kwiki.ffii.org was started in 2003 as a light-weight wiki system for extending the static pages. !KWiki was chosen because of its flexibility and extensibility. It soon evolved into a central source of information. Yet the extension capability, although badly needed, has not been taken advantage of, and the site still runs on a fairly primitive and old version of kwiki that leaves many wishes unfulfilled.
News & Chronology
2004-12-04 phm creates a kwiki page index that is auto-updated every hour
2004-10-16 phm makes kwiki pages require login by default
- 2004-09-00 phm adds metadata info into nodebase/*.n files
Kwiki has been maintained by Michael Wasmeier (mwas).
Some other systems such as the database and mlht interact with Kwiki.
mwas finds it small, well-structured and convenient to extend with perl plugins. People who do the maintenance work decide what is used. We try to stay independent from particular wikis by building as much as possible on a relational database, see 'metadata' discussion in 'To Do' section below. Use of alternative wikis is conceivable, see 'Alternatives' below, but note that extensibility and cooperation with ffii relational database are among the most important features.
Configuration Options on Genba
- genba:/var/www/kwiki/pages.lst contains list of pages for which a static version (less ressource-consuming) is mirrored by cron (using wget) to a static space
- This could be turned into a full cache by substititing the ? in the kwiki links during saving the mirrored html (using a pipe from wget - note this requires to mirror all kwiki pages)
- kwiki pages withount the ? can then be selected for rewriting to the static space in genba:/var/www/apache-ssl/vhost.conf
internal documentation on aktiv-kwiki interface (password-protected)
- We hope that mwas can update kwiki soon to support UTF-8 and other elements wich are typically standard features of wikis.
- eternal waiting for UTF-8 migration prevents Polish, Hungarian, Slovak, Slovenian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Estronian and Greek from being used
We should also switch to kwiki to mod_perl then for performance and load on GenbaEn..
metadata markup system now present but very primitive, needs elaboration
wiki pages which allow to manage comments for patents from the patent database
wiki pages which allow to manage comments about MEPs and other representatives from the database of representatives
- allow people to watch wiki pages and receive mail notifications when they were changed
More Complaints and Suggestions for Improvement
In my opinion it is essential for a usable Wiki to make visbile what was changed when by whom. So I suggest:
- Page-History: In edit-mode I see this combobox to revert changes, so there must be already a versioning system. However, this should be displayed in a list similar to the "Changes" link at the bootom now. A possibility to do a diff between versions is crucial.
- Login: Give people the possibility to log in, to make it visibile to others who did the changes. The current situation is bad as I can't see who actually is collaborating with me. The idea to use accounts from the aktiv system is good, but excludes people who do not have such an account. And even though I have an aktiv account, I don't see a way to login (this maybe is just an issue of placing a button at each page).
There is a lot of improvement on the CSS style to be done to make the appearance more convenient. The current colour scheme is ugly and we lose a lot because of this.
- no lightblue, darker colour for visited links
- drop purple for unknown wikiwords
- h1 as the static pages in orange (I had it in my simple.css style, however it was not merged)
- also merge bottom box of static pages from my submitted simple.css, the current box (as on this page) taken from the old style looks ugly. I mean ffii_title_area
- darker blue tone for hr, also this was already submitted
My personal motivation to edit Simple.CSS again is not increased if changes are merged on a random basis.
(phm: I wonder who is doing this merging. arenbenti should be put in charge of kwiki CSS at least as long as kwiki is de facto orphaned.)
Inserting html code, pictures and tables is bad with kwiki. PhpWiki was superiour in this. proposal "generate wiki pages for individual EP patents from the patent database" makes only sense when it appears on the same page as the patent. I would strongly recommend to support the FFII.se system that handles comments quite well.
- System of Wikipedia
http://www.emacswiki.org/cgi-bin/alex combines Blog and Wiki