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Re: [ontolog-forum] How should we design a good wiki? [Hit SEND too soon

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 19 Oct 2014 03:23:13 -0400
Message-id: <544366E1.2010800@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Dear Matthew, Jack, Pat, and Mike,    (01)

> One of the possibilities is that this becomes the topic for the
> Ontology Summit. I am thinking that we might develop a framework
> of topics that we might then go on to fill in pieces over time.    (02)

That's a good idea.  The option of exploring how ontology could be
used to develop a good wiki for discussing ontology is sufficiently
general that it could have much broader applications -- for example,
how to use and/or develop ontologies for    (03)

  1. Wikis, help facilities, and FAQ pages about any topic of any kind.    (04)

  2. How to be more helpful in searching for anything.  For example,
     supporting a dialog that helps a user collaborate with the
     system in navigating a network of indexed and cross-linked
     documents on any topic.    (05)

  3. Developing more helpful annotations and linking strategies
     for web pages on any web site anywhere.    (06)

> I think there are ready partial solutions to the specific, short-term
> needs of this conversation...
> it should be possible to make use of a structured conversation
> platform such as http://debategraph.org/ ...
> There are now beginning to exist open source "Watson-like" platforms    (07)

Yes to all those points.    (08)

> I would favor a format with, in addition to a FAQ-like Q&A section,
> a section where, for issues not generally agreed on, there are two
> columns... [for]  alternative views side-by-side on a single page.    (09)

Yes. We should look for software that can be adopted/adapted/extended
to support a wide range of options.    (010)

> Perhaps we should focus on improving relevant Wikipedia pages
> (and adding any that we find missing...    (011)

Wikipedia explicitly *excludes* ongoing research, and it prohibits
people from contributing novel ideas.  Any wiki we develop should
link to outside resources from anywhere, including Wikipedia.  But
we should also explore new technologies that go beyond the kinds
of links Wikipedia supports.    (012)

Our goal is to develop new ideas, not prohibit them.  If we reach
a consensus that is sufficiently stable for Wikipedia, we could
contribute the finished product to Wikipedia.    (013)

> I would also favor that it be a closed wiki, requiring either
> membership in the Ontolog forum or specific authorization from
> a moderator to add or change items.    (014)

> One thing I am certain of is that it will only have value if it is
> organized and managed... So we will need gardeners and librarians    (015)

I agree with both.  The wiki should be available for anyone to browse,
but we will need some conventions about membership.  And there may be
different gardeners and associate gardeners for different topics.    (016)

We can also continue Ontolog Forum -- but with enhancements, such as
an automatic search engine that makes suggestions before posting any
note.  For example,    (017)

  1. Automatically search the wiki for related topics and ask how
     the current note is related to one or more previous notes.    (018)

  2. In some cases, the new note may be irrelevant.  Sometimes, the
     new note may add something new, but it may have some parts
     that overlap previous notes.    (019)

  3. As a result, the new notes would be semi-automatically cross
     linked with archived notes.  They could still be searched in
     chronological order, if desired, but they could be linked
     in many other ways as well.    (020)

  4. And for people who hit SEND too soon, the system could notice
     that the signature is not included and ask why.    (021)

There's a lot more to discuss, to explore, and to implement.    (022)

John    (023)

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