User talk:Grey Wanderer

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Springfield[edit]

I disagree with your edit on the Springfield page. The material is not a copyright violation. First the lead section about indians the "civil war" "railroad" and "wildbill Hickok" do not come from the source under question. Secondly the information is not a verbatim copy from the website. Thirdly, the information comes from a website maintained by the city of Springfield thus placing it under government works and free of copyright. The deletion is overly broad and unnecessary. — Preceding unsigned comment added by ThinkHat (talkcontribs) 13:59, 6 September 2017 (UTC)

I stand by my edits, government works are not necessary copyright free and the sections were blatant copies. Your rewrite looks wonderful. Grey Wanderer (talk) 02:55, 10 October 2017 (UTC)

Columbia, Missouri has been copyedited![edit]

I wasn't sure about the second lead paragraph, however. It's a big chunk, so I wanted to ask your take on the situation. The only source in the whole paragraph is one I just added. I think it should be either A. Removed entirely, B. Sourced, C. Moved to the history section, or D. Merged in History of Columbia, Missouri. Do what you please, no need to get my opinion. Cheers, JTP (talkcontribs) 04:48, 22 October 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for your work. Grey Wanderer (talk) 22:12, 28 October 2017 (UTC)

ArbCom 2017 election voter message[edit]

Scale of justice 2.svgHello, Grey Wanderer. Voting in the 2017 Arbitration Committee elections is now open until 23.59 on Sunday, 10 December. All users who registered an account before Saturday, 28 October 2017, made at least 150 mainspace edits before Wednesday, 1 November 2017 and are not currently blocked are eligible to vote. Users with alternate accounts may only vote once.

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Springfield, Missouri[edit]

Thanks for your thanks!Parkwells (talk) 13:23, 21 April 2018 (UTC)

Brewery name convention[edit]

I'm contacting you as an active contributor on brewery articles and/or member of WikiProject Beer. There is some discussion going on as to how we should name our brewery articles. See Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Beer#Change_brewery_titles? and Talk:Greene_King_Brewery#Requested_move_10_May_2018. If you are interested, please comment. SilkTork (talk)

Kansas City, Kansas[edit]

Population and whether or not it is a state capital are not the only criteria. An example would be Lowell, Massachusetts. It still is a very significant city with a history just as old as Kansas City, Missouri. and a distinction between the two is necessary. When you type in Kansas City it even redirects to the Kansas City metropolitan area. Howpper (talk) 04:15, 24 May 2018 (UTC)

I also wanted to add that the total number of U.S. cities on the list is supposed to be around 200. Howpper (talk) 04:19, 24 May 2018 (UTC)

Kansas City, Missouri is certainly an order of magnitude more significant than Lowell, I would question that Lowell meets the criteria for level 5, but I don't really care. As for Kansas City, Kansas, it is significantly younger than Lowell (and Kansas City, Mo). I'm unaware of any particular historical significance of Kansas City, Kansas, though I own every published history on the subject. I'm happy either way I just wanted to make sure you knew what you were doing. Grey Wanderer (talk) 23:41, 24 May 2018 (UTC)
I had no idea the list was supposed to be at 200, is that written down somewhere? Thx Grey Wanderer (talk) 23:48, 24 May 2018 (UTC)
Someone on the talk page said based on the overall number of city articles, the number of U.S. city articles should be around 200. Howpper (talk) 00:32, 25 May 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #007, 31 May 2018[edit]

We have grown to 89 members.

This is the seventh issue of this newsletter. For previous issues, see our newsletter archive.

Welcome[edit]

A warm welcome to our nearly one dozen new members...

Our new members include:

Be sure to say "hi" and welcome them to the team.

The portal set has shrunk[edit]

There were 1515 portals, but now we have 1475, because we speedy deleted a bunch of incompleted portals that had been sitting around for ages, that were empty shells or had very little content. Because they were speedied, they can be rebuilt from scratch without acquiring approval from WP:DRV.

Maintenance runs on the portals set have begun[edit]

This is what we have been gearing up for: upgrading the portals en masse, using AWB.

More than half of the Associated Wikimedia sections have been converted to no longer use a subpage. This chore will probably be completed over the next week or two. Many thanks to the WikiGnome Squad, who have added an Associated Wikimedia section to the many geography-related portals that lacked one. The rest of the subjects await. :)

The next maintenance drive will be on the intro sections. Notices have gone out to the WikiProjects for which one or more portals fall within their subject scope. Once enough time has elapsed for them to respond (1 week), AWB processing of intro sections will begin.

Thank you, you[edit]

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your part in the RfC. I went back and reread much of it. I believe your enthusiasm played a major part in turning the tide on there. I'm proud of all of you.

Why reread that mess, you ask?

To harvest ideas, and to keep the problems that need to be fixed firmly in mind. But, also to keep in touch. See below...

Thank yous all around[edit]

I've contacted all of the other opposers of the RfC proposal to delete portals, to thank them for their support, and to assure them that their decision was not made in vain. I updated them on our activities, provided the link to the interviews about this project in the Signpost, pointed out our newsletter archive so they can keep up-to-date with what we are doing, and I invited them all to come and have a look-see at our operations (on our talk page).

Sockpuppet, and reverting his work[edit]

It so happened that one of our members was a sockpuppet: JLJ001. According to the admin who blocked him, he was a particularly tricky long term abuser. This is a weird situation, since the user was quite helpful. He will be missed.

This has been somewhat disruptive, because admins are doing routine deletions of the pages (portals, templates, etc.) he created, and reversion of his edits (I don't know if they will be reverting all of them). Please bear with them, as they are only doing what is best in the long run.

The following pages have been deleted by the admins so far, that I know of:

Automation so far, section by section...[edit]

Automatic article alerts is up and running[edit]

Automatic article alerts are now featured on the project page.

Some super out-of-date entries kept showing up on there, so posting it on the Project page was delayed. Thanks to Evad37 and AfroThundr for providing solutions on this one. Evad37 adjusted the workflow settings per Wikipedia:Article alerts/Subscribing#Choosing workflows, to make sure only the appropriate page types show up. AfroThundr removed the tags from the old entries that caused them to keep showing up in the article alerts.

Other things that could use some automation[edit]

Noyster pointed out that it would be nice to automate the updating of the portals section at the Community bulletin board.

Another major component of the portal system is the main list of portals, at Portal:Contents/Portals. How would we go about automating the updating of that?

Please post your ideas on the WikiProject's talk page. Thank you.

Deletion discussion survivors[edit]

Keep in mind that we have already speedy deleted almost all of the nearly empty portals, which can be rebuilt without approval whenever it is convenient to do so. Other portals should be completed if at all possible rather than delete them through MfD (which requires approval from Deletion review to rebuild).

(Current deletion discussions are posted on our WikiProject page).

Portals needing repair[edit]

Wrapping up[edit]

There's still more, but it will have to wait until next issue.

Until then, see ya around the project.    — The Transhumanist   12:01, 31 May 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #008, 7 June 2018[edit]

The WikiProject now has 92 participants, including 16 admins.

Welcome[edit]

A warm welcome to the newest members of the team:

Be sure to say hi.

Congrats[edit]

Pbsouthwood has just gotten through the grueling RfA process to become a Wikipedia administrator. Be sure to congratulate him.

The reason he went for it was: "For some time I expect to be busy with subpage deletion for Wikipedia:WikiProject Portals as mentioned above. The amount of work is expected to keep me busy for some time. I am primarly a content creator and contributor to policy discussions, but would be willing to consider other admin work on request, providing that I feel that my involvement would be appropriate and not too far outside my comfort zone."

New feature: Picture slideshow[edit]

Picture slideshow

Evad37 has figured out a way to let the user flip through pictures without purging the page. Purging is awkward because there is an intermediary confirmation screen that you have to click on "yes". In the new picture slideshow section, all you have to do is click on the > to go to the next picture or < to instantly show the previous feature. The feature also shuffles the pictures when the page is initiated, so that they are shown in a different order each time the user visits the page (or purges it).

It is featured in Portal:Sacramento, California. Check it out to the right.

Keep in mind that the feature is a beta version. Please share your comments on how to refine this feature, at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals#Refining the Picture slideshow.

The one-page portal has been achieved[edit]

We now have a one-page portal design. It isn't fully automated, nor is it even fully semi-automated, as there are still some manually filled-in areas. But it no longer requires any subpages in portal space, and that is a huge improvement. For example, Portal:Sacramento, California utilizes the one-page design concept. While is employs heavy use of templates, it does not have any subpages of its own.

I commend you for your teamwork[edit]

This is the most cooperative team I've ever seen. With a strong spirit of working together to get an important job done. Kudos to you.

In conclusion...[edit]

There's more. A lot more. But it will have to wait until next issue, but you don't have to wait. See what's going on at the WikiProject's talk page.    — The Transhumanist   02:09, 7 June 2018 (UTC)

The Columns (Columbia, Missouri)[edit]

Hello:

The copy edit that you requested from the Guild of Copy Editors of the article The Columns (Columbia, Missouri) has been completed. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

You'll see that I have added several citations where I thought them necessary. You should probably cite the information in the Appearances in art ... section if possible. I had a quick look but could find nothing.

Regards,

Twofingered Typist (talk) 13:47, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

Thanks for your work. Grey Wanderer (talk) 21:56, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #009, 15 June 2018[edit]

(Article slideshow prototype)
Selected animals

Don't mind that box to the right. We'll be talking about that later, below.

Almost done...[edit]

With the portals upgrades?

No. :)

What is almost done is the updating of the main list of portals!

There are 23 portals left to be listed.

Kudos to the WikiGnome Squadron, for spearheading this.

Once it is fully updated, we need to keep it up to date. When you complete a portal, remember to add it to Portal:Contents/Portals.

Concerning portal upgrades, we are working on those section-by-section...

Associated Wikimedia section conversion task complete[edit]

The Associated Wikimedia sections of the entire set of portals have been upgraded. These are now handled on each portal base page (bypassing the previously used corresponding subpages), using the {{Wikimedia for portals}} template rather than reiterated copied/pasted code.

So, to be more accurate on reporting upgrade progress, that's one section down (for the whole set of portals), with (about) nine sections to go. (Skipping curated portals, regarding custom content sections, of course).

Further section conversions (using AWB)[edit]

Work is underway on converting Portals' introduction sections, and the categories sections.

If you would like to help, see Wikipedia:WikiProject Portals#Upgrade introduction sections and Wikipedia:WikiProject Portals#AWB task: Convert category sections

Further section conversions (by hand)[edit]

Work has also started with converting selected picture sections to picture slideshow sections. See Wikipedia:WikiProject Portals#Install picture slideshows.

Quality rating system for portals under development[edit]

Currently, there is no quality rating for portals: in the Portals WikiProject box on each portals' talk page, it just says "Portal". But times are a changin'. Quality assessment is on the way, and you can help. See the discussion.

What's coming: excerpt slideshows[edit]

Evad37 has figured out a way to apply the picture slideshow feature to displaying article excerpts (now you can check out the provided box above). :) This allows us to bypass page purging to see the next selection, and you can even click through them rather quickly. Currently, the wikicode for doing this for article excerpts is a bit eye-boggling, and so we are looking into simplifying it. A streamlined version may be just around the corner.

Note that this is a prototype, not ready for widespread use. Click on the box in between the lesser than and greater than signs, to see what I mean. It was meant for pictures, and so the thumbnail feature doesn't apply to article prose very well. I've presented it even though it isn't ready, to show the direction portal development is heading. See the discussion.

Wow[edit]

I'm amazed at how rapidly portals are evolving. And we're still within a single generation of portal technological evolution. Imagine what they might be in 2 or 3 more generations of developments. Pretty soon, portals will be able to shake your hand. :)    — The Transhumanist   11:03, 16 June 2018 (UTC)

Columbia Historic Homes[edit]

I hope I'm writing back you correctly, Grey Wanderer. Yes, I am the person who created and writes Columbia Historic Properties, with the url of ColumbiaHistoricHomes.com

It looks like you've done amazing work on wikipedia!

Thank you for your kind words. Diannaobrien (talk) 21:35, 22 June 2018 (UTC)Dianna O'Brien

Portals WikiProject update #010, 30 June 2018[edit]

We've grown to 94 participants.

A warm welcome to dcljr and Kpgjhpjm.

Rating system for portals[edit]

We are in the process of developing a rating system specifically for portals, as the quality assessment scheme for articles does not apply to portals. It is coming along nicely. Your input would be very helpful. See the discussion at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/General#Proposed new quality class assessments.

Better than a barnstar[edit]

One of our participants got involved with this WikiProject through interest in how the new generation of portals would be handled in WP's MOS (Manual of Style). It didn't take long before he got sucked in deeper. This has given him an opportunity to look around, and so, he has made an assessment of this WikiProject's operations:

I'm quite frankly really impressed and inspired by what's happening here. If you'd asked me a year ago if I thought portals should just be scrapped as a failed, dragged-out experiment, I would have said "yes". This planning and the progress toward making it all practical is exemplary of the wiki spirit, in particular of a happy service-to-readers puppy properly wagging its technological and editorial tail instead of the other way around, and without "drama". It's also one of the few examples I've seen in a long time of a new wikiproject actually doing something useful and fomenting constructive activity (instead of acting as a barrier to participation, and a canvassing/ownership farm for PoV pushers). Kudos all around. — SMcCandlish

Congratulations, everyone. Keep up the great work.

Slideshow development[edit]

We've run into a glitch with slideshows: they don't work on mobile devices.

Initially, we will need to explore options that allow portals to have slideshows without adversely affecting mobile viewers. See Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Design#Mobile view support.

Eventually, we may need another way to do slideshows. If we do go this route, and I don't see why we wouldn't, then (user configurable) automatic slideshows also become a possibility.

TemplateStyles RfC passed[edit]

Once implemented, this will allow editors to create and edit cascading style sheets for use with templates. This will expand what we can do with portals. For more detail, see mw:Extension:TemplateStyles and Wikipedia:TemplateStyles.

Automation effort[edit]

We've run into an obstacle using Lua-based selective transclusion: Lua is incapable (on Wikipedia) of reading in article names from categories. Because of this, we'll need to seek other approaches for fully automating the Selected article section. We are exploring sources other than categories, and other technologies besides Lua.

Speaking of using other sources, the template {{Transclude list item excerpt}} collects list items from a specified page, or from a section of that page, and transcludes the lead from a randomly selected link from that list. Courtesy of Certes. So, if you use this in a portal, and if the template specifies a page or section serviced by JL-Bot, you've now got yourself an automatically updated section in the portal. JL-Bot provides links to featured content and good articles, by subject.

What is "fully automated"? When you create a portal using a creation template, and the portal works thereafter without editor intervention, the portal is fully automated. That is, the portal is supported by features that fetch new content. If you have to add new article names every so often for it to display new content, then it is only semi-automated.

Currently, the Selected article section is semi-automated, because it requires that an editor supplies the names of the various articles for which excerpts are (automatically) displayed. For examples, look at the wikisource code of Portal:Reptiles, Portal:Ancient Tamil civilization, and Portal:Reference works.

So far, 3 sections are fully automatable: the introduction section, the categories section, and the Associated Wikimedia section.

Where is all this heading?[edit]

Henry.

Or some other name.

Eventually, the portal department will be a software program. And we won't have to do anything (unless we want to). Not even tell it what portals to create (unless we want to). It will just do it all (plus whatever else we want it to do). And we will of course give it good manners, and a name.

But, that is a few years off.

Until then, building portals is still (partially) up to us.    — The Transhumanist   13:31, 30 June 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #011, 10 July 2018[edit]

We now have 97 participants.

Be sure to welcome our newest members, BrantleyIzMe, Coffeeandcrumbs, and Nolan Perry, with warm regards.

Work is proceeding apace. We have 2 major thrusts right now: converting the intro sections of portals, and building the components of the one-page automated model...

Converting the intro sections

We need everybody, except those building software components, to work on converting intros. If you have AWB, definitely use that. If not, then work on them manually. Even one a day, or as often as you can muster, will help a lot. There are only about 1,000 of them left to go, so if everyone chips in, it will go pretty quickly. Remember, there are 97 of us!

The intros for most of the portals starting with A through F have already been converted to use the {{Transclude lead excerpt}} template.

The standard wikicode for the automated intro that we want to put into place looks like this:

{{/box-header|Introduction|noedit=yes|}}
{{Transclude lead excerpt | {{PAGENAME}} | paragraphs=1-2 | files=1}}
{{Box-footer|[[{{PAGENAME}}|Read more...]]}}

That works for most portals, but not all. For some portals it requires some tweaking, and for others, we may have to use a different or more customized approach. Remember to visually inspect each portal you work on and make sure that it works before moving on to the next one.

Be sure to skip user-maintained portals. They are listed at Wikipedia:WikiProject_Portals#Specific_portal_maintainers.

AWB tips

I've started an AWB tips page, for those of you feeling a bit overwhelmed by that power user tool. Feel free to add to it and/or improve it.

Portal automation

We have some very talented Lua programmers, who are pushing the limits of what we can do in gathering data from Wikipedia's various namespaces and presenting it in portals. Due to their efforts, Lua is powering the selective transclusion core of our emerging automated portal design, in the form of selected article sections that rotate content, and slideshows.

To go beyond Lua's limits, to take full advantage of Mediawiki's API, we are in the midst of adding another programming language to the resources we shall be making use of: JavaScript. The ways that JavaScript can help us edit portals to boost the power of our Lua solutions, are being explored, which will likely make the two languages synergistic if not symbiotic. Research is under way on how we can use JavaScript to make some of the portal semi-automated features fully automatically self-updating, in ways that Lua cannot. Like gathering random members from a category and inserting them into a portal's templates as parameters. Once the parameters are in place, Lua does the rest.

If you would like to get involved with design efforts, or just keep up on them, see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Design.

When should we start building new portals?

Well, not at the present time, because building portals is quite time consuming. The good news is that we are working on a design that will be fully automated, or as close to that as we can get. And the new design is being implemented in the portal department's main portal creation template. This means, that not only will portals update themselves, their creation will be highly automated as well. That's the nature of templates. You put them in place, and they just... work.

What I'm getting at here, is that it would be better to wait to build lots of new portals until after the new design is completed. Because with it, instead of taking hours to create a new portal, it will likely take minutes.

That does not mean we should be idle in the meantime. The main reason most of us are here is because it became apparent that portals were largely unmaintained and had grown out-of-date. This had become so apparent that a proposal was made to delete all the portals and the portal namespace to boot. That makes our main objective in the short term to improve all the existing portals so that the community will want to keep them—forever.

Building lots of new portals comes later. Let's fix up the ones we have first. ;)

And on that note, I bid you adieu. Until next newsletter, see ya 'round the WikiProject.    — The Transhumanist   12:30, 10 July 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #012, 15 July 2018[edit]

We have 97 participants.

Getting faster[edit]

Automation makes things go faster, even portal creation. One of the components Certes made was {{Transclude list item excerpt}}. I became curious about its possible applications.

So I worked out a portal design using it, the initial prototypes being Portal:Kyoto (without a "Selected pictures" section), and Portal:Dubai (with a "Selected pictures" section). Then I used Portal:Dubai as the basis for further portals of this type...

I was able to revamp Portal:Munich from start to finish in less than 22 minutes.
Portal:Dresden took about 19 minutes.
Portal:Athens took less than 17 minutes.
Did Portal:Florence in about 13 minutes.
Portal:Stockholm also in about 13.
Portal:Palermo approx. 12 minutes.

Why?

To see, and to show, what may become feasible via automation.

It now looks highly feasible that we could get portal construction time down to a few minutes, or maybe even down to a few seconds.

The singularity is just around the corner. :)

Slideshows[edit]

When using the {{Random slideshow}} template to display pictures, be sure to use the plural tense in the section title: "Selected pictures". That's because slideshows don't show up on many mobile devices. Instead the whole set of pictures is shown, hence the section title "Selected pictures", as it fits both situations.

In case you are curious, here is a list of the portals so far that have a slideshow:

Progress on intro conversions[edit]

The intros for most of the portals up through the letter "O" have been converted, using this wikicode:

{{/box-header|Introduction|noedit=yes|}}
{{Transclude lead excerpt | {{PAGENAME}} | paragraphs=1-2 | files=1}}
{{Box-footer|[[{{PAGENAME}}|Read more...]]}}

Where the pagename didn't match the article title for the subject, the title was typed in.

Most of the portals that do not contain {{/intro}} or {{{{FULLPGENAME}}/Intro}} have not yet been processed.

About a thousand portals use the method of selective transclusion for the intro section. That's about two-thirds. That means we have one-third of the way to go on the intro section conversions.

Much more to come...[edit]

So much has been happening with portals that I can't keep up with it. (That's good). Which means, more in the upcoming issue. Until then, see ya 'round the project. Sincerely,    — The Transhumanist   08:45, 15 July 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #013, 18 July 2018[edit]

I got overwhelmed IRL (in real life) during the production of issue #12. So, here is a catch-up issue, to help bring you (and me) up to speed on what is happening with portals...

By the way, we still have 97 participants. (Tell all your friends about this WikiProject, and have them join!)

Panoramas![edit]

One cool feature of some of the geographical portals is a panoramic picture at the top of the intro section.

Check these out:

The Portals WikiGnome squadron is busy adding panoramas to geographical portals that don't yet have one. Feel free to join in on the fun. See task details at Wikipedia:WikiProject Portals#Add a panorama or skyline to a geographic portal.

Caveat: avoid super-huge pics, as they can cause portal scripts to time-out. Please try to keep picture size down below 2 megabytes. Thank you.

Auto-populated slideshows[edit]

Speaking of pictures...

We now have two slideshow templates. You may be familiar with {{Random slideshow}}, in which the editor types in (or copies/pastes) a list of pictures he or she wants it to display.

Well, now we have another template, courtesy of Evad37, which accepts one or more page names instead, and displays a random image off of the listed pages. So instead of listing dozens of files by hand, you can include a title or three to be scanned automatically. It even lets you specify particular sections.

The new slideshow template is {{Transclude files as random slideshow}}.

Here's a sample, that grabs images from a single page:

Selected motorcycle or motorcycling pictures

New Template:Box-header colour[edit]

Speaking of new templates, here's another one!

Also from Evad37, we have a new component for starting section boxes, that is color configurable, and that bypasses the need for box-header subpages altogether. It is {{Box-header colour}}.

For color support, see Web colors.

For the discussion in which this was inspired, see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Tasks#Colour combinations for accessibility.

(In case you didn't notice, the slideshow box above uses this new template).

BTW, don't forget to close your box with {{Box-footer}}.

Where are we on the redesign?[edit]

The answer to this question is quite involved, and would fill this page to overflowing. Therefore, this subject, including a complete update on where we are at and where we are going with portal design, is covered at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Design.

Where are we on portal conversion?[edit]

An AWB pass to convert intros on the portals has been completed. The pass couldn't convert them all (due to various formatting configurations, etc.).

All but about 170 portals now have introductions selectively transcluded on the base page. Not counting manually maintained portals, that leaves about 70 portals that either need their intros converted, or they need an intro.

Next, we'll be converting the categories sections!

What's the plan, man?[edit]

The course of action we have been taking goes something like this, with all steps being pursued simultaeneously...

1) Design a one-page automated portal model

2) Convert existing portals to that design (except those being manually maintained)

3) Remove subpages no longer needed

4) Develop further tools to empower editors working on portals

Later, when the tools are up to the task, filling in the gaps in coverage (with new portals) will also become practical.

Are we caught up yet?[edit]

Probably not.

Who knows what our programmers and editors have dreamed up while I was writing this.

See ya again soon,    — The Transhumanist   11:06, 18 July 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #014, 27 July 2018[edit]

Development of design continues, full speed ahead...

Excerpt slideshows are here![edit]

Can you say "paradigm shift"?

Now, in addition to picture slideshows, we have slideshows that can display excerpts. Portals are not just for topic tasting anymore. Now they can be made useful for surveying Wikipedia's coverage of entire subjects. This gives a deeper meaning to their name. Hmmm. "Portals"... Doorways to knowledge.

Portal:Lithuania was redesigned using excerpt slideshows. Check it out.

For those of you who cannot wait to test out these new toys...

We have not one, but three excerpt slideshow components to pick from:

{{Transclude excerpts as random slideshow}}

For this one, you specify the page names where the excerpts are to be extracted from.

{{Transclude list item excerpts as random slideshow}}

This one accepts source pages from where the page names are gathered from list items. Then an excerpt from one of those pages is displayed. The selection of what is included in the slide show can be limited to a specific number from the collection (of the page names gathered), and that selection is renewed from scratch each time the page is purged.
For example, if you specify Template:World Heritage Sites in Spain as a source page, the slideshow will cycle through those sites. Now you don't have to type them in one-by-one. This greatly reduces portal creation time.

{{Transclude linked excerpts as random slideshow}}

Same as above, but gathers links instead of just linked list items.

Panoramic banners[edit]

{{Portal image banner}} displays a panoramic picture the width of the page, and adjusts its size, so it stays that way even if the user changes page view size. And it accepts multiple file names, so that the picture displayed randomizes between them each time the page is visited/purged.

Give resizing the page a try:

Vilnius old town banner.jpg
Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania.

You can now balance section boxes[edit]

Before:

Reptile types
Selected amphibian type

After:

Reptile types
Selected amphibian type

Notice how the box bottoms line up. That readjusts even if you click the slideshow buttons.

The template used for this is {{Flex columns}}.

By the way, when you include more than one box in a column, any left over whitespace in that column is divided between them.

Box-header colour[edit]

You may have noticed the new {{Box-header colour}} template used above. It lets you pick the color locally (right on the same page). Before, this was handled on a subpage somewhere.

Testing, testing[edit]

Now that we have lots of toys to play with for making cool portals...

Don't forget, that the majority of views of Wikipedia these days are from mobile devices. We need to make certain that portals display well on those. So, remember to check your work on portals in mobile view mode...

To see a portal in mobile view mode, insert a ".m" into a portal's url, after "en", like this:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portal:Reptile

If you discover problems in a portal you can't fix, report them on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Design.

Until next time...[edit]

Have fun.    — The Transhumanist   00:22, 27 July 2018 (UTC)

Portals tasks requests: presented in the newsletter below...[edit]

Portals WikiProject update #015, 31 July 2018[edit]

Now that we have lots of toys to play with, it's play time!

Here are some fun activities to use our new toys on...

Fun activity #1: put the improved panorama template to use[edit]

Would you like to travel around the world? Well, this may be the next best thing...

Here's another fun toy to play with: {{Portal image banner}}

To see what it looks like, check out the panoramas at the tops of the following portals:

The task: There are many geography portals that lack panoramas. Please add some. Please keep the file size down below 2 megabytes, and keep in mind that you may find quality banners at commons: at less than 200K (.2 megabytes). Good search terms to include with the place name are "banner", "cityscape", "skyline", "panorama", "landscape", etc.

Related task: There are also lots of geography portals that have panoramas used as gaudy banners (with print or icons splattered across them) or that display them in some random location on the page. In many cases, those pages would be improved by displaying the panorama as a clean picture at the top of the intro section, like on the examples above. This works best with banner-like panoramas. Please fix such pages when you come across them, if you believe it would improve the look of the page.

Taller images might be better suited displayed further down the page, or in the "Selected images" section.

Note that {{Portal image banner}} supports multiple images, and displays one at random upon the first visit, and each time the page is purged.

Fun activity #2: install "Selected images" sections[edit]

That is, image slideshows!

Over 200 have been installed so far. Just 1200 to go. (Be sure not to install them on portals with active maintainers, unless they want you to).

The title "Selected images" reflects the fact that not all images on Wikipedia are pictures, and encompasses maps, graphs, diagrams, sketches, paintings, pictures, and so on.

The toys we have to work with for this are:

{{Random slideshow}}

and

{{Transclude files as random slideshow}}

The task: Using one of the above templates directly on a portal's base page, replace static "Selected picture" sections, with a section like one of these:

Selected images
Selected images

The one on the left uses {{Random slideshow}} (which accepts file names), and the one on the right uses {{Transclude files as random slideshow}} (which accepts source pages from which the filenames are gathered).

The above section formatting is used on many of the pages you will come across, but not all. In those cases, use whatever section formatting matches the rest of the page.

Note that you may come across "Selected picture" sections done with {{Random portal component}} templates. That template call is the entire section. Replace it with a section that matches the other sections on the page, and put the new slideshow inside that.

For example, in Portal:California, this code:

{{Random portal component|max=21|seed=27|header=Selected picture|subpage=Selected picture}}

was replaced with this code:

{{/box-header|Selected images|noedit=yes}}
{{Transclude files as random slideshow
| {{PAGENAME}}
| Culture of {{PAGENAME}}
}}
{{Box-footer}}

And the new section blended right in with the formatting of the rest of the page. Note the use of the {{PAGENAME}} magic word. Plain article titles also work. Don't feel limited to one or two page names. But be sure to test each slideshow before installing the next one. (Or if you prefer, in batches - just don't leave them hanging). Report technical problems at the Portal design talk page.

Fun activity #3: upgrade "Selected article" sections[edit]

These sections, where unmaintained, have gone stale. That's because 1) the excerpts are static, having been manually copied and pasted, and 2) because they lack automatic addition of new entries.

They can be upgraded with:

{{Transclude random excerpt}}

or

{{Transclude list item excerpt}}

or

{{Transclude linked excerpt}}

All three of these will provide excerpts that won't go stale. The latter two can provide excerpt collections that won't go stale, by providing new entries over time. The key is to select source pages or source sections that are frequently updated, such as root article sections, mainstream lists, or navigation templates.

Where will this put us?[edit]

When the above tasks are completed for the entire collection of portals (except the ones with specific maintainers), we'll be more than half-way done with the portal system upgrade.

Keep up the great work.    — The Transhumanist   19:11, 30 July 2018 (UTC)

St. Louis meetup[edit]

Wikipedia Meetup St. Louis 15
Fleur de Arch.svg

Dear fellow Wikipedian,

You are invited to attend the 15th St. Louis Wikipedia and WikiProject Meetup. We are doing a quick touch-base to gather current interest and make a plan for more regular meetups in the future. The meetup is next Thursday, August 16 from 5-6 PM with more structure and from 6-7 PM social time. This all takes part during Venture Cafe's Thursday Gatherings at Cortex in the The District in St. Louis. There are free drinks. Please do visit 15th St. Louis Wikipedia and WikiProject Meetup and add your name if you plan to attend. THANKS :)

I hope to see you there! Jon Phillips (talk) - via Jon Phillips (talk) 22:05, 10 August 2018 (UTC)

Join our WikiProject St. Louis Page and add your name as a participant

Portals WikiProject update #016, 15 Aug 2018[edit]

Future portal tool[edit]

Discussions are underway on the design of a portal tool (user script) that will hopefully have features for modifying portals at the click of a menu item, to make editing them easier. It might do things like change the color for you, add to a selection, add a new section, move a section, and so on.

If you'd like to be involved and suggest features for the tool, please join us at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Portals/Design#What would you want a portal tool to be able to do?.

Progress report: upgrade of portals[edit]

As new portal components are built by our Lua gurus, those components are being used to upgrade portals. Each component automates a section of a portal in a particular way.

The sections that are mostly upgraded so far are the Intro, and the Associated Wikimedia section.

The sections currently undergoing upgrade are: Selected image, Categories, and the Intro.

The Intro? Isn't that done already?

Yes, and no.

The upgrade of the excerpt in intros is mostly complete (there are about 70 non-standard portals that still need it).

Now we are doing another upgrade of intros in the form of adding a panoramic picture at the top of the intro, on portals for which such a picture is available on Commons:. Dozens of panoramas have been added so far, and they are really starting to affect the look of portals — the portals that have them look really good.

Regions are the most likely subjects to have panoramas, but a surprising number of other subjects have banner-shaped pictures too. Some examples of non-geographic portals that they have been added to are:

Speaking of pictures, several hundred Selected image sections have been upgraded to include image slideshows.

Progress report: design[edit]

The push for automation continues, with new components under continuous testing in the field. As problems are spotted, they are reported to our programmers, who have done a fantastic job of keeping up with bug reports and fixing the relevant Lua modules fast. I am highly impressed.

Construction time on new portals is now down to as little as a minute or less. Though not in general. If you are lucky enough to spot portals that fit the profile of the new tools (their strengths), then a portal can be complete almost as soon as it is created, with the added time it takes to find and add a panorama. Source page titles are not generally standardized, and so it source pages in many cases must be entered manually. Where source page titles follow a standard naming convention, portal creation for those subjects goes quickly.

So, we still have some hurdles, but the outlook on portals is very good. New features, and many improvements to features are on the horizon. I'll be sure to report them when they become available.

What will the portal of the future look like? That is up to you!

See you on the project's talk pages.

Sincerely,    — The Transhumanist   21:04, 15 August 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #017, 22 Aug 2018[edit]

This issue is about portal creation...

Creating new portals[edit]

Myself and others have been testing and experimenting with the new components in upgrading existing portals and in building new portals. They have now been applied in hundreds of portals.

The templates are ready for general use for portal creation.

They are still a bit buggy, but the only way we are going to work the rest of the bugs out is by using them and reporting the bugs as we come across them.

I look forward to seeing what new portals you create!

Be sure to report bugs at WT:WPPORTD.

The main portal creation template is {{box portal skeleton}}.

Portal creation tips[edit]

After starting a portal using {{box portal skeleton}}...

  1. Placing a panorama (banner picture) at the top of the intro section is a nice touch, and really makes a portal look good. {{box portal skeleton}} doesn't automatically insert panoramas. So, you will need to do that by hand. They can be found at Commons:. For some examples, check out Portal:Sharks, Portal:Cheese, and Portal:Florence
  2. The search term provided in the Did you know? and In the news sections is very basic and rarely matches anything. It is best to replace that term with multiple search arguments, if possible (separate each argument with a pipe character). For example, in Portal:Capital punishment, see https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Portal:Capital_punishment&diff=855255361&oldid=855137403 Searches in templates use Lua search notation.
  3. Check the In the news and Did you know? sections for mismatches. That is, sometimes entries come up that shouldn't be displayed. If there are any, refine the search strings further, so they don't return such results.
  4. Finish each portal you've created before creating a new one. We don't want unfinished portals sitting around.

Need a laugh?[edit]

Check out the Did you know? section on Portal:Determinism.    — The Transhumanist   02:43, 22 August 2018 (UTC)

Portals WikiProject update #018, 04 Sept 2018[edit]

Bug hunt![edit]

As you know, portals are now supported by a number of new templates, which are in turn supported by some new Lua modules.

Those templates and modules are being put to the test, in the new portals that have been created since this WikiProject rebooted, plus a number of existing portals that have been revamped.

The new portals, and revamped ones, can be found at Category:Single-page portals.

Please browse the new portals at your leisure, and report any and all problems that you spot. Post bug and other portal problem reports at WT:WPPORTD. Please report bugs, quirks, awkward aspects, or anything weird or off that you notice. Compliments and suggestions are also welcome. :)

When you report a bug, please indicate the portal's name, the section that the problem appeared in, and the name of the article appearing (first) in the section with the problem. Most problems will likely be encountered in the Selected general articles" section, due to quirks in a displayed article's wikicode that the lua modules don't handle yet. Your help in spotting those is of utmost value. Thank you.

Don't delete portal subpages just yet[edit]

For portals that have been converted to the single-page design, we are not deleting their subpages at this time, because we are working on ways to harvest the data from those pages. For example, the Selected picture subpages include filenames and captions that would be valuable for the image slideshows. Please don't delete portal subpages, for now. They'll be slated for d-batch speedy deletion after harvesting. Thank you.

Development notes[edit]

We are currently testing a feature added to {{Transclude files as random slideshow}} that allows it to accept both sourcepages and filenames. Courtesy of Evad37. This will pave the way for harvesting files and their captions from portal subpages, for use in image slideshows.

We need your help[edit]

The bulk of the work is being done by a handful of editors. But we can't do it all. We need help with spotting bugs, refining the search parameters in new/revamped portals (in the "Did you know..." and "In the news" sections), adding images to slideshows for a broader selection (they default to showing the images on the root article page but are capable of showing so much more), adding panoramic pictures at the top of the intro section of region portals (cities, counties, states, provinces, countries, continents, and other regions), to name but a few task types.

It is rewarding to be a part of the growing portal phenomenon. And you get to see its expansion and refinement up close.

Feel free to join in on the fun. ;)

Thank you,    — The Transhumanist   06:51, 4 September 2018 (UTC)

wmstl16[edit]

Wikipedia Meetup St. Louis 16
Fleur de Arch.svg

Dear fellow Wikipedian,

You are invited to attend the 16th St. Louis Wikipedia and WikiProject Meetup. Please join the discussion if you have articles or topics for discussion for our focused meeting time from 7-8 PM in the room Chuck Berry. This all takes place as part of Venture Cafe's Thursday Gatherings at the Cortex Innovation Community in St. Louis. Come early if you want to have social time. Please do visit 16th St. Louis Wikipedia and WikiProject Meetup and add your name if you plan to attend. THANKS :)

We hope to see you there!

St. Louis Wikipedians

Join our WikiProject St. Louis Page and add your name as a participant