User group meeting agenda & minutes 28 May 2008

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Proposing ideas for this agenda

To propose or discuss ideas for this agenda, please use the Discussion tab above. As the meeting draws near, we will review the items proposed on the Discussions page and decide which ones should get highest priority on the agenda.


Administrative items

  1. Assignment of time keeper, note taker, and facilitator
  2. Introduction of new members: 10 seconds for name and desired takeaways.
  3. Today's agenda preview

Information items

  1. New time for this meeting is 1:30 pm - 2:30 p.m.. This is a permanent change for the remainder of 2008.
  2. Proposed items for the agenda for this meeting should be placed on the discussion page or on the Wiki feedback page.

Discussion Items

  1. Biographical sketches - The question has been expressed on whether we should have them or not.
  2. How do we get others involved on the Wiki? We currently have about 1,740 users. Perhaps 1 in 30 or maybe 1 in 10 may be involved as contributors to the Wiki. How to we get more people involved?
  3. BYU book digitization: should we link them to the Wiki?
  4. Size of portal pages: Aren't they intended to be short and an introductory to lead people to quite a bit other information? Some are getting quite long.


Facilitator was Darris Williams, Note taker was Thomas Lerman, Time keeper was not named.

Prayer by Barbara Baker.


(Note from Thomas: sorry, lost the list of attendees when I tried to save and found that I timed out)

Darris Williams, Thomas Lerman, Anne Roach, Jimmy Parker, Mollie Forbes, Don Stringham, David Samuelson, Sister _________, James Anderson, Steve B_______, Barbara Baker, Geoff Morris

Remote: FranJ

Items Discussed

  1. Biographical sketches - The question has been expressed on whether we should have them or not. The problem seems to be if we add one, do we allow everyone to add one? Do we limit it to deceased, prominent researchers? How do we draw the line? It seems that we may not want to open up the pandora's box and get people to starting to advertise their services. It seems a user's talk page should be their own biographical sketch. An example was brought up about someone that did quite a bit of bad research. Maybe instead of a biographical sketch, it would be better to have article more like case studies on researching. Another person was one that wrote all sorts of great articles and having their biographical sketch pointing to the articles. Maybe instead of this, why not have the articles and a category can get them to other articles by the same person.
  2. How to get others involved on the Wiki? 1,740 users. 1:30 or maybe 1:10 may be involved in the Wiki. How to we get more people involved? or is a mailing list that is used quite a bit: memo recently said 50,000 registered. Through these, quite a bit of training is available for all those individuals: If we set up a training "video" that was 10-15 minutes and make it available to the consultants, then it seems that we could help alliviate the fears and intimidation factors that they seem to have. Other ideas was setting up an e-mail group for everyone, another was maybe using a RSS feed within the forum. Another interface that someone set up is as The question was posed as to why have yet another thing when the thought was to integrate the FHL My Favorites into the Wiki? It does have a more graphical interface which is nice. Why not put it into the Wiki? Remember images will slow down on slower connections and can be a problem with several types of visual imparities. Rather than being intimidated or having difficulty, it would be great to get the specifics so that it can be improved.
  3. BYU book digitization: should we link them to county, state, or where? They are available in the FHLC, mostly family histories, not so much county histories, etc. nor research outlines. The feeling is probably not specific family histories, but rather county type of histories. The question was brought up about all the records coming available through the Record Search on Is there any automatic way of linking to this? Agenda item for next week!
  4. Size of portal pages: Intended to be short and an introductory to lead people to quite a bit other information. Some are getting quite long and some do not know how to scroll. Are things getting missed especially when it is over two screenfuls. How much should be on a page? Best use? Work-around may be breadcrumbs so that one can jump back quick? "Back to the portal" link may be quite helpful? What about this lists of states, counties, tribes, etc. being on another page? This can shrink the page and may be a good place for clickable maps, etc. Things to think about: What is this link for, is it helping lead to learn, or it is just more fluffy information? Another thought is the major tribes and then category for the other tribes? Use discussion pages to let the community decide what is too big. Moderators, creators, etc. need to watch pages? If people are intimidated by the editor or whatever and will not contribute, will they put in discussions? More may be willing to be critics (in the good way) . . . opinions, views, etc. rather than starting a new page. Try to get people involved in the discussions and Wiki. Can everyone bring one new person to the users' group meeting? History tab shows people that have contributed to a page. You may click on one of those people's talk page to leave a message. Michael wanted a User Groups extension to send mass mailing. How about an extension to send an e-mail to all people that have contributed and/or watching a page? Can we have tabs on the portal pages for common categories? Yes, why not? Currently, 1000 concurrent users would take the site down. Likewise, 500 hitting the home page at the same time. Hardware needs have been submitted, but the timeframe is not known at this time.

Action items

  1. BYU Book digitization should be carried over for next meeting