Welcome to the Summer of Documentation!

Blender documentation projects, tutorials, translation, learning & teaching Blender

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ton
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Welcome to the Summer of Documentation!

Post by ton »

This forum is the starting point to discuss the organization and execution of the "Summer of Documentation" project.

The Blender Foundation offers 10 grants of 500 EUR each for people providing a substantial addition to our documentation online.

Timothy (timmeh) Wakeham has volunteered to coordinate this project. During the next few days we expect to fully define the conditions for participation.. stay tuned!

Some dates:

May 19: project outline defined, start submitting proposals
June 10: closing date for proposals
June 15: announcement of the granted proposals


-Ton-

[Update]

With the Blender Summer of Documentation (BSoD, not of the Windows kind), we are aiming to encourage the substantial addition of online, user-level documentation.

Currently, we are in the organisation stages, but we do have a few guidelines already set.

- We will be aiming for strictly user-level documentation, that is no code doc projects.

- Ultimately, we'd like these projects to be included in print materials, so they are to be text/image based, no video tuts this time round, sorry.

- We need docs to be released under an open license such as Creative Commons-attribute or Open Content (http://download.blender.org/documentati ... icense.txt

- We are aiming for high quality documentation, and will require proof of your ability to contribute this. This will likely be in the form of past experience with Blender(other project?) documentation and displaying a very good knowledge of the area/featureset in which you are planning to document.

- Proposals are to be submitted, then ranked by a team of doc 'mentors, who will ultimately decide which proposals are accepted. They will also examine the end product and decide which projects have been successful in delivering what they promise

We have decided that, to unify the project, we will have a theme. At this point, there are two options:

a) Blender Basics Bootcamp - this will involve detailed introductions to the main parts of Blender, possibly graduating into some more advanced topics.

b) Updates since 2.3 - detailed documentation of a specific set of features in Blender, which may include more advanced topics, aiming towards documenting major features since the 2.3 manual, possibilities such as softbodies, fluids, new animation system, etc etc.

That's all for now, we'll keep updating as more details are finalised.


[edit] Anyone who is wishing to email me regarding this project, please send to tim.wakeham@gmail.com as it happens I had a number of emails in an inbox I very rarely check, and was lucky to notice. Thanks

-Tim

beepmaster

blender summer of docs, translation, project

Post by beepmaster »

Hello, it's my first post here,

About translation :
May I help in French translation (Mother language), I teach and write user-friendly documentation, I manage few educationnal project near Paris.
Video Tutorials may be nice for a graphics oriented software like Blender.

One idea :
May be a Blender Tutorial day all over the world with connected teachers to answer people (webcam and software like msn/gaim) may be a good idea.

Do not hesitate to contact me,

Best regards,

Cedric.
contact at beepmaster dot com

ton
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Post by ton »

Yes, what we forgot to mention: it would probably work best when people can work in their own language. The quality of text would benefit from it a lot. What we then need to find is people willing to translate this... so it would be a good idea to have submissions in from both translators as authors.

The grant then should be split up I guess... or maybe, for translation, we can provide a nice extra. Needs to be thought over. :)

greg57
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Location: Istanbul

Post by greg57 »

Hi,
I have a background in journalism and computer sciences and I'm currently Information Officer in an UN project. I have been a Blender user for a few months now. If the material is worth it, I might be interested in doing a commented translation of a tutorial as my MA Dissertation (I am French, based in Istanbul, doing a distance course with the University of the West of England in Bristol).
You are all doing a great job.
(but could anybody fix the import of Autocad .dxf files ? :P ;) )

Toni Grappa
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Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 8:59 pm
Location: Germany

Post by Toni Grappa »

I´am a german mediendesigner and working with Blender since 4 years. 8 months ago I started to write and design my own „user guide for beginners“, because I was and I`am still disapointed about the fact, that Carsten Wartmanns „Blender Buch“ was published six years ago and never was updated. If there is any need for professionell text editing (including grafic editing / without editorial office), it would be a great pleasure for me to offer my help.

Unfortunately english is not my favourite language.

Toni Grappa
Last edited by Toni Grappa on Tue May 16, 2006 8:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

BogdanOancea
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Re: Welcome to the Summer of Documentation!

Post by BogdanOancea »

Soo... just translating the whole documentation and the QuickStart guide in my language wouldn't qualify? :?

MikeMLP
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Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 3:56 am

Post by MikeMLP »

Greetings!

I have been a Blender hobbyist for about four years, and I have been closely following its developments since I first learned of it. I am currently pursuing a B.A. in English at the University of Connecticut, and have wanted to help improve Blender's documentation for some time.

About a year ago, I posted to the DocBoard with an offer to help, but found myself daunted by the use of DocBook XML, and by the project managers' requests to "pick a section in need of work and rewrite it."

While the move to Wiki is sure to make it easier to submit work (I have not yet had a chance to check it out), I still think that it would be difficult to write a section of documentation on a part of blender that I know very little about, in part due to the lack of complete documentation. My knowledge of any specific "undocumented" portion of Blender would have been limited to the releaselogs, the mailing lists, and any user-submitted tutorials.

As a result, I would hardly find myself in a position to write authoritatively on the less-documented sections of Blender, unless in close communication with the individuals responsible for coding these sections, as they are the only ones who know for sure not only how things work, but why they work as well.

I therefore submit that the best area for me to contribute would be in the editing (for clarity, grammar, spelling, and documentation standards adherence) of submissions, although I may be willing to write sections myself provided the proper guidance from those more familiar with the code.

Please let me know if I can be of assistance.

MikeMLP

Michael(dot)Roy1(at)gmail(dot)com

greylica
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Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2006 10:18 pm

I can Help with documentation if you need

Post by greylica »

I can already contribute with the docs if someone give me what I have to do and help blender users all around the world.

bullx
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Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 9:25 pm

Post by bullx »

if you are still in dubt between choice "a" and "b"
a) Blender Basics Bootcamp - this will involve detailed introductions to the main parts of Blender, possibly graduating into some more advanced topics.

b) Updates since 2.3 - detailed documentation of a specific set of features in Blender, which may include more advanced topics, aiming towards documenting major features since the 2.3 manual, possibilities such as softbodies, fluids, new animation system, etc etc.
i prefer the second one better, in my opinion documentation about "basic" stuffs is already present and at a quite good level on the web and existing manuals, instead powerfull features like cloth simulations, fluids, stride bone, new kind of bones, etc has already some documentation but could be better explained

LetterRip
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Post by LetterRip »

tim,

thanks for taking the lead on this.
a) Blender Basics Bootcamp - this will involve detailed introductions to the main parts of Blender, possibly graduating into some more advanced topics.
I think this is a good idea, I'd recommend perhaps a slight split with 9 of the proposals here, and 3 to shore up the weaknesses in the core manual. In particular finding knowledgable individuals on the core of the animation system.
b) Updates since 2.3 - detailed documentation of a specific set of features in Blender, which may include more advanced topics, aiming towards documenting major features since the 2.3 manual, possibilities such as softbodies, fluids, new animation system, etc etc.
If the 'changes since 2.3' some major projects - particle hair, modifiers, fluids, hard body dynamics are already well documented as are the modeling tools. Stuff in CVS and the animation tools for 2.41 are really the big missing pieces (although soft bodies could certainly use a bit more docs).

LetterRip

cekuhnen
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Post by cekuhnen »

i would love to help out the only problem is that you can see from my writing that i am german. i write a german style english.

can somebody afterwards go over the text to fix thse problems?

claas

timmeh
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Location: Brisbane, Australia

Post by timmeh »

Wow such a good response in just the time that I have been asleep, it's great to see people lining up to be involved.

As Ton mentioned something that we did not bring up in the initial post was the need for translators for those who do not speak/write English natively. The way that I see this working, is that you team up with your translator for the duration and they will constantly be in contact with you ensuring that we get correct translation. At this point we're not sure how this will work grant-wise, but we will let you all know.

So yes, everyone interested in translation, please make yourself known to us so that we can compile a list of translators for when the projects start.

BigdanOancea, that's correct, the project must be new documentation.

LetterRip, which parts of the core documentation do you consider to be weak? Have we a set date for next release yet? I dont like the idea of documenting features that are only in CVS, and not in a release, of course that's not an issue if next release is before the end of the project.

Also where is documentation for the things like fluids, particle hair etc? I know of all the general one page post threads with "tutorials" but I've not seen 'real' docs, remembering our aim here is to provide authorative, detailed documentation, these a core features, that haven't been properly doc'd imo.

cekuhenkl, as we've mentioned now, we are expecting people to write in their native language and will organise something with translators

-=Sensei=-
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Joined: Tue May 16, 2006 4:02 am

Great idea

Post by -=Sensei=- »

Hi,

Great idea. :P Time permitting I hope to contribute.
Just an idea for Blender Basics, but is there any way to reuse the intro to 3D I did for the Game Kit manual?

Sensei

LetterRip
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Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 7:03 am

Post by LetterRip »

Timmeh,

the rigging (bendy bones, constraints, IPOs and expressions), weighting (envelope, paint based), and posing (ghosting, new faster methods) have radically changed/improved from the pre 2.40/2.41 manual. Also in CVS there is the groups and layers work for armature. Then see the list of improvements for 2.42

http://mediawiki.blender.org/index.php/ ... s/Notes242

That doesn't include everything - the additions from April and May are missing but is 90% of the key changes since 2.41 (I'll have April and May in there later today - most of which has been bug fixes).

Regarding release date - probably official testing builds by end of the month, probably release middle of next month, but I don't think anything has been officially decided. Only items to yet be added is some patches and stuff that Ton wants to finish up regarding the renderer. I don't think the changes would impact documenters much though.

So release could easily be out before the documentation actually begins being done, or if not would be so shortly after it begins.
Also where is documentation for the things like fluids, particle hair etc? I know of all the general one page post threads with "tutorials" but I've not seen 'real' docs, remembering our aim here is to provide authorative, detailed documentation, these a core features, that haven't been properly doc'd imo.
http://mediawiki.blender.org/index.php/ ... Simulation
http://mediawiki.blender.org/index.php/ ... ticle_Hair
http://mediawiki.blender.org/index.php/ ... ard_Bodies

LetterRip

blendix
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Post by blendix »

timmeh wrote:I dont like the idea of documenting features that are only in CVS, and not in a release, of course that's not an issue if next release is before the end of the project.
I disagree, it's important to release with all new features documented, and a nice goal to aim for. The only way to do that is to document projects only in CVS. Of course they would need to be stable, but we're nearly in feature freeze at this point.

Locked