Phase 1 Draws to a Close

by evoeges

This week, my work bounced all over the place (in the best way possible). I’ve been finishing up the last of my interviews (I still have a few scheduled for next week). It’s great to see all of the information coming together into a very comprehensive overview of user/developer/implementer/contributer interaction with documentation.

This week, I’ve also been sorting through the existing pages of the OpenMRS wiki and roughly sorting them into three categories:

  • Extensive work needed: these are the pages that are very out of date, or have very little (if any information) and will need to be heavily worked on to bring up to speed. For these, the module will need to be downloaded and run, and the code will need to be looked at.
  • Some work needed: these are the pages that have fairly basic information already, though perhaps not organized and missing some components. These pages don’t need as much work, but maybe still some hands on module-use or a glance at the code to fully update.
  • Comprehensive: these pages are great examples of documentation, and have been pointed out by members of the community or follow the requirements they’ve discussed. The HTML form entry page is the best example. Perhaps some minor changes will be needed, but for the most part, these pages are spot-on.

Of course, these divisions are fairly rough and some changes will be made, but for now it’s useful to wrap my head around the documentation that’s out there and the work that needs to be done.

I’ve also been brainstorming the best ways to show of the information I’ve been collecting. I’ve read through a collection of design and graphic design e-books from my school library. I’ve been focusing in on infographics as a useful way to coalesce, synthesize and disseminate what I’ve learned. A simple infographic can go a long way in concisely but precisely showing what’s important about documentation. It can be given to any newcomers who are interested in documentation, as well as existing community members. It’s obviously not the finale of what I’ve been working on, but it is a useful tool that’s a natural byproduct of my work to this point. To this end, I’ve also been familiarizing myself with different types of infographics, and the thought processes behind them; what information? why this information? how should it be displayed? what is the intent? Online tutorials for planning and specific programs (including inkscape) have been on my plate for the week.

To that end, I’ll be putting up a few of my rough drafts in the coming days, as soon as they become blog-worthy.