Wikipedia:Village pump/Archive Y

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Village pumps: PolicyTechnicalProposals (persistent)Miscellaneous


Computer game / Video game[edit]

It is proposed that a general article on Computer and video games be created to give an overview of the topic for the novice, and provide links to other, more specific articles for the passionate. This article is being drafted at Talk:Computer game/Computer and video games. It is proposed that the articles on Computer game, Video game, Adventure, Interactive fiction and Arcade game would remain, but focus on elements that are unique to those subcategories. Please edit, and discuss! Mark Richards 00:53, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

This has already been discussed on both Talk:Video_game and Talk:Computer_game. Mark Richards is the one who "proposed" to draft the new combined article, but has been rebuffed by ever other editor. Other Wikipedians who have given input voted to keep them seperate (for reasons, see talk pages). So, please do give input, but note that, so far, no one else supports merging the articles. Not only would it obfuscate both topics, it would require fixing links in 100's of articles. If you have justifications in support of (or against) merging the two, please voice them. —Frecklefoot 16:14, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Thanks Frecklefoot - it looks from the discussion pages that there have been frequent discussions about merging them - Computer game in particular has virtually no content about computer games, and only links to articles about both computer and video games. My proposal is to try to build concensus around an article structure that is both clear and easy to navigate, and also preserves the important differences between the genres - please have a crack at producing something we can all agree on - if we still hate it, there's no harm done and we can keep the old version - I'm asking you to hold off judgement until people have had a go ;) Mark Richards 17:53, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

graph/chart/raw number request[edit]

i'd like to see a graph (2001-present) showing the number of users/month who made 500+ edits. Is anything like that possible? Kingturtle 00:34, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Print Edition[edit]

On a personal level, I can't imagine wanting to own a print version. A hard copy would be a like a blurred snapshot. Wikipedia is a living and breathing document. Wikipedia is not paper. We don't write like it is paper. We don't think like it is paper. I hate the idea of a print edition.

On a practical level, I am not going to stand in the way of anyone working to create a print edition. Also....if there are people interested in owning such a thing, could we make a profit and put that money into the upkeep fund? Or are we non-for-profit? Or does that matter? Kingturtle 23:26, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think the license allows anyone to produce any version they like, for profit or not, in whatever medium they like, subject to a couple of fairly trivial conditions about copyright notices. Mark Richards 00:55, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Press release[edit]

I haven't found any news agnecies running the story! google search finds no mention of the press release. Has anyone found any newspapers with the story? Perl 22:13, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Two: Kuro5hin and Spiegel-Online Jrincayc 15:40, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Neutral term for Movement of a Group of People[edit]

What is the most neutral term for describing moving of a group of people from one place to another? "Displacement", "relocation", or perhaps something third? Nikola 21:32, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

  • Immigration can describe it. For example, there was an immigration wave to the U.S. of Irish peoples in the 19th century. Kingturtle 22:50, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Under consideration is the forced deportation of ethnic Albanians from Kosovo at gunpoint and under threat of death by the Yugoslav army, I don't think emmigration would be an accurate term in this case. Nikola of course doesn't believe any of this, so he's trying to find the term that least describes what really happened. Dori | Talk 22:58, Feb 26, 2004 (UTC)
No it isn't, but displacement of residents of one village. Perhaps forced, perhaps not, if forced then perhaps legitimately, perhaps not. Nikola 23:23, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Diaspora is very neutral, and often used in both voluntary, semi-voluntary, and involuntary cases. It is just a noun, not a gerund: "There were centuries of stability, during which across the region the Kurds laid down roots and settled in small villages, followed by a great diaspora, during which they scattered across the continent."
  • Migration might be better, though I suppose it does infer that the movement is voluntary rather than forced, when deportation might be better. Arwel 23:02, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
  • I think Nikola means "forced relocation" as in the Trail of Tears. Forced relocation would be appropriate in that case. Perl 23:19, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

spring cleaning (watchlists)[edit]

Hello all, springtime soon approaches (for those of us north the equator) and with it comes the tradition of spring cleaning. This provides a clear opportunity to remind yourself to edit your watchlist. Remove the excess. Remove items that were once important and now you don't care about. Remove things you haven't a clue why they are even there. Tidy up.

It is important to all of us that we all parse down our watchlists. Smaller watchlists means less demands on servers. In a recent survey of regular users, the number of watchlist items ranged from 3 to 3393 (that is NOT a typo, and I am sure there are those out there with higher counts). I am at 876.

I believe the system is designed so that watchlists under 1000 retrieve info from the past three days, while watchlists over 1000 retrieve info from the past 12 hours.

The more tidy your whities more tidy your watchlist is, the more efficient your work here will be :)

Sincerely, Kingturtle 19:45, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Hmm, apart from the server-load issue, I'm not sure it is desirable to "remove things you haven't a clue why they are even there". I leave the "Watch this page" box ticked on every edit I make, even trivial copyedits, and find that having completely irrelevant pages on my watchlist is a great way of spotting vandalism. Load watchlist, see an anon edit with no summary, check the diff. If every article was on a few user's watchlists, we'd be more or less guaranteed to spot nefarious edits - and, indeed, general copyediting needs.
I can't speak for what it does to the server, though, and maybe this isn't the best approach; but it does seem to work.
(Aside:Funnily enough, a lot of the time recently I've just been seeing self-corrected vandalism! They discover just how easy it is, and realise they're being childish, I guess...) - IMSoP 22:48, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
No I think they are just experimenting. When they vandalise they do so with every intention of correcting strait away. This is why we should be very careful about calling newbies vandals. theresa knott 23:06, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Unable to rename article[edit]

I want to rename Evaluation of ζ(2) to "Basel problem", but it keeps giving me an error message "could not submit form". There is no content at "Basel problem", and I have renamed articles before, so I know the process. Any idea? Revolver 18:38, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It has trouble with the special charactar and thinks you want to move "Evaluation of &" This might be similar to the way the diff js feature had problems with the & charactar in titles. Perl 19:13, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Wow, such a great name — please, don't move it! I'm sure many people, like me, know what is ζ(2) but never heard about Basel. The current title is clear and self-explanatory. ilya 21:35, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

US Speaker of the House - email address?[edit]

Does anyone have an email address for the current US Speaker of the House (of Representatives), or a way to directly contact him? Even the newspapers say he is the hardest person to try and contact and have termed him "elusive".

Please respond to:

Thank you.

His address, phone number and web contact form are on his website, which took about 1 minute to find, and I didn't know his name: Please do not demand that we reply to your email address only. The information may be of interest to more than just you. Please direct any future enquiries to the correct place - which is either Wikipedia:Reference desk, if the answer is liable to be of interest to the encyclopedia, or Google, if not. Thanks. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:54, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Fun little project : International names for Village pump[edit]

over at If you are a cross-border contributor, please add your localised name. Some of us find this stuff oddly interesting! Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 14:23, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Please Rephrase the Explanatory text for the Watchlist[edit]

Can someone rephrase the text at the top of the watchlist page? Isam was asking for help translating it, and I've realised just how confusing it is, I've never understood what the mysterious cutoff was until today. And there's at least one user who thinks that the number of edits listed is the number of edits he's made (a count of his user contributions).

I suggest that something like this would be clearer: (you have x pages on your watchlist not counting talk pages; users have made a total of y edits to articles on the English language wikipedia during the time-frame you have selected to view below; checking watched pages for recent edits... show and edit complete list of articles you are watching.) fabiform | talk 12:36, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I don't know if it's possible to find something a little less verbose than that, but certainly the current text is a bit opaque. For reference, the text in question is MediaWiki:Watchdetails - IMSoP 13:22, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I made a suggestion & asked a question on its talk page (which is probably where this discussion shd continue?). Elf 17:37, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Can I Count Readers of an Article?[edit]

How can I know how many people viewed a page? It could be nice to know the impact a page had.

Earlier each page used to display the no. of hits at the bottom. This feature was disabled as it made the servers too slow. -- Paddu 10:09, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

So there is no possibilty to know the exposure? Is this feature enabled from time to time?

Permanently disabled with no view to re-enabling it, ever.
James F. (talk) 11:52, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I hope to enable the webalizer stats soon, the scripts are ready, but the old logs need to be processed before the new ones because webalizer chokes otherwise. Hope to find those soon. -- Gabriel Wicke 14:39, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I believe there was a new list of all the articles that gained over 1000 hits posted somewhere on metawiki this morning. Ambivalenthysteria 04:39, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

National Capital territory[edit]

The article on National capital territory implies India is the only country to have it, but there are other countries which have it, some from even before India. Anyone who knows what other countries have it, please fix it. Thanks. -- Paddu 06:15, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Paddu presumably means the article on National capital territory. -- Jmabel 07:49, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, thanks. -- Paddu 08:19, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Added one link, more would be good. However of more concern to me is a seeming inconsistency between this article and the one on New Delhi, see Talk:National capital territory. Andrewa 15:42, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

flags and arms: asking for permission to use images from FOTW and others[edit]

I'm wondering whether anyone has approached Flags of the World ([1] and many mirrors) for permission to reproduce flags (with attribution and links)-- in particular, local flags rather than the flags of countries, which we're already well placed for. For example, I'd like to ask them whether I could use their copy of the flag of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania on its Wikipedia page rather than redrawing it. There are dozens of similar examples.

I'd also like to do something similar with city, county and district arms in England and Wales; [2] has lots of good stuff and I'd like to ask them whether we could use any of it.

Has anyone done either of these things before? Should I? Any thoughts? Marnanel 01:28, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I say go for it. Contact them and tell us how it goes. However, the copyright is held by the original contributors so we might need to contact each individually. But how? There doesn't seem to be contact info. --Jiang 22:05, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The FOTW website is generated by participants in the FOTW mailing list, so it's possible that you could contact people through that (although not all contributors are still active). I'd recommend contacting the Director first, though. However, it may not be necessary to contact the individual copyright holders at all - the FOTW copyright page says "You can freely use any material copyrighted by the contributors of the website" provided you obey certain conditions, which implies that FOTW is able to give permission on behalf of its contributors. (Unfortunately, the conditions on the Copyright page include a requirement not to use more than 5% of the site, which would be difficult to monitor for Wikipedia). -- Vardion 05:40, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, I was wondering whether FOTW might licence things differently for us, perhaps. I'll ask. Marnanel 05:58, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Press release hits jackpot in Germany[edit]

Kurt Jansson wrote on wikipedia-l: "Yesterday there was an article about Wikipedia in Spiegel-Online, the biggest German online news-magazine (30 million visits/month), and I'm sure we got more new German Wikipedians yesterday than ever before.

Through this article the TV took notice of us, and so there will be a feature about us in the "Tagesthemen" at 22:30 (ARD)."

For those who speak German, the Spiegel-Online article is at[3]

File:Wikipedia ARD TagesSchau.jpg

The ARD newsitem can be seen at ARD site, click video above right. Erik Zachte 00:09, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

You don't need to speak German to enjoy the video. Kurt, you have a great beard.  :) fabiform | talk 01:30, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I block so I see broken links at, and when I unblock, Spybot warns me about an attempted Mediaplex download. The WMV movie below was Ok (no spies) and very interesting. Wikibob 09:31, 2004 Feb 28 (UTC)
Saw the video but didn't get the last part. Was that guy with two shelves of print encyclopedia saying that books that they sell will be assimilated by the Borg? I mean, the Wikipedia? --Menchi
No, if I remember correctly he noted that they, with their articles created by professional editors, are a much more reliable source in the jungle that is the internet. ;-) DrZ
Maybe we need a new slogan: "Wikipedia: World Famous in Germany" MK 20:12, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

WMV movie of this (9Mb): -- Gabriel Wicke 13:53, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Is the hit from these German users the reason the 'pedia is so darn slow (and kinda flakey) today? —Frecklefoot 17:12, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)


A translated transcript can be found at meta:German TV coverage of Wikipedia

Personal attacks, legal threats[edit]

Please read through the all new wikipedia:no personal attacks and wikipedia:no legal threats and edit them mercilessly. Thanks. Martin 00:07, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Display of accented Russian characters[edit]

Some pages relating to Russia (e.g. describing Russian personalities or Russian geography) have Cyrillic spelling added after the head word. It is very useful to show the place of accent in Russian words (it matters!). The only correct way to add accents to Russian text is to use the character U+0301 ("combining acute accent") after the stressed vowel. (The HTML codes for it are ́ or ́). This complies with the Unicode standard. There are also some non-standard ad hoc ways of showing the place of Russian accent — e.g. making the stressed vowel bold. Such non-standard things must be avoided. If someone's browser cannot show the standard Russian accents, it is the browser's problem, not the Wikipedia's — Monedula 00:05, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Cyrillic text with accents won't show up on Google results if you search for the cyrillic text without the accent. I suggest marking the accented letter in bold instead. However, if you are going to use accents in cyrillic text, please don't bold or italicize the word, because if you do, the accent will be shown separately from the letter in most (if not all) Mac browsers. And Modedula, where does it say that adding accents to cyrillic text is a "standard"? I've seen many sites using bold letters instead, ie. -- Cantus
Genuine Russian texts have no accents at all, although these may be added for the convenience of foreign speakers. It would probably be typographically correct to leave all accents out; the exact pronunciation of Russian words could (and should) however be added parenthetically in the article. At least article titles should not have any accents for the reason given above. Kosebamse 12:33, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
In fact, there is sometimes accent in native Russian texts, when resolving an ambiguity or making non-standart accent due to ryhme structure. They are always marked as: прим́ер. The uses color instead (and not bold). I think, adding the full pronuncation whenever possible is the best solution. ilya 21:24, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Rosa Parks[edit]

I'm just trying to draw some attention here to Rosa Parks. I found what I think is a pretty bad error, and I am hoping someone will look into it. See: Talk:Rosa Parks Katahon 22:16, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I've adjusted the article to make this more clear. Jamesday 00:10, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

German TV news[edit]

German TV coverage is expected this evening about one hour and 50 minutes after the timestamp of this post (at 22:45 CET, 21:45 UTC, 4:45PM Eastern). The show normally has about two million viewers. Don't be surprised if response times increase just after the broadcast. The broadcast is available via Real Player at [4]. Jamesday 19:57, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

On the HTTP access chart (green line) there's a spike exactly at 21:45 UTC (!) Alfio 22:41, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I got timeouts at that time - seems like that spike was too high even for our better hardware. At [5] is the online edition (not a transcript, but an article on its own), with the link to the video at the right - however both in german only. This great presentation will give the german wikipedia a boost for sure. andy 23:19, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Not sure how exact "exactly" is, but the coverage was approx. 21:55-21:58 UTC, so it couldn't be this peak. Good thing, still. DrZ 23:44, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Unless it was an attempted Denial of Service attack. Mr. Jones 14:06, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Disk caching on[edit]

Squid disk caching has been turned on again, after a week with only RAM caching. This is in response to signs earlier today that the Apache web servers were starting to become overloaded and it's hoped that this will relieve them of enough load that things stay fast. If you see any sign of unusually slow response times on page requests (more than 30 seconds or a timeout) please post about it here. This time the cache is using asynchronous disk requests (the aufs filesystem instead of ufs) and the timeout problems which were experienced last time shouldn't happen. The previous ufs system is reported to have known problems abve 30 requests per second and we're seeing about 60 requests per second even at quiet times, so it's not surprising that there were delay problems with ufs. Jamesday 19:57, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Using MediaWiki namespace[edit]

we have in the German Wikipedia just a discussion going on about the use of the MediaWiki namespace for articles like an extra navigation list. Main argument against it is currently that this is mixing up text elements that were only meant for describing the software (e.g. "From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.") with real content.
The idea was at the end of last week just copied from the english Wikipedia. So my question is: was there a discussion going on that finally led to the decision to use this namespace or did it just happen? And how is your experience in using these new text blocks? How many do already exist and did they cause any technical problems so far?
Thanks in advance, Triebtäter

There are quite a lot in Wikipedia:MediaWiki custom messages already. AFAIK no problems yet - and the fact that a self-link is converted into a bolded non-link seems to indicate that the navigation bar was an intended use of it. If navigation bars are wanted (and it seems like they are even though I could live without them) then the mediawiki gives an elegant way without "spamming" the articles with the same table code, which gets tedious when a change in the table needs to be done. It's the same as with code-copy, better one place for all then n copies of it. andy 16:58, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The fact that internal messages and custom messages are mixed together was a bad idea in hindsight. Eventually I will separate the two. For now, continue to use them, and don't worry too much about technical problems. -- Tim Starling 23:14, Feb 25, 2004 (UTC)

Red link will not go away[edit]

In the article SkyTrain, we had a Wiki link to an article Vancouver SkyTrain. No matter what I did to modify--or delete and reinsert--the link, it always stayed in red; clicking on it opened up an edit window with all the article text in the window! If I changed the URL to go directly to the article (not via the link from SkyTrain), I could view the article properly. If I put an external link to the article on the SkyTrain page, I could link to the article properly. As you can see, the link to Vancouver SkyTrain works just fine from this page, and also from Wikipedia:Sandbox. Another editor changed the link to Vancouver Skytrain (which redirects to Vancouver SkyTrain, and that worked. After all of these experiments, I tried adding the original Vancouver SkyTrain link once again to the SkyTrain article, and once again it didn't work! What the heck is going on!? --Sewing 15:19, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

When the a similar thing happened last time, editing the page which was linked did help to update the link table. However this "hack" doesn't work anymore - I tried the same as Sewing some hours earlier with the same negative results. Interestingly on the "What links here" of Vancouver Skytrain the link shows (even though it isn't there currently). I know there is this long-time bug which causes the link table to be broken - but if that can't be found can we have a way to enforce the link table update manually? andy 15:23, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The link looks blue to me theresa knott 15:28, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Because right now it's actually written as: [[Vancouver Skytrain|Vancouver SkyTrain]]. --Sewing 15:39, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Look at the what links here list to see many non-existing (or better no-longer-existing) links listed. andy 15:54, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
These kind of errors tend to go away once the link tables get updated in the db. Just ignore it for now I say. Dori | Talk 16:14, Feb 25, 2004 (UTC)

British or American English?[edit]

Right now I am seeing a mix of American and British English all over the place in Wikipedia. Is there a standard for this? If not, I think there should be one. It's kind of disconcerting to see "honor" on one page and "honour" on another. Not to mention that this generally affects page titles as well. --Johnleemk 12:57, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Manual of style, and especially this section thereof.
In brief: we use whatever is appropriate to a specific theme, or keep with what the original author chose to use when both are appropriate.
In theory, of course, we could split into,, and so on, but for now...
James F. (talk) 13:07, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Well, continue to be disconcerted, because to have spellings mixed in proportion to the population of internet users using each spelling is the True and Proper situation, although maintaining this ratio precisely may require some deliberate activity. -- Tim Starling 13:31, Feb 25, 2004 (UTC)
Celebrate diversity! We might as well, because by its nature that's the way Wikipedia is going to be. If you want to read and/or contribute to a tightly copy-edited encyclopedia with a uniform writing style, you are not going to like Wikipedia much. Personally, some of the books on my bookshelves at home spell "colour" with a "u" and some spell it "color" without a "u" and I don't find that disconcerting. Indeed, there are some books by Lewis Carroll on my shelves that spell ca'n't with two apostrophes, and, IIRC, some by George Bernard Shaw that spell it cant with no apostrophe, and somehow I manage to get through the day. We shouldn't need to violate that stuffy stale old British sense of honour, and we certainly don't want dilute the raw, rugged, pioneering, euphonious, democratic, economical, sensible, Noah-Webster-inspired linguistic flavor—do we? Dpbsmith 16:08, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Yes, really, this isn't a big deal. Some articles suggest one spelling over another (ie US articles should probably have US spellings) but I don't think anyone will take offense / misunderstand (with the possible exception of pants and suspenders! Mark Richards 19:50, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Or rubber. :-) Elf 20:52, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Requests for article removal by their protagonists: Richard Genovese, etc.[edit]

Question: What happens when a contentious article, which is regularly VfD'ed or argued heatedly on its talk page -- what happens when such a page is about a person or group, and that person or group contacts WP to ask that the page be removed? Does this carry weight in VfD and similar discussions? Is there a proper procedure for politely getting a page about one's own life or affairs removed? Of course nothing can be done about mirrors or copies of the 'pedia elsewhere, but is there a way of asking (and receiving permission for) future versions of WP to leave out such a page? Often the reasons for wanting a controversial page to be actively left out include unhappiness that the primary content associated with one's name/group are ANGRY TALK-PAGE RANTS about the content, or reversion thereof, rather than the content itself; perhaps reflecting poorly on the subject of the article because of the pettiness of its adopted protectors.

Case I: Brianism. Lots of people wanted the page to go away, accused the page authors of trying to promote a small sect; the sect itself found out about the whole mess and wrote a public letter asking that its page be removed. Upshot: Brianism is still here; many W'pedians want the page to go away, while others want it to stay; the open letter is still up on the official Brianist website.

The Brianist open letter was written when the page was in many ways an attack on that religion. That's no longer the case. It's a shame that there are people who lack religious tolerance but that's hardly a reason for us to stop covering religions which some people dislike. Jamesday 19:46, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Csae II: Richard Genovese. Modern-day artist has resume-like bio pasted-in and wikified by a sequence of both anon users and old-timers; it is put on VfD multiple times without reaching consensus; emotions run high due to connections with older related 'is this important enough to be here' issues [cf. DCB]; W'pedians variously claim it is self-promotion or non-encyclopedic. An anonymous user claiming to be RG himself tries to blank out the page, replacing it with a LONG ALL-CAPS NOTE ABOUT HOW HE DOESN'T WANT A PAGE ABOUT HIS LIFE OR WORK ON WIKIPEDIA and would W'pedia kindly stop trying to maintain such a page. Currently: RG is still here, and still on VfD; Morwen recently protected it to keep the recent user from engaging in a reversion-war; no verification that the angry user is the subject of the article; no verification that the subject of the article is important or famous enough to be included in W'pedia. +sj+ 08:16, 2004 Feb 25 (UTC)

  • This last clause is an egregious misrepresentation. Did you ever bother to even look at the cites? Only if you have done so should you be making this statement. --Daniel C. Boyer 17:17, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)
See also Robert Taylor, Hank Eskin and Patrick Jennings. Angela. 17:20, Feb 26, 2004 (UTC)
Thank you, Angela. The Taylor discussion was particularly helpful, and I think I feel good about the result there (removal of partly-npov commentary; preservation of verifiable article).

Why does this keep happening? Is it true or a bug?[edit]

On certain pages I get the following error..

"Someone else has changed this page since you started editing it. The upper text ..."

but it happens with the most minute edit, when practically nothing has actually been modified. Is there a trick to not losing your work? I have tried the Preview page but it has not come up. Besides intelligence, what am I missing?


It's annoying, but you have not actually lost your work; you need to look more closely at the Edit Conflict page. Your work is in a second edit box at the bottom of the page, and if you keep a cool head you can locate it in that box, copy it from there, paste it into the top box, and continue.
Here are two things I do. First, before pressing the "save page" button, I select all the text in the text box (or the block of it I've just written) and hit "copy." Then if anything untoward happens I can try again, or paste it into a text editor, and not lose it.
However... when an edit conflict occurs, it's often because many people are working actively on the same page, and it's not unusual for the result of the above to be a fresh edit conflict. Particularly since the edit conflict box presents the whole page, and it sometimes takes a while to find the place in which the new material should go.Here is my technique for dealing with this.
If I am editing a SECTION on a popular page, and I get an edit conflict... rather than correcting it on the edit conflict page, I copy the text I wish to paste into the clipboard, take a deep breach, think about where on the page it goes, CANCEL from the edit conflict page, and QUICKLY hit the section edit link, find my place, paste my new stuff in, don't waste any time with silly previews (!), and Save Page. I don't recommend this exactly, I just say it's what I do. Dpbsmith 13:27, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
That's called an edit conflict, and it is undeniably annoying. See Wikipedia:Edit conflicts. -- Tim Starling 04:32, Feb 25, 2004 (UTC)

I keep adding Sarah Polley to vfd because the entire article is copied from here but it seems to keep disappearing. What is going on? SD6-Agent 05:13, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It looks like Texture moved it to Wikipedia:Possible copyright infringements. I've added the copyright violation boilerplate text to make that more clear. Angela. 07:07, Feb 25, 2004 (UTC)


I have created the first Wikimoney lottery at User:Silsor/lottery. silsor 23:33, Feb 24, 2004 (UTC)

trees, request for feature[edit]

Whoops. I should have put this in the feature request area. Sorry. GregLee 15:03, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Yes you should. wikipedia:feature requests. Martin 00:20, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Take a look at the Wikisophia Sandbox. --Phil 17:06, Feb 24, 2004 (UTC)
Wow! Trees like that would be very useful in Wikimorial. --mav

phonetics, request for feature[edit]

It would be really nice to have a better way of inputing and editing phonetic notation. I've worked out a little example, whose conventions are loosely based on Tipa, a phonetics package for LaTeX:

Example sentence: "Dubbs asked his brother what it was like in the other world, and his brother said it was not unlike Cleveland."

Editing form of phonetic transcription: <ipa> [d2bz #askt hIz br2Dr#& w2t It w2z layk In Di 2Dr#& wr#&ld n#&d Iz br2Dr#& sEd It w2z nat @nlayk klivln#&d]</ipa>

Display form: [dʌbz æskt hɪz brʌðr̩ wʌt ɪt wʌz layk ɪn ði ʌðr̩ wr̩ld n̩d ɪz brʌðr̩ sɛd ɪt wʌz nat ənlayk klivln̩d]

(Character 809 is supposed to be a non-spacing diacritic, but my browser gets it wrong.)

GregLee 13:03, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think support is coming. Check out :) Dysprosia 13:08, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Aha, very nice. And there's parsetree also, for doing trees. Thanks, GregLee 14:22, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)

You say it's your birthday?[edit]

I got a proposition for ya--adopt your birthday! :) In the interests of keeping all the date pages updated March 15, August 22, December 3, etc., I'd like to suggest (beg, implore) that you toddle on over to whereever your birthday is, and click on "what links here" and use it to check to make sure that everything is up to date, spelled right, and so on, and add anything that's been updated recently. This will be a great blessing to those who want to update Wikipedia:Events in history. Thank you for reading. jengod 07:28, Feb 24, 2004 (UTC)

Also, please note that the standard is to use (d. yyyy) and (b. yyyy) to mark births and deaths on these pages, rather than († yyyy), (+ yyyy) and (* yyyy) etc. fabiform | talk 12:23, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I thought it was standard to use (birthdate - deathdate)? Dysprosia 13:10, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Just for the anniversary pages I mean. There's a list of births for each day of the year (e.g. February 24). fabiform | talk 13:53, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
1927 - Freg Bloggs (d. 1985), rather than
1927 - Freg Bloggs († 1985)

On a related topic, it'd be nice if we had a Wikipedia:Wikipedians by birthday kind of categorization. Jay 13:20, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

But now we do! See Wikipedia:Wikipedians by birthday and add yourself! -- Seth Ilys 15:00, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
So now will Wikipedia say "hello" to me on my birthday? Now that would be user-friendly :-) --Phil 15:15, Feb 27, 2004 (UTC)
Not 23 peple, and already two of them share. Do I separate my name from his with a comma? Put it on a new line? --Charles A. L. 18:54, Mar 1, 2004 (UTC)

WikiProject Schools[edit]

Anyone want to help me create guidelines for Wikipedia:WikiProject Schools? There seem to be many schools on WP, but no guidelenes on how to add information or how to make them encyclopedic. Davodd 07:17, Feb 24, 2004 (UTC)

Log in/log out mystery[edit]

I don't know whether this is a bug; I haven't noticed it before but maybe I was asleep. 1. I was logged in. 2. I started editing a page and didn't save it for quite a while. 3. Apparently I timed out, because it saved it as an anonymous user, not as me. 4. I logged in. 5. I realized that, to request a change to the edit history, I had to log out. So I did. Then I sat there for about 5 seconds, doing nothing. 6. It redrew my screen, with my username at the top, as if I were logged in! 7. I clicked on a link to another page, whereupon it claimed I was logged out. (I repeated steps 4-7 3 times to be sure I wasn't imagining things.) Any ideas what's going on? Is it a bug? Is it my brower? Elf 03:21, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Please see Wikipedia:Clear your cache. When you log out, pages that you've visited while logged in aren't necessarily cleared out of your cache, and will display again as you last saw them if they haven't been changed. --Brion 04:49, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)


(Which How-to articles to include? Where do How-to articles belong?)

"Procedural knowledge or know-how is the knowledge of how to perform some task. Know-how is different from other kinds of knowledge such as propositional knowledge in that it can be directly applied to a task.".

According to Wikipedia:How-to:

"A HowTo is a simple set of instructions needed to complete a task or build something. Ideally, Wikipedia articles should not be mere sets of instructions, but additionally provide historical context and further information."

Both were written before Wikibooks: was created for "developing and disseminating free, open content textbooks and other classroom texts". Not a few of the how-to previously included in Wikipedia have been moved there.

The current situation is less than satisfactory, teachers look at our main page and Wikipedia:How-to and suggest to their students to write how-tos for a task, deletionists use a "how-to" argument for anything that has "How-to" in the title.

Should we continue to have how-tos in Wikipedia or not? Should any type of procedural description be excluded? Is it just classroom-projects and IKEA-how-tos that shouldn't be included? -- User:Docu

I was a strong supporter of having How to knowledge in wikipedia before wikibooks was started. Now I feel that wikibooks is the best place for this stuff. I propose we move all the how to pages over, we put a notice on VfD saying how to's are not to be listed there, we keep the page how to but tell people not to start new how to pages on wikipedia. The how to page should be used to list existing procedural knowledge that needs to be transwikied. theresa knott 00:42, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
  • Theresa, I agree with your proposal. Kingturtle 00:44, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
  • Yes - Wikibooks is the best place for How-tos. That type of content is very welcome there. --mav 04:43, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
  • Appropriate how-to's should have a place in Wikipedia. I am beginning to feel this more and more. I agree that "Wikipedia articles should not be mere sets of instructions, but additionally provide historical context and further information." However, I am somewhat bemused by the apparent consensus that instructional articles are not encyclopedic. Given
a) the derivation of the word (-paideia, teaching or instruction),
b) the historical origins of the Britannica, where "utility" was a chief feature of the mission,
c) The lack of any deprecation on the What Wikipedia is Not page,
d) The apparent endorsement on the Wikipedia:How-to page,
I don't think articles should not be excluded merely on the basis of being how-tos.
An ideal encyclopedia should contain the elements of a full course of general education. Just because something could go in a textbook doesn't mean it should be excluded from an encyclopedia. An encyclopedia is a textbook--a comprehensive textbook, and "instruction" belongs in it as well as "information."
Soapbox off. Dpbsmith 16:15, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I don't think there's any such consensus. I do think that most people don't care which project information ends up in, as long as it is preserved and propagated. Among the people who care strongly about those divisions, I think the only consensus is that original-research style how-tos do not fit in with the rest of Wikipedia. However, many of them would accept a suitably "NPOV" how-to; that is, one which addresses all of the different ways to do something, and puts it in context and into perspective. -+sj+ 09:43, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)
Dpbsmith, I agree with you up to a point. However, distinguishing the two types of knowledge does seem useful. Perhaps wikipedia and wikibooks should be renamed, both being wikipedia, but each part being "wikipedia information" and "wikipedia instruction" (or whatever). Or perhaps the names should be accepted as idiom as they are de facto now.
Mr. Jones 14:20, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

A solution for recipes appears to be that they are to be included (see also Talk:List_of_recipes/Delete, not necessarily with all steps, quantities and variations though). If we leave out the procedural part, they might as well end up in Wiktionary.

In another field, Algorithms on Wikipedia are described in pseudocode to allow to understand how they work. The Meta:reading level of most of us seems to need that "instructional part". -- User:Docu

Following the various comments also made on the mailing list wikipedia.english, I suggest we add the following to "What_Wikipedia_is_not": "Wikipedia is not excluding content that may also be suitable for textbooks (Wikibooks)". -- User:Docu

New Main Page[edit]

The new main page looks awesome. I have one suggestion which I'd like a little feedback on: should the navigation bar on the left list Community Information Page or Wikipedia:Main Page or whatever right below Main Page? That way we can jump straight to either main page....we'd have to name them so that new users wouldn't get too confused, but I think it would be helpful. I assume this is a low-difficulty change for developers to make? Jwrosenzweig 21:52, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Oops, apparently this is already being discussed at Wikipedia talk:Main Page -- for the record, Angela beat me to this suggestion. :) I still think it a good one! Jwrosenzweig 21:54, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Michael Landon (moved to Reference Desk)[edit]

Please follow the link above

Looking for "Food libel" article[edit]

Once upon a time, there was an article about food libel, but I can't find it anymore. Was it deleted? Moved? jengod 19:03, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

Did you mean Food libel laws? Angela. 19:55, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)
Sounds like a redirect is in order. I'll add it. -- Jmabel 20:40, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

"Xxxx (disambiguation)" pages and msg:disambig[edit]

I suggest you to explicitely (in the manual) decide whether pages with this kind of title require msg:disambig. I started the discussion at Wikipedia talk:Disambiguation. My position: msg:disambig for these pages is misleading, since links to these pages can only be intentional. I understand that these pages do need a message, because of slangish "disambiguation" word, but it must be customized for this page. Mikkalai 17:39, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia as TEFL Project[edit]

Hey there, I'm an American teacher living in China andt I'm interested in using Wikipedia with my second-year college English students. Since they come from all over China (though they all go to school in Zhengzhou, Henan province) I figure they can add information about their hometowns and other topics in China, since in general it seems that info is lacking. Any suggestions on how to have my students write articles and not frustrate everybody in the process? Mjklin 11:22, 23 Feb 2004 (Beijing Time)

Maybe Wikipedia:School and university projects already answers most of your questions. andy 15:36, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

How to get a heart attack from a typo, or is for sale[edit]

Anyone with heart problems should be careful when typing in the wikipedia address. i spent five minutes looking at various wikipedia pages (so i thought) and was told that the domain name is for sale. Even worse, the site is without content!! Had wikipedia people sold out??

Details of the Offer

Offer comprises: Domain Name without content. Make Offer

The domain name is for sale by its owner. If you would like to buy the domain name please make your offer below:

It took me several minutes to realise i was missing an i in wikpedia.

This is just a comment, idle chit-chat - i'm not sure if village pump is the right place for it. Sorry if it's not...

Boud 14:55, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Offer it to Wik, he can set up his own 'pedia. ;-) -- ChrisO 16:07, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Hmm. I wonder if and have already been snagged... -- Cimon Avaro on a pogostick 16:54, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)
Yes. →Raul654 03:34, Feb 24, 2004 (UTC)

This looks like an example of a case where the uniform domain dispute policy would get the domain handed over to the Wikipedia. It looks like a bad faith attempt to capitalise on the good name of the Wikipedia. Jamesday 23:45, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Who decide what is encyclopedic and what is not ?[edit]

Discussion about whether recipes belong in Wikipedia. (Moved to List_of_recipes/delete Talk:List of recipes/Delete as per Gentgeen's suggestion)

This was moved to the wrong place. I've added it to the existing discussion now. - IMSoP 19:57, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC) to ensure a discussion be buried really deep. I'll come back to it if necessary :-) Anthère0
There is no beginning of an evidence of consensus on the topic. While moved, whole articles are sometimes deleted, international links broken, information lost (because links are not always left between both projects), cultural background lost, examples of techniques lost, and to end it...since many articles are just deleted, it is very likely that someone will recreate them. This is very bad. Anthère0
Agree. While I don't subscribe to the whole inclusionist agenda, I do notice that VfD is often used as a first reaction to something that a user just hasn't heard of before. IMO we need to do something about this. Dunno what. The policies documents to which VfD already refers emphatically are already explicit that this isn't the way to go, but many still do it, and IMO we lose both content and users as a result. I'm personally spending far too much time replying "Keep" to things that IMO don't meet the VfD listing guidelines at all. Perhaps we should have a "KALU" response on VfD... "keep (and lighten up)". Andrewa 20:27, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Especially as in Finnish "KALU" translates to "TOOL" as used as a reference to the "male member". -- Cimon Avaro on a pogostick 02:34, Feb 26, 2004 (UTC)
The history of this is that there was a new wiki cookbook started up and some people started using the transwiki system to copy the recipes to that other project, then delete the recipes from the Wikipedia and list them as deleted in the transwiki log after the fact. I objected in part because we need due process prior to deleting from the wikipedia and these deletions weren't getting it. So, VfD, since they are being deleted from the wikipedia. FWIW,I've never written a recipe entry, though I've slightly reworked one. Not my type of article... but still interesting to their audience, IMO. Jamesday 23:37, 25 Feb 2004 (UTC)
True, but both the heading and my comment apply to an issue much bigger and more complex than just recipes. I've only voted to keep one recipe article that I can think of, and that was after refactoring to remove the actual recipe and just keep the cultural stuff that was mixed in (;->. Andrewa 02:19, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

acl stayaway browser ^Mozilla/3.0[edit]

I've been getting a very annoying and long error message that ends with "acl stayaway browser ^Mozilla/3.0" off and on for the last couple hours while using Konqueror 3.1.3. I'm using Galeon 1.3.8 right now. Anybody have any idea what is going on? --mav 08:19, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I'm getting it, on and off, with Opera 6.0x; Opera 7.x, Mozilla 1.6b, and Internet Explorer 5.0. (All under Win2K.) Clearly, it's a server-side problem, Mav. Tannin 08:23, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

This has nothing whatsoever to do with your browser or user-agent. Nothing at all. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Zero.
The error message placed undue emphasis on the user-agent check list. If you get the message again, it will tell you:
We may be having an intermittent server problem; please wait a few minutes and reload.
Another possibility is that your User-Agent is blocked, which is done to block e-mail harvesting bots used by spammers and some abusive download spiders:
Let me say again: this has NOTHING to do with your user-agent or your browser. Squid throws this error occasionally for about a minute for unknown reasons. --Brion 08:24, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Thanks Brion. Tannin

images u/l'ed before new FU guidelines[edit]

There were four images I uploaded in in the summer and fall of last year before the new fair use guidelines came into effect. They are:

(Councilman Davis's Details have since been removed from the site since his death)

  • Date Uploaded: 11 Aug 2003
  • [9]:
  • Scan of animals entering Noah's Ark
  • The photo was scanned with a scanner from the 1976 edition of the Good News Bible which I have owned since Christmas 1994.
  • Date Uploaded: 15 November 2003

What page should I go to to get these images deleted? -- iHoshie 06:20, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The new fair use guidelines aren't policy. They are one person making a proposal on the mailing list and another person on the mailing list saying that they liked it, but announced here by the proposer as though it was policy. It isn't. Both of the people involved are very strongly in favor of GFDL only. There are also people saying that they don't like it. If you want fair use images, say that you want fair use images. It's clear from the number of people uploading them that most people do want them. Most of the discussion has been on the mailing lists so far and the people there are, on average, far more enthusiastic about GFDL only than the community as a whole. The discussion on the mailing list continues, with no sign of a decision yet. If you do want to delete the images, Wikipedia:Images for deletion is the place current policy says you should use. If you like the new proposal and want to use it, you could list the images at Wikipedia:Fair use. Personally, I'll stick to arguing that it's silly, because it doesn't really solve the legal problem it's supposed to be helping to solve, and has the effect of pushing the project to fork. Jamesday 12:30, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

"view source" link on 'go' guess[edit]

When I 'go' (button) to a non-existent page and the server guesses at the page (for example "greek koffee"), there is a "view source" link for the Main Page in the sidebar and top, along with that entire sidebar section. There are some similar links in the header. Is this a known bug? Also, is there a better place I should have posted this? --Spikey 04:56, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I've no idea if it's a known problem, but bugs are best posted at sourceforge (instructions at Wikipedia:Bug reports), or at m:Bugs if you want to discuss it. Angela. 20:01, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

Can I use images (and other materials) that are crown copyright?[edit]

Can I use this image [10] even though it is "crown copyright"? Is it fair use? Perl 04:01, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Fair use. IMO, a thumbnail of that image would be fair use. --mav is not the RAF or the MOD, so don't assume that because they have a crown copyright notice on their website that they have permission to reproduce the image. (They may well do, but it's not obvious.) You should email the RAF webmaster via the page at to ask permission. I'm pretty sure this would apply to a thumbnail version as well (the image is copyrighted at any scale, thumbnail or otherwise). -- ChrisO 11:57, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
If you are physically in the UK you would need to check that it is fair dealing, becuase those in the UK can't use fair use. If it is not fair dealing, you would need a license. The HMSO click-license may cover that image. Or not - I haven't checked. The lack of fair use is one reason why it is moderately common to see fair use images uploaded by UK people with a license - they may need that license to avoid infringing copyright, even if it is fair use in the US. Note that for those in the UK, a licensed image is often more free to use than a fair use image. Even a Wikipedia only license is more free in the UK than a fair use image which isn't also fair dealing. Jamesday 13:22, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Copyright question/most linked dab page question[edit]

I have a copyright question. I cut a few small sprites out of screenshots of a game taken from an emulator to use on the Rupee (Legend of Zelda) page. Is this a violation?

Also, I'd like to know when the "most linked disambiguation pages" will be updated again. I like to go through and disambiguate them. Thanks. Derrick Coetzee 02:07, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

You could probably argue fair use. Perl 03:24, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Whats wrong with Wikisource??[edit]

Somethings amiss with Wikisource. When I try to submit something i've edited i get:

"The requested URL //wiki/Wikisource:Historical_documents was not found on this server."

and when i type into my browser i get:

"The requested URL //wiki/Main_Page was not found on this server."

The server seems to be adding an extra /:

Perl 21:04, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Fixed now -- Tim Starling 05:44, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

Guidelines for Indexing Articles[edit]

Are there indexing guidelines or advice for Wikipedia?

Having contributed to the pages on Hyperthyroidism, and Graves-Basedow disease, it is disappointing that the search does not pick up on the name "Graves", "Graves'", nor the errant apostrophe version "Grave's". I created a "redirect" page for Graves' disease, which is the common name in the English speaking world, but this appears not to be indexed, which seems wrong to me.

Since on-site full-text search is still disabled, we are reliant on Google doing the indexing for us. One disadvantage of this is that the copy being searched is doomed to being out of date, as it is only updated when Google's crawler comes our way. So it may be that the page(s) in question simply haven't been indexed yet. - IMSoP 17:35, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
See wikipedia:searching?
Any idea of when on-site searching will be re-enabled?? WormRunner 17:46, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
If all goes well we should get our old database server back (fixed, allegedly) in a couple of weeks; search should be up then if we're not able to get it running on the current system. We've had some trouble getting all memory on the current machine used, and search runs too slow to be usable so far. --Brion 10:05, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia button image for links[edit]

Is there an image that could be used to link to Wikipedia (button size — 88x31)? alerante 17:06, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

There is Wikipedia:Banners and buttons but they're rather outdated. Someone who's good at these things needs to make some new ones. Dori | Talk 17:13, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)
I made too new buttons. I think they might be what you need. Perl 17:42, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
File:Wikperlban.png and File:Bancolorwik.png
Perl 17:48, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Perfect, although you might want to consider making those transparent as well. alerante 23:56, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
How's this
File:Wikperlban.gif -- Davodd 15:05, Feb 26, 2004 (UTC)

That's great, but shouldn't it be "WikipediA: ThE FreE EncyclopediA" ;^)

Computer screenshot guidelines[edit]

This may seem like a trivial issue, but after half a dozen variations were uploaded to Mozilla Firefox, I decided we needed an agreed policy on the form of screenshots used to illustrate software articles. Since image copyright issues are currently a hot topic, and screenshots have specific issues in that regard too, I've created Wikipedia:Software screenshots as a central point for discussion of both. I'm pretty sure this isn't duplicated elsewhere, and would appreciate comments and refinements so that this can be linked into the hierarchy of "official" policy pages in due course. - IMSoP 15:46, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

[Comment by Perl moved to the page in question.] Sorry, I should have said: please comment there, not here, to avoid this page becoming too large. - IMSoP 16:48, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Navigating back and forth through differences between revisions[edit]

How hard would it be to add (possibly) two new links to the Difference Between Revisions page that is displayed when you click on "Last" in the page history. The links would be "Prev" and "Next" and would link to the Difference Between Revisions for the Previous and Next Revisions (if either or both existed). I recently wanted to skip though the revisions of a page to find when a recent change occurred and who changed it, and found it a very difficult thing to do. - Gaz 13:44, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I tried constructing a history traversal query once before and found it to be very slow for large histories. Brion thinks it should be possible to do in logarithmic time but I'm inclined to think that such features should be left until after the schema redesign. -- Tim Starling 13:52, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)
I think I'd better pre-empt queries of "what's all that mean?" by explaining that a schema is the way data is organised in a database, and that a complete restructuring of the MediaWiki database structure is (as I understand it) imminent. See also Denormalization. - IMSoP 14:17, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Currently the history ('old') table doesn't contain pointers to next/previous revisions. Recentchanges has a limited summary table which does include a previous link in order to generate the 'last' diff links; the history list grabs a bunch in order so can construct the pointers from what it needs.
However I suspect we don't actually need that information at the time a link is generated; it should be possible to make a link that'll say "diff revision X with whatever comes immediately before/after it", and when we load the page we check in old for something > or < than that timestamp, with appropriate ordering, limit 1. That ought to work for most cases and be reasonably snappy... however the timestamps only have second resolution and there are cases in the database where timestamps are not unique in an article's history. These are mostly due to bugs that didn't record edits properly (a lot of edits in Jan/Feb 2002 got their timestamps reset accidentally, and there used to be a bug that affected some near-simultaneous edit conflicts by recorded one save twice and throwing the other away). I'm not sure how to handle those properly. --Brion 10:00, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Thank you both, I'll wait. As a Database Consultant, I know exactly what they are about to go through. Its amazing that you spend ages creating a schema, think it is great, and come back (usually much) later and think it more closely resembles doggy-doo. So you start all over again. Have fun ;-) - Gaz 16:31, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Layout change for Votes for deletion?[edit]

See Wikipedia_talk:Votes for deletion#VOTE:_NEW_LAYOUT_FOR_VFD! -- BL 11:29, 22 Feb, 2004 (UTC)

Article count[edit]

Only 1487 articles to go! A live count is available at -- Tim Starling 09:43, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)

Seems to be down.—Eloquence
Try Ronabop 04:44, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia user pages on Wikinfo[edit]

--> Wikipedia talk:User page

Moving/renaming images[edit]

Is it possible to move/rename uploaded images? When looking at the Image: namespace page for the image, there's a Move link, but does that move the image itself, or merely the page that describes the image? I can't seem to find any mention of images on Wikipedia:How to rename (move) a page. (The image in question is Image:YabokoLogo.png, the logo of Russia's Yabloko political party - it needs to be changed to "YablokoLogo" rather than "YabokoLogo".) Thanks. -- Vardion 03:23, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

No. Rename the image and upload it with the new name. --Brion 03:47, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Plain Vanilla Main Page[edit]

See Wikipedia:Plain vanilla main page. Optim 02:55, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

How can I see user contributions for users that aren't logged in?[edit]

Is there a reason why that from an anonymous IP address's user page, there is no link to "User Contributions"? ugen64 01:01, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)

For me, an anon IP address is automatically linked to the contributions - there is no user page (at least, from Recent changes and article histories) - does that not work for you? -- Wapcaplet 01:43, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Me too. Anon users link goes straight to the contributions list - Marshman 02:24, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)<IP or username>
—Noldoaran (Talk) 17:11, Feb 27, 2004 (UTC)

Any need for links in printable version?[edit]

Not sure if this has been discussed before, but is there any need to have links to other articles in the printable version of an article? It seems unnecessary when its only purpose is for printing.

—chopchopwhitey 00:46, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Doesn't really hurt anything, and it's probably easier to generate than one that removes the links :-) Also, it might be at least useful to know which phrases are linked in the printed version, in case someone wants to look them up. -- Wapcaplet 01:41, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Could go into an automatically created "See also:" section at the end, that lists all in-text in-wiki links alphabetical for the print version, maybe naming only existing links. For example:
Déi Lénk
The Left (Luxembourgish: Déi Lénk, French: La Gauche, German: Die Linken) is a socialist political party in Luxembourg.
It is associated with the European United Left - Nordic Green Left in the European Parliament. It does not currently have any members in the parliament, however.
External Link
... could become the following print article:
Déi Lénk
The Left (Luxembourgish: Déi Lénk, French: La Gauche, German: Die Linken) is a socialist political party in Luxembourg.
It is associated with the European United Left - Nordic Green Left in the European Parliament. It does not currently have any members in the parliament, however.
External Link
See also
European Parliament, European United Left - Nordic Green Left, French language, German language, Luxembourg, Luxembourgish language, Political party, Socialist
Pros: Looks more like an print encyclopedia, Contra: See also: German Language is a bit silly.
Maybe am even better solution would be to introduce small arrows into the print version instead of wikilinks. Looks even more like an encyclopedic article. Like:
The Left (->Luxembourgish: Déi Lénk, ->French: La Gauche, ->German: Die Linken) is a ->socialist ->political party in ->Luxembourg.
It is associated with the ->European United Left - Nordic Green Left in the ->European Parliament. It does not currently have any members in the parliament, however.
External Link
What do you think (example is choosen rather randomly)? -- till we *) 11:04, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Links are useful in the printable versions. Some third party users use the printable versions of our pages since the printable versions already have all the copyright info and links needed to be legal. Somebody also made a CD version of Wikipedia based on the printable versions of pages. Links also highlight relevant terms even on hardcopy. --mav 04:13, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Image Replacement non-Functional[edit]

This has been a problem for several monthas, but I do it so seldom that I'm unsure if it a transient problem or one that is always been here since the servers became overloaded. It is not possible to change an image by loading it on top of an old image. Sometimes one might want to clean up an old image, or adjust its size, or even replace it with an improved version (better cropping, etc.) The present system does not allow images to be altered and then reloaded. Loading any image on top of an old image lays down all the proper "paperwork", but the actual image does not change. It does not change for several days. I'm unsure if it ever changes. Both the new and the old versions exist on the document page, but only the original image is used by an article. I've been forced to just abandon old images, rename the improved version, and load it as a new image, which is terribly inefficient and must be leaving orphans behind, but what other option is there? Is this just part of the silly behavior of the present server setup? - Marshman 00:03, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It has always seemed to work fine for me. Are you sure it's just not a matter of your browser cache not being refreshed? -- Wapcaplet 00:30, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I've done it before, some while back, so it has worked fine for me; but not since about November. But this last time I waited overnight with no change. What was particularly odd was that the photo doc page showed the old image at the new image dimensions. Because I had uploaded a larger version of the first picture, when it enlarged the old image, the picture went fuzzy - unable to fill in all the new pixels required. Meanwhile, the article page continued displaying the undersized image. I'll check, but because I have a broadband connection I set the browser to always renew all pages. Do not know if that setting affects images. - Marshman 02:20, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Marshman is 100% correct. I've experience similiar problems. I overwrite an old image with a new one, and when I load the picture, I get a distorted version of the old one. It's definetely not a (local) caching problem - I switched browsers and got the same thing. →Raul654 02:30, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)
You have to force the cache to update. This is now complicated slightly by having server-side caches... See Wikipedia:Clear your cache for some tips. usually shift+reload or ctrl+reload in IE or Mozilla will do the job.
Thumbnail images also probably don't update properly. If you could point to a particular image, we could check it out. --Brion 02:31, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Yep, I experience exactly what you're talking about - old image at the new dimensions. Hitting "refresh" fixes it. -- Wapcaplet 02:33, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Image purging is enabled since yesterday, this problem should be solved mostly. -- Gabriel Wicke 17:00, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Main Page replacement[edit]

A discusssion to replace the Main Page --> Wikipedia talk:Main Page

Wikipedia:WikiProject Poetry and heading style[edit]

I just noticed that Wikipedia:WikiProject Poetry and associated articles like Poetry and English poetry don't follow Wikipedia section heading style in regards to capitalization found in Wikipedia:Manual of Style (headings). Is there some reason we should not edit these to be conformant to the standard section heading style? Bevo 16:28, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

As one of the few members of that Wikiproject, I think it's safe to say that (a) we didn't know/remember the style guideline and (b) we thought it looked good capitalized so that's what we did. Obviously if we're in violation of style, switch us, but I do like the caps myself. :) Also, it should be remembered that a lot of the headings at English poetry, for example, make extensive use of proper nouns that remain capitalized. Thanks for bringing it to our attention....I'll do my best to stay away from the Shift key in future. :-) Jwrosenzweig 16:36, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The level of subject matter expertise needed (as you say) is one reason that I have not just gone in boldly chopping capitals down to size. It's always better for one who is lending content to an article to achieve a little standards conformance at the same time. I'll do some obvious ones, and leave any ones I'm in doubt about as they are. Bevo 02:38, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Talk Pages for IP (not logged-in) users on "New pages"[edit]

I really like the New pages feature. But I've noticed that the IP addresses are not links to the associated user page. Is this intended or an oversight? -Rholton (aka Anthropos) 02:52, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Although you could probably create a page named User:, we discourage this because IP addresses are not tightly bound to specific users. Most dial-up services assign you new IPs every time you log in, and a different user may get that same IP later. Users should thus create a named account so their contributions can be conglomerated into one list, people can remember them by their name, and they can have a user page always at the same place. -- Timwi 13:00, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Thanks, Timwi. Actually, I was confused. What I was (and still am) missing is a link to the user's Talk page. This is included on the Recent Changes page, but is missing from the New Pages page, for all users, logged-in or not.

Symbols for Chemical Equilibrium[edit]

There is no symbol for chemical equilibrium (the <-> thing is chemical resonance) Bensaccount

↔ or ⇔? Dysprosia 08:42, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

↔ is resonance, ⇔ is a box. Equilibrium is two half arrows like --\ over \-- . Someone needs to make a Wikipedia symbol for Equilibrium. Bensaccount 18:03, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It's not really a wikipedia issue, it's a font issue. Here are three more arrows defined in Unicode, maybe the right one is among them: ⇋⇆⇄. However those may display as simple question marks if your font doesn't support them. andy 21:11, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
You probably want the first one. I get you know. If ⇔ doesn't show up properly for you, you probably won't have much luck with the Unicode symbol. Dysprosia 04:06, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
If you don't want to wait till most users have the character in their font you can also do it with the TeX syntax - <math>\rightleftharpoons</math> should show it, but strangely the TeX engine used here currently gives a parsing error. andy 11:55, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
How do you put the characters in your font? Bensaccount 22:03, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I did not put it there - Microsoft did :-) Actually it is a special font MS had for download some time ago which contains almost every Unicode character, including thousands of japanese and chinese characters. But it isn't available anymore, and I have no idea which product they include it now.
However even if you find a font which contains that character it won't help much - as most of the readers of this site won't have such a font. And if all those will only see a question mark or a box instead of the arrow they will not understand the meaning - if it is a native name of a city which displays wrongly it doesn't hurt, but the arrow is more essential. I tried to read the above with a Win2000-IE6 standard installation and it gave only boxes - only my Mozilla with that special font shows it correct. Maybe you better ask for ideas how to continue at Wikipedia talk:Chemistry, as there the chemistry people might have a solution. TeX would be a solution, but the fact that rightleftharpoons don't work is already listed on Wikipedia:TeX requests for quite some time (since October actually). andy 14:51, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

When should I remove Stub Messages?[edit]

Hi, this is a great place!

I have just expanded a page containing a stub message Malvern Hills.

Is it cool to delete the stub message myself, or is that decision better left to someone else?


Chris B


If you feel it's crossed that threshold, feel free. Also, feel more than free to create an account: there are several good features here that only work if you are a registered user. -- Jmabel 23:40, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Page footers, revisited[edit]

It seems that the discussion at meta:Page footers is pretty much over. It seems that there is no consensus between alternatives #1 and #3, but a clear opposition to suggestions #2 and #4. How would I proceed further now? What would be the next step in attempting to reach consensus? Thanks for any help. -- Timwi 22:52, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Please see Mediawiki talk:East Asia. The discussion is not over, and certain assumptions about the implementation cannot be made. --Jiang 01:21, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
This discussion is just starting. I object to these "clutter objects" on principle. If the content of these "footers" is valid then create an article for that content and link to it. --Gaz 08:35, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
See my reply to you on the meta page. — Timwi 12:56, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Page footers is available for commenting and discussion. --Jiang

Errors in What links here ?[edit]

If I go to the "What links here" for Pelé I find Pele listed 3 times, but if I go to Pele, I find just 1 link to Pelé. Why's this so ? Jay 21:56, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It's a bug. ;-) -- Timwi 22:52, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
When will it get fixed? Try which has dozens of links to "Orphaned articles". -- SGBailey 22:14, 2004 Feb 25 (UTC)

Special:Whatlinkshere/National_capital_territory and Special:Whatlinkshere/Talk:National_capital_territory give scores of Village pump links. What's up? -- Paddu 10:21, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I noticed the same thing on Special:Whatlinkshere/Delaware, which gives tons of hits to Current events. →Raul654 10:23, Feb 28, 2004 (UTC)
I was about to add this to meta:MediaWiki_feature_request_and_bug_report_discussion but hey, it seems to have gone away! Was the bug fixed or was it just a transient thing that went away, probably to surface again? -- Paddu 07:45, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Visualising article hierarchies and interdependences?[edit]

A problem that has sometimes bothered me: when contributing to a field of knowledge in which there is not a well organised hierarchy of articles, it can be difficult to find out what has already been written. To get an overview, it is often necessary to follow many, many links and additionally search for individual words or phrases (further complicated by the current absence of direct database searching). I wonder if there are more effective means of understanding how articles are related to each other. It would help a lot if one could get a graphical representation of links between pages. Are there any tools to do this, or are there other ideas how to make it easier to understand the increasingly complex structure of our article namespace? Kosebamse 19:47, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I looked around and found TouchGraph - enter a URL and a neat Java applet pops up showing a network-like map to whatever depth you like. -- Wapcaplet 20:04, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Edit: Does not appear to work within the article namespace though; looks like it works only with entire sites. Darn :-) -- Wapcaplet 20:08, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
A rudimentary non-graphical solution is for someone to dedicate a large percentage of his or her Wiki time to compiling or maintaining an alphabetized or hierarchical list of articles on the desired field of knowledge. The list is formed by manually chasing down links between germane articles, and also watching for recent contributions by editors who are known to edit on the topic. Of course, the compiler of the list often encounters the same fundamental problem--figuring out what is already out there, and trying to find unfindable articles that aren't linked to anything else, or only linked to their own small subset of related articles, usually all edited by the same person. Nevertheless, other contributors (who know the list exists and aren't too lazy to consult it) can save some time by exploring the list before doing their editing.... I know it's not at all what Kosebamse had in mind, but if one person is focussing most of his or her mental energy chasing down articles on a particular topic--rather than editing or creating articles--it can, I think, be fairly efficient. An example of a hierarchical list is List of United Kingdom-related topics. An excellent example of a well-maintained alphabetical list is List of Japan-related topics, which I have tried to emulate with less success with List of Korea-related topics. --Sewing 22:08, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
One problem I can see with such a visualization is that it'd be difficult to make it hierarchical - since any article can link to any other (or even be directly related in some way to another), a graphical view of such a thing would be a great big messy network of nodes. I don't doubt that someone could come up with a little utility that would crawl around on Wikipedia checking out "what links here" and similar things, and build a graphical (or even non-graphical) diagram of the structure. It could be a useful thing to have - if only to help contributors figure out what specific parts of a broader topic need to be added, merged, deleted, or otherwise reworked. -- Wapcaplet 01:50, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
A well known limitation of a wiki is that wikis were really made for ease of writing and not for ease of reading. Unfortunate for an encyclopedia! I think it will unfortunately continue to require a lot of human effort to show a well organized overview of any subject. Tempshill 20:07, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
We have to convince writers and editors to add their articles to these lists. If we distribute the chore, it is manageable. mydogategodshat 05:30, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Whatever happened to the [[Category:...]] feature which reared its head a few months back and then hid away again? I tried it out over on the Test Wikipedia and it seemed fine but never managed to make it over here AFAICT. --Phil 10:03, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

Random human-authored page?[edit]

I'd enjoy a "random human-authored page" feature that excludes the robot-written descriptions of U. S. towns, which currently seem to constitute about 50% of the "random page" hits. Thoughts? Dpbsmith 17:14, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

See User_talk:Rambot/Random_page - and you will see many thoughts, but few decisions. - IMSoP 17:56, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
There about 30-35,000 rambot articles and 210,000 articles total. Thus only about 1 in 6 or 7 random articles should be a rambot one. And remember, if you get a rambot page, google for some fact about the place, and add it to the article, then it is a rambot article no more! Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 18:02, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Try it. The percentage is far, far higher than 1 in 6. I just tried ten random pages and got four rambot articles on U. S. towns. Using a binomial test, if we assume the expected percentage is 15%, then getting 40% in ten tries is statistically significant at the 5% level. Dpbsmith 21:38, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Ten tests was not enough. I've just done 50 tests and the result is 1 in 6.25 i.e 8 rambots in 50 trials. Curiously I also got 4 rambots in the first 10 trials.
Adrian Pingstone 08:54, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
(Shrug) I tried again and got zero rambots in 25 tries. Oh, well. I guess that's what sustains Las Vegas. I don't feel dragging out my old statistics textbooks to try to figure out whether the rambot hits really come in bunches. Maybe the algorithm needs to be changed from "random" to "stratefied random" or something. I did read User_talk:Rambot/Random_page and conclude that there was little point in my bringing the topic up. Dpbsmith 14:48, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
All a statistical signifficance of 5% means is that if you did 20 trials, 19 would show the correct result and the last would be incorrect. So you managed to do the 1 in 20 trial that failed. Like Adrian said, you need more tests to be more confident. Jrincayc 16:52, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Proposed new fair use guidelines[edit]

In accordance with the recent discussion on the wikipedia-l mailing list and Jimbo's pronouncements (edit: this was not a decision - this was an opinion and discussion is ongoing Jamesday) on the matter I have created

Wikipedia:Fair use

This page serves as a discussion page for debating whether an image or other file can legitmately be considered fair use, and whether all alternatives have been exhausted. Images and other files that may be eligible should not be used until there is consensus on the page to do so; on the other hand, they should not be deleted until there is consensus that they are not eligible for fair use.

Image pages that have undergone due process should be tagged with {{msg:verifieduse}} (MediaWiki:verifieduse).

All pages which are currently tagged with {{msg:fairuse}} (many older ones link to fair use instead) should undergo due process on this page to determine whether their status as fair use is justifiable. If so, they should be tagged with {{msg:verifieduse}} instead, if not, they should be deleted and efforts should be made to seek free alternatives.

Whenever a previously fair use image is deleted, a link should be added to Wikipedia:Requested pictures. Images without any copyright information should either be deleted or undergo the fair use process.

No newly uploaded images should be tagged with {{msg:fairuse}}.

This post is also cross-posted to the wikien-l mailing list. [11]

—Eloquence 17:01, Feb 20, 2004 (UTC)

You should establish that there is community consensus before suggesting deleting such images. The mailing list is a tiny portion of the whole community and we already have an established process for replacing images: finding a more free one and uploading it. Did Jimbo announce an official decision of the Wikimedia Foundation Board on this question or is he acting as an influential individual who is advocating his own personal view, one I think amounts to advocating forking the project. Jamesday 09:49, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Note that it is contrary to current policy to delete an image without listing it on either Wikipedia:Images for deletion or Wikipedia:Possible copyright infringements. Not recommended for a sysop who wants to retain the deletion capability to delete without using due process. Jamesday 12:19, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Placenames - use traditional or modern versions?[edit]

Having recently expanded an article on Nishapur in Iran following the recent rail disaster there, I've found that the place appears to be referred to more often as Neyshabur these days. Nishapur is the "traditional" English transliteration, Neyshabur is the current version (much like Peking/Beijing in China). However, Google reports that Nishapur is more often used (5640 results) than Neyshabur (2970 results). Which version would I be better off using in the article? -- ChrisO 13:11, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think the way it is now, with a redirect at Neyshabur, is fine. As that usage becomes more common (referring to your Google results and number of Wikipedia links), we could flip the position of the article and redirect. Lou I 16:27, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
We'll use whatever most English speakers use. That means we'll often switch long after those in the local area have switched, because we need to allow time for others to learn about the change and most people don't get all of the official reminders and notices seen by the locals. We should indicate the new name in the article as soon as practical, so people who come here will learn of it and we should redirect from the new name to the old, while we use the old, then from the old to the new when we switch. When it comes to historical articles, the name at the time is the one most often used, with some disputes in cases where each side in a war used different names. Jamesday 09:40, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Time Zone[edit]

I am confused about the time zone of the date stamps. It appears to be one hour ahead of California time, or MST - Mountain Standard Time. Shouldn't it be Coordinated Universal Time in order to be neutral? --pstudier 06:07, 2004 Feb 20 (UTC)

Timestamps are in UTC, though if you've set your preferences to display differently they will do so in most places. --Brion 06:15, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Sorry, I just noticed this as I posted my question. Why are there different timezones? "Because the earth is round and it keeps spinning" by Radar, a character on Mash. ;-) --pstudier 06:21, 2004 Feb 20 (UTC)

Congress, in general[edit]

I've noticed that Wikipedia's articles on the United States Congress are a bit lacking--for instance, we don't even have articles on most of the current members, let alone past ones. As I've been slogging through the List of House Committees, I've realized there's a number of separate WikiProjects I could start here. Where are good places I could advertise for help with these various things? I'm no good at starting new articles (prefer to edit) and I'm not a congressional scholar. Meelar 05:57, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC) P.S. Please reply at my talk page

There's a Wikipedia:WikiProject US Congress that's quite dead and need reviving. The Congressional Biographical Directory and the large amt of commentary on the house and senate websites are almost all public domain. --Jiang 06:00, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Adam Carr has done extensive work on U.S. Congress, such as List of United States Senators, List of members of the U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. House election, 2004, U.S. Senate election, 2004 and United States Senators from 1789. Adam would be a great person to talk to about your ideas. Kingturtle 06:04, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Edit count[edit]

Is it possible to quickly find out the number of edits made by myself or any other user (not which specific ones, just a total number)? If so, can this be filtered by date, etc - e.g. can I find out how many edits I made in December 2003, or in the last 3 weeks, and so on. Would find this handy. Graham 04:29, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

As far as I know there is no quick way, and no quick way will be implemented. To find out the number of edits you/someone has made, go to "user contributions" then click "next 50" (or change this to 250/500, whatever) until you reach the end of the user's contributions, count the last batch and add to the number at the top. This is boring and kind of stupid. I think it is to discourage any status being attached to how many edits a user has made, so people in arguments and edit wars don't say "I've made 4,657 edits, you've only made 76, I outrank you...". Well you get the idea.  :) fabiform | talk 09:39, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
You can also wait until Wikipedia:List of Wikipedians by number of edits is updated again (last update was in August last year, so it should very much overdue), or search in those nifty Wikipedia statistics. Both of course only work if you look for a user which already have made it into the Top50 or Top100. andy 11:53, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

to troll or not to troll, and sock puppets too[edit]

Hello all, this is just a friendly reminder about trolls (and sock puppets too). As Wikipedia increases in coverage, so too increases the meddling of trolls. There are times when it seems like trolls are everywhere, and it becomes a game (of sorts) to catch, nab or name the little buggers (and sock puppets too). It is in such moments that people begin to be overly suspicious of the actions of newcomers. Our trust in newcomers diminishes. Once distrust supercedes trust in a community, it is difficult to reverse the change. Let's not let that happen to Wikipedia. The project depends on a strong, friendly community. Build the database and build the community, too.

I realize you are all working hard at building our community. This messages is not to insult you or scold you. It is just a reminder. Welcome newcomers. Don't be overly suspicious of the actions of newcomers. Speak softly.

But carry a big stick, Kingturtle 04:20, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Sounds good advice, I'll try. Andrewa 11:34, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I'm concerned at the tendancy to use the label 'troll' to describe people with whom we disagree. What is trolling in this context? What is the difference between trolling and vandalism / abuse? 20:02, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

From the Jargon file
troll v.,n.
1. [From the Usenet group alt.folklore.urban] To utter a posting on Usenet designed to attract predictable responses or flames; or, the post itself. [...]
2. An individual who chronically trolls in sense 1; regularly posts specious arguments, flames or personal attacks to a newsgroup, discussion list, or in email for no other purpose than to annoy someone or disrupt a discussion.
Trolls are recognizable by the fact that they have no real interest in learning about the topic at hand - they simply want to utter flame bait. Like the ugly creatures they are named after, they exhibit no redeeming characteristics, and as such, they are recognized as a lower form of life on the net, as in, "Oh, ignore him, he's just a troll." Compare kook.
Some people claim that the troll (sense 1) is properly a narrower category than flame bait, that a troll is categorized by containing some assertion that is wrong but not overtly controversial. See also Troll-O-Meter.
The use of "troll" in either sense is a live metaphor that readily produces elaborations and combining forms. For example, one not infrequently sees the warning "Do not feed the troll" as part of a followup to troll postings.

--Ruhrjung 02:42, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

So a troll is someone whose arguments I find specious or annoying, or if I think that they are not interested in learning (agreeing with me?) "Ignore him, he disagrees with us"? Or worse, "Ban him - he disagrees with us, and shows no signs of learning (agreeing with us)"? See also [12] for an alternate view. Aside from vandalism and abuse, how can we ever distinguish someone who holds views we don't like from someone who is deliberately trying to provoke by adopting views we don't like? 05:36, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
That's not the way I understand it ... a troll is not just specious, but an attempt to provoke and inflame without really caring what the argument is. It's argument for the sake of making people angry, or at least that's what I infer. -Leo Okonski 10:08, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

See wikipedia:sock puppets

(And then see, Wikipedia:Meet the Feebles :) →Raul654)

Tell me about this - not sure I can comprehend it. Thanks 02:20, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)



Username or Real Name? Which should I use?[edit]

I was wondering what the pros and cons of signing posts using a real name versus a username are. I was unable to find any discussion of this on Wikipedia:Changing username or Wikipedia:Username. All that they say is that your username should not be irritating or controversial. The question came up while pondering whether I should list myself under my real name or my username on Wikipedia:Instant Messaging Wikipedians, but then that got me onto the broader issue, and now I can't decide whether to sign with my real name or my username, it's a terrible decision! Please help :-) --Skyfaller 02:33, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)

  • Also, if I use my real name, should I use my full name Nelson Pavlosky or just Nelson? I've been signing as Nelson, but then I realized it was kind of egotistical to think that I'm the only Nelson on Wikipedia. Although it may be true at the moment, I don't want to cause confusion in the future if another person with the first name "Nelson" becomes an important contributor. On the other hand, my full name seems a bit long and unwieldy for a sig. --Skyfaller 02:44, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)
Basically it's your choice. People do all sorts of things. I sign with my username. Other people, like Cimon Avaro, sign with some variant on their user names. MyRedDice usually signs with his first name. Ed Poor has his real name (or so I assume) as his user name, but signs as "Uncle Ed". Some people completely avoid using their real name because they prefer to remain anonymous.
My personal opinion is that it makes everyone's life easier if people use their usernames or a close variant as their talk page signature. That makes it easier to link your comments on talk with your actions as an editor. If your user name and your talk sig are unrelated, you look like two people to me until I know you. Isomorphic 02:58, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
That sounds like excellent reasoning to me, would you or somebody else like to point the issue of confusion resulting from a sig that is different from your username on Wikipedia:Username? I realize that some people may want to sign their real name when they've already joined with their customary username, etc., so it's not a useless feature, but I think that avoiding this kind of confusion is very important and something that people should take into consideration. -- Skyfaller 03:28, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)
<< Other people, like Cimon Avaro, sign with some variant on their user names. >>
"Actually, Mister President, that is not entirely accurate." I regularly use two variant signatures, which serve as a semi-private barometer/(string around my finger) about my general mood/(life situation). I use my given name (Jussi-Ville Heiskanen) when I am going through a concentration requiring or stressful patch in my life, so that I am reminded that letting that spill over to wikipedia, will be ascribed explicitly to me and my reputation. "Cimon Avaro on a pogostick" (like now) I use when I am either not stressed or pressured, or so stressed and or pressured, that I am deliberately choosing not to even make a serious effort at engaging more comprehensively at wikipedia. A sort of relaxed/(deliberately goofing off (in a constructive way) to relieve stress) signature. The signatures which are just the bare Cimon Avaro, are either very old, or hand-typed. (I hope this confuses matters :) -- Cimon Avaro on a pogostick 07:40, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)
There's an old wiki convention to strongly encourage the use of real names. Anonymous posting is considered by some to be preferable to a pseudonym. See WikiWikiWeb:RealNamesPlease and MeatBall:UseRealNamesRefactored. The basic rationale is that people who use real names are more serious about what they write, and are less likely to play games. Wikipedia's acceptance of pseudonyms was something of a break from this tradition. Initially many of Wikipedia's contributors had a background in Wiki culture and hence used real names, but over time Wikipedia has drifted towards the predominance of pseudonyms seen elsewhere on the Internet. -- Tim Starling 12:08, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)
This is an excellent point, and something that people should consider, but I don't think that I am really writing under a pseudonym here. If you click on my username, the first sentence on my Userpage is "Hi, I'm Nelson Pavlosky..." I'm certainly not creating an alternate identity to entertain myself with, this username is tied closely to my real world identity. I think it's just easier to remember and type Skyfaller than Nelson Pavlosky. But I'm really not sure now. Can people come vote as to what I should use on my Talk page? Thanks a gazillion! --Skyfaller 18:17, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)


What is this Special:contributions/Mwiseman1 note on VfD about rehosting? I looked around and am not sure what it is or what it is warning us to do or not do. - Texture 17:45, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Looking at the actual edit in question [13] I eventually realised it's a response to a particular listing. I note it has now been moved into the section for that listing (it's the big listing of user sub-pages, if you're wondering). - IMSoP 18:14, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Username or Real Name? Which should I use?[edit]

Moved to User_talk:Skyfaller/Username_or_Real_Name

Username or Real Name? Which should I use?[edit]

Moved to User_talk:Skyfaller

Where can i find who wrote this page??? for parenthetical sitations......

Naming conventions (common names)[edit]

On Naming conventions (common names), the following addition was suggested:

"Use the name the group calls itself People should be called what they say their name is, and groups should be called what they call themselves. This should only not be the case if there is a conflict between groups over who has the rights to a name (such as Taiwan and the mainland PRC both claiming that they represented China). When there is a refusal to call a group what it asks to be called, and instead an outside dominant group claims the right to assign it a pejorative, or propaganda name that it be called, this seems to be the end of any kind of NPOV. Some examples of this would be the Vietnamese National Liberation Front being called "Viet Cong" (as if anyone in South Vietnam opposed to the government was a de facto communist), the Communist Party of Kampuchea being called "Khmer Rouge", the Communist Party of Peru being called "Shining Path" and so forth. These names would usually be created and propagated by a small elite group, from government leaders to the corporate media, in an attempt to make the use of the name widespread."

Then reasoning for this was spelled out on the discussion page. More names spring to mind as I think about it "(American) Indian", "anti-globalization movement", and so on and so forth. -- Richardchilton 21:49, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Village Pump -> Agora[edit]

See Wikipedia talk:Village pump/Agora for a proposal to rename the Village Pump and name it Agora. Don't vote here. Any comments you make here will be ignored. Use only the talk page. Optim·.· 21:35, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Civic heraldry again[edit]

I mentioned previously that I was thinking of contacting the webmaster of [14] to ask for permission to use civic arms in articles. I've now done so. He says:

With regards to using some of the content from the site I have no problem with it, but would request a credit. Strictly speaking I cannot give permission to use anyone's coat of arms, and even extant council's arms in theory become the property of any successor council. My understanding from the College of Arms is that as long as no one claims another's arms for themselves, uses them for commercial gain or in such away as to debase them, then no heraldic laws have been broken. However some councils are very "sniffy" about me putting their arms on my site and start talking a load of rubbish about "usurping royal privilege".

Based on this, do people think it's reasonable for me to go ahead and add things? Marnanel 17:46, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.

It has now been 12 months since gun owners in Australia were forced by new law to surrender 640,381 personal firearms to be destroyed by their own government, a program costing Australia taxpayers more than $500 million dollars.

The first year results are now in: Australia-wide, homicides are up 3.2 percent Australia-wide, assaults are up 8.6 percent Australia-wide, armed robberies are up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent)! In the state of Victoria alone, homicides with firearms are now up 300 percent.

(Note that while the law-abiding citizens turned them in, the criminals did not, and criminals still possess their guns!)

While figures over the previous 25 years showed a steady decrease in armed robbery with firearms, this has changed drastically upward in the past 12 months, since criminals now are guaranteed that their prey is unarmed. There has also been a dramatic increase in break-ins and assaults of the ELDERLY.

Australian politicians are at a loss to explain how public safety has decreased, after such monumental effort and expense was expended in "successfully ridding Australian society of guns." The Australian experience and the other historical facts above prove it.

You won't see this data on the American evening news or hear our president, governors or other politicians disseminating this information.

Guns in the hands of honest citizens save lives and property and, yes, gun-control laws affect only the law-abiding citizens.

Take note my fellow Americans.....before it's too late!

The next time someone talks in favor of gun control, please remind them of this history lesson.

With guns, we are citizens.

Without them, we are subjects.

If you value your freedom, Please spread this anti-gun control message to all of your friends. 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)~ From the tornado capitol of the world. Check it out! For the latest information on Ham, and CB Radio... Be sure and visit my website at: Over two million visitors can't ALL be wrong... 73 Uncle Jim 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)~ In God we trust!

Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million 'educated' people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.

In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Gun Control[edit]

I checked this out on "Snopes", "Hoaxbusters", "the National Fraud Center", "The Internet Tour Bus", "Internet hoaxes, urban legends, chainletters, and other junk;", "F-Secure", "CIAC", "Aris", "Internet 101", and several other sources I have that debunk internet hoaxes. I finally went to the "Australian Institute of Criminology" and found out that this is all true! The crime rates involving guns have been steadily rising since law-abiding citizens turned in their guns in 1996! Since this was written in 1998, I wanted to find out if the trend had continued through 2002. Alas, it IS true! Gun crimes have steadily increased since Gun Control took effect in Australia in 1996! All of you who really know me know that I don't forward this stuff without first researching it to be sure it's true. Well, this is true! Giving credance to the old bumper sticker that says, "When Guns Are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Guns"! Read if you dare! LTA, UJ 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC) 17:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

SOMETHING WORTH THINKING ABOUT Jennifer Haralson Senate Staff Receptionist Ext 692 Rm 309

Subject: Gun Control Whether you agree or not, it's an interesting lesson in history. Something to think about...

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

short note on installation of a computer[edit]

B-flat hemidemisemiquaver. HTH HAND --Phil 11:03, Mar 4, 2004 (UTC)[edit]

165.0000 martyrer a year global -

this global forming networking activity is looking for anybody who likes to take part in:

- active, engaged christian community living global according acts 4,32

- anybody who likes to support christian community living

- anybody who likes to help other to live according acts 4,32

please pass on this message always and reply to

Extlink spam?[edit] has added 3 Gandhi extlinks not only to Mohandas Gandhi (where they belong), but continues to add the same links to over a dozen loosly related articles. I think it's enough to have them in the article where they're most relevant...comments? Mkweise 21:18, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yeah, I mentioned hir at Wikipedia:Clueless newbies. Has created a number of articles which now solely contain that external link. It seems to be a commercial site. moink 21:21, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia and novelty appeal[edit]

There are more than two roads. Web implementation, hyperlinking, and open collaboration give it interesting characteristics. One of the more curious ones is that garbage damages Wikipedia less than it would damage a print encyclopedia. If you look up on LISP and find a well-written article that answers your question, you don't really care whether there's a questionable List of [insert favorite junk list here] in the same "volume." As for organization, the article on Programming languages is a very good organization of the overall topic. It doesn't matter much if there are junk articles on programming if you don't find them when you're searching, or looking up something, or if the articles you find don't link to them. Wikipedia is proceeding down a road of its own. It is encyclopedic, but it combines elements of traditional, scholarly encyclopedias and "encyclopedias" of popular-culture topics. Dpbsmith 14:03, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I agree theres nothing wrong with wikipedias inculsion of pop-culture and any topic at all for that matter (I dont really even have a problem with lists of two letter words, but in comparison with definitions there is a definite level of priority). Bensaccount 17:35, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Deadend pages[edit]

Can someone update Wikipedia:Deadend pages? It's linked on mediawiki:opentask and all entries have all been resolved. --Jiang 19:43, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

All done except for Ammunition for infantry and Angelwings and Finerthings. I did my best but there's only so much time :-( Help would be much appreciated. --Phil 10:52, Mar 4, 2004 (UTC)
I have now added some sort of annotation to these last remaining entries. When this page is re-created, do the comments get carried through, or do we have to go through the whole things again? --Phil 10:57, Mar 4, 2004 (UTC)
If they've been fixed, theyre no longer "dead end" so they would no longer be listed. --Jiang 19:00, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Someone should run the script for Special:Deadendpages. I don't know how to do it. --Jiang 19:00, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I updated it, but it's fairly useless as it's just showing a load of misformed date redirects. It will only display 50 at a time, so until those are deleted or fixed, the list doesn't contain any actual articles. Angela. 17:17, Mar 5, 2004 (UTC)

What script is used to generate the list? It should be done again. --Jiang 02:45, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Deleting a page[edit]

How does a Wikipedian go about deleting a page? JB82 16:55, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)


I apologize if I'm raising this issue in the wrong forum or if it's already been discussed. But I've noticed several examples of what I'd call overwikification. Check out these articles: List of Ambassadors to Canada, Survivor: Pulau Tiga, Tom Berenger, Twelfth United States Congress. There's over two hundred red links to empty articles on these four pages alone. And looking at the titles of these empties, it's likely nobody is ever going to fill them in with any article, let alone one worth reading.

Maybe we need to discuss some informal standard an empty article needs to rise to before someone creates a red link to it. MK 22:30, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I can't really see the harm. It's possible that they may just inspire an interested party to write a series of articles for them - it's certainly happened before. Ambivalenthysteria 22:53, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I'm with MK. I find it prevalent and an annoying irritation. I suspect the practice of wikifiying almost everything regardless of whether the linked article exists was more useful when Wikipedia was getting started. I don't believe a word should be linked unless you either a) know that an article for the linked term exists or b) feel strongly that the article should exist and have a reasonable expectation that someday it will exist. Dpbsmith 22:59, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Well, I can't speak for everybody, but I "strongly feel" that an article for every member of the U.S. House (past and present) should exist, along with an article on every movie in IMDB and every band at Ultimate Band List. I've got no problem with these articles. Meelar 23:02, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I agree that in narrative text, overwikification is very annoying. But I'd draw a distinction between narrative text and lists: in lists of films, books, credits, etc, like those pointed to by MK, it's less annoying to have them all wikified. And many of them will come to have articles eventually: several of those in Tom Berenger's list, for example have three or more links to them already. - Nunh-huh 23:07, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
What Nunh-huh said. On lists like 12th Congress, all of those names eventually (sometime in the next decade) should get articles of their own. In actual articles overwikification is a huge problem, especially with dates. But in lists is cool...

USA meet up[edit]

Formatting help[edit]

The table at European Union is too wide. Please fix it. --Jiang 01:16, 8 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I changed width=400 to 300. Better? fabiform | talk 01:23, 8 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Enter the "who is moink?" contest![edit]

Identify my gender, nationality, and rough geographic location, and win a fabulous prize! Details at my user page.

Contest is ended. Maximus Rex has won. moink 21:42, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Sites for Guitarists[edit]

I would like you to know about a new site that you can place a banner and text description pointing back to your site. Your text description of what your selling or doing will be displayed under your banner. The only rule is that your site has resources for guitarists and provides a link back to our site. was just uploaded, so your site will be one of the first sites listed. Your banner should be .gif format and width 468 x height = 60.

To add your banner with text description is FREE!

To signup and get your site listed, visit:

Before your site becomes listed, one hit from your site including the cgi script provided at signup must occur.

Each week the rankings for each site are set back to zero. By placing a banner on your site and maintaining one hit per week will keep your site listed. The more hits in from your site, the better rankings and chance to become site of the moment you will have.

Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.


Sorry, but Wikipedia does not engage in this kind of thing. You are welcome to contribute appropriate material to Wikipedia if you wish. Dori | Talk 17:08, Mar 8, 2004 (UTC)

Concern about Grape seed oil[edit]

I am somewhat concerned about medical information offered in grape seed oil, but am not an expert in the area. I have made a few preliminary notes at Talk:grape seed oil, but would like to ask someone more knowledgeable to have a look. Hopefully VP is the right forum for this sort of thing. Securiger 17:34, 8 Mar 2004 (UTC)

balaclavas and cap.[edit]

Dear sir, we are manufacturers and exporters of balaclavas and cap,our rates and quality wil go to yours business favor. if you have any wihses you can contect with us. thanks. shamas. GET WELL INDUSTRIES.

need work[edit]

hello sir , this is pankaj from india , we have team of software developare , we are loking for some work ,our main motto work hard & do our best in the chosen field, so plz give some attention on this. thanks

Hello Pankaj, welcome to Wikipedia. We can always use skilled people to help write articles for Wikipedia, so feel free to dive right in and start working. If you are interested in helping with the development of Wikipedia's software, check out the MediaWiki homepage. If you have any questions, the Wikipedia:FAQ may be a good place to start. Once again, welcome! -- Wapcaplet 18:53, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Just so there is no confusion, Wikipedia is not a for profit endeavor. Anyone that contributes here does so only to build a better free encyclopedia. Dori | Talk 20:07, Feb 29, 2004 (UTC)

Sisi- Forever my Love[edit]

I want to order a Sisi Movie, I have seen it in French, and I would like to order it in French.

We don't sell movies here. However, you may be able to order it from this site. Cheers! -- Wapcaplet 04:44, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Alright, is someone using Village Pump as a channel for coded messages again? ;) -Rholton (aka Anthropos) 02:21, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

No, we put those in the images via steganography. Dpbsmith 03:15, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

And Plautus satire was laughed down when he said we were talking about him in code. RickK 03:23, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Bedrest, enforced if necessary. (The Head Nurse will explain.). And no caffeine or other stimulants for the first month. Wetman 15:14, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)



I need to reconnect the East/West shores of Panthalassa. I gotta walk the amiable Tapirs across. Problem: Dinos had to be long dead. 'Possums crossed down under. The Calendar doesn't Jive.
Japan will have to go back to Utah, and NewZealand to Patagonia.
Please help,

Bird, SoCal, Raptor, Bad Faith, etc.[edit]

I am finding it hard to deal with the unreasonable personal attacks from this user or users (see my talk page and those of the pages to which I have contributed). Do I have any support. What should I do, because I feel like quitting? Washington irving 07:35, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Why do you think they're the same person? Oh, and a quick look says thatBad faith appears to be living up to the username. Check user contributions. Isomorphic 08:02, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It appears Bad Faith is throwing down more truth than Isomorphic cares to tolerate.Bad faith
I am not sure that they are all the same user. For more information, check out the talk pages/histories of the following pages:

And see below... Washington irving 08:16, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Personal attacks by Bad faith removed by Angela.

NOT. Legitimate participation censored by Angela from England, who rarely contributes anything of substance and only shows up to interject herself when there is conflict and she has an opportunity to take sides. Angela should recuse herself from this conversation, or at least restrict her activities to contributing her bizarre comments and "STOP CENSORING OTHER PEOPLE" The British Empire is OVER, honey.
Bird and SoCal look to me like the same person. The others I do not know. Pfortuny 08:32, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Please see User:David Newton/Bird Dispute and the talk page User talk:David Newton/Bird Dispute for talk on the problem and suggested solution -- sannse (talk) 12:28, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)
the comments USER:Angela deleted were exactly germaine to this discussion. Washington irving is the sole editor and author of pages that are plainly point of view and have no basis in scholarly research. The pages were laced with links to another left-leaning site which in turn is networked to direct-mail fundraising efforts of Democrat organizations.
While Irving was busy creating those political pages, at least one of which is buried in comments about bias and lack of foundation, he overlooked for several months patently erronious information on a brain page he claimed to be watching. When someone showed up to correct the errors, Irving still stood back. He later explained that he thought bird was insane and was afraid to collaborate in an open editorial process with bird, who was writing several profound articles that still don't rise to Bird's high expectations for accuracy, despite Birds earilier best efforts.
Yet, admittedly beleiving insensitive interaction might seem abrasive to another user, Irving chose not to go to battle over something substantive, like whether the cerebellum is part of the archipallium, an issue bird was tediously trying to sort out, but rather, Washington Irving felt he was better qualified to wake up and make a snap judgement about image placement with images Bird had been studying and experimenting with for several hours. Washington Irving's position, like that of slanderer David Newton, is that Bird is insane and that they have no obligation to consider Birds concerns. Would that bother bird? Has lack of consideration ever stopped Bird from delivering a message? I doubt it.
So now Irving and Newton are down here campaigning against a contributor and Newton has the pages locked in a status in which at least Irving knows there are gross errors. I wonder if there is a reason some people might want Wikipedia readers to remain ignorant of science but be interested in political writing?Bird

Received mail: your password has changed[edit]

I got an e-mail from wikipedia:

Someone (probably you, from IP address requested that we send you a new Wikipedia login password. The password for user "Pascal" is now "XXXXXX". You should log in and change your password now.

But, my old password still works, so there is no problem. I don't believe I unintentionally pushed this button, even since I did not visit Wikipedia yesterday.

Anyone any explaination? Who is

Pascal 12:07, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Ignore the e-mail. Someone just entered Pascal and pushed the button. Anyone can do that. — Timwi 13:56, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Out of interest, that IP appears to belong to someone somewhere in Japan. But indeed, just ignore unless it keeps happening. - IMSoP 01:01, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

How to deal with rampant POV?[edit]

I'm fretting over the article Asymmetric warfare. The original author seems to be making a sincere effort to put forward what he/she thinks the subject is about, but it amounts to an extensive POV, mixing incomparable elements, personal musings and attempting to reach a conclusion.

I know something about the subject, having taught related subjects in the US Army, and the subject is worthy of discussion, but I'm not comfortable essentially throwing out someone else's work and writing the article new.

This is not the only such article. I'm tempted to simply leave them alone, but it makes wikipedia very un-encyclopedic, if someone were actually researching a subject.

Opinions? About this and the issue of near totally POV articles in general? Cecropia 14:46, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

You are quite welcome to completely re-write articles if you want see Wikipedia:be bold in updating pages If you think the present article is beyond salvage. I have done on occasions and I have also had some of my articles completely re-written by other people, although it might be better to try to integrate changes with the existing text G-Man 14:54, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)
In this case, if you know that this (really long) article is riddled with POV and since it isn't the focus of edit wars and you wont be upsetting a delicate balance, I suggest that you can be quite radical. If you're willing to do the work this involves, I suggest that you write a good solid stub from scratch and replace the current article. If the current article contains anything useful then copy it to the talk page first, or summarise the key points it makes which should still be included (albeit it correctly flagged as a certain POV). Then build on the stub, reintergrating anything you want to keep into the new article, expand it and add balance where appropriate. If you document all these stages on the talk page, you may even encourage other knowledgeable people to join you in creating a much better article.  :) This might be too radical an approach for articles which have escalated into an edit war, in which case you might propose completely rewriting the article on the talk page, and solicit a lot more opinions in order to reach a consensus. fabiform | talk 15:00, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Well, you guys are encouraging me. It's a complex subject and might be more controversial if more people really knew what it was. I'll see if I can upgrade it modularly. Cecropia 23:14, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

A further thought: Set it in context at the start. "Asymmetrical warfare is an inherently freighted term expressing the value judgment that..." Thus you can discuss the subject within its defined bounds. Not all point-of-view need be smoothed into cream pudding. Sometimes a statement that seems to lack any objective reality springs into crisp focus when the opening words set the context: "In Arianism..." "In Catholic dogma..." or "From the standpoint of..."etc. Wetman 14:37, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Neutrality dispute blackmail[edit]

As some readers may be aware, yesterday I did a fairly major edit on Kim Jong-il. User:172 then put a "disputed neutrality" on the article, but declined both to edit it himself or to discuss with me what he objected to in my edit, other than that he didn't like it. I then removed the tag, but he reverted. So now the article is permanently tagged as non neutral, but the person who holds this view will not do anything to resolve this. I consider this to be blackmail. What does the panel think? (Note that I am not asking what the panel thinks about my edit - I am asking about the dispute). Adam 07:22, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I could understand if he were unwilling to help fix it, but (at the very least) he has to *say* what he finds objectionable. I agree with you - if in some reasonable amount of time the NPOV objection isn't clearly stated, consider it moot and remove the tag. →Raul654 07:27, Mar 1, 2004 (UTC)
I agree with Raul, adding that, even if your change was entirely POV you are entitled to due process - Gaz 12:15, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I agree with Raul and Gaz. We need a process to deal with this since way too many articles are semi-permanently tagged. IMO, at least two users should agree that an article is POV before a tag can be placed on it. Then if the consensus on the talk page that the article is OK, then the tag should be removed. This unilateral tagging of articles has got to stop ASAP. --mav 12:24, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I agree - we have had NPOV tags unilaterally added for the most trivial of reasons (e.g. the Macedonian disambiguation page got tagged because someone apparently objected to the term being used for anything other than the Greek province, though it's not easy to tell for sure because no explanation was posted). But how could we enforce your "two users" rule? -- ChrisO 12:45, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Same way we enforce any other rule. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 12:53, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It may be obvious from re-reading the page what is not-neutral. If so, fix it. If not, ask the person adding the NPOV dispute. If you don't like the NPOV header, the onus is on you to write neutral text. Were that not the case, Wikipedia would find it harder to deal with people who have no interest in our NPOV policy. Martin 21:59, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)

My watchlist[edit]

I propose a small modification to the header section of the Special:Watchlist page, similar to a feature already present on the Special:Recentchanges page. In Recentchanges there is an option to show/hide logged in users, bots, etc. I would like an option in "My watchlist" to show/hide my own edits so that edits by others are far more evident. - Gaz 12:32, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Shouldn't this go to Wikipedia:Feature_requests? —Frecklefoot 16:44, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Corsican "nidicà "[edit]

On my userpage, I include the Corsican proverb: "Quandu ellu canta lu cuccu Muta pèlu lu singhjari E la gallina faci l'ovu Senza mancu nidicà lu. " This translates to "When the cuckoo sings, the wild boar changes skin(pelt); and the hen is able to lay an egg without the same { nidicà }. I don't know what the Corsican word nidicà means and the quote doesnt make that much sense either. Anyone know enough Corsican to help me out? Perl 15:31, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps "nest"? ("Nidus" means nest in Latin, and "nid" is nest in French.) Adam Bishop 21:47, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thats what my brother guessed this afternoon. I think that makes the most sense. The meaning of the proverb, however, still doesnt make sense to me. Perl 21:58, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I presume this proverb has something to do with the fact that the cuckoo lays her egg in the nest of another bird. -- Jmabel 02:14, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)


I added the MediaWiki:Nonsense, which is:


I want your feedback at MediaWiki talk:Nonsense. Don't answer here. Any comments you make on the Village Pump will be ignored or moved to the talk page. Optim 18:12, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

What's wrong with the images?[edit]

I uploaded an image to Wikipedia, but something seems to be wrong with it.

This is the image: File:MissingNo.GIF

Check the file size of the current version. Now, click on the image, and check the size of the file. Aha, you got it - they don't agree. What's wrong here? Can somebody help me?

Fibonacci 23:42, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

They agree down to the last byte for me. Were you using the images as thumbnails, as these are supposed to have smaller files sizes than the large versions. fabiform | talk 23:53, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Or, are you seeing the a cached copy of the old smaller image on the image description page? If that's the case, you need to refresh the page in your browser, it should correct itself after a minute or two, or after a hard refresh (hold down shift or control as you click refresh). fabiform | talk 23:56, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thank you. I was seeing the cached copy. The strange thing is, I've seen it since I uploaded the image... until now. Fibonacci 01:27, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Trademark symbols[edit]

So, the article on the 76th Academy Awards has a bunch of trademark symbols (the R-circle thing), as well as a disclaimer at the bottom ("Oscar, Academy Awards, etc. are trademarks of..."). I think this is pretty unusual for Wikipedia. There's no legal requirement to add those symbols -- companies do it so they don't lose the trademark, but nobody else is obliged to. Is there a good reason to have these, or could we just get rid of them? Do we have a manual of style entry for trademark? --ESP 01:38, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I got rid of them. They don't belong in an encyclopedia. Perl 01:41, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
(IANAL) In general, a trademark used in a conversational way that in no way implies endorsement of, or that you are, the owner of the trademark is permissible. "While we drove to the mountains, my daughter played with her Beanie Babies and stuffed Barney toy."
In an article talking about a product in a descriptive way or in any way that might imply endorsement of (or that you are the owner of) the trademark, or imputing trademark of an actually generic product, or where the reader might be uncertain whether you were describing the trademarked product or a similar generic product probably should have the circle-R once. For example:

Stuffed dolls
Stuffed dolls are classified for trademark purposes as soft sculptures. Familiar examples are Beanie Babies® and Barney® dolls.
Beanie Babies are generally small representations of animals stuffed with batting and the kind of pellets familiar in bean bags made by the Ty Company, while Barney dolls are the more usually kind of stuffed doll modeled after Barney character of TV...
As to whether the "Blah blah is a registered trademark of blah blah" should be in an encyclopedia, I have no opinion... Cecropia 19:37, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Remote possibilities[edit]

My friends and I were recently (3/2/04) playing Milton Bradley's game "Remote Possibilities" and noticed one question regarding who recieved the most Oscar (Academy) nominations. Until the 2004 awards held on 3/1/04, Titanic had the most nominations in history, but it no longer does, thereby making your game incorrect, by stating Titanic as the answer. I am a huge fan, i know two other people who have this game, and we want to know if you will be making a new version.

Let me know, Nichole

Er, we don't make games and we aren't affiliated with Milton Bradley. You may want to go to Milton Bradley's web site and ask them there. Dysprosia 08:23, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Isn't it a bit odd that so many questions of this sort get asked. What is about our pages that causes people to think we can answer these sorts of things? And besides the Oscars were held on the 29th and All about Eve and Titanic still jointly have the most nominations (14), IIRC. Lord of the Rings equals Ben-Hur and Titanic in having the most wins (11). Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 08:28, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Not only is it odd, I'm now tempted to write a love letter to my ex and post it to the Pump. And she's not even a Wikipedian. --Charles A. L. 16:28, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)
I think one reason that so many are posted is that most get answered. Wikipedians seem unable to resist helping someone outwith a bit of research. Not necessarily a bad thing, but perhaps we need a special page for it. Mark Richards 21:23, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
We have a special page for it. Wikipedia:Reference Desk. moink 21:25, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Er....not to be too elitist, but those of us who keep up with RD regularly really do hate to be seen as the people who handle any question. :) RD is designed to handle reference questions, not the questions of people who don't know what Wikipedia is. :-) Frankly, people like Nichole (no offense, Nichole) rarely seem to return to see if we answered their least, we never see evidence that they did. I think explaining who we aren't and letting it sit here a few days is fine, personally. Redirecting them to RD where they will be told the same thing isn't a good idea--believe it or not, RD is about as crowded with posts as the VP is, usually. :-) That's my 2 cents,

Jwrosenzweig 21:30, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Hey, I keep up with RD as well! No, Nichole's question would not be answered any better there. But Mark's point about helping someone out with research refers to the reference desk as the right place. moink 21:36, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, moink! I phrased that badly. I get tired of the Village Pump's tendency (in my experience) to dump just about any question on the Reference Desk, especially when it sometimes seems like there are only about 4 or 5 of us trying to answer questions at the RD. I didn't mean to imply that you didn't though -- my bad. You are right....helping out with research is definitely in the RD's purview. I was just looking at this particular question and thinking "this doesn't have anything to do with research or reference questions". Didn't mean to be grumpy -- I'll go make some productive edits as penance. :-) Jwrosenzweig 21:39, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Barred IP addresses[edit]

Hi. I have sent this message to User:PMelvilleAustin, but could somebody please have a look at it? I'm quite confused about the whole IP thing so if anybody could please help I would be very very grateful. Thanks.

I was barred yesterday from editing and apparently it was you who did it. I was shocked actually and then I realised contributions by my "IP" address were in fact not mine. I actually don't know much about IP addresses, so is it possible for two different computers to have the same IP address? And if it is, why didn't I receive a warning? I have also checked the IP's discussion page and there is no warning whatsoever either. Do you ban people just like that or did I get anything wrong? Thanks Rumpelstiltskin 10:52, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yes it is possible for two different computers to have the same IP address under some circumstances (though not at the same time). This can happen if you use a dial-up modem to connect to the internet. Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) gives you a temporary IP address when you dial-up so that other computers can send data to you. Because your ISP knows that not all its users will be online at the same time, it gives you an address only temporarily - when you go offline the address returns to the pool so that your ISP can give it out to someone else. (With AOL it is even more complicated than this - they may give you several IP addresses during one internet session.) It looks like you were extremely unlucky, not only did someone who had previously been given your IP address visit Wikipedia and vandalize it, someone decide to block that address, even though it was an IP address that may be given to lots of people which is not something an admin should do in the normal run of things. If all that is true, you've had a lot of bad luck and I am sure the Wikipedia community offers its collective apologies. It looks like the ban is no longer in force, else you couldn't have posted this message. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 11:36, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
by edit conflict: Two computers cannot have the same IP address at the same time. However, if you use a dial-up connection to the internet then it is possible that by accident you got the same IP as the one the vandal had before. Another possibility is that both the vandal and you use the same proxy server (which might be a mandatory proxy server from your ISP), then the blocking did block the complete ISP. I doubt that your username was getting blocked, you should've found a warning on your talk page first. andy 11:40, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
What was the IP address? -- Tim Starling 11:46, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)
Hi and thanks. Yes, I thought it was strange I didn't get a warning before, but I still can't really understand what's going on. Thanks for the IP information by the way, I didn't know that (and yes, I'm using a dial-up connection). IP was Thanks again. Rumpelstiltskin 12:00, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The acts of vandalism in question were [15] and [16]. It looks like the IP address in question is a proxy, which is why you were blocked too. Instead of just one computer, everyone using that proxy server was blocked. That could be hundreds or even thousands of people. To PMelvilleAustin and sysops in general, I would say: this is an example of why it is better to revert several times and warn the user, hoping they will go away, before heading for the block button. -- Tim Starling 12:28, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)
I think you are going a little too easy on PMA here, Tim. Blocking a proxy after just two non-insidious bits of vandalism (particularly when that IP has made decent contributions before) and without giving any warning on the talk page is totally unacceptable. What happened to Rumpelstiltskin is exactly why it is unacceptable. Sysops respect your power! Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 12:35, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
To Pete: To nitpick: This is irrelevant: "particularly when that IP has made decent contributions before": As a shared-IP user, I can tell you that "good history" means nothing. The vandal and the goodie user are obviously two separate people. People don't turn retarded and start go vandalising after making half a dozen solid contributions. Most of us aren't blessed with Jackyll/Hyde-DNA. My IP is shared by over 10 Wikipedians who dont even know each other's names.About 5 are in fact quite trollish. The solution is easy: Sign up with a nice user name, Anon guys! --Menchi 12:47, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I think you missed my point - the mixed history is *very* relevant. It shows the admin that the address is likely to be used by lots of people.. and thus is likely to be a proxy... and thus extra care should be taken when considering whether to block it or not! All without having to resort to reverse DNS. Agreed that this is just one more reason why it is good to log in... Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:06, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

To Rumpelstiltskin: Silsor told me an easy solution over IRC: Go to (in IE) Options > open "LAN" dialogue. uncheck everything. Da-la... I was never blocked again despite my constant trollism under my anonymous IP. And yes, I in fact was blocked 3 times in 1 Internet (cable) session, without dis/reconnection. Weird dynamic IP. ----Menchi 12:47, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I think what is needed here is the ability to differentiate between unlogged in access from an IP, and logged in. Then one can block anon. and bad-user edits. Those with good edit histories for their accounts can continue editing with impunity. They can get started and get such a history by reconnecting and getting unblocked IPs. This is not a complete solution, though. Mr. Jones 09:01, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Excellent idea! I don't know when the developers will find time, but this is definitely the Right Thing. Noel 03:20, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
That seems obvious. I'm surprised it's not done this way already. One thing we would need to block from blocked IPs is creation of new accounts, of course. Andrewa 18:11, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Something I'm curious about: in Special:Ipblocklist, I see a number of entries reading "This IP address is blocked for editing because it belongs to an anonymizing proxy. Editing from anonymous proxies is currently not allowed." I looked around on Wikipedia to see if I could find out more about this policy, but couldn't find anything. Can someone point me in the right direction? Thanks! Noel 03:20, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Village Pump -> Agora[edit]

See Wikipedia talk:Village pump/Agora for a proposal to rename the Village Pump and name it Agora. Don't vote here. Any comments you make here will be ignored. Use only the talk page. Optim·.· 21:35, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Now withdrawn. Optim 23:15, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Naming conventions (common names)[edit]

On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (common names), the following addition was suggested:

"Use the name the group calls itself People should be called what they say their name is, and groups should be called what they call themselves. This should only not be the case if there is a conflict between groups over who has the rights to a name (such as Taiwan and the mainland PRC both claiming that they represented China). When there is a refusal to call a group what it asks to be called, and instead an outside dominant group claims the right to assign it a pejorative, or propaganda name that it be called, this seems to be the end of any kind of NPOV. Some examples of this would be the Vietnamese National Liberation Front being called "Viet Cong" (as if anyone in South Vietnam opposed to the government was a de facto communist), the Communist Party of Kampuchea being called "Khmer Rouge", the Communist Party of Peru being called "Shining Path" and so forth. These names would usually be created and propagated by a small elite group, from government leaders to the corporate media, in an attempt to make the use of the name widespread."

Then reasoning for this was spelled out on the discussion page. More names spring to mind as I think about it "(American) Indian", "anti-globalization movement", and so on and so forth. -- Richardchilton 21:49, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I would agree to this (ie the actual requirement to 'use the name the group calls itself unless ambigous') as long as you tone down the rationale significantly. Policy pages aren't the place to denounce "small elite groups". Morwen 21:54, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)
Does this proposal mean Wikipedia is going to call Americans "Americans"? - Tweak 22:03, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
As opposed to "Yankee Imperialists?" ;-) -- WormRunner 22:11, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I clarify this in the second sentence. Americans call themselves Americans, so that is outside the range of what I am talking about. I am not talking about two groups fighting for the same name, I am talking about two names being applied to the same group, one the name the group gives itself, one the pejorative/propaganda name given to the group by its enemies. Richardchilton 22:13, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Of course, I should have realized that you would not consent to calling Americans Americans. Wikipedia should continue to pretend it's avoiding "ambiguity" rather than making political points. :) -- Tweak 22:21, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
For a policy aimed at de-PoVing, that paragraph is extremely PoV. But more interestingly, it brings to a mind a discussion I barely dare dredge up - Burma versus Myanmar. Arguably, both the government and "the People" are they with respect to a country, but they are asking for the same thing to be called by different names. See, amongst others, Talk:Myanmar and Talk:History of Myanmar. - IMSoP 22:15, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I was not part of the Burma/Myanmar discussion, but I'm surprised it was such an issue. The UN has recognized Burma as Myanmar for a long time now. - DropDeadGorgias (talk) 22:18, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)Ugh, never mind- I read through some of the thread. Being of partial burmese descent myself, I'm surprised that people are still so up-in-arms about it. Other countries that requested to be called their original name rather than their Anglicized name (Thailand, for example) are now commonly known as such - DropDeadGorgias (talk) 22:33, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)
Importantly, we are deferring to the UN as a higher authority, rather than "what they call themselves" - higher than "the People" or a particular foreign government, such as the US. To clarify, I completely agree that this is the best thing to do, but it bears mentioning in this discussion. - IMSoP 22:36, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC) [Note:this post was a reply to DropDeadGorgias' first, now struck out, comment, so is now rather redundant]

A lot of these arguments remind me of the novel 1984, where the government puts out a new Newspeak dictionary every year, and everyone complies right away, rewriting all the old words so they comply with the new ones. Then they are all "common usage" and all of the arguments presented here, after all, the government called them that, the corporate media complied, and tried to propagate that. Thus words like freedom would become thoughtcrime in the common usage. I think one thing that is instructive is to note how there are only a small number of groups where the US government (and corporate media) refuses to call them by their names, whether anglicized or not (Partido Comunista del Peru = Communist Party of Peru). You can't find many instances where a political group is refused even to name itself. The ones where this is done are just total propaganda from what I've read. This just seems like the kind of totalitarian white collar American arrogance that exists - most white, white-collar Americans call a group a certain name, thus, that will be its name. Richardchilton 23:03, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Richard, you have at the core a very good point. Why are you making it with rhetoric which will alienate many people who would otherwise agree with it? Morwen 23:07, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)
Richardchilton/Lancemurdoch was telling us on IRC yesterday that we should also call African-Americans "niggers" because that's what they call themselves. Do you think that's also a good point? For the full conversation, see User:Tim Starling/Richardchilton IRC log -- Tim Starling 23:42, Mar 3, 2004 (UTC)
Let's see, your log says that if the white Americans get to name everything should apply everywhere that "We should change the African-American entry to niggers since that name was commonly usage (by white Americans, the only group on the planet whose opinion matters) to refer to a certain group of people." It says in the log that whites called blacks this, yet here you say that it was said that blacks called themselves this. In other words, you are misrepresenting what was said, and are in fact, saying the exact opposite of what was said. -- Richardchilton 00:11, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Oops, sorry. -- Tim Starling 01:57, Mar 4, 2004 (UTC)

The issue of "two groups fighting for the same name" seems to me to apply to what we have to date calling the "Shining Path". They call themselves the "Partido Comunista de Peru", but, in fact, references to the "Partido Comunista de Peru" nearly always mean the party that used to be part of the Comintern. "Shining Path" is a literal translation of "Sendero Luminoso", a name that to the best of my knowledge is -- at least in part for just this reason -- used both in Peru and elsewhere, by friend and foe alike. (E.g. it is used by the RCP, who claim the Senderistas as an affiliated party.) It seems to me that it would be OK to list what a group calls itself as a very important factor in what to call an article, but not to make this an absolute and immutable rule. And in any case, I hope we can all agree that all of the relevant forwards and disambiguations should always be in place, and all commonly used names should be mentioned in the first paragraph, making this all more of an issue for partisans (of either side) than for end users of our site. -- Jmabel 00:43, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

But speakers of English are a "small elite group." And, without intending anything whatsoever, certain names for things have just come into being, mostly by common usage, since we have no Royal Academy directing usage here in the English-speaking minority. In Wikipedia, any local name can be set in parentheses once— italicized, since it's a foreign language&mdash and then the article can continue blithely on, in English. (Now what's that Egyptian name for "Egypt" again?)Wetman 15:52, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Nicely put! --mav 05:07, 8 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Coorporate Prosecution[edit]

We seem to be moving forward a little, however, the greatest crime to the American citizens is the theft of millions of dollars which was earmarked for our military. What and when are we going to launch an investigation and prosecution on Halliburton for their theft and kick-backs? We really need to do something about that to stop coorporate greed!

Does anyone have any idea where to move this to? Certainly doesn't belong here. -- Jmabel 22:18, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Perhaps on Talk:Halliburton? RickK 03:33, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Or perhaps just delete? Of course then it will stay in the history, it just won't be easy to find it.
The function of this and all other Wikipedia pages is to support the development of Wikipedia, which consists primarily of the articles. I can't see how indexing this particular comment is helpful towards this goal myself. I suppose perhaps it might help to attract this anonymous critic to the idea of becoming a contributor, or perhaps it might inspire someone else to improve the article suggested, but I'm not convinved of either of these. Andrewa 20:04, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Script to convert to new table syntax[edit]

Please where can I find the script to convert to the new table sysntax ? Kpjas 22:29, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I'm not aware of a script. The new markup is described in MediaWiki User's Guide: Using tables. Elf 23:40, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It is in the Python Wikipedia Robot Framework, The bot itself is, but to have it work you also need, and and a reasonably recent version of Python. Also download and read CONTENTS, and create as described there. Subscribing to the pywikipediabot mailing list (see ) would also be useful, as would getting permission to use a bot first. Andre Engels 02:08, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
There is a robot used on de: to convert the tables - but it must be human-monitored as HTML-tables can contain many mistakes but still get rendered by the browsers correctly - for example a missing </tr> is just ignored. However if the robot misses it it can destroy the table. You might ask User:Head, as he is one of those who used to run that robot on de:. andy 09:28, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I agree - you can use the bot to do the conversion for you, but you should still check the page afterward to see whether it has not made any errors. Still, it's a nifty bit of programming. Andre Engels 19:29, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Is it really usefull to convert all tables. The new syntax may be suitable for some of the tables, but for many tables, the simple five tags <table>, <tr>, <th> or <td>, and </table> are much easier to use. Given that the software supports both, Wikipedians should have the choice. -- User:Docu


What's the meaning of id=toc of the table params (apears in MediaWiki:JanuaryCalendar and other tables). Guillermo 12:39, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It applies the formatting defined in the style sheets [17], [18] for the automatic TOC to the table. The CSS don't offer another selection of styles for tables. -- User:Docu

History of the Middle East[edit]

I want this article to focus on Southwest Asia, although not completely exclude Northern Africa.

Here's an example of what I want in the article...

The entire Ottoman section should be left alone in this regard, as the North African lands are part of their empire, and whatever happens there affects Southwest Asia. However, in this sentence... "When republican revolutions brought radical anti-western regimes to power in Egypt in

 1954, in Syria in 1963, in Iraq in 1968 and in Libya in 1969, the Soviet Union, 
 seeking to open a new arena of the Cold War in the Middle East, allied itself with Arab rulers such as 
 Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt and Saddam Hussein of Iraq."

IMO, Libya should be taken out there, as this doesn't show interactions between them and the Southwest Asian countries. Yet Egypt should stay, as they are better connected to the other Middle Eastern countries, and part of their country is in Asia.

I also want to put "This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East, (This article uses the Southwest Asia definition). For more detailed information, see articles on the histories of individual countries. For North Africa, see History of Africa.", but Adam Carr doesn't want me to do this.

Perhaps I should have "This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East, For more detailed information, see articles on the histories of individual countries. For more detailed information on countries in North Africa, see History of Africa.

See: Talk:History of the Middle East for more information. WhisperToMe 23:37, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Capitalization of Common Species Names[edit]

I noticed, because of the Featured Article, yesterday that the title of both words of the Sperm Whale entry was capitalized. Following some more links, I realized that other animal entries, like Blue Whale or Asian Elephant, were also capitalized. I don't think that is correct. The entries should be titled Sperm whale, Blue whale, Asian elephant, etc., instead, because normally in sentences you would write something like "The blue whale is the largest mammal," not "The Blue Whale is the largest mammal." You simply don't capitalize common names of animals (for example, see praying mantis), except when a word is already a proper noun (for example, "Persian cat" or "Asian elephant"), and even then you only capitalize the proper noun and not the entire common name. --Lowellian 17:27, Mar 9, 2004 (UTC)

The capitalization is the style agreed on in Wikipedia:WikiProject Tree of Life. Just that topic has come up again shortly ago, so you can still find some discussion about it there. It seems that many scientific sources use the capitalized version like a name, for example to distinguish between "the Common Sparrow" and "a common Sparrow". andy 19:57, 9 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yahoo Search[edit]

You might be interested to read this [19].

"Additional CAP partners include The New York Public Library, one of the most renowned libraries in the country; Project Gutenberg, the Web's oldest producer of free electronic books; University of Michigan's OAIster project, which provides hard to find academic collections; UCLA's Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (CDLI) with content documenting Babylonian history back to 3500 B.C.; Wikipedia, a free, multilingual online encyclopedia with articles in more than 50 languages; and the National Science Digital Library (NSDL), the National Science Foundation's online library, with more than 250 collections that improve the way Americans learn about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The OYEZ, CDLI and NSDL projects are all federally funded in part or in whole by the National Science Foundation."

Dori | Talk 17:36, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)

I am surprised this has generated so few responses. Wikipedia is under Yahoo!'s Content Acquistion Program... does this mean they will index us a lot... or something else? Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 23:18, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Jimbo has commented on the mailing list:
"Yes, I was in negotiations with Yahoo about this last week.
We have a contract in which we supply them with an XML feed (which I will have Jason construct) and they stick us in their index. They make no promises as to the placement of our urls, of course, as that's entirely up to their editorial department. But of course we have absolutely maximum quality content, so it is thought by all that we will rank very high in their index.
The area that this will benefit us most is when news breaks on some topic about which there is little information on the net -- an area in which we excel anyway.
I tried to get their PR person to feature us more prominently in the press release, but alas, she didn't listen to me.
Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 23:27, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)
This sounds incredible! It also sounds like we will need to be even more vigilant on RC, especially concerning articles being highlighted by Yahoo! news. :-) Jwrosenzweig 23:32, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Yet another site using Wikipedia material[edit]

[20] is using Wikipedia stuff. Seems to comply with GNU-FDL, anyone want to confirm? --Dante Alighieri | Talk 01:30, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Seems to have already been categorized as a "high compliance" site. See [21]. --Minesweeper 02:33, Mar 4, 2004 (UTC)

links stand out[edit]

I'm reading some very intersting articles about middle and old english when I start to get a little frustrated with all the links within the article. I love being able to instantly connect with relevant articles, but the links stick out so much that they are difficult to pass them over when one is trying to actually get all the way through an article (I tend to wander to other pages). Anyway, my point is, has anyone ever thought of making the links more subtle? If Wikipedia continues to grow, and just about anything has an associated page, then every article will be covered with links! Can you imagine trying to read a whole page of blue, underlined words?

Just thought I'd add my two cents.

The Manual of style says that you are not supposed to link every word. You're only supposed to link important ones. So even as Wiki grows (assuming people follow the guideline) I don't think we have to worry about anything. →Raul654 05:46, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)

There was a m:Link style vote on Meta in which, sadly, a large majority chose to keep the current, underlined link style (really the browser default). If you are logged in, you can disable the underlining in your preferences.—Eloquence 06:51, Mar 2, 2004 (UTC)

Or, if you have a browser with good Cascading Style Sheets support, you can use your own style sheet to choose what you want links to look like. -- Wapcaplet 00:45, 3 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Overlinking defeats its own purpose. It's done with a good heart so it's crotchety to complain. I dare not de-Wikify, though I itch to. Wetman 15
18, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Username or Real Name? Which should I use?[edit]

Moved to User_talk:Skyfaller and Wikipedia talk:Username

List of pages with more than 1000 hits in February[edit]

For those curious to see which parts of the English Wikipedia see the most traffic, I've put a list of Pages from English Wikipedia with more than 1000 hits in Feb 2004 on meta, generated from the webalizer stats. -- Jeronim 02:16, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC) -->Talk:Pages from English Wikipedia with more than 1000 hits in Feb 2004

Trademark symbols[edit]

-->Wikipedia talk:Copyrights/archive2

Merging Accounts[edit]

If it is at least frowned upon to have multiple accounts, is it possible to have them merged somewhere (given that such thing already exists for IP addresses)? -- Dissident 19:10, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

See: Wikipedia:Changing attribution for an edit --Kokiri 10:09, 2 Mar 2004 (UTC)


Take a look at Wikipedia:Candidates for vfd and vote at Wikipedia talk:Candidates for vfd. Do not reply here; your comments on Village Pump will be ignored or moved to the talk page. Optim 18:43, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Old English markings[edit]

I am reading a book, a 1972 reprint of the 1925 book "Brunel and After, The Romance of the Great Western Railway", by Patrick Stevens. Throughout the book it has the "st" and "ct" of every word joined with a half circle over the tops of the letters. I have never seen such markings before and hoped there might be someone who could tell me what they are and what they signify. A particular pronunciation?

                     Ross Lambourn

No, it's a typesetter's device called a ligature. See Ligature (typography) Adam 09:53, 1 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Neutrality dispute blackmail[edit]

-->Wikipedia talk:Neutral point of view

How to deal with rampant POV?[edit]

-->Talk:Asymmetric warfare

Requests for help and comments[edit]

I have been very impressed with this whole site. I have yet to find an article suffering from a lack of NPOV. Of course I know they are out there, but so far so good. I was pretty skeptical about this in the beginning. (Good to be wrong once in a while.)COMPATT 21:37, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

  1. Sennheiser has created a WikiProject Space and he would like to invite Astronomy and Space Exploration enthusiasts to join his new project.
  2. TUF-KAT has created Wikipedia talk:Infobox for all taxobox/infobox discussion to be centralized
  3. Belizian is willing to take photos of plants and animals in the jungle for wikipedia, he requests your help in identifying species at Plants and animals of Belize
  4. For those who enjoy writing and editing: Wikipedia:Articles requested for over a year, Wikipedia:RC patrol
  5. The Wikipedia:Association of Members' Advocates is an intra-Wikipedia voluntary association looking for new members who are interested in assisting users with the dispute resolution process.
  6. If you voted to remove an article to Wikipedia:Featured article candidates but have not raised a formal objection to it, please do so now. Bmills
  7. Wikipedians are encouraged to make use of this public domain site, see Wikipedia talk:Porting Vectorsite articles
  8. Multilingual? Or need a foreign-language wikipedia article translated into English? Check out the newly created Wikipedia:Translation
  9. Rholton (aka Anthropos) suggests that every Wikipedian take the time each day to find a home for one of the many orphaned articles.
  10. Wikipedia:WikiProject Ethnic Groups has gone live, seeks more participants.
  11. Jengod would love it if you would adopt your birthday (April 7, November 22, etc) and keep it updated, so the Wikipedia:Selected anniversaries people have more material with which to build that section of the main page.
  12. Optim asks for feedback at MediaWiki talk:Nonsense

main function[edit]

is there any full form for main().function in c.please let me know

And this has solved the problem! The extra line doesn't even appear on the page. jaknouse23:21, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)

EXAMPLE: &lbr;&lbr;pl:Okrytonasienne&rbr;&rbr; &lbr;&lbr;sv:Fröväxter&rbr;&rbr;


<table border="1" cellspacing="0" align="right" cellpadding="2" style="margin-left:1em">


[ [ pl:Okrytonasienne ] ] [ [ sv:Fröväxter ] ]


<table border="1" cellspacing="0" align="right" cellpadding="2" style="margin-left:1em">

Possible MediaWiki bug[edit]

The HTML validator finds an erroneous

in the Honeysuckle article--there's no such thing if you click Edit this page. (You have to save the whole page and upload it--if you try and run the validator direct on the site it gets a 403 error.) Niteowlneils 02:44, 11 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Image thumbnail weirdness[edit]

OK, another weird thing. The thumbnail in the Australian Shepherd breed table displayed fine 20 minutes ago. I didn't change the Image statement at all, but I did go to the image page and edited its text. Now the thumbnail doesn't display. Clicking the magnifying glass works OK. (Simply editing the image description page doesn't seem to be the problem, because I tried it with one of the other thumbnails.) Can anyone else see the thumbnail? If not, anyone know why it's gone? Elf 05:36, 11 Mar 2004 (UTC)

The Oldest Article[edit]

Just out of interest - what is the oldest article on Wikipedia. Shouldn't we frame it and put it on display somewhere?! :-) Ludraman 14:55, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It has Special:Ancientpages which lists those page which haven't been edited for a long time. However which article was the very first one I have no idea, I am just active for one year now - someone who knows should add that information into the Wikipedia article. andy 15:05, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Likely no way of knowing, I believe early on Wikipedia history, the history of the pages were lost. - user:zanimum
A lot of information was lost during the conversion from Phase 1 software to Phase 2 software in February 2002. User:Brion VIBBER heroically rescued all that could be possibly be rescued... thus you can find page histories going back to e.g. 20 February 2001: Note that Leisure is still not that good three years later! The very very early edits (January 2001), are lost forever. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:52, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)
7 February 2001: Hope an SQL query to find the oldest article would hog the servers too much... otherwise it would spoil my fun! Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 15:58, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Sorry Pcb21, it doesn't, and I did it while you saved your edit. According to the search, the oldest still existing version of a page is at It is the page UuU (now at U), version 16 January 2001 (which I think was the second day of Wikipedia). From that same day we have:
There are 11 pages from 17 January, not including 6 more versions of ScottMoonen. The oldest page for which there is no break in the history because of being changed into a redirect is List of female tennis players, which has a version from 6 February 2001, but it seems that that one will have been moved nevertheless - it just was moved with moving the history. - Andre Engels 16:07, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Thanks, Andre, interesting stuff. I'll sign off with the oldest recorded edit made by Jimbo - - on the 23rd January 2001. I believe Jimbo said he made the first ever edit to Wikipedia, a test edit.

The perfect model for hitting a hockey ball[edit]

Hi, My name is Christie Bray and i am currently studing Physical Education in Archbishop Blanch School in Liverpool. For my GCSE coursework i have to know the perfect model for hitting a hockey ball. I have beein trying to research this but so far i have not been sucessful. I would be extremly grateful for any information you may be able to give me. Thanks, Christie Bray.

Email -


User:Nohat indirectly started a discussion on the spelling of 한글 (Hangeul/Hangul). I wish to involve as many of the community as possible. We used to use Hangeul, until Nohat backed with a Google test and be bold in editing pages changed most instances into Hangul. I think we can reduce much of the disagreement whether Hangul constitutes an English word or is merely a romanization. Please see Talk:Hangeul. --Kokiri 00:38, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Michael Hayden[edit]

Michael Hayden's name should have been included in the list of "classical period composers".

I see Michael Haydn in List of classical music composers# Classical era. Maybe you missed him because you misspelled his lastname? Or do you mean another list? andy 20:12, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

What are these?[edit]

What's the use of this page: List of stations of the Paris Métro? Most of the links there are stubs! Like Pont de Levallois - Bécon, Anatole France, Louise Michel, Porte de Champerret etc. Are they necessary? --Yacht 14:33, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)

Yes, they are. Optim·.· 15:03, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I would agree with Optim if those articles have more then the basic stub info they have now. There is probably more info than the subway line which goes there. When was the station opened? Where did the name come from? Any special events there (e.g. a bomb, a serious accident)? See the London subway stations as a positive example what this stub can grow into. But there is equal chance they will stay these ugly stubs for a long time. andy 20:20, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Errr... what i cay say is: they are really ugly...--Yacht 08:40, Mar 7, 2004 (UTC)
Some suggestions, best first:
1. Fix them. It's a lot more work to fix them than to just criticise them, but it does directly improve the Encyclopedia.
2. Add stub warnings, if appropriate and not already there. This is really a minor fix, but it is progress and it's surprising how often it's overlooked, so I thought it deserved its own line.
3. Discuss them on the article talk pages, making the best suggestions you can to help others fix them.
4. List them on cleanup. This at least alerts others to the fact that they need fixing.
But, please don't list them on VfD unless you've read Wikipedia:Deletion policy and there are sound reasons for deleting them in terms of this policy. Oh you may laugh, but doing just this seems to be an increasingly common hobby and is IMO an enormous waste of the time of those of us who would like to improve the articles. Sorry if that's blunt. Andrewa 19:49, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)
And why is that wasting your time? You can still improve the article, or start a new one. Is it really that much easier to improve "Anatole France (Paris Metro) is served by line 3" than to improve "Anatole France (Paris Metro)"? Really, I don't think so. Andre Engels 12:10, 10 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Is a subway article really necessary? There's something like 500 subway stations in NYC... should we have an article on every single one? Many are nothing more than a 200-sq-ft empty platform with a ticket-vending machine. --Delirium 00:51, Mar 9, 2004 (UTC)

Maps, etc...[edit]

It is despairing finding an article on a region/river/place... which is not illustrated with a map. I am sure this has been already discussed, but it might be worthwhile keeping a record of those articles somewhere so that someone having the time and willing may "fix" them. Any ideas? I am going to start this list at user:Pfortuny/Unmapped_places. Pfortuny 12:32, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I agree, maps are so important to these articles. I know that User:Morwen has been uploading loads of maps recently, so I don't know if she already has a list that she's working off of? fabiform | talk 13:06, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I am making a list of things as I do them at User:Morwen/maps. Morwen 13:27, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)
You're doing some commendable work.MK 22:37, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I am not sure if you are aware of the Wikipedia:WikiProject Maps - maybe your requested maps list can become a subpage in that project. And it would be more likely that any wikimapmaker would look there than your userpage. andy 20:26, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I knew there was something of the sort. I'll refer to that page. Thanks to all. Pfortuny 08:42, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

FWIW, the unmapped places page is now Wikipedia:WikiProject Maps/Requested and orphan maps thanks to ... well, I do not remember. If you find an article on a place without a map, you can list it there.

Tutorial on 'how to write a well-sourced article': Hapiru example[edit]

I just ran across Habiru/Sources, and was pleasantly amazed at the quality of the source-referencing and research that has gone into what was once a likely deletion candidate. I think every Wikipedian should run across this page in their first day of community-page browsing, so that somewhere in the back of their minds they have an idea of what high-detail citations can look like.

Could someone who knows where all the WP-intro documents are include this as a standard for excellent research, so that people who would otherwise be inclined to engage in POV or factual finger-pointing can see how else their efforts might be directed?

While I agree that's a good article, I'm not sure it's desirable to have that level of source detail. That looks a lot like extensive original research into primary sources, which Wikipedia is not. --Delirium 00:46, Mar 9, 2004 (UTC)
Delerium seems to be asserting that Wikipedians should not consult historical documents in an effort to amend errors in popular texts of our time.Bad faith
That's correct, in general. We're an encyclopedia, not a historical research organization. We can consult original documents to make sure things like quotes and dates are accurate, of course, but interpretation and context ought to be left up to original research outside Wikipedia. If you feel there are major errors in popular texts of our time, you're free to publish an article in a history journal with a novel interpretation, and then we'll report on it. --Delirium 06:12, Mar 10, 2004 (UTC)

Weird bug on VFD or stupidity on my part?[edit]

I went to Wikipedia:Votes for deletion and tried to vote on Symbiotic algorithm. I clicked on the section "edit" and it took me to an editing page. The edit box, instead of the list of votes, had the following:

=== The 6th ===
Take an old day's section off by moving by removing its last listings, and moving    
its heading to be the line before this sentence.
(However, headings containing the word "March" may be discarded instead of being     

Does anybody know what this means? Why can't I vote? moink 04:12, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Tried it with no problems... might just be you, may have been temporary... Fennec 07:32, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I think it was temporary. I suspect that User:Jerzy was in the middle of something odd he was doing with the date headers. Thanks for checking for me. moink 08:19, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The --> is a clue that a comment was created, and is probably a guideline to editors who want to maintain the page. Anything you put in between a <!-- and a --> doesn't show up Dysprosia 08:25, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I think it is a known bug that headings inside comment tags break section editing. Angela. 10:43, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)[edit] was just featured on Slashdot. A nice enough project, but they need help. Many of the contributions would make a seasoned Wikipedia editor cringe for abuse of Wiki syntax, their manual of style is blank, Article Titles have Mixed Case Too Often, and I can't find a single community page.

BUT STILL! It shows promise, and I thought you (plural) would. be interested. They could use some help.

-- Fennec 03:33, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC) (User:Fennec)

Hey Fennec, I just saw you over there a few minutes ago :-) Fennec is right though, the project is just starting up and has a lot of gaping holes to fill, so any Wikipedians who know stuff about Linux would certainly be welcomed there. They use our Wiki code, so there is zero learning curve for anyone who's spent time here. -- Wapcaplet 04:09, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
I see an upside and a downside to this. We don't need to lose seasoned wikipedians to another wiki project, but if their project adds even one or two more developers to the project, it would be a great windfall. →Raul654 04:11, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)
Indeed? :) I should try to become a developer-type... I've considered running my own wiki as well. As for this site... Right now I think that they suffer from a lack of infrastructure for guidelines and community. A village pump? Naming conventions? Editable help pages? You wish. - Fennec 06:27, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Pancreatitis in the headlines[edit]

Attorney General John Ashcroft has been hospitalized (intensive care) with acute gallstone pancreatitis. Looking at our article on pancreatitis, it sure could use some spiffing up -- including articles for the many red links.

Could someone with a medical background take a look and see what can be done? Thanks. -Rholton 02:47, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Meta Question[edit]

For reasons we shall leave to a defenseless posterity to ponder, I have composed a lengthy ill-contrived article over in m:User:Itai/Gnutella (if you want to comment on this article, please do so in the article's Talk page. It should be noted that despite several ill-conceived declaration on my behalf, the idea thereby presented is doable. Worse still, I could do it). I was wondering where in the Meta - if such a place exists - I should place a link to this article (although I should probably move it out of the User: namespace first), the concept therein discussed not quite fitting the title of a Project? Furthermore, if I have future questions regarding the Meta, where should I place them? (Somehow, I'm not sure Wikipedia's own Village Pump is the best place for questions such as this. Possibly a mailing list would have been better, for a given definition of the term.) -- Itai 01:54, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Mainly m:Current issues and m:MediaWiki_development#Proposed. As you're saying we could do away with the Squid proxies, you might want to link from m:Cache strategy. If you think it will make things faster, you can link from m:Why Wikipedia runs slow. And if you're desperate for more links, claim it will reduce stress and link from m:wikistress. :) Angela. 10:43, Mar 6, 2004 (UTC)
Reduce stress... I wouldn't know. Is there a page for reducing Wikipedia? :) Anyway, I am much obliged. -- Itai 23:51, 7 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Fun new page suggestion - Monsters![edit]

I was thinking about a page for monsters with human heads/torsos. We could put sphinx, harpy, mermaid, shedu, Lamia, centaur and many more there. Can anyone think of a good title for the page, and/or a good way to organize it? Perhaps a table listing the component body parts of the beasties? Lion's body with human head as compared to horse's body with human torso for example.

Furthermore, what about monsters with different human body parts? For example, the Minotaur is all human... except for his head. While we're at it, what about werewolves who are human most of the time? Darn it, this is getting complicated... --Dante Alighieri | Talk 01:19, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Chimera is both the name of one such monster and a term for a living creature combining attributes from several different sources, so it might be one possible title... By the way, I think that the existence of mermaids and mermen were deductions from a medieval theory that every land creature had a corresponding sea creature (hence all the sea-urchins and sea-lions and sea-whatevers...) Which comedian had a bit about a "maid-mer" ("on her, the top half was a fish?") Dpbsmith 01:37, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
The Chimera had no human parts. --Dante Alighieri | Talk 01:52, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Although Chimeric creature might work... but it wouldn't limit it to beasts with human components. --Dante Alighieri | Talk 01:54, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)
It might belong as a sublist on some existing pages. Browse around List of species in folklore and mythology and List of species in folklore and mythology by type and see what you think. (Main entry seems to be Legendary creatures, but I don't think Legendary means at all the same as Mythical, which is what I really see these things as. But I didn't title the pages. :-) ) Elf 02:28, 6 Mar 2004 (UTC)~


First, I'd just like to say that it sucks that VP is now no longer linked from the main page.

Secondly, what the heck is going on with the "What Links Here" page for Fortran? (scroll down) --Dante Alighieri | Talk 23:10, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Seems like the link table updating bug gets more and more serious. The way it happens there is a minor problem, much more annoying is that sometime a links stays red even though the target page exists. andy 23:22, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Project Gutenberg[edit]

Would it be useful to go through and post links to full text versions of literature as found on PG? I am a newcomer here, so let me know. kmac 20:52, Mar 5, 2004 (UTC)

Links to PG works are fine (actually welcomed not just fine). Dori | Talk 20:56, Mar 5, 2004 (UTC)
Wikisource is a sister project of Wikipedia and is the proper repository for the full texts themselves. --Dante Alighieri | Talk 22:49, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Scientific name redirects[edit]

Should it be made possible for people to look up organism species via their latin names, via redirects? Or is there already something fulfilling this need? I first wanted to start doing this off my own bat, but then I decided to ask first; then I can also ask whether it should be put on the open tasks list if it needs to be done. I have a suspicion that it may be a very large task; maybe it would be a good idea to ask page authors if they would make scientific-name links for their own pages? Thanks, Sietse

Ask at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject Tree of Life for specific ( :-) ) advice. Pete/Pcb21 (talk) 14:51, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)
As that discussion is a bit lengthy - the short answer is: current policy is to have any lifeform at its common english name (if it has one), and make the scientific name a redirect. E.g. Salamandra salamandra is a redirect to Fire Salamander. However by far not all species have that redirect. In the Wikipedia:WikiProject Tree of Life you'll find the full answer with a lot of discussion around it... andy 15:09, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

wikipedia mirror[edit]


Is it possible to get the complete sources of all articles compressed into a single file like a .tar.gz file? or is it possible to get a copy of the MySQL database directory?

Cheers, Vincent

Yes, see Please also see Wikipedia:Copyrights if you are going to set up a mirror. Dori | Talk 14:04, Mar 5, 2004 (UTC)

Borderline Vandal: posting in bad faith; POV material largely off-topic[edit]

I'm about to call it a session, but perhaps others will be able to pay attention to the following users and articles:

Note that those are the entire contribution histories of the 3 users.

I reverted Governments' pre-war ...

04:27, 2004 Mar 5 . . Jerzy (rv to last of : POV, off topic, at least one absurd assertion about polling public in every country)

for the reasons stated, especially in light of "masking" of the IP's edits with the 2-character Minor edit. That is, i believe User:Mobz's edit was pre-planned, and intended to keep the use of the IP and the extent of the edit from being noticed by Watchlist users who look at "(cur" rather than "hist)"; i describe this as editing in bad faith.

The counter-revert by a third brand-new user reinforces my impression of the attempt (initially) at stealth.

I don't contest that there may be some verifiable and useful material in what i reverted, and other edits that may be similar. But at this point in time, i don't edit for the enemy when they are using stealth, doing sloppy work, and showing no regard for staying on topic. As i suggest in my heading, i consider these 3 users represent a single person, who is entitled only to be treated like a vandal.

I'm going to do another revert, on the one article, before logging off.

Whether the contributed material deserves harsh treatment is of course another matter; i leave it to others, as i do the other, i think similarly edited, articles. --Jerzy(t) 08:14, 2004 Mar 5 (UTC)

Wikipedia and novelty appeal[edit]

Wikipedia will become a database of usless unimportant articles that have novelty appeal. Bensaccount 17:37, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)

There are more than two roads. Web implementation, hyperlinking, and open collaboration give it interesting characteristics. One of the more curious ones is that garbage damages Wikipedia less than it would damage a print encyclopedia. If you look up on LISP and find a well-written article that answers your question, you don't really care whether there's a questionable List of [insert favorite junk list here] in the same "volume." As for organization, the article on Programming languages is a very good organization of the overall topic. It doesn't matter much if there are junk articles on programming if you don't find them when you're searching, or looking up something, or if the articles you find don't link to them. Wikipedia is proceeding down a road of its own. It is encyclopedic, but it combines elements of traditional, scholarly encyclopedias and "encyclopedias" of popular-culture topics. Dpbsmith 14:03, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)
In retrospect, I agree theres nothing wrong with wikipedias inculsion of pop-culture and any topic at all for that matter (I dont really even have a problem with lists of two letter words, but in comparison with definitions there is a definite level of priority). Bensaccount 17:35, 5 Mar 2004 (UTC)