How we’re working, at WebPlatform.org

I thought I’d share some thoughts this week on how we are working towards making web standards documentation rock more here at WebPlatform.org! We knew it would be challenging to deal with this much content, especially as we are mostly volunteers with only a finite amount of time available to work on the project. We’ve already achieved much, working towards our goal of making WebPlatform.org the definitive client-side web technology documentation site, but there is still much more to do. This is why we opened it up to the wider community as an alpha.

The plan has always been to include the public as early as possible. The web does, after all, belong to all of us. To facilitate getting things done, we have a number of communication means at our disposal. We have a number of discussion methods available including IRC and a mailing list. These are mostly used for general communication, such as announcing in-person Doc Sprints, soliciting feedback and discussing current and future work. For focusing on particular tasks, we:

  • Identify specific tasks to work on. To make the work more manageable, we have started to split it into manageable chunks and we work on each item in turn.
  • Discuss these tasks via our regular communication means, and also have more involved discussions at our regular weekly meetings, simultaneously held on teleconference and IRC.
  • Record task priority lists and who is working on each task, at our beta requirements page.
  • Create detailed task plans to outline how the work will be done, with subtasks, and people assigned to complete them.
  • Get on with the tasks!
  • Speed up task progress with intensive bursts of work at Doc Sprint events.

Current priorities

At the moment, the main topics we are focusing on are CSS properties and JavaScript APIs. Our plan is to perfect the topic pages for these two major areas over the next two to three months. This is where you come in! If you are knowledgeable and passionate about these areas, please get in touch with us to find out how best to contribute. If you don’t wish to contribute to either of these focus areas, and wish to work on something else instead, get in touch anyway, as we will be able to find something for you to do.

The next Doc Sprint we have coming up is in Berlin, Germany, this week — we expect to make a lot of progress on our priority tasks there!

3 thoughts on “How we’re working, at WebPlatform.org

  1. @maxw3st, cool – thanks! The best way to start is by getting signed up to the site. You can find the full details of the work we did in Berlin at http://docs.webplatform.org/wiki/community/berlin_feb_2013

    The guide to working on CSS property pages can be found at http://docs.webplatform.org/wiki/WPD:CSS_property_guide

    And the CSS properties list can be found at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkRs-89PKiZpdE0xdm9Sb1ZvRW1ZRzMtWEdyU0Z4OEE#gid=13, showing what’s already been done.

    You can also find details of how to ask for help, at http://docs.webplatform.org/wiki/WPD:Help.

  2. I am a lawyer, a teacher, and starting work as coach, commentator on manners, and organizer of real estate deals. I am here because I want to make my own web pages. My problem is I like to do things right, or at least efficiently. I don’t know if that makes me a web-developer, but in this increasingly democratic (thanks to the internet) world, it’s a direction in which I would like to expand.

    I could go out and buy a web pages for dummies type of book, or just cut and paste my Microsoft Word documents into the WYSIWYG editor of my web page, or have it convert automatically to html, but it seems to me this will leave me with some really sloppy mark up code that is outdated and difficult to manipulate, and anyway, some of my ideas (there are a handful of site ideas that spin about my head) will be better served if I can program them myself and call to the databases that I am also planning to build and use.

    But that’s in the future. For the moment, I am really a beginner. I’ve looked at your stuff for “beginners” (but maybe even that presumes more knowledge than I have), and I realize that I am getting a bit lost. I wanted to color certain text. From what I see, this might be best handled via a CSS definition (I couldn’t even figure out how to do it in-line), but when I search for color or text color, I get a lot of information on various color coding systems, but can’t figure out how to paint a few words red, or some table headings blue, etc.

    So what I am offering is to work with someone to provide a beginner’s perspective as I learn what I am doing so that we can document the process and design the W3C pages so that the next person who comes here as a beginner actually feels like he can get the tools here to start developing well-formed web pages.

    I’d appreciate your input and advice on how we can move this project forward together.

    Thanks,

    David R. Herz