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    Autodesk Wikihelp discussion

    Originally posted by Gordon Price View Post
    In order for wikihelp to take off it needs to be really useful, and focusing on the content that actual users need right now will make it a lot more useful. Waiting a month to "see how things go" will mean our first impression is not as good as it could have been, which is hard to claw back from.
    I think you took the communication I had with you the wrong way.
    Jeff Hanson
    Sr. Subject Matter Expert
    Autodesk, Revit - User Experience

    #2
    Jeff, I don't think I did. Because I didn't think it was anything negative. I was under the impression that you where saying that Autodesk "as an entity" if you will was going to not allocate official resources in the short term, which I can understand. If no one attempts to add content early on it would be a problem, but if Autodesk as a bureaucracy tries to it would likely be only some of the information we need, and likely delayed too long to be useful. I think Scott's approach is ideal. It is someone "official", but also a small enough effort that results can happen quickly, and user driven which helps focus the effort. To some extent it also allows for an ad hoc wikihelp wishlist. If in fact Scott got no replies at all, it might even suggest that effort to add an official wikihelp wishlist might be misdirected.
    If anything my post gave the wrong impression. My point is that if no one adds anything timely for a month, not "Autodesk", not "The Factory" by which I mean those Autodeskers that are here and elsewhere in quasi-official capacity, and not "Power Users", then it would be a problem. Sorry for the confusion. Actually, just reread our PM thread, and I see that I used the same phrase, but in my own head was using it differently. Doh!

    Gordon
    Pragmatic Praxis

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      #3
      This Wiki-Help idea makes me ask myself these questions:

      Is Autodesk not hiring any more technical writers anymore?
      From now on that the site has been launched, is completing the help an ongoing duty of Autodesk or a duty of the community?
      What percentage of Wiki Help is or was done by Autodesk personnel and what percentage is expected to be done by the community?
      Freelance BIM Provider at Autodesk Services Marketplace | Linkedin

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Alfredo Medina View Post
        This Wiki-Help idea makes me ask myself these questions:

        Is Autodesk not hiring any more technical writers anymore?
        From now on that the site has been launched, is completing the help an ongoing duty of Autodesk or a duty of the community?
        What percentage of Wiki Help is or was done by Autodesk personnel and what percentage is expected to be done by the community?
        I don't know what our status is on hiring. I guess I could look up what's posted in Careers on our website.

        Not sure there is a "duty" in any case. We, as Autodesker's, are trying to improve the Help internally, and there is an effort in place to do that. But we also know our Community is a very valuable resource, and know that many of you will contribute great things to the Wiki Help that may not otherwise have been considered.

        As for percentages, I have no idea. I would say that the majority of what is on the Wiki now was done by Autodesk. Obviously, we would like to see you all contribute as well.
        Scott D Davis
        Sr. AEC Technical Specialist
        Autodesk, Inc.
        http://bit.ly/aboutsdd

        Comment


          #5
          Yes, but I see this as a continuation of the same trend of recent years, the ecological trend: "we don't print any more books because we want to use less paper", but in between, we hire fewer technical writers, we burn less disks, we write less on the help articles... and now it's like let's leave the community complete the help documents. Is it just a natural transition motivated by changes in the media and the technology, or is it really that the company keeps on cutting costs and giving less in the production of help documents?
          Freelance BIM Provider at Autodesk Services Marketplace | Linkedin

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Gordon Price View Post
            Jeff, I don't think I did. Because I didn't think it was anything negative. I was under the impression that you where saying that Autodesk "as an entity" if you will was going to not allocate official resources in the short term, which I can understand. If no one attempts to add content early on it would be a problem, but if Autodesk as a bureaucracy tries to it would likely be only some of the information we need, and likely delayed too long to be useful. I think Scott's approach is ideal. It is someone "official", but also a small enough effort that results can happen quickly, and user driven which helps focus the effort. To some extent it also allows for an ad hoc wikihelp wishlist. If in fact Scott got no replies at all, it might even suggest that effort to add an official wikihelp wishlist might be misdirected.
            If anything my post gave the wrong impression. My point is that if no one adds anything timely for a month, not "Autodesk", not "The Factory" by which I mean those Autodeskers that are here and elsewhere in quasi-official capacity, and not "Power Users", then it would be a problem. Sorry for the confusion. Actually, just reread our PM thread, and I see that I used the same phrase, but in my own head was using it differently. Doh!

            Gordon
            In our PM conversation I never said, Autodesk "as an entity" was not allocating resources in the short term to adding content to the Wiki. What I did say is, there was a feeling of "wait and see" on the subject of an official documentation "wishlist". I recomended createing a stub page with one or 2 sentences about waht you were looking for and it could be filled out by anyone in the community who had information. This is similiar to the approach taken in other more established Wiki platforms.

            edit: The change has already been made to the Wiki explaining how you can "request" a topic for the Wiki.

            http://wikihelp.autodesk.com/Revit/enu/Community


            What Scott is doing is exactly what Autodesk "as an entity" is encouraging. We have asked our internal subject matter experts and extended teams to add their own information the the wiki platform UA has provided.
            Last edited by JeffH; April 14, 2011, 07:48 PM.
            Jeff Hanson
            Sr. Subject Matter Expert
            Autodesk, Revit - User Experience

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Alfredo Medina View Post
              Yes, but I see this as a continuation of the same trend of recent years, the ecological trend: "we don't print any more books because we want to use less paper", but in between, we hire fewer technical writers, we burn less disks, we write less on the help articles... and now it's like let's leave the community complete the help documents. Is it just a natural transition motivated but changes in the media and the technology, or is it really that the company keeps on cutting costs and giving less in the production of help documents?
              I think you are missing some of the point of publishing User Assistance in a Wiki format. We are acknowledging the fact there are many, many users out there who have a tremendous amount of knowledge about our products. By publishing the UA documents in a wiki platform we give the community a platform where they can share their knowledge more easily. It is one common place where knowledge from a variety of locations can be collected and then more esisily searched.

              We (Autodesk) is not writing or publishing any less than before we have just made it easier for our users to enhance and expand on what we publish and fill in any percieved gaps with their own knowledge. That way the Revit community as a whole can grow and the UA material can be exactly what the community wants them to be.

              In the wiki environment the role of the writer is somewhat changed and they become a "curator" of the knowledge contained in the Wiki. I hope you feel like you can share your knowledge on our wiki and help it grow.
              Jeff Hanson
              Sr. Subject Matter Expert
              Autodesk, Revit - User Experience

              Comment


                #8
                Thanks for the explanation. Yes, I might be looking at it in the wrong way. It is some kind of enhanced forum, with moderator or curators, and contributions from anybody? Are you guys going to incorporate into the Wiki the solutions posted in the Autodesk forums?
                Freelance BIM Provider at Autodesk Services Marketplace | Linkedin

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Alfredo Medina View Post
                  Yes, I might be looking at it in the wrong way. It is some kind of enhanced forum, with moderator or curators, and contributions from anybody??
                  Yes that is basically the idea here. It has the added advantage that the information added to the Wiki pages in the Users Guide can be pulled into our CMS (content management system) and then included in the next version of the Wiki. Pages added in the community area will live on as the Wiki grows. The more member of the community that contribute to the wiki the better. Any and all contributions from anybody are welcome.


                  Originally posted by Alfredo Medina View Post
                  Are you guys going to incorporate into the Wiki the solutions posted in the Autodesk forums?
                  Right now the search functionality in the wiki should be looking at the forum responses and return those in search results. We do not however have a good way to bring those responses directly into the wiki. That is where the "curation" takes place. If a page is updated and point to a forum post for the answer it will be up to the Autodesk UA person assigned to that page to decide how that information gets updated and included in our CMS system for the next version of the Wiki.
                  Jeff Hanson
                  Sr. Subject Matter Expert
                  Autodesk, Revit - User Experience

                  Comment


                    #10
                    So, im going to be the giant negative nancy in this thread. (Anyone surprised?)

                    But its a "searchable help database, that anyone can write to," and it happens to be active INSIDE the Revit Interface???

                    So this is going one of two ways:

                    1. I find a way to defeat it in the configuration settings.
                    2. Im having IT block that entire freakin website, even if it means blocking the Autodesk Domain, and having to file support requests from an isolated workstation.

                    Unless there is a SERIOUS, and i DO mean SERIOUS, QC System in place on these pages, then this is going to get even messier than Seek. Revit is NOT a "one way for all" program, and i- at least, if not others- do not have the luxury of having users "searching" and finding what any Joe wrote up there about how to Import CAD files, explode them, use drafting lines, hide modeled objects, and so on and so forth.

                    I hadnt seen the wiki before this post. But to be sure, ill be looking in to this further before anyone else in the office sees it, LOL.
                    Aaron "selfish AND petulant" Maller |P A R A L L A X T E A M | Practice Technology Implementation
                    @Web | @Twitter | @LinkedIn | @Email

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