Open Web Docs

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Chris Coyier on (Updated on )

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Robert Nyman:

Open Web Docs was created to ensure the long-term health of web platform documentation on de facto standard resources like MDN Web Docs, independently of any single vendor or organization. Through full-time staff, community management, and our network of partner organizations, we enable these resources to better maintain and sustain documentation of core web platform technologies. Rather than create new documentation sites, Open Web Docs is committed to improving existing platforms through our contributions. 

Well that’s… awesome. I know a lot of people were worried about the long-term health of MDN after the Mozilla layoffs, even though they have made some strong moves.

But wait, hasn’t this been tried before with Web Platform Docs? There is a big difference:

Q: Is this the same as Web Platform Docs was?

A: No, Web Platform Docs was a new documentation platform, whereas this is aimed at contributing to existing platforms.

Working through my mental checklist of things I would think this needs to succeed… does it have leadership? Does it have a plan? ✅

Florian Scholz joined the project in November 2020 as our Content Lead, working with stakeholders to define initial workstreams. Our 2021 priorities include working with Mozilla’s MDN writers and engineers to support the recent infrastructure transition and to prioritize and move forward with key documentation work, developing a community of contributors around core web technology documentation, browser compatibility data, and improving JavaScript documentation.

Does it have a team? ✅ Looks like 11 already and new hiring is happening.

Does it have money? ✅

That’s a good chunk of change, and covers that whole first year’s budget (Nov-Nov). Here’s hoping the big contributors keep that contribution up annually. But even if they don’t, I imagine a ton of good will come from just one year of this much focus and investment.

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