The coding of the dough calculating tools was done by a member (Mike/Boy Hits Car) who no longer is active on the forum. Also, he was using resources of a former employer that are no longer available to use to make changes in the tools. Maybe Steve has a way of making the changes you mention, but he will have to look into that.
No problem. May take me a few weeks but I can incorporate a simple calculator, and expand on it with time.
I'd also like to mention that when I came up with the compilations of the Non-Lehmann NY style dough formulations (at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,11860.0.html) and the emergency dough formulations (at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8297.0.html), I did not attempt to include every dough recipe on the forum for those styles. I laboriously went through all of the threads to find what appeared to be the best and most popular representations of those styles based on how members reacted to the results using those recipes. I even tried to prioritize the recipes as best I could on the basis of member feedback. I didn't mention it earlier, but for the Lehmann NY style recipes that I personally tried, I created a special Roadmap of the recipes, at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1453.0.html. More recently, at the urging of a member who thought that the Chicago thin style pizza was getting short shrift, the compilation at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,16422.0.html was created. We do not have compilations for any other styles.
That much, in itself is a wonderful resource to begin populating the database with and does save quite a bit of time for those who have volunteered their help already, as well as myself.
Since it never has been an objective of the forum to be a recipe forum, but rather a forum where members can commune on pizza matters in general and where recipes will unavoidably be involved, I have not tried to update the compilations on a regular basis. I do not have the time to do that sort of thing. Also, as previously mentioned, many of the recipes included in the abovementioned compilations are not standalone recipes that can be practiced with ease. Rather they are often developed over a series of posts that are often disconnected and must be read as a group to be usable. So, very often, all we have is threads with multiple versions of recipes and parts thereof, and often the threads are so long as not to make sense to cite since most people, and especially new members, will not read them.
Contrary to conventional thinking, this is ideal, and what I bolded
above is also very true and is not at all a bad thing. I don't think this forum would be of much use if it were just a bunch of recipes. To give you an example, there is another forum software called phpbb 3, which is free to download, free to inistall and free to use. However, the community of phpbb has grown very large, with many members that actively support and write MODs for phpbb and even their stuff is free. The community does not see themselves as giving stuff away to non-members for free, they see it as helping each other and themselves, while slowly attracting new members, who will then become new contributors as older ones fade away. With phpbb and even other CMS's like Joomla and WordPress, you see the first contact is something for free. Out of 100 or so users who grab the software and go, 1 or 2 eventually return and get involved with the communities in some way.
Pizza may not be free software, but it's something that is quite mystical for the average home cook who has eaten plenty of commercial pizza, but has either never tried to make his/her own, or has failed several times. Like free software, even if it's at no monetary cost, the thought of having to sift through 1000's of posts here to make sense of, and obtain a dough recipe, is like phpbb, Joomla and WordPress leaving their software in threads for the public to search for, and find if they are able.
Back to "ideal" in the sense of dough recipes. Dough for pizza, once one gets the hang of some of the basics, is not that mystical at all. At present, with the recipe formulations on the top of any given thread in those compilations, a person new to pizza making can turn out a pizza that can impress one's friends and family.
The the "ideal", or magic is that we can and should share as a community. Out of every 100 or so who come and grab a recipe and run, 1 or 2 will be back and will be hooked on the same passion of ours. The remaining 98 or 99? Satisfied at the very least at finally making a quality pizza!
Also, for many of the best recipes, the authors are long gone from the forum. So, as a result, we have lost the people who could best put their recipes in the form that would be most useful with your proposed tool. I honestly don't know which members we have who are willing and able to put in the time and effort to populate the database with recipes in the form that makes the tool most useful. You will need to identify the team that will do the actual work. It can't be Steve or the Moderators alone, if at all. Maybe the starting point would be to incorporate the compilations mentioned above into your proposed tool, warts and all, and hope that over time the work product will be improved. Or maybe members can recommend their favorite recipes and, at the same time, take responsibility for creating the recipes in a form most suitable for the purposes for which the tool was developed. However, as I see it, there will always be a challenge getting the right people to do the actual work.
I agree with everything you say. I can and should be the coordinator of that process from here. I have a couple of volunteers already testing for me and giving feedback. Once it's ready to go live, we will start adding those compilations only. After that, we can look at getting some consensus on other styles and maybe a few to represent those styles in the app. I think one thing should be clear though; I don't want anyone to think that the recipes that get in the database are perfect and the end all be all of a style. I expect these to be dough formulations that one can start with, turn out a quality result and, if he/she is likes, can choose to try and improve upon it, either alone, or by returning to the forum thread where it is discussed to read more about it. That said, it really isn't that important for any of us to scour an entire thread to piece together what might finally have been deemed the "best" formula of any given recipe. At the same time, I think as far as the styles already represented in Pete's compilations this app will be worth a visit or two, just to browse through those!