On Thu, 2005-04-07 at 17:51 +0100, Philip Johnson wrote:
On 7 Apr 2005, at 00:30, Paul W. Frields wrote:
> Send your public key to one of the well-known public keyservers if you
> haven't done so, and sign your messages to the list for maximum effect.
If all is well, this message should now be signed :). Sorry, I didn't
look (was too lazy to look? :D) at the Self Introduction wiki page
before sending so I wasn't aware it was mandatory ;). Also, by looking
at the page I noticed a few other things I should have probably filled
Heres what I aim to do as one of the documentation guys and gals:
1. First of all, docbookalize documents which haven't been already in
order to get familiar with docbook itself.
DocBookalizing (dig that crazy verb!) is definitely appreciated, since
this seems to be perceived as a major barrier to entry for some would-be
participants. I say perceived because, as someone who knew NO DocBook,
and didn't even really use Emacs before I started here, I can tell you
it's definitely more perception than reality.
2. Second of all, help out with editing - not full blown writing just
yet - I think being an editor would help me see how things work before
jumping right in, getting things wrong and annoying those
sometimes-irritable ;) programmers :D.
We are in desperate need of writers right now, with quite a few editors
having signed up already, but *any* help is good help. Even finding
extra people to take existing documents and rewrite them with better
attention to grammar, usage, and style would be a major help. As you
read the actual files, you'll get very familiar with the DocBook basics
You don't have to let learning the editing process block the writing
process. Here's what I did: I found a subject which interested me and
would be useful for novice to intermediate administrators (setting up a
local Fedora mirror for use by LAN users). I started by writing an
outline, then wrote a first draft from that. I made a first attempt at
DocBook tagging by reading someone else's XML code, trying to imitate as
best I could. Karsten agreed to edit it for me, so I sent the somewhat
spotty results to him.
Instead of rewriting my whole document, which was a waste of his time,
and which wouldn't teach me anything in the long run, Karsten rewrote a
section of it and tagged it correctly. He then sent me the results,
with instructions to make the rest of it consistent with what he'd done.
(He was a lot nicer about it than that, of course, which was pretty
commendable, given how much work he put into the process.) The next
draft was, I thought, quite a bit better, and the editorial process
after that point went faster since there wasn't as much to correct.
Along the line of 'soft skills', I would say I have good
and a great deal of patience.
Very commendable and helpful for any collaborative project!
The most helpful advice I think that *I* could give you (as opposed to
other more experienced writers/editors) would be to pick something small
and chewable to learn with. That's not to say you shouldn't work on an
HCL. I'm only saying that from the standpoint of learning the tools and
process, a small tutorial will serve you better. You can continue
working on the substantial part of the HCL at the same time if you like
without the learning process unduly hindering those efforts. Once
you're comfortable with the writing style and DocBook tagging,
converting the HCL material will only get easier.
After I did the mirror tutorial, I actually took a bunch of content, a
book in the public domain, albeit a slim one, and converted it into
DocBook with great results. If I had started with the book, I think I
would have lost steam very quickly because it was such a big project.
Just my $0.02. Looking forward to your contributions!
Paul W. Frields, RHCE http://paul.frields.org/
gpg fingerprint: 3DA6 A0AC 6D58 FEC4 0233 5906 ACDB C937 BD11 3717