Help improve the manual

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Skippy
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Help improve the manual

Post by Skippy » March 4th, 2006, 8:12 pm

Following discussion in another thread, a copy of the Game Manual has been opened up for editing and improvement.

I believe that Dave is looking to organise some responsible management (I am not it); in the meantime there is nothing stopping people from making contributions and hoping the wiki process works as well as it can. In particular a clear purpose for the Manual including its target audience and its relation to the other documentation could usefully keep the improvements well directed. I've put something on the talk page but it's only my opinion and subject to discussion and modification (it's a Wiki after all).

Regardless, this is one area where new users might be able to provide many useful comments - the manual is designed to explain the game to new users. Experienced users may be poorly placed to judge what is unclear or confusing when first starting the game. If there is something that you found particularly difficult or unclear when first playing Wesnoth, and couldn't find the answer in the Manual, it would probably be useful to add it to the Manual.

So, consider this an informal invitation to make a contribution.

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Post by borisblue » March 5th, 2006, 4:57 am

I'm a newbie, and I think explanations for the WML code should come with some examples.

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Re: Help improve the manual

Post by Dave » March 5th, 2006, 5:41 am

Skippy wrote: I believe that Dave is looking to organise some responsible management (I am not it);
I hope you realize that if you want to, you could easily enough become the 'responsible management' of the manual.

There aren't high barriers to entry to becoming a Wesnoth developer, and it's not meant to be some elite, exclusionary club.

If you show that this is an area you are genuinely interested in (and you've already done a good job of showing that), and you show you're good at it, then you could easily enough be recognized as the 'Chief Scholar of Wesnoth' ;)

David
“At Gambling, the deadly sin is to mistake bad play for bad luck.” -- Ian Fleming

Skippy
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Post by Skippy » March 5th, 2006, 7:31 am

Thanks Dave. We'll see how it goes and whether I'm any good at this. Howabout I rephrase that "I'm not it" to - "It remains to be seen whether or not I'm it." :)

Skippy
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Post by Skippy » March 9th, 2006, 11:37 pm

Well, I've been tinkering away at the manual and it has changed somewhat. This has involved changes to the Getting Started Guide and the 'Manual'. It is still a work in progress but comments would be better now than later.

So, if you have a chance, have a look at the Improved Manual and either add your changes, or leave some comments here or on the talk page.

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Post by Dave » March 10th, 2006, 2:06 am

Skippy,

I think you've done a great job improving the manual. I think your version is much more comprehensive, readable, and useful.

I do have a couple of suggestions:

- It's rather long for one Wiki page at the moment. perhaps you could consider breaking it into multiple Wiki pages. This would also allow more room for growth.
- Perhaps you could add images to make it easier to understand.

David
“At Gambling, the deadly sin is to mistake bad play for bad luck.” -- Ian Fleming

Skippy
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Post by Skippy » March 10th, 2006, 2:43 am

Dave wrote:- It's rather long for one Wiki page at the moment. perhaps you could consider breaking it into multiple Wiki pages. This would also allow more room for growth.
- Perhaps you could add images to make it easier to understand.
Length: The length is a product of irrevenant having used transclusion to link together the Getting Started Guide, Manual, Basic and Advanced tactics. So all those are accessible as stand alone pages. Having it all strung together encourages making them all work together and minimise duplication. But it is a rather long page isn't it. There's probably an elegant solution to this somehow... I'll work on it.

Images: I was thinking about that the other day. Particularly for explaining interface elements, a picture of the screen would be useful. I'll try to work up a list of pictures and then probably put out a call for people to contribute those I can't obtain easily myself.

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Post by irrevenant » March 10th, 2006, 7:44 pm

Dave wrote:- It's rather long for one Wiki page at the moment. perhaps you could consider breaking it into multiple Wiki pages. This would also allow more room for growth.
- Perhaps you could add images to make it easier to understand.
The length is my doing; I wanted people to be able to print the manual. I'm also aiming for something like a commercial game manual format, probably 50+ A4/letter-sized pages. (I suspect there's already almost this much material in the wiki; it 'just' needs organising into a linear format).

However, since the manual is already multiple wikipages connected into a single document by transclusion, it's absolute childsplay to maintain both a (huge) printable manual and an index of the individual wikipages for browsing on PC (either online or off). I'm also trying to figure out a way to assign ID numbers (like those in the table of contents) to section headings; that would improve both feel and navigability of the giant
manual.

Images are a great idea, and something I had been thinking about. They are an absolute must for a serious manual (a picture is worth a thousand words, and all that). I wasn't planning to look at it until after the basic framework of the manual was finalised, though. AFAIK, the Wesnoth wiki doesn't accept the upload of images, so we'll probably have to use the 'post it in a thread somewhere so the contrib-bot grabs it' trick.

P.S. In the interests of "credit where it's due", this manual revamp is Skippy's project, and he's done most work on it to date. We probably should get a roadmap set up so that we don't end up working at cross-purposes...

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Post by Skippy » March 10th, 2006, 9:05 pm

I've put some thoughts on a roadmap down at the talk page. Anyone reading this is welcome to check it out, provide suggestions and contribute.

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Post by Skippy » March 11th, 2006, 6:37 am

irrevenant wrote:AFAIK, the Wesnoth wiki doesn't accept the upload of images, so we'll probably have to use the 'post it in a thread somewhere so the contrib-bot grabs it' trick.
Right - how does this work? I've noticed there are a bunch of images already on the wiki - but how does one get new ones in there?

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Post by irrevenant » March 11th, 2006, 10:58 am

Skippy wrote:
irrevenant wrote:AFAIK, the Wesnoth wiki doesn't accept the upload of images, so we'll probably have to use the 'post it in a thread somewhere so the contrib-bot grabs it' trick.
Right - how does this work? I've noticed there are a bunch of images already on the wiki - but how does one get new ones in there?
Actually, turns out the contrib-bot isn't necessary. Just post it in a thread like so (we'd probably set aside a thread for manual art). Right-click-copy the Image address & paste it into the wiki page. I've added an example to the talk page.
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