Add Talk pages to Foswiki topics


TalkContrib adds a wikipedia like Discuss Button to the PatternSkin edit&attach buttons, and to the topic action bar of the Classic, default and Foswiki:Extensions.MoveveableTypeSkin.

When the user initially clicks on the 'Discuss topic' button, it will create a new topic by appending Talk to the original topic. From then on, you can switch between the topic and its Discussion topic using that button.

Installation and Configuration Instructions

'Talk' topics in created in the same web as the topic, with 'Talk' Suffix


To enable Talk Topics, add the talk skin to the SKIN path in SitePreferences or the WebPreferences topic of whatever web you want to enable Talk topics in (eg, if you're using PatternSkin):
      * Set <nop>SKIN = talk,pattern
OR by setting the COVER setting to talk OR by putting the contents of templates/ into a topic, and setting VIEW_TEMPLATE to reference that topic (ok, rather advanced usage)

You can over-ride the suffix (defaults to Talk) that is appended to a topic to create its Talk topic by setting TALKSUFFIX in SitePreferences
      * Set <nop>TALKSUFFIX = Talk

You can over-ride the Topic template that is used when creating a new Talk topic by setting TALKTOPICTEMPLATE in SitePreferences
      * Set <nop>TALKTOPICTEMPLATE = %SYSTEMWEB%.MyTalkTemplate
You can over-ride the Topic formtemplate that is used when creating a new Talk topic by setting TALKTOPICFORMTEMPLATE in SitePreferences
      * Set <nop>TALKTOPICFORMTEMPLATE = %SYSTEMWEB%.MyTalkFormTemplate

TalkContrib has been tested with TWiki 4.2.0 using the default skin (used as a building block for other skins), ClassicSkin, PatternSkin and Foswiki:Extensions.MoveveableTypeSkin.


There are 2 known limitations at this time
  1. any topic containing the TALKSUFFIX will be considered a Talk topic - this is due to a bug in VarIF string matching
  2. you cannot create Talk topics for topics in webs you do not have change permission. This will not be solved in the Talk Suffix mode.

Discussion and future ideas

There are many approaches to storing Talk discussions:
  1. append a 'Talk' suffix to the name of the topic, and link to that
    • Talk topics are normal topics that conform to a naming scheme, thus are listed in WebChanges seperatly from their parent topics
  2. convert the web and topic name to some reversible but otherwise unlikely combination, and store in a seperate Talk web
  3. use Subwebs with common topic names
  4. use a formfield in the topic to store the Talk
  5. use a META:PREF in the topic to store the Talk

This Foswiki Application implements the first using either a SKIN or COVER setting or using VIEW_TEMPLATE. The other modes will be examined over time.

Package installation

You do not need to install anything in the browser to use this extension. The following instructions are for the administrator who installs the extension on the server.

Open configure, and open the "Extensions" section. Use "Find More Extensions" to get a list of available extensions. Select "Install".

If you have any problems, or if the extension isn't available in configure, then you can still install manually from the command-line. See for more help.

Contrib Info

Contrib Author: Foswiki:Main.SvenDowideit - DistributedINFORMATION - a partner
Copyright ©: Foswiki:Main.SvenDowideit -
License: GPL (Gnu General Public License)
Contrib Version: 2442 (10 Feb 2009)
Change History:  
Dependencies: None
Contrib Home:

Related Topics: Contribs, DeveloperDocumentationCategory, AdminDocumentationCategory, DefaultPreferences, SitePreferences

Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
TalkSuffix.jpgjpg TalkSuffix.jpg manage 11 K 09 Apr 2008 - 07:43 AdminUser Talk Suffix mode
Topic revision: r2 - 09 Apr 2008, ProjectContributor

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