User talk:Zedshort

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A proposed change to Wikipedia[edit]

If I might paraphrase Diderot's definition of the encyclopedic endeavor:

An encyclopedia is a dynamic effort to collect all knowledge in an effort to pass that knowledge to future generations, such that it might not be lost, and so that we might become with each generation improved, and in the end die confident of having passed to those who follow all our understanding.

The compilation is well on its way, but a compilation is not sufficient.

The purpose of Wikipedia should not be just to create a compilation facts, but to educate. While self education is ideal, many people would benefit greatly from being able to ask and receive answers to questions. To further the goal of education, I propose providing readers with the ability to ask questions about an article. To that end, the addition of a single sentence at the top of every article would invite readers to Click to ask questions, to leave comments and suggestions. A “Talk” page already exists, but it is too awkward for the average reader. A Reference Desk already exists but is remote from the articles and I suspect that most readers of WP articles don't know that it exists. I also don't know how successful the Reference Desk is. A cleaner and simple tool is needed to implement this idea.

To that end I suggest:

The addition of a floating ? button that invites readers to click to ask a question or post a comment. Clicking that button would open a floating note-window that would allow the reader to create notes, questions, and comments. If a the question-author wishes a response to a question, the question-author would then click a button in the note-window to ask for assistance of a volunteer. A ? feature, such as the “Alerts” button might appear illuminated on the page of those who have volunteered to answer questions to alert them to a question posed on an article for which they have volunteered to assist. For those with an account, a Volunteer to answer questions button could be added to the article page, like the present “watch this page button” feature. Those without an account could browse the Questions asked section of a particular article and attempt to answer posted questions. The notes and questions would be saved and remain linked to the article for later editing by the question-authors and volunteers. If a question-author has a user page, all of that user's posted notes and questions would accessible to that question-author by way of a Questions posed button similar to the “sandbox” or “contributions” buttons. If a volunteer has a numeric IP address, the questions asked page would be accessible on the article page.

When a question-author posts a question, it would be appended to a separate Questions posed page for the article similar to the “Edit”, or “Talk” pages.

To simplify the response to a question, a tool would be provided that would allow a volunteer to highlight material in the article so as to lead the question-author to an answer.


It should be made clear to the question-author that the volunteers who assist answering questions are not necessarily expert in a subject but are simply volunteers who have only a bit more experience and knowledge than they have, but are endeavoring to help.

Possible problems:

I've no doubt that a great many young people will come to Wikipedia to ask questions to gain help with homework. If the purpose of this change is to educate, personally I feel it would be best to guide people in helping themselves rather than to do the work for them. It could be suggested to the volunteers that they should lead the question-author to reading within the article by highlighting passages in the article that might provide an answer. If more than one volunteer provides such highlighting it would be necessary for the question-author to click a particular volunteer's user name to display only that volunteer's highlighting.

Vandalism might rear its ugly head in the form of "volunteers” that run interference on the process by intentionally misleading the question-author. In that case, it might be necessary to allow the question-author to block that person. Other volunteers should have the ability to flag the "vandal".

Those without an account might be sharing an numeric IP address, which would cause some confusion.


  1. Many people have no interest or have lost interest in editing Wikipedia. Some of those, however, may have an interest in educating. This might draw them.
  2. If the ultimate purpose of Wikipedia is to educate then this proposal will move us in that direction in a very dynamic way.
  3. If implemented, this will draw in a different demographic, probably older, more mature, people whose primary interest is education. Perhaps the percentage of people acting like adults will rise.


  1. ? button added alongside the "alerts" and "messages" button
  2. A floating ? button clickable to ask a question and which opens a simple editor.
  3. A simple editor for the question-author to post questions and for volunteers to post responses.
  4. A Volunteer to answer questions button on the article page, like the "Watch this page feature"
  5. The ability for the volunteer to highlight passages. Such highlighting would appear visible to those that respond to a question-author's request and to the question-author.
  6. A feature on the question editor page to allow the question-author to block problematic users.
  7. A feature to allow the question-author to select highlighting from only one volunteer. (reduces clutter)

Criticisms so far

From the discussion on the Village Pump:

1 Other sites exist to ask questions

 Response: Those sites are elsewhere, and I really don't know how many there are and is there one out there for every subject. I suppose it is easy enough to type in a question at the search, but it would be even better to have some living person to respond to your question posted on the very article that prompted the question.

2 It has already been done in the form of Reference Desk.

 Response: I don't know how successful or heavily used Reference Desk is. If it is not used, perhaps it should go.

3 This will cost too much.

 Response: I don't know what this will cost or how many resources are available, so I can't rebut that. I suspect that the question of cost would have to be answered at a higher level but only answerable once (if) this proposal is agreed to. 

4 This is too complicated.

 Response: Again, I cannot rebut that unless I have some type of measure of how complicate WP is and how this will increase the complexity or what that really means. I agree WP is complicated to the point of convolution.

5 Fundamentally, your proposal is contrary to one of the major pillars of Wikipedia.

 I have no idea how this proposal violates pillars of Wikipedia.

6 "Wikipedia is an encyclopedia". It has a purpose and everything else should be directed towards that goal. See also WP:NOTFORUM. Your proposal would be taking effort and attention away from building an encyclopedia and putting it into a difficult medium to get right – Q&A.

 As pointed out, we have a Reference Desk where we can ask questions and receive answers. Does that violate WP Pillars? I don't think so. "WP is not a forum." Asking questions and receiving answers does not make WP a forum. For this critique to be thrown out suggests that people are acting in a reactionary manner and are blindly opposed and not really thinking.

7 Despite all the discussions in Wikipedia, there hasn't been a discussion and consensus developed around every possible idea and procedure. And there never will be—it'd be a colossal waste of effort. People have built-in preprocessing filters to avoid that. So please, just a proposal, no advocacy. If you don't like the first half dozen responses, don't take it personally—consider it as the product of evolution. You pitched an idea—it didn't gain traction.

 I'm sorry to say this but such a response borders on a non-sequitur. I proposed this today and someone already wants to declare the discussion to be over because a few very negative people, who seem to be lurking on Village Pump, have "responded." I am now told to go away and not advocate? What exactly am I to do?

Little mistake[edit]

Hi Zedshort, FYI, regarding this edit: at the time I wasn't totally convinced, so I tagged it ([1]). When I was reviewing the article today, I went looking for a source, and it seems that you had made a (little) mistake after all, so I have corrected it, and added a source: [2]:

It is not


which indeed makes more sense, because this is consistent with the additivity of kinetic energy, being proportional to the squared speed. Cheers. - DVdm (talk) 16:34, 27 March 2016 (UTC)

Well, that should have been obvious by substitution into the eqn for conservation of energy. Thanks Zedshort (talk) 17:18, 27 March 2016 (UTC)


Remember that when adding content about health, please only use high-quality reliable sources as references. We typically use review articles, major textbooks and position statements of national or international organizations. WP:MEDHOW walks you through editing step by step. A list of resources to help edit health content can be found here. The edit box has a build in citation tool to easily format references based on the PMID or ISBN. We also provide style advice about the structure and content of medicine-related encyclopedia articles. The welcome page is another good place to learn about editing the encyclopedia. If you have any questions, please feel free to drop me a note. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 14:34, 6 April 2016 (UTC)

Edit warring[edit]

You're not new here, so by now you shoud know about wp:edit warring. You removed something without an explanation ([3]), I reverted that with an explanation ([4]), and now you are supposed to discuss this on the article talk page, not to revert again, as you did here. This is explained in wp:BRD. Please keep that in mind. Cheers. - DVdm (talk) 15:38, 6 April 2016 (UTC)

Copyright issue[edit]

Adding large blocks of text like this is not allowed.[5] Please read WP:MEDRS regarding what sort of sources you should use. Also that content was already in the lead. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 20:07, 7 April 2016 (UTC)

Yes, a large block of text that is a presented as a quote is permitted. Remember that there are guidelines on WP not rules and while those guidelines are useful they are not hard and fast. Who exactly do you think you are? Zedshort (talk) 20:10, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
Doc James has more contribs than anyone to medical articles (not an exaggeration, see here), is more of less the leader of WP:MED, and is an admin who is very attuned to copyright issues, and who will block you if you continue doing this. Yes you used a blockquote here and the other times you edit warred it in, but the blockquote is not especially clear since you made it the very first sentence of the article, and it is arguably simple plagiarism as it appears. It is also completely unnecessary. Don't do this. Jytdog (talk) 21:16, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
I frankly don't care who he is nor who you are. Or perhaps I should say who you think you are. The number of edits a person makes is immaterial, nor does it matter who he says he is as there is no special status here. Why don't you try to put your brain in gear and improve the article? Zedshort (talk) 21:30, 7 April 2016 (UTC)

Personal attacks[edit]

Information icon Please do not attack other editors, as you did at Talk:Gout. Comment on content, not on contributors. Personal attacks damage the community and deter users. Please stay cool and keep this in mind while editing. Referring to "I suspect you are incapable of that as you are too intent on defending your territory" (addressing Doc James) and "That might work if you are not somebodies lackey" (addressing Zad68) as you did here. - DVdm (talk) 21:05, 7 April 2016 (UTC)

Oh dear, I seemed to have stepped on some gouty toes. So sorry. Zedshort (talk) 21:47, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
I don't think that you stepped on anybody's toes, so there is no need for sarcastic non-apologies. You are however close to shooting yourself in the foot—again. - DVdm (talk) 07:01, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

Edit warring[edit]

You currently appear to be engaged in an edit war according to the reverts you have made on Gout. Users are expected to collaborate with others, to avoid editing disruptively, and to try to reach a consensus rather than repeatedly undoing other users' edits once it is known that there is a disagreement.

Please be particularly aware that Wikipedia's policy on edit warring states:

  1. Edit warring is disruptive regardless of how many reverts you have made.
  2. Do not edit war even if you believe you are right.

If you find yourself in an editing dispute, use the article's talk page to discuss controversial changes; work towards a version that represents consensus among editors. You can post a request for help at an appropriate noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases it may be appropriate to request temporary page protection. If you engage in an edit war, you may be blocked from editing. Jytdog (talk) 21:17, 7 April 2016 (UTC)

I see you did not post the above silly, semi-official notice on the other user's page. Why not? Biased a bit maybe? Zedshort (talk) 21:38, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
Sorry but the English Wikipedia does not have a neutral point of view (NPOV). Instead, it has a JPOV. This means that all articles must conform to the POV of the two Js, User talk:Jytdog and User talk:JzG. The administrators should have stopped this abuse but they are too cowardly. Threegoodmonkeys (talk) 14:47, 8 April 2016 (UTC)
It's pretty pathetic, is it not? Zedshort (talk) 15:09, 8 April 2016 (UTC)
That you would have that jaded (another J!) viewpoint is, true. They've earned the respect they're paid. Have you? Jtrevor99 (talk) 15:47, 8 April 2016 (UTC)
Saucy and pointless. Do you really have something to say? I made quick review of your contributions and found you do little more than post on talk pages. Zedshort (talk) 15:51, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

Another poisonous edit summary[edit]

Please stop attacking other editors, as you did on Sun. If you continue, you may be blocked from editing. Comment on content, not on other contributors or people. This is about your edit summary "if you don't understand English as a first language then leave it alone" to user JorisvS. Before you insult people like that, you might also look around. Searches in Google Scholar and Google Books for the exact phrases prove you wrong:

DVdm (talk) 09:44, 12 April 2016 (UTC)

I am very unimpressed. Maybe you need to understand what is going on first, before you post these semi-thuggish, semi-official looking placards on people's talk pages. In addition to that, you completely missed the point of he edit. It was an attempt to replace a two syllable word with a single syllable word "grows" and simplify the writing. Zedshort (talk) 13:26, 12 April 2016 (UTC)
The point of your edit and summary was that you accused JorisvS of not understanding English, thinking that "to grow older" must be related to "growth". You might have asked yourself and/or JorisvS whether perhaps he had made the edit in order to avoid possible confusion for readers with a more shallow understanding of English. - DVdm (talk) 13:39, 12 April 2016 (UTC)
The best you might accuse me of is being a bold editor. I have grown irritated beyond expression with the very bad writing I find here on WP in super abundance. I work very hard to straighten the convoluted and clear the turgid writing. We should not adjust things here for those who speak English as a second language, but "grows" is better than "becomes". I don't see the point of your using Google "Scholar" to justify bad writing. Are you suggesting that if everyone uses "there" rather than "their" that such a choice is to be approved of here? Zedshort (talk) 13:50, 12 April 2016 (UTC)
"Grows" being better than "becomes" is an opinion to which you are entitled, but some people seem to disagree. Indeed, you work hard to improve bad writing, and you're doing a very good job at it, for which thanks. And yes, from your edit summaries and comments it is obvious that you have grown irritated, which is no excuse for insulting fellow editors. - DVdm (talk) 14:02, 12 April 2016 (UTC)
The other editor is in fact one for whom English is a second language, there was no attempt at an insult. Zedshort (talk) 14:19, 12 April 2016 (UTC)
Many permanently deleted remarks have appeared in DVdm's User page and his User Talk page, in perfect English. MI5 came to his help in 2010. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kt6yda (talkcontribs) 16:29, 12 April 2016 (UTC)


Thanks for your improvements to the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg page! DaltonCastle (talk) 17:23, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

Disambiguation link notification for May 3[edit]

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Please use care to avoid edits like this. You may wish to review WP:AOHA and WP:HA#NOT. VQuakr (talk) 19:09, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

May 2016[edit]

Information icon Please do not attack other editors, as you did at User talk:VQuakr. Comment on content, not on contributors. Personal attacks damage the community and deter users. Please stay cool and keep this in mind while editing. 2nd warning regarding behavior such as [6]. Per above, please review WP:HA#NOT. VQuakr (talk) 19:49, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

The only thing I reverted on a talk page was your removal of my post: [7], [8]. VQuakr (talk) 19:56, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

I honestly have no clue what you mean. I found you reverted my post on the talk page. Perhaps there is some edit conflict. Zedshort (talk) 20:00, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
Your throwing out of the blue flags of WP shows that you are incapable of standing on your own two legs and thinking and expressing yourself. As we all know, the problem frequently is with particular editors, not just with the article. I suspect you are becoming a problem. If you remove my postings on the Talk page of battery again I will bring in other people. Such obscurantist behavior is very inappropriate. Zedshort (talk) 20:00, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
Not sure what "blue flags of WP" are but immediately above I link to where you removed my article talk page post, an action which I subsequently reverted. That has been my only rv in article talk space related to you. VQuakr (talk) 20:05, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
It was not my intention to revert your comment on the talk. Probably editing too fast and edit conflict. Blue Flags refer to the WP "rules" and the bad habit of some people to refer to them rather than to speak for themselves. Personally, I am always unimpressed with such behavior as I suspect such people are lazy or have weak minds. Zedshort (talk) 20:10, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
"Blue flag" as in WP:BLUELINK? VQuakr (talk) 20:12, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

Please refactor this to focus on content, not other editors. Your personal attacks become disruptive when you let them bleed into article talk space. VQuakr (talk) 21:15, 10 May 2016 (UTC)

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May 2016[edit]

Please stop attacking other editors, as you did on Talk:Schottky diode. If you continue, you may be blocked from editing. Comment on content, not on other contributors or people. I don't know how else to explain to you that targeting editors rather than discussing content in article talk space is disruptive. This warning is in response to this diff. If you have questions or concerns about my edits, you are welcomed to discuss them in user talk space. VQuakr (talk) 05:43, 13 May 2016 (UTC)

I consider the posting of such semi-official placards as a mark of a person that cannot think for or express himself in his own words and to be an example of usurpation of authority. Stand up on you hind legs and learn to speak for yourself or shut up. Zedshort (talk) 14:04, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
I consider your response silly and melodramatic. Learn to work with others or shut up. But since you asked, targeting editors rather than discussing content in article talk space is disruptive. This warning is in response to this diff. If you have questions or concerns about my edits, you are welcomed to discuss them in user talk space. VQuakr (talk) 15:49, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
I do not "target" editors, you followed me around and reverted my edits and have as a result come to my attention. Working with others is a fine idea, provided it does not mean resorting to leaving an article incorrect as in the case of the battery article. You seem to think that an article should be written by a crew that has no familiarity with the subject. The end product of such a process will be garbage. I once came upon a law text written by a committee of seven lawyers. It was the most turgidly written bit of dross I have ever encountered. A law text written by committee I call a "turgidity"; a horse designed by committee is called a camel; an encyclopedia written by a crew of nattering half-educated amateurs is called Wikipedia. BTW have you found a good chemistry text with a section on electro-chemistry? Have you read it? Do you now agree that the anode is the source of electrons? Do you understand that the manufacturers of such devices mark a positive sign on the product to indicate that that end is at a higher potential than the other and is not to suggest that cations gather at the + end and electrons gather at the - end, but is in fact the reverse? I am searching the literature for a clear expression of that. Very oddly, they seem to studiously avoid making such a clear expression. I will eventually find one. In the meanwhile, it would be appropriate for you to go to the battery article and correct the article based on the abundant sources that express what we can in fact back up with sources (electrons flow from the anode, etc.). I suggest you do that as you were the one that foolishly and incorrectly reverted my edit there. You want to talk about cooperating with other editors, then try practicing what you preach. Zedshort (talk) 16:27, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
By "targeting", I mean resorting to ad hom on article talk pages rather than focusing on content. When, as you did, an editor adds several pieces of incorrect information to several different articles, it is quite reasonable to check their other edits. Wikipedia is written by many editors; what is your point? I added a source on the battery article already. Yes, we agree that the anode is the source of electrons in a discharging battery, and we agree that the terminal marked "+" on a discharging battery has higher voltage than the terminal marked "-". Electrons flow from negative to positive (the opposite direction from positive current, i). You seem to be confused about that last part; maybe you could at least entertain the possibility that you are mistaken and the other editors pointing out your mistake are correct? VQuakr (talk) 16:43, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
Again, I think we are out of sync w.r.t. the symbols marked on a device and the source of electrons. The terminal marked positive (should be marked "this end is the high potential end") is the anode and is the source of electrons that flow from that end "downhill" (against the PE gradient) through the external circuit and to the cathode end where they recombine with the cations gathered there. That cathode end is marked with a negative on the case of the device. The article reads: The terminal marked negative is the source of electrons that when connected to an external circuit will flow and deliver energy to an external device. That is simply incorrect. The terminal marked positive is in fact the anode and is the high potential end and hence is the source of electrons. I had corrected the article, yet you reverted my edits that eliminated those grotesque errors, hence I can only conclude that you agree with that nonsense. The material I added on the battery page was correct. What can I possibly think of someone who insists on getting it wrong? Zedshort (talk) 17:15, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
You are confusing the issue by making up your own terminology, as evidenced by your incorrect phrase, "...the high potential end and hence is the source of electrons". Can you review Electric current#Conventions and rephrase in that context? The sentence you bolded is correct as written. VQuakr (talk) 17:28, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
You are correct, I was wrong. I forgot the convention for positive current is defined by a flow of positive charges and the opposite sense of that, the flow of electrons in the opposite direction and same total charge rate amounts to the same thing: one coulomb of cations to the right is the same as one coulomb of negative charges to the left. W.R.T. a carbon zinc battery, the zinc can is the anode, it is marked negative and can be seen as the source of high potential electrons that flow through the external circuit to the positive terminal. Meanwhile the current within the battery is in the opposite sense, the cations flow from the anode to the cathode at the same rate as do the electrons. My bad. My apologies. Sincerely. Zedshort (talk) 19:22, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
Glad we were able to drive it to ground, pardon the pun. Kind regards. VQuakr (talk) 19:38, 13 May 2016 (UTC)