OpenWetWare:Software/Feature list

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< OpenWetWare:Software
Revision as of 11:47, 6 July 2007 by Jason R. Kelly (talk | contribs) (Publishing)

Please consolidate ideas from these pages onto this list if they describe a technical feature improvement:

Jason R. Kelly 14:18, 6 July 2007 (EDT):I made up the categories below since I thought it helped to organize things a bit, feel free to add to them.

Information contribution

Tools that encourage contribution of new content / improve existing content

  • Protocols
  • Courses
  • Lab homepages
  • Reviews
    • Conversion of the PLoS One Topaz XML to wiki markup (with references included).
  • Lab notebooks
    • A private wiki (or public) wiki that was specially geared to be a lab notebook (include a calendar, etc). I know people have pretty nice private lab notebooks so would be good to get the best practices collected and then have them automatically implemented. A "publish to OWW button" (see below) would allow pages to be moved to OWW when ready.
  • Front ends for existing databases (e.g. how biblio interfaces with pubmed)
  • Better UI for using biblio
  • "Publish to OWW button" - publish from a private OWW wiki to the public OWW site with one click
  • Lab backups -- labs should be able to have a backup (independent of the complete backup) of all their lab/specific pages as well as all the files they've uploaded.

Information management

Tools that better organize existing content and make it more valuable to the community

  • Tags/categories
  • Watchlist improvements
    • What my lab members / friends have edited
    • Automatically add every page I've started, or every page that friends have started.
  • Better UI for editing the sidebar / very confusing at the moment for new users


Tools that allow for dissemination of OWW content to other sites / outlets

  • DOI - output an OWW page and give it a DOI with one click
  • Display a printable version of a subsection of a wiki page. This was suggested by smd on Wiki questions page.
  • RSS feed digests
    • So we have the capability to provide RSS feeds of labs or projects (see Endy:Screening plasmid RSS feed.), though it's not especially obvious how to set it up. However with every edit showing up it overwhelms the ol feed reader -- would be nice to provide a daily digest. LifeHacker does this so might be model there on how to implement.
    • Also in general, it would nice to have the feed icon show up on the actual article page, rather than only on the history page (where no one just browsing the site sees it).
  • Wiki to PDF converter
    • Reshma 15:11, 23 May 2007 (EDT): At a panel discussion on use of wiki's in education at MIT yesterday, there were several comments from educators that while wiki's were great for collaboration, they aren't great for putting together proper reports. For example, they said that if a group of students start writing stuff up on a wiki, eventually they have to move everything to a Microsoft Word document in order to make a report that was submittable for the class assignment. My guess is that part of this sentiment is psychological ... since the wiki feels like a work in progress, users don't feel as much need to clean up errors and spelling mistakes. And part of this sentiment is the practical problem of it being hard to print out a wiki page and make it look "polished". Right now, since we can compose latex docs on the wiki that look "polished", it shouldn't be very difficult to write an extension that goes from wiki markup direct to a latex-generated PDF. It might be useful to be able to generate a "polished" version of a page.
      • Jason R. Kelly 18:05, 24 May 2007 (EDT): This would be especially valuable for the Reviews section. If you wanted to submit a review periodically for peer-review and publication in traditional journals then it would be nice to be able to dump it straight from the wiki.



  • User management system - overall works well, but there are some open bugs that needed to get sorted out.