How to update a page

Jacob Levy 05/18/2003 It would be really nice if people would, when updating an existing page, mark their changes and updates with their name and date, as I do here. That way it'll be easier to follow conversations. Comments?


(following comment moved from home page to here by jcw)

(Jacob Levy 05/18/2003 the this page in escargo's comment refers to the home page, where these comments originated.)

escargo 18 May 2003 - I have made some really minor copyediting changes (which should be revealed by the wikidiff). I think this is one page that should not be marked by any more text than absolutely necessary. (For example, I think this little subsection should be removed once minimization is considered to be a good thing.) Giving people credit or having people take responsibility is generally good, but in this specific case I think noncontroversial changes should be allowed to stand without attribution.

escargo 19 May 2003 - Apparently jcw agreed that the home page did not need to be burdened with this discussion.


RS 2003-05-19: Please also consider that changes are most easily seen if they're at the end of a page. And some pages have grown to more than sufficient size, so best fork out a new page if a new point in discussion comes up.


Also consider that some people would prefer not to provide their name - either for privacy, or because they don't believe that it is relevant. To try to force the issue would diminish the community that has grown here.


escargo 20 May 2003 - There are many reasons that pages get changed, and some of them beg for attributions. In other cases, an attribution just adds pointless clutter. For example, here are some of the kinds of changes I have made to pages that I can remember.

  1. Adding a new line before an instance of ---- so that the horizontal rule is restored.
  2. Adding spaces between letters to correct typographical errors in typing.
  3. Correcting misspelled words.
  4. Adding missing punctuation.
  5. Changing "which" to "that" where such changes are appropriate.
  6. Changing verb forms to promote parallelism (e.g., "asking" to "ask", "adding" to "add" on The Tcl'ers Wiki page).
  7. Removing scribbles to pages (like the fff I just removed from The Tcl'ers Wiki page).

None of these changes affect the meaning of the words, only the presentation. In these kinds of cases, I don't think that attributions make sense.

Where there are discussions or dialogues going on, then knowing who said what (and when) makes sense.


JMN 2003-05-31 I'd really like to see people using ISO8601 style dates in these comments (and indeed elsewhere in Tcl literature). When I see 01/02/2003 my natural assumption, due my particular location in the world, is that this represents the 1st of Feb. Yeah, sure I can remember to do some mind-jarring adjustments when reading a page with contributors of mixed nationality - but sometimes it's simply ambiguous. It comes as no surprise to me that RS, with his work in i18N uses this format above. Whilst the weight of custom may make it impractical to have any great effect on the way most people in the general population record their dates - I think that it's a worthwhile adjustment to gently encourage here. - RS notes that the yyyy-mm-dd format is also Siemens standard, though not all people honor it; but most of all sorting such dates is easiest.

DKF 02-Jun-2003: I use the style I've used here for dates on TIPs because it is completely unambiguous (even if not really i18n-aware, I admit.) Numeric formats are all very well, but they're easier to get confused with.

escargo 2 Jun 2003 - I use the style used by the Wiki itself, simply for consistency. So, we have seen that there are several different reasons for picking a date format, and none of them seems arbitrary.


I'd like to see the wiki stay informal. There are more formal web sites for Tcl, where each contribution are time and person stamped. See the forums at https://www.tcl-lang.org/ for instance.


2003-08-29 An additional "Preview" option (rather than just "Save") might help to keep the Wiki looking clean. I'm not sure if a change history is maintained, but on my first edit I ended up saving the page 3 times. If I was able to see a preview then this would not have happened.

sm 23 Jan 2004: there's a patch to Wikit to add this functionality described at Wikit web Preview button.


Scott Gamon - In a recent interview[1 ], Ward Cunningham made this interesting remark:

 There's an interesting temporal element to wiki. If you read news groups or email lists,
 there's the sense that the right now is what's on your position in the list. And if you get
 behind, it's a struggle. I didn't want there to be a chronology in wiki. If you're reading
 something in a wiki, I didn't want it to matter to you whether it was written a year ago, a
 day ago, or just a minute ago.