Forums: Index > Watercooler > Wiki Books

Wikipedia has this cool new (to me) feature: Wiki Books. Essentially, you can make a selection of pages, order them, and print them as a PDF (or have them printed and bound). I'd say this an ideal extension to Familypedia for creating a perfect Christmas gift for an elderly uncle.

I have not yet looked at the templates, so I don't know how much work it is to transplant them. Anyone any experience? rtol 12:25, September 29, 2009 (UTC)

Yes. I have been using Wiki books friendly templates and design techniques. This means that users should employ CSS styles as much as possible in their templates and any special formatting. For example, things like "edit facts" should not appear in the PDF file. The way that it disappears if it it has a CSS style that where display can be set to off in print mode. This is an enhancement for phase two, but what you can do in the meantime is use class statements on your divs, spans and tables rather than style statements. Text should not be marked up with direct html like strong or small. Instead they should use a span with a class. No problem mocking something up using span or div style="..." then constructing a class with the same style later. The indirection is a pain, but the benefits will be especially nice.
CSS classes also influences how well our material can be used on other devices, such as with smaller screens, or generating YouTube slideshows... you name it. So using CSS unlocks the multi medium publishing paradigm that has been promised since the rise of SGML in the 1980s. Actually, I was professionally involved in promotion of this approach since the 80s. (Okay okay... I'm old).
Anyway, regarding inventing new CSS class's: We will be making far less work for ourselves if we leverage wikipedia's robust set of CSS classes designed with Wikibooks in mind. So please look at the what wikipedia uses and try to use them. We are currently using en wikipedia CSS classes, with minor styling differences to reflect our parchment colour theme. I haven't updated them in a while, so if anything is missing, feel free to contact me. Of course admins can add CSS classes themselves- those who want to take the lead on this, feel free. My only opinion is that we stay simpatico with wikipedia CSS design patterns and not fall into the Not Invented Here trap that so many wikis indulge in. There is a mountain of work to do and we don't need to make any more for ourselves. We should leverage the good work that has already been done at WP regarding message boxes and so on. ~ Phlox 17:05, September 29, 2009 (UTC)