Repository for member-contributed resources


#1

Hi folks,

I work for a consortium that uses Discourse as its basic community infrastructure. We currently use Google Drive for sharing member-contributed resources with each other. From time to time, a request surfaces of implementing a tool that’s purpose-built for such a task, but I’m not sure what that might be.

Material that might be collected: documents (Word, Excel, PPT, PDF), links (to Google Docs or other online resources, including YouTube, etc.).

It would be helpful if in this tool a user could search for individual resources (such as a specific Word document, say a syllabus) as well as groups of resources (said syllabus, along with its PDF readings and links to external resources).

Any suggestions?


#2

It might be worth looking at Nextcloud https://nextcloud.com/. I don’t know if it would meet all your needs but in addition to being something of a Dropbox/G drive open source alternative they have a lot of plugins to extend functionality. It’s also an available install on Reclaim Hosting.


#3

Thanks for the suggestion Tim, I’ll take a look. I was hoping to find something that’s easy to use, but results in something more attractive than a list of folders and documents – especially because we’ll need to group together documents and links.


#4

Pydio might do, but Pydio Classic is a dead branch and they are now pushing something called Pydio Cells (rewrite of the app). Abstracts away various types of storage and has some search capability while providing a consistent UI to the end user. Detailed admin interface though, and, um, nuanced settings


#5

This also sounds a bit like a case for Commons in a Box https://commonsinabox.org/? It’s in the Installatron, and I think definitely worth an evaluation.


#6

We’ve built a number of HTML/JS front ends for Google Drive folders. Basically, you set a Google Script to log particular information to a Google Sheet and then use that JSON to drive the search interface (if you’re submitting the files via Google Form you can skip that part and just log the entries into sheets directly). If you’re organized in Drive and have some programming capability that’s a pretty direct path to what you’re describing. If you’re grouping your materials via folders/multiple folders, those elements can become search facets. If not, they could be added by hand to the spreadsheet.

You can see a folder’s contents being built out and giving access to some non-standard Google links here. Jeff made this one using Vue. You can see the little bit of JS used to create the elements here.

This post doesn’t get into the front end but does describe indexing folder contents to a spreadsheet. For your scenario, likely you’d just set it to loop through sub folders as well and write their names to a particular column.

If I didn’t want to do that or if I didn’t have the programming background, I’d probably just use vanilla WordPress with some well thought out categories and tags.

If I wanted to spend a bit of money, I’d get facetWP for the search interface.