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User talk:Download








Welcome to my adoptee's classroom! Adoption usually involves a lengthy process (anywhere between 1-3 months) in which you will ask me any questions you have about Wikipedia (on your corresponding question page), whether it be about coding, policies, or just questions in general. During this period, I'll be in regular touch with you, giving you comments about editing and suggestions. Once you and I feel that you are satisfactorily learned about Wikipedia, you'll be an "experienced" editor! Cheers! -download | sign!

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Stop by the Reference Desk

The Wikipedia reference desk works like a library reference desk. Ask a question here and Wikipedia volunteers will try to answer it.

Do you have a difficult question? Or, would you like to take a break from editing and perhaps share your knowledge with others who have questions? If so, then take a trip to the Reference Desk to ask or answer the tough questions.

If you're doing research and need to know where to find a particular piece of information, or just want the answer to a trivia question, try Wikipedia:Reference desk. Note: Legal or medical advice is prohibited.

New editors may find the New contributors' help page a valuable resource. If you need general help with creating and editing articles on Wikipedia, try Wikipedia:Questions or at the Help desk.

See also:
To add this auto-updating template to your user page, use {{totd-random}}

Lesson 1: Basic formatting

Wikipedia uses unique Wiki markup, which allows you to format text. For example:

  • '''Bold text''' gives Bold text
  • ''Italics text'' gives Italics text
  • '''''Bold and Italics text''''' gives Bold and italics text

More Wiki markup:

  • [[Wikipedia]] gives Wikipedia
  • [ Live Search] gives Live Search
  • <s>Strike-through text</s> gives Strike-through text
  • <sup>Superscript text</sup> gives Superscript text
  • <sub>Subscript text</sub> gives Subscript text
  • <small>Small text</small> gives Small text

Now try using these tags at the sandbox. For more information see Wikipedia:Formatting#Wiki markup or Help:Wiki markup.

Lesson 2: Namespaces

In Wikipedia jargon, a namespace is that part of the Wikipedia database where all the data of a particular kind are stored. This definition applies to all wikis that use the MediaWiki software.

Namespaces are like folders in a filing cabinet — or on your hard drive. The main namespace, for example, contains all of the encyclopedia articles and past versions of those articles. Likewise, the user namespace contains the personal pages of registered Wikipedia editors (for example, your userpage).

Wikipedia has 18 basic namespaces and 2 custom namespaces. With the exception of the main namespace, each namespace has its own prefix (such as "Wikipedia:" or "User:"). Some namespaces have abbreviations that you can use instead of a full prefix to identify the namespace in a search or edit (for example, "WP:" instead of "Wikipedia:" and "WT:" instead of "Wikipedia talk:").

For more information see Wikipedia:Namespace.

Lesson 3: Talk Pages

  • What's the meaning of a talk page? To let multiple users collaborate on improving an article
  • How do I get there? Every page has its own "discussion" tab, just click on it.
  • How do I ask a question, start a discussion or make a comment? Click on the "new section" tab.
  • How do I contribute to a discussion? Scroll down to the right discussion, and click [edit].

Nearly every page on Wikipedia also has a talk page (also known as a discussion page). A talk page is a space for editors to discuss improvements to articles and other pages. Talk pages are named the same as their associated pages, the only difference being that they have "Talk:" before their name.

For example, there is one page called "Australia", which contains the article on the continent of Australia. There is also a page called Talk:Australia, where discussion occurs about possible improvements to the article page.

User pages also have associated talk pages (for example, "User talk:Download"). Those pages are also intended for discussion; only in that case, the discussion might not relate to an article. When another editor needs to contact you, they will usually do this by leaving a message on your talk page. You will be notified when someone leaves you a message that way, with a notice the next time you access a page in Wikipedia.

For more information, see WIkipedia:Talk page.

Lesson 4: Templates

Templates often look like text boxes with a different background color from that of normal text. They are in the template namespace, i.e. they are defined in pages with "Template:" in front of the name.

For example, consider the template Template:Disambig (follow the link to see the page where it can be edited). To insert the template's content into an article, type {{Disambig}} in the wiki page ( {{Disambig}} is called a template tag ). Every article with that tag in it will display the following text:

Disambig gray.svg This disambiguation page lists articles associated with the same title. If an internal link led you here, you may wish to change the link to point directly to the intended article.

This technique is commonly known as transclusion. Templates can also include calculated and substituted elements, as well as parameters, allowing for complex usage. For a table of some useful templates, see Wikipedia:Template messages. For detailed templating documentation see m:Help:Template.

There are two major ways to include custom messages, {{Your message}} and {{subst:Your message}}. {{subst:Your message}} makes a copy of the message text and places it where you put the tag after you save an article (substitution).

In other words, when the message is updated, you do not need to update a page that uses it if you use {{Your message}}. As a guideline, short temporary messages that will be removed soon should be copied using subst (which has the advantage of showing the message in the wiki source), and standard notices that might remain on a page for months or forever should be transcluded for easy updating. (You should not use {{Your message}} for a message which contains any links which may change in the future. This method doesn't refresh "What links here" unless every article containing the {{Your message}} gets changed after the modification of the link in the message.)

If you need to edit the template message individually after you put it on your page, use subst. If you don't need to edit it, and would rather the message is automatically updated along with changes made to the template, don't use subst.

Now try transcluding and substituting {{cleanup}} at the sandbox. Afterwards, see the difference by editing the sandbox again. For more information, see Wikipedia:Template namespace.

Lesson 5: User Scripts

A user script is a piece of JavaScript code executed on Wikipedia pages. Scripts can make navigation easier and simplify common maintenance tasks. To import a user script, add the code to your monobook.js.

For more information, see Wikipedia:WikiProject User scripts/Scripts. Now try importing my prose tool to your monobook.js.