The SMF Documentation Team thanks you for offering to help us improve the SMF Online Manual. We appreciate your willingness to give of your time to do so.
There are a few things you should read before you begin. Hopefully, you will find the following information helpful as you embark on the glorious and exciting journey that is documentation. If you have any questions regarding the following information, please don't hesitate to contact a Documentation Team member. We're here to help you.What exactly are the Doc Helpers?
The SMF Online Manual is a wiki which any member in good standing of the SMF community can edit. This means our documentation is written by the SMF community for the SMF community. Anybody can be a Doc Helper. If you want, you can join the Doc Helpers group from your profile page
. But you don't have to do that to help.
Doc helpers are people who volunteer their time to work on the SMF Online Manual. Sometimes, they correct documents or rewrite them. Sometimes, they update documents or produce new ones to fill in missing documentation. Ultimately, the Doc Helpers keep the manual up to date and error free. Members of the SMF documentation team are just Doc Helpers with yellow badges and a few administrative tools up their sleeves.What can I do?
The answer is "pretty much anything."
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
- Proofread & Correct a Document
- Update a Document
- Rewrite a Document
- Write a New Document
- Fix Dead Links
- Assist Other Doc Helpers
If you want to discuss anything to do with writing or improving documents, or improving the doc-writing skills of the Doc Helpers, please discuss it at The Documentation Help boardOkay, I know what I want to do. Now what?
With a couple of caveats:
- If the document says "Other Languages" at the top, please don't edit without discussing it first. These are the "help tab" documents. Changing them will affect the experience of thousands of SMF users around the world, every time they use the "Help" button.
- Please do not make major rewrites without discussion, especially for the pages listed in the Main Page. These documents are laid out to show things in the same order as the different parts of the SMF forum show them. Changes to these documents could cause confusion.
If you want to ask a few questions first, find us at The Documentation Help board
. If you are new to wiki editing, please read the new editors guide
at the wiki. And please don't use &
in wiki article titles. It confuses the webserver.Corrections and Dead Links
If you want to fix grammar and spelling, and fix dead links, please fix away. Please refer to the Documentation Guidelines
, and ask at The Documentation Help board
if you have any questions.What if I get stuck?
Work with each other on the Documentation Guidelines
. Ask a doc team member. Send a PM, if you have to.Do you have any advice?
- The online documentation goes on a wiki that anyone is free to edit. Don't contribute unless you are prepared for your contributions to be edited mercilessly by others, without your permission.
- Doc Team submissions are often criticized and edited just as heavily as everyone elses
- Take as much time as you need. There are no deadlines. We want quality documents, not documents created quickly.
- Do your research, double check, and triple check.
- If someone corrects or comments on your document, do not take it personally. Accept it as constructive criticism and learn from it. No one is perfect.
- Learn the Documentation Guidelines
- Stick around long enough, work hard enough, and you may just find yourself with a gold badge as the newest member of the Documentation Team.
Many thanks to B for the original of this document