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akiy
01-21-2010, 01:04 PM
It seems these days that both netiquette and the maintenance of FAQs have declined as common practices. The answer to a common question used to be "read the answer to the common questions (read the FAQ)"; it is now "search the forums." That is not an improvement.
I wonder if the AikiWeb community would be willing to collaborate on such an FAQ (and answers) list?

(Unfortunately, for the time being, the best place to collaboratively work on such a thing here might be in the AikiWeb AikiWiki, but it's not working very well right now. I'm in the process of looking at it, though.)

-- Jun

MM
01-21-2010, 01:14 PM
I wonder if the AikiWeb community would be willing to collaborate on such an FAQ (and answers) list?

(Unfortunately, for the time being, the best place to collaboratively work on such a thing here might be in the AikiWeb AikiWiki, but it's not working very well right now. I'm in the process of looking at it, though.)

-- Jun

I think the wiki technology replaced FAQs. Just as :D replaced LOL. In that regard, I think the AikiWeb AikiWiki is the right way to go. Until tech changes again. Vid may replace Wiki one day when either vid takes less bandwidth or greater bandwidth is more common. Not to mention 3D tech.

Janet Rosen
01-21-2010, 01:35 PM
You know, many of the FAQs are there in the ARTICLES section - I mean that's really where we refer a lot of newbies to things like language terms, how to pick a dojo, etc. I don't think a new section is needed - maybe just adding to the scope and content of the articles.

jxa127
01-21-2010, 01:45 PM
I wonder if the AikiWeb community would be willing to collaborate on such an FAQ (and answers) list?

(Unfortunately, for the time being, the best place to collaboratively work on such a thing here might be in the AikiWeb AikiWiki, but it's not working very well right now. I'm in the process of looking at it, though.)

-- Jun

Hi Jun,

Thanks, as always, for providing this forum!

I think wikis can help, but it is still important for people to comb the forum for real honest-to-goodness frequently asked questions and then come to some good consensus on the answers for it to be truly useful.

Regards,

Dan Rubin
01-21-2010, 02:48 PM
Maybe there could be a notice on the home page leading to an article with fairly detailed instructions on how to use the search feature, including a few examples. The examples would use frequently asked questions, like "how do I find a dojo?" or "what's the difference in styles?" or "does aikido work in a fight?" The article could also explain how to use AikiWeb articles and the AikiWiki to find answers to FAQs.

ninjaqutie
01-21-2010, 04:55 PM
I could see some value in a FAQ area. I also see lots of value for the current way to search for posts and articles. I think more people understand from the get go what a FAQ section is and would go there first. I didn't know how to use the search feature (or knew there was one at all) at first, but like everything else, I'm learning. :D

Michael Fitzgerald
01-22-2010, 04:12 AM
I wonder if the AikiWeb community would be willing to collaborate on such an FAQ (and answers) list?

(Unfortunately, for the time being, the best place to collaboratively work on such a thing here might be in the AikiWeb AikiWiki, but it's not working very well right now. I'm in the process of looking at it, though.)

-- Jun

Thanks for putting the idea out there for people to consider Jun.

lbb
01-22-2010, 01:23 PM
You know, many of the FAQs are there in the ARTICLES section - I mean that's really where we refer a lot of newbies to things like language terms, how to pick a dojo, etc. I don't think a new section is needed - maybe just adding to the scope and content of the articles.

I see a few different problems and some possible solutions:

- The FAQ format has the advantage of user-friendliness: it presents the answers to the most common questions, ideally in the order or in some organization that makes sense to a person who is looking for information. It has the disadvantage that it doesn't exist yet, and also that there are many questions that can't be dealt with comprehensively in a FAQ: the topic is extensive, but a FAQ reader is looking for a quick general answer, not necessarily an exhaustive one. Thus, many FAQ answers are only partial answers and have to reference other sources.

- Columns have the advantage of already existing, and moreover of being well thought out, well written, and a thorough treatment of their subject. They have the possible disadvantage of not addressing every FAQ topic, and also the disadvantage of being static. A column stands as the written expression of its author: it is not "updated".

- The wiki has the advantage of being fluid and revisable, and of including tools that allow the creation of a hierarchy. It also has the advantage that topics can be dealt with comprehensively in a wiki. It has the disadvantage that hierarchy is organization, not ordering: a FAQ presents topics in their order of interest, a wiki does not.

My own thought would be to create a FAQ that presents brief answers, and that references other sources -- columns and wiki articles -- as appropriate. That way, each type of information can be used to its best advantage: the FAQ to provide a sort of "guided tour" and overview, the wiki articles to provide more comprehensive information and other references, and the columns to provide the insight of the people who wrote them. Copying information from one to the other is a Bad Idea -- just ask anybody who has had to maintain revisions to two sets of documents.

Janet Rosen
01-22-2010, 05:42 PM
My own thought would be to create a FAQ that presents brief answers, and that references other sources -- columns and wiki articles -- as appropriate. That way, each type of information can be used to its best advantage: the FAQ to provide a sort of "guided tour" and overview, the wiki articles to provide more comprehensive information and other references, and the columns to provide the insight of the people who wrote them. Copying information from one to the other is a Bad Idea -- just ask anybody who has had to maintain revisions to two sets of documents.

Mary, that's a really good organizational focus for it.