Thorf wrote:Looking back over this thread and my other bibliographies, I can't help but wonder if it wouldn't be better to set up a Wiki on my site to do this stuff. In fact a Wiki could perhaps be great for the whole Atlas idea. Eventually I want it to be a PDF, but that's still years away at this point.
I think it may be worth hooking up with Anna Meyer (the woman who is doing the Atlas of the Flanaess project) or at least taking a look at how she is arranging her stuff.
She has a website called Atlas of the Flanaess
. That website is not a wiki, but I love the way that she has made an area maps page
which shows each of her individual maps in geographical context. Regardless of what you use (wiki, CMS, or HTML website with picture links) I think that you could get some ideas on the organisation there.
Like you, she has been working on this for years (20 years IIRC). (Her maps are 3D by the way. That is why they look a bit different to other maps at first.)
Unlike you (at least I don't think you are doing this) she is making a series of identically sized maps essentially chopping the GH map into a series of "pages" that will end up in a PDF (or perhaps printed) book. I'm still not entirely sure what she is going to do with all the map pages that are in the sea. (I'm hoping that some canon or fanon can be found that gives the locations of the places where aquatic elves and other undersea races live.)
She is also going to do a set of realm maps
, but she has put that side of the project on hold, as recently she has been accelerating her area maps. But that page shows a couple of maps at the moment. (I'm not sure a full set would fit to be honest. You can get a rough idea of how long the page might be if tons of nations were on it and the maps were shown with the same level of detail and information.)
The thing that has speeded things up a bit for Anna (as far as I can tell) is that, as well as talking about the maps on forums, she has also set up a Facebook page for her own maps (Greyhawk Maps - by Anna
) and a Facebook group, which was originally just for her own maps, but is now for all Greyhawk maps (Flanaess Geographical Society
). From what I can see, the FGS group especially, has pulled in a lot of other map makers and Anna now throws up mostly finished maps and lets other experts point out the errors and omissions. I think the feedback she gets from others (along with the alternative maps that go up alongside hers) has allowed Anna to reduce the amount of time she spends looking for her own errors and finish maps much faster than she did a few years back. I almost can't keep up with her new maps now!
I'm not saying you should move to Facebook, as I think that having the threads here is great, but if you ever want to use FB to hook up with other Mystara cartographers, let me know and I'll invite all the people I've got on my Mystara fan list.
Thorf wrote:Come to think of it, a Wiki could also be a great place to present my finished maps, as a less forum-orientated version of my posts in the Geographical Mapping sub-forum. I wouldn't want to replace those posts, because they provide invaluable places for the community to work together gathering up all the relevant info related to each map. But it would make sense as a replacement for my current mystara.thorf.co.uk, which is practically devoid of organisation in its current form.
One way to arrange something like a wiki (to complement, rather than compete with, this forum) would be to arrange the wiki however you need to and then have an "official thread" over here at The Piazza, for each map. That would allow you to use the wiki for various types of navigational aids, and still get all the benefits of a discussion forum (that you have right now). Each thread could then have a link to the wiki page in the first post (as well as thumbnails and anything else you want to do).
And if you do link a wiki to the forum, you can lock that wiki down (and only let in editors you know are not spammers). Spammers will (eventually) attack any unprotected and unpatrolled wiki. If you don't start off with an anti-spam strategy, you will end up chasing your tail trying to get rid of the blighters. (Another important reason for locking down your wiki is that you don't want some numpty uploading TSR PDFs there, while you are not looking and causing you legal problems.)
Thorf wrote:Can anyone point me to appropriate Wiki software I could add to my site? David, perhaps?
I'm sure you already know there is more than one type of wiki software, but you may not realise that each type of software has different markup code (in the same way that different forums use different BB code for marking bold, italics, hyperlinks and so on). WikiIndex lists 120 different Wiki Engines
I'm a fan of MediaWiki
(which is the wiki engine that is used by Wikipedia). But that is partially because I started out on Wikipedia and am used to the markup style and the way that you can navigate around the wiki. MediaWiki is actually built by Wikipedia (as well as being used by it) and that means that you know that, so long as Wikipedia exists, you are going to be able to get support for MediaWiki.
Other people dislike MediaWiki, as it uses SQL to make it work. Ashtagon is one of those people. She thinks that DokuWiki
is easier to maintain. I'm not sure how well DokuWiki supports hosting of images (which is something that would be essential for a map wiki) but take a look at the image page on DokuWiki's documentation
to see if you can work with it. (A quick skim read makes me think that you could host images and even PDFs on a DokuWiki wiki.)
I have my wiki on a wiki farm
, so did not need to worry about installing software and that sort of thing. But I have come to realise that was a mistake (as the owners of the wiki farm are trying to do things with my content that I don't like
If you fancy the ease if the wiki farm concept, but don't want to trust a company that might do dodgy things with your content, you could look at the Mystara Wiki
(Cyclopedia Mystara). This wiki is owned/operated by a member of the Mystara community (and also provides space for Havard's Blackmoor content). Cyclopedia Mystara allows a variety of Mystara projects to share the one wiki, so you would need to put all of your work in something called a "namespace
". They use DokuWiki software, so you could look around, see how it works and then decide if you want to go with them or go it alone.
If you do go it alone, you will have a lot more control, but will need to be learning a lot of technical things. That might eat up a lot of your spare time. And if you ever move servers, you will have to do a lot of work to get any sort of wiki migrated.