Interview with BizTalk Guardian : Steef-Jan Wiggers, Integration MVP and TechNet Guru Medal Winner
Welcome to the Monday interview. Today we have Steef-Jan Wiggers, who is a Microsoft Integration MVP and one of the Guardians for the BizTalk TechNet Wiki Articles. He has been helping lot of people personally by sharing his ideas and suggestion leading to the right direction.
He was one of the first to be interviewed on the TechNet Wiki Blog a couple of years ago and it can be read at: Interview with a BizTalk MVP Wiki Ninja!!! - Steef-Jan Wiggers
Below are some questions, which I guess most of us had(when you were new to TechNet Wiki) or have, and the great insights from Steef-Jan.
Mahesh: What makes a person eligible for writing an article, for TechNet Wiki?
Steef-Jan: A good question. A person writing an article should a) adhere to the guidelines in mentioned in the TechNet Wiki Governance and Guidelines Portal(
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/17319.wiki-governance-and-guidelines-portal.aspx , section Authoring and Editing Guidelines) ( b) Write about Microsoft related technologies or products c) Assure that the content is not plagiarized and adds value to existing content on the wiki and/or MSDN library.
Mahesh: What according to you is a good article that can complement TechNet Wiki?
Steef-Jan: A good article should be crafted according to guidelines of the TNWiki: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/115.wiki-what-makes-a-great-wiki-article.aspx and apply style according to the style guide: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/140.wiki-style-guide.aspx. See also previous question section Authoring and Editing Guidelines of theTechNet Wiki Governance and Guidelines Portal.
Mahesh: Do you use or know any tools which are useful for writing articles?
Steef-Jan: Content wise you can follow up on what TNWiki guidelines provides us. Grammar and spelling wise you can use the spelling checker in word or grammar checker (http://www.grammarly.com/) online. Besides these tools to work on your grammar and spelling you could use tools I use like ginger(http://www.gingersoftware.com/) and rate my paper (http://www.paperrater.com/free_paper_grader).
Mahesh: What is the importance of stub articles?
Steef-Jan: I do not see direct importance of a stub article. The only reason for assigning an article as a stub is that the author has a topic in mind and has some content. Based on that basic content he/she can create the article and mark it as a stub to indicate that he/she wants to finish the article later. A way of indicating it more explicitly, beside adding a tag (stub), is by adding in the text ( [content to be added] ).
Mahesh: Some articles are written, or get an idea from some books and articles already on Internet, is that good?
Steef-Jan: Those articles can be of value if a the idea, concept or technology is further enhanced by for instance a follow up to the latest version, use cases, or elaboration of pro/cons of applying that idea, concept or technology. In case the information in the book or the idea lacks context in your view than elaborating that in article can be a good idea. Ultimately there can be many reasons leading to writing about something you read in a book or a certain concept or technology.
Mahesh: Why does adding missing tags, correcting typos and grammar really help the articles which are written by someone else?
Steef-Jan: Interesting question. Correcting typos and grammar is definitely useful however adding tags is a different story. The tags are intended as meta-data for articles to make them better searchable. Though some tags can puzzle people of its value. Like has TOC, has Comment, has Image, and so on. This is a separate discussion. In general it is a good idea to read the article by Ed Price: http://blogs.technet.com/b/wikininjas/archive/2012/10/10/wiki-life-tags-on-a-wiki-why-tags-help-maketechnet-wiki-as-awesome-as-it-is.aspx on how to apply tags.
Mahesh: When writing an article, whom you consider as the audience/reader?
Steef-Jan: That depends on the topic of the article. In my case I write a lot about integration and BizTalk Server in particular. So you could say my target audience are the BizTalk/Microsoft Integration people in general.
Mahesh: Any suggestions to TechNetians and BizTalkians?
Steef-Jan: My suggestion would be read the guidelines about writing for the TechNet Wiki, use tools in case you need to improve your spelling and grammar, and finally ask help from others to review your article(s). For people who like to write about BizTalk Server I would say pick a topic that in your view lacks content on the TechNet Wiki or needs to be updated because Technology has advanced (updates platform, Windows Azure, and so on).
Thanks Steef-Jan, for this interview and I strongly believe, that with the insight provided by you, will help lot of us.
If you have any doubts or questions then feel free to ask!!!!!!!
-- Wiki Ninja Mahesh