Document Mode

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Document Mode - written in the third person and left unsigned. may have multiple and changing authors as it is updated to reflect the community consensus. This is in contrast to Thread Mode , comments which are usually signed and in the first person, and rarely edited by people other than the one who signed them.

  • Wiki excels at Document Mode . Many pages start off with an Opening Statement which declares a piece of wisdom. It might be a pattern,... a question instead of a statement, opinion, phrased strongly to invite feedback. The rest of the page may then be the feedback: clarification, comments of agreement or disagreement, supporting evidence...
  • Often the feedback is in Thread Mode . Sometimes, after a discussion has reached a consensus, someone (could be anyone), will delete it and post a new Document Mode contribution which incorporates what has been learned.
  • A good Document Mode comment is easier for newcomers to understand than a Thread Mode one. Threads are full of transient misunderstandings and special cases. The important points don't stand out well. And they are full of egos. The valuable content of Wiki ought to find its way into Document Mode comments. It doesn't, always. We need more Wiki Masters.
  • Thread Mode comments are usually shorter than Document Mode ones. If you find yourself writing a long reply, consider writing it in document mode, or even making it the Opening Statement* of a brand new page (with back and forth links to the original page, of course).
    • An Opening Statement is the base thesis of a Wiki page, the core idea that everyone pokes at, prods at, and refines.


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