Talk:History of Earth

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Former good article nominee History of Earth was a Natural sciences good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for History of Earth:

Here are some tasks awaiting attention:
  • Verify : * Solar System formation YesY RockMagnetist (talk) 00:35, 20 April 2012 (UTC)
    • Hadean and Archean Eons YesY RockMagnetist (talk) 21:31, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
    • Proterozoic Eon
      • Oxygen revolution YesY RockMagnetist (talk) 04:53, 29 April 2012 (UTC)
      • Snowball Earth YesY RockMagnetist (talk) 23:43, 30 April 2012 (UTC)
      • Emergence of eukaryotes
      • Supercontinents in the Proterozoic YesY RockMagnetist (talk) 23:32, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
      • Late Proterozoic climate and life YesY Tobias1984 (talk) 07:46, 29 September 2012 (UTC)
    • Phanerozoic Eon
      • Tectonics, paleogeography and climate
      • Cambrian explosion
      • Colonization of land
      • Evolution of tetrapods
      • Extinctions
      • Diversification of mammals and birds
      • Human evolution

Eras of the Phanerozoic addition?[edit]

I've already added this to the Phanerozoic article, and I'm thinking that I should add it here as well. If you have anything you want to change, either change it directly, or tell me on my talk page. I'd appreciate your input! I'll be adding it tomorrow, but you're still free to edit it further (but if you're going to delete, please tell me why)... Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 03:09, 5 May 2015 (UTC)

Since this is a copy of the Phanerozoic article as it stood a few days ago, I have taken the liberty of putting it in a collapsible box so people can find the discussion. RockMagnetist(talk) 03:40, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for your offer. You are welcome to add some material, but you should bear in mind a few things:
  • We have a lot of material on the Phanerozoic already, so you'll need to be careful how you blend the new stuff in.
  • Aside from the largest time divisions, this article is organized by theme, not period, and it would be best to stick to that organization. You might want to look at Geological history of Earth, which is organized more like Phanerozoic.
  • This article is a failed Good Article nominee, but it has been much improved since then, so you need to maintain the high standards. In particular, bare urls for citations will not do. I see that someone has cleaned up your citations in Phanerozoic.
  • RockMagnetist(talk) 05:34, 7 May 2015 (UTC)

I don't know how those bear URL's got in there, but I've added the original copy from my sandbox which (to my knowledge) has no bare URL's. If you wish to edit that section, please do, and then tell me what you did because I'd like to keep my sandbox copy up-to-date. If you wish to delete it, please tell me why (and it better be a good reason...) Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 01:49, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

Remember my points about thematic organization and blending the material in? Please don't just paste it in. You need to read the existing material and see where (and if) your material fits. Much of your text duplicates existing material. RockMagnetist(talk) 02:04, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

I guess I could add the Cenozoic section because the existing one is lacking in information. I don't really know if I can merge the rest though, but I'd appreciate it if anyone could find a spot for it in this article. I also added it to the Mesozoic, but if you want to delete that one, I'd understand. Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 02:17, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

I'm sorry I have to keep reverting your additions, but you need to understand the issues. If it were o.k. to just paste a verbatim copy of Phanerozoic#Cenozoic, then why not also Cenozoic? And why stop there? You could also paste in Paleogene, Neogene, and Quaternary; then Paleocene, Eocene, Oligocene, Miocene, Pliocene, Pleistocene, and Holocene; then Gelasian, Calabrian, Ionian, Tarantian, ... and so on. Where would it end? That doesn't make for good articles. Articles on broader subjects should contain summaries of subtopics (see Summary style). I know it's much more work, but there is no substitute for reading this article and thinking carefully about how to add to it. RockMagnetist(talk) 16:03, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

I didn't add the entire "Mesozoic" section, just the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous subsections. You deleted too much and someone's going to have to re-write it... Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 01:46, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

I've re-written the section titled "Diversification of Mammals". Before I add it (in about a week or so), tell me what you think. Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 02:38, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

One last comment here, then I'll move on to diversification of mammals. If you look at the edit summaries, you'll see that I did some work after deleting your material. Some years ago, I pointed out that the organization of the article was inconsistent, with most sections being organized thematically but the Phanerozoic being organized by era. There was some support for changing this, but I never got around to doing it. Now I have done it. RockMagnetist(talk) 02:54, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Actually, another comment. Would you mind if we deleted the copy of Phanerozoic? We can always look at the article, and the copy puts a large table of contents at the top of this discussion. RockMagnetist(talk) 02:58, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Go ahead, I have plenty of copies. Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 03:00, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Diversification of mammals[edit]

Good choice of subject. It's the part of the existing article that is most in need of help. I think that, with a little cleanup, it would be quite a suitable addition. I'll try to get to it soon. RockMagnetist(talk) 03:00, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Should I work on a Mesozoic version, or would that be too much? Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 14:06, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Not much point in that, since the Mesozoic no longer has its own section. RockMagnetist(talk) 23:51, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Should we re-add the section because that's a fairly important time in earth's history (involving life)? Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 00:20, 10 May 2015 (UTC)

Please read the previous section again. As I mentioned there, that is not the way the rest of the article is organized, and there was a discussion some time ago in favor of using the same organization for the Phanerozoic. I do describe the time divisions at the top of History of Earth#Phanerozoic. RockMagnetist(talk) 14:26, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, I forgot about that. Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 19:02, 10 May 2015 (UTC)

On the topic of adding that revised version at the top of the section, should I go ahead and with it, or does it need to be revised? Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 00:47, 12 May 2015 (UTC)

Do you mean the material on mammals? RockMagnetist(talk) 00:52, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
The first two paragraphs of this section; the writing in the collapsible box Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 23:11, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
It does need significant revision to look more encyclopedic, but it is still an improvement over the existing material in that section, so I'd be o.k. with your adding it. RockMagnetist(talk) 02:48, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
One thing you should do first is to convert your bare urls to proper citations. It looks like you can use {{cite web}} for all of them. I have done the first one to provide you with an example. RockMagnetist(talk) 05:36, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
Whoa, that's confusing. Is there some tutorial for proper citations? Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 00:53, 15 May 2015 (UTC)
You could try Wikipedia:Tutorial/Citing sources. Thanks for indenting, by the way. RockMagnetist(talk) 05:01, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

Should this article be reorganized by geological divisions?[edit]

I don't know if you've noticed, but everything talking about geological time (which makes up over half of the articles info) is not organized thematically, but rather chronologically. When speaking in terms of geological time, it is natural to order them chronologically, which is why I strongly suggest reorganizing the rest of the article chronologically rather than thematically. Dunkleosteus77 (talk) 17:20, 11 May 2015 (UTC)

By "chronologically" you mean by geological time units. Of course, it is divided into eons. I have some reasons for preferring this organization:
  • There is no single right or wrong approach. This article is intermediate between Geological history of Earth, which organizes time by epoch, and Evolutionary history of life, which is entirely thematic. It seems to me that when there are articles with overlapping contents, it is good to vary the presentation.
  • Since we're trying to cover all of Earth's history, we need to paint with a very broad brush. The article size is already 52kb of readable prose size, with some sections still needing expansion (see the size guideline). I think it is easier to be concise if we keep the time divisions large.
  • This is the way the article has developed, and we have been working section by section to raise it to a Good Article level (see the to-do list at the top of this page for progress so far). You're still relatively new to Wikipedia, so I don't think you realize how much work this involves. A major reorganization would set this effort back.
I have provided a separate section heading for this discussion. RockMagnetist(talk) 19:13, 11 May 2015 (UTC)