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Author Topic: Forge vocab one more time  (Read 16773 times)
Christoffer Lernö
Member

Posts: 822


« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2002, 04:47:58 PM »

First Ron: Having built and maintained web stuff including automated programs, I know you have to have maintenance. But that is little compared to if one guy had everything in a textfile on his computer and every time there was a change, people would mail him, then wait until he made the necessary updates to db. Those things get delayed, that's my experience. A person who just had an idea of something to write is much more likely to take the time to update stuff, than a maintainer who probably has a lot on his/her mind at the time.

Quote from: Clinton R. Nixon
Here's my concept for a glossary that wouldn't be that hard: a system consisting of matches from terms to links. It would be a simple mapping where term X can found first found in thread Y. (And clarified in threads Z1, Z2, and Z3.)
Does that sound like something useful? If so, I will put effort into it.


Yes, that's essentially what I'm saying.

In fact, I see it pretty similar to the resource library (as I already mentioned). Just like that one we need a keyword, a few links, a description... People being able to add descriptions would be a neat feature but not necessary.

The essential features would be:

Name
Short description
Original link (to thread or article)
Additional links

I'd have it so that the admin rights to it would be restricted but that the regular contributors still would be able to admin it.

Finally a really really neat thing would be if the program could produce a listing of all the keywords (say every night - good to have for back-up purposes as well) dumped to a html page or textfile that could be downloaded from the site.
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Le Joueur
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« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2002, 05:34:34 PM »

Quote from: wfreitag
In all fairness I should mention that although Fang is a terminology fiend, he consistently enters his specialized terms as links, which is a great help.

Hey, that's what markup languages and hypertext were supposed to be for.  I'm just carrying on an ancient tradition.  (That's right, dates me from before these darn fool 'mice' pointer thingies, whatever the heck they're for.)  I'm waiting until one of these forum writin' outfits thinks of the idea of automated linking.  When you set up a forum, you make a vocabulary file; it automatically links any future instance of that word to your glossary.  Nice and neat.

Anyway.  Put me down for one word (a few more if'n they're mine).

Fang Langford
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2002, 05:04:53 AM »

Quote from: Le Joueur
When you set up a forum, you make a vocabulary file; it automatically links any future instance of that word to your glossary.


That sounds like a Wiki.

Mike
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CC Douglas
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Posts: 6


« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2002, 09:44:15 PM »

My first post, and I really must say I'd personally greatly appreciate such a glossary of terms. I grew up on the well known games such as AD&D, Star Frontiers, Top Secret, Marvel Superheroes, etc..sure they were great at the time, but I always felt something was missing. I get the feeling that something can be found at The Forge, but I get lost in terminology and mention of different mechanics.  I'll surely wade through it until I get it all, but a glossary fo some sort would certainly help speed that process up a bit.
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Andrew Martin
Member

Posts: 785


« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2002, 01:25:42 AM »

Quote from: Clinton R. Nixon
Jonathan,

I appreciate the Wiki idea - it's a good one and has merit.

The reason it didn't work out before, and I don't think it's the right one now is that it basically creates another forum. When a glossary is codified - which should happen some day - it needs to be a static, not dynamic, thing.


A Wiki with switchable edit permission seems like the ideal solution. Set it up for editing at the start, then freeze it after a while, when everyone's done their writing for a term. If a mistake is noticed after this time, unfreeze it and let the modifications be done, and freeze it again.
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Andrew Martin
Valamir
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« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2002, 04:57:54 AM »

Ok, so if everybody just started adding definitions willy nilly this would be a bad thing right?

Not necessarily.   First such a glossary would need to distinguish between "official definition" and "working definition".  Since this is the Forge, and the Forge is run by Ron and Clinton, only Ron and Clinton should be able to institute something as an "Official" definition.

Anything added by the rest of us would not be official.  If there is no "official definition" (as there would unlikely to be for a term like Immersion" then all submitted definitions would be labeled "working definitions".  If there IS an official definition, then all submitted definititions would be labeled "dissenting" or "minority" opinions.

After all the purpose of this excersize isn't really (and shouldn't be) to carve in granite some sort of official Forge lexicon.  It SHOULD be to condense dozens if not hundreds of threads in a way that allows new readers to get up to speed.  If there are 3 different working definitions for the term Immersion and they are all different and all attributed to certain users thats not a bad thing that renders the glossary "useless".  That's a good thing that means new readers will now know everything we know from just having a long thread where those definitions were hashed out, only they won't have to search for and read the entire thread to get there.

So a new comer could pull up "Simulationism", find Ron's "Official Definitions", find a couple of "dissenting opinions" and know that whatever issue they were about to raise has already been covered...because their opinion has already been acknowledged in the lexicon.  If they then wish to start a discussion about it, we're all saved from rehashing the same ground to bring new users up to speed.

That to me would be the best use for such a glossary.  It would grow in time as people who realized there was a certain term they were using would create an entry and add their working definition to it.  There wouldn't need to be a huge and ultimately futile attempt to reach total consensus as their was with the failed faq attempt.

Think GNS/Forge Cliff Notes as opposed to dictionary, IMO.
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Christoffer Lernö
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Posts: 822


« Reply #21 on: October 04, 2002, 05:17:48 AM »

Very good suggestion Ralph. That makes sense!
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Le Joueur
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« Reply #22 on: October 04, 2002, 07:10:12 AM »

Okay, we all seem to be pretty much in the 'yeah' mode together.

So.

How do we get started?

More importantly, why don't we start today?

And as a secondary issue, a few of us have said, "yeah, I'll do a word," who will (or wants to) despense those to us?  Likewise, shouldn't we have a separate running conversation about what words should or should not be put into the glossary?  Without some guidance, the glossary would have no reason not to turn into a full dictionary covering every conceivable word.

Let's not start with the 'I wanna do this word, approach' expectation.  After the first few choice words get going, nobody will want to do the 'hard work' with the less than choice.  We've got to have a steady stream of 'give a word' people and a 'leader' to dispense the words or I see this project foundering quite quickly.  (Don't get me wrong, a list of 'who wants these words' might be quite desirable, but there has to be 'teeth' to the system; perhaps if they don't get snagged off the 'most wanted definitions' list in a coupla weeks, they can be assigned.)

Let's not forget 'victory conditions.'  How will we know when we're 'mostly done' (you can never really finish this project like this).  Staring into the maw of 'so many to do' without even the vaguest idea of what 'done' would look like will get intimidating in the long term.  (I've been there.)

Lastly, do we need a 'Glossary' Forum?

Okay, that's my bit.  Now, "What's my word?"

Fang Langford
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Valamir
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« Reply #23 on: October 04, 2002, 07:43:38 AM »

Well, to me it seems the starting place is deciding on the technology that makes it possible...is that WIKI...i don't know.  Never used it.  Once there is a place for entries to be entered (the way you can with the Resource Library), than people can go an browse and put up their own entries.

That seems to me to be the starting point.
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Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2002, 09:12:32 AM »

Ron and I are discussing what we're going to implement, and will let you know early next week.
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Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games
Le Joueur
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« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2002, 01:56:57 PM »

Quote from: Clinton R. Nixon
Ron and I are discussing what we're going to implement, and will let you know early next week.

Um...well?

Fang Langford

p. s. Am I the only one still interested? ;)
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Walt Freitag
Member

Posts: 1039


« Reply #26 on: October 16, 2002, 09:15:23 AM »

I'm still interested.

In fact, I've been pretty close to deciding to step into the word-dispensing role (knowing that that also, as I said to Christoffer, requires being the progress-haranguer, and probably leads to being sucked into other editorial functions as well). I'm just waiting to see what the target format will be.

- Walt
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Paul Czege
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #27 on: October 16, 2002, 10:07:36 AM »

I'm just waiting to see what the target format will be.

For what it's worth, I like Christoffer's original proposed format better than any of the suggested variants.

Paul
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Christoffer Lernö
Member

Posts: 822


« Reply #28 on: October 16, 2002, 10:12:14 AM »

I'm pretty much waiting to hear what software solution Clinton and Ron will decide on. Like I said if there is programming to do I could volunteer for that.
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Emily Care
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« Reply #29 on: October 17, 2002, 09:59:20 AM »

I just found this thread today, and am not necessarily an expert on anything, but I would love to lend my energy to the project.  

It would be great for new-comers, and also, I think, would help focus discussion in general.  This would also help in the handing on the baton Ron asked for in the "Lots of Folks on the Forge" thread. If we can all direct people to the glossary, none of us has to either feel like an Authority on a term to define it, or take the time and energy to write, yet again, a description of a term, or find the links that pertain.  

Forge Glossary, go, go, go!

--Emily Care
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