Tools for Babyboomers' collaborative work on a formal document/whitepaper

Hi all. An interesting issue that I’ve come upon.

I’m looking for a tool for the tech saavy, and the tech challenged alike to collaborate on the production of a whitepaper. A lot of these guys and girls will be busy doctors who don’t usually feel compelled to sit in front of a computer for very long, if at all.

So my first thought on this was to use exactly this: what I’m typing into now, A vbulletin bulletin board system, or similar. Also was thinking about using wordpress. These have plugins so all the busy doctors can view posts and otherwise collaborate from the comfort of their blackberry/iphone/other smart phone, as I’m sure they have one and use it.

My next thought was to use Git, or Bazaar, or CVS, or Subversion or Mercurial or some other version of revision control software, as that is really what is to be done: to develop and refine the content of a white paper. So the code in this case is in plain english, and the end product is just a paper, but with collaboratively worked upon content. But I don’t know enough about these RVS products, and I can’t seem to find the info. Do they allow comments from others about your code? Is there real-time messaging within them? Can anything be done (view, edit, comment, revise, delete) on RVS products from a smart phone?

Maybe we end up using a host of open-source products, but it would be nice to have them integrated as tightly as possible from the beginning. Or to use the features that are integrated already, out of the box.

But again, I think the key to getting busy, non-tech people to collaborate on anything online would be through the apps on their cell phone. So I kind of start there, as a lowest common denominator.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Ideas?

forgot about Zoho, though. Good to look again at an old friend!

yes, we did talk Wiki. But I think the idea is that the final product end up in a Wiki. Rather than development. The final product might continue to evolve or whatever, but all the heavy-duty changes happen in an environment that allows for more discussion back and forth first, as it happens. we also talked about Google Docs. Google Docs might be used for the first iteration of it, when there are only so many collaborators, but as we open it up to allow more people, we want to be able to get a bit more formal in capturing all the changes and suggestions, and related dialogue.

How about using a wiki? They all should be familiar with Wikipedia, and you can get the software from Wikimedia - not sure how well they’ll be able to use the Wikimedia software through their smart phones though.

There are some collaborative online tools that could be used, Google Docs and Zoho come to mind.