Open and Shared



I had a meeting with Indy Johar at Hub Westminister and the project has now broadened in scope as well as narrowed. I had elements of this plan in the back of my mind but I have now been advised to bring it all to the forefront along with a new structure.

The idea that it is not open if it is not shared/sharable.

The goal is now to develop what might be the evolution of the wiki, within the context of instructions for open source appropriate technology before expanding to other fields. A system of multifaceted documentation, which tackles the fundemental question “How much documentation is necessary before it can truly be considered open?” and considers of use of the instructions in conditions ranging from extreme scarcity to abundence. I am terming this Appropriate Documentation.

The end goal is to develop tools, conventions and potentially a platform that allows the several types of instructional documentation, ranging from videos to printouts, and their various revisions, translations and source material,  to exist cohesively in an open, collaborative friendly, decentralised, but non-fragmented environment.

A tall order. So where to begin. It begins at the same place the original project began. With one good example of multifaceted documentation. Then another, and another until we have a few good examples. Whilst building these examples we analyse the process of building this level of documentation and break it down  into component parts, so that the next step of building the framework that future documentation will sit in begins with an understanding of the complexities that is nested in the real world as opposed to the conceptual. Then comes the testing of the system by building a few more examples.

This is a two team approach, the platform team and the experiment team. The experiment team experiments in building documentation and the results are fed to the platform team, they both define it all fit within a logical framework. The platform team then builds the backend on which this should all sit. Both team work at the same time so that lessons from the next example are incorporated into the backend as it evolves.

So this is the new documentation project, many of the old considerations still stand. The objective to make documentation a crucial part of any open-hardware budget still stands. It now becomes a case of lowering the entrance thresh-hold.

New project quote, “Things are only open if they are shareable”.

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