Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Mars/archive2

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Mars[edit]

A fair bit of work has been done cleaning up this article and implementing previous suggestions, its a great page and im hoping it may finally become FA - Nbound 03:37, 18 September 2006 (UTC)

  • The article is very good. I would like to see all the references use one format so they are cleaned up some. Perhaps look at the reference templates and go through the article and use the appropriate template for clean-up. I might also suggest a little rewording of the intro as it seems a little choppy.--MONGO 12:37, 18 September 2006 (UTC)
(Ive fixed the intro as per criticisms below, seems to flow much better now -- Nbound)
  • Comment: Only some quick thoughts.
  1. The "Life" section seems pretty short, considering it's a very popular topic in the media. (a added an extra sentence or so - its hard to add much more without copying integral parts of the main article -- Nbound)
  2. "Past missions" is merely two sentences. Are they really that uninteresting? (bulked up section - Nbound)
  3. (rather an observation than actual criticism) overall the article falls short vs. the German FA. -- EnemyOfTheState (I will try and transcribe some of the information presented there, [i only know basic german] -- Nbound)
  • Object. Lacks one citation (Future plans section). Also I'd rather add Category:Surface features of Mars to the See also section, not to the list of the main articles under the Areography. A picture of the dust storm would be nice. --Brand спойт 18:03, 18 September 2006 (UTC)
(Removed unsourced statement, to be added again when/if source is found, I'm unable to add that category to the see also (it wont show up in preview :S), image conataining a duststorm is already in the article. -- Nbound 06:40, 19 September 2006 (UTC))
  • Comment - The intro is not well written. Compare the intro to Mars with other Featured planet articles such as Venus. Here are a few specific criticisms:
  1. In Indian languages like Hindi and Telugu, Tuesday is called Mangalvaar, named after Mangala, Mars, and Bahram in Persian, related to Persian mythology.
    • This sentence has so many commas and clauses it is virtually unintelligible. For example, is "Bahram" Persian for Mars or Tuesday? No matter how you parse the sentence, it still doesn't make sense. Personally, I think trivia such as this has no place in the introductory paragraph anyway. How many people are really interested in the fact that Tuesday is named after Mars in Telugu?
  2. These may be captured asteroids similar to 5261 Eureka.
    • What is 5261 Eureka? No context is given. Either "similar to 5261 Eureka" should be dropped, or some explanation should be given as to what 5261 Eureka is.
  3. Mars can be seen from Earth by the naked eye with an apparent magnitude of up to -2.9, a maximum surpassed only by Venus, the Moon and the Sun.
    • This should be split into two sentences to avoid the dueling prepositional phrases: "Mars can be seen from Earth by the naked eye. It's apparent magnitude reaches -2.9, a brightness surpassed only by Venus, the Moon, and the Sun."
  • Kaldari 00:06, 19 September 2006 (UTC)
(Ive fixed the lead as per your comments. -- Nbound)
Oppose: I think this article still has a ways to go before it is a FA. The Geology of Mars is very poorly discussed in this article. Geology of Mars is a daughter article, but that doesn't have much more than what is in the main article. The diversity of surface features is only lightly touched on in the Areography (Geography of Mars) section. Some consolidation of sections can be useful (such as combining the Historical Observations and Exploration sections). However, I am afraid that this article, and its daughter articles, do not sufficiently cover the topic. Perhaps look at the Enceladus article for guidance on how to structure this article. --Volcanopele 19:17, 19 September 2006 (UTC)
Also look at the Portugese version of the Mars article. I don't read Portugese, but there are enough cognates there to see that they apparently do a very good job covering this subject. --Volcanopele 19:24, 19 September 2006 (UTC)
(Will do, thanks -- Nbound)

Oppose. This is a difficult topic to get right and I'd very much like to see it an FA, so kudos on your effort Nb. Thoughts:

  • Many issues with the structure of "Physical characteristics":
    • The life section does not belong in "Physical characteristics" and should also be expanded somewhat. Consider a short para on how habitability parameters apply to the planet (see planetary habitability).
    • The "Moons" section does not belong here either.
    • "Polar ice caps" should be merged somewhere.
    • "Orbital characteristics" should take the title "Orbit and rotation" (at least that's what I notice elsewhere) and be given its own section.
  • A patch of stub-sections from "Viewing Mars" on.
  • Past missions is definitely underweight. Re Viking: "Both landers successfully touched down in 1976 and remained operational for many years." This is a throwaway sentence. (fixed -- Nbound)
  • Sources: 4 of 48 are research papers. The % ought to rise. (cant really fix this one, ive been more maintaining this page, or doing interwiki info transfers -- Nbound)
  • No refs in "Historical observations" (this was an interwiki transfer... it wasnt cited (like the rest of the article) -- Nbound)

So, getting there but not quite. These are structural level considerations. I'll try to look at the prose if this remains up for a while. Marskell 09:41, 23 September 2006 (UTC)

Thx for quick reply. I edited the addition on habitability and that concern seems addressed. Also, the sectioning is more rational now, which is good.
Disagree with removal of "Orbital characteristics". This is a fundamental level two for a planet and belongs in the article (see how they do at Mercury and Venus) even if there is repetition with the info box.
On the sourcing concern, can you maybe try to enlist someone else? Marskell 12:58, 23 September 2006 (UTC)

(Thanks for the edit, i like your version better =P , yeah ill have a look at Mercury and Venus and see what stuff i should put in for Mars, as for the sourcing ill see what i can do... -- Nbound) (Readded and expanded on orbital and rotation, added reference thing to article todo list, hopefully someone is feeling like a bit of work =P)

Comment — Overall it's a pretty decent page and is getting close to FA quality. Some notes:
  • I agree with the comment above about the German article serving as a model for the FA-quality of the English-language version.
  • Although it's a daughter article, I'm a little surprised that the Geology of Mars page is in need of considerable development. It's difficult to judge what may be needed on the Mars page geology section before that happens. (-- added to todo list - hopefully someone will have a go -- Nbound)
  • I'd like to see the last two paragraphs of the "Fictional Works" section removed: both are obscure comments at best, and can be covered by the daughter article. I'd rather see more development of the geology section than the fictional references. (para's removed -- Nbound)
Thanks. :-) — RJH (talk) 21:06, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

Now some proses issues:

  • "It has the highest mountain in the solar system, Olympus Mons, the largest canyon in the solar system, Valles Marineris, and polar ice caps." Polar ice caps is tacked onto the sentence awkwardly. Consider two sentences.
  • "It might be interesting to note..." I just went and removed this myself. Never tell the reader what may or may not be interesting.
  • "They started off by establishing once and for all that most of Mars' surface features were permanent..." First, it's wordy: "They established that..." knocks out seven words. I'm unsure of "permanent". No surface feature can be called permanent, given impacts and possible geological activity. The ice caps wax and wane, for instance.
    • A question while on this: is Mars geologically dead? I've heard "yes" and "not quite" and am curious. The geology section needs to address this.
  • In life section "...and had some positive results, later disputed by many scientists, resulting in a continuing fight." Weasely adjectives (some, many)—what, briefly, were the positive results? "Fight" is poor word choice to characterize a scientific dispute.
  • "...that some researchers half-jokingly speak of an Earth-Mars "Bermuda Triangle", or a Mars Curse, or even a reference made to a "Great Galactic Ghoul" that feeds on Martian spacecraft." Eek, the phrases are mangled.
  • "To a naked-eye observer, Mars usually shows a distinct yellow, orange or reddish color, and varies in brightness more than any other planet, as seen from Earth, over the course of its orbit. When farthest away from the Earth, it is more than seven times as far from the latter as when it is closest (when least favourably positioned, it can be lost in the Sun's glare for months at a time)." Maybe two sentences for the first, and move the descriptive phrase ("over the course of..."). Why is "latter" introduced in the second sentence?

That's a half-dozen, so I'll stop there. This needs a thorough copy-edit to meet the standards.

I'm not sure that this should be closed successfully on this FAC attempt. But if the work keeps up the page will be stronger and better positioned for another try soon. Marskell 13:01, 26 September 2006 (UTC)


  • Question? Interesting work, but why is this page not listed at WP:FAC ??? I came across it while looking for Marskell to comment on the Transit of Venus FAR :-) Sandy 22:21, 26 September 2006 (UTC)