Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Computer science

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WikiProject Computer science (Rated Project-class)
WikiProject icon This page is within the scope of WikiProject Computer science, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Computer science related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
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Help needed with History of logic post-WWII[edit]

The article History of logic has been nominated for a featured article here. The nominating editor has asked for help concerning the post-WWII period (see this post). Any assistance would be appreciated

Nomination of Invasive weed optimization algorithm for deletion[edit]

The article Invasive weed optimization algorithm is being discussed concerning whether it is suitable for inclusion as an article according to Wikipedia's policies and guidelines or whether it should be deleted.

The article will be discussed at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Invasive weed optimization algorithm (2nd nomination) until a consensus is reached, and anyone is welcome to contribute to the discussion. The nomination will explain the policies and guidelines which are of concern. The discussion focuses on good quality evidence, and our policies and guidelines.

Users may edit the article during the discussion, including to improve the article to address concerns raised in the discussion. However, do not remove the article-for-deletion template from the top of the article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ruud Koot (talkcontribs) 19:18, 12 February 2011

Request for feedback: Y-fast tries[edit]

I wrote an article about y-fast tries, a data structure for bounded universes that improves on x-fast tries. Any and all constructive feedback is appreciated. Rf insane (talk) 20:13, 15 April 2011

Binary decision diagram[edit]

Please could someone take a look at the External Links section of the Binary decision diagram article? It is enormous and has been in the Spam Cleanup category [1] since 2009!

I've removed the links; link farms like this aren't appropriate as Wikipedia is not a directory. -- Mikeblas (talk) 04:53, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

This article needs attention from an expert in Computer science[edit]

As an evolving science many experts hold conflicting views, and the taxonomy is inconsitent

Let's revive this wikiproject![edit]

This project, and the associated portal Portal:Computer science, is inactive. Let's try to revive it! Here is the plan:

  • sort out all the inactive members Wikipedia:WikiProject_Computer_science/Participants (considered inactive when they haven't made a single contribution on en.wikipedia for one year) Yes check.svg Done
  • identify, among the remaining members, who is still editing computer-science related articles
  • send them messages to invite them to join the effort
  • update the TODO list of the project because some links are not relevant anymore
  • propose some concrete projects:
    • catching up with the backlog of importance assessments
    • review the state of computer science on en.wikipedia
    • propose to focus edits on some high-traffic low-quality articles
  • try to build a community: IRC channel, meetups?

Pintoch (talk) 15:08, 3 August 2014 (UTC)

RfC: Mention string literal concatenation on constant folding page?[edit]

There’s an RfC at Talk:Constant folding#RfC: Mention string literal concatenation, asking:

“Should there be a mention of string literal concatenation (SLC) on the constant folding (CF) article or not?”

Concretely, proposed edit (diff):

“A superficially similar feature is string literal concatenation, which concatenates adjacent string literals during lexical analysis, for example replacing "abc" "def" with "abcdef".”

Any comments are most welcome – please reply at the talk page!

—Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:56, 6 August 2014 (UTC)

Algorithm examples[edit]

See Talk:Algorithm examples for a discussion on the naming and use of this article -- (talk) 05:18, 9 August 2014 (UTC)

Tech help required to improve categories[edit]

Please see Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)#CatVisor and User:Paradoctor/CatVisor#Planned features if you are willing and able to assist this innovative WP project move along it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, IZAK (talk) 23:48, 12 August 2014 (UTC)


For your information: The above user seems to be mass-producing articles on (notable?) computer scientists. No user page, but see here: [1] YohanN7 (talk) 02:08, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Leonard Schulman definitely is notable. Some of the other more junior ones are far less clear. And the formatting of the article categories is broken. But the number of new articles is not really on a mass scale (only nine so far, easy enough to check and clean up all of them individually). —David Eppstein (talk) 03:48, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Messy duplication in some language/grammar topics[edit]

I found the following pages very unwieldy to edit because of the duplication. Dunno where to add material basically:

Thoughts? JMP EAX (talk) 15:21, 16 August 2014 (UTC)

I would keep the current separation. Context-free language should be a general presentation of this class of languages, relating them of course to context-free grammar but also to push-down automata, categorial grammar and so on. Context-free grammar should focus on the grammar as an object in itself, proper CFGs, Chomsky Normal Form, and subclasses like LR. I think some paragraphs from context-free grammar could be transferred to context-free language.
Nowadays there are so many different grammar frameworks that we deal with context-free languages very often without using CFGs at all.
I would keep Context-sensitive language and Context-sensitive grammar separate for the same reason, but I would merge Noncontracting grammar with Context-sensitive grammar because the notions are the same. − Pintoch (talk) 15:39, 16 August 2014 (UTC)
I don't find you argument compelling. In practice the language article is just a poor cousin of the grammar one. Look at Indexed language and Indexed grammar. The former doesn't even say WTF an linearly indexed language is. JMP EAX (talk) 10:53, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
Then would you merge Regular language with Finite state automaton? Or with Regular expression? Or with Prefix grammar? (and so on.) I agree that currently the state of the context-free and context-sensitive articles is quite bad, because the overlap between them is not handled properly, but I still think these articles should remain separate. However, for notions that are less widespread, it would make sense to merge the articles so that we can focus on one article. Maybe it would be the right thing to do for Indexed language and Indexed grammar. − Pintoch (talk) 11:19, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
To give you the ultimate example why this practice is bad, I just watched the appearance of Mildly context-sensitive grammar formalism as a clear WP:POVFORK of [2]. JMP EAX (talk) 22:29, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
The article on regular language makes a bit of sense separately because regular expression turns out to have way more stuff because the notion was extended in programming practice. So if want to be pedantic, the first article is about regular expression (theoretical computer science), while the 2nd is regular expression (computer programming). I never said anything about merging the automata articles with the grammar/language ones. But when you define a language by its grammar, it makes little sense to have two articles. JMP EAX (talk) 22:38, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
Did I mention we have Rational series and Rational language? JMP EAX (talk) 23:26, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
OK, I am sure you can find lots of such pairs of articles. I have already said that I do agree with you that some of them could certainly be merged, because there are not enough things to say about them to keep the distinction useful. The goal of my example about regular languages was not to be pedantic but to show that, in some cases, it makes sense to keep the treatment of the language and the grammar separate. And you agree with that. Then, we have to decide where to put the limit: what is the notability threshold above which we should separate the articles? You think that context-free grammars and context-free languages should be merged, I have explained why I think they shouldn't (because there are many definitions of this family of languages and many of them don't deal with CFGs), so I think we should simply wait for some other opinions about that. Cheers. − Pintoch (talk) 07:20, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
Some time ago I made a start on trying to sort out the terminology on Wikipedia for rational, regular and recognisable languages. Some texts treat all three as synonyous, but I wanted to distinguish the case of working over an arbitrary monoid. For various reasons I didn't get very far. It would be good if someone more knowledgeable and energetic were to complete the task. Deltahedron (talk) 08:13, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
As far as can tell "rational language" is exactly the same thing as "regular language", except coming from the perspective of rational series. But you cannot actually define a simple, solely string-based language using that other than the regular/rational. What can do with rational series more generally is to define weighed rational expressions (I gave an example of this on Talk:rational language) which are interpreted as giving the structure of weighted automata. But these aren't simply recognizers of string-based formal languages. Anyway, I've added the necessary prerequisites to star semiring and I'm working my way through the formal power series article, which also needs the semiring version of the notion detailed. After that I'll be able to spiffy rational series and weighted automata and write weighed rational expression. As for rational language it should be redirected to regular language although it will need an explanation there. JMP EAX (talk) 20:05, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
It is true that rational is the same as regular (Kleene-Schützenberger Theorem) over many semirings. Has it been been shown in general? Sakarovich already identified rational monoids as a class for which rational and recongisable coincide. Deltahedron (talk) 20:31, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
And what does that have to do with this? JMP EAX (talk) 14:06, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
I don't know, but if you do, then please say so. Deltahedron (talk) 14:23, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
I'm guessing you are actually talking about rational set vs recognizable set. Those sets aren't called "languages" by anyone as far as I know (except in the case of the free monoid, in which case the two notions coincide [by Kleene's theorem]). JMP EAX (talk) 04:33, 26 August 2014 (UTC)
The article on formal power series currently has focus on power series over rings, and mainly in commuting vatiables. To write that out again in terms of power series over semirings would overbalance it. Why not expand the shorter article at rational series? Deltahedron (talk) 20:39, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
You have free hand. Amuse me further. JMP EAX (talk) 14:06, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Bibliographic identifiers[edit]

Should there not be a sub-category:Bibliographic identifiers under category:Identifiers ? Many such are used in template:citation etc. LeadSongDog come howl! 18:39, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

Hum, maybe… Anyway I don't understand why this Category:Identifiers is tagged by the WikiProject Computer science. Isn't WikiProject Computing more relevant? And still, it has very little to see with computing, don't you think? Pintoch (talk) 19:32, 17 August 2014 (UTC)


It's kinda annoying that this redirects to the FSA page because the notion is obviously more general. JMP EAX (talk) 20:06, 18 August 2014 (UTC)

Yes, often redirects are set to what seems like the best link we have, but many are really interim solutions until someone comes along to develop the topic in more detail. Beyond finite state recognizers, we have articles on syntactic monoid, ω-regular language, and Büchi automaton, but none of those are general enough, either. A possible solution would be to turn the redirect into an article. One possible survey article for the infinite stuff would be Automata and semigroups recognizing infinite words. --Mark viking (talk) 20:49, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
If a full article would be too much work to put together, a set index article could be an easy way to start. —David Eppstein (talk) 01:25, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
By the way, it is funny that Recognizer redirects to FSA and Recognizable language redirects to… Recursively enumerable language! After all, the difference between FSA and TM isn't that big, is it? Pintoch (talk) 06:24, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

The same problem basically exists in the header of the 4th/last column in Template:Formal languages and grammars, titled "Minimal [[Finite-state machine|automaton]]". Piped link goes to FSA again. Automaton surely looks too broad for a TCS topic though. JMP EAX (talk) 21:59, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Following a few links, it seems abstract machine is the best bet insofar. The article isn't in great shape though. I have read the first couple of pages from the van Emde Boas paper/chapter cited there, and it is indeed what we want for a topic like this. Too bad the wiki article's text reflects almost nothing from the ref cited, at least as far as the text before the machine list is concerned. It seems someone just added that ref as a substitute for the article rather than base the article on it... A sort of "read this instead clueless newbs". The wiki article also has one of my favorite headings "==Information==" with the meaning of "==stuff goes here==". JMP EAX (talk) 22:17, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

There's also some material about this at Automata theory#Formal definition. Wherever this material ends up, we should probably leave a pointer to it in the language recognition disambiguation page. —David Eppstein (talk) 22:23, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Software development merge proposal[edit]

I recently proposed that software development process be merged into software development. Feel free to join the discussion, or to improve the content of the articles. (Software development process is a bit too long because it overlaps internally and with subarticles, though I'm slowly chipping away at it.) -- Beland (talk) 16:40, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

Topological insulator[edit]

Anyone want to try to make this article carbon-based-life-form readable?Mercurywoodrose (talk) 04:54, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

Part of the problem is that this isn't really a topic on computer science; it is a fairly specialized topic in condensed matter physics. That said, I agree that the article is too heavy on jargon and too light on readable explanation. --Mark viking (talk) 08:24, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

Request for Comment at Talk:Artificial intelligence[edit]

I would appreciate it if anyone interested would comment on the following RfC: Talk:Artificial intelligence#RfC: Should this article define AI as studying/simulating "intelligence" or "human-like intelligence"?. Thanks. ---- CharlesGillingham (talk) 06:23, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

A new RFC has replaced the old one, please see Talk:Artificial intelligence#Another RfC on "human-like" - (talk) 10:57, 22 October 2014 (UTC) (steelpillow (talk · contribs) having login problems)

Comment on the WikiProject X proposal[edit]

Hello there! As you may already know, most WikiProjects here on Wikipedia struggle to stay active after they've been founded. I believe there is a lot of potential for WikiProjects to facilitate collaboration across subject areas, so I have submitted a grant proposal with the Wikimedia Foundation for the "WikiProject X" project. WikiProject X will study what makes WikiProjects succeed in retaining editors and then design a prototype WikiProject system that will recruit contributors to WikiProjects and help them run effectively. Please review the proposal here and leave feedback. If you have any questions, you can ask on the proposal page or leave a message on my talk page. Thank you for your time! (Also, sorry about the posting mistake earlier. If someone already moved my message to the talk page, feel free to remove this posting.) Harej (talk) 22:47, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

RFC in progress[edit]

There is a Request for Comments at Talk: Artificial intelligence. The issue has to do with the wording of the lede of the article. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:12, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

Some eyes could be used on this article. The RFC was prematurely closed so the two people most involved could form a compromise that doesn't seem (to me) to have been where the RFC was heading. APL (talk) 20:35, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

Request for Comment on Metacompiler definition.[edit]

There is a Request for Comments at Talk: Metacompiler. The issue has to do with lede stating:

The feature that sets a metacompiler apart from a standard compiler-compiler is that a metacompiler is written in its own language and translates itself.
And a proposed change to be more consistent with existing definitions.
Need some eyes on this subject. Historically some metacompile have been developed in other languages. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Steamerandy (talkcontribs) 01:09, 28 October 2014 (UTC)


What is the scope of the Computer science project? I ask because I'm finding several articles tagged for the project, but don't (in my opinion) have much to do with Computer Science and would be more appropriate for the Computing project. (Two current examples are Code page 770 and Code page 771.) When is an article appropriate for the CS project, and when should it be in the Computing project? What taxonomy is followed? -- Mikeblas (talk) 04:56, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

I completely agree with you, many articles tagged with Computer Science should be tagged with Computing instead. I have not been able to find guidelines concerning this, but as the wikiproject is not very active, feel free to define them and tag articles accordingly. − Pintoch (talk) 10:06, 30 October 2014 (UTC)