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Tool plan for Open Farm Ecyclopedia of Practical farm knowledge

Topic Type: 
Idea

This post is track the kick off a tool page that will be able to use the wiki/forum structure of FarmHack to post the digitized version of a four volume set of a farm encyclopedia titled "encyclopedia of practical farming" It was completed in 1928 and is very comprehensive, but obviously would benefit from a complete review and update. The tool wiki will work for the table of contents but if each article were a separate wiki - they would not have the associated forums attached, so we may want to add the option to have forums attached to non-tool wiki substructure.

I think that the basic structure would also accommodate other articles and libraries such as the following - each of these approaches should also be reviewed for strengths and weaknesses.

http://www.cd3wd.com/cd3wd_40/cd3wd/index.htm

http://practicalaction.org/browse-and-download-answers

http://en.howtopedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

http://www.appropedia.org/Welcome_to_Appropedia

Additional discussion of this type of approach can be found here http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2009/10/how-to-make-everything-yourself-o...

The next step is to get the text posted at www.archive.org until it is transitioned.

R.J. Steinert's picture

Hosting the file on Archive.org is a good idea. They'll convert it into many different formats and give us a reader that we can embed on a Farm Hack wiki page. I've actually been building things with their API and communicating directly with one of their developers lately so building some kind of Farm Hack / Archive.org integration is in the cards. I'll keep thinking about it. I'm also thinking about ways we might be able to automate a conversion of this book into Markdown format. In Markdown format we could host in on GitHub and/or the Farm Hack wiki pages. For an example of markdown being used on GitHub, check out this README.md file. Because I gave the extension .md, GitHub converts the Markdown formatted text into HTML. You can click on Raw to see the Markdown source of the HTML.

Let's definitely get that document on A.o for starters. Then, if I can't figure out how to convert one of the formats that A.o converts to, I'll figure out an efficient manual workflow that we can then divvy up to some volunteers.

Dorn's picture

Any comments on forum wiki structure? - would it be hard to add forum links to floating wikis as a method to comment on articles?

R.J. Steinert's picture

No idea yet. I've only seen the file on your computer once or twice. I'll need to look through the file to think about how we should structure a digital copy of it. In case you didn't know, anyone can add a document to the Community Texts section on Archive.org, no approval process required.

Dorn's picture

All four volumes are posted now https://archive.org/details/Farm1

R.J. Steinert's picture

Woohoo! I see their robot hasn't converted it into any other format yet. It may be because it's a huge file or it may be because it's in Word format. Let's give the robot a day or so to see if it can work its magic on that file.

Dorn's picture

What about sandboxing all the internal chapters/articles and just publishing the main table of contents as a regular tool - with each article linking to a sandboxed tool? That should work right? Then the navigation is from a main tool page to the articles - but the articles will then still have forums and no coding needed.

Dorn's picture

Here is a link to the table of contents and an article (preface for book)

http://www.farmhack.net/tools/encyclopedia-practical-farm-knowledge#wiki

Chriswaterguy's picture

How is this going? Good to see what you're up to.

Keep in mind that we have compatible aims at Appropedia. Perhaps we could work together.

Joel_BC's picture

Hi, Chris.

Yes, I think along the same line as Appropedia... I've been on that site many times.

Here's something I got going, along this line. It's on a fairly obscure web site, but has still had nearly 35,000 views by now... http://www.sufficientself.com/threads/upcycled-repurposed-projects-many.11661/

I think there is great potential for fulfilling needs by using common or stock parts, used & repurposed components, plus ingenuity.

DGrover's picture

Chris-- We'd be thrilled to work with you, share content, co-develop, etc. Perhaps a phone conversation could bring us closer to a concrete concept of what that might look like.