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Investigations are active topics that need fleshing out and decision before being crystallized into a Solution with associated Tasks. Group related investigations into an appropriate thematic area. Try to divide discussion into questions/problems and potential solutions.

Proto Investigations are quick, reasonable seeming ideas that we haven't discussed yet. They may not need much discussion, and can quickly become tasks. If they seem out of scope for the current round of development, move to MaybeSomeday

This is essentially our "digestive process" of raw ideas and creativity into concrete actions.



Soliciting and Facilititating Contribution, Feedback and Discussion

And is this a technical or presentation or cultural issue? Are talk pages appropriate, or simply for meta-discussion ala Wikipedia? How do we get elicit and encourage contributors?

Definitely throw out for input to our Wiki COP, other wikis, web pages.

(Display) Discussion / Review section on main page

Problem: we have a need for better talk pages. should feel more like discussion threads. the 'talk' label may vary by page type. article page should reveal talk page activity. more inviting.

What's appropriate for discussion vs contribution to the article itself?

  • a bit like the Amazon review-function: Below the rating stars, list up user-comments and a "add yours" window (either at the bottom or right after the stars before the first entry)
  • to save space, for instance truncate and only display the first 1-2 lines with link to full entry (chapter in discussion page)

display editor-info and discussions

  • more prominently on the main "article-page"
  • in addition to (= not replacing) the classic history- and disussion-tabs / pages

"Feedback" or user-dialog wizard

this is for luanch

dialog-box linked to a "Report a problem" / "make a suggestion" / etc. that
  • recognizes what page the user is on when reporting (history?)
  • generates data to help identify where users seems to be confused or get lost or lose interest..
  • suggests some general issues on a menu to chose from (page is expired; page contains spam/unwanted content; content is incorrect / vandalized; ..)
  • links to solutions in case one has by mistake opened this dialog (user-login; help-page; suggestion-box)
  • inspired by the Wikia - solution: Click on the "report a problem"-tab from any page (but no need really to create a tab for this...)

How to encourage contribution?

This is the bigger question. Facilitate engagement.

Presentation and content section naming issue question perhaps.

WYSIWYG and Editing


TABLES: Make creation and use easier

Seen by coincident on http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:WikiCategoryTagCloud
there are possibilities to use templates for table - see Sandbox_tables
How about adding new toolbar buttons for tables (Extra_edit_buttons). This can be done by changing MediaWiki:common.js. --Johanne 04:36, 8 October 2008 (CEST)



Install UNIWIKI upload (and other nice) plug-ins
  • new page / using templates (if I can still easy-enough change the templates, similar as we do now
  • discussion plug-in ?
  • is there stuff like "latest contributions" (or can the Special:Newpages-page be reformated somehow into a nicer / more user-friendly look?), or "top contributors, or a way of showing on each page itself who the latest 3 contributors were with date and link to their user-pages?

"Add new page" wizard

that would open a dialog box "hand-holding" that leads the user through the steps (incl. "templates" and tagging)

--> get inspired by Wikia and Uniwiki

"Upload/Attach file" wizard

  • change "upload file" to "upload/attach file" and create wizard/dialog box that opens which guides the user through the upload and link-creation procedure
    • asks the user what to upload (video, pic, file, ...?)
    • where to display/create a link (multiple pages possible with "internal browse function"?), by default suggesting page where the user started from
    • etc.
    • should also work when starting from within any edit-mode!!
    • for embedding videos as well. good defaults for videos.

wizard to add external links

Coding, Efficiencies

Transclusion, breadcrumbs, etc && caching

To scale WaterWiki we need caching. And need the cache to work with our features.

code repos

vs structure stored directly in wiki db (css, templates, etc)

server and "behind the scene" issues

  • Can we get rid of the "/index.php/" in the URL?


  • utilization / ownership status / win_vs_linux hosting of [www.waterwiki.net]


Installed BreadCrumbs Extension. It can be styled in MediaWiki:Common.css. http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:BreadCrumbs2 provides hierarchical categories, for when organization is in place later

Proto Investigations

Portal(s) for contexts-specific news, ...? (GADGET?)

Including ability to simply list sent-in e-mails (e.g. to "Share@WaterWiki.net") - stand-alone or combined with news-feeds. (GADGET?)

Photo Gallery extension (GADGET?)

  • Why not use flickr (or some similar page) as external rapository, just as we do with YouTube? Can pictures be linked in as easily?

RSS-feed extension (GADGET?)

e.g. for

  • news-feeds (filtered) from other sites (example: BBC News)
  • jobs from various sites
  • events from other sites
  • Listing of bookmarks from delicious (e.g. tagged "WaterWiki_resource")
  • use in regular newsletter?
  • http://www.mediawikiwidgets.org/Feed ?

Can/should this be combined with an extension that can "read" e-mails and newsletters sent to a specific address (e.g. news@waterwiki.net) and transform it into elements on the same news / jobs / events pages?

Ideally this would be combined with a syndication service (e.g. delicious) "reader": One could tag any kind of items in the web through delicious (e.g. with "WaterWiki"), which would then be syndicated on the WaterWiki RSS-page.

Events-extension (GADGET?)

  • Possibly combined with RSS-feed (see above)?
  • Ability to add sent-in (e.g. events@WaterWiki.net) info to an events-list (blog?). For example by transforming e-mails into events-pages (title starting with date in "2009-01-05"-format), tagging it "event", while a DPL-page lists all such messages.

Translation options

Create (quasy static) RU mirror-pages to each existing page (e.g. with automated "_RU" extension; or use "/" to create (automated) sub-pages?) from where
  1. a knowledge farmer (or on-line volunteers) can take the raw text and create "nice Russian pages" (in the possibly coming RU WaterWiki section)
  2. RSS-feeds can be sent/exchanged with other Russian pages, e.g. the possibly-to-come Russian parallel WaterWiki (or can this be solved also with dynamic ad-hoc Google-translation?)

Smart text / Automated linking

We want WaterWiki to

  1. recognize key terms, abbreviations, expressions (e.g. 'water governance'), or whatever we will have eventually (once WHO lexicon is hooked-up) and
  2. create a "mouse-over or link"-function, for instance indicted by color (different than proper links) or a dotted underline:

--> "mouse-over" would pop-up a short definition (e.g. intro-text on the respective page, truncated as needed) and display/provide a menu with link(s) (i) to go to the full write up (page), (ii) possibly also display existing page-titles that contain that text (use suggest-function), (iii) etc...

Tasks & questions:

  • Search for extension(s)
  • how to link up with do-be-done WHO Lexicon integration?
  • how can new terms / abbreviations be (automatically) recognized, and new pages for each of them created?

Modify formating options (Wikitext)?

Inspired by the new ws.UNDP.sk Workspace Wiki

Only if this makes sense in the first place, and also works with WYSIWYG and other extensions and functionalities. E.g.
  • headings by
    • equal signs only on the left

('=== Title' instead of '=== Title ===')

    • using '---' and '==='
  • *bold* and +italic+ (in addition ot the

'''bold''' and '' italic'' )

  • easy (-ier) table formating code

Advanced template / category functions

how to utilize the templates (e.g. Template:Countries) also for such functions like in-page section-links (see e.g. bricolage on Cop-Members)


Add web-page display extension (

<anysite> )

break this out into a seperate page

add sub headings -- agreed and envisaged

stats exposure

on accesses, edits etc

Transboundary community portals

"recipes on the river" --> see WaterWiki:Development/UNESCO

Maybe use http://WaterCommunityWiki.net ?

Help / What's this Buttons |?|

extension to create little |?|-buttons to be placed into strategic places for mouse-over pop-up explanation and leading to more extensive help when clicking example: |?| besides "related content" explaining that there's publications that have same tags, sorted by newest / most recently edited top, and displaying only the last 5 ones (or so..)

Google Sitemap (GADGET?)

County Information Box

Automatically import from spreadsheet or such? Combine with UN-Water matrix




We've added lots of complicated tools and bits for users, and staff (templates, DPL).

  • How can we make it easier for users?
  • We are gaining technical aptitude in our team .. but are placing a higher technical requirements on new team members. Can we make it sustainable?

Transclude from Wikipedia (and other MediaWiki-sites) (GADGET?)

More of tag-cloud functionalities

1. Add "edit" link to Category-box (in sidebar) which opens tag-cloud to select/deselect keywords and Cat-tree tags
2. SHOW categories that are used in connection with an article's categories as tag-cloud

3. Navigation
Open (different) tag-clouds when clicking on "Find Knowledge -> Countries, WB's, Themes, etc.)