Contributing to the Wiki

John Quinn
Wed, 06 Aug 2014 00:45:44 PDT

What I would like to know is how to access all the information on the Wiki.
I recently had Windows Live Mail added to my laptop but it made such a mess
of everything I had it removed.
The one good thing about it was all the bulb information articles downloaded
on to my laptop and I was enjoying reading them.
Now they have all disappeared and I would like this facility back - but how?


-----Original Message-----
From: pbs [] On Behalf Of Mary Sue
Sent: Sunday, 3 August 2014 8:42 AM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: [pbs] Contributing to the Wiki

I would like to point out that in 2003 when we first learned that we could
have a wiki, the thought was that this was a place for people to upload
photos of the plants they were growing so others could see them. It was the
time of slow Internet connections (still happening in rural parts of the
US), not much storage space on web sites or people's computers, and concerns
about viruses that came with attachments. As the one setting the wiki up
with help from Mark McDonough and then Mark Wilcox I decided to organize it
in a way that would allow people to find the photos again at a later date. I
urged people to write something about their photos as well. Some people
wrote more than others. None of us were paid for the time spent adding to
the wiki. Some genera were well described as there were wiki contributors
knowledgeable about them or willing to learn enough to add information. We
had no idea at the time how the wiki would evolve.

Along the way new contributors like Susan Hayek,Jay Yourch, Mike Mace, Nhu
Nguyen and Gastil have added a lot of information about their favorites as
well as how to grow bulbs, the media to use, etc. 
Even though he wasn't an administrator Angelo has added a lot of great
photos of bulbs he saw or grew in Italy, Mary Gerritsen spent hours on
Calochortus, and Oron Peri has added a lot of Eastern European bulbs that
weren't represented on the wiki. Giorgio Pozzi gave hours of his time to set
up the Arisaema pages. Alessandro Marinello added lots of photos of things
we didn't have on the wiki and in the beginning Bill Dijk provided us with
both photos and information. When Jane McGary added to the wiki, she
provided useful text.

And David Pilling has made enormous contributions because of his developer
skills and great ideas. He's added videos, photos of storage organs, and
gotten Lilium experts to contribute an amazing amount of information about
that genus. You can't expect the administrators to have all knowledge about
everything that is on the wiki. When I've added photos for others when they
didn't contribute information for me to add I had to look it up and as we
all know that can be dangerous although I used sources I felt were reliable.
All of that took time. In adding to the wiki we always debated whether it
was better to have a lot of information about just a few things or a little
information about a lot of things. Over the years a huge amount of time (BD-
Before David since he has figured out ways to save people working on the
wiki many hours) was spent adding thumbnails a page at a time, changing the
url of every photo one at a time when the website url changed, etc. It took
me a whole year to make the corrections and changes when we had to change
the wiki software even with help. There just hasn't been time to go back and
add information to previous pages although a number of us have done it when
we were adding other information to those pages. If you look at the wiki
contributors page it looks like a huge number of people are involved in the
process since we always have added the names of people who provided even one
photo or information.…
The reality is that only a few have done most of the work.

Recently David wrote the group asking for volunteers to add to the wiki. In
looking over the recent changes pages I haven't seen many new names so I
expect he didn't get a lot of replies. This list generates an incredible
amount of really useful information that could be added to the wiki. What it
doesn't have are a lot of people to add it. Editing the wiki to add
information like the information suggested by Leo and Peter wouldn't be
hard. You just need to know the password which David or one of the other
wiki administrators can provide (listed on the contact form on the website)
and then you click on edit and add the text, preview how it looks, and save.
The administrators look over the changes so you don't even have to worry
about making a mistake.

Leo has added to the wiki and knows how to do it so could add the text he
suggested. Alberto Castillo frequently gives good information and it usually
is brief. It would be really easy for anyone who has the time and is willing
to add for instance his description of the difference between the bulbs of
Amaryllis belladonna and Lycoris squamigera.

It would be wonderful if some of you who have really useful ideas about how
to improve the wiki would volunteer the time to implement them. I'm sure
everyone would appreciate it.

Mary Sue

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