User:Peter Chastain

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This editor is a Yeoman Editor and is entitled to display this Service Badge.

My real name is Peter Chastain. Welcome to my user page.

About me[edit]

Committed identity: 3caf0d9e6b1ef23d2f0e9477fc9fe37bebb3a94d is a SHA-1 commitment to this user's real-life identity.

I became a Wikipedia editor in 2006. Having recently moved into Lake County, Oregon, I am interested in improving Wikipedia information about eastern Oregon. Other interests include, but are not limited to, the sciences, foreign languages, and Judaism. I enjoy nitpicking text to improve its grammar, structure, and clarity, so most of my editing activity here involves cleaning up, rather than creating original content. To a much lesser extent, I contribute to Spanish Wikipedia and to Wikivoyage, with a tiny forays into other Wikimedia projects. On some Friday nights, I attend services at my shul, and I occasionally go hiking and camping with an LGBT activity section of the Sierra Club.

Currently, I am trying to organize a Wikipedia Loves Libraries event in Lakeview, Oregon.

In 1964, I took the Kuder Occupational Interest Survey and Strong Interest Inventory. One of those tests (I have forgotten which) asked questions about what I would rather do (e.g., watch an execution or collect stamps) and compared my answers with those of people who were happily employed in various occupations. The results indicated that I had the most in common with librarians. At the time, I was taking pre-engineering classes at a junior college. After some detours to bible college and back, I got a BSEE degree from UC Davis. Then I got interested in psychology and went for a MA in psychology at San Jose State University (SJSU), before finally settling into computer programming. However, a favorite activity, on or off the job, has been to point people to where they can find answers to their questions. I love being a reference librarian, though I have never been employed as one. It seems to me that helping people find answers is what Wikipedia is all about. I also enjoy recommending books and have written a few Amazon book reviews[dead link].

Until 2012, I was enrolled at SJSU in a second-baccalaureate program. Not actually intending to get another degree, I was using the Over 60 program at California state universities to take classes (science, foreign languages, history) for $5/semester. Having paid lots of California income tax for most of my life, I had a clear conscience. But eventually the university expressed an official opinion that I had been taking classes for personal enrichment, and I was unceremoniously dropped from the program. It was nice while it lasted, and I am moving on to other learning opportunities. I will be a student until I die.

Some useful links[edit]

Patrolling and assessment[edit]

Links to pages that are useful to Wikipedia editors[edit]

Links to my stuff[edit]

To see my user pages for non-English versions of Wikipedia, click the links under Languages in the navigation section of this page.

I have a sandbox, for experimentation, and have created a few sub-pages to organize some ideas that could conceivably be useful in articles that I think should be written. Feel free to make comments and add information there. I would appreciate it if you would use four tildes to sign your comments.

Links to Wikipedia administrative stuff[edit]

Some useless, but fun, links[edit]

Favorite templates[edit]

I don't really have any favorite templates, but here are some that I like, for easy reference in case I forget their names:

Special:ExpandTemplates is handy for customizing template messages.

Graphics for do-it-yourself user messages[edit]

Sometimes canned template messages are not exactly what is needed. Here is some wiki-markup that can be pasted into a custom message to produce the indicated graphics:

  • [[File:Information.svg|25px|alt=|link=]] produces
  • [[File:Ambox warning pn.svg|25px|alt=|link=]] produces
  • [[Image:Stop hand nuvola.svg|30px|alt=|link=]] produces


  • Wikiblame is supposedly useful for searching past versions of an article.
  • Listen to Wikipedia,a site showing recent updates to Wikipedia, accompanied by some very cool music. (Thanks to Flyer22 for the link.)
  • REFLINKS - automated bulk reference fixing

On my soapbox: a plea for rigor[edit]

I find Wikipedia a useful tool for educating myself, because the information here is usually correct, especially in its main points and in areas where there is no serious disagreement. However, in discussions with friends, I sometimes hear that Wikipedia is inaccurate. Both of these perceptions are valid. As an editor, I want to take pride in getting it right all of the time. That is why it is important that we cite good references. When I search the web for corroboration, I sometimes find incorrect information in articles that seem to have been copied from Wikipedia. We say it, because they say it, because we say it.

I look for references on the web, because doing so is easy and cheap, but there are times when we need to spend some extra effort looking for an authoritative information source or going to the library or even spending some money on non-free content. If Wikipedia is worth doing (and I firmly believe that it is!), then it is worth doing right.

User pages I like[edit]

Occasionally I come across a user page with some information or solution to a problem that I have wondered how to solve. I list some of those pages here, for mostly for my own future reference:

My user boxes[edit]

CVU puzzle.svgThis user is a member of the
Counter-Vandalism Unit.
Wikignome crop.gifThis editor is a WikiGnome.
Writing Magnifying.PNGThis user is a member of
the Guild of Copy Editors.
Crystal kdmconfig.pngThis user's IRC nick is PeterSJC on the server freenode.
This user is a member of the Association of Deletionist Wikipedians.

The proliferation of mediocrity is never its own excuse.

Association of Deletionist Wikipedians
This user is a member of the Association of Inclusionist Wikipedians.

The motto of the AIW is conservata veritate, which translates to "with the preserved truth".
This motto reflects the inclusionist desire to change Wikipedia only when no knowledge would be lost as a result.

Usage and Grammar Preferences
ANAL 2This user rely's on others better grammar too fix there article's.
’sThi's user know's that not every word that end's with s need's an apostrophe and will remove misused apostrophe's from Wikipedia with extreme prejudice.
its & it’sThis user understands the difference between its and it’s. So should you.
A, B, and CThis user prefers the serial comma.
Subj This user prefers that the subjunctive mood be used. Were this user you, he would use it.
he or she
This user considers the singular they to be substandard English usage.
enThis user is a native speaker of the English language.
es-2Este usuario puede contribuir con un nivel intermedio de español.
la-1Hic usor simplici latinitate contribuere potest.
lad-1Este uzador puede kontribuir kon un nivel báziko de djudeo-spanyol.
ke-1Ὁ χρήστης οὗτος δύναται συνεισφέρειν μετὰ μικρὰς γνώσεως τῆς Κοινῆς Ἑλληνικῆς.
ru-1Этот участник владеет русским языком на начальном уровне.
ar-0هذا المستخدم لا يفهم حرفا في العربية.
משתמש זה מסוגל לתרום ברמה בסיסית של עברית.‏
Global warming ubx.svgThis user wants to stop
global warming
Leaf 1 web.jpg This user is interested in environmentalism.
Urbine221dc.jpg This user supports the
use of green energy.
Mafate Marla solar panel dsc00633.jpg
Star of life2.svg This user supports stem cell research.
Icom.pngThis user is a licensed amateur radio operator, with the rating of Extra.
Cycling (road) pictogram.svgThis user is a cyclistCycling (road) pictogram.svg
General Information
Héraldique meuble Fleur de lys lissée.svgThis user is of French ancestry.
National Public Radio logo.svgThis user listens to NPR.