Ben-WPAN press pickup

Joshua Judson Rosen rozzin at
Fri Jun 17 21:50:00 EDT 2011

Werner Almesberger <werner at> writes:
> David Kuehling wrote:
> >
> > Using GIT for a wiki?  That's like carving text into stone... using a
> > CNC machine, programmed via punch cards, that are manually punched with
> > your big toe.

I know David's joking, but... Git's just a data-store--just like SQL....
And editing a wiki via SQL sounds like a worse idea than editing it
via Git :)

> Naw, but the CNC machine sounds useful ;-)
> All you need is a revision control system, a renderer, and - to lure
> the masses - some Web interface.
> For the revision control system, git seems a natural choice, given
> that it's fast and we use it already.

Well, *any* of the DVCS systems seems more apt as a back-end store
for a revision-controlled collection of text and auxiliary files
than whatever variant of SQL. Somewhere in the MediaWiki codebase
is an a revision-control system on top of SQL..., but not Monotone
or Fossil or any other general-purpose revision-control system.

If it was, it'd have an `annotate' feature... ;)

Here's a wiki that uses Bazzar for its back-end store, for example:

> No idea about the renderer.

Ikiwiki supports using any of several different version-control systems
as it's back-end store--including Git:

> It would render the pages between git and Web viewers - possibly via
> a static cache, for performance - and it would render local drafts
> for previewing. The Web interface would just stitch the pieces
> together.

I think (from what I understand of it) you may have just designed Ikiwiki :)

> Some months ago when we looked at such things the first time (there
> were various projects that implemented some git-based wiki), some of
> them didn't really expose the functionality necessary for local
> editing and Joachim dismissed others as too slow, but I wonder if
> this has changed since.

There are other considerations, too, of course--like, if you're hoping
to grow a community..., you might be better off using whatever tool
the community thinks works better for it--even if you hate it.

And that's not a dig at you--it's commiseration. :\

And on that note..., I had this same discussion, just the other day--
with me playing your part (I guess that was a rehersal, and I guess
that makes you... my understudy? ;)). Someone suggested this tool:

It looks like it's even packaged in Debian (and probably other distributions).

"Don't be afraid to ask (λf.((λx.xx) (λr.f(rr))))."

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