User talk:Nettrom

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Hello Nettrom, Eduemoni↑talk↓ has given you a shinning smiling star! You see, these things promote WikiLove and hopefully this has made your day better. Spread the Shinning Smiling Star whether it be someone you have had disagreements with in the past or someone putting up with some stick at this time. Enjoy!

Update, please?[edit]

Could you or User:EpochFail run an update on m:Research:Screening WikiProject Medicine articles for quality/Stub prediction table? I've personally gone through the top half or so, and I know a couple of other people have been through parts of the list as well. It would be a little more efficient for me if the ones that they've already updated were taken off the list.

If it's a hassle–really, if it's more than about ten minutes work–then it might not be worth your time, but if it's easy, then I'd appreciate it.

By the way, your predicted percentages are still holding approximately true. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:25, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

I had this on my calendar yesterday, but failed to get around to it. Will take care of it later today. Cheers, Nettrom (talk) 14:46, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
@WhatamIdoing: The table is now updated. I also created a page with the list of redirects that were identified, in case WP Medicine wants to fix those too, see m:Research:Screening WikiProject Medicine articles for quality. Regards, Nettrom (talk) 23:28, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks! I'm starting down the new list. I see that a few more have been added. I have found one copyvio among the recently enlarged articles. Thanks, too, for the redirects list. Cleaning out mislabeled redirects is something I haven't done for over a year, and I can see that it's high time.
I've been thinking about the idea of producing a predicted status for all articles. The line between a long-ish Stub and a weak-ish Start is pretty fuzzy. What might be most useful as a starting point for that is a report only on the articles that are wrong by two classes–not Stubs that are probably Starts, but Stubs that are probably C-class or better, or, in the other direction, C-class articles that are probably Stubs. That would clear out the most significant outdated (or vandalized; it happens) assessments before going on to the much longer list of slightly-off ratings. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:09, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
I've cleared the entire redirects list, and blanked it so that anyone visiting the page will know that it's done. Feel free to ping me if future runs find more. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:47, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
One more update, please? I've reached the end of the list. The page currently lists 490 articles, and while some of these are still stubs, more than half of them will go away. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:02, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Hi WhatamIdoing, I'll take care of the update tomorrow (Oct 30). Cheers, Nettrom (talk) 22:38, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
@WhatamIdoing: I have updated both the main table as well as the redirect table, there were ten redirects this time around that you might want to have a look at. Let me know if you there's anything else! Cheers, Nettrom (talk) 20:06, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks! I'm halfway through the new ones.
In terms of turning this into a sustainable ongoing task (e.g., the bot updates it periodically and editors go over the ratings), it would be useful to know which ones are newly added and which ones are old. I can look at the color of the link and know that I visited this page recently, but not that one, but nobody except me can know which ones I've already reviewed vs which ones still need to be done. I don't know how much work that would be, or if it's worth it.
User:Dank was interested in seeing how this worked out, with an eye towards seeing whether MILHIST would benefit from a similar re-assessment drive. I think that I've reassessed about 1% of WPMED's articles (about 400) as a result of this list. As I said earlier, the ones that are probably very wrong (rated as stub but predicted as C or higher) are probably the most important ones to review, but the predicted levels were reasonably close to my experience. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:31, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

SuggestBot and HTML5[edit]

Hello there! I was wondering if you could update SuggestBot to have the tables it posts on user's talk page be HTML5 compliant. I'd be happy to help if you point me to the source code for the script or templates used to make those tables. Currently, I'm seeing a lot of align='right'align='center'align='left' where style="text-align: right;"style="text-align: center;"style="text-align: left;" would be up-to-date and appropriate. If you could do this, it would fix a huge eyesore for me and a couple other users. Thanks! — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 05:40, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

@Technical 13: Thanks for letting me know about this. I'm a little swamped at the moment, but I've made a note to look into this, should be done some time next week. I suspect it's only a matter of minor changes to SuggestBot's templates to get it taken care of. Thanks again! Cheers, Nettrom (talk) 15:44, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
  • If you want to point me to those templates, I'd be happy to make the needed changes. I can edit on-wiki templates (even if I need to submit a specific edit request to a Template editor/Administrator protected page) and I could submit a pull request if it is on BitBucket. I don't mind. If not and you'd rather just do it yourself, I understand and that's not a problem either. Happy editing and thanks for your time! :) — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 16:45, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
@Technical 13: Thanks so much for volunteering, that's much appreciated! I would've pointed you to the templates if it didn't mean I first had to go poke around in SuggestBot's configuration to check which ones are in use, and also inspect the other content elements that are in the configuration. Since that's about 75% of the work to fix the issue, once it was done I might as well go do some copy & paste on the templates and test them.
If you have time to go have a look at the templates and see if there's anything I've missed, that would be great, another pair of eyes is always helpful! There are two templates currently in use: the first one is used for one-time requests, and the other one is used for our subscribers (those who get suggestions periodically). The resulting posts from SuggestBot can be seen here in my sandbox, they're in the same order. Looks like the vertical alignment in the big table is slightly off, that might be due to how images and text is aligned in CSS, if I remember correctly, but as it looks like it's a really small difference I haven't yet allocated time to look into it (if I'll bother). Anyways... thanks again for helping me get these upgraded! Cheers, Nettrom (talk) 22:10, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Administrator Barnstar Hires.png The Admin's Barnstar
I'v done and people got credit but now ? Zaed.zaman (talk) 04:59, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Stub predictions[edit]

Hi Nettrom,

I wanted to give you and User:EpochFail an update on m:Research:Screening WikiProject Medicine articles for quality/Stub prediction table. I'm "done", in the sense that I've checked every page on the list at least once. Overall, I think it was useful. I personally reassessed the class on about 450 articles, and in other cases I kept the class rating but made other adjustments, like adding task forces or removing the WPMED banner altogether. I really appreciated the list of pages that were redirects.

Here are a few complications:

  • Does your algorithm use raw file size (vs readable content)? It seems to give high ratings to articles that have a dozen footnotes, but very few sentences.
  • Imagine that I checked an article yesterday, and decided that it's still a stub. User:Dank expanded it this morning. The bot runs tonight. When I look at the list tomorrow, there is no way for me to know that it needs to be re-checked. What I see, basically, is that I have visited that URL recently.
  • It's fun when you start. It gets boring after a while. Using a rater script is probably essential to getting the job done for mid-size or larger projects.
  • Updates don't work as well as the original list. With the updated list, you run into the "I already checked that one" problem, but you also get articles that are unstable. On the most recent list, several of the highest rated articles were being expanded now, appeared spammy or smelled of copyvios, didn't belong to WPMED, or were at AFD. These are articles that are more likely than average to get stubbified, which would render my "new" rating out of date.

I think it might be useful to run through a list like this maybe a couple of times a year, but I don't think that it's a good candidate for an everyday maintenance task. If you were setting up a bot to do this, then you might consider having it run once a month. Every day would be too often to be useful.

And, finally, I could see some value in two other lists:

  1. An off-by-two list, to find things rated as Start (for example) but that are at least two classes higher (or lower, I suppose).
  2. A list of pages that are probably over-rated (for example, listed as B, but having a greater than 50% chance of being C class or lower).

Thank you both again for doing this. Between all of us, we have probably corrected the ratings on 2% of WPMED's articles this way. I really appreciate it.

Are you interested in doing this for other groups? I don't want to go out and volunteer your time, but a few of the more organized projects might benefit from a list. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:45, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

Hi WhatamIdoing, thank you so much for this great feedback! Sorry about the delay in getting back to you. I'm of course happy to hear this has been a useful experiment, but also that there's improvements left to do. Let me respond to a question you had and then I'll move on to future plans, I have some ideas that can hopefully result in some good support tools for WikiProjects.
You asked whether the algorithm uses raw file size. It's a random forest classifier, which we give eleven inputs to (here's a perhaps rather cryptic list of them). We do use the raw length of an article’s wikitext as one of the inputs, it might be better to use an approximation of readable content, I’ll make a note to test that. If my memory of the classifier's scoring of importance is correct, the raw length of the article's wikitext is the #1 feature when it comes to predicting quality, and the number of footnoted references is #2. We did some investigation into the classifier's performance earlier this year for a research paper that'll be presented at a conference in 2015, and one thing I for instance noticed is that it'll flag some articles as C-class that some Wikipedians will rate Start-class. At that time the Start-class criteria contained the phrase "most notably, lacks adequate reliable sources", which I see you changed on Nov 17 (ref this revision). The classifier is a bit of a black box and there will definitely be edge cases it gets wrong, short articles with a good number of references is likely one of them. Hopefully the Revision scoring as a service IEG results in a gold standard labelled set of revisions that we can use to further improve the classifier.
I hope that answers the question. As for future plans and interest in doing this for other groups, the answer is “yes, definitely!” I am currently working on designing a research experiment to finish up my PhD and based on the previous work we have done WikiProjects is probably the right place to build some support tools. A tool that will help projects keep track of candidates for reassessment is one part of that, but I’m also very much interested in understanding more about how projects (or groups of project members) make decisions about which articles to work on, and if there’s an opportunity to build tools to support that. We’ve been experimenting with information about article viewership and quality in SuggestBot’s suggestions since 2011, and my latest research found some interesting results with regards to how article viewership and quality is related to WikiProjects (unfortunately this work isn’t published yet, but I'd be happy to discuss it off-wiki).
Would that be something that WikiProject Medicine might be interested in as well? And are there other projects that you’re in touch with that I could also reach out to? Given its size, I’m quite curious about what MILHIST participants are thinking about this, but of course, only if they’re interested. And I'd be happy to hear about other potential projects I could get in touch with, if you have ideas! I’m thinking I would first reach out with a small set of questions to learn more about the decision process and whether article viewership is something they’re concerned with (or would like to be informed about).
Let me know if this sounds interesting, and please do ask questions or let me know if I’m off on the wrong path. Regards, Nettrom (talk) 22:00, 16 December 2014 (UTC)
Half an answer, so that I can get you some reply this week:
I suspect that readable content will be a better measurement, especially for stubs. The difference may be greater for pharma stubs than anything else, because there are many stubs that have a large number of refs (sometimes more than a dozen) behind just a couple of sentences. The difference may be less obvious in other subjects.
I changed the Start-class description because of a complaint: Article ratings are being sent to new editors via WP:Echo, and "most notably, lacks adequate citations" was being read as "if you have citations, this class should not have been assigned to your article". In broad theory, you must have one (1) citation (need not be inline) per article to leave Start-class. In theory, you need (almost always) one (1) inline citation per ==section== to leave C-class. In practice, some reviewers are much stricter.
More later, WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:47, 21 December 2014 (UTC)

Thanks Nettrom[edit]

Hi, Thanks for helping me unsubscribe. Hope to sign up again in the near future. The suggestbot has been useful for me. Thanks --Nkansahrexford (talk) 22:49, 9 February 2015 (UTC)


Can you please configure Suggestbot to suggest articles every 2 days. THANK YOU A.A.Wasif | Talk 10:22, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

@Abdullah Al Wasif: I'm reluctant to change the subscription setup so it allows shorter periods than a week, as the table with suggestions is a fairly large amount of wikitext. We'd rather not write those too often. If you do want suggestions more often, you can use the request template to get them as often as you want. Although that currently formats the suggestions with less information, it can be used several times a day if you want. Regards, Nettrom (talk) 15:22, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

WikiProject reports from SuggestBot[edit]

Hi Nettrom! I am working on WikiProject X, an effort to overhaul WikiProjects. As part of this, I am interested in developing a scalable approach for generating article worklists. I am very encouraged by the efforts you've made with SuggestBot, especially in the above talk page thread about stub prediction for WikiProject Medicine, and I would be interested in something that would allow any WikiProject to generate these kinds of reports. I was considering just using User:SuggestBot/Requests, but WikiProject categories index a bunch of talk pages, rather than the articles themselves. So would it be possible to come up with some way to make the request feature work for WikiProjects? Thanks, Harej (talk) 17:16, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

@Harej: Thanks for getting in touch, sorry about not being quicker in responding! I've seen WikiProject X pop up here and there and am looking forward to see what you come up with, good support for WikiProjects is in my view a key component to sustained success of Wikipedia. With regards to SuggestBot, it does have undocumented support for seeding it with WikiProject articles. It was developed a while ago to allow easier requests of suggestions for Teahouse visitors, who were asked to copy & paste names of active WikiProjects. You can give it the full category name directly (e.g. Category:WikiProject History articles), and it'll handle the talk pages just fine. An alternative is to give the WikiProject name as a specific parameter, and it'll add " articles" automatically and similarly grab pages from the corresponding category: {{User:SuggestBot/suggest|category1=WikiProject History}} In either case, it will be seeded by up to 256 articles from that category, and it uses the timestamp of when the article was added to the category to sort them with the oldest one first (meaning it assumes that older timestamps are articles in less need of improvement than younger ones).
WikiProject support in SuggestBot has been requested quite a lot by other contributors. One thing we have not implemented is to limit suggested articles to ones within a specific WikiProject. As mentioned above you can seed the suggestions with articles from WikiProject, and since the bot finds similar articles it will likely find other ones within the project as well, but it is free to also suggest other articles. It might therefore not be a great fit for WikiProjects specifically, but could be very useful for individual project members.
Hope that helps, let me know if you have further questions and I'll try to help you out! Regards, Nettrom (talk) 17:47, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
Hello! Good to hear that WikiProjects are already supported. Would it be possible to use User:SuggestBot/config, for regular updates, rather than the one-time User:SuggestBot/suggest template, to get the same functionality? Harej (talk) 04:04, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
I also would be interested in having the output be in the table format, rather than just the list. Thanks! Harej (talk) 22:34, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

I have recently used suggest bot and want to let you know that I find it very helpful. I want to let you know that I appreciate you as its 'caretaker'. Thank you for your work on this bot. Best Regards,

  Bfpage |leave a message  14:33, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
Hi Bfpage, I'm happy to hear you find SuggestBot useful, and thanks so much for the kind words! Regards, Nettrom (talk) 18:45, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
👍 Like   Bfpage |leave a message  18:57, 19 May 2015 (UTC)