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Review of user documentation

Project ID: 
Current stage: 


Review of the Informatics documentation for users and computing staff which is currently spread across,
the DICE pages and the Wiki, with the aim of developing a coherent, searchable structure.


  1. An initial discussion paper reviewing the current situation and soliciting input from the CO community.
  2. A set of guidelines, and a suggested final framework, for all existing and future documentation.
  3. Implementation of anything necessary to provide the final documentation framework.

The evaluation stage covers items 1 and 2.

Delivered documentation:

  1. Discussion paper 1
  2. Discussion paper 2
  3. Final decisions


Informatics users and computing staff.

Case statement:

Currently, user and computing staff documentation is spread across multiple servers, takes a variety of formats, and is neither coherent in structure nor easily searchable. (It is possible to search those areas which are publicly accessible to web robots - e.g. Google - but there is always a time lag before new web pages are harvested, and modified web pages reharvested.)

Our existing documentation suffers from lack of maintenance, and we currently have no guidelines for the production and maintenance of any new documentation.

We need to establish and/or decide upon:

  • The intended audience for our set(s) of documentation.
  • The scope of our set(s) of documentation.
  • A coherent and searchable framework which will allow us to incorporate any new documentation, as well as incorporate/migrate all relevant exisiting material.
  • A maintenance mechanism that ensures all such documentation is kept up-to-date.

Whatever we finally settle on has to be acceptable to, and signed-up to by, all members of the computing staff who produce any documentation within the scope of this project. It also has to be as future-proof as possible.




Priority: CEG has rated this project as "crucial".


Two FTE weeks for the evaluation stage.







Any suggested framework will certainly be (at least, partly) web-based, so this project is related to (if not necessarily dependent on) the various projects addressing our future web provision, namely:

  1. Project #93: Future direction for the main Informatics web service
  2. Project #97: Informatics Commercialisation website
  3. Project #45: Improve search technology

Project #8: Web technologies and policy is also relevant.



Proposed date Achieved date Name Description
2009-12-01 2009-09-30 2.0 Issue final report of this evaluation stage
2009-06-26 2009-06-26 1.0 Issue discussion paper and solicit input from C(S)0s