James: Gale, I think in general you try to put too much in the opening box. The intention should be to facilitate speed readers. If I read the box I should know, 'do I need to read this page'? The italic part is only relevant if I have made the decision, 'Yes I do need to read this page'. The italic part should live outside the box, in my opinion.
Gale 25Apr08, 17:41 UTC: I had already tried to trim what was there before. Bear in mind it's not always that easy to gently convert someone else's text to an intro. if there is a lot of it above the contents.
I think we should always plan in advance for having an Intro when writing if there are more than a couple of paragraphs. Suf had the idea of italicising part of the intro as a sort of "hint" within the intro, secondary information for those interested, like you say. This usually works well I think? And the Intro should be a balance of having enough to be useful against being quickly read.
IMO there is still too much above the contents box here. It says almost the same thing in another way. I am not in favour of unheadered text between the intro and the contents because given it's there I'm still thinking it has some importance greater than the contents below it (whether I'm interested or not). I think it should either all be put in the intro, or the text currently outside it expanded and made a section in its own right if it's important to say. My recommendation here is trim it and put in all in the intro like the below:
|We ask that all our Google Summer of Code projects specify early spinoffs that can be completed by half way stage. This way, even if a GSoC project runs into difficulties, the Audacity project still gets a useful result. Open source projects often generate interesting code that is not ready for release at any given time.
I don't think that loses anything significant? If it does, please expand the third sentence and make it a proper headered section.
James: I'm perfectly happy with having intro text before the TOC. In this case I think three sentences in the intro is still too much - but way better than what we had before. How about my latest change?
- Gale 25Apr08, 18:24 UTC: Well all we've done now is retained the originally shortened intro and completely cut the point that was below the intro. It's perfectly acceptable, though I think something like "Open source projects often generate interesting code that is not ready for release at any given time" is a useful side point to the general reader (and maybe to others too, given not everyone understands the nature of collaborative development). Not fussed in the slightest, but isn't "help to ensure" a bit "wordy" given the mid-term spinoff is an absolute requirement? My first two suggested sentences are five or six words less, but again I'm not fussed :=)