[Haskell-cafe] Help wanted with Wiki.Haskell.Org

Gershom B gershomb at gmail.com
Mon Apr 20 19:30:53 UTC 2015

One of the central repositories of knowledge in the Haskell world is the HaskellWiki (https://wiki.haskell.org). This wiki has been with the Haskell community for years, and contains a wealth of knowledge. Like other services on the haskell.org domain and with haskell.org equipment, ultimate responsibility for maintaining it falls on the Haskell Committee. However, it is a community wiki, and requires care and maintenance and contributions from all of us. 

The wiki has been, and continues to be, a vital component in the Haskell world. Like any wiki, it is fueled by contributions from many people, and in this sense it is thriving. 

However, it could use a certain amount of attention and work in three key areas. We are looking for volunteers to step up in these regards, 

1) Account Creation Management: Account creation is manual only because spambots otherwise destroy us. It would be worth investigating if a full upgrade and new plugins could help this issue. In the meantime, the responsibility for creating new accounts has fallen on only one person for years. This is not a good situation. We would like to set up a mail alias for wiki admins and extend account creation rights to a range of people. If you would be willing to be one of a team of responders to account creation requests, please write and let us know. 

2) Technical and design oversight: Now that we have a new haskell.org homepage, the current wiki frontpage could use a redesign. For that matter, the whole wiki could use a bit of a redesign to bring it into a more modern style. Along with that, it may be the case that additional plugins — such as for typesetting code or equations better — could be quite helpful. It would be good to have a mediawiki admin who wants to help improve the technical capacities of the site, as well as to overhaul its look. Again, if you are interested in taking charge of this, please let us know.

3) Content curation:  One issue with a large collection of documents written by different people is the lack of curation. Some pages fall out of date, information is spread across multiple pages instead of collected together, and quality varies greatly. Without a central authority, no one is responsible (or empowered) to fix the situation. There is a balance between keeping things up-to-date and preserving the historic content of the wiki, and without people feeling empowered to make big changes, the tendency will always fall towards the latter.

We're looking for people in the community to volunteer to help improve this status quo. The task, generally speaking, is to be responsible for curating and improving the content of the wiki, but that's clearly a vague description with lots of room for individual embellishment. This doesn't need to be a single person either: a team working in a coordinated fashion could be incredibly effective. 

Once more, depending on response, we’d be happy to designate and empower people to make broader changes on the wiki or to organize a team to do so. If you are interested in this as well, please let us know.

for the Haskell.org Committee

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