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wikification of IESDP

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Did anyone ever consider moving IESDP to a wiki? That way not only updates could happen soon after things are found, but it would also allow for more people to have editing access (could still be restricted) and any changes would be easy to review and follow.

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It has been considered. It's not happend yet due to the following factors:

a) No-one has sufficient inclination to find time to do it

b) The majority of the IESDP is table based, which is probably the hardest thing to do in a wiki

c) There are likely to be issues related to the downloadable copy of the IESDP

d) I'm unsure whether the group of people trust-worthy enough to have write access would make it a wortwhile investment of time

e) The current forum structure serves a role as a storing house while information is verified


Other than that, it's a good idea.

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I can take care of a) sometime (I run several wikis including the gemrb one). There are also some html "decompilers" available.

b) is not an issue since the tables are simple.

c) wikis have come a long way and in many you can export to various formats. Those of course include html, which I guess you also use for the downloadable version.

d) I haven't been here as long as you, but it is clear that at minimum 3 people here would be worthy. If you meant to question whether they would do anything about it: it can't get any worse than now. There have been plenty of verified findings, but the last IESDP update was done in May 08.

e) The forum would not be deprecated. It could probably import the rss feed of changes, so double posting wouldn't be required. It would still be used by people asking questions or by people without write access to point out new info (no choice there).

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I'm unsure what you mean about wikification, or rather how it can make IESDP easier to use. Global search function is hardly vital, as most everything can be tracked from the main page.


The biggest benefit would be a bigger amount of data, IESDP is currently restricted to some select aspects of the engine.

Also, updates would be more frequent.

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Not to be an ass, but if you want a wiki, make one. Otherwise, STOP COMPLAINING.


I don't like wikis. I would much rather discovery and documentation come about through discussion and forcing igi to review everything than shadow-posting on a dumb random webpage that nobody will ever find.

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That's the plan, but I wanted to see what igi and other community members think about it first. I wouldn't want to start or maintain a fork.


Having the data in a wiki would not change the path to discovery, nor would it limit discussion (especially with some kind of a feed to the forum).


If it will be succesful, it would hopefully reside in the same place as the current IESDP, so I see no random-dumb-webpage problem. (if you were refering to what gemrb's address resolves to: this is just the end host, since sourceforge had crappy project web space until this year; the site is accessible through the simple gemrb.sf.net/gemrb.sourceforge.net subdomain)

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Guest Edheldil

I hope that wiki would allow for faster updates. I can't see a reason to do releases of documentation, if you do not have to ship the printed books. :(


There is a possibility in many wikis to easily revert changes, so igi's role as a supervisor would stay, just the task of writing content could be delegated.

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Not to be an ass, but if you want a wiki, make one. Otherwise, STOP COMPLAINING.


I don't like wikis. I would much rather discovery and documentation come about through discussion and forcing igi to review everything than shadow-posting on a dumb random webpage that nobody will ever find.


Well, you failed :)


There is no point in restarting the information gathering process from the beginning --> we need all the current data


There is no point in restricting the possible sources of information --> we need an established place which interested people already know and would use


The above points pretty much bar us from just starting a wiki out in the void.


Is there any reason why a wiki couldn't be placed in the current IESDP site?

As far as i see DevSin has problems with the wiki format? (the obscure site place is not a valid complain)

Igi has problem with time?

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Guest Edheldil

I forgot to add one advantage of wikis, although it's certainly not limited to them, nor always provided: possibility to list changes to pages.


Although IESDP has some history page, it's certainly not detailed and accurate enough for my needs. I would like to e.g. open the page on PRO file format and list all the changes to it since 2009-02-01 when I have last updated ieshell's PRO support.

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My only other concerns with a wiki would be:

a) The IESDP may lose focus. As it is is is a reference for modders which (hopefully) has some central structure to it. If it were a wiki I feel it would rapidly expand to cover extreme edge cases in depth, becoming less useful to a more general audience. I would argue that e.g. a four paragraph description on the True() trigger is probably more than most people are looking for.


b) Inconsistency. The IESDP is currently internally consistent in its IE language (feature block, extended header etc.) and technical language (we always start counting from bit 0 etc.). Also, I'd have to ritually murder a kitten every day if the grammar reverted to anywhere near its previous standard.




While I enjoy maintaining the IESDP, it's also quite soul destroying to see the contant criticism and sniping - if it does become a wiki I may take the oppotunity to relinquish my duties completely.

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I think both points would mostly be covered by not opening it up completely. By choosing a team of expert comaintainers, you'd have less work, more time and take less flak.


I'll try to think it through sometime this summer and will post here when I have something to show. The forum input rss integration will probably be the hardest part.

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I wasn't going to say anything and just wait to see how it all plays out...

But I changed my mind...


I kinda like how the IESDP is laid out. It's not necessarily newbie friendly, but neither is weidu and those two go hand in hand. A wiki with supporting information where certain aspects can be described in further detail would be sufficient IMHO. The wiki pages can link to IESDP pages as needed and the IESDP pages can link to wiki pages that describe things in greater detail. But there really is no need to redo or even open up to the public the ability to edit the IESDP.


An example of what I'm trying to explain (if you don't get it):

IESDP page with ARE file header & section offsets would have a link to a wiki page.

The wiki page could then explain in depth at what times it is best to add actors into the area file or by script during the game. The wiki could also point to discussion forums or download pages of various macros, functions, and other weidu code used to make ARE modifications easier. The wiki would also provide a return link to the ARE page in the IESDP.


This idea would allow for the current standard format in simple descriptions and layout to remain as well as providing a central locale for additional information whether it be links to weidu code that will make editing certain file types easier or further descriptions to help readers better understand the varied usages of certain IDS values.

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