[Vit-discuss] content refreshness or lack of [was Brainstorming]

David A. Black dblack at wobblini.net
Wed Feb 23 14:40:14 EST 2005


Hi --

On Wed, 23 Feb 2005, Ben Giddings wrote:

> On Feb 23, 2005, at 08:25, David A. Black wrote:
>> I would be cautious about the centralization (physically) of
>> resources, as well as about the notion of "official" resources.
>> Physical centralization doesn't make sense for many things --
>> especially advocacy material, which should be as far-flung as
>> possible, but also documentation and tutorials.  (I can't think of any
>> reason to go to the trouble of moving the online Pickaxe, Why's
>> Poignant Guide, Chris Pine's "Programming through Ruby" site, etc., to
>> a single server; it would just be busy-work).
>> 
>> Similarly, things that are not on the ruby-lang.org server must not be
>> cast in the role of second-rate or unimportant.  This is where the
>> notion of "official" materials can be counter-productive.  The
>> official site should point with pride and joy to the great things that
>> have been done, and continue to be done, around the net on behalf of
>> Ruby.  The community has already outgrown -- or simply not bothered
>> with -- a strict official/non-official division, particularly along
>> server lines.
>> 
>> In short, I'd describe it not as "the official site for Ruby
>> resources", but as "the Ruby homepage, which includes some resources"
>> -- leaving it open-ended.
>
> Ok, but would you agree that there are certain resources that really do 
> belong on the Ruby homepage?

Yes -- principally links to projects and resources that are hosted
elsewhere, plus whatever's hosted there.  I don't think the line
between those two categories is important.

> I really think that certain things *need* to be 
> there, like the Ruby API and standard library docs.  They're one of the first 
> things a newcomer to the language would want to see, and if they're not on 
> the Ruby homepage and up-to-date, a newcomer might not believe they're 
> official.
>
> Sure, not everything Ruby-related needs to go on ruby-lang.org, but I think 
> there should be more there than there is now.  There should be at least 
> enough to convince people that Ruby should be taken seriously.  Newcomers 
> shouldn't *need* to go elsewhere to find important resources.

If people think that having networked, distributed resources relating
to its use and dissemination means that a programming language isn't
serious, then they need to take remedial lessons in Web architecture,
not start studying Ruby :-)  But I really cannot imagine anyone
saying, "This link goes to pragmaticprogrammer.com; I guess Ruby is a
toy."  If there are such people, I certainly wouldn't want to see the
tone and architecture of the Ruby Web presence pitched to their
level.

People will always need to go elsewhere to find important resources,
unless we start defining "important" as "hosted on ruby-lang.org" --
and that, as I've said before, would be completely out of keeping with
how things have played out, and hopefully will continue to play out,
among Ruby programmers everywhere.


David

-- 
David A. Black
dblack at wobblini.net


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