OpenWetWare talk:Community Portal

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Integrating Navigation Bar on Pages

  • Jennyn 15:06, 19 September 2006 (EDT): Should we do this? Does this make it easier to navigate?
  • BC 10:32, 21 September 2006 (EDT): I like having the community portal navbar on the different pages but we might not need to also have the full oww navbar.
  • Jennyn 11:09, 21 September 2006 (EDT): I've modified the navbar for the community portal. Still in developmental phase, but should look better soon.
    • Jasonk 11:48, 23 September 2006 (EDT): I don't think we need the navigation bar, it makes the edit page look confusing -- is there a way to get it to be a template (is there a reason it can't be?)

Simplifying the community portal

  • Reshma 14:02, 14 September 2006 (EDT): Tried to streamline the community portal as discussed in today's steering committee meeting. This is just one option. Please feel free to edit and improve further.
  • Jennyn 14:27, 14 September 2006 (EDT): looks much better, Reshma! Good work!


  • Jennyn 13:29, 15 March 2006 (EST): When I change the background color of the Active Discussions section, only the outline changes, and not the area with the text. Anyone know why?
    • Jgritton 14:12, 15 March 2006 (EST): The discussion sections are part of a template. If you change the color here: Template:Discussion_topic you should change the inner parts.
    • Jennyn 14:30, 15 March 2006 (EST): Thanks, Jeff!

Fine-tuning the Portal

  • BC 10:56, 13 March 2006 (EST): Test driving removing the spacer column. We can change back if people prefer having it. (I had to increase the width of the active discussion column from 233 to 249 to make the column widths match.)
    • Jennyn 14:50, 13 March 2006 (EST): Nice work, Barry. Looks much better.
  • BC 10:56, 13 March 2006 (EST): I created a template for adding discussion topics to the active discussion column. This should minimize the amount of html people need to see. It asks you to specify an area that the discussion fits in and uses that to pick the image. The only actual change that I made is that the icon now points to the discussion page rather than the "area" page as this seems more intuitive. Comments welcome, especially if there is a way to "parse" the area from the page name, for example it would be nice to pull software out of OpenWetWare:Software/Foo so that the right image is automatically asigned. You can get the subpage name using magic words but not the main page name.

Logos for discussions

Jasonk 16:43, 11 March 2006 (EST):

Jenny, I really like the logos for discussion areas, we may want to set it up so that those point to the 6 areas reshma outlined here:

  1. OpenWetWare:Software
  2. OpenWetWare:Information management
  3. OpenWetWare:Community development
  4. OpenWetWare:Courses
  5. OpenWetWare:Design
  6. OpenWetWare:Ideas

The issue is that adding new icons for each new discussion, such as non-language OWW discussion, will be tough. Instead, since the non-english version discussion is a subpage in Community Development, it could have the community dewvelopment icon. Then we have only 6 icons to remember - and people only remember 5+/2 things ;)

  • Jennyn 11:19, 12 March 2006 (EST): Jason, will do!
  • Jasonk 23:53, 12 March 2006 (EST):I think we may want to make the pictures on the legend links to each of the 6 portals above (and rather than call it a legend call it "Portals", or something better than that;). The links next to the specific higlighted discussions could still be links to those discussions. I started filling in a couple of the "portals" (Design and Community Development), just as an idea for how they might tbe organized. Please feel free to improve the design.
  • Jennyn 01:58, 13 March 2006 (EST): Done, and done. Nice suggestion, Jason. It's much better now. Portals remind me of Super Mario.
  • BC 10:56, 13 March 2006 (EST): I renamed portals to "development areas" which is slightly more descriptive but definitely less interesting, please improve! I also made the logos on the active discussions smaller than the large ones on the development areas. I think this makes it more obvious that the active discussions are just specific instances of the development topics. Again, revise as people see fit.

Another Possible Design for Community Portal

I thought it might be useful to have an entire page that just dealt with discussions, rather than trying to fit it into a smaller area. We could lay out the portal with tabs similar to the getting started pages as a way to let users navigate easily. I thought

  1. Welcome tab
    • highlighting the ways to help out (kinda like pg3 of the getting started),
  2. Common Areas tag
    • point to protocols, eqiup, help pages, categorizing, etc.
    • e.g. how to make a "common protocol" from disparate lab protocols, etc.
  3. Discussion
    • The main discussion areas reshma outlined at the bottom of this page. Plus the 5 most recently edited OpenWetWare: pages, just to get people pumped ;)

Here's the new version, I only made up a rough version of the discussion page, let me know if you think the 3 tab system is good or not, plus other comments (please leave comments on the talk page):

--Jasonk 23:34, 8 March 2006 (EST)

Improving the community portal

  • Shorten significantly.
    • Partially done. Most of the text that I cut was discussion on the portal rather than actual content. I moved all of that to this discussion page or just deleted it entirely.
  • Move the various discussions regarding OWW to here.
    • Work in progress.
  • Remove all the help items that are currently at the bottom of the page.
    • Done
  • Give greater prominence to the discussions and improve page navigability (is this a word?:)).
    • Making it shorter may be sufficient to accomplish this.
  • Make initial paragraph describing the community portal clearer.
  • Apply the OWW color scheme when its finalized.
  • Include dynamic lists.
    • I've implemented a trial version of this for one section of the portal. If people thinks this is useful and start using the categories, we could expand the approach.

Please feel free to improve the style and content of the community portal in major and minor ways.

Making it easier for people to contribute

In the future, there are some other things we could do to help people contribute to OWW -

  • Rename this page or give it a more prominent location.
  • Create a mailing list for people interested in opportunities to contribute to OWW. This would be a contributors/developers mailing list. All the same information would be available on this page but its always useful to receive reminders of what needs to be done.
  • It may also be useful to create a developers sub-committee of the OpenWetWare:Steering committee that could meet (in person if the need arises) to make decisions about new features or the organization of OWW.
  • What other ways can we enable people to contribute to OWW?

Old community portal discussion

  • This page is basically a simplified version of the wikipedia community portal. We can add more of their features here as appropriate. Please feel free to edit in major and minor ways.--BC 15:43, 9 February 2006 (EST)
  • I'm trying to use this page to aggregate all the discussions and pages that have been generated regarding the issue of community development and back-end users.
  • There is currently still help info. at the bottom of the page. All this information may best be relocated to a master help page.

Another version

Welcome to the Community Portal!

This is the place to be if you are interested in contributing to OpenWetWare. It tells you how to stay informed about what needs to be done and lists ways to contribute. It also serves as a location for discussions about OpenWetWare's structure, content and features.

How do I know where to contribute?

• Just surf around and you'll find stuff that could be improved.
• Add this page as one of your watched pages, so you get email alerts of changes to the page.
• Join the Steering committee.

Add knowledge

• Add to an existing page.
• Start a new page on your favorite topic or on a requested topic.
• Contribute questions and answers to the Q&A page.

Add software

• Add feature requests to the extensions page.

Active collaborations

Please help edit these community pages.
  • Needs to be split: User FAQ , New User FAQ, Visitor FAQ, Admin FAQ, New Lab FAQ.
  • Needs organization.
Tips on using OpenWetWare

Organize information

Contribute information to the OWW shared resources.
• Add links to individual lab protocols to Protocols.
• Add links to individual lab equipment to Equipment.
• Add links to individual lab materials to Materials.

  • BC 16:02, 7 March 2006 (EST): I like this, its definitely an improvement. My only concern is that the community portal should be accessible to those who are learning how to contribute and they may benefit from a little bit more explanatory text on what the different sections are. At the same time it needs to be uncluttered for power users. In the future the organize information section might benefit with links to an "uncategorized protocols" page.

  • BC 16:02, 7 March 2006 (EST): I made this version go live.

  • BC 16:02, 7 March 2006 (EST):I reverted your changes to the "pages needing attention" list Austin because the intention was for that list to cover all pages in OWW, not just the meta or community pages. They should be covered on the OpenWetWare:Recent changes page.

  • SC 21:48, 8 March 2006 (EST): Is there any way to have the pages in the "needs attention" category named something other than their current title? Since it's dynamically generated instead of listed in the content of the community portal page, this doesn't seem possible.
    • Austin 22:27, 8 March 2006 (EST): Not sure why you would ever want to do this. I would argue the page title itself should be changed if you feel the title is inappropriate. Better to promote good page naming than to change the display name in various places.

do we have a section for news on openwetware?

Hi everybody,

I was wondering whether we have a section/page for biology related news?

Jakob Suckale 06:26, 12 November 2007 (CST)