- 1 words about this user
- 2 Some... userboxes
- 3 contact me...
- 4 projects under development
- 5 Archive
- 6 metaphors for wikipedia
words about this user
....who began by just tidying the odd word as he was reading.
At Wikipedia (WP), as elsewhere, looking for precise definition, and where that is not possible, at least to reduce ambiguity. Much of what I do is copy editing: facilitating flowing but efficient english and page layout. I am an aesthete and will attempt to make pages more elegant as well as contributing towards their encyclopedic improvement. I tend to work in bursts, with breaks of several weeks or even months. I'm quite happy to be summoned back by editors who want my specific input, as sometimes occurs. However, when I encounter attachment to dogma among co-editors, I will quickly go work somewhere else. I have no time for pedantry and point scoring.
When I'm active, I study perhaps 10 - 20 WP pages a week for background or just curiosity. My watchlist presently gets pruned to stay at about 250. As well as contributing to consensual resolution of issues, meaning a high proportion of my edits are in Talk pages, I also focus on quite complex editing tasks that cannot be automated, working off-line, so my actual edit count is relatively low. Neither do I have much of an interest in spawning pages, preferring to merge superfluous ones rather than add new ones!
Outside, I am a freelancer somewhere between a sculptor, architect and engineer, born in 1957 in England. I have a Dual Special Honours Bachelors degree in Physiology and Chemistry and have also worked as a professional writer and an electronics development engineer, working even there in fields as diverse as nuclear reactor core instrumentation and audio.
Some of my presence here reflects an underlying interest in (human and wider) consciousness, and development of aspects of the mind potentially compromised by linear, language and symbol-based "left-brain" dominance and egoistic identity. These include personal expression through music, dance and organic form, as well as meditation and open-ness to transpersonal (spiritual) experience, none-the-less tempered by a desire to explore the contrasts and gradients between experiences and concepts rather than accept vague suppositions.
I sometimes view and edit WP on a laptop using the mobile phone network internet, which in remote areas can be very slow, so I have an interest in tuning topics that waste bandwidth because they spread content over too many small pages, or have illustrations that bulge over the belt.
(...his touch typing is very slow...) – but! –
(...he knows how to appear as if he knows what he's writing about)
(...has managed to escape from The Island State)
(...but both of him are still trying to leave The Village – on his tandem)
This user loves this World... but may leave anytime.
My appearance here will continue to be sporadic – several days in a row then nothing for a month, so if you've written stuff concerning me on pages here and nothing happens, also feel free to email me. Email is usually checked and responded to daily. I can also be hailed through my web site, http://wavesculptor.com - though that's under redevelopment at the moment too...
projects under development
Do collaborate on projects here if you are the kind that can do so sensitively! Please introduce yourself on the talk page of the document you want to contribute to before ploughing in.
Monitor sizes and resolutions have grown since Wikipedia page format was set in stone (apart from a few frills) in many editors' minds. This means that on monitors with high resolutions, many pages now display with a great white space gap down the middle between a right-aligned Infobox and the expanded left-hand Table of contents. This is not acceptable page feng-shui to a designer wishing to create optimal pages, for their own use not to mention other users – it being a waste of screen space that could be usefully conveying otherwise hidden information.
However, on smaller monitors, or where the Wikipedia page is not stretched to the full width of the screen, or the maximum resolution of the screen is not used (the page effectively "blown-up"), or a larger font-size selected, this is not an issue: editors are quite content and don't want their familiar layout upset.
I have adjusted one or two pages with particularly long leader sections, to place the table of contents to the left of the leader, with the leader wrapping it if necessary, to avoid having to scroll a considerable distance before being able to read the page contents. This also seems like a sensible and user-friendly fix for the problem of the Great Gap down the middle of the top of pages on higher res screens. The problem with this simple fix is that under any of the conditions above, the leader is transformed from a column of text of about equal width to the contents box and the infobox (just like any 4 column presentation – if the left bar is included) to a difficult to read strip of words squashed between them, or rendered in one of several other unacceptable configurations.
The user page to which this section title links is an attempt to build and test a simple and hopefully foolproof layout that can be checked on different browsers, OSs and users, to resolve this screen-res related problem. 22:37, 29 June 2010 (UTC)
...a page (or small group of pages) to combine, refine and add to the information sprinked lightly and haphazardly around the sprawling Category:Yoga positions tree of documents which I'm simultaneously tidying. I need help from those whose academic knowledge and "embeddedness" within the institutions of yoga is greater than mine - I can do the Asanas and format appropriate articles on them but struggle with the referencing.
... developing a template to place a thumbnail, like the [[Image:...|thumb]] but providing an id="bla" for the outer div element, so that when a #bla link is activated from elsewhere (in the page), auto-scrolling to the TOP of the thumb box occurs, NOT the caption - the simplest way of adding an anchor in the standard thumb box - which leaves the image still out of the browser window area. A way around having to add yet another ecapsulating div to each thumb.
Rather than just wipe-out external links to sources that have considerable merit but may not conform to all WP standards, I'm trying contacting the external site to see if they might want to make adjustments - such as adding their own references to sources of material. Contactability and responsivenes of such sites is, obviously, a criterion for keeping reference to their content.
Just having a look and seeing if I can act as an intermediary to resolving some of the issues on this potentially useful page, get it back on line. User:Tyrenius has since drafted a new page.
metaphors for wikipedia
a paper path
Imagine wikipedia is a path, the kind without a clearly defined edge, just worn by people walking it. On this path every visible character on every article page of the english wikipedia is given a place the same area as it has on a screen showing a character and the space around it up to the next one as approximately 5 mm x 3 mm. No white space, images or naviagtion bars are included. Then if this path is about 1 metre wide including a border of roughly equal width/area of stray walkings, then the path is 9570 km long.
Jogging at 10 km/hr would take you 4 x 24hr days to run it, never mind about reading it as you ran.
The width uncertainty is the extent of the average revision history. I've assumed off the top of my head it's about twice the page content. If it's actually smaller, you could regard the borders of the 9570 km metaphorical path as encroaching less on the centre but not affecting its length. I've not yet looked into whether the database size I used includes the discussion pages as well as the articles and their revisions.
The calculation is as follows:
from http://download.wikipedia.org/backup-index.html accessdate 2010-03-20 16:00 GMT 2010-03-20 15:49:49: enwiki 29548 pages, 19731000 revs
Based on uncompressing (up to) 20 times the archive download size. 31900000000 bytes compressed 638000000000 bytes ≈ characters, uncompressed 9.57e+12 sq mm, 5 mm x 3 mm 9570000 sq m 9570 km at 1 m width
Correct me if I make grossly false assumptions. The next step is to work out the actual area of it on WPs HDDs