User talk:RexxS

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I'm still enjoying real life for the moment, so please accept my apologies if I do not reply in a timely manner. There may be a few TPS who can answer you in my absence.


All the socks watching fireworks[edit]

Darwinfish and the gang send you some deep midwinter Stockholm fireworks from last night.

Yo Ho Ho[edit]

Thank you for the advice on references to multiple pages[edit]

Hi, RexxS,

If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I am sincerely flattering you by adopting the slick use of templates to reference multiple pages from the same reliable source in all the articles I hope to bring up to good article status this year. I wanted to thank you for your informative page on the topic, which has been my guide for article drafts for several years (and the documentation I link to when I use that reference format in articles in mainspace). I'm also posting here to let you know that I have now written my own version of documentation for that editorial practice, as a sign of my appreciation. I love to make articles absolutely, positively verifiable through reliable sources, and you have helped show me the way. Thanks. -- WeijiBaikeBianji (talk, how I edit) 21:17, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Don't do this[edit]

RexxS, I had decided a week ago to stay away from Andy's ArbCom review, largely because of comments by Nyttend, Ched and other long-time editors whom I respect. This reference to me [1], however, is a major mistake in your defense of Andy, and I urge you to remove your reference to me as unfairly treating him in TfD discussions. Unlike DePiep and several others, I can back everything I've said in TfDs about Andy's conduct (and his sarcasm and provocative comments and accusations) with diffs and damning explanations. Your call: either remove me from your comments, or I will request an extension of today's deadline and will file a complete presentation of evidence that will not help your cause. Please advise. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 23:55, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

I stand by all my evidence and have the diffs to support it. I'd be happy to see an extension - or even more an opportunity to analyse the evidence. Understand that I will refute your denial that that you have unfairly targeted Andy and you will not be painted in a good light if I have to do so. I suggest you take a step back and reflect on your attitude to Andy as you would both be better off if you avoided each other. That's my advice. Cheers --RexxS (talk) 00:20, 11 February 2015 (UTC
Please explain how I have "unfairly targeted Andy," because that's not even remotely close to being true. I am no Javert, and Andy is certainly no Jean Valjean. If you believe that, then you need to review your own perspective regarding Andy, your heated defense of him, as well as Andy's own on-wiki history.
My perspective regarding Andy is largely a result of Andy's own aggressive conduct in TfDs in which I have participated, as well as other TfDs and drama board discussions which I read contemporaneously with Andy's participation in them over the last several years. Andy does have his supporters, several of whom I hold in great respect (I don't know you, so please don't take that as a back-handed swipe at you), and that is why I had decided to stay away from this ArbCom review largely because of their early comments, largely to the effect that everyone deserves a second chance and that Andy had made significant positive contributions to the project despite his past sanctions. Because I am open to other perspectives regarding this editor, I had decided to let the AbrCom proceedings take place without my participation.
That being said, several of Andy's supporters are only too willing to ignore Andy's aggressive and often uncivil discussion comments to other discussion participants, as well as his aggressive editing. Angry comments directed at Andy do not "just happen" in a vacuum; they are usually triggered by Andy's comments in the first instance, and when confronted with vocal opposition in discussions, he does little to reduce the level of heated discussion. Very little, in fact. So let's not pretend this is someone who has been unfairly targeted by hoards of Wikipedia bad actors; I can think of precisely one editor who routinely opposes Andy's proposals for the sake of opposing Andy. He is an editor who, however admirable his accomplishments, has also been blocked thirty-plus times, site-banned for a year twice, banned from editing the article of the day, and is currently topic-banned from various things related to infoboxes. He has an established pattern of conduct and a record of serious sanctions, and that's on him, not on some imagined hoard of people who live to make Andy's life miserable. Most of us would love for the project to have his productive work, but coupled with a far less aggressive, more collaborative approach to editing and to templates in particular. I'm sorry if you believe otherwise, but there are other perspectives on Andy which do not coincide 100% with your own, and many of those perspective are no less valid than your own, and there are numerous editors who hold such perspectives in good faith based on first-hand observations of the editor in question. And they're not all wrong. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 01:32, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
And, Andy's prosecutors - including you, Dirtlawyer1, fail to see the log in their own eyes. Andy is often correct and the OWNers of various templates are engaging in mere IDONTLIKEIT knee-jerk opposition. His conduct, far from "aggressive," is merely pointing out the obvious (and note I oppose him occasionally on TfD and find he is reasonable and fair in his debate(). Now quit trying to intimidate people who speak fairly about Andy. Save your pitchforks for actual trolls. Montanabw(talk) 02:53, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
@Dirtlawyer1: I have only to read your recent interactions with Andy to see how you've singled him out for your attention. My defence of him is far less heated than your persistence in opposing him with little justification.
It should be clear from the diffs I've already provided that I have little time for for those who bait and harass others. Andy has not done that. He has been working on consolidating the unmanageable proliferation of templates into more generic ones for several years now and is just as civil to others as they have been to him.
Those who OWN their templates see him as an inconvenient threat to their creations. Once someone has had a target painted on their back by ArbCom, it is far too easy for those opposing Andy to try to use unrelated issues as a tool to remove him from discussions. That is precisely what this case is about - and incidentally, it's also the argument that you're deploying above.
Andy has worked with many editors - myself included - on multiple projects, both on-wiki and in support of Wikimedia UK without any suggestion of a problem. He received an award at Wikimania for his work and those who endorsed that award were not all wrong either.
Like many other editors Andy does not suffer fools gladly and I have seen him snap back when provoked. I have regularly counselled him to ignore these editors, but it is difficult when they are deliberately side-tracking debates and attacking him. I have documented many instances of this and there's nothing imaginary about it. This isn't your hyperbole of "hoards of editors", but it is a clearly identifiable handful of editors. I can only surmise from your persistence in whitewashing the actions of that group that you sympathise with them. Clearly your actions do nothing to help alleviate, but merely further antagonise the situation - you ignore those who start the provocations and seek to blame Andy for his reactions. That he reacts poorly when attacked is no justification for calling him the names that I noted in the case.
You're just going to have to accept that your interactions with Andy do nothing to further your claimed desire "for the project to have his productive work, but coupled with a far less aggressive, more collaborative approach". If you're not able to collaborate with Andy, then you need to examine your own attitude. Plenty of other editors manage to collaborate successfully with him without having problems.
Frankly, I have no confidence in your assertion that "I am open to other perspectives regarding this editor" since your actions demonstrate quite the opposite to your words. Please feel free to explain how open you have been to other perspectives on Andy because I've been unable to find any evidence of that anywhere. Cheers --RexxS (talk) 03:00, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
Rexx, from your comments above, you seem to be under the mistaken impression that it's my conduct that is under review here. It is not. The sooner you accept that some of Andy's conduct is problematic, the sooner some recurring TfD problems will begin to resolve themselves. I am not part of any conspiracy to hound Andy, and I don't pretend to speak for anyone other than myself. I certainly have no interest in whitewashing the actions of anyone. Andy is responsible for his own actions. As am I. As are you. Andy is no different in that regard. But you have to believe in some of Wikipedia-wide anti-Andy conspiracy/cabal to believe that there is no merit to complaints about his conduct when he has been blocked more than 30 times, site-banned for a year twice, banned from editing the article of the day, and is currently topic-banned. Do you think I'm responsible for that? I have no prior personal history with Andy before November 2014, and I am certainly no leader of your anti-Andy cabal.
"Like many other editors Andy does not suffer fools gladly and I have seen him snap back when provoked." And the same could be said of me, and many other editors who have been on the receiving end of Andy's on-wiki comments and editing behavior. You clearly like Andy and admire his good work. Good for you. You also clearly have a blind spot for Andy's not-so-admirable conduct. When you make blanket statements about Andy's critics, to the effect that they are all out to get Andy, that none of them have any valid points, that they are all driven my some irrational animus towards him, I hope you understand how that sounds to an uninvolved third-party.
"Plenty of other editors manage to collaborate successfully with him without having problems." And plenty self-evidently do not. Why is that? Why does Andy generate such reactions? Is that the fault of everyone except Andy? Does an editor get blocked 30+ times and site-banned twice because other persons are unfairly persecuting him? Is it remotely possible that Andy is perhaps doing some things that lead to these outcomes?
"I have no confidence in your assertion that 'I am open to other perspectives regarding this editor.'" As for my open-mindedness, have you stopped to ponder why I am engaged in this discussion with you? Or do you believe that my dialogue with you is part of some vindictive campaign to stick it to Andy?
I would be curious to hear your answers to my questions. And in an intellectually honest manner where we're not trading rhetorical statements. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 03:36, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
You're the one who is mistaken if you think that you can malign other editors without your own conduct being examined. This is my talk page and I'm entitled to review whatever I choose here. Let me remind you, you're the one who came here. You have a track-record of attacking Andy in concert with others, so please don't insult my intelligence. I've just come from pointing out where you've called Andy foolish and stated that he intentionally (your emphasis) did not notify the creator of the second template in a TfM discussion. Words are easy - "I'm not part of a conspiracy" - yet your actions contradict such platitudes.
Andy's blocks were before you even started editing on Wikipedia, but I see that you insist in dredging them up time and again as if they were relevant to the present disputes. That's common tactics in attempting to discredit an editor and I'm pretty sure you know that. Not an admirable trait.
I see from your repeated hyperbole ("Wikipedia-wide anti-Andy conspiracy/cabal") that you take me for an idiot. I have no need to believe in any such thing. A few determined editors are sufficient to pile on - as you have so clearly demonstrated at Wikipedia:Templates for discussion/Log/2015 February 10. You don't have to be a leader, just being a follower is all that's necessary.
Personalising these sort of issues into "liking" or "disliking" someone is playground talk. I had assumed you were older than that. Let me say that I do think Andy does good work, even when I disagree with him. I don't think he does himself any favours when he makes terse replies instead of spelling out the issue in detail, but my response is to privately try to counsel him, not to make it into a confrontation as several others have a habit of doing.
You want to know why some editors don't get on with Andy? It's because he believes that infoboxes improve articles and that reducing the vast number of overly-specific templates into more manageable generic ones improves the encyclopedia. He believes this sincerely and has put a lot of work over the years into furthering those goals. There are a number of editors who intensely hate infoboxes and a similar number who have invested effort into the very templates that Andy seeks to amalgamate. Both groups have not found convincing reasons for opposing Andy but know that they can provoke him sufficiently to get a response that allows them to seek sanctions. It doesn't matter how often they fail because eventually the mud will stick and Andy will be removed from the area where he is an inconvenience to them.
No matter how much you protest, you're not an uninvolved third-party, so I have no expectation that you'll agree with my analysis. But you provide no reason why the same few editors show up time and again to oppose Andy. It was exactly the same behaviour from a small group over infoboxes. Your attitude is that it isn't real but you simply ignore the evidence I already found from a brief inspection of the TfD logs. Feel free to explain away the treatment numerous editors have received when they tried to add an infobox to certain articles. Am I imagining that as well? It's the direct result of the campaign to keep Andy away from infobox discussions and gives a free hand to the anti-infobox brigade to dismiss editors who won't argue their case as firmly as Andy used to. You'd like to see the same result for TfDs, wouldn't you?
The reason you came here was to try to get me to remove my mention of you in the Review Evidence page, or have you forgotten that already? There's nothing for me to ponder, other than why you waste your time by continuing the debate when my opinion of your actions is absolutely clear. Perhaps you can enlighten me as to that last point? --RexxS (talk) 04:39, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Yes, sir, I do believe you are sadly correct: this is probably a waste of my time, as you suggested immediately above. In your adamantly stated opinion, I am 100% at fault, Andy/Pigsonthewing is 100% blameless, and you are completely unreceptive to arguments by me or anyone else that some of Andy's discussion comments and related editing are problematic. So, no, this is probably not a good use of our time, and I apologize for wasting yours.

For your benefit, I had absolutely no part in the Great Infobox Wars, nor did I ever have any personal interaction with Andy/Pigsonthewing prior to November 2014. In fact, I am generally pro-infobox, but I have never engaged in an edit war to add or remove one. You might ask yourself how someone with my six years of history and depth of Wikipedia contributions has come to view Andy as problematic, but that would require you to question your own opinions and conclusions. I have attempted to engage you regarding Andy's issues, with sincerity and in good faith here on your talk page. Based on your strongly expressed opinions regarding me and the motives you attribute to me, I see no further point in continuing this discussion. Hopefully, we can find something upon which we can agree and work together in the future. As you note above, this is your user talk page, and I will now respectfully withdraw from it. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 07:54, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

Refs[edit]

WRT refs IMO it is much better over one line rather than 20 lines and access date is not needed for journals. I prefer full journal names. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 05:38, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

Have re added the full journal names. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 05:49, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
I agree with you 100%, James. Also, I'd be keen to see the {{cite doi}}s removed, but as well as replacing journal names with abbreviations, Boghog's script also amalgamated authors into a single parameter and removed month from the date. I'd like him to get it right because he's doing a good job cleaning up the cites otherwise. Thanks for commenting on his talk page. As for the width of refs, there's never a "right answer" as 32em will cause longer citations to be broken up over more lines than 35em would - and anyone viewing on different screen width will see something different from us anyway. I'm sure 32em will be fine. Cheers --RexxS (talk) 16:03, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

Help with a teaching exercise[edit]

Hi RexxS, RichFarmbrough has recently refreshed a list for me which has enabled me to update a training exercise for newbies. But I think I've made it over complicated, would you mind running an eye over it? ϢereSpielChequers 21:22, 12 February 2015 (UTC)

It certainly looks fine and you've broken down the steps quite well. But it does introduce several techniques at once to newbies:
  1. The difference between Wikipedia and Commons;
  2. Searching Commons;
  3. Altering a given piece of text in Wikipedia to match information read from Commons;
(Assuming they will have already met editing an article and giving an edit summary.)
It may be that your audience will cope with those concepts all in one go, but I wouldn't guarantee it. You may also find - depending on the IT skills of the group - that you need to explain having multiple tabs open as well as copy & paste. Believe me, it happens. Normally I'd prefer to demonstrate adding an predetermined image (perhaps a picture of a kitten to a sandbox) first so that they can see how it's done before asking them to do that themselves - and adding the "search" bit as a separate step. The sort of actually useful exercise that you're describing would then be the follow-up. Now, the problem is that you may not have time to do all of that, so you have to either pre-judge the abilities of your audience or have extra helpers available to catch problems as they come up individually. It's always more efficient to solve problems as a group, but it risks boring the more able in an non-homogeneous group.
tl;dr: It looks good and should work well with the right audience, but may need some simpler preliminary exercises for some. HTH --RexxS (talk) 01:09, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks Rexxs, I've run a couple of sessions based on earlier versions of this and yes on both occasions I had an assistant. Also for things like opening multiple tabs people seemed happy to help each other. I'm thinking of this as a module which could even be someone's first edits. ϢereSpielChequers 14:14, 14 February 2015 (UTC)

talk aimed at college faculty[edit]

While you guys are at it, do either of you have a link to a good outline for a talk where one as only 30 minutes to discuss WP to a layperson's audience? (College faculty, to be precise) - basically a "how you can use WP in the classroom and a teaser for a class on editing that I'll be doing in a few weeks?") Montanabw(talk) 06:37, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
@ToniSant: or @Kudpung: are likely to have something that would work for that. ϢereSpielChequers 07:38, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
Montanabw, 30 mins is very short. If it's a straight lecture and you have your own notebook connected to a large display, with your knowledge you should be able to deliver something off the cuff. If you are expecting people to learn how to get on to Wikipedia in the first place or sign up for it it will take longer. Old experienced professional teachers and lecturers like RexxS and me (we've also done workshops together) don't need a lesson plan or crib sheet for this kind of thing. Using your computer and a large display is essential whatever you do. Load your computer with lots of screenshots that you can use on the fly when and if they need to know. better still of course is if you have an Internet connection. 'How you can use WP in the classroom' is as broad as it is long - does it refer to doing academic research for homework assignments, or just obtaining and improving editing skills as a contributor?Much of the content you deliver depends what previous knowledge of using or editing WP they bring with them and you will have to establish that within the first three minutes of classroom time to know where to place the starting point for your talk so that you teach them as much as possible in that limited time. Hope this helps. --Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 07:55, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
If I was talking to a bunch of academics, I'd be inclined to spend a decent chunk of the time dispelling myths and explaining how a tertiary source can be useful for students without being a substitute for the primary and secondary material they should be relying on. Just my two cents. :) HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 14:41, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks all, and more comments welcome! Yes, I will have my laptop hooked to a display and the internet should be up, so I could easily wing it, (Ah iz also a teecher at da place...(an adjunct)) but I find it helpful to bounce around ideas for the audience, who will most likely have zero editing experience. My goals are 1) Explain that WP is not crap and the basics on how to best use it as a tertiary research source for undergrads doing their term papers; 2) To introduce faculty to things like GA/FA -class articles but also the caveat emptor of vandalism that can always hit even an FA class article. (But how not to freak out about it), then 3) Offer a "teaser" for the class I'll be teaching on editing (that I offered in the fall but was cancelled because only one person signed up!). Montanabw(talk) 19:59, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Oh and, if anyone has some good screen shots, especially annotated ones, I'm always glad to steal them - email me or post links? Montanabw(talk) 20:00, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
Montanabw, expanding a bit on what Harry says, I always make a point very early on about how imperative it is to understand what COPYVIO is and why it is strictly forbidden, without of course expounding all kinds of laws. I usually illustrate this with some screen shots of the Duplication Detector. --Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 07:08, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
I think it is important to win people over at the start of a session, so with a faculty audience I would lead with something like of course by the time you are studying at undergraduate level you need to get beyond tertiary sources such as a general interest encyclopaedia. ϢereSpielChequers 11:41, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Indeed. The biggest challenge is the "wikipedia is crap" belief. It's about attracting these people to be interested in editing, maybe creating (advanced) class projects (as opposed to crap class projects) and how to make use of it as a tertiary source in contrast to other encyclopedic resources. Montanabw(talk) 03:27, 16 February 2015 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Infoboxes/Review/Proposed decision[edit]

RexxS, if you are going to provide analysis of evidence, could you please try and do it in the next 24 hours? I'm trying to get the PD out Wednesday. Courcelles (talk) 06:32, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Will do, Courcelles, and thanks for the note. It's a shame that I won't have the time to go into the detail that it deserves, but I'll do my best in the time allowed. --RexxS (talk) 17:12, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Some baklava for you![edit]

Henry Singleton - Ariel on a Bat's Back - Google Art Project.jpg For excellent images for facebook Hafspajen (talk) 16:20, 28 February 2015 (UTC)


Whirling dance disappoints[edit]

(That's a very artistic baklava above.) Laurel and Hardy dance in my edit notice, but the phenakistoscope is frozen! Disappointing! :-( Can Dino help? Bishonen | talk 11:31, 2 March 2015 (UTC).

Never mind, seems the couple just took a few hours to overcome their shyness. They're dancing right now! :-) Bishonen | talk 14:27, 2 March 2015 (UTC).
Laurel and Hardy were always very shy in the company of ladies. I imagine the ellipsis in the caption would have caused them considerable consternation, so you're lucky to get them to dance at all. There was also a known bug in the way that the server rendered animated gifs at different sizes, although I thought they had fixed it - perhaps not completely. --RexxS (talk) 14:39, 2 March 2015 (UTC)
Well, Laurel and Hardy have always danced with great abandon no matter where I put them, though now you mention it, I suppose they are shy with ladies — remember Oliver Hardy's tie-twirl? (We should have an animated gif of that.) But the pretty phenakistoscope image, where a gentleman caller spins 'shonen von Leuchtenberg round and round, wouldn't move at first. Both the dancing images have ellipses in the captions, but at opposite ends. Hmm. I didn't call up any individual sizes for them, just a gallery size. "Perhaps not entirely fixed" is the story of animated gifs, I suppose. Though the blinking Bishzilla will blink scarily at any size! Bishonen | talk 15:09, 2 March 2015 (UTC).

Ozymandias[edit]

Hahahahahaha! You know, you should create a sock under your real name, Famously Brilliant. Bishonen | talk 22:10, 3 March 2015 (UTC).