06 May, 2009
By michal
Filed under CiviCRM, Documentation

Second day of the sprint behind - manual pages count is now 117. We started at 9am as day before and continued writing until lunch. When we were sleeping, our off-site editor Andy came through a few chapters and introduced quite a lot of propositions, remarks and edits - so it was not only writing new text, but also integrating fixes to whatever was written so far. Second day was also the first one when off-site authors started contributing their chunks of text to the book.

Last few days were quite rainy and cloudy in Tahoe, but on second sprint day the sun showed up just in time for having lunch outside. After short break we came together again and started our first review of the manual as a whole - everyone reported back on work so far, some good discussions happened on what should still be included in existing chapters, how chapters flow together and so on. After that we split into two groups that had separate conversations on how to combine some existing parts of the...

Read more
05 May, 2009
By michal
Filed under CiviCRM, Documentation

Wow - to me personally, the first day of Book Sprint was quite a surprise. I knew there is a really cool and knowledgeable group of people here, and I also knew that getting away from everyday work really helps with focusing, but I just couldn't guess how productive this day will be. We gathered a few minutes after 9, Adam gave us an overview of Flossmanuals tools to get everyone up to speed, we claimed our chapters and started writing. First part of the day was pretty silent, only the sound of ferocious typing could have been heard.

The simple rule is - when you get tired with what you currently write about, take a rest or switch to writing something else. If you are unsure about the scope of your paragraph, ask others, have a little talk. As we were going further in our writing, more and more "synchronisation talks" were happening, people started peer reviewing their writing and brainstorming over different ideas.

Dinner...

Read more
04 May, 2009
By michal
Filed under CiviCRM, Documentation

Long awaited day came - a bunch of good folks from CiviCRM Community arrived to Truckee to work on CiviCRM book! Some of us have been hanging out in San Francisco for some time already, attending NTEN and CiviCRM Developer and User Meetups, some of us arrived only today. First item of business was finalising book outline so that we can be ready to do actual writing on Monday morning. The outline looks quite detailed, but also realistic - it seems like it will be a busy week, but we should be enjoying the effects on Friday.

Stay tuned for news on the book - new information will be showing up on Twitter, as well as on #flossmanuals and #civicrm channels on IRC.

P.S. Doesn't look like the cover will be looking like anticipated. :-)

02 May, 2009
Filed under Documentation

A quick reminder that the week long CiviCRM book sprint starts this Monday and you're welcome to participate by writing, reading and commenting on chapters and sections.

We'll be using the Floss manuals infrastructure. The best way start is by saying hello in the IRC chatroom which is available on the Floss manuals site or via an IRC client at #flossmanuals on irc.freenode.net.

08 April, 2009
Filed under Documentation

Dave Greenberg recently posted about our upcoming book sprint saying "almost every week folks ask whether there is a CiviCRM Book they can read".

So there must be something missing from the documentation. And given that the book will be in addition to what is on the Wiki - not a replacement for it - the two questions I am asking myself are:

'What are we missing in the documentation? And how should the documentation and the book complement each other?'

Here is my initial answer:

'If the documentation is a hands on quick reference where you go to find the answer to a specific question, then the book is the tool that enables you to make effective use of the documentation. It contains all those things you to keep in mind when using (or deciding to use) CiviCRM; the advice and best practices; details of the some of the challenges you may face; the questions you need to ask yourself to get the most out of your CiviCRM installation.'

... Read more
31 March, 2009
Almost every week folks ask whether there is a CiviCRM Book they can read to help them learn about all the cool things that CiviCRM can do. Thanks to a grant from the Information Program initiative of the Open Society Institute - we will soon have just that (a big tip of the hat to the Information Program Project Manager for making this happen!). We will be writing the book using tools and techniques developed and hosted by Floss Manuals - whose mission is to provide quality manuals about how to use free software. Adam Hyde, the founder of the Floss Manuals project will be guiding a team of CiviCRM users, integrators and core team members through the process of creating the book during a 5-day Book Sprint to be held during the week of May 4. The team will also have editorial support from Andy Oram who is an editor... Read more