Technique interpretation website idea.

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Craig Shackleton
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Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Craig Shackleton » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:13 am

I have an idea for a useful format for posting technique interpretations and making them available to the public, and allowing reasonable discussion while maintaining readability and usability.

Here are the problems I see with the way these things happen now.

Someone publishes a book or website or whatever with their interpretation of something described in a manuscript. The format does not allow for discussion, development and understanding are stymied, and in some cases updates are difficult to create.

or

Someone proposes an interpretation on a forum. Someone else counters it and flames engulf the thread. Eventually it turns into 40 pages of bile with little bits of useful discussion peppered in. Someone else asks about the technique on the internet, and no one wants to discuss it, and at best the new comer is directed to try and wade through the mess.

or

Someone proposes an interpretation on a forum. It goes unnoticed. Later someone else proposes another interpretation on the same or another forum. It also goes unnoticed. The two authors could, with meaningful discussion, develop a better interpretation, but neither knows the other exists, nor does anyone else int eh community working on these projects.

or

Someone comes up with a good interpretation, but they are so sick of flame-wars on the internet that they won't even bother to post it. Either they are right and no one else ever sees their idea, or they are wrong but since they can't engage in meaningful discussion, they never develop their ideas, or something in the middle.

etc.

So how do we fix this?

I have an idea, but not the requisite skills to generate it. I believe the pieces all exist, but need to be brought together.

What I propose is a site that is a little bit like a blog, a little bit like a wiki, and a little bit like a book review portion of a bookstore.

Users can generate a post linked to a general wiki-like index. Their post proposes their interpretation like a blog post, and they can link video and images if they want.

Other users can comment on their post, but the original poster is the sole moderator of that blog. They can ignore and suppress non-constructive flames, they can answer questions and leave the Q&A live, or they can edit their original post to incorporate their responses to the comments.

Other users can also create their own interpretation of the same technique and they are linked from the same index, and they have the same power over their own interpretation post.

All users can rate any and all interpretations based on usefulness or correctness as they see it. Overall ratings determine the ranking of technique interpretations on the central index.

There are overall moderators as well, who can intervene in certain circumstances. The main things that overall moderators would act against is ad hominem or similar attacks on interpretive posts. In other words, you can create an alternative interpretation page to one you disagree with, but you can't create an alternate interpretation page and use it to insult another user.

I'm sure this idea needs some tweaking, and as I said, I don't have the IT skills to build this. However, I think it's a step above what's happening now, and I really believe that the individual pieces are all out there.

How can we make this happen?

Does anyone else want to make this happen?

How can we make this even more betterer?

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Jake Norwood
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Jake Norwood » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:30 am

It's funny you bring this up. We were just talking about doing something similar (but not quite as ambitious) as this via the Wiktenauer's technique pages. To make it work it would need a "captain" of sorts to monitor it, moderate it, QC it, etc. It's not something that Mike or Ben would be likely to be able to do.

So...volunteers?

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Ben Floyd
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Ben Floyd » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:34 am

I like it. I've exprienced many of those things...though probably not as much because I haven't posted a lot. I've read my fair share of it though. One of the reasons I don't post a lot is I haven't found it overly constructive in the past. I'm trying to post more about the things I'm thinking about now though.
Last edited by Ben Floyd on Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:03 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Craig Shackleton
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Craig Shackleton » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:42 am

I volunteer to moderate and help with quality control etc, but I think it would be better to have someone with actual applicable technical skills at the wheel. I'll do as much as I can.

I did know that there was a plan for some form of Wiktenauer interpretation set up, which was part of why I've been thinking about this. Plus I had a drive to southern Ohio and back with a like-minded person to brainstorm with this past weekend.

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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Ben Michels » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:54 am

The problem with doing something like this on Wiktenauer is that it does not allow for easily moderated discussion, nor does it allow for the linking together of video discussions with their own separate responses or even the ability to vote up or down quality interpretations or discussions that I know of.

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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Ben Floyd » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:58 am

I'm willing to help as well. I think something like that would be very helpful.
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John Harmston
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby John Harmston » Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:50 am

What I suggested on the call last night was to create threads on this forum, each dedicated to a different technique. We would maybe just have 1 or 2 going at a time in order to maximize participation and keep everyone a little more focused. People would have the opportunity to post videos, links, and write-ups of their interpretation or questions. Then, after the discussion had run its course an editor would go through to consolidate and organize the information, posting their edited version to the thread. After feedback, either the editor or another volunteer would format it for inclusion in the Wiktenauer. Included in the wiki article would be general info about the technique, links to all mention of that technique in the various manuals, different interpretations of that technique (along with the supporting "arguments" for that interpretation), and more.

The idea being that lots of people don't feel like they have the time or technical know-how to use a Wiki, but are happy to devote time to posting on a forum.

Ben Michaels was going to produce a brief write-up of how he originally viewed the Technique pages working, and then I was going to start methodically posting threads on different techniques. If someone wants to take over this entire project, then I am all for it. In addition to more great ideas on what the Technique pages should include, we need the following types of volunteers, I believe:

- Project Lead
- Technique Moderators/Facilitators
- Participants
- Editors
- Formaters

This way, rather than having to make a new site from scratch for this project, we use this forum to do the heavy lifting initially, and post the results on the Wiktenauer.
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby John Harmston » Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:54 am

During the review process is when we could use a polling system (built into this forum) to suss out the most popular interpretations. I don't think we would ever single out one particular technique as THE proper interpretation, but rather we would maybe list them in the Wiktenauer in order of "popularity" to give some context to the page?
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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Ben Michels » Wed Jun 15, 2011 7:03 am

I can do the importing to Wiktenauer myself. Especially if we're only going to be focusing on one or two techniques at a time, that won't be any kind of prohibitive time requirement.

I can just put the brief write-up here. In their basic form, the technique pages were going to have three sections:
1) Summary that talks about the basic idea of the technique that is consistent across most or all of the major sources, the masters that include it either in picture or text form, the manuals it is included in and some other general stuff specific to each. This would be displayed as both a text summary and an infobox on the right side of the screen similar to how a master or manual page looks now.

2) Excepts from all relevant manuals for the technique. For instance, the Zornhau page would display the zornhau sections of the manuals in individual expandable tables. This section would grow based on how often new translations become available.

3) Video section for people to post their interpretational videos.

4) In addition to those three, as we spoke about last night, a section with links to various notable discussions on forums about the technique.


So these threads that will be created for each technique will provide most, if not all, of the information for #1 above, videos for #3 and a start for #4. #2 is already pretty simple in that all I have to do is copy those sections from the manual pages and format them a bit.

As for listing all of the different interpretations on the Wiktenauer, I would be against doing so in text form. I think you'll find some people get so hung up on a tiny little detail that it'll end up being qualified as a 'different interpretation'. If we're going to display interpretation-by-popularity, I would rather it be done by ordering the videos in the video section. This both requires that someone really show their interpretation, rather than just type it out, and allows for people that wern't involved in the original discussion to get a better idea of what they intend.

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Re: Technique interpretation website idea.

Postby Ben Floyd » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:27 am

Ben Michels wrote:As for listing all of the different interpretations on the Wiktenauer, I would be against doing so in text form. I think you'll find some people get so hung up on a tiny little detail that it'll end up being qualified as a 'different interpretation'. If we're going to display interpretation-by-popularity, I would rather it be done by ordering the videos in the video section. This both requires that someone really show their interpretation, rather than just type it out, and allows for people that wern't involved in the original discussion to get a better idea of what they intend.


To piggieback on this, another good reason to go the video route is one of time/space. If you posted 30 detailed bit-by-bit interpretations, it makes the entire process tedious to see them all in a timely manner and to figure out what each means. Also, they would not make for a space efficent layout.

Another reason for video, of course, is to limit other's interpretation of your interpretation. You know, because the writers of the manuals didn't have video, we now come up with 9001 different ways to do the same thing based on the same writing.
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"A poor Stück will be executed by an ingenious mindful person much more usefully in the work, than the best one will be executed by a fool."


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