Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Outlines

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Wikipedia talk:WPOOK)
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Outlines (Rated NA-class)
WikiProject icon This page is within the scope of WikiProject Outlines, a collaborative effort to improve outlines on Wikipedia. For guidance on building outlines, see Wikipedia:Outlines.
 NA  This page does not require a rating on the quality scale.


Gaps in coverage / missing outlines[edit]

The effort to create new outlines needs to be focused on blatant gaps in coverage. Some obvious ones (shown in red) are included in the list below. Please help create them and turn this list blue! An example of a well-developed sports outline is Outline of kayaking and canoeing.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are many other gaps that I didn't spot that others would spot instantly.

The Transhumanist 23:02, 30 October 2010 (UTC)

Project page layout overhaul[edit]

I've simplified this project page, in an effort to make it easier to read, easier to update, and for the sake of general standardization.

The main remaining problem, is the surfeit of subpages. I'd suggest that we need to merge these:

And consider redirecting a number of others, towards the central wikiproject page (outreach, contests, halloffame, newsletterindex, etc). Unnecessary subpages are harmful - people are unlikely to notice or watchlist them; and if they do notice our profusion, they're likely to be overwhelmed by the quantity. The whole point of a wikiproject is to keep things centered, and non-redundant.

Assistance would be appreciated. -- Quiddity (talk) 01:56, 31 October 2010 (UTC)

Outline of Canada[edit]

There is currently a deletion request concerning the Outline of Canada article. Pls join in the discussion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Outline of Canada. Moxy (talk) 19:36, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Main Outlines TOC up for deletion[edit]

Portal:Contents/Outlines has been nominated for deletion. Robert Skyhawk (T C B) 04:48, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Proposal: Rename this project to Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines[edit]

This project was named after the title of the main list of outlines: Portal:Contents/Outline of Knowledge. But that title was simplified to Portal:Contents/Outlines. This wikiproject's name should be simplified too. It pertains to outlines. Referring to all the outlines on Wikipedia as a single integrated "Outline of Knowledge" is confusing. Most new editors don't get it. I propose we change the name of this project to Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines.   The Transhumanist 02:12, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

  • Support your right!Moxy (talk) 02:15, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Support. No need to divide the encyclopedia into "knowledge" and "non-knowledge". --SmokeyJoe (talk) 13:55, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Support. Simpler, easier, makes more sense - HIGHFIELDS (TALKCONTRIBUTIONS) 14:51, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Support. New name is more concise, shorter and much less confusing. Robert Skyhawk (T C B) 18:48, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Article alerts[edit]

This project is now served by Article alerts, which can be seen at Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Article alerts. This will allow us to know about any AfDs or other such discussions without having to rely on notifications on this page. The Alerts page is easily transcluded into userspace if desired. Robert Skyhawk (T C B) 03:28, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Template:Main outline[edit]

The hatnote template Template:Main outline is unused and orphaned. Is it still wanted by this project? If not, it can probably be speedied. — This, that, and the other (talk) 03:57, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Not in use. If we need one in the future, we can remake it. If you can do an administrative delete of it, that would be fine with me. The Transhumanist 02:35, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Outline traffic analysis[edit]

How can we improve the availability of outlines (i.e., how can we increase traffic to them)?

My guess is that most traffic to outlines comes from within Wikipedia (via internal links). Outlines apparently don't show up on external search engine searches (at least not anywhere near the top), so they don't get much Google traffic, etc.

Here are some traffic comparisons...

United States is one of the most visited pages on Wikipedia. It's portal and outline don't even get 1% of that traffic:

The portal pages with links on the Main Page get far more traffic than the corresponding outlines:

Other portals get a small fraction of the traffic of Main Page links and prose article traffic, and this applies to outlines as well. In comparing these, sometimes outlines get more traffic than portals, sometimes portals get more:

Where is the traffic coming from, and how can we get more? The Transhumanist 03:30, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

My observations from Outline of sharks is that it is very related to the internal page views, outline of sharks have about 100 pages views per day, some days it jumps to 200 and even over 500, that is days when e.g. a shark article is on the main page, or where the featured page of the day have links to a shark page. So it (in my case) is really driven by internal wikilinks. --Stefan talk 10:15, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Outlines needing updates[edit]

Outlines being annotated[edit]

The following outlines are in the process of being annotated (a dash followed by a description or note of interest). Please help add annotations to those entries needing them.

Collaboration / outlines under construction[edit]

Some outlines currently being developed are:

Some things you could do include gathering missing topics, place links from the see also or general concepts sections, add annotations, etc. The Transhumanist 19:15, 19 March 2011 (UTC)


it's a very useful project for users from other wikipedias! -- (talk) 12:51, 24 June 2011 (UTC)

Thank you. The Transhumanist 21:06, 3 September 2011 (UTC)

Are these articles in scope?[edit]

Would Outline of Nevada territorial evolution, Outline of North Dakota territorial evolution, Outline of Oregon territorial evolution, Outline of Washington territorial evolution, and Outline of Wyoming territorial evolution fall in the projects scope? I tagged them but I'm not sure. —  HELLKNOWZ  ▎TALK 18:19, 15 July 2011 (UTC)

Yes. Thank you for tagging them. The Transhumanist 21:07, 3 September 2011 (UTC)

Category:Incomplete outlines[edit]

I'm proposing upmerging Category:Incomplete outlines into Category:Outlines. There are very few outlines which could be said to be "complete". If there were a description of the category, it might be different, but I can't imagine what it could be. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 01:17, 4 September 2011 (UTC)

See the description at WP:WikiProject Outlines#Work on an existing outline. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 01:20, 4 September 2011 (UTC)

Arthur Rubin (talk) 01:27, 4 September 2011 (UTC)

Disruptive nature of this WikiProject[edit]

At Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Mathematics#Undiscussed_List_-.3E_Outline_moves a discussion is underway of the disruptive nature of this WikiProject. There is a consensus to undo a large number of page moves for which this projects purposes were cited as justification. I've started undoing them. About two years ago, this same episode happened and lots of page moves had to get undone. Michael Hardy (talk) 15:56, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

Not a members of this project - but am very distressed to see the lack of good faith in the comment above. To come to a projects talk page and refer to the efforts of all there editors as being overall disruptive in nature is not acceptable. I see you are frustrated over some moves, but do you realy think kicking the project members in the balls is a good idea that will lead to a solution or simply anger towards the lack of respect being shown? --> Wikipedia:EtiquetteMoxy (talk) 16:58, 5 September 2011 (UTC)
There is further discussion of these issues on AN/I here. Voceditenore (talk) 17:22, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

When my only familiarity with this WikiProject is because of disruption resulting from participation in it, how can I say anything about any of its other aspects, if those exist?

If you look at the discussion I linked to, you will find, among other things, a proposal to abolish this WikiProject. I'm not the one who propsed that. Michael Hardy (talk) 23:40, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

RfC: Elimination of outline articles[edit]

See Wikipedia:Village_pump_(proposals)#RfC:_Elimination_of_outline_articles. Ozob (talk) 00:03, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

Annotations needed[edit]

The annotating of the entries on Portal:Contents/Outlines is nearing completion.

Annotated entries look like this:

  • Basketball – team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules.
  • Canoeing and kayaking – two closely related forms of watercraft paddling, involving manually propelling and navigating specialized boats called canoes and kayaks using a blade that is joined to a shaft, known as a paddle, in the water.
  • Cricket – bat-and-ball team sport, the most popular form played on an oval-shaped outdoor arena known as a cricket field at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard (20.12 m) long pitch that is the focus of the game.
  • Martial arts – extensive systems of codified practices and traditions of combat, practiced for a variety of reasons, including self-defense, competition, physical health and fitness, as well as mental and spiritual development.

Entries needing annotations look like this:

Please go to Portal:Contents/Outlines' and fill in as many missing annotations as you can, even if it's only one or two. Every little bit helps!

Thank you. The Transhumanist 00:13, 7 October 2011 (UTC)

Guideline for outlines[edit]

As a followup to the RFC on elimination of outlines, I have created Wikipedia:Proposed Outline Guideline. Input from the Outlines project would be appreciated. Monty845 16:23, 12 October 2011 (UTC)

I moved it to Wikipedia:Outlines/Proposed Outline Guideline. The Transhumanist 11:18, 14 October 2011 (UTC)


Hi. Outline_of_algebraic_structures is currently a mess. I have no experience with the Outline Project, so I was going to consult it before doing anything. The outline suffers from multiple problems. The chief problem is that the entire thing is written from the perspective of a universal algebraist. This will be an enormous stumbling block to anyone reading it who isn't a universal algebraist already (i.e. everybody learning about the topic). Besides using the highly specialized terminology, it also uses very obscure terminology ("shell" is an example, the page which it linked to has already been AFD'd). Finally, it includes a large examples section. This section, I would think, would not be appropriate in an outline, but I will not know until I ask. I'm not sure if this article can really ever be whipped completely into shape, because the subject matter will be difficult to organize into an outline. We might be able to make major repairs, though. Rschwieb (talk) 23:02, 11 March 2012 (UTC)

After just looking at it, I feel there are several other problems. For example, I feel the lead is too long. I don't understand universal algebra, and hesitate to try to condense bits of this outline into smaller form without some major research, which right now I really don't have time for. I think it can be saved, but... well... time is a factor. Marikafragen (talk) 01:39, 26 April 2012 (UTC)
And, of course, the main article about algebraic structures is more like an outline than an article. Perhaps some judicious copying? Marikafragen (talk) 01:41, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Satop[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Satop has been nominated for deletion. Among other things, Template:Satop links an article to its relevant outline, index, and portals. You may wish to comment at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page.  Buaidh  01:28, 30 March 2012 (UTC)

Outlines in See also sections?[edit]

I am beginning to see lengthy outlines of links in See also sections (notably in AI topics, e.g. here, here, here), including links already used in the article. Is that an aspect of this project? If so, it does not fit well with standard practice across WP for See also (a short, simple bulleted list of nonredundant links). I would think that, rather than increasing the size and complexity of See also sections, the outline articles would collapse many of them with a link to an outline. Jojalozzo 19:59, 1 April 2012 (UTC)

Nomination for deletion of Template:Sar[edit]

Ambox warning pn.svgTemplate:Sar has been nominated for deletion. Among other things, Template:Sar creates a link to the outline of an article in its see also section. You may wish to comment at the template's entry on the Templates for discussion page.  Buaidh  21:39, 7 April 2012 (UTC)

[1] Outline of Catholicism in draft space[edit]

Created this outline today; not sure if it's ready for prime-time or not. If someone would review it, please? Thanks! Marikafragen (talk) 00:51, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

Never mind, finished it and put in article space.Marikafragen (talk) 18:14, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

This is confusing[edit]

I don't understand this WikiProject or any of these "Outline of... " articles. A general reference encyclopedia should provide an outline of any of these subjects at their respective articles. For example, you don't need Outline of Catholicism when you have Catholicism. This seems like a lot of unnecessary duplication.

In some ways, it also seems like these "Outline of... " articles are trying to be portals, but we have an entire Portal namespace devoted to that purpose. For example, Portal:Catholicism.

I'm rather confused. --MZMcBride (talk) 04:24, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

There are several reasons for outlines to exist as separate articles. As most outlines state, they are both an overview of and a topical guide to a subject.
  • First, outlines are an overview of the topic, summarizing it in bullet points (at least here on Wikipedia; numbers confuse the TOC generator).
  • Second, the outlines provide a topical guide to the subject. In both Categories and Portals, the topics are often listed without so much as a lead to tell you what they're about. Outlines provide the user with guided navigation of the topic at hand. Users may not want (or need) to read the entire article at Catholicism when what they want to know is some more specific area of doctrine, which isn't necessarily located in Catholicism, and may not be readily visible from the Catholicism article (how much do they have to read to find it?).
Right now, for example, Portal:Catholicism contains a passing reference to transsubstantiation, but someone looking for "bread and wine at communion" might not recognize the reference for what it is. Outline of Catholicism mentions the Eucharist specifically and provides some information to guide the user's choice of articles to read. Hope that helps your understanding.Marikafragen (talk) 02:30, 14 May 2012 (UTC)
Wouldn't a tree view of Category:Catholicism be roughly equivalent to these hand-made outlines? Though, admittedly, a dynamic category tree wouldn't allow for annotations. I'm not sure if that's a major loss, though. --MZMcBride (talk) 15:12, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

Dear MZMcBride,

Are we talking about the same thing? The context in which we are using the term "outline" is short for "hierarchical outline" a type of list and tree structure. All prose articles on Wikipedia fit the general context of "outline" that means "introduction or summary". It's just that "Hierarchical outline of the United States of America" is a bit long for an article title. So we've shortened it to "Outline of...", which is consistent with how the academic community and other encyclopedias refer to hierarchical outlines.

I hope this explanation helps alleviate your confusion.

There is more information available at Outlines and Wikipedia:Outlines.

Sincerely, The Transhumanist 06:19, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

I read your reply before it was moved to Wikipedia:Outlines. As I see it, there are a few competing issues:
  1. Should Wikipedia include (hand-made) outlines?
  2. If so, where should those outlines go?
  3. And are these pages really outlines or is there a better name for them? Topical index, perhaps?
A general purpose encyclopedia exists to provide summaries of information. The article namespace in particular is generally limited to this function, though obviously with exceptions (redirects and disambiguation pages, e.g.).
Personally, I'm still not sure how I feel about these outlines. A part of me feels like they're not encyclopedia articles, so at a minimum they shouldn't be living in the article namespace. Maybe a separate namespace is needed. Maybe a separate site is needed (e.g., Wikibooks or Wikiversity). There are advantages and disadvantages to moving the content elsewhere, to be sure.
And, semantically, I'm still not sure about the use of the word "outline." Hmmm. --MZMcBride (talk) 15:12, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

All of those issues have been discussed ad nauseam in Wikipedia's widest forums. The community consensus is to keep outlines where they are, in the article namespace, which is where they and lists in general have been since Wikipedia started.

Keep in mind that outlines, and indexes, are lists. Lists, including outlines and indexes, have been a type of article in the article namespace since the beginning of this encyclopedia. When Wikipedia started, outline and index articles were called "List of x topics".

Outlines and indexes were renamed because they shared the same title convention and began to clash. When there's already a structured topics list (outline) called "List of psychology topics", what do you call an alphabetical topics list (index) on that subject that you want to make? So both types were given their own more accurately descriptive name.

The community decided not to move outlines (or other lists) to another namespace, because lists are articles, and because other namespaces are not supported in searches by default. If you reduce a navigation aid's search access, you reduce its effectiveness. So moving lists defeats the purpose of having lists.

The community has also decided not to change the name. A great deal of research, and trial and error, was conducted to arrive at the current name. Note that alphabetical indexes are also topical (that is, they are comprised of topics). Both are examples of general topics lists. Remember, having an ambiguous name shared by indexes was why outlines were renamed in the first place.

Outlines have a great number of users and supporters. Their traffic has grown to over 6,000,000 page views per year, and continues to grow as outlines continue to improve.

Lists are doing fine where they are, including outlines. Sincerely, The Transhumanist 13:24, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Fair enough. Thank you for the detailed reply. :-)
I hadn't realized that outlines and indexes had been around so long until recently. And I hadn't realized that they're classified as lists until I read your post. That's very helpful information.
I tripped across Index of law articles recently. It makes sense to re-evaluate these lists occasionally, I think. With improvements to MediaWiki, there may be smarter (less duplicative) ways to store and re-use this information. For example, a dynamic category tree of law-related articles may make sense instead of a manually updated (and always out of sync) outline or index. Annotations still need to be thought out. And, of course, any feature involving category membership doesn't work for non-existent pages (as they can't be categorized). But some of these issues and caveats are no longer as relevant as the encyclopedia has grown (e.g., the number of red links in such indexes or outlines is much fewer). Some issues still need technical work (e.g., implementing a reusable category_member_description field in the database that can accompany the category title when it's presented in a dynamic list).
It's good to see that people are still thinking about these things. --MZMcBride (talk) 21:17, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
Sometimes, one just needs to look at a bare list. One thing I'd like added is a toggle for annotations (to turn them all off/on). Do you have any ideas on how such a feature could be implemented?
Another feature I want to see included is level collapsing/expanding.
I see redundancy as a resource, for the reasons presented on WP:CLN. With multiple (parallel) avenues of technology development in an open environment like Wikipedia, you can never know which one will leapfrog the others, or when. I see a great deal of potential for outliner technology, which is well suited for reorganizing and reformatting existing material.
Keep in mind that each system, including lists, portals, categories, and navigation templates has strong support from editors who prefer one of these styles of reference aid over the others. Trying to force any of these groups to close down the system they have developed for the sake of efficiency is counter productive, as they have and will continue to fight to preserve their favorite system. Because of this, deletion nominations and move proposals of Wikipedia's navigation systems usually either fail or result in "no consensus". Such discussions waste valuable editor time and effort that would be better spent developing and innovating.
Editors differ in style, not just aesthetically, but in the way they think. That's probably the main reason we have several navigation systems. Each has its strengths and weaknesses, just like the editors who built them. Because of this, if you delete a system, don't be surprised if the editors of it do not switch over to developing one of the other systems. First, those may not fit their thinking style. Second, you've just lost their trust - the reward for their hard work was deletion of it. How motivating is that?
A subtle benefit of this encyclopedia's navigation aids, but perhaps the one that will be proven the most powerful in the future, involves checking data relationships against Wikipedia's redundant systems. Human decision making went into each edit in each system, and that makes all of those systems valuable... Having several taxonomical systems developed independently and in parallel by human editors provides a more robust data pool from which semantic web elements can be induced by data mining and heuristic software. If 3 out of 4 navigation systems say that something is a subtopic of something else, that is probably more reliable than if you only had a single system to check the relationship against. Such an approach can enable computers to bootstrap off of recorded instances of human discernment with a high degree of reliability. The redundancy in scope helps control errors — for example: imagine if one of the 4 look-ups was a typo or vandalism or a factual error. The 3 others make up for that. Redundancy in scope is a strength.
For these reasons, each of Wikipedia's navigation systems is a valuable resource. It's best to keep them to provide building blocks for future generations to develop even better systems.
Sincerely, The Transhumanist 16:55, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Promoting Wikipedia Outlines so that they are easier to find.[edit]

My devil's advocate comments here (at the bottom of "high quality simple English leads for all articles") may be of interest. Yet another way of making outlines more easy to find would be to add a Hatnote with a link to the corresponding outline at the top of articles with outlines. Keep up the good work, but please make it easier for people to find ;-) LittleBen (talk) 09:54, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Move outline of metaphysics draft to main article space[edit]

The outline of metaphysics looks pretty complete- I suggest moving it to article space and finish minor edits there. Metaphysics is the final major red-link in the outline of knowledge. (talk) 22:30, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

Outline of Judaism[edit]

I'm thinking about fixing up Outline of Judaism, but I have a few concerns:

  1. How should the history section be done? The problem is, the history overlaps with other sections a lot. For example, both History and Law might include information about the Development of Jewish Law. One of the examples shown at the top of this page is Outline of Ancient Rome, which barely has a history section at all. Is that a model worth following, or should I try to include more about the history in the outline?
  2. I understand that outlines should not be lists. But if a subsection has only a few dozen members, would it be acceptable? An example might be listing all presidents of the United States in Outline of American politics. More topically, including all 63 tractates of the Mishnah.
  3. Specifically here, should the outline be renamed and/or broadened as Outline of Judaism and the Jews?
  4. Is this even worth it? Considering that almost no one reads these outlines, would it be better to focus on improving the main article (which gets about 1000 times more traffic)?

YPNYPN 01:51, 24 December 2012 (UTC)

Featured outlines[edit]

There is a proposal at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#Featured outlines? that might be of interest to the watchers of this page. -- Toshio Yamaguchi 09:03, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

Redirects into project space[edit]

Hi, the following WP:CNR all redirect to Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts/Outline of family and consumer science, as a result of page moves by user:The Transhumanist:

The target isnt a well developed topical outline - not mainspace quality IMO. Is anyone likely to improve it soon? If not, I think the redirects from mainspace should be deleted. But I don't want to nominate them for deletion if there is someone here willing to pick up this challenge. John Vandenberg (chat) 18:42, 7 January 2014 (UTC)

I don't have time to work on it. The redirects should go bye-bye. The Transhumanist 08:48, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. I have deleted them. Happy to continue discussion if someone feels they should be restored. John Vandenberg (chat) 03:32, 9 January 2014 (UTC)

Template:Outline footer[edit]

FYI Template:Outline footer (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has been requested to be renamed, see template talk:Outline footer -- (talk) 05:08, 2 June 2014 (UTC)

Leaflet for Wikiproject Outlines at Wikimania 2014[edit]

Project Leaflet WikiProject Medicine back and front v1.png

Hi all,

My name is Adi Khajuria and I am helping out with Wikimania 2014 in London.

One of our initiatives is to create leaflets to increase the discoverability of various wikimedia projects, and showcase the breadth of activity within wikimedia. Any kind of project can have a physical paper leaflet designed - for free - as a tool to help recruit new contributors. These leaflets will be printed at Wikimania 2014, and the designs can be re-used in the future at other events and locations.

This is particularly aimed at highlighting less discoverable but successful projects, e.g:

• Active Wikiprojects: Wikiproject Medicine, WikiProject Video Games, Wikiproject Film

• Tech projects/Tools, which may be looking for either users or developers.

• Less known major projects: Wikinews, Wikidata, Wikivoyage, etc.

• Wiki Loves Parliaments, Wiki Loves Monuments, Wiki Loves ____

• Wikimedia thematic organisations, Wikiwomen’s Collaborative, The Signpost

The deadline for submissions is 1st July 2014

For more information or to sign up for one for your project, go to:

Project leaflets
Adikhajuria (talk) 17:09, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Outline of biophysics[edit]

FYI, "Outline of biophysics" has been requested to be renamed to Biophysical techniques; for the discussion, see talk:Outline of biophysics -- (talk) 08:50, 27 July 2014 (UTC)

Outlines are lists, and therefore require the list prefix "Outline of" in the title. Titles without a list prefix ("List of", "Outline of", or "Timeline of") are prose articles. Titles of prose articles are the subject itself. The Transhumanist 21:10, 22 November 2014 (UTC)

Comment on the WikiProject X proposal[edit]

Hello there! As you may already know, most WikiProjects here on Wikipedia struggle to stay active after they've been founded. I believe there is a lot of potential for WikiProjects to facilitate collaboration across subject areas, so I have submitted a grant proposal with the Wikimedia Foundation for the "WikiProject X" project. WikiProject X will study what makes WikiProjects succeed in retaining editors and then design a prototype WikiProject system that will recruit contributors to WikiProjects and help them run effectively. Please review the proposal here and leave feedback. If you have any questions, you can ask on the proposal page or leave a message on my talk page. Thank you for your time! (Also, sorry about the posting mistake earlier. If someone already moved my message to the talk page, feel free to remove this posting.) Harej (talk) 22:47, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

List guidelines[edit]

As lists, outlines are expected to follow the notability guideline for stand-alone lists, which states that a list topic is notable if it is discussed as a group or set by independent reliable sources. In addition, the Manual of Style for stand-alone lists states that a stand-alone list should have selection criteria for the items in the list. As far as I know, there is not a single outline that satisfies both these criteria. For example at the top of WikiProject Outlines, the following are given as examples of well-developed outlines: anarchism, ancient Rome, Buddhism, canoeing and kayaking, cell biology, chess, forestry, Iceland, and Japan. Not one of them provides a source for the list as a whole. Should we insist that outlines satisfy the above guidelines? If so, what would the appropriate selection criteria be? And what is an appropriate source? RockMagnetist(talk) 05:14, 10 November 2014 (UTC)

@RockMagnetist: Would a book table of contents be an appropriate source? Fgnievinski (talk) 01:18, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
I don't see why not. Good idea! RockMagnetist(talk) 03:51, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
Another one: learned societies often are organized in working groups, whose topics of interest may be listed in their websites. Fgnievinski (talk) 04:02, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
Here's an example: Outline of radio science. Fgnievinski (talk) 21:19, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

RockMagnetist, the focus of outlines are the topics of the subject of the outline, which is the same scope as regular articles on Wikipedia. Therefore, the selection criteria is specified in the title! "Outline" is short for "hierarchical outline", which means it's a taxonomy of the subject. That is, it's a tree structure presenting the topics that belong to the subject of the outline. "Outline of geography" means the topics of geography organized as a tree structure. Being amongst the "topics of geography" would be your selection criterion for the Outline of geography.

Keep in mind that any source that deals with a subject as a whole is treating its topics as a set. It is superfluous to provide proof that the topics of an outline form a subject, because the main article on that subject already does so, and to access this verification we generally rely on click-through.

However, WP:VER states that if a challenge is made, a source must be provided. That a subject's topics are a set is so obvious readers rarely challenge it. But if they do, it very easy to prove that the topics to a subject are a set, because they are treated (and discussed) as a set throughout that entire field, and in the fields of general reference publishing, library science, information science, and even artificial intelligence.

Within a field, that field's subject gets broken down into its component parts and presented as a set of topics in text book tables of contents, glossaries, and indexes, in college course catalogs, course syllabi, school curricula, specialized dictionaries (such as single-field dictionaries) and specialized encyclopedias, and taxonomies.

Taxonomies for subjects are included in the subject classification systems used within a field. And because they are taxonomies, each of their branches is a subset of topics. So, if you want to find a subject as a set of topics, go to the taxonomy for the topmost subject it belongs to and refer to its branch. For example, in the field of philosophy, there is a comprehensive index and bibliography of philosophical literature called PhilPapers. The papers are classified in an extensive structured bibliography of philosophy which presents the entire subject of philosophy as sets of topics. All major branches of knowledge (mathematics, science, humanities, etc.) have treatments similar to this.

In general reference publishing, there's the Encyclopedia Britannica's Outline of Knowledge, which breaks all of knowledge down into sets of topics. There are many catalogs and reference databases which classify their contents in a similar way (by subject), which results in sets of topics.

Library science provides us with library classifications, that present sets of topics.

Taxonomies (outlines) are central to domains and ontologies as discussed in the fields of information science and artificial intelligence that design programs and databases for particular subjects - those subjects must be defined with respect to the topics (terminology, etc.) they are comprised of, and the relationships between them. The result again is sets of topics.

It is best not to worry about it. Proving that a subject has a set of topics is almost the same as proving that the subject is a subject. Because all subjects have a set of topics. This is universal. The Transhumanist 10:16, 25 December 2014 (UTC)

@The Transhumanist: I think RockMagnetist has a point: it's not necessarily superfluous, especially when there's not a Wikipeida categorization in place. List of life sciences#New is suffering from this problem. Who is to say what is a life science or isn't? Fgnievinski (talk) 17:05, 8 July 2015 (UTC)
That's a different problem. That problem exists for every subject. Who is to say what is or is not a topic belonging to a given subject? WP:VER applies to such situations. RockMagnetist was concerned with each outline subject as a whole, and with whether or not a list (outline) of that subject's topics was warranted in the first place. Well, since general topic lists have existed on Wikipedia since the beginning (2001), they have precedent as an acceptable list type. General topic lists are ubiquitous throughout Wikipedia, presented in the form of categories, navigation footers, sidebars, embedded lists, and outlines; together general topics lists number in the many thousands. Getting rid of them, or any one type of them (e.g., outlines), would take a decision from the community, and this very issue has been decided upon by the community on multiple occasions.
Does an outline have to be justified as existing in the world outside of Wikipedia? No. That is, the subject does, but there is no requirement that there be some sort of outline (or general topics list) out there on the subject, because "outline" in the title indicates the format of the article, and is not in any way part of the page's subject. WP:LISTN requires that the items in a list must be notable as a set, but when the set is the group of topics making up a subject, this is the same as the notability of the subject itself. If there are no topics, then there isn't anything to write about in an article on the subject. It is the same requirement on subjects in general per WP:N. In this respect, all articles are groups of topics, while most of those topics are embedded in the prose of each article. The Transhumanist 22:30, 9 July 2015 (UTC)
Exactly: either an outline is a trivial hierarchical listing (an annotated categorization, if you will) or, if it doesn't abide by WP:VER, it could be tagged as WP:ORIGINALSYN. The membership of listed concepts needs to be sourced somewhere, as a whole or individually, in the outline itself or in the wiki-linked articles. Many listings don't have a separate main article (the latter redirects to the former, as in Life sciences); in the example given above (List of life sciences#New), sources cited define each child concept but don't establish membership in the parent concept. Outlines cannot sidestep non-existing verifiability. Fgnievinski (talk) 03:46, 10 July 2015 (UTC)
Furthermore, below The Transhumanist says that "Outlines are evolving into a form of classified glossary"; then we should follow Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Glossaries#What to include, which says: "All entries must be verifiable with reliable sources, just like regular article content." Fgnievinski (talk) 22:20, 18 July 2015 (UTC)

outline sections (not articles)[edit]

MOS:SEEALSO says that "the 'See also' section should not repeat links that appear in the article's body or its navigation boxes," which seems in contradiction to WP:EMBED#See also lists saying that "links in these sections should have been featured in the article". Indeed, often see also sections serve as a mini-outline of key-concepts in the article. WP:NAV are appropriate when related links are sufficiently cohesive so as to be reused as a whole from multiple pages. Otherwise, what are your thoughts on allowing mini-outline sections listing key concepts within a given article? Is this issue already covered in any guideline? Thanks. Fgnievinski (talk) 01:27, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

Some examples (please add more):

Fgnievinski, thank you for asking. I'll give a shot at answering your question to your satisfaction...
You mentioned "mini", as in basic. That is, you implied that the scope of outlines to be included in see also sections would be less than comprehensive. That's in accordance with WP:SEEALSO that states "should be limited to a reasonable number", and WP:LINKFARM which similarly discourages large collections of links in articles (except in lists, including outlines).
The question is, how are you going to keep them basic? That would require a great deal of maintenance labor to revert any and all editors who added links beyond what would be considered basic/mini. And who is to decide what is or is not basic?
We tried exactly what you are talking about with "basic topic lists", such as "List of basic chemistry topics". That's what outlines were called initially. They were intended to be rudimentary structured lists that never grew more than basic. The problem is, wikis and wiki-communities are not set up for that. Wikis are a growing medium for articles. Their articles tend to grow and grow and grow, because editors go "Ooh, they forgot to include this!" and add yet another item, or three, or one-hundred and three. So something rather embarrassing happened...
Many of the basic topics lists not only outgrew their titles (because they were no longer basic - or mini), they also grew more comprehensive than the full topics lists, such as "List of chemistry topics". So we renamed the basic topics lists to "Outline of", and started absorbing all the topics lists into the collection.
In conclusion, if you allow mini-outlines to be included in see also sections, they won't remain mini. They'll grow and grow and grow. Editors won't be able to resist the temptation to add missing topics.
Do I oppose including topic outlines in see also sections? No. Because WP:SPLIT applies. Once such an outline becomes unwieldy for its article, you simply split it off to "Outline of ______", and link to it. See also sections that link to an outline are very neat and clean, because the outline serves as the list of related links. See Geography#See also.
Keep in mind that if an outline article already exists for a subject, creating an outline in the see also section of the corresponding main article would be superfluous.
I hope the above observations and recollections have been helpful. Please keep up your efforts to improve Wikipedia. The Transhumanist 07:23, 25 December 2014 (UTC)

Outline of evolution[edit]

A very nice outline of evolution has been created by TheProfessor. It bridges the gap we had that was caused by Outline of the creation-evolution controversy. The Transhumanist 11:57, 2 January 2015 (UTC)

WikiProject X is live![edit]

WikiProject X icon.svg

Hello everyone!

You may have received a message from me earlier asking you to comment on my WikiProject X proposal. The good news is that WikiProject X is now live! In our first phase, we are focusing on research. At this time, we are looking for people to share their experiences with WikiProjects: good, bad, or neutral. We are also looking for WikiProjects that may be interested in trying out new tools and layouts that will make participating easier and projects easier to maintain. If you or your WikiProject are interested, check us out! Note that this is an opt-in program; no WikiProject will be required to change anything against its wishes. Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you!

Note: To receive additional notifications about WikiProject X on this talk page, please add this page to Wikipedia:WikiProject X/Newsletter. Otherwise, this will be the last notification sent about WikiProject X.

Harej (talk) 16:56, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

Wikipedia Primary School invitation[edit]

Hi everybody. On behalf of the teams behind the Wikipedia Primary School research project, I would like to announce that the article Outline of domestic violence was selected a while ago to be reviewed by an external expert. We'd now like to ask interested editors to join our efforts and improve the article before March 31, 2015 (any timezone) as they see fit; a revision will be then sent to the designated expert for review. Any notes and remarks written by the external expert will be made available on the article's talk page under a CC-BY-SA license as soon as possible, so that you can read them, discuss them and then decide if and how to use them. Please sign up here to let us know you're collaborating. Thanks a lot for your support! --Elitre (WPS) (talk) 12:33, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts/Outline of the Cold War[edit]

Hi. I've recently been working on the page Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts/Outline of the Cold War, and as someone new to outlines, would welcome any thoughts on its content and structure so far, and what needs to be added/changed before it's moved to article space. --CSJJ104 (talk) 19:04, 19 April 2015 (UTC)

Outlines and WikiProjects[edit]

"Outline"-articles appear to extensively interleave with WikiProjects. I think it would be a good idea to somehow combine both approaches for an increase in productivity, coordination and utility. There are probably many ways to do so...this post isn't supposed to be a worked out suggestion - I just hope to initiate some discussion on this.
Some examples right away:

  • "Outline" Articles could embed some kind of new WikiProject-Box and/or
  • the content of outline articles could be embedded in Portal- and WikiProject-pages and/or
  • WikiProjects could create their own dynamic topic-navigators that make use of their respective outline article; similar to these footer boxes; and/or
  • the WikiProjects could be responsible for separate data which is dynamically displayed on the outline articles: for example the quality or importance of an article (which could be represenated by different font-colors of the entries on the outlines-page) and/or
  • "outline"-articles for their topic could be a new by-default goal of WikiProjects (for this various platform changes could be made) and/or
  • Outline could become a new class-type for WikiProjects (which can only be used for a single article) in the same way that lists are (relevant discussion)
  • ...

(All of this also seems to be relevant to WikiProject X)
Would be interested what you think of this... --Fixuture (talk) 00:30, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Most of these suggestions have been addressed over the years...
Outlines (and lists in general) serve Wikipedia at the same time as both articles and navigation aids. They list the topics belonging to their subject, but since those topics are linked to articles, they also serve as tables of contents to their respective subjects on Wikipedia. Be sure to read Wikipedia:Outlines and especially WP:CLN for perspective.
Outlines are part of the formal encyclopedia, and therefore project-level links and boxes are not appropriate (per WP:SRTA). Outlines are list articles, and the guidelines WP:LIST and WP:STAND generally apply.
Embedding outlines in portals is problematic, as many outlines dwarf portals in size, and moving them to portals would effectively remove them from the encyclopedia proper and bury them. Being articles, outlines reside in the main namespace. A link in a portal to the relevant outline is appropriate. Note that many portals have topics lists that are themselves outlines, but their format differs from the format used by the outlines of the outline department. Outline articles use simple wiki-formatting, and so are much faster to build and maintain.
Embedding outlines in WikiProjects would bury them even further -- they get the maximum traffic by being in the encyclopedia itself where readers can most easily find them. However, a prominent link or subsection on the project page is a good way to focus attention of a project's members on outlines. For an example, see Wikipedia:WikiProject Geography#Improve the bird's eye view.
Creating a new class type for rating outlines is unnecessary. Using regular class types works well. List class not so well. Outlines on a particular subject should get top-priority in the WikiProject of the subject of the outline, because outlines are root-level. (The words "Outline of" in the title refer to the article's format, not its subject -- the subject of Outline of sharks is sharks, not outlines; the outline is about sharks!)
Displaying project-level metadata on outline articles is disallowed by WP:SRTA, and the color of links is standardized to blue for article, red for missing article. Displaying ranks in the standard way would interfere with the outline format. There is a different type of page on WikiProjects that is devoted to displaying quality ranks -- for an example, see Wikipedia:WikiProject Canada/Popular pages#List. Outlines have their own format which is evolving into something pretty special...
Outlines are evolving into a form of classified glossary, with entries including annotations to assist in topic selection. See Outline of chess, Outline of forestry, Outline of architecture, Outline of cell biology, and Outline of canoeing and kayaking.
The outlines get over 9 million page views per year in article space, where they get maximum exposure. To increase traffic further, please place links leading to them.
Thank you. The Transhumanist 02:57, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
P.S.: Take a look at DBpedia.
when The Transhumanist says that "Most of these suggestions have have been addressed over the years" this actually means that people have noticed the futility of this one-man crusade for many years, but he still carries on in spite of everything. The "9 million page views" imho show, if anything, that nine million visitors were hijacked to a useless list of links before realizing this wasn't what they wanted and had to use google to find whatever it was they were looking for. "Outlines" are a vanity project of a single user who is quite frank about seeking "maximum exposure". This project is clearly an attempt to "index" Wikipedia content. It is not the creation of original content, and wherever it is that, it constitutes WP:CFORK. It is exactly what Portal: namespace is for, and I am frankly amazed that the community has let this get as far as it has, with hundreds of pages cluttering article namespace that never had any business in article namespace. --dab (𒁳) 11:26, 14 July 2015 (UTC)

All stand-alone lists are defined as articles, and that establishes their place in article space. At the same time, lists are linkified, and therefore serve as navigation aids. Outlines are structured topics lists, and aid browsing subjects by their subtopics.
Outlines and portals are two very different approaches to presenting information: "As a type of article, outlines are designed to cover the entire scope of their subjects, while portals are modeled after the Main page and are designed to sample a subject by presenting excerpts of a small selection of articles. Outlines are for browsing an entire subject, while portals are for presenting suggested reading material in a fashion similar to the Reader's Digest."
The purpose of the outline project is to build a taxonomy of (all) knowledge, with descriptive annotations to aid in topic selection. Outlines are one of Wikipedia's navigation systems.
My goal with outlines is to tap their potential as a type of ontology, and apply related (AI, etc.) technologies to them, perhaps ontology learning, outliner user interface features, search results augmentation, question answering, etc.
As a data structure, Outlines have a lot of potential, because new technologies are being developed to utilize taxonomically formatted data.
Outlines complement and are synergistic with search engines. Outlines improve users' option awareness and ability to use search engines effectively, as they are chock full of relevant search terms.
In the discussions concerning lists, the community consensus has been again and again that lists are useful. Every debate over the existence or location of outlines came to the same conclusion: they are a useful part of the encyclopedia proper (article namespace). Keep in mind that outlines have been around since the beginning of Wikipedia, the earliest ones with names like "List of ____ topics". Most of those have since been renamed to "Outline of _____".
I'm amazed at how many people have supported and contributed to outlines over the years. If I'm proud of anyone, I'm proud of them. The Transhumanist 12:23, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

@Dbachmann: Well, I don't think that it's futile nor that it's a one man crusade. I just wanted to remark that it overlaps to some degree with the WikiProjects so I would like to have those two be combined somehow. Also imo more people should help out with the outlines if it's regarded as "one man crusade" (combining it with the WikiProjects might also help out with that).
Not sure how it would constitude WP:CFORK: "multiple separate articles all treating the same subject" -> where is there another article treating the same subject? If the outlines are not that useable it's because not enough people are helping out and because Wikipedia is still missing (or often times deleting) articles of the outlined topics making them miss important parts. I also don't see portals already covering it (e.g. Portal:Internet). Maybe these outlines could also be integrated more into portals though. Not sure if it would be a good idea to take the content off this main-wikipedia-article namespace, in either way the content of the outlines should be sustained and if necessary be moved in their entirety to another namespace (in that case I'd rather oppose moving it to portals or wikiprojects and would instead prefer a new namespace).
@The Transhumanist:
>Outlines are part of the formal encyclopedia, and therefore project-level links and boxes are not appropriate (per WP:SRTA)
Okay, that's a good point.
>Embedding outlines in portals is problematic, as many outlines dwarf portals in size
Not quite sure what mean here?
>A link in a portal to the relevant outline is appropriate.
>[...] However, a prominent link or subsection on the project page is a good way to focus attention of a project's members on outlines.
Do all portals have such links? If not imo they should have. Also I think it would be a good idea to set up some kind of template for such similar to the navigation-boxes or alike. So for example a button that can uncollapses the whole outline which it fetches from the outlines article right at the portal.
>Note that many portals have topics lists that are themselves outlines
I also think that these should be made redundant by outlines, mainly so that portals focus their attention/work to on a single outline. Wherever portals have such lists there should be an outline-template instead.
>Embedding outlines in WikiProjects would bury them even further
If anything embedding outlines would do the opposite?! They just get an additional place where they can be viewed.
>Outlines on a particular subject should get top-priority in the WikiProject of the subject of the outline, because outlines are root-level.
I guess that's the best to go by right now.
>P.S.: Take a look at DBpedia.
Looks they make use of the outlines (yet?)?
I guess my basic point was the quality of outlines could be vastly improved if WikiProjects (and people active in some field of study in general) took another approach to them (by recognizing them; and when doing so not by viewing it as just another list-article but another type that should be of primary importance).
Thanks for your explanations! --Fixuture (talk) 12:41, 18 July 2015 (UTC)
@Fixuture: You are welcome.
I agree with your assessment of WikiProjects, and that their perspective of outlines be enhanced. The only way I can think of to do that is to include a section on each WikiProject page that points out the relationship of outlines to their corresponding subject, and that explains why they are of primary importance.
DBpedia doesn't make use of outlines as far as I can tell. But it does store data that could conceivably make outlines easier to build, or which could fill in missing topics, etc.
The word "embedded" can be confusing, since Wikipedia has a specific definition for embedded lists. It appears you've been using "embed" in the context of transclusion. Transcluding outlines into portals using a show/hide button is possible, but not feasible for the entire collection of portals.
It has been awhile since I've taken a detailed look at portals, or at how they approach topic lists. I'll check into it and will let you know what I find out.
Thank you for your interest. I look forward to your further involvement. This project definitely needs your energetic participation. The Transhumanist 01:12, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

The project should be speedily closed and "outline" pages merged back into their source articles. It is WP:CFORK, pure and simple. --Ghirla-трёп- 09:19, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

Outline of the Palestinian territories listed at Requested moves[edit]


A requested move discussion has been initiated for Outline of the Palestinian territories to be moved to Outline of the State of Palestine. This page is of interest to this WikiProject and interested members may want to participate in the discussion here. —RMCD bot 23:04, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Outlines: lists or articles?[edit]

Hello, I am a bit confused about this recent change, and have reverted it (for now). Are outlines considered as articles or as lists by this project? They always looked more list-y for me :). Thanks for any background information, as I am fairly ignorant about outlines in general (just tweaked Germany's outline once or twice), and couldn't find any specific decision about this aspect on this talkpage. GermanJoe (talk) 18:43, 18 July 2015 (UTC)

I think by the classifying it as "list" the important information about the article's quality is lost. And there's no use in classifying it as list; also outlines also aren't lists. They are "outlines" which is something different, which is something I asked about a bit further up.
imo most outlines are in poor state but nobody does something about it as at first glace some actually look quite ok and there's no quality-qualifiers on the talk page.
The essence of outlines is not simply "listing" it's rather categorizing and putting into context.
Or is there any advantage of classifying it as "list" instead of using the quality?
--Fixuture (talk) 21:18, 18 July 2015 (UTC)
The "list" rating is entirely redundant, as it tells us nothing that the titles don't already tell us -- that they are lists. We should get rid of the list rating and use quality ratings for all lists. The Transhumanist 10:34, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
@GermanJoe: there are two main divisions of lists. 1) Item lists (the vast majority of lists on Wikipedia), and 2) General topics lists (outlines and indexes). Item lists present instances of things of a particular type. General topics lists present the subtopics of a given subject. Keep in mind that lists are a type of article. And therefore, they belong in article namespace. The Transhumanist 10:34, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
@The Transhumanist:, thanks for the additional background info. Just a random (pretty ignorant) idea, but wouldn't a separate assessment system for such topic lists make more sense then? It seems like an outline (or other indexes) require special qualities do be a "good" outline, slightly different from the qualities that make a good item list or a good article. It would also make more sense for WikiProject Outlines to include that assessment directly in the WPOutlines banner itself. To clarify: I am not really against any kind of change, if it helps building Wikipedia :) - but I think such aspects need discussing before large-scale changes of banners are done. GermanJoe (talk) 11:52, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
I agree. The Transhumanist 12:32, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

Portals and their topics lists[edit]

@Fixuture: I stated above that I would look over Portals' treatment of topics. Here's what I've learned:

The topics lists are structured, and therefore they're topic outlines.

It appears that the majority of portals that have a topics section, custom format that section to match the rest of the portal. Most of these sections have topics lists that appear to be built from scratch.

Some portals transclude the corresponding navigation footer into the topics section, and use that as its topics list.

Many portals do not have a topics section at all.

Many portals have a different name for the topics section. Such as "articles", "major topics", "basics", etc.

For many portals, there is no corresponding outline article. For many outlines, there is no corresponding portal page.

Based on the above observations, I believe it would not be feasible to seek consensus to transclude outlines into portals, due to the diversity of portal designs and portals' tradition of customization.

However, providing a link to the corresponding outline in each portal's topic section is doable and non-disruptive. The Transhumanist 14:11, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts[edit]

It seems like there's a lot of old draft outline hidden away in Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts. Most has not been edited for months if not longer. Do you think it makes sense moving those to draftspace and perhaps adding in other relevant WikiProjects for them? It may get some eyes on a few of them. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 08:40, 5 June 2016 (UTC)

No, I don't. Outlines are a peculiar type of articles, and I think the only people who should be encouraged to take an interest in them are people already familiar with WP:Outlines. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 06:30, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
They are a specialized type of article. By keeping them in this WikiProject's draft space, we can make that clear. If these are in generic draft space, the connection to this WikiProject (which explains what they are, and what their format is) is likely to be missed. You don't want editors writing outlines that are not in outline format -- those are not outlines. For example, if you insert a lot of paragraph prose into an outline, it is no longer an outline, just another article. It's the list format that makes the difference. Outlines are a type of list. The Transhumanist 01:57, 28 June 2016 (UTC)

The future of Outlines. Discuss here, or pull apart the WikiProject bit by bit?[edit]

Ricky81682 wrote, atWikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Wikipedia:WikiProject Outlines/Drafts/Outline of the LGBT community:

Refer to Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Longevity and you should see why the idea of deferring MFD to a WikiProject is a problem. If you think there's a collective issue, then it can be discussed but outlines overall should not be discussed at the WikiProject with some presumption that the project has some greater expertise or authority on the subject than anywhere else. As noted before, that creates problems. Otherwise, I am evaluating these as pages and based on my review of this page, I see no reason why there would need to be an outline on this topic when another outline on a similar topic already exists and when there's no indication that this draft is being improved upon. I see nothing from you about the actual content of this page, just some complaining and demands that all further discussion about things created within this project be carved out from MFD (and I assume AFD/CFD and otherwise) if it relates to an outline and left to the project and the project's editors rather than the wider community. I would say that the outlines project would have been better served if, from day one, there was an effort even a minimal one to inform people involved in the actual topics about those outlines rather than take on the approach that the Outlines project, and that project alone, should be concerned with outlines. That attitude is one large reason why I suspect the remaining outlines are stagnant and entirely dependent on a single editor's involvement. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 06:37, 25 June 2016 (UTC)

I agree with much of that, but not all, and certainly not discussing serious precedent setting decisions in multiple places. Here is appropriate. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:52, 28 June 2016 (UTC)

Thank you for your input. Note that thousands of editors have edited the outlines. I have made effort from the beginning of the project and over the years to get editors involved in developing outlines. The most effective so far has been to create an outline and provide links to it on the corresponding article pages and navigation boxes. A sort of catch-22 situation, because you want other editors to create them and not be stuck doing most of that yourself.

Contacting WikiProjects has had some success. The birds people created one, and random editors came along to build outlines on diverse subjects such as water, chocolate, forestry, cell biology, sharks, fishing, and so on. The way the religion outlines were developed was to show the editors at the various religion WikiProjects that there was an Outline of Islam. Buddhism took up the challenge immediately and created the largest outline on Wikipedia. WikiProject Judaism couldn't stand by and be unrepresented, so they created an Outline of Judaism. Then I told the Christians about the Judaism outline. Competitive spirit did the rest.

I tried a similar approach on sports wikiprojects, and that resulted in editors coming forward to build an outline on cycling, and another on kayaking and canoeing.

I think one effective approach would be to introduce some sort of automation. Computer tools to work on outlines would make it more fun to work on them, and would probably attract many more editors. The Transhumanist 02:41, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
I'd make two suggestions: (1) move them to draftspace where I'm certain other editors will be more likely to be involved and (2) add the quality parameter to this project so that you can distinguish Draft-class outlines from everything. Also, this project of all projects should move away from the traditional Stub/Start/C/B/A structure and perhaps do like Wikipedia:WikiProject_Military_history/Assessment#Quality_scale and go with List (close enough)/CL/BL/AL/FL and draft to find those easily. Call it Outline/CO/BO/AO/FO for all I care. I've also been sorting the outlines so they actually show up in order. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 04:43, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
(re:#1 above). The knee-jerk reaction is to nominate skeletons for deletion. The main purpose of those is as reminders of what outlines need to be created. Placing them in draft space would be counter-productive. The Transhumanist 08:21, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
There's never been any enthusiasm for doing #2 for outlines – too much overhead, especially the FO thing. They don't really fit the spirit of outlines, which map subjects and their coverage on Wikipedia at the same time. The outline project is a lot like Tyrion Lannister from Game of Thrones: small and eccentric, but capable of guiding people. The Transhumanist 08:16, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
Perhaps taking a look at what outline building tools are out there would be a better approach. Some cool toys might attract just the kind of editors we need on outlines: general taxonomists. The Transhumanist 09:32, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
If you want to propose new tools, go ahead and try WP:VPT. More people are inclined to delete all outlines than care about that in my view. There isn't an MOS for what an outline should or should not have. Unlike you, I see outlines within the structure of the project, but I'm not pretending like I have some grander scope and ability to generalize subjects than the people who actually spend the time and energy to research and review them enough to write articles. That's one reason why this project had an "Accounting law" outline that anyone with two bits of knowledge on the subject knew was nonsense. And a decade of a blank skeleton is just a blank skeleton because it couldn't go anywhere. As to the location, that's again another example to me of this project setting it itself up to be a WP:WALLED garden that ignores the remainder of the project. Almost every other discussion regarding other types of articles (and including outlines) supports draftspace but this project seems intent of having total control above all else. There's no reason your set of red links above can't just be changed to drafts. As for the ratings, again, same idea. The goal here clearly is either red links for outlines or for this project to create them. After that, it seems like no one here actually cares about the quality of the work. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 06:54, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
  • I have been aware, and thinking on, outlines for many years. Perhaps 9. At the moment, I don’t think they are on a viable path. Outlines, as a hierarchical presentation of contents, has the advantage of being comprehensive, but cannot be made to be comprehensive by manual incremental improvement.
Automatic generation of outlines is an exciting idea, and I think the only idea that could lead to completeness. I am not familiar with programs that can do this. I recall that Microsoft Word used to have a tool that would auto-condense text. I can read about Automatic summarization. Outlines could be based on the existing category structure.
Outlines should not be subject to WP:WALLED, they should not be considered articles at all. They are most similar to categories, in that they are not repositories of any creative information, but are derived from information in mainspace. I see already that there are few mainspace links to outlines, except from navigational templates. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 07:24, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
If you keep on saying that outlines are not considered articles at all, then you are guaranteeing that this WikiProject is going to end up a WP:WALLED garden with its own rules and theories because I doubt you will find any consensus about that. As I noted above, I don't think there's a single MOS guideline about outlines and it seems like there's an outright opposition to any attempt to actually distinguish between various qualities of outlines. We have lists and featured lists for a reason and if this project, of all places, doesn't care to make featured outlines, then so be it. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 08:59, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
I dont know The Tranhumanist's opinion, but I think all Outlines belong in PortalSpace, subpages of Portal:Contents/outlines, and there there is no walled garden issue.
If outlines could be generated automatically, there would be no point having featured outlines as an editing reward. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 10:28, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
After considering the rationales presented above, my opinion is that we should move all outline drafts to draft space where more people can find them and work on them.

As for outline articles, Portal:Contents/Outlines would be a horrible place to put those, for the same reason we shouldn't move prose articles to be subpages of Portal:Content/Overviews, or lists as subpages of Portal:Contents/Lists, or categories as subpages of Portal:Contents/Categories.

In building the encyclopedia, it is important that we avoid all-or-nothing reasoning. Even though the set of outlines is not as comprehensive[[ as certain other page sets, they improve the coverage and access to the subjects they do encompass. In general, deleting an article because it is not complete is a ludicrous approach because Wikipedia is a work-in-progress and having pages in various stages of completion is what makes community development and wiki-collaboration possible. This applies even more so to sets of pages. Deleting an article (or removing it from the encyclopedia, aka mainspace) because we don't have more of that particular type of article, is to ignore the benefits of the articles we do have. Outlines generate between 7 and 9 million page views per year. Somebody finds them useful. The Transhumanist 22:01, 9 July 2016 (UTC)

Outline of sailing[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
Is hereby awarded to Mindfrieze for creating the Outline of sailing, which is now in article space. Keep up the good work! The Transhumanist 00:26, 12 July 2016 (UTC)

Outline of adoption[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
Is hereby awarded to Marikafragen for creating the Outline of adoption, which is now in article space. Thank you for creating this outline! The Transhumanist 22:43, 12 July 2016 (UTC)

Outline of the Cold War[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
is hereby awarded to CSJJ104 for creating the Outline of the Cold War, which is now in article space. Thank you for filling this gap in the navigation system! The Transhumanist 05:06, 15 July 2016 (UTC)

Outline of Star Trek[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
is hereby awarded to Randy Kryn for work done on the Outline of Star Trek, including content contributions, copy editing, title italicizing, and placing links to the outline. Keep up the excellent work! The Transhumanist 22:40, 18 July 2016 (UTC)

Outline of Joseph Smith[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
is hereby awarded to Broter for creating and developing the Outline of Joseph Smith. A very fine job indeed. The Transhumanist 19:14, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

Outline of New Brunswick[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
is hereby awarded to PKT for creating and developing the Outline of New Brunswick. Well done. Thank you. The Transhumanist 04:33, 12 August 2016 (UTC)

Outline of Assam[edit]

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
is hereby awarded to Lakun.patra for creating and developing the Outline of Assam. A very nice addition to the collection. Keep up the good work. Thank you. The Transhumanist 08:14, 21 August 2016 (UTC)

Preview future outline of cannabis[edit]

Interested parties can preview Draft:Glossary of cannabis terms which, as under discussion on its talkpage, very well could end up published as Outline of cannabis by the end of April. - Bri (talk) 01:59, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

Official and Common Endonyms for Countries with Multiple Official Languages[edit]

I was working on Outline of Peru and added the Spanish official and common endonyms, and I was thinking about the best formatting to add official endonyms in Quechua and Aymara. I went to a couple other multi-language country outlines to see examples of how it was done and noticed that on several outlines of countries, official endonyms and common endonyms are left blank if there are multiple official languages (see Outline of Switzerland, Outline of Paraguay). Is this a policy, or is this just the result of the examples I picked? --Furicorn (talk) 09:26, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

Demonyms, Endonym, Official Names on Template:Outline country[edit]

I was comparing outlines for Germany, Japan, and Peru and I noticed the following issue with the template.

The following two bullets both redirect to here: List of countries and dependencies and their capitals in native languages

I assume it would make sense to harmonize both those links in the template since they are going to the same place now. Also, I would note that List of countries and dependencies and their capitals in native languages doesn't actually include the official endonyms anymore. For instance, Germany's official endonym is "Bundesrepublik Deutschland", but only the common endonym "Deutschland" appears on the new redirect page. Obviously this is sort of an upstream problem for this template, but it makes me wonder if there is a new place that lists all the official endonyms now. Furicorn (talk) 09:07, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

Future of outlines[edit]

I'm in the process of building scripts for viewing outlines and for outline development.

So far, there is:

  • User:The Transhumanist/OutlineViewAnnotationToggler.js – this one provides a menu item to turn annotations on/off, so you can view lists bare when you want to (without annotations). When done, it will work on (the embedded lists of) all pages, not just outlines. Currently it is limited to outlines only, for development and testing purposes. It supports hotkey activation/deactivation of annotations, but that feature currently lacks an accurate viewport location reset for retaining the location on screen that the user was looking at. The program also needs an indicator that tells the user it is still on. Otherwise, you might wonder why a bare list has annotations in edit mode, when you go in to add some. :) Though it is functional as is. Check it out. After installing it, look at Outline of cell biology, and press ⇧ Shift+Alt+a. And again.
  • User:The Transhumanist/RedlinksRemover.js – strips out entries in outlines that are nothing but a redlink. It removes them right out of the tree structure. But only end nodes (i.e., not parent nodes, which we need to keep). It delinks redlinks that have non-redlink offspring, or that have or are embedded in an annotation. It does not yet recognize entries that lack a bullet (it treats those as embedded).

It is my objective to build a set of scripts that fully automate the process of creating outlines. This end goal is a long way off (AI-complete?). In the meantime, I hope to increase productivity as much as I can. Fifty percent automation would double an editor's productivity. I think I could reach 80% automation (a five-fold increase in productivity) within a couple years.

There's more:

  • User:The Transhumanist/StripSearchSorted.js – another script, which strips search results down to a bare list of links, sorts them alphabetically, and inserts wikilink formatting for ease of insertion of those links into lists. This is useful for gathering links for outlines. I'd like this script to sort its results. So, if you know how, or know someone who knows how, please let me know.

Script and script feature requests (for outlines) are welcome. The Transhumanist 06:15, 26 October 2017 (UTC)

The soon-to-be-implemented "short descriptions" magic word {{SHORTDESC}}, which will eventually provide search disambiguation for all Wikipedia articles would be a useful resource for this, as they could be used as annotations for outline and index lists. You can see an example of this being done manually at Draft:Outline of underwater diving. · · · Peter (Southwood) (talk): 09:36, 11 February 2018 (UTC)