Template talk:Automatic taxobox/doc/new

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search


Great job so far. Two things, though: I thought we were going to always suggest using the taxon= parameter? So the first example should have it. And I would change "REPLACE WITH AUTHORITY NAME AND YEAR" with just "REPLACE WITH AUTHORITY." Botanical authorities do not use the year, so we shouldn't encourage this practice in the guide. Rkitko (talk) 16:47, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

They don't? News to me, but thanks. Also-- indeed with the taxon parameter. Will do.
Keep an eye on this page, I might need more pointers from you! Bob the Wikipedian (talkcontribs) 21:38, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
Yep. We had some pretty long discussions at WP:PLANTS a while ago. I used to prefer the year as it gave the info concisely on when the taxon was published, but I've since changed my mind and now include a sentence or two on the publication of the taxon. Many of our expert botanists at WP:PLANTS rightly argued that including the year made us look like we didn't know what we were doing. It's not strictly prohibited by the ICBN, but in practice, the year is only included with the full citation (including publication abbreviation, volume, and page number). User:EncycloPetey asked me to start working up an example-drive guide to this template. I started a bit but have been stalled by other editing and work. I think both a step-by-step guide and specific examples of how common problems are solved are useful, so I'll keep working on it (Wikipedia:WikiProject Plants/Automatic taxobox). I'd appreciate any comments you have there, though! Rkitko (talk) 23:26, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

Can we keep extraneous information to a minimum? I don't need to know that it might take research to find the authority. I'm creating a taxobox, not looking for the authority. I may need to know that I should strictly follow the format in the sources I'm using, but I don't need to know how to search for sources to create a taxobox. How about just a link to the botany and plant and animal taxobox guidelines pages, and let's stick with just instructions on the taxobox in this. Things on wikipedia have too much side information, it detracts from functionality.

How about opening with definitions?

"Hit "preview". Perfect? Wow, lucky you! If it's perfect, you're done. Save your changes."

How about just "Hit preview. If it looks good, then you're done. Save your changes." The extraneous side remarks will reduce the flow and functionality of the instruction set. I want to be able to move through this top to bottom as I create the template.

Every template I created said I needed to create a template. It's incomprehensible. The genus template said I needed to create a tribe template, and the tribe template said I needed to created the genus and the subfamily template, then, after I created the tribe template it said I needed to create the tribe template which I just created.... So, will there be any instances in which the templates are perfect?

"The purpose of this guide is to help you resolve any problems with the automatic taxobox. You can tackle each issue separately by using the table of contents below as a guide."

Should be said up front, once, then not repeated. This is too wordy. It interrupts my ability to use it to create an automatic taxobox or debug it.

I'm just having a hard time with this as an instruction set. It doesn't flow for me because of all the chatty text; and it lacks examples.

Well, you're just starting. I'll check back later. --Kleopatra (talk) 23:43, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

Heh, you're right. If there's one thing I hate about "personal" technology, it's that it's too chatty. I'll see what I can do to clean it up.
Yesterday I wrote up some definitions for the parameters; I'll go ahead and add that to this.
When you create a taxonomy template, the back-end of the code searches for the parent you entered in the |parent= parameter. If it doesn't exist (most lower-level taxa aren't added yet), you'll get to create that template as well. If you're working with a particularly rare branch of the tree, you just might need to enter as many as ten or twenty templates. I've been working hard to make sure the upper-level taxa are entered for the most common upper-level taxa to try and save editors as much headache as possible.
Rkitko-- Wow. Great work there. Looks very nice. Bob the Wikipedian (talkcontribs) 02:19, 10 January 2011 (UTC)


Step by step doesn't mention how to format species. Specifically, I'm confused as to how to make the taxobox show an abbreviated form (say, A. regia) of the binomial name while showing the full binomial below it with authority:

Anatoma regia
(Mestayer, 1916)

Currently I'm doing it like this, but it spells out both fields:
{{Automatic Taxobox
| name = ''Anatoma regia''
| image =
| image_caption =
| display_parents=5
| parent= Anatoma
| taxon= Anatoma regia
| binomial= ''Anatoma regia''
| binomial_authority= (Mestayer, 1916)
| synonyms = ''Scissurella regia'' <small>Mestayer, 1916</small>

--ObsidinSoul 04:13, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

[What is below is now wrong! Use {{Speciesbox}}. Peter coxhead (talk) 10:04, 16 May 2011 (UTC)]

On the template page, include the following:

|link={{subst:#titleparts:{{subst:PAGENAME}}|2|2}}|A. regia

On the article page, include the following:

|taxon=Anatoma regia
|binomial=''Anatoma regia''
|binomial_authority= (Mestayer, 1916)

Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 05:02, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Gotcha, thanks. Should be explained more in the page imho. The E. coli example is a bit ambiguous, considering its article page has not been converted yet.--ObsidinSoul 05:05, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Just added a new section that's basically identical to what I posted here. Thanks for asking, that's how I know to include something here Face-smile.svg Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 05:09, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Species should now use {{Speciesbox}}, which does not require Template:Taxonomy/species to exist. The documentation is seriously incorrect in this respect! No time to fix now... Peter coxhead (talk) 07:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
BTW, Template talk:Speciesbox#Colors messing up. Only affects plant articles.-- ObsidinSoul 03:31, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Fixed (was a problem with {{Taxobox/core}}, so actually affected more than {{Speciesbox}}). Peter coxhead (talk) 08:35, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Revised documentation – please check[edit]

I've heavily revised some parts of the documentation, which were seriously out-of-date with the current state of this template and of {{Speciesbox}}.

My revisions are based on my experience of using the template. I'm far from being an expert on it, so others need to check my revisions. Peter coxhead (talk) 10:06, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Camassia quamash[edit]

I don't know if its just my browser or not, but the taxobox for this page is showing up totally messed up, and I can't figure out what's wrong with it. Murderbike (talk) 21:33, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

There was a problem with many taxoboxes (caused by an erroneous edit elsewhere); all is ok now. Peter coxhead (talk) 02:01, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

Botanical sections[edit]

While creating articles for several extinct Acer species I noticed that the sections entry in the box is not being italicized. See Acer douglasense. Could this be adjusted so it is?--Kevmin § 18:15, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

I can take a look at that tonight-- thanks for mentioning it. Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 19:11, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
Turns out {{Taxonomy/Douglasa}} had an Anglicized rank instead of a Latin one. Fixed Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 02:03, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Two points:
  • I've made the mistake of using the anglicized rank instead of the Latin form in the past; it would be good if sometime the automated taxobox system were fixed to accept either.
  • Why does the section show in the taxobox (e.g. at Acer douglasense)? Sections shouldn't normally show, so I assumed that "display_parents" was set, but it doesn't seem to be. Peter coxhead (talk) 05:40, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Peter, I wouldn't be opposed to that. Also-- the reason it shows is because it's an intermediate rank below the next major parent rank. If this were an article on a subspecies of A. douglasense, the section would be hidden. You'll find this as well where species groups exist. Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 19:31, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
(1) Ok, so does it go on your to-do list or mine (or both)? (2) So that's why it shows automatically, but should it? What is the argument against only automatically showing the Linnaean major ranks? Taxoboxes are visually complex enough as it is. Peter coxhead (talk) 02:49, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
You can go ahead and do it if you've got time; it might be a few days or weeks before I have a chance to do it (and might forget by then).
The automatic taxobox is programmed to function in the same way TOL editors have been encouraged to design taxoboxes-- that is, only display the major ranks, plus all immediate parents until you get to the lowest major rank. The reason for eliminating minor ranks is simple when you take into consideration that Velociraptor, for instance, has over 60 ranks. This would make a longer-than-useful list. The standard for "major ranks only" makes it easy to determine which ranks should be eliminated. It's a solid rule that's easy to apply to just about any situation, which makes it a good policy. The rationale for displaying the lowest minor ranks is actually two reasons-- first, this is information that often is not included anywhere else on Wikipedia. Second, readers of the article on the Velociraptor will value the detail that Velociraptor is a velociraptorine eudromaeosaur over the fact that it is a deuterostome-- most of us that care about that can figure bit it out simply by knowing it's a chordate. Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 17:57, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
Bob, you've partly answered a question I didn't ask. I understand entirely why only the major Linnean ranks are shown at the top. I was only concerned with the minor ranks from the taxon in question up to the next major rank. (1) The argument that this information is often not included elsewhere in Wikipedia strikes me as wholly unconvincing. If it appears nowhere else there is nowhere to link to and hence to explain what the taxon is, so this is a good reason not to display it. (2) Being a "plants person", I have no idea what a "velociraptorine eudromaeosaur" is as opposed to a "eudromaeosaur", so why would I value this detail? Only those who know what these terms mean will understand and value them.
To me the point of taxoboxes is to give broad navigation and orientation – too much detail merely confuses. I still think that, by default, only the major Linnaean ranks should be displayed. Editors can easily over-ride this via |display_parents=. Peter coxhead (talk) 15:33, 24 August 2011 (UTC)
So you're saying you don't see the significance of including minor ranks immediately above the taxon in question; am I understanding you correctly? Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 18:27, 25 August 2011 (UTC)


I've added the article Psittacopasserae describing a damn convincing paper, as taxonomy papers go, showing that parrots and passerines are in their own little subgroup. But I'm not actually a taxonomist by trade, and I haven't edited this network of automated taxoboxes before, and above all I don't want to fowl up every passerine article on the wiki! Can someone add this grouping for me so it shows up above Passeriformes in the taxoboxes? Also, which author on the paper counts as the authority for the new taxon? Is it listed as "clade" or "unranked"? Once you do this I'll look up your diffs so I know how. ;) Wnt (talk) 06:00, 24 August 2011 (UTC)

Looking at the paper, this is only proposed as a clade name, not a formal Linnean rank. So no author counts as an authority for this name under the ICZN; if the PhyloCode ever became official its rules might apply. Generally unless otherwise indicated in the publication, all authors are the authority. As it's intended as a clade name, it should be listed as such.
More to the point, why would you want it to show up in all the taxoboxes for members of the Passeriformes? Only the major Linnean ranks should normally be shown; taxoboxes are too complicated for most readers as it is. Peter coxhead (talk) 15:20, 24 August 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for your informative answer! I didn't mean for it to be treated specially; I wasn't sure when these extra levels are shown and when they're not. Wnt (talk) 15:28, 24 August 2011 (UTC)


I've tried using display_children but nothing seems to show. Is this parameter supported? Can anyone point me to a working example. Regards, Sun Creator(talk) 18:04, 22 April 2014 (UTC)

This parameter depends on a bot running at tool server.org. For example, if you go to Template:Taxonomy/Aves, you'll see the word "Subgroups" followed by a curly arrow and "update". Press "update" and http://toolserver.org/~Template:Template:Taxonomy/Aves/Aves/Bot/taxobot/update_child_list.php?Template:Taxonomy/Aves should run and find all Taxonomy templates that have Aves as the parent. After this, |display_children= will work in the Aves taxobox, at least until someone adds another taxon with Aves as the parent. So you probably need to do the update for the relevant taxonomy template. However, in my experience the bot frequently fails to work, needs manual action when it does, and runs outside Wikipedia. For these reasons alone I personally don't believe in using this parameter. Peter coxhead (talk) 21:19, 22 April 2014 (UTC)