Wiki page to share Debian presentations and associated templates

After having created my Debian presentation template, I wanted to share it so that future speakers can reuse my work. Surely there should be a place for this. I quickly found Ubuntu’s dedicated wiki page, and for Debian the relevant place was on the website.

However looking at that page, it’s obvious that the website is not the proper place: the page has not been updated with new talks since 2005. It’s just to much burden for any speaker. A wiki page is much more convenient in that regard. Switching to the wiki means we loose translations but that’s still better than an outdated translated page on the website.

So I went ahead, I created and I filed a bug against to suggest to move the content to the wiki (see #601337) and to leave a link pointing to the new wiki page.

So the content of the website needs to be injected into the wiki. This is an easy task for someone that wishes to start contributing to Debian. Thus it’s your task.

Once completed send a mail to to inform the webmasters that the wiki part of the work has been completed. They just have to drop the old pages and replace them with links to the wiki.

PS: If you have given a Debian talk recently, please put your slides online and link to them on the new wiki page.


  1. Eric says

    Thanks! I think it would be nice though to have some sort of Office Template database that could be access over the web and in LibreOffice and Gnome Office. Microsoft does this and it’s very usefull and brings a lot of value to the suite. Don’t make it specific to any one office suite, but have follow the ODF standard and create an api that any program can use to access the templates.
    PS I realize that this is probably completely unrelated to something that you would do, but I’m just commenting. 😛

  2. pmate says

    Thanks, Raphael!
    It is a really beautiful idea and i will accep’t your invitation about filling the wiki page.
    I read the discussion (or flame? 😉 ) between you dd in the bug report page and i am really upset about seeing one time more how things get complicated sometimes in debian.
    Do you know which is the result? Well, all is more confusing now…
    From what i understood is better reporting into the wiki the exact content of the www page (as you did) and let the templates in www pages (reasons are obscure to me…).
    Am i right?

    • says

      Hi pmate, I’m also upset by the way things played out. I was only trying to improve the situation and did not expect that I would annoy anyone in doing so.

      But that’s the kind of surprises you get when you work in a large and diverse community. There’s no clear final decision yet (and it’s possible that there might be none before quite some time).

      In any case, the decision is also taken by virtue of doing things… so if you just go ahead and integrate the content in the wiki, it’s more likely that the wiki will be used to store the list of talks. The content might be duplicated for some time, but in the end when there’s proof that the wiki page is updated while the website one is not, it will be easier to take a real decision.

      I do hope however that some kind of compromise will be reached, I like the suggestion of Javier: use the wiki page for the exhaustive list that can be updated by anyone and on the website put a more targeted selection that is useful for speakers to prepare new talks.

    • says

      Hi, pmate!

      Sorry that the conversation got you confused. It’s just that if there would had been discussion for fixing the existing infrastructure instead of creating an external one and then claiming that the existing one is “obvious not the proper place” is making me a bit jump. We, the webteam, invest a lot of time and energy in improving the website, and snide sideremarks like that one aren’t motivating or helpful.

      Feel assured that the webteam is willing to pick up any pointer and suggestion for improvement. This can’t happen though if there is no try for communication though, the site is quite big and we only can work on it step after step. Any help is truly appreciated, but moving existing services off the site is only improving one thing: diversity.

      Thanks for understanding, and sorry for the mess this approach left behind,

      • pmate says

        @Rhonda, thanks for your attention.
        I don’t want to judge anything and anyone but i find that sometimes discussions can be made in a better way (above all in mailing list) not to “scare” potential contributors. In this case i think that Raphael’s idea is pretty good: a wiki page is easyer to update from a contributor because all is needed is an account on the wiki. And a wiki works the same everywhere… Instead, for the site pages, someone who wants to contribute is “forced” to go to check informations about contributing and it is not so immediate for a non-expert of internal debian dynamics…
        As a simple debian user i can say that i feel much more comfortable in editing wiki pages to add my slides (for example) than writing to a mailing list in order to see www pages updated.
        I hope you don’t misunderstand but i think that, sometimes, is much better to let things go… in order to see which is the “feeling” about them.
        About the “communication problem”… well is the dark side of do-ocracy, don’t you think so? I mean: if i find that there is a good thing that can be done or that is missing, i do it. Communication (sometimes) arrives later. But i think it’s not so bad…
        Sorry for my poor english (the only guilty of possible misunderstandings :D) and thanks again for your reply. 🙂


        • says

          Thanks for your response, pmate. I indeed need to apologize for the style of my response in the bug, and I hope you can understand where it’s coming from. The webteam is trying to get their stuff together these days, as you can read in my “Bits from the Website Team” on mail. I’m very happy that we finally managed to attract some very active people helping out, but there is still a lot of things to do. It’s a very unthankful job because of some things that had been neglected for a way too long time, and in that light it doesn’t help motivating others to join when people blog about that the website is totally outdated and not the place to fix things. That way we can’t move forward and things won’t improve.

          Actually I don’t completely buy the reason that wikis are the same everywhere (because the syntax varies very much between moin, ikiwiki and mediawiki), and I’ve heard often enough from various people that they rather not edit a wiki before creating yet another login on the next wiki site. Granted, people giving talks on Debian are likely to have an account in the Debian wiki already, but that sentiment is there. The first paragraph on the talks page was there for always, and from what I was told not a single person did send in any talk. I’m only partly convinced that the turnaround for the wiki would be any better, and give the page much less official standing or less exposure, let aside the mentioned translation.

          Sure, do-ocracy is good at times, but it always is encouraged, preferred and yields better results to coordinate instead of fork. Only when coordination doesn’t work out because of different opinions it’s viable to fork – but that approach hasn’t been tried here.

          And your English is pretty well I’d say. At least I think so, I’m no native speaker neither. 🙂


          • pmate says

            Well, about the wikis of course i don’t refer strictly to the syntax… but to the fact that it is really easy to subscribe and edit or create a page.
            I think that www site and wiki are two extremely different concepts and i think that something like debian talks fit better to the wiki philosophy than not to that of a classical static web site.
            I know very well that www team make a huge but often invisible work and i appreciate it really a lot, but it is not the point here.
            At least, for me it’s not the point 🙂
            I don’t think it is a problem of “forking”. Better i’d like to think that is an easyer way to start contributing.
            I hope that between you dd will always raise a collaboration spirit because that spirit is what you “transmit” to the final users by your discussions.
            I am not saying that it has to be always perfectly on the same “line” but… it’s nice to have the possibility of showing people that from a misunderstanding can raise a beautiful idea…!