Open Source Development and Documentation Project

Submitted by Boris Mann on Thu, 10/14/2004 - 02:31.

I've posted about this on my Bryght blog, but also wanted to mention it here.

The Open Source Development and Documentation Project (OSDDP for short) is doing some interesting work in combining open source methodologies and tools to connect students in Purdue's Professional Writing program with the open source community.

Of interest will be their introductory press release:

In a new initiative to foster what Dr. David Blakesley calls "networked
learning," Purdue University students interact with new people and new
technologies to provide valuable open source
documentation. Students in a variety of English courses in the
Professional Writing major will study open source software, talk to its
designers and users, use the software themselves, then write and test
user documentation, help organizations promote their software in the
wider community, and even develop action plans for deploying such
software in new business and academic ventures.

And the introduction on the site:

for the next 8 weeks, the students in my technical writing class will
be creating an end user documentation manual for Drupal 4.5. In the
spring, I hope to have students work on OpenOffice user documentation.
While there are only a few technical writing class offerings in the
program, we anticipate additional sections writing documentation for
other open source apps in the future.

What does this mean for REALNEO? Well, rather than having to write all sorts of end user help and how-to documentation ourselves, we can participate in this effort.

In fact, REALNEO might become a client of this program, engaging them to write a white paper or other custom collateral supporting this effort.

( categories: )

Beautiful collaboration

Excellent, Boris. I'm also working with an extended learning program called H2O at the Harvard Law School that is teaching me lots. These synergies will keep our effort at the leading edge.

Of course, we expect to see CWRU increasingly involved refining our effort, but it sounds like the effort at Purdue has well defined purpose and next steps that fit our needs perfectly. The work at Open University is awesome, as well. Gotta love the open source community, really getting momentum.

<>Are there next steps you recommend I take with Purdue right now - anyone I should contact?

Next steps

I'm making contact with Charles Lowe, a Drupal community member who is one of the organizers of the Purdue project. Check out the OSDDP project site -- it may be that there will be a fit between their students and writing some sort of white paper or other collateral in support of REALNEO (students are looking for projects to work on).

We'll be coordinating on documentation, and a lot of the user guide material will naturally flow into REALNEO. I've put up a guide on different node types (that I'll be posting here as well).

Teaming up with Purdue


I'm checking out the Purdue Open Source Development and Documentation Project right now - see link to OSDDP yourself and comment on this.

<>My position is absolutely we value and  appreciate the  involvement of Purdue on the Drupal and overall open source development and documentation side and in direct collaboration of any sort developing and/or studying impact and benefit of REALNEO - I would love to explore doing a mirror project in Indiana.

Boris - brainstorm with Charles - invite him into REALNEO - welcome him to get in touch with me or ask if he'd like me to get in touch with him