New forum system: The Wiki has returned

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Senior elf
Jun 30, 2010
Adelaide, Australia
The new wiki is now up and running, accessible via the 'Wiki' menu tab, and is now (or should be?) accepting contributions from registered members with 1+ forum posts. This editing restriction has been lowered from the old wiki 50+ posts restriction but edits will currently be placed into a moderation queue (we'll see how this goes). The wiki was not quite ready to open up at the time of the migration hence the delay (read more about this here).

This new wiki (unlike the old wiki) hooks into the forum directly so it is possible to watch (subscribe to) certain wiki pages and receive forum alerts when someone makes a change to it. The number of contributions you make also display in your member card profile overlay. Like forum posts, you might receive trophy points for contributing to the wiki - if this is your thing.

This new wiki works a bit differently to the old one in a few ways.

1) From an editing perspective the formatting tools are now more in-line with how forum post formatting works, like consistent bbcodes for bold, italic and hyperlinks.
Under the old wiki, making a word bold would look like this:
'''bold text'''
Whereas on the new wiki this is simply:
[b]bold text[/b]
Basic formatting will apply in a WYSIWYG fashion just like what happens when creating a forum post. By basic formatting I mean bold, italic, underline, hyperlinks and bullet or numbered lists. More complex bbcode like tables and headings are not WYSIWYG elements but you can still preview an edited article to see what it looks like before saving the changes.

Supported media site content will automatically embed without the need for odd syntax. For example pasting a YouTube link will automatically insert an embedded YouTube player (YouTube example) and pasting in a Google Map will - you guessed it - insert an embedded Google Map (Google Maps example).

2) The sorting of wiki pages has also changed as there is now an entirely new grouping process called "Areas". All wiki content must belong to exactly one Area. The Areas defined at this time are:
  • Software
  • Lights
  • Hardware
  • Elements
  • Misc (for anything that doesn't fit into any of the above Areas and is not about a Mini)
  • Mini Expo
  • Wiki Pages (an area for wiki-specific content, such as the template codes that make other wiki pages easier manage e.g. the Mini Expo dates by state info-box that you'll see added on many of the wiki pages in the Mini Expo area)
  • and System (a reserved area for wiki critical things like the Special:RecentChanges page)
Categories still exist and wiki pages can belong to several categories, the same as before. Categories are good for making lists of related wiki pages like this one (although you'll soon see this category and several others are far from complete! ;)).

Each area has a page that has a potential to have introductory type information and potentially include links to the most useful pages in that Area (n.b. currently these Area pages have more restrictive editing rules and so you may not be able to change these introduction pages at this time). Underneath this Area-specific information is a list of up to 15 of the most recently updated wiki pages from that Area (or categories, or wiki attachments). Beneath this list is a "view all pages" button which is how you can browse through every page in that section. A flaw with the old wiki was that pages could exist without ever belonging to at least one category and this made it quite hard to find these pages again unless you knew what to search for. This is what the Area groups seeks to address. Of course, I still would recommend adding pages to relevant categories to help people find the useful content. For example there is a 'Broadcasting' category containing wiki pages on FM transmitting and legalities and this category is more specific than the broader 'Misc' Area name.

I hope this information answers some of the questions you might have been thinking with the new wiki area.

PS: There is a high possibility some links in wiki pages to other wiki pages may point to a missing page. This is because the new wiki treats spaces as a dash '-' and not an underscore '_'. Feel free to fix these as you come across them.

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