User talk:Alarbus

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All comments welcome at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Ice_Hockey#Accessibility. Frietjes (talk) 22:03, 8 March 2012 (UTC)

Just a thought, but edit summaries like "will prevail here" are not helpful. I suggest you avoid taking a battleground mentality. I think we can find a way to introduce better accessibility features while retaining existing visible styles. But this requires that you actually work with people. If you are not capable of doing that, then I suggest you back out now and let one of the other people Frietjes canvassed initiate an actual discussion. Resolute 02:38, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

Not impressed with the rhetoric. Accessibility is a core WMF priority and many existing visible styles are really poor. Alarbus (talk) 02:49, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

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Hi Alarbus, I know you're a pretty busy guy, but if you get a chance, could you take a look at the templates on Ahalya? I'm doing a copyedit on it right now for someone, it's probably going to be nominated for FAC soonish. Thanks, Mark Arsten (talk) 21:26, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

Looks interesting, I'll take a pass through it. Alarbus (talk) 05:10, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, it is quite an interesting article. Mark Arsten (talk) 05:38, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
Just started; don't edit conflict me in the next few hours. Alarbus (talk) 05:40, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for taking a look. Will stay away :) --Redtigerxyz Talk 05:45, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
Thanks a lot for improving the referencing. Thanks for improving the references of Ganesha, Iravan and Vithoba too. --Redtigerxyz Talk 12:53, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
You're welcome, thanks for an interesting read. I'll get to doing a full pass on the others in due course. Alarbus (talk) 00:23, 11 March 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing out. Fixed. --Redtigerxyz Talk 09:31, 17 March 2012 (UTC)
Glad you agree ;-) Alarbus (talk) 10:48, 17 March 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Editors Barnstar Hires.png The Editor's Barnstar
Thanks for fixing Kosovo-note. All best! WhiteWriterspeaks 11:04, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
You're welcome; however there are hundreds more uses to-do… Alarbus (talk) 11:22, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Reference problem[edit]

I'm having trouble getting reference 16 (Olson et al) to work on Sinking of the RMS Titanic. Could you please help? Prioryman (talk) 22:19, 13 March 2012 (UTC)

Actually don't worry, another editor has sorted it out. Prioryman (talk) 22:51, 13 March 2012 (UTC)
I fixed them all up properly. !Nice to know this place has talk page stalkers. Alarbus (talk) 03:57, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

Hensley notes[edit]

Hi Alarbus, I took a stab at fixing the Endnotes on George Went Hensley, did I do ok? Mark Arsten (talk) 04:35, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

Much better. I formated them for better clarity and maintainability. There are only a few hundred pages using {{cref2}},[1] and {{cnote2}}.[2] There are rather more of their older cousins, which are worse. I've been updating the easy ones. I saw that Crisco 1492 has started using this, too, which is goodness. Thanks, Alarbus (talk) 05:27, 14 March 2012 (UTC)
Alright, we'll get rid of all those old clunkers sooner or later! Mark Arsten (talk) 05:34, 14 March 2012 (UTC)
Good to hear; I just did two ;-> Mostly it's a matter of getting people pulling in the same direction and not have one set adding more while others are going in the other direction. cite.php and that direction are to be preferred. Alarbus (talk) 06:27, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

Harvard citations[edit]

Thanks for the fix. I had not encountered that particular situation before. Finetooth (talk) 03:21, 15 March 2012 (UTC)


I'm really happy I happened to see your discussion about the sfn template. I've been looking for something like that. I wish I would have known about it when I did L'ange de Nisida, because I like that ability to click the notes and be taken to the corresponding source. It will be useful as I start working on Scotch whisky, especially since I'm naming references and there are multiple books by the same author. --Laser brain (talk) 04:13, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

{{sfn}} rocks. L'ange de Nisida will be an easy update; I'll just do it. Scotch whisky might not be as good a candidate as {sfn} is geared toward sources with pages, not web sources. Anything can be used with {sfn} if you also use {{sfnRef}}, but it's more work. I'll watchlist that and see where you take it. Alarbus (talk) 04:39, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Scotch whisky will be mostly book sources by time I'm done, not to worry. The only thing I haven't figured out is how to anchor a source that doesn't have an author. I put ref=swa in both the sfn and citation templates, but it still won't link. Maybe using sfnref is the key. Thanks for the help! --Laser brain (talk) 04:59, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Yup; {{sfnRef}} as here. You should never put an explicit value in the ref parameter (other than "harv" or an {sfnRef}); that's for [[#swa|Swa]] awfulness. Alarbus (talk) 05:09, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
  • Thank you very much. --Laser brain (talk) 06:05, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
    You're welcome. The whiskey page looks to have a conflation of Regulation and Association which needs sorting out; have not looked too closely. You need to install User:Ucucha/HarvErrors to see broken links. Alarbus (talk) 06:32, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

Infobox consolidation[edit]

There are three templates on Hindu temples {{Infobox Mandir}} (created 2006, primarily used infobox), {{Infobox Hindu Temple}} (different layout, hardly used, 2007), {{Infobox temple}} (based on Infobox Mandir, some parameters different, used in some articles, 2011). How can I merge them without affecting functionality? --Redtigerxyz Talk 06:07, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

User:Thumperward or User:Gadget850 can probably build a template that deals with all the needs, possibly @ {{Infobox temple}} with the others redirected there. It will take a bit of looking into, but they're very good at this. The point here is to focus efforts on somewhat fewer, but more robust templates. There are issues like having the templates emit Microformats, which the current ones may not do, or may not do as well (I've not looked, but Andy's the expert on these things). I'll point them at this… Alarbus (talk) 06:29, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
I do not know anything about template synchronization but I want to learn more, and in addition to that, I work with a Wikipedia outreach group in India so through them I have a personal stake in the quality of the Hindu template template. I would love to be a part of this conversation and help in any way that I can. Where is this conversation happening? Right here? Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:59, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
This particular thread started at Wikipedia:Templates for discussion/Log/2012 March 17#Deity templates, where Andy proposed merging some templates into a common one. See Wikipedia:Infobox consolidation for FAQ. We have tens of thousands of templates doing very similar things. Mostly this has happened as a result of endless copy-paste-paste-pasting. Most of them are not very well made; a few are and that's a lot of work. See {{infobox person}}, {{infobox officeholder}}, and {{infobox settlement}} for examples (and I mean view source, not just the doc). A poorer example would be {{Infobox Australian Hut}} (Keebles Hut is using it; a fishing hut). There is a pretty steady trend of proposing such consolidation at WP:TFD and getting mixed results as too many people don't really get it; they think every topic should have its own unique and special stand alone infobox. This results in most of them being rudimentary. Consolidating infoboxes is about leveraging the heavy lifting that's gone into large and complex templates that offer many advantages.
I left Thumperward and Gadget850 notes, but no comment as yet. Alarbus (talk) 18:37, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

FA Thanks[edit]

On behalf of WP:CHICAGO, I would like to thank you for your contributions to Cross of Gold speech, which has fairly recently achieved WP:FA status.

--TonyTheTiger (T/C/BIO/WP:CHICAGO/WP:FOUR) 20:17, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

You're welcome, Tony. It's a nice article and Bryan was an interesting fellow. Then there was the Scopes Monkey TrialAlarbus (talk) 20:26, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Work is underappreciated around here, alas. No interest in doing the trial, the whole thing was a put-up job.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:36, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
"Work" is not part of WP:MMORPG and is undramatic, which is why most here don't do much of it.
I know; ACLU wanted to lose. Mencken was great (but Hornbeck was better). Alarbus (talk) 21:41, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Part of the game is accepting credit for the work of others, I gather.--Wehwalt (talk) 22:46, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Well, it was your writing; I just helped with the structure. Alarbus (talk) 22:44, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
I didn't mean you, sorry. I greatly value your work and the kudos are deserved.--Wehwalt (talk) 22:46, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Do you think it is worth adding an "Actual precious metal content" field to the coin infobox? I fear that this is why many people are consulting the articles ...--Wehwalt (talk) 22:52, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
I wasn't really worried about it; just checking. (edit conflict) And thanks.
I can see people being after that sort of information. Of course most coins are made of zinc or aluminium. That box the same one used for Krugerrand and other bullion coins? The label should be short as it will line-wrap and tend to force the left column wider. Tables do an auto-proportioning of widths based on content and most infoboxes just let that happen. There are also some odd nbsp being forced in as prefixes to a few fields… you know if that's really intended or appropriate? Alarbus (talk) 23:02, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
Try the new fields; they're a knock of Mass. Seems most of this information is currently in the Composition field (if at all). And I think the nbsps should go; they mostly seems to make things weird. Alarbus (talk) 00:44, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
That works fine, thanks, I'll put in over the next few days. I'll let you know if you need tweaking. I don't remember specifically but it's always possible I played with nbsps to make it look OK, The coin template can be a pain in the neck to deal with. Washington quarter shows that, it is creaking and may collapse if they do change the composition to .999 for collectors next year.--Wehwalt (talk) 05:02, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
The idea is that people may have found a Franklin half dollar or Standing Liberty quarter or indeed a Mercury dime or if they are very lucky a Indian Head eagle in Grandma's attic, and wanna find out what the silver content is before selling it to a dealer. The problem is, we are given very little data on how people use articles. It's why if an IP complains about something in an article, I'm taking it very seriously. In my view, a sixth FA criterion should be added, relating to reader utility. Does the article give the reader what he wants? It's difficult. I try every shabby trick to keep the reader of one of my articles reading, but that doesn't help the person who comes in for a specific point, like the guy on McKinley who wanted John Sherman's first name (see talk page). Like the surge of interest in the Gough Whitlam article, 15,000 clicks over the past two days instead of a few hundred. What are they reading? Do they just want to see if we caught Margaret's death? 1975 Australian constitutional crisis, the companion article, got a modest uptick. Are people reminiscing? Are they kids in school who have been asked to look up the Whitlams? Shouldn't that be material to how we write articles?--Wehwalt (talk) 12:15, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
I know I need tweaking, but that's another topic. I'd like to try cutting the nbsps; they seem to have been about indenting but it really doesn't seem helpful and I don't like the look when lines wrap (which may be less as you move info to the new parameters).
With old bullion coins, isn't it mostly the collectibility that drives their market value? Not the content. With bullion value only coming into play when it's a common coin in poor condition? With new ones it would be more about the content but still a limited edition high pressure proof kept in a safe.
Most people don't read whole articles. It takes a lot for me to read a full sized article straight through. I think most readers pop in to look something up; a movie detail or something they were talking about with someone. Look it up. But we don't really know. Maybe the foundation does; Maryana might be a good person to have that talk with. A reader trends study. They have elements of this going already, article rating, editor feedback, probably more. The timeframe for gathering and analysing such data is long; long in wiki-time, at least. Whitlam is in the news and Google is driving a lot of hits to the article. Mostly it would be younger people who really don't know his history, so they look it up. And editors here swarm any in-the-news article, usually with poor effect. The more serious readers are the ones clicking through to related articles. With Titanic's centenary soon, I've been editing a fair number of the related articles because I know they will all be read a lot next month. Gotta go. Alarbus (talk) 16:59, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
I suppose. The problem with working on an article like that is that the literature is huge. The plague of a FA writer is too much or too little. I'm home Thursday and hope to get some work done on the Great Redesign of U.S. coins I've been slowly working on. That's really to complete the featured topic, as is the nickel article I'll work over. I have Avery Brundage research started but that's really waiting for some archive visits, probably in May. Also thinking about William Jennings Bryan presidential campaign, 1896, which will be a lot of fun. --Wehwalt (talk) 21:53, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
Prioryman did most of the work on the Titanic article. I'm sure there are endless 'sources', mostly junk. What coin articles have I missed that are related to your Feature topic plans? Name them, and I'll work on them; any that are not done, too. I'll look from your sandbox navbox and review… I'll find time to nudge Brundage along, too. And will watch for the Bryan page. Alarbus (talk) 02:36, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Don't bother with Brundage, I'm going to do a complete rewrite, so it's pointless now. Let me see, you haven't gotten to Indian Head gold pieces and Indian Head eagle in the Great Redesign series, and Shield nickel and Jefferson nickel in the nickel series. Thanks for your fine work. I'll probably be working in userspace on whichever article I do first.--Wehwalt (talk) 08:47, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
ok, all watchlisted; will push them along. Alarbus (talk) 10:04, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Thanks for that. I see you did them.--Wehwalt (talk) 14:58, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

Nope, only did two of them, so far. I cut those nbsp; looks better to me, you ok with it? Alarbus (talk) 16:42, 21 March 2012 (UTC)
Not a big deal either way. Shield was my first coin article, it's still a bit primitive, though I had Howard Spindel, one of the experts on Shield nickels go over it and he seemed to like it.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:04, 21 March 2012 (UTC)
And I've mostly done shield nickel. Here moved Indian Head gold pieces to using years. We spoke of this before as useful when pulling stuff together for your redesign article. Still liking the idea? I'd have to make a pass over all the coins (or a subset) to see which one were omitting the years. Indian Head eagle is a mix and shield nickel is sans-years. I loved the story about "Clark". Alarbus (talk) 21:27, 21 March 2012 (UTC)
I know. One of the great numismatic anecdotes, and this one actually true. May not actually be a mix, may be for disambiguation. But yeah, I'd be grateful if you could make them consistent.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:32, 21 March 2012 (UTC)
Amazing that he though he could get away with it. They must be rare. Yeah, the eagle is mixed for disambig; was before I got there. I'll move them all along. Some of the new/current stuff, like Jefferson, have a lot of non-print sources and they should be kicked into using short footnotes, too. See the thread just below, and User talk:Ucucha#sfn/sfnm; lots happening under the hood for all of these templates. Alarbus (talk) 21:57, 21 March 2012 (UTC)
Not very. Under a hundred buck even in fairly new condition. I'll keep an eye on it.--Wehwalt (talk) 23:49, 21 March 2012 (UTC)


I saw your posts at Sfn talk about the false positives that my HarvErrors script produces. That's indeed annoying, and I should do something about it. I'm thinking of coding it so that it only puts errors on references that are inside a section named "References" or so (or realistically, within the first HTML node following the references header). The risk with that is that there are probably so many ways to declare a reference section out in the wild that the script is likely to miss some cases. What do you think? Ucucha (talk) 19:21, 19 March 2012 (UTC)

That was easier than I expected. I've created a new version at User:Ucucha/HarvErrors2.js, which only marks citations within a section called one of "References", "Bibliography", "Literature cited", "Works cited", "Citations", "Sources", or "Notes". I'll try it for a while to see how well it works, and then hopefully transfer it to the main HarvErrors script. Ucucha (talk) 20:07, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
Hi. I'm looking and like. I'll try the '2' version and give you some feedback. I've been meaning to talk to you about sfn and sfnm and will get my thought together and post them to your talk. This script is very helpful. I would like to tone it down; maybe use small instead of strong, and class="warning" on the second message? I'd prefer to be able to able to distinguish these at a glance from the hard mw:cite.php errors. Alarbus (talk) 02:20, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
This still needs to be applied to the '2' script… Alarbus (talk) 02:26, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
It does; I'll make that change now.
I think there is some value in consistent error messages, but I agree that it's a good idea to tone them down a bit, especially for the false positive-prone search for citations with nothing leading to them. I hadn't heard of class="warning" before: it looks like this (as opposed to error). Ucucha (talk) 02:37, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Purged-all and the false-positives in A Free Ride went away (again). I noticed the warning class when I looked up the error class (in the served css). The 1.19 release of mw is when a lot of the junk messages began appearing; {citation} in {reflist} sort of things. I want's after the yellow specifically, just a different look. The second class or message is only about cites that might be better in a further reading, or better removed. The first set are real problems where they omitted ref=harv or got something else wrong and the footnote links are busted (which you know, but we have an audience). Alarbus (talk) 02:57, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes, it previously didn't get false positives on ones within refs. Apparently, there's another span in there now for some reason. I've changed the second set of errors to warnings, per your suggestion. Ucucha (talk) 23:53, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Ah, the added span makes your first fix make sense to me; I'd not seen that they tweaked the generated structure. I've seen the warning class being emitted and it seems fine. Thanks. Alarbus (talk) 02:51, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

Couple things[edit]

Hi Alarbus, I just tried to convert all the ref and cref2 templates on Elias Abraham Rosenberg to sfn and efn, could you check my work? I'll probably nominate that at FAC later this week. Also, I just heeded your advice and installed the harverrors script. The first article I came to after that was A Free Ride, which had 8 "There is no link pointing to this citation" errors, how would I go about fixing them? Mark Arsten (talk) 00:35, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

The problem was in my script, not in your article; the error messages should no longer appear. Ucucha (talk) 00:51, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Oh, Ok, I see the thread above now, thanks. Mark Arsten (talk) 01:19, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
I see it, too. This would be the fix. And This would be what's coming soon. Anyway, Rosenberg looks fine; I see a few small adjustments and will make a few tweaks. Free Ride's not showing anything for me, now. This talk started at template talk:sfn#why are there errors in the template?. Alarbus (talk) 02:12, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Alright, Free Ride looks fine to me now too, looks like it all works out then. Thanks for the tip on Rosenberg. Mark Arsten (talk) 14:42, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

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In editing this Template:Navbox, you substituted
This broke the template because parameter list requires a number after it.
Roseohioresident (talk) 18:15, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

It most certainly does; my typo. Sorry I didn't notice and thanks for fixing. Alarbus (talk) 19:20, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

Learned something new[edit]

thanks. --Floquenbeam (talk) 18:20, 23 March 2012 (UTC)

You're welcome; I try to be useful. Alarbus (talk) 18:24, 23 March 2012 (UTC)


Help me to understand something. At TT:Citation you advocate using {{Harvid}} to encapsulate the string being being encoded in a citeref. Now I do understand the use of a procedure to encapsulate standardized processing of a datum (rather than writing such processing anew each time the daturm is processed). But I do not see how "|ref={{harvid|Smith|2001a}}" is better than "|ref=CITEREFSmith2001a". It could be argued it saves having to type "CITEREF", but overall that is no saving. I don't see that Harvid does (in this case) anything more than trivially concatenating the arguments. What is benefit? ~ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:28, 23 March 2012 (UTC)

You did see what Redrose64 said to you there, right? {{harvid}} is a redirect to {{sfnref}}, although once that was not the case. Anyway, the current implementation does do the concatenation that you're doing by hand, but if there is a need down the road to change that algorithm to something else, your having set explicite values in articles will cause the articles to break when {sfnRef} and the related other templates are changed. Worse, having these in the wild serves as an impediment to making needful changes. Eventually a bot will come along and change them on you; please see this and use the template, ok? Alarbus (talk) 01:17, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
What you are saying is, essentially, that someday the tags might be generated by some other process than simple concatenation. Is the chance of that anything greater than a hypothetical possibility? ~ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 18:57, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Who knows? But what does it matter? If you use a call like {{harvid|Smith|2001a}} then you future-proof your work by allowing developments to use the parameters you pass in whatever way may be useful - emitting metadata, for example - without having to rewrite every article where the call is used. There's almost no downside to enabling developments in this way, whereas hard-coding will always suffer from having to be re-written when a new idea comes along. If editors get into the habit of working in this way, it becomes the norm, and we don't then have to second-guess the hypothetical probability of some worthwhile advancement and make a case for it every time. Surely there's sense in that? --RexxS (talk) 23:31, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
What Rexx said ↑↑↑ This is also what Redrose64 told you. Sheesh. Alarbus (talk) 23:52, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes, yes, I hear what you guys are saying, I understand the principle, and in principle I even agree. I just don't see that in this case the chance this would be needed is greater than that of a snowball in hell. Well, I will take this under advisement. Thank you all for you assistance. ~ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 20:34, 26 March 2012 (UTC)

A small favour[edit]

I'm sure you have for more worthy things to be doing, but this one shouldn't take you too long! ;) Could you have a look at User:HJ Mitchell/Recognised, and see if you can get the top row (the admin icon, etc) to line up, preferably in both Monobook and Vector settings, but I'd settle for just Monobook. You could also check List of field marshals of the British Army for accessibility if you were feeling charitable, though Rexx promised over a whisky that he'd look at it at some point. Cheers, HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 00:10, 25 March 2012 (UTC)

Hi, Harry. Looking now (and watchlisted the field marshals…) I'm using vector but am willing to switch back to monobook a few times to sort things out. Should be done soon enough. Best, Alarbus (talk) 01:09, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
👍 Seems better. I moved some things around and you have a new subpage for the top icons. It looks reasonable to me in both skins, so you can probably cut the alt-skin link. I take it the ambox was not really about this issue. Best, Alarbus (talk) 02:59, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
I've looked at the field marshals. I added a missing name, which was pretty obviously just an omission. I also flipped the notes to using {{efn}} which is the new standard way of doing this. The accessibility structure seems well in hand. It is a bit odd having the row header as the second column but it's done properly so it more a 'look' anomaly than anything else. I'd take the references to a more robust system, of course; would be easy, too since, it's heavy on the one source. See Woodes Rogers for example; it also uses {{London Gazette}} via foor notes. I'm not quite done with Woodes; I'll be revisiting the refs still in the footnotes section, and can do the same for yours See also: Ernest Augustus I of Hanover, Washington quarter, Neville Chamberlain, Albert Speer, Richard Nixon; many others, really (Pedro II of Brazil,450 footnotes Empire of Brazil, Luís Alves de Lima e Silva, Duke of Caxias, Afonso, Prince Imperial of Brazil, Isabel, Princess Imperial of Brazil). Best, Alarbus (talk) 05:18, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Harry, I've done a review for you at Talk:List of field marshals of the British Army#Accessibility and usability review, and I'd agree with Alarbus that the list is good quality already, although minor improvements are always possible. I'd be tempted to seriously consider upgrading the references to {{sfn}} as it makes it so much easier for future maintainers to find errors and broken links, etc. in them. Although 150+ extra templates are likely to add a few extra seconds to the edit preview time, it certainly won't have any significant impact on the pages served via the squid cache to normal viewers. On the other hand, it's probably less of an issue for this article as the list is essentially complete and any further references are unlikely to be added in the near future. Alarbus may have further thoughts on my comments both here at at the list talk page. Cheers, --RexxS (talk) 17:01, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Hi, Rexx. I'll have a look at your full review. Above, I was suggesting {sfn}. It's a very lightweight template so I think we're talking a few milliseconds of preview/load time. {sfn} also auto collates which this list needs some of; there are two refs that are copypasta'd and would otherwise be combined with icky named refs. re the sorting, there are a lot of explicit display:none in there and I believe there's a template to hide that markup; some n00b might lose an eye, seeing such a thing. Alarbus (talk) 17:19, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Hey Alarbus, I agree that {{sfn}} is a lightweight template. I did a benchmark on Albert Speer out of interest. In its present form, an edit preview takes the server around 8.2 seconds to create the html (as reported in the last line of a "view source"). If I disable the {{sfn}} by replacing all 198 instances of {{sfn with ((sfn, then the preview takes the server around 5.4 seconds. That's about 14 ms per template, which is pretty good. I stand by my guess that putting 150 {{sfn}}s into List of field marshals of the British Army would add around 2 seconds to the edit preview time - a pretty negligible addition. Obviously it only affects editors, not normal page viewers, so I agree with you that it's nothing even for Slim to worry about.
The template to encapsulate the display:none markup is exactly the date table sorting {{Dts}} template that I was recommending :D --RexxS (talk) 18:08, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the tests. The benefits of the better citation system certainly warrant the trivial overhead. {dts} sounds like the ticket; will say so on articles talk if there's much debate going on. Thinkin' I'll just help the refs along, too. Alarbus (talk) 00:09, 26 March 2012 (UTC)
  • Thanks very much, gents. I'll reply to the suggestions on the field marshals on that talk page in due course. Is there any chance you could get the MilHist coordinator icon to appear between the admin icon and the OTRS icon? HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 21:59, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
    Re-ordering the icons is trivial; I'll do so in a sec. They're all using the {top icon} mechanism now, so you can fiddle as you like. Alarbus (talk) 00:09, 26 March 2012 (UTC)
    👍 'Yes check.svg Done'. There's something odd about that milhist icon; needs custom offsets. Or I'm missing something. Alarbus (talk) 00:22, 26 March 2012 (UTC)

C.D. Howe[edit]

Why change from this format to your preferred style, isn't WP:Retain involved? FWiW, the MOS doesn't dictate style of using citations or bibliographies. Bzuk (talk) 23:40, 26 March 2012 (UTC).

Not a question of personal preference, it's an issue of merit. The MOS does often get things wrong, but we ignore it in those cases. I'm reworking all of Wehwalt's FA this way ;-> Alarbus (talk) 00:06, 27 March 2012 (UTC)


can you enable e-mail? Or mail me?
Amalthea 07:24, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

replied ;> Alarbus (talk) 16:41, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

Dropped by[edit]

Hey, Alarbus. Just passed here to give a hello. I hope you're fine. I'm barely editing here since I don't have enough time. Please share the news, I like to hear them. P.S.: I hope Wehwalt is doing well too, I'm really away from everything. --Lecen (talk) 22:34, 1 April 2012 (UTC)

I'ts amazing to see that once you fall from grace, so many people simply ignore you. No one to say a single "goodbye, my friend". Quite a shame. First they came… I had warned you of this months ago. They will remove one by one, until a large majority stays silent out of fear. --Lecen (talk) 23:35, 1 April 2012 (UTC)
  • FWIW, Lecen you really need to learn to WP:Don't give a fuck, please don't get smoked by the pretentious one here. Another thing, Alarbus is a self-admitted sockpuppet of Jack Merridew, Jack is now one step closer to being nominated for eligibility to be BANNED. --Dave ♠♣♥♦™№1185©♪♫® 00:31, 2 April 2012 (UTC)
Hello, Dave. I believe we haven't met yet. Nice to know you. Was he using the accounts to disrupt something? Like move requests, talk pages, etc...? As far as I know, he helped so many people around here that he deserved a little bit more of consideration. But who am I to speak that, after all, I know what it feels like to be on the losing side. And Raul shouldn't have blocked Alarbus, as both had a well known awful relationship, to say the least. But I'm not here for one last stand. I already did that once. I just wanted to say goodbye to a great editor who helped me a lot in the past while asking nothing in return. I wonder how long it will take to the people at the top to figure it out that they are losing good editors... fast. I barely edit here anymore, others, do not edit at all. What a place... --Lecen (talk) 00:40, 2 April 2012 (UTC)
  • Hi and hello to you too. Actually, I stand corrected as Alarbus is indeed BANNED as the sockpuppet of Jack Merridew, whose master account of Davenbelle (see → WP:Sockpuppet investigations/Davenbelle/Archive ←) has been BLOCKED & BANNED by Wikipeida's arbitration commitee for using multiple accounts to conduct abusive edits across a number Wikimedia projects on top of English Wikipedia. Normal procedure for us when handling such souls would be to WP:Revert, block, ignore, effectively to BLOCKED and then LOCKED away for good as they have overstayed their welcome here. Just don't be fooled by their faked goodwill, ever. --Dave ♠♣♥♦™№1185©♪♫® 00:57, 2 April 2012 (UTC)
Dave, you need to check your facts before you start slapping tags around. This user is not indefinitely blocked from editing Wikipedia. This account is indeed blocked, but the user is only under restriction to edit from a single account. ArbCom, as well as Lecen, has recognised the value of the contributions, but it would seem that a lynch mob mentality doesn't care about improving the encyclopedia; it only cares about playing a MMORPG where facts are less important than levelling by eliminating opponents. --RexxS (talk) 00:51, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Hi, Dave 1185. Rexx is correct; the user is not banned; he is restricted to using one account at present. The account was globally locked because the user himself publicly revealed the password. If you wish to learn more about this complex and lengthy case, here are a few handy links to get you started:

I am sure there is more, but this will get you started. -- Dianna (talk) 02:11, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

(edit conflict) Please don't edit-war, Dave. Re-reverting a reversion is a poor way of conducting a debate. Keep checking and you'll see that on the page you linked WP:Sockpuppet investigations/Davenbelle/Archive it is made clear "Davenbelle is an former sockpuppeteer. He is now using the username 'Jack Merridew'. He has been unblocked per the direction of the Arbitration Committee". What you see there is Jeff G making a fool of himself by asking in May 2010 for a SPI on Jack Merridew, who was unblocked by ArbCom in December 2008. I'll give you the pointers you need to see how far wide of the mark you are:
So as you can see, there is a restriction in the number of accounts this user may use (at most one), but there is no current block, much less a ban, on the user. Would you be kind enough to revert yourself in the interests of accuracy, please, when you've had a chance to review the evidence. Or do you feel able to adduce your own evidence demonstrating the decision your assertion is based upon? Cheers, --RexxS (talk) 02:24, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

Good to know that he isn't out for good. I hope he'll return one day, although I'm sure that his "friends" will be waiting for the smallest mistake he may commit. Good times those when editors actually cared about articles, not each others... or power on a virtual website. How many have a sterile real life and only find true fulfillment here? Someone should create an article about it... --Lecen (talk) 15:01, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

I don't know about all the past political drama, but this user was polite, did nothing nefarious and was extremely helpful on several articles at my request. I also hope there is a way for him to continue to contribute. • Astynax talk 17:20, 2 April 2012 (UTC)


He was despised --Gerda Arendt (talk) 22:45, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

Sanddunes Sunrise
Easter – Rising – --Gerda Arendt (talk) 22:31, 7 April 2012 (UTC)
Terima kasih, Gerda. Jack Merridew 23:59, 7 April 2012 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

Thank you for expressing your support for me in the Sanddunes Sunrise thread and/or participating in the Easter Egg Tree thread. Peace to everyone. PumpkinSky talk 00:50, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

Extended Easter, eggs for peace, with thanks for your precious image that made it possible, --Gerda Arendt (talk) 11:28, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Sanddunes Sunrise[edit]

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Every day, we lose what the wrongly blocked would have given that day. And a little bit of our souls.

nb: User talk:Wehwalt#Sanddunes Sunrise

We know that Alarbus is one of many inventive names of a creative contributor who has a long and difficult history with Wikipedia from the project's beginnings. He created Sanddunes Sunrise and voiced Wikipedia Reformation, showing Luther's words "amore e studio elucidandae", roughly translating to "love and eagerness to enlighten". We believe that he has it, and that the project would be better with him than against him. "Well, you have to start somewhere."

  1. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:30, 17 April 2012 (UTC)
  2. Time for ArbCom to get off its collective butt.--Wehwalt (talk) 12:17, 17 April 2012 (UTC)
  3. -- Dianna (talk) 13:59, 17 April 2012 (UTC)
  4. Warning - upcoming rant. Sort of along the lines of Wehwalt's comment. This is going to come across as really snarky, it's not meant that way, and I honestly do have the utmost respect for the INDIVIDUALS at arbcom, but as a collective group? Case in point: At 7:08 on April 6 an edit was made to the main page. By 23:41 of that same day the editor was not only desysoped, but blocked as well. In another (private) matter, at least 28 hours have now passed on a likely trivial, yet real life matter with no feedback. It seems that while AC is content to deal with "virtual" reality - they are less inclined to deal with "real" reality. </rant> — Ched :  ?  18:12, 17 April 2012 (UTC)
  5. Mark Arsten (talk) 01:01, 18 April 2012 (UTC)
  6. Under a single account, naturally... Crisco 1492 (talk) 01:44, 18 April 2012 (UTC)
  7. Need more like him, not less,
Really, they are the best.
His kind are leaving the site in droves.
Without them we have no one but the trolls.
(OMG did I just write poetry?) N419BH 00:59, 19 April 2012 (UTC)


Ahalya crop.jpg Ahalya says Thanks
Thanks for helping the article improve to FA standards by your reference cleanup ! Not only did you fix the article but also you taught me how to improve references in my future articles. Though you may kept away from Wikipedia editing, the effect of your constructive edits is impossible to erase. Cheers, Hope you can return some day... --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:48, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

Precious torch[edit]

Cherry blossom Frauenstein.JPG

Precious and missed

--Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:26, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Did you know that the above Precious was my 24th PumpkinSky Prize? Proclaiming you an awesome Wikipedian? Doing so for the first time to someone I didn't know for a long time - because your call for Reformation struck me immediately as immensely valuable? - I put "Letting go of the past" on top of my talk, still not giving up my hope for reformation in the future, --Gerda Arendt (talk) 16:31, 18 February 2013 (UTC)

A good legacy: The only real nation is humanity. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:26, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Harv Errors[edit]

If you decide to start editing again you might find User:Ucucha/HarvErrors interesting. -- PBS (talk) 10:12, 7 September 2013 (UTC)

Precious again[edit]

Cornflower blue Yogo sapphire.jpg

Thank you for holding up the torch for reformation, for elucidating love and study, for a free project that everybody can edit without petty restrictions, for peace, - you are an awesome Wikipedian!

--Gerda Arendt (talk) 16:29, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Three years ago, you were the 24th recipient (but I counted wrong) of my PumpkinSky Prize, repeated in br'erly style ;) --Gerda Arendt (talk) 11:35, 18 February 2015 (UTC)