Template talk:Discovery and New Frontiers program

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Template name[edit]

Suggest this template's name changed to "Template:NASA Discovery Program" as "Template:Discovery" seems very generic (e.g. could be about history of discovery on Earth, etc). (talk) 12:35, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

I see the template was just moved to "Discovery and New Frontiers program". These are 2 separate programs, so should it be in plural?: "Discovery and New Frontiers programs"
Cheers, BatteryIncluded (talk) 00:47, 20 January 2016 (UTC)

Template design[edit]

As a response to @The Tom:'s edits, who replied back with my feedback of his design being ugly with "Ugly is in the eye of the beholder". In hindsight, I should've used a better word than ugly, but my point still stands - for both his first and latest revisions of the template, the rows of the template are not properly aligned with one another, resulting in an odd design full of gaps where there shouldn't be. This is what I meant by "ugly" - on the basis of technical objectivity, there has been no attempt in the first revision I deemed "ugly" to properly align any of the rows with the image to the right, or to properly align the subgroups with the group they belong to.

What I am willing to discuss, however, is the content of the navbox itself. Basically, one needs to understand that the Discovery program is divided into two subclasses of missions - the mainline canonical Discovery program missions and the "Missions of Opportunity", as defined on the program website. Mixing the two subclasses together is not right, since they're not of the same class. For example, Deep Impact is Discovery Mission 8, while EPOXI is a Mission of Opportunity in the Discovery program. I used to have these mixed together in the template before, until I discovered that they belong in a subclass of missions together. This is why they're divided into "Main" and "Opportunity" missions as of my last revision; the latter being short for "Mission of Opportunity". They shouldn't be mixed together in this way because it's simply disingenuous. It's like mixing together the Cosmic Vision missions and ignoring that each belong in a subclass of missions. My new version of the template keeps these elements, but also adds a section for competitions, now that I'm making articles such as Selection of Discovery Mission 13 and 14, and similar articles in the future, such as the "Selection of New Frontiers Mission 4" and "Selection of Discovery Mission 12" articles I'm about to draft up. Philip Terry Graham 06:14, 5 January 2017 (UTC)

It seems @The Tom: really wants to go to a revert war without a discussion on this talk page, just so he can have a two-column navbox instead of a three-column. Since I obviously can't change his mind on this, and the navbox needs to be preserved the way it was before, I propose a simple and easy solution - we split the Discovery and New Frontiers program into their separate navboxes. That way we can get rid of the first column and just have two column each. Satisfying both our needs for the design of this template. Simply put, it's impossible to have a two column version of this template and not have a mostly incoherent and complicated mixture of items that belong in separate groups in a navbox, and this solution, reverting back to having the two separate, would be a better idea if The Tom is that insistent on two columns instead of three. Philip Terry Graham 06:47, 5 January 2017 (UTC)
No reply, so I'll just assume it so. Philip Terry Graham 07:29, 5 January 2017 (UTC)

Hey Philip. Just gave Selection of Discovery Mission 13 and 14 a quick glance and it's quite impressive work and a great addition. That said, you'll have to forgive me, but I do get my back up against the wall a little when when people start throwing around the word "look properly".
First of all, if your objective is to achieve horizontal alignment between the two stacked images to the right and the two stacked category boxes in the first column on the left (Discovery and New Horizons), I'm afraid all you're doing is aggressively defending your personal browser and screen settings. Under the current table topology, there's simply no way to match the "Discovery" image and the "New Horizons" image with the respective table row for all users of Wikipedia. Other than the fact the first one was lifted off the Discovery NASA website and the other was lifted off the "New Horizons" page, I'm really struggling to see any topical relevance between each picture and the respective category -- bodies visited by probes in one category are visible in the other and vice versa. Per WP:NAV purely decorative images are to be avoided in Navboxes so to be honest I think there's a case to be made we could get rid of them, or cut down to one, but I didn't feel like getting so radical with my edits thus far.
Not to waste time defending a vanished revision, but I really disagree with your suggestion that there was something objectively wrong with the first revision and with the greatest respect I don't appreciate the suggestion I made "no attempt to properly align the subgroups with the group they belong to". I most certainly did, and everything did align conceptually. I then observed that the structure I landed on, in which one row of data had three tiers of categorization information and everything else had two, might have rubbed people's sense of symmetry a little and so I went to work on an alternative.
To my eye, a navbox structure with groups, subgroups, and sub-subgroups is incredibly unwieldy, particularly as the subgroup and subsubgroup structures you have proposed are redundant in many cases--all the links in the "New Frontiers > Mission" category, for instance, get labelled as "New Frontiers > Missions > Main". I didn't like the use of the word "Main" and "Opportunity" as they're rather unintuitive. And using the word "Previous" in reference to proposals can be misleading: in some cases the proposals are stale and actually abandoned (but without a citable source proving they're actually dead), but in other cases they're very much live proposal expected to be refined and re-entered in an forthcoming competition.
So I came up with this revision, which manages to avoid all that confusion and has only two tiers of categorization. From an aesthetic perspective, I actually invested a fair bit of time getting the vertical lines to stay clean and aligned which meant some cheats in the codes for word wrap.
On the question of having a "Missions of Opportunity" row vs an "Instruments on others" Row, I think it boils down to whether we're trying to group encylopedia articles into natural themes or group in accordance with NASA's budget categories. Yes, NASA has "Discovery Program Proper" with the competitions and the like, and then they subsequently created a financial carve-out for emergent spends that crop up and don't come through the regular competition process. But that emergent bucket of stuff contains two very distinct different things--bolt-ons on missions flown by other people, and second acts for existing Discovery program missions. And while Strofio has the bureaucratic label of "Mission of Opportunity", in plain English it's a piece of equipment, not a mission. I think in this case the older version of the template had it right.
As I was saying, I like Selection of Discovery Mission 13 and 14 (although I'm a tad skeptical it will be as straightforward to get equally detailed articles for some of the older competitions). But I don't understand the logic behind listing it in the table accompanied by only the failed proposals that have articles.
Anyway, sorry for running on so long. The Tom (talk) 07:31, 5 January 2017 (UTC)

Grouping with New Frontiers[edit]

I have witnessed some of the back-and-forth about template layout, and I'd like to stress that from a WP:Readers first standpoint, it makes a lot more sense to keep the Discovery and New Frontiers programs grouped in the same navbox. A reader interested in exploration of the Solar System doesn't care whether a particular mission is part of funding class A or funding class B. Please reconsider the split. As a matter of personal taste, the version with two columns and differentiated colors looks best. — JFG talk 12:51, 8 January 2017 (UTC)