Template talk:Technical

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Location of tag[edit]

I removed the template that complains if this template is not placed on the problem article's talk page instead of the article itself. Most cleanup tags are added to the top of the article. Doing so definitely increases the chance that the article will get fixed, and that the template will be removed when it is no longer necessary. It also lets readers know that we know that there is a problem, which improves the image the encyclopedia projects. -- Beland 09:48, 14 December 2005 (UTC)

I put it back. See the discussion at Wikipedia talk:Make technical articles accessible. As to your "image" point, I really don't think technical language in technical articles hurts the encyclopedia's image; intelligent readers understand that some things really are inherently technical, and they need to acquire some background if they want to understand them. --Trovatore 19:35, 15 December 2005 (UTC)
  • I put this tag on articles when there's actually something wrong with the article that prevents people from understanding it as well as they could be. Many articles are hard to understand even if you do have all the necessary background information. There are also many concepts that non-technical readers can get a general understanding but not the details, but bad writing prevents them from doing so. Certainly I don't expect everyone to understand the technical details even in the ideal article on a complex subject; that's not what this tag should be used to indicate, because that sort of thing can't be fixed. -- Beland 21:26, 18 December 2005 (UTC)
  • I see that since the "make sure this template is on the talk page" code was restored, User:AzaToth removed it again. Then I got a note from User:Kjkolb that it's back, and he preferred the tag to be on article pages. It seems we don't have consensus to keep this tag on talk pages, so I put a note on Wikipedia talk:Make technical articles accessible inviting people here to continue the discussion. I checked Wikipedia:Template messages/Cleanup, and this is actually the only general cleanup tag that says it should be put on talk pages, which is quite inconsistent. -- Beland 21:26, 18 December 2005 (UTC)
In my opinion, the tag is widely abused. If it were used correctly, it wouldn't be such a problem on the article page. Unfortunately there are folks who will put it on any article they don't personally understand.
And therein lies the rub, because if you don't understand the subject matter, how do you actually know whether the article could be made more accessible? So I think it belongs on the talk page after all, where people who do know can discuss it. --Trovatore 21:29, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

Summary of placement issues[edit]

Let's see if we can't reach some agreement about tag placement. To get us started, below I've tried to summarize the points I've seen so far. Modify, add, discuss, consense... -- Beland 21:26, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

Generally agreed:

  • Editors using the tag should explain why they mean on the talk page

Arguments for talk page:

  • Directed at editors, not readers
  • Readers don't need to be warned that they might not understand something.
  • Pastel boxes are distracting and ugly.
  • Makes it easy to add tag and rationale to talk page in a single edit.

Arguments for article page:

  • It's a cleanup tag, and cleanup tags go on article pages.
  • Increases the chances that someone will actually fix it.
  • Lets readers know we know there is a problem with the article.
  • Greatly increases the chances that it will be removed when the article is fixed.
Another approach is to delete this tag completely. Arguments for doing so are: it is frequently misused; there is very little agreement on how and when it should be used, what it means or even where it should be placed; it overlaps with other, more specific, cleanup tags. Gandalf61 09:12, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

Check talk tag[edit]

This is the only cleanup message template that has the {{check talk}} tag on it. I don't see any reason for it, but I see that people who have removed it have had it reverted. Why is this the only cleanup message that needs to go on talk pages, when every other cleanup message goes on article pages? --TreyHarris 19:49, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

See discussion above. --Trovatore 19:53, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
I saw it, but that discussion seems to have ended ten days ago with only you and one other editor discussing it, and thus no consensus aside from status quo ante. You claim that {{technical}} is liable to be misused, but how is that different from any other cleanup message? What makes {{technical}} more likely to be abused, and do you have evidence that it is, or was until the {{check talk}} was added? Or do you think, by all rights, every cleanup message should be on talk pages only? --TreyHarris 20:02, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
There's more discussion at Wikipedia talk:Make technical articles accessible. Yes, I think the technical template is far and away the most abused of the cleanup tags. It's the only one for which the editor adding it can very rarely know whether it is appropriate or not, because it is not possible to know whether an article can be made more accessible without understanding the subject, and ordinarily the person adding it does so precisely because he doesn't understand it. See the examples from Wikipedia talk:Make technical articles accessible (for example, Analytic continuation.
No, I don't think most cleanup tags belong on talk pages. Things like bad spelling and grammar, unclear logical organization, or failure to conform to Wikipedia style, make the encyclopedia look bad and amateurish; there the argument that the reader should be informed that we know there's a problem is a strong one. Articles that are simply about subject matter too difficult for most people to understand do not have this problem. --Trovatore 20:26, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
For the record, the only reason that I have not entered the discussion is because I completely agree with Trovatore's position. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 21:00, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
There may always be articles that many people are unable to understand, such as a topic in advanced quantum mechanics. The article probably won't be able to define every term or go over every concept necessary to understand the article. However, the number of articles like this is rather low. When I see a "too technical" tag, it's usually because someone has managed to make an article of medium difficulty nearly impossible to understand by outsiders with the constant use of unexplained jargon, and/or they've done a poor job of writing the article. -- Kjkolb 17:09, 1 January 2006 (UTC)
  • I just added this tag to Internet Fibre Channel Protocol. This is not quantum mechanics, it's just an article that is written in a jargon-heavy way that assumes you already mostly understand what it is talking about, and is missing some context and also technical details. I would like this tag to appear on the article page as an apology to readers that this article is in such bad shape, and to encourage others who see it to fix it up. It doesn't need a notice that says that the tag is misplaced, because is in this case, it's not. -- Beland 21:12, 30 January 2006 (UTC)
    • How about coming up with a new tag for this situation, maybe {{context-technical}} or similar? I'm concerned about a relapse towards random appearances of the tag on articles that simply have difficult subject matter. --Trovatore 21:22, 30 January 2006 (UTC)
      • Why is a new tag necessary? Articles about complicated technical subjects that are well-written do not need any tags. Articles about complicated technical subjects that are poorly written generally need this tag. I don't see how placing the tag on the talk page vs. the article carries a different meaning. I also added this tag to a specific section of Superstructure, which is inconvenient to do on the talk page, and a note on the talk page is unlikely to get carried forward when the article is split, as recommended. -- Beland 07:25, 11 February 2006 (UTC)
        • The one in the Superstructure article should have been {{context}}, not {{technical}}. Actually I think those two sentences are close to nonsense; it's not really a problem of excessively technical writing. --Trovatore 16:38, 11 February 2006 (UTC)
          • (Just to be clear: I mean the "two sentences" that comprise the text of the "Mathematical concept" section of the Superstructure article.) --Trovatore 16:50, 11 February 2006 (UTC)

Too technical template too technical[edit]

Guys, c'mon! In the last week or so the template has devolved into a mass of obfuscation. I'm going to try this zero reverts thing here and ask that you attempt to craft something with some elegance and/or simplicity. Obey 08:52, 6 January 2006 (UTC)

I agree, the template should be shorter and more simple. – Y Ynhockey || Talk Y 06:28, 17 February 2006 (UTC)

Check talk removed[edit]

In my opinion, the tag is widely abused. If it were used correctly, it wouldn't be such a problem on the article page. Unfortunately there are folks who will put it on any article they don't personally understand.

If the article is inappropriately tagged, then the tag should be removed, not "hidden" on the talk page. If it's on the article page, more people (especially those with the requisite expertise) will see it, and will be more likely to either improve the article or remove the tag, if appropriate.

I wanted to add this tag to a specific section of Sweet crude oil, but it complained that it was misplaced, so I removed the "check talk" subtemplate again. -- Beland 00:19, 7 May 2006 (UTC)

I have put back the check talk. It's a matter of practicality. The tag has been too often abused when check talk wasn't there. --Trovatore 00:21, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
And that isn't really the only thing. Even when the person who adds the tag has a good point–say at the article determinacy, largely written by me–the tag still has less reason than other cleanup tags to be on the article page itself. Many cleanup tags are added to articles that may be wrong or misleading, or that are written so poorly as to harm the reputation of WP. That isn't the case for determinacy; a reader who isn't a mathematician won't be misled, but simply won't understand it. He also won't think that it doesn't express a coherent narrative; at worst, he'll see that he doesn't have the background necessary to figure out whether it's coherent or not.
I don't want to remove the tag, because it does express a legitimate way in which the article could be improved. In the mean time, though, the article is not really deficient from the point of view of readers who can actually benefit much from it, and putting an ugly tag on it for that reason is inappropriate. --Trovatore 00:41, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
I like this argument. The argument from abuse didn't make much sense to me -- in an open system like Wikipedia, anything that gets used is almost certain to be abused -- but this one does. I tend to agree that this tag addresses a different issue from most of the other cleanup messages, which is why it merits a different placement. Although I wonder whether we need it at all -- templates are a terrible way to start a discussion. Wouldn't it be far more constructive for users to write a short explanation of why they feel the article is too technical? -- Visviva 02:19, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

Removing technical-tag[edit]

14-Oct-2007: (Another year has passed here.) I am removing the "{{technical}}" tag from many talk-pages: it is a waste of time to try rewriting computer grammar production rules for a "general audience". Encyclopedias, historically, have been separated from science encyclopedias, but Wikipedia does not bias knowledge to prevent linking "physics" to an article about "hummingbirds" and their wings. Also, that tag is an access barrier which prompts scientists and others to feel they cannot use technical terms in WP articles. The technical-tag probably applies to well over 20,000 articles, and the appropriate solution is not to rewrite articles, but to "also-see" link back to general intro articles, not spend hours rewriting computability theory or quantum mechanics for "the masses". I'm afraid the technical-tag is just another vanity-tag that does more for those who use it, then actually helping readers or editors improve articles.

The technical-tag, along with many other vanity-tags, should really be eliminated totally from Wikipedia, except as a historical reminder of failed concepts. Anyway, for now, I am commenting out the "{{technical}}" tag from articles that are inherently technical (and please also remove it from other talk-pages). -Wikid77 21:59, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Largely agree about cleanup tags (we don't have a way to limit them to cases where someone is willing to explain what is wrong and help fix it). I guess Wikipedia:Make technical articles accessible is also somewhat controversial, although I think that article is closer to conveying the nuances, and providing constructive suggestions, than the cleanup tag. I find it hard to address just what the desired technical level is in sound bites, but for computability theory (computer science), my hope would be that "the masses" can see that there is a theory of what computers can do and that various things (never mind which ones) can be proved to be possible or not, that a CS or math undergrad could slog through it (perhaps with some effort), and that specialists could use it more or less as a table of contents into more specific (and probably more technical) articles. Kingdon 18:42, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
I just encountered this template for the first time today (and promptly deleted it from a computer science article). I don't understand the rationale behind it. Since Wikipedia articles get pretty specific, it's almost impossible to avoid technical language in all but the most general cases. Unless I'm missing something important, I think this template should be deleted. modify 15:48, 3 July 2008 (UTC)
I think it makes more sense to try and gauge the likely readership of a given article, and use the technical tag if it's likely to be too technical for them. So a technical tag in the statistics article would mean a very different thing from a technical tag in the central limit theorem article, since one can presume that the average reader of the latter article will be more versed in mathematics than the average reader of the former. On the other hand, certain material may still be too technical for this reader, and should be better explained for his benefit. skeptical scientist (talk) 15:29, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
This practice of removing this tag willy-nilly is terrible! The point of it is not to tell people they shouldn't be using technical language in articles, it's that they need to be adding a non-technical explanation. Wikipedia:Make technical articles accessible is an official guideline. Wikipedia articles need to be accessible to a general audience - at least giving some context, applications, or a non-technical introduction, before getting into details that require some amount of specialized background knowledge. A lot of editors who are experts in a particular field seem to look at such an article, and either say, "I can understand it just fine" or "there's no hope of ever explaining this to anyone who isn't an expert". Thus the need for a tag - the accessibility problem is not self-evident to everyone working on the article, and it's necessary to get the attention of people who can translate or add context for the general audience. -- Beland (talk) 07:51, 11 August 2008 (UTC)
Certainly many articles can and should be improved along these lines. However, it is simply true, in many cases, that there is no hope of explaining the concept (or even much about it) to someone without some serious background. The goal in these cases should be to make the article as accessible as reasonably possible, to as wide an audience as reasonably possible, given the inherent difficulty of the subject matter itself. And yes, the more accessible matter should be front-loaded, to give as many people as possible as much of a chance as possible. But in many cases the best you can do for a truly "general audience" is tell them what field the concept comes from.
Just the same: I agree that some thought should be given before removing the tag altogether (not before moving it to the talk page; that should be automatic -- that's where it should have been put in the first place). It is often a valid criticism; even in cases where there is no hope of explaining it to a general audience, a little more effort could often make it more accessible than it is. --Trovatore (talk) 08:07, 11 August 2008 (UTC)

check talk[edit]

This template is still inappropriate on article pages and should go on talk pages. My arguments are still on this page; I have no new ones. I believe {{check talk}} should be restored; I invite anyone to comment first. --Trovatore (talk) 19:01, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Seeing that nobody argued against it, I re-added {{check talk}}. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 19:54, 9 August 2008 (UTC)
Ug, I don't see why I can add {{tone}} to an article page, but not {{technical}}. I'm just going to ignore the check-talk warning and add the tag where I think it's best. -- Beland (talk) 07:43, 11 August 2008 (UTC)

Informal RfC: Should Template:Technical be added on the article or talk page?[edit]


I'm seeing a lot of different of opinion here over the years, so let's see what people have to say. 20:59, 16 August 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by ImperfectlyInformed (talkcontribs)

  • Article Personally, this seems appropriate for certain sections of article pages. The argument is that certain sections really can be explained in a way that makes sense, but they aren't. Certainly there may be articles which are impossible to make less technical, but there are many more which can be made understandable. This needs to be a targeted template on the article page. II | (t - c) 20:59, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Article. It's a cleanup tag. Cleanup tags belong on articles. Discussion of cleanup tags belongs on talk pages. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 21:15, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Talk page. It's not useful information for the reader. Meta-information belongs on the talk page. It's minor cleanup because an article that's too technical is still useful for many readers and minor cleanup tags belong on the talk page, as the page for the archetypical cleanup tag Template:Cleanup says. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 21:39, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Problem with that is that you can't target specific sections of the article, which is handy. Also, do you take the same position for other cleanup tags on the article pages, ie all the refimprove, neutrality, ect? These are meta-information as well. II | (t - c) 21:44, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Targeting a section is not enough. As somebody who actually tries to make technical articles more accessible, I can say that it's very hard for us to find out exactly what bit of the article readers have problems with. You have to be more specific of where the problem lies. That's why it is essential that a note is left explaining what's wrong, and that note will automatically target a specific part of the article.
Some meta-information is useful for the reader and they should go on the article page, for instance whether it's a featured article or the neutrality tag. Other meta-information is only useful for editors and should go on the talk page, for instance old AfDs. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 23:32, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Talk page. Per Jitse Niesen and previous discussions on this talk page. --David Göthberg (talk) 07:50, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Article - all the similar templates are placed on the articles (e.g., {confusing}). Magog the Ogre (talk) 16:39, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Talk page, of course, as I've said above. It's not quite the same case as {{confusing}}, because it's usually harder for the editor placing the template to judge whether the template is in fact appropriate (that is, whether the article is indeed written as accessibly as possible given its subject matter). --Trovatore (talk) 16:44, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Article - it's a cleanup matter. Articles should be accessible per Wikipedia:Make_technical_articles_accessible. If they aren't, it's a cleanup matter just like any other and should be handled just like any other, with a cleanup template transcluded at the head of the affected article or section; this encourages sufficiently knowledgeable editors reading the article to fix the issue. Even where an article can never be made fully accessible, it should have an introductory paragraph for nontechnical readers per Wikipedia:Make_technical_articles_accessible#Articles_that_are_unavoidably_technical. I suspect that at least some portion of the alleged inappropriate use of this tag covers this case, where some tag is valid, this being the most appropriate I am aware of. Inappropriate use should be discouraged through proper wording of the template and documentation, not hidden by consigning the template to talk pages where it will be ignored by everyone, making its use pointless. --Rogerb67 (talk) 11:08, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
  • talkpage. I tend to remove these when I encounter them on articles. The reason is, it is not a cleanup note. It is a request by one editor to clarify parts of the article. Cleanup tags warn the reader that the article may be unreliable. It is silly to "warn" the reader that the article may be too technical for them, because you don't know about your reader's education or intelligence. You can always use {{context}} or inline tags like {{huh}}. Using this tag is more of a personal comment to the effect "one editor has said they found this article too difficult for them". This is the sort of thing you say on a talkpage. Encapsulating this in a ready-made template isn't an excuse to make the point on the article page instead. dab (𒁳) 17:05, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Article there are some really terribly written technical articles out there, which I have seen much better written, and much clearer written in books and online. The tag is not intended for the reader, it is intended for the editor, it is not a Meta-information tag, it is a clean up tag. Dbachmann/dab EVERY tag is a personal comment, a Verifiable tag is a tag which says "one editor has said they found this article to not have sources", many tags state "A user has expressed a concern"...This is not an "excuse to make the point on the article page instead" is a clean up tag, and does not block a user from making their comments on the tag page. Your argument makes no sense.
    Should we expand this to be a formal RfC? Inclusionist (talk) 21:37, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
    • comment on the contrary, dab's point makes great sense. If, as you say, the tag is not for the reader, then it should definitely be on the talk page. Tags that are only for editors should never appear in article space; this is a general principle. Maybe we should have a wider discussion on this general point.
    • The reason most cleanup tags make sense on articles is that they aren't really just for editors -- they're to warn readers about a possible disupute, POV problem, other potential inaccuracy, or at the very least to let them know that they should not infer that WP standards in general are as low as displayed on the article in question. The last clause might apply here; the problem is that the person applying this particular tag is usually not in a position to evaluate whether the article is in fact written more technically than it has to be. --Trovatore (talk) 04:24, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Article. Incomprehensibility is the second-biggest problem on Wikipedia (behind accuracy), and anything that encourages improvement in this area is helpful. I also support rewording the template to reflect that not all articles must appeal to a general audience. -- Mwalcoff (talk) 01:57, 30 December 2008 (UTC)


The template links to Wikipedia:Make technical articles accessible, but distorts the actual content of that guideline. It says "even for subjects that are inherently technical." as if any topic can be rewritten to the layman's voice. In fact, the guideline makes clear several times (e.g. with 'People who will simply not understand the concept.', 'Articles that are unavoidably technical', 'Every reasonable attempt', etc.) that some articles can not be made any more readable by the layman without sacrificing content. The template should not imply otherwise. Superm401 - Talk 00:35, 28 March 2009 (UTC)

Interesting point. What change do you suggest? My impression is that the template typically gets rewritten so that people who like to paste that template onto articles (because they didn't understand it), can do so more easily. The people who watch the guideline page, on the other hand, typically write it so they have something to point toward to say, look you can't expect every article to be accessible. So these two tendencies will conflict, and this probably explains the current wording of the template.
I do agree, however, that the template should be consistent with the guideline. There is too much of a tendency for people who use this template not to understand the guideline, seemingly because the template's wording, as you say, gives the wrong impression of what the guidelines says. --C S (talk) 02:41, 2 April 2009 (UTC)

Anyway, I'm going to edit the template so it doesn't say "too technical for a general audience". As is clear by now, some articles will always be too technical for a general audience. The question is whether an article is more technical than necessary. So I'll phrase it in that kind of way instead. --C S (talk) 06:47, 27 April 2009 (UTC)

Placement in articles or on talkpages[edit]

I've revived this discussion here, adding a new proposal. Debresser (talk) 19:58, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

What about the lead section?[edit]

The template code shoud make allowance for listing the introductory section as the problematic section. __meco (talk) 09:26, 15 August 2009 (UTC)

That's {{context}}. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 11:14, 15 August 2009 (UTC)

Merge with template:cleanup-jargon[edit]

{{Cleanup-jargon}} seems to perform the same task as this template. I suggest it to be merged with this one. --Waldir talk 16:54, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

  • I have no objection. I think that is a good idea. Go ahead. Adamtheclown (talk) 21:49, 21 November 2010 (UTC)
  • I think that is a logical and good idea. I noticed the merge from and merge to templates and fixed them so that they should lead here. Lt's see for a week or two, and if there will be no objections, let's do it. Debresser (talk) 12:11, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
  • I disagree. Jargon is much more specific than the technical template which could refer to general content as being too technical as opposed to jargon which is undefined terminology Deciwill (talk) 11:22, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
    • Actually, on wikipedia, all articles that are too technical are should have their definitions explained, which is served by both of these templates. Both of these templates are doing a job that is overlapping and identical.Curb Chain (talk) 03:58, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
  • I agree with Deciwill, the term "Jargon" has a specific meaning which is different to both the "Too Technical" and the "Buzzwords" templates. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:47, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
    • What exactly is this meaning?Curb Chain (talk) 03:58, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
  • MergeJargon means "language that is used in a specific discipline" so it is identical to its adjective form: "technical". Articles that have jargon are terms that need to be explained. If terms are undefined, they should go to a dictionary.Curb Chain (talk) 03:56, 20 April 2011 (UTC)

This discussion is now going to be decided on Templates for discussion. I'll inform all involved editors. Debresser (talk) 10:46, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Small in sentence template[edit]

Is there a template for specific technical terms or sentences similar to {{who}}? A template such as this would zero in on the problem sentence or article, and make it easier for editors to make the corrections in the article itself. Adamtheclown (talk) 21:49, 21 November 2010 (UTC)

Use Template:Clarify. Debresser (talk) 11:56, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

Do the reason and section parameters work?[edit]

From looking at the examples right on the page here, it seems like the 'reason' and 'section' parameters have no effect whatsoever on the resulting display. I tried using them in a sandbox as well, with similar results. Was there an edit to the template which broke these parameters? -- Fyrefly (talk) 22:45, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

The section parameter works, when used correctly. The reason parameter not. I'll update the documentation. Debresser (talk) 02:42, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
I noticed an tag on Bulk carrier where someone left a reason, but it doesn't show in the tag. Is it possible to have the reason showing on the tag? AIRcorn (talk) 01:55, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
The reason parameter was removed in this edit in May 2011. Please note that I fixed my previous reply to reflect this, after making a mistake (must have been tired). Debresser (talk) 22:05, 22 February 2012 (UTC)

Expert attention?[edit]

This template adds articles to Category:Articles needing expert attention and Category:All articles needing expert attention. This is a hidden side effect and not appropriate: non-experts can look up the meaning of jargon too. I propose that the relevant parameters be removed. RockMagnetist (talk) 04:46, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

The reason it was put here, and for which I do think this is appropriate, is that if an article is too technical it is the job of experts first of all to make it easier to understand. Not all non-experts would be able to do so. Especially since the "technical" template is not only for "jargon", but also for articles whose whole content is too technical, even if it doesn't use jargon. Debresser (talk)
The documentation for the Expert-subject tag makes it clear that expert help should only be requested for specific problems. Otherwise it could be added to just about anything. There just aren't that many real experts contributing to Wikipedia, and too many requests will reduce the chance that they will go where they are really needed. The same considerations should apply here. If someone tries to make the article more accessible and is unable to interpret some of the content, that is the time to explicitly tag the problem and seek help at a wikiproject. RockMagnetist (talk) 14:38, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
Your interpretation is incorrect. Expert help can also be sought for sections and even whole articles. I have seen such articles, which in their entirety were technical. Debresser (talk) 14:57, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm not denying that such articles exist, but do all technical articles with the technical tag need experts? And if so, is a hidden category the best way to attract their attention? RockMagnetist (talk) 15:03, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
Even if they do not need expert attention, but expert attention would definitely be of help. :) Debresser (talk) 18:28, 21 July 2012 (UTC)
I think that the views of the people editing {{Expert-subject}} should be considered. I have left a note on their talk page. RockMagnetist (talk) 03:24, 22 July 2012 (UTC)

Certain subjects are technical[edit]

There's a certain amount of overuse of this template, particularly in mathematics and other technical articles. Some subjects are intended to be technical - perhaps a word change to suggest that an article be made accessible to the widest possible audience, rather than people with no interest in the subject? RayTalk 03:45, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Nothing about the wording suggests to me that we're trying to make articles accessible to "people with no interest in the subject." I'm not sure where you're getting that from. -- Fyrael (talk) 06:10, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
There's that whole bit about "accessible to non-experts." A lot of Wikipedia math pages are about subjects where, to even broach the definitions, the reader is most likely a graduate student focusing on the area or greater. I come across a fair number of "technical" tags on these articles, which are, honestly, somewhat silly. RayTalk 15:39, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
There is definitely a problem with how the template is used. As Ray says, this template is often added to advanced mathematics articles. Undoubtedly, these articles are sometimes unnecessarily technical and can be improved, and as somebody with the knowledge to do that (for some articles) I am interested in doing this. Unfortunately, often the template is added without any explanation, perhaps with an automatic tool like Twinkle or by people doing some kind of page patrol. This leaves me (and other subject experts) puzzled about what the problem is and thus unable to fix it. From my point of view, a {{technical}} added without explanation is impossible to address and thus useless. I therefore edited the description of the template to urge editors to add an explanation when adding this template. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 11:15, 5 September 2013 (UTC)

Emphasizing the "don't dumb down" clause[edit]

I recently added emphasis to the phrase without removing the technical details. My thinking was "it's far too easy for people to miss this important qualifier".

Unfortunately, my change was reverted by Debresser (saying that wasn't the main point of the template -- which is obvious, but what does that have to do with anything anyway?), but after asking on IRC, I decided to let it lie. However, Trovatore thought this was actually important, so reverted the revert. So Debresser reverted again, claiming that this had something to do with WP:BRD, despite the fact that that page very clearly says that If you revert twice, then you are no longer following the BRD cycle. So, um, I'm a bit confused, both about Debresser's reasoning for thinking the change is detrimental, and why he's trying to invoke WP:BRD as he violates it. —SamB (talk) 02:43, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

Hmm, another approach would be to make the template explicitly say that the way to fix this is by explaining (possibly by link) any necessary terminology/notation. —SamB (talk) 02:53, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
Procedural points aside, templates have specific purposes, and should focus on those. The text in maintenance templates is usually already packed with information, links and bolds, and stressing secondary points is the last thing that should be done. I say this based on years of work in the area of maintenance templates. Debresser (talk) 06:57, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
This template has issues not shared by the general run of maintenance templates. The problem, as always with this template, is its misuse by editors who think that anything they personally don't have the background to follow is "too technical".
That said, I'm not interested in fighting over the italics. When I think the tag has been misapplied I simply remove it, or sometimes move it to the talk page. The important issue is really whether the tag is correctly applied. But on balance, I would prefer the italics, because they could be a harm-reduction strategy in certain cases. --Trovatore (talk) 08:01, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
Italics or bolds? I don't think we usually use italics in template text. But better italics than bolds. Debresser (talk) 15:39, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

Talk parameter[edit]

There is no Talk parameter (or I can't find one that words). Is there a reason for this and can it be changed? Leaving out the reason for the flag or making the reader trawl through the Talk page for that reason seems a loss to the template. LookingGlass (talk) 08:29, 7 September 2016 (UTC)

@LookingGlass: Using the talk parameter works. It's possible you tried "Talk" with an upper case "T" rather than "talk". For example, this will link to the "Certain subjects are technical" section that's above if it were used on this article.
{{technical|date=October 2017|talk=Certain subjects are technical}}
However, there is an issue in that the result of using talk= creates a slightly confusing result as it inserts a sentence into the hat notice that about "Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page" that links to the talk page section but leaves the "The talk page may contain suggestions" in place that links to the talk page in general. Here's the wording without and then with the talk parameter.
  • This article may be too technical for most readers to understand. Please help improve it to make it understandable to non-experts, without removing the technical details. The talk page may contain suggestions.
  • This article may be too technical for most readers to understand. Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page. Please help improve it to make it understandable to non-experts, without removing the technical details. The talk page may contain suggestions.
I believe it would be better that using the talk= parameter does not change the wording but would change the link for "The talk page may contain suggestions" to refer to the indicated section. --Marc Kupper|talk 16:41, 11 October 2017 (UTC)