author names WAS Re: [pmwiki-users] How can I ... ?
Patrick R. Michaud
pmichaud at pobox.com
Fri Jul 22 09:49:25 CDT 2005
On Fri, Jul 22, 2005 at 10:13:14AM -0400, Radu wrote:
> Pm, how about keeping 3 author variables in each page? The current
> viewer should be $Reader, the original author gets $Author and the
> last editor gets $LastAuthor.
I'll address these in reverse-sequence. First, the last editor
is already $LastModifiedBy, so we don't really need $LastAuthor.
I have trouble with the idea that PmWiki can automatically designate
the "original author" -- many times pages are created as simple
placeholders, which other authors then come and fill in. So, I
think $Creator is probably better name than $Author for this, if
we were to add it. But overall I think it's a mistake to try to get
PmWiki to automatically determine "primary" authorship. Sometimes
pages are completely reworked; and some authors will start deleting and
re-posting pages just so they can get a perceived status or ego
associated with some "primary author" designation. I think it's
better if the appropriate credits for contributions appear in
the content (either as prose, signatures, citations, or directives),
than to have PmWiki impose a particular model on its authors.
Lastly, PmWikiPhilosophy #1 is "favor writers over readers",
and somewhat fundamental to that concept is that any reader
can also be an author, thus $Author instead of $User or $Reader.
While I recognize this idea of "readers are authors" isn't
universally true for many sites that will use PmWiki, as well
as an extreme case of wishful thinking, the truth is that
in PmWiki the only way someone gets a value into the $Author
variable is to actually *be* an author.
(In case any are wondering, "authorship" and "identity" are two
different things in PmWiki. The variable used to track the
"reader" or login is $AuthId, and it really stands for "authenticated
identity", as opposed to "author identity" or "author".)
So, despite how it may look, the current choice of variable
names is fairly deliberate and I don't have any plans to change
them, other than the possibility of adding a $Creator variable
to pages (likely via a Cookbook recipe).
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