The need for a comprehensive review of older material
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Author:  Schol-R-LEA [ Thu May 04, 2017 7:37 am ]
Post subject:  The need for a comprehensive review of older material

The recent flap with john765 - which came down in large part to a very outdated comment in the wiki - has shown just how grave the situation is with the material in the wiki.

I know that there is already an ongoing project to fix Bare Bones, but I think we need to start reviewing everything, at least everything more than about five years old. We need to actually organize this as a project, and assign different parts of the wiki to specific groups, I think. Maybe even set up a system in which particular subject-matter experts have ownership of specific pages, to make sure that changes get looked at and have accountability on the existing material.

This isn't how a wiki normally works, but the bigger ones such as Wikipedia often adopt an approach like this. It looks as if OSDev is getting to a size and age where it may need a more formal structure too. We need to seriously consider reorganizing things along these lines to lessen the chance of something like this happening again.

I am not sure if this community can organize itself in this way, though. It is one thing to spend a few minutes or hours to editing an article as a one time event, but volunteering to maintain a page or set of pages is a different matter altogether, especially since most of the real experts are employed full time and would not have the time the project may require.

We certainly aren't big enough to afford stipends for any 'pro-unteers' the way Wikipedia and most large FOSS projects have - last I checked, there is no donation account on Patreon or any similar service, and even hosting is covered out of pocket by Chase (please correct me if I am wrong, here). I recall it being discussed, but I don't know how it went (I will go through the archives and see if I can find out).

Author:  matt11235 [ Thu May 04, 2017 8:41 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The need for a comprehensive review of older material

Maybe a template could be added to every page with something along the lines of "This page hasn't been reviewed recently, it may contain incorrect or misleading information" and a category tag for unreviewed so that it can be found easily.

After that, some discussion could take place on the talk page on if the article should be kept as is (with the template removed), what needs to be changed on the article for it to be correct, or if the article should just be deleted.

Author:  Schol-R-LEA [ Thu May 04, 2017 8:48 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The need for a comprehensive review of older material

Excellent suggestion, at least as a first step. But I think we would still need to come up with some sort of plan as to how to make sure that they get reviewed. The experience of sites like Wikipedia is that a site can go marked for removal or update for years before anyone actually does a review, and that in the meanwhile both readers and editors will ignore the marking.

Author:  no92 [ Wed May 10, 2017 4:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The need for a comprehensive review of older material

While I'm probably beating a dead horse, I suggest creating a template that we can easily add to pages that need review or correction.

Also, while we're at it, it might make sense to do this with badly written pages as well. In my definition, this includes bad grammar, spelling and style, including, but not limited to, code style. For instance, Kernel_Multitasking is a hilariously bad page. It contains next to no text (hence, I cannot comment on its writing style) and boils down to being a wall of unannotated code with, IMHO, abhorrent naming conventions.

I believe we had some sort of similar effort a few years back (IIRC 2014), although I don't remember how it went.

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