[Web Comm] GeoTools content for OSGeo follow up ...

Jo Walsh jo at frot.org
Sun Oct 8 15:38:51 EDT 2006

dear Jody, cheers for putting energy into this. Some thoughts:

On Thu, Oct 05, 2006 at 04:33:48PM -0700, Jody Garnett wrote:
> Developer Spotlights
> - OSGeo is doing them already with some success, not sure how we sign up 
> but I would love hear what Gabriel has been up to :-)

I don't know if they are being actively produced anymore. It would be
easy enough to make a "community spotlight" type object in drupal and
ask PMC chairs to cough them up, using publicity as leverge to
interrogate their developer community. 
> Flash
> - visual walk through w/ commentary on any of our demos. ie from 
> maven.pom to eclipse to run
> Powerpoint
> - architecture or design material showing how the library fits in the middle
> - goal is to allow budding projects to steal good looking pictures that 
> happen to have geotools in them

I shudder at the powerpoint word - there are open formats which it
would be preferable to use - there are those standard Open Document
Template layouts in the VisCom library. Or maybe this is a generic use
of the word? ;) 

It would be good to incorporate such in-depth material into an
overview of the complete OSGeo stack - a diagrams-and-code-snippets
version of the stack of informational brochureware PDFs. Right, you
could archive components and sequences of them. Ideally you could have
some interface to pick-and-mix, autostitch a whole presentation.
> PDF - White Papers
> - short technical papers, buzz word happy to show up in search results
> - get your name out there and take geotools along as your example

You mentioned this was specifically directed at encouraging people
running small consultancies to write up their projects and that sounds
really good - case studies, ideally with details on the numbers -
timing and rates and maintenance even. One bit of open source FUD one
still hears is "we evaluated the costs and figured that open source
was going to cost as much to set up the project in terms of developer
time and planning for maintanance time; reliable contractors and good
service level agreements are harder to find then when operating
within a proprietary framework". So along with the business directory
ideas that are swimming around, this would help provide a "convincer"
that would also be useful for individuals.

So how do we make it easier for people to produce this sort of
material? You also mentioned PDF export being a key requirement for
online doc management systems. Again we could provide templates and
patterns for producing this kind of whitepaper - you have examples
kicking around yet that you're offering to geotools developers?

> Thought: if we are moving to pdf files generated from DocBook for user 
> documentation (rather then free form wiki), perhaps allowing people a 
> descriptions of themselves and contact information would be a nice way 
> to motivate content creation.

Nod, I want to do more with user profiles inc. connecting them to
projects more strongly, to developer/community profiles etc. It all
starts to sound a bit "friendster" but think more spatialised
organisational network mapping. That's more or less a simple byproduct
of what e.g. drupal already does - it's just connecting things up right.

I guess i would want to extrapolate from what you have described, with
the addition of example driven / demo driven userdocs as a template to
projects for what it would be of benefit for them to produce. Well,
the "leading example" thing helps especially if it's possible to adapt
the toolkit to make more of this easy to do.



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