Iron Giant Template Site Help - default-template-v2
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suefsuef wrote on 14 Oct 2009 19:18

default-template-v2 featuring "How to set up your new site"

About This Project

This is version 2 of the default-template. The basic template is the same as version 1, but it has been enhanced to incorporate a hand-holding style of help instructions for the initial site set-up procedure. This is intended to make it much easier and quicker for completely new users to get started.


The goals are to:

  • be simple enough for the complete beginner to succeed
  • cover the process from cloning, through using the Site Manager, to setting up the About and Home pages, without losing people along the way
  • have minimal impact on the visual appearance of the template home (start) page
  • move virtually all instructions away from the home page so they don't have to be deleted later
  • be available from the admin menu, since they should easily be found but are not relevant to normal site members
  • be generic - instructions should work on all templates
  • be able to incorporate template-specific variations easily
  • provide a model for developing additional help files for template sites


Taking one of the template sites from cloning through to a working site, in the shoes of a new user, highlighted the need for providing more guidance and hand-holding. For instance, it was found that it is quite easy to be tripped up by doing things in the wrong order. While this is fine for most seasoned Wikidotians, it is not desirable for a new user. The aim is to provide a slightly more wizard-like approach to the set-up process.

This is probably not the ultimate solution, as changes to the cloning process may erradicate some of the pain, but hopefully it is a little better than what we have on offer currently.

Suggested Next Steps

If you can help, please sign up!

  • It would be very much appreciated if someone would take a clone of the site and work through the setting up instructions - please report any issues
  • Develop the help:getting-started page to include the basic knowledge required for new end-users eg creating/editing pages
  • Develop the help:more-help page for more advanced actions including site management issues

Documentation isn't very exciting to create or test, but it is essential to have the right level of it for a successful project!

Thank you

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