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    • CommentRowNumber1.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeNov 24th 2009

    I've edited the About page a little. My initial intention was just to update the technical information but I ended up adding a load more, mainly to expand on the "lab book" view. Given that we've discussed this back-and-forth for quite some time, I felt it time someone started actually modifying the page itself. Of course, if you don't like what I've said then change it!

    It is a wiki, after all - even if it isn't an encyclopaedia.

    • CommentRowNumber2.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeNov 24th 2009

    Thanks, I like that.

    Maybe one point I hesitated a moment at is the statement that "our aim is to achieve that those who put in the most get out the most", or similar. Somehow I am not sure what you mean to convey by saying this. What is the message the reader should take from this?

    • CommentRowNumber3.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeNov 24th 2009

    Hmm, now that you quote it then I don't like it either. I think I was trying to get at the point that 'n-lab ain't Wikipedia' without actually mentioning Wikipedia. Someone who merely browses through the n-lab isn't going to get as much out of it as someone who works there - that's the idea I was trying to get across. I was trying to say: "Get involved if you want to benefit."

    • CommentRowNumber4.
    • CommentAuthorTobyBartels
    • CommentTimeNov 24th 2009

    I think that we should say that the Lab isn't Wikipedia. Wikipedia has had a huge impact on people's expectations from wikis, which we should address. I'm not quite finished writing that, but I've been thinking about it ….

    • CommentRowNumber5.
    • CommentAuthorzskoda
    • CommentTimeNov 26th 2009
    • (edited Nov 26th 2009)

    It is already diclaiming so many times that it is different from wikipedia, that it is not supposed to be polished etc. I think this is discouraging for serious contributors like me, and for people looking for some level of reliability. It is good that we do not have the LIMITATIONS of wikipedia, like ONLY checked material, and only published and verifiable material and balance, and so on. But the infrastructure of standard balanced material on well-understood topics, in areas which are not simply facts (wikipedia is good in listing facts) but require some depth, proof, math notation etc. is desirable and I do not see why all that pressure all the time, like don't be wikipedia like. I think that in some tricky areas nlab is now more reliable than wikipedia. School example is wikipedia's entry on noncommutative geometry which is a list of random, mainly nonimportant, examples, wrongly classified, with random emphasis and missing overall picture. So of course we are WORKING using nlab and not PRIMARILY doing encyclopaedic service to the community, but saying that supporting nlab with classical informative entries is JUST a "happy byproduct" and not one of the intentional architectural tendencies is discouraging for contributors and those users who are not primarily WORKING, and co-notekeeping, but using as a SOURCE. In area which is closer to our expertise I have bigger expectations from nlab than from wikipedia, as it is in my experience in our area more reliable. Why to work FURTHER to downplay this, while the cafe and nlab abound in such negative warnings already ??

    • CommentRowNumber6.
    • CommentAuthorTobyBartels
    • CommentTimeNov 26th 2009

    It is good that we do not have the LIMITATIONS of wikipedia, like ONLY checked material, and only published and verifiable material and balance, and so on.

    This is particularly what I was thinking of.

    • CommentRowNumber7.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2009
    • (edited Nov 27th 2009)

    But we do indicate which material is checked, which not. Which is from the literature, which not. At least we try to. So there should in the end be a large resource of reliable checked material on the Lab, and clearly indicated as such. I think I spent the last weak with compiling such kind of material, for instance.

    I think that's what Zoran is getting at: we should not sell the nLab under value in the About page and suggest to people that it may not be worth their time even looking at some pages. We are reasonably justified to say, I think, that we are in parts like Wikipedie, but have more to offer. Not only the standard material, but also the cutting-edge new developments (or at least what we take to be such and manage to type up).

    • CommentRowNumber8.
    • CommentAuthorzskoda
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2009

    Right Urs, this was about my point. We should stay ambitious and create climate which is such.

    • CommentRowNumber9.
    • CommentAuthorAndrew Stacey
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2009

    I was deliberately avoiding mentioning Wikipedia not because I felt it inappropriate but because I felt that it'd be harder to go from mentioning it to not mentioning it than the other way around (I hope that makes sense!).

    I agree that the About page should sell the n-lab and laud it to the skies! But I'm British and that kind of language doesn't come naturally to me so I figured I'd make a start and let the rest of you come in with the superlatives.

    • CommentRowNumber10.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2015

    I moved the “Technology” section of About to the end and added a paragraph acknowledging support from the HoTT MURI grant to pay for the server.

    • CommentRowNumber11.
    • CommentAuthorDavidRoberts
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2019

    Update text about Instiki fork.

    diff, v38, current

    • CommentRowNumber12.
    • CommentAuthorDavidRoberts
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2019

    The heading levels were all wrong so didn’t show up in the toc.

    diff, v38, current

  1. Thanks for fixing!

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