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• CommentRowNumber1.
• CommentAuthorUlrik
• CommentTimeJun 29th 2021
• (edited Jun 29th 2021)

This is something that just came up in this Twitter thread. Cody Roux suggested here that some people may prefer to hang out on Zulip rather than the nForum. (Or something like that; I’m not sure exactly what the suggestion is.)

There is already a Category Theory Zulip Chat, and maybe it would be possible to have a stream there for discussions about the nLab? At its simplest, we just create a stream there, and people can coordinate improving pages there if they like. A more advanced option would be to have some code that cross-links that stream with the nLab, just as there are plugins that cross-link StackOverflow sites with Zulip. So there would be updates on the stream whenever a page is edited, for example.

• CommentRowNumber2.
• CommentAuthorDavid_Corfield
• CommentTimeJun 29th 2021

As long as people enter into the project with the intention of fitting in. No major unannounced pages changes, etc.

• CommentRowNumber3.
• CommentAuthorDmitri Pavlov
• CommentTimeJun 29th 2021
• (edited Jun 29th 2021)

There is also a possibility of switching the nForum itself to Zulip. It has an API that can be used for nLab’s purposes (e.g., posting comments about changes to nLab pages).

This has an added benefit of using free and open source software actively maintained by somebody else.

• CommentRowNumber4.
• CommentAuthorMike Shulman
• CommentTimeJun 30th 2021

This might be a good way to get more people involved in editing the nLab. There are a lot of folks on the CT zulip.

If we switched the nForum to Zulip, is there any way we could still link directly to nLab pages with [[simple link syntax]]?

• CommentRowNumber5.
• CommentAuthorDmitri Pavlov
• CommentTimeJun 30th 2021

Re #4: We can substitute the current nForum parser instead of their Markdown implementation: https://zulip.readthedocs.io/en/latest/subsystems/markdown.html#changing-zulip-s-markdown-processor

• CommentRowNumber6.
• CommentAuthorvarkor
• CommentTimeJul 1st 2021

Re #4: We can substitute the current nForum parser instead of their Markdown implementation:

My understanding is that this would involve editing the source of Zulip and asking people to use a custom client.

However, fortunately there’s an easier solution. Zulip supports custom “linkifiers”, which search for custom regexes and replace them with URLs: we should be able to use this to automatically link to nLab pages as Mike suggests.

• CommentRowNumber7.
• CommentAuthorMike Shulman
• CommentTimeJul 1st 2021

That’s great! Would that require having a dedicated nZulip, instead of just a stream on the CT zulip? I suppose if we were actually replacing the nForum with a zulip we would probably want that anyway.

• CommentRowNumber8.
• CommentAuthorvarkor
• CommentTimeJul 1st 2021

That’s great! Would that require having a dedicated nZulip, instead of just a stream on the CT zulip?

The linkifier would affect the entire server, but I imagine this would be useful more generally anyway, given how often the nLab is linked. So it would just involve asking a moderator to add a linkifier. There’s a small issue at the moment in that the linkifier syntax doesn’t support square brackets, so the syntax [[link]] wouldn’t currently be supported. Hopefully either that will be fixed by Zulip soon, or we could use an alternative syntax in the interim. There’s another open issue for supporting linkifiers only in certain streams.

• CommentRowNumber9.
• CommentAuthorDmitri Pavlov
• CommentTimeJul 1st 2021

Re #6: It’s not just about the double-bracketed links. nForum has tons of Instiki- and iTeX-specific syntax, which is actually used all over, especially since a lot of text is copy-pasted from the nLab directly to the nForum.

For instance, iTeX’s bizarre syntax for 2 or more letters being typeset in a different font. Also, the various TeX commands that the nLab now allows, e.g., \ref{…}, \cite{…}, etc.

• CommentRowNumber10.
• CommentAuthorMike Shulman
• CommentTimeJul 1st 2021

Well, I was assuming we would only switch going forward, so the syntax of past posts wouldn’t matter. However, it’s true that we do continue to like to copy and paste stuff in from the nLab occasionally, and that would certainly be more annoying if the syntax changed.

• CommentRowNumber11.
• CommentAuthorDavid_Corfield
• CommentTimeJul 3rd 2021

If only a fraction of the effort of talking about the nLab could be put into actually editing it.

• CommentRowNumber12.
• CommentAuthorUrs
• CommentTimeJul 3rd 2021

Incidentally, what the guy who triggered this discussion really meant to ask (as he finally admitted) is for someone to add to locale more of a list of examples of non-spatial locales and in particular of locales without points.