User talk:CBM/Archive 7

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You ran our fun down the street!

You deleted ALL the images on the club penguin article! That was RUDE!

Deletion of category descriptions

Please see Wikipedia_talk:Avoid_self-references#Category_descriptions. -- User:Docu

Books image

Carl, Thanks for your message about the "Books" image. I've changed the licence to "no rights reserved".

Paul Finsler and his proof

Hi, wvbailey here. Are you familiar at all with Finsler's Formal proofs and undecidability (1926)? This appears in van Heinjenoort on p. 438ff. According to Dawson (Godel's biographer) Finsler tried to claim priority over Godel 1930-1931 and Godel countered that "it contain[s] obvious nonsense" (Dawson p. 89); Dawson says that Godel admitted to not being aware of Finsler's paper.

But van Heijenoort, in his commentary, is far less critical than Godel. van H. does seem to agree that Finsler "presents an example of a proposition that, although false, is formally undecidable" (p.438). [A question then: Is this the first "valid" Entscheidungsproblem proof?] He says that both Finsler and Godel, in the same way, "skirt the Richard paradox without falling into it", and van H. explains how this happens. What I like about Finsler's demonstration is its very simplicity (uses binary, creates a Cantor diagonal that is "1111...." ad infinitum, etc etc). van H does goes on to say that Finsler more-or-less missed Godel's point about strict use of formal systems. My question is: others who have read this proof and commented on it, what do they think? Have you ever encountered anything about Finsler or his proof? Finsler doesn't even have a bio in wikipedia. Thanks wvbaileyWvbailey 18:07, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

I have never heard of it, but it does seem intriguing. I want to look it up this week. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:39, 19 August 2007 (UTC)
I (partially) verified the business about Godel not being aware of Finsler's proof -- in a letter to a graduate student! And there is more (in an unsent letter from Godel) but I have to trek to the library to get Godel's works (Dawson uncovered the letter), and there is as well as an exchange back and forth between Finsler and Godel. There's a book about Finsler:
David Booth and Renatus Ziegler, eds., [?] Finsler Set Theory: Platonism and Circularity, [?]
This is reviewed by M. Randall Holmes, and a preliminary copy of the review appears on his site at (near the bottom of his page is a link). The actual review appears in the Mathematical Gazette, Vol. 81, No. 490 (Mar., 1997), pp. 159-162. This is in JSTOR which means I have to trek to the library (part II) to see it; the published review looks to be a bit different. In his preliminary review Holmes is pretty uncomplementary to the editors' commentary. There's also someone named Thomas Forester at UC, Irvine who's written a review (I think he did, am not sure) but I can't get at it. The biography of Finsler that I found on the web is just a meager page at (this link isn't working) http:/// wvbaileyWvbailey 16:30, 19 August 2007 (UTC)

TI 3D Graph

I typed it in myself but I think I found the equation somewhere else...

Either way, to recreate it (with the calculator in 3D mode) set:

...and let it graph. Cool stuff... Nrbelex (talk) 00:53, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

P.S. - I made the actual screen shot using the TI utility for the computer via the USB cable. This is as free an image of the TI-89 as you'll find. Nrbelex (talk) 00:56, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

I'm happy to license it under whichever gives it the most freedom to be used while within the limits of the law regarding screen shots. If possible I'd also like to maintain the caption, though this isn't essential. Nrbelex (talk) —The preceding signed but undated comment was added at 00:58, August 20, 2007 (UTC).

I undid your removal of the Kean Logo which you think is a non free image.

Please check your facts before doing things like this.

Thank you.

--akc9000 (talk contribs count) 17:04, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

I am quite aware of the facts: we treat all contemporary logos as nonfree, and per WP:NFCC#9 nonfree images are not allowed in userboxes. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:05, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

Hi CBM--thanks for contributing to the American Regions Mathematics League page. I noticed you recently took down the logo. I believe the logo is covered by Fair Use and, while it is true that one may not recognize the logo without already knowing it, I believe an encyclopedia must also cover relevant bits of exposition that is new to the reader, and I feel the logo fits right into this category. I would love to hear your comments. :) mitcho/芳貴 12:59, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

I think that logo is a close call. On one hand, we do use many nonfree logos on articles about the company/university/etc. On the other hand, we try to use as little nonfree content as we can get away with. Since this competition is relatively limited in notability, people are unlikely to see the logo unless they are already familiar with the competition, so I lean towards not including the logo. That's mainly because I don't think that having a logo on the article really helps the reader much. What would be nice would be a photograph of competitors during the competition, released under a free content license like Creative Commons or GFDL. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:19, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Repost of Club Penguin Locations

Information icon.svg

Hello, this is a message from an automated bot. A tag has been placed on Club Penguin Locations, by another Wikipedia user, requesting that it be speedily deleted from Wikipedia. The tag claims that it should be speedily deleted because Club Penguin Locations was previously deleted as a result of an articles for deletion (or another XfD)

To contest the tagging and request that administrators wait before possibly deleting Club Penguin Locations, please affix the template {{hangon}} to the page, and put a note on its talk page. If the article has already been deleted, see the advice and instructions at WP:WMD. Feel free to contact the bot operator if you have any questions about this or any problems with this bot, bearing in mind that this bot is only informing you of the nomination for speedy deletion; it does not perform any nominations or deletions itself. CSDWarnBot 23:45, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

pulling out reference templates

Hi Carl,

please run your script to pull out the following information of all WP Math articles: - the templates {{citation}}, {{cite book/journal}} (I hope I don't forget an important citation template) including the leading and finishing {{, }} - along with every occurrence of such a template in some article, the categories the article page is contained in

You don't have to somehow squeeze the category information into the template, I'll think about that later myself. You can email me the results. Thanks very much. Jakob.scholbach 05:58, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I can do that. I'll have to modify the parser to pull out category tags, so it may be a few days before I have the data ready. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:52, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

Heroes spoiler

The spoiler tag was for Takezo Kensei's ability. I was just looking for who was going to be in it this season (actors and actresses), not spoiler plot info like he's immortal. --Nealparr (talk to me) 14:32, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Please edit MediaWiki:signupend

Can you please do me a favour? I'd like you, who is an admin, to edit that page, by adding a sentence saying that if the person who wish to register found that the desired name is already been registered, he/she/it may go to Wikipedia:Changing username/Usurpations to request for using that username, if that username has no log at all (Except user creation log). I make this request because once I've changed my name from Edmundkh, then re-register with that name. Now I'm regret for doing that, so I'd like to help the person who wish to register with that name.
Thanks for helping! --Edmund the King of the Woods! 03:26, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

If someone else wants to take that name, and you give permission, the usurpation will be automatically granted. Ordinarily, usurpation is reserved for established users, so users just getting a new account can't use usurpation. So I don't think it would be appropriate to put a note about usurpation on that page when new users can't take use it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:29, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

Fair use of Escher image

Hi, you have removed Image:Gravitation.png from the Kepler-Poinsot polyhedron article a couple of times, and I have restored it. Before this gets to be a habit, could you check out the Fair Use explanation on the image page, so we can agree on the way to go? Cheers, -- Steelpillow 21:01, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

I am not removing the image from Wikipedia, only from that article. It is perfectly appropriate and should appear in Gravitation (M. C. Escher). But per WP:NFCC#3, use of nonfree content on Wikipedia must be minimal and only when text will not suffice. The article on the polyhedron says "In the 20th Century, Artist M.C. Escher's interest in geometric forms often led to works based on or including regular solids; Gravitation is based on a small stellated dodecahedron." and links to the article on the Gravitation image. I think this is a perfectly good text replacement. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:52, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
I can understand your point of view. Someone else had a different point of view, when they wrote on Image:Gravitation.png#Fair_use_in_Kepler-Poinsot_polyhedron that:
Though this image is subject to copyright, its use is covered by the U.S. fair use laws because
  1. It illustrates an educational article about the geometric form that is represented in this work.
  2. It is a low resolution image.
  3. Its inclusion in the article adds significantly to the article because it is a notable cultural reference to the geometric form that is discussed in the article.
  4. It is not replaceable with an uncopyrighted or freely copyrighted image of comparable educational value.
Do you think that this statement should be amended or deleted? Perhaps I should have started the Talk page for the image, and raised the issue there? -- Steelpillow 17:08, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
The talk page for the image would probably not be watched by many people. A rationale such as the one above can be written for a lot of uses of fair use images; the problem is deciding whether the rationale is actually convincing. Items 1,2, and 4 are completely generic and unrelated to the actual use. that leaves item 3. Is it really a notable cultural reference? I agree that the article on the geometric form should mention the artwork, and link to its article, which accomplishes the goal of the third item without including the image. If you want a wider hearing, I suggest WT:NONFREE, which is watched by many editors familiar with the image issues. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:16, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
OK, thanks for that. I read round a few guidance pages first and then posted the question on WT:NONFREE as Non-free image on multiple pages. I now think the only justification would be the iconic status of the artwork (c.f. "notable cultural reference" in 3. above). Hope you can find the time to add your thoughts. -- Steelpillow 10:09, 25 August 2007 (UTC)


thanks for your message. not sure exactly how to proceed. i'd asked someone in rochester to take that picture specifically for the article and allow me to upload it. he did and i did. i thought i'd tagged it properly - that permission had been granted by the photographer to post the photo. what else do i need to do, or which tag should i use instead to clarify the matter? J. Van Meter 14:09, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

You should ask him to release the picture under a free license. Either GFDL or CC-BY-SA is acceptable. The issue is that since someone else could take a free picture, if this one is not released as a free image then we can't use it per WP:NFCC#1. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:13, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
ok thanks. i thought "giving permission" meant "releasing it". so then what tag do i use once it is a released photo? J. Van Meter 01:05, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
i appreciate the guidance. please give me a couple of days. J. Van Meter 02:19, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

Random Smile!

-WarthogDemon 23:59, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

Railroad images

I'm going to have to search through my email archives to see if I still have this; this preceded the use of OTRS to archive these things. However, we can only use these images by claiming fair use in any case; the Denver Public Library was willing to grant specific permission but not blanket free licensing. I simply noted the permission to ensure people realised that there were no legal complications possible here. Matthew Brown (Morven) (T:C) 21:07, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

If I can't find it, we may as well just label them fair use. Matthew Brown (Morven) (T:C) 07:58, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

Image:BTC img1.gif

Please see the talk page of the uploader and read the image description page before you put silly tags on images. It clearly says the copyright holder themself uploaded the image. The user's identity is confirmed by OTRS on their talk page. -Nard 13:46, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

  • I said the uploader's talk page. -Nard 13:51, 25 August 2007 (UTC)
    • Are you dense? Why would a company upload something and not give permission to use it? -Nard 13:54, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

I see no evidence of "denseness". Perhaps you could rephrase in a more civil fashion, Nard? KillerChihuahua?!? 14:06, 25 August 2007 (UTC)


User:CBM/verifypermission has been marked for deletion. Please see the discussion at Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/User:CBM/verifypermission. -Nard 13:56, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

This is what I meant

Hi, Carl! This is Angel David. I meant that you must put the template: {{edit protected}} in <nowiki></nowiki> form. The template was made so it could be put to the reason it was created-to tell the admins to edit. It's kind of hard to under stand but you will learn some day. Or after you just read this message.--Angel David (talkcontribs) 00:27, 26 August, 2007 (User Talker Contributor)

  • No silly, I said that it should not be used with no wiki. That is what mean.--Angel David 00:40, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

Edit requests

I wanted to comment about the editprotected requests I disabled. I didn't think they were bad ideas, just that changes to the mediawiki interface should be well advertised, and changes to image licensing should be even more widely advertised. Otherwise it just leads to long arguments when someone realizes it was changed "behind their back". Please don't take any offense. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:58, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

I didn't ask to change the image licensing system. What are you referring to? —Remember the dot (talk) 01:00, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
I meant MediaWiki_talk:Licenses/en-nonfree and MediaWiki talk:Licenses. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:06, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
OK, you're probably right to want a few more comments at MediaWiki talk:Licenses#cc 3.0 before making that change. But the other change, MediaWiki talk:Licenses/en-nonfree, really should not be controversial, and even if it is then it is easily reversible. I think we can apply WP:BOLD in this case. —Remember the dot (talk) 03:06, 26 August 2007 (UTC)


I can understand why the text was removed, however there were some parts to the summary that weren't copied straight from another page (which was done long before I started editing the article), that you deleted also. I'm going to edit the pages again with summaries of the Marvel summaries - but it's a little hard to write about something with only one source of information. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Bronzie (talkcontribs) 06:22, August 26, 2007 (UTC)

Ack, forgot to sign. I have just edited the article. Bronzey 06:53, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

Re: Mistula images

Oops, I'd forgotten about those images, and no one warned me about the licenses before you came along. Sorry about that, I was such a noob when I uploaded these. :-| I've fixed the licenses now though. -- SilentAria talk 15:47, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

  • Permission was granted through chat, but I cleared my message archive fairly recently, so I don't have a copy of the exchange. I think can ask the creator of the images to send me written permission again, though. What should I do after acquiring the permission? Do I copy-paste it in the image page? -- SilentAria talk 17:31, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
    • Oh, okay. :) Thanks for all the help! -- SilentAria talk 17:36, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
      • Hi, it's me again. Sorry for bothering you again, but I just wanted to ask: what exactly does the copyright holder need to say in the e-mail regarding the permission to use the images in Wikipedia? Thanks in advance! -- SilentAria talk 17:58, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
        • Alright, thanks again! :) -- SilentAria talk 03:31, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Image:Colegio-big-1- (2).jpg

I believe I still do, But it is in SPanish.--Charleenmerced Talk 20:12, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

no subject

Hi. Re the Childers pic, I wasn't the person who got the permission. It was a user called JJ. I simply left details clarifying it. I did speak many years ago to the then Assistant Press Officer to the President of Ireland and she said Wikipedia could use the pictures of the presidents from the presidential website but we weren't specifically talking about the Childers pic. The problem is that there is unlikely to be any other image available better suited than his official one. All the others will be the copyright of media outlets. FearÉIREANNIreland-up.png\(caint) 03:00, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Image threats

Thank you for the thinly vield threat to delete all the images I've uploaded to Wikipedia. Please be very, very careful that you do not delete all of them, since most are photographs that I have taken and are in full compliance with Wikipedia's new, highly restrictive and bizarre "non-free" image policies. Over agressive editing is attempting to denude Wikipedia of perfectly legimate images, and frankly, it's a stupid mistake. But if it makes people feel good to conduct Jihads like this, more power to them. - Nhprman 03:36, 27 August 2007 (UTC)


OK I've added the email exchange to the image talk page. Have just removed actual email addresses to preserve privacy! Bluewave 10:55, 27 August 2007 (UTC)


If you look on the page, it says that the permission has been granted by Brodack herself. Henceforth I am deleting your tag on the image. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Yeahwhynot (talkcontribs) 17:11, August 25, 2007 (UTC)

I hold the copyright on behalf of Brodack. | Yeah why not? | » Reply » | 08:35, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

I've been looking for it for a while, if i cant find it, i'll get her to send an email or something. | Yeah why not? | » Reply » | 16:47, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Image:Double the phat.jpg

Hello. What don't you understand about the copyright tags? It's fair use as an album cover, but it has been released into the public domain by its creator. I ran it by him to be sure, and his reply was that all of the images on his website were public domain. The Evolution Control Committee is well known for advocating free use of all intellectual property. Is there some other way this information should be conveyed? Aelffin 01:18, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Well, I would think it would be both fair use and free content. If you feel that the free content tag is superfluous, feel free to remove the free content tag, leaving the fair use tag. If, on the other hand, you feel the fair use tag is NOT sufficient by itself, please explain why and I would be happy to supplement it with Mark Gunderson's express written permission. But before asking me to dig through my old emails and/or email Mark, I would point out that you did indeed miss the copyright statement featured very prominently on the Evolution Control Committee home page, which can be seen here: [1] So, you see this image is quite available for use, as is documented on at least three different grounds. Is there anything else I can do for you? Aelffin 05:48, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Actually, the use of the anti-copyright symbol in the band's copyright violation for the nation logo is an explicit copyright statement. Also, I see nothing in our articles on free use or public domain which explicitly precludes the possibility of an image being both. Is this some obscure wikipolicy, or are you just assuming the two categories are mutually exclusive? Aelffin 13:55, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Excuse me, I meant to say that there is nothing in fair use that precludes the image from also being in the public domain. Remember that Wikipedia is an international resource and many different legal standards apply, so each rationale for use needs to be presented. As for the anticopyright logo, if you read up on the ECC and consider the context, you'll understand that--being displayed prominently at the very front of the website--this logo is clearly intended as a sort of statement of principle. Aelffin 17:01, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Mark is at Burning Man right now, so please do not attempt to delete the image if he doesn't get back to you right away. Aelffin 17:06, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

One more question regarding [Image:Rochlittletheatre.jpg]

-trying to write up the cc-by-sa letter of release to forward to the photographer of this image and i notice the standard letter says "the right to use the work in a commercial product". i was under the impression that the release of an image was for non-commercial uses only. (ie, seems only fair that if i'm asking someone to release their rights to an image, someone else shouldn't be able to come along and make money off of using the same image). is there a non-commercial use only way to go with this -- or is it all or nothing. just curious. thanks. J. Van Meter 15:16, 28 August 2007 (UTC)


Because it seemed you were the one who put the article up for deletion and/or protected it, can you please add Image:Akatsukispread.jpg onto the upper right hand corner of List of Akatsuki members so that, while it still exists, will have an image on the upper-right hand corner (which seems to be a requirement on Wikipedia). You're an admin, so it seems you can ignore protections. Artist Formerly Known As Whocares 20:47, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

There is no requirement that there be an image in the upper right hand corner. Since the dispute was about images, I'm not going to jump into the middle of it by adding nonfree images while the article is still protected. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:50, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

Image:Cover fq06.jpeg

You asked me to prove I've been given permission to put the image here but I am unsure how to go about this. I emailed them and they sent over a folder of images. There isn't much to show. (Emperor 02:52, 30 August 2007 (UTC))

Little Theater (yet again)

hope it's ok, but i'm going to remove the email address on the permission letter for the Little Theater photo. privacy issues and all. if there's a problem with that, let me know. J. Van Meter 14:44, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

Donowho and John Mark Karr (author) photo nonsense

Both of the photos used have been used with the express permission of the copyright holders. In addition, both photos are well established and have been in use for a long time. Quit stuffing straw men and find something constructive to do. Michaelh2001 16:23, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

Re:Replaceable fair use Image:Pilecki powazki.jpg

The image is certainly replacable, unfortunatly I don't live in Warsaw so I can't do it easily. The owner gave us permission for use a year ago; I send him an @ asking for a free licence for the photo. -- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  16:44, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Replaceable fair use Image:Jeff Monson.jpg

Sorry for the talk page clutter. Like Piotrus, I sent the owner a email asking to use the photo in Wikipedia, and the owner gave me permission to do so. I was uncertain which license to state it was under, so I used the fair use tag. But based on their response it should be acceptable to use in Wikipedia and works based on Wikipedia. I don't know of any replaceable images for it. So I don't think it should be deleted. I could use some guidance in this issue, though. Jimmy C. 17:34, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

RFUI: Nalle live

Hi. I have recieved permission from the label owner of Pickled Egg records regarding the image in question, and additionally am in contact with the band themselves occasionally. Nigel has already granted usage of the image in question, and I'm sure I can get a release from the band as well (they are, however, rather hard to get hold of). I will be away until Monday at a festival; could you please hold off on deleting this image until I have a chance to sort things out? Thanks, and thank you for the courtesy of informing me on my talkpage as well, which many people do not do when tagging FU images! --Kaini 18:12, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

Re: Defamatory content

Thank your for your explanation. As soon as the ban on editing is lifted from that article, I will provide the proper source and modify my contribution to have it meet Wikipedia's standards. --rafvrab 03:10, 2 September 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for creating this quick fix, it's nice to have the script functional again. ˉˉanetode╦╩ 08:26, 2 September 2007 (UTC)

John Karr and Ryan Donowho images

No free images exist or can be created. Please leave the images alone and move on. I'm sure your intentions are good but you are wrong in these two cases. Lets just move on. I ask that respectfully. Michaelh2001 16:37, 2 September 2007 (UTC)

Claudia Rossi Picture Removal

How come the image was marked for deletion and in fact, removed completely? The image came directly from her personal blog, and full permission was sought and granted by her and her management company to use the picture on Wikipedia. I know it's not under a free commons license, but full permission to use the picture on Wikipedia was duly granted. This was stated alongside the image but it was still removed.

Does Wikipedia have a policy of only allowing free images now, regardless of granted rights or permissions from other sources?

WikiPedia's information on copyright and images is so complicated and convoluted, it's a wonder many people put as much time as they do in to contributing to articles. If permission-given pictures are not allowed, it should be clearly stated on the copyright pages, as apposed to the circular entries currently on the subject.

If Wikipedia wish to be that strict on it's permission-given images, why not watermark them as "Wikipedia Use Only" so it's clearly stamped across the picture and then can't be used anywhere else?

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:09, 4 September 2007 (UTC) 

Good job!

Thanks for deleting those pics off the Gary Whitta page. Both were totally free and released for wikipedia use by their authors, and I had included that informatino on those pages. But you deleted them because I must have used the wrong tag or something silly.

Double thanks for complete deletion even though it hasn't been seven days since the notice was posted. A+++!

--shift6 20:43, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

Tangerine (novel)

I disagree with your last edit summary. The spoiler tags are nescessary because that section gives away all of the suspense about 2/3 of the way through the plot details. I hate spoiling a book that someone is reading, and I think it would be very helpful to have the spoiler warnings.

p.s. please respond on my talk page, thanks

Connör (talk) 21:48, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

Collection of material proposed language

There is a new subthread having proposed language for Wikipedia:User page. You previously commented on this matter and your comments at Collection of material proposed language would be appreciated. Hopefully, we can bring this to a close with the next day or two. -- Jreferee (Talk) 18:16, 5 September 2007 (UTC)


Template:WPRT2 is messed up on Talk:Vaimanika_Shastra and has this same problem on other pages can you fix this--Java7837 21:36, 5 September 2007 (UTC)

I did something. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:44, 5 September 2007 (UTC)

Venturi Automobiles

Well how about it? You are someone, how about going to Automobiles Venturi and clicking that tab that says move page? Consensus has nothing to do with making the move. The article just has the wrong name. 03:29, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Administrator assistance is not needed to move that page. Please feel free to register an account and move it yourself, or develop consensus on the page and get someone there to move it. Editprotected requests are not appropriate for pages that aren't actually protected. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:32, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

What? You want me to create "moveventuri" as a username and never use it again? That is silly. 23:19, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Peano again

Re: this comment, I am willing to take a look at Peano axioms again. You probably already know about my draft version, which I think is currently a drop-in replacement for the main article. Sorry for the long delay in responding, but I was kept away from Wikipedia by real life. Kaustuv Chaudhuri 08:39, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

The current arbitration request on images and intelligent design

Carl, I appreciate that you are doing what you think best for the encyclopedia. So am I. One of the other advocates for a strong interpretation of policy restrictions on non-free content, Videmus Omnia, recently brought a request for arbitration to help sort out the way in which discussions are proceeding. Unfortunately, it looks like arbitration don't want to touch it; but even so, I am just letting you know that I have raised as an issue the multitude of different pages that get involved in these divisive discussions. I did not mention you by name, and so it is entirely up to you whether you would like to comment on your own behalf or not. But as a courtesy, I am letting you know that it is on file. See: Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration#Non-free_media_at_Intelligent_design. Cheers Duae Quartunciae (talk · cont) 14:49, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the note. It seems to me that the arbitration case is about the edit warring and claims of wheel warring that took place after the IFD decision. I didn't become involved with these particular images until after that. I left a note at WT:NONFREE explaining why I left a request for comment there. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:13, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

Image:TroySHP.jpg - Troy CLE

Thanks for nothing Carl. You have succeeded in making an article less than what it could be by deleting an image for which the owner approved use.

From : Richard Morris <> Sent : Thursday, May 31, 2007 10:28 AM To : cdman882 Subject : RE: Author Troy Tompkins (Troy CLE)

your welcome to use it. -R Morris

You see, that is why I am very close to ceasing my efforts to edit on Wikipedia. Too much red tape and bureaucracy. --Cdman882 15:34, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

I didn't delete the image; a second person reviewed the image page and deleted it. We have not allowed images to be used "with permission" for some time; they are considered the same as all other nonfree images and subject to the same criteria. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:41, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
It's still red tape and bureaucracy. I could see deleting an image that had no permissions, or even deleting a fair use image once a free one was found, but to strip an image that was legally used and leave the article with nothing? That's not creating a better site. --Cdman882 16:00, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

Familiarity breeds contempt...

or so it would seem.—DCGeist 16:43, 8 September 2007 (UTC)


It's an important event in both the characters' lives, which you'd know if you knew anything about them. --DrBat 12:12, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

Re: Jeff Monson

Thank you. :)  [[User:ea . Aelffin 12:49, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

At 06:22 AM 8/27/2007, you wrote:

Hey Mark, some Wikipedia editors are getting pissy about image copyrights. Would you mind providing a quote I could put on the images I uploaded from your website? Something to the effect of “I’m Mark Gunderson and I approve this image.” Thanks!
Have fun at the burn! (jealous)

     Hi Nathan; you have the permission of myself (TradeMark Gunderson) and The Evolution Control Committee to use materials of all kinds (including images, audio, video, and text) in any way you see fit.  Such as Wikipedia.  Thanks!

- TradeMark G.

--                 "It was twenty years ago today..."
or                             The Evolution Control Committee                      Established 1987

SKYPE: trademarkg ...     ICQ: 1353166 ...      AIM: TradeMarkECC
MYSPACE: ...      YAHOO: evolution_controlled_creations
TRIBE: ...  GMail/GTalk:

Well, the words he used the first time I emailed him were "public domain" and I take "use in any way you see fit" to indicate exactly that. It doesn't matter though. This email is sufficient to ward off those editors who would prefer to erode Wikipedia's function by obstructing the use of images. Thanks for your time. Have fun with your image vandalism. Aelffin 04:52, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

1) Where in Wikipolicy does it say that "Lists of nonfree album covers aren't permitted." 2) Where in Wikipolicy does it say that I cannot use images that I was given specific and explicit permission to use? Back up your policy claims or back off. Also, I would like to move this discussion to the Evolution Control Committee talk page. Aelffin 15:17, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

archdiocese of miami

{{editprotected}} Dear Administrator CBM, I am requesting immediate removal of material on the wikipage Archdiocese of Miami that you locked in under the version edited by DominvsVobiscm. Specifically, allegations by Sharon Bourassa's dismissed lawsuit saying our priests are all practicing homosexuals who steal church funds to live exhorbitant lifestyles, the ownership in the liquid aphrodisiac which happens to be this , everything in this section. As you can see by visiting the third party reference to the supposed liquid aphrodisiac, the beverages sold by this company are marketed as "energy drinks". No where does this company say that it is selling a liquid aphrodisiac. In no newspaper is it reported that any of these drinks are aphrodisiacs that are sold in gay bars. I would also like to point out that there are no references that Wikipedia would allow to sustain having any of the material in this section, yet you are clearly allowing it to stay. I searched for any third party references to any investigations of any Archdiocese of Miami priest for stealing money and there are none. I searched for any third party references to find any kind of evidence that would sustain an accusation that over 400 priests are sexually active homosexuals. There are none. Wikipedia policy states that extraordinary claims must have extraordinary sources. This does not exist to sustain these claims. I have four school age children here. Sharon Bourassa and her tiny catholic hate group told entire schools full of children, including my own that the priests they have loved and known all their lives are practicing homosexuals because they own real estate (just like doctors do when investing) with other priests. (Archdiocese of Miami requires their priests to provide for their own retirement) I watched my child cry for over two hours and she only stopped after I told her that her own father owns a hunting cabin with his hunting friends, owning real estate does not mean a person is an active homosexual, nor that they have bought it with stolen funds. One priest lives in a home on the intracoastal. He is an only child who has lived in this home most of his life with his parents. When his parents died, he inherited the home which is three blocks from his parish. Sharon Bourassa assumes that since it is on the intracoastal, it is a luxury home he owns with stolen parish funds. This is such a horrible defamation of good, innocent priests who have been loving and kind to our kids and it is so painful to see this garbage being proclaimed on Wikipedia, with your help and approval. Please remove this material that clearly violates wikipolicies WP:Redflag, WP:Proveit, WP:NPOV#undue weight, and WP:RS If you visit the mediation page of John Favalora you will see many editors who have a consensus that this material should be removed. The only person who wants this material on this site is DominvsVobiscm. If you visit his talk page you will see how many times he has been reprimanded for vandalizing Catholic sites in Wikipedia. This is not an unbiased Wiki editor. This is a person using Wikipedia to turn Catholic sites into anti Catholic propaganda. I intend to turn this informatin over to the Catholic League for prosecution if it is allowed to stay.NancyHeise 14:10, 9 September 2007 (UTC)


Hi, thanks for visiting the protected Fred Thompson article in response to my request for an immediate edit. You said that a previous version is only restored if the current version contains false info. However, the protected version does contain false information. It starts as follows: Freddie Dalton "Fred" Thompson. There is no document on the face of the Earth that writes the man's name like this. It has never been written this way anywhere by anyone. The editor who wrote it has not cited any instance in human history where it has been written this way. It is false.Ferrylodge 19:16, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

Government of the Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia

Could you please unprotect this article as it has been requested? The new version seems to satisfy all the involved editors (as some of them participated in writing and refining it). TIA. Alæxis¿question? 19:46, 9 September 2007 (UTC)


Carl, I've been noticing you around free / non-free content stuff recently. I'm impressed with your knowledge and calm. (I am especially impressed by the latter, as it is something I lack!) Thanks for promoting free content while you are at it. :-) --Iamunknown 21:05, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

Doc Gyneco

You have left a message on my page attesting to your will to delete the 'Doc Gyneco' image, which, you argued, did not follow rules.

I went through a decent amount of effort for the photographer of the subject to release the image for use in Wikipedia. I did so, because I could not find other not-copyrighted images. The photographer who took the picture specifically allowed me to use it.

I will now proceed to bring the image back, and add a tag on it that you said I would need. If you wish to delete it again, then do so - with the knowledge that Wikipedia will certainly suffer from it, by rejecting quality material even if it used legally (in any sense of that word.)

Regards, --DragonFly31 21:31, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

I've just read the free/non free guidelines, and it is still beyond my imagination as to why you would want to delete the image. All 10 points of the guidelines can easily be argued for the safekeeping of the image, and your deleting it only served to lower the general Wikipedia standard. I'm not going to upload it again, for the simple reason that I cannot find it - but the reason I uploaded it is it was a very good picture taken by a famous photographer (Roberto Frankenberg), who came in contact with me specifically to use it in this encyclopedia...

My point being, while it may be useful to delete certain images which don't carry free liscences, here the article has been severely apoverished by a lack of image (which, it is obvious, is key for the viewer to not only visualize the article he is reading about particularly in this case but also keep him interested in reading more).

Hence, it is because of such trivial deleting, for the sake of just doing so, and the awful use of common sense and reason such as you have shown that alter this encyclopedia in a negative way and contribute to its negative reputation. Just because another user agreed with you does not make your descision right, even by your invoked guideline's rules.--DragonFly31 09:30, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Deletion reviews

Carl, If you can start your opening comment on the deletion reviews with Endorse, Relist or Overturn (depending on your point of view), it would probably help the closing admin as they read through the discussion. Thanks -Nv8200p talk 14:40, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

I realize that many people do the bold word thing, but I think it only reinforces the impression that these discussions are votes, so I don't use the bold words myself. If the closing admin skips my comment and only counts bold words, that's unfortunate, but there's nothing I can do about it. If the closing admin reads my comments, I hope my opinion will be clear enough. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:43, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Semi-protection procedure

Hi Carl. I just semi-protected a page (Dependent and independent variables). It has been a while and I couldn't find where the proper procedure is explained. Do I need to do anything except for actually semi-protecting the page and putting Template:pp-semi-vandalism on it? There used to be a list of protected pages, but I believe that is no longer used. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 03:13, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

That's all you have to do. There are still lists of pages protected from recreation, but not lists of all protected or semiprotected pages. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:13, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Eiffel tower

Our article on the Eiffel tower suggests that these images are not copyrighted in the United States Eiffel Tower#_note-15. These byzantine country-specific copyright laws are still confusing for me - could you explain exactly what are the relevant issues for photos of "copyrighted buildings" and Wikimedia commons? I need some help understanding this area. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:52, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

No wonder you are confused, so is everyone! Copyrights are really complex :)
On Wikimedia Commons we respect local laws first. All images are intended to be "Free for All" or "Free for Most".
US Copyright law is meaningless for photos taken inside France soil as per Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works in theory. You can legally take a free photo of the Eiffel tower at night outside of France (French soil and French waters) (to be more specific outside of EU as per EU laws which complicate the matter further). This is of course an extreme case and is a mess inside France alone.
Some countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan do not have a commercially free Freedom of panorama (more info commons:Commons:Freedom of panorama). Meaning even if you take the photo of a building, unless its author died over 70 years ago, it is commercially unusable and hence not free enough for commons.
Of course international copyright disputes are the nastiest and most complex kind.
-- Cat chi? 15:19, 11 September 2007 (UTC)
Here's why I'm confused about the Berne convention (quoting from that article):
"The Berne Convention requires its signatories to recognise the copyright of works of authors from other signatory countries (known as members of the Berne Union) in the same way it recognises the copyright of its own nationals, which means that, for instance, French copyright law applies to anything published or performed in France, regardless of where it was originally created."
That seems to imply that if the picture of the Eiffel tower is published in the US (and our servers are in the US) then US copyright law applies. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:39, 11 September 2007 (UTC)
The Eiffel tower itself is published in France. Think of it like a statue. Photo of it is a derivative work. That at least is one side of the argument. -- Cat chi? 18:39, 12 September 2007 (UTC)


Thank you for your assistance in that question. The source have appeared, but it is still unverifiable or very generalized. Alex Spade 16:16, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Copyright status of Image:TimeKinsey1953.jpg

Hi, could you elaborate on this edit summary: "this was recreated because the license was now claimed to be free, but email to the copyright owner shows it is not a free image." What email are you referring to? Kaldari 19:07, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Thanks! Kaldari 19:13, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Your statement that "It seems very unlikely that Time 'forgot' to renew to copyright on their covers" is belied by the evidence. Please search, as I did, the relevant U.S. Copyright Office records--as you will see, Time Inc. registered copyright on its new publications during the relevant period (1980–1981). It did not file copyright renewals as required to sustain copyright protection on material such as this in question. If you search under the artist's name, you will note that he did file renewal on another work of his. The fact is, many concerns did indeed "forget" to file renewals as required. In sum, the claim made in the email you've posted is not supported by the evidence.—DCGeist 19:47, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Simmer down, boy.
(A) There's no claim that Time, Inc. was "grossly incompetent," merely that, like most businesses, it didn't bother to renew its copyrights during the era when that was necessary.
(B) You're just blown your gasket when you write, "It's inappropriate for editors to investigate on their own and declare that an image is public domain when there are clear claims that the image is copyrighted (in this case, both the website where the image was obtained and the email I received make such claims)." Investigating is what we do here, son. And you should know that the boilerplate "Copyright © 2007 Time Inc." at the bottom of all of's webpages does not and cannot cover the entire contents of those pages. can post any public domain image it wants on its webpages; a copyright symbol at the bottom of those pages doesn't magically give them proprietary rights to such material. That general webpage copyright is very far from a "clear claim" to the historical image in question. Ask one of those lawyers you love. She'll tell you. That's what they're for.—DCGeist 20:22, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
One very important element of the email response you got that makes its validity especially questionable, given the available evidence, is that it is not in fact from Time Inc. Right—we still have no claim from Time Inc. itself that it maintains copyright on this image. We might be able to clear this up a bit more swiftly and efficiently by sending another email to Something like the below could be sent with little modification either by you or by me. What do you think?
I'm inquiring about the copyright status of images of Time magazine covers such as the one at the link below. It is the cover from Aug 24, 1953:,16641,19530824,00.html
In response to a previous inquiry, I was informed by a representative from Wright's Reprints that the cover was still under copyright. However, a search of U.S. Copyright Office records for 1980 and 1981 reveals that no copyright renewal on the magazine, its cover, or any of its contents was filed within 28 years of original publication--such renewal would have been necessary to maintain Time Inc.'s copyright. If there was an error in this search, and Time Inc. did indeed file the required renewal, could you please give me the U.S. Copyright Office record number? If indeed the required renewal was not filed per then prevailing copyright law, does Time Inc. claim continued copyright on some other basis, or was the response from Wright's Reprints incorrect? Thank you.
DCGeist 20:57, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

A request

I noticed you removed a spoiler tag on some novella. I would ask that you refrain from doing so for the rest of this week; a couple of editors asked me to conduct a sami-scientific survey on spoiler usage, and you can bet some of the pro-spoiler editors would be annoyed when they see its "the anti-spoiler brigade" at work. David Fuchs (talk) 21:15, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Wait, I don't understand what you're measuring. Is the goal just to count the number of times such tags are added? I don't mind leaving them until Monday if it helps somehow; the novella spoiler tag was obviously misplaced, though. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:17, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
yes, it was, but if you could hold up until monday that would be great. David Fuchs (talk) 21:25, 12 September 2007 (UTC)


Great. Thanks for the research. Corvus cornix 22:50, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Stubclass template

I noticed that you had responded on the talk page of this template, so I'm turning to you for a bit of advice...

On the last run of my bot with this template, the category did not "pipe" the article name, instead it left included the talk page in the category and not the article. I had used "|category:Book stubs", which I thought would produce [[Category:Book stubs|article name]], however it simply put the [[Category:Book stubs]] (not piped) on the talk page, which means that the talk pages are transcluded to the category listing pages, and not the article pages themselves. I'm probably missing something really simple here - suggestions? SkierRMH 00:48, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Usually it is the talk pages that are categorized, not the articles themselves. I'm not sure exactly what you mean by piping the category links, though. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:55, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

request for reasons as to why request for edit was declined on Archdiocese of Miami page

I would like to know why the edit request was declined on the page Archdiocese of Miami. The page is locked in its most offensive form, the information contains obvious violations of Wikipedia policy and lacks not only reliable but in some cases any references. NancyHeise 03:08, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

I explained on that talk page why the request was declined. You are a party to mediation about this article; that is the best forum to resolve your concerns. If you wish to make further edit requests, please send them by email to — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:26, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
CBM, I do not know your email so I am posting this here. Thank you for helping.

From: To: Cc: Sent: Thu, 13 Sep 2007 12:14 am Subject: material locked on Archdiocese of Miami Wiki pages Dear Wikipedia,I am a Wiki editor user name NancyHeise which is also my real name. I am writing to alert you to material that has been locked on these Wikipedia sites:1) Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Miami and 2)Roman Catholic Sex Abuse Cases Requests for edits to material on these sites have been repeatedly denied. The pages are locked into their most offensive form submitted by user DominvsVobiscm

As you can see from his talk page, DominvsVobiscm has been reprimanded several times for vandalising Roman Catholic Sites but is never blocked even when he violated the three revert rule. His vandalism is locked onto these two sites. The discussion pages of these sites is complete with consensus of all editors (except DominvsVobiscm) who reject his material listing the numerous Wikipedia policies it violates.Wikipedia states on its information page that vandalism is dealt with swiftly yet the Archdiocese of Miami page has been locked for a month.Please consider that the way that Wikipedia is reacting to this vandalism appears to be an endorsement of this blatant anti Catholic hate material. The evidence is very easy to copy and send to the Catholic League for prosecution. As a parishioner of the Archdiocese of Miami, I know there are groups of parishioners here who will not hesitate to do that. I am writing you to tell you that the way this material is being handled is only helping the case of a possible future lawsuit and/or negative media attention against Wikipedia. For a listing of the offensive material and why it should be removed, please see the three editprotected tags that have been denied edits on the discussion page of Thank you for your attention to this matter. Sincerely, Nancy Heise

Please send your message to — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:25, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Malicious deletion of talk page comments

Immediately upon the apparent lifting of a block for User:Northmeister, he maliciously deleted relevant comments by me on the talk page of Talk:Anchor baby. [2] This is apparently why he wanted his block lifted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ramsey2006 (talkcontribs) 04:25, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Removal of tags from Image:TheDrainingLake.jpg

I note that you removed the, perfectly justified, disputed fair-use tag from the above image. As an administrator I would expect you to uphold the principles and legal obligations of Wikipedia, not ride roughshod over them. As the non-free book documentation itself states, each such book cover image needs "a detailed fair use rationale for each use, as described on Wikipedia:Image description page, as well as the source of the work and copyright information. Please include in your fair use rationale details of the particular edition (publisher, market & year of publication) of the edition you have used, and also acknowledge any cover artist if such artist is acknowledged in that edition's frontmatter". None of these conditions was properly applied, yet you removed the tag in any case. Why? Pyrope 12:19, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Betacommandbot was malfunctioning about that time. Rather than go through the all of its contributions that night to decide which were correct and which were wrong, a group of editors including myself reverted all the bot's edits for that night. In this case, it seems the bot was correct in adding the tag. You should contact the initial uploader, as well; we would have reverted the bot's message to contact them. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:22, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the rapid response. The uploader (Barbara Osgood) has been contacted, although she has a long history of uploading material under similar circumstances. This is in fact the second time that she has uploaded this particular image, after it was deleted for exactly the same reason the first time. Pyrope 12:25, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

OES Deletion

The OES cannot be verified by internet, but I beleive there have been a few handmade books - for instance, the 16th-century ones I mentioned in the article - that mention OES. I am not affiliated with the organization, but since I joined wikipedia for the purpose of making this information known, i chose it as my username. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Oes23 (talkcontribs) 12:47, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Edit request

Can you see the second request then please? One Night In Hackney303 13:09, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

TU agreed with this edit being made while the page was protected. All the other editors have repeatedly (and at length) asked for sources that the people making the observation are opponents, which TU will not provide. If the wording cannot be changed, can I at least have the {{fact}} tag added please? Thanks. One Night In Hackney303 13:50, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Orange Order

There is not a content dispute on this article. There is one editor, who is engaging in a disruptive way to prevent this article being expanded. There have been numerous sources provided, which are both verifiable and reliably sourced. One Editor, has provided nothing but commentary and opinion. Despite this, you have said consensus is required? I think you will need to provide the policies which state clearly, that referenced information that is verifiable and reliably sourced can be omitted because one editor dose not like it. Having wasted enough time on this and another article with the same editor, I want to know how, you came to this conclusion, and the relevant policies which governed your decision. --Domer48 13:17, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

I have not been involved with these articles, but I do know they have been the subject of long running disputes, so I hope my caution is understandable. If there is only one editor involved, surely that editor could be cautioned and the article unprotected? In any case, you should focus on getting the article unprotected, at which point you will be able to make any requested changes yourself. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:20, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

I agree one editor can not hold an article to ransom I asked the blocking admin to have a look but he is unfortunatly ill at the moment and on a wikibreak. BigDunc 13:22, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

You can request unprotection at WP:RFPP, or if the case for unprotection is complicated you can post it at WP:ANI. But please keep your request focused on the article, rather than other editors; this will give it more credibility. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:24, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

I have wasted enough time on this, I would like answers to the questions I have posed. I've put forward a number of references, not on of which has been disputed with references. So show me the policies where opinions are favoured over references. It is discisions like this which fuel disputes. And editors who can not back up a claim, prefare to have articles protected. --Domer48 13:49, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Immigration to Australia


You unprotected Immigration to Australia yesterday. The edit war, infested with obvious socks, has broken out again. Please can you protect the wrong version again and perhaps knock some heads together? Thanks. Someone is bored at work 08:33, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Someone else already protected it. Unfortunately, the editors there were just waiting for unprotection; when I went to that page to handle an editprotected request, the talk page was very quiet. What a pity. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:01, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

About a Deleted Image


The image Vgsys.JPG has been deleted, because a lack of fair use rationale. The image (if not deleted) would qualify as fair use. I just didn't realize that no rationale had been given or that some was needed. The history page for the Video Game Console article seems like it says that you've used an automated tool to delete it. Is there any way to recover the image (archives, etc.) if I no longer have an offline copy of it.

Thanks, Altarbo 09:16, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

I undeleted Image:Vgsys.JPG. Please add a use rationale in the next day or two. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:58, 14 September 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. Appreciate it.Altarbo 07:06, 15 September 2007 (UTC)

I would like to join mediation group for Archdiocese of Miami page

Dear CBM, Thank you for responding to my edit protected tag on the Wikipedia page Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Miami. I would like to join the mediation group for this page and include the information that I supplied with the edit protected tag that you denied for editing. I think that information will be helpful to the mediation process. However, I see that the article has been referred to the Arbitration committee, I am not sure that my participation in mediation now will be included. How may I include my information for the Arbitrators to see? Is there a separate Wikipedia page for Arbitration that has been set up for editors to place items to be included into evidence? I can not find a link to any such page. Thank you in advance for your help. StacyyW 09:34, 15 September 2007 (UTC)

Confusing behavior of MediaWiki:Cascadeprotected

The behavior is confusing, but normal and expected (that's also the case with the current message, BTW). I've explained in more detail on the talk page; but if you want to see try doing a cut-and-paste of my sandbox version on an unexisting page and preview the change , then look at the result after being saved. You can see the same behavior with the current message. — Coren (talk) 03:21, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

pulled reference templates

Hello Carl,

thank you very much for your help with pulling out the templates! I appreciate it a lot. It contains about 7.000 reference templates, which is a good amount of data to get at least the references which occur more often, i.e. all standard books etc.

I will need some time to prepare the items for adding them to the database. For example, some templates have "author=     " and other malformatting. However, the general quality of the content is quite good. If you are interested in the details, have a look at a discussion with KSmrq at my talk page.

Jakob.scholbach 15:40, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

I'm glad to hear you can deal with the format, and thanks for the pointer. It isn't too surprising that the cite tags are in good shape, since as you say people who can't be bothered to format the tag correctly probably won't use it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:57, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

Bot Malfunction?

The VeblenBot may be malfunctioning. The current versions of the following lists are definitely incorrect:

For example, Trigonometric function (a former Featured Article) currently appears in the list of Stub Class, Top Priority articles. Jim 18:47, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for reporting that error. yesterday, I changed to a different library for fetching the contents of categories, and introduced an error in the process. I have run the script to update the tables, which should be correct now. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:34, 16 September 2007 (UTC)
Happy to help. :-) Jim 20:08, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

Vanessa Anne Hudgens

There was no attempt to add information; it was the insertion of the nude photo, and links to the nude photo, that I was worried about. That said, I would watch what's added beyond what's already there; there's no need to add information unless it's relevant and sourced - specific rumors, etc. that obviously fail BLP shouldn't be added. I'll look over the talk page; I was on a business trip over the weekend and didn't have internet access. Ral315 » 01:08, 17 September 2007 (UTC)


Hey, Carl - the reason I changed the template to subst is that standardized license templates are required by WP:IUP - in this case, {{cc-by-3.0}}. By substing Bollywoodblog, you convert it to the correct license tag with the additional text in this template. Also, if these images are moved to the Commons (as they probably will be), {{Bollywoodblog}} doesn't exist there and the license tag will get garbled in the transition. Videmus Omnia Talk 02:52, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

I see. The machine readability on enwiki is fine, but I see the issue with commons. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:55, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, I reverted for now. Also, Riana had some questions about the OTRS ticket and is talking to the copyright holder, but I expect the ticket to be closed soon and then we can add the OTRS ID. Videmus Omnia Talk 02:57, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
I checked the ticket with kylu, it seems OK, if not great. I'mgoing to subst the template where it is used, unless you tell me otherwise. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:59, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
Sounds great. I've been in on the e-mail traffic between Permissions and Bollywoodblog, basically Riana is confirming that the copyright holder knows that the license means that downstream users can re-use the photos if they grant Wikipedia the cc-by-3.0 license, so there are no misunderstandings later. I don't think it's going to be an issue, the blog owner seems very competent. Videmus Omnia Talk 03:03, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
Well, granting a cc license for wikipedia only didn't seem great, but a grant to us is a grant to everyone, so I was willing to let that slide. I'll go through tomorrow and subst the uses. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:07, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
Riana, who's working the permission for OTRS, had asked that the OTRS ticket number not be placed on the images yet, so if she gets mad I'm going to give her your name. :) Cheers - Videmus Omnia Talk 03:08, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
I'm fully willing to take the blame. I did my best to check the OTRS claim... But even if it isn't valid, the first person to check it will find out. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:10, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
I'm not bitching at you, honest. :) Oh, if you don't want to subst the templates yourself you can always ask User:MetsBot to do it, I'm not sure how many images have the template at this point. Videmus Omnia Talk 03:36, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

My Page

Sorry about that, I should have known better. I've removed the pictures. I also should have made it clearer, those are just random FAs, not one's I've contributed to in particular. :) Sorry for any confusion... Bella Swan 12:27, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

Needs to clear

I did extend my comment at Template talk:Ambox#Needs to clear at the same time you answered, and didn't get an edit conflict so I did not know. You might want to check that you answered all you wanted to what I wrote. --David Göthberg 14:18, 18 September 2007 (UTC)


Hi Carl. How do we get a user blocked? The IP address vandalized Clifford torus and appears to have been warned repeatedly. Thanks. VectorPosse 23:45, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

This IP only has two edit this month, which isn't enough to block. Our blocking policy is, for better or worse, lenient. I did leave another warning for the IP, but unless there is more vandalism there isn't much we can do except revert it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:11, 20 September 2007 (UTC)
That's cool. It wasn't hard to revert, so no biggie. VectorPosse 08:00, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Challenges comment

I think you may have misinterpreted there. I certainly wouldn't challenge an entire article because "everything" failed to have a citation on it. On the other hand, I sure don't mind challenging an article for which nothing is cited, especially when I can't find anything reliable either. If I can, easier just to add some cites. But without that, I really do doubt the veracity and suitability of the article. We should mirror, not second-guess, reliable sources, so it follows that if reliable independent sources have chosen to write little or nothing about a topic, we should mirror them—by writing nothing or mentioning the subject in passing in a different article. I suppose you could consider it stylistic, but one function of editors (that thing we all are) is to challenge and cut for both factual and stylistic reasons. Seraphimblade Talk to me 04:16, 20 September 2007 (UTC)


Hi. I thought you might wish to know that User:Monkeyspangler, who you blocked for link-spamming a few days back, appears to be at it again from two IPs: Special:Contributions/ & Special:Contributions/ HrafnTalkStalk 14:34, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Since the spam continued after the original user was warned and blocked for it, I added the link to our local blacklist, which will prevent it from being added any more. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:37, 20 September 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for adding an entry at MediaWiki talk:Spam-blacklist -- it really helps to keep a record of how things get on the blacklist since there likely will be a whitelisting request in the future and it's hard to figure out what to do with a blacklist entry if you don't know why it was added. I just wish more admins followed your example.
Leaving a note also flags WikiProject Spam volunteers to get a closer look at the domain and see if there are any other domains we need to watch for. You'll note that we found some other domains this guy owns that we need to watch for.
So thanks for the good work! --A. B. (talk) 00:08, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the courtesy

re:TfD nomination of {{1632 covers}}

Template:1632 covers has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:45, 17 September 2007 (UTC)

  • Nice to see some newer editors have the basic courtesy to drop a dime. Thanks. // FrankB 16:41, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Simon Wessely

Carl, you've apparently intervened in the Simon Wessely problem. Could you confirm if you have unlocked the page? It appears to be still locked. If you have not unlocked the page as such, could you clarify what your comment meant, as it is not clear to me. Many thanks Angela KennedyAngela Kennedy 17:01, 21 September 2007 (UTC)

I haven't intervened per se. I turned off an editprotected request because there didn't seem to be consensus to make a change. Editprotected requests are meant only for small, unanimous changes to protected articles. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:24, 21 September 2007 (UTC)

Reverting my update to first order logic

Why was this update reverted? The beauty of wikipedia is that it can be at the cutting edge of new developments. You've obviously not seen the news recently, gardeners in Scotland have been conducting trials since 1989 about the logical patterns behind planting trees, and other assorted plants. They represent their findings using first order logic, because propositional logic does not easily allow for the domain (that is, the particular area of planting), to be taken into account. A simple search on google should confirm this if you are still unsatisfied, in the meantime I will be reverting to my edit of the article. Thanks. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 16:06:10, August 19, 2007 (UTC)

foundations article

Hi, I changed some words in an effort to make it read in an encyclopedic style, I hope that suffices. My original reason for adding to the article was that it read "most mathematicians do not doubt the consistency of ZFC". Technically this statement is true, but it is misleading. Most mathematicians do not know what the axioms of ZFC are!-Manifesto50 23:11, 8 September 2007

O Tennenbaum('s Theorem)

Thanks for your assistance with Tennenbaum's theorem -- I quite agree! Zero sharp 20:51, 23 September 2007 (UTC)

NOR page

Hello. I would like to ask you to reconsider your revert on the NOR policy page for the following reasons:

  • 1. The policy page itself has undergone over 500 edits within the past year. Some were merely vandalism, but by far the majority have been contentious edits conducted without discussing first.
  • 2. The comments themselves clearly didn't state that editing was prohibiting, I was just warning editors that an official policy does in fact exist, and that before editing policy should be followed.
  • 3. The comments do not appear on the policy page itself, only in the osurce for it, so it doesn't change the policy (the way many other edits do). I think the comments may help prevent some of the edit warring that has been going on with the policy without having to resort to page protection yet again.

In short, I personally feel that there is nothing wrong with the profusion of hidden comments to warn potential editors. I added it to every section (though extremely redundant), so that somebody couldn't say the just hit a section edit button and didn't see the warning. With the warnings so prominent, contentious edits (even if an amount of time has slipped by), can still be easily reverted back if proper policy hasn't been followed. Otherwise, much time is wasted talking back and forth to revert those edits that may have slipped through unnoticed or otherwise unchallenged at that time, with the original "inserter" arguing that it's been there unchallenged for a while.

I don't see the comments as hurting anything and I only made them in an attempt to offer a quick way out for any contentious future edits on a policy page that has seen an abnormal amount of editting within the last year. This is extremely bad for an official policy.

Thank you for considering this. wbfergus Talk 13:24, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

Policies get edited all the time - it's a normal part of Wikipedia. Policies are only correct to the extent that they describe practice, so as practice changes the policy documents have to change as well. Pages like NOR are too well watched for truly contentious changes to remain unnoticed for long. If a particular user keeps making inappropriate changes, that user can be counseled to discuss them first. I think that sort of counseling will better address your valid concerns about editors who make inappropriate changes, because such editors are likely to ignore warnings anyway.
Requiring every edit to be discussed first only encourages deadlock, since the true measure of consensus here isn't unanimous agreement, but whether an edit sticks. If the edit is never made, we can't tell whether it stuck.
My impression is that the hidden comments took the sentence from WP:POLICY out of context and made it out to be more controlling then it is meant to be. All it is trying to say is that one shouldn't completely rewrite a policy without seeking consensus. It isn't saying that every change to a policy document has to be discussed at length before the page is edited. The foundation principle of everyone being able to edit every page applies to policy pages, as does WP:BOLD. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:33, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

Let's put any further comments on WT:NOR to keep the discussion together. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:40, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

Ambox float problem solved.

Do not set the CSS style {clear: both} on ambox since User:Dispenser suggested a much better solution that at least works perfectly in all my browsers. See examples that shows the new solution at Template talk:Ambox#Needs to clear.

--David Göthberg 02:01, 26 September 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for removing the comment from my talk page and handling the matter. It's appreciated. --Rob 19:17, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

I don't know what possessed User: to show up so late with that comment. I usually ignore such things, but I thought that one was over the line. I haven't forgotten about the intelligent design page, but I thought a cool down period was worthwhile. I think a good solution everyone could live with would be for the article to be more specific about the importance of the books, so that the NFCC case is more compelling. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:00, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for blocking this anonymous account, but you may want to check out Michael Dorosh. Since it is claimed right on that user page, I think it's pretty obvious that the anonymous IP is simply used as a sockpuppet for that account when it is under fire. You may also want to take a look at the pages created by that user that are currently tagged for speedy deletion. Thanks! --Ioeth 21:22, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

NFCC proposal

I'm a little surprised that we haven't generated any discussion yet. I wonder if we did such a good job that it's uncontroversial or boring to everyone. Do you think we should post a notice anywhere else like village pump? I think people were discussing / asking about it there. Perhaps WP:FURG though that's a quieter page, Wikipedia:copyright, WP:CSD? It's not canvassing because we're simply alerting people to an important proposal that they shouldn't miss. Wikidemo 23:27, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

I did make a post to WP:VPP and as an RFC. Making discreet posts isn't canvassing. I don't think it needs to be at WP:CSD, but putting a note at WP:FURG would be reasonable. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:33, 26 September 2007 (UTC)


Regarding Wikipedia:Templates for deletion/Log/2007 September 17#Template:Infobox Oh My Goddess! character, I do think it would be fair to userfy it simply if anyone wanted to keep the history of it (for ideas, remembering how a certain look was achieved, etc). I did so with one such template during the 4th anime character infobox TfD, and no one seemed to have any objection to that. I don't know if anyone want to keep it for that reason, but I don't think it would be an unreasonable request, should the request be made. Just thought I'd put that out there. -- Ned Scott 04:01, 27 September 2007 (UTC)

That makes sense. If anyone asks me to restore a deleted template into their user space, I'll be glad to provide a copy. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:54, 27 September 2007 (UTC)


Why are you deleting Meerkat Manor more info's user page? Its their user page, they can do what they want. Cruise meerkat 02:06, 28 September 2007 (UTC)

Please see WP:USER#Copies_of_other_pages. You can advocate for keeping the page on the MfD discussion, but in general it's a well settled issue that user pages are not an appropriate place to keep forks of article content. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:57, 28 September 2007 (UTC)

Flying primates image

Re: I appreciate that it can be hard to understand our licensing policies; we do take copyrights seriously, which makes the policies somewhat cryptic for new users. If you would like to give permission for others to use this image, the best way is to release it under a free license. Either of the GFDL or CC-BY-SA licenses is acceptable to us. If you agree to release the image under either of these licenses, all you have to do is send me an email that says you are the copyright holder and explicitly states the license you choose (you can use the "email this user" link on User:CBM). I will take care of all the details after that. If you have questions, feel free to contact me on my talk page. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:43, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for the offer to help, much appreciated.--Fluminense 04:00, 30 September 2007 (UTC)

My signature

Hey. I need some help fixing my signature, I can not save it into my preferences. Can you please help with this? Thanks.

STORMTRACKER 94 Stormtracker94 00:52, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

It says "Invalid HTML tags".

STORMTRACKER 94 Stormtracker94 00:58, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

My signature still is not working right. Can you please give me the correct code to put in my preferences? Thanks.

STORMTRACKER 94 Stormtracker94 20:08, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks so much for the help! STORMTRACKER 94 20:18, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

Undeletion request for fair use rationale addition

Would you be able to undelete this image, as I would like to write a fair use rationale for it? Carcharoth 16:34, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

Done. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:48, 2 October 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. Didn't realise it was such a rubbish image. Logo is not much either. Oh well. Carcharoth 17:31, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

Sōsuke Aizen

It really seems to me that it's time for the spoiler tag on Sōsuke Aizen to go. The tag is right at the top of the page, which means that it doesn't discriminate between the "spoiled" content and any other kind of content.

A tag saying that the whole page is a spoiler isn't much help. Someone who wanted to read about Sōsuke Aizen without having their experience spoiled—I'm not sure who that would be, but let's assume they exist—wouldn't find any joy in a tag that covers the whole page.

What do you think??? Marc Shepherd 18:27, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

Replying on your talk pgae to try to keep different users' replies together. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:49, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

Image tagging

I replied on my talk page, thanks. Videmus Omnia Talk 21:45, 3 October 2007 (UTC)


Sorry for jumping at conclusions. I recently performes massive tagging of articles; I edited this article as well, and I thought it was my work reverted, without explanations as if I was an anon vandal. Apologies again. `'Míkka 01:35, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

It's no problem; I was just pointing out my reasoning because it would otherwise seem strange to remove tags. The problem with that user's mass tagging (some of which he convinced a bot operator to perform) was that the importance and field parameters were left blank, and we have other ways to make a List of mathematics articles than to tag the talk pages. I don't know of any objections to tagging math article talk pages if all the parameters are filled in, although that makes the "mass" part more difficult. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:41, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:1966april.jpg

Thanks for looking into the picture issue. I'm still a bit new so all the rationale & tagging stuff is still a learning process for me. I'll remove the picture. Thanks again. :) Pinkadelica 06:10, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Bollywood blog

It was I who contacted the Bollywood blog and got the license under 3.0. User:Riana and Videmus contacted the site also and recived an email of verification ♦ Sir Blofeld ♦ "Talk"? 11:41, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

I'm sorry if what I said wasn't correct. Thanks for getting that permission, it's a large number of high quality images that are now free. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:31, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Use of talk page

Bill here,

I hear you. Thanks. I've developed a (bit) thicker skin over the 2 years I've been doing this, I had spent almost a whole day trying to figure out how to present it, and it got big. I'll be more careful about the long posts, or give a "warning" that I'm using the post as a "holding point" while I develop something. With respect to this I just didn't feel like I have any other recourse. The watchdogs will strip everything off the article page. This isn't the first time I've encountered this problem. I've even read wikipedia articles about this phenomenon of an uber-watchdog and his minions that circle around, Old-Man-in-the-Sea-like, to devour any carcass that happens to enter their water. Whether that's what's actually going on here, I don't know, it feels like it. And as you will see on the talk page, I may be pushing a POV that, although I can't take credit for it (blame Turing, Minsky, Enderton), is unusual. wvbaileyWvbailey 19:09, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Re: Psychiatric abuse talk page

Yes, I would like to see the Psychiatric abuse talk page, if possible. Thanks! --Mattisse 02:16, 6 October 2007 (UTC)

I sent it to you via email. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:40, 6 October 2007 (UTC)


re: Wikipedia:Non-free content criteria/Proposal

All the discussion of templates seems to be ignoring things in place such as: {{Non-free media rationale}}. Why not discuss how such will be superceded, augmented, or changed to implement this measure? // FrankB 18:52, 6 October 2007 (UTC)

Diagonal lemma article

That is a really nice article. Crisp, clean, to the point. I thought Kleene had something to do with this, but I don't see it as "fixed point" in his 1952's index, nor in van H nor in Undecidable (not indexed as "fixed point", anyway). I'll keep my eyes open and report back if I see anything.

Whether Rosser's 1939 An Informal Exposition of proofs of Godel's Theorm and Church's Theorem (Undecidable p. 223) is apropos, I dunno. But Rosser is very interesting because of his elegant summary of Gödel 1931's development, plus Rosser's further expansion of it where he "call[s] attention to an extra assumption implicit in the "for suitable L" of lemma 1, namely that "z = φ(x,x)" be expressible in L, where φ(x,y) is the function defined below [etc]" (cf p. 227 in Undecidable). Rosser is the first place where I've seen this so cleanly presented. He footnotes that Godel had intended to do this, but because of illness did not.

This unwritten assumption apparently inside G's 1st incompleteness theorem has bothered me since I got enough background to be able to even attempt to follow his argument in the original. The other strange thing was the fact that a function could be Godelized, but so could a number be Godelized as a string of successor functions, and (the question of whether or not) they could be two representations of the same number, and if so or if not, what this would imply. I'll have to study the Diagonal lemma article carefully. Bill Wvbailey 17:29, 8 October 2007 (UTC)

Kleene 1943, also Kleene 1952:303: This isn't the same thing is it?

THEOREM XIII (PART II). In particular, suppose S is a formal system with distinct formulas A(x) designed as expressing the propostions (y)~T1(x,x,y) for x = 0, 1, 2, ... Then a number f can be found such that: If S is correct for (y)~T1(x,x,y) then (y)~T1(f,f,y) and ~(⊢A(f)) , i.e. the proposition (y)~T1(f,f,y) is ture, but the formula A(f) expressing it is unprovable." (in the original, negation-bars are over the T1 and over the ⊢A(f) expression, Kleene 1952:303).

There's a bit of discussion after this, RE how truly broad this theorem is casting its net. Wvbailey 17:48, 8 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your comments on the article. Kleene's theorem above is not quite the same. Kleene is just proving directly the incompleteness of a theory based on its ability to represent certain functions. The diagonal lemma is obtained by taking proofs like that and splitting them in half. The first half is the diagonal lemma, which applies to any formula. The second half of the proof is then to apply the diagonal lemma to a (maybe hypothetical) formula such as ~Pvbl(x) or ~True(x). This split is elegant because it gives both Godel's first incompleteness theorem and Tarski's undefinability theorem as relatively quick, and parallel, consequences of the diagonal lemma. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:03, 8 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the "splitting" explanation, this really helps. Lately I've been wondering about Tarski and his theorm, there's a bio in the bookstore but I don't know anything about his work. I will pursue. Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 19:10, 8 October 2007 (UTC)

I looked at Kleene's undergrad book (1967) and he also seems to avoid the diagonal lemma there, giving a result like the one above instead. I also looked up Carnap's 1934 book (it was published in English in 1937). Carnap proved something very similar to the diagonal lemma there, just a few years after Godel's original paper. And Godel was aware of Carnap's work during his lectures in 1937. The main thing that would have held up the diagonal lemma as it is currently phrased is that the notion of "recursive function" wasn't well understood in the 1930s. In any case, Kleene would have been well aware of the diagonal lemma, so he must have chosen not to present it in his books due to some personal preference. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:03, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

I found, not the source of, but a hint at the nature of my confusion/association with Kleene: the article Recursion theorem also refers to Kleene's theorem(s) as the "fixed point theorem". I found "the theorem" indexed in Enderton as "fixed point lemma" and Boolos-Burgess-Jeffrey 2002 in a heading as "27.3 The Fixed Point and Normal Form Theorems" but in the index as "De Songh-Sambin theorem" (unclear if this is the same thing). I have yet to encounter "diagonal lemma" in an index. I have not found any attribution to Kleene or anyone else, for that matter.

The B-B-J version is a frightening presentation in "modal logic" with symbols ⃞ for necessity and "diamond" for possibly, and other unfamiliar-to-Bill symbols. With the strange bracketing it resembles the earlier version of the diagonal lemma article, i.e. before you edited it. Enderton (I believe), is more in the spirt of yours, e.g. using #(ε) to indicate a Godel number (cf p. 225). But yours is at least an order-of- magnitude more accessible than either of these.

Kleene's Normal Form Theorem is definitely 1943, reprinted in The Undecidable pp. 254ff. Carnap 1934 in the translation 1937 is indeed referenced by Kleene 1952 re use of language. Indeed ... in his 1943 §15 (Undecidable p. 281-282) I see Rosser, Tarski, Quine referenced in footnotes, and a "Carnap's rule" where Kleene is discussing something interesting: "Rosser has shown how Godel theorms arise on going very far in the direction of nonconstructiveness" etc. I get it: he is discussing "non-constructive logics" and "ordinal logics", i.e. "transfinite extensions of deductive reasoning." In his 1952 Bibliography Kleene warns that the reader should omit this §15 because of an error in his 1944 (!). But maybe there's something useful in Kleene's 1943 §15 discussion re non-constructiveness: it's over my head, I can't tell. Also see, in his 1952 index under his own name i.e. p. 527 in my edition (10th printing, emended in the 6th reprint 1971) where he criticises his own works 1943 and 1944. There is spooky stuff relative to Quine 1940. Bill Wvbailey 15:55, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

In Boolos and Jeffrey, third edition, the diagonal lemma is lemma 2 in section 15. It's in the index as "diagonal lemma". You seem to have found out the hard way that "fixed point theorem" is generic enough that it is used to denote many results. The stuff on modal logic at the end of Boolos and Jeffrey is interesting stuff, but it's not really necessary for understanding the diagonal lemma. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:04, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
After looking through it again, I would strongly recommend section 15 of B&J for its presentation of Tarski's theorem and Godel's theorem using the diagonal lemma. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:10, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

We just had an edit conflict: I was just writing to say I blundered. I looked right at "diagonal lemma" in the index and missed it. I have the 4th edition, (they added Burgess in this 4th edition 2002). The presentation was moved to chapter 17. There is indeed a Lemma 17.2; the write-up looks to be a good one. Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 16:23, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

Why was the image I uploaded moved to Wikimedia Commons?

I made a couple of minor edits on this project page and only later realised, at this stage, you were inviting coments on talk. Anyway, I hope I haven't done any harm. I'll now put a comment in its talk. Thincat 13:32, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

It's in the Wikipedia namespace, so anyone can edit it. Your copyediting is appreciated. I don't want to own that page; I hope that other people will edit it to make it more relevant. I just started it because there was no similar page in existence. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:40, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
However entitled to edit I may be, I still think it can be useful to hold back a bit with policy-orientated stuff arrived at by some sort of consensus. Anyway, that's fine. Thincat 16:00, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

Technical question about systems Q and R and primitive axiom schemas and "bases"

Why do the axioms include definitions of + and * (multiply)? Why not just define the signs + and * in terms of a string of symbols that include "zero" and "successor"? Is it because (some form of behavior, i.e.) induction (recurson?) is being (indirectly) defined via these axioms? Are the five schemata of primitive recursion considered to be an actual axiom schema? And if not, why not?

The reason I ask is two-fold: (1) One form of counter-machine model has the Peano-like instruction set { INCrement(r,next), CLeaR(r,next) Jump-if-equal(r1,r2,branch,next) } ("r" is a "register", a place that holds a (variable) quantity of "markers"). In this model we can define all the recursive functions. It is true that, when we tear the machine apart to see what it is really doing, we see modus ponens at work in the "next instruction" transformation and in the "conditional jump" transformation ("IF [r1]=[r2] THEN "branch" OR IF [r1]≠[r2] THEN "next", what we engineers call "AND-OR-SELECT"). I don't see that + and * are required anywhere, altho if they are it is probably in this primitive CASE instruction (but it would be a binary event, e.g. only two outcomes are possible for the Jump-if-equal instruction: 0*branch+1*next => next, or 1*branch+0*next => branch; here we don't need the full axiom set for + and *).

(2) The Kalmár bibliographic note in Kleene 1952:526 states that Kalmár proposed "as a basis for elementary functions", "the variables, 1, +, |a-b|, Σz (y=w), Πz(y=w)". [am confused: why, if we eliminate * we still have Π, but anyway...]. The Kalmár basis looks suspiciously like the "instructions" of the counter machine, where "+" is taking the role of "successor", and |a-b| is perhaps redundant, too. (The other counter-machine model, the Minsky version, requires |a-b| in the form: { INCrement(r,next), DeCRement(r,next), Jump-if-zero(r,branch,next) } ).

Do you know anything about this Kalmar business? Are there other bases such as Kalmar's even more primitive? Am I confusing "axioms" and "bases"? thanks, Bill Wvbailey 16:33, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

One common reason for including addition and multiplication directly is that this makes it easier to consider what is provable without the induction axioms. Since induction is needed to define these from the successor function, the easiest way to have them without those induction is to just assume them as part of the axioms.
I think the main distinction between "axioms" and "bases" is one of context. In the context of primitive recursive arithmetic they are indeed axioms. In the context of just primitive recursive functions they are usually not called axioms. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:33, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

New bot for Wikipedia 1.0?

Hi Carl, There are now over 900,000 articles assessed by WikiProjects using the WP1.0 assessment scheme. Over at WP:1.0, we want to get a bot to sift through all of these data and select articles that meet the requirements for an offline release such as WP:V0.7. We had someone start writing a bot for this, but he has now moved onto other things (outside Wikipedia, I think) and he has lost all interest in the project. Would you be willing to help with writing a bot? VeblenBot has been giving us regular, valuable information on V0.7 - thank you for that! You can see an outline of the plans here, which are based on giving each article a "score" (additive or multiplicative) based on its quality and importance. Currently Version 0.7 (our next release) is completely stalled for want of this bot. Can you help? Thanks, Walkerma 20:27, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

I think the proposal you linked to essentially says that all that the bot needs to do is to download a lot of information about which articles are rated with which ratings, and then calculate a score for each article/wikiproject pair. Is that correct? I could write a script to do that without too much trouble. The main thing I would need is a complete algorithm for computing the score of an article from its wikiproject, importance, and quality. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:44, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Yes, that's basically it, though it would also need to produce some sort of output - probably a set of tables or something similar to [[3]]. I'm pretty busy right now getting ready to head out of town for a few days (to a Wikipedia conference, in fact!), but if you think you can work on this I will try to write out the algorithm I'm proposing. The main complexity comes in calculating importance, though of course this can be as complex as you want it to be. Ideally I would like an importance algorithm that incorporates four independent variables, and I'd like to run tests in order to tweak the algorithm - but only if you have the time and patience for that. Should be both worthwhile and fun, though! So, do you think you'll be able to work on this? Thanks a lot, Walkerma 02:58, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I think this will be an interesting thing to work on. An important issue you should keep in mind is performance. An algorithm that gets all its information by just using category lists will run relatively quickly, because it only has to fetch the contents of each category one time. An algorithm that has to fetch information separately for each article will run very slowly. My internet connection lets me fetch at most one or two articles per second, and one article per second for 900k articles is 10.5 days. Some other information can be fetched more quickly (like interwiki links) using the API on multiple articles at a time, but other info like backlinks can only be fetched one article at a time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:09, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Thanks a lot, that's wonderful news! Yes, this was an issue for Martinp23 as well. He had dial-up initially that was very slow. After that was fixed he got set up on the Toolserver - the ideal place for this - but that kept crashing. I contacted the Foundation people and they got the server to be reliable, but by then Martin had moved onto other things. What I suggest is:
  1. We test the bot using a fairly simple algorithm, without all of the "calls" on importance. We can use that to see if we get sensible results. We were testing using a subset of articles - we chose the Physics, Chemistry and Medicine projects before since they all have both importance and quality, and also I'm a chemist myself! (We could include Mathematics!) I'd like to see us use the full set of articles from these projects.
  2. Once we have a working system, relocate the bot and begin to use it across all projects. We have access to other high-speed servers which can act as a home for the bot. Oleg has already decided to move his bot (WP 1.0 Bot) over to one of these, as he has moved from Berkeley. User:Kelson, who organises the French 1.0 project, is a professional programmer who can help with this. If you prefer, we could get it put on one of the main Foundation servers in the US, though it may take a few months to get put on.
  3. We can put the bot on the Toolserver, if we need the added sophistication and speed for things like backlinks. This might allow us to run the bot every week, instead of it taking a month or more to trawl through lots of articles. (If we write it well, though, we could perhaps avoid much of the server problem by having the bot avoid all stubs, etc.) We may still need the Toolserver to get the hitranking for an article, though.
One benefit we have now is a good network of support. If you need help writing a portion of tricky code, we may be able to get that. If you need someone to help you get set up on the Toolserver, that can be done. I'm very excited about the possibilities - this will allow use to use those 900,000+ assessments to build some very nice selections.
By the way - can I tell people on the WP:1.0 that you will be going to help us with this? Many people are probably wondering why we're doing so little at the moment.... Also let me know if you think the rough plan (above) is viable, and anything you need beyond an algorithm. Thanks again, Walkerma 16:45, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
The general idea sounds fine. I have very limited time this weekend as I host some guests. Later the coming week I will have more detailed comments. Yes, you can tell people I'll help with writing some code. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:31, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
No rush, don't worry! I'm very busy myself at the moment. Thanks again, and have a good weekend. I'll try and design a nice algorithm to start us off with. Walkerma 02:19, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Thom Hansen "Panzi" - Question about photo deletion

Reference: Thom Hansen. Can you help me understand why the photo of Thom as Panzi was tagged for deletion by you on 30 August 2007? I am rather new to Wikipedia and do not understand all of the codes and rules here. The same picture is available publicly at and I have his permission to use it. He sent me the picture. Also, lots of his bio information was recently changed and deleted too. Thanks for any help you can provide. njcraig 12 October 2007 (UTC)

Removing templates

Why did you remove this template? Copyright issues are a serious concern on Wikipedia, and simply removing potential copyvio templates puts us at risk. Thanks in advance. /Blaxthos 13:38, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

The bot was malfunctioning that evening, so rather than manually examining several thousand edits, Betacommand asked several people to revert all the bot's edits to ensure the faulty edits were undone. Some reasonable edits were also undone in the process. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:08, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
Cool. Thanks. /Blaxthos 14:17, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

speedy deletions

If WP is a collection of overlapping specialist encyclopedias, it still only has one set of admins. The Pokemon editors don't create Pokemon articles that consist of only one sentence. (The link above is to a long list of characters. These lists are made so that each character does not have its own article.) With people like Whitehead and Kervaire, it would not be hard to assemble a one-paragraph stub that, even if one doesn't understand jargon, shows the subject is an important mathematician.
The issue here is that speedy deletion of newly created articles is based only on the literal text of the article, not on any deep understanding of the text. This is a result of the large number of newly created articles that are tagged for speedy deletion each day; the large volume prevents any deep analysis of each article. Rather than complaining about this system (I agree it's not ideal), we need to work within it. That means making sure there is enough text in each new article that it will not be speedy deleted. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:59, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia has only one set of admins, but a user ignorant of how to do open heart surgery should not add material on how to do open heart surgery. Similarly if an an admin is so ignorant of mathematics that he does not know whether it's an assertion of notability to say that he doesn't know whether proving the existence of n-manifolds with no differentiable structure is or is not an assertion of notability, then he should leave it alone.

I think that's too much to ask. We're talking about a one-sentence article in this case. It would be simple enough to write a one-paragraph article that makes it clear to a layman that the person in question is worthy of an article. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:03, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Forgive my intrusion into the discussion. In fairness, this one-sentence article linked to a well-referenced article that went to the heart of its assertion of notability. I agree with you in general: one sentence articles ought to be a little suspect. But this was not really a borderline case. Even if it were, at the very least a note could have been left at WPM. If you're saying the ideal is one paragraph, fine. I agree completely. But why should perfectly good material be deleted when it is likely (beacuse of holdon tags and connections to important areas of mathematics) that someone will come along and make it better? VectorPosse 04:23, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
No problem. I'm not expressing myself well here. I'm not saying articles like that should be deleted. Ideally, they would be expanded into better articles, or the person who thinks about deleting them would do a little investigation, or leave a note at WP:WPM. I'm just saying we shouldn't be too surprised or offended if articles like that are deleted. Shouting down admins who treat math articles the same as all other articles won't help build good will towards the project.
Rather than chastising people about their lack of math knowledge, it might work if we encourage them to leave a note at WP:WPM to ask if the topic is notable. We have plenty of admins, so we could delete it ourselves if it isn't (and, as a project, the Math group is pretty good at getting rid of junk). The person who put up the hangon tag could have left a note saying that on the talk page. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:22, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Okay, now I see what you're saying, and I agree 100%. I side with Michael's assessment of the situation, but I don't condone his reactions. So you and I are on the same page, I think. VectorPosse 03:33, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
Personally, I avoid deleting speedies on subjects I really don't understand unless it is blindingly obvious. There are enough other admins to do the garage bands and the Pokemon. I stick to the schoolkids and the advertising--it keeps me busy enough.DGG (talk) 03:54, 19 October 2007 (UTC)

object theory

I put something there that I found in Kleene 1952; I needed an expansion re the notion of the "object theory" of its metatheory and the notion of a "model" of the object theory. I need a precise, firm and correct notion of formal system. You might want to fix what I wrote. Bill Wvbailey 20:14, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

I don't know anything much about object theory. My vague sense is that it is some sort of philosophical theory about abstract objects. But I don't know whether it is related to formal systems, because I really just don't know what object theory is. I left a couple notes to try to bring some people who do know to that article. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:16, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
thanks, yeah.... Neither Enderton nor B-B-J have anything directly applicable. Kleene is quite specific re his §8 Systems of objects (where I got the stuff that I put on the page) -- he talks about the two methods of "introducing objects" (1) "genetic" (generating) or "constructive method" versus (2) "axiomatic method". Later he identifies formal system/formalism with formal theory, and he attributes this notion to Hilbert. But as we know, time has passed so maybe the word-usage and concepts have evolved. What I really need is a cc of Hilbert and Bernays 1934 (in english) to see where all these notions came from. Bill Wvbailey 14:20, 19 October 2007 (UTC)


Did you mean to apply indefinite full protection to this disambiguation page? Seems like sprotection would be more than enough to discourage anons and new users looking for the sandbox.--VectorPotentialTalk 17:05, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

I did mean to do that. I was reinstating the previous protection, which had expired or dropped somehow. Since this is a disambig page, it shouldn't need to be edited very much - only when new entries need to be added. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:15, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
According to the logs, the original full protection was applied to a redirect page, not to a content containing page. Is there some reason you feel sprotection with move set = to sysops would be inadequate to protect the page from new users and anons?--VectorPotentialTalk 17:21, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
I changed the protection to that. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:25, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

Re: Withpermission images

I thought that e-mail address was only for when images are released under a free license, not when Wikipedia gets permission to use an image that is otherwise unfree/fair use (Wikipedia:Requesting copyright permission, where instructions on sending copies of permissions to that address are given, doesn't mention these cases). Wikipedia:Publicity photos mentions reprinting the mails on the image's talk page, but it's not policy or guideline, and I think I read some other other place that one shouldn't do that. --Fritz S. (Talk) 11:53, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

image deletion

Carl: why was the image of Saskia Sassen deleted?... Oh... I just read what you posted on my talk page on Aug 30, and no the image is not replaceable: it is a photo of Professor Sassen, obtained from the person who took it and posted with permission, and it took a great deal of time & effort to understand & explain & arrange all that. I don't know of any other suitable & available photos of her, myself, and I did look pretty extensively back when I initially found this one. So would you please put the image back wherever it was before and let me know? I'll insert explanations of its irreplaceability wherever you want them, but I really don't want to go through the whole process of setting it all up again.

--Kessler 00:22, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

Part of the mission of Wikipedia is to provide free content whenever possible. In particular, in articles about living people, we only allow freely licensed images to be used for the purpose of identifying the person's appearance. This is because we feel that free images of such people could reasonably be created. I tagged this image for deletion because it was a nonfree image of a living person, and another admin agreed with that assessment and deleted the image. One way to continue to use this image would be to ask the photographer to release it under a free license (such as CC-BY-SA). You might also be able to ask Dr. Sassen to provide a freely licensed image; many people are glad to provide a free, high-quality image of their choosing to illustrate their biography. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:35, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

"One way to continue to use this image would be to ask the photographer to release it under a free license (such as CC-BY-SA)"... I thought this is what it had. I'm sure I got that or something like it from him and posted it on the image page. I remember going back & forth with someone here originally on that. --Kessler 01:01, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

The image page (now deleted) only said "c.Alan Rusbridger (London), used with permission." That is ambiguous about whether the permission is for Wikipedia only or extends to other parties. If you have an email or letter from the photographer that does release the image under a free license, that would be great. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:09, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

Photo Deletions

Why on earth have you deleted my picture from the Wikipedia entry on me (Gary Howe)

I've seen you talking about 'copyright' issues, but if that's the case why don't you try and contact anyone before simply deleting it?

My picture was a silly picture of me taken by my wife and was clearly not a professional picture

In addition, what gives you the right to remove pictures from Wikipedia pages?

And it's clear that you've annoyed quite a few people with your ridiculous nannying attitude.

Gary Howe —Preceding unsigned comment added by Garyhowe100 (talkcontribs) 18:01, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

The original uploader was, in fact, contacted by the person who tagged the image [4].
The image is clearly shown here with the notice "© 2007 British Sitcom Guide. No reproduction without permission." WP doesn't allow the use of nonfree images to identify living people, which is why the image was tagged for deletion. I deleted the image after it had remained tagged for seven days.
If you own the copyright for this image, I can explain to you how to release it under a free license so that it can be used on WP. However, please avoid any further personal remarks ("ridiculous nannying attitude" etc). The deletion of this image was in complete agreement with WP policies. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:13, 23 October 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for adding the needed data on this image! - Ahunt 18:22, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

Your 'novel' approach

Your 'novel' approach

Based on these comments of 2 uninvolved admins, [5] [6] [7], your decision to institute zero RR and blocking instead of page protection was not supported by policy or guideline. I'd like an apology on my talk page please - I'm owed at least that. Odd nature 19:40, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Have you even bothered to read the conversation, before issuing threats? There were four people in support of one version, two (last I checked) who said they didn't see the difference, and one who was going on about leftwing journalists and Bill Clinton who wanted to change the page because he didn't trust the sources. And you issue threats for that sort of nonsense? Guettarda 20:41, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

You blocked ON for reverting to the version that had 4:1 support? Seriously? You do know that we work on the basis on consensus, right? Guettarda 20:45, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Why the desperate rush to unprotect? You've breenged into this, giving a completely inadequate notice of your intentions before blocking a productive editor, and now can't wait a day to get consensus on the talk page? I strongly recommend leaving the template protected for now, and trying to get a proper agreement on the contentious issue. If there are any other edits requested, they can be flagged up on the talk page and the edits made by an admin or the template temporarily unblocked, in the usual way. ... dave souza, talk 21:54, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
I could ask the converse question - why the rush to protect the page without discussing it first? I hope my posts on the talk page and WP:AN made it clear I was watching the template page closely. In any case, I think that the editors who were participating in the edit war will avoid extending it, and my announcement on WP:AN may have stirred some new blood to take a look at the template, which hopefully will help resolve the lingering BLP issues. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:03, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
So you blocked me to make a point? And I can't believe I'm reading you'd rather block others than protect a page. Talk about draconian and heavy handed. At least Dave souza is following existing policy, which is more than I can say for you. Odd nature 22:55, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
No, I did not block you to make a point. I blocked you because edit wars are disruptive to the project, and WP:BLOCK authorizes admins to block for disruptive editing. This is perfectly well established policy. There is no requirement to protect pages, and it is increasingly common for admins to not fully protect pages repeatedly, and instead deal directly with the disruptive editing that might lead to protection. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:10, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
Really? You didn't block to make a point? What then - to punish him for disobeying you? Guettarda 02:29, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
For an example from today of another admin warning people he will not reprotect the page, see Talk:Tsinghua_University#Protected. The situation there is a little different than the Dominionism template, but the overall admin response is similar. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:20, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
Maybe you have forgotten what adminship is. It's a few extra tools given to a trusted user, under the assumption that he or she won't abuse them. It gives no special authority to rule in disputes, it given no special authority to invent new rules. The example you cited bears no resemblance to this issue - it's two editors fighting about some trivia, not a single editor editing against consensus (and policy). Eagle oversteps his "authority" there, but it's nothing like what you did. Adminship is a privilege - you should know better than to treat it like a toy. Guettarda 02:37, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

One edit in three days is not disruptive. On the other hand, threatening editors, blocking productive editors, inventing new rules on the fly - that is disrupting the project. I had a little while, logged in to work on an article...and I found your nonsense. I'd say your decision to waste everyone's time, to engage in threats, that's disruption. Odd Nature is a top class, highly productive editor. You seem to be trying to drive him out of the project. I'd call that disruptive. I'd call that hurting the project. Editing against consensus (and NPOV) is disruptive. Reverting edits like that isn't. We're here to write an encyclopaedia, not to build a better bureaucracy. Stop pretending it's the other way around. Guettarda 02:28, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

Blocking editors for edit warring is perfectly established policy (see WP:BLOCK); I am not inventing anything new. There is no exception that allows edit warring if you think your version is the right one. Since you were one of the editors edit warring on the Dominionism template, I take your opinions about the matter with a gain of salt.
I'm not trying to drive anyone out of the project, and I didn't expect that anyone would read a warning that edit warring would result in being blocked and respond by continuing to edit war. In the future, I hope that everyone will realize that it is acceptable to block users for edit warring, and that warnings about edit warring therefore should be discussed before the reverting starts again. The root of the matter is that edit warring is fundamentally disruptive to the project. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:53, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Carl, you've made a hole and surely it's time to stop digging. I really don't understand why you can't accept that Odd Nature thought, in good faith, that he was not edit warring and was complying fully with your messages, and give him your apology on that basis. In case you think the same approach is useful in future, you might find it instructive to study Talk:Tsinghua_University#Protected, where the admin concerned protected the page briefly and was at least reasonably explicit that s/he would treat 1RR (not 0RR) violations as disruption, and "remove the ability to edit this page from those responsible for the disruption". It's appreciated that you're not trying to drive anyone out of the project, but if your unusual and extreme interpretations of the unstated implications of guidelines and policies have that unintended effect, that's a lot more disruptive than this slow "edit war" was. ... dave souza, talk 08:27, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Carl, no. The blocking policy allows for blocking for disruption. Edit warring can be an instance of disruption. When someone insists on inserting their own opinion into an article, is isn't disruptive to remove material which violates NPOV. However, nothing that ON, John or I did was nearly as disruptive as what you did. So please - if you want to block people for disrupting the project - block yourself. Stop rules lawyering, stop inventing crap, and start behaving like you're here to write an encyclopaedia. Guettarda 13:38, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Edit warring is by nature disruptive, since it hinders the discussion process that is necessary to develop consensus. Just like with 3RR, there is no exception that allows you to repeatedly revert others in a content dispute just because you have the majority on your side. The change you were edit warring about was not sufficiently clear to allow automatic reverting because of NPOV. I have no desire to argue about the rules, and would be glad to stop doing so, since I think I have explained the reasoning behind my actions clearly enough. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:52, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Of course the "reasoning" is suspect at best, flawed at worst. It looks to me like you Wikilawyered yourself into a corner and usurped power that does not belong to you. Has it ever occurred to you that when three editors with over 8 years of experience between them tell you that you're wrong, and you fail to even apprehend why the think you're wrong that you just might be being dense? &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 19:53, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
"Edit warring is by nature disruptive"[citation needed] No, it isn't "by its nature disruptive"...because it has no nature. How many reverts over what period of time equals an edit war? How out of line does it need to be to constitute an edit war? How much discussion does there need to be?
"Just like with 3RR, there is no exception" - really? Just like the 3RR? The 3RR has a defined set of parameters that were approved by the community. It was put to a vote, and the community accepted it. There was consensus, although not unanimity. There are people who fact, everyone who goes beyond 3 reverts rejects that consensus. So, by your definition of consensus, there's no 3RR, because there are people who still fight it.
"there is no exception that allows you to repeatedly revert others in a content dispute just because you have the majority on your side" - this isn't true. The 3RR does not apply to vandalism. The 3RR does not apply in the case of BLP issues (which is why there are people who use it in content disputes all the time). Editing against consensus is the problematic behaviour. Editing in support of consensus isn't.
"The change you were edit warring about was not sufficiently clear to allow automatic reverting because of NPOV" - yes, it was. Surely you don't believe that "Clinton is a rapist" is a valid argument?
"I have no desire to argue about the rules, and would be glad to stop doing so, since I think I have explained the reasoning behind my actions clearly enough". Yep - you have explained that you were blocking on the basis of the 0RR, no, wait, on the basis of an essay, no, wait, on the basis of disruption, no, wait, because of edit warring, no, wait... Your actions are disruptive and violate Wikipedia policy.
I'm curious when this "road to Damascus" conversion of yours came about anyway...I seem to remember you revert warring just last month, and using the edit summary rv - niether the fair use review nor the IFD showed consensus to keep these images. Take it to DRV, or find consensus, before inserting them. Why is it that back in September you were willing to edit war, and you were willing to use "lack of consensus" as justification for your edit warring? (When, in fact, you were the one editing against consensus). Guettarda 20:21, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Surely that was different. I await the "reason" why that was different, but I'm sure it'll be good. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:41, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Regarding my block of Odd nature, I have provided all the explanation I plan to provide. If you wish to pursue the matter further you are of course free to do so, and I will contribute as appropriate. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:02, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
I do believe that my edits on Intelligent design could have drawn a warning for edit warring, as could the edits that reverted mine. Had I received such a warning, I would have had the sense to stop before being blocked. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:48, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
Very well, and yet the issues I've raised have had squat to do with ON. You have simply refused to explain how either WP:EW or Disruption validate your personal 0RR policy. What do you fear? That there is no defense?
Given that you have repeatedly referred to WP:EW, it seems rather disengenuous to imply that you edit-warred and continued to edit-war because no one warned you. (BTW, the "but he did it too" defense is no defense at all). &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 19:15, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
Actually, I stopped reverting before anyone warned me. It's common for editors engaged in a discussion to want to change the page while the discussion is ongoing, and I am no exception to that. But if someone had pointed out that I should stop reverting, I would have paid attention. Mild edit warring (one or two reverts) is often tolerated, but there is no requirement for admins to look the other way. In the case of the dominionism template, the edit war had lasted for several weeks. If you fail to understand that anyone who reverts the same material repeatedly might be in danger of being blocked for edit warring after being warned, I would encourage you to avoid reverting very much. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:46, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Me thinks something is rotten in the State of Denmark...CBM wouldn't happen to be from Copenhagen, would he?--Filll 20:24, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Please avoid personal remarks. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:46, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
I apologize if this was taken as a personal attack. I did not mean it in that spirit. However, something seems wrong in this entire situation, which is what the expression "something rotten in the State of Denmark" means. There is something here

that seems wrong to me, however. Maybe I am not just understanding what is going on, but I am a bit suspicious. Sorry.--Filll 21:24, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

I hesitate to comment on this since I am not involved in the original dispute. Nevertheless, what is wrong with you people? Carl is an admin for whom I hold a great deal of respect, and he has patiently and kindly tried to respond to your requests for explanation. All I see is a bunch of rude people piling it on. He graciously admitted that he is not perfect, and you all try to throw it back in his face. So you have a disagreement. Big deal. People disagree all the time, and most of the time, they manage to do it without all the sarcasm and taunting. I wouldn't even get involved except that everyday I check my watchlist and I see more and more people entering into the thread just to throw this crap around. Get over it and move on. VectorPosse 20:50, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

I apologize and I do not mean any disrepect, but I do not think you have characterized the situation totally accuratedly, in my humble opinion.--Filll 21:24, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Another Re: withpermission Tags

I screencapped the latter image a long time ago (Dys silo0008.jpg). I also uploaded it a long time ago; I don't really remember much about what I uploaded it. I do know that I definitely didn't contact the developers about adding it to Wikipedia, and if I mistagged it, I apologize. If it needs to be changed to something else, go ahead. Perhaps I thought the "withpermission" tag meant that whoever screencapped it allowed it to be distributed? If I am in error, go ahead and change it to whatever it should be.ZenSaohu 21:25, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

You rock!

Thanks for cleaning up Wikipedia:Fair use review. What a miserable, thankless job. (Except for this message.) -- But|seriously|folks  21:37, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. I am hoping to find a way to make it easier to archive the stale reviews, perhaps by changing the page layout a little. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:46, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

1.0 bot work

Hi, Sorry I've been out of commission for the last week, I was away in France and the UK for almost a week. Just catching up on things. I'll be working on things tonight; I want to rearrange the pages and update them to make way for you.

I had a very interesting Wikimedia France meeting in Paris, and three things that may prove very useful:

  • We are hopeful that WM France will be setting up their own "toolserver" in Normandy, and this could eventually (next year?) be a home for your bot. It would be able to work on a live feed straight from the main Foundation servers, and be very fast compared to using your own server as a host.
  • A professor I met is very interested in this work, he wants his students to be able to help if possible. If you're willing to do this, he would have his students involved with the test work - maybe even analyzing the effect of tweaking the values of the numbers in the algorithm we use.
  • User:Kelson is also going to help us design the algorithm. Not only is he the main French WP1.0 coordinator, I understand he once won a computational competition for algorithm design, and he's a professional Perl programmer, so this could be very helpful.

I'll get in touch again later tonight. Once again, sorry for the absence. Walkerma 21:41, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

The results you got in your test look great! It looks as if you have already reached the same point as MartinBotII - well done! As for a place to discuss the algorithm, I'd suggest here, I'll ask Emmanuel (Kelson) to comment there too. I moved the page and tidied it up a bit, I'll do a bit more on that as I have time and energy. Walkerma 03:08, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
For the most basic version of the algorithm, see [[8]]. We still need to add in all the other factors for importance. Walkerma 03:10, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
OK, I've put in a "first draft" of an additive algorithm [[9]], could you take a look and give comments? I've also asked User:Kelson to look. Thanks, Walkerma 07:02, 29 October 2007 (UTC)


I can't see that the policy refers to location in the article in relation to "minimal" use. It is a good lead picture as being a strong modern image of a woman - most of the pictures, especially in the early part of the article, are "old master" works. Also the way you did it created white space in both the old and new locations. On the wider issue of the image, if you are concerned about it being used too many times, it might be better to upload other Kahlo images and use each once or twice in the various articles where a Kahlo image is to be expected. Johnbod 17:05, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Whether an image creates white space depends on your particular browser settings; different users will see white space in different places, and there is nothing that can be done about that. It seems strange to have two images, of different sizes, at the top of the article.
The issue with the image being used so many times is that very little commentary is being made about Kahlo in several of the articles. And the fair use rationales are no help for someone trying to understand why the images are used where they are, because the rationales are so vague.
The articles that do have commentary about Kahlo (Self portrait and her bio, for example) are certainly fine with the image. (I do think it should be moved down in the Self portrait article, but that's a different issue). On the other hand List of Latin American artists has no commentary whatsoever about anyone, so we can't use the image there. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:10, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
In my opinion the Kahlo image is most critical in the Bio, Self portrait, and the two historical overviews - History of painting and Western painting. List of Latin American artists, Women artists and the autoportrait article which has been eliminated are less critical. The fact that Kahlo is in the historical articles is important on a lot of levels partially because her image appears with some of the most important painters of the 20th century, with plenty of text, and her work holds up very well. I will be more specific in the use rationales, I think we are in agreement concerning article selection. It would be beneficial to have another image for the Diego Rivera article too. Modernist 17:33, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. I think we do mostly agree about article placement. The only thing I don't quite see yet is why the image needs to be in both of the History articles. There are a couple sentences about her in Western painting but only a small amount in History of painting. It's a close call for those two. The Bio and Self portrait articles are fine. I can also edit the rationales some to explain why how I have been convinced about the images. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:43, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
I appreciate your efforts Ty, I added a little text to the history articles, they cover a wide range of artists. - Modernist 19:40, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Godel's Theorem

You agreed with the deletion of the modern proof of the incompleteness theorem. This is probably because you did not read it carefully. The proof is complete and correct. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer them.Likebox 21:47, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

The proof is far from complete and far from correct. It is the sort of proof that I would expect from a confused undergraduate student in the logic class I am teaching. I left detailed comments on the article talk page. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:46, 2 November 2007 (UTC)

Computable Function

A computable function is the same as a computer program. Please do not make edits to important pages before discussing them.Likebox 21:55, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

A computer program is not at all a computable function. It's not literally the same - a function is a set of ordered pairs, while a program is a string of symbols. And it's not figuratively the same - a computer program runs on a computer, which cannot even store arbitrary natural numbers. Perhaps you mean that a Turing machine program is the same as a computable function. Even this is not right, because many Turing machines compute the same function. If you want to make a claim about things being the same, you will need to be precise enough that your claim is correct. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:48, 2 November 2007 (UTC)

Paper re Godel and a machine-based proof

If it's not too much of a bother could you email me a cc also? Thanks, Bill. (I'm still bugged by this whole thing. Turing's original first circle-testing proof is so different from the Davis "halting problem" proof. It didn't "quine" its own operating system, it tested numbers one after another until it hit its own number (same thing). Because it had to create a diagonal number for every successfully "non-circular" number, it had to "execute" its own code, thus causing it to start over and thereby "circle" (contrary to premise ... Q.E.D.). I want to double-check and be sure that these guys aren't re-inventing the wheel. Bill Wvbailey 13:57, 2 November 2007 (UTC)

Got it. Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 23:32, 4 November 2007 (UTC)


You commented on WP:AN last week concerning a proposed 0RR/1RR regime on the article Northern Cyprus, which is being disrupted by a SPA, User:3meandEr. I've posted a request for a block or community ban on this user at WP:AN/I#User:3meandEr and Northern Cyprus - your comments would be appreciated. -- ChrisO 11:21, 3 November 2007 (UTC)

Link to German username

I have registered de:User:CBM2. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:46, 5 November 2007 (UTC)


Hello CBM,
please send your real-name, your wikiname, your prefered login-name and the public part of your ssh-key to Zedler-admins.png. We plan to create your account soon then. --DaB. 16:47, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Halting problem

You claim that the CS definition of the problem is no good. It is referenced, it is accurate, and it is brief. It avoids the problem of defining the x,x business by quining, and it is not in any way original. I was hoping you could tell me what your complaints are.Likebox 19:50, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

BTW, the rewrite you gave is IMO not very satisfactory. It removed a complete proof and replaced with very vague language. Please discuss your changes.Likebox 20:05, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Hi, I'm really sorry for being suspicious that you are not real! I hope you are not offended. But please, read and understand the proof in its entirety before condemning it. I believe you are sincere in wanting the recursion theoretic proof, and of course that's fine. But this proof is coherent and correct, and can be understood by non-specialists. I understand the recursion theoretic proof, and it does have some points in its favor, but the main issue is Kleene's fixed point theorem.
This theorem is just a restatement of the "existence of Quines", but in an unnecessarily complicated language. There is absolutely no reason for the recursion theoretic language complications, and the proof I gave is a demonstration by example that everything can be just as precise without any Kleeneisms. I hope you take the time to think about it carefully, again, and I can assure you beyond any shadow of a doubt that it is precise and correct. Again, I am sorry for doubting your authenticity.Likebox 22:35, 5 November 2007 (UTC)
The recursion theorem says more than just quines exist. It says that any recursive operator has a fixed point. There is no way to get that directly from the fact that quines exist.
In the end, for your changes to remain you will need to convince people on the article talk pages that they are valid, not merely claim that they are and continue to revert. I have been working to compromise the wording, rather than just removing the ideas you are interested in. I encourage you to do the same. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:11, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Look, I sympathize with your position, but do not edit a proof you think is invalid. Think about it for a few days first. Your edits make it imprecise and vague, by reverting to very, very unfortunate recursion theory language, language that should have been retired decades ago. I worked hard to make it correct and precise.Likebox 23:52, 5 November 2007 (UTC)
I know that we disagree philosophically on what is central, the computer or the arithmetic. Just please, I implore you to read Godel's statements on the matter. He retired recursion theory entirely, because he felt it was superceded by Turing's work. I also know that you thought this proof was rubbish until a few hours ago. A few hours is not enough time to absorb a philosophical position you are not familiar with. I ask patience. I am sure that once you are comfortable with the philosophical position, you will feel no need to rewrite the proof.Likebox 23:58, 5 November 2007 (UTC)
I'm quite familiar with the area; I have a PhD in mathematical logic and work in computability and proof theory. Godel did believe that Turing's definition of computability was compelling. But he certainly did not retire "recursion theory" - and I'm not certain what you even mean by that. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:03, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
And I don't have a PhD in anything! Nor do I work in anything at all.Likebox 00:30, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
The fact that I have a PhD doesn't give me special authority on the wiki, but it does mean I am quite familiar with the subject area. There's no point in addressing comments to me about my lack of understanding of the content of the articles. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:32, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

(deindent) The fact that you have a PhD means that you think you know more. This is very annoying, because you clearly don't understand the computational proof yet. I can tell, because you keep editing it to be wrong or vague.

Actually, maybe you do understand it. I can't read your mind. Here's a test. Prove the following theorem: "There does not exist a computer program that can decide whether any other computer program runs in polynomial or exponential time on its input." You can't use Rice's theorem BTW.

The following text is copied from the talk page on GIT. It explains what I mean about Godel abandoning the recursion theory:

Copied Text

The following note in "Postscriptum", dated June 3, 1964, appears in Davis 1965:71-73. Here is where he utterly blows off recursion theory (Church 1936 and his own §9 General recursive functions) in favor of Turing 1936 and Post 1936:

"As for previous equivalent deifintions of computability, which, however, are much less suitable for our purpose, see A. Church, Am. J.. math, vol. 58(19360 pp. 356-358 (this anthology, [Davis 1965] pp. 100-102). One of those definitions is given in §9 of these lectures."

A skeptic might think he was sick of mind, but he repeats his assertion in a differnt way to van Heijenoort two years later (after working for months with van H on a new and better translation of his 1931):

"In consequence of later advances, in particular of the fact that due to A. M. Turing's work69 a precise and unquestionably adequate definition of the general notion of formal system70 can now be given, a completely general version of Theorems VI and XI is now possible.... "
" In my opinion the term "formal system" or "formalism" should never be used for anything but this notion.... I suggested certain transfinite generalizations of fomalisms, but these are something radically different from formal systems in the proper sense of the term, whose characteristic property is that reasoning in them, in principle, can be completely replaced by mechanical devices." (Gödel 1963, note at end of Gödel 1931 as appears in van Heijenoort 1967, 3rd printing 1972:616)

So yes, if you take the man at his word, he says the "proper" way to construct a formal system is with mechanical devices. Period. Bill Wvbailey 01:37, 15 October 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Likebox (talkcontribs) 2007-11-06T00:40:26

Wait, are you Wvbailey, or Likebox? Anyway, I don't think I know more. Trovatore, Arthur Rubin, and David Eppstein are all extremely knowledgeable in the area, and I would be willing to defer to them if you can convince them. I am certain they each know more than I do about various things.
I am likebox, copying a quote of Wvbailey. I know Trovatore, and Arthur Rubin, and whatnot, and I am sure that I understand this proof better than all of them put together. I came up with it. They didn't. End of story.Likebox 01:26, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
Regarding the Goedel quote, the point is that he is giving a definition the effectiveness condition that he would require of a formal system. At the time, it was not quite clear what it should mean to say that a formal system is effective (or, if effectiveness is part of the definition, to say what a formal system is). — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:53, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
This quote is from 1963 from when after the dust settled. He is annoyed that people don't just use modern computing to define formal systems, instead sticking with the outdated recursive definitions which make code obscure. I agree with this quote, but not from authority. Just because in this case I think he's right. He was wrong on other things. Look, I'll probably lose this fight, but I will fight until the very end, because I believe in the cause.Likebox 01:26, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
There's no need to fight anything to the end; people are quite willing to compromise. I should point out that a proof that only the author can understand isn't really a ... proof. When you have enough experienced people who say your proof is either wrong, vague, or otherwise needs improvement, you should consider the possibility they're right. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:33, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Re: John Marshall image

Please reply to the message I left on my talk page. Thanks. :) --Setanta 23:00, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Edit Warring

If you keep replacing a correct proof with a vague sketch, I will continue to war. I don't want to war, but your rewrites are not acceptable in any way, and the current text, due to me, is complete and correct.

I can't believe this. I gave Wikipedia the gift of a book proof of Godel's theorem, and instead of thank you, I get edit warring! Do you understand how galling that is? Please bring in some neutral parties.Likebox 06:35, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Edit Warring

I know it is discouraged, but I really believe that you are obfuscating clear and correct proofs for no reason. You have reverted the clear quine proof of halting to the slightly less clear f(i,i) proof three times, with no reason.

There is no reason not to have both proofs, as I had in my rewrite. I would prefer to come to an agreement too, but the two proofs are slightly different. They are only equivalent if you understand the fixed-point theorem, which is not a given for a reader of this page. I can't stomach the idea that the halting problem will only be proved for programs with an input. That's ridiculous! In this day and age. When the proof for a program with no input just requires a quine.Likebox 01:21, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

We can talk about that. I have pointed out on the talk page why I would not call your program a quine. I would need to think about whether there is a way to do it with no inputs without the recursion theorem. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:22, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
You need the fixed point theorem. But you're right. I was usin "quine" in the more general sense of a program with a subroutine that prints out all the code, and then goes on to do something else. That's why I called it a lemma. Please, I am sick of this fighting. I am sincere, and so are you. We should be able to agree. I'm going home.Likebox 01:29, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
I also think we should be able to agree on some compromise language for the articles. Nobody has said that the ideas you are advocating shouldn't be in the articles. The objections seem only to relate to the wording. There is a message somewhere that encourages you not to contribute unless you are willing to see your text mercilessly changed by others. You can't expect that just because you prefer a certain wording, everyone else will also like it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:52, 6 November 2007 (UTC)
But I can expect that a person who edits "Godel's Incompleteness Theorem" actually understands a little mathematics.Likebox 00:14, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

List of basic mathematics topics

There is no style guideline, the project is basically a being driven by The Transhumanist. See a thread I've started at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Lists of basic topics#Overlap with portals and other concerns for a few of the concerns that have been raised. --Quiddity 01:26, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

The style guideline is Wikipedia:Lists and its relevant subpages. The format I've been using is in the template:BLT, but that just provides a starting point. Instructions are included on the template. The template provides a rudimentary outline structure (headings that are common to most subjects), but the section "basic concepts in" is just a catch-all for anything not yet covered in the rest of the list's sections. It's best to replace that section with further headings/subheadings that identify their contents. The general order of sections is "essence" first, followed by branches, followed by history, followed by the main body of topics, followed by participants in the field, followed by reference aids. The goal is to present the material in the most easily understandable way, so if another order works better, by all means use that way instead.
Two main issues that are still being worked out are:
  1. The scope of a basic list (that is, the meaning of the term "basic"). This is a slight problem with respect to list of basic mathematics topics because the term "basic mathematics" is an idiom that has a different connotation than the terms have as used in the basic topics department, in which "basic" means "introductory level" for that subject, and calculus isn't an introductory-level mathematics subject, even though it comprises part of "basic mathematics" as the term is used in the field. Note that knowing what the main branches of a subject are may be basic, even if the contents of the branches are not. For example, in an introductory-level course on mathematics, a teacher may mention that calculus is a branch of mathematics, but wouldn't then jump right into teaching you calculus. Further detail on the branches isn't appropriate on the page unless they're introductory in relation to the subject presented in the list page's title. As for what comprises "introductory level" with respect to the subject at hand is a matter of whatever the sources out there verify as such.
  2. The sourcing required on such a list. Being a table-of-contents-like navigation aid similar to categories, I feel that sources are not as important on this type of page. For sources verifying that a thing is the type of thing presented (for example, that a plateau is a land form as represented on the List of basic geography topics), the primary responsibility should reside with the article on land forms, or the one on plateaus, and not with a table of contents page. Once Wikipedia is entirely sourced, the lists will all point to sourced material, and citations would be entirely redundant (and if still deemed necessary, could simply be copied from the pages they point to). It's a gray area. However, to become a featured list, sources are definitely required as per the requirements of the WP:FLC department.
These issues have been discussed at Wikipedia:Featured list candidates/List of basic geography topics/archive1 and Wikipedia:Featured list candidates/List of basic geography topics, and at Talk:Lists of basic topics. The current location for discussion on these issues is at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Lists of basic topics.
I hope this helps. If you have any more questions, or need help, please let me know. Sincerely, The Transhumanist    01:24, 7 November 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. I was mostly wondering about the "essence" part. It seems somewhat romantic to talk about the "essence" of mathematical logic, etc. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:03, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

Non free image, editprotected

Thanks for removing the image per editrequested request. On the same page you just removed an image, could you remove the image of Edward Brongersma aswell, per same rationale? (same licence, same issues). There has been no discussion to establish consensus over it, but the rationale and circumstance are identical. Martijn Hoekstra 16:38, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

I would prefer it if you would leave a comment on the talk page for a day or so; it's very painful to find out that something that seems uncontroversial actually is. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:40, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Aye, I can imagine, I'll do that then. Martijn Hoekstra 16:42, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Get (Conflict)

Hi, I suppose I could have tried to "discuss" these changes with Sagbliss, but she's been banned from Wikipedia for harassment on talk pages and by e-mail and making legal threats. The article was protected to stop an edit war that she was at the heart of. To be honest, I don't really care that much to make further improvements to this article and was just following the guidelines set out by the edit protection banner. It's enough to leave it as it is at this point. 18:40, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Mediation on Battle of Jenin

I'd be very happy to have an uninvolved person mediate this article, and I suspect many others would want the same. But nobody has yet created the Sandbox page you've suggested - do you know what you think should be in there? PRtalk 15:04, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

Margaret Sanger

Hi, could you possibly protect Margaret Sanger again? It's being vandalized by User Thanks! MFNickster 19:25, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

Math project page

I left another comment there about not disrupting the DRV. The reason I didn't archive the discussion myself is that some editors there are very firm about our social convention of not prematurely closing discussions. But the project as a whole is very professional and collegial, and I am confident they will refrain from any more "political" discussions. Mostly that was one disgruntled editor who has been advised not to continue by several people including me. I hope you will accept this as a compromise instead of continuing to archive the page, which will only lead to continued arguments from editors who feel discussions should be allowed to continue as long as they are not disruptive. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:16, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

No problem. I've commented to this at User talk:Paul August, as well. (Noting, of course, that others have considered it disruptive...) - jc37 16:22, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
We need to be mindful of those concerns, while not being so inclusive in the definition of disruption that all discussion is considered disruptive. I have worked with the math project for a long time, and it is overall a more civil and professional environment than the rest of the wiki. This situation seems to be mostly because a newish editor didn't meet our social norms. You can see that several other people pointed out on WT:WPM the importance of being calm and deliberate, or were only interested in how to move forward. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:31, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
I agree (and had noted that on the user's talk page as well). However, I felt that continuing the discussion in the face of such concerns would be a bad idea. That said, I have no problem deferring to your take on this (I liked your comment on that page). Anyway, hope you're having a great day : ) - jc37 16:39, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Perplexed about formal systems, wffs, and halting

Hi. I'm puzzled, and maybe you can correct my thinking: As a designer of a formal system, aren't I am free to define what is considered to be a "wff" (aka "proof" where the last "line of code" is the "theorem")? Given that, can't I specify that every wff contains one and only one HALT, this must occur at the end of the proof, and be the last line "executed". Now, I know that the "halting problem" is undecidable, so in general my wffs (aka proofs with last line HALT) are undecidable. Correct? (I used a similar device at Talk:Division by zero to demonstrate how the "proof" divide hangs up in an inescapable loop of infinitely repeated subtractions of divisor 0 from dividend 6, so it never reaches the HALT step or any other extension).

If this reasoning is correct, then trying to demonstrate "the undecidability of the consistency of a formal system" by use of the halting proof as a premise feels like begging the question. Plus the reasoning in above paragraph is so trivial, it must be flawed. What am I missing here? Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 17:43, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

I think this can be resolved by clarifying the definitions. In the most abstract sense, you could define 'wff' to be any particular type of string, but in Goedel's theorem the wffs are by definition well formed formulas of arithmetic. Also, in the most abstract sense, you could define a 'proof' to be any particular type of sequence of 'wff's, but in Goedel's theorem a proof means a proof using the ordinary deductive system for first order logic.
So although you could get some sort of 'incompleteness' using a special definition of 'wff' and a special definition of 'proof', Goedel's theorem is better because it uses the standard definition of wff and the standard definition of proof, and the standard language of arithmetic. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:52, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

I agree that Goedel's proof is better (more interesting, more convincing). Which is, I suppose, my point. I have a increasing concern that an attempt to assert the "Halting proof" as a premise, and then demonstrate "undecidability of consistency of a system" in a formal system that consists of an abstract machine, is so fraught with question-begging that such efforts should be discouraged. Plus it's a pedagogical cheat. The student doesn't learn anything. As you said: "Goedel's proof is hard." The student has to march through the details. I observed on Likebox's talk-page that CeilingCrash may be arriving at same kind of the trivial "proof" that I posted above. Bill Wvbailey 18:10, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Here is what I think you are saying; let me know if I am misunderstanding you.
It would be possible to define a 'wff' to mean a complete computation state of a Turing machine, including the current machine state, the head position, and the tape contents on the region that has been scanned, except that a pair of natural numbers is also considered a wff. Then we can define a 'proof' to consist of a sequence of states, starting with an initial configuration and ending with a halting configuration, followed by the pair of natural numbers giving the original machine and its initial input. This is a perfectly legal definition of an effective formal system, because the set of wffs and the set of proofs are deciadable. But a pair (e, i) is provable in this system if and only if machine e halts on input i; so the set of provable wffs is not decidable.
That would be correct, but it would not prove Goedel's theorem, because you have to completely redefine the formal system and notion of proof, while Goedel's result uses their normal meanings in terms of theories of arithmetic. Also, the proof I sketch above is in terms of decidability, and Goedel's theorem is about unprovability. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:15, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

In the first paragraph you scored a direct hit on where I fouled up: the notion of a computation as, (as Gurevich stated the same notion in one of his papers, an evolution of), the "complete computational state". Yes, the computation-as-wff must include all the various "memory" (tape, registers, etc) involved in the computation. My original notion above was to just consider the "program" as the wff, not the "complete computational state" as the wff. Now I have to go away and think some more about proofs vs computations. What you wrote really helped. Thanks! Bill Wvbailey 22:53, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

A very useful general purpose bot activity: would Veblenbot be interested?

Hi Carl - many thanks for posting my RfA at WT:WPM. I'm here on another mission however.

I believe it would be extremely useful to have a general purpose bot which keeps track of articles in a particular category. The types of category I have in mind are Wikipedia maintenance categories, rather than genuine article categories, but there may be some use for the latter. For maintenance, the key problem with categories is that they don't provide information about when an article was (most recently) added. Also, there are limitations on what one can do when listing the articles in a category.

So I would really like it if there were a bot for listing articles in categories with dates. A category could subscribe to this process much as talk pages subscribe to automatic archiving, by linking to a particular page or transcluding a particular template with a name like {{listify this}}. For each category X which links/transcludes to this, the bot would keep track of articles in the category on a regular basis (maybe once or twice a day), probably in a subpage of the form [[User:VeblenBot/Category/X]]. This subpage would contain a list of templates, one per article, of the form {{category X format|name = ArticleName|date = DateAdded}}, probably sorted by date.

This would be extremely useful, because the template {{category X format}} can be defined to format the information, and then the subpage [[User:VeblenBot/Category/X]] could be transcluded anywhere to provide a formatted list of articles in the category, together with the date when they were most recently added.

I am asking you, because it seems to me that this is the kind of activity that VeblenBot (i.e., your code) is good at. There is some extra programming required to keep track of the articles in the category and hence date them, and also I expect some care is needed to ensure the bot is not asked to listify really large categories. Would you be interested in developing something like this? Geometry guy 19:48, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

This is the sort of thing that can be done much more efficiently with the toolserver, which is a server where coders can directly access a copy of some parts of the wikipedia database. In particular, it is possible to query the contents of a category and get the timestamps for when articles were placed there. One such tool is at [10]. I just obtained an account on toolserver, so I could write a script to do something similar with different output. That would be much more efficient than having a bot generate lots of index pages. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:21, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
I knew that asking you would be a good idea! As you may remember, I'm quite keen on separating form and content. Could this approach still do that, e.g., provide the output in template form, so that the templates could drive the formatting? Geometry guy 20:30, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Sure, the script could even output the wiki code and you could copy it into a page on the wiki, a process that could be automated for categories for which you want to have automatically updated information. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:34, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Great! The kind of thing I have in mind (probably you know or can guess) is automating the listing of articles at pages like WP:GA and WP:GAN. At the moment this is a colossal waste of editor time. I've already raised the issue at WP:GAN and received general support, but the idea really needs to be demonstrated. I think that Peer Review might be a good place to try it: there have been discussions about this at Wikipedia:Content review/workshop. We also want to adapt something like GimmeBot to automate archiving, but this is a more server-intensive activity, so I would guess it is not along the lines of your interests, although I would be delighted to be proved wrong. Anyway, if you would like to comment at the workshop, that would be most welcome. Geometry guy 20:54, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
(e/c) Here is a very very rough alpha version: [11]. I have just got an account, so I don't have a proper library in place. Part of the goal of toolserver is that the script should be usable by all wikimedia projects in all languages. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:57, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Toolserver is clearly a great step forward. Could we demonstrate it on Category:Requests for peer review? (Unfortunately, this is about 230 articles right now, because all peer reviews are gathered together: the plan is to split them into categories.) I'd be happy (probably tomorrow) to code the template, and make a demo subpage of WP:PR to transclude the information, although it is not yet clear to me how the latter is done. Geometry guy 21:30, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Just type 'Requests for peer review' into the box; this link will do that for you [12]. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:32, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Brilliant! Okay so now it is only necessary to automate the process of copying this output to a page on Wikipedia. Would you/VeblenBot be interested? Or is there still an easier way which I am missing (sorry to be slow). Geometry guy 21:46, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Yes, VeblenBot can do that. I need to improve the toolserver script some first. It needs to be able to output in a bot-friendly format. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:03, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I see that: for one thing the script needs to distinguish articles in different namespaces so that the bot can select only those in a particular space (e.g. Talk, for the applications I have in mind), although I imagine that the selection could also be done at the script level. Anyway, I leave that to you for now. Thanks again. Geometry guy 23:20, 9 November 2007 (UTC)


Hi Carl. The Template:Dominionism TfD, on which you commented, has been closed with no consensus (default to keep). Although the TfD debate touched on several issues regarding the form the infobox should now take, much seems unresolved. I invite you to participate in further discussion on this topic. Thank you. --BlueMoonlet (t/c) 05:23, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Starting work on Selection Bot?

Hi, glad to see that the Toolserver account went through nicely. I'll be around this weekend, if you are starting tests with the new selection bot. I see that G-Guy has also been recruiting your help (above), and that's another worthy cause, so if you're being kept too busy I understand. Let me know what you'd like me to do to help. Thanks, Walkerma 06:18, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for following up on this. The first order of business for me was to get a Perl framework written for connecting to the databases. I have a rough framework in place as of this morning. The project Geometry Guy asked for is a good test case as it is extremely simple code once the database connection is made. I am also just getting familiar with the database layout and with the information available on the toolserver database replicas.
One downside of the German toolserver that I did not anticipate is that it is extremely busy; I have yet to see how much effect this has on the script.
I'm going to work on the framework some this morning, and from there I'll be able to start working on the rating script. — Carl (CBM · talk) 11:45, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Richard's paradox article & Hilbert-style proof system article

I.M.H.O. this article is abysmal. Would you or someone you know be willing to look at it and render an opinion? On the talk page you will see where I typed in Richard's actual letter that appears in van Heijenoort. Tonight some poor soul tried to type in a "warning" (now reverted) that the article doesn't present the actual paradox (it's just a few words, but there may be copyright issues...), never mind they were absolutely correct -- the paradox is nowhere to be found. If necessary I'll locate the damn thing in the original and translate it myself so there isn't a copyright issue. The paradox deserves better than this article. Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 01:03, 10 November 2007 (UTC)


Is it just me, or is the Hilbert-style deduction system incomprehensible? I tagged it on the talk page. I came to the article with the honest intent of trying to figure out why a "computation" and a "proof" are different notions. The article did not help, to say the least. (I am not convinced they are different, at this point. There's also a confusion about "algebras" as symbol-manipulation schemes vs "evaluations of formulas" in computations). It's strange, but Suppes 1957 (Dover Introduction to Logic just sort of jumps into the notion of "proof" without a definition, as if it is just obvious. Tarski 1945, 1961 (Dover 1999) Introduction to Logic is doing much better, cf his chapter VI p. 117 "On the Deductive Method". It would seem that "proof" (at least this axiomatic type), is identical to a "deductive method".

I found something interesting about abstract computational machines: to cause the state transition, their "code" (TABLEs of instructions) use (the equivalent of) the "CASE operator" (connective) "IF (c=criterion) THEN step "b") AND IF NOT-(c=criterion) THEN step "a")". This is clearly deductive in nature. Ergo at least in this regard a "computation" (evolution of the state) is a deduction, and if "proof" = "deduction" then "computation" = "proof".

Thoughts? Thanks, Bill Wvbailey 16:51, 11 November 2007 (UTC)

Fellowship of Friends

I noticed you edited the Fellowship of Friends article in the past. There is an issue with Conflict of Interest (COI) at the moment and the article has been stubbed and protected and I thought that it would be nice if you could voice your opinion on the Talk page. If you are too busy, that's OK. Thank you in advance. Love-in-ark 00:12, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Edit wars / abuse of process

There is a process for createing new policy. It is slow inefficent and the odds of anything passing it are effectively zilch. From my POV that means it works beautifully.Geni 22:34, 12 November 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for taking care of most of the pages at User:ST47/OCT, including some of the more complex ones (e.g. hist-merging Category talk:Comic book characters created from television). Cheers, Black Falcon (Talk) 22:52, 12 November 2007 (UTC)


Hi Carl, thanks for the updated references. I've started to feed the database. There are some 6.000 reference tags, I guess 5.000 of which are effectively different. So it will take a while to do this. I'll get back to the Wikiproject when this is done. Regards, Jakob.scholbach 16:53, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Automatic updating of categories

The automation of peer review looks like it will work well: could you ask the lovely VeblenBot to update the /C/Requests for peer review subpage daily? Dr Kiernan has been fixing it in the meanwhile, but I have advised him that edits will be overwritten once the automation is active. Geometry guy 19:04, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

OK, I set it to upload 20 minutes past each hour. I ran into an unexpected issue - the database on toolserver is down right now. So I added code to skip the update when that happens. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:29, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, I understand that issues like this can arise! Do you mean that VeblenBot is updating the subpage each hour, or just querying the category each hour and updating if there is a change? Geometry guy 22:33, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
It is checking every hour, but there will only be an update on the wiki if the information changes. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:22, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Structures for typed and higher-order languages

Hello Carl, thanks for teaching me a few things about Wikipedia. I really appreciate it.

I know next to nothing about typed or higher-order logic, and so I am somewhat puzzled by the second sentence in structure (mathematical logic). I thought that the concept of a structure, being semantic, was always the same. But now your formulation makes me suspect that some people consider more general structures in which there might be, for example, a symbol for a subset of the powerset of the universe. Is this what you meant? Or should it be "but structures are also important for typed and higher-order languages"? --Hans Adler 00:28, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

That sentence was just meant to allude to the sections below on many-sorted first order logic and on higher-order logic and type theory.
In higher order logic, in addition to the basic set of objects, there are extra sorts of variables that range over sets of objects, sets of sets, functions from objects to sets of objects, etc. There are variables for each of these types. The syntax is modified so that terms can be formed by applying a function variable to a term of the appropriate type. Set membership is now a logical symbol like equality. And any type of variable can be quantified. So a structure for this sort of language would need to include not only a set of objects, but for each type of variable a set of the appropriate type of objects for the quantifiers on that type to range over. This sort of thing can be simulated in first-order logic, at the small cost of introducing a lot of 'function application' symbols. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:10, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the clarification. I think the new wording is much clearer. --Hans Adler 09:49, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Nicolaus Copernicus

As you unprotected Nicolaus Copernicus [13], I expect you to watch that article, and take part in reverting vandalism, too. -- Matthead discuß!     O       02:27, 14 November 2007 (UTC)


The question is one of form vs. substance. To use your example, in constructing free groups, we begin with the semigroup of forms and then mod out by an equivalence relation to obtain the substance -- a free group on n generators. If you view a polynomial as a form, then you are correct, but if we mod out by an equivalence relation, then my view is correct: (x squared plus 1) squared divided by (x squared plus one) IS in the ring of polynomials.

Rick Norwood 13:14, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Hilbert-style deduction system

Dear CBM,

Thank You very much for Your attention to Hilbert-style deduction system. I have been long working on a complete rewrite. The main ideas I could collect till now are:

  • another axiomatization (based on another literature), which is better to understand, e.g. because it resembles more to natural deduction (truth functions axiomatized in a style where "weak enogh to" and "strong enoght to" pairs of axioms describe them in an intuitive way)
  • the "stratification" of the whole machinery must be explained in a clear and introductory way, possibly with use of pictures. How we proceed from formation rules through the instantiation of axiom schemes, then "closing them" with universal quantifiers, then "pouring them into the funnel of" "machine of deduction". All in a correct, but also in a illustrative way.
  • Most approaches rely on extension by definitions: we provide axioms for implication, negation, then the other truth functions are only mentioned: they can be defined. This is not illustrative enough. As in natural deduction, even conjunction and disjunction can be axiomatized "from scratch".

My work from a complete rewrite can be seen in a subpage User:Physis/Hilbert-style deduction system. It is still incomplete (in fact, I wanted to work on it one more week before mentioning it at all), but the main ideas are beginning already taking shape. I am not sure if people will like it, that's why I only wrote it on a subpage, so that it can be discussed separately from the existing article. I am interested in any opinions.

Best wishes,

Physis 16:00, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

I totally agree with the second point above. On point 3 I'd rather see an approach that avoids a propositional logic based purely on implication and negation, or on peculiar symbols i.e. stick to { 0, ~ (or bent bar), & (∧), ∨, →, "successor", =(predicate identity), (, ), ∀, perhaps +, * }. For example in his 1934 Goedel added a whole bunch more primitive symbols to his 1931; he added { ≡ (logical equivalence, he used ≡ rather than ↔ or ⇔ but these are less likely to be confused with =), & (he used &), ∃, ε (mu operator), f(x) } just to make his presentation easier. (As previously noted) I like Kleene 1952's and Hilbert's 1927 presentations (said another way: I understood them because I didn't have to learn a bunch of new symbols and wade through peculiar-looking formulas). Bill Wvbailey 17:28, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

re: Obama image

Thanks for letting me know. For the record, I disregarded the speedy tag placed by the IP and made my own judgment based on my knowledge of policy and the FUR discussion. I concur with RG2 that since this is not an iconic image, and it is possible to find free images of Obama, there is no fair use case. Additionally, the requirement for using a news agency photo under WP:NPC is that the image itself is the subject of critical commentary. In the case of Obama, the image is not discussed, only the event it depicts. There is a subtle but crucial difference. I maintain that the image should be deleted. I will not re-delete it, but I would appreciate your reconsidering your action. --Spike Wilbury talk 22:33, 14 November 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for the input on that image - didn't think that the portion of the "arrow" would affect copyright issues (although it does make an ugly pic!) I've added fair use & took it out of review. Thanks! SkierRMH 01:49, 15 November 2007 (UTC)


Keep your comments on my talk page to the essential minimum.Likebox 01:51, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

I try to keep all my comments to a minimum, but I'll be extra discrete in leaving comments there. I do reserve the right to contact you with things I feel are important to share with you. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:53, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
You are a programmer? Look, maybe I was hasty and paranoid in this whole thing. I try to be reasonable, but maybe I wasn't. I don't know. I am full of self-doubt on all these political questions, because I am not too good politically. The internet is not the best medium for communication with strangers with which you have differences of opinion. Compromise. How do you do that again?
My central issue is that I think Godel's theorem (and all of recursion theory) is much too profound to hide in jargon obscurity. Everyone needs to have a good exposition, and by that I mean not only specialists, but other mathematicians, scientists, programmers and laypeople. The presentation I gave is honest-to-god mostly understandable by lay-people without any other resource. I tested it. They might not understand the subtleties of omega-consistency, but they understand quining, and they understand SPITEing. That's the reason I keep on insisting on the perhaps ideosyncratic and convoluted-seeming language with explicit programs. Both because that's how I understand it, and also because it's the easiest way for a layperson to follow the proof.
The language that I am using for Godel's theorem is not standard, but Wikipedia has a complementary goal of wide dissemination of knowledge. It is not just a compendium for standard expositions. If you have something accessible, even if a small audience has a standard language for it, it is good to share the accessible language. I don't want to overwrite your exposition, because in hindsight, you are presenting Kleene's proof which was absent in the previous version and really needed to be there. It didn't occur to me that no-one other than you put a standard recursion theoretic proof. I just skipped over all the other sections. What was I thinking. Of course your presentation needs to stay.
But it would be nice if there could be a lay-accessible proof, in addition to your discussion. But there might be a little overlap. It wouldn't be too bad. Perhaps it could be titled, "Formulation With Explicit Programs"?
Part of the problem is that whenever I present the exposition to lay-people, I am around to explain things that are unclear. It might be that the presentation is opaque to people that I am not explaining things to. But I feel very strongly that somewhere close to this exposition is a short and clear explanation that is 100% precise and that everyone can follow. I think a little tweaking by others would make it completely accessible.
The important thing to understand is that this theorem is not the exclusive property of mathematics. It is a central result in philosophy, religion, biology, sociology. I think that it is impossible to overstate the importance of Godel's proof, or of the fields that sprouted from it. I do this out of respect for the greatness of the result. I really, really want people to understand.
But perhaps it was a little idiotic of me to think that other people want others to not understand?
I also would like to prove Rosser and Rice along the way to Godel, since it's no more work (if you accept the computational stuff). So let me try to not replace your discussion, but complement it. The idea is that a (short) quine/spite discussion can complement the K/halt discussion. Would that be ok?Likebox 04:08, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
Let me know what you think. I put a slightly copy-edited version of your presentation (I didn't read it fairly. I'm sorry.) along with the explicit construction on the page where I keep the draft. Hope you like it.Likebox 05:17, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
I really didn't know you were a programmer. I just assumed in a knee-jerk way that the people who would have problem with this proof would be non-programmers who would think it is not a valid proof. Wow, I misjudged.Likebox 06:29, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
I don't know whether I butchered your prose or not. I tried to just edit for clarity. I think I kept everything ok and to your intention. I don't know. If you like it, you can put it in.Likebox 19:55, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
If you do not comment, I will take it that you like the compromise. Good!Likebox 02:22, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
I apologize; I haven't read the version on your user page. I'm mostly interested in the actual articles, not particularly in arguments about politics, the nature of proof, or extra expositions in your user space. I have plenty I want to do elsewhere on WP and in real life, so I have been trying to reduce the quantity of my comments on these issues. If you don't hear from me, you shouldn't assume anything. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:28, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
Ok, sorry. Your exposition was actually good when I read it. I have stuff to do to outside of Wiki too. I really hope this can be set right, even though I made some regrettable statements.Likebox 23:41, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

Three approaches to Hilbert calculi

Dear Carl,

Thank You for Your reply, and Your work. I have now updated the image, replaced "axiom schemata" to "axiom schemes", as You suggested. I can send the native source of the image,so that You can easily update or develop any time.

Thank You also for Your explanation: what the motivation is for avoiding the style natural deduction follows. It is easier to prove metatheorems this way -- I have not thought of that yet. In fact, I am very inexperienced in mathematical logic (I work in functional programming, using Haskell), thank You for explaining motivations behind the styles, and also for rewriting the article.

I have learned three approaches to Hibert-style calculus. I have written them to the talk page of the article.

Best wishes

Physis 14:01, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

Structure (mathematical logic) marked for deletion

Hello Carl, no, I wasn't going to rename the article (yet), although it might make sense to rename it to structures (model theory), because that could be easier for universal algebra people to identify with. What happened was that I started a new version in my user space before reading somewhere that we are not supposed to do this. Now I know one reason why it's not a good idea: I copied the new text into the article, did some research because I wanted the page with my draft deleted, and — requested deletion of Structure (mathematical logic) instead of User:Hans_Adler/Model_theory_and_universal_algebra/Structure! Fortunately I realized immediately what I had done. Sorry, too many tabs open, and it was already past midnight... --Hans Adler 00:59, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Sandbox/World's Longest Poem

Hi. I see you deleted this a few months ago as CSD criteria: "housekeeping". However, "housekeeping" is meant for uncontroversial cleanup like page moves, redirects, etc. This would mean that that the poem still exists, otherwise I don't see how it is housekeeping. Is the poem still existing somewhere, or has it been completely deleted? If it's the former, where is it? If it's the latter, why would it be housekeeping? I'll try to dig deeper using Special:Search, and perhaps come back here later. I haven't checked if there are discussions about this, so I'll go check. Thanks. ~AH1(TCU) 01:00, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

The sandbox is intended for test edits. Deleting unused subpages of the sandbox is housekeeping. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:03, 16 November 2007 (UTC)
Hi. I see that, but I'm wondering why there was no discussion at all on this. Obviously, many, many people have worked on this, and the loss of interest for several days could have been from lack of awareness or temporary. Was the stoppage of editage sudden or gradual? Had the page been not edited for that long before? Maybe people were busy on summer vacation? Perhaps the Sandbox/ was to allow more people to edit and experiment with it? Apparenly some people were even warned for everly experimenting with the page. Usually the only time when someone might be warned due to a sandbox edit is if the user acted in an objectionable behaviour or if the heading was removed, or perhaps the bot thought that Wikipedia_talk:Sandbox was an actual talkpage. I see that the archived discussion is very long, with many suggestions, amny people contributing. Is a permanent sandbox poem against policy? If this was an actual world record attempt, how come it was taken down so easily? People were discussing that we were 1% there...2% there...then everything was gone? Should the poem perhaps have been on another wiki? What about a non-sandbox Wikipedia site? Would that have gained enough attention for a world record attempt? Are all sandbox subpages, if any, subject to deletion withought prior notice? I'd think the deletion was unexpected for the people working on it, especially the newcomers. Are all areas of the sandbox temporary and subject to speedy deleting other than the main sandbox pages and templates? Also, while we're at it, what happened to using red for speedies at AfD's? Thanks. ~AH1(TCU) 01:20, 16 November 2007 (UTC)
The page had not been edited for three months when it was deleted. I would have also deleted the talk archive but I missed that. The entire point of the sandbox is that it is for temporary, test edits, not for long-term projects. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:30, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

Three revert rule and exceptions for user space

Can I direct your attention to WT:3RR? The exception for user space has in fact been in the three revert rule policy since 14 June 2005, and is not a new addition. Sam Blacketer (talk) 22:13, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

I was wrong there. I mistook the reverting of its removal as the original addition. I left a comment on WT:NOR as well. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:33, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

Blanking of Swedish iDAG newspaper articles

Assuming a likely copyvio, you have today blanked the three Swedish iDAG newspaper articles from Talk:Alternative theories of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103/Archive 2. These articles were written by Swedish journalist Jan-Olof Bengtsson who has given permission to former British diplomat Patrick Haseldine to use them in any way he chooses (see Patrick Haseldine#Incriminating South Africa):

Haseldine got in touch with Swedish journalist Jan-Olof Bengtsson about three articles Bengtsson had written in the iDAG newspaper in March 1990 about UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson. The main thrust of these Swedish articles appeared to be that South African pressure had been applied to Carlsson so that he would take Pan Am Flight 103. Bengtsson mailed the articles to him from Malmö following a fax dated November 23 1995:
"Dear Mr Haseldine, Have just received your fax and you'll have copies of my three articles published in iDAG in the mail at once. As you understand they are in Swedish so you have to translate them.
"The articles were published as follows – 1990-03-12, 1990-03-13 and 1990-03-14.
"I would very much like to have the articles/letters you've published in The Guardian before and after the explosion.
"I don't know the British regulations of how to use articles and press materials in your court system as evidence. But if you find my articles and 'digging' helpful supporting your theories, you have my permission to use them in any way you want.
"Yours sincerely,
"Jan-Olof Bengtsson"

I think you will agree that this is not therefore a copyvio. I should be grateful if you would reinsert the iDAG articles at /Archive 2, and undo your edit to the Alternative theories of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 article. Thanks.Phase4 (talk) 13:54, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

Warning removal on User talk:

I noticed you posted a note to the talk page above and removed my last warning in the process. An accident? Just wondering; it looked like one. Tuvok[T@lk/Improve me] 21:09, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

I replaced your warning with a block notice. But if you want the page to show the warning and the block notice, that's fine with me. I thought it might be confusing for naive users to have a warning and a block message for the same edits. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:20, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
Usually what I've seen is for all warnings to be left as-is unless they're invalid. I can understand your position, though. I've put my warning back just for historical purposes, so users arriving at the talk page after the block expires will be able to see the user's vandalism history. Tuvok[T@lk/Improve me] 21:48, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

What to do about "consequence operator"

Hello Carl,

while removing obvious miscategorisations in the model theory category, I ran into this vanity page: consequence operator. If you have the time it would be great if you could have a look at the associated talk page and advise me how to proceed. Thanks, Hans Adler (talk) 12:50, 23 November 2007 (UTC) (PS: I just got a little shock, because the rest of your talk page was archived away while I was writing this.)

I just became aware that it looks as if I was asking for immediate deleting. But for some reason I think that might not be the best solution. -- Hans Adler (talk) 13:56, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

I was traveling for a couple to visit family, sorry for the delay. I remember seeing the consequence operator page before. At the time, I thought it looked like nonstandard terminology that Hermann was fond of, but for a standard concept. I would support merging it with closure operator, and it looks like Arthur Rubin also favored the merge. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:02, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

Your bot request

Hi CBM I wanted to let you know that Wikipedia:Bots/Requests for approval/VeblenBot 5 has been approved. Please visit the above link for more information. Thanks! BAGBot (talk) 23:07, 27 November 2007 (UTC)

Archive, and Give credit where it is due

I'm not going to do this myself. I'm not going to put the DYK template on my own talk page. Duncan Hunter's presidential campaign was featured on the main page as was Straw polls for the Republican nomination. This is the most ridiculous thing I have seen and if this censorship should be done then somebody should put back up the banner I had recently put up at the suggestions page.--STX 02:08, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

Please mind your own business

Please don't harrass me again. - BillCJ (talk) 04:11, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

I wholeheartedly agree with CBM's comment that your edit summary was inappropriate, and he had every right to make that comment. -- Jitse Niesen (talk) 13:17, 28 November 2007 (UTC)



check existence of WP articles

Do you know whether it is possible to check externally, whether a WP article with a given title exists? Thanks, Jakob.scholbach 18:24, 2 December 2007 (UTC)

Yes, it is possible to use the API to tell that. For example, this query shows one page that does exist and one that doesn't: [14]. The API documentation is at mw:API and the available output formats are listed at mw:API:Data_formats. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:55, 2 December 2007 (UTC)
Oh, great! I need to learn more about the inner mechanisms of the engine. Many thanks. Jakob.scholbach 20:21, 2 December 2007 (UTC)

VeblenBot and categories: minor issue and less minor request

Someone pointed out to me, and I noticed it once myself, that VeblenBot occasionally blanks the list of articles in a category: an example is here. I think this is a fairly minor issue, as VeblenBot soon restores the data in the correct order: I would guess it is a server unavailability problem. However, it would be better if VeblenBot retained the previous data rather than blank the category.

This brings me on to a less minor request. It would be nice if the category listing was fairly robust to articles being removed from a category (e.g., by accident) and then re-added again shortly thereafter (e.g. within a day). I can appreciate that such robustness requires some programming work, as it involves keeping track of the category contents by date, and not relying entirely on the date information from the servers. Let me know if you have the time or the interest in developing something along these lines and I will elaborate if necessary. Geometry guy 00:07, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

The bug is somewhat strange; I'm not sure what caused it, but I'm guessing it happens when the wikimedia toolserver is unavailable on the internet. I added some error detection code for that; please let me know if it happens again.
The request won't be hard to achieve; I'll see if I can have it done this weekend. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:19, 4 December 2007 (UTC)
Many thanks! It has been very worthwhile trialing this idea. Geometry guy 19:30, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

Battle of Jenin

Dear Carl, I've belatedly done as you've asked and set up a sandbox page for the proposed consensus edit at Battle of Jenin. The request for a protected is located here. The description of the edit and the supporting comments are at Talk:Battle of Jenin/Sandbox. I didn't seem feasible to ask everybody to approve the edit again, so I pasted in the approval statements now that the last one was received. Please let me know (at my Talk) if you have any questions about this request or are able to fulfill it. Thanks. HG | Talk 00:15, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

Carl, thanks for fixing up the sandbox and putting the note on the Talk page. So far, this edit is approved by six editors: Armon, Eleland, G-Dett, Kyaa, PR and Tewfik, reflecting both/various sides of the issue. These were all the editors who were involved in the dispute over this text (aka the "prima facie" sentence). Please let me know if there's anything else you need to implement the edit. Thanks very much. HG | Talk 23:50, 6 December 2007 (UTC)
I'd like to give other people just a little more time to comment. I realize they could have commented on the talk page already, and many of them did; I'm just being cautious.
By the way, is there any other sort of mediation or dispute resolution going on for this page? It seems like it has been protected for a very long time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:09, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

bogosity check request

I'm thinking of mentioning this in the Gödel incompleteness theorems article, next to the bit about Chaitin:

C. Calude and H. Jürgensen, Is complexity a source of incompleteness?

but I wanted to get your opinion first. Thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:25, 6 December 2007 (UTC)

I spent a couple minutes looking at the paper, which I wasn't aware of. Thanks for pointing it out to me. It seems very reasonable, although the terminology is idiosyncratic. The paper does have a very thorough set of references, which makes it a good thing for us to cite.
The following doesn't need to be in the article, but it's interesting. Theorems such as Chaitin's and this one seem to only apply to true theories of arithmetic, rather than arbitrary consistent theories. Thus if the negation of a true, independent result is added to a theory, the results of this paper will no longer apply, although Goedel's theorem will still apply. I wonder whether it is possible to modify Chaitin's proof or Calude's proof so that it works for arbitrary theories of arithmetic, by replacing the naive recursion theory with formalized recursion theory. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:17, 6 December 2007 (UTC)


I knew I was at 3, so I was going to leave it alone. But thank you for the warning (it was appreciated), SirFozzie (talk) 20:54, 6 December 2007 (UTC)

  • sighs* 6th revert, anybody? [15] Durova's answered the question on his page, we've pretty much settled it down, and he goes right back to inflaming things once again. At some point, the edit warring, and violations of civility have to stop. SirFozzie (talk) 21:47, 6 December 2007 (UTC)


I agree completely with the removal of the phil tag from some of the logic topics. There is a lot more of that sort of thing out there. I am personally very reluctant to add maths ratings to articles because they have expressed a reluctance to tag everything. I thought element (mathematics) was particularly important to have included.

At some point I think I will make a list for proposed changes.

Be well, Pontiff Greg Bard (talk) 05:49, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

There are only two things to keep in mind when tagging math articles. First, most importantly, please fill in all three fields of the rating template. The only role of the template is to carry rating information; we already have a list of mathematics articles. Second, that list is very wide in scope; the tag should be applied slightly more conservatively. Element (mathematics) should be tagged; I just filled in the rest of the template. If you tag articles like that by hand when you realize they aren't tagged, I don't think anyone will complain. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:47, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

Your block

"Claiming that my block is bad, or that I a member of some 'bad police', without contacting me, seems misguided." <-- Maybe we need a numerical scale. Is this how you would construct the measuring scale: blocking an editor as part of a gang effort to delete someone's question = +10 on the scale, helping Wikipedia; JWSchmidt discussing a bad block = -10, misguided? For me, the scale would be reversed. 'bad police' <-- I was discussing real world police, but the analogy to administrators is clear. Or rather, I thought it would be clear to Ian. --JWSchmidt (talk) 18:17, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

Perhaps you could explain why you think the block is bad? — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:05, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

WP:NOR protection

I haven't been keeping that close of an eye on the dispute since protecting the article, to be honest; if you think that suggestions can be implemented without dissolving into another edit war, you are more than welcome to unprotect the page. :) GlassCobra 02:51, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Additional replies

I generally don't put replies in two places but I wanted to inform you I made some additional comments regarding our previous discussion. Sorry to clutter your page. CelticGreen (talk) 05:17, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

Hartley Rogers: convergent vs divergent functions

Just got the book an hour ago: sure wish I'd gotten it 2 yrs ago. But am confused, need help. Is Rogers using "convergent function" (p. xvi) in the sense of calculus, as in "an infinite sum that comes closer and closer to", or "in the limit"? How about "divergent"? In the engineering world this means the number (more likely: computational sequence) "explodes", i.e. goes to infinity, as opposed to e.g. converging toward but then oscillating around an integer value. E.g. a failed computation outputting: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 8, 6, 8, etc seems to have converged toward 7 but then gets stuck in a "loop" -- is that "divergent" computation? Kleene 1952 uses "convergence" in the calculus sense but doesn't use "divergence" at all. Yikes. Bill Wvbailey (talk) 20:54, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

I don't have Rogers at home, but I am confident that when he says convergent he means defined. So a partial function f is said to converge at a value xif f(x) is defined. I'll look it up tomorrow at the office and leave a more detailed comment. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:56, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Constructive criticism

Hi there. I think your response here could have been a bit more helpful. The anon had to ask somebody for help in editing, since they couldn't without an account. Remember that we want to encourage new users and anonymous editors; I worry that your reply might possibly have been read as a brush off, even if you didn't mean it that way. You also might have looked at whether the page deserved to stay protected—it had been that way for over a month, for a reason that didn't make any sense to me, so I unprotected it. -- SCZenz (talk) 20:55, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

Peer Review automation

Hi Carl: I've made the proposal at WT:PR#Automation of this page now. Thanks for all your support! Geometry guy 21:36, 10 December 2007 (UTC)


This was so far beyond inappropriate that I don't know where to begin. Cheers, WilyD 22:08, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

  • Given your prompt response, I now know where to begin - please more or less disregard the above. Sorry, eh? WilyD 22:09, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
    • It was entirely my fault. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:11, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
      • Mistakes happen - I'm letting myself get pissed off over wiki-silliness too, which is my own dumbness. WilyD 22:22, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

maths rating template

I'm confused about a comment you left on my user talk page. You said: Also, please fill in the class, field, and priority parameters when you place the template. There is no benefit to the template except to convey rating information, which is why it's called maths rating.

I thought that placing the template was the only way to include articles in WikiProject Mathematics, which does more than just rate articles. I sometimes left the parameters empty because I didn't know what to put. In such cases I thought it was better to place the template anyway just to include the article in the project. That way others in the math community would have a better chance of seeing it and potentially add the missing information. Timhoooey (talk) 22:50, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Re: Math template

All right, thanks for telling me. Every time one creates a new article, does someone have to manually add it to the list? Temperaltalk and matrix? 23:49, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

My talk page

Multi-front discussions are counter-productive. Do you want to take this back to the RFC? --TheOtherBob 20:04, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

This is going to become its own meta-discussion, but I find them productive only when the parties have some sort of interest that they can't express fully in the union that can't be seen to acknowledge that any part of management's offer is reasonable, but also needs to do so privately in order to reach agreement. Here...I don't know that I have anything to offer that isn't being discussed more generally. (And I think the questions you ask on my talk page are, if anything, useful for moving the discussion ahead there - so if we think that discussion can move towards progress, I don't want someone to have to monitor all of our pages to find the progress.) We can discuss on here - I'm not saying no, if it's something you'd find valuable - but I think a discussion like this is better on the RFC. --TheOtherBob 20:18, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Comment on User talk:Kmweber

Hello, CBM! I responded to your post on my talk page. Regards.--12 Noon 20:45, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

NOR Request for arbitration

Because of your participation in discussions relating to the "PSTS" model in the No original research article, I am notifying you that a request for arbitration has been opened here. I invite you to provide a statement encouraging the Arbcom to review this matter, so that we can settle it once and for all. COGDEN 23:50, 12 December 2007 (UTC)


Hi, you wrote in Absoluteness (mathematical logic) that Shoenfield's absolutness theorem is about Sigma-2 formulas. I think this is not correct -- for example, the continuum hypothesis is Sigma-2 (unless I miscounted quantifiers).

I think we should say that Shoenfield really talks about formulas in descriptive set set theory; using countable well-founded models this can be translated to formulas of set theory.

Aleph4 (talk) 11:37, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Yes, you are correct. That's a very embarrassing mistake I made, and I'm not sure what I was thinking at the time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:33, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

waterboarding interwiki link

I don't know if you're watching it or just checking from the edit protected category but I answered here. It was all set yesterday, sorry for the extra edit request. Lawrence Cohen 23:06, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

I didn't even realize it was an interwiki; I searched the article, but couldn't find it. Good to know it's resolved. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:09, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

RE: Changed date

Hmmm, not sure why you left it on my page, but Im not Jeeny. But it appears that she's retired anyhow. - Rjd0060 (talk) 06:13, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

I thought Jeeny might check for responses to comments she had left, and I didn't want to seem provocative by leaving a comment on her talk page immediately after she changed it to say retired. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:10, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Oh. I see, thanks - Rjd0060 (talk) 16:50, 14 December 2007 (UTC)


Hi! Seems like you removed the protection template from Canada and wrote on the talk page that you removed the protection, but forgot to actually do it. Or is there another reason that the page remains fully protected? Cheers! JdeJ (talk) 13:49, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Hmm - I thought I changed the protection, but it wasn't changed. It is changed now. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:12, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Current fiction

Template:Current fiction has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. The log page is here. --Pixelface (talk) 04:53, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for letting me know. I'll need to think about this one for a while before I can comment on it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:09, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

Bug report

I gave VeblenBot a test by readding a peer review request that was archived more than 48 hours ago. It tripped up by setting the date to the beginning of time. I also tested removing a current request from the category. I've now put it back, so we'll see what happens on the next update. Geometry guy 19:19, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the note. I'll figure out what's going on. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:24, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
It looks like a test is acted on the wrong way round: VeblenBot has now reinserted the briefly removed article at the top of the list, instead of in the original place. Geometry guy 20:14, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
That's very strange - I tested that aspect with a real article and thought it was working correctly. I think I need to go back to the drawing board with this code. Until I ge that done, I have disabled the timestamp-caching part of the code, so categories removed and added back will show the new timestamp. — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:45, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
If you need another pair of eyes to look at the code, let me know. It does seem that the test for "was it in the cat less than 48 hours ago?" is being evaluated the wrong way round when a new article is detected. Geometry guy 15:21, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
This morning, I went through the code, streamlined it to make it as straightforward as possible (I think I found at least one of the bugs in the process) and added comments to explain the logic. I put it online here; if you can read Perl, I would certainly appreciate a second review. Maybe we can come up with a testing procedure that will exercise all the execution paths. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:45, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
I've never programmed in perl, so I may just be talking nonsense, but it seems to me that you update the "LastSeen" times to "nowtime" before making the test against the "Cutoffs". That might account for the other error. Geometry guy 20:30, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
If you have programmed any imperative language (C, Java, Python) you can probably learn to read Perl pretty quickly. You're right that the update was out of order. I rearranged the code online (same place); do you see any other problems? — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:42, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I know imperative languages (C, Basic, Pascal) from a fairly young age, so thanks to your well-commented code, I have essentially learnt to read Perl modulo many details! I was about to add that the rest of the code looks good to me, and the rearrangement should work. But I would not have spotted that you need to make LastSeen well defined first. Perhaps this is ready for another test at my dummy PR page. Geometry guy 20:53, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
Oh, I think I've spotted a minor problem with the change: if LastSeen is undefined, it means that the article has not been seen, so it should not be set to nowtime, but to the beginning of time, right? Geometry guy 21:04, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
I believe that code is correct. The test if ( $diff <= $Cutoffs{$cat} ) will be successful, because $diff will be 0. But for articles that have never been seen before, all we can do is use the timestamp that the database currently reports, and this will happen, because higher up the line $Added{$key} = $Timestamps{$key}; will execute. This assumes that LastSeen and Added are either both defined or both undefined for a particular key, but I believe this is correct, because the first time an article is seen in the category both will be filled in, and after that they will both always be defined. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:15, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
Okay, yes, I understand now, although that is a bit subtle! It raises a performance question: your two caches never decrease in size, right? Geometry guy 21:31, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
It could hypothetically become a performance issue, but I would estimate not until there at least tens of thousands of articles in the cache. I can write code later to remove stale entries from the cache if that becomes a problem. I have re-enabled the caching code, if you would like to test it again. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:07, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
I did another test, and it looks like it is working well. Many thanks for this. Geometry guy 20:15, 18 December 2007 (UTC) PS. I like the new maths ratings tables you are producing!

One Laptop Per Child's "Function: Calculate: Boolean" operations

Something interesting here. I bought into the "Give One, Get One" program for the "One Laptop per Child" and got one of the first laptops hot off the press. The programmers have equipped the machine with a "Calculate" function that includes a little "Boolean" evaluator. When I played with it I ran into some strange stuff. So I wrote:

Boolean operations: request NOT:

(3) I have some suggestions for the activity's functionality, but am not sure they should be here. I will enter them here anyway. The philosophy behind this is to provide the kids with the same symbolism and functionality that they will find on wikipedia.

(3a) The symbol | (stroke): Why use the "Sheffer stroke" for OR? this symbol was classically used for NAND (NOT AND). Why not use V for "von", the more classical symbol? I've never seen | used for OR.

(3b) Logical NOT: I was rather ... stunned shall we say ... to see XOR rather than NOT (i.e. ~ or "bent bar" 2-shift-alt, or whatever). XOR would be an okay addition but not without NOT; NOT is virtually mandatory. I am quite aware that the three functions chosen (AND, OR, XOR) are sufficient, but hey, so is NAND (stroke) by itself or NOR by itself or implication by itself -- and using them by themselves is ugly.

(3c) What happens when we plug in numbers not { 0, 1 }? The numerical results such as 3&4 => 4, and 3|4 => 3 are rather peculiar; they seem reversed (from a Venn-diagram point-of-view). For example, as "4" contains "3" we would expect that 3|4 might be "4". I will pursue this with my wikipedia cohorts to get their opinions. Usually Boolean functions have to do with predicates in particular "equality" that evaluate to { TRUE, FALSE } or values { 1, 0 }, e.g. =AND(3,4) yields TRUE in Excel.

Carl, do you have any opinions about what I wrote above? Lemme know, thanks. Bill Wvbailey (talk) 19:39, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

The output when the inputs aren't 0 or 1 do seem strange, but somehow I have become accustomed to software implementations using strange notation and conventions. Including NOT would certainly be a good idea. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:35, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

A correspondent at the OLPC wiki agrees with you, i.e. "C/C++, java, and Python" all use the | for "OR", apparently. He agrees with us about the strange output with non- { 1, 0 } values (also apparently {TRUE, FALSE} end up as variable names rather than as "values"). The corresponent describes the simple algorithm that "Python" uses to evaluate non-1, 0 numeric functions, etc. If you're curious, see more at I'll post your response there. Thanks, Bill —Preceding unsigned comment added by Wvbailey (talkcontribs) 15:10, 22 December 2007 (UTC)

(You probably know C but) in C there are two OR operators: | is a bitwise OR of two integers, and || is the logical OR. I believe the same is true in python. But whoever uses the system can learn the input convention, I suppose. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:47, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Peer review implemented

I've now implemented the peer review automation, so there will surely be teething problems. First one: the date of the latest two entries is in the future! Let me know if you need further details. Geometry guy 22:15, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

The problem was that all the dates were off by the same shift, because of a difference between local time at my computer and UTC. The TZ correction is fragile; there are several independent things that can try to account for time zones, so there is a parity effect. I changed one function from GMT to local time (!), cleared the cache, ran the code again, and checked that the PR page now appears to agree with the raw data [16]. I will investigate this in more detail, but for now I think it is fixed. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:34, 21 December 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, but the latest update has messed it up again. The times now seem to be right for the most recent additions, but not the older entries! Geometry guy 11:27, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm working on it this morning. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:18, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
Do you know the joke about the doctor who says 'So don't do that'? That's the strategy I'm going to take here. There is some subtle problem with timezones that only happens when the script is run automatically, not when I run it from the command line. So I am just going to avoid parsing the timestamps that are displayed; whatever the database records will be exactly what my script sends out. I still need to parse the timestamps to unix times for sorting, but as long as this is monotonic it doesn't matter if it is off by a few hours. The updated code is here (diff). — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:04, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
I also moved this script to run off the toolserver, which should be more reliable overall than my home computer. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:44, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
I don't know the joke, but the strategy sounds good to me. Now that this is fixed, could you clear the cache again so the wrong times are fixed? Also, there are a couple of articles which have the wrong dates because of my tests. I believe Sarah Brightman should be 02:52, 29 November 2007 and Egyptian God Cards should be 00:29, 27 November 2007. Once the cache is updated could you fix these by hand? I really hope this is the last time I'm going to ask this favour! Geometry guy 21:05, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
No problem; everything should be updated. The joke goes like this. A man calls his doctor's office to make an urgent appointment. He argues with the secretary and finally the doctor agrees to make a few minutes to see him. The man arrives, clearly distressed. He tells the doctor, whenever I push on my bellybutton, I faint, my nose bleeds, and my feet go numb for an hour. The doctor turns pale and rushes the man to the hospital, where the man is kept for a week while all kinds of tests are run by numerous specialists. Finally, the doctor returns, and the man begs him to give a diagnosis. The doctor says, I don't know what's wrong with you, but I have found a cure. The man, desperate, begs hims to continue. The doctor says, "Don't do that anymore." — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:47, 22 December 2007 (UTC)

I went through the list again, and there are alas still four more to fix (two cases of vandalism, one page move, and one of your tests)! They are

The two cases of vandalism would have been fixed by the caching, which is good news for the future. Geometry guy 11:57, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

I changed those. I think I should implement a log of some kind that permanently records each time a category is added or removed (from the perspective of the script); it's on my list. — Carl (CBM · talk) 12:41, 23 December 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. Have a nice break and a cool Yule! Geometry guy 10:43, 24 December 2007 (UTC)

Merry Christmas

Wishing you the very best for the season - Guettarda 05:56, 25 December 2007 (UTC)

WikBack account created

Someone, perhaps you, recently created an account at the WikBack. If the account was created by an imposter, please let me know as soon as possible so that it can be disabled. Otherwise, welcome! The Uninvited Co., Inc. 19:52, 28 December 2007 (UTC)


There's actually been a lot of discussion on the talk page. Dreadstar 04:20, 29 December 2007 (UTC)

I was in the middle of leaving a longer comment on the talk page; my edit summary was too brief. I wanted to say there was discussion, but no consensus or prior discussion, but I ran out of room. Sorry for the poor wording. — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:23, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Cool, I just wanted to make sure you saw it. And now, we have all brand-spanking-new discussions! "Policy can be fun: 101"....;) Dreadstar 04:26, 29 December 2007 (UTC)


I am sorry, but if you heard some of the nasty comments he made towards me, you would be shocked. Sacharin (talk) 21:05, 30 December 2007 (UTC)



That discussion is exactly what is ongoing at WP:BN. For Wikipedians who've been around a long time, a few reversions (always under the limit of 3RR) are often a part of these "negotiations". In the old days, WP:BOLD was much more often used to justify the approach of "discuss as you change". 3RR is the absolute universal cap on this, of course; but, under that limit, reversions are quite natural... especially for non-mainspace pages, where no real encyclopedic content is at stake. In any case, this underlying issue will be resolved shortly by the b'crats. Thanks for your input. Best wishes, Xoloz (talk) 21:14, 30 December 2007 (UTC)


Hey there! I noticed VeblenBot creates a nice summary page of the peer reviews at User:VeblenBot/C/Requests for peer review. Do you think the same can be done for WP:FAC and WP:FAR? A similar format would be fine ([[Date (which links to FAC/FAR subpage)]] : [[Article]] ) Cheers, (and thanks in advance if this is doable) BuddingJournalist 23:12, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

I would be glad to have my bot help with the FA system. Unfortunately, FA isn't as simple as the peer review system, because it's possible for an article to have multiple FAR pages (if it is reviewed multiple times). Just knowing that the talk page of an article is in the FAR category doesn't tell which of the FAR pages to link to. To automate a system like FA would require some changes to the way that things are set up. That would require the FA group to decide on what sort of automation they desire, so that the set up can be tailored to their exact needs. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:37, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
So I think the way the system is set up, both FAC and FAR archive old nominations automatically, and the most recent one (which is the one that should be linked to) will always be at [[Wikipedia:Featured article review/Article name]] or [[Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Article name]] (so it's actually quite similar to the revamped peer review process). Was that what you were talking about? I guess, upon re-reading my request, I may have been unclear. What I was hoping for was a separate page each for WP:FAC and WP:FAR. That is, there would be something like User:VeblenBot/C/FAC listing all the articles currently at FAC, and there would be User:VeblenBot/C/FAR listing all the articles currently at FAR. The categories that the bot would need to read from are Category:Wikipedia featured article review candidates and Category:Wikipedia featured article candidates. BuddingJournalist 03:03, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
I didn't realize that they automatically moved old FARs or FACs to other locations. If the correct location is always as you say, then it's no problem to set everything up. I thought that the FAR pages were numbered sequentially like AFD pages. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:06, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
The lists are at User:VeblenBot/C/Wikipedia_featured_article_candidates and User:VeblenBot/C/Wikipedia_featured_article_review_candidates. The formatting is generated by Template:CF/Wikipedia_featured_article_candidates and Template:CF/Wikipedia_featured_article_review_candidates. The lists will update once each hour. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:18, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
Amazing! Many, many thanks! BuddingJournalist 03:23, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Vandalism on the Landmark Education page

User:Spacefarer is hacking/vandalising the page to bits with no use of the discussion page. Suggesting revert to page before his chooping occurred and freezing it. Apparently there is an LE convention (Global Transformation 2020) very soon, hence the rapid edits. --Pax Arcane 16:50, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Image removed from Godel's Theorem

I think removing the image from the article on Godel's Incompleteness Theorem is -- well, forgive me -- silly. It's a Wikipedia article, not a formal mathematics paper. --KSnortum (talk) 22:15, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Mixing in here: It's a close point but there's no need to use heated language, on either side. The image is not directly on point but its inclusion could be defended, and for those who think every article should have at least one picture, it's hard to imagine what else one might use. But personally I'm against straining to include a picture just to have one, and people who want to know about Goedel himself will presumably click on the link to his bio, where the portrait is prominent. --Trovatore (talk) 22:33, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
I believe that images are only useful when they increase the reader's understanding of the topic at hand. In this case, I don't think that an image of Goedel increases understanding of the incompleteness theorems. I am not certain that any image would increase understanding of that topic.
There is a separate issue with Image:Kurt Gödel.jpg, because it is not a "free" image; but I think that even if it were free it would not be appropriate outside the bibliographical article. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:04, 3 January 2008 (UTC)


A contributor has suggested that User:VeblenBot update User:VeblenBot/PERtable only when the contents of the table need to change, to avoid making unnecessary edits. The discussion may be found at Wikipedia talk:Bot policy#Frivolous bot editsGurch 13:13, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

WP:PERTABLE not being updated

VeblenBot hasn't updated WP:PERTABLE for almost a week. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 11:31, 8 January 2008 (UTC)

Thank you for letting me know. I'm traveling this week, which is why I didn't notice. The error is related to handling unicode characters. It will be a few days before I have a chance to fix it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:19, 8 January 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by CBM2 (talkcontribs)

New Page Patrol

Are you actually tagging pages this fast? I mean if so, great, but something seems wrong; youve tagged thousands of pages today and made like 20 edits. --CastAStone//₵₳$↑₳₴₮ʘ№€ 03:41, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

I'm using an automated tool to patrol pages by users who have large numbers of unpatrolled pages. The goal is to reduce the backlog to the point where other unpatrolled articles won't cross the 1-month limit. I realize there is some potential error, but I think that it isn't worse than losing pages altogether because they weren't patrolled within a month. Some of the pages that get patrolled are actually older than a month; I don't get them from the wiki list. Let me know your thoughts on the matter. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:49, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
I think it's great, actually. I typically spend my NPP time doing older articles and this helps greatly. Unfortunately, I posted (nicely) on WP:AN literally as you were posting this, because I thought the problem was likely with your bot and also that you were out. My apologies, I struck it out. Thanks for the update!--CastAStone//₵₳$↑₳₴₮ʘ№€ 03:54, 12 January 2008 (UTC)


Hi, I am an admin on it:wiki. I received a message from User:Sandrobt, who was blocked for one day: despite its name (!) he is not a bot, he is a user of it:wiki interested in algebra and he was putting some italian interwikis here. :-P Cheers, Ylebru (talk) 12:11, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks!--Sandrobt (talk) 00:56, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Doing more with VeblenBot

I was pleased to see VeblenBot making inroads into FA and hope this idea will be more widely used.

Several further applications suggest themselves.

  1. Automated archive pages (for example at PR). This would involve VeblenBot tracking categories of the form [[Category:January 2008 peer reviews]].
  2. Automating GAR, and its archives: categories could be something like [[Category:GAR]] and [[Category:GAR/archive 37]].
  3. Automating GAN. Here I am trying to persuade editors that the process is too complicated, but in the worst case, there are 34 subtopics and 4 statuses to handle, leading to 136 categories. It may be possible to cut this to 68, but I'm not convinced that such a simplification will be accepted.

My current thoughts are to pursue 2, then apply this experience to 1, while (all the time) making the case for (and developing) 3. However, I need to know your view on these applications (whether you are happy with handling growing numbers of archive categories, and potentially large numbers of GAN/GA categories) and also if you have any further ideas. Geometry guy 00:47, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

My general philosophy is that we should start by deciding how we would like the final result to work, and then design the software to achieve that result. I think that automated peer review archives are easier, since the peer review system already has separate pages for each review. The GAR system looks like it still uses one large page for all current discussions. By the way, you can link to categories by putting a colon in the link, like Category:GAR. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:54, 11 January 2008 (UTC)

I agree with the philosophy, although this is all volunteer work, and getting the software designed is not always straightforward! In the GAR case, the current system just makes too much work for editors: I hate archiving GARs, because it involves cutting and pasting and making loads of edits, and I am not alone! So could you ask VeblenBot to listify Category:GAR (newest item first as usual) and Category:GAR/34 (oldest item first per archiving conventions)? They are empty at the moment, but I will fill them, and implement a much easier GAR process over the weekend. Geometry guy 19:08, 11 January 2008 (UTC)

PS. Thanks for the wikilinking tip, which caused me problems in my early days here, but in this case I didn't use it because the categories didn't exist, and I hadn't decided on the names.

It seems to me that that first step in improving GAR would be to switch to a system more like peer review and FAR use, where each review is on a separate page. But that makes it harder to nominate an article for review. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:58, 11 January 2008 (UTC)
Actually, it can be done easily with a bit of template magic: see WT:Content review/workshop#Peer review. And the switching to separate subpages is exactly what I plan to do this weekend! The two VeblenBot pages are all I need, and I'm willing to subst into out of date archives so VeblenBot only has to deal with 1-2 at a time if this is an issue. Geometry guy 21:03, 11 January 2008 (UTC)
Adding the categories is extremely simple. What namespace will the pages in each of the two categories be in? As for sorting in the opposite order, I will implement that tomorrow. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:26, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
Wikipedia. Thanks for that, and for your comment at the workshop. Presumably the toolserver can be used to get "What links here" info too: does it provide a date as it does with categories? If so, that might be a useful variant. Geometry guy 06:04, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

I've set up the subpages and the new system at GAR, so the listing of Category:GAR would now be very welcome. Geometry guy 19:24, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

It's at User:VeblenBot/C/GAR. I can get backlinks information from the toolserver or from the API. The only thing I can get with the toolserver but not the API is the timestamp when a page was added to a category. No timestamps are stored for backlinks, however. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:01, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, this now seems to be working nicely. The timestamps are crucial for most applications I can think of, so lets stick with categories. We can do a lot with this and some clever template code. Geometry guy 20:35, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
VeblenBot seems to have fallen behind on Peer review: there are articles such as U2 in the category which are not listed. Also, let me know when you get the reversed listing going for Category:GAR/34. Thanks - Geometry guy 17:29, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
VeblenBot is still down on the Peer review cat. Another 4 articles have been added to the category since my previous comment. Geometry guy 22:26, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Banach-Tarski paradox

If you get a chance sometime, I wonder if you could look at the end of the section about the axiom of choice, particularly the bit I added about BT following from ZF plus the Hahn-Banach theorem. Trovatore makes a good point on the talk page that the exposition there is possibly misleading, but it looks like neither one of us figured out the right way to rephrase it. I also wonder whether the statement of the set theory needed for the Hahn-Banach theorem could be made a little sharper. Does the Brown-Simpson result about WKL0 and Hahn-Banach have any applicability, given that ZF is already involved? Thanks. (talk) 11:12, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

I view the second-order arithmetic case and the set theory case as related but not at all the same. It's hard to represent arbitrary sets of reals in second order arithmetic, and I don't know whether there has been any research on formalizing the Banach-Tarski paradox in higher order arithmetic. I am intrigued by the result of Pawlikowski, but I haven't had time to read the proof in detail, or the paper by Foreman and Wehrung on which it relies. But I am glad to learn about them. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:49, 11 January 2008 (UTC)
Right, it's just surprising if something can be provable in second order arithmetic but not in ZF. I'm wonder what the minimum is that one really needs to add to ZF in order to get the Hahn-Banach theorem. I think you are right, the concept of something like the BT paradox occurring in second order arithmetic is unlikely (I hope). (talk) 16:46, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
The thing is that the theorems proved in second-order arithmetic are often only special cases of the general theorem in the sense that second order arithmetic can only deal directly with natural numbers and sets of naturals. Thus there are implicit countability restrictions on theorems proved in second-order arithmetic. For example, there is no way to prove the Hahn-Banach theorem for arbitrary Banach spaces in second-order arithmetic, only for separable ones. Similarly, the fact the every countable boolean algebra has a maximal ideal can be proven in second-order arithmetic, and ZF, although the theorem for arbitrary boolean algebras cannot be proven in ZF. Careful authors will always make sure that they are explicit about the countability hypotheses when stating that a particular theorem is provable in second-order arithmetic. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:25, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

Re multiple references to same volume, different pages.

Thank you! But named references don't help because I can't change page numbers to correspond with the text in different places. See references 8a and 8b in George Bernard Shaw. 8b should mention only page 515. The same volume has other citations I should use that are on other pages. Wugo (talk) 03:44, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks again. Perhaps I'll omit page numbers even though it makes a hardship for the reader. Wugo (talk) 04:04, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Agreed, page numbers are important. I may have solved the problem by associating different topics with their appropriate page numbers within the body of the reference. Please look at reference 8 in George Bernard Shaw and tell me what you think. If this trick is acceptable I plan to add several other topics with their pages to the existing pair. Wugo (talk) 17:43, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Re: Headless Nun deletion

Thank you for your note. Ironically, I more often get criticism for declining deletions; it is pretty thankless work. So, I appreciated your follow-up comment.--Kubigula (talk) 15:33, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

I do, however, feel compelled to add that finding my action on a widely read discussion board without any prior attempt to discuss the issue with me has left a surprisingly bad taste in my mouth. I certainly make occasional mistakes, but I am perfectly willing to discuss and remedy them. The good things we all do are too rarely acknowledged; having one's mistake (and I do think it was one) publicly pointed out is quite discouraging.--Kubigula (talk) 21:16, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

No hard feelings - you are a gentleman :).--Kubigula (talk) 03:10, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

Bot not working?

I noticed the bot hasn't been working in the last day. Should we begin adding the peer review manually, or just wait until the bot is up again? Cheers! -- ReyBrujo (talk) 00:25, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

It seems the bot ran into an error with a different category. I've fixed that. I think my next project should be to implement a separate system that notifies me automatically if the peer review page is not updated for a certain length of time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 02:10, 14 January 2008 (UTC)


Hello CBM. I saw your note over at WT:WPM that you are among the administrators who will consider granting rollback permission. I'm interested in trying this out, though I don't like to make changes with no edit summary, so I hope there is still a way to leave one. EdJohnston (talk) 22:14, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

I enabled it (it's the first time I have used that interface). A brief automatic edit summary is left, but the idea is that it's only used for vandalism. If you hold to that standard, everyone will know how to interpret the summary correctly. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:18, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
I mainly use it to revert my own edits, taking the point of view that I'm one of WPs worst vandals :) Geometry guy 00:23, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
It does have the property, which I didn't realize at first, that it reverts all edits by the last user back to the previous user. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:27, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, that's a problem: sometimes I have to just use plain old "undo", because only one of my recent edits was vandalism. Geometry guy 00:31, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks! I had somehow imagined this would deal rapidly with the case where a vandal has edited multiple articles. But I guess that would not make sense because every change needs to be looked at, even if it's vandalism. EdJohnston (talk) 02:34, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Your recent edits

Hi there. In case you didn't know, when you add content to talk pages and Wikipedia pages that have open discussion, you should sign your posts by typing four tildes ( ~~~~ ) at the end of your comment. On many keyboards, the tilde is entered by holding the Shift key, and pressing the key with the tilde pictured. You may also click on the signature button Button sig.png located above the edit window. This will automatically insert a signature with your name and the time you posted the comment. This information is useful because other editors will be able to tell who said what, and when. Thank you! --SineBot (talk) 02:42, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Re: WP 1.0 bot

I moved our discussion to WT:1.0/I, as I think more people would be interested in commenting. Oleg Alexandrov (talk) 06:14, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Projects for Selection Bot

Hi, if you want a bigger, representative smorgasbord of projects to work from, take a look at User:Walkerma/Sandbox2. This will total about 100k articles total; if you want to keep the numbers down, miss off the biographical ones in the last section. Thanks! Walkerma (talk) 08:31, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Changes to policy pages

Carl, I agree with your assessment of my position. I do object to arbitrary and unnecessary changes to the policy pages at WP. While the strength of WP is the dynamic aspects of the articles, constant tinkering with the policies is counterproductive to the “freedom” of the project. We need a simple but stable rule set which is easy for our writer contributors to follow. We seem to have evolved a wiki-bureaucrat-class which contributes little to the content of the project, but lives and thrives for incessant debating of policy nuances. There are two three things which I seek: (1) fewer rules, (2) clearer rules, and (3) stable rules. I’d be really interested in seeing why our perceptions might differ on this topic. Cheers! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Kevin Murray (talkcontribs) 15:47, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

Carl, I think we have a lot of concerns and perceptions in common. I do realize that absolute stability is neither possible not desirable. To be dynamic, the rule sets need to be dynamic to a limited extent. If there is no stability then there is anarchy, which is more desirable in an emerging project, but less desirable as we mature.

I most certainly agree that the ways that policies and guidelines emerge needs fine-tuning. My interest is not in the administration of WP, but I became involved where poor rules and poor or biased assessments of rules were causing poor choices at AfD. Originally, I became involved because "I don’t like it" AfD's were decimating many new entries in the subject of sailing; so I became involved in AfD, and then trying to simplify the notability rules so that they were understandable and consistent (with some success).

Getting involved in notability lead to trying to stabilize the guidance around the introduction of proposals, since there is a constant pressure to expand the permutations of notability to the point of confusion and contradiction. With the best of intentions people are throwing band aids at problems, but adding to morass, without considering deeper consequences. I frequently use the analogy of the tragedy of the commons, where the sum of many “best solutions” on a micro perspective can collectively cause more harm than good. Enough of my rambling. --Kevin Murray (talk) 17:18, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

Carl, I realize that we don't agree on how the editing of policy pages should be handled, but I do very much appreciate your very fair and well thought out comments today. Talk to you soon. --Kevin Murray (talk) 05:45, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

WP1.0 bot test

Hi, I was wondering if you would be available some time over the weekend to chat on IRC about the testing of the selection bot. Was my list helpful? Cheers, Walkerma (talk) 22:40, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the prompt reply! By all means send me the raw spreadsheets, if these are in Excel format I can add the formulas myself. One thing - is there some way to convert (easily) the spreadsheet data back to a wiki table? Walkerma (talk) 22:46, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
Received and opened fine, thanks! Can you tell me what is in column G? This tool is now available for me to use as a "reality check" on the hit ranking. Do you have access to those data yet? Thanks again, Walkerma (talk) 23:06, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
OK, we'll have to try and validate column G. According to that hit counter I mentioned, Frank Macfarlane Burnet] received 880 views in the last three weeks of December, yet it shows up as zero in the table. Maybe it's a page move issue or something. Still I think we have plenty to be evaluating. Thanks! Walkerma (talk) 23:17, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
That's very good to hear about the new source of #hits data, it'll be interesting to see how well they compare! I have a couple of questions:
  • Which bot is running the tests, and which bot will be used for the full-scale work?
  • The articles used are a small subset of the total - is it simply that whatever is on Emmanuel's list makes it into the test output? Can we do a test on a full set of articles for a particular WikiProject?
Many times thank you! Walkerma (talk) 04:32, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Avoid instruction creep is marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:Avoid instruction creep (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been marked as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 17:44, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

Actor infobox instructions not quite fixed yet

Hello CBM. Thanks for your efforts in getting the LO awards section of the actor infoboxes to work. Unfortunately they aren't quite fixed yet. Please take a look at this page [17] and you will see what I am talking about when I made this post here [18]. Anything that you can do to get these fixed will be appreciated and thanks for your time. MarnetteD | Talk 22:52, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

Thank you

I am very grateful for you right now. I was just referring to substitution instance in a discussion with Arthur at Talk:Formal system, when I noticed your changes. You have expanded the article without destroying anything. I have no argument for anything you have done at all. You added information, and I learned something new about the concept as a result. That's what I want out of wp. Pontiff Greg Bard (talk) 00:30, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Criterion T3, prod

It's been a couple days, but you haven't responded to my last post over there, so I thought I would come see if you had a chance to think about it. I see your point that it might be possible to extend the PROD system. My concerns is that nobody is actually spearheading a campaign to do that, and it isn't clear that it would get consensus in the end (there are comments on WT:PROD against extending prod to templates). Implementing T3, even temporarily until PROD is changed, would help free up some resources from TfD and is unlikely to cause bad deletions. Do you have objections to T3 apart from wishing to extend PROD to cover it? — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:15, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

Looking at the several timestamps, I'm not seeing "a couple days", but in any case, what I was suggesting is that we spear-head (to use your word) such a page.
I'll write something up today, and perhaps you may see more what I'm talking about.
As for "other concerns", I've noted some at least twice in the discussion. I'll be happy to do so again, if you wish. - jc37 17:11, 17 January 2008 (UTC)
Time must be going by slowly for me lately; it's only been one day, your right. I'd be glad to continue discussing this.
I don't think there is much weight in the objection "I don't like this because I think you should be advocating some other policy change instead." There has already been a lot of discussion about adding templates to prod on the prod talk page, so it seems to me to be a lost battle for the moment. And there is no reason why this criterion couldn't be implemented until a time when prod is changed, at which point several CSD criteria could be moved to prod.
I did see you mentioned that the code to one template might be different than code to another; I replied that I don't see how that affects deletion, since we don't have templates in order to showcase their code, we have them to achieve some purpose, and the criterion only applies when both templates have the same functionality. Let's talk about that, or other concerns you have. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:37, 17 January 2008 (UTC)
Now it's been a couple days, and my apologies for that.
One of my other concerns is an example that just happened recently at TfD concerning a wikia-link template. (Memory-alpha, I think? I'll have to look for it.) Someone depopulated the template which they didn't prefer, and then nominated it, saying that it was an orphaned template. Too much fait accompli for me. And this TfD suggestion would seem to bear the same potential. - jc37 20:52, 19 January 2008 (UTC)
This is what the delay is meant to help prevent. In the end, this sort of thing can't be avoided either in with a speedy criterion or with TFD. But with a delay, any editor who disagrees with the switch can remove the speedy template, at which point the TfD process will need to be used. I think that the number of cases where this occurs is in the minority, though. I think Happy Melon can give more details about the number of templates currently going through TfD which would fall under T3. — Carl (CBM · talk) 18:41, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

PR again

Hi Carl - as you probably saw, the peer review page broke again today for being too large. I've replaced transclusion by listing for now. You suggested only doing this for articles where the peer review was long. Now, I wonder, can this be automated? For example, can VeblenBot use the toolserver to obtain lengths of articles? If so, then it could get the length of each article in a category and add it to the template as an extra parameter. At the moment this would do the job nicely for Category:GAR, where the articles are actually the reviews, but I'm planning to make the same change at WP:PR anyway, to make archiving easier. What do you think? Geometry guy 19:48, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

I don't follow peer review that closely, so I didn't notice that it is broken. It may be worth pointing out, if anyone asks, that the page would have broken in the same way under the pre-bot system, because that also transcluded the review text onto the main page.
There are various ways in which the system can be automated. But let me do a little digging. I think we will need to give some thought to the best way to fix the problem. In the meantime, I can write something to check the length of the PR page and leave a note if it gets too long. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:17, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I pointed that out before. Allen3 appears to have used the automation proposal as a reason to stop maintaining the archiving, and I don't blame him. Dr.Kiernan has helped a lot, but there is no reason why he should do all the archiving either.
Thanks for offering to dig. Obviously the solution I had in mind was that the CF template would say "If reviewlength>threshold, link, otherwise transclude", but I'm open to other options. Meanwhile, a break in the PR page is usually spotted within 6 hours, but forwarning would certainly be helpful.
On another issue, I think it might be helpful if the VeblenBot/C pages accepted a named parameter, which they then forwarded to the CF templates using "par={{{par|}}}". So far, I've managed without this, by testing the PAGENAME in the CF templates, but I'd really like to transclude the GAR backlog onto the GAR page automatically, and I can't see how to do that without passing a parameter through the VeblenBot/C transclusion. Geometry guy 22:48, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
Here are the longest current peer reviews, sorted by size:
  • 8202 Wikipedia:Peer review/To Kill a Mockingbird
  • 8634 Wikipedia:Peer review/Jazz drumming
  • 8791 Wikipedia:Peer review/Atom
  • 8835 Wikipedia:Peer review/Connie Talbot
  • 9312 Wikipedia:Peer review/Carbon
  • 9731 Wikipedia:Peer review/Mr. Stain
  • 10103 Wikipedia:Peer review/The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson
  • 10782 Wikipedia:Peer review/Missionary position
  • 13036 Wikipedia:Peer review/Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
  • 17560 Wikipedia:Peer review/Princess Leia Organa
  • 22866 Wikipedia:Peer review/Reactive attachment disorder
  • 47666 Wikipedia:Peer review/Emily Dickinson
Converting them to soft redirects, like I did with Wikipedia:Peer review/Duck Soup, should fix the immediate problem with the PR page. But I am fortunate enough to have a date with my wife tonight, so I am about to leave the computer.
The idea of "If size > max then link, else transclude" is a good idea, but a problem is that the pages in the category are article talk pages, and the length you want is the length of the corresponding peer review page. As you can see from above, I can get the lengths of the peer review pages, but I don't know how to do it (if it's even possible) from a single database query.
I don't quite follow what you are suggesting for a named parameter; I am a little slow today. Would the bot fill in the parameter automatically? Would all pages in a category have the same value, or different?
I think that we can work out all these details, but I want to spend some time to do it right. I also have an idea, that I learned from MZMcBride, about how we may be able to use the soon-to-be-live new parser to fix this transclusion problem with no new bot code. I need to ask a dev about it, since it would require a small amount of new code in mediawiki. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:13, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
As I'm sure you realised, none of this is an emergency, and you went far beyond the call of duty by finding these lengths! If the PR page looks bad, it will teach people to archive! So, enjoy your date, lucky man! Meanwhile I will just comment and explain.
The idea "size>max" will work for PR too, once the process is changed so that the category is on the article PR page. This movement of the category to the article PR page is needed anyway to make archiving easier.
As for the parameter, you are slow because my suggestion is trivial and I didn't explain it well. I simply propose VeblenBot adds "|par={{{par|}}}" to the end of each item it lists, i.e., {{CF/CATEGORY NAME|1|2|3...|par={{{par|}}} }}. The idea is simply to allow a transcluding page to pass a parameter to the CF template. Geometry guy 23:29, 18 January 2008 (UTC)
I added the additional parameter, but I called it "extra". I have a grand scheme for the size issue, but I need to run it by a developer to make sure they are willing to implement it. More later. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:06, 19 January 2008 (UTC)
I look forward to that. Meanwhile, after some work, I've managed to use this trick to automate the GAR backlog. Geometry guy 21:07, 19 January 2008 (UTC)
My plan for fixing this transclusion problem is at bugzilla:12698. I spoke with Tim Starling, the parser developer, on IRC today, and he had no objections in principle to the idea, although the implementation may take a while to get right. — Carl (CBM · talk) 05:28, 20 January 2008 (UTC)
That looks great, and could be used in lots of places. Meanwhile, there's been some archiving at PR, but VeblenBot appears to have fallen behind again. Could you take a look when you get a moment? Geometry guy 10:45, 20 January 2008 (UTC)
This time I can pass the buck. The cron program on toolserver seems to be turned off. I'll run the cat program by hand, and ask them to re-enable cron. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:12, 20 January 2008 (UTC)
Very good. PR is now back online, but still operating at 75% capacity :) Geometry guy 15:00, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Version 1.0 Editorial Team/Assessment is marked as a policy

Wikipedia:Version 1.0 Editorial Team/Assessment (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been marked as a policy. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:47, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:User page is no longer marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:User page (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) is no longer marked as a guideline. It was previously marked as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:47, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Semiprotection for geometry

Hi Carl, can you, please, semiprotect Geometry again? A quick look at edit history shows that pretty much all edits past January 1 were either vandalism or reverts. Thanks, Arcfrk (talk) 22:44, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

"Archival" of Wikipedia:Peer review/Emily Dickinson

I saw that you moved the peer review to the archive because of its length, but it is not truly archived because it is still active and the current page still exists. I'm not ready to archive it fully yet, but when I am, how will I go about doing that? The archive has already been created, so I cannot move the page as the directions say, can I? What would you suggest? María (habla conmigo) 15:41, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

See my comment at WT:PR#Wikipedia:Peer_review_is_getting_full: you replace the contents of Wikipedia:Peer review/Emily Dickinson by a redirect to Wikipedia:Peer review/Emily Dickinson/archive1 instead of making the page move. Geometry guy 18:28, 21 January 2008 (UTC)


I liked your rephrase of WP:LEAD. Geometry guy 18:35, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. We'll see if they stick. I prefer the spelling lede since it was the one I learned first, and I read lead as the name of a metal. But I think I am outnumbered by people who prefer the other one. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:01, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I know (from our long and productive acquaintance!). As I am sure you know, this was surely the original reason for preferring "lede", because the metal was rather important in printing! But the days of lead typesetting are numbered if not long gone. In my own weird psychology "lede" reminds me of German Songs! Geometry guy 19:53, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:User page is marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:User page (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been marked as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:50, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

I think you need to have your bot mine the history a bit before spamming the village pump. I assume your bot reacted to this edit; [19]. Note that you have to go back to [20] to bypass vandalism. Taemyr (talk) 18:58, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
I have thought about this. If you have ideas about when the bot should decide not to make an announcement, I would love to discuss them here. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:00, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
Actually the way it is stated it should run is better than my idea of making a best guess by going through the history. I am confused however since WP:User page was marked as a guideline continuously yesterday. Taemyr (talk) 19:15, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
Oh wait, I got it. You should probably wait with updating it's cache after making an announcement. Taking it to Wikipedia:Bots/Requests for approval/VeblenBot 6Taemyr (talk) 19:23, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
If you can explain your idea there, that would be great. I already realized this would happen if the guideline/policy status changed and then changed back, but I don't see the right way to work around it. I was hoping someone else would have a brilliant suggestion. — Carl (CBM · talk) 19:32, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

A couple of suggestions (just passing by):

  1. The bot runs daily right? So if a change is made, I suggest the bot logs it but does not report it. Then, the next day, if the change has stood, that either means it has not been noticed or it has been accepted. Then the bot makes a post, so the community can decide which! (Advantage: if the change got reverted in the last day, no spam.)
  2. At the moment, the phrasing of the bot output suggests it is announcing a change in policy rather than reporting an edit (perhaps without consensus). Even with the above provision, it could be either. I suggest rewording the output so that it makes no assertion either way.

If these two suggestions are combined, it would probably not be necessary to keep a cache of changes reported by the bot, nor would it be necessary to vary the bot output depending on the situation. Geometry guy 20:08, 21 January 2008 (UTC) PS. Please feel free to cross-post to the bot request page if this suggestion is helpful.

I copied this to the bot request page and responded there. — Carl (CBM · talk) 21:05, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
Replying here rather than on the bot page since I have no problem with your decision to limit the bot to a single announcement and this means that this is not really about the bot any longer. You will note that the fact that section indexing lacks robustness is a minor problem. Following my suggestion the bot would get the section number from the TOC, and if it should somehow get the wrong section, or a section is deleted in the short time from finding the section to making the edit then the section will no longer start with the bots earlier comments and the bot will refrain from making an edit. Taemyr (talk) 21:56, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

Many thanks

Starhalf.png The Half Barnstar
I wanted to present "The Right Half of the Half Barnstar" to say many thanks for working with Jeanenawhitney to fix the actor infobox anomoly that I discovered. You both put in time and effort to fix a small problem that may not have affected many pages, thus, I doubly appreciate your efforts. MarnetteD | Talk 22:50, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

re: Deletion

You are, of course, correct. To the best of my knowledge, we haven't executed that right to purge since 2002. There has since been a tacit promise not to do so without good reason and a fair amount of notice. But if the developers needed to purge the deleted history to keep the project up and running, they would absolutely do so.

Until they do so, though, the point that deleting a page doesn't affect the costs to the project remains. Deleting a page doesn't free up any server space or "clean up" anything. I'm really trying to teach people that there are many good reasons to delete a page but "cleaning up the database" is not one of them. Thanks for your comment. Rossami (talk) 15:59, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

It does, however, clean up Special:Prefixindex and ensure that the old templates aren't mistakenly used instead of the newer ones. And it prepares for the Day of Great Purging. — Carl (CBM · talk) 16:02, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

Lon Horiuchi

Hey Carl. I've replied on my talk page. Neıl 17:55, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

Ping - and again. Neıl 18:08, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

"C" for the computable functions

Hi Carl,

an anon has added to computable function the claim that the collection of all computable functions is denoted by "C". I've never heard of this, have you? --Trovatore (talk) 21:25, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

Probably there is at least one book that does that. It sounds like the sort of thing a more CS oriented book with a focus on subrecursive hierarchies would do. They like to have a collection of symbols to represent various classes of languages and functions. But I don't think that using C for the computable functions is common enough to point it out in the article without attributing it to a particular author, and even that is probably not needed. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:34, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

Stone representation theorem

After a recent edit of yours, the article currently says that any boolean algebra is isomorphic to the powerset algebra of the set of ultrafilters. Unless I'm thoroughly confused about something (and it's always a possibility that I'm wrong, confused or completely insane) shouldn't it say that X isomorphic to the algebra of clopen subsets of the space of ultrafilters, where the space of ultrafilters are equipped with the hull-kernel topology?--CSTAR (talk) 03:21, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

You're right. In my attempt to simplify something without editing the article much, I oversimplified it. I fixed that tonight by reworking the article some. The difficulty I had when editing the second section is that all the needed terminology was at the end of the third section. To fix that, I made the new second section just define Stone spaces, so that the statement of the result in the third section can be precise while still using the right terminology.
I may have trimmed the article too much, but I think that the previous version was somewhat verbose.
By the way, I have always called this the "Stone topology" on the ultrafilters. If you have a moment, could you give me a brief cheat sheet of how the terminology from functional analysis specializes in the setting of Boolean algebras? — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:53, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes the article is better now.
Well, hull kernel topology applies to the set of primitive ideals (= maximal ideals for boolean rings) so what I said above about filters is true modulo a trivial renaming.
A primitive ideal of an algebra is the kernel of an irreducible representation
The kernel of a set of primitive ideals is just their intersection. The hull of an ideal J is the set of primitive ideals P st P is s superset of J.
The hull-kernel of a set of primitive ideals is a closure operation which defines a topology.
--CSTAR (talk) 04:06, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, that makes perfect sense. I think there's another word for that closure operation, as well, but it has slipped my mind. — Carl (CBM · talk) 04:21, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
In algebraic geometry the hull-kernel topology on prime ideals is the Zariski topology. Is that what you had in mind?--CSTAR (talk) 05:37, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

User talk:Sussexman

Please could I draw your attention to the unblock request here. Chelsea Tory (talk) 16:39, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

I don't like this one bit CBM. If you look at Chelsea Tory's contributions, you'll see that the account was registered three days after Sussexman was blocked. It's a little weird considering now Chelsea Tory is trying to get the user unblocked. Ryan Postlethwaite 16:46, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
Blocking admin,User:Jtdirl, have apparently retired from wikipedia. As far as I can see the block was over legal threats made in conjunction with a content dispute on Gregory Lauder-Frost, said page having been deleted since. User:pschemp was the admin that rejected the first block appeal. Taemyr (talk) 17:14, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
I'm more concerned about the fact that Chelsea Tory is most probably a sock of Sussexman, given the interest after so long, the fact that the account was registered 3 days after the account was blocked and many early edits were trying to appeal the sussexman block. Ryan Postlethwaite 17:20, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
Possibly, they do appear to have similar political views. I find it sort of incidental the the block, although there could be grounds to reblock due to sockpuppet abuse. Taemyr (talk) 17:29, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
I did not know Sussexman when I registered. I hope you will not condemn all those who registered within a few days of the fellow's ban! I have a family and my time is in demand. Are we all being judged now by how many edits we do? Many people are Conservatives just as many others are not. We are talking here about a block which has been in place for a year and a half and according to WP's own policies should be lifted. See:[21] There does not seem to much assumption of good faith evident here. Kind regards, --Chelsea Tory (talk) 00:46, 25 January 2008 (UTC)


Thank you for fixing this. I should have thought of the autoblock but stupidly didn't. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 21:37, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Requests for checkusership has been marked as a policy

Wikipedia:Requests for checkusership (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been edited to mark it as a policy. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:50, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Universities/Article guidelines has been marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:WikiProject Universities/Article guidelines (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been edited to mark it as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:50, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

New GAR archive

Hi Carl, could you also add Category:GAR/35 to the listing list. Geometry guy 21:03, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

RE: Thanks

Thank you for the question. I appreciate your comments on my talk page. I also feel that I've improved the encyclopedia in some way, but others are welcome to disagree. That is a good quality of Wikipedia. Again, thank you. - Rjd0060 (talk) 02:45, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Peer review plans

Hi Carl - I've set a couple of plans in motion to improve the PR page further:

  1. Organising the page by topic;
  2. "Archiving from the get-go."

The first of these involves assigning a WP1.0 topic (there are 10 of them) to each peer review to make it easier for reviewers to find articles. The second involves placing an article's peer review on an archive page from the very beginning so that the page never needs to be moved: I did this with GAR, and it is much easier to use than the PR system.

The first plan only requires VeblenBot to list 10 more categories, one for each topic.

In principle, the second plan requires no change to VeblenBot. However, in practice there are transitional issues, because in the new system, the Wikipedia/Peer review/ARTICLE NAME/archiveN pages will be in the category, and the current talk pages would be taken out of the category. This can of course be done preserving chronological order, but not preserving dates. I'm thinking about several different ways that this could be done, and wondering which would be the most smooth. Do you have any suggestions? Geometry guy 20:37, 23 January 2008 (UTC)

The simplest option is for me to just edit the caches one time by hand. Then they would reflect the correct dates when existing PRs began. As new pages are added to the categories, the caches would automatically be correct. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:38, 23 January 2008 (UTC)
Okay, I will develop the idea on that basis. At the moment, if I understand it, VeblenBot is only listing talk pages in the PR category. Geometry guy 10:02, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
That's right. Please let me know shortly before you depopulate that category, so I can save a copy of the cache to have a record of the data. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:02, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Actually, I don't think I will depopulate the category: instead I will put the peer review subpages in a new category called Category:General peer reviews. If VeblenBot doesn't mind watching empty cats for a short while, could you add this to the list (namespace 4), and also

These are the GA/WP1.0 topics, except that I've folded maths in with sciences, because math peer reviews almost never happen. Finally, I'm going to need Category:February 2008 peer reviews soon, so could you add that one too? Thanks, Geometry guy 19:31, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

PS. I used {{GA/Topic}} to generate the correct names. Geometry guy 19:36, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

I'll be glad to add these. The only issue is that the toolserver database is down for (unscheduled?) maintenance today, so it will be a while before any updates by VeblenBot appear. It was a good test of the safety system of the bot, though. The system has so far been correct in detecting the error, and not uploading empty pages. — Carl (CBM · talk) 20:42, 25 January 2008 (UTC)
Very good: I probably won't use these cats in anger until Sunday, so the toolserver has more than a day to lift its spirits :) Geometry guy 20:47, 25 January 2008 (UTC)
I've set up some templates and categories to do this, but the toolserver downtime and archive-naming issues have delayed my plans. I'm hoping to go ahead early this coming week instead. I will keep you posted. Geometry guy 23:01, 27 January 2008 (UTC)
Of course there is no hurry from me. Thanks for keeping me informed. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:01, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

request for 'below' parameter in Template talk:NavigationBox athletic conference

I followed up to your response on Template talk:NavigationBox athletic conference. Take a look see if that makes more sense. Thanks. -Gwguffey (talk) 20:31, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Thank you. - Gwguffey (talk) 02:14, 28 January 2008 (UTC)


There is a new suggestion at MediaWiki talk:Newarticletext. If this is acceptable I have the full message text ready to provide for installation. Sbowers3 (talk) 23:11, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Zeroth order logic

Zeroth_order_logic seems to be a typical Jon Awbrey article. Apart from the usual edit wars nobody else seems to have edited there. I would expect that the word is notable enough to mention it in propositional logic, but probably not enough so to replace this article by a real one. Would it be a good idea to prod it? --Hans Adler (talk) 00:27, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

Perhaps it could simply be redirected to Propositional logic, and a sentence added there to include the name. That avoids the sometimes difficult deletion process. The material at the bottom could be used to start List of propositional logic topics, which I wouldn't mind creating. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:05, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
I like this idea, the redirect is obvious in retrospect. I will probably do this tomorrow; Jon seems to have made plenty of idiotic links to that page, so it's not as straightforward as it should be. --Hans Adler (talk) 01:12, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
The only links that "must" be changed are the redirects that will become double redirects. From "what links here" I only see Zeroth order logic and Zeroth Order Logic. There is an argument that most of the other links shouldn't be changed, in case the zeroth order logic article is later split from propositional logic and expanded. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:17, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
I was worried because there were so many links from relatively unlikely places. It seems that this was only because the article was in the Logic template. I have simply unlinked it there; probably not the best solution. I wonder when "What links here" will be updated, so I can double-check there is no further insanity anywhere. — I was going to add the article's "See also" list to List of Boolean algebra topics, but it was already a subset of that list. --Hans Adler (talk) 12:50, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
When you edit a template, all the pages that use the template get recompiled in the background. The links will be incorrect until that process completes (it seems to be done now). Sometimes, there is a backlog of pages to be recompiled, and so it takes a while for your changes to become visible. If there are only a few pages that use the template you can update them manually by making a help:null edit.
I think it makes sense to link to something in the template, so I changed it to propositional logic for the time being. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:16, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
After looking closer, I no longer think a redirect is the right solution. The issue is that Propositional logic and Sentential logic both redirect to propositional calculus, which is about deductive systems for propositional logic rather than an overview of propositional logic itself. I think it might be better to just rewrite Zeroth order logic and then update those other two redirects to point to it. I left a note for Gregbard about that idea, too. Let me know what you think. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:27, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
One issue is that we might run into the Boolean algebra debacle. Maybe that should be a topic for this spring. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:30, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
Are you aware of what's going on there right now? Vaughan Pratt is writing an excellent elementary introduction as Boolean algebra (introduction). I am trying to remove cruft and at the same time strengthening the lattice POV. My impression is that it's very dynamical right now (especially VP), except that StuRat isn't open to things he doesn't know, and Boolean logic suffers from so many problems that I am afraid of doing a single edit there that is not completely technical.
I agree that we need a proper article. For every important kind of logic there should be one big article covering syntax and semantics adequately. Is there a reason not to call it Propositional logic, so that Zeroth-order logic can redirect there? Or do we want to promote the term "zeroth order logic"? (I am not sure I have encountered it outside Wikipedia.) The big article could have Propositional calculus as a "main article", and perhaps one of the Boolean algebra articles as another. I have already redirected Zeroth order logic and Zeroth Order Logic to Propositional calculus, and I was about to redirect Zeroth-order logic in the same way when I read your reply. Now we are in an inconsistent state and I don't know which way to go.
Thanks for the info concerning templates. I am surprised it's so fast and convenient. --Hans Adler (talk) 14:20, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
My impression is that this area has suffered from fragmented effort for a while, leading to the duplication and omission that we see. To try to get some more focused attention, I created WP:BATF just now. I'm going to personally invite some people from the history pages of these articles, and you would be a valued contributor as well. I don't think we can fix the organization by just editing one article at a time. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:33, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
I am cleaning up the redirects for your project. Could you please delete Jon Awbrey's redirect page BACD? I think it's a clear case of WP:SNOW, so I am not even prodding it. --Hans Adler (talk) 14:48, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

PR again

VeblenBot appears to have fallen behind on the PR cat, which is quite close to the template limit now, so I have archived a lot this evening. Incidentally, I don't think being 20K within the limit is enough warning: after the current archiving effort settles, could you up it to say 1-200K? Geometry guy 23:01, 28 January 2008 (UTC) PS. Now that the new preprocessor is in place, can you estimate the timescale on the new parser function? This would help a lot at PR. Geometry guy 23:03, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

I don't have an estimate of the ETA for the new parser function, but my best guess is that it will be a long delay. The parser is under heavy development (I don't think the new preprocessor is "done"), and the code I wrote before will probably no longer work. I will update my code at some point, but I want to wait until the parser code is stable. Even then, it will have to wait until one of the developers has time to look at it, and they are very busy.
On the subject of unstable code - the API was changed two days ago in a way that made me update my scripts, then someone else pointed out it should have been done differently, so apparently they changed it back, breaking the script again. These changes are frustrating at times.
I will set the bot warning to go off when there is less than 200k of space left. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:25, 29 January 2008 (UTC)

Successor section on Infobox Officeholder‎

I've reinstated the editprotected tag on Infobox Officeholder‎ as only one person on the page objected, and that was only because they incorrectly thought it removed the Successor field from all current officeholder‎s. Had they read the details of the edit they would have seen it doesn't. I don't know why you didn't spot this; if you have an objection to the edit you should just state it. --Hera1187 (talk) 07:00, 29 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the note.

If there's a reliable source to be found, that sounds fine. -- Bellwether BC 04:29, 30 January 2008 (UTC)

From IAR

You wrote, "If you read the archives, you'll find that I've actually supported (and even argued in favor of) edits to the policy that defied my personal preferences, purely for the sake of compromise and consensus-building. For this reason, some of my reversions were actually from my preferred version, not to it."

If these reversions are towards a version that you think more likely to find agreement among everyone, that they are certainly valid. If, however, you are reverting solely for the sake of stability, I'd like to convince you to work towards a compromise version instead. There's no rush in getting the wording correct, and if the page is less than optimal for a few hours we would never allow someone to use that to wikilawyer an excuse for bad behavior. — Carl (CBM · talk) 17:53, 30 January 2008 (UTC)

I assure you that I have not reverted for the sake of stability. In the instance that I cited, I supported the introduction of new text (intended to serve as a compromise) and attempted to counter arguments in favor of reverting to the more established version (despite the fact that I personally preferred it).
My goal is to arrive at the version most supported by the community (even if it isn't my favorite version or the version that's been around the longest). —David Levy 01:35, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
That's my goal as well. Thanks for the response, — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:36, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Be nice has been marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:Be nice (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been edited to mark it as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change. -- VeblenBot (talk) 18:52, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

Good job.

No edit bickering, just aiming for the compromise. Only one problem, the template that was being searched was cleanup-rewrite.

... there should be an easy-to-find guide for these. As an administrator, btw, could you redirect the currently empty Template:Crap to cleanup-rewrite?

Signing sure is annoying. (talk) 00:22, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

There is a list at Wikipedia:Cleanup_templates. I don't know if it's easy to find. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:43, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

General peer reviews and a glitch

I've been tracking the old peer review category at the new Category:General peer reviews, and am almost ready to make the switchover, but there appears to be a small glitch, as you can see from the last two or three diffs: VeblenBot keeps updating the timestamp for Allegations of state terrorism committed by the United States and A Magical Christmas of Magic with Harry and the Potters and Wizardly Friends and Magical Singing Creatures.

The fact that both of these articles have uncommonly long titles may suggest what is going wrong (with the /archive1, the shorter of these is 82 characters - does Perl use 80 character lines for something?). Geometry guy 19:58, 30 January 2008 (UTC)

This seems to be resolved now (thanks). I believe Category:General peer reviews now contains the same 106 articles as Category:Requests for peer review, and in approximately the same order. Could you now make the (hopefully) one-off cache edit that we discussed to synchronize the dates at User:VeblenBot/C/General peer reviews with the correct dates at User:VeblenBot/C/Requests for peer review?
Thanks again, Geometry guy 13:45, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
I tried doing it the cheap and dirty way, but that didn't work. I'll edit the timestamps when I get some free time later this morning; it's no problem. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:01, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks Carl: I've added three more and taken two out to match the changes at the old category. Geometry guy 18:43, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
OK, I think the two categories are synchronized now. — Carl (CBM · talk) 22:13, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Great. I've made the switch and will try to troubleshoot. Geometry guy 00:03, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

Hi again - VeblenBot doesn't seem to be listing Category:Natural sciences and mathematics peer reviews. (Note that I combined these two topics in one category.) Geometry guy 21:58, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

I turned it on. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:08, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, Carl, your help with content review is invaluable! Geometry guy 22:55, 2 February 2008 (UTC)

RfA thanks from Happy-melon

I just wanted to say thanks for your support for my RfA, which closed (74/2/0) this morning. Your comment and support was very much appreciated. I'm sure we'll bump into each other again at WP:CSD or elsewhere. Happymelon 15:37, 1 February 2008 (UTC)


It needs a lot more referencing than it currently does. Judgesurreal777 (talk) 22:41, 2 February 2008 (UTC)


You're right about the thing with Guliani. But I heard that he was going to endorse McCain from one of his campaign staffers on Fox.

Citations in Algorithm article

Thanks. Now I see the advantages of Harvard citations. The main drawback, as the template is currently implementated, is that it is not immediate to go back from the reference list to the point or points where that particular book or paper is mentioned. I know, it is a minor snag, but I like it when in a book each reference lists the places where it is mentioned in the text. I have mentioned this in Template talk:Harvard citation#From_the_reference_to_the_text.3F. Happy editing, Goochelaar (talk) 11:34, 4 February 2008 (UTC)


Carl - If you remember, you weighed in on the use of user pages to draft a future RFC, and whether such use might count as an attack page if not promptly converted from a personal on-wiki collection of evidence about a person into an actual RFC or ArbCom case. The above is an ongoing discussion of one such user page; part of the question is what counts as a "reasonable" period of time to bring the RFC or delete the draft. (Opinions differ from "a few days" to "several months.") The discussion seems to be floundering a bit on what this policy means, so, if you're interested, I thought you might have input to add. (If not, sorry to bug you.) Thanks. --TheOtherBob 15:27, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

Consequence operators

Hello Carl, I have finally finished cleaning the consequence operator article. There are still three directs left that I don't know what to do with:

I think they are all idiosyncratic Herrmann terminology, but that doesn't seem to qualify them for speedy deletion. Any immediate advice? (If it means any work, don't worry. I can just put them to Redirects for discussion and see what happens.) --Hans Adler (talk) 19:04, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

If you put them on RfD, I will support their deletion. The only one that I had to think about was finite consequence operator, but since that term isn't bolded in the article, I think just the redirect from consequence operator is enough. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:50, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, you are right. I found two non-Herrmann references to "finite consequence operator", and no non-Hermann reference to "finitary consequence operator". I will put the definition into the article and the other two redirects on RfD (tomorrow or so). --Hans Adler (talk) 23:58, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

NOR & Peer Review as a secondary source

What would you think of the following? (last sentence added)

Secondary sources are accounts at least one step removed from an event.[3] Secondary sources may draw on primary sources and other secondary sources to create a general overview; or to make analytic or synthetic claims.[4][5] Wikipedia articles should rely on reliable, published secondary sources. All interpretive claims, analyses, or synthetic claims about primary sources must be referenced to a secondary source, rather than original analysis of the primary-source material by Wikipedia editors. Peer reviewed studies, cited in regard to the analyses and interpretations presented, are generally considered to be reliable secondary sources.

Perhaps some other wording would serve the same end.--Strider12 (talk) 21:56, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

February PR list

This doesn't seem right. Gimmetrow 22:30, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

What this is indicating is that Wikipedia:Peer_review/July_2006 got added to the category; I checked the page and it did get added. I'll have to look into what change caused that. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:13, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
It was because the peer review for Star Wars was at Wikipedia:Peer review/Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace/Archive1, a nonstandard name, and the second one was at Wikipedia:Peer review/Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace/archive1. I'll try to fix it. — Carl (CBM · talk) 23:42, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

User rights

Thank you for answering my questions, but if import is disabled, what good does him having it do? Earthbendingmaster 00:39, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

I don't know why; perhaps he had a use for it at some time. I don't think it's a big deal. Cary and the developers both work for the foundation, and the developers have full control over the database. So if Cary needs to do something as part of his job, he will always have the technical ability to get it done. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:45, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes, thats good, but administrators also have import if I am correct? Of course, if it was enabled, which I wish it was. Earthbendingmaster 00:50, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
No, admins don't ordinarily have the import right. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:53, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
Special:import. When I try it, it says The action you have requested is limited to users in one of the groups Administrators, imports, transwiki.
Return to Main Page. Earthbendingmaster 00:57, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
If you tried it as an admin, you would see the error copied from MediaWiki:Importnosources, because import isn't enabled here. The message you are seeing isn't accurate. — Carl (CBM · talk) 00:59, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
Its not because it is not accurate, its just if it was enabled only those user groups could do it, and administrators get that message because it is disabled, if it was enabled, they could use it. Earthbendingmaster 01:02, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your help. Cheers. Earthbendingmaster 02:56, 6 February 2008 (UTC)


I just wanted to say a quick thankyou for fixing the mess I inadvertantly left in {{db-t3}} and {{old template}} last night when I was dragged away by RL. I will make a response to the comments MZMcBride has raised on his talk page, but your fix was both clever and uncontroversial, and very much appreciated. Happymelon 12:02, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

It was no problem to fix the templates. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:43, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

Disagreement with tagging

I disagree with your assessment about not using inline citations for articles on mathematics. When I see things that do not use inline citations, I will mark them as such. I would like to know that this information comes from a book and that it isn't just someone's home grown lecture notes.

Please do not check on every edit that I have made from this IP address. I find your actions deeply disturbing. (talk) 17:43, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

You were very wrong about astrophysics. If you look at Talk:Astrophysics, astronomy, Talk:Astronomy, Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Astronomy, and possibly Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Astronomical objects (and I may have missed something else), you can see that I spent a lot of time trying to convince people that, based on both other information on the web and in books as well as my professional experience in astrophysics, the information on astrophysics was badly misinformed. (Note that I earned the title "Dr.".) This type of information was misleading many people in the general public, including my own college students. This is precisely why inline citations are needed. You can also see that I have used inline citations very generously in all articles that I have edited in the past. In particular, I have used many inline citations in the article on astronomy to explain why astrophysics is used synonymously with astronomy.
This article on astrophysics is an excellent example of why inline citations are necessary. Without them, it is impossible to tell whether information in an article is just something made up by someone who thinks he understands the subject or whether it is real information from an authoritative reference. I hope, after this demonstration, you see both the value and the necessity of inline citations as opposed to vague references to a book on the subject.
I recall that I left Wikipedia partly because I disliked the personal conflict among people. It now appears that I cannot even leave {{unreferenced}} tags in articles anonymously anymore. I regret that a lot of this poorly referenced or unreferenced information may harm my students, but I really just do not feel like fighting with people on the web anymore. You can do what you want with my {{unreferenced}} and {{citations needed}} tags. I have already told myself that I do not expect other people to understand my concerns and that they will do what they want anyway. Dr. Submillimeter (talk) 18:39, 6 February 2008 (UTC)
Merging astronomy into astrophysics made the most sense. The information in astrophysics was more-or-less duplicative of the information in astronomy, and the information that was not duplicative certainly seemed as though it could be placed in the astronomy article. Moreover, the distinction between astronomy and astrophysics in the real world is very gray at best. (Please read the section that I wrote under "Lexicology" in astronomy, which includes many inline citations.) After an extended discussion, most people were willing to go along with the idea of merging astrophysics into astronomy. (See for the discussion.) If you disbelieve me and if you think you know the topic better than me, or if you think that the merge needs to be discussed, than go ahead and revert what I have done. I am signing off now, and I will not be signing back on for a long time. Dr. Submillimeter (talk) 19:02, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

SelectionBot table

Hi Carl, can you look at the new Maths tables I posted at the SelectionBot talk page? We have two variants of the Log formula now. Tito's "tweak" looks to be the best yet, IMHO, but I'd like your opinion if possible. Thanks, Walkerma (talk) 20:52, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

Thanks! Walkerma (talk) 03:27, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

Super-recursive algorithm

Hello Carl, can you have a look at this new article and its creator? He re-reverted me while I was writing a justification for my reverts on the article's talk page. I must go offline now for at least an hour and feel a message on their talk page is necessary, but I don't have the concentration now to write a message that doesn't WP:BITE. Will be back later. --Hans Adler (talk) 18:08, 7 February 2008 (UTC) PS: Of course, you can also just leave it as it is and I will deal with this later… I know you have enough to do even without me drawing you into such things. --Hans Adler (talk) 18:10, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

Page buffer limit

08-Feb-2008: Hello, User:Wikid77 here. I got your message, and will begin to answer, but I have to admit I've forgotten details about the page-buffer limit (19,000 WP edits have clouded my memory). I'm sure the page-buffer size is over 1 MB. I think it is the same or related to the template-expansion limit, and also seems purposely limited to reduce malicious server attacks attempted by pages stuffed with huge templates. The page-buffer limit counts the contents of "<noinclude>" sections (probably to prevent flooding with 100KB noincludes in repeated templates). However, the "<noinclude>" sections are not expanded for the embedded templates. I continually hit the page-buffer limit when doing an "impossible" task: I wrote "Template:Location_map_many_polarx" to place latitude/longitude markers on polar or conic projection maps, by performing hideous nested calculations to skew latitude and longitude with the conic mathematical transforms, 5 times per template (using tedious quadratic and linear interpolation). This is how Wikipedians can mark maps in polar areas, such as across Canada, Template:Location_map_CanadaTerrain. It actually works, which is why I used it enough to hit the buffer limit. I'll try to remember/find the actual page-size limit from "way back" in November 2007, and reply later. I'm sure you understand wiki-amnesia. -Wikid77 (talk) 10:35, 8 February 2008 (UTC)