Documentation/Alfresco/Brainstorming

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Intro

David Nelson to the rest of the team: If you have time, I would just like to start a brainstorming about the docs team workflow, as it is now and how it might be if Alfresco was the primary working platform.

For this, I have downloaded Alfresco documentation from the Alfresco project about "generic" use of Alfresco Share (Share is what is installed and operating at http://alfresco.libreoffice.org). At the same time I also downloaded the Alfresco project's Alfresco administration guide.

Comment

File:AlfrescoBrainstorming.pdf Dan: I have combined the discussion contained in the Alfresco Brainstorming threads.

Jean: Further discussion occurred on the list after Dan compiled the doc above.


Jean Weber's opinion

(This was also posted to the Docs discussion list.)

Here is the short version of my considered opinion on the topic of whether the Docs team should change to using Alfresco for the production and delivery of user documentation or continue with what we're using now (ODFAuthors + wiki).

My conclusion: at this time it is not worth making the change from what we're doing now, although some refinement of our workflow and file naming practices is necessary and worth doing.

Summary of reasons:

Firstly, we are discussing at least two separate needs:

  • Production - what works best for the Docs team
  • Delivery - what works best for the consumers (users)

In neither case do I see a clear advantage of Alfresco over our current setup (ODFAuthors + wiki).

Production: Alfresco has some features that could convey advantages, but ONLY IF the Docs team use those features consistently and correctly. Based on past experience, I can't see that happening.

Worse, learning to use those features could well act as a further barrier to participation. Any time people need to learn a bunch of new tools to do a bit of volunteer work, many of them are likely to either do it wrong or badly, do it not at all, or decide it's all too hard and quit. (This is quite apart from the related discussion on workflow and file naming.)

Delivery: Even IF the interested and knowledgable people take the time to set up Alfresco and get it integrated with other TDF/LO services, I can't see any real advantage to consumers in looking up docs on media.LO.org vs the wiki and downloading them from either site. Note that I don't see disadvantages either.

I would still like to hear from other team members who have not yet expressed an opinion.

Regards, Jean
Team Leader, LibreOffice Documentation