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How can I help?

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At the moment I'm in the process of importing pages from the old help and updating them. Also updating the tool tips.

Things you can do to help include:

Contents

Intro - Quick start for editing

This page assumes you are already familiar with wiki editing. If not, then you need to familiarise yourself with the proces then come back here.

For a quick start to editing, see Help, and especially, Editing_pages

To experiment with editing use the Sandbox

For examples see Sandbox - Examples

Routine type tasks

Fix typos and obvious errors

If you notice any typos or spelling errors or obvious mistakes as you read, just dive in and fix them right away.

UK and US spelling

If you see colour for color, etc, that's because I'm from the UK so use the British spelling system. You can follow any recognised standard spelling system for your own articles. But there is no need to correct my spelling to US English as some readers will be from countries that use the same spelling system as the UK.

Some sections have to be written twice especially if they use whole note, half note, quarter note, eighth note etc - UK readers may not know what those are. In the UK we refer to the quarter note as a crotchet, the rhythm units in decreasing size are: breves (for double whole note), semibreves, minims, crotchets, quavers, semiquavers, demisemiquavers and hemidemisemiquavers.

If you come across a section like that, leave it as it is. Don't try to correct it or merge the UK section with the US english section.

The same applies for UK users - no need to correct any US english you find to UK spellings and words.

Fix Broken links

The urls in the help linking to external sites break frequently. It's normal to find that half of them are broken when you revise the help after an interval of a year or two. You can help by going through and updating any broken links - this is a very long task to do by hand, and any help with it is much appreciated. Each broken link takes several minutes to fix and when there are hundreds to fix, it takes many hours of work to fix them all, so any help here makes a big difference.

You will probably evolve your own procedures for doing this. Here is how I do it:

What if I can't find it?

It may just be temporarily unavailable. This is fairly common. So leave the link in place. You could add a note after it saying (POSSIBLY BROKEN). Try again a few days later.

Once you are pretty sure that it is broken, the next thing you can do is to link to the wayback machine. You can use this template {{wayback|url web site title}}.

Example: {{wayback|http://www.robertinventor.com Robert the Inventor's web site}}

Shown as:

Robert the Inventor's web site (WAYBACK)

Maybe someone else will be able to update the url later on.

If you can't find the site at all, not even in the wayback machine, put a note after the link (BROKEN LINK). Maybe someone else editing this help will know where it has moved to (for instance if the author of the site comes across this help).

Eventually it can be removed if it has been there for a few months and no-one has updated it- especially if you know of another url which is just as good to replace it.

Add New links

Perhaps you may find other useful links, or you may know of links that should be added. If so do add them as well.

Link to the tool tips page for each window

Intro

Go through any pages in the wiki and look for any reference to one of the Tune Smithy windows. Replace it by a link to the page of all the tool tips help for that window. This is very useful for a reader who wants to find out more details about how to use a particular window - or at any rate will be once the tool tip help is completed.

How to do it

E.g. if the help says "Look in the Pitch of 1/1 window" change the words Pitch of 1/1 there by the template for the tool tips for window 10 like this:

Look in the {{w10}} window.

which will be shown as:

Look in the Pitch of 1/1 of Scale (Ctrl + 10) window.

Or if you don't want to show the shortcut, use another template wt10 as:

Look in the {{wt10}} window.

which will be shown as:

Look in the Pitch of 1/1 of Scale window.

For other windows just replace the 10 there by the appropriate number for the window. To find the window number, show the window in FTS and look in its title bar. You can also see the window number in the drop list for Organise windows (F2)

Change the link text

You can also set the text to show for the link, like this:

Look in the {{w10|Pitch of 1/1}} window.

which will be shown as:

Look in the Pitch of 1/1 window.

Generally it is best to leave the title at its preset value for the template - because this will be automatically updated if the titles of the windows are ever changed. Now and again I do make minor changes in the window titles, e.g. recently I changed Voices to Instruments everywhere.

But sometimes it is appropriate to set the title.

Change the shortcut

To change just the shortcut, e.g. to show an alternative shortcut for the window, use

Look in the {{w10|shortcut=(Ctrl + PI)}} window.

which will be shown as:

Look in the Pitch of 1/1 of Scale (Ctrl + PI) window.

The tool tip pages are work in progress

Some of the tool tip pages aren't very informative at present. Don't be put off by that - I'm going through them right now and updating them. Each will have an introductory section with an overview of how you use the window, and detailed tips for any controls that need extra help.

For an example of what those pages will be like when it is done, see Window 5 - New Scale which is close to finished.

It may take a week or two or maybe longer before they are all done - depending on what my other commitments are.

The tool tip pages can't be edited

Don't try to edit the tool tip pages yourself. They are auto generated from the tool tip help that comes with the program, so your changes will be removed eventually.

If you have suggestions of ways these pages can be improved let me know and I'll keep your suggestion in mind when I update the tips. You can add comments to the discussion page for each window. But anything you add to the window itself will be erased next time I do a bulk upload of all the tool tip pages/

Highlighting

The old help used color tags throughout, together with bold case or italics. This is better changed to style sheet styles. I update some of them as I go, but others may still be left as the original colors. Also some that should be in colour may not be yet. You can use the templates hi, hiu, hik and hit as a quick way to highlight the text.

Follow these examples:

{{hi|Navigation}}

shown as:

Navigation

{{hik|Keyboard Shortcut}}

shown as:

Keyboard Shortcut

{{hiu|User Input}}

shown as:

User Input

{{hit|File Name, Program or window title}}

shown as:

File Name, Program or window title

This can make it easier for readers to follow the help.

Add screen shots

Sometimes you can make instructions easier to read if you add screen shots to show the user step by step how it is done in FTS.

You can help by adding more screenshots to this help wherever they seem needed - with more detailed step by step instructions too if the instructions here are cryptic in any way.

You may like to reduce the file size of the image before you upload it

If you can do it easily, please reduce the file size of the images as this will make the page load more quickly. It will also reduce the size of the download if later I add an option to download all the help as a single file (or maybe selected areas of the help).

There I mean - the saved size in KB not the image resolution - please keep the original resolution for screen shots. You can often make a jpeg for instance into a much smaller and faster loading image by increasing its compression by just a few percent.

A useful free tool for working with images is Paint.net. It is particularly useful for reducing the size of images as it shows the size in the save window, along with a preview to show you what the saved image is like. So you can see how far you can increase the compression of a jpeg for instance, before it begins to deteriorate visually.

You can get it here: Get Paint.net

No need to bother about this unless it is easy for you. Someone later on can easily make an optimised version of your screen shot if it they notice that it's a large file. Jpeg's aren't that large, but if there are lots of jpegs on a page, or if you need to put a lot of images into a zip or installer for download, then the end result can be large, making optimization worth doing.

Add new content

At the moment the most useful content you can add may be new tutorials and FAQs. If there is something you frequently use Tune Smithy for which isn't covered in the help, then add a tutorial about it for newbie users of the program. You can add your tutorial to the Tutorials page, and add FAQs to appropriate areas of the FAQ.

Before you add new content, do a search to see if someone has already written about it. If you find something similar - you need to decide whether it is better to merge with the existing page or improve it or to start a new page.

You can link to tutorials from the FAQ as well if appropriate, also from the relevant task in the Tasks page once it is done (that page is work in progress right now though).

Please don't feel concerned at all if your contribution is incomplete or rough around the edges, or if English is a second language for you. Just add it anyway. Someone else will probably come along and fill in the gaps, correct spelling and grammer, or improve the exposition.

How to start a new wiki page

For those new to wiki editing - it is very easy to start a new page. Just make a link to a new page like this Tutorial: Example Tutorial Link. (Please don't use that one to start a new page).

Then click on your new link and you will be presented with a blank edit window. Enter the text you want to have for the new page, press Save and the page is made.

If you wish to import large parts of the old help, please consult me first

The help needs to be completely redone and re-organised. Many things in the old help no longer apply to FTS as it is now.

So for now - keep with tutorials and the FAQ as far as new content is concerned, and leave other sections especially the reference type sections for now.

Once the old help is imported, you are welcome to dive in and help to improve any of it. Any suggestions about how to organise it all and so on are very welcome!

If you want to help import the old help into the wiki, consult me first. You will need to have a thorough knowledge of FTS 2.4 to do this, and also be very familiar with FTS 3.0 as well.

Various ways of importing content - from documents, or web pages etc.

If you prefer to work with a Word style document - Open Office has an option to save documents as wiki text which you can copy / paste into the edit window.

If you want to copy / paste from the old help or the web site or other web pages, you can convert Html pages to wiki text using html2wiki (on-line converter) Make sure that you have the author's permission if you copy from any other web site other than robertinventor.com or the FTS help.

WikiEd

This is a useful tool to do such things as search and replace the text in a window, you can also copy / paste web page content and convert it to wiki text.

I haven't installed it for all users as it only works with Firefox, not with Internet Explorer. Also some of its features don't work 100%, but most work very well indeed.

To install it go to your javascript page for your current skin.

It will have a title like this:

User:YourName/monobook.js

Replace YourName there by your user name. If you have changed the skin, replace monobook by the name of your current skin (all lower case).

Add this to the end of that page:

// install [[User:Cacycle/wikEd]] in-browser text editor
 
document.write('<script type="text/javascript" src="'
+ 'http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:Cacycle/wikEd.js'
+ '&action=raw&ctype=text/javascript"></' + 'script>');

Wiki maintenance

Skins and other add ons

Do you have any skins or other add ons that you would like to see in this wiki. Let me know. Particularly skins are very easy to install, just let me know where to get it, and I'll add it to the wiki. Many other features which you find in the larger wikis are easy to install by adding a package (though some are techy and need "root access" which I don't have). So if you have a favourite "must have" feature, let me know and I'll see if I can add it in.

Sysop and Admin

Do you have sysop / admin type experience with MediaWiki?

There's lots to do configuring this wiki. I've got the basics running now but there is probably lots still to do..

Let me know if there is anything you would like to see installed, or if you have any techy suggestions or tips.

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