Wikipedia:Village pump (technical)

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The technical section of the village pump is used to discuss technical issues about Wikipedia. Bugs and feature requests should be made in Phabricator (see how to report a bug). Bugs with security implications should be reported differently (see how to report security bugs).

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Template access to Preferences:Appearance:Offset (or local time generated from it)?[edit]

I'm doing a template that will show today in both the Western Calendar and the Hebrew Calendar. What I would like to have access to is the Preferences Appearances:Offset value (or something related) in order for the template to change what day it displays for the Western Calendar at Midnight based on the user preferences for offset (and the Hebrew date to change at 6PM). Is the information as to what the user has as their Offset value available to templates? (Asked on Help Desk, the suggestion was to post here)Naraht (talk) 13:53, 18 January 2015 (UTC)

That is not possible, as it would either show a version of the page cached with someone else's timezone preference or would fragment the caches. To do something like this, you'd have to have some sort of JavaScript (in common.js or a gadget) that would add in the user-specific date on the client side. Anomie 17:32, 18 January 2015 (UTC)
I guess that makes sense, everything that the offset affects are pages where they have to be calculated each time in areas like special. However it is possible to have templates that include the date and time, so this would cause a more rapid flush of the cache, correct?Naraht (talk) 15:20, 19 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, they do to an extent. Also the times displayed by such templates may well be out of date. Anomie 11:09, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
@Anomie: And to the extreme, they can include time. Can this cause the cache to empty every second? (I'm curious as to whether there are things in pages that would force the cache to be emptied quicker) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Naraht (talkcontribs) 18:47, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
No, there is a minimum. Offhand I think it's one day, but I don't recall for certain and I'm not feeling like looking it up at the moment ;) Anomie 04:14, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Accessing an article today the box says "Today Tuesday 27 January 2015 AD 7 Bahman 1393 SH 6 Rabi'al - Thani 1436 AH". The source code is "Today|AD|SH|AH". Actually there are curly brackets round that but I haven't included them because I don't know what will happen. When I tried to insert that template into a page all I got was a link to a U S television programme. Can someone explain how the workings of this template can be unearthed? - The template has just been updated, but I'd still like an answer to my question. (talk) 09:45, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
More info: there is a "Template: Today" marked "This page is about U.S. TV program. It is not to be confused with Date - computing templates based on current time." Clicking on this link leads to "category Date - computing templates based on current time", and clicking on "Template:Today|AD|SH|AH" simply brings up what appears in the article. Now I see this text is editable (from "Editing Template: Today|AD|SH|AH") and the source text contains lots of parameters in curly brackets. Taking one of these at random, "CURRENT DAYNAME" produces the output "Wednesday". So where is the interface which enables editors to check whether a template does what it says on the tin? (talk) 13:04, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
The template you're looking for is Template:Today/AD/SH/AH with forward slashes ("/") rather than pipes ("|"). In template syntax, pipes separate a template name from its parameters, so {{Today|AD|SH|AH}} invokes Template:Today, the navbox about the TV program. {{Today/AD/SH/AH}} invokes the correct Template:Today/AD/SH/AH. SiBr4 (talk) 15:00, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Spelling in search - broken record?[edit]

I go to wikipedia first for a factual/reference question and too often, I get the confused look on wikipedia's face. It happened again this morning with "X-ray Phase Contrast Tomography". While that did produce the same quote about scanning the same scrolls and a few other links, it did not show this: - I went to the article about Phase-contrast imaging and under X-Ray, it said Main article: Phase-contrast X-ray imaging.

Of course, for those who use google as in index to wikipedia, this is not a problem.

So, here is my question, does anyone look at the search failures to see if there are common mistakes or easy algorithms that can be applied? If not, are they easy to get, just in case I have some spare time this weekend?

BTW, I added a redirect from "X-ray Phase Contrast Tomography" to Phase-contrast_X-ray_imaging. I spose I should add a link from the quote in

Bodysurfinyon (talk) 18:23, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

I don't think so. From what I've heard, the terms that people search for are not kept at all (not even temporarily or anonymously). When editors happen to find issues like that, they create WP:Redirects to solve the problem (just like you did), but there's no systematic way to find out what people are searching for, much less where they ended up.
User:^demon or User:NEverett (WMF) might be able to tell us more about how the search tool is expected to work in this sort of situation. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 06:32, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
Hi, Whatamidoing (WMF). Regarding "the terms that people search for are not kept at all (not even temporarily or anonymously)", the WMF:Privacy Policy states that the WMF "may use cookies to learn about the topics searched so that we can optimize the search results we deliver to you." Surprisingly, that's all it says about privacy related to search. I'd like to see the Policy explicitly state how search information is stored and precisely how it's used. Ideally it is not stored or used at all in any way that connects to users. This lack of specifics regarding search in the Privacy Policy seems like something that requires more discussion. The search box should have "no memory" at all. The best way, I think, to view the search box is as a librarian whom you are asking for help, and I expect some confidentiality with a librarian. It'd be interesting to review some different code of ethics for various librarian organizations like the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions to how well the idea of treating the search box as a "librarian" could/should be taken. I believe that librarians make some exceptions to confidentiality under some circumstances but I don't know if we should. Jason Quinn (talk) 02:01, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Even though the privacy policy may permit it, the last time I heard anything about it, nobody was actually doing it. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:52, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for all of your responses. I certainly don't want to associate the failed searches (or any searches) with anyone. I just want the searches got more hits. Bodysurfinyon (talk) 21:33, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

A diff without markup?[edit]

Is it possible to generate a diff without markup - just the text and references as they appear on the public-facing page? --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 19:26, 22 January 2015 (UTC)

I don't understand what you want. Can you clarify? PrimeHunter (talk) 20:58, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
I think Anthony means a diff using rendered page content rather than a diff of the source wikitext. I don't think there currently exists code to do it, but it's presumably possible. {{Nihiltres|talk|edits}} 21:05, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
You mean the diff page showing the rendered text of both the old and new version? I don't know a way to do that. If the goal is a side-by-side diff with rendered text pieces to the left and right when the source differs then there would be a lot of complications and it would probably often be impossible to produce a meaningful result. PrimeHunter (talk) 21:13, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
It seems like it'd be fairly simple for prose, but HTML, templates, and tables—especially in combination or when nested—would complicate things. You'd want to expand the scope of the quoted portion of the diff to include the entirety (opening to closing syntax) of those elements, which would probably require analysis of the rendered HTML and be prone to breaking. It might be worth some experimentation, though. {{Nihiltres|talk|edits}} 22:00, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
There was some talk about a different diff-viewing approach last year. I'm pretty sure that the information is in my other brain. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 00:12, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Expert-reviewed versions of en.Wikipedia articles are starting to emerge, and I'd like readers to see something they can understand when comparing that version and the current one, WhatamIdoing's other brain. Unlike this "diff". Is there a solution? User:Eloquence, User:Magnus Manske, does this interest either of you? --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 02:30, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
I think it is called "inline diffs". -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 10:33, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
  • OHH!! I think I know what the OP is asking for now! This wouldn't be overly complicated to offer as a userscript or gadget. The API actually will return rendered version of the page. The only tricky part might be deciding how to highlight the differences if difference highlighting is requested. The reason this might be tricky is I'm unsure how things like images or parts of tables would be highlighted. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 13:20, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Technical 13, I think a user script or gadget would need to be installed by the reader before they could use it wouldn't it? If that's the case, it wouldn't really do. I'd like all readers to be able to access a simple diff with one click, not just those with an account who have installed a script or gadget. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 09:40, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Anthonyhcole, typically yes although it could be set up as a default gadget after being tested and vetted. The problem is in the way that they store the diffs in the database, few past the current one are cached in a rendered state so the API returns "not cached". I just found this out with a little testing. Sorry if I got your hopes up more than that. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 14:09, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Creating a link parameter[edit]

Piggybacking on this question: We have been trying to create a template for a successful expert certification or peer review on an article. The template can be seen at User:Konveyor Belt/sandbox and a transclusion test at User:Konveyor Belt/sandbox2. When entering the parameter for a link at sandbox2, it does not convert it into a link properly as seen there. What would I have to do to make it work? KonveyorBelt 19:32, 22 January 2015 (UTC)

Your broken example says {{User:Konveyor Belt/sandbox||}}. It's unclear from that how you intend the parameters to work but if you use external link syntax like now then you need http:// or https:// or // to make the link work. See Help:Link#External links. If it isn't added by User:Konveyor Belt/sandbox then it must be included by the caller. PrimeHunter (talk) 21:08, 22 January 2015 (UTC)


There's a CentralNotice-type banner advert up at the moment, which has this background image, and linked text "Help choose the best image of the year. View the candidates and vote for your favorite." which I couldn't hide at first, because it doesn't have an obvious "hide"/"dismiss" link/button at upper right. Eventually I found two: one is in the usual place, to the right of the "Image credit (2007 winner)" link but is not at all visible because this image doesn't exist, so it falls back on the alt text "Close" in the default colour for unvisited links - which would be OK were it not that the effect is of blue text on a blue background. The other is very tiny, and in a non-obvious place - the × symbol halfway across the screen, below the banner's background image and above the link "Round 1 of the Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year competition ends January 31. Click here to learn more about the contest and vote for your favorite image." Does anybody know where I should complain about this? I got as far as m:Special:CentralNotice, but I can't work out which notice it is, nor where to discuss it. --Redrose64 (talk) 13:19, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

Awesome tip, thank you! It's so much better not to have it eating vertical space. :) — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 13:22, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Redrose64, found it at this config page. From the code inserted when "Insert close button" is clicked, it looks like whoever created the banner forgot to click it, as it depends on this image instead of the broken one.
We can ping anybody listed at m:Special:CentralNoticeLogs with "POTY_2014_R1" (the code name of this campaign) listed under the "Campaign" column. I'll go ahead and ask m:User talk:Beria, as he or she was the last admin to edit the banner. APerson (talk!) 15:56, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Ah, POTY_2014_R1 - right at the top of the list. I passed over that one, because it's now 2015 and I assumed that the notices were listed oldest first. However, it also doesn't have any immediately-obvious discussion page. --Redrose64 (talk) 17:24, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
It should probably be Closewindow.svg and someone screwed up, but I threw together a quick PNG that will do in the meantime. Adam Cuerden (talk) 18:12, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
By the way, can I just say that that Image credit is rather shameful? Instead of actually giving credit to, say, User:Newton2 who took the photo, it just states the image was the 2007 winner. That's not what image credit is. Adam Cuerden (talk) 18:14, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
It's a wiki, you can edit it. I've added a FYI on c:Commons_talk:Picture_of_the_Year/2014#banner_spam. –Be..anyone (talk) 03:49, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@Be..anyone: The file description page is easily editable, yes; but I believe that since Adam Cuerden said "the image was the 2007 winner", this is the "Image credit (2007 winner)" link, which is part of the white text in the banner. I cannot edit it, because I don't know where or how to do so. I strongly suspect that it's only editable by those with appropriate rights, otherwise we would see a lot of banner vandalism - but I've never seen any. --Redrose64 (talk) 12:06, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Exactly. This may be a wiki, but I'm not a global sysadmin. I can't edit text on the ad, even if it's shameful behaviour. Adam Cuerden (talk) 17:12, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
The page on commons isn't protected, I miss a clue what you're talking about. But c:Template:Credit line is tricky, I added it, please fix what's missing. –Be..anyone (talk) 03:07, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
@Be..anyone: We're not talking about the page that the link takes you to, we're talking about the text of the link itself, the phrase "Image credit (2007 winner)". This is not in any editable page, so far as we can tell: it's part of the CentralNotice code that is set up on Meta. If it is editable in the normal way, please direct us to it. --Redrose64 (talk) 13:53, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
No idea, I block these notices. Looking now, m:Special:CentralNoticeLogs shows the history, and m:Special:CentralNoticeBanners/edit/POTY_2014_R1 is the current text with "Image credit (2007 winner)". That's a link text, the link goes straight to the image page with full credits, attribution, license, etc. Beria (on m: or c:) is one of the POTY committee members, and the POTY help desk on Commons should be also able to arrange required fixes on Meta if you tell them. –Be..anyone (talk) 16:31, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
BTW the × link has been removed, and the blue "Close" link now shows as a cross-in-circle image, so that accessibility issue is sorted. --Redrose64 (talk) 13:53, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Interwiki link[edit]

Hi, Can someone put in links between The Sea Girl and A Menina do Mar on the Portuguese Wikipedia, Thanks GrahamHardy (talk) 15:25, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

Thanks ! GrahamHardy (talk) 16:29, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Here's an example of the type of things I'm looking for[edit]

Throughout your activities on Wikipedia, no doubt you've picked up a useful trick or two that few other people know about.

Here's an example of such a trick:

You've just grabbed the page's title to place a link on another page, but now you want to add a section title to it to create a section link, but the copy cache is already full. Instead of making two trips back and forth to the page you wish to add the link to, try this...

...use the search box as a quick-and-dirty edit window:

  1. Copy/paste the title into the search box, followed by a "#"
  2. Copy/paste the section title after the "#"
  3. Enclose in double square brackets and copy/paste the whole string to the page you wish to edit.

The search box is also a handy place to store copy text while you copy/paste something else.

Do you use any interesting or useful tricks or little known but cool tools (for navigating, editing, anything to do with using or improving WP)? If so, please tell... The Transhumanist 23:01, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

@The Transhumanist: I would do it this way:
  1. Scroll up to the table of contents, and click on the section you wanted
  2. Copy the article title and section from the browser's URL
  3. Paste the string in the page you wish to edit, and add the double square brackets
Hope this helps! GoingBatty (talk) 00:24, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@GoingBatty: Cool, I hadn't thought of that. What other cool tricks do you know? The Transhumanist 00:32, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@The Transhumanist: You can use CTRL+C and CTRL+V to do the copy and paste. I also have a list of tools I use on my talk page. GoingBatty (talk) 01:37, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@GoingBatty: I amended your post - {{button}} is for marking up clickable buttons, keystrokes are marked up with {{keypress}}. --Redrose64 (talk) 12:40, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@The Transhumanist: You can also use User:Bility/copySectionLink to generate sections links directly. I've made a prettier version on User:Zhaofeng Li/common.js along with other tools I use. Zhaofeng Li [talk... contribs...] 14:41, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Speaking of little-known shortcuts, you may have a need to convert a full URL into a wikilink. See User:Js/urldecoder for that. If you have the script installed, you place the cursor at the end of the URL (in your edit window) and click a button. It converts the URL into a proper wikilink, with square brackets and everything. EdJohnston (talk) 18:19, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
You can also use my very own Template:Urltowiki for that if you don't feel like installing a script. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 00:07, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

How do you put comments on your vector.css page?[edit]

The Transhumanist 06:30, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

They are done with C-style comments. /* Like this */ —EncMstr (talk) 07:10, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Ah, just like on the .js page. Thanks! The Transhumanist 08:16, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@The Transhumanist: Not quite the same - js (and some flavours of C) allow end-of-line comments // like this
but these don't work in CSS. The inline kind /* like this */ can be used anywhere that a space is valid in CSS, besides js (and all flavours of C). --Redrose64 (talk) 12:17, 24 January 2015 (UTC)


I'm in the process of updating the WP:TOTD department's tip collection, as some of the tips have gone obsolete. So I'm looking for useful techniques and tools, that is, tips, to replace them with.

Any leads on the latest and greatest wiki-related programs, extensions, plug-ins, scripts, commands, or methods, would be most appreciated.

So far, I've added the following new tips:

If you spot any errors in them, please let me know. Or edit them directly. Thank you. The Transhumanist 08:16, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

Some 2007 stuff might be seriously obsolete. You can ask Help desk or Teahouse regulars what new users would want to see, if they add the TotD-template to their page. Some tricks for the Visual Editor (I don't use it and therefore can't judge it) or the Media Viewer, maybe, because that certainly didn't exist eight years ago. New ways to archive talk pages could be interesting. Or something about user boxes, #babel:-extension, and scribunto. How to get Tech News or Signpost, what's a Village Pump, where are the real help pages, the works. –Be..anyone (talk) 10:21, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, some things to do with VisualEditor might be nice. It is very useful for basic to intermediate editing, and especially for editing tables. However, any tips relating to VE would have to include information about turning it on, and would also need to be updated in the future when VisualEditor becomes available by default for all users. — This, that and the other (talk) 11:43, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

Template:Discreet abbreviation[edit]

This doesn't appear to be functioning as advertized – can someone confirm and, if so, use their powers to fix..? Sardanaphalus (talk) 11:22, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

It has never omitted the dots at the English Wikipedia. The template code was copied from the French Wikipedia but they define the abbr class without dots in fr:MediaWiki:Common.css. It may be controversial to do that here. PrimeHunter (talk) 11:39, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
It was controversial when created, see Category talk:Wikipedia formatting and function templates#New template requested — Discreet abbreviation - IIRC there was discussion elsewhere too. Is there any reason why {{abbr}} is unsuitable? --Redrose64 (talk) 12:23, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

RSS feeds for Edit Filters?[edit]

I've recently taken an interest in edit filters and feel like having the option of an RSS feed for the log of any given filter is a feature which could be very useful. For example, a filter set up to catch a vandal who often acts very quickly making dozens of subtle vandalism edits would be enormously more useful if I received a notification when the filter was tripped; I could stop them instantly rather than a few hours later when I happen to check the log. That might not be the best example because such a filter can be reported automatically to AIV using Mr.Z-bot, but I think the feature could be useful regardless. Is this something which can be enabled here or would it need a software change of some kind? Sam Walton (talk) 11:42, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

Opt-in for removal of "patrolled" notifications[edit]

There are many who create a lot of articles. I browse through the PERM pages to evaluate requests and place a {{nao}} if required, but I have observed one thing common to many (including myself): Most don't like to get notifications for their pages being patrolled. A lot openly declare it while requesting for autopatrolled while others express it through other means. I am a coder as well, so from the technical perspective it's possible, and I thought of creating a script; but there's a problem. To begin with, I do not know the code architecture from top to bottom- and thus I do not know what triggers the notification when a user clicks "patrol". Secondly, it has to cater to a lot of users and thus it being a MediaWiki gadget is a much better idea, than people pasting importScript("..."); into their scripts page. Thirdly, I personally prefer client-side operations, and thus JS is the language for me. So if anyone thinks about implementing the idea here, I think it's worth a go. The only thing to make sure is that it should be optional: if the user wants, he enables it, else it's just not there and he gets those patrolled notifications. EthicallyYours! 13:46, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

  • Preferences → Notifications → Notify me about these events → uncheck Page review for both web and email and you'll never get another notification that your page was patrolled. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 16:52, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

I am working on an article[edit]

about the muralist Ethel Edwards and have discovered that some helpful person has already linked her name to the article about her husband, Xavier Gonzalez. I believe that their wedding vows were 'till death do us part", so since they are both deceased, can someone let me know (or just do it) how to make this separation so that Ethel can have her own article? thanks, Einar aka Carptrash (talk) 15:33, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Redirect#How to edit a redirect or convert it into an article. The page history has a stub [1]. PrimeHunter (talk) 15:42, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks PrimeHunter, looks like a fun time ahead. Perhaps I'll do my laundry first. Carptrash (talk) 15:54, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

Okay, I can get as far as "To do this, go to the redirect page by clicking the redirect note on the target page, " and then peter out. Namely, where do I find this " redirect note on the target page,"? Presumably somewhere on Xavier Gonzalez, but where? Carptrash (talk) 16:23, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

@Carptrash: When you click on Ethel Edwards, you're automatically taken to the Xavier Gonzalez article. Right above "Xavier Gonzalez (1898 – 1993) was a..." is text that says "(Redirected from Ethel Edwards)" Click there to get to the redirect page. Good luck! GoingBatty (talk) 16:29, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
life is sweet. Now off to the Duffeeland Dog Park Club exec committee session. then back to this business. Thanks Gone Batty Carptrash (talk) 16:46, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

I broke a talk page[edit]

Good friends, I've broken the wiki. It did not seem very complicated at the time but when I turned a redirect into a real article at Garfield Park Conservatory its talk page is to the old redirect article talk page and not to the proper article. Help please and mea culpa. Alanscottwalker (talk) 17:43, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

You can just edit the talk page redirect in the same way as the mainpage redirect: Click Talk:Garfield Park Conservatory, click "(Redirected from Talk:Garfield Park Conservatory)" at the top, click the "Edit" tab, remove the redirect code. PrimeHunter (talk) 17:49, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
Ah, yes. Thanks. Alanscottwalker (talk) 17:57, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

ABC no longer showing as disambiguation page[edit]

Any idea why ABC is no longer showing up as a disambiguation page in tools such as WPCleaner and Dab Solver? The page still has the {{disambiguation}} template, and the page hasn't changed since October. Some examples of articles where I would expect ABC to be reported as an ambiguous link are Firelight (2012 film) and MetLife Building. Thanks! GoingBatty (talk) 21:21, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

There's a bug (which I can't find the number of at the moment) where the links tables somehow-or-other don't get updated, which seems like it might be triggered by ClueBot reverting very quickly. It should be working now, after a null edit. Anomie 22:58, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

Compact Personal Toolbar beta removed[edit]

This is notification that Jared Zimmerman has now removed the beta feature Compact Personal Bar which reduced the top menu items to a dropdown menu and simple icons for the watchlist and notifications. I'd even forgotten this was a beta feature so very sad to see it go. It was the first time I'd seen a design move away from a text-heavy interface, one of the—if not the most—important factors in Wikipedia's look being off-putting to readers and those we should be encouraging to edit. Hopefully this is just a prelude to the introduction of the Winter/Fixed Site Header feature (which uses a similar system), but I don't see why it isn't available as a gadget for those people happy to keep using the toolbar before that is released. SFB 22:16, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

It requires some server-side code, so a gadget is not possible. Personally, I found the design pretty horrid, with it's non-descriptive icons, which jumped all over the place when scrolling, so nothing had a fixed spot. Imagine a car where the accelerator and brakes moved around depending on which way you steered... I do hope that Winter is more intuitive and not too afraid of text. -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 22:37, 24 January 2015 (UTC)
@Sillyfolkboy, Edokter: Well, since the extension, VectorBeta, is still loaded, you can activate it with an one-liner in vector.js: mw.loader.load("skins.vector.compactPersonalBar"); There is a discussion on undeploying the extension from WMF wikis. Zhaofeng Li [talk... contribs...] 00:07, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
@Edokter: I feel that the Winter prototype strikes the image-to-text balance in the interface very well. I understood the setup within a minute. I think this is the first technical change for Wikipedia that I've actually been excited about and immediately see value in. If categories and portals are added to the right rail then that will completely transform the way we interact with and use those areas. SFB 00:56, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
SFB, I've heard that it was removed because it broke the mw:Universal Language Selector. It will be back as soon as they can get the bug fixed (maybe as early as next Wednesday, if I've read the deployment calendar correctly). Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:09, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
No, it was removed because currently there are no plans to fix it in the short term. --Glaisher (talk) 18:15, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Contradictory template instructions[edit]

Template:Infobox hockey team says, in subsection Subtemplates:

Use {{start date}} for the date on which an organisation was "established", "founded", "opened" or otherwise started, unless that date is before 1583 CE.

and somewhat lower down

Use {{Birth date}} for the "founded" date.

Isn't this a contradiction? Which is right? Not that I expect to use the template myself, but I noticed this while browsing randomly and editing HC All Stars Piemonte.

To discuss this with me, please {{Ping}} me. Thnidu (talk) 23:48, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

MOVE: I'm putting this item on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Ice Hockey#Contradictory template instructions, which seems more appropriate. To discuss this with me, please {{Ping}} me. --Thnidu (talk) 04:01, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Renaming of User:Zhaofeng Li/Reflinks[edit]

Hello, folks! Since the the original Reflinks tool is working again on his own server, User:GoingBatty suggests that we use another name for the new tool on Tool Labs. This makes sense, since it's confusing to have two tools with the same name, and the current name doesn't get the purpose of the tool (expanding bare references) across very well. The localised version of the name in Chinese is 来源扩充 (as in "citation expander") which makes its purpose clear. Any idea for a concise name? Zhaofeng Li [talk... contribs...] 00:37, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

@Zhaofeng Li: Bummer - looks like Wikipedia:Citation expander already exists. GoingBatty (talk) 01:23, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
@GoingBatty: True, and it's too long anyway. Zhaofeng Li [talk... contribs...] 01:31, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
@Zhaofeng Li: "RefMaker" or "CiteMaker" also seem to be taken. Maybe "CiteExpand"? GoingBatty (talk) 01:38, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Perhaps we could have a naming contest on Zhaofeng Li's talk page, or a brainstorming session. I thought of "CiteIt", but that's a commercial product. Could we include all or part of Zhaofeng Li's name, or the English meaning of the characters, in honor of the creator? Any groan-worthy puns, like "AppleCiter"? – Margin1522 (talk) 04:40, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Maybe something like "zLinks", "zLinkRefs" or "zLinkrefs" could fit the bill? With "zLi", any of them would honor the creator. — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 08:25, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
@Zhaofeng Li, Margin1522, Dsimic: Agree with the idea of a contest/brainstorming sessiom on Zhaofeng Li's talk page. As of now, I would pick something with "zLi" in it over my previous suggestion. GoingBatty (talk) 13:02, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for all your comments! I'll start a brainstorming session on the tool's talk page later when I have more time. Face-smile.svg Zhaofeng Li [talk... contribs...] 08:49, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

New Help:Internet Explorer information page[edit]

This is a note to let people here know that Help:Internet Explorer has been created as a location for FAQs about the Internet Explorer web browser's issues with certain Wikipedia display features. The page was created as a result of a discussion at a citation Module Talk page.

Anyone who cares to expand it, or link to it from relevant locations within WP's other Help pages, is welcome to do so. – Jonesey95 (talk) 02:33, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

It should be merged or linked to Wikipedia:Browser notes. PrimeHunter (talk) 03:14, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
I agree, there is not enough information to warrant a separate page. -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 09:43, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Article assessment links STILL not working[edit]

These links have been broken about 50% of the time for the past 6 months or so, it is very frustrating. I refer to the links on this table here: Wikipedia:WikiProject_Anatomy#Article_assessment_statistics. Is it possible to file a bug report or change the links to a tool that works? Cheers, --Tom (LT) (talk) 04:13, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Day 3 and still not working. Tool is "enwp10". Example link is [2]. --Tom (LT) (talk) 20:59, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
If you urgently need some lists, Catscan 2 on WMFlabs can provide similar results. Just search for the needed category and check the correct page type in "Namespaces" (usually the talk page). A pre-defined example query for Anatomy templates would be "[11]=1&doit=1" (nowiki here, because of [] characters). You can also search for specific importance levels, listing both class and importance category as selection criterion. Hope that helps a bit, while we wait for the "enwp10" project to recover (can't help with that - not a developer or tools writer). GermanJoe (talk) 00:58, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

@CBM: ^^ (as the only obviously active maintainer listed at :-) --Quiddity (WMF) (talk) 01:04, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

I was logged in for other reasons and noticed this message. I am no longer a maintainer. I have requested to have my name removed from the list - I think that a cached version is being shown. I can say that the wp10 project could use one or more additional maintainers, but I cannot do it at this time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:35, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Project has been restarted and works again (thanks Theopolisme). See also Wikipedia talk:Version 1.0 Editorial Team/Index with some information about that project and recent requests and questions. GermanJoe (talk) 13:41, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
+1 confirmed results are now available. --User:Ceyockey (talk to me) 14:46, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Arabic display issues[edit]

The last line of the lead section of Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean isn't displaying correctly (the link is to Zeta Ceti). I think the problem is the Arabic earlier in the line (right-to-left problem?). Anyone know the fix? Thanks Wbm1058 (talk) 04:40, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

It looked OK to me but I've added a {{lang}} template as a good idea anyway and properly marks it as Arabic.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 04:53, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, that fixed it! {{lang}} is exactly what I was looking for, but I was at a loss as to how to find it. WP:Arabic... didn't give me any clues. Wbm1058 (talk) 05:14, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Vitamin B12 on the mobile site[edit]

Drmies asked me, on my talk page, to take a look at strange stuff displaying at Vitamin B12 when viewed on a cell phone. I normally view using the desktop site on my Android smart phone, and the article looked fine that way. But when I switched to mobile, there is a bunch of stuff that looks like gibberish. My hunch is that it is coding for the Simplified molecular-input line-entry system that isn't displaying properly. Can anyone correct this? Cullen328 Let's discuss it 06:47, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

@Cullen328: For me, the SMILES gibberish looks the same. The only different is that I have to click the show button on the desktop site to see it, where it's the default view on my phone. GoingBatty (talk) 07:09, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
@Cullen328: You could post at Template talk:Infobox drug, and ask if the SMILES and InChI information is supposed to look like that. Personally, I would say that it is. --Redrose64 (talk) 15:00, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Indian Religions: mobile site picture cropping[edit]

I don't know what team to talk to about this, but I figured you guys would know.

While this is a great shot of the statue, I think that on mobile devices, this is probably not the photo we want to see here. The crop places undue visual emphasis on the statue's genitals. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Spaceboss (talkcontribs) 18:49, 25 January 2015‎ (UTC)

Is this the Wikipedia app? It seems to center the first image it finds. I've swapped the two top images. -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 19:16, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, that was the Wikipedia app. It's good to know how to change the picture it grabs for the header - it looks great now. Spaceboss (talk) 20:32, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for posting a link to the image. User:Deskana (WMF) may already have this problem on his list. I believe that this only affects the Android app (not what you would see if you used a web browser on an Android device). Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:13, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback. I've submitted a patch that changes the cropping of images to focus the top of the image rather than the centre. That should stop this kind of thing from happening. In the mean time, changing the image should also work. Thanks! --Dan Garry, Wikimedia Foundation (talk) 17:54, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Search utterly fails on dashes[edit]

A search for U.S. Route 75 Alternate (Sapulpa–Beggs, Oklahoma) should be able to find U.S. Route 75 Alternate (Beggs–Sapulpa, Oklahoma). --NE2 20:39, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Added a phab bug for it. No guarantee I'll be able to get to it quickly but I agree it should certainly work. NEverett (WMF) (talk) 00:19, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Arabic font[edit]

Does anyone know if something about the way WP displays Arabic has changed recently? For me, it seems to be clashing with the proceeding Latin script, which I'm 100% certain it didn't used to. Formerip (talk) 20:44, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

@FormerIP: Is this the same as #Arabic display issues above? --Redrose64 (talk) 23:19, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
It could be related, but it is happening for me with the lang template already in place. I am seeing the last part of the Arabic (bearing in mind Arabic reads right-to-left) overlaid with the last past of the preceding Latin. I also *think* the font looks different overall. I was wondering whether maybe someone who has access has been playing around, which might explain it. Formerip (talk) 23:33, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Formerip, what's your broswer and OS? Can you link to an article that has this problem? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:37, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
the description sounds very similar to an issue Google Chrome browser developed recently (well, not that recently: several months ago, maybe with version 38 or 39) with RTL languages - the problem seems to be closely related with use of diacritics in the text. so if the browser is chrome, and the problem does not appear with other browsers (prolly better to compare with IE of FF, not safari), please file a bug report with google (either through Menu=>About=>Report, or simply Alt+ Shift+I). i sent a report several months back, but i think that the more people report the issue, the better chances it gets to actually getting fixed. if you do send a report, i think it's best to use "permanent link" from the side-bar to get a link to the page (press "permanent link", and then issue the report - chrome will include the link in the report automagically), so the report will remain valid even if someone edits the page in a way that disappears the issue. peace - קיפודנחש (aka kipod) (talk) 19:56, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Search Reverts[edit]

Is there a way to contributions search an editor's history of "undo" reverts?

If not, is there any possibility of implementing a tag, or preferably and easier a checkbox, that would filter the contribution list to show all the "undo" reverts implemented by an editor?

It appears that "tags" has "Rapid reverts" as an option, but when I put the option in the tags field, it doesn't work for registered editors (as indicated by the description "Non-autoconfirmed user rapidly reverting edits") –GodBlessYou2 (talk) 21:33, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

You can use the "Edit summary search" tool at the bottom of their contribs page, and search for "undid" or "reverted". There's really not a better way to do it, since revisions don't contain any other indication of whether or not they're a revert. Jackmcbarn (talk) 21:44, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. That's very helpful.GodBlessYou2 (talk) 22:02, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
I've checked this tool out for a number of editors who frequently do a total revert of other's edits. For some, what you suggest works fine. Some editors, however, delete the autogenerated comment line, replacing it with some other explanation, or even nothing useful for recognizing it as a revert.
As a diagnostic and evaluation tool, I think it would be helpful to be able to develop metrics on editors who have a tendency to "protect" articles with rapid deletions instead of working to refine articles collaboratively. Being able to identify how frequently editors revert without refinement would be a helpful tool. I'm sure there are plenty of reasons not to add an extra field to the database, but it would be helpful if there was an automated log showing that an edit completely reverted the previous edit. This would be helpful in being able to review the "revert" activity of specific editors for discussions regarding whether or not their pattern of reverts are generally helpful or generally disruptive or may indicate a tendency to WP:OWN an article.—GodBlessYou2 (talk) 22:18, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
If you use the "undo" link on a single edit, the default edit summary is "Undid revision nnnn by [[Special:Contributions/xxxx|xxxx]] ([[User talk:xxxx|talk]])". But if you are viewing a diff of two or more edits, and use the "undo" link, the default edit summary is blank. --Redrose64 (talk) 23:09, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Interesting. A record of a reverting multiple edits should also be logged. Couldn't the database record that the "undo" link was used to initiate the edit and save a tag in the tag field (or some other field) indicating it was initiated as an "undo" when the edit is saved?–GodBlessYou2 (talk) 15:31, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
GodBlessYou2, why would you want to do that? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:36, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Well, Whatamidoing, I think it would be helpful to view a list of reverts made for many reasons, especially in cases where editors may have a pattern of rapidly reverting goodfaith edits rather than practicing WP:PRESERVE methods. It may also be useful in arbitration to be able to more easily see the pattern of reverts. Outside Wikipedia, other wiki's might benefit from being able to see reverts, too.--GodBlessYou2 (talk) 21:38, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Templated reasons in MediaWiki:Ipbreason-dropdown[edit]

Many of the user talk templates were standardized several years ago, including block messages; Wikipedia:Template messages/User talk namespace#Blocks. It appears MediaWiki:Ipbreason-dropdown was missed in the update. I'd like to correct them to match the correct template names, and add an informative note beside each one. For example,
would be changed to
{{uw-spamublock}} <-- Promotional username - Bad faith -->
. Any objections? I'll do a full mockup of all changes in a sandbox if requested. --Geniac (talk) 03:18, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
{{spamusernameblock}} doesn't sound like a warning, and its name as is doesn't need an XML explanation, it's clear. But actually I don't care, if you think your solution is better, make it so. JFTR, <!-- Be..anyone (talk) 16:52, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you mean. spamusernameblock doesn't sounds like a warning because it isn't a warning; it's a block notice. I'm proposing updating block reasons, not any warnings. I've posted to the sandbox subpage MediaWiki:Ipbreason-dropdown/sandbox and I'll wait at least a day or two for discussion. And yeah I forgot the ! in my example here. --Geniac (talk) 01:46, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Don't see the problem as long as you don't break Special:Block (which uses that page as the input to its dropdown menu). Black Kite (talk) 22:37, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, Special:Block uses that page. That's my point; the options in that dropdown menu need updated and some of them need annotated. Another improvement I've made in the sandbox is to group some related block reasons together in a logical order. --Geniac (talk) 01:14, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
uw = "user warning" is arguably misleading for a block, but no big deal. –Be..anyone (talk) 03:35, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
The uw- prefix simply indicates that a user talk template was a part of the standardisation effort of 2007, not that a template is necessarily a warning. That's neither here nor there; those are the current correct template names. --Geniac (talk) 03:45, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Edit notice filter[edit]

Hellow, how can I add an edit notice when some wants to edit an article and imform him not to add a common misconseption. Eg. above the edit box there is an notice saying: wait until the results are published (eg). --C messier (talk) 12:47, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Editnotice#How to request an editnotice if you are not an administrator. --  Gadget850 talk 13:04, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
And if I am (I want to know how add one in el.wikipedia, where I am am admin)? --C messier (talk) 14:20, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Editnotice#Other namespaces for the name of the page you must create. The English Wikipedia has made it easier by creating MediaWiki:Editnotice-0 which links to the edit notice page when you edit an article with an admin account. It may be difficult to convert it for use in el:MediaWiki:Editnotice-0. PrimeHunter (talk) 14:43, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
You can see examples at el:Special:PrefixIndex/Template:Editnotices/Page/. PrimeHunter (talk) 14:46, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
If you are and admin, then you can simply use Wikipedia:Editnotice#Creating editnotices. I don't see the the Greek Wikipedia has the help page, but you could translate it there or just copy the section to your userspace. --  Gadget850 talk 15:03, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Vertical bar in a table?[edit]

I'm trying to build a table that has cells that contain a vertical bar character, |. I tried {{|}} but that gets interpreted as }}. Anyone know the trick? Maury Markowitz (talk) 13:16, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Use the magic word {{!}} (formerly a template). --  Gadget850 talk 13:20, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Using &#124; as a HTML escape also does the trick. However, using {{!}} is a cleaner solution. — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 13:27, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) If you want to display a pipe and not make it part of any syntax then you may have to use {{Pipe}} or &#124;. It looks like that is needed for your intended usage. PrimeHunter (talk) 13:29, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Unenforced non-blank edit summaries[edit]

Hello! While editing lead section of the Data scrubbing article, I've accidentally clicked on the "Save page" button instead of "Show preview" and my edit was saved with no edit summary. The trouble is that I have "Prompt me when entering a blank edit summary" ticked in my preferences and blank edit summaries shouldn't be allowed; that enforcement seems to be working as expected when editing non-lead sections, but fails to protect lead section edits. While editing that lead section, I've used the "edit" link provided by having "Add an [edit] link for the lead section of a page" ticked in my preferences.

Perhaps this bug has something to do with the automated insertion of /* top */ into edit summaries when lead sections are edited, what was introduced about a year ago or so. However, IMHO it should be fixed, if you agree. — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 13:20, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

  • Dsimic, I'm not sure if this is what happened in your case here, but if you click save, and notice some text out of place or something and go back to fix it or whatnot I've found it easy to forget I clicked save once. When you click save again, it goes right through because you've already clicked once and technically gotten your blank summary warning. It's actually never prevented saving, it just takes you back to the edit window and doesn't let you know why. It can be very confusing to new users. I'll try to put in a phab ticket today if I can remember. :) — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 14:20, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
@Technical 13: Yeah, I didn't mean that edits with no summaries are completely impossible, instead I had those "first click" warnings in mind. Sorry for not describing it more precisely. However, just to make sure, I've tried to reproduce this bug, and a test edit on a lead section, with no edit summary provided, was saved immediately after clicking on "Save page" with no warnings or anything. So, that's what happened in the first place. :) — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 14:44, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Sooo... is this a bug or a feature? :) — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 11:35, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Nobody finds it important? Technical 13, maybe? — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 12:50, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
It seems like a minor issue and I doubt it can be fixed without an unreasonable effort by the developers to adapt a MediaWiki feature to take a gadget into consideration. "Prompt me when entering a blank edit summary" at Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-editing is part of the MediaWiki software which powers thousands of wikis. "Add an [edit] link for the lead section of a page" and everything else at Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-gadgets is made at the English Wikipedia, in this case MediaWiki:Gadget-edittop.js where /* top */ in the edit summary was added in [3] after discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (technical)/Archive 123#Editing the lede as opposed to editing the whole article. If you really want to avoid the issue then you could disable the gadget and make a version in your common JavaScript without /* top */. You could probably just copy code from MediaWiki:Gadget-edittop.js and remove a few things near the end without having to know JavaScript. PrimeHunter (talk) 13:20, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I really don't have time right now, but what I would do is modify the gadget to check if the `warn on blank summary` option is activated if ( mw.user.options.get( 'forceeditsummary' ) === 1 ) { ... and then hijack the Save page button to see if ( $( '#wpSummary' ).val() === '/* top */' ) { ... and if it does throw confirm( 'Blank edit summary detected,\npress [OK] to save anyways\nor[Cancel] to go back' ) and then if they click OK $( '#editform' ).submit(); or if they click cancel do $( '#wpSummary' ).focus();. Anyways, I don't currently have access to gadget pages and I'm too busy to work up and test it in a sandbox at this time. Ping me back in a couple three weeks or so if you can't find someone else to do it and I'd be happy to. :) — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 14:52, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
@PrimeHunter, Technical 13:
Went ahead and had a look at includes/EditPage.php from MediaWiki 1.24.1: basically, MediaWiki sends an MD5 hash of the default edit summary as a value of the form variable wpAutoSummary on edit pages, and compares it when the form is submitted later to see whether a summary was entered (better said, whether it was modified). Gadget-edittop.js jumps into the middle of that and pretty much "breaks" the relationship between the default edit summary and its stored MD5 hash. In more detail, Gadget-edittop.js presets the summary using GET variable summary, what is additionally handled in includes/EditPage.php as a fix for bug #17416: if submitted using &summary=, edit summary is checked only to be non-empty (the default summary is forcibly assumed to be empty) – that's why /* top */ is accepted.
Thus, Gadget-edittop.js should instead set the summary by modifying wpSummary form varible upon the initial loading of edit pages, and should also initially set the wpAutoSummary to the value of md5('/* top */'). That should correct this issue, by establishing the same relationship as if the setting of a default edit summary was performed by MediaWiki. Would something like that be doable in Gadget-edittop.js? — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 15:01, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Okay, so then Phab:T19416 apparently isn't fixed or was rebroken is what you are saying? MrBlueSky, since you're the one that marked this as resolved, maybe you or Happy-melon (bug author?) can help clarify there. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 19:03, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Well, that's what the code in MediaWiki 1.24.1 does (see lines 2428–2433 in includes/EditPage.php). If that behavior is changed, then it seems that Gadget-edittop.js should be working as expected with no modifications. — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 20:04, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Phab:T19416 asks to not require a different edit summary when &summary= is set. MrBlueSky (talk) 21:24, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Hm, the whole Phab:T19416 is like "well, I like my waffles with xyz syrup" with no real explanation and no analysis on what else could be affected by such changes. Maybe I'm missing something, but in a request like this it would be important to state where pre-specified summaries shouldn't be validated to be different when a page is submitted; as-is, IMHO it doesn't look like it's about a bug or specific misbehavior. — Dsimic (talk | contribs) 21:39, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Tech News: 2015-05[edit]

16:08, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Font-weight or '[edit]

If I'm writing a template, what would be better from technical point of view? Using <span style="font-weight:bold;">{{{1|}}}</span> or '''{{{1|}}}'''? I'm not talking about this kind of problem (an empty {{{1|}}}, which if using the ''' results in '), but generally, using span/''' is better, because ... ? --Edgars2007 (talk/contribs) 16:43, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

For now wiki markup is better, because it could be rendered differently, e.g., for mobile devices not supporting CSS. –Be..anyone (talk) 17:02, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
That is a stretch. I would prefer CSS because it prevents reversing the bold wiki markup, ie. when text is already bold, it stays bold. -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 17:21, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
Unless purely decorative, <em> or <strong> is at least better than span, because they are semantic HTML elements. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 22:20, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
<strong> is a good idea, even screen readers and text browsers should grok this. –Be..anyone (talk) 02:31, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, the strong element "represents strong importance, seriousness, or urgency for its contents", whereas the b element "represents a span of text to which attention is being drawn for utilitarian purposes without conveying any extra importance and with no implication of an alternate voice or mood". The first is semantic; the second is merely presentational. As for the span element, it "doesn't mean anything on its own", and relies on CSS styling to achieve a change of appearance, but cannot give a semantic meaning. --Redrose64 (talk) 11:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

XTools moved to Labs?[edit]

For those of us who still have User:Hedonil/common.js in our script .js, clicking on "See Full statistics" at the top of any article now flips to this: "301 Moved Permanently This tool has moved to a new location. You will be redirected to shortly."

And then it hangs in a loop forever and never really redirects to anything.

However, I do notice that Labs has all the XTools listed there. The problem is that the redirect doesn't really redirect. Can anyone please either correct that, or supply a new script to substitute for Hedonil's old one. Thanks. — Maile (talk) 00:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

  • That's because the maintainers agreed that we should segregate the /ec and /articleinfo tools into there own webservice to improve overall stability since they were the top two most likely culprits for locking the whole thing up. If it is getting stuck there, then articleinfo itself is locked up and you just need to ping one of the maintainers (Cyberpower678, Technical 13 and MusikAnimal) and one of us will restart it (I just restarted it now, FTR). :) — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 00:32, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • This also means we found the tool causing xTools' entire instability.—cyberpowerChat:Online 00:37, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, both of you. It is indeed getting stuck at Labs, because when I try to open the Page History tool directly from Labs, that's the one that hangs. Thank you for trying to restart it, but it still does not seem to be working. Still getting that message, either from the article or directly at Labs. — Maile (talk) 00:42, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Technical 13, Mozilla, Windows NT 6.3; WOW64; rv:35.0, 5.0, Gecko 20100101, Firefox 35.0. OK, its really strange. As of this morning, progress. After I get the above message, it stalls a few seconds and then, the full page read out that always used to show. However...when I scroll down that to "Page views", the only thing there is a "bla" link. I click on that, and I get "Again something is messed up after Tool Labs database maintenance Sorry for that!No db-connection-" with an image that resembles a test pattern. So, therein, we are back to the original problem that has existed since Hedonil stopped editing. What happened to the daily page views? — Maile (talk) 13:31, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
    I'm pestering Coren to give me access to that tool to restore functionality. I pestered him today, but nothing.—cyberpowerChat:Online 00:14, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
    Today's part of "Tech Days" for the WMF dev staff, so he may be busy with event-related things right now. Things should mostly be back to normal by next week. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 01:08, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Navigation popups style change[edit]

This is to let everyone know that I have fulfilled the edit request at Wikipedia talk:Tools/Navigation popups#Style enhancements similar to Hovercards, which brings the style of navigation popups in line with that of Hovercards. The actual edit was made to the page MediaWiki:Gadget-navpop.css. If anyone would like the style tweaked, or the change reverted altogether, please voice your opinion at the edit request discussion. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 05:28, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

I've reverted, seeing as the first couple of reactions weren't positive. If others could join the discussion about whether/how to tweak the styling, it would be appreciated. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 05:43, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Watchlist changes curtailed[edit]

This morninng I logged on to find my watchlist's list of changes severely shortened. It is only displaying changes as far back as ca. 11:00 pm last night (about 12 hours ago). I checked my preferences and they are unchanged, I should be seeing many more days' worth. Is this a know issue or something to report? — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 10:27, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

To confirm, the "Show last" period displayed is stuck on "12 hours". When I click on a different value, the script seems to run but the setting sticks at 12 hours. — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 16:04, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
"Works for me" isn't a very helpful response, even though it's true. Have you tried all the usual things, like WP:BYPASS? What happens if you go to the full URL: ? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:43, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for the suggestions. Hving hit the probem with Chromium on Linux, I am now on my Andriod tablet and I can confirm that the probem perists. I tried the direct url for 30 days and that just resets the dispay to 12 hours as well. Seems to be some sort of corruption of my Wikipedia account settings? — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 21:32, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
@Steelpillow: How many pages are on your watchlist? There used to be a threshold (which was once 1,000 pages) beyond which a user's watchlist would only display the last twelve hours of changes – I'm not sure if this is still the case. Also, how many changes are displayed on your watchlist? That could also have something to do with it. Graham87 06:03, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Good thoughts. However the number of pages was 351, and I just now trimmed it to 343 and the problem persists. The last few weeks it has been above 343 and the list of changes has been displaying fine. The number of changes displayed is whatever were made in the last 12 hours: there is a user setting above the list for "Show last 1 | 2 | 6 | 12 hours |1 | 3 | 7 | 30 days" and whichever I select it just reverts to 12 hours selected. — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 07:11, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
What happens when you click Does the url continue to say days=3? Post the line of form "Below are the last $1 changes in the last $2 hours". What is the first two fields at Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-watchlist, and is "Expand watchlist to show all changes, not just the most recent" enabled? PrimeHunter (talk) 11:19, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
the url remains correct but the displayed list of changes does not match it. First two fields are: Days to show in Watchlist 5, Maximum number of changes... 250
@Graham87: Any threshold that exists is plenty more than 1,000 pages, since my watchlist is now 19,736 pages, and it will show me right back to 13:21, 29 December 2014 - a genuine 30 days. --Redrose64 (talk) 13:28, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Solved, thanks to PrimeHunter (talk · contribs). Maximum number of changes to show in expanded watchlist was 250. I recently added WP:ANI and that's when the problem kicked off - it ate all my allowance. Raising it to 1000 has solved the problem. All the 12 hr stuff seems like it must have been coincidence, as I was judging the duration set by the list that appeared. Many thanks to all who chipped in. — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 16:16, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

@Steelpillow: If you set it to zero, that's treated as "no limit on count", and the only limit that then applies is the time period. --Redrose64 (talk) 17:33, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Cool, I'll do that. I keep forgetting MediaWiki is coded by people who are doing what they want. :) — Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 21:19, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Edit request references[edit]

Is there anything that can be done to clean up the references at the bottom of a talk page generated by edit requests example, this can be highly confusing if you don't know why they're there ? Mlpearc (open channel) 19:09, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

@Mlpearc: Yes --Redrose64 (talk) 19:17, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Thank you (quick response also :P ) Now I have a follow up, is there a way to have {{edit semi-protected}} and similar templates, place that template if it's needed and not present ? Mlpearc (open channel) 19:27, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
It's nothing to do with {{edit semi-protected}} (or similar). The problem occurs when somebody uses <ref>...</ref> on a page that has no <references /> {{reflist}} {{reflist-talk}} or similar on the page at any point after the last <ref>...</ref> that is on the page. --Redrose64 (talk) 19:55, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
{{ec}}Thank you again,Redrose64. @Technical 13: Yes I do use that script and your suggestion is basically what I was asking (Sorry I didn't realize about the <ref> tags). Mlpearc (open channel) 20:22, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
@Technical 13: It is nothing to do with {{Edit protected}}, either. The automatic reflist was showing at the bottom of the page, in the "Reliability of Popjustice" section, which has no {{Edit protected}}. I placed a {{reflist-talk}} in the "Genres" section, because that is the only section containing <ref>...</ref>; it also has no {{Edit protected}}. The section between them, "Semi-protected edit request on 25 January 2015", does have a {{edit semi-protected}}, but that is irrelevant because that is neither the section with refs, nor the section where the refs were showing. --Redrose64 (talk) 20:18, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
I guess I got things confused here, Sorry. I only mentioned {{edit semi-protected}} cuz that's when editors usually add the references to the page. Not because I thought the template was causing the issue. Mlpearc (open channel) 20:28, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Redrose64, something was misunderstood here. I read the OP as is there a way that {{Reflist-talk}} can be added to the various {{Edit protected}} templates so that if there are references in the section below that, the reflist will show up. My answer to that interpretation is no, putting the call to list the references in the template above the references will not work in that way. My response had nothing specifically to do with the templates used. I hope this clarifies what I was saying, although it seems that Mlpearc understood what I was saying. :) — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 20:58, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Mlpearc said "the references at the bottom of a talk page" and gave a link, I followed that link, looked for the references, and found them exactly where Mlpearc had said they were (at the bottom). I also noticed also that they were not in a section that bore an edit request, and regardless of that, I cleaned up these refs as requested. The link that I gave in my first post shows exactly how I did that. --Redrose64 (talk) 21:27, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
In my "Example" link, I wanted to show that there's no separation between the last section and the reference links. (also the article has nothing to do with the issue, just the example I choose). Mlpearc (open channel) 21:39, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
It's not practical to automatically add a reflist, since it doesn't work if it's above the references, and there's nowhere suitable to add it below them. Jackmcbarn (talk) 23:01, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

502 Bad Gateway[edit]

About five minutes ago I got the message "502 Bad Gateway". Does this indicate that my connectivity was lost due to a temporary condition? Robert McClenon (talk) 19:17, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

I wasn't running a bot. Does the reboot of lab instances affect connections of regular editors to the servers? Robert McClenon (talk) 22:27, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • It affects all bots and tools that are hosted on labs. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 23:22, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Preventing user talk pages from being moved[edit]

It often happens that a new user writes an article in his main user page and then moves it to the mainspace, taking his user talk page with it. Sometimes the redirect at the original talk page gets over-written with new messages, and the confusion becomes difficult to sort out. Would it be possible to arrange that main user talk pages do not, by default, move with the user page, but can only be moved by an admin? JohnCD (talk) 20:31, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

When you move a page, there is always an option (checked by default) to move the associated talk page. If you move the talk page by mistake, one can tag the redirect page with {{db-a7}} and an admin will delete it. -- [[User:Edokter]] {{talk}} 20:51, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, but the sort of inexperience newbie I am talking about doesn't understand that, and as the default is checked, his user talk page goes off into the mainspace with his article and probably gets deleted with it. JohnCD (talk) 21:24, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Help Needed Copying a Template to Another Wiki[edit]

I asked here if I could borrow the 'In5' template and copy it to another wiki, but nobody's responded there yet. I would just copy the page's wikitext to a page with the same name on the other wiki (or could I just use template transclusion?) but the 'In5' template delegates the work that it does to a Lua module. How can I copy it, or do I even need to?
— RandomDSdevel (talk) 22:38, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Do you have admin rights on the other wiki? If so, you should be able to use Special:Import. --Redrose64 (talk) 23:03, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Unfortunately, I actually don't have administrative rights over there. I am, however, on good terms with one of that site's admins, so it couldn't hurt just to ask him if he might do it for me!
— RandomDSdevel (talk) 20:29, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
You cannot transclude a template from another wiki. Special:Version versus shows no Lua or Scribunto at the latter so you cannot use the current version of Template:In5. The page history [8] shows non-Lua versions before 2013. PrimeHunter (talk) 00:02, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Don't panic[edit]

To deploy a patch for an urgent security vulnerability, the operations team at the Wikimedia Foundation are rolling out restarts of all servers. If something is down, from the wiki to labs to thumbnail renders/image scalers to whatever, never fear! they shall be back up very shortly. If the outage of something lasts for a really long time, do let me know. Keegan (WMF) (talk) 23:57, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

@Keegan (WMF): - AFD Stats on Labs has been dead since the restart. Ritchie333 (talk) (cont) 10:58, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, it looks like it's working again. Labs was being fussy. Keegan (WMF) (talk) 19:35, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

What's going on with this page?[edit]

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Solid State Society appears to be suffering from every script error imaginable, and I don't see the source---it appears to be an internal scripts issue. Perhaps this is related to the post above, but on the off chance that it isn't, can someone take a look and determine what's happening? Loading previous revisions seems to restore the page to working order for me.

Here is what I am seeing: [9]. ResMar 14:37, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

I saw the same thing. All errors disappeared after a simple purge though. SiBr4 (talk) 14:46, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Well, whatever it was it's gone now. ResMar 02:48, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Bad page names[edit]

Https:// Wyatt Family (American Guns), a redirect, is up for deletion. Attempts to link to it using wiki syntax render, brokenly, as [Wyatt Family (American Guns)], which is actually a link to Draft:The. Should we have an edit filter to prevent such pages from being created? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 18:34, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Use the entity &#x3a; instead of the first colon: Https:// Wyatt Family (American Guns). --Redrose64 (talk) 18:48, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
URL-like page titles are already forbidden by means of the title blacklist. However, there have recently been some bugs that caused non-admin/-TE users to be able to create blacklisted pages. See this archived thread. SiBr4 (talk) 19:01, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
@SiBr4:, sure enough, the title that was deleted matches a blacklist entry. Yeah, that MediaWiki software issue was a bit annoying; glad it's fixed now. Steel1943 (talk) 19:08, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Andy Mabbett, a better venue to bring this concern up would probably be MediaWiki talk:Titleblacklist. (I was going to suggest that to you in the RFD discussion, but the discussion was closed before I had a chance. Someone who watches that page may have an idea how to add it to the title creation blacklist, but unfortunately, I personally am not sure what syntax would have to be added to the list to accomplish the task you are asking ... which I agree needs to be done somehow.) Steel1943 (talk) 19:06, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
(Never mind on that; looks like the deleted title already matches a blacklist entry, and was probably created as a result if the software issue that SiBr4 referenced above.) Steel1943 (talk) 19:11, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Find red links[edit]

Hello. Is there a way to find all red links that are in all the articles of a certain category? Xaris333 (talk) 21:28, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

There is in AWB: make a list of pages in the category, save the list, convert it to a pipe-separated list, and make a new list using "Links on page (only redlinks)" for those pages. If you don't use AWB, I could make the list for you if you gave the category name. SiBr4 (talk) 21:41, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
User:SiBr4 thank you! I did it! Xaris333 (talk) 22:13, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Stats broken?[edit]

I've just noticed that appears to be broken as It failed to record any record for this article yesterday. Is there an issue as WikiViewStats is down too? The C of E God Save the Queen! (talk) 21:59, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

The C of E, It's just that one article, I think. I see stats for all my articles for Jan 27. Here's the Main_Page stats. — Maile (talk) 20:31, 29 January 2015 (UTC)


I am a fairly new editor, but am having some difficulty with infoboxes. If for example, a person is say both Native American leader and a politician, Harry J. W. Belvin it does not appear that the boxes can be combined, thus, as I did there, does one have to use 2 boxes? Or is there a way to combine the information?

On several articles, though I have completed the tribal leadership position and language, that information does not actually show in the infobox. It may or may not be a critical piece of information to a programmer but for example in the case of Bill Osceola and Billy Osceola their information is so similar that ANY identifying characteristics that help one to determine which is the correct one may be critical. They did not hold the same tribal office, nor did they speak the same native tongue, but that information does not show in the infobox, though it was completed. Can these become visible fields?

Thank you for your assistance. SusunW (talk) 23:08, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

I've echoed part of your question here: Template_talk:Infobox_Native_American_leader#Parameters_not_showing_up_in_Infobox ... I note that for language the template is wanting an ISO code and not a link to the language artice page, so for Bill Osceola that would be native_name_lang = mik ... and the infobox seems to use the "mik" to alert your browser that the nickname is in that language ... your browser yawns and ignores the info being thrown at it. I've not figured out what, if anything, happens to the known_for parameter info. --Tagishsimon (talk) 23:34, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
@Tagishsimon: Thanks, I think. LOL. I have no earthly idea what an ISO code is, nor a how one figures out what one is. Programming is pretty much unintelligible to me, as a researcher. Can you tell me in simple language for a writer what that means and how one determines what it is? I think, that it doesn't matter if one knows the secret "code" or not as someone added the box to Minnie Evans (Potawatomi leader) and it still isn't visible. I admit freely that programming is way over my head, don't remotely understand it. SusunW (talk) 04:00, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
@Montanabw: totally confused. Andy responded at the link above on template talk, still have no clue what any of it means. Is he saying it won't show up even if you fill it out? I am wayyyyyy too old to learn so many new tricks. ;) SusunW (talk) 04:13, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

You're not intimately familiar with ISO 639-3 Susun? I'm shocked!. From the top. You quite reasonably want to be able to specify a language and a known_for sentence, so they'll appear in the infobox. I'm hoping that Andy, or someone else, will look at that in a short while. The ISO code for Mikasuki language is to be found at the bottom of the infobox on the Mikasuki language page - it's mik. But be clear: the native_name_lang parameter, into which you entered Mikasuki language, is not designed to display a language in the infobox, but instead to specify the language of the native_name of the individual, if such has been added to the infobox (and in a way - ISO codes - useful to browsers and the wider semantic web, but of no use to the human eye). You should only need to hunt for ISO codes if you add native_names and want to do your best for posterity by specifying the language of the native name in a machine-readable format. We - people on wikipedia who understands templates better than I - need to be responsive to your requirement to get a human readable "language" parameter, and a working "known_for" parameter. And if this comes to pass, then we get you to where you perhaps ought to be - able to use Mikasuki language rather than "mik". (There's also the open which infobox to use / should multiple infoboxen be used query yet to be answered.) hth. --Tagishsimon (talk) 04:34, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

@Tagishsimon: You have made my night. I can hardly breathe from laughing so hard. I told Montanabw earlier that it would be an interesting conversation, but that there was a real possibly no communication would occur due to the language barrier ;) and here I am learning that humor is universal. While I (think I do) understand that the language parameter is meant to specify the correct spelling of the native name, from a writer's standpoint, I will have verified that with multiple sources. (In the case of Minnie, I verified it with 3 sources before I determined the 2nd syllable should be waht rather than what.) We call it preponderance of evidence. Not very scientific, possibly, but the way researchers work -- verifiable and weighted. I would much rather be able to see the mother-tongue if it can be determined, as an identifying biographical figure, than as a formula for determining how to spell their name properly, as, it may important for identification purposes, as previously identified, and how the name is spelled, has quite often changed over time. (My own name, case in point, has varied at numerous points in my lifetime, but I am still me.) SusunW (talk) 05:07, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I find your case for a human readable native langauge field unimpeachable, and I live in hope it'll be implemented. The machine readable code of which we spoke is not to do with spelling/verification, so much as to tell the web browser software that "this next bit's in French" on the off chance the browser wants to display French text in a different font, for instance. In the case of Minnie Evans, it turns up in the code which makes up the page as: <span class="nickname" lang="pot" xml:lang="pot"></span>. Which is nice. Meanwhile, I find no guidance on the question of multiple candidate infoboxes, although I'm still poking about on that question. I triple checked the spelling of your name before committing it to my preceding paragraph ... "verifiable and weighted", I muttered to myself, as I typed... --Tagishsimon (talk) 05:25, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Indeed. Mi cabeza da vueltas. I suspect, that you are way too young to be at the muttering stage yet, so I apologize for reducing you to muttering, though I admit, it is often where I am in muddling through Wikipedia. The infobox is a very complicated tool o.O What if it is a woman, Native leader, politician? Oy vey, we input which box? Thank you for the levity. Nothing is so serious that it cannot be laughed about. SusunW (talk) 06:04, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
@Tagishsimon, SusunW: It's not a good idea to simply say "ISO code", since there are many different things that are assigned codes by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). In this context, it's better to say "ISO 639 code", but even that is ambiguous - here, the ISO 639-3 code is what is needed. --Redrose64 (talk) 11:43, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Not so much "display text in a different font" (though that'd be possible), but to set the accent for (for example) text readers for blind users; or to tell translation software what's going on. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 14:55, 29 January 2015 (UTC)


Please see the template talk page for updates, and continue discussion there (where it will be seen by other interested parties). Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 14:55, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Spoiler: known_for has been fixed by Andy and is showing up on Bill Osceola. And consensus is being sought on the template talk page as to whether or not, and if so how to add a native language parameter to the infobox. --Tagishsimon (talk) 15:12, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Thank you all so much. I am amazed at how fast y'all were able to resolve this. Total respect for what you do, to make the articles more reader friendly. SusunW (talk) 19:28, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Embedding Infobox officeholder[edit]

How do we make {{Infobox officeholder}} embeddable within another infobox? I can do that for templates based on {{Infobox}}, but this one isn't. Please discuss at Template talk:Infobox officeholder#Embeddable, or boldly make it so! Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:10, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Should/could this be rewritten to be based on {{Infobox}}? --Tagishsimon (talk) 15:13, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Ideally yes; whether that's possible, I have no idea. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 17:59, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Japanese and Chinese character forms[edit]

Issues sometimes arise with browsers displaying the wrong form (Chinese or Japanese) of a particular character (e.g. versus ). Typically they seem to default to Chinese, which is inappropriate for Japanese content. Japanese (or Chinese) can be forced using the HTML "lang" parameter or various templates that presumably generate this internally, but it is highly tedious to do this throughout a long article that makes extensive use of such characters. Instead, what is needed is a way to set a default (Chinese or Japanese) for a whole article. Is this currently possible, and, if not, could I place a request for it to be considered as an enhancement? (talk) 21:36, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Can you give an example of each? --  Gadget850 talk 21:38, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Do you mean an example of a character that looks different in the two languages? I gave an example at the start of my post. If they look the same to you then it must be due to some local issue on your machine (e.g. maybe you don't have a Japanese font installed). If you don't mean this then I'm afraid I don't understand what you are asking. (talk) 22:04, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
For those like me who didn't know the issue, it appears that some Unicode characters are supposed to render differently depending whether they are part of a Chinese or Japanese text. {{lang|zh|直}} and {{lang|ja|直}} contain the same character 直 renders as: and contain the same character 直. The zh and ja version render differently for me. The third unmarked version renders like the Japanese in my Firefox 35.0.1 on Windows Vista. So does all three in the nowiki text. {{lang}} merely adds a "span lang=". I see exactly the same if "span lang=" is made directly. <span lang="zh">直</span> and <span lang="ja">直</span> contain the same character 直 renders as: and contain the same character 直. PrimeHunter (talk) 22:04, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
The first samples appear different to me. Please provide examples where you see the problem: what articles? --  Gadget850 talk 22:07, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Hes not saying anywhere is rendering it wrong, hes saying its tedious to have to set the language for every character, and would like to set it once for the whole page. Could a template at the top of the page set a variable that could then be read as a default value for unicode display later in the page? Gaijin42 (talk) 22:09, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
As I understand it, the display is potentially incorrect in any article that does not explicitly set the language (directly or indirectly via a template) every time Japanese or Chinese characters are used. Whether it is actually incorrect depends on what the browser does by default. Note also that most characters render the same. Only a few are different. (talk) 22:38, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
When I read "whole article" then I infer that certain articles have a problem. What articles and what are some of the wrong characters in that article? --  Gadget850 talk 22:45, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I can't remember now, and it doesn't matter. It is a general usability/maintainablity thing. For example, Japanese grammar has masses of Japanese text with no language set. If there any any uses of these dual-form characters (I haven't checked the whole article!) then they would likely display incorrectly. Rather than going through checking every line and applying "lang=", a better solution is clearly to set the language once at the top of the article. (talk) 22:50, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
The lang= attribute is already set at the top of every article, and it is set to lang="en" because this is the English Wikipedia. On the Japanese Wikipedia, pages have lang="ja" set at the top. This code must match the language of the page as a whole: if any part is not in the default language, that part should be marked up as being in that other language (whether by using <span>...</span> <div>...</div> or some other element isn't important), but if that element has (say) the lang="ja" attribute, it cannot enclose any text that is not in Japanese, unless that text is itself marked up using (say) <span lang="en">...</span> for text in English. --Redrose64 (talk) 23:33, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
It couldn't override the main language being English, of course. What would be convenient is a directive "everywhere you find Chinese/Japanese characters, set the language as Japanese (or Chinese)". (talk) 00:12, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Redrose64 is right: every English Wikipedia page has the language set to English by the MediaWiki software. Where other languages such as Chinese or Japanese are used, we have templates to set the language code. Without specific page examples, I can't see what is going on and I can't help. --  Gadget850 talk 23:53, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I have given you a page example. I believe I have explained the issue clearly enough. I don't know why you can't seem to understand it. (talk) 00:09, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
I see you did point out Japanese grammar. ("I can't remember now, and it doesn't matter." made me skip over the example). All of the Japanese text should be enclosed in {{lan-ja}} for proper language support. As PrimeHunter pointed out, the characters render differently when different language templates are used or not used. We have a series of templates for language support. --  Gadget850 talk 00:41, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
In both Chinese and Japanese 直 (U+76F4) is the same character with the same meaning. The difference is that the glyph in Chinese fonts looks different from the glyph in Japanese fonts. This FAQ from explains how this works, using the example of this character (U+76F4). So if we had a global tag for the whole page, we would be telling the browser that we want one font or the other for characters in the Asian code range. I think that modern browsers already have heuristics to handle this and usually get it right. For example, Japanese grammar and Chinese grammar both display fine for me, even though neither specifies the lang= for all characters. The problems tend to come up when pages contain mixed languages. One example is this page. If you look at the HTML for that page, it handles the 3 different glyph sets in the same way that we do, by wrapping the characters in "lang=ja" or "lang=zh-Hant" spans. We can always do the same thing on Wikipedia if the characters are not displaying properly. – Margin1522 (talk) 06:24, 30 January 2015 (UTC)