state of the wiki
Hey guys, I'd like some input on this. Sometimes it bugs me that the wiki is so disorganized, so much content out of date or needing refactoring, so much unmigrated content on the old wiki. Other times, it feels very organic and like it servers its function perfectly. I'm not sure if spending tons of time cleaning up and migrating old content is really worth the time, but if it is, I'd gladly pitch in on that.
What do you guys think? What would make the wiki better / more usable / more useful / more fun to browse for you?
Personally, I find myself browsing talk pages a lot - it would be nice to have some saner way to browser old / interesting conversations across the wiki. I'd also like to get lots of old bot pages migrated - maybe a semi-automated way of doing that would help.
I´m quite confortable with the wiki the way it is. The only thing that bothers me a bit is having to search for a keyword twice, once in this wiki and again in the old one. Although Google can be a workaround.
I agree that there are some places that need cleanup and such. For my own part, I just need to be bold and go ahead and touch up things when I see them, and not be so afraid to add things. I personally feel far too outclassed and overshadowed by the giants of Robocode to feel myself knowledgeable enough to speak on lots of things, despite my rather thorough mathematical training at university. That might be fixed somewhat when I can get my bot a bit closer to the top of the rumble. *chuckles*
One things that's interesting to think about is the "ownership" of bot pages. There are a lot of bot pages that feature time-specific information (mostly about the bot's current rating) that's quite old indeed. These are bot pages whose authors seem to have left the community, at least for now. The status of what's considered polite to do there is a conversation worth having, I think.
As far as things the wiki could add.. I've noticed lately that there's a Robocoding-term/bot-component that gets mentioned a lot in talk pages and bot version histories and so on, but that doesn't have a wiki page explaining it whatsoever. I've been fiddling with adding this aspect to my bot, and recently decided to scrap everything I've done with it and start it over as a proper Object so it doesn't make a mess of my already messy movement Object. Can anyone guess what it is?
Reminds me... When I started in late 2005, the whole top 10 was Wave Surfing, but there was basically no centralized info on what all is involved or any of the gory details. Sometimes it takes a fresh pair of eyes to notice these gaping holes in the wiki's coverage of topics. =)
For migrating things over from the oldwiki, a talk page to help coordinate that project might be useful.. maybe have folks vote on whether or not certain articles should get moved over?
I'll try to be more proactive in helping to tidy up and extend the wiki. The information and conversation here is a big part of why I love Robocode! :)
Is there a way merge two pages? Or better what is the best way to merge two pages with all the history and discussion stuff? :)
Hmm... I don't think there is a way to merge pages that preserves history for both. I suspect the best option would be... move the page with the most history/content to the new name (if it's not already the correct name), and add the content and discussion-history from the other page.
One thing that could maybe be done is have the "edit summary" include a link to the history of the other page. That way a link to the other appropriate history is there when people are viewing the page history.
I feel like some parts of the wiki could use a little cleanup to expanding on yeah, though I feel that for the most part it works as it should.
Hmm.. MN's comment about search makes me think that if I find some time, I may look into making a little mediawiki plugin to make the search results also show things for the old wiki.
I would like to see something on the main page that shows that the community is active. Maybe some parts of the recent changes, current discussions, lately visited pages or last updated robots. Because when i started with robocode and came to the robowiki (trough the robocode page) it looked to me very abandoned because i was not familiar with the "recent pages" or "talk pages". I had a lot of questions and had no place where i could ask. I think i hit the first talk page by accident 3 month later and it took me even longer to find the "recent pages" (i know its a shame because it is linked on the main page). But i guess if you are not used to how wiki works behind you didn't notice it is there.
Some informations are hidden quite well if you don't know what you are looking for. Lets say the code size related pages. The informations about code size are spread over 3-5 pages i guess and you really have to know what you are searching for.
After i got used to the wiki i found out that most of the interesting informations are on the talk pages. Maybe it is possible to integrate the discussion threads, if they relate to the content, as links in the wiki page as well (probably -1 for bad style but it would save the time to edit the page after each new discussion).
For editing/making pages i would second Tkiesel and feel outclassed and overshadowed by the robocode veterans, plus i don't think my spelling is appropriate for that. I'm also very afraid of moving/summarize pages or insert relevant links because i can not estimate the damage it would bring.
Lately i was in the moot to make a bot pages for the probably most influencing bots to the robocode community - the sample bots :). Just because i think they deserve it and probably most of the robocoders have struggled against these little buggers. I don't know but i guess it would be nice if the new robocoder can start from these bot pages to discover the wiki basics. For example links to linear targeting on Walls or circular targeting an SpinBot, radar lock on SittingDuck or orbiting movement to show how to circle around SittingDuck and so on. My guess is, it would be some sort of entertaining tutorial, and also leads to the feeling what you need to make a robot. I don't know , maybe i'm wrong on that.
All in all i can say, now that i'm a little more used to the wiki i'm very happy with it and like the way how it bonds the community. I'm keen to help with whatever you need.
If you want to make new pages, or edit anything, please just do it. If you want to change the main page to show more prominent links to Recent Changes or some sort of howto for the wiki, go ahead. If we don't like it we'll say. After all, it is easier to get forgiveness than to get permission =) Myself, I hardly ever look at the main page, I just bookmark Recent Changes.
When I first came to robowiki (2005/6 or so, I think), I also didn't see the recent changes page for about a week and was impressed that everybody managed to find my page. Of course, that was on the old wiki, but I think a lot of the same problems are still around.
I agree, what the wiki needs is something to get beginners acquainted with the layout (the talk pages, recent changes) and maybe a glossary of commonly used terms and 1 line explanations of them (VCS, wavesurfing, DC/KNN, flattener, HOT etc) with a link to their page. I'm busy over the next few weeks (off to Mexico for Robocup 2012!!), but feel free to do whatever you feel will make the wiki better. The wiki is a community resource, and as part of the community you are strongly encouraged to do whatever you think will help the most! If you want to update old bot pages, or migrate anything over from the old wiki, just go ahead.
Hi mates. I'm planing to link the wiki pages related to the Robocode terms to the terminology category. I think it would be a good source to browse the robowiki pages. Also can you get a fast look on everything that is interesting i guess. Would that be ok for you?
Is it possible to automate something with wiki commands? I had in mind to make a table on the main page where every new entrant to the paticipant pages is linked. So you can see the latest bots who are updated added and whatnot. Not sure where i should start to bring this to life.
It would be great if some of the native speakers could correct my spelling or rewrite some stuff that sounds weird or not appropriate for the official pages. For me it would be a great opportunity to see where i'm wrong and i would not be offended by that at all.
Anyway Take Care
You can write wiki bots to communicate with MediaWiki via APIs. I do some of this with User:VoidBot, and Nat has also done some. If you start working on any wiki bots, let me know and I can give your bot user the "Bots" permission (if you promise to be careful =)). Darkcanuck's RoboRumble server also has an API you can play with: Darkcanuck/RRServer/Query.
Hmm i guess the wiki bots is nothing for me by now. But i could think of using the RoboRumble API or even better would be to embed your twitter feed on the main page to see whats going on in the rumble. A quick goggle search told me there is a widget called "Twitter Search" that can embed Twitter feed in wiki pages. This would need the widget extension for this wiki. Not sure how much trouble it would be to set up these things.
I will have a closer look at the RoboRumble API to and maybe i find something that could make this happen.
Btw. the roborumble twitter is indeed very neat .. well done mate