State of HelpHub February 2018

What is HelpHub?

Project HelpHub is the user documentation base that will sit on WordPress.orgWordPress.org The community site where WordPress code is created and shared by the users. This is where you can download the source code for WordPress core, plugins and themes as well as the central location for community conversations and organization. https://wordpress.org//support. It's the companion to Developer's Hub which serves development documentation.

The general guiding philosophy for the design, content creation, and build of the project is – Help users help themselves.

We want users to be able to find answers on WordPress.org before posting on the forums. We want to make documentation more discoverable, through enabling search, visual improvements and concise targeted content.

We've been working on HelpHub for some time now and its possibly the final item that needs completion from the roadmap created by the Docs Team way back in 2013.

What’s the difference?

The biggest change is actually using WordPress to power content!

Shifting away from Codex was a deliberate decision

Scribbles the Docs Team did in 2013, suffice to say Codex wasn't enough

  • Too many pages that deal with the same issue (we have 4 getting started pages!)
  • Conflation of user and developer content
  • Content is hard to navigate
  • Content is way way way way way too verbose
  • Too much irrelevant content
  • Codex couldn't be realistically improved in it's functionality to deliver meaningful content

HelpHub aims to curate articles in a more concise way with standardised formatting and screenshots where possible.

Proper editing via WordPress back end & GutenbergGutenberg The Gutenberg project is the new Editor Interface for WordPress. The editor improves the process and experience of creating new content, making writing rich content much simpler. It uses ‘blocks’ to add richness rather than shortcodes, custom HTML etc. https://wordpress.org/gutenberg/

The possibility to add functionality as need arises

Adding read time to help keep articles concise

Current State

We want to releaseRelease A release is the distribution of the final version of an application. A software release may be either public or private and generally constitutes the initial or new generation of a new or upgraded application. A release is preceded by the distribution of alpha and then beta versions of the software. a minimum viable productMinimum Viable Product "A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development." - WikiPedia, and we have classified it as such below:

MVPMinimum Viable Product "A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development." - WikiPedia – Plenty better than Codex

  • Better content
  • Internal search
  • Improved readability through design and content re-writes
  • Better article discovery through better categorisation
  • REST APIREST API The REST API is an acronym for the RESTful Application Program Interface (API) that uses HTTP requests to GET, PUT, POST and DELETE data. It is how the front end of an application (think “phone app” or “website”) can communicate with the data store (think “database” or “file system”) https://developer.wordpress.org/rest-api/. endpoints

Phase 2 & beyond – Iteration

Phase 2 & beyond will have the team working on the enhancements on top of the basic features. We'll keep iterating to make things more use-able, easier for people to collaborate and of course create better content.

Examples are

  • WordPress Search -> ElasticSearch
  • Simple input search -> Auto complete and Suggestions via JS
  • And more

We'll also work on new features based on understanding how well the basic ones work and what the general end public needs next. Such could be article voting, direct article contribution via Feedback or user guides for example.

Team

Many people came in to help, unfortunately, life happens. We will need some consistent help going forward.

It is also plainly obvious that having an overall project lead isn’t enough to help tackle the pre-launch needs, let alone the post launch ones.

They have already been doing these tasks but it would be great to properly introduce them

Release Date

Our focus right now is to complete the development work for MVP and also work with the MetaMeta Meta is a term that refers to the inside workings of a group. For us, this is the team that works on internal WordPress sites like WordCamp Central and Make WordPress. and Support Team to properly setup HelpHub on WordPress.org

We aim to release HelpHub latest by 31st May 2018. We are working however to release it earlier than that.

Progress of Phase 1 (MVP)

  • Articles are appropriately categorised
  • Many popular articles were re-written
  • General WordPress.org styling are being merged in

We're now focusing on the tasks needed to ensure proper integration to be the Hub Page of WordPress.org/support

What do we need?

Developers. Consistent developers who are familiar with WordPress & PHPPHP PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely-used open source general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML. http://php.net/manual/en/intro-whatis.php. coding standards and good practices.

Content Migrators and Editors who are familiar with editing in WordPress.

If you would like to join us, you can do so in the following ways

  1. Comment here
  2. Join us at HelpHub meetings Tuesdays at 15:00 UTC in #docs
  3. PingPing The act of sending a very small amount of data to an end point. Ping is used in computer science to illicit a response from a target server to test it’s connection. Ping is also a term used by Slack users to @ someone or send them a direct message (DM). Users might say something along the lines of “Ping me when the meeting starts.” @clorith or @zzap for development, @atachibana for content on Make WordPress SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform https://slack.com/. The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at https://make.wordpress.org/chat/.

Take a look

We have the the staging version of the site up. (It still requires a fair bit of styling fix but the fundamental code to run it is in). It's not the prettiest right now but we're working on it. And we could certainly use your help!.

See it in action here – https://wp-helphub.com/

Project Documents & Links

  • Github Repository: https://github.com/kenshino/helphub
  • Contributing to Helphub: https://make.wordpress.org/docs/handbook/helphub/getting-started-with-helphub/
  • Staging Site: https://wp-helphub.com/