Online Documentation with the FogBugz Wiki


Here’s one way to use the FogBugz Wiki to create online documentation:

  1. Create a wiki template which makes your wiki pages look exactly like how they should look for your end-users.
  2. Apply that template to your docs (for dogfooding purposes). If an augmented template is desired for the developers (e.g., a search box), script this step.
  3. When it comes time to deploy, scrape the wiki pages* and generate a static wiki to export to your users. If you’re averse to api’s, you can write a script to spider the wiki and dump the html to a folder. It’d be easier to use the xml api, plugin api, or sql queries for this step; there’s no real reason to resort to screen-scraping.
  4. Run a script to process all of the stuff that you’ve dumped, and change the inter-wiki links to be consistent throughout your newly-invented structure. You’d probably want some sort of folder structure for storing the documentation, and there’s nothing you could do to get around specifying this, so you’d need to massage things into whatever format you need.
  5. Having gotten this working, you’d bundle this into your build/deployment scripts.

*While it would be neat to have an existing plugin which could provide the “scrape the wiki pages” functionality, it gets kind of tricky: there’s a lot of specific use case functionality which might be desired. While a general-use plugin would be cool, we think it’d still just get you 91% of the way there. That is to say, to get exactly what you want, you’ll need to do some post-processing or scripting regardless of what format the output comes to you in. We suspect that the ability to use the plugin api or the xml api to specify exactly what you want, as opposed to mostly what you want will pay off pretty quickly.