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ciwah FAQ posting policy?

P: n/a
A few years ago, I was posting the WDG's Web Authoring FAQ to ciwah. The
FAQ was crossposted to comp.answers and news.answers, and is archived at

ftp://rtfm.mit.edu/pub/usenet/news.a.../authoring-faq

The last posting was more than 4 years ago. The current version of the FAQ
is at

http://www.htmlhelp.com/faq/html/

Recently, I was contacted by Nick Boalch, who is helping clean up *.answers
and the rtfm.mit.edu FAQ archive. Before I answer him, I'd like to see
whether there is consensus (or something resembling consensus) in ciwah
about posting this FAQ regularly again.

Here are a few options:

- Resume (monthly?) posting of the entire FAQ
- Split the FAQ into sections, and post individual sections (one section
per week?) in rotation
- Post only a subset (the TOC and the Preamble and Other Documents
sections?) of the FAQ
- Post only a pointer to the FAQ (including its URL)

So, what do ciwah regulars think?
--
Darin McGrew, mc****@stanfordalumni.org, http://www.rahul.net/mcgrew/
Web Design Group, da***@htmlhelp.com, http://www.HTMLHelp.com/

"When strong encryption is outlawed, only outlaws jvyy hfr fgebat rapelcgvba."
Apr 18 '07 #1
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6 Replies


P: n/a
On Wed, 18 Apr 2007 20:51:15 +0000 (UTC), Darin McGrew
<mc****@stanfordalumni.orgwrote:
>Here are a few options:

- Resume (monthly?) posting of the entire FAQ
It strikes me as too large to take in all at once, and the web version
is more navigable.
>- Split the FAQ into sections, and post individual sections (one section
per week?) in rotation
I maintain a FAQ for another NG, envisioned as 9 sections (only 5
completed so far) spread over 9 days, posted 3x/month. There have
been no complaints about the frequency. There are more topics here so
it would take longer to cycle through them, but I would be more likely
to read and absorb them if they are served as a "tip of the day."
>- Post only a subset (the TOC and the Preamble and Other Documents
sections?) of the FAQ
Just an introduction to this NG and its resources, along with pointers
to resources for those who would be better served by another.
>- Post only a pointer to the FAQ (including its URL)
This may be sufficient, and it could be put out weekly.
>So, what do ciwah regulars think?
As a regular lurker, I see a need for a section "How to ask for help"
or "Before asking for help." Whichever option is chosen, this should
probably be included in each posting.
--

Charles
Apr 19 '07 #2

P: n/a
Darin McGrew <mc****@stanfordalumni.orgwrote:
>Here are a few options:
[...]
>So, what do ciwah regulars think?
1) The people for whom FAQs are meant rarely read them before posting,
ergo FAQs add to the noise instead of reducing it
2) The answers in FAQs almost always contain errors and/or contested
personal opinions (a brief glance confirms that both are also true for
this FAQ)

I'd prefer not to have a FAQ bot posted here.
When linking to specific answers in an FAQ in response to questions, the
answer and/or the FAQ should not pretend to be endorsed by anyone other
than those who have given their permission to do so.

--
Spartanicus
Apr 19 '07 #3

P: n/a
In comp.infosystems.www.authoring.html message
<f0**********@blue.rahul.net>, Wed, 18 Apr 2007 20:51:15, Darin McGrew
<mc****@stanfordalumni.orgposted:
>
Here are a few options:

- Resume (monthly?) posting of the entire FAQ
- Split the FAQ into sections, and post individual sections (one section
per week?) in rotation
- Post only a subset (the TOC and the Preamble and Other Documents
sections?) of the FAQ
- Post only a pointer to the FAQ (including its URL)
I think that there should be something weekly, recognisable as FAQ-
related by Subject line. But for the whole FAQ at once, no more than
monthly.

Material actually appearing in the Group is IMHO more likely to attract
suggestions than material on the Web, even with broadband.

In the web version, could each page have Next & Previous links?

Section 2.10, suggest addition of Errata for ECMA -

<a href="http://www.mozilla.org/js/language/E262-3-errata.html">
ECMAScript HTML, Edition 3 Errata</a>, dated Monday, June 9, 2003

and of ISO 16262 -

<li>At ISO :-<ul>
<li>Seek 16262 <i>via</i<a href="http://www.iso.org/">Home Page</a>
<li><a href="http://standards.iso.org/ittf/PubliclyAvailableStandards/
c033835_ISO_IEC_16262_2002(E).zip">
ZIP of PDF </aof ISO-16262:2002 - FoC
</ul>

Section 3.3 - look out for new link (soon?) for Alan Flavell's stuff.
Also 5.3C, etc.

Section 3.5 - rewrite para 2 so that "--" is unlikely to be split <g>

Section 4.1 - I hope "5MB" can be increased. Etc. More countries use
the Euro than use the Dollar; and, in an international medium, one needs
to indicate which dollar to avoid offence.

Section 6.13 - add a method of hiding the E-address from harvesters, if
any are thought now worthwhile? Or a link to methods? I mean something
like @ for @.
*RE* Sec 11.7 - target="_top" - I use it on "all" pages, but W3's
validator complains. Any suggestions? Note that in the context it
might be helpful if it works, but no problem if it fails benignly.

IMHO, there's criticism of sites that use frames which should be
directed only at sites that *require* frames. See mine, top of typical
page.

That was a very quick scan.

It's a good idea to read the newsgroup c.l.j and its FAQ. See below.

--
(c) John Stockton, Surrey, UK. ?@merlyn.demon.co.uk Turnpike v6.05 IE 6
news:comp.lang.javascript FAQ <URL:http://www.jibbering.com/faq/index.html>.
<URL:http://www.merlyn.demon.co.uk/js-index.htmjscr maths, dates, sources.
<URL:http://www.merlyn.demon.co.uk/TP/BP/Delphi/jscr/&c, FAQ items, links.
Apr 19 '07 #4

P: n/a
Scripsit Darin McGrew:
- Post only a subset (the TOC and the Preamble and Other Documents
sections?) of the FAQ
This might be OK.
- Post only a pointer to the FAQ (including its URL)
This is probably better.

Perhaps the best option is an extended pointer: a paragraph of text
explaining what the group is about, mentioning the existence of the FAQ and
its purpose, and perhaps a list of main topics in it, and naturally the URL

--
Jukka K. Korpela ("Yucca")
http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

Apr 19 '07 #5

P: n/a
Dr J R Stockton <re*******@merlyn.demon.co.ukwrote:
I think that there should be something weekly, recognisable as FAQ-
related by Subject line. But for the whole FAQ at once, no more than
monthly.
Among the 4 replies I saw, there seems to be some consensus for a weekly
newsgroup FAQ posting that includes links to web authoring FAQs and an
entry for "How should I ask for help?" The dissenting vote comes from
Spartanicus, who seems to think that all FAQ postings are futile, and just
clutter the group.
In the web version, could each page have Next & Previous links?
You're right; not everyone uses a browser that supports LINK.
Section 3.3 - look out for new link (soon?) for Alan Flavell's stuff.
I went ahead and linked to the Wayback Machine for now. I'll update the
links when his content is online again.
Section 6.13 - add a method of hiding the E-address from harvesters, if
any are thought now worthwhile? Or a link to methods? I mean something
like @ for @.
The problem with recommending any specific trick is that then it becomes
more common, and then it becomes worthwhile for the harvesters to program
their spiders for the now-comon trick, and then it becomes ineffective.
*RE* Sec 11.7 - target="_top" - I use it on "all" pages, but W3's
validator complains. Any suggestions? Note that in the context it
might be helpful if it works, but no problem if it fails benignly.
I use <base target="_top"on my personal site. This is perfectly valid
HTML 4.01 Transitional.

Other than this, I use HTML 4.01 Strict. I chose to create a custom DTD,
which is HTML 4.01 Strict, with support for <base target="_top"copied
from HTML 4.01 Transitional.
--
Darin McGrew, mc****@stanfordalumni.org, http://www.rahul.net/mcgrew/
Web Design Group, da***@htmlhelp.com, http://www.HTMLHelp.com/

"Good teachers are costly. Bad teachers cost more." - Bob Talbert
Apr 25 '07 #6

P: n/a
In <f0**********@blue.rahul.net>, Darin McGrew wrote:
A few years ago, I was posting the WDG's Web Authoring FAQ to ciwah. The
FAQ was crossposted to comp.answers and news.answers, and is archived at

ftp://rtfm.mit.edu/pub/usenet/news.a.../authoring-faq
Here are a few options:

- Resume (monthly?) posting of the entire FAQ
Monthly seems about right.
- Split the FAQ into sections, and post individual sections (one section
per week?) in rotation
That's just confusing.
- Post only a subset (the TOC and the Preamble and Other Documents
sections?) of the FAQ
- Post only a pointer to the FAQ (including its URL)
Or:
[1] Post the WDG FAQ monthly, but do not call it a "c.i.w.a.h. FAQ".
(It's not about the newsgroup, but about the subject of the ng.
"HTML FAQ" might be better.)
[2] Post a c.i.w.a.h. FAQ (with a reference to the WDG FAQ) once or
twice a month, and post a very small pointer to it and the WDG FAQ
in the other weeks of the month.

There should be very few changes to the second one, except for maybe
moving subjects between the "what to discuss" and the "what *not* to
discuss" sections. (And we should at least try to be a little lenient
about the distinction.)
I used to post such a FAQ regularly (most recent version at
http://www.stack.nl/~boris/HTML/ciwahfaq.html) and can do so again.

--
Boris Ammerlaan bo***@stack.nl http://www.stack.nl/~boris/
"We ended a nefarious global domination scheme, not world peace... Right?"
May 1 '07 #7

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