OpenWetWare:Software/Publish To OWW Button

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The "Publish to OWW Button" is a feature contemplated for OpenWetWare and the community of various wikis that surround it. This button also could be used from within OWW to allow content to be published outside of OWW to other wikis based upon MediaWiki, most notably, Wikipedia.

The feature would allow an OWW community member to specify a page or a range of pages that would then be copied to another wiki. An example of this would be in facilitating a user of a Private wiki hosted by OWW to move content to the OWW wiki itself. Another example would be in allowing a person creating a new Private wiki to move the content of OWW pages to the Private wiki as it is created.


Jason R. Kelly has written about the application of this idea in OWW lab notebooks. Any set of wiki pages that constitute a starting point for some kind of activity can be grouped together and used to create a specialized Private wiki.

Technical Issues


OWW Wiki pages do not use the same content as all web pages. However, they do use the same content as other wikis, such as Wikipedia. The content of a page contains image files, rich text, hyperlinks to other wiki pages or to external web pages, or attached files. The pages use a special kind of wiki page, called a Template, to format the contents of pages. The use of these template files is widespread in Wikipedia. When you see a pretty infobox for a country, as an example, a template is used to create the uniform look for it and all other country entries. If it only were one template, there would be a simple job of copying the template associated with a single wiki page. However, MediaWiki template files can be nested. In practice, this has led to a massive number of template pages that are marshaled together to create a page such as an infobox. In a recent trial, I counted over 130 templates are required to render onr of the simpler infoboxes. Moving these templates along with a page is required if you want to preserve how a page looks.


Images are stored as files on a MediaWiki server. But they also are stored as a class of pages within the MediaWiki database. There is little support for coordinating the movement of pages from one wiki page to another. Any image management requires creating new tools to move these pages.