Notice: The WebPlatform project, supported by various stewards between 2012 and 2015, has been discontinued. This site is now available on github.

Plan for Berlin Doc Sprint, February 8-9, 2013

Note: This plan has been used at the Berlin Doc Sprint. You can also access the full slidedeck we’ve used here

Intro Talk, general

Hello, and welcome to the first European Doc Sprint!

You are making (a small part of) history!

<Play the WPD video>

We first need to say a big "thank you", for coming here today and offering to lend a hand with creating documentation, building up WebPlatform, and generally contributing great things to the web community. We want this to eventually be the definitive client-side web documentation site, and we can’t do it alone.

I’ll keep this short so that we can get on with things. I first just want to say a few words about how to get started, what you can do, and who to go to for help. At this point, those who have used before can go off and do their thing.

Afterwards I’ll also deliver a set up talk, to help those who have never used the site before to get going quickly and easily.

So, find somewhere comfortable to sit, grab a drink, log on to the Wifi, and let’s get going!

Work plan

So, the main focus groups we have for today are:

  • The APIs group
  • The CSS property references group

We decided to provide two focus areas to choose from because well, some people hate CSS, and some people aren’t very adept at scripting. Please choose one of these areas to focus on. Even if you are not interested in writing documentation at all, there will still be a good deal to do, in terms of testing, code example writing, and more.

Of course if you want to do something other than these two, you can be in the third group, which is technically titled:

  • The “do what you want” group ;-)


There are a lot of APIs we want to cover on WebPlatform, and we have only really investigated the tip of the iceberg so far.

To get started with APIs:

  • Read the API project plan at /WPD/Proposals/api_docs, which includes a list of the main APIs we want to work on.
  • Read our guide to creating API pages at /WPD/Creating_API_pages.
  • Choose what API you want to work on, and let us know — we’ll track who is working on what, so that there are no overlaps.
  • Get started.

Your main go to point for help and guidance with APIs is Scott Rowe.

CSS Property references

There are a huge number of CSS properties to cover in our reference pages, and we need your help to cover them all! Well, specifically, we are going to cover the highest priority ones first, and then move down to lower priority ones later.

To get started with CSS property references:

Bear in mind that we want to work on p0, p1 and p2 properties first of all, so please stick to those first, and go on to lower priorities if they are all completed.

Your main go to point for help and guidance with CSS property references is Chris Mills.

Do what you want

If you don’t like the idea of working on CSS or API docs, please have a think about what else you’d like to do. You could:

  • Write some code to fix your most hated WebPlatform bug
  • Work on a useful extension/template mod/other addition to WebPlatform
  • Work on some different documentation than CSS and APIs (there’s a lot to do)
  • Work on some graphics/styling that will improve the look of the site

Please let u know what you want to work on, and we’ll keep track of your progress.

Other people you can go to for help

  • Julee Burdekin, Adobe
  • Janet Swisher, Mozilla
  • Andre Jay Meissner, Adobe
  • David Kirstein (fr0zenice)
  • Scott Rowe, Google
  • Florian Scholz, MDN

Working practice, and getting help

Different people work better in different ways. Therefore, how you work is entirely up to you, as long as you are happy and productive! We’d suggest that people working on similar subjects first of all introduce themselves if they don’t already know each other. Then think about whether to work solo, or pair up: some people work alone best, some people might work better if they pair up (one creative to write code examples and one person to write the doc/researching, perhaps?)

Some of our attendees could also act as tutors too, sometimes, as well as writing some docs.

We are planning to keep help methods pretty low fi for the doc sprint. If you want help, ask someone next to you, raise your hand, or just go and grab one of the organizers. And please, don’t be worried about the quality of your English when talking to us non-natives. My German is terrible!

You can see a list of online help and communication mechanisms at /WPD/Help. These will be more useful when we leave here, and start contributing at home, in the future.

Beginners: getting started

So, those with prior experience can split off at this point and start working: this talk is mainly just for those who have not used the site before.

To get started, you need to:

Media Wiki crash course

  • (Almost) no tags needed
  • * and # for bullets and numbers
  • =x=, x, etc. for heading levels
  • ‘’x’’ and ‘’’x’’’ for bold/italic
  • [URL link-text] for external links
  • [[relative-URL|link-text]] for internal
  • [[]] for embedding files
  • Tables are horrible - see /WPD/Style_Guide/Gotchas
  • <syntaxHighlight></syntaxHighlight> for code blocks
  • <code></code> for inline code
  • Use <div> to hang style=”” off, for bespoke styling
  • Use proper list markup for complicated lists

See for much more detailed information