Browse Author by Nathalie Köpff

Knowledge platform for service and support processes – cooperation with marillabax

Since the beginning of 2015 we welcome service specialist marillabax as a partner at Hallo Welt!
With marillabax we develop a wiki that is not only functionally, but also matches perfectly to the content-related needs of service and support employees. The result of this partnership is called „b-know“, and it is introduced on CeBIT 2015.

Radovan Kubani and Marilla Bax raising mugs to the cooperation at CeBIT 15
Radovan Kubani and Marilla Bax raising mugs to the cooperation at CeBIT

Ms. Bax explains:

When companies talk about service and support, they often mean their telephone or e-mail hotline or when the service technician is solving problems right away.
This is why service is still considered as a necessary but unpopular cost center. Successful companies are demonstrating how service can be more than a cost driver – namely a customer oriented department which supports competitive differentiation and adds value to the company.

To achieve this, a lot of companies buy elaborative consulting processes or expensive training initiatives.
b-know is an internal, wiki-based knowledge platform for all service and support processes and the necessary expertise knowledge. With the help of b-know, companies can reorganize their service and position themselves as customer oriented. All concerned parties have quick access to the expert knowledge, handbooks or FAQ’s they need – this is knowledge management at its best.

Knowledge management in service and support

b-know is available for three industries: IT companies, IT organisations and mechanical engineering. For those industries you will get predefined templates and best practices as a basis, which you can adapt according your needs. New processes can be easily implemented. With the help of b-know companies can profile their service organization much more efficiently, structured and with a higher quality. As a result they save costs and gain additional sales in service and support.

b-know is based on the wiki platform BlueSpice developed by Hallo Welt! and enriched with special service handbooks and contents from marillabax.
More information on the BlueSpice website.

BlueSpice 2.23.1 – Patch Release for the Free Enterprise MediaWiki

Today we released BlueSpice 2.23.1 on sourceforge. This is a patch release which you can download on sourceforge.net.

However we focused on bugfixing there are also some notable new features:

  • Database: added experimental SQLite compatibility
  • ExtensionInfo: Added link to Mediawiki version page
  • Shoutbox: mentions of users with @ now possible and with ajax autocomplete
  • SmartList: Added mode “whatlinkshere”

In the BlueSpice helpdesk you will find detailed release notes as well as the installation manual and update manual.

MediaWiki Images – What you need to know about uploading and inserting images

Images and screenshots are an essential part of the content. The visualization of content supports the understanding and the motivation to spend time on the text. But how can I upload pictures in MediaWiki and how do I insert it in an article? I will show you three ways how to display the pictures in your article – one in an original MediaWiki and two in BlueSpice. Also I will give you some background information on images in MediaWiki. Continue Reading

Advent calendar 23: Provide a dynamic view of the wiki’s category structure as a category tree

23-Advent-Calendar-Category-Tree

 

In BlueSpice and MediaWiki you can display the category system as a category tree. With the category tree, the user gets an insight into the structure and the yet available categories and articles. To insert a category tree into any wiki page please use the categorytree-tag and one of the existing categories from which the category tree shall start. In this example it is top level

<categorytree>Top_Level</categorytree>

There is also a special page for displaying the category tree – just call up “Special:CategoryTree”.  This page provides a form where you can type in the category you want to be shown. You also have the choice whether all pages of the category, only the category (with subcategories if available) or all pages except the files should be shown.

For more detailed information and attributs for the categorytree-tag please have a look at mediawiki.org.

Advent calender 22: Upload a new version of a file

22-Advent-Calendar-File-Versioning

If you click on an image, which is uploaded and linked in your wiki – you will be redirected to the meta page of this file. Here you can discover a lot e.g.

  • size of the image
  • meta information of the image
  • you can see on which pages the image is used
  • and it is also possible to upload a new version of this file

Especially this last point is very important not only for images but also for files. Because if you have a new version of this file, which might be linked or used in several other pages, just click on „upload a new version“. Afterwards upload an „updated“ modification. Now, in every page this file is used, the new version will be shown – you don’t have to edit and update every page.

So you avoid spamming your wiki with too many files that might be named like „photo-account-manager“ „photo-account-manager-new“…. Just replace the original file with this functionality and you have replaced the file. Like you know it from the version history of articles, also the files have their own version history with the time a version has been uploaded and the user who did that. In the same way as you do it for articles, you can also rollback to a former version.

Advent calendar 21: Mass deletion of articles

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Not only Wiki gardeners of public wikis need to clean-up their content. Also wiki gardeners of company-internal wikis should do a regularly maintenance work. For example when users create a lot of test pages, because they don’t know that there is a sandbox. To delete one page after another is very laborious – therefore you can use the MediaWiki extension „nuke“ (that is also included in all BlueSpice versions) to delete several pages at once. You can also make settings for this extension e.g. limit the deletion for a special namespace, user or articles that include a certain word.

This functionality is provided on the special page “Special:Nuke”.

For more information about this feature visit our helpdesk: https://help.bluespice.com/index.php/Nuke

Advent calendar 19: Multi-upload for images

19-Advent-Calendar-Multi-upload

The standard feature for uploading images in the wiki is only for single uploads. But this is very laborious, if you need lots of pictures, which should be available in the wiki.  A small and free program solves this problem and helps for this task with an multiple upload feature – the “Commonist”.
The tool was developed  as an upload client primarily for Wikimedia commons. But you can configure it with the path to your wiki(s). The images will be uploaded in the wiki you defined automatically.

Download the Commonist and read our helpdesk article to find out how to configure and use the upload client.

By the way, you can use Commonist for both – BlueSpice and MediaWiki!

Advent calendar 18: Statistical information on the wiki

18-Advent-Calendar-ExtendedStatistics

For BlueSpice administrators, there is a special page that provides several statistics and diagrams. Call up the page “Special:ExtendedStatistics”. Here you can start different statistical queries like number of users, pages, content pages, edits as well as edits per user and search queries.
Once you have choosen a query you will get the possibility to define e.g. the range of date, resolution, namespaces, categories, users and other settings that are related to the query. Click on “Create a diagram” to see a visualization of the statistical information. Afterwards you can export the diagram as a svg or png file.
By the way – in the admin dashboard you will also find some of those statistics.
Furthermore, you can configure the “Extended Statistics” in the admin preferences. Exclude single users from the statistics (e.g WikiSysop) or raise the number of steps.

Advent calendar 17: Moving the table of contents

17-Advent-Calendar-Move-table-of-contents

In MediaWiki and BlueSpice the table of contents will be shown at the very beginning of an article, when there are more than three headings. If you want to place it somewhere else, choose a position in the text and insert __TOC__ to display it right there. The same command will also force to display the table of content, even if there are less then four headings in the article. If you use __TOC__ several times in the text, it will ony appear at the first word’s position.
In the other case, if you don´t want a table of contents, meantion __NOTOC__ somewhere in your wiki code and it won´t be displayed, no matter how much headings you used. __TOC__ overrides the __NOTOC__ command, if you are using both in one article.

Advent calendar 16: Wiki-related information and statistics – the User Dashboard

16-Advent-Calendar-UserDashboard

BlueSpice provides a user dashboard for every user, which supplies so-called “portlets” with several information and statistics. This portlets can be activated and placed in the dashboard individually. You can choose from 10 different portlets (for some of the  following portlets, further settings can be made) :

  • RSS feed: Import any RSS feed you want e.g. the BlueSpice blog.
  • Calendar: Display a calendar with a marker on the current day.
  • My edits: See a list of pages you recently edited and call up a page by clicking on it.
  • Most edited pages: Have a look at the list of most edited pages, sorted by their edits, to see which pages are regularly updated or which topics activate users to contribute.
  • Most viewed pages: The list of the most viewed pages, sorted by their views, may indicate which topics are very popular for users. Maybe this is a hint which pages are that important that they should be linked in the left navigation.
  • Most active users: Get to know who is very engaged in the wiki by using the list of the most active users, sorted by their edits.
  • Your responsibilities: Get a list of pages you are responsible for to keep an overview of your tasks.
  • Number of users: Statistic of the number of users.
  • Number of edits: Statistic of the number of edits.
  • Number of pages: Statistic of the number of pages.