Gathering the Wisdom of Quora
- Dave Mackey posted to Quora the question, “What would be the best collaborative solution for creating an open source translation of the Bible?” We received helpful answers from a number of individuals, essentially it broke down like this:
- This lead us to “Are there any good open source collaborative apps?” Options listed here included OneSky (Amanda Wong), TranslationCloud (Matt Bramowicz), crowdin (Iryna Bilyk, Marco Cevoli), Transifex (Yiannis Varelas), Pootle (Yiannis Varelas, Martin Wun, Ulta O’Broin), TranslateWiki (Evan Prodromou), otrance (Marco Steinhauser), mygengo (Ray Solnik).
- And to “What are the best tools available for document collaboration?” Answers here included Twoodo (David Arnocks), and Wrike (Ashley Coolman).
- Dave more recently posted another question, “What tools are available to create a book in a collaborative and distributed manner?” Stating the question in this same seemed like it would help generate the best ideas as it de-emphasizes the concept of translation (which, while accurate, is somewhat different in the instance of Scripture, as unlike most other documents being translated into English (or any other language), it has already been done so many times) and that it would also emphasize the scope of the project (as opposed to more general document collaboration).
- The topic of using GitHub for collaborative authoring is not new, here is some of the more interesting articles/discussions we’ve found revolving around the topic:
- Andrew Odewahn. github_non_coding (in fact, a GitHub repository).
- Konrad M. Lawson. “Getting Started with a GitHub Repository.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. March 15, 2013.
- Other options include Wikipedia, Google Docs.
- Allows for “forking” which can live independently or be “pulled” back into the primary repository (text).
- Maintains a full history of every change made and by whom.
- Does not have a canonical text (e.g. as Wikipedia, Google Docs, Etherpad).
- Use plain text, perhaps with markdown to allow for exporting to other formats.
- Konrad M. Lawson. “Direct Editing and Zen Mode in GitHub.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. March 21, 2013.
- Konrad M. Lawson. “Forks and Pull Requests in GitHub.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. March 26, 2013.
- Forks are different from clones as it “retains a connection to its originating repository.”
- The author of a forked project can ask for its changes to be “pulled” back into the main codebase and Github shows in detail what changes have been made and would be merged.
- Konrad M. Lawson. “File and Repository History in GitHub.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. April 1, 2013.
- Konrad M. Lawson. “Resources for Learning Git and GitHub.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. April 8, 2013.
- Konrad M. Lawson. “The Limitations of GitHub for Writers.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. April 16, 2013.
- Steep initial learning curve.
- General restrictions to plain text and markdown.
- Programmer oriented terminology (“fixing bugs,” “adding features”)
- Alternatives: Authorea, Draftin, Editorially.
- Also see Lawson’s “Fork the Academy” and “Wish List for a Powerful Collaborative Writing Platform.”
- J.J. Merelo. “Writers: Start Collaborating Using GitHub Now.” Medium, June 8th, 2013.
- Lauren Orsini. “Seven Ways to Use GitHub That Aren’t Coding.” ReadWrite, November 8, 2013.
- Harrison Massey. “GitHub, Academia, and Collaborative Writing.” HASTAC, November 12, 2013.
- A few options that aren’t GitHub but are inspired by GitHub included: