Jump to content

Wikipedia:Village pump/March 2004 archive 5

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A MediaWiki table of contents?[edit]

Lists of messages usable with [[mediawiki:{{{1}}}|message with id '{{{1}}}']] ([[mediawiki talk:{{{1}}}|talk]]) were eventually found via Wikipedia:MediaWiki namespace - list of boilerplate messages or list of navigational elements being the most relevant.

Undo a move[edit]

Problem solved; archived at Talk:Lacinka alphabet

Including Talk link in signature[edit]

Elf asked how to include a talk link when signing. In preferences, either set signature to "Elf [[User Talk:Elf|(Talk)]]" or nickname to "Elf]] | [[User talk:Elf|Talk"

Blacks of the Xia Dynasty[edit]

Before the Hans, Turks, Mongols, Manchus, and other tribes of China, the blacks were the first ones there I believe in 2800 B.C.-2200 B.C. Somehow, the blacks have dominated much of east and southeast Asia.

If you are referring to a specific article, please post those comments on that article's Talk page (follow the "Discuss this page" link for any article). —Frecklefoot 21:21, Mar 11, 2004 (UTC)


Straw man articles[edit]

Is there a policy on Wikipedia (or should there be) on articles that appear to have no other purpose than to argue with their own premise? I'm referring specifically to Spitting on soldiers during the Vietnam War. I went through the war and a lot of stuff went on and was talked about, but "spitting on soldiers" was barely a blip on anyone's radar screens. AFAIK, there isn't any current incident or debate which makes this an issue. Cecropia 22:02, 11 Mar 2004 (UTC)

  • I'd say keep it. I have heard of this debate in other areas, so it's a real subject. MK 05:32, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • I don't see any major issue with the content, which is interesting, reasonably well supported, and IMHO encyclopedic. Biggest weakness is that it seems to me that it's a restatement of material from a single source. But that's not an issue, unless someone maintains that such incidents actually did take place, in which case the article needs to be expanded to reflect a neutral point of view. The only issue I see is with the title which does, as you say, seem to be setting up a straw man. It might benefit from some careful wordsmithing. I'm not sure I can come up with anything short, simple, and neutral. "Allegations of spitting on soldiers during the Vietnam War?" Dpbsmith 17:23, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Hangeul [edit]

User:Nohat indirectly started a discussion on the spelling of 한글 (Hangeul/Hangul). I wish to involve as many of the community as possible. We used to use Hangeul, until Nohat backed with a Google test and be bold in editing pages changed most instances into Hangul. I think we can reduce much of the disagreement whether Hangul constitutes an English word or is merely a romanization. Please see Talk:Hangeul. --Kokiri 00:38, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

What does striking out a section mean? No longer an issue, or just somebody who disagrees? - IMSoP 00:05, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
No idea about the strikeout... but the word exists in English as Hangul. That's the official spelling in the Unicode standards. —Tkinias 02:15, 23 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Sea of Japan/East Sea suggested Naming Convention[edit]

I have suggested a naming convention at Talk:Dispute_over_the_name_Sea_of_Japan#Naming_Convention, but nobody seems to be interested. Fortunately, it's been quiet about the article itself, but I do think we should have some form of naming convention to prevent future disputes. --Kokiri 00:58, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

User since?[edit]

Is there any easy way to tell how long another user has had their account? --zandperl 01:14, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Not really (I mean, it's probably possible if you have db access). Usually though, people make at least an edit when they register, so either check when their user and user talk page got first edited, or check their list of contributions and look for the first one. This would be a good approximation. Dori | Talk 03:18, Mar 12, 2004 (UTC)
Some hand-crafted data at Wikipedia:Wikipedians in order of arrival. Hopelessly incomplete of course! Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 08:10, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)


Kia ora! The Maori wikipedia needs YOUR help!!![edit]

Do you speak te reo Māori? The Maori Wikipedia only has 8 articles :( If you know any Maori please come to the Maori Wikipedia. I have done my best to translate the things like "edit this page" , "discuss this page" , and "main page", but I do not really know Maori. If you know any Maori, please come to the Maori Wikipedia to help out. Perl 02:05, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I don't know any maori, but from what i see, you and the others working on it have done an awesome job! Good work! tb 10:12, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Stopping forced capitalization[edit]

Unfortunately article names cannot begin with a lowercase letter. Discussion moved to Wikipedia talk:List of pages whose correct title is not allowed by MediaWiki

Mediation required[edit]

Ah, we seem to have developed an edit war over Hinayana. I own up to contributing to this, and someone has been mediating, but user 20040302 has now stepped up the conflict by vandalising my user and user:talk pages by posting taunts and other unhelpful stuff there (since removed). I've created maybe 30 or 40 articles, and contribute happily to many others, and seem to generally get on OK. But this one doesn't seem to be going to resolve itself and I'm aware that anything I do now is likely to be seen as adding to the conflict. Not sure what to do, but I'd like user 20040302 not to edit my user page like that, and I'd like to see this settled. Suggestions? Is anyone qualified to peer review this article? mahābāla 14:22, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Why do I have to keep logging in?[edit]

In the last week, every time I come to the site I have to re-log in, even though I click on "remember my password across sessions." RickK | Talk 15:52, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Has been fine for me. Have you been deleting your cookies? Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 16:08, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
No. I do, from time to time, delete cookies that haven't been accessed for a while, but I haven't deleted any cookies for over a month now. RickK | Talk 16:14, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I always have to enter the password with MozillaFirebird. -- Chris Q 16:26, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I have had this problem too, just started the last day or two for me. It looks as though I am logged in on the Main page (I can see my user name at the top), but when I try to go to My Watchlist, it shows some message about an IP number not having any watchlist. If I go back to the main page it looks like I'm still logged in. If I close all the browser windows, when I come back into Wikipedia, I have to log in (and I always check the option to stay logged in between sessions). Bkonrad | Talk 17:31, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Yep. I've newly been getting this too. moink 19:39, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Me too. It seems that someone has changed the software to implement a time-out, perhaps to ensure that serial users of a contributor's workstation (PC) don't make inadvertant or deliberate spoof edits. Matt Stan 11:10, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia - L mailing list[edit]

mailing list postings were being wrongly identified as spam; moved to Wikipedia talk:Mailing lists

Wu Dynasty[edit]

--> Moved to the Reference desk

Interwiki on Recent Changes[edit]

There are so many interwiki-links on the recent changes page, there's no space for them without changing something. Any views on this? Wikipedia talk:Recentchanges. Warofdreams 21:00, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)


Ships as "she"[edit]

Discussion moved to Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style, please continue there. Stan 14:31, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Viewing the images already uploaded to Wikipedia?[edit]

Discussion of possible image cataloguing / searching techniques. Moved to Wikipedia talk:Image use policy- but that page is rather big itself - can anyone think of a better destination? IMSoP 00:15, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

How do I know if anyone's reading my stuff?[edit]

How do I find out the hit rate for particular wikipedia pages and the extent that they are being watched by other wikipedians? Matt Stan 22:08, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

You can't. Your best bet is to make sure that many links point to the page.—Eloquence 22:41, Mar 12, 2004 (UTC)
Easy: make an obvious typo and see how long it takes for someone else to fix it. Mkweise 23:06, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It would be nice to know though. Could be calculated daily to avoid tying up SQL servers... It would be a good way of publically showing how influential wikipedia is. Washington Irving | Talk 23:59, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Hell with that, I'm just a narcissist. --Charles A. L. 00:39, Mar 22, 2004 (UTC)
The hit rate is easy to get by visiting http://wikimedia.org/stats/en.wikipedia.org/. Choose the month, in this case March, move down to Urls and see the View all Urls link at the end of that table if your article didn't make it into the top 50. Beware, that list is long... (over 30MB!!!) Use you browser's find function to see your articles's rank and hit count for that month. -- Gabriel Wicke 15:16, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thanks for that - it really does work. Interesting to observe that during the 1st two weeks of March 2004, about 1000 of wikipedia's entries received 1000 or more hits. When I get a moment, i'll try to do a distribution histogram - if this isn't already available somewhere else. Note - when you're totting up for a page remember to count Redirects: for instance, I found there were more hits for the Lord Byron page than for that to which it redirects. Matt Stan 17:53, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Will it cause a strain on the server if too many people do it?
It's just a static file, so it's cheap to serve. The DB download would be something to worry about if we were short of bandwidth (and other sites loading images from wp), but not a 30Mb file. -- Gabriel Wicke 18:10, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Status of Freedom of Information Act and other photos and materials[edit]

Discussion of whether these are copyrighted came down to whether they were fair use. Original questioner decided it was best not to use them. Moved to Wikipedia talk:Copyrights - IMSoP 00:25, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

log on, village pump no good[edit]

I wish you HAD to log on to edit the articles. This discourages vandals. Also it prevents idiots like me accidentally posting new articles anonymously.

The Village pump page takes a few minutes on my slow connection to fetch, so I can't really use it much.

Ojl 00:06, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yeah, it discourages vandals, but it also discourages honest people who just want to fix a typo or other small error without going through the fuss of creating an account. Garrett Albright 00:09, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)


Site with Wikipedia content, but no mention of Wikipedia[edit]

I wasn't sure what to do with this, but I figure someone here might know better than me. I came across these sites [1] [2] that are somehow connected and use Wikipedia content but I saw no mention of Wikipedia and no explicit link back to Wikipedia like expected with GDFL. Clicking around in it eventually gets you back to Wikipedia, but this whole site looks like a really poorly conceived idea. Bkonrad | Talk 02:20, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Sites that use Wikipedia for content --mav 08:07, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • Thanks Mav. I'm moving this to there. Bkonrad | Talk 14:00, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Copyright policy[edit]

Im kind of thinking about our policy not to mention the person who has the copyright on the articles with the photos. The dilemma lies in that I have gotten a few permissions to post photos of airlines here, but the people who did it asked to have their names named on the article and to send them the page: Im worried they may ask to have them removed if they dont see their names next to the hpto, a misinterpretation cause as you all know , we credit the owner....one the photo history page, which one access by clicking on the photo....

I have requested for permission for various other airlines to have photos on their articles.

Thanks and God bless!

Antonio Jet Fuel Martin

Whenever we use text from another source (even if public domain or GFDL), we usually say something at the bottom of the article. It is just good form to acknowledge external sources (whereas wikipedians are in the history). I have also gotten some people to allow for some of their images to be under the GFDL. In those case, as part of the image's caption, I include the name (as a link to their site) of the author. This shouldn't be any different than what we already do for text. I think this is perfectly acceptible, and in fact, I think it should be recommended if not mandatory. Nonetheless, someone may come along and delete their name because they don't think it's acceptible. Therefore, you should explain the situation to those whose pictures you want to use. Dori | Talk 04:15, Mar 13, 2004 (UTC)


Some legal type may want to correct me here, but removal of the accompanying text is allowed under the GFDL, as I understand it. Therefore, if the condition attached to the image is to have such attached text, then the image is not under the GFDL, and therefore aught not to be in Wikipedia.

Now, keeping an attribution to maintain favour with the doners is fine, and probably advisable - it's the requirement to do so that I think is problematic. Syntax 03:11, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

If the attribution counts as a copyright notice, and it probably is when properly phrased, then the GFDL explicitly allows that those attributions cannot be removed or changed. Thus yes we should attribute to copyright authors on the article page itself, and give a guarantee to the copyright holder that the name will not be removed, if that is what they want. We do this, for example, at Sperm Whale. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:52, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

propagation of changes[edit]

I have edited a couple articles, and then sent the link to a friend, who tells me they see the old version of the article. The only thing I can guess is that wikipedia uses some sort of round-robin dns system, and the article hasn't propogated itself to the server that their dns server points them to. Is this correct?

If so, how do I make sure that they get the most recent edit of the article?

Reload the page or edit it to purge the cache. See Wikipedia:Reload --mav 08:09, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Developer access[edit]

About a week ago, I put forward a proposal on wikipedia-l for separating developer ability from administrative power. It wasn't instantly shot down, so I've made a meta page for discussing it. Also, you can nominate people you think should be given developer-like powers. Head over and have a look, at m:Developer access -- Tim Starling 13:45, Mar 13, 2004 (UTC)

Jiddisch Wikipedia[edit]

There seems to be wikipedias even in languages like Latin, Afrikaans and Zulu. Jiddisch (Yiddish) is spoken by more than four million people. Shouldn't a Jiddisch Wikipedia also be created? / BenjS

Take a look at Wikipedia:Create a new language in Wikipedia Jor (Darkelf) 15:04, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
There is one. See http://yi.wikipedia.org/ Nobody's started working on it yet, but its there. Morwen 15:09, Mar 13, 2004 (UTC)
Maybe this comment is a bit off-subject, but: "even Afrikaans and Zulu"??? That borders on the insulting IMHO. Currently about 10 million people world wide speak Afrikaans as a first language and 9 million people speak Zulu! Sheesh. :-) Elf-friend 23:52, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Counting number of edits[edit]

I was wondering if there is an easy way to count the number of edits of a user. Unfortunately, the My contributions is not numbered, and having MS word or so count it is not very convenient. Is it also possible to count New pages, Talk pages, Minor edits, Image uploads, etc. separately? Thanks -- chris_73 16:29, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I made a feature request on sourceforge about 2 months ago for this - I'm not holding my breath. You have to count them at my contributions. So set it for 100, and just start clicking next. That is fairly quick and should give you an approximate count. I do it slightly differently, manually altering the offset in the URL so I can "jump" over a certain number of edits. →Raul654 16:32, Mar 13, 2004 (UTC)
At the time of the weekly database dump (=yesterday) Chris 73 had 322 edits, ranking 806th, Raul654 had 2328 edits, ranking 178th now, 202th 30 days ago. Only edits on articles are counted in this, not discussion pages etc. You can check at this csv file, not nicely formatted, just of a dump of some counts, but updated weekly.
The top 50 active users of all time are listed here Erik Zachte 22:05, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thanks a lot for the Info. I think I'll check the CSV file every now and then, that seems to have all the info I need. The count by hundreds seems to be useful if I also want to know my talk pages. Thank you to everybody. -- chris_73 02:08, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Wikipedians by number of edits has been updated to incorporate this yummy new data. It now extends to 500 contributors. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 14:02, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Manual purging for Main_Page and similar[edit]

I've just added a manual purge action that can be invoked like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wiki.phtml?title=Main_Page&action=purge Works for any title, in all wikis. Hope this makes updating pages like the front page easier. -- Gabriel Wicke 16:43, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Is this available only to sysops? If not, I'm not sure I like this idea. The current msg-system actually makes a quite good vandalism protection; Anybody can contribute content to the mainpage (within the frames of chosen topics), but there is still an offset in time from editing til it's shown on the main page. This means we can catch vandalim before it gets aired. So I think this is something which needs to be discussed. — Sverdrup 17:02, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
A simple shift-reload as anonymous user does the same, so this doesn't really work as anti-vandalism protection. However, there is a fair bit of talk about implementing more flexible protection mechanisms based on time and/or some form of trust/experience, for example see m:Anti-vandalism ideas. -- Gabriel Wicke 17:08, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Neato feature! I added a link to it on the top of Talk:Main Page. Is there a way for it to automatically get activated when the day changes? This is important due to the fact that the selected anniversary section auto updates when a new UTC day arrives. Vandalism of the MediaWiki pages linked on the Main Page so far is just theoretical - just like the idea of a vandal bot was until very recently. If needed, a developer could set the MediaWiki namespace permissions so that anon users cannot edit them. If and when that isn't enough, we could protect the Main Page MediaWiki pages. --mav 05:33, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Added a cron job that does this at 00:00 UTC. -- Gabriel Wicke 11:21, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
As many people start doing the manual purging, at random times, won't it pretty much mean that the main page will not be cached for any relatively useful periods of time? Will this have an impact on performance? Dori | Talk 11:27, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)
Well, it'll only affect that one page, so at worst it will be like turning off caching for 1 article out of 6,833,511. And I suspect there will be more anon requests than purges, so it will be even less of an impact than that. Besides, if it weren't for all the {{msg}}s it would be purging the cache for every edit anyway. - IMSoP 17:48, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The problem is that it's the main page. It's the one that gets hit the most, and perhaps it should be updated a bit less frequently. Dori | Talk 18:50, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)
Just out of interest, does anyone know if the Main Page does get hit that much more than other things - I'd have thought we'd get a huge amount of traffic via deep links (and as I understand it, the caching in question is only relevant for anons, right? So anyone with a user cookie doesn't count.) - IMSoP 01:06, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)
According to m:Pages from English Wikipedia with more than 1000 hits in Feb 2004, the Main Page got 1631916 hits and it's at number one. Notice which "deep link" is number one :) Dori | Talk 01:13, Mar 17, 2004 (UTC)
Lol - looks like Wikipedia's readership is a fairly accurate microcosm of that of the Internet as a whole, doesn't it? - IMSoP 00:59, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Rollback[edit]

Did something happen to the rollback feature? It doesn't seem to be working properly. I clicked it to revert some vandalism and instead of taking me back to the original page (like it used to), it says it reverted the edits when in actuality it did not. Am I missing something? Is this just me? (I don't see how that could be the case, though.) RadicalBender 19:22, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I had the same problem. It seems that rollback doesn't work if the person who made the vandalism then deleted it and the latest version is the same as the non-vandalized version. RickK | Talk 21:33, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It's more general than that. It will give you an error anytime someone changes the article between the time you click cur and the time you click rollback. You can only rollback the most recent changes. Once it isn't, you can't roll it back. →Raul654 21:37, Mar 13, 2004 (UTC)
No, no. That wasn't it. I knew about that. The actual rollback functionality wasn't working at all (I just tried it again a minute ago, though, and it's working again). I would click rollback and it would say it rolled back (as opposed to redirecting me back to the page again), except it didn't actually roll anything back.
Well, either way. It's fixed now, so never mind. :) RadicalBender 21:52, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)
A bug was introduced last night that broke rollback in a misguided attempt to fix a perceived failure to detect edit conflicts. The change was reverted a few hours ago, and rollback should work fine now. --Brion 00:55, 2004 Mar 14 (UTC)

Master Editor[edit]

A dispute over the article on Artificial consciousness has resulted in a complicated situation involving an alternate version at Consciousness (artificial). Discussion continues at Talk:Artificial consciousness (IMSoP 00:35, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC))

  • See my talk page User talk:Tkorrovi and Ugen64 talk page user talk:ugen64 for the reason I created a separate page. Sorry, I know it is not the best solution to create NPOV version artificial consciousness NPOV, but this case was exceptional because solving the dispute by normal procedure was made impossible (I cannot edit an article started by me because of the blasphemy it shall cause on my address). Tkorrovi 22 Mar 2004
I think the discussion has got bogged down because:
-The article is trying to cover a topic for which no authoritative sources exist
-There is total confusion between the participants in the discussion of a Tower of Babel nature because there is no agreed definition of consciousness upon which to base a definition of artificial consciousness
-The article itself is about something that is hypothetical, and hence there is nothing to point to to test whether artificial consciousness can be said to exist
There is a case for the article to be treated as patent nonsense, or at minimum that it is non-encyclopedic, for the reasons I have given above
Suggest there is a strong case for the complete article to be deleted, though perhaps, if unicorn is allowed, then an article on Artificial consciousness could remain, provided it states that it was merely a concept that has never been actualised, just like unicorns. Better perhaps just to put a brief bit in the article on Artificial intelligence to the effect that one of the aims of AI researchers is to simulate consciousness in machines. Matt Stan 11:55, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This would be blog, an article without content. I also think that the existing article is too long, so why not replace it with artificial consciousness NPOV what I tried to make shorter, including essential from main article (add more if you consider I omitted something important).
Artificial consciousness is a field of study with scientists working on it and articles published, so I think it's wrong to leave it out from Wikipedia, rather it shall add the value to Wikipedia when all not so well known fields are also described. Matthew, I would like to talk to you, do it on my talk page or where you prefer, but not on artificial consciousness talk page as of yet. Tkorrovi 22 Mar 2004
Artificial consciousness is a field of study, it is claimed, with scientists working on it and articles published, though none have been cited in the article in question. So it is claimed that it's wrong to leave it out from Wikipedia, rather it shall add the value to Wikipedia when other not so well known fields are also described, though no instances of such other articles are provided. Please leave me a message on my Talk page. Matt Stan 12:35, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Impossible to provide all evidence here, so thank you for your suggestion, I replied on your talk page. Tkorrovi 22 Mar 2004

There is a lot of truth in Matt Stan's comments re the difficulty of writing this article. But the subject is encyclopedic. That it got bogged down before and the reason for that is well understood. The reason the discussion is bogged down now is that the Wikipedia edit boldly mantra is still not being followed by any of us. All articles are supposed to be treated as if they are always drafts. There is much good material in the talk page that should be in the main article. For proof that the whole article (in its multiple versions) is worthwhile, just compare where we were to where we are. More work is required, that's all. That AC can only be simulated, that it has never been realised, that should it ever be realised it will not be real: These comments are all POV and deserve identifying as such together with their contrary POVs. That this discussion is being held here is not correct, BTW. Paul Beardsell 12:23, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)

OK then what you think about artificial consciousness NPOV version? Tkorrovi 22 Mar 2004
I will reply on its discussion page. Paul Beardsell 14:01, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I cannot discuss there, I don't want another edit war against me there, with all the consequences for me from that. But OK, we can try first on NPOV version talk page. Tkorrovi 22 Mar 2004

New Imperialism[edit]

-->Talk:New Imperialism

Copyright/sources question[edit]

As I begin to submit articles, I'm wondering about copyright and privileged sources. Through the course of my work I have access to a number of paid-for databases, mainly of newspaper clippings dating back years. If I were to use these to provide citations, or check facts, am in any danger of somehow tainting articles? Also, would it always be preferable to quote a newspaper directly or rephrase what it says?

Darkaddress 16:11, Mar 14, 2004 (UTC)


Am I correct in understanding that these sources are paid for by an employer? Has this employer stipulated that they are to be used only for job-related research? Then using the sources to research for Wikipedia might get you in some trouble; I don't know about the legal issues for Wikipedia itself. (None of this applies, of course, if you've paid for the database access yourself or if your job is to research and write for Wikipedia. :-)
As for the citation and copyright questions, Wikipedia:Cite your sources and Wikipedia:Contributing FAQ should have the answers. --67.71.76.166 17:21, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Discussion of future history as patent nonsense at talk page[edit]

Hello, I have posted some comments about possibly expanding the definition of patent nonsense to include future history. Please see the talk page and follow up there. Happy editing, Wile E. Heresiarch 16:15, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Unidentified fruit/veg[edit]

-> Wikipedia:Reference Desk

Missing images[edit]

I've been coming across articles with missing images (Hamilton, Ontario, for instance). It appears images were once uploaded, but now they have disappeared. Is there a reason why this is happening? Is there a place to note missing images? —Mulad 21:18, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

There used to be a note about it at the top of this page. There was a hardware failure and about three days worth of images uploaded at the end of January were lost. They might be recovered at some point in the future.  :) fabiform | talk 23:34, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Can't images be moved?[edit]

 This action cannot be performed on this page.
 Move page:    Image:HotPeppersinMarket.jpg
 To new title: Image:Habanero_Peppers.jpg

Does that mean Nothing in the Image: namespace can be moved at all, or did I do something wrong? Mkweise 22:32, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Unfortunately, files cannot be moved. Dori | Talk 22:37, Mar 14, 2004 (UTC)
Any suggestions on how to rename photos to be more useful? I ran into this the other day trying to rename Dog1.jpg or something like that to be the actual breed name. Do we have to re-upload under a new name and request that the old one be rapidly deleted? Elf | Talk 19:57, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Naming of article about a person[edit]

The article on bridge expert Charles Goren is titled simply "Goren." He is not someone commonly known by a single name, like Madonna, although there would of course be a certain number of people who would know there was a bridge expert named Goren but who wouldn't know his first name. Is there a reason the article is so named? or should this simply be changed? JamesMLane 22:49, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yes, poorly named, I'll move it. -- Jmabel 23:10, 14 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Move is a good idea. But he is commonly referred to simply as Goren by bridge players, as is his system of point-count bidding. I no longer play, but in several years' playing I never heard his first name mentioned once. So there should be a redirect (as now following the move) or possibly a disambig. Andrewa 16:19, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Anonymous users should not be permitted to ask questions[edit]

Discussion of the perceived problem of the large volume of questions posted here by anonymous users. Further theories and discussions should be added to this page's discussion page - IMSoP 00:45, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Bcorr has been nominated to join the Wikipedia:Mediation Committee. There has been no opposition from the committee or from Jimbo, and we would like to welcome comments from the community at Wikipedia:Mediation Committee#How does one become the member of the committee_?. Thank you. Angela. 00:19, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)

Allpages for other namespaces[edit]

Is there some feature analagous to the (currently offline) Special:Allpages that works for different namespaces, such as MediaWiki, User, or Image? -Branddobbe 06:22, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)

It doesn't seem to be offline so long as you are not trying to list everything. If you include a "from" starting point, it works. And it does indeed seem to be accessing a live copy. For example:
http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wiki.phtml?title=Special:Allpages&from=Eyeglass
Sort of, but not really (you would need to do a db query)...for MediaWiki see the links at the bottom of Wikipedia:MediaWiki namespace, for Users see Special:Listusers, for Images see Special:Imagelist. Dori | Talk 14:07, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)
Well, the Special:Listusers only lists user pages, and I'm looking for subpages. I do remember very distinctly that I saw something that did that somewhere on here, so maybe that was Special:Allpages and that function got changed or something. I don't know. -Branddobbe 20:41, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)

Question about all blacks who have played against Australia[edit]

  • Question being answered at the reference desk
  • A statement that "We don't reply to email addresses" was contradicted, and it was reiterated that the best strategy is to move reference questions to the Ref. desk and let them be dealt with there.

Minor edits[edit]

When did the "Minor edits" become small letter in recent change page? :O --Yacht 08:59, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)

Must have been just this weekend. Maybe Wikipedia:Goings-on might be interesting for you - amoung other things such small changes are listed there. The rationale behind that change is simply that the capital N and the capital M look quite similar, but a the small m is much more different, thus easier to see at first look if it is minor or new. andy 09:08, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
There was a discussion about this somewhere a couple of weeks back & the idea seemed popular. Elf | Talk 20:01, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It's a nice change. There is a difference, and it's good. — Sverdrup 20:03, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
See MediaWiki talk:Minoreditletter -- Tim Starling 13:31, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)

Please go here to join the discussion over the use of Mediawiki:msgs for topical article sidebars, or if you've had problems with an overzealous Cal student named Jiang. -SV(talk) 10:28, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

topic about hrm[edit]

sir i am doing mba,from next month on words i must do my project,so please send me the details of hrm and send the topics under it so i can do the project on it so please send the details of it. please send me which topic is best so i can prefer it and proceed it for further for my job.
thanking you, your faith fully,
g,naga sudhakar nagasudhakar1@rediffmail.com

We don't reply to email addresses and we don't have an article on hrm (I assume that's an acronym for something obscure? Human Resource Management?). If that's it, try List of human resource management topics. —Frecklefoot 16:39, Mar 15, 2004 (UTC)
Actually, I haven't got time at the minute, but there's no reason somebody couldn't be polite and send that link to the given address, along with a quick explanation of What is Wikipedia and a link to this conversation once it's been moved to Wikipedia:Reference desk. They may end up contributing useful information from elsewhere. - IMSoP 17:11, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Can/should GFDL images have a visible notice in them?[edit]

I noticed a very nice picture added to Arboretum which, unfortunately, contains the visible text "(c) 2003 Christopher Harris," where [User:Chris Harris] is the person who uploaded. I was going to send him a note, but realized I had no idea whether there was really a problem. I know that when I upload images myself, I usually put a notice on the image description page saying "(c) yyyy Daniel P. B. Smith, released under the terms of the Wikipedia license" myself.

  • Is there anything wrong with a visible copyright message on an image?
  • Conversely, would it be a good idea to have some kind of visible GFDL notice on images that are intentionally released under the GFDL (to increase the chances that the GFDL-ness will travel with the image when it is copied)?
  • If so, what would be a good short form for the GFDL notice?
  • How about a combined notice? What form should it take? "(c) yyyy Person P. Human, GDFL licensed"?
I like the idea of this. As long as the writing is small and unobtrusive. But it would have to be added by the copyright holder (ie the person who took the photo) before they uploaded it wouldn't it? theresa knott 11:38, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I don't like the idea to put text into the image. And if I understand the GFDL correctly you don't loose the copyright on the actual photo, you just release that one binary version of the photo. One possibility would be to add the author info into one of the magic JPEG header fields, which can contain any text. Many graphics software can add that one, while "thieves" may be ignorant of it. It gives less protection than a watermark or even the text in the picture, but is also least intrusive - but if you have a picture you intend to sell you don't have to upload it here anyway. andy 09:17, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Downloading some linked pages[edit]

I am intersted in downloading a very small portion of wikipedia database, but when I download a single page using the "save as" command of Internet explorer the Html source always contains the absolute addressess (such as http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wik..... )and it is impossible to navigate the locally downloaded pages. Is there any way to work around this and get instead local/relative addresse without editing each single html source code. 15 march 2004 mauri

Your browser is altering the pages while saving them. There should be some sort of option in the "save as" dialog to not do this. --Brion 19:41, 2004 Mar 16 (UTC)
See also the new article m:MediaWiki User's Guide: Downloading pages .--Patrick 13:54, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Why?[edit]

Hey. I have to find out about Oxfam and I was just wondering why you do the work you do. Thanx

I'm guessing that you meant to ask this somewhere else. This is an online encyclopedia. We do have an article about Oxfam. Their own web page is at http://www.oxfam.org.uk/, if that's any help. -- Jmabel 19:12, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Mobile Wikipedia?[edit]

I wondered if a mobile version of Wikipedia (either WAP or XHTML Basic) has ever been considered?

I currently access Wikipedia using the Google HTML to WAP gateway, which works reasonably well but is a little restrictive as the gateway is designed for older phones with smaller screens, so you have to click "next page" a lot. Also data-tables are drawn incorrectly which is often a pain.

An XHTML Basic version would be easy to create and would could be designed for newer smart-phones and PDAs which support tables and formatting.

Having Wikipedia "on the move" is often very useful, even if it's just to resolve an argument in the pub :) Sort of like a real-life Hitch Hiker's Guide. No reason why editing facilities couldn't be provided too - so a Wikipedia researcher could amend an article while out and about, as they come across facts, also like The Guide.

Drop me a note on my talk page if you want to discuss.

--Danhuby 19:19, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

No, h2g2 is "a real-life Hitch Hiker's Guide"! ;-) (their WAP version got put on hold indefinitely, though, unfortunately). But yeah, could be good. - IMSoP 19:41, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
"sort of like" in that it would be a more, erm, "serious" version (not to be offensive to H2G2 which of course is exactly in humorous keeping with The Guide). I saw the H2G2 WAP version was put on hold because I thought the same thing about H2G2 and found the old WAP project page... a real shame! --Dan 23:15, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
An XHTML Basic version designed for media="handheld" would also work well with Opera to allow people to create sidepanels which do not lose all formatting. — Jor (Darkelf) 19:47, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
What do you think about the xhtml skin at http://wiki.aulinx.de/ ? The parser needs some fixing of course, but apart from that it should work pretty well in small devices. -- Gabriel Wicke 02:08, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Looks a lot better than currently on a handheld medium (small device), although the mobile version could do without the large WP logo. The skin could do with some media="handheld" rules to beautify the layout, and hide some of the content. Specifically, for media="handheld" large images should be hidden from display and be replaced by a "click to show" link if possible, especially the WP logo. And the 'edit this page' is not needed probably. — Jor (Darkelf) 02:15, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I've changed the logo to a background image specified in the media="screen" stylesheet now, won't be loaded for mobile devices. -- Gabriel Wicke 14:25, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
ja:Wikipedia:携帯電話やモバイル機器からのアクセス explains, in Japanese, an ongoing pilot project for making Wikipedia readable via mobile devices (esp. cell phone). Tomos 21:23, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
http://a.hatena.ne.jp/browse?http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump

Ii 02:26, 21 Mar 2004 (UTC)

redirect problem[edit]

I've accidently created a redirect from Glutaminic Acid to Glutamic acid. From what I can find on the 'net, they are the same thing, however, but I would like someone to confirm or deny this, and if they are not, to delete the redirect (or write a Glutaminic acid entry. Silverfish 21:40, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I'm fairly sure they're the same thing, yes. -- Vardion 04:02, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The Merck index lists Glutaminic Acid as a synonym for Glutamic Acid. -- Popsracer 12:21, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

de-anonymizing contributions[edit]

I added a new section to an article but forgot to login. It's not a big deal, but is there any way to de-anonymize content after it's been submitted?

Eoghan 22:42, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

This page should be what you're looking for: Wikipedia:Changing attribution for an edit Silverfish 22:44, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)
A much easier way is simply to revert your edit while still logged out, then log in and re-submit it. GrahamN 17:18, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

legit use of Wikipedia content[edit]

I noticed that the people at

http://www.voyagenow.com/travel-references/en/wikipedia/l/li/list_of_countries.html

Are using LOTS of wikipedia content which seems OK in general. However, their site uses the content without clearly indicating where the text comes from or that wikipedia is the owner. Is this a violation of the GFDL?

Blimpguy 22:51, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

There's a central place where sightings like this are organised: Wikipedia:Mirrors and forks. I found that voyagenow.com is listed on this page, which is linked from the above: Wikipedia:Copies of Wikipedia content (low degree of compliance), it's been noticed, and I see that David Newton emailed them about it just yesterday. fabiform | talk 22:59, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

refactoring large article[edit]

I'd like to refactor an article which appears as a number of separate edit sections. Rather than make multiple edits to the separate sections, how can I edit it as a whole?

Eoghan 23:58, 15 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Click on "edit this page" in the side bar or on the bottom of the page any time you wish to edit the whole of an article.  :) fabiform | talk 00:09, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Of course! That was dumb of me. I just thought maybe there was some special feature for moving text between sections, that's all. Thanks, Eoghan 00:14, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

"msg" vs. "subst"[edit]

I've restarted discussion of the policy on the use of "msg". I think we should use "subst" instead. Please see Wikipedia talk:MediaWiki namespace. -- Oliver P. 03:23, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Font[edit]

This is a little problem in Chinese WP: some users like to use Times New Roman, while others prefer Songti. can developers add an option to the "Preferences" so that users can choose the font they like? --Samuel 03:50, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Can't they just change this in their browser settings? Dori | Talk 03:52, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)
i can't find how to change the font of English... the problem is that when Chinese and English are mixed up, the English will be shown using the Times New Roman. Some users who like songti just keep adding <div style="font-family:songti"> to redefine all the font in the articles, which upsets me very much. because i don't like to use songti for English letters. --Samuel 04:04, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The point might seems to be: "Songti" is a monotype font, while "Times New Roman" is a proportional spacing one. When Latin text are displayed with Han characters, using "Times New Roman" may lead to misalignment of lines at the right hand side, due to variation of spaces caused by characters using "Times New Roman". There is nothing special but just cosmetic problems.--Tomchiukc 04:16, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
well, i don't like (i don't want to say that, but i do hate) to use Songti to display English letters, whenever, whatever. The set of that Chinese font is badly designed for displaying English letters, though its design for Chinese characters is nice. (this is my POV) :# --Samuel 04:24, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Let work with Tahoma (on MS-Windows) or Sans (on X-Window). They are perfect to display both Chinese and English. :) Yaohua2000
Well, in fact, Tahoma is a WGL4 font, which does not contain any Asian characters. Therefore, it does not help much on displaying both Chinese and English together. -- Tomchiukc 18:16, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Do Songs and/or Characters Deserve Their Own Pages?[edit]

I've noticed that in pages like listings of songs, and movie pages, songs and characters typically are not linked as wikipedia articles in their own right. I've made a few related pages like Without You and The Sound of Silence and there are characters like Catwoman which haven't appeared on VFD, so now I'm confused. What's the official policy of Wikipedia on this? I half-expect to hear that there's no real policy and if we want to make such articles, we can go ahead. =p --Johnleemk 06:06, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Wikipedia is not paper - in short, we're happy to take notable things you would not normally find in other encyclopedias. What exactly is "notable" is quite subjective. →Raul654 06:08, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)
If there is an interest in the topic even if it is marginal (Catwoman certainly deserves an article I believe, as do popular songs), and you can say something about it, it deserves an article. The only exception would be unverifyable material (such as Dragon Ball Z Powerlevels) or patent nonsense. — Jor (Darkelf) 11:55, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Elf, the problem is that we are starting to end up with many pages that are little more than stubs, and never will be anything more. This for example. I'm as much as a LOTR fans as the next guy, but in too many ways Wikipedia is becoming a fan site. Elde 23:30, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This seems a bit POV. What is fandom to you is expertise to an enthusiast in the area. But it's a good question as to how general an encyclopedia Wikipedia wants to be. My suggestion is to err on the side of inclusion, the old catchcry being of course Wikipedia is not paper. Where we do get lots of little articles or informative but unexpandable stubs, eventually we should create a more general article to cover the same information, and merge and redirect the unexpandable stubs etc. to it. IMO we could and should have an article on Minor characters in the Books of Kings, for example, and eventually I'll write one. Andrewa 16:30, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Select anniversaries - Rachel Corrie's brutal murder one year ago by Israel[edit]

I see on the front page that there are selected anniversaries for March 16. Why not put that today is the one year anniversary of the brutal murder of the peaceful protestor Rachel Corrie by the Israeli Defense Forces? Rest in peace, Rachel. -- Richardchilton 06:52, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I don't think this is so important as to be necessary. The IDF has killed many high-profile victims, intentionally or not. Will we put Barbara Olson's death on the main page on September 11? Also note that whether the death was an accident or not is controversially debated in itself, so I don't think murder would be an apt description. --Johnleemk 07:07, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
New users may like to know that there was a lot of controversy about how to write about Rachel Corrie's death on Wikipedia this time last year. The above post may well be a deliberate attempt to stir up a fuss, or it could be a co-incidence. That the message was left on the village pump, rather than the appropriate talk page, leans me in one direction more than the other. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 09:40, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Uninformed, speculative attribution of a writer's motive is not probative to an effort to appreciate the signifigance of the anniversary of a political death. The death occured, it occurred on a certain day and it is widely recognized as a signifigant event. Those facts are probative to the discussion. Attacks against a person's motivation (ad hominem) are so routine on Wikipedia, I have stopped contributing substantive content because I see little or no appreciation of fact, but rather a widespread interest in attacking the mind or motivation of anonymous writers. Bird 16:15, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I did not resort to ad hominem. All I did was point out:
  1. The basis for putting Rachel Corrie on the front page is weak. It's a memorable event, but she is hardly a world-shaker.
  2. The use of the word murder is POV. --Johnleemk 05:15, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Internal error[edit]

While I am trying to upload a GIF animation, I got an error message, which said:

Internal error
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 
Could not copy file ""   to "/home/wikipedia/htdocs/en/upload/d/d5/Animation_of_Mars_Arrival_of_Opportunity.gif". 


The GIF animation is about 3.8 MB, and has 91 frames (640x480).

That's hella large. Maybe you should shrink it, somehow. Dysprosia 11:35, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

See this webpage for lot's of useful advice on shrinking gifs theresa knott 11:45, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Uploads are limited to 2 megabytes. --Brion 19:40, 2004 Mar 16 (UTC)

Do we really want animated gifs on Wikipedia? RickK | Talk 02:50, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I've seen sane uses of them. [3], for example ([4] is bigger).

Strange deaddead links[edit]

At this page it can be seen that the page on the topic deaddead is requested a LOT. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Wantedpages This can't be right, and if you go the the "what links here" page of this page, a lot of pages are returned on which no link to deaddead can be found. Anyone knows what this is about?

--Omegium

This was mentioned just a couple of days back, but fell victim to vigourous archiving already: see the moved discussion. I suspect it's a dummy value being taken literally by the scripts somewhere. - IMSoP 18:21, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC) PS:I'm very annoyed at this conversation being buried so quickly

George W. Bush Q & A![edit]

What is George Bush's middle name?

Walker. --anon
Beelzebub. --anon
For future reference, see Wikipedia:Reference desk or the appropriate article. — Sverdrup 13:09, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)

request for a house name[edit]

Hi,

This is request for a name for my new house.

My wife, baby (son) and myself are the people who are going to stay in the house. My name is PAUL NEVIN, Wife - ABILAH, Son - ROHAN.

I want to give an attractive simple name for my house. We will always like some words with meanings love, simplisity, and also with christian names.

Please suggest few names.

Awaiting your early reply.


Many thanks.

PAUL NEVIN

romansons@asianetindia.com

  • "Shanthinager" is Hindi for place of peace →Raul654 14:16, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)
  • Nautilus pompilius, the chambered nautilus, of which Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote "Build me more stately mansions, O my soul." Dpbsmith 17:06, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • Xanadu: the summer capital of Kublai Khan's empir
  • Shangri-La: "a mystical and harmonious valley, gently guided from a lamasery, enclosed in the western end of the Himalayas
  • Síocháin na Naoimhe is Peace of the Saints in Irish. Ludraman | Talk 19:13, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • I always liked Camelot, but that's because I'm a political junkie. Meelar 19:38, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • If your son is called Rohan, maybe Edoras? DJ Clayworth 20:17, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
  • Lou pastissoun (the tiny pastis) ^^ Greudin

Encyclopedia4U.com[edit]

Has anyone already discussed Encyclopedia4U.com and other encyclopedia thieves? Apparently they are using the entire copy of Wikipedia and advertising on their site -- have they paid for a license?

You can find them listed on Wikipedia:Copies of Wikipedia content (high degree of compliance). They don't need to pay for a license are thus are no thieves - the Wikipedia is GFDL, thus it can be copied with just a few limitations - most of all is quoting the source. andy 20:14, 16 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I've put this question in the Overview FAQ, since it seems to be asked about once a month. -- Tim Starling 23:34, Mar 16, 2004 (UTC)

Photograph of animal abuse[edit]

A user has uploaded an image which, while cute, may represent animal cruelty. Discussion included status of bonsai kitten as a hoax website, deletion via copyright technicality, and the personal merits of the users involved. Full text at Image talk:Cat in pint.jpg - IMSoP 01:08, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Railways E-Mail list Worldwide[edit]

moved to Wikipedia:Reference Desk

msg:[edit]

How does one edit the boxes that appear when {msg:x} is used? I'd like to change the format of {msg:RAH} but can't figure out how. --Alex S 01:33, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

If you want to edit a msg:blah, edit the page MediaWiki:blah, so in this case Template:Religion and homosexuality. Dori | Talk 01:34, Mar 17, 2004 (UTC)

Thanks a lot. One more question: The list of most wanted articles lists Deaddead with 39429 links, none of which actually exist. What's going on? --Alex S 01:38, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

See Strange deaddead links, above. - IMSoP 02:24, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

searching[edit]

When is the wikipedia's own search engine going to be turned back on?. I was under the impression that it was only switched off when the WP was experiencing technical problems as a temporary measure. The current setup of using google etc to search the WP is far from satisfactory. G-Man 14:28, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Our secondary database server still has not been repaired by Penguin Computing. Until we get it back, we can't re-enable the search for performance reasons.—Eloquence 14:57, Mar 17, 2004 (UTC)

Four color theorem[edit]

moved to Wikipedia:Reference desk. moink 18:11, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Map of Wikipedians[edit]

I don't know how much info is logged about IP addresses, but would it be possible to make a world map showing Wikipedia edit activity geographically? Just a single static image. May not be worth it, but I think it would be pretty cool. Possibly useful for PR. --Spikey 18:05, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Wikipedians would be a good place to get the info from. →Raul654 18:06, Mar 17, 2004 (UTC)
I was hoping we could mark the map by edit or otherwise by activity, but it may not be worth that much detail. Also, many Wikipedians aren't on that list. Which reminds me... (runs off and adds self) --Spikey 21:29, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I'm not sure, but aren't there tools mapping IPs to geographic space? -- till we *) 18:54, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)
There are. The trick is getting the IPs. :) --Spikey 21:29, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

No more yellow?[edit]

What happened to the yellow background in namespaced pages? Did I miss something? --Spikey 21:35, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I still see it. Perhaps you've been spending too much time on the computer and need to take a small break, eyestrains are not cool. If that's not it, then perhaps try resetting your monitor to the manufacturer's default settings. Or maybe a simple Ctrl/Shift Reload will fix it. Dori | Talk 22:08, Mar 17, 2004 (UTC)

What did happen to the background color? It is not there anymore after a refresh (on one of my monitors, and very faint on another...I guess it turns out to be a QC check on the display device). - Bevo 22:17, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Undoing an article name change[edit]

Hi, I added a page cycles which someone else (not sure who as two people made changes) changed to cycle I think for later ambiguity reasons. This is not good because "cycles" better describes the page than "cycle" and the ambiguity is now worse. I tried to rename it back but a page already exists there. Help! I have put more notes under Talk:Cycle, thanks, RayTomes

quality system decoumentation[edit]

moved to Wikipedia:Reference desk. moink 22:24, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Proposal: New pages patrol[edit]

Discussion moved to Wikipedia talk:New pages patrol

After noticing how many new pages we're getting now, and how many of them do need a little help along the way, I'd like to propose Wikipedia:New pages patrol as an entirely voluntary and low-obligation way of keeping up with Special:Newpages and the flood of new stub articles. As a community, we have a vested interest in watching new pages as they come in and gently offering advice and support to new contributors in order to keep the quality of our article database high. If people think that this is a good idea, I think it'd be ideal to link to this from a header in Special:Newpages much like we do on Special:Recentchanges. -- Seth Ilys 22:55, 17 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Betty Boop[edit]

Hi, my name is dani and i have to do a prject in school on the history of Betty Boop. I need to set up an interview...

Hi Dani. I have copied this message to talk:Betty Boop, where BB fans are likely to see it, as the message will be deleted from this general purpose page quite quickly. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 09:22, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
In fact, no need for it to be in both places. Follow link if interested. - IMSoP 15:33, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
QED :) Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:37, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Sedna[edit]

Just like to say that I think the coverage of the recently discovered planetoid Sedna in Wikipedia has been excellent - the article is well written, informative and authorative, and the discussion page is very interesting too. A great example of Wiki collaboration. Gandalf61 09:27, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)

[edit]

I Noticed wikipedia logo in many languages use phrases which mean "A Free Encyclopedia" for "The Free Encyclopedia" as seen in the English version. Could someone clarify?Mayooranathan 09:53, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

The page where this information should be found is Wikipedia:Logos and slogans - however that one hasn't been updated since the new logo contest was started, so it does not include the current logo description. You can find some description in meta:Image talk:Paullusmagnus-logo (small).png. andy 10:10, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Auto-summary and preview[edit]

The new automatic summary for section editing is quite nice, but has one drawback - it is also set when doing a preview of the edit, so one has to set the summary after the previewing. I usually prepare everything and then when the preview shows fine save directly, so this is a bit annoying. And it isn't necessary, as the summary already contains the section name, so if the summary has changed it was done intentionally. andy 14:56, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Hi,
Yes, you're correct, that was a bug. It should be fixed now.—Eloquence 15:19, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
Wow! Neato feature! Thank you! (Was about to say "funny, it works for me" - what a record-breaking bug-fix!) - IMSoP 15:25, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This might be nice for some, but for those of us that used to put something in the summary anyway it won't. It now procides an incentive not to put anything else (more informative) in the summary, as you have to delete what's already there (or fiddle with the cursor, to get your text in there). Will there be a preference to turn this off? Dori | Talk 15:31, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
If you are going to write something anyway, then the provided text is irrelevant. When you are finished with your change, tab to the summary box, and the automatic text becomes highlighted, simply overwriting your summary replaces the automatic text without needing to press delete or anything, i.e. the key strokes are unchanged. This information may be browser-dependent!:-)
But yes, I have noticed a lot of edit summaries that are only loosely related to their content today as people just use the default. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:36, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I would appreciate feedback on how these prefilled summaries should be formatted. Currently they are formatted as "(section name)". The problem with that is that it's not always obvious that it is an automatic summary, which might lead to confusion. It also looks a bit ugly to have it listed in recent changes as "((section name))". I have experimented with "[section name]", but that becomes very ugly when there are links in the section titles. Something like "<= section name" might work, but keep in mind that people write the text both to the left and to the right of whatever is in the summary field.—Eloquence

I'd go with "<section name> " (notice the space at the end). That way you can enter text at the end, or you can just leave it as it is, and it's less ugly than the other alternatives IMO. Dori | Talk 16:47, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
How about single or double hyphens or something, like --section title-- , (w/extra end spc) which would look like (--section title-- user's own text) in history lists. I feel that such delimiters would be better than the current ((section title) user's own text) (that is, I share the opinion that double parens are ugly here). (this comment was copied from my original one in Wikipedia talk:Edit summary) --Wernher 00:44, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I think "Section name: " would be good. Encourages people to put something after the colon. moink 00:05, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Note: see also previous discussion of pre-filled summary fields (including the idea of having lists of suggestions) at Wikipedia:Village pump/February 2004 archive 3#Summary line - IMSoP 17:50, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Maybe I'm being a party pooper, but I don't really like the automatic summaries. I think it discourages meaningful summaries. I'm not sure the section title is always helpful to know what somebody's doing to an article. moink 18:07, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Automatic summaries are irritating- at least for people who always fill the edit summaries- because one is forced to do two actions. Why not simply have a system such that saving/ editing a page is rendered impossible without writing at least a certain amount of characters- 1,2.. whatever. Maybe we can have exceptions only for minor edits, or maybe even for that we can follow the same rule. Is it too obvious but difficult to do or is it overlooking the obvious?:-) KRS 16:32, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I don't have to take two actions, because I tend to put the section title in the summary anyway, lest I edit two sections in the same article in a row and it looks like I don't know how to preview. --Charles A. L. 19:27, Mar 20, 2004 (UTC)

Note: there is a now a meta:Edit summary prefill poll in progress - IMSoP 04:27, 21 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Vandal alert[edit]

Having a bit of trouble with an anonomus IP vandal: 204.228.216.6. Help out by reverting the vandalous edits made by this IP. Ludraman | Talk 15:45, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

New anonymous users making substantial edits[edit]

Is it possible to block edit access to anonymous users for certain contentious articles, where they appear over and over under different IP addresses to insert POV material? Cecropia 16:27, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)


new look boilerplates[edit]

What's with the new-look boilerplate texts such as {{msg:stub}} and {{msg;delete}}. Is there any way you can view the old ones. I kind of like the traditional kind... Ludraman | Talk 19:47, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

On second thoughts - they're absolutely terrible! Ludraman | Talk 20:43, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I don't like them either, looks like someone was a tad too bold. Discussion at MediaWiki talk:stub. Dori | Talk 20:06, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
A poll is underway at that same page to decide which look to use. Dori | Talk 02:19, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

Uploading trouble[edit]

I'm trying to upload a new version of Image:Two polar bears sparring.jpg, but it's not working. The upload says it works, the page says the new version is there, but the image isn't replaced. Note that my versions are listed as larger, so I'm not uploading the old image by accident. Is this related to the recent upload issues? (I can't find info about that anymore) --Spikey 20:20, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

For the 876th time this has been asked here, it's a caching problem. Hit cotrol-F5 and the new image should load fine. →Raul654 20:25, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
It's annoying isn't it, and catches a lot of people out.  :) fabiform | talk 20:49, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Why don't we just do what everyone is doing these days - make our own canned wikimedia reply message? →Raul654 22:01, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
Note to reader - the above is a joke. →Raul654 22:01, Mar 18, 2004 (UTC)
But we already have Wikipedia:Clear your cache, so shall we move it to the MediaWiki namespace? (just kidding as well) andy 22:26, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I thought that was it, but I still couldn't get it to display. Odd. It's working now, though. Sorry to post another caching problem here, Raul. *self-dopeslap* --Spikey 03:34, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It would've been polite to tell the original uploader about changes you made to a photograph from their private collection. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 08:19, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Alert!! Recurring slashdotlike effects over the weekend[edit]

BBC Worlds Click Online just mentioned Wikipedia as an example of a "well maintained" WikiWiki site. This program will get numerous reruns through the weekend, day and night; expect minor slashdotlike effects! -- J-V Heiskanen 21:05, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Test message[edit]

Hi. I actually think it's a bit useless sending a test message like the one you're seem to be sending to every IP address that changes something in an article. Among many other reasons, because IP addresses can be shared by several people. I just got a message befor I could even think of editing anything! 62.255.64.5 21:45, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

For clarification, the test message does work because once it gets noticed the user realises this site is checked regularly by administrators, and gets directed towards the sandbox and welcome page which are all they need to start out. In your case someone using your IP posted two highly offensive articles that were both speedily deleted earlier this evening. It is unfortunate that, because of dynamic IPs, you then picked the message up. -- Graham  :) | Talk 21:50, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Polite request[edit]

If a decision is made on #wikipedia with regard to which version of an article that is involved in an edit war is correct, can a statement regarding this decision please be added to the article's talk page? I was accused of vandalism because I reverted an edit to New Haven, Connecticut earlier this evening, and the accusation was not appreciated. I do not have access to IRC so had no possibility of knowing that a decision had been reached. -- Graham  :) | Talk 23:05, 18 Mar 2004 (UTC)

You are at liberty to ignore IRC entirely. IRC is not Wikipedia. Decisions reached on IRC have the exact same validity as a decision about a Wikipedia page you and I might reach over a cold ale at the Crown and Anchor — i.e., none. Wikipedia decisions take place right here at Wikipedia. Tannin 03:00, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Cold ale. God that sounds good, doesn't it. WormRunner | Talk 05:51, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
To the best of my knowledge, this was not discussed on IRC. It was, however, discussed on the mailing list [5], which everyone does have access to through the archives, and this fact was noted at Wikipedia:Goings-on. Having said that, I still don't believe the mailing list is the right place for such decisions to be made. Angela. 06:16, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
The only reason I took it to the mailing list is because there isn't really anyplace on the Encyclopedia to ask other people's opinions about articles. RickK | Talk 06:23, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Err... the talk pages? Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 16:21, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I wanted to raise it to a level of awareness that wasn't available at the Talk page.
Link from this page, then. Hence my recent thoughts on what this page could be - IMSoP 21:31, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Or Wikipedia:Requests for comment? -- Graham  :) | Talk 16:22, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I never knew that page existed. RickK | Talk 17:34, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This raises (and partly answers) a question I was thinking about earlier, namely: is anyone running a bot to archive [any of] those IRC channels? If so, where are the results kept; if not, might it be a good idea? Tannin's point that it is/should be ignorable notwithstanding, it would be nice to be able to copy appropriate parts of a log into relevant discussions, without relying on it still being visible in your client. - IMSoP 17:26, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Article Images[edit]

Recently I've noticed a proliferation of images in articles which do not really add anything to the article itself. This is especially prevalent with various aircraft and airlines articles, where multiple images showing the same thing over and over (and often not even from different angles) are added. It seems as if people are adding their own images just because they can, without regard to whether it is really adding anything useful. The additional image content makes quite a difference to the download speed for pages on a dial-up connection (and it's costing me money), and I thought we were trying to keep WP lean and mean. Is there an official policy on this? I've been editing out superfluous images but feel I'm fighting a losing battle. Obviously if multiple images really enhance an article I have no objection, but at one point recently the Boeing 747 page had 6 nearly identical pictures on it! How do others feel? If like me you think that one image per article is usually enough, how can this be enforced? Graham 00:08, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps a better approach would be to have some sort of standard practice for image galleries on particular topics, linked from the relevant article. Such galleries may be of interest to some people (and it'd be a shame to waste the precious few GFDL-ed images we do have, since contributors have taken the time to create and/or photograph and upload them). That way, images wouldn't have to bog down the main article unless they were really pertinent, vital, and non-redundant. Not sure of a good way to do this, though... Boeing 747/Gallery would work, but we're trying to stay away from subpages. Maybe a portion of the Wikipedia: namespace could be used for image galleries? (not really appropriate use of the namespace, but it's a possibility). Perhaps on meta? -- Wapcaplet 02:23, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I like the idea of a gallery, similar to the personal galleries some users already have. I have some more photos which would be good enough for publishing them here, but the article where they would go are already illustrated, so they either need more text to allow for space for more images, or I would run into image-overloaded articles like the ones Graham mentioned, or I would have to add links like "For an alternative image click here". Such a gallery would be another application of the language independent image repository suggested some time ago on meta, but the subpage suggested by Webcaplet would be fine for me as well. andy 09:12, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Please don't delete image references just to save download time! They become orphaned, and some well-meaning admin comes along and deletes them, and they're gone forever. Just because an image doesn't have obvious value in one article doesn't mean it doesn't have useful information for another. By the time WP gets well-known most people will have broadband and the download speed issue will go away - plan for the future, not for the past. If it's Just Too Painful, create gallery of XYZ images and move the extra images there; this has been done a number of times already. Stan 07:57, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)


pls answer the question[edit]

=> Wikipedia:Reference desk

Proposal: Wikimedia Commons[edit]

I have written a proposal to share media among the various Wikimedia projects, and to develop a central repository for freely licensed content. I call it the "Wikimedia Commons". I have posted the proposal to the wikipedia-l mailing list:

This project would absorb the free text repository Project Sourceberg, which is still in its infancy.

I invite all interested parties to participate in the discussion about whether we want to do this. The discussion about and roadmap for the implementation will be moved to Meta-Wikipedia if a consensus develops that we do. For those who do not want to subscribe to the list, I hope someone will summarize the discussion on Wikipedia:Goings-on.—Eloquence 02:38, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

"I invite all interested parties to participate in the discussion about whether we want to do this"
That's all well and good, but there are a few people that avoid participating on the mailing lists like the plague (present company included). Couldn't this have been done on meta to begin with, and a notice posted on the mailing lists? Dori | Talk 02:46, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
The problem is that Jimbo usually only frequents the mailing lists, and we need his approval to begin with. I'll try to get this to Meta ASAP, promised.—Eloquence 03:07, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

swear words[edit]

it's about time the profanity was addressed on the TV and air waves through the radio. Now how about the computer too?

This is an encyclopedia, not a children's book. RickK | Talk 04:58, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I agree totally. I'm sure there are some mormons out there somewhere who'd be happy to fork wikipedia and censor out all the objectionable stuff. I suggest the above poster should try to get in contact with them. →Raul654 05:08, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
Besides, Wikipedia doesn't really use any swear words except in the context of discussing them as swear words. It wouldn't be much use if those articles said "There are several words in the English language that are considered vulgar, but we can't tell you what they are because someone might get offended." This topic has been brought up a bazillion times, by the way; see Wikipedia:Content disclaimer (and its talk page). -- Wapcaplet 05:20, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Well, I'm pretty sure he's not just talking about swear words, but anal sex, dogging, and all the rest. →Raul654 05:27, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
Seems we are talking about two different things here. "Vulg." words are fine in context or as legitimate quotes - not as part of ordinary descriptive text. Well-known sexual acts I think should be defined and the obscure excluded (on the same grounds as anything else we list here), but we need to make very sure articles are neutrally-descriptive - i.e. people who write/read them are not "getting off" on the text. I would suggest a good rule of thumb might be "would the text look appropriate in an academic text book"? Anjouli 10:48, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Biology pictures - request away[edit]

Next week, I'm going in with my mom to her work. She's a high school biology teacher. She has a lot of stuff in her room that would could benefit from having picture of. I'd like to know - specifically, what biology releated items do we need pictures of? I know she has an actual human skeleton (it's very old - at least 30+ years old). Do we pictures of any particular bones? (I have noticed that most of our bone articles are really lacking for pictures) Chemicals? Lab equipment? Other stuff that isn't readily available? →Raul654 05:43, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

I think all that stuff would be nifty but I have no specific requests--unless she's next door to a physics lab with a Mad Physics Teacher who has on hand such useful devices as Tesla coils, Van de Graaff generators, Jacob's Ladders and such turned on and sparking and arcing dramatically... Mwah ha ha haaaaa.... I mean, er... how nice it would be. Elf | Talk 06:02, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Actually, yes - in fact, the physics teacher is right next door. I could try to slip in and grab some photos →Raul654 06:04, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
There are good photos in the articles but they're not turned on. Just a thought. Probably better to spend time taking photos of ulnas and phalanges and such. Elf | Talk 06:26, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikiquote.org temporarily dead[edit]

Wikiquote's regular address at http://wikiquote.org/ is temporarily dead due to servers being swapped and DNS not being updated. It should be back within a few days, in the meantime please use http://quote.wikipedia.org/ Sorry for the trouble! --Brion 06:21, 2004 Mar 19 (UTC)

Thanks for the info. I was just trying to get in contact with you to find out what was going on. — Kalki 10:03, 2004 Mar 19 (UTC)

How can we help this newbie? He's setting up his own private tech support here and here...  :)
Elde 06:22, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I think we need to politely let him know that Wikipedia is not a web hosting service. We do not wish for him to use our resources for his private buisness. →Raul654 06:57, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

Jaymer OK, great, I'm a newbie to YOUR system, and thats about all you know about me. As listed on the main page I setup, there's already 2 tech support sites, don't need yours for that... I'm not trying to use your resources for my "own private business....".
What i AM trying to do is utilize this technology to

  1. introduce a whole new batch of people to the wiki technology
  2. try out this technology for a collaboration-type effort, where maybe some design ideas can be handled more easily.

I'd gladly use some other nice wiki system and may do so at some time. I'm sure there must be other discussion/collaboration pages on your system, so I think the issue is this business thing. i've read through the policies and couldn't find anything - please be specific on which rules(s) i'm breaking.
Thanks - please don't delete me!


The Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, where people come to write articles about many different things. All of the articles that exist here meet that goal. The Wikipedia, however, is not a forum for discussion about commercial software - Wikipedia is not a resource for conducting business (#20). Like I have told you, you can download the Wiki software and set it up on your own server, and enjoy all the wonders of Wiki-technology and you will have absolute control over it. Perhaps that would interest you more. Thanks Dysprosia 14:01, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Please bring these things to the talk page of the newbie, and the talk pages of the articles first, before coming here in future, or else the newbie won't know he's doing anything wrong.

Eye of a newcomer[edit]

Hi everybody.
I don't know if this comment is in the right page. Please move to proper page if necessary, and please indulge my English (I was not lucky enough to be born from English native speakers) :).
I am a complete newbie and I don't know much about Wikipedia yet (though I am trying to start a Tok Pisin Wikipedia, which is another story).
Nevertheless I would like to share some thought. First, I have to say that I was delighted to find Wikipedia on the net. From the first minute, I really thought it is a great thing to have. But you probably read that kind of comments many times before. Anyway, many thanks to everyone contributing. Now I would like to point out some things that surprised me. Maybe you heard that before to, but anyway, let's list it. These are just reflexions of a newcomer willing to improve things. There aren't attacks or reproaches in anyway.

  • I read in the discussion pages that newbies often create void pages by accident. Couldn't it be easily fixed? That should be possible to work out a feature which automatically deletes a page which contains the mention "No text in this page for the moment". Or?
  • The editing process is still difficult, and I believe it is kind of discouraging for people who have encyclopedic skills but no internet or programing skills at all. I am sure developers are working on this a lot, but at least the following would help:
    • why have to type <br> for a single paragraph break?
    • the buttons at the top of the editing window are extremely useful to understand the whole thing. Maybe they could type the relevant chains of characters directly into the window, without having to copy-paste them. Also I suggest the following buttons "Insert table", "Insert column", "Insert Row". I suppose it is technically difficult but I trust you guys!
  • It seems to be a very old debate about the too many stubs and red links are actually a little discouraging for a newcomer, even on the English Wikipedia, not to speak of others, nor of Wikibooks and such. Someone pointed out that it comes out badly when printing, too.
    • Maybe one should ease up on wikifying; maybe one should red-link something if and only if she intend to create the page in next days or weeks. If someone is interested in creating a link from a word, she will do it anyway, I guess.
    • Maybe one should refrain from creating stubs with empty subtitles. I read that some of you hate dictionary definitions, but they are fine to me, at least they help understanding the concept. But what I really find disturbing are articles with many subtitles with no contents. Maybe subtitles should be added only if one can put at least some content in it. Of course, they can be useful as guideline for others to expand the article, but a sentence should do the job (something like "A is the science of B, C, D and E". People willing to expand, say, D, could then add a subtitle and content.)
    • To that respect, the "Random page" button, which a newcomers hits a lot, leads to too many cities and empty timeline links. Who cares about 39th century BC if it is empty? One simple idea would be that the "random page" button hits only page with some content, say, pages with more than n bites.
  • The language list at the bottom of all main pages lists the languages by alphabetical order, which gives a distorted image of what Wikipedia really is. I suggest the language be ranked by number of articles, or by volume (with some indication of it between brackets, say: Tatarça (31 articles)). This could encourage contributors to promote their Wikipedia. Also newcomers will have a sharper image of what they can expect in the different language Wikipedias.


Sorry for having been so long; sorry for my bad English; and sorry to intrude in some maybe old debates. Well, I'm a newcomer, but remember that most visitors are newcomers! Their first glance and their first try are certainely determining in the developement of Wikipedia.
Best. --Milaiklainim 08:47, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Welcome Milaiklainim. You make some good points. But one thing you will soon see is that things tend to get better rather than worse. If you can't get an article formatted as you wish, or if you are unsure of the English grammar or spelling, somebody else will soon correct it for you. That is the beauty of Wikipedia. Some types of articles have been automatically inserted from existing non-copyright sources, such as census data. That is why the random button always seems to bring up small towns in Nebraska :) Have fun! Anjouli 09:11, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Wow, it is good to have people just wanting this to get better (and taking the trouble to express their concerns!). Thanks for the feedback and keep contributing! Pfortuny 10:52, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Regarding the toolbar buttons: They do exactly what you describe in Internet Explorer. Unfortunately other browsers do not support this functionality. Mozilla does to a degree, but it has an ugly bug which causes it to scroll to the top of the text window whenever you change the text selection. You can vote for the bug here. Before this is fixed, we can't enable this functionality in Mozilla.

However, the current development version of the toolbar should be more useful for users of non-IE browsers, you can test it here.—Eloquence 14:04, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

For some reason the popup asks me to "Please vote for bug #231389 to make text selection work in Mozilla!" This doesn't make a lot of sense when I'm editing in Safari! ;) It's also not too friendly, even for Mozilla users -- it's a bunch of extra seemingly meaningless instructions in what is already a fairly overwhelmingly long prompt. The eyes glaze over... --Brion
I knew you'd say that, but I'd like to keep it in for a while at least. It already tries to show this only for Moz, but the detection routine could use some improvement.—Eloquence 20:38, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
  • Regarding language order, there's a current poll on exactly this topic.
  • Regarding too many red links--I'm pretty new to Wikipedia, too (2 months) and they've never bothered me. But I might not be a typical casual user. Advantages to having red links include that the database can list commonly-requested topics that don't yet have articles --and all of those links become instantly good when an article is created, instead of someone then having to do a text search (via google, which is out of date) to find all possible text links to that topic and then add links to each of those pages. (There's some discussion on this topic on the Talk page for Wikipedia:Make only links relevant to the context.) Elf | Talk 18:47, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Copyright format[edit]

What's the proper format for the copyright notice (if any is required) on pages like Human eye? What's there now is obvioulsy wrong ("My copyright" from an anon. contrib. with link to original text which is copyright.) but I have no clue how to fix it. Anjouli 10:40, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

As noted on Talk:Credit repair, copyright notices must be preserved under the GFDL. However they're not allowed by wikipedia policy. Hence, the offending text should be removed. If the poster wants to have their work displayed on Wikipedia, they should submit it without copyright notices. -- Tim Starling 14:39, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)

By the way... thanks for the new servers[edit]

I'm not sure who-all deserves the thanks--the people that donated money, the people that got them installed and working... but I've now gotten so used to reliable access and pretty reasonable response speeds that I thought I'd better express my thanks while I can still remember how bad it was a few months ago! Dpbsmith 17:11, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Amen to that -- it's a world of difference! To all those involved, your work is greatly appreciated and will be put to good use, we promise. :-) Jwrosenzweig 17:24, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia on steroids[edit]

If anyone wants a visual statement of the difference that the new servers have made, take a look at the latest stats (http://en.wikipedia.org/stats/ ). December and January were the dog months but see how those bar charts soar afterwards! Looks like we're well on course for March to be the busiest month yet. -- ChrisO 21:56, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

That link doesn't work. Tuf-Kat 21:57, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, try it now. -- ChrisO 21:58, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
FWIW, those aren't this last December and January -- those are December 2002 and January 2003. The stats didn't get kept up properly while we were fighting with replacement servers. --Brion 22:50, 2004 Mar 19 (UTC)
Ah, I see. :-) I'm sure the assertion that March will set a new record is bound to be true, though. I came close to giving up on Wikipedia last year because of the server problems and I'm sure many others did take the jump. -- ChrisO 23:00, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Unicode conversion[edit]

A while back I posted a query here about finding an ASCII to Unicode converter. A helpful Wikipedian steered me to this page - http://www.mikezilla.com/exp0012.html - which does the trick very nicely. You can paste an entire sentence there (in, say, Cyrillic or Chinese) and get it converted into Unicode. Hope others find it of use too. -- ChrisO 22:02, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

The problem is that it's much harder to edit these pages subsequently. I still think it's better to type out the actual characters. Dori | Talk 22:19, Mar 19, 2004 (UTC)
The problems is that the actual characters often get corrupted by users who don't have those fonts installed. For some reason, the character š seems to be particularly vulnerable to this; I've had to re-insert it many times where users have accidentally corrupted it to ? (apparently the default value for uninstalled characters). I suspect that the average UK/US user is only likely to have regular western European character sets installed, and certainly won't have the more "exotic" character sets. -- ChrisO 23:04, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It is not Unicode conversion, but Unicode to numeric HTML entities conversion. Those kind of entities make editing almost impossible. It is hard enough as it is to keep having to check preview what &#658; is, if also all ASCII letters would be thus encoded editing would be made almost impossible. Wikipedia should just move to Unicode. — Jor (Darkelf) 23:13, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
See Japanese proverbs if you want to know what people are talking. -- Taku 18:40, Mar 20, 2004 (UTC)

Random picture selection in sidebar[edit]

I think it would be interesting to have a Random picture selection as well as the Random page selection on the Wikipedia sidebar. - Bevo 23:09, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It would be fun, but alas, many seem to think the sidebar too crowded as it is (see Wikipedia talk:Community Portal). :) Jwrosenzweig 23:14, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It certainly looks like a customisable sidebar would be pretty popular, if anyone created such a thing... - IMSoP 23:36, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I was thinking how good this would be just yesterday. Even if it didn't make it onto the sidebar, it would be nice to have it as a link on a page somewhere. fabiform | talk 23:55, 19 Mar 2004 (UTC)
How about on the [[Image:...]] description page? Click on (eg) the VP sheep, then click your way ever onward through Borgesian forking paths of randomness. Hajor 00:10, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
That would be a great place for it. fabiform | talk 00:22, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Alexa "Top 50 Reference Sites" list[edit]

Alexa has a top-50 list of reference sites; WP is by now probably one of them, by subject matter, reach, and traffic, but not yet on the list. Would it be alright to contact frontdesk@alexa.com and suggest our inclusion there? Has this already been done? +sj+ 23:20, 2004 Mar 19 (UTC)

I don't see how contacting them would hurt. I also have not heard about anybody doing that. --mav 19:11, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback. I wrote them today; they wrote back promptly and were grateful for the heads-up. Turns out we weren't listed under the dmoz "Reference" category. Here's their reply (markup added):

We're glad you wrote to us to mention this. The top sites in categories of our Browse Subjects Directory are those sites with the most Alexa visitors during the past month, updated daily. It turns out the reason you're not among the most popular in reference is that the Directory (which we inherit from the Open Directory Project at DMOZ.org) did not include you in the Reference category. We've added you to that category on our back end, and you should be listed there within days. After you've been in that category for a month, you'll be eligible to be most popular in that category if the stats fall that way[1].

[1] Ed. note: it will be a good many months yet before we're more popular than the Internet Archive or Mapquest.) +sj+ 04:16, 2004 Mar 23 (UTC)

Edit summary auto-prefill[edit]

As some of you may know I hacked a little feature a couple of days ago that automatically enters the section title ("Edit summary auto-prefill" in this section, for example) in the summary box when editing a page. This can be overwritten if necessary - just tab into the edit box and the text is highlighted so you can write whatever you want.

Brion has disabled the auto-prefill of edit summaries for section edits because "a number of people" have complained that people would now be "discouraged" to write "real" summaries. I consider it a highly useful feature and, in my experience, it has much improved the value of Special:Recentchanges to get an idea what's really going on, as especially for small edits people do not typically fill out the edit summary box.

If you would like this feature back, or agree with Brion, I encourage you to vote on m:Edit summary prefill poll. Please post this announcement to other language/project pumps as it affects all wikis.—Eloquence 00:03, Mar 20, 2004 (UTC)

"They" as a neutered pronoun[edit]

What is Wikipedia's position, if any, on the use of "they" as a singular gender-neutral pronoun? Recently, someone converted some of my "they"s I had written in an article to "he"s ([6]), and I want to know if Wikipedia has some position on the issue before I revert them.

Personally, though I know it's not traditional, I support using "they" in this sense. It's a word English needs ("he or she" is awkward and too PC), and just about everybody uses it already, in my part of the globe at least. Garrett Albright 02:58, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)

The other editor did not replace "they" with "he". The other editor reworked the paragraph and in one of two cases replaced "their" with "his or her" as part of a rewrite of that sentence. In the second case, the rewrite completely eliminated the need to use any form of words for this. Jamesday 00:57, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I think the relevant diff was [7], not the link that is given above, since that is the last diff of the article. Dysprosia 03:42, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I support it also. However, if someone feels they take offense to use of it, I try and reword it so it does not depend on a reference to gender - which is almost always possible. Dysprosia 03:03, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
For example:
In another variant, players may be un-frozen when someone crawls between their legs. Such an action helps prevent "It" from winning, but puts the person crawling in a position where they may be easily tagged and frozen as well.
-->
In another variant, players may be un-frozen when someone crawls between their legs. Such an action helps prevent "It" from winning, but makes the person crawling vulnerable to being tagged and frozen as well. Dpbsmith 10:26, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This is becoming accepted English usage, and in my opinion nobody should be going round changing such usage to 'he' and similar. I'm not sure if anyone should be doing the reverse, either, unless we have a consensus opinion on it. This is like fixing spellings that aren't wrong, just alternates, or going round changing English to American spellings or vice versa -- it tends to step on peoples' toes and is best avoided. —Morven 03:05, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It's not good English, and doesn't really look professional. What I do is change it to "he" in one article and "she" in the next, switching off. That way I don't offend any PC patrol, but still get good writing. Meelar 08:35, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Exactly. Singular 'they' is an ugly distortion of the English language, it just happens to be a quite old one. English has the perfectly acceptable pronoun 'one' if the PC crowd must be catered to. — Jor (Talk) 16:05, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
FWIW, here is AHD's usage panel's position on the use of the word they as a singular neuter pronoun. As you'd expect it doesn't settle the matter, but I certainly think it puts the usage into the range where "correcting" it would be uncalled-for. Furthermore, when it seems clear that the singular "they" was used for the purpose of expressing gender neutrality, "correcting" it to the male gender strikes me as an assertion of a non-neutral point-of-view. Anyway, here's what AHD4 says: Dpbsmith 10:38, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The use of the third-person plural pronoun they to refer to a singular noun or pronoun is attested as early as 1300, and many admired writers have used they, them, themselves, and their to refer to singular nouns such as one, a person, an individual, and each. W.M. Thackeray, for example, wrote in Vanity Fair in 1848, A person can't help their birth, and more recent writers such as George Bernard Shaw and Anne Morrow Lindbergh have also used this construction, in sentences such as To do a person in means to kill them, and When you love someone you do not love them all the time. The practice is widespread and can be found in such mainstream publications as the Christian Science Monitor, Discover, and the Washington Post. The usage is so common in speech that it generally passes unnoticed. •However, despite the convenience of third-person plural forms as substitutes for generic he and for structurally awkward coordinate forms like his/her, many people avoid using they to refer to a singular antecedent out of respect for the traditional grammatical rule concerning pronoun agreement. Most of the Usage Panelists reject the use of they with singular antecedents. Eighty-two percent find the sentence The typical student in the program takes about six years to complete their course work unacceptable. Thus, the writer who chooses to use they in similar contexts in writing should do so only if assured that the usage will be read as a conscious choice rather than an error. •Interestingly, Panel members do seem to distinguish between singular nouns, such as the typical student, and pronouns that are grammatically singular but semantically plural, such as anyone and everyone. Sixty-four percent of panel members accept the sentence No one is willing to work for those wages anymore, are they? in informal speech.
Forgive my ignorance, but who or what is AHD? Hard to make an appeal to autority when the authority is not widely recognized (at least not by initials). FWIW, I am perfectly content using a singular they, although I do try to avoid it if possible without torturing the syntax. Bkonrad | Talk 16:03, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)
OK, I just realized AHD is probably the American Heritage Dictionary.

I have a hard time with this one too. Using "they" ends up ungrammatical, a choice between "he" or "she" leaves out half the population, "one" doesn't always connote what one wants it to connote (it often feels too formal), and s/he (my feminist husband's favourite) looks kinda dumb and it's uncertain how one reads it out loud. I usually do like Dpbsmith and reword it. If that would be to torturous, I use "one." But I don't think this is very amenable to consensus. moink 17:08, 20 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It looks ungrammatical to me. If I was editing that piece of text anyway, I'd reword to avoid it. If I wasn't reworking it I'd almost certainly ignore it as a matter of individual taste of the writer concerned. Jamesday 00:57, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)