Author Topic: Future of RogueBasin  (Read 72637 times)

PaulBlay

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Future of RogueBasin
« on: July 01, 2009, 09:45:44 AM »
For some time I, and some others, have been concerned about RogueBasin.  The person (people?) with administrator access to the wiki don't appear to be very active (to the extent that I'm not sure who they even are) and there are ongoing problems with the MediaWiki version and wiki settings used.

My greatest worry is that whoever is paying for the domain name might not and the next time I visit it might just not be there.

One possible way forward would be to copy the wiki content to a new wiki hosted elsewhere.  At the least I would be happier if I knew that someone is taking monthly backups or something.

Any suggestions, volunteers, information?

rdc

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2009, 12:20:06 PM »
I use Wikidot for my wiki and I am quite pleased with the system. You can go with either a free site or a pay site. I use the free site and haven't had any problems.

The question though is the content rights on Roguebasin. If it is moved to another site and is challenged, it may be a problem.

ido

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2009, 01:00:33 PM »
Björn Ritzl is the one paying for the domain/hosting, I emailed him and he will hopefully be able to help you.

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2009, 01:01:51 PM »
Björn Ritzl is the one paying for the domain/hosting, I emailed him and he will hopefully be able to help you.

Not Björn Bergstrom ?

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2009, 01:07:24 PM »
I use Wikidot for my wiki and I am quite pleased with the system. You can go with either a free site or a pay site. I use the free site and haven't had any problems.

PBworks was the service I was thinking of, but I haven't actually tried it so I don't have anything invested in the choice.

Quote
The question though is the content rights on Roguebasin. If it is moved to another site and is challenged, it may be a problem.

Articles in RogueBasin are those which are under either the "GNU Free Documentation License 1.2" (most of them) or a modified version that doesn't allow the content to be modified (a handful or two, I guess).  There should be no problem with copying them to another site as long as they remain under the same license.

[EDIT]

As I see it the big problem is the uncertainty.  If we knew that the wiki content was safe and that somebody (or somebodies ;-) was both actively interested in the wiki and had the relevant admin access that would be good enough.

The more minor problems seem to be symptomatic of a lack of interested people with admin access.  Non-ascii characters turning into gibberish, searches that include certain pages causing crashes, crude spam prevention and Delete category pages that rarely getting deleted. 
« Last Edit: July 01, 2009, 01:25:39 PM by PaulBlay »

ido

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2009, 01:44:16 PM »
Not Björn Bergstrom ?

Name changed due to marriage as far as I know.

Same person anyway.

Ex

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2009, 05:53:59 PM »
For some time I, and some others, have been concerned about RogueBasin.  The person (people?) with administrator access to the wiki don't appear to be very active (to the extent that I'm not sure who they even are) and there are ongoing problems with the MediaWiki version and wiki settings used.

My greatest worry is that whoever is paying for the domain name might not and the next time I visit it might just not be there.

One possible way forward would be to copy the wiki content to a new wiki hosted elsewhere.  At the least I would be happier if I knew that someone is taking monthly backups or something.

Any suggestions, volunteers, information?

I'm concerned about this too. I definitely think we need an easy way to backup/mirror roguebasin. Roguebasin has an export page, but it would require typing in the name of every page on Roguebasin, to my knowledge anyway. However, unless there's an easier way to do this, this might be the best option. We could use the export utility to export every page in the wiki, and then migrate that content onto another mediawiki. If only there was some kind of script or program to automate that process...

edit;

Another solution would be having more people who are admins at roguebasin and able to pay roguebasin's bills. Though this would be nice, I think it's not as full of a solution as having the ability to easily backup and mirror Roguebasin. As long as there is only one server hosting a single copy of Roguebasin, the threat of it simply disappearing remains.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2009, 05:56:46 PM by Elig »

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2009, 06:36:31 PM »
I'm concerned about this too. I definitely think we need an easy way to backup/mirror roguebasin. Roguebasin has an export page, but it would require typing in the name of every page on Roguebasin, to my knowledge anyway. However, unless there's an easier way to do this, this might be the best option. We could use the export utility to export every page in the wiki, and then migrate that content onto another mediawiki. If only there was some kind of script or program to automate that process...

It should be relatively easy to do for someone who already has admin access to the (server?)/wiki and knows what they are doing. 

There are 975 pages in RogueBasin (not counting any 'non-page' type content).  That should be doable, even if it has to be done manually (ick!).  Slash (or maybe Z) would probably be the best able to say if there are easier methods (/scripts) available.

Quote
Another solution would be having more people who are admins at roguebasin and able to pay roguebasin's bills. Though this would be nice, I think it's not as full of a solution as having the ability to easily backup and mirror Roguebasin. As long as there is only one server hosting a single copy of Roguebasin, the threat of it simply disappearing remains.

Quite.  For example the ToME wiki lost a lot of content from some sort of data corruption problem.

[EDIT] Technical considerations.

RogueBasin uses MediaWiki.  Apparently the wiki syntax used by wikidot is quite different (although some work has been done on conversion utilities.

PBWorks is apparently also quite different to MediaWiki.

Wikia does use MediaWiki - but may have a worse reputation technically?  Also Wikia is under Creative Commons license so that may cause problems as RogueBasin is under a different license.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2009, 06:45:48 PM by PaulBlay »

Ex

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2009, 07:16:42 PM »
Further support for the idea of an easy way to backup and mirror Roguebasin is the Interactive Fiction archive: http://www.ifarchive.org/. They have many mirrors which help the archive greatly by keeping their bandwidth costs low. This has the added benefit of preventing the disappearance of the ifarchive even if the "main" site goes down.

[EDIT] Technical considerations.

RogueBasin uses MediaWiki.  Apparently the wiki syntax used by wikidot is quite different (although some work has been done on conversion utilities.

PBWorks is apparently also quite different to MediaWiki.

Wikia does use MediaWiki - but may have a worse reputation technically?  Also Wikia is under Creative Commons license so that may cause problems as RogueBasin is under a different license.

Even a copy that required a certain amount of manual or automatic translation would probably be preferable to no copy at all. I'm not sure if the Creative Commons license is compatible with the GNU FDL, but I would suspect it might be. Wikia looks perhaps like the best option, so long as the licenses are compatible.

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2009, 07:28:42 PM »
Further support for the idea of an easy way to backup and mirror Roguebasin is the Interactive Fiction archive: http://www.ifarchive.org/. They have many mirrors which help the archive greatly by keeping their bandwidth costs low. This has the added benefit of preventing the disappearance of the ifarchive even if the "main" site goes down.

Interesting, but more technically advanced than what I'd be able to cope with.  :o

Quote
Even a copy that required a certain amount of manual or automatic translation would probably be preferable to no copy at all. I'm not sure if the Creative Commons license is compatible with the GNU FDL, but I would suspect it might be. Wikia looks perhaps like the best option, so long as the licenses are compatible.

I've been looking through the options available for wiki farms.  I think there are some that are MediaWiki and GNU FDL.  Don't know whether they're any good as well though.

**********************************

Anyhow, to summarize some of the options available:

Option 1: Create a read-only backup at a free wiki farm using MediaWiki.  Update the backup with changed pages every month or so.

Pro
- Content is safe (and everybody can see it's safe ;-).

Anti
- Monthly backup will be a tad fiddly / annoying.
- Does not solve any of the problems with spam, non-ascii characters, etc.

Option 2: Create a backup at a free wiki farm using MediaWiki and allow editing at the new location.

Pro
- Later versions of MediaWiki will (hopefully) cope better with spam, odd characters etc.

Anti
- Keeping the two versions synchronized might be stupidly difficult.

Option 3: Create new 'RogueBasin' at a wiki farm and encourage people to go there instead.

Pro
- Can take advantage of later MediaWiki versions.

Anti
- Lose nice domain name, lose Google ranking, possibly annoy Slash and Bjorn for trying to 'steal' their wiki.

Option 4: Obtain reassurances from those responsible for the current RogueBasin that the wiki content is properly backed up.  Encourage additional admin access users for server / wiki to deal with technical problems.

Pro
- Keep all the current good stuff.

Anti
- Current admin may be too busy with real life and may not want (or be able to) allow other people at the admin level required.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2009, 07:31:07 PM by PaulBlay »

Ex

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2009, 08:17:59 PM »
There's got to be a way to automate the process of exporting and importing a wiki. I think a variant of option 1 is the best. If we found a way to automate the process of exporting and importing wikis, we could automatically mirror RogueBasin every month or so onto a host of different mediawiki based wiki farms.

Isn't there an easier way to import and export wikis? It'd be nice if there was just a link somewhere that contained a zipped copy of the entire roguebasin. Don't admins have more import and export options for mediawikis? Perhaps if someone (say for instance PaulBlay) was given admin at roguebasin, they might be able to export the wiki say once a month, and post a link to a copy of it on roguebasin as a backup/mirror copy of the archive. Then, other people could download the entire archive if they wanted, or easily mirror the archive on other mediawikis.

Definitely, these mirrors would need to be read only, unfortunately. It would simply be too difficult to constantly merge different versions of the same wiki.

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2009, 08:20:45 PM »
Isn't there an easier way to import and export wikis?
I'm sure there is, but I daresay it requires admin rights and possibly a bit of technical expertise.

Slash

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2009, 05:16:16 AM »
I understand everybody's concern. The history loops again (see http://angband.oook.cz/rgrd.php?showpost=79040), and most facts remain true from back then.

Björn has been away from the scene from a while, which is understandable. I noticed he put some google ads and a paypal donate option into the page, which I guess were being used to upkeep the hosting costs, (although I wonder how profitable those has been :P)

I currently own the roguebasin.com domain (currently pointing to roguelikedevelopment.org), but I dont have a hosting plan big enough for roguebasin; it would also be probably be a BIG work to import all existing content.

I hope we can reach Björn so he can consider handing over the mantainance of roguebasin to a new admin staff, I volunteer again for any tech work needed.

I agree it is not cool to feel nobody is minding the store, after all work invested there :)

I am not too keen on using a wiki farm, as that's what we had first, and we discovered it was best to have full control over the content..

PaulBlay

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2009, 05:32:24 AM »
I am not too keen on using a wiki farm, as that's what we had first, and we discovered it was best to have full control over the content..

Yarr*, I know what you mean, but frankly I can't afford a decent internet connection nevermind proper hosting.  Perhaps a wiki farm might make a good temporary backup spot and test ground.

* Feeling a little pirate-y today.

Ex

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Re: Future of RogueBasin
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2009, 05:36:20 AM »
For anyone who hasn't seen yet, Duerig has created a set of scripts to automate the process of exporting roguebasin. He's also included a tutorial describing exactly how to use it, and it comes with a current backup copy of roguebasin. Get it here: http://www.xmission.com/~tyrecius/roguebasin-backup-2009-07-02.zip

Post:
http://roguebasin.roguelikedevelopment.org/index.php?title=RogueBasin_talk:Community_Portal#Wiki_backup_.2F_duplicate.3F

Edit; I absolutely agree that the wikifarm isn't an ideal solution, but I think that this backup script could be put to some very good use. We could maintain a torrent of the most recent backup of Roguebasin, for instance. The backup would only need to be updated every so often, maybe every other month or less, and then as long as the torrent had sufficient seeds, it'd stay alive :D
« Last Edit: July 02, 2009, 05:38:35 AM by Elig »