[pmwiki-users] Email response management system

Clemens Gruber cgruber at uni-osnabrueck.de
Wed Aug 16 13:40:37 CDT 2006

Hi Luigi,

we have had a similar problem. We would set up a FAQ system with
affiliated email support. Taget was to have only one point for data
maintenance. You should not have two databases (and twice work) for
emails and website.

Because we have made good experiences with OTRS http://otrs.org we
decidet to use this system for mail support and as "database" You can
use the built in FAQ feature to manage text blocks. It is possible to
use this text blocks by one click by editing an email.

With some markup you can use the OTRS database (FAQ part) as content for
PmWiki, you can use markups, but you shoud do this cautiously, because
mails with wiki markup aren't nice. ;-) same with pictures an so on, we
neede only basic mail support, _no_ html mails. If you need this, the
approach here is nothing for you.

We have added in PmWiki some markup - some mails ago someone wrote "Is
there anything PmWiki can't do? :)"  ;-) - to pick up the OTRS database
for displaying the FAQs and use them in a search form. Second we have
enhanced OTRS to sort the FAQs in two categories - to further use in
PmWiki as group and page - and a GUI to sort the FAQs. All FAQs in the
same OTRS category are displayed on one wiki side.

You can have a look at the PmWiki page


kirpi at kirpi.it wrote:

>I work for the German National Tourist Board.
>As it happens, a lot of people write email and ask, let's say, info
>about Berlin or the Oktoberfest.
>And here is my Midnight Summer's Dream: I would like to see if it is
>possible to build a basic email response system within my wiki site,
>thus also enjoying a web knowledgebase open to all.
>Some rough ideas I started with...
>a) Small pieces of information are kept as individual pages, let's say
>on a "Knowledgebase" group.
>This way they are
>- web based
>- individually editable
>- "atomic" (I mean "they make sense even alone", "selfstanding", they
>are basic pieces of information, small bricks, units)
>- examples:
>                - Webcam in Berlin Mitte http://www.dhm.de/webcams/VID2.html
>                - Wheather forecast for Berlin
>b) Pages for any topic can easily be written, with the convenient
>inclusion of the "Knowledgebase" pages. Grouped under "Topic" those
>pages also are:
>- web based
>- individually editable
>- "organic", sort of "cells", richer pieces of information.
>- example: A page about "Berlin" could show some text and then include
>other pages both from the "Knowledgebase" and the "Topic" groups.
>c) Here comes the hard (to me) task: the core of the email response
>management system.
>A special page is set which has two parts:
>        1) A pagelist (say on the left) from both "Knowledgebase" and
>the "Topic" groups
>        2) A mail form (say on the right). As long as I click on every
>single link in the pagelist, the content from the clicked page fills
>the textarea, one after the other. Just add the mail address and the
>subject, and the email is sent.
>This way, composing and sending emails is a matter of seconds.
>Also, precomposed mails with the most common topics can be stored in
>advance as individual "Topic" pages (example: Weekend Trip to Berlin).
>Having an online knowledgebase adds value to the project, in that it
>is available to everybody on the internet, and is not hidden within an
>office for internal use.
>We just handle 50-100 emails per day, so we do not need specialized
>and sophisticated software.
>As I'm not a programmer, I started by searching for available pieces
>of code to be used.
>A few of them are listed here
>http://www.kirpi.it/wiki/pmwiki.php?n=Mail.HomePage (please add, if
>The hard part (to me) would be to let the page contents jump into a
>textarea when clicking on the links, and then add more contents as
>long as I keep on clicking.
>Does anybody think it could be an interesting idea?
>Better ideas?
>Willing to contribute?
>pmwiki-users mailing list
>pmwiki-users at pmichaud.com

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