User talk:SMcCandlish

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If you leave a new message on this page, I will reply on this page unless you ask me to reply elsewhere.

As of 2014-09-21 , SMcCandlish is Somewhat Busy.
I will probably check Wikipedia periodically, but I may not be consistently participating or editing until 15 September 2014.

WikiStress level

Most recent poster here: Steven Walling (talk).

No RfAs or RfBs reported by Cyberbot I since 0:45 9/21/2014 (UTC)


Old stuff to resolve eventually[edit]

Cueless billiards[edit]

Unresolved: Can't get at the stuff at Ancestry; try using addl. cards.

Look at the main page[edit]

Unresolved: Katsura News added (with new TFA section) to WP:CUE; need to see if I can add anything useful to Mingaud article.

Some more notes on Crystalate[edit]

Unresolved: New sources/material worked into article, but unanswered questions remain.


Unresolved: Not done yet, last I looked.

Your free 1-year HighBeam Research account is ready[edit]

Unresolved: Needs to be renewed, if I come back.

Your Credo Reference account is approved[edit]

Unresolved: Needs to be renewed, if I come back.


Unresolved: Need to file the RfC.

You post at Wikipedia talk:FAQ/Copyright[edit]

Unresolved: Need to fix William A. Spinks, etc., with proper balkline stats, now that we know how to interpret them.

Hee Haw[edit]

Unresolved: Still need to propose some standards on animal breed article naming and disambiguation.

One of the reasons gardens are walled[edit]

Unresolved: 'We really need an "intro to Wikipedia for academic and professional experts" guide.... Still do! Good potential project!
You're right that my cleanup efforts have not been efficient when it comes to horses. (They have been in other areas, including donkeys, with direct cooperation from Montanabw, curiously enough, and in domestic cats, among others.) It is difficult to predict what projects will find article naming and categorization cleanup controversial, and on what points.

I understand the WP:RANDY problem, but I'm not part of it; WP:Manual of Style/organisms could not have been written by a Randy. One problem to me is that too many alleged experts treat everyone who disagrees with them about anything as a Randy, often very insultingly so. And by no means is every editor who claims expertise actually an expert; many, especially in biology projects, are simply fanciers, and others may have studied zoology or botany as an undergraduate, but that's it. I have a degree in cultural anthropology, but would never call myself an expert in that field. Large numbers of, e.g., WP:BIRDS editors don't even have that level of qualification, but will fight to the death to get their way on capitalization (and on a faulty basis – they continually claim that the fact that bird field guides capitalize common names means that the mainstream publishing world is honoring the IOU's convention, when in reality all field guides on everything have always capitalized this way, as ease-of-rapid-scanning emphasis, since at least the 1800s, long before IOU even existed; it's a coincidence, and they know this but pretend this fact was never raised.

Another related issue is that WP:Competence is required – not just competence in a particular field, but online community competence to work collaboratively toward consensus. Not all academics have this, and many are extremely competitive and debatory. Sometimes the only thing to do is not care if this sort leave the project (or even be happy that they've gone). The vast majority of expert editors are a boon to the project, but being such an expert is not a "Get Out of Jail Free" card in Wiki-opoly. As one example, several years ago, one alleged (and probable) expert on albinism was extremely disruptive at the page that is now Albinism in humans. He considered himself [writing live; I don't mean peer-reviewed joural articles he'd written] to be a reliable source, and basically refused to do the leg-work to provide source citations for the material he wanted to add, nor to show that material he wanted to remove was obsolete or otherwise wrong. I bent over backwards to try to get him to understand WP:V, WP:RS and WP:NOR, but he just would not listen. Myself and others kept having to prevent him from making the well-source if imperfect article a mostly unsourced mess, and he eventually left the project is "disgust" at other editors' "stupidity", much to a lot of people's relief. The article today is very well sourced and stable (aside from frequent "ALBINOESES LOOK STOOPID" vandalism). The disruptive expert's absence was a boon. I feel the same way about WP:DIVA expert editors who threaten wiki-retirement, WP boycotts, editing strikes, mass editorial walkouts and other WP:POINTy nonsense. We all know that in reality academics have zero problem adapting to in-house style guides of whatever venue they're writing for. Pretending that doing it on WP is onerous is a abuse of WP as massively-multiplayer online debate game.

We really need an "intro to Wikipedia for academic and professional experts" guide, to help prevent incoming specialists from falling into such pitfall patterns (not to mention the one identified at WP:SSF). — SMcCandlish  Talk⇒ ɖכþ Contrib. 20:45, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

Just wanted to let you know that I did read this, started an unproductive reply, and then decided I needed to think about it a while.--Curtis Clark (talk) 02:40, 7 January 2013 (UTC)
@Curtis Clark: It's a been a while, but I thought I'd get back to you about this. If I resume editing, I may in fact try to draft an "intro to Wikipedia for academic and professional experts" guide. — SMcCandlish  Talk⇒ ɖכþ Contrib. 20:54, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Actually, Wikipedia:Ten Simple Rules for Editing Wikipedia might be good enough. Didn't know that existed. — SMcCandlish  Talk⇒ ɖכþ Contrib. 21:59, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Kinda old stuff to sort through (mostly barnstars I didn't move to my /Barnstars page yet)[edit]


... for this one! Cheers - DVdm (talk) 20:20, 31 January 2012 (UTC)

Thanks! I actually like hats. :-) Your readability tweak was a good idea. I was a little concerned about it myself, but I'm not a cards editor, so I wasn't sure if there was a typical way of making hands more legible. (Also not sure if people conventionally use the card symbols that are available in Unicode, etc.). I do edit a lot of games articles, but almost exclusively in cue sports and related. — SMcCandlish Talk⇒ ʕ(Õلō Contribs. 12:49, 1 February 2012 (UTC)
I specially like hats when there's a set of dice under them :-)
Perhaps you don't know, but overhere we use the name chapeau for the cup and, by extension, for the game itself. As you can see here—als je Nederlands een beetje in orde is—, we play an entirely different game with it, a game where one can practice the fine art of subtle bluffing, downright lying, assessing oponents' behaviour, and accurately estimating probabilities. We also play the "Mexican" variant, which is even subtler. Check it out and cheers! - DVdm (talk) 18:26, 1 February 2012 (UTC)
I didn't know that, about the chapeau. I thought you were awarding me a virtual hat. :-) . I am familiar with the bluff game (possibly the Mexican version, since I learned it in California), but have always played that one with regular dice. Anyway, if you like what I did in the English version, certainly feel free to "port" it to the Netherlands Wikipedia. I may be able to work through the Dutch enough to add something about the other variants to the English article here, since it is rather paltry. Heh. — SMcCandlish Talk⇒ ʕ(Õلō Contribs. 04:04, 2 February 2012 (UTC)
Actually, it was meant as a virtual hat award as well - I had seen a hat on your user page :-)

Porting from there to here could be a bit problematic, as there's not many sources around, alas. - DVdm (talk) 17:40, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

I'll have to dig through my game encyclopedias and stuff. — SMcCandlish Talk⇒ ʕ(Õلō Contribs. 17:45, 2 February 2012 (UTC)
Ok, if you find something, please let know. I'd be glad to work on it together. Cheers and happy digging. - DVdm (talk) 20:20, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

Barnstar comment[edit]

You have new message/s Hello. You have a new message at Djathinkimacowboy's talk page.

Don't delete this! -

Random Acts of Kindness Barnstar.png The Random Acts of Kindness Barnstar
For behaving in a genteel fashion, as if nothing were the matter, and for gallantry. --Djathinkimacowboy 03:27, 2 February 2012 (UTC)
Sankyu beddy mush! Hardly necessary for me just behaving properly. Heh. But I appreciate it anyway. I left you a note at your page about that Guidance rename idea. — SMcCandlish Talk⇒ ʕ(Õلō Contribs. 04:43, 2 February 2012 (UTC)
Shou ist werie velcum. I think the 'Guidance' name and the way you simplified it into a short statement is very good! And people should give out more barnstars. They are very merited and it isn't as if they cost us anything.--Djathinkimacowboy 10:19, 2 February 2012 (UTC)


Export hell seidel steiner.png A beer on me!
for all of the thoughtful posts through the extended discussion at MOSCAPS. I've appreciated it. JHunterJ (talk) 13:52, 10 February 2012 (UTC)
Thank ya verra much! I was thirsty. >;-) — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒〈°⌊°〉 Contribs. 15:10, 10 February 2012 (UTC)


Creatorofbarnstars.png The Barnstar Creator's Barnstar
Thank you for your submission of the Instructor's Barnstar. It's now on the main barnstar list. Pinetalk 15:11, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Keen beans! Thanks.

A barnstar for you![edit]

Kindness Barnstar Hires.png The Random Acts of Kindness Barnstar
This comes as a recognition of your kindness in developing the Firefox Cite4wiki add-on. It has been helpful and a great resource. I was also happy to learn you contribute to Mozilla which I do as well :) ₫ӓ₩₳ Talk to Me. Email Me. 18:28, 31 August 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, though some others deserve more credit than I do, especially Jehochman (talk · contribs) for the original concept, and Unit 5 (talk · contribs) for the bulk of the code still used in this version. I mostly just added the ability to customize the output for specific sites, and fixed some consistency issues, as well as set up the WP:Cite4Wiki page for it. — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒ ɖ∘¿¤þ   Contrib. 21:01, 31 August 2012 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

Socratic Barnstar.png The Socratic Barnstar
In recognition of your general fine work around the 'pedia, and the staunchness and standard of argumentation on style issues. And if for nothing else, I think you deserve it for this comment  Ohconfucius ping / poke 02:07, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
<bow> — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒ ɖ∘¿¤þ   Contrib. 07:59, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
It's a bit delayed, but for your rather accurate edit summary here. Keep up the good work on various breed articles! TKK bark ! 18:06, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
Why, thank ya verra much!  :-) — SMcCandlish  Talk⇒ ɖכþ Contrib. 20:34, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Heroic Barnstar[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
For your recent work at WP:MOS: A model of unflagging effort, precise analysis, institutionally broad and historically deep vision, clear articulation, and civil expression under great pressure. Unforgettable. DocKino (talk) 06:14, 7 February 2012 (UTC)

Thanks. I do my best. At this point I'm being attacked on multiple pages in a concerted effort of harassment, and suspect that their goal is to get me to simply quit the project. — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒〈°⌊°〉 Contribs. 18:17, 7 February 2012 (UTC)

Some Wiki-love for you[edit]

Purple Star.png The Purple Barnstar
You've been putting up with a lot of crap from other quarters; just want to let you know that people out there do, in fact, manage to appreciate your work. illegitimi non carborundum! VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 04:55, 11 February 2013 (UTC)
Thanks. That means a lot right now, actually. — SMcCandlish  Talk⇒ ɖכþ Contrib. 11:42, 11 February 2013 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Brilliant Idea Barnstar Hires.png The Brilliant Idea Barnstar
I couldn't quite find a suitable barnstar for this, but I found it insightful when you brought up the issue of accessibility within TfD#Template:Tn. Maybe it was kind of a small realization you had, but on behalf of the disabled friends I have, thank you for bringing it up. A step in the right direction for making this everyone's encyclopedia. Meteor_sandwich_yum (talk) 02:58, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. As someone with really poor eyesight, {{tn}} has actually meant something to me from an accessbility point of view (honestly, I don't even like that its functionality has been pared to do this {{!}} instead of {{!}} this to begin with, but one thing at a time, I guess.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  03:54, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

A cheeseburger for you![edit]

Cheeseburger.png Except of course that would be 30 min on the treadmill. But we can still look. Thank you for well measured comments. In ictu oculi (talk) 02:59, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
<nom nom nom> Thanks. I'm actually headed to the gym in 15 minutes, coincidentally. Heh.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  03:53, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
So was I when I sent it, hence the thought... In ictu oculi (talk) 05:30, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

Current threads[edit]

Updating of Wikipedia guidelines and essays[edit]

Unresolved: Not sure as of June what needs to be one on this.

I saw the discussion and thank you for your help through Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#A simple way forward on common names of species. Would you also like to update (check consistency with the consensus) the guidelines and essays related to the discussion (Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#Bird article names: related Wikipedia guidelines and essays pages)? Thanks in advance! Selai Poisvre (talk) 15:54, 1 May 2014 (UTC).

Working on it. I've already taken the first step of removing the "local consensus" stuff that suggests capitalization of birds, but don't know if I'll get resistance on this. Just because one RfC is closed doesn't mean everyone in favor of the capitalization will accept the result. This isn't the first such RfC. Assuming acceptance comes this time, we'd need to get the taxobox changed to support the parameters I added (they're just in a sandboxed version), and then add mention of how to use them to the relevant guidelines (maybe; that part might not be needed, and might even be objected to, since not everyone agrees all articles should have infoboxes).  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  20:07, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

Tlg module[edit]

Unresolved: The affected templates are still using the old code.

I've recreated (some of) {{tlg}} in Lua w/ a shorthand here -- it works 86% percent of the time! Anyway, this way should be easier to maintain, and we'll still have a shorter syntax if the tl-whatever tpls get deleted. If you like the idea, then maybe we can pitch it at tlg's talk page or wherever. If not, then oh well. — lfdder 00:32, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

@Lfdder: Cool beans!  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  07:08, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
@Lfdder:: The temples were kept, marginally, but I agree that the Lua route you were working on is ultimately a better way.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  09:50, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

Redundant sentence?[edit]

Unresolved: Work to integrate NCFLORA and NCFAUNA stuff into MOS:ORGANISMS]] not completed yet.

The sentence at MOS:LIFE "General names for groups or types of organisms are not capitalized except where they contain a proper name (oak, Bryde's whales, rove beetle, Van cat)" is a bit odd, since the capitalization would (now) be exactly the same if they were the names of individual species. Can it simply be removed?

There is an issue, covered at Wikipedia:PLANTS#The use of botanical names as common names for plants, which may or may not be worth putting in the main MOS, namely cases where the same word is used as the scientific genus name and as the English name, when it should be de-capitalized. I think this is rare for animals, but more common for plants and fungi (although I have seen "tyrannosauruses" and similar uses of dinosaur names). Peter coxhead (talk) 09:17, 3 May 2014 (UTC)

  1. I would leave it a alone for now; let people get used to the changes. I think it's reasonable to include the "general names" thing, because it's a catch-all that includes several different kinds of examples, that various largely different groups of people are apt to capitalize. Various know-nothings want to capitalize things like "the Cats", the "Great Apes", etc., because they think "it's a Bigger Group and I like to Capitalize Big Important Stuff". There are millions more people who just like to capitalize nouns and stuff. "Orange's, $1 a Pound". Next we have people who insist on capitalizing general "types" and landraces of domestic animals ("Mountain Dogs", "Van Cat") because they're used to formal breed names being capitalized (whether to do that with breeds here is an open question, but it should not be done with types/classes of domestics, nor with landraces. Maybe the examples can be sculpted better: "the roses", "herpesviruses", "great apes", "Bryde's whale", "mountain dogs", "Van cat", "passerine birds". I'm not sure that "rove beetle" and "oak" are good examples of anything. Anyway, it's more that the species no-capitalization is a special case of the more general rule, not that the general rule is a redundant or vague version of the former. If they're merged, it should keep the general examples, and maybe specifically spell out and illustrate that it also means species and subspecies, landraces and domestic "types", as well as larger and more general groupings.
  2. I had noticed that point and was going to add it, along with some other points from both NCFLORA and NCFAUNA, soon to MOS:ORGANISMS, which I feel is nearing "go live" completion. Does that issue come up often enough to make it a MOS mainpage point? I wouldn't really object to it, and it could be had by adding an "(even if it coincides with a capitalized Genus name)" parenthetical to the "general names" bit. The pattern is just common enough in animals to have been problematic if it were liable to be problematic, as it were. I.e., I don't see a history of squabbling about it at Lynx or its talk page, and remember looking into this earlier with some other mammal, about two weeks ago, and not seeing evidence of confusion or editwarring. The WP:BIRDS people were actually studiously avoiding that problem; I remember seeing a talk page discussion at the project that agreed that such usage shouldn't be capitalized ever. PS: With Lynx, I had to go back to 2006, in the thick of the "Mad Capitalization Epidemic" to find capitalization there[8], and it wasn't even consistent, just in the lead.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  11:11, 3 May 2014 (UTC)
  1. Well, certainly "rove beetle" and "oak" are poor examples here, so I would support changing to some of the others you suggested above.
  2. I think the main problem we found with plants was it being unclear as to whether inexperienced editors meant the scientific name or the English name. So you would see a sentence with e.g. "Canna" in the middle and not know whether this should be corrected to "Canna" or to "canna". The plural is clear; "cannas" is always lower-case non-italicized. The singular is potentially ambiguous. Whether it's worth putting this point in the main MOS I just don't know since I don't much edit animal articles and never breed articles, which is why I asked you. Peter coxhead (talk) 21:55, 3 May 2014 (UTC)
  1. Will take a look at that later, if someone else doesn't beat me to it.
  2. Beats me. Doesn't seem too frequent an issue, but lot of MOS stuff isn't. Definitely should be in MOS:ORGANISMS, regardless.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  00:46, 4 May 2014 (UTC)
Worked on both of those a bit at MOS. We'll see if it sticks.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  01:18, 5 May 2014 (UTC)

code vs. tt[edit]

Unresolved: Did not yet do the code work I said I would: I have it open in some window somewhere...

I could say that insisting on the use of <code> rather than <tt> is an example of an un-necessary, if not fallacious, specialist style. :-) I ought to be guilty of it, since I used to teach HTML! I confess that I use "tt" because it saves typing... Peter coxhead (talk) 09:31, 4 May 2014 (UTC)

Heehaw! I'm a stickler for HTML semantic purity whenever possible (which reminds me I need to fork {{bq}} into a div-based block indenter for non-quotations). I try not to make edits like that unless I'm making other ones at the same time and throw them in as an afterthought, on the same basis that just futzing with things like [[chicken|chick]] -> [[Chicken|chick]] is considered objectionable by some.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  09:56, 4 May 2014 (UTC)

Diacritics: Moving forward[edit]

Unresolved: No diacritics RfC drafted yet.

I too have no very clear idea about how to word an RfC, other than that it should be in relation to specific proposed changes to the MOS and not something vaguer. I also think it's very important to keep to the issue of diacritical marks in the original orthography of the language, and not stray into either additional letters (like eth or thorn) or the use of diacritical marks in transcription/transliteration (like retaining accents when going from πότε to póte or marking long vowels by macrons in transliterating a number of languages, including Greek and Japanese). These are separate issues.

The problems, for me, are primarily in the first paragraph of WP:DIACRITICS, which is evasive, muddled and inconsistent:

  • The use of modified letters (such as accents or other diacritics) in article titles is neither encouraged nor discouraged – this is just evasion. Their use or non-use should be motivated, and hence should be encouraged or discouraged according to the strength of the motivation.
  • when deciding between versions of a word which differ in the use or non-use of modified letters, follow the general usage in reliable sources that are written in the English language (including other encyclopedias and reference works) – this encouragement to count "hits" just results in muddled policy, apart from the problem of the weasel word "general". However, this bit seems clear that the "modifications" are to the same word, i.e. can be treated as stylistic modifications.
  • The policy on using common names and on foreign names does not prohibit the use of modified letters, if they are used in the common name as verified by reliable sources. This seems to me not to be consistent with the sentence before: is "the common name" here supposed to be with or without the added diacritical marks? "[V]ersions of a word" above should mean that "the common name" is the same with or without the diacritical marks.

Is it possible to re-write this paragraph to achieve consensus? I don't know. Peter coxhead (talk) 09:31, 13 May 2014 (UTC)

@Peter coxhead: Agreed those are separate issues

Agreed the first quoted passage is evasive, but motivating use or avoidance of diacritics seems to be the sticking point. Did you have some particular direction in mind? My take has been that if reliable sources show that their use is normal for the names in question that they should be used here, except where particular subjects eschew them. E.g. for a baseball player named Eddie Sandoval we'd give him as Eddie Sándoval if some reliable sources did (it can't be based on a majority of English language sources, since majority of them ignore diacritics entirely, as a matter of editorial/publishing convenience). It's the same principle that we can cite a single source for Eddie's birth date and place even if most sources don't mention them. A fact does not have to be provided by every single source to be considered reliable. And it's not a matter of sources conflicting (analogous to giving two different birth dates); some giving only Sandoval without the diacritics is like some sources giving a birth year but not a full birth date; it is incomplete information, not conflicting information. On the other hand, if Eddie himself is quoted saying he doesn't use the diacritic that should be a trumping factor (unless WP totally ditches subject preference in all areas, which seems unlikely given the number of discussions going on to make more allowances for subject preference all over the place). This can apply to geography, too (Santa Fe, New Mexico is "Santa Fe" not "Santa Fé" despite the popularity of the diacritic in certain circles; the official name of both the city and the county are "Santa Fe" with no accent. People frequently cite WP:OFFICIALNAME as if it were a policy, but it's actually just an essay, it may not accurately reflect the nuances in cases like this, and people often cite it without actually understanding what it says to begin with (it's frequently misinterpreted as being against use of official names, when it's really only against using them when they're directly unhelpful to readers, while otherwise we would almost certainly use the official name)

I'm not sure "general" in the second passage is actually a weasel word, rather than just lack of clarity. It's not clear if it means the predominant use in reliable sources generally, the predominant use in general-audience sources, or both. The inclusion of "and reference works" strongly suggests the former. Regardless, the "hit-counting" aspect is a problem because of the aforementioned facts that a) English-language sources tend to ignore diacritics for their own convenience (and sometimes for socio-political reasons - you'll find that right-wing sources in English virtually never use them), and b) it only takes one reliable source to establish a fact, for WP purposes.

Yes, the third passage means that the name for WP:COMMONNAME purposes is the same and that the diacritics are just a style matter. But I'm not sure we care what this passage says since it's just an interpretation of "the policy [sic] on using common names and on foreign names". An interpretation of policy doesn't trump actual policy and can be rewritten to more clearly reflect it.

The location of this material at Wikipedia:Naming conventions (use English)#Modified letters (WP:DIACRITICS) seems a bit problematic, and it should mostly be merged (in whatever form) into MOS:DIACRITICS: Wikipedia:Manual of Style#Spelling and romanization.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:59, 13 May 2014 (UTC)

To take the last point first, absolutely; this (now) has nothing to do with titles per se.
My gut feeling is that the policy should be that personal or place names originally in a language that uses the Latin alphabet extended by diacritics should be written in their original orthography by default, unless there is evidence that the name has been assimilated into English. Sources are then relevant for two purposes: to determine whether the name is assimilated (including sources showing the preference of people for their own names), and if it is not assimilated, to determine how the word is written in its original orthography. Placing the onus on editors to show that a name has been assimilated seems to me likely to work better than being neutral and asking what sources do. What do you think? Peter coxhead (talk) 08:57, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Makes sense to me. Even moving the stuff from the NC guideline to the MOS proper shouldn't be hard, since they're both guideline-level. It'd be nice if both the WP and MOS shortcuts went to the same text.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  22:08, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

@Dohn joe: You've been silent on this for a while. What's your take?  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:24, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Cite4Wiki development[edit]

Unresolved: Still need to deal with this Cite4Wiki stuff.

During the time you were not editing Wikipedia I sent you a request to be added to the list of developers at Mozilla for Cite4Wiki. That request did not pan out because I had changed my user name there between when I made the request and when you were able to work on it. I replied to the email you sent me, providing my changed Mozilla user name. However, I did not hear anything more from you on the subject. It is quite possible that my email did not reach you.

I would again like to request to be added as a developer so I can release a new version of Cite4Wiki that is compatible with the current version of Firefox, includes automatic and semi-automatic archiving, etc. I also desire to put up an alpha/beta version with page scraping for more parameter values (authors, identifiers, etc.).

My user name on Mozilla is the same as my user name here: Makyen

Thanks. — Makyen (talk) 12:32, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

After making this request I realized that the position I was coming from was still that you were not participating in Wikipedia, or that you would stop doing so. In that situation, there was a need for an active developer able to post updates to Cite4Wiki to Mozilla. Given that you are back there is not a need for me to have this access. Convenient, yes, but not a need. It would also be possible for me to put a package somewhere where you could download it, review, make changes, and then upload to Mozilla if your choose. — Makyen (talk) 20:35, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
I do need to give everyone access who needs it; I don't have any further development interest in that little project, but it's a needed tool. Keep pinging me about it, if I don't get around to it in short order. (I have a lot on my plate right now, so I've been dawdling on it.)  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:31, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
It has been several months since my original request and closing on two months since my request here. It is clear that this is not a high priority for you. That's fine. Given that, it looks like the most appropriate thing for me to do is create a new extension name, something like "Cite4Wiki Phoenix". I will proceed with doing so. — Makyen (talk) 11:56, 1 July 2014 (UTC)
Fair enough.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  12:42, 26 August 2014 (UTC)

Informal note[edit]

Hey, I notice that you have HighBeam access and you seem to have a few topicons. That being said, if you are interested, I've created {{Wikipedia:HighBeam/Topicon}}. No reply to this message is necessary (and I won't see it unless you ping me), just wanted to let you know it was available. Face-smile.svg Happy editing! — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 23:46, 11 July 2014 (UTC)



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Royal Society Access[edit]


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Crystal Clear app clock-orange.svg Started

Excellent work you're doing on this article. It would be good to work into the article the general point that all attempts to produce rigid boundaries when defining groups/taxa of organisms are bound to fail, because of inherent genetic variability between individuals. Darwin's statement "I was much struck how entirely vague and arbitrary is the distinction between species and varieties" applies equally to distinctions between landraces and breeds or cultivar groups and cultivars. However, although I've looked I can't find a source for this exact point. Peter coxhead (talk) 09:20, 7 August 2014 (UTC)

Thanks! Yeah, I've been keeping an eye out. I can find lots of sources for the fact that there are different definitions serving different interests (some very broad, some very narrow, most in the middle), but I've not run into anything about the underlying genetics reasons that make it a thorny problem from the outset.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  09:42, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
I'd almost bet money that we don't find a universal definition. Montanabw(talk) 22:32, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
We don't need one, just an operable one that doesn't significantly contradict what less narrow and more reliable sources are getting at. Automobile is a good case in point; it provides the reader with a general-consensus definition assembled from how use in most sources' overlaps – i.e., it a non-novel synthesis, permissible under WP:NOR – and that article allows for (right there in lead) other, less common definitions without dwelling on them (which would be WP:UNDUE under NOR), and it makes it clear that the article is not principally about those alternative views (a permissible form of WP:SELFREF). We would not tolerate a lone editor trying to force a PoV at that article that the term must include 18-wheelers, in WP's treatment of the subject, just because they encountered some definition somewhere that did; nor that we must not include SUVs because this editor personally can't stand the term being applied to SUVs or thinks that off-roading magazines (a narrow, specialist source) mostly don't use the term to refer to SUVs; or that we can't have an article that provides a general, broad definition, on the basis that it's somehow original research to note what the sources do agree on, or not every source agreeing on every aspect of a definition makes it somehow an invalid approach.

I detect all three types of this reasoning being applied against the Landrace article, and it's not how we do things here. A very large number of our articles provide general-purpose definitions and treatments of a term/subject, note that other definitions exist and sometimes what they are, then move on, with the rest of WP mostly using and linking to the term as used at that article. For another case in point, see Species. All sorts of PoV pushing could be done with regard to that topic (and has been tried), but we shut it down, because it's anti-encyclopedic noise. Enough has been written, in reliable sources (but perhaps only by one researcher, which may itself present a PoV issue) about definitional disagreement that perhaps a section can be devoted to it (it's not like it rises to an article-level issue like the species problem), but even that may be overkill.

At any rate there's no such thing as a "universal definition" of anything. WP nevertheless goes on just fine. This too shall pass, and we'll end up with a perfectly fine landrace article, and articles on animal and plant varieties that properly refer to it and stop abusing the word "breed" for everything that isn't a wild species, whether that happens this month or ten years from now. Hell, it took ~9 years for the species common name capitalization issue to sort out (if it really has). I take the long view of these things. I could disappear off the face of the earth, and it'll still happen eventually, just because of how the WP community builds and cross-references articles.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  07:21, 13 August 2014 (UTC)


Unresolved: Proposal not made yet.

Hi. Sorry for not seeing this before it got archived. Yes, I would be happy to support your suggestion for updating MOS in an RFC if you started one on the subject. Best, It Is Me Here t / c 12:55, 12 August 2014 (UTC)

Please comment on Talk:September 11 attacks[edit]

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GA Cup[edit]

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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.

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Shooting of Michael Brown[edit]

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I saw your comment at the Michael Brown talk page. I remember working with you years ago at WP. I don't do much here other than occasional clean up, mostly without logging in. But I use WP to get to the heart of information, as I feel that for most topics the system works. For that reason I came to the MB article last week and was upset by the POV and bias in the Lede. There was subtle and not so subtle sensationalism. I think that it is better now. But I think it could be better. You gave some broad direction, but could you be more specific? I hope that all is well with you and that you are having a great weekend. Kevin. --Kevin Murray (talk) 07:43, 31 August 2014 (UTC)

August 2014[edit]

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Please comment on Talk:White people[edit]

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September 2014[edit]


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Please comment on Talk:Government of Louisville, Kentucky[edit]

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You've got mail![edit]

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Thanks for the reminder! I submitted the form just now.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  03:16, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Consistency in article titles[edit]

Pursuant to our discussion at Wikipedia talk:Article titles, I have created an essay Wikipedia:Consistency in article titles, and would welcome your input into that essay. I believe that it should quickly be refined with whatever additional points are needed to fully reflect our practices with respect to consistency, and moved to guideline status. Cheers! bd2412 T 21:22, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

@BD2412: Looks good so far, though I have not pored over its every detail. I wouldn't bet on guideline status. It's hard enough to get even an essay on this sort of thing to stick around in projectspace (Born2cycle has had three WP:AT supplementary essays userspaced recently). The key is probably just avoiding WP:OWN problems. I think it should cover consistency of disambiguation in more detail, too, but no hurry.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  00:19, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

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Please comment on Wikipedia talk:Article titles[edit]

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Please comment on Talk:Macedonia (ancient kingdom)[edit]

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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.

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Livestock and poultry breed articles[edit]

Why don't we just solve this via a general RFC at WikiProject Agriculture, rather than stringing out a bunch of split arguments across many articles. It would be easiest for all involved to discuss the issue in one place. Steven Walling • talk 03:46, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

@Steven Walling: This will be a pretty detailed response, and am interested in your thoughts. Because not all domestic animal breeds are agricultural, that wikiproject wouldn't seem to be an appropriate locus, even if having such discussions hosted by wikiprojects wasn't problematic for bias reasons. RMs and RFCs about naming that are hosted on wikiproject pages almost always go the way the wikiproject wants them to, because most wikiproject participants have the wikiproject pages watchlisted and are thus brought into the discussion in much larger than normal levels, resulting in a skewed WP:LOCALCONSENSUS that doesn't reflect a site-wide perspective, and which will just be challenged later, because lots of people are aware of this RFC/RM-skewing effect of hosting them on wikiproject pages. When we get to the point where some RFC might be viable, it should be hosted at WT:AT because this is a WP:AT matter, and AT is a topic-neutral policy page for everyone. It's vaguely possible that one could succeed there now, but I wouldn't bet on it.

All that said, attempts to resolve these matters centrally are attacked as trying to force a one-size-fits-all view, an external rule, a style cabal straightjacket, [insert something else histrionic here]. Meanwhile, attempts to resolve them one article at a time are attacked as trying to tendentiously drag out and nickel-and-dime everything in a war of attrition, picking on articles that violate (non-existent or invalid) wikiproject-level naming rules, and [insert various personal attacks here]. It's a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" scenario, in which the desire to have wikiprojects autonomous and making up their own "naming conventions" that conflict with the next project over, leads to both WP:FILIBUSTER tactics being used by the same parties; neither approach to cleaning up the breed article naming mess can succeed, because both are blockaded.

Do you really feel an RFC would be effective now, and if so how would it proceed? The devils are really in the details on this, and virtually all the involved projects want there to be no site-wide rules to comply with, only their own internal convention on "their" articles.

My tactic lately has been to try a third approach that is much harder to prevent community consensus about, and it's one that is usually effective, regardless of topic. That is to sort RMs into groups of titles that all raise the same problem (e.g. confusabilty with an ethnicity), that is already clearly addressed by WP:AT policy and/or WP:MOS rules, and propose moves to names that comply with those rules. Then it's not an animal breed names (or whatever) discussion, it's a discussion about article compliance with actual, site-wide naming conventions generally, and this either eliminates drama or makes the drama much easier to detect and ignore as just drama. After enough such moves, a pattern of how to name breed articles will naturally, automatically emerge (in theory), and can't be easily WP:BATTLEGROUNDed against. An RFC at that point should cement things into an actual, written naming convention that is adopted as a guideline and doesn't conflict with WP:AT policies.

Unfortunately, the mess at Talk:Teeswater sheep is liable to result in a confused, confusing and disruptive mass status quo ante reversion to inconsistent and AT-violating names, and necessitate an whole new round of these discussions. Fortunately, I've already sorted them, at that page, into 7 different kinds of article titling issues, so they can probably be addressed in 7 RMs, the results of which will effectively be a new naming convention. Unfortunately again, the main problem is that the launcher of that RM mess has vowed to launch several more such messes, which will simply drag this out even longer, because they interfere with the other RMs.

So, you tell me – why would an RFC, even one hosted at WT:AT, be effective now, instead of just derailed by more grandstanding and handwaving? And more importantly by inter-wikiproject canvassing to protect WP:LOCALCONSENSUS interests (i.e. to protect the status quo of chaos and inconsistency simply because it's not a rule to comply with)? What can be done to prevent a handful of combative wikiproject editors from derailing the entire thing again?  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  09:39, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

There's an interconnected issue, which is that there has never been a community-wide decision on the capitalization of breed names. (Personally I see no argument for it that does not apply to capitalizing the English names of species, which was decided against, so I can't see how a properly discussed RfC could decide otherwise than to de-capitalize breed names, along with all generalist sources I can find.) The relevance is that if breed names are put into sentence case in titles, the distinction disappears between "Big Pig" as a full breed name but "Big pig" as a breed name followed by natural disambiguation, and this is intimately connected with the current discussion. Peter coxhead (talk) 11:07, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
@Peter coxhead: I've enumerated some (probably not all) of the differences between between breed caps and species caps at User:SMcCandlish/Capitalization of organism names#Breeds. I've long agreed that in theory breeds should not be capitalized where they do not contain a proper name, and noted that most off-WP style guides agree. But the WP:BIRDCON drama would probably be considered a mild little discussion compared to the shitstorm that would surround de-capping breeds. The majority of active editors of breed articles are strongly in favor of capitalization, because all the specialist sources use it. This is different from bird caps, because it's cross species. Bird were weird because the same standard wasn't being applied to mammals or arachnids or ferns or whatever. But all the breed articles are cap'd, other than I think I ran into two that weren't, and procedurally RM'd them to be consistent. In some cases, breed editors agree on nothing but the capitalization, and otherwise are antipathetic. Despite a strong logical case for doing so, I don't think WP will successfully decapitalize domestic animal breeds. I no longer bother advocating it, as it seems utopian. Heh.

I'm not sure that the Big pig vs. Big Pig stuff would make any difference; "The breed is closely related to the American Quarter Horse" vs. "The breed is closely related to the American quarter horse". Who cares? Obviously people who like to capitalize breed names do, but I mean that for encyclopedic reasons, it doesn't matter; the actual article wording will correctly give the breed name in the lead (here it would be "The American Quarter Horse is..." vs. "The American Quarter is..."). There may be one or two cases where a breed and a landrace or type name would coincide, because of a WP:DIFFCAPS disambiguation, but those are dumb ideas in this topic area anyway, and if there are still any, they should be renamed. If one wants to make the argument that using parenthetical disambiguation would "protect" a breed name, lower cased, from being confused with something else, it wouldn't really, because the horse project for one consistently uses parenthetical dab. for the names of individual horses (mostly racehorses) and these sometimes even coincide with breed names. We have such limited ways of dab'ing, there is no one perfect solution. The least conflicting one is: "Foo Bar baz" means a domesticated baz breed named Foo Bar; "Foo Bar Baz" means a domesticated baz breed named Foo Bar Baz; "foo bar baz" (or "Foo bar baz", if Foo is a proper name) means a non-breed population or type of bazes; "Foo Bar (baz)" means some term Foo Bar that relates to the baz species, most often a body part or an individual. The "Foo Bar (baz)" structure can already mean almost anything, and it's senseless to operator-overload that further to also mean breeds. At least one person purporting to represent the horse project will go to the mat on this, and "Foo Bar baz" naming has been totally uncontroversial in several other species such as cats. (Most of the "controversy" that exists at all, is three individual editors being loud about it. One doesn't even agree with the stance she's taking and openly says she's doing it just because she doesn't like me, which means her position can be ignored by the closer. One of the others has such serious English language comprehension problems, including with regard to capitalization basics, that the competence of their input renders their !votes basically useless, too. So that leaves one editor mostly responsible for the filibustering of consistency in these categories.) That fact that getting these names consistent would mean they could be easily mass-moved with regard to capitalization, disambiguation style, is clearly among the reasons for resistance against consistency in breed article titles.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼ 

You may be right about the impossibility (at present anyway) of getting agreement to decapitalize breed names, however illogical that is given the decision about English species names. I entirely agree with you on using natural disambiguation where at all possible; there are already far too many confusing and inconsistent uses of words in parentheses in titles (and see the discussion at Talk:Cereus (disambiguation) where there was an argument for "disambiguating" an already disambiguated title by adding another word within the parentheses). So I'm certainly not arguing for "Foo Bar (baz)" over "Foo Bar baz", just that it mustn't be accepted that the capitals show that this is the breed "Foo Bar" of the species "baz", because one day it may become "Foo bar baz" (and there should be a redirect there anyway under the principle of having redirects at alternative capitalizations). Peter coxhead (talk) 21:30, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
@SMcCandlish: Whether a centralized discussion is at a WikiProject (I suggested Agriculture because it is popular and generic, rather than specific to Livestock or Poultry or Equines) or at a page like WP:AT or MOS:ORGANISMS makes zero difference to me. I am just tired of seeing essentially the same argument spread across too many individual article talk pages. People with lives outside Wikipedia don't have the energy to have the same argument in a dozen different places. I think if you're concerned about getting participation from people with expertise in article title issues who are not livestock/poultry aficionados, you'll have a better chance if we don't make people chase the issue around a collection of different breed articles. Like I said on a few pages, I'm neutral on the actual issue. I just want to see it dealt with so we can get on to more important stuff. Steven Walling • talk 22:14, 21 September 2014 (UTC)