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Bad bad WIKI

We often develop support documents in MS Word or a similar word processor, then transmit them to the Wiki for support staff to reference while they do their work.

Even where the Wiki contains compatible features, it doesn't place nice with text that comes in this way.

For example, I just transferred in a two page support document that had a centered title at the top.  Then I transfered the title out of the body of the Wiki and into the title section.  The Wiki ended up having a line at the top with the curor in the middle, and nothing I tried would allow me to delete or left justify that line so that my first paragraph could start on the first line.

Another example, I transfered another document in from Word, and apparently it had font styles or sizes that are not supported in the Wiki.  No matter what I tell it to change the font to in the Wiki, I can't get the text to switch to the requested font style or size.  In fact, when I specify a "Normal" font size for one of these lines, the font switches to something resembling the "very big" font size.

I know it has to do with control codes that came from Word, but that doesn't explain why the Wiki won't use its own controls to allow me to correct the format.
doug coates Send private email
Friday, April 9, 2010
I just spent several hours fighting with the Wiki when importing a support document from Word.  I finally gave up on the direct copy and paste from Word.  I copied the material from Word into Notepad and then from Notepad into the Wiki.

It meant I had to go back through and manually re-format everything but it was less frustrating than trying to figure out what the Wiki had done behind the scenes in its attempt to preserve my original formatting.  Obviously this is a less than ideal way of doing things for a large document, but it worked for my limited purposes.

You might try using WordPad as an intermediate step.  I believe that will convert your formatting into Rich Text which I imagine would be easier for the Wiki to deal with.
Mike Wolfe Send private email
Friday, April 9, 2010
When the wiki came out, it was pretty darned good.  Unfortunately, that was 3 years ago and the state of the art has progressed significantly, and we have pretty much stood still because of other pressing development needs.

We're taking steps to correct this in upcoming versions, and to allow for better user experience.  Sorry for the long delay.

Bad, bad Fog Creek!
Rich Armstrong Send private email
Friday, April 9, 2010
My take was that the wiki functionality was built for doing specifications from scratch.  It seems to be pretty good at that.  However, a wiki traditionally does much more than this.  We had several setup with details on complex tasks such as reinstalling a developer machine from scratch or keeping track of our software licenses.  In recent months we've migrated away from using the FogBugz wiki and ported our data manually to MediaWiki.  We felt the tools there were more robust and established, and generally wern't that much harder to use.  It also allowed us to open up to a larger audience since our support, sales, and marketing departments are able to use it, via Active Directory, without the need for FogBugz licenses they would use just for a wiki.

I don't think the FogBugz wiki is bad, it's just immature.  I'll certainly be keeping an eye on the changelogs to see how it progresses in time.
Jonathan Gray Send private email
Tuesday, April 27, 2010

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