User talk:Rusty Cashman

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Hello, Rusty Cashman, and welcome to Wikipedia! Thank you for your contributions. I hope you like the place and decide to stay. Here are some pages that you might find helpful:

I hope you enjoy editing here and being a Wikipedian! Please sign your name on talk pages using four tildes (~~~~); this will automatically produce your name and the date. If you need help, check out Wikipedia:Questions, ask me on my talk page, or place {{helpme}} on your talk page and someone will show up shortly to answer your questions. Again, welcome!  --TeaDrinker 09:29, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

welcome again[edit]

Rusty, welcome again to Wikipedia. You might be interested in Wikipedia:WikiProject History of Science.--ragesoss 13:44, 16 October 2006 (UTC)

History of geology[edit]

Rusty, my student has finished the draft of a history of geology article: User:Ragesoss/History of geology. If you're interested, you can take a look and give constructive criticism on the talk page; I'm sure it would be appreciated. We'll probably move it into Main space in about a week.--ragesoss 06:54, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

Rusty, thanks for your perceptive comments. It's in main space, so feel free to make changes now.--ragesoss 02:56, 11 December 2006 (UTC)


Hi Rusty. Thanks for your comments - it's always good to know that ones effort has not gone unnoticed. I couldn't help but notice from your profile that our backgrounds are very similar. I am also a software engineer and embedded programmer - I work on wireless handsets. I am also, of course, interested in the history of science and particularly evolutionary biology. Albie34423 03:59, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Philippine Tarsier WP:GA[edit]

Yehey!!! Thank you very much, in behalf of the editors, contributors, critiques, etc., as well as the Filipino community in Wikipedia/Tambayan Philippines. Your words are very very kind! Here's looking forward to more and more collaboration with you esp. on the WP:FA nomination. --Ate Pinay (talkemail) 20:01, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Maybe you can also check on the Philippine Tarsier Foundation WP:GA nomination, too? --Ate Pinay (talkemail) 21:18, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Polish cochineal[edit]

Hi Rusty, thanks for evaluating this article and for your comments on the talkpage. I added some more inline citations; I'd appreciate if you could let me know if you find it better now. — Kpalion(talk) 19:06, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Indonesia - February Newsletter[edit]

Hello there! Please click here for the latest edition of the Wikiproject Indonesia Newsletter.

We hope it gets you interested in the some aspect of the project. Please contact Indon or Merbabu if you have any comments or suggestions (or do not want to receive this newsletter). regards Merbabu 10:07, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


Hi Rusty - Thanks for the help re: Oscar (fish) and it's good article nomination. Hopefully it'll pass through the process. Cheers, David. MidgleyDJ 20:34, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue I - March 2007[edit]

The inaugural March 2007 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter has been published. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse--ragesoss 04:10, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Alfred Russel Wallace FAC[edit]

Wallace's article has been proposed for FA, and an objection has been made regarding the reliance of the article on Stotten's book. Thought you'd like to know. -Malkinann 11:12, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

You flatterer, you. Some sentences tend to run on a bit - I've gone through and tagged the ones I had issues with. The references need alphabetising by author - I had a little go at it, but I don't think I got them all. There's also the British/American spelling problems, but you could always ask for a 'translation' from a native British English speaker. (of which I am not one.) -Malkinann 09:49, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
I've only one thing to say about that stuff on spelling... biZZare.... ;) I've gone through the article again and found another couple of odd phrases and American spellings that aren't -izes, tagging them with {clarifyme}s. The article still appears to "rely" on Slotten, so you may need to defend Slotten in the FAC. It may be good to take it to peer review and to examine the structure and coverage of the Charles Darwin article (which the Wallace article will inevitably be compared to. *sigh*). -Malkinann 21:24, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

Very nice work...[edit]

A Barnstar!
The Barnstar of National Merit

For excellent, dedicated and ongoing efforts to Alfred Russel Wallace -- --Merbabu 17:37, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

He gets quite a mention in the Indonesia article - see Ecology section. Also, i trust you've read Tim Sevrins book and the Malay Archipelago. I've read Sevrins book a few times, bits of the Malay archipelago and have spent a few weeks in Maluku including Banda Islands and Seram. Haven't been to Sulawesi yet. happy editing --Merbabu 17:37, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, it is always nice to have your efforts recognized.Rusty Cashman 04:57, 8 April 2007 (UTC)

history of biology[edit]

Rusty, I'd love to have your thoughts on history of biology overall. I've done all I think I can without some serious critiques and suggestions from other knowledgeable people, and I know you've put a lot into it as well. It's on peer review and WP:GAC.--ragesoss 06:25, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

Some encouragement[edit]

Bio barnstar2.png The Bio-star
En avance de bringing Alfred Russel Wallace to FA status, and for some earlier contributions. Samsara (talk  contribs) 09:37, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue II - May 2007[edit]

The May 2007 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter has been published. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse--ragesoss 06:21, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

DYK nom[edit]

Hi, I've nominated an article you worked on, The Malay Archipelago, for consideration to appear on the Main Page as part of Wikipedia:Did you know. You can see the "hook" for the article at Template talk:Did you know#Articles created on May 4 where you can improve it if you see fit. Thanks, Malkinann 08:13, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

The Malay Archipelago[edit]

Updated DYK query On 9 May, 2007, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article The Malay Archipelago, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the "Did you know?" talk page.

--howcheng {chat} 07:04, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Taiwanese Aborigines[edit]


Thanks for your support on Taiwanese Aborigines. I appreciate the time you spent appraising such a challenging(long) article:-). It has been a really positive project all along. Thx!Maowang 01:37, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Just a note[edit]

I came over to check out your userpage during the FAC on Wallace and I just wanted to say that I like your picture of the Encyclopedie. You are correct that it is far from accidental that a group of philosophes (what a terrible article that is!) decided to write an encyclopedia during the eighteenth century. It was a century of organizing knowledge (Buffon, Linnaeus, Antoine Lavoisier, Samuel Johnson. They seemed to think all things were possible, such as a universal language (Thomas Sprat). It is a wonderful time period to study. :) We need more wikipedians contributing pages on it, that's for sure! I had to create my own userbox since there was one for every section of European history except the eighteenth century. *sigh* It's always left out. Awadewit Talk 09:52, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

GAC backlog elimination drive[edit]

This form message is being sent to you either due to your membership with WikiProject Good Articles and/or your inclusion on the Wikipedia:Good article candidates/List of reviewers. A new drive has been started requesting that all members review at least one article (or more, if you wish!) within the next two weeks at GAC to help in removing the large backlog. This message is being sent to all members, and even members who have been recently reviewing articles. There are almost 130 members in this project and about 180 articles that currently need to be reviewed. If each member helps to review just one or two articles, the majority of the backlog will be cleared. Since the potential amount of reviewers may significantly increase, please make sure to add :{{GAReview}} underneath the article you are reviewing to ensure that only one person is reviewing each article. Additionally, the GA criteria may have been modified since your last review, so look over the criteria again to help you to determine if a candidate is GA-worthy. If you have any questions about this drive or the review process, leave a message on the GAC talk page. --Nehrams2020 00:34, 25 May 2007 (UTC)


Congratulations! It looks like the Wallace article has been promoted. History of evolutionary thought has four votes now for history of science collaboration of the month, so I'm going to restart the collaboration soon (probably June 1). Hopefully we can find a handful of knowledgeable people who can find some time to put into that.--ragesoss 22:41, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

Shiny new medal[edit]

A Barnstar!
The shiny new Darwin-Wallace medal

For your dedicated work on Alfred Russel Wallace - Shyamal 02:30, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

Oh, I renovated the medal image and replaced your image. Hope that is ok with you. Shyamal 02:30, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

Congratulations on Alfred Russel Wallace[edit]

Well done, sorry I wasn't around to be much help. Samsara (talk  contribs) 12:05, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Evolution FAC[edit]

Hi there, thanks for your comments. I decided to cut this paragraph, since human evolution is peripheral to the subject of the article, which is the concept of evolution and its general outcomes. This also helped bring the page below 100kb. I hope this deal with your objection. TimVickers 03:06, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

Thanks Rusty, for your supportive note at my RfA. Shyamal 03:51, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Rhacophorus nigropalmatus[edit]

Ta for the nice comment on my tiny edit. I just pushed it 'out of the nest' and was linking it here and there. Sorry there is not more to it. I currently sensitive to the issue of editing FAs, due to an editor reducing one by 20%, I only noticed the star after saving. After everything I said elsewhere today, I thought I had better speak up. I will finish reading Wallace later. Regards, ☻ Fred|discussion|contributions 19:41, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

July 2007 GAC backlog elimination drive[edit]

A new elimination drive of the backlog at Wikipedia:Good article candidates will take place from the month of July through August 12, 2007. There are currently about 130 articles that need to be reviewed right now. If you are interested in helping with the drive, then please visit Wikipedia:Good article candidates backlog elimination drive and record the articles that you have reviewed. Awards will be given based on the number of reviews completed. Since the potential amount of reviewers may significantly increase, please make sure to add :{{GAReview}} underneath the article you are reviewing to ensure that only one person is reviewing each article. Additionally, the GA criteria may have been modified since your last review, so look over the criteria again to help you to determine if a candidate is GA-worthy. If you have any questions about this drive or the review process, leave a message on the drive's talk page. Please help to eradicate the backlog to cut down on the waiting time for articles to be reviewed.

You have received this message either due to your membership with WikiProject: Good Articles and/or your inclusion on the Wikipedia:Good article candidates/List of reviewers. --Nehrams2020 23:36, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

History of Palæontology[edit]

I'll have a look in the morning. Sorry, I've had a bad chest cold. Adam Cuerden talk 02:04, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Tim Vickers awarded this Barnstar to User:Rusty Cashman for his excellent work on the History of paleontology.


Hi. [1]. Regards, Fred 07:03, 14 August 2007 (UTC)

Modern synthesis[edit]

Rusty, I've sort of been following the discussion page, but I haven't been keeping up with the actual changes to the article that M-r has been introducing. My own feeling is that the article should be written mainly from the books The Evolutionary Synthesis (edited by Mayr and Provine) and Smocovitis's Unifying Biology, along with bits from a few other secondary sources, with almost nothing based on primary sources. I'm not going to stick my head into this right now, because I haven't actually analyzed the expanded version (and I really shouldn't be on Wikipedia at all right now, until I finish my prospectus). Sorry I can't be more helpful.--ragesoss 18:27, 16 August 2007 (UTC)

thank you, Rusty, for your recent thoughts. I'd feel worse, of course, if I felt the reversions were actually merited! However, it's worth the WP community remembering that one destructive reaction tends to outweigh, in the minds of contributors, many helpful and encouraging reactions. I could say more if I had an e-mail channel...
I enjoyed the plastic-eating bacteria no end; WP should have originality badges! As I mentioned somewhere... bacteriology was practically a medicine-only discipline until well after WW2; there's still so much more to discover. Regards, Macdonald-ross 13:45, 18 August 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue III - September 2007[edit]

The September 2007 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter has been published. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse--ragesoss 00:57, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter for November 2007[edit]

The November 2007 issue of the WikiProject Good Articles newsletter has been published. Comments are welcome on this, as well as suggestions or offers of assistance for the December 2007 issue. Dr. Cash 01:21, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

GA renomination of Computer program[edit]

Just to let you know, Computer program was renominated for GA. Timhowardriley 22:45, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

GA review of History of evolutionary thought[edit]

Sorry this is taking so long, but I thought that since this is something I know reasonably well, it might be more efficient if I dealt with most of the points in my review myself. The article is certainly GA quality but I'd like to polish it a bit further before passing it. Tim Vickers (talk) 20:58, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

All done, congratulations! Tim Vickers (talk) 04:40, 19 November 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter for December 2007[edit]

The December 2007 issue of the WikiProject Good Articles newsletter has been published. Comments are welcome on this, as well as suggestions or offers of assistance for the January 2008 issue. Dr. Cash 01:10, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

Request for comments on computer program[edit]

You may have removed computer program from your watch list. I rewrote the introduction as the topic sentence of many of the subsequent paragraphs. What do you think? Timhowardriley (talk) 23:44, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles January Newsletter[edit]

Happy New Year! Here is the latest edition of the WikiProject GA Newsletter! Dr. Cash (talk) 04:06, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

History of evolutionary thought[edit]

From a first look at the History of evolutionary thought and the archived FA discussion, it's a really useful good article with a lot of detailed information, but pushing towards being overlarge for a FA – This page is 87 kilobytes long. Expression error: Unrecognised punctuation character "$". Don't know what the $ is about, just something to fix.

The lead section seems rather large and a bit unfocussed, my inclination is to try drafting a tighter alternative, aiming to cut it to about half the size. The nineteenth century gets a bit out of date sequence, and that could be clarified.

Overall it seems to me to be a bit lacking in narrative, and a drastic approach would be to concentrate more on the general shape of developments, moving the excellent detail into sub-articles or into any appropriate articles that already exist. For example, the Erasmus Darwin detail could go in his biography, or perhaps could form the basis of a new article about his evolutionary ideas. It might work best to treat the whole section as the basis of a new article overing the various Enlightenment natural philosophers.

Then, as SandyGeorgia commented on closing the FAC, summary style sections could amalgamate the existing stubby sections. By the way, it would in my opinion be better to retitle "Early modern thought" as "Renaissance and Enlightenment", and "19th century before The Origin of Species" could become "Early 19th century", with the next section being "On the Origin of Species and its aftermath". Just some ideas. Would you like me to make a start on trying out this drastic approach? .. dave souza, talk 13:51, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Ideas above on reorganisation seem constructive and appropriate to me.
As a fan of this article, I'm still somewhat concerned about over-interpretation and over-selling of the ancient world, which is here most clearly seen in the Islamic section. Elsewhere (Hist biol Talk) I've emphasised 1) overdefinite statements with weak references from probably unrefereed sources, and 2) overall emphasis which is quite out of line with other broad historical overviews such as Mayr and Encyc Brit (more recent editions). I would be happy to see a more conservative line taken, believing that it's the job of an encyclopedia to be cautious, and not to run ahead of consensus. Of course, large-scale histories of science are something of a rarity nowadays, and consensus is difficult to judge. I would advise both cuts and more restrained neutral language in the areas where scholarship is equivocal, and emphasis given to statements backed by references from quality sources.
In intro and elsewhere, I still think the statement "natural selection was not widely accepted until the 1930s" is not completely accurate. The literature shows that general acceptance did not come until the 1940s or even 50s [usual refs]. Neutral theory predominated in the 30s, and Huxley, Fisher, Haldane, Ford were in a clear minority. Even Dob. did not come on board with a clear recognition of the primacy of selection in wild populations until his 3rd edition, 1951. In general though, I'm more than happy with the Darwin and post-Darwin material, which deserves congratulation. Macdonald-ross (talk) 07:04, 25 January 2008 (UTC)
Oops, feel sorry to have been the bearer of sad tidings. Glad you're taking this on board, have a think about how you think this should go and give me a heads-up. Agree with Macdonald-ross that care has to be taken to give a proportionate mention of claims such as Islamic ideas – it seems right to note that claims have been made, but finding a good mainstream view of the significance of such claims may be tricky, and that's needed to avoid undue weight. As you say, Transmutation of species could be expanded as a historical article covering Buffon to the Origin. Modern evolutionary synthesis puzzles me a bit, as I'm never sure if the name applies to today's theory, or if it's a historical era that ended by 1950 as the article currently implies. As always other alarms and diversions have arisen, but when you're ready I'll take on some work in getting this sorted. Thanks, .. dave souza, talk 18:45, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

I am definately going to get started on the reorganization tonight. I am going to start by announcing the plan on the talk page so that big edits don't take anyone by surprise. I honestly don't think the current Islamic thoughts section is that much of a problem. After all many of the current claims are consistent with what Draper was saying in the 1870s. I admint I was made very unconfortable about the specific claims previously being made about natural selection and Al-Jahiz because I couldn't find a translation to directly support them, but with those gone I don't see a big problem with what remains. If anyone has a concern about a particular statement I would be happy to try and dig into it. Rusty Cashman (talk) 19:47, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Intro section now much better! Macdonald-ross (talk) 17:39, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
"Wikipedia and the History of Science" might amuse you :) .. dave souza, talk 22:52, 23 February 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter[edit]

The February 2008 issue of the WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter is ready! Dr. Cash (talk) 05:19, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter[edit]

The March 2008 issue of the WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter is ready! Dr. Cash (talk) 06:10, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

History of Science Collaboration of the Month[edit]

Kepler-solar-system-2.gif You voted for On the Origin of Species and this article is now the current History of Science Collaboration of the Month!
Please help to improve it to match the quality of an ideal Wikipedia History of Science article.

April GA Newsletter[edit]

The April issue of the WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter is now available. Dr. Cash (talk) 04:02, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Your assessment of Stephen Jay Gould[edit]

One thing jumps out at me the second I lay eyes on this article. It should jump out at every editor, but unfortunately it doesn't even seem to jump out at those who make GA assessments (including yourself, obviously): the lead is too short. Ridiculously too short, in this case. It's part of the good article criteria and I suggest you review both that and the lead section guideline page. Please raise your consciousness about lead sections and help others to raise theirs. Richard001 (talk) 07:08, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles May Newsletter[edit]

The May Newsletter for WikiProject Good Articles has now been published. Dr. Cash (talk) 22:16, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue IV - May 2008[edit]

A new May 2008 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter is hot off the virtual presses. Please feel free to make corrections or add news about any project-related content you've been working on. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse--ragesoss (talk) 23:28, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

Charles Lyell[edit]

Thanks for the note. I've done some subsequent mini-edits to smooth over the joins (do look & see what you think). I imagine we both jumped on this because it's so important that Lyell's article is accurate about evolution. There appear to be many Earth Science students and professionals who don't know about his mental torment! It comes about, perhaps, because biography is under-rated by mainstream science teaching. Best wishes, Macdonald-ross (talk) 16:54, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Thomas Henry Huxley[edit]

If you can spare time, please give your opinion on the THH talk page!

A user has deleted the 'Quotes' section near the end of Thomas Henry Huxley, and I would like some opinions on this. The content is listed on the Talk:Thomas Henry Huxley page (section 18).

Obviously, such a section is unusual, but there are good reasons for having it in the case of THH. First, it improves the biography by making it easier to understand the man: this would not be true of most scientists, but it is true of Huxley. Second, he was, and still is, quoted extensively. Some individual quotations of Darwin may be seen more often, but the range of topics in Huxley is not easily matched. Thirdly, unlike my critic, I don't think it contravenes the 'Wikipedia is not a directory' policy, and if it did I would argue that policy should be a guide, not an absolute. Options, it seems to me, are:

1. section deleted, as now is
2. section reinstated, as was
3. section shortened and reinstated
4. create a linked page 'Huxleyana' to put it in, flagged on the main page
5. put it in Wikiquote (I am against this, both on grounds of remoteness (being on a different system, and little used, and on grounds that Wikiquote has developed into s place for longer excerpts taken from web sources)

Same user changed character of the Biographies section. This is a less significant change, but your thoughts are welcome. Macdonald-ross (talk) 06:10, 1 July 2008 (UTC)


Sorry I haven't participated already. It's currently at the very top of my Wikipedia to-do list; I just know that once I jump in it won't be easy to stop, and my own research is getting to the point where a lot of my criticisms would tend toward original research. I'll take a close look at it and give my overall impressions tomorrow (I promise!).--ragesoss (talk) 01:44, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Congratulations mate, a long haul but well worth it! Tim Vickers (talk) 03:29, 28 July 2008 (UTC)
Yes, congratulations! You handled the whole experience exceptionally well, with patience and good humor. Special congratulations to you are certainly in order. —Mattisse (Talk) 22:27, 28 July 2008 (UTC)
Second and third the above! . . dave souza, talk 23:16, 28 July 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter[edit]

Sorry about the delay. AWB has been having a few issues lately. Here is the august issue of the WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter! Dr. Cash (talk) 20:49, 19 August 2008 (UTC)

History of evolutionary thought#Modern evolutionary synthesis[edit]

History of evolutionary thought#Modern evolutionary synthesis

I'll say this here, so I don't get in the way of 'Main page request' (which is a good idea!).

I have recently re-read this section carefully. IMHO, the section is just a tad skewed as it stands, giving almost sole attention to those who worked in the U.S. Perhaps you can find some way to better acknowledge the British contribution, Huxley and Ford particularly; I enclose a couple of extracts for your perusal:

"Ford had a long working relationship with R.A. Fisher. By the time Ford had developed his formal definition of genetic polymorphism,[1] Fisher had got accustomed to high selection values in nature. He was most impressed by the fact that polymorphism concealed powerful selective forces (Ford gave human blood groups as an example). Like Fisher, Ford continued the natural selection versus genetic drift debate with Sewall Wright, whom Ford believed put too much emphasis on genetic drift. It was as a result of Ford's work, as well as his own, that Dobzhansky changed the emphasis in the third edition of his famous text from drift to selection.[2]" [Quote from Edmund Brisco Ford article]

"Huxley was one of the main architects of the new evolutionary synthesis which took place around the time of World War II... Huxley's first 'trial run' was the treatment of evolution in the Science of Life (1929-30), and in 1936 he published a long and significant paper for the British Association.[3].... Now it was time for Huxley to tackle the subject of evolution at full length, in what became the defining work of his life. His role was that of a synthesiser, and it helped that he had met many of the other participants. His book Evolution: the modern synthesis.... Reviews of the book in learned journals were little short of ecstatic; the American Naturalist called it "The outstanding evolutionary treatise of the decade, perhaps of the century. The approach is thoroughly scientific; the command of basic information amazing."[4][5]" [Abbreviated quotes from Julian Huxley article]

So, perhaps some modest extra recognition is called for?

Macdonald-ross (talk) 12:29, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue V - January 2009[edit]

It's here at long last! The January 2009 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter is ready, with exciting news about Darwin Day 2009. Please feel free to make corrections or add news about any project-related content you've been working on. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse --ragesoss (talk) 02:57, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

Alfred Russel Wallace[edit]

Hi Rusty. You've probably noticed some anon IP activity over at Alfred Russel Wallace - ie, changing the nationality. I'm treating it as vandalism for now but then I don't really know too much about the details if it comes to debating a point, so I thought I'd just check you were watching. cheers --Merbabu (talk) 02:09, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

History of evolutionary thought[edit]

Hello and thank you for taking the time to explain Plato's Theory of Forms. I used the beagles and poodles as an example off the top of my head. I still think an example or a clearer explanation would be helpful for the history of evolutionary thought article, but it's not that important if left out. Thanks again. LovesMacs (talk) 16:47, 12 February 2009 (UTC)

On the origin of species[edit]

Thanks for your message. I'm happy to put my GA nomination on hold until you feel the article is ready. SP-KP (talk) 11:01, 13 February 2009 (UTC)

Concept vs conception[edit]

In plain speech the two are rarely distinguished, but in more serious discourse they must be. A conception is something conceived; conceptions are thoughts. Evolutionary thought is a conception about nature. A concept is the object of conception. Evolution, in this case, is the concept. At least, this is how I've always understood the two and a look at the dictinary backs me up (as much as a dictionary can). Srnec (talk) 20:34, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. Srnec (talk) 03:07, 15 February 2009 (UTC)

Ralph Bakshi[edit]

You last supported this article's featured candidacy in January. Would you mind lending your support to the current nomination? (Ibaranoff24 (talk) 09:45, 24 February 2009 (UTC))

On the Origin of Species[edit]

Hi. How far away from meeting the GA criteria is the article now? Should I take it off hold and let it be reviewed yet? SP-KP (talk) 19:35, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

Hi. What's the latest on this ... are we close to being able to get it reviewed as a GA? SP-KP (talk) 19:45, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

Hi. I'm sure you'll notice yourself, but there's a very detailed GA review on the talk page. Let me know if I can help with any of the issues raised/work needed. SP-KP (talk) 09:45, 28 March 2009 (UTC)

BTW I asked Malleus and G-Guy to comment in case I was asking for too much, especially as I'm pretty interested in evolution. --Philcha (talk) 20:53, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
A couple of thoughts. Concerns about length seem to be raised about the Contents section, but to me that's the meat of this article. Perhaps copyediting can help there. The background's looking more useful and focussed now, and gives a summary of the context, but even then it's pretty large. No good answer, as it's worthwhile reading for newcomers to the subject. I've toyed with the idea of moving it elsewhere and trying to condense it further, but a lot would be lost by doing that. As for the Reception section, my aim is to try a draft focussing primarily on the scientific reception, with paragraphs on field naturalists, anatomists/morphologists including Owen and Mivart pushing non-Darwinian idealist evolution, the tree of life, reconstruction of history of life on earth, etc. The Religion section would be correspondingly shortened. The Reception outside Great Britain could helpfully be split, with the information about publication moved to a new section under Publication and subsequent editions, probably titled Publication outside Great Britain. The "reception outside GB" content would be merged into the scientific reception, as it's hard to separate the international discussions into UK/nonUK. The religion section would only cover non-scientific responses, as aspects like natural theology and Owen's idealism would already appear in the scientific section. I've made a start on the Reception intro at User:Dave souza/Reception of the Origin, but have only moved the existing subsections around and haven't tried editing them yet. Hopefully tomorrow. Goodnight all, . dave souza, talk 21:33, 3 April 2009 (UTC)

<ri> Regarding the Literary style section, David Quammen describes himself on p. 16 as not a biologist, not a historian, and having virtually no training in science. The book cover describes him as an author, which is perhaps a bit obvious, so just suggest leaving out the "historian" tag. Jim Secord's Victorian Sensation pp. 507–514 gives useful context, as Origin was much less readable than Vestiges and that helped to reassure readers that it was a serious scientific work. Will try to add that soon. I'm struggling along with pulling my draft Reception section into order, hope to get there soon. . dave souza, talk 22:41, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for your response, I've added a bit to the literary style section based on Secord plus a comment from Browne which seemed relevant: haven't searched for any other statements she makes about style. . dave souza, talk 12:59, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

Hi, Rusty. I've posted a message at User_talk:Dave_souza#Origin_of_Species:_GA_review: (a) it's in danger of failing GA due to lack of mention of contribution to / place in modern evolutionary thought; (b) you and Dave need to decide on your strategy for getting it to FA by 24 Nov, as this will determine my approach to the rest of the review. Please contribute at User_talk:Dave_souza#Origin_of_Species:_GA_review. --Philcha (talk) 11:52, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for joining in the proposals that have broken out on my talk page, Rusty. The idea of bringing in the modern situation gave me a cunning plan for a new section giving a happy ending to the article. I think we can keep the overall article size reasonable, have a look and see what you think. . dave souza, talk 19:58, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Any thoughts on "So which is it: get it to GA as fast as possible to allow for 2 x FAC, or make the GA review as thorough as possible? --Philcha (talk) 22:02, 22 April 2009 (UTC)"[2]? Don't have any recent experience of FAC myself, and while I'm inclined to try to get the article perfect first, suspect that the wider input of an early FAC could be fed into resolving a lot of the needed improvements. Will bow to your judgment on this. . dave souza, talk 07:57, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

Once it is solidly GA quality. I think it should pass GA. What I have done on previous articles is that after I catch my breath for a week or so I open a new section on the talk page called "ready for FA?" or some such thing and ask if anyone knows of anything that ought to be addressed before FAC. I also go out and solicit opinions from a few editors I know with interest in the subject matter and ask them specifically to take a look at the article with FAC in mind. Then after a couple of weeks of that I go ahead and nominate it for FA. The first FA nomination always seems to fail but it produces a lot of copyediting and usually some good suggestions for improving the article that take a month or 2 to work through. The 2nd FAC usually goes much more easily and produces less dramatic change. I think that this approach will work very well with this article because the subject matter will draw a lot of interest and comments once it gets nominated. At least that was my experience with history of evolutionary thought and Alfred Russel Wallace. My goal would be to nominate it for FA sometime in May as that would leave plenty of time to respond to comments before making a 2nd attempt in the late summer/fall. I do want to coordinate it with Dave so that he and I are both available to support the nomination. I would hate to nominate it a week when he is on vacation or have him nominate it a week when I don't have much availability. Rusty Cashman (talk) 09:00, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Suits me, my main changes are completed now. . dave souza, talk 09:29, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

Copyediting sandbox[edit]

Fancy a fancy pigeon pic showing a rock pigeon vs. English pouter? . dave souza, talk 11:44, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

I've turned my attention to the Content section, and am trying out ideas at User:Dave souza/Reception of the Origin#Variation under domestication and under nature. See what you think of that subsection, and if you like the way it's going. I'm uneasy about the use of the past tense, as in "Darwin described variation" rather than "Darwin describes variation" as used by Quammen, which is a pretty good precedent. I think we can keep it consistent with a little care, fancy going for the present tense? . . dave souza, talk 20:15, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

STOP! we just spent a lot of time getting the tense stuff fixed based on Geometry guy's comments and I believe the tense stuff is now3 correct in the lead and the content section and I am VERY unhappy about the idea of it being changed. Rusty Cashman (talk) 23:37, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
I am also very nervous about introducing non period images into the content section. I know it was my suggestion that lead to the additio of the illustration of the Rhea to the introduction, but at least that was a contemporary illustration. Rusty Cashman (talk) 01:39, 24 April 2009 (UTC)
OK! The sandbox remained in the past tense, just seemed a bit awkward. Bowler also uses the present tense, "In a second chapter on this theme, Darwin argues...." but I think the past tense can work. Have removed the image from my sandbox draft, may use it in one of the biography articles or if not it can be deleted. . dave souza, talk 08:03, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

<ri> Returning to the main issue of copyediting, I've tightened the sandbox draft a bit more and removed mistaken reference to "introduced the term" – Darwin doesn't use the term "artificial selection" until later chapters. Similarly, he doesn't mention Neolithic, but does describe the earliest records of ancient Egypt and referes to the lack of knowledge of earlier times, in refuting arguments that domestic breeds had been introduced and fixed there. I've also placed more emphasis on how Darwin began with contemporary opinions on the origins of the many distinct breeds under cultivation. Mostly it's tightening the prose, try comparing them and feel free to edit in the sandbox if you feel it's worthwhile but some points are less well covered. If nothing else, this can act as a check for any issues I can find in this section. . dave souza, talk 08:03, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

I made a couple of tweaks to the section in your sandbox and went ahead and copied it over to the main article. I am thinking the whole article looks pretty good right now, and I am confident it should pas GA now. Rusty Cashman (talk) 21:19, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

Hi. I thought I'd ask how things are progressing with getting this article to GA standard. Cheers. SP-KP (talk) 23:43, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for tweaking the lead, Rusty. Looks ready for GA review to resume, in my opinion. . . dave souza, talk 08:56, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
By the way, on a related topic I've now got Bowler and Morus, Making Modern Science, which has interesting comments on idealism, amongst other aspects. The issue is covered in a bit more detail in Desmond's Politics of Evolution, there was a wide and diverse influence on both sides of the transmutation debate. . . dave souza, talk 15:54, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Bowler and Morus is indeed a useful source. I have used it for both History of evolutionary thought and History of paleontology. Rusty Cashman (talk) 18:08, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

GA Sweeps invitation[edit]

Hello, I hope you are doing well. I am sending you this message since you are a member of the GA WikiProject. I would like to invite you to consider helping with the GA sweeps process. Sweeps helps to ensure that the oldest GAs still meet the criteria, and improve the quality of GAs overall. Unfortunately, last month only two articles were reviewed. This is definitely a low point after our peak at the beginning of the process when 163 articles were reviewed in September 2007. After nearly two years, the running total has just passed the 50% mark. In order to expediate the reviewing, several changes have been made to the process. A new worklist has been created, detailing which articles are left to review. All exempt and previously reviewed articles have already been removed from the list. Instead of reviewing by topic, you can consider picking and choosing whichever articles interest you.

We are always looking for new members to assist with the remaining articles, so if you are interested or know of anybody that can assist, please visit the GA sweeps page. In addition, for every member that reviews 100 articles or has a significant impact on the process, s/he will get an award when they reach that threshold. If only 14 editors achieve this feat starting now, we would be done with Sweeps! Of course, having more people reviewing less articles would be better for all involved, so please consider asking others to help out. Feel free to stop by and only review a few articles, something's better than nothing! Take a look at the list, and see what articles interest you. Let's work to complete Sweeps so that efforts can be fully focused on the backlog at GAN. If you have any questions about the process, reviewing, or need help with a particular article, please contact me or OhanaUnited and we'll be happy to help. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 08:41, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

Re Origin of Species nominated for FA[edit]

Hi, Rusty, thanks for the heads-up. For now, I think I'll wait and see what others think. --Philcha (talk) 07:08, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Rusty, have supported as a significant contributor. While I was adding that, SandyGeorgia added what seems to me to be a good suggestion, changing {{main}} to an alternative which doesn't imply that the section is a summary of the other article. I've suggested changing to {{seealso}}, as we've already got one case of that. Any objection? . . dave souza, talk 14:54, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Also, how do you feel about adding a mention of the extended coverage of sexual selection in The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex to our mention of the subject in the section on Chapter IV.? . . dave souza, talk 18:09, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
On second thoughts we could add it to the Religious attitudes section paragraph on human descent, changing "Darwin put forward an evolutionary explanation of such attributes in the Descent of Man in 1871." to "In 1871 Darwin put forward his evolutionary explanation of such attributes in the The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex which also expanded his concept of sexual selection to explain apparently non-adaptive features." Bit longer, but avoids a redirect from Descent of Man, and includes it in the Reception section. Alternately, and perhaps best, we could add a sentence about it at the end of the last paragraph of the Impact on the scientific community subsection, on the lines of "Darwin published his own views in The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex of 1871 which also expanded his concept of sexual selection explaining apparently non-adaptive features such as beauty in plumage." That would relate both to human evolution and the Duke of Argyll's objection. We could then omit the effectively duplicated sentence out of the Religious attitudes section, and leave that paragraph just covering religious responses by others. . . dave souza, talk 19:21, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
I liked your first suggestion best and have implemented it. I think it works there during the summary to mention that Darwin returned to the topic at greater length in a later work. Rusty Cashman (talk) 20:28, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
HU . . . dave souza, talk 22:52, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Thanks Rusty. I've been going through it bit by bit for the last few days. My only complaint so far is that it's sooo long. ; ) I'll weigh in at the FAC once I get all the way through; I anticipate supporting, as I don't notice any major issues so far. I think relying on Mayr for the "key facts and inferences" might be a bit sketchy, just because Mayr had such a big stake in promoting a particular interpretation of Darwin's legacy, but it also has the virtue of being concise and lining up well with how Origin is usually read today.--ragesoss (talk) 14:25, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, I don't think it's something that needs to be changed (although I also don't think OR is a significant concern even the article didn't rely on Mayr there).--ragesoss (talk) 20:13, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations! Many thanks, dave souza, talk 09:15, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

Georges Cuvier's elephant jaw diagram[edit]

Hi, File:Cuvier elephant jaw.jpg is kind of blurry, agree? I found that Eric Buffetaut had made a derivative of Cuvier's work. Please take a look at File:Georges Cuvier - Elephant jaw.png. There was not a conclusive agreement at Commons Village Pump about this (see the image's talk page), but the opinions would point to the lack of originality in Buffetaut's image to deserve a copyright. I think this image is superior (in terms of clear picture quality) to File:Cuvier elephant jaw.jpg, but I refrained from replacing the image as I am uncertain if you chose it for historical significance (the exact page itself). If there is no such consideration, I think the clearer File:Georges Cuvier - Elephant jaw.png can replace it. Jappalang (talk) 03:43, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

On the Origin of Species[edit]

Congratulations on the FA. A truly superior article! It would be great to get the Lucy (Australopithecus) article up to snuff, as suggested on the talk page. Regards, —Mattisse (Talk) 13:40, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

Wow, you really did make it first time! Congratulations to you and Dave, it was a pleasure working with you both. --Philcha (talk) 18:48, 21 June 2009 (UTC)
Barney the Bishapod.png The Origins Award
Thanks for all the fish, Rusty, and for doing so much to improve On the Origin of Species. . .
dave souza, talk 11:02, 22 June 2009 (UTC)


Congratulations on bringing On the Origin of Species up to FA level. Over the last few months I’ve watched Dave and yourself skilfully edit this large and complex article. It is a beautiful example of how knowledgeable editors can work together to improve Wikipedia.Aa77zz (talk) 09:39, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

My congratulations as well, to you and the others. I look forward to seeing it on the Main Page on its 150th. Regards, Kablammo (talk) 22:07, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

NASA GAR[edit]

hi Rusty Cashman, I just wanted to let you know that the main NASA article is undergoing a Good Article Review. Most of the gruntwork is done now, and the article could use a fresh set of eyes to copy edit it, add more materiel, and offer suggestions and feedback. If you have a chance, I would appreciate it if you could take a look. Thanks!
V = I * R (talk) 23:47, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Fertilisation of Orchids[edit]

I'd appreciate some advice on how to progress Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Fertilisation of Orchids/archive1. Philcha raised some valid concerns on my talk page, and it's taking me a bit longer than I'd hoped to make proposed changes on a draft at User:Dave souza/Sandbox/Fertilisation of Orchids. Think I should withdraw it from FAC and start again, or treat the changes as the usual sort of revisions to meet FA questions? . . dave souza, talk 21:36, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Hi, at User talk:dave souza#Proposal for action I've proposed steps to revise the article for the Fertilisation of Orchids - FA review issues, as shown at User:Dave souza/Sandbox/Fertilisation of Orchids. Hope this meets the concerns, particularly with regard to keeping the quality of writing and focus on Darwin's approach to experimental science. Any comments welcome. . dave souza, talk 17:06, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

Talk:Geography of India[edit]

Hi - I request a follow-up on this debate. There is a new suggestion. Shiva (Visnu) 02:27, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Hi, another update.Khokhar (talk) 18:09, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Another award[edit]

Bio barnstar2.png The Bio-star
For helping to taking 2 important and complex works to FA, Origin of Species and Fertilisation of Orchids --Philcha (talk) 12:14, 13 August 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, although I think Dave, Matisse and yourself did all the heavy lifting for Fertilisation of Orchids. Rusty Cashman (talk) 04:31, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

Third opinion[edit]

Hi, would you mind casting your eye over the article you gave a third opinion to recently (List of guest appearances in Doctor Who)? There's an explanation there, but basically I was wondering why the third opinion was needed to counter my own, when I was already acting on the opinion of another editor. I'm a bit confused, I thought third opinion was called for when only two editors were involved, yours now seems (to me at least) to be a fourth opinion! Alastairward (talk) 00:18, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

simple:Alfred Russel Wallace[edit]

Thought you might like to know I've been putting up basic topics and biogs on evolution in WP:Simple. One of which is our old friend A.R.W. You might recognise a few phrases!... I've put in the full title of Bad Times, which has such an uncanny resonance to the situation our countries find themselves in 130 years later. Regards, Macdonald-ross (talk) 10:54, 19 September 2009 (UTC)


Do you suppose it might be useful to clarify the wording of WP:NOTNEWS, or to open an RfC on how it is applied? I've seen it referred to as a justification for deleting quite a few articles when it didn't seem appropriate, and the debate at the Maura Murray AfD highlighted for me the varying interpretations of this guideline. Fences&Windows 13:25, 27 September 2009 (UTC)

I think the wording at WP:notability is better it says: "it takes more than just a short burst of news reports about a single event or topic to constitute sufficient evidence of notability". I would support a small change to NOTNEWS to make it more consistent with notability. I would be in favor of changing "Routine news coverage of such things as announcements, sports, and tabloid journalism are not sufficient basis for an article." to something like "Routine news coverage of limited duration is not sufficient basis for an article. Extensive coverage over an extended period may be." However, getting such a change made may not be very easy. Policy changes rarely are. Rusty Cashman (talk) 21:46, 27 September 2009 (UTC)
That's going in the right direction. How about "Routine news coverage of a single event or topic of limited duration is not sufficient basis for an article. Extensive coverage over an extended period may be." Maybe we need a notability guideline for events? Ah, it was proposed and failed: Wikipedia:Notability (news events). Fences&Windows 16:08, 28 September 2009 (UTC)
I'd certainly support a rewording. Beyond the extreme difficulty of getting consensus around any changes, though, this still faces the rocks and shoals of WP:V, which technically gives a free pass to anything that passes the verification bar, notability be damned. Changing that would be a formidable task.  Ravenswing  08:51, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't see that there is a conflict there. Verifiability is a threshold that any information added to any article must meet. Notabiility is a threshold that only the subject of an article has to meet. They are not intended to be the same thing. Notability does assume verifiability but it also assumes compliance with WP:NOT. If we clarified the wording in WP:NOT, I don't see WP:V being a problem. NOT is already more restrictive than V since even routine coverage of sports events such as box scores, newspaper wedding announcements, and obituaries meets the reliable source requirement, which is why such material can be cited in articles, as long as there are other sources that establish notability for the article's subject as a whole. Rusty Cashman (talk) 17:37, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

William Buckland[edit]

Your revision as of 17:47, 2 October 2009 included a reference name, <ref name="Rudwick2005"/>, that is causing a cite error. Can you go back and fix the error? (talk) 20:53, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

Fixed sorry. Rusty Cashman (talk) 22:03, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

Main page requests[edit]

I'm rather baffled by the procedures for proposing articles to appear on the main page: was wondering about On the Origin of Species, but more by accident than design have now found it listed on WT:TFAR in a table of Potential upcoming requests . So that's in hand. It's crossed my mind that if Fertilisation of Orchids appeared at a date fairly soon after 24 November it would continue the theme of celebration of Darwin's anniversary, but as far as I can see it would have no points: think it's worth putting together a request for WP:TFAR, or raising the idea at WT:TFAR? As an aside, I've a couple of ideas for potential DYK new or expanded articles, but have a lot to do before they're ready! . . dave souza, talk 11:20, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

I added Origin to the pre nomination list a few weeks ago. I will go ahead and nominate it soon for Nov. 24 (because it is a 5 point nomination it is not supposed to be nominated too far ahead of time). There is point deduction for similar articles that run within 30 days so I doubt you will be able to get it run before the end of the year. My recommendation on Fertilisation would be to wait until Febuary. Either Feb 9 (the anniversary of publication) or Feb 12, Darwin's birthday. I think Feb 12 would be particularly appropriate as long as there isn't an Abraham Lincoln related article ready to run (and there hasn't been the past couple of years). Unfortunately, in either case it would be a 1 point nomination, which can be tricky to get and to keep on the nomination list long enough, but it can be done; even if we can't get it on the nomination list, we can always appeal to Raul64 on his talk page. I suspect he would be very receptive to a suggestion that the article would be appropriate for Darwin Day, assuming again that there is no Lincoln related article or other strong nomination already in the pipe for Feb 12. Raul64 still schedules the majority of the TFAR artciles without them ever having been formally nominated. The formal nomination process is really just a structured way for the community to provide suggestions, and sometimes the informal back channel works just as well. Rusty Cashman (talk) 18:25, 31 October 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the advice, and for noting something which caught me out too: the section was a bit unclear, but the book was actually published on 15 May 1862. I've changed the wording and added the date to the lead to make that clearer. Thus, I can try suggesting it for February 12, unless something shows up for Lincoln, and if that fails can put it up for May 15. Not to worry, will turn my attention to DYK rather than trying to push Orchids into the limelight. . . dave souza, talk 19:12, 31 October 2009 (UTC)

In reply, you'll be astonished to know that I've thought of some revisions to the blurb after all!

On the Origin of Species, published by Charles Darwin in 1859, is considered to be the foundation of evolutionary biology. Darwin's book presented evidence that the diversity of life developed in a branching pattern of evolution through common descent by the mechanism of natural selection. Prior to its publication various evolutionary ideas had been proposed to explain new findings in biology, but the English scientific establishment, closely tied to the Church of England, believed that species were unchanging parts of a designed hierarchy and had rejected ideas of transmutation of species and of humans being related to animals. The book attracted widespread interest, and legitimised scientific, philosophical, and religious discussion on evolution. This debate contributed to efforts to make science secular and professional. Within two decades there was widespread scientific agreement that evolution through common descent had occurred, but until the modern evolutionary synthesis in the 20th century there was much less agreement on the significance of natural selection. (more...

Some thoughts: reading various historians, the effect was to legitimise scientific discussion of evolution, which had previously had popular support but no scientific credence. Note that Engvar of secularize is secularise. Scientific naturalism redirects to Naturalism (philosophy) which has become more confusing as an article, and we don't want to suggest that Metaphysical naturalism ia intended. The relevant detailed article, Naturalized epistemology, has been improved by philosophy students as part of a class assignment to the point of incomprehensibility. In my reading of sources, the idea of empirical science without supernatural presuppositions was pretty well established, as in the Baconian method, and Darwin's book attempted to satisfy mainstream ideas of science, though it became part of the debate between the ideas of Whewell and those of J. S. Mill. So, think that's a bit complex to include in the blurb, may try to review it in the article. . . dave souza, talk 23:56, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Re-reading Bowler, will agree that Huxley was pushing for "scientific naturalism" as well as for progressive evolution in a way that supported new middle class values, but still think it's a topic open to misunderstandings and think secular covers much of the same ground. Will review further, as time permits. . dave souza, talk 00:52, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
I am utterly perplexed about why there should be any confusion at all on this topic. Scientific naturalism (or if you prefer methodological naturalism) is nothing more than the idea that any scientific hypothesis needs to be explained and tested with reference only to natural (as opposed to supernatural) causes and events. That was a paraphrase of the Naturalism (philosophy) article which you seem to consider confusing but which seems pretty clear and lucid to me. This is a core premise of what we used to be taught in school as the scientific method. More to the point it is still one of the few relatively uncontroversial aspects (at least among practising scientists) about the philosophy of science. It had already become a core precept of the physical sciences by the start of the 19th century, and it had become such in geology by the middle of that century with the rejection of flood geology. One of the key steps in this was the debate between Whewell and Herschel over the empiricism of Lyell's Principles of Geology. The later debate between Mills and Whewell was really just an extension of that earlier debate. Besides Bowler, Micheal Ruse has written extensively on this topic and another good source if you are interested is Greene and Depew's The Philosophy of Biology (2004). See especially pages 165-175 or so. Biology was the last hold out for the natural theology of the British and for the metaphysical idealism of the some of the Germans and figures like Cuvier, Owen, and Agassiz. Frankly I find the reference to scientific naturalism to be much clearer and less controversial than using the word secularize in this context (though I admit that one of the reasons Huxley promoted scientific naturalism was because it would inevitably lead to secularization). I like your simplification of some of the wording about transmutation of species in the blurb and I will change it but it is going to take a heap of arguing to shift me off of scientific naturalism! Rusty Cashman (talk) 09:15, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, these are only suggestions, and basically agree. My concern was that naturalism in science gets conflated by antievolutionists with naturalism as atheism, and Naturalism (philosophy) has been revised so that it covers both. However, it does make the former clear, as you say. The minor point about spelling "secularise" in the British way on a UK article remains. As you say, the debate about the extent of divine intervention had been going on since the start of the 19th century, if not earlier. As an aside, there has been discussion about the extent to which Whewell was an idealist or an empiricist. In the longer term context, a possible suggestion is changing "This debate contributed to efforts to secularize science by promoting scientific naturalism." to "This debate contributed to establishing secular science based on scientific naturalism." If nothing else, it's probably worth providing the link to Secularism as it's another term that seems to be widely misunderstood. However, no big deal if you prefer the current wording with the UK spelling corrected. Thanks also for the reading list, am currently trying to find my way through disputes between Bowler and Robert J. Richards about Ernst Haeckel, dave souza, talk 11:06, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, I have fixed the Americanized spelling (I wonder how that made it past FAC?) and linked the term as you suggested. One of the reasons I reacted as strongly as I did is that I am very resistant to allowing creationism or concerns about creationsist misrepresentations to dictate the terminology used to discuss serious topics in science, history of science, and philosophy of science. It is bad enough that you can no longer use "neo-Darwinism" in a serious article. I don't want the same thing happen to "scientific naturalism". I agree that some of the subtle aspects of 19th century debates on the philosophy of science are beyond the scope of the article let alone the scope of the blurb, but I think the bit about secularising (see I remebered the UK spelling) the life sciences, which really had been the last bastion of resistence to scientific naturalism, is important enough and well established enough to allude to it at the highest level. I am glad to hear you are taking an interest in Ernst Haeckel. My personal opinion is that his foibles and over enthusiasims are over emphasized at the expense of acknowledging his contributions. Rusty Cashman (talk) 22:08, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Rusty. My spellchecker gets upset about secularize, and though it's given as an option in my Concise Oxford dictionary, Chambers Dictionary definitely uses secularise, as does the UK secular society]. The Haeckel related articles are a bit of a mess, but I'm only a bit into the book by Richards. First my intention is to produce a couple of new / expanded Darwin related articles for DYK, have done research but keep getting diverted from writing. Haven't seen anything organised this time, but pretty sure that Great Hippocampus Question (not sure about capitalisation, could be the great hippocampus test) and William Snow Harris aren't likely to be started / expanded by anyone else. . . dave souza, talk 22:57, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
Fyi, Wikipedia talk:WikiProject History of Science#Did you know.... . . dave souza, talk 14:55, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
By the way, now that OtOOS is up on the main page, there's not much anywhere to highlight the 150th anniversary: could the text there be changed to say published on 24 November 2009, and not just 2009? Great Hippocampus Question and William Snow Harris are both proposed for the DYK queue, so should appear for some part of the day. . .dave souza, talk 00:30, 24 November 2009 (UTC) Date added by someone, thanks, dave souza, talk 11:35, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes someone had beaten me to the fix by the time I saw your note. I am glad you got some things in the DYK queue for the day. I am also glat that you and other editors seem to be doing a good job jumping on the vandalism as it occurs. I will probably be in a position to help with more of that later in the day.Rusty Cashman (talk) 20:25, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, Rusty, quite a number of editors have been jumping on vandalism, and there's not really been that much of it, though some odd edits which I've raised on the talk page. Hope it doesn't get worse later! . . dave souza, talk 21:11, 24 November 2009 (UTC)

I agree the edits that stuck have actually improved the article. This was a pleasant surprise to me after my experience with history of evolutionary thought, which required significant clean up after all the edits that happened when it was on the main page. Not bad after a day with 42K hits! Rusty Cashman (talk) 03:26, 25 November 2009 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Notability (news events)[edit]

Are we about ready for wider comment, such as an RfC? Fences&Windows 17:04, 10 November 2009 (UTC)

Thank you for your comments about notability. I added directly under your comments a revision (2A) to reflect what you wrote. This seems reasonable. It gives guidance, is not too loose, is not excessively restrictive. A good compromise on first thought. Suomi Finland 2009 (talk) 01:09, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

Deletion review for psyBNC[edit]

An editor has asked for a deletion review of psyBNC. Because you closed the deletion discussion for this page, speedily deleted it, or otherwise were interested in the page, you might want to participate in the deletion review. --Hm2k (talk) 11:13, 23 November 2009 (UTC)


Thank you for your encouraging words. Fainites barleyscribs 21:14, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Mary Anning[edit]

I started copy editing the article. I really like it. You have done a good job. One question though. I'm wondering if you should refer to Anning by her first name throughout. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 00:43, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for your help and I am glad you like the article. I had thought alternating between "Anning" and "Mary" was less repetitious and I thought a couple of the sources did it, but now that I look at them again I realize that Torrens uses "Mary" as does Emling and McGowan uses "Anning" as does Rudwick when they don't spell out her name. I was going back and forth between the sources so much that I conflated the styles. If you think we need to standardize on one I agree that "Mary" is better. Rusty Cashman (talk) 05:22, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
After I looked at it some more I decided you were right and I have switched to "Mary".Rusty Cashman (talk) 05:43, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
I wonder if you should not switch to Anning. It used to be the custom that women were always referred to by their first name, whereas males like Charles Darwin were always referred to by their last. Darwin is not called Charles in his article. Jane Austen is not called "Jane". I know it struck me immediately upon reading the article, so I skipped the issue. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 22:11, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Intersting topic. I apologize if I misunderstood the point of your original comment. I did a quick survey and Marie Curie uses Marie, but Rosalind Franklin, Lynn Margulis, and Lise Meitner all use the last name. I had been inclined to use Mary, because the two sources I used the most (Torrens 1995 and Emling 2009) used Mary. I suspect Torrens is being old fashioned and following the outdated convention you mention where as Emling is deliberately using the first name to personalize her subject, which is perhaps more appropriate for a book length biography than an encyclopedia article. I will switch back to "Anning" as it is perhaps more appropriate for an encyclopedia article.Rusty Cashman (talk) 23:33, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Ok, it is now "Anning" ecept where "Mary Anning" is spelled out and a couple of places where she is being dicussed in the same sentence with her brother Joseph, and "Mary" seemed less confusing. Rusty Cashman (talk) 23:55, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
That's great. Sorry for the misunderstanding. I think that is the right way to go, especially as she sought to be a professional person. Her biography is quite poignant. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 00:13, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
  • I did some copy editing of the article, some of which you might want to change. Are you using British or American spelling? (I became confused, but I can fix it.) Also, you talk of the illustrations from deep time in two different places. Is this intentional? I think the article is wonderful, but I may not be neutral. You did a great job of portraying the difficulties of her life interwoven with the importance of her findings. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 17:04, 14 February 2010 (UTC)
I very much appreciate your copy editing. Yes the phrases "image from deep time" and "scene from deep time" are being used deliberately. An extremely distinguished historian of science, Martin Rudwick, uses them to describe 19th century depictions of prehistoric life. He even wrote a book, Scenes from Deep Time (1992), that traces the history of the genre (it is one of sources cited in the article) that has become somewhat of a classic in the field. Although there had been some sketches (for examble by Cuvier) published that attempted to show what extinct animals might have looked like with flesh on the bones, and their had been a few simple cartoons (like the one about William Buckland's investigation of Kirkdale Cave showing him sticking his head into a hyena den) Rudwick considers Duria Antiquior to be the first serious and fully realised example that influenced all the ones that followed. As for the spelling issue, the article should use Br. spelling per MoS, but I am notoriously bad about that so it is just as well that you have cleaned up some of it. Thanks again for your help. Rusty Cashman (talk) 18:50, 14 February 2010 (UTC)

Al-Jahiz and History of evolutionary thought[edit]

I wanted to follow up on some very old comments you made on Talk:History of evolutionary thought about the claims about Al-Jahiz and History of evolutionary thought. Since you replied to my recent comment on that talk page (many thanks), I'm assuming you are still active and interested in this area.

You mention there, in defence of those claims, that you had turned up other material that supported that interpretation of al-Jahiz's writings. For example, you gave a reference to Al-Jahiz and the rise of biological evolutionism and said that you had found "a couple of papers with Google scholar, and a couple of books with Google books that talk about Al-Jahiz's ideas on evolution".

As people have mentioned before, the material quoted from Gary Dargan is problematic and not just because it is from an unreliable source. Some of the content is not especially odd and can be verified (if not in such contemporary terms) from various sources. One particular claim though for which I can find no support is the following: "Animals that survive to breed can pass on their successful characteristics to offspring". Unfortunately it is precisely this claim that tends to excite the most comment.

(This might also be the moment to mention that I currently suspect that one textbook on the history of evolution, from a reputable publisher, appears to have sourced its information on al-Jahiz either from Wikipedia or from the original interview with Gary Dargan.)

I was wondering if you might remember what those references might have been that you mentioned before? and, do you know if they have been added to any of the articles containing these claims? If you don't, no matter; I'm gathering references on this myself, so I'll carry on looking for now. It's a shame that the primary source from which this material comes is compendious to say the least and has not been translated into any European language, so far as I know. My Arabic is certainly not up to working my way through it in the foreseeable future.

My apologies for such a wall of text on your talk page. Many thanks for any information you might have. –Syncategoremata (talk) 23:58, 20 March 2010 (UTC)

The issue of Al Jahiz and natural selection is a vexatious one for me as well. Like you I suspect that Dargan is seriously over reaching with his interpretation but I have never been able to find a source to discredit it. The following I do know. At one time (not now unfortunately) I had access to the full text of this [3] 1941 paper by Conrad Zirkle, which is one of the sources for the article. This paper contained a fairly extensive extract from al Jahiz's book of animals. The text is a little difficult to read and obscure in places probably because it was Zirkles translation of a very old Spanish translation from the original Arabic. However, there is no question that it contains a description of what we would call the struggle for existence and in particular graphic (and sophisticated) examples of food chains and the struggle between predators and prey including a variety of defensive mechanisms. It did not connect this idea explicitly to evolutionary change however, which is why I renamed the section from "Islamic philosophy and natural selection" to "Islamic philosophy and the struggle for existence". From other sources like this one [4] it is apparent that al Jahiz did at some point, like some later Islamic writers, discuss a form of transmutation from lower to higher organisms, but not that he connected it to his concept of the struggle for existence to form the sort of proto-Darwinian theory of evolution that Dargan suggests. I am strongly suspicious that Dargan has done an illegitamite synthesis to make al Jahiz's remarkable ideas seem even more modern than they were. In some sense it would be an easy mistake to make since modern readers tend to connect natural selection and the struggle for existence so closely as to make them interchangable. However, I have never been comfortable enough to impose that view on the article without a source to cite. What is really needed is a good English language translation of the book of animals, but I have never been able to find one anywhere on the web. Rusty Cashman (talk) 05:10, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply to this. Yes, the material on the struggle for existence and on the development of new traits in response to the animal's environment are very plausible ideas here; they are pretty common from antiquity onwards. The material on food chains is not something I can remember any earlier example for and is definitely very interesting. The issue of "transmutation from lower to higher organisms" is presumably just the standard neoplatonic idea of the great chain of being, and it would be surprising if it were associated with any explicitly evolutionary ideas. (Such chains usually start from 'dumb' matter, so the step to animals is a large one; though Aristotle believed in some amount of spontaneous generation.)
Thus my guess is that there is nothing so dramatic there, though obviously I could well be wrong. If there is something that interesting there, I would expect someone to make a big article out of it soon, as the Book of Animals is widely available in a modern Arabic edition. As far as I know, there is no English translation of it and I doubt there will be one too soon: the book is immense. (I think it is 7 volumes in its Arabic edition.)
But I think it is unlikely there will be any direct refutation of these claims, as my impression again is that no scholar would take them seriously enough to bother refuting them. I'll try talk to another professor here who specializes in the relevant area and see what his reaction is. I've spoken to one professor who said the text was extremely unlikely to support any such interpretation but he has not worked on it in detail.
I've got the 1941 Conway Zirkle paper here, as well as the Spanish paper it depends on for al-Jahiz: Palacios, Miguel Asin (1930-05). "El "Libro de Los Animales" de Jâḥiẓ". Isis 14 (1): 20–54. ISSN 0021-1753.  Check date values in: |date= (help) I'll read through that and put together some notes in a userpage on what I can find.
All the best. –Syncategoremata (talk) 14:02, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
I look forward to seeing what you can find. Frankly the Dargan source is so questionable that at this point I would even accept a good faith reading of the primary source to help resolve this. Unfortunately I don't read Arabic. You may have noticed that in the past few days a similar debate has erupted over Thomas Aquinas and some of his comments on Empodocles. Fortunately there are plenty of good English language sources on Aquinas so I don't think it will take too long to resolve. Rusty Cashman (talk) 19:03, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the pointer to that: I'd not realised the current state of the discussion there. I've deleted (again) the material on Aquinas and Empedocles. It has occurred to me that deleting the material in the middle of a discussion may well be a breach of Wikipedia etiquette or due procedure, but I think my comments on the talk page show the basis of my actions. All the best. –Syncategoremata (talk) 22:53, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

Happy Rusty Cashman's Day![edit]

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User:Rusty Cashman has been identified as an Awesome Wikipedian,
and therefore, I've officially declared today as Rusty Cashman's day!
For being such a beautiful person and great Wikipedian,
enjoy being the Star of the day, dear Rusty Cashman!

00:06, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

A record of your Day will always be kept here.

For a userbox you can add to your userbox page, see User:Rlevse/Today/Happy Me Day! and my own userpage for a sample of how to use it. RlevseTalk 00:06, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

April 2010 GAN backlog elimination drive[edit]

WikiProject Good Articles will be running a GAN backlog elimination drive for the entire month of April. The goal of this drive is to bring the number of outstanding Good Article nominations down to below 200. This will help editors in restoring confidence to the GAN process as well as actively improving, polishing, and rewarding good content. If you are interested in participating in the drive, please place your name here. Awards will be given out to those who review certain numbers of GANs as well as to those who review the most. Hope we can see you in April.
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MuZemike delivered by MuZebot 18:10, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

Smedley Butler[edit]

I just wanted to say thanks for the Help on fixing up this article. --Kumioko (talk) 19:54, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

You are welcome. It was a very interesting article. Rusty Cashman (talk) 07:34, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

Mary Anning[edit]

I created the article of Tracey Chevalier's book for the Spanish wikipedia and I saw your nice article. I decided to improve and even translate it all. I saw that "played a key role in" is repeated twice in the lead section, could you check that please? Thanks, OboeCrack (talk) 23:56, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

I fixed it. Thanks for catching it. Rusty Cashman (talk) 07:30, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Also, in the talk page I place another comment and here it comes another: The extremely long neck of the plesiosaur with its unprecedented 35 neck vertebrae, neck is repeated twice, can we avoid that? Cheers! OboeCrack (talk) 15:37, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

Smedley Butler[edit]

I responded to your comments in the FA review, my apologies it was an accident. I didn't go into the whole story but basically I wrote it offline while my internet connection was down and when I went in to edit you must have done it moments before and I wiped it out. --Kumioko (talk) 22:45, 28 March 2010 (UTC)

Smedley Butler[edit]

Thanks and no problem and I saw it coming as well, thats kinda why I haven't been killing myself to fix all the comments. With all the comments and changes that have been made I am going to have to read back through the entire article section by section and rephrase, cleanup and expand some areas (such as the Banana Wars sections and adding some info about his time at Quantico). Although there have been a lot of good edits and improvements to the article there have been some edits that have also completely changed the meaning or outcome of certain things (to a POV nature both for and against him depending) and some areas that have been reworded to be just incorrect. I think I am also going to incorporate the award citations into the appropriate areas rather than having them all the way down at the bottom. And a few other things. Thanks for all your help though. --Kumioko (talk) 19:59, 6 April 2010 (UTC)

Unreasonable reasonableness[edit]

I'd just like to say how impressed I am by your most recent response on the Talk:History_of_evolutionary_thought page despite the tone of the original comment.

I'm still looking for good material on al-Jahiz and evolution without much progress as yet; I'll put up something there once I have something to bring to the discussion. I would just mention that there is one popular science book that contains material on this subject:

Agutter, Paul S.; Denys N. Wheatley (2008). Thinking about Life: The History and Philosophy of Biology and Other Sciences. Springer. ISBN 9781402088650. 

Unfortunately, if you look at the material there (p. 43 or just search for al-Jahiz) it is both unsourced and also almost certainly derived from Wikipedia. (Or at least, that particular claim is presumably be from the Gary Dargan "summary", whether directly or indirectly, but much of the other material on that page looks a lot like material from Wikipedia.) I've removed use of it from at least one page here already but I guess it will turn up again. If you think I am wrong, or too hasty, in my decision that it is not an independent witness for this, please do let me know and I'll look into it further.

Many thanks for your work here and all the best. –Syncategoremata (talk) 11:05, 7 April 2010 (UTC)

Mary Anning 2[edit]

I think it could be an excellent FA. As you are the main writer, what do you think about that? I think it is toroughly well written and covers all the main aspects of Anning's life and works. Tell me, OboeCrack (talk) 19:04, 23 April 2010 (UTC) I think it could be an excellent FA. As you are the main writer, what do you think about that? I think it is toroughly well written and covers all the main aspects of Anning's life and works. Tell me, OboeCrack (talk) 19:04, 23 April 2010 (UTC)

I do plan to take it to FAC, but I plan to do a little more work on it first. In particular there were a couple of issues about one of the sources used raised during the GA review process (which just completed a few weeks ago), and I am planning to get back to it and replace it with other sources for the same information. For another I find that it helps to step back from an article after it goes through a period of intense revision and expansion, which this one did immediately prior to and during the GA review process, for a few weeks before returning to it and giving it an intense copyedit. The delay allows me to look at the article with fresh eyes and for other editors such as yourself to become involved and make improvements. I hope to start my copy editing next week, and to have the article ready for FAC sometime in May or early June.Rusty Cashman (talk) 07:45, 24 April 2010 (UTC)

You are now a Reviewer[edit]

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Hello. Your account has been granted the "reviewer" userright, allowing you to to review other users' edits on certain flagged pages. Pending changes, also known as flagged protection, will be commencing a a two-month trial at approximately 23:00, 2010 June 15 (UTC).

Reviewers can review edits made by users who are not autoconfirmed to articles placed under flagged protection. Flagged protection is applied to only a small number of articles, similarly to how semi-protection is applied but in a more controlled way for the trial.

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The two are synonymous geologically. DuncanHill (talk) 19:58, 14 September 2010 (UTC)


I'm sorry I made you spend $7.50! I just assumed you had the access already when I asked for the quote. I feel bad that you did that.

By the way, as always when I edit other people's FACs, if I add anything that you really don't like, including changing any writing, you should feel free to revert. I might argue a little, but I'll respect your decision in the end if you really don't want it. I'm finding this really very interesting, and so I've been editing more than I normally would at FAC, and tonight I realized that maybe I'm overdoing it, so please feel free to ask me to back away a little. It won't affect my support for the article. SlimVirgin talk|contribs 08:09, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

I know from my own experience that it can be emotional, so if at any point you definitely don't want something I've added, or you do want something I've removed, please feel free to undo whatever I've done. As I said, it won't affect my support for the article. My only real concern is one of the tertiary sources. I looked through the book (I'm hesitant to criticize it too much by name), and there's a lot of "She would have done this, she would have done that," as in (paraphrasing) "As she worked the beach that night, she would have looked up into the sky, would have seen the dark clouds gathering, would have pressed her collar more tightly around her neck." I'm always wary when I see that. It's not history. And I've found a couple of things that seem to be clear errors. So I'd be quite keen to see that source used less. SlimVirgin talk|contribs 20:47, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Rusty Cashman and SlimVirgin, thank you both for your work on the Mary Anning article. I'm pleased to see this interesting woman's article brought to FA status (and hopefully to the main page.) FloNight♥♥♥♥ 22:08, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Thanks, Flo. Full credit must go to Rusty, who's produced an excellent and important article. SlimVirgin talk|contribs 22:12, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Rusty, if you have a copy of the Torrens article (the 1995 one) that you could email me, I've love to read it. SlimVirgin talk|contribs 22:19, 24 September 2010 (UTC)

Mary Anning[edit]

I see you are involved with improving the Mary Anning article. Just to let you now I've added two new sections to the talk page. Thanks81.147.150.25 (talk) 15:26, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

Nylon-eating bacteria‎ edit - thanks[edit]

Thanks -- that was exactly the edit that I knew was called for but didn't have the facts at hand to do myself. Rgds, NapoliRoma (talk) 19:45, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

A quote of you[edit]

Hi - I'm the author of and have quoted you in the introduction - is this OK by you? Thanks. Strange Glue (talk) 13:47, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

I replied on your talk page at more length, but yes it is fine with me. Rusty Cashman (talk) 19:13, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

March 2011 GAN backlog elimination drive a week away[edit]

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WikiProject Good Articles will be running a GAN backlog elimination drive for the entire month of March. The goal of this drive is to bring the number of outstanding Good Article nominations down to below 50. This will help editors in restoring confidence to the GAN process as well as actively improving, polishing, and rewarding good content. If you are interested in participating in the drive, please place your name here. Awards will be given out to those who review certain numbers of GANs as well as to those who review the most. On behalf of my co-coordinator Wizardman, we hope we can see you in March. MuZemike delivered by MuZebot 00:01, 22 February 2011 (UTC)

150 short[edit]

You could also use Huggle to rack up 150 anti-vandalism reverts in under 1 hour. Reaper Eternal (talk) 20:37, 29 March 2011 (UTC)

Inadvertent deletion[edit]

Was this edit inadvertent?--TonyTheTiger (T/C/BIO/WP:CHICAGO/WP:FOUR) 20:33, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

Yes sorry, I am getting used to AWB and I messed up. Will try and be more careful in future... Rusty Cashman (talk) 21:32, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

Derek Jeter[edit]

Thanks for your recent edits on Jeter's page. In case you're not aware, this article is currently a candidate for featured status. Here's the discussion thread. Any help you can provide is appreciated. – Muboshgu (talk) 18:54, 27 July 2011 (UTC)

Evolution history[edit]

Red Kitten 01.jpg

That was a very nice edit of my clumsy addition. Thanks!

Ettrig (talk) 13:05, 30 October 2011 (UTC)

Main page appearance: Mary Anning[edit]

This is a note to let the main editors of Mary Anning know that the article will be appearing as today's featured article on December 16, 2011. You can view the TFA blurb at Wikipedia:Today's featured article/December 16, 2011. If you prefer that the article appear as TFA on a different date, or not at all, please ask featured article director Raul654 (talk · contribs) or his delegate Dabomb87 (talk · contribs), or start a discussion at Wikipedia talk:Today's featured article/requests. If the previous blurb needs tweaking, you might change it—following the instructions at Wikipedia:Today's featured article/requests/instructions. If this article needs any attention or maintenance, it would be preferable if that could be done before its appearance on the Main Page. The blurb as it stands now is below:

Mary Anning with her dog Tray, painted before 1842

Mary Anning (1799–1847) was a British fossil collector, dealer and palaeontologist who became known around the world for a number of important finds she made in the Jurassic age marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis, where she lived. Her work contributed to fundamental changes in scientific thinking about prehistoric life and the history of the earth that occurred in the early 19th century. Anning searched for fossils in the area's Blue Lias cliffs, particularly during the winter months, when landslides exposed new fossils that had to be collected quickly, before they were lost to the sea. It was dangerous work, and she nearly lost her life in 1833 during a landslide that killed her dog Tray. Anning's gender and social class prevented her from fully participating in the scientific community of 19th-century Britain, as it was dominated by wealthy Anglican gentlemen. (more...)

UcuchaBot (talk) 23:02, 9 December 2011 (UTC)

Hello Rusty Cashman. I just noticed your tweaking of the Mary Anning article, then read the above thread. I have only recently put this article on my watchlist, so haven't been aware of its Main Page nomination. Is it the case that the article was postponed from appearing there on December 16th 2011, and is due to appear there imminently? PaleCloudedWhite (talk) 07:16, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes I went to the WP:TFAR page intending to nominate it for the anniversary of her birth (May 21) and found that someone else already had. I expect it to go through this time. Rusty Cashman (talk) 07:54, 17 May 2012 (UTC)

Main page appearance: Mary Anning[edit]

This is a note to let the main editors of Mary Anning know that the article will be appearing as today's featured article on May 21, 2012. You can view the TFA blurb at Wikipedia:Today's featured article/May 21, 2012. If you prefer that the article appear as TFA on a different date, or not at all, please ask featured article director Raul654 (talk · contribs) or his delegate Dabomb87 (talk · contribs), or start a discussion at Wikipedia talk:Today's featured article/requests. If the previous blurb needs tweaking, you might change it—following the instructions at Wikipedia:Today's featured article/requests/instructions. If this article needs any attention or maintenance, it would be preferable if that could be done before its appearance on the Main Page. The blurb as it stands now is below:

Mary Anning

Mary Anning (1799–1847) was a British fossil collector, dealer and palaeontologist who became known around the world for important finds she made in the Jurassic marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis where she lived. Her work contributed to fundamental changes in scientific thinking about prehistoric life and the history of the earth. Her discoveries included the first ichthyosaur skeleton to be correctly identified, found when she was just twelve years old; the first two plesiosaur skeletons ever found; the first pterosaur skeleton located outside Germany; and important fish fossils. Her observations were critical to the discovery that coprolites were fossilised faeces. Her gender and social class prevented her from fully participating in the scientific community of 19th-century Britain and she struggled financially for much of her life. As a woman she was not eligible to join the Geological Society of London, and she did not always receive full credit for her scientific contributions. After her death her unusual life story attracted increasing interest. In 2010 the Royal Society included Anning in a list of the ten British women who have most influenced the history of science. (more...)

UcuchaBot (talk) 23:02, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

I gather you are the main contributor to this fantastic article - well done and thanks for all your hard work from a grateful reader! (talk) 06:57, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Evolution and common descent[edit]

I would like you to provide a source that says that pre-Darwinian theories evolution. Lamarckian evolution also include common descent otherwise it couldn't be a theory of evolution but would be a theory of metamorphosis or multiple creations. IF there is inheritance then there is common descent by definition - Lamarckian evolution is inheritance of acquired traits, but it still presupposes that traits are passed along lines of descent. Darwinian evolution is different from Lamarckian in that it specifies the mode of inheritance as being descent with modification, and by including the principle of natural selection not simply common descent. Even anaximander's theory of evolution from fishes includes common descent. Please provide a source that calls Darwinian evolution "evolution through common descent" I know of none. ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 23:50, 22 June 2012 (UTC)

"evolution through common descent" gets 10 (!) hits on google scholar.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 23:57, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Common descent means that modern organisms are all descended from one

I have moved this discussion to the article talk page. Rusty Cashman (talk) 17:54, 23 June 2012 (UTC)

Credo Reference Update & Survey (your opinion requested)[edit]

Credo Reference, who generously donated 400 free Credo 250 research accounts to Wikipedia editors over the past two years, has offered to expand the program to include 100 additional reference resources. Credo wants Wikipedia editors to select which resources they want most. So, we put together a quick survey to do that:

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At this time only the initial 400 editors have accounts, but even if you do not have an account, you still might want to weigh in on which resources would be most valuable for the community (for example, through WikiProject Resource Exchange).

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If you have any other questions or comments, drop by my talk page or email me at Cheers! Ocaasi t | c 17:31, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

The Olive Branch: A Dispute Resolution Newsletter (Issue #1)[edit]

Welcome to the first edition of The Olive Branch. This will be a place to semi-regularly update editors active in dispute resolution (DR) about some of the most important issues, advances, and challenges in the area. You were delivered this update because you are active in DR, but if you would prefer not to receive any future mailing, just add your name to this page.

Steven Zhang's Fellowship Slideshow

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Read the entire first edition of The Olive Branch -->

--The Olive Branch 19:27, 4 September 2012 (UTC)

WikiProject Good articles (Participant Clean-Up)[edit]

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DYK nomination of William Warren Orcutt[edit]

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DYK for William Warren Orcutt[edit]

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Vaccination pamphlet not notable enough for his list? I disagree. --Pawyilee (talk) 06:04, 7 October 2012 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles - Participant Clean-up (Second Call)[edit]

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WikiProject Good Articles - Participant Clean-up (Final Call)[edit]

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You are receiving this message because you have not added your name to the list of active WikiProject Good Articles participants. Though you may have recived the past two messages sent out in September and October, some users may have had that message archived before coming online to read it and therefore never saw it. If you are deeming yourself inactive with the WikiProject please disregard this message as your name will be moved to an "inactive participant" list at the end of the clean-up. If you are still active with the WikiProject, please be sure to include your name on this list. The deadline to add your name to the list (if you are still active) is November 1, 2012. This will be the last message sent out before the deadline which is in 2 days. Thank-you.--EdwardsBot

The GAN Newsletter (November 2012)[edit]

In This Issue

The WikiProject: Good Articles Newsletter (December 2012)[edit]

In This Issue

The WikiProject: Good Articles Newsletter (January 2013)[edit]

In This Issue

This newsletter was delivered by EdwardsBot (talk) 14:32, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Newsletter - February 2013[edit]

In This Issue

Good Article Nominations Request For Comment[edit]

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A 'Request For Comment' for Good Article Nominations is currently being held. We are asking that you please take five to ten minutes to review all seven proposals that will affect Good Article Nominations if approved. Full details of each proposal can be found here. Please comment on each proposal (or as many as you can) here.

At this time, Proposal 1, 3, and 5 have received full (or close to) support.

If you have questions of anything general (not related to one specif proposal), please leave a message under the General discussion thread.

Please note that Proposal 2 has been withdrawn and no further comments are needed. Also, please disregard Proposal 9 as it was never an actual proposal.

Invitation to WikiProject Breakfast[edit]

Hello, Rusty Cashman.

You are invited to join WikiProject Breakfast, a WikiProject and resource dedicated to improving Wikipedia's coverage of breakfast-related topics.
To join the project, just add your name to the member list. Northamerica1000(talk) 05:50, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles Recruitment Centre[edit]

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Hello! Now, some of you might be wondering why there is a Good article icon with a bunch of stars around (to the right). The answer? WikiProject Good articles will be launching a Recruitment Centre very soon! The centre will allow all users to be taught how to review Good article nominations by experts just like you! However, in order for the Recruitment Centre to open in the first place, we need some volunteers:
  • Recruiters: The main task of a recruiter is to teach users that have never reviewed a Good article nomination how to review one. To become a recruiter, all you have to do is meet this criteria. If we don't get at least 5-10 recruiters to start off with, the Recruitment Centre will not open. If interested, make sure you meet the criteria, read the process and add your name to the list of recruiters. (One of the great things about being a recruiter is that there is no set requirement of what must be taught and when. Instead, all the content found in the process section is a guideline of the main points that should be addressed during a recruitment can also take an entire different approach if you wish!) If you think you will not have the time to recruit any users at this time but are still interested in becoming a recruiter, you can still add your name to the list of recruiters but just fill in the "Status" parameter with "Not Available".
  • Co-Director: The current Director for the centre is me (Dom497). Another user that would be willing to help with some of the tasks would be helpful. Tasks include making sure recruiters are doing what they should be (teaching!), making sure all recruitments are archived correctly, updating pages as needed, answering any questions, and distributing the feedback form. If interested, please contact me (Dom497).
  • Nominators, please read this: If you are not interested in becoming a recruiter, you can still help. In some cases a nominator may have an issue with an "inexperienced" editor (the recruitee) reviewing one of their nominations. To minimize the chances of this happening, if you are fine with a recruitee reviewing one of your nominations under the supervision of the recruiter, please add your name to the list at the bottom of this page. By adding your name to this list, chances are that your nomination will be reviewed more quickly as the recruitee will be asked to choose a nomination from the list of nominators that are OK with them reviewing the article.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to seeing this program bring new reviewers to the Good article community and all the positive things it will bring along.

A message will be sent out to all recruiters regarding the date when the Recruitment Centre will open when it is determined. The message will also contain some further details to clarify things that may be a bit confusing.--Dom497 (talk)

This message was sent out by --EdwardsBot (talk) 01:13, 4 June 2013 (UTC)

DYK RfC[edit]

  • As a listed GA participant, you are invited to contribute to a formal Request for Comment on the question of whether Good Articles should be eligible to appear in the Did You Know? slot in future. Please see the proposal on its subpage here, or on the main DYK talk page. To add the discussion to your watchlist, click this link. Thank you in advance. Gilderien Chat|Contributions03:03, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

GAN December 2013 Backlog Drive[edit]

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Hello! A GAN Backlog Drive will begin in less than 4 days!

In past Backlog Drives, the goal was to reduce the backlog of Good article nominations. In the upcoming drive, another goal will be added - raising as much money as we can for the Wikimedia Foundation. How will this work? Well, its pretty simple. Any user interested in donating can submit a pledge at the Backlog Drive page (linked above). The pledge should mention the amount of money the user is willing to donate per review. For example, if a user pledges 5 cents per review and 100 nominations are reviewed, the total donation amount is $5.00.

At the time this message was sent out, two users have submitted pledges for a total of 8 cents per review. All pledges, no matter how much money, are greatly appreciated. Also, in no way is this saying you must make a pledge.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me or leave a message on the Backlog Drive talk page. And remember, there are less than 4 days before the drive starts!--EdwardsBot (talk) 03:11, 27 November 2013 (UTC)

GAN December 2013 Backlog Drive[edit]

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Hello! Just a friendly reminder that the GAN Backlog Drive has begun and will end on December 31, 2013!

If you know anyone outside of the WikiProject that may be interested, feel free to invite them to the drive!

If you have any questions or want to comment about something regarding the drive, post them here--EdwardsBot (talk) 00:04, 3 December 2013 (UTC)

March 2014 GAN Backlog Drive[edit]

It's that time again! Starting on March 1, there will be another GAN Backlog Drive! There will be several changes compared to previous drives:

  • This drive will introduce a new component to it; a point system. In a nutshell, older nominations are worth more points than newer nominations. The top 3 participants who have the points will be awarded the Golden, Silver, or Bronze Wikipedia Puzzle Piece Trophy, respectively.
  • Unlike the December 2013 Backlog Drive, earning an additional barnstar if you reached your goal has been removed.
  • The allowance to have insufficient reviews has been lowered to 2 before being disqualified.
  • An exception to the rule that all reviews must be completed before the deadline has been created.

Also, something that I thought I would share with all of you is that we raised $20.88 (USD) for the WMF in the December 2013 drive. It may not sound like a lot but considering that that was raised just because we reviewed articles, I would say that's pretty good! With that success, pledges can be made for the upcoming drive if you wish.

More info regarding the drive and full descriptions regarding the changes to this drive can be found on the the drive page. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a message on the drive talk page.

I look forward to your participation and hope that because of it, some day the backlog will be gone!


--MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 00:58, 22 February 2014 (UTC)

GAN March 2014 Backlog Drive[edit]

The March 2014 GAN Backlog Drive has begun and will end on April 1, 2014! Sent by Dom497 on behalf of MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 21:01, 1 March 2014 (UTC)

Good article reassessment[edit]

Peak oil, an article that you or your project may be interested in, has been nominated for a community good article reassessment. If you are interested in the discussion, please participate by adding your comments to the reassessment page. If concerns are not addressed during the review period, the good article status may be removed from the article. Beagel (talk) 18:39, 5 June 2014 (UTC)

WikiProject Good articles Future GAN Backlog Drive[edit]

Hello everyone! Hope you've all been having a great summer!

TheQ Editor recently proposed the idea of having another Backlog Drive in either September/October or November/December of this year. For those of you who have participated in the past two drives you know I was the one who organized them, however, come September, this will be my most important year in school so I will not be able to coordinate this drive (if it happens). TheQ Editor has volunteered to be a coordinator for the drive. If any of you would like to co-coordinator, please notify TheQ Editor on his talk page.

If you would be interested in participating in a Backlog Drive sometime before the end of this year, please notify TheQ Editor. Also, make sure to specify what month(s) work best for you.

At the time this message was sent out, the backlog was at 520 nominations. Since May, the backlog has been steadily increasing and we are currently near an all time high. Even though the backlog will not disappear over one drive, this drive can lead to several others which will (hopefully) lead to the day where there is no longer a backlog.

As always, the more participants, the better, and everyone is encouraged to participate!

Sent by Dom497--MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 15:52, 16 August 2014 (UTC)

GA Cup[edit]

Hello everyone! We hope you have all been having a great summer!

As we all know, the recent GAN Backlog Drives have not had any big impact on the backlog. Because of that, me (Dom497), Figureskatingfan, and TheQ Editor have worked on an idea that could possibly finally put a dent into the massive backlog. Now, I will admit, the idea isn't entirely ours as we have took the general idea of the WikiCup and brought it over to WikiProject Good Articles. But anyways, here's what we have in mind:

For all of you that do not know what the WikiCup is, it is an annual competition between several editors to see who can get the most Good Articles, Featured Article's, Did You Know's, etc. Based of this, we propose to you the GA Cup. This competition will only focus on reviewing Good articles.

For more info on the proposal, click here. As a FYI, the proposal page is not what the final product will look like (if you do go ahead with this idea). It will look very similar to WikiCup's page(s).

The discussion for the proposal will take place here. Please let us know if you are interested, have any concerns, things to consider, etc.

--Dom497, Figureskatingfan, and TheQ Editor

MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 01:29, 31 August 2014 (UTC)

WikiProject Good Articles - GA Cup[edit]

WikiProject Good Articles's 2014-15 GA Cup
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WikiProject Good articles is holding a new competition, the GA Cup, from October 1, 2014 - March 28, 2015. The Cup will be based on reviewing Good article nominations; for each review, points will be awarded with bonuses for older nominations, longer articles and comprehensive reviews. All participants will start off in one group and the highest scoring participants will go through to the second round. At the moment six rounds are planned, but this may change based on participant numbers.

Some of you may ask: what is the purpose for a competition of this type? Currently, there is a backlog of about 500 unreviewed Good article nominations, almost an all time high. It is our hope that we can decrease the backlog in a fun way, through friendly competition.

Everyone is welcome to join; new and old editors! Sign-ups will be open until October 15, 2014 so sign-up now!

If you have any questions, take a look at the FAQ page and/or contact one of the four judges.

Cheers from NickGibson3900, Dom497, TheQ Editor and Figureskatingfan.

--MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 19:04, 15 September 2014 (UTC)

To receive future GA Cup newsletter, please add your name to our mailing list.

Evolution Day (2011 AfD)[edit]

Back in 2011 you commented on Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Evolution Day: "The only thing I could find is this, which appears to be a self published blog."

After doing a recent web search, I found evidence that the term had been used at least as early as 1996, in TES (magazine): [5] If this is sufficient information that would have changed your vote from "Delete" to "Keep", would you mind putting a comment to that effect on User_talk:Postdlf#Evolution_Day? Thanks! -- Limulus (talk) 09:28, 25 November 2014 (UTC)