, etc. (sometimes the google site search engine can be used, but sometimes it doesn't work either)

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by neptronix » Jun 25 2018 1:02pm

It might be a lot easier to export the articles into posts than fix the wiki itself.
I'd certainly hate to throw away content you guys spent time producing.
If there is a better collaborative document editing software out there, i'd also be happy to try that. But man, do i hate the mediawiki software right now :lol:

Anyway, still need a show of hands so i can gauge how important the wiki is.
My first major build: 8T MAC motor on a Trek 4500.
The new all-arounder: Leafmotor 1500w on a Turner O2 full suspension.
The wheelie machine: 20" Rear Magic Pie II on a Trek 4300 MTB

"The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now."- Chinese Proverb

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by wturber » Jun 25 2018 6:14pm

I use search. I've never used the Wiki. Maybe I should have. Maybe converting to WikiPosts is the best compromise.
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by KalSteve » Jun 25 2018 11:38pm

I vote for abandoning the wiki and restoring the info as posts.

Also, thanks for your efforts keeping this valuable resource and community going. Much appreciated.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by teklektik » Jun 26 2018 9:41am

Good intentions do not a useful resource make.

Lose it.
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by swbluto » Jun 26 2018 10:20am

Recreating the wiki as a new subforum of threads seems like a plausible idea.

Think also a wordpress site might also work, but forum posts are most likely among the most efficient manifestations of the data. And users can add addendums in further posts, unlike in a wordpress post or article, where users would have to add comments.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by Dauntless » Jun 26 2018 3:56pm

Where is it? Trying to find it on my phone is useless, don't know if it's easier on the computer. Cant say I've ever looked at it.
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by mark5 » Jun 26 2018 4:17pm

Dauntless wrote:
Jun 26 2018 3:56pm
Where is it? Trying to find it on my phone is useless, don't know if it's easier on the computer. Cant say I've ever looked at it.
It's at https://endless-sphere.com/w but it's shut down right now.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by eee291 » Jun 26 2018 5:17pm

Well, it's the newbies that ''need'' the Wiki.

But I guess every noob that comes along, always seeks direct help instead of using at least google first :roll:

But I won't lie, I refresh the Unanswered topics section at least 5 times a day :pancake:

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by Takemehome » Jun 26 2018 9:48pm

Need a show of hands ? :wink:
neptronix wrote:
Jun 25 2018 1:02pm
It might be a lot easier to export the articles into posts than fix the wiki itself.
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Thanks for all your efforts man, I appreciate your work.
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by DrkAngel » Jun 28 2018 12:39pm

I found the Wiki early and felt it a great area for resource data - info.
EG: I spent many hours categorizing and consolidating specific MeanWell Mods.

I was somewhat dismayed that the Wiki was so difficult to find, with nary a mention or link to be easily found.
I finally posted a link in my signature, but have no idea where else it is listed. ... ?

Found Link to Endless-Sphere Wiki with 9000+ views. = 9000 trying to find ES Wiki
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by fechter » Jun 28 2018 2:25pm

I agree it was a good idea in theory but was poorly utilized. If there was a better way to implement something it could be useful.
Most people don't know it exists.
"One test is worth a thousand opinions"

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trazor   10 W

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by trazor » Jun 29 2018 8:29pm

I find the information on the forum too scattered. The wiki provided some cohesion in some areas, and I remember consulting couple times at some point. I think it is very underutilised and on my eyes that is a fail because I see forum posts in internet era like 'tacit knowledge' and wikis as explicit knowledge. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacit_knowledge. I mean, I can distill good information from a thread, but sometimes it takes to read hundred messages in sequence. Wikis require more commitment from authors, but the resultant information is much more concice and accountable.

I think the real question is "what we want ES to be?". If we want to be a club for people to chat around EV matters, it is ok as it is now. If we want to be a structured reference about EV technology, accessible to newcomers and even being used as a study material, we are miserably failing by not using a wiki.

I really enjoy what ES is now. But imagining a wiki with an entry for every controller, for every motor, for every throttle, every rim or tire, iteratively refined and objectively redacted sounds like a powerful idea to help the DIY EV scene.
There are some success stories, altough much more narrower in knowledge scope, eg: https://zeromanual.com

So, for me it is important, and should be more important every day.

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neptronix   100 GW

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by neptronix » Jun 29 2018 11:12pm

Okay, that's a frocking awesome example of what a wiki should be.
I think it is WAY easier to do a wiki on a narrow topic ( IE one company's lineup of bikes ) than this crazy DIY ebike business where the structure and form easily gets out of control with so many subjects to cover.

Wikis do not generate their own indexes very well also. So they do really good when you can type something into the search bar.. unless someone is feverishly maintaining a nice looking index amidst the chaos.

That being said, i have an interesting proposition.

I wrote a content management system for a company i work for that is kind of like a simplified wordpress, but more with an emphasis on categorizing content instead of being a media feed.

Instead of wikipedia's markup system or phpbb, it uses CKEditor, which is kind of like an inline HTML editor that allows you to upload images in the middle of the article.. so it's VERY easy to use.
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I could implement a 'round robin' editing system, where one person goes to edit an article, and it locks it out to other users until that person hits save ( or it times out after X amount of hours ). This would be a ghetto way of preventing edits from colliding, and i think it would be better than the wiki system for that reason.
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I wrote this software to be secure because i didn't want to maintain wordpress ( which currently has an unpatched bug that lets any author ( or higher ) edit/delete any file in the wordpress/html root folder, as an example!!! )

Okay, now i'm not saying we have to use my special home brewed software. I'm open to trying something else.. but what do you all think about using something closer to a blog / content management software type system..

And if the answer to that is yes, do you have any suggestions on what web software to go with?
My first major build: 8T MAC motor on a Trek 4500.
The new all-arounder: Leafmotor 1500w on a Turner O2 full suspension.
The wheelie machine: 20" Rear Magic Pie II on a Trek 4300 MTB

"The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now."- Chinese Proverb

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by Lurkin » Jun 30 2018 7:29am

trazor wrote:
Jun 29 2018 8:29pm
I find the information on the forum too scattered. The wiki provided some cohesion in some areas, and I remember consulting couple times at some point. I think it is very underutilised and on my eyes that is a fail because I see forum posts in internet era like 'tacit knowledge' and wikis as explicit knowledge. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacit_knowledge. I mean, I can distill good information from a thread, but sometimes it takes to read hundred messages in sequence. Wikis require more commitment from authors, but the resultant information is much more concice and accountable.

I think the real question is "what we want ES to be?". If we want to be a club for people to chat around EV matters, it is ok as it is now. If we want to be a structured reference about EV technology, accessible to newcomers and even being used as a study material, we are miserably failing by not using a wiki.

I really enjoy what ES is now. But imagining a wiki with an entry for every controller, for every motor, for every throttle, every rim or tire, iteratively refined and objectively redacted sounds like a powerful idea to help the DIY EV scene.
There are some success stories, altough much more narrower in knowledge scope, eg: https://zeromanual.com

So, for me it is important, and should be more important every day.
Precisely why I re wrote the section on the Bafang Mid Drive. I wanted what I had either found out the hard way or located in threads already on ES (but throughout a number of very long threads) could be quick referenced to allow finding a solution when a mid drive is failing and needs immediate attention.

For those who have admitted reading it, they found it useful but most refused as its easier to just keep posting the same questions in new threads.

Its extremely time consuming to prepare and I ran out of time/lost interest given no one seemed to be really interested in using it when it came to summarizing a programming section.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by AF7JA » Jun 30 2018 9:27am

I have looked at it a couple of times; but it didn't have what I needed (and no, I don't remember what I was looking for). I tend to just use the forum and "advanced" search.

As I write this I am trying to remember how to even get to the wiki; and no, I don't remember. I think thread indexes would work better; but that might be hard to implement.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by markz » Jul 02 2018 12:51pm

Just put the wiki info in the forum as a sticky or in the main where General Topic is or something like that.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by fechter » Jul 02 2018 12:56pm

Originally, that was the purpose of the Technical Reference Area section of the forum. This section has limited access (to prevent topics from becoming discussion threads).

We could revive that section and solicit articles from members to add there.
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MrDude_1   100 kW

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by MrDude_1 » Jul 03 2018 1:04pm

I have been here for about a decade, 6years under this username.
To answer your question accurately I apologize but my answer is also a question.

We have a wiki??
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by methods » Jul 03 2018 1:12pm

I do not ever use wiki's on emerging technologies

My experience is that they cobweb up with "the old way" leading new folks (say me...) to ... less than cutting edge solutions.

Like...
Maybe we have a wiki full of tips on how to swap 4110's into a jank controller
When...
These days everybody will sell you a sine-wave controller for about the same cost

Now...
The education one would get doing the job end to end... priceless
The cost of disjointed folks who invest time in money in something Yesteryear? ... Priceless

Go figure

-methods
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by Njay » Jul 03 2018 5:26pm

Forums are discussion tools, but absolutely terrible to find information. If we want ES to be something more than a discussion place, we need to have an information consolidation area, and a search exclusive to that area. What platform doesn't really matter as long as it's easy & quick to use (create and update information, reading), and maintain; it must not allow comments, discussion should be on the forum, the discussion tool, then update the consolidated information.

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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by gammaray » Jul 05 2018 10:04am

I wonder if we could move towards a more "open-source" board solution. Hosted externally from Endless-Sphere's main servers.

Such an example would be pages implemented in Github Pages. Although that requires the community to agree on a tool like Jekyll or Hugo.

However, most of us can write markdown. If so, something like the Github Wiki could be a viable alternative. It being written in markdown would also mean that it would be portable. We wouldn't necessarily be tied down to Github, and markdown is not platform/application specific (sometimes).

Here's a great Github Wiki I often use. I'd love to see the wiki move towards something like this:
https://github.com/d3/d3/wiki

One of the major benefits I see moving the wiki to an open-source static solution is that we could alleviate sysadmin time dedicated to fighting PHP and Database issues. Practically remove hosting costs, improve wiki responsiveness through CDNs, and even get more transparency through commit history (granted this existed in the wiki). Moderation would be done during a pull request and only approved PRs move upstream. Automated build systems could automate a bunch of the boring stuff if necessary. Downtime with the forum wouldn't affect a static external wiki.
It could even look modern without causing too much headache.

This is just a thought. Would be curious to know how you guys feel about such a project/new site.
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Re: How many of you really use the wiki?

Post by neptronix » Jul 06 2018 10:20am

The one thing i don't like about a version control system like github is that someone needs to be responsible for approving push/pulls. That's a boring job i doubt anyone will be interested in.

Because of this, users can't edit the document and see the result appear on the web in realtime, as with wiki. So, contributing is less satisfying/encouraging.

Using markdown instead of using a visual editor is a huge downside. The system needs to utilize TinyMCE, CKEditor, etc..
( wordpress uses CKEditor and my custom system also does )

Here's jekyll's documentation on how to edit posts.
https://jekyllrb.com/docs/posts/
Am i correct in thinking that you have to give users FTP access to upload files.. and that this is just basically a templating system?

Also, Microsoft owns github now. What if they decide that the wikis need to go.. or just do the usual thing and start doing retarded things with their new intellectual property?

Whatever we go with needs to be roughly as easy to use as wordpress. electricbike.com has built all their content using wordpress. electricbike.com is a symptom of our failure to organize our content and provide tools that ease the creation of high quality summaries.

There has to be some kind of 'wordpress lite' system out there.
My first major build: 8T MAC motor on a Trek 4500.
The new all-arounder: Leafmotor 1500w on a Turner O2 full suspension.
The wheelie machine: 20" Rear Magic Pie II on a Trek 4300 MTB

"The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now."- Chinese Proverb

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