We're moving to a new documentation platform and this is your opportunity to give us feedback and help. There has been a huge amount of work going on behind the scenes on these over the past three months, including the 30 volunteers working within the Documentation User Group. It's now time to include the full community.

You can see a glimpse of the team's work in the betas of the new ArduPlaneArduCopter and ArduRover sites. Click on the "Instructions" tab to see what the new manuals will look like. 

Right now most of the work has been in creating new graphics and design elements to make the manuals easier to read and use, with some work on simplifying and updating the content. But because they're based on a Wiki-plugin for WordPress, it's also a much more powerful and flexible collaboration environment than the current Google Code wiki for community participation, and we can now take this opportunity to update and improve every page of the manual. 

Just a reminder that these sites are still in beta, and we won't be steering users to them until the documentation team has had an opportunity to scrub every page. We'll continue to maintain the Google Code wikis for legacy purposes, but the new sites are designed to reflect the model we'll be moving to in the future. 

Please give us feedback in this thread. If you'd like to participate, please join the Documentation User Group linked above. 

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I know you jest and I only fly planes, but I'll happily hand my xmitter to almost any passing stranger after I've turned on geofence.  They happily fly the plane in manual or stabilize and even when the plane comes screaming towards the bottom of the box the APM happily fixes things...

Yeah, but the GeoFence is currently non-operational in Arducopter.  And it's still never going to be perfect.  GeoFence won't stop a quad if it loses a prop and goes spinning off like a Tie Fighter.

The other aspect of what I wrote is just knowing where people are.  I don't fly behind myself, so if you're behind me, you're safer.  I don't have perfect depth perception to be able to avoid people at the sides or front.  I know this, because if I did have perfect depth perception, I wouldn't have hit that light pole...


All you have to do is join the Documentation Editors Group .



Did you see this page?

Between that and the drop-down menus hopefully everything can be found, still more work to do...

John C, I'll fix those.

Robert, I agree, I never let anybody between me and my copter. I also agree that GeoFence is a good safety device, but not one I would trust to extend control to others under circumstances where I would not otherwise do so. 

I really prefer, a trainer transmitter or an experienced pilot.

And Josh, the New Wiki is very much a work in progress.

It is a bit tricky to port stuff over to it, but also they are really working to greatly improve the ease of understanding through the use of effective illustrations, consistent format and as little text as possible.

We will eventually get it all in there, but in the meantime, the old one still needs to be referenced too.

I will make a PDF version of the Safety section.

I have already produced a few downloadable printable PDF files for the Old ArduCopter Wiki and I think that a good set of those with appropriate coverage for field, tuning or assembly work can be useful. 

Finally, Troy, you bring up a good point, So far, non PC use hasn't been addressed, but the reality is Nexus's, IPads and Windows 8 Tablets are going to be important for in field use.

At some point we will at least have to address tablets for actual in the field use and for at least some of the functionality of the Wiki.

A LOT is going to be happening this year, I expect that serious incorporation of Tablet functionality will fit in there somewhere. - Volunteers would be good!

Added changes suggested above and have produced (slightly abridged) 2 page Printable PDF MultiCopter Safety guide here:


I love the towel bit, Douglas Adams would be proud. Perhaps a merchandising opportunity in the making. Must just have the number 42 on it somewhere. 

+1 rep!

I did not, but in my opinion, it's sub-par navigation compared to the old model.  Drop down menus are more laborious and a left hand always open navigation plane is hard to beat.

However, I think the overall changes are great, and losing the ease of navigation is a okay loss.

Let's figure out a way to make it better. I think WordPress will let us do just about anything. Simple and intuitive navigation is critical, millions of new users will be making their way through these manuals.

Agreed, the drop-down menus (especially submenus in menus) should be (ahem) dropped.  Just put section links on a page--you can see the overall structure at a glance, and they work on any browser on any platform.

Hi Joshua, I added 2 flavors of hyperlinked drop down complete table of contents to the Old ArduCopter Wiki.

The simple version here: https://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/ArduCopterTOCsimple just contains the Items in each drop down menu.

The full version here:  https://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/ArduCopterTOC contains a breif explanation of the item.

These table of contents are designed to be used instead of or as supplements to the main drop down menu and provide the immediacy of reference that is often missing when a drop down menu item you are looking for isn't in the current drop down you have open.

Tables of contents are definitely superior when using the Wiki as a reference source.

This way you get the best of both worlds and finding a specific topic is made considerably easier.

I believe that implementing a similar dual structure system in the new Wiki will provide the same benefit.

Right now you have the "Documentation page" but it does not directly paralell the drop down Menus, nor maintain the same "heirarchical" presentation.

I will look into implementing this structure as I become more familiar with WordPress's capabilities.

I am also hoping that we can provide at least a reasonable level of hyperlinked indexing as well.

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