List/ Forum/Wiki

Shoal Creek Succulents
Sun, 16 Nov 2014 13:43:24 PST
It would be interesting to see if PBS polled the group on just that one
item; allow photos in a post or not.  

I didn't know it was an option for this group and would really like to see
pics.  As with emails that are OT; one can just skip viewing pics they don't
want to see.

Thanks to all who have contributed to the topic and asking the question in
the first place.
-----Original Message-----
From: pbs [] On Behalf Of Mary Sue
Sent: Sunday, November 16, 2014 3:24 PM
Subject: [pbs] List/ Forum/Wiki

I'd like to correct with Jane posted. The wiki has always been available as
a place to add photos. You didn't have to be a member of the Pacific Bulb
Society and for that matter not even to the pbs list if you knew someone on
the list who was willing to add your photos. 
When we started the wiki, it was the time of slow internet connections
(still true in rural parts of the United States) and viruses attached to
spam. We decided not to allow attachments for that reason, but still wanted
to have people be able to post photos. 
I was frustrated to find photos on the Internet with no information about
them and thought it would be helpful to have a information about the photos
and a way easily to retrieve them later. And so we settled on the wiki and
asked people who added photos to it to write something about their photos
and add them to a page.

In the beginning a lot of people contributed, but we didn't require a
password and all kinds of bizarre things got uploaded. Mark McDonough and I
spent a lot of time removing these things. When the spam bots discovered a
way to add all kinds of spam to the wiki pages we had to add a password as
spam got added faster than I could restore pages. 
When that wiki was no longer supported, we needed a new one and some people
didn't make the transition.

Learning how to use the wiki has been challenging for some people. 
Once you learn it, adding a new photo only takes a few minutes, but most
people lose interest before they get to that stage. So that has left all the
work to a few people. Before I retired I was spending quite a lot of time
each day helping others, fixing mistakes, adding information sometimes
contributed by others, etc. I expect that David Pilling is doing the same
now. People are often willing to let you copy their photos and add them, but
often these photos come without any information so it's not just a question
of adding them, it's a question of doing research about the photo.

If we had started with a forum or two lists with people sending their photos
as attachments on one, we wouldn't have the wiki now.
So there are trade offs with any decision made.

There is already an outstanding forum for discussing bulbs as many of the
people on this list know as they contribute to it and it is the Scottish
Rock Garden forum and as David Pilling says it has an amazing woman who
manages it. If only we could clone her. The Pacific Bulb Society does not
need to reinvent something that already exists.

More people want to keep the list as it is than change, but people also
would like to share their photos more easily than adding them to the wiki. I
have wondered if there would be a way to make the wiki more accessible. I
personally like having a link to photos. That way I can look at the ones I
am interested and skip others. Sometimes people have sent links to pictures
and posts they have added to the Scottish Rock Garden bulb forum and perhaps
that would be a solution for people who don't wish to learn how to use the
wiki or add photos to one of the free online bulb storage sites (Flickr,
Photobucket, Google Images, etc.) and provide a link.

Having more than one way to communicate about bulbs I think is a good thing.

Mary Sue

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