Talk:Spark (fire)

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  • I have removed the {{prod}} tag from Spark (fire), which you proposed for deletion, because I think that this article should not be deleted from Wikipedia. I'm leaving this message here to notify you about it. If you still think the article should be deleted, please don't add the {{prod}} template back to the article. Instead, feel free to list it at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion. Thanks!Colonel Warden (talk) 23:45, 19 November 2010 (UTC)


I feel that this article's name should be changed. The word fire is somewhat misleading, and there would be better terms to describe spark.--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:01, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

What other sort of word do you think would fit? SilverserenC 01:11, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Particle maybe? Or ember?--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:31, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Ember doesn't sound bad. Particle probably wouldn't work though, because that could overlap with other types of sparks. But ember could work. SilverserenC 01:42, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
How about "combustion"? --Nuujinn (talk) 01:48, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
That would work too. Should we start an RfC on this? SilverserenC 02:14, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Sounds good to me.--Yaksar (let's chat) 04:24, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

So do we want to move it to Spark (combustion) then?--Yaksar (let's chat) 06:42, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose The eminent scientist Robert Hooke called these things "sparks of fire" and this seems much clearer English than "particle (combustion)". I'm not seeing any sources or evidence to support such alternatives and so they would fail WP:V. Colonel Warden (talk) 07:00, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Oops, I meant to write Spark (combustion), as proposed by an editor above. Silly me. I assume this is less objectionable?--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:07, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I just added a source which uses the word fire as its title, not combustion. I'm not seeing any reason to change the title to one for which we have no such source. Colonel Warden (talk) 07:22, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Because a spark is not actually a type of fire, even if many people associate them. Combustion seems to be a more applicable term that had consensus from other editors.--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:25, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • No, a spark of the type discussed here burns and so is actually a small fire. Colonel Warden (talk) 07:33, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Lot's of things can burn without being fire. This article is about the term spark when used in combustion, so it's a fitting title change.--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:38, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose - "fire" is clear and short and conveys the correct meaning. PamD (talk) 07:51, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Except it's not the correct meaning. Spark as discussed in this article is not necessarily fire, but it is a combustion term.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:04, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Spark (fire) is most fitting. It is a spark that leads to fire, and is thus fire itself. Whether you can call all fire combustion or not, don't know and don't care. Dream Focus 10:36, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
As pointed out by Nuujinn below "there are many causes to fire, and sparks most often do not lead to fires. Both sparks and fire are types of combustion."--Yaksar (let's chat) 14:02, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Comment, there are many causes to fire, and sparks most often do not lead to fires. Both sparks and fire are types of combustion. --Nuujinn (talk) 11:32, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Spark can mean various things though, which is why that page is currently a disambiguation page. Perhaps this page could be called Sparks used to make fire, it currently listing the methods of that, as well as the history of various inventions to do so. I think Spark (fire) works fine though and sounds much better. Dream Focus 17:56, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
See, the problem is, the sparks discussed in this article are not only or always used to make fire, and have other applicable uses in the field of combustion.--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:59, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Alright, so with all that said, are there any objections that don't hinge upon the mistaken idea that all sparks are or cause fires?--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:41, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Spark ionization and atomic emission spectroscopy are produced by electrical sparks which are a different topic. Electrical discharges are covered in other articles such as electrostatic discharge and electric arc. They are quite different in nature from the fiery sparks which are our topic here. This is the point of the parenthetical disambiguation (fire) — to distinguish fiery sparks, which are white-hot pieces of matter, from electrical sparks, which are electricity travelling through the air.
So, sparks in the most general sense are covered by spark (disambiguation). Electrical sparks are covered by a variety of pages, as listed at the dab page. And fiery sparks or sparks of fire are covered here. The current title is fine for this purpose while the suggested alternatives are inferior. Colonel Warden (talk) 18:41, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I totally agree with your first section; the other usages of sparks are already covered in other articles. The concern with this article, however, has nothing to do with electrical sparks. This article isn't just about "sparks of fire," but any use of spark in the field of combustion.--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:48, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • You keep saying this but it doesn't seem to make any sense because combustion is just the process of burning and so is not significantly different from fire in this context. Please provide some examples and sources to explain and verify what you mean. Colonel Warden (talk) 18:54, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Sure. I'd suggest reading the Wikipedia page for combustion though. It specifies the difference between "rapid combustion," which is the type you're referring to, and other types. It also specifies that the release of heat from combustion "can result in the production of light in the form of either glowing or a flame." Flame is the term for the visible part of a fire. Sparks, which are a visible light, are not synonymous with this. I'd also suggest reading the entry for ember. Thanks!--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:35, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
If the article is about sparks that make fire and you are taking fire to be the equivalent of combustion, I don't see how that eliminates high voltage discharges since high voltage sparks (e.g. spark plugs) produce combustion. --Kkmurray (talk) 20:37, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
This article is not about "sparks that make fire," though. It is about the particle or ember or heat.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:45, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
So you would exclude sparks from arc welding because they result from an electrical discharge or include them because they are glowing hot particulate matter? --Kkmurray (talk) 22:34, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I don't know enough about arc welding to answer that, but if its sparks are "small airborne embers or particles of glowing-hot matter," then yes, they are described in this article. But this is getting beside the point, which is that the article's current title is inaccurate and misleading.--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:06, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Are there any more objections or misunderstandings in regards to this I can help clear up?--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:20, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

  • We already have enough objections to the proposed move to see that there is no consensus and your claim of misunderstanding seems both tendentious and uncivil. But since you persist, let us consider the incoming links. For example, the article is linked to using current title by beryllium copper. This is used to make tools because it will not spark easily. Such a safety consideration is commonly called a fire hazard and so the word fire seems to work well here in providing a good context for the topic. A change of title would weaken this context and so worsen our content. Colonel Warden (talk) 08:10, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Look, I never said that sparks that cause fire were not a substantial part this article. But they are just one example of a possible spark described by this article. Your argument would only apply if this article was only about sparks and fire hazards, or, once again, only about sparks that cause fires, which it is not. Besides, the link in that article will read as "spark" no matter what, so its not like anyone would even get confused.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:19, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • In Wikipedia common names are used. That's we have United States instead of United States of America, and Mexico instead of United Mexican States. Common names instead of proper names. Spark (fire) is something at a glance people would understand. Saying Spark (particle) would cause some confusion, as would using the world combustion, or ember. Dream Focus 13:54, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I honestly cannot understand the logic behind that, for two main reasons. For one, something should not be mislabeled in an attempt to avoid confusion, and two, I don't think the words "particle", "ember", or combustion are too complicated for anyone to understand.--Yaksar (let's chat) 16:11, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose: I think common usage should prevail. "Spark (particle)" seems especially inadvisable to me as it completely loses touch with their incandescent character, which I think is important. Redirects, for other unambiguous alternatives if really useful for the likely reader, would be fine. Wwheaton (talk) 20:04, 25 February 2011 (UTC)

Request for Comment on Article Name[edit]

Should this article title be changed (as per the discussion above) and if so, to what? Spark (fire) is not an accurate way to describe the sparks described in this article, since in many cases they are not a type of fire nor do they lead to fire. Proposed alternatives include (ember), (combustion), and (particle), since these all apply to the sparks described by the article. The discussion above gives multiple reasons as to why fire is not an accurate title.--Yaksar (let's chat) 16:16, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

  • No; no worthy alternative has been suggested. If one appears below, I may reconsider. pablo 16:57, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
For the record, the suggested titles include Spark (combustion), (ember), and (particle). It would be helpful if you could state why these are less fitting than fire. Thanks so much!--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:04, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes I know. And it would be even more helpful if you could state why any (or all) of these are an improvement on the simple term "fire" pablo 17:13, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Absolutely. The reasons why fire is not fitting are explained above, but basically boil down to the fact that the sparks described on this page are not always (or even usually) types of fire, and certainly don't always lead to one, the two points which seem to be the main argument against the change. The article more describes sparks that are small particles of an ember, and therefore ember would be a more fitting name than fire. Combustion, which all of these topics seem to fall under, would be a fitting title since it encompasses the sparks described in this page. Particle, while somewhat broad, would still potentially be a better option than fire since it covers all that the article does. If there's anything else you'd like explained I'm happy to try, and of course if you have any suggestions you feel would be better or more fitting please mention them. Thanks!--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:23, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Spark - The article name should be changed to spark. The current DAB page should be moved to spark (disambiguation) (paralleling fire/fire (disambiguation)). The current article starts "a spark is" with no further qualification, yet contains only the "particle of glowing matter" definition and not the "burst of electrical discharge" definition (see Wictionary spark/noun [1] definitions 1 and 2). The article also includes the concept "creative spark" (Wictionary definition 3), implying that this concept is related only to the glowing matter definition and not the electrical discharge definition. This is not consistent with WP:WEIGHT. The distinction between sparks generated by heat and sparks generated by electrical discharges is artificial. Both glowing matter and electrical discharges can start fires (spark plug, furnace) and in many cases, electrical discharges can produce glowing matter (arc welding) that can start fires. Splitting the closely related concepts of glowing matter and electrical discharge sparks into spark (fire) and spark (electrical) is not warranted. Thus there should be one article containing both concepts and it should have the name spark. --Kkmurray (talk) 17:28, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Isn't that meaning covered here though?--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:38, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
As "firey" sparks are covered in Ember. How does that justify ignoring electrical sparks in this article? --Kkmurray (talk) 17:55, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
So how would you feel about a move of this article to spark (particle) then? It would be a more fitting name for this article and then the sparks you are discussing (which I don't believe could be interpreted as particles, as explained in statements below) would be able to be put in a more fitting place.--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:04, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
So the spark (particle) article would contain a section on arc welding since that process produces particles (e.g. [2])? But not spark plugs? I don't see how you can cleanly draw the line or why you would want to. --Kkmurray (talk) 22:42, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Whether the information on those types of sparks would be included is a valid, but separate discussion. I certainly suggest you bring it up after this move.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:46, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
But article content is not unrelated to article name. If all types of sparks are to be included in the article, then there is no need for a parenthetical qualifier in the article name. --Kkmurray (talk) 00:01, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
This is very true. However, I feel like it would be an error to address both of these issues at once, and would probably result in neither being solved. My suggestion would be to let this move finish up and change to what would most be fitting for what is currently in the article. After that, we can (and should) begin a discussion on your suggestions. If we try to deal with both changes at once, it will just get people confused (which will probably lead to them opposing any change, something I know we both want to avoid.)--Yaksar (let's chat) 00:10, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Having looked into the issue further, I would now argue that the types of sparks you mentioned are not electrical sparks as in the case of Electrostatic discharge but are the same as any sparks produced in welding, and therefore their inclusion in this article would not be an issue.--Yaksar (let's chat) 16:20, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Comment. I don't get it. As I understand it fire just means a rapid combustion. So what kinds of sparks is this article discussing which aren't rapidly combusting?TheFreeloader (talk) 17:34, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Can't sparks be a small particle of ember rather than a fire though, and therefore not be rapidly combusting? And regardless, would the subtitle of combustion be nonetheless more fitting than fire? Thanks for your input.--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:38, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, you might be right, a small slow-burning piece of ember could be considered a spark. I guess Spark (combustion) would be more fitting then.TheFreeloader (talk) 17:58, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Although now that I look at it a spark could be just a small particle which is very hot and therefore incandescent, in which case it doesn't have to be under combustion at all. I guess Spark (particle) would be the most fitting then.TheFreeloader (talk) 18:08, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Ok, that makes sense, but do you think that the comment earlier about a potential confusion with other types of sparks could be an issue, or are those types not considered particles (I'm not knowledgable enough there to be sure.)--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:19, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I'd have a hard time considering an electric spark a particle, at least not in the sense of a small piece of matter. I could only see it at as a particle in the sense that everything is made of elementary particles, but that wouldn't really make sense in my opinion to be thinking about that in this context.TheFreeloader (talk) 18:38, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
That seems like it would work, and the growing consensus seems to be potentially for this change. Of course, I'll wait for more constructive input from others.--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:04, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I think that this article and ember should be combined. They naturally fit together. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 17:47, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • While that's an understandable argument, it concerns a different issue which should be brought up. How do you feel about the current title of this article? Would ember or combustion or particle be more fitting?--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:50, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • "Ember" is more fitting. It's more descriptive and less likely to cause confusion. Spark can mean electric discharge but there is no other definition for ember except for literary ones. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 00:43, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Are some types of sparks described in this article not embers but a type of fire though? Regardless, how would you feel about moving the article to Spark (particle) for now? It seems like it would cover both sparks as an ember or as fire, covering all that the article does. After this, of course, we can all discuss the proposed merge.--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:01, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • By the dictionary definition ([3][4][5]) is just any small hot and glowing particle. While ember is more narrowly defined as small burning particles of wood or coal[6]. Just think about the particles the angle grinder pictured in article produces, you would call those sparks, right? But you wouldn't call them embers. And they aren't electric either.TheFreeloader (talk) 01:56, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • The second definition of ember is "smoldering ash". A spark is a piece of smoldering ash that is small. A spark is just a small ember. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 19:26, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • But what about sparks such as the kind created by welding, or the kind from striking metal? Those wouldn't qualify as embers, right?--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:32, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • They would so qualify. Such sparks are glowing metal embers. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 19:45, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
But according to the definition, embers are carbon based.--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:52, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Only the first definition. The second one is more comprehensive. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 22:27, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Wait, what's the second definition of ember you're referring to. Everything I can find, from dictionaries to Wikipedia's own entry, describe embers as carbon based (such as from wood or coal from a fire.)--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:39, 6 February 2011 (UTC)


  • You're referring to the second definition of smoldering ash? I don't understand how the sparks created by welding or a piece of metal being scraped could possibly qualify as ash by any definition.--Yaksar (let's chat) 23:30, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Ash is the remnant of an oxidation, be it rapid or controlled. In the case of welding, knife sharpening, or flintlock striking, it is a rapid oxidation process associated with metal oxidizing in the atmosphere. Sparks, as embers, cannot occur in a vacuum. The same processes attempted in a vacuum would result in shards or shrapnel: not sparks. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 00:03, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • And yet dictionary definitions of sparks still include small particles made hot and incandescent by friction (1 b [8], 1 b [9], second part of 1 [10]). I think you will have to find me some place where it makes the same claim that you are making to convince me that the dictionaries are wrong.TheFreeloader (talk) 03:21, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Regardless, I don't think there would ever be consensus to merge this with ember. Given the notability sparks hold in popular culture, there could never be an agreement that they should be merged with sparks. I suggest reading the old deletion discussion for this page listed at the top for the reasonings why people felt this deserved this own article. So barring a merge with ember, Spark (particle) seems that it would be a much more fitting title than the first.--Yaksar (let's chat) 03:46, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Embers are incandescent which is why they glow. What process makes them hot, for example friction, is irrelevant as all incandescent bodies exhibit the same physical features regardless of how they're brought to that temperature. This is the zeroeth law of thermodynamics. It seems to me that those in this conversation need to learn a bit more physics and chemistry.
  • Well, while particles might show the same physical characteristics regardless of how they have been heated, that doesn't seem to be the case linguistically, as the term ember by any definition seems to be confined to particles heated by some process of combustion.TheFreeloader (talk) 05:13, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • If you cannot distinguish the provenance then the phenomenon is identical and thus there cannot be two separate scientific articles. It would be as if we had two different articles on quicksilver and mercury. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 05:25, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Well first, I am not certain that particles heated are the same whether heated by combustion or friction. One would probably contain oxygen bonds while the other might not. Second, linguistically you can still distinguish between physically identical things based on their past. Condensed vapor and melted ice are both liquid water. But you certainly wouldn't say condensed vapor is melted ice. They are linguistically two different things.TheFreeloader (talk) 05:46, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Two objects of the same temperature are incandescently identical. There are not two different articles on Wikipedia for condensed vapor and melted ice. There is only any article on water. Linguistics is irrelevant. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 14:06, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Actually linguistics do matter because an article just on embers could not be used for describing particles heated by friction, as those are not within the dictionary definition of embers.TheFreeloader (talk) 18:45, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • It is possible to make embers by heating through friction from, for example, a classic fire-starting procedure rubbing two sticks together. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 19:49, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • While I don't necessarily agree they are the same, if they are I'd say a better comparison would be having an article on both a fruit peel and zest; they may technically be made up of the same stuff, but zest has clearly demonstrated significance outside of being fruit peel, just as sparks seem to have demonstrated significance outside of just being embers.--Yaksar (let's chat) 05:32, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Zest is not just a small amount of fruit peel. It is only the outermost layer of the fruit peel. They are fundamentally different things. A spark is just a small ember. There is no phenomenological difference.

IvoryMeerkat (talk) 17:00, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

  • You're right, that was a bad example on my part. I should have said something more along the lines of bones vs bone meal.--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:29, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Sparks are not crushed/coarsely ground embers as far as I'm aware. But, if you're positing a size difference, perhaps you can describe the size range at which an ember becomes a spark? IvoryMeerkat (talk) 19:49, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I doubt there is an exact range or point. However, no one ever says flicking a lighter is creating "embers" rather than sparks, or that a metal car part dragging on the road is creating embers rather than sparks. Even if, as you claim, they are physically identical (which is certainly debatable) the term certainly has its own use in both the scientific community and in the vernacular.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:03, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • The terminological distinction between a spark of a cigarette lighter and the embers of the cigarette may have something to do with that. People do speak of glowing embers from a cigarette which are the same size as the sparks from the lighter. In such case, the real distinguishing feature of the "spark" is that of the activation energy it is the result of or provides. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 20:40, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Ah, so at least we've reached an agreement on the existence of a distinguishable difference in how the two subjects are viewed. Do you also agree that, at least in the vernacular, people tend to refer to embers when they are small particles as sparks?--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:03, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Not in this instance. If there is a terminological distinction along these lines, it is not in the realm of size but rather in the realm of production. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 21:08, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Alright, at this rate it looks like the article may very possibly stay at Spark (fire) anyway, although you never know.--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:18, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I've done a fair bit of looking into this issue. There seems to be no reasonable means by which a small heated piece of metal could be considered ash, per your argument. However, this has gotten far off the topic of whether (particle) is a better subtitle than (fire) for what this article is currently about, so I'm going to step away from this section of the discussion.--Yaksar (let's chat) 05:04, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Ash is the remnant of oxidation, be it rapid or controlled. In every process in which sparks are produced, they are produced as a byproduct of associated oxidation. IvoryMeerkat (talk) 05:25, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Move to Spark (particle), that way, it would be able to include things like electrical sparks, which are presumably particles. Also, as can be seen from the article, sparks don't necessarily have to do with being created from fire. For example, sparks created from flint or any other hard material scraped together. Yes, these sparks can start a fire, but they are not themselves originating from fire. That's why I feel the current title is inappropriate and should definitely be changed to something else. SilverserenC 18:23, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose The essential features of a spark are that it is incandescent and small. I have added a citation to a glossary to support this: "a small, incandescent particle". Note that only liquids and solids may be incandescent and so other forms of matter, such as electricity, are not included. If we want to be especially picky, then spark (incandescence) might be appropriate but, as this would be rather cumbersome, the current title still seems best. Colonel Warden (talk) 19:51, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Your statement does not at all seem to counter the numerous arguments above on why fire is not a fitting title (indeed, it seems to argue against it.) Also, the point of the subtitle is to disambiguate the page from other uses of the word spark; particle does just that. --Yaksar (let's chat) 19:55, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Why exactly does the current title still seem best?TheFreeloader (talk) 02:00, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I don't see how 'spark (particle)' isn't clear, short and simple too. It is not clear to me either that WP:COMMONNAME applies to disambiguation terms, I have always taken it to just be for the main part of the title. And even if it does, I don't think a more than 300 year old source, especially in a matter like this, is the best indicator to go by when deciding what is the common name. In a time with a much poorer understanding than today of nature of combustion, they for example had to turn to phlogiston theory to try to explain it, it is likely that many things which weren't actually undergoing combustion were still called fire. Also, WP:COMMONNAME has an exception about not using common names in instances where the common name is technically incorrect, which I think is the case for "sparks of fire" as a term for all sparks made of particles.TheFreeloader (talk) 13:34, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Where does it say that at? And everything is made out of particles. Particle is a disambiguate page, showing how many different things it could be. Dream Focus 14:22, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I can't see your point. Particle is a disambiguation page, and therefore Spark (particle) shouldn't exist? I really can't see how that makes sense.--Yaksar (let's chat) 14:40, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Well, I am saying that. Hot small particles like those produced by a grinder, are sparks, but for all that I know they aren't on fire. And about particles, I think people will know what kind of particles are being talked about (namely the traditional sense, defined first here[11]) when they see that this isn't an article on particle physics, but just on regular sparks. Your claim might have been valid if there had been some concept in quantum or particle physics one could have confused the topic of this article with, but from what I can tell, there isn't. And in that case we really can't take into account all the different ways particle could be understood. Otherwise it would be a bit like saying a Georgia (country) had to find another disambiguation term, as some might think it was about a country singer named Georgia.TheFreeloader (talk) 14:47, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Colonel, your argument has been addressed multiple times before. TheFreeloader's point about time period is particularly important, but please note again that, while "sparks of fire" may describe some sparks it is still an inaccurate way to describe an article as a whole. Let's look at a different example. Lots of people commonly associate revolutions with violence or war, right? But plenty of revolutions are perfectly peaceful or civil. You wouldn't want to describe revolutions as "violent" just because they're best known for that, would you?--Yaksar (let's chat) 14:33, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Move Request - February 2011[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Not Moved there is currently no consensus for the move to the proposed title. The current article is about the general term, not just fire. Therefore the current title is not the commonname. This topic appears to be the primary topic, and if consensus is established, it may be moved to Spark. Alpha Quadrant talk 18:44, 25 February 2011 (UTC)

Spark (fire)Spark (particle) — The reasons are outlined by multiple editors in the two sections above. In summary, not all sparks as described in this article are types of fire, nor do they always cause fires, which seem to be the two main arguments against the move. While there was initially some worry over possible confusion resulting from this move, this seems to have been cleared up; no page could reasonably be potentially confused with the proposed one. Another editor has opposed the change since they feel that all types of sparks should be included in this article, however there is already a disambiguation page which distinguishes these particles from electrical discharge and the other electrical sparks described.--Yaksar (let's chat) 15:01, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

With respect, I think that the move request at this time is not helpful. We should let the RFC run its course, and see what happens there before considering this. --Nuujinn (talk) 15:04, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I added this because I couldn't see the RfC making any progress past the point it's already at. It seemed to be multiple editors who came to agree on this change, and then Dream Focus and Colonel Warden continually making the same arguments, which would get refuted, but then making them again. But I do understand your view. Do you think anything in the RfC will change over the next days? If so, I guess we could put this off.--Yaksar (let's chat) 15:06, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
The RFC result will be meaningful even if there's no further contributions, as it will suggest that not many editors care. But some, like myself, may still be ruminating. It would be best if we had an inclusive title, one that encompassing sparks from grinding, fire, electric arcs, etc. I'm not really sure what works best. --Nuujinn (talk) 15:12, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Alrighty, I'll let it play out until it slows down I guess. Can I just delete this section of the talk page? Also, I'd hope you continue to discuss the issue in the section above. Actually, after putting some thought in, this seems to make more sense. This way, after the discussion is finished the decision on the move can be made directly. Otherwise, we will most likely have to rehash the exact same discussion after the RfC ends in order to go through with the move request. Of course, I'm always open to suggestion. On a side note, it seems like a lot of us, myself included, have been misinterpreting the type of spark created by arc welding. While this spark may technically be caused by an electrical event, the sparks created are the same as those created in any type of welding, and would easily fit in the proposed new name.--Yaksar (let's chat) 15:16, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Electric discharges do produce particles under some conditions, for example arc welding, so Spark (particle) will need to include a discussion of this kind of particulate spark. --Kkmurray (talk) 17:15, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Looking at it carefully, electric arcs do seem to create sparks; that being said, they are the kind that are small heated particles of ember or metal, distinct from the kind mentioned in Electrostatic discharge. So yes, they do deserve mention in an article on Spark (particle).--Yaksar (let's chat) 17:20, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Electric sparks also produce particles, see electrical discharge machining and [12] for example. Electrical sparks are also used for nanoparticle synthesis [13]. I don't think that spark (particle) is as restrictive as you intend it to be. --Kkmurray (talk) 18:50, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • That is the phenomenon described at electric arc, "arcing can also occur when a low resistance channel (foreign object, conductive dust, moisture...) forms between places with different potential.". In that case, you have a carbon dust facilitating the passage of electricity. And that's a different topic. Colonel Warden (talk) 22:34, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
From what I can tell, electric sparks in these cases do produces types of particles, but these particles are not sparks, so there's no issue there.--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:05, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Here's evidence that a spark discharge can produce a "small airborne ... incandescent particle: [14] – a spark as defined in the article. --Kkmurray (talk) 20:13, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
If the thing being produced really is what you say, then it obviously would fit in Spark (particle). I'm don't get what your objection is.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:32, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Sorry to not be explicit. I'm with you half-way on the move. I agree that spark (fire) is not a good article name, but I don't agree that spark (particle) is a better name. It should simply be spark and cover floating embers, incandescent particles produced by heat and electricity, and plasma produced by electricity. I don't get the rationale for separating plasma producing electrical sparks from plasma and particle producing electrical sparks. --Kkmurray (talk) 21:41, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Hmm, ok. I'm not really sure why the phase of what the spark produces is important though, just the phase that it's actually in. But out of curiosity, if there was not a consensus in favor of your proposal, what would you feel would be the best name for the article as it stands now?--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:46, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I'd have to oppose your proposed move since I think that it is in the wrong direction. But I think that you understand my reasoning at this point even if you disagree, so I'll leave it at that and let other editors comment. --Kkmurray (talk) 22:27, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
This page cannot simply be called "spark" and cover all of the topics you've suggested; there is a distinct difference these categories, and they are already divided at the disambiguation page.--Yaksar (let's chat) 23:09, 5 February 2011 (UTC)


  • Oppose Per the above. Separation of spark into particle/no particle or fire/no fire is arbitrary and unnecessary. --Kkmurray (talk) 15:26, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • So you want electric sparks to be combined into the same article as all other types of sparks?--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:18, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I just don't see it how it will be possible to combine all meanings of 'spark' in one article, when we can't even combine all the different kinds of electric sparks in one article. Until there is found a way to combine all the different kinds of electric sparks in one article, I just don't think it realistic to expect that all sparks can be encompassed by a single article.TheFreeloader (talk) 18:32, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
The complete lack of consensus as to how the spark topic should be split is the best argument against splitting it. Many different kinds of sparks have been identified: particles of burning organic material (ember), completely oxidized organic material (ash), molten metal from striking or grinding, molten metal from an electrical arc discharge, incandescent particles from an electrical spark discharge, and the electrical discharge and plasma itself. Energy - chemical, friction, electrical - goes in rapidly, light comes out, sometimes from a particle, sometimes from a plasma, sometimes from both. Neither fire nor particle nor any of the other suggested divisions clearly distinguishes these phenomena. --Kkmurray (talk) 14:29, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, the problem is that while the different kinds of sparks might be closely related visually, the different kinds of electric sparks seem to be much closer related physically to other phenomena. That is things like electrostatic discharges or electrical arcs, as essentially electric sparks are just small and short instances of those phenomena. For us to make just one article on all sparks would require finding a way to separate out electric sparks from these other concepts which they are much closer related to. This would certainly be a very hard task, and I am not sure it would make a better encyclopedia, as I am not sure readers would benefit from having to read about short and small instances of a phenomenon in one place, and more general information about phenomenon in another place.TheFreeloader (talk) 16:33, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose There is no consensus either for a move from the current title nor for the proposed title of spark (particle). Colonel Warden (talk) 22:33, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Do you oppose it for any other reasoning than the points you've made above?--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:49, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Being against something because it lacks consensus really is no reason at all. The reason why we discuss this here is to establish a consensus.TheFreeloader (talk) 23:16, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • I have provided plenty of reasons above. Whenever discussion indicates that there is no consensus for a change from the status quo, User:Yaksar starts a another section for discussion. Presumably the idea is to wear down opposition by persistence. Colonel Warden (talk) 23:30, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • First of all, each of your reasons have been refuted above, and the reasons you keep coming up with have gotten increasingly absurd or repetitive. Second, while there is still some discussion on the best change, there is basically at least a strong consensus that the current title is not a good one. Third, I suggest you assume good faith in regards to the new sections; the first was simply asking the people editing the article for their opinion, the second was a request for outside comment, and the third was an actual merge request. But essentially they should be considered all part of the main discussion on the title.--Yaksar (let's chat) 23:34, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • As this is all the same discussion, then your claim of consensus is false because we have 4 editors on the record as opposing a change to the title: myself, User:PamD, User:Dream Focus and User:Pablo X. A variety of alternatives have offered but none of them have obtained stronger support. RfCs are supposed to run for 30 days, not 7 and so your repeated starts of fresh procedures is making the process unnecessarily complex and confusing. The original discussion was ample to demonstrate that there was no consensus for change and so persistence seems to be improper. Colonel Warden (talk) 08:40, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Pablo X gave no reason for his oppose vote, but did ask for the reasoning and has not responded since. Both you, Pam G, and Dream Focus have continually argued that fire is fitting because all sparks as described are types of fire (or some variation thereof), an argument that at this point has been proved numerous times to be totally inaccurate.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:59, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Support. As discussed above, not all the kinds of sparks this article is or could be discussing are undergoing combustion. Sparks can also be the small hot and glowing particles, like those produced by a grinder, which aren't combusting. It would therefore be more accurate to use Spark (particle), as that would cover the complete array of different kinds of sparks being discussed.TheFreeloader (talk) 23:16, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Support And if, after expanding the article further in the future, we feel that we want to include more general information on electrical sparks and other kinds of sparks that wouldn't necessarily be particles, we can always move it to the general title of Spark at that point in time. But, for now, I feel like moving it to Spark (particle) is the best move to make and is a million times better than the current title of Spark (fire), which is too specific and not even reflected in all the current information used in the article. SilverserenC 23:39, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Support as nominator (I have no idea if this is necessary or already implied, but I guess it can't hurt).--Yaksar (let's chat) 01:18, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose and I'm a bit surprised to see that the proposer, having found a consensus of opposition further up this talk page, has restarted the same argument again. Spark (fire) is plain, clear comprehensible English and reflects common usage. Attempts to obfuscate the article by changing its title do not help create a better Wikipedia. ErnestfaxTalk 08:38, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Ermm, could you address the argument that the topic of this article is not a type of fire, nor is it solely produced by fire, nor does it always produce fire? Your input certainly is appreciated, but it would be much more helpful if you could explain how (particle), a name more applicable to what the article describes, could possibly obfuscate it.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:45, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Sparks resulting from fire is only a single section of the information presented in this article. We shouldn't have the title be referring to only a single section in the article and not the rest of it. Besides, sparks resulting from fire are embers, which we already have an article on. SilverserenC 08:55, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • The current title is not sparks resulting from fire. The current title is spark (fire) which means something like sparks associated with fire or sparks in the context of fire. Colonel Warden (talk) 09:07, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • And, as I said, sparks in the context of fire are embers, which we already have an article on. Yes, this article should have a section on embers and have a Main page link to them, but this article should be about a broader context of sparks that goes beyond just fire. SilverserenC 09:32, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • The article already does this, discussing the sparks produced by fireworks, and the sparks produced by flint and steel, as used to start fires, and the sparks generated in great showers by fires such as those of wood-burning steam engines and the sparks produced by metal tools which might start accidental fires. Colonel Warden (talk) 09:56, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
And this article also includes sparks produced from welding, or from metal being struck (such as a car dragging a fender on a road and producing sparks, for example). It's both confusing and downright inaccurate to have a title that excludes those types. --Yaksar (let's chat) 10:25, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • 'Oppose Still opposed to this. As I said, particle could be anything. Look at its definition please [15] and what Wikipedia has on it. Fire is more recognizable at a glance, and is fine. WP:commonname is met here. And it is rude for someone to dismiss the opinions of those that oppose them, and declare them invalid because they disagree with him. That's now how consensus works. Dream Focus 09:12, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Obviously particle has many meanings, but no one is proposing moving this article to particle. The proposal is to move it to particle (spark). And how does having an inaccurate title make it more recognizable? If someone was, say, looking for info on the sparks made when a blacksmith strikes a heated tool, why would they ever think fire is what they're looking for?--Yaksar (let's chat) 09:23, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Fire is not explanatory about the information contained in this article. We have Ember for sparks that come from fire, we shouldn't create a second article on the same topic. SilverserenC 09:32, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Ember is not the same as sparks. You can make a spark by various methods to start a fire. Ember is something that comes from a fire. Read both articles. Totally different. Dream Focus 11:00, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • What about the sparks produced from welding or from metal being struck? How are they related to fire?--Yaksar (let's chat) 11:03, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
We don't have Spark (electrical) so those bullet points from the dab page should be included in this article (or they could be left on the dab page). That leaves us with mathematical, computing and entertainment uses, which are all clearly derivative. --Pontificalibus (talk) 10:22, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Right, but couldn't someone searching for spark reasonably (and possibly even more likely) be looking for the electrical types mentioned in the bullet points? In that case, it would make sense for the reader to first be directed to the page that describes these possibilities in order to avoid confusion. We wouldn't want a search for the word spark to always redirect right to here if it wasn't the most common page people were looking for.--Yaksar (let's chat) 10:29, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Spark(particle) could be spark from fire, or electric spark which is covered in other articles already. See spark. The electric spark is a particle also isn't it? "A luminous disruptive electrical discharge of very short duration between two conductors separated by a gas (as air)". Dream Focus 11:04, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Quote from The Freeloader above: "I'd have a hard time considering an electric spark a particle, at least not in the sense of a small piece of matter. I could only see it at as a particle in the sense that everything is made of elementary particles, but that wouldn't really make sense in my opinion to be thinking about that in this context." Also, please answer how the types of sparks created by welding or metal being struck are related to fire. Thank you.--Yaksar (let's chat) 11:07, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • It can start a fire can't it? You hit flint against steel to make sparks to start a fire. Sparks are all hot enough to burn. Look through what the article has, and what other articles have or should have in them. Then determine where everything should go and how it should be sorted. Changing a name you don't feel fits everything, to something else which doesn't fit everything in the article, makes no sense at all. Dream Focus 11:19, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
First of all, could you explain how particle doesn't cover everything in the article? And in response to your first point, no, not every type of these sparks starts fires. If they did, we'd have a lot more problems with train tracks starting to burn whenever a train started to break, or cars lighting on fire if a part starts dragging on the road.--Yaksar (let's chat) 11:36, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
That could in fact start a fire, if you had gasoline around, one small spark all it would take. How long the heat is applied to something, and how flammable it is, determines whether it'd catch fire or not. Perhaps some materials make hotter sparks than others, I don't know, but all sparks can start fire. Dream Focus 11:55, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • 1. Saying all sparks can cause fire, provided there is something like gasoline, and should therefore be linked to it does not work as an argument. It's the equivalent of saying "all bread should be described as sandwiches because all bread can potentially become a sandwich.
  • 2. If your point is that this article should stay as fire because all of the sparks can potentially make fire, you've backed yourself into a corner. Electrical sparks can also start a fire; by your logic, this article's name is not correct because it would also have to encompass electrical sparks.--Yaksar (let's chat) 12:12, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Why would it not? People do use electric sparks to start fire. I had a lantern in Boy Scouts that used an electric spark to set the propane on fire. Dream Focus 12:33, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
That's exactly what I'm saying. If both electric sparks and heated particle sparks can be used to start fires, why should only the heated particle page have the subtitle (fire), since that wouldn't distinguish it from electrical sparks by your logic.--Yaksar (let's chat) 12:36, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Heated particle sparks? What? I'm mostly objecting to you changing the name to sparks(particle) since that isn't an improvement, as I have said. I see no reason to not just list all types of sparks in an article call spark. Anything that isn't a spark would be on a ambiguous page. Dream Focus 12:40, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
The problem with trying to merge sparks made of particles with electric sparks is that electric spark is listed to have four different meanings in the Spark disambiguation page. And each of those meanings are more closely related to some other topic than to the phenomenon described in this article. Electric sparks and sparks of small heated particles really aren't that closely related except for etymologically and maybe in some types of welding. That's also why that all the dictionaries I have looked up the word in have had electric sparks and sparks of particles listed as two different meanings of the word([16][17][18][19]). Also, if we were going to merge particle sparks and electric sparks, which I don't think we should be doing, I don't see it as in any way feasible before all the different meanings of electrical spark have somehow been unified in one article first. And that's probably not gonna be an easy task.TheFreeloader (talk) 14:49, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Support As Yaksar said, not all sparks cause fires, so particles would be a better description. --123Hedgehog456 11:54, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Not a common name or idea so not a good choice for an article title. Google gives 24 million hits with spark fire and only 750000 with spark particle. And the top spark particle ones were a software package called spark which could simulate particles. The article title is a selector, it isn't a definition or equivalence. People will not select the spark with particle because they will think it is the wrong spark. Dmcq (talk) 12:20, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Article title[edit]

Given that there's a pretty big backlog on closing move requests, I thought it would be easier just to move the conversation to a new section. Fire was clearly seen as objectionable as a subtitle for many reasons, but there were other reasons that opposed the move. So I'd like to know what other's may suggest as a possible title for this article.

The article uses the glossary from the User's Manual for the National Fire Protection Association. The source for most articles titles is the most common usage, so perhaps you'd like to find some other place that discusses sparks that isn't so intimately concerned with fire? If it gives something suitable and common then propose that. Dmcq (talk) 12:48, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm not at all arguing that sparks aren't very often associated with fire, don't get me wrong. But more often than not they actually have nothing to do with fire. Sparks from a blacksmith hitting a hot piece of metal for example, or sparks from arc welding are also described in this article, but have nothing to do with fire. The article at its current title does not accurately fit these sparks. And while the article subtitle is meant to specify what the article is about in comparison to others with the same name, it should still be accurate. If someone was looking for an article about a spark that was a small heated piece of metal from a blacksmith, for example, spark (fire) would seem to be an inaccurate title to them.--Yaksar (let's chat) 13:36, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
And I'm not arguing about what you're saying either, just that precision is not of paramount importance for an article title. Please see WP:TITLE. The main consideration is common name and spark as a particle fails that test badly. Spark as associated with fire is very recognizable. You'd need to find something that was reasonably recognizable if you want to substitute for it. Dmcq (talk) 13:52, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
And that's what I'm asking for in this section. The problem with fire is that it's a very recognizable name but only for one type of the spark in this article. Particle may not be the best, but it was proposed because it at least distinguished the article without only applying to a section of it. Other proposals have been ember, combustion, matter, etc. Any suggestions or input on them is great. While many of these will probably have less google results than fire, that's in part because sparks are more likely to be written up about when they make the news, which will normally be in a more inflammatory context.--Yaksar (let's chat) 14:02, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
It should simply be spark. If quarks, protons and grains of sand can exist together in particle, why can't plasma, embers, and red hot bits of metal exist together in 'spark'? --Kkmurray (talk) 14:17, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
Spark fire is recognizable even if there isn't a fire. Recognizablilty is not the same as truth. Spark particle is not recognizable by anyone not privy to the conversation above. People are just as liable to think it must be something like another type of quark. Dmcq (talk) 14:28, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
The issue is that the article title should be recognizable but more importantly needs to be true. It would be like having marijuana (drug) as the title for the article on the plant. Yes its more identifiable, but it's not correct. Particle doesn't have to be the subtitle, that's why I asked for other suggestions.Yaksar (let's chat) 14:53, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, I wasn't clear above. I am not advocating "spark (particle)", I was arguing that if particle can exist as a coherent article (rather than a DAB) with such a diverse set of things known as particles, why can't the DAB page for spark be converted into a similar sort of article that describes a diverse set of things known as sparks. I think that there are serious difficulties with spark (fire), spark (particle), spark (combustion), spark (etc.) and the best evidence is the lack of consensus above. --Kkmurray (talk) 14:48, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
You still have not explained how it will be possible to have an article about all sparks, when it hasn't even been possible to make a single article just for the electric sparks. As I said above, trying to separate out the various types of electric sparks from the articles about the more general phenomenons, which they are much closer related to, will in my opinion make the encyclopedia unnecessarily fragmented. TheFreeloader (talk) 15:43, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
I've argued above that spark (fire) must cover all kinds of sparks (plasma, ember, glowing particle) since they all either result from or can be used to start fires. The qualifier "fire" doesn't narrow the scope of the article (nor do "particle" or "combustion"). I haven't heard a proposal to subdivide "spark" that isn't ambiguous. --Kkmurray (talk) 18:10, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
Personally I would have Particle as a disambiguation page. I do not think it is a coherent topic. I would prefer also if any proposals be based on sources rather than peoples personal feelings about truth or whatever. Dmcq (talk) 16:56, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
And no I don't have any intention of raising an AfD here like I did at particle! This seems a perfectly good topic to me just there's a bit of difficulty editors have with the title. Dmcq (talk) 23:31, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
While I certainly agree that sources are always stronger than opinion, I'm somewhat confused as to what you're looking for. Do you want a source that explicitly says that there are sparks that don't cause fires? That's probably somewhat hard to come by (although I admit I'd find it incredibly entertaining to find an article or news story talking about "sparks which have nothing to do with fire"). But as for reliable sources, how about any dictionary definition of the word. Merriam Webster, for example says "
a : a small particle of a burning substance thrown out by a body in combustion or remaining when combustion is nearly completed
b : a hot glowing particle struck from a larger mass; especially : one heated by friction
Or really anything discussing safety with welding (I'm sure there are plenty of .gov or .edu sources that would work, just ask and I'll find something if you have trouble.) Once again, I'm not saying particle is the best option, but I'm hoping a discussion will bring up others.--Yaksar (let's chat) 04:30, 25 February 2011 (UTC)
How about simply putting in 'hot particle' instead then? That would instantly tell people looking at the disambiguation page that this was the right article if this is what they wanted. Particle on its own just doesn't do the job properly. Dmcq (talk) 10:23, 25 February 2011 (UTC)
That would make sense. Of course, heated particle, combustive particle, etc would all be other good options. But that idea would certainly be fitting.--Yaksar (let's chat) 23:13, 25 February 2011 (UTC)
Yaksar - I see that, now you have tried and failed three times to get consensus to rename the article, you then just renamed it despite the absence of consensus (which was quite rightly reverted immediately); I see you're now trying to kick off a FOURTH discussion on the subject? Do you think it might perhaps be a good time for you to drop the stick and walk away from the dead horse? ErnestfaxTalk 08:07, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
First of all, almost all that discussion above is basically one conversation. Also, what was clear from the move proposal was that many people did not like the proposed change, but still had issue with the current title, so I started this to take suggestions, and we actually seem to be making progress. So in short, no, I don't think it's a good time to drop this. Hell, the admin who closed the move discussion even stated in his closing statement that the current title is incorrect.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:13, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
I see there is clearly no consensus to rename this low-importance, start-class article, after over 70KB of discussion. I think it is time to suspend discussion unless other editors have fresh input. Wwheaton (talk) 09:42, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
Wait, stop discussing because there is no consensus? Doesn't that achieve the opposite of what we want? If there's no consensus on a specific name but ample opinion that a different name is better, the discussion should certainly continue. But this is getting off topic.--Yaksar (let's chat) 13:27, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
You failed to get your way, so let it be already. The discussion is over, there is no consensus to rename it, and bringing it up again this soon to just drag it out even longer makes no sense at all. Dream Focus 13:57, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
You're completely misunderstanding what no consensus means. Discussion is always encouraged, and a "no consensus" does not mean that all discussion should end, especially considering the fact that the closing administrator encouraged a continued discussion and that many of the oppose votes offered other suggestions for the article title. Plus, discussions and debates are both fun and more importantly educational, which I do believe is the purpose of this encyclopedia. There is absolutely no reason to stifle debate.--Yaksar (let's chat) 16:30, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
Most people were opposed. Continuing the discussion the moment the previous discussion closes seems ridiculous. You can not change the article's name with so many people opposing it. So all future discussion is pointless. Dream Focus 00:05, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
There was no consensus for that specific move. Many oppose !votes still wanted different titles. The nominator encouraged a continued discussion with a different proposal. Please stop trying to stifle legitimate debate. Thank you.--Yaksar (let's chat) 00:24, 28 February 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The closing admin said that the topic of the article appears to be the primary topic for the concept "spark." If so, the content should be moved to spark. Is there a consensus that "spark" does in fact have a primary topic? --Kkmurray (talk) 21:03, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

Hmm, it's an interesting position. Given that the other possible primary sparks (electrical types) all seem to fall under articles not titled spark, and this type of spark is the original use of the word I believe, I'm inclined to agree with you.--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:05, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
And then I guess the dab page would be moved to Spark (disambiguation) if this were done, right?--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:41, 27 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes, the moves would be spark (fire) -> spark and spark -> spark (disambiguation). --Kkmurray (talk) 21:22, 27 February 2011 (UTC)
Hmm, ok, I need to ask though: What justifies this being the primary term for spark over, say, all those possible examples of what an electric spark could be? I'm open to any logical answer.--Yaksar (let's chat) 23:51, 27 February 2011 (UTC)
This cuts to the heart of the lumpers and splitters argument. If you are a lumper (as I am in this case) you would write a general article on all kinds of sparks called spark. That's like the rice example in WP:DAB. Everyone knows that "rice" means the grain even if you are an alumnus of Rice University and a fan of Jerry Rice. A splitter will envision numerous different kinds of sparks - fires, fireworks, welding, electrical discharges - and can't guess what most people think of when you mention "spark." This is the joker example; it could mean the jester or the card or the villain to different people. As I see it, we have three kinds of sparks: burning organic material from a fire, glowing hot bits of metal, and plasma from an electrical discharge. Can we write spark to include all three of these? Or should there be three different articles for each kind of spark? From the arguments above, I get the idea that most would agree that "spark" has a primary topic even if we can't agree what should be in the primary topic article and what should not. If that is true, we can move the argument from the name of the article to what kinds of sparks can be kicked out of the primary topic article spark.I would welcome this because I think that I can argue for the inclusion of electrical plasma sparks in the primary topic. You might welcome this because it would allow you to argue for a spark (electrical) article that would remove these kinds of sparks from the primary topic. In either case, I think that it would advance the issue. --Kkmurray (talk) 02:09, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Hmm. I can't say I would be able to support an article that discussed both these and "electrical" types of sparks. Other than the name, there's no correlation between the two. The difference between a dictionary and an encyclopedia is that subjects with the same name but different topics are separate in an encyclopedia. I would, however, still potentially support a move of this article to the primary Spark and then discuss it from there.--Yaksar (let's chat) 02:14, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
As you say, a way forward is to divide the question and first agree that there is a primary topic and second discuss the content details of the primary topic article following a move. I would support a move of spark (fire) to spark with current content as a starting point for a consensus primary topic article. That would reduce the question from what is the best name to what is the consensus on the scope of primary topic content. --Kkmurray (talk) 03:11, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Seems logical. Let's get some more input.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:08, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
(outdent) It is worth looking at the wikipedia definition of primary topic: "it is often the case that one of these topics is highly likely ... more likely than all the others combined" (my emphasis). ISTM that there is no single usage of spark that is more likely than all the others combined. ErnestfaxTalk 08:12, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
I think it's important to note, though, that the other potential main articles are all located in articles with names other than spark.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:14, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree with you about not mixing up the sparks in this article with spark of electricity. That was my main problem with the particle article which unfortunately seems to be about to be kept with loads of people jumping in saying it is a most important principle in this that or the other. Dmcq (talk) 08:51, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Yep, agreed. Though I do see some logic in having this article be the main one, considering that the other potential main ones are located at articles with other names besides Spark.--Yaksar (let's chat) 08:56, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
When deciding primary topic, it doesn't really matter what the articles are called, as long as readers are likely to search for the given word when looking for a topic, that topic should be taken into consideration when deciding primary topic. In January Spark had about 4000 views[20], while Spark (fire) had only about 1000 views[21]. This pretty clearly suggests to me that Spark (fire) isn't "more likely than all the others combined" as the intended destination when searching for the term "spark", as WP:PRIMARYTOPIC says it should be to be primary topic.TheFreeloader (talk) 11:17, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
It's harder than that to tell though. By being located at Spark, the article will undoubtably get tons of more hits than one at a page with a subtitle. The more telling statistic, and I have no idea if there's any way to get it, is how many views the other pages for Spark got (and since they aren't located at Spark, I guess only the views that came from either he disambiguation page or the spark link). This article doesn't have to compete for views against the disambiguation page, but against the other articles. Now, this article does receive a lot less views than the other spark articles at names other than spark, but I have no idea how to tell how many of those people came from the disambiguation page. Also, for a lot of the articles, the name is derivative from the concept of this type of spark. In these cases it's somewhat less cut and dry. For example, an article like, say, Bumblebee, will always be the main topic, regardless of whether Bumblebee (transformer) starts to pass it (and it is much closer than you might think). Of course, that being said, I can't say I'm 100 percent sure about this move at all, so I obviously welcome any and all input.--Yaksar (let's chat) 14:43, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
You can tell how many times an article is viewed by going to the history page and at the end of the top just before all the history theres a link to a tool giving Page view statistics'. And unfortunately for this idea both electrostatic discharge and electrical arc get more views. Dmcq (talk) 16:26, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Oh, I know, I think you misinterpreted my comment above. I said I wish there was a way we could know who went to those articles from a link saying spark, since most of the viewers can be assumed to have gone to the article to look for its topic rather than a small section of the topic. But I also think as we continue this discussion we should also continue off of your "hot particle" idea, although I'm sure there are some potential problems.--Yaksar (let's chat) 16:48, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Google analytics could do that easily :) I suppose if Wikipedia kept track of the referring page for page views it could do a reasonable version of that. Dmcq (talk) 19:35, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
God, google is just amazing. Well, I have no idea how to do that, but anyone else is certainly encouraged to try. Thanks for pointing it out.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:15, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
My assumption when reading those statistics is that when Spark gets 4000 views and Spark (fire) gets 1000, the other 3000 were looking for some of the other things on the disambiguation page. It doesn't really matter which of the articles on the disambiguation page people were going to, as long as the majority of people who search for "spark" aren't looking for this article, this isn't the primary topic. I think a lot of people make the mistake of looking for what the origin of a word is to determine the primary topic. This is not the right way to do it according to WP:PRIMARYTOPIC. For example even though the planet Mars was named after a Roman god the planet is still placed as primary topic at Mars. All which really matters when determining what the primary topic is what people are looking for when writing a given word in the search field.TheFreeloader (talk) 21:09, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, barring further investigation potentially discovering something I guess I'm inclined to agree with you. I do, however, think that Dmcq's idea of "hot particle" or whatever, while possibly not ideal, may be worthwhile to discuss.--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:17, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
While I would think just "(particle)" would have been enough, I certainly think "(hot particle)" is better than the current solution. But my opinion doesn't really change that much, what matters more is what those who were against the move thinks about it.TheFreeloader (talk) 21:29, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
Fair point, as long as they don't insist that all discussion must end their input is certainly appreciated.--Yaksar (let's chat) 09:35, 1 March 2011 (UTC)
As I (and others) have previously said, above all we must make the title useful to the typical reader that is seeking information. "Spark (particle)" is especially inadvisable as it completely loses touch with their incandescent character, which is central. "Particle" is too generic to "spark". No reader is going to type "Spark (hot particle)" to find this article. Redirects, for other unambiguous alternatives if really useful for the likely reader, would be fine. Wwheaton (talk) 16:10, 1 March 2011 (UTC)
I don't think the subtitle is there for being something that someone would type in, it's just to differentiate the term from others. I don't think, for example, anyone's going to search for the exact title of whoever this guy is, but his title serves its purpose of distinguishing him from others. That being said, I don't think we're going to find a subtitle that is perfect, but I'm hoping we can think one up that is at least more accurate for this subject than fire. Not encompassing the incandescent character may be somewhat of an issue, but it's a far smaller one than a title that doesn't encompass a fair bit of what its subject is about.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:11, 1 March 2011 (UTC)
OK, I agree it's not so bad just as a disambig, as long as it is clear in context. I think "(fire)" is much better than "(particle)", but "(hot particle)" or "(incandescent particle)" might do. Wwheaton (talk) 04:57, 2 March 2011 (UTC)

Requested move -- March 2011[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: No move. Unanimous opposition and withdrawal of request by proposer. (Early non-admin closing). TheFreeloader (talk) 20:48, 5 March 2011 (UTC) TheFreeloader (talk) 20:48, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

Spark (fire)Spark — This article is the primary topic and the title should be the common name and not overly precise. --Kkmurray (talk) 01:38, 2 March 2011 (UTC)

  • Support. I have no problem with "Spark" alone. I would suggest it simply disambig to two branches, one for electrical sparks and the other for thermal/combustion sparks. But both of these could just as well be incorporated as major sections in one article as far as I can see. Wwheaton (talk) 02:10, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
I would be dead set against a combined article just stuck together because of th name. I can see people sticking in the particle article which is exactly like that and worse but it is something quite against the core policy of verifiability or notability. Things like that should be disambiguation pages. Dmcq (talk) 03:54, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
OpposeYou are right, because the change would clobber the higher level Spark disambig page that I forgot about. We can still rename this Spark (fire) to something else, but not simply to Spark. See my comments & proposal below (earlier 5 March) re fairly minor reorganization of Spark disambig, and re-scoping of this proposal to treat only the renaming of Spark (fire) to some other title restricted to the incandescent thermal/oxidation meaning of the term. Wwheaton (talk) 15:57, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Dmcq about a combined article per Wikipedia:Dictdef#Overview:_encyclopedia_vs_dictionary. I have yet to decide about this move yet, however.--Yaksar (let's chat) 03:59, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Weak Oppose I'm not sure that is the primary topic. In fact I think electrical arc or electrostatic discharge might be a lot more primary as far as what people want when they look up spark. I do however see a small advantage in the move as getting rid of the problem about what should be in the bracket in the article title. Dmcq (talk) 03:51, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
It seems to me we are rather stuck with spark as primary, since there are numerous other meanings on the disambig that need to be accommodated. There are several slightly differing forks for the electrical case: electrostatic discharge, inductive discharge, electric arc (as in arc welding), lightning (special case of electrostatic, but not quite obvious prior to Franklin), corona discharge, Jacob's ladder, even a solar flare is a huge inductive arc. I think we don't need to accommodate all of these at the first level, but probably they should all be reachable via the linked pages. Then the other, thermal/combustion, case needs a name to link to. I still think spark (fire) is not too bad, but there are other possibilities. Mainly it needs to be obvious to someone getting to the disambig page with the thermal/chemical case in mind. Wwheaton (talk) 04:59, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
Thermal and chemical aren't half bad, to be honest. Incandescent might work too. But I'm sure there are lots of options.--Yaksar (let's chat) 13:59, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose There doesn't seem to be a clear primary topic for the word spark. For example, the #1 hit on Google for the word is about spark (software). Colonel Warden (talk) 07:18, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose The way I read the page view statistics, this isn't the primary topic. In January (before the naming discussions started) Spark had about 4000 views[22], while Spark (fire) only had about 1000 views during the same month [23]. This, to me, suggests that at least 3/4 of the people who searched for the term "spark" were not looking for this page. Therefore this topic isn't more likely than the alternatives combined as target for a search for "spark", which WP:Primarytopic says it should be to be primary topic.TheFreeloader (talk) 13:02, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
Do you think that any article could be the primary topic? That is, keep spark (fire) where it is and create a new primary topic at spark and move the DAB to spark (disambiguation)? --Kkmurray (talk) 21:27, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
You might be able to get everything together into one article, like particle, but as Dmcq has said, it probably won't be a very desirable way to do things, as you would then be lumping together subjects which aren't very similar in substance and which aren't covered together by reliable sources.TheFreeloader (talk) 12:14, 3 March 2011 (UTC)
What's your take on the primary topic issue? Do you think that there is one - either electrical sparks or a combined article? --Kkmurray (talk) 21:12, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
I think we need to build an overview article for all the electrical spark articles, though the dielectric breakdown caused by a large electric charge and subsequent discharge would be it (it is the meaning of three of the electrical sparks on the dab page). (talk) 21:25, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree. Electric spark or spark (electric) is needed in any case. I also agree that they neither be primary for spark. --Kkmurray (talk) 22:30, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
As whether spark (glowing ember) or spark (electrical) is primary, leave the dab page where it is, since both are prominent. (talk) 22:09, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
Sadly, there is no "spark (glowing ember)," just the inaccurately named spark (fire). But I digress.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:18, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
That is the glowing ember... Do you wish to rename this article as spark (glowing ember)? (talk) 22:20, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
It would certainly be a much more sensible name for what is covered in this article.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:22, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Comment this should be formatted as a multimove request. (talk) 20:47, 2 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Spark has many meanings so best to leave that page is it is now. And this page should remain as it is, as Spark (fire) as the recent discussion above[24] had already discussed in great detail. Dream Focus 03:09, 3 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose This isn't the primary topic: by no meaningful measure do references to this acceptation outnumber the sum of all other references. How many more times are we going to be dragged through renaming requests? ErnestfaxTalk 18:58, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

So I think we have to first consider the higher-level page, to resolve this confusion. IMHO, we must leave spark as a disambig page (because of all those other meanings). We might reorganize that page a bit, of course. I would have one main section there, with two equal subordinate subsections: one for the electrical concept, and one for the "fire" or thermal/chemical one. I think these two are of roughly equal importance in everyday use. (We can argue about which subsection should come first.  :) ) The electrical branch really does have a bunch of third-level sub-branches: electrostatic, inductive, ... etc, as I listed above. I think we should list some of them, but probably not all (with links to the others in the appropriate branches, to be sure.)

The mathematical sense, the butterfly, and the sled I would move out of that section, into some "Other" (or whatever, possibly more than one) co-ordinate section, without too much violence to what we have previously had, in the sense that someone coming in with just "spark" will see them all laid out, but with the electrical & thermal guys near the top.

Then we can come back here and figure out a better name for "spark (fire)", whatever we want. The formal proposed move would still be up for discussion, but focused just on the fire/thermal/chemical species. I have no very strong opinion, only think it should be immediately clear to anyone coming to it via the spark disambig page where they want to go. Of course, we are also free to have any redirects that we think are likely to be useful, to go directly wherever.

I guess I should post this suggestion on the spark discussion page (to alert any of the other editors who may be sled-oriented, etc.) Wwheaton (talk) 00:48, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose. "Spark" has a host of meanings in many areas - songs, ships, etc - as well as the physical sense described in this article and the electrical kinds of sparks. Although the incandescent particle is the core, original, sense of the word, there's no evidence that it's the most likely to be being looked for by readers of the encyclopedia. PamD (talk) 09:59, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
Could someone who has convenient access to the OED look up "spark", to settle its original and primary meaning? I think the glowing particle meaning(s) ought to be primary, and all the others are derivative, but we should document that for the spark page. Thanks. Wwheaton (talk) 16:02, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
  • The first meaning given in the OED is "A small particle of fire, an ignited fleck or fragment, thrown off from a burning body or remaining in one almost extinguished, or produced by the impact of one hard body on another.". That goes back to 725 AD, the word having come across from Germany and the Low Countries. The electrical meaning comes a thousand years later, when electricity is discovered. Colonel Warden (talk) 16:31, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

I have posted my remarks above to the Talk:Spark discussion page. In my opinion this move cannot be done at this level. My proposal is that we table this discussion (or simply declare it closed, result Opposed) until the effects on Spark are settled and agreed. Then return to this page to decide on a possible new name for Spark (fire), explicitly restricted to the thermal/oxidation/incandescent particle case. Wwheaton (talk) 15:57, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

  • Speedy Close. Looks like a clear consensus against a move and also a clear consensus that there is not a primary topic for "spark." I would not object to closing the move request per WP:SNOW --Kkmurray (talk) 20:31, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Seconded. There's a lot still to be discussed.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:37, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Moving on[edit]

Annnywayyyy, some new suggestions were brought up in that discussion, so some input on them would be cool.--Yaksar (let's chat) 20:53, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

Here's the list from above: spark (fire), spark, spark (particle), spark (hot particle), spark (combustion), spark (ember), spark (incandescent). I expanded electric spark/spark (electric) per part of the above discussion. Since the consensus seems to be that there is no primary topic, a further split of the physical manifestations of spark into spark (fire)/spark (metal)/spark (electric) would be another way to go. --Kkmurray (talk) 22:16, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
I'd also throw (chemical) and (thermal) into the mix, as well as what anyone else may suggest, of course.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:19, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

NOTE: Discussions on this page have been the subject of a topic at WP:EAR. --Kudpung (talk) 08:30, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Actually, I'm not particularly sure that chemical is a very good descriptor for this, although I could be convinced otherwise.--Yaksar (let's chat) 21:27, 13 March 2011 (UTC)
I guess we are agreed that this article should be disjoint from electrical sparks, which have a separate branch under the spark disambig page? (Of course I think the "Symbolism" section should definitely be merged into the other meanings on the disambig page.) I think spark (hot particle), spark (combustion), spark (ember), spark (incandescent), spark (fire) ..., can all be encompassed in this branch, and are mostly viable candidate names as well (except "embers": a bed of embers is not a bed of sparks). Typically these are initiated by some heat source, and then sustained against immediate cooling by chemical energy, usually oxidation. Either because the cooling energy loss is greater than the oxidation (or other) chemical input, or because the fuel is exhausted, such sparks may fade quickly, or last quite a while. I have had on my self a Scientific American Library series book on fires and combustion, ca 1985 or so, that I think goes through all this well, but at the moment I cannot locate it, and it is apparently out of print. There must be lots of books on the physics and chemistry of fires which would cover the same material. In the case of metallic "struck" sparks (eg, flint & steel), the heat source is mechanical energy, but then oxidation keeps them glowing until they get too small and heat losses win or they run out of fuel. Electrical sparks may also produce hot bits of molten metal that are then sustained by oxidation, but I think the division between electric sparks and discharges on the one hand, and thermal/chemical sparks on the other, is important and good in practice. I have no strong preference among the various candidate names above. Actually "spark (glowing particle)" seems good to me, though "spark (particle)" alone is not, because on the spark disambig page it seems too vague--IMHO the "glowing" part is essential to the concept. (Other parts of the concept that might be considered are "airborne", and more or less "transient".) I have said all I really have to say at this point, and am happy to leave the name for this branch up to the consensus of the group, though I think spark (glowing particle) is clear and probably would be my first choice. Wwheaton (talk) 03:47, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
I'd support that, although I don't personally think it's the best. It's wordy, but at least it's accurate.--Yaksar (let's chat) 04:17, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

Requested move (July 2011)[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: page not moved, although User:Dmcq's proposals deserve a closer look. Arbitrarily0 (talk) 03:17, 7 August 2011 (UTC)

Spark (fire)Spark (particle) – The current disambiguation term used for this article is misleading and imprecise. It's misleading in that it may imply to readers that all the kinds of sparks which are discussed in this article are in some way all undergoing combustion, which they are not, as sparks produced by a grinder or the Bessmer process are in fact just hot incandescent particles. It's imprecise in that the sparks discussed in this article are not the only sparks associated with fire, as the sparks discussed in Electric spark are also commonly used for starting fires. This move was discussed earlier this year, but the discussion died out as no perfect disambiguation term could be found. But I say we should not let the perfect be an enemy of the good, and as I see it "Spark (particle)" goes a long way towards more accurately describing the subject of this article, as all the sparks discussed in this article are small incandescent particles.TheFreeloader (talk) 14:28, 31 July 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose The matter has been discussed extensively above and I am not seeing any new input in this proposal. The current title of Spark (fire) is fine. Warden (talk) 22:34, 31 July 2011 (UTC)
  • That's not a valid reason to oppose something. You need a valid argument beyond "this discussion has sort of happened before". I'd say you should just repeat your old arguments, but you kept changing them around every time your rationale was proved incorrect.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:53, 31 July 2011 (UTC)
  • We discussed why it should be called this and not particle before. No need having to copy and paste discussions and have the same argument all over again. Dream Focus 07:13, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support -- Absolutely. The current title is misleading and incorrect, something we should try to avoid especially strongly with science articles.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:53, 31 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Support The current title can easily be confused with Ember as that's the only type of particle that comes from a fire. However, this article is not about embers or particles just from fires, but particles from metalworking as well and other activities. Thus, Spark (particle) is a more understandable and accurate term for this article. SilverserenC 05:00, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose People who see "Spark (particle)" will think it's about some other concept they never heard of instead of what causes fires. Normal people don't think of sparks as a particle. Forget scientific accuracy, the principle of least astonishment applies. If you ask me, this should move to "Spark" as I'd say it's the primary topic. D O N D E groovily Talk to me 05:09, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
Ah but see, this wouldn't necessarily be the most obvious choice of spark over Electric spark. Right now, this title doesn't really distinguish between the two; hell, both of them often cause fires. The proposed title isn't perfect, but at least it's accurate and does the job of what a disambiguation term is supposed to.--Yaksar (let's chat) 05:17, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
I just saw above that this was rejected as primary topic. That's fine with me. But I'm not changing my vote on this one. Non-scientists don't think of sparks as particles, and they will probably think that this "spark" is some recent discovery in quantum physics or something. (Those sub-atomic particles do have some pretty strange names, quite literally) Something like spark (ember) might work, but spark (particle) is right out. D O N D E groovily Talk to me 12:24, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose For reasons we discussed extensively months ago. See above discussion. Dream Focus 07:13, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
Then reiterate them please. SilverserenC 07:16, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
Why? Just scroll up and read it in the two discussions of it already. The same people who didn't get their way, are now trying to start up the same exact argument. Dream Focus 07:26, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
(EC) And once again, a lot has changed since that last discussion. First of all, the page Electric spark has now been created, changing a lot of the arguments above. Second of all, like Colonel Warden, your reasoning was consistently incorrect and inaccurate, changing every time you were proved wrong. You're more than welcome to oppose this move, but you have to give an actual reason why the current name is better than the proposed one, not just say "this has happened before".--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:18, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
Nothing has changed. Apparently you believe anyone that disagrees with you has their "reasoning was consistently incorrect and inaccurate." There is no convincing you otherwise, as the long previous discussions have already proven. There is no possible reason to have the same exact argument yet again, since the same people are involved, and the outcome will be the same. Dream Focus 07:26, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes, the situation has totally changed with the creation of electric spark. That being said, I'm not sure if the proposed move is the best possible solution, so we can continue the discussion after it is over.--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:59, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose yet again. A google of spark particle clearly shows that the spark particle engine in computer simulation is more popular. Plus it gives entirely the wrong impression that there might be a spark as well as electrons and quarks etc. Why do you persist with this proposal when there have been a few others which probably are more acceptable like spark (hot particle), spark (combustion), spark (ember), spark (incandescent), or spark (thermal) and probably a few more besides if you'd lose the narrow focus? Dmcq (talk) 07:31, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
I personally wouldn't oppose any of those, and we should certainly move on to a discussion of those now that circumstances have changed after this one ends. But I personally am supporting this move, not because it is to the best option, but because it is at least better than the one we currently have in that it does what it's supposed to do as a disambiguator. But I do agree that those other ones will be discussed, and I'll probably end up proposing it if you or someone else doesn't.--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:44, 5 August 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Different ideas[edit]

As proposed by the closing administrator above, I'd like to ask for input on what a better name would be. I personally would be in favor of (combustion); it is accurate, relates to what people think of with sparks and, most importantly, accurately describes the topic while still differentiating it from electric spark and other types of sparks. But I'm open to any other opinions, obviously.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:18, 7 August 2011 (UTC)

You seem to be bringing up the same argument every few months, and having a long drawn out debate. Let it go already. You haven't convinced most people, and you aren't going to. Dream Focus 03:23, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
Do you have anything actually on topic to say?--Yaksar (let's chat) 04:17, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
Not that hasn't already been said several times already. WP:DEADHORSE The majority of people have already stated their opinion that this is the best name. Dream Focus 16:16, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
I'd go with incandescent or thermal, I think combustion was the least good of the options. Combustion implies it will be burnt up. Dmcq (talk) 07:53, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
Are electric sparks also incandescent, though?--Yaksar (let's chat) 07:55, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
Then how about my original thing of hot particle? Dmcq (talk) 17:10, 8 August 2011 (UTC)
I personally would prefer thermal over that, it's a bit less wordy. But only if thermal is fully accurate, of course.--Yaksar (let's chat) 22:43, 8 August 2011 (UTC)'
I don't think thermal is that good an option. It doesn't quite get to the heart of what a spark is, and I would dare say electric sparks have a thermal element to them too. I am not opposed to trying hot particle, although I think it's quite clear that WP:PRECISION says that we should only be as precise with our disambiguation terms as to distinguish it from other actual articles, not as to distinguish it from everything anyone could ever imagine a term to mean. I mean Queen (band) might also refer to some sort of wristband. But if calling it hot particle is what it takes to get this article away from the current title, which nobody seems to have any good arguments for keeping it at, then I am for it.TheFreeloader (talk) 12:42, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
The issue here is how a move discussion works though. It's not like an AfD, where !votes are weighted based on their actual content. Yes, there haven't been any good arguments for the current title. But the opinion of someone !voting "I like this title more" or "this has already had a move discussion with no consensus" is in the end weighed the same as someone who actually makes an argument based on accuracy and fact.--Yaksar (let's chat) 13:30, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • WP:PRECISE states "...over-precision should be avoided. ... Remember that concise titles are preferred." WP:TITLECHANGES states, "If ... no consensus can be reached on what the title should be, default to the title used by the first major contributor after the article ceased to be a stub. ... Debating controversial titles is often unproductive, and there are many other ways to help improve Wikipedia."
I am that first major contributor, having expanded the article from the stub which was taken to AFD and having written the majority of the current content. The title that the article had then seems adequately precise and concise. We have debated the matter sufficiently to show that there is no consensus for a change and so further debate would be unproductive.
Warden (talk) 15:49, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
No. The circumstances have changed, there is still ongoing discussion and progress, and many issues need to be addressed. We have stayed at this default title so far because yes, you are right that as the first major contributor the title you put it as stays until there is a consensus otherwise. But that does not make your arguments automatically stronger than others (that would be a case of WP:OWN. There are numerous accuracy issues with this title that still need to be addressed, and stopping a discussion without making any comment on its actual content is what is unproductive.--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:35, 10 August 2011 (UTC)

Back to the actual discussion: would hot particle definitely only apply to this article and not electric spark? The main issue with the article title now is that is that it does not properly distinguish this article from the other page, which is the purpose of a disambiguation, and that it doesn't accurately apply to what this article covers. Hot particle definitely fixes the second problem, but does it fix the first?--Yaksar (let's chat) 18:39, 10 August 2011 (UTC)

I would say hot particle does quite a good job distinguishing the subject of this article from that of electric spark, but I don't think does a better job then particle alone. After all an electric spark is momentarily turning the matter it is discharging through into plasma, and must therefore be said to be quite hot too. But as I have said before, I don't think we should let the perfect be the enemy of the good, and whatever tiny bits of ambiguity might be found in this proposed name, it is still nothing compared to the inaccuracy in the current name.TheFreeloader (talk) 23:31, 11 August 2011 (UTC)

For this issue not die again for who-knows-how-long, what do people say about trying another RM, this time to Spark (hot particle)?TheFreeloader (talk) 21:47, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

Oppose mainly because that sounds incredibly stupid, but also because electric sparks are also hot particles. Dream Focus 22:18, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
While it might be possible to see an electric spark as being such, it certainly isn't how I would first describe an electric spark. Rather I would describe it as nonconductive material being temporarily ionized by an electric discharge. While on the other hand a hot incandescent particle is often the way reliable sources choose to first describe the kind of spark being discussed in this article, as you may see here:[25][26][27]. Also, I would like to here some reasons why you think (fire) is a better disambiguation term than (hot particle) for this subject.TheFreeloader (talk) 23:08, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
Just scroll up to the various places I already explained it already. I gave several different valid reasons at various times. No consensus to change it, no reason for the same people to keep trying to have the same conversation time and again when that isn't going to change. Dream Focus 03:12, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
I would support a name change to Spark (hot particle), as that properly expands the title to include sparks made beyond the mere involvement of fire. And it also has no relation to electric sparks, as that is an ionic discharge, not a particle. SilverserenC 05:15, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
I have no great problems with fire but hot particle seems to describe it better. So a support from me. Dmcq (talk) 08:28, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

Requested move (August 2011)[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

No consensus to move. Vegaswikian (talk) 02:13, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

Spark (fire)Spark (hot particle) – We seem to have found a name which most people can approve of. I'll copy paste my old rationale (with slight edits), as it still basically applies here. The current disambiguation term used for this article is misleading and imprecise. It's misleading in that it may imply to readers that all the kinds of sparks which are discussed in this article are in some way all undergoing combustion, which they are not, as sparks produced by a grinder or the Bessmer process are in fact just hot incandescent particles. It's imprecise in that the sparks discussed in this article are not the only sparks associated with fire, as the sparks discussed in Electric spark are also commonly used for starting fires. This move was discussed earlier this year, but the discussion died out as no perfect disambiguation term could be found. But I say we should not let the perfect be an enemy of the good, and as I see it "Spark (hot particle)" goes a long way towards more accurately describing the subject of this article, as all the sparks discussed in this article are small incandescent particles. TheFreeloader (talk) 12:51, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose These repeated attempts to rename the article seem increasingly vexatious. This latest proposal is inferior to the current title because hot particle is not commonly used to describe sparks of this sort, as the relevant article of that title demonstrates. Warden (talk) 13:00, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support Comment It looks like a lot of fire safety literature refers to sparks and hot particles as slightly different things where hot particles can be less hot but often are bigger. I don't think we need worry about that distinction for this article. I think it is better than just saying fire though. By the way I'd have thought some of the sparks in the symbolism section were based more of the lightning spark type. Dmcq (talk) 13:19, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
I see now though that hot particle can mean radioactive dust or fragments. The stuff from fire safety stands but there is a second use against so I've changed to a neutral comment. Dmcq (talk) 15:26, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support Hot particle seems to be a more descriptive term for the varied subjects expressed in this article. And, in contradiction to the comment made by Colonel Warden, hot particle is used in a number of works in conjunction with or as another word for sparks. For example, in flint and steel, in welding, and in flammable material. It's quite clear that hot particle is a more proper term that can combine all of the elements in this article (pyrotechnics, flint and steel, welding, and spark arrestors), and it does so much better than the simple term "fire", which is very limited and doesn't really apply in a number of the cases described herein. SilverserenC 19:19, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support -- It's wordier than I'd like, but at least it both accurately encompasses what the article covers while successfully differing it from other uses of the word "spark", something the current title does not do.--Yaksar (let's chat) 19:27, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Have those wishing to change this actually read the article? Its about sparks related to fire. Spark (fire) is a common name easily understandable. Spark (hot particle) is not. Are we discussing electrons here? [28] Electric sparks would be included in Spark (hot particle) wouldn't they? We need to distinguish each article from the other, as we have now. Spark (fire) and electric spark Dream Focus 02:59, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Electric sparks aren't particles, they are an ionic discharge between two surfaces. And, as the sources that I gave above show, sparks are often described as being hot particles. SilverserenC 07:05, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
  • The sources that you and Dmcq have provided all discuss sparks in the context of fire. Those sources are thus good evidence for the current title, not for a change.
  • Oppose Spark (fire) is easier to understand than Spark (hot particle). Suraj T 05:05, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Except that fire only has to do with a portion of the content in this article. Sparks can create fires (as can electric sparks), but sparks in and of themselves do not come from fires, those are called embers. And we have an article on that. The sparks described in this article, for the most part, don't have to do with fires. Thus, it is not a properly descriptive term. SilverserenC 07:05, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Sparks are, by definition, flecks of fire per the OED: "A small particle of fire, an ignited fleck or fragment, thrown off from a burning body or remaining in one almost extinguished, or produced by the impact of one hard body on another.". If your topic is hot coals, embers, radioactive particles or other types of phenomenon then they are covered elsewhere: ember, hot particle, &c. Warden (talk) 14:34, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
My concise OED says 'fiery particle' not 'particle of fire'. The business of hot particle meaning a radioactive fragment or dust is a real problem though. I think I'll just change from Support to Comment. Dmcq (talk) 15:26, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Pyrotechnics section - subjective wording[edit]

From the Pyrotechnics section,

"...carbon burns explosively in the hot iron and this produces good, branching sparks."

Good in this context is a bit subjective, isn't it? Would a better term be 'large' or 'bright' or something? Kierkkadon (talk) 15:05, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

  • The word used frequently in the source is attractive, meaning aesthetically pleasing. Let's try pretty. Warden (talk) 16:22, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

Metalworking sentence fragment[edit]

The last sentence in the Metalworking section "or the resistance heating of spot welding.[10]" is obviously a fragment from a previous edit. I tried to track the change but failed. Changing the or to Or doesn't fix it and neither does removing the period in the preceding sentence. I could not figure out how to make it make sense. A better editor probably can by finding the original version. MisterHOP (talk) 09:29, 21 March 2014 (UTC)