Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/Archive 2

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3
This is the second archive of the discussion at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles.

This is cool

Type Nuttall encyclopedia into Google. We're NUMBER ONE!! Just wait till Friday. ... Danny 01:13, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Remember that today is Nuttall Day. 3,500 to go ... Danny 13:49, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Removal bot ; request to reconsider

I have been doing some blue link removal today and I think we should ask Dragon's Flight to reconsider his decision not to run the removal bot on the pages. The pages with the search engine links on them are very difficult to edit by hand because they are so unreadable. A bot would work wonders in this respect.

The main reason people asked him not to originally was because we don't poor redirects/articles removed before someone else has had a chance to check them.

My proposal therefore: The bot not only removes blue links, but also adds those blue links to a new list... called "formerly missing topics" or something. This much more manageable list would make it very easy for us to run through the newly created ones and check for correctness. i.e. this task would become easier than it is now! Moreover we get our stats updated more often and more correctly because of the bots unstinting correctness. So what you say people? Pcb21| Pete 17:20, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Removing the blues by copying the list into a spreadsheet then deleting the blues and pasting back in is 100 times quicker, especially as you can then delete by looking at the number rather than searching through for the name. I dont know if i have explained that well enough to understand, but i certainly can delete blues very quicky using this method. It is an interesting suggestion though. Bluemoose 17:46, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Another thing we can do to be more efficient is to delete/hide the old nuttall lists if no one uses them (and i cant see why they would) and keep but not prune the alphabetic EB2004 lists, as it seems very wasteful to maintain 2 separate lists for the same things. Bluemoose 18:18, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I don't think wastefulness comes into if a bot can clear up at will. Dragonsflight, would your bot be able to be adapted to this? Pcb21| Pete 07:46, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Yes, though not overnight (which is to say I am fairly busy this week). Also, if you guys would like to do something like this, it would be useful for you to be specific about the format, arrangment, and number of pages you want links spit out on. For example, one large alphabetical page? one per encyclopedia? one per page of links? Include some sort of headings? etc. Dragons flight 18:04, Jun 26, 2005 (UTC)

World Book Encyclopedia

Is Wikipedia missing any World Book articles? If so, can it be added to this project? Dralwik 18:11, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I will work on getting a topic list and see if it can be incorporated into the new hot list Reflex Reaction 19:15, 7 September 2005 (UTC)


I wikified the 1911 article and saved it as Silesia (1911 EB). Right now, there seems to be a revert war going on the Silesia page. The point of having both articles is that the EB contains a huge amount of historical information the Polish-dominated Silesia article does not cover.

Is there a policy for such cases?--FourthAve 02:30, 21 July 2005 (UTC)

Encyclopedia of reproduction

Though the original page seems to be broken, I once made a list of topic from the "encyclopedia of reproduction" (believe it or not). It can be found here, in case there is interest to add this to the ever-growing encyclopedias-to-be-redone list :-) --Magnus Manske 17:13, July 25, 2005 (UTC)

Sure, sounds like a sexy topic. Danny 01:22, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

We need to harness some of the 1.2 billion

2004/Y is chock full of missing Chinese topics, many of which already have articles on zh: . Any ideas on how to get these topics done on en:? It is a hard work for those of us with only a passing knowledge of China, but my previous plea on the Chinese wikipedians noticeboard didn't get much of a response! Pcb21| Pete 11:51, 4 August 2005 (UTC)

Handbook of Norse Mythology

I've started a project to provide a Wikipedia entry for all entries in John Lindow's Handbook of Norse Mythology.


I am intimately familiar with the subject and Wikipedia's coverage of it so I can work on this very efficiently. Anyone is welcome to help, of course. If you want to move the page from my user space and file it under the Missing encyclopedic articles project (if only to brag about it when it is completed) that's fine too :)

Anyhow, just thought I'd let you know since I got the idea from this project.

- Haukurth 18:08, 4 August 2005 (UTC)


I just looked over the "did you know" on the main page, and was very pleased to see that Nurek Dam, made largely by User:Bantman, had the first edit summary as (Created as part of the WikiProject Missing articles project), brilliant!

Anyway, I think it would be great if we put a few examples of really good articles this project has produced on the main project page, partly to show what kind of quality to aspire to, and partly because it will look really cool.

Anyone got any other good examples? Martin - The non-blue non-moose 23:23, 19 August 2005 (UTC)

I'm proud of Qala'un Mosque, if I may say so — a well-researched and complete article. It even exposes a pretty serious error of the Encyclopedia Britannica, as pointed out here. Another good one of mine might be Bono Manso. — mark 10:47, 20 August 2005 (UTC)
You may certainly say so! they are very good articles.Martin - The non-blue non-moose 13:01, 20 August 2005 (UTC)

Search capability

I have always been surprised that not every project has a search capability or someway of linking back to the source of the lists. Having search or linking back to the source of the information expedites and improves culling blue links because makes it easier for people to actually check the source (Britannica, Encarta or whatever) before removing that link. It also makes article creation easier because a search link is right there. I know that adding search capabilites for long lists makes the page often significantly larger which is really bad for people on slower connections, but I believe that it is a capability that should be added to each project page because it makes the work so much easier.

I propose that:

  • Each topic should have at least one external link
    • For topics where the source is known the link should be direct link to the article or a google site search for that topic. Site search is particularly useful for sites with premium content that may only be displayed on search pages (Encarta).
    • For topics with unknown source or mulitple sources there should be a google link
  • Most pages should have three external links
    • Direct link to material on external site or google site search of topic
    • Google web search
    • Google site search of wikipedia
  • Long lists can have between one and two external links
    • 200k* can be a cut off point for having one or two external links *(proposed number)

Any input, comments are appreciated. Reflex Reaction 17:20, 24 August 2005 (UTC)

Searches are great, but I think all the lists are fine how they are, with exception of Encarta, I kept meaning to add the searches to that, but you have sorted that out now which is great. Martin - The non-blue non-moose 19:11, 24 August 2005 (UTC)
I disagree, I think the General, Music, and science topics would all benefit from some sort of search. It just makes it easier to do the work, especially checking if the material matches. It doesn't necessarily have to be just a google web search, adding a google site search of britannica would probably provide context for a number of articles rather than a list random red-linked name or topic. The Jewish probably wouldn't need any addition given the format of pages that have already been worked on. It certainly wouldn't hurt to add Nuttall, though I wonder if there is a way to easily search the Guttenburg production of encyclopedia. The relative cost of bandwith is small to the convenience gained by having the search there. Reflex Reaction 20:59, 24 August 2005 (UTC)
I have modified the search at Hutchinson and have added search for the first ten pages of the General encyclopedia, if there are no complaints, I will add it to the remaining pages over the next few days. After that I will add modify the search at the Music list to a google wikipedia search because I think that the wikipedia search is extremely limited.

MacTutor archive

Another very decent, somewhat encyclopedic web site I keep coming across is the MacTutor archive. Should the content of this site this be included in the list of missing encyclopedic articles? Thanks. — RJH 17:47, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

I have just created a list, but I'm concerned about formatting and presentation. I tried to eliminate as many duplicates as possible, but the formatting is not consistent on their site so I'm sure that there are problems with the list. If anyone would like the spreadsheet I used contact me. Reflex Reaction 19:34, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Thank you! — RJH 19:00, 29 August 2005 (UTC)
I wonder, maybe if someone would ask the authors politely, wouldn't they release their work under GFDL? They don't seem to care so much about the license of their work. Samohyl Jan 20:47, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Good idea. I e-mailed the authors an asked them. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 03:36, August 30, 2005 (UTC)
They said no. The response could probably be better paraphrased as "hell no". The author who responded said he doesn't like Wikipedia, and doesn't want to be asked again. Fine. This increases my resolve to make Wikipedia a better source of information about mathematicians than MacTutor. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 12:53, August 30, 2005 (UTC)
Oh my. Will they ever learn? :) Maybe they should read about Linus Torvalds and Andy Tanenbaum. Samohyl Jan 08:05, 17 September 2005 (UTC)

Removing Copyrighted Encyclopedia Lists

In accordance with Jimbo's instruction that we should not use lists of material from "an organization with whom we directly compete in the market", I intend to go through and delete the topic lists from other organizations marketing themselves as encyclopedias. To my mind, this includes:

The other pages in this project appear to be comprised either of lists for which copyright has already expired, the material was taken from a mixture of unidentified sources, and/or the source is not an "encyclopedia" (e.g. a book index or a speciality dictionary). These other lists may have to be revisted in the future as the foundation clarifies their position on the use of topic lists from copyrighted sources.

It is my intention to begin this process roughly 12 to 15 hours from now. Comments? Dragons flight 04:21, August 31, 2005 (UTC)

Seems to be an appropriate course of action. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 14:31, August 31, 2005 (UTC)
I have now finished deleting these items. Dragons flight 19:00, August 31, 2005 (UTC)
"The other pages in this project" includes lists taken from a mixture of copyrighted sources. I'm thinking of 2004xEncarta in particular. I'd suggest that none of us here is sufficiently versed in copyright law to know whether it's a violation, although I am aware of the argument that there is original work in making the crossreference. Has the foundation opined? David Brooks 19:26, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
To my knowledge, this is one of the grey areas that is still unresolved. Dragons flight 20:07, August 31, 2005 (UTC)
Couldn't someone put this on his own webserver? That way we can still use the lists, but wikipedia would not be responsible. (I stongly believe that the way we use this lists is fair use.) --R.Koot 19:48, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
The courts have historically thrown out almost all fair use claims if the person attempting to claim fair use is a competitor in the same economic market place. I suspect this may be part of the reason for Jimbo's "direct competition" standard, though he has not said so directly. As far as putting the lists elsewhere, Wikipedia could still be hit for contributory infringement if people are encouraged to infringe someone else's copyright even if the material is located on an outside webserver. Basically this means that while you could move the lists offsite and assume responsibility for them, it would still be potentially dangerous for the foundation (though perhaps less so) if the lists were linked to from anywhere within Wikipedia. Dragons flight 20:07, August 31, 2005 (UTC)
I think Jimbo should delete the lists himself. The fact that only the Encarta lists has been deleted hints that Microsoft might be upset by this, not EB or any of the other parties involved here. --R.Koot 20:17, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
They were already deleted before you made this comment, though I left a message with Jimbo when I did it, so he is free to overrule me if he likes. For the record though, he said the only reason Encarta was deleted now was that he only just learned of its existence or otherwise he would have deleted it sooner. Dragons flight 20:48, August 31, 2005 (UTC)
Wikipedia cannot be made responsible on what is found on servers it does not own, nor controls. Anyway, here's a link: (http://wikibrit. host. sk/) bogdan | Talk 22:18, 31 August 2005 (UTC)

According to various key people in the legal department, it would not be a problem if we were to consolidate the lists. No request was formally made by Jimbo to delete the 2004 list or the other lists. My suggestion is that the lists be consolidated, that the Encarta entries be restored to the consolidated list, and that we carry on with the work of building an encyclopedia. Deleting these lists unilaterally because you decide to interpret something Jimbo says in a way that may not be correct is little more than vandalism. Yes, Dragons flight, you have wanted these lists deleted for a while now--ever since we rejected the idea of you running a bot to prune these lists, in fact. Ultimatums, however, are not the way to get this done. To everyone else, I strongly suggest that the lists be consolidated. Danny 01:20, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

I doubt my words are going to change your opinion of my actions, but the only reasons I deleted them is I really seriously believe these lists have the potential to screw over the Foundation AND I honestly believe that the Foundation (or in this case, at least Jimbo) does not want them to exist. I am not going to delete them again, but if you are going to consolidate them, I really beg you do so quickly and then delete them again. (Honestly, I would really prefer you use your rights as admin to read them and consolidate them without undeleting them). For the record, are you going to undelete the Encarta list? As far as I know there is no logical reason for having one live and not the other except for the fact that Jimbo knew to ask about one and not the other. Dragons flight 01:42, September 1, 2005 (UTC)
On a technical note: Admins can only see the rendered versions of deleted revisions, not the wikitext. Thus it might be necessary to temporarily undelete simply to achieve the consolidation, depending how the consolidation is achieved. Pcb21| Pete 11:28, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

I have asked Magnus if he can produce a consolidated list. If he does not answer by the weekend, I will begin to do so. Danny 01:49, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Reflex Reaction and I (and possibly Magnus as well) are already on top of this. We have "clean" versions of EB2004, Encarta, Columbia Encyclopedia, Weisstein, Hutchinson, and the Modern Jewish Encyclopedia ready for merging. (By "clean", I mean that they have been given a consistent format with errors and some blue links removed.) We're considering merging this all with Wikipedia:List of encyclopedia topics. This should be ready soonish. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 02:47, September 1, 2005 (UTC)
Can I recommend that this is not merged with Wikipedia:List of encyclopedia topics. My impression is that the latter has a much higher false positive count, of articles that should not really exist at all (for example, all the minor computer viruses). OpenToppedBus - Talk to the driver 11:35, September 1, 2005 (UTC)
Merging into a single list is a good idea. Improving the quality of that single lists is an important but secondary consideration. Pcb21| Pete 12:49, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
I agree with that. List of encyclopedia topics contains way too many titles that are not appropriate for Wikipedia articles. bogdan | Talk 12:54, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
Let me expand on why I disagree. Firstly it is a matter of debate what are and aren't appropriate topics for inclusion. I think most things on the current list are at least worthy of a redirect to a broader topic (e.g. the computer viruses). You may disagree with that and we can talk it. But that is a separate issue from the merge which is a necessary condition for the lawyers to allow us to have the other lists at all. Keeping them in a "separate merge" defeats the purpose of the merge in my opinion. Pcb21| Pete 13:02, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
I'm in agreement with Pete, and will be glad to see a fully-merged list. +sj + 02:45, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
Dragons flight acted in good faith. No one objected, despite his edit being up for some time. Quadell, who himself is creating a consolidated list, posted his approval. It is inappropriate and insulting to call his Dragons flight's "vandalism". — Mateo SA | talk 01:57, September 1, 2005 (UTC)
Seconded. Assume good faith. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 02:47, September 1, 2005 (UTC)

I apologize to Dragon's flight for my reaction. Danny 11:44, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Thank you. Dragons flight 13:01, September 1, 2005 (UTC)

Mathworld request

I have sent the following e-mail to Wolfram:

Dear Mr./Mrs.

We at Wikipedia are trying to create the worlds largest free encyclopedia. This includes information about
mathematics. To make our encyclopedia as complete as possible be want to make sure that there is an article on
Wikipedia for every artcile on Mathworld. To help our editors we create a list from your alphabetical index
(e.g. which show whcih articles have to be written. We thought this
would be allowed under fair use, but since there have been some concerns that this could actually be a copyright
violation and have deleted the list as a precausion. It would greatly help if you could give explicit permission
to us to create this list from your alphabetical index. (To be clear: we do not copy any information from your 

Yours sincerely,

Rudy Koot

--R.Koot 02:16, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

The new "Hotlist"

I now have a prototype of the "Hotlist" up at Wikipedia:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/Hot. Only the A list is populated, but I hope to do the rest tomorrow. Have a look! (It still needs pruning.) – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 22:34, September 1, 2005 (UTC)

B list is up. Others will soon follow. When they're all done, I'll link from the main project page. Comments, critiques, and compliments are welcome. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 12:57, September 2, 2005 (UTC)
Some feedback.
  1. Great work on making these lists possible so quickly. It is particularly good that the names are clean.
  2. Clearly listing only 100 items and not purging existing items is going to leave only a very small list of TODO items. How will the lists look when we "go live".
  3. Something I noticed from the older lists... the wikitext is very hard to read because of all the extlinks. Is there any way it could be tidied? For example by using a template with the article name as the argument. The template would then unwrap to a list of searches. Pcb21| Pete 13:08, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
Ooh that template idea is clever, possibly a bit complicated though. I would rather we just left it how it is, but just don't trim any blues until the whole page is complete.
Quadell, very nice work indeed, any estimate on the total amount of red links? and why does it say 500 per page when there is only 100 per page, a typo or am i missing something? thanks Martin - The non-blue non-moose 13:44, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
Try {{search|article+name}}. It is important that any spaces in the name of the article are replaced with "+" or the hyperlinks won't work correctly, but Quadell's script seems able to do that. Edit to your heart's content. Hopefully having 10000 copies of the template (or whatever number ti ends up being) won't melt servers. Worth a try though. Dragons flight 14:32, September 2, 2005 (UTC)
Good work Quadell, it has been a pleasure working with you on generating the lists. Some comments
  1. Wikipedia search should be removed considering how often it is down. I find that a gwp search produces better results for searching wikipedia than wikipedia could ever do. Because this will be a large page, I think that this search can be removed.
  2. The template idea is interesting, but couldn't it also be dealt with some formatting? Is there a way to "tab" over the searches so that the topic is a little more clear?
  3. I think that ~200k should be a rule of thumb for the size of the pages so that people with slower connections can work on the project and so there is less of a drain on the servers. This will probably work out to about 500 per page which, with all the trimming needing to be done should be a reasonable starting number, rather than the 100.
  4. Over 18,000 of the terms were generated from the Computer encyclopedia, shouldn't this also have a search?
  5. What was the starting count of articles, and do you have an estimate of red links? Reflex Reaction 14:13, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback, all! Some answers:

  1. I had planned to go with 100 per page, but as most of you seem to prefer 500, I can increase the count.
  2. I really like the {{Search}} template! But I worry about how it will affect the servers. Could we get a developer to chime in on the issue?
  3. I don't know how many of the links are red. I don't know of a way of calculate that, short of counting manually.
  4. I'm divided on whether Wikipedia search should be included or not. Any other opinions on that? (Keep in mind that a Google search of Wikipedia will exist.)
  5. Yes, a search on the Encyclopedia of Computing Terms would be a nice addition. I'll see what I can do.

Thanks for the kind words. And props to Reflex Reaction for all his work on this too. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 16:14, September 2, 2005 (UTC)

I like the wiki search, it isn't always inferior to the google one, in fact i probably use it more than the google one. Martin - The non-blue non-moose 16:21, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
I would like to use it more, but whenever I try to use it it always seems to be down.Reflex Reaction 16:46, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
You can use a computer to count the red links by capturing the HTML and counting occurrences of class="new", but I'm not sure if that's what you meant (plus it's fussy). David Brooks 21:23, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

I left a message with Tim Starling (head developer) about the template. Once I get an answer on that, I'll finish filling it all in. Until then, feel free to help prune the lists or add new articles. – Quadell (talk) 21:05, September 2, 2005 (UTC)

I haven't heard anything back from any developers. I'm a computer programmer by trade, and though I only have a rough idea of how the Wikipedia servers work, it makes sense to me that having 500 instances of a template on a page should use only negligibly more resources than having one. So I'm using the template, unless I hear a developer complain.
Meanwhile, I now have A through E P up, with 500 entries, and using the search template. Knock yourselves out. More will follow, and when all letters are up, I'll link to it from the project page. – Quadell (talk) 13:25, September 6, 2005 (UTC)
Very nice, btw what work is left to do on these lists? if you want a helping hand you know where to ask. Martin - The non-blue non-moose 13:35, 6 September 2005 (UTC)

I really should have come in earlier with my comments. First of all, thanks for all the work that you've all done on this. However, for what it's worth, I really wish you hadn't included the computing terms. The original point of this wikiproject was to get articles from general encyclopedias. I think we'll find it hard to finish these pages now as there are so many computing terms - I'm certainly not going to find those easy or interesting to work on. OpenToppedBus - Talk to the driver 15:22, September 6, 2005 (UTC)

I understand. It was a difficult decision whether to include them or not. At least they're fairly easy to recognize and skip. (Faddey Venediktovich Bulgarin is probably not a computing term; E3000 probably is.) – Quadell (talk) 17:17, September 6, 2005 (UTC)

The new Hotlist is done! Yay! – Quadell (talk) 12:07, September 8, 2005 (UTC)

Sweet! Is there any chance of putting multiple section headers on each page, for ease of editing? It's kind of tough to locate one line in a list of 500 in a tiny text area. -- Avocado 22:44, September 8, 2005 (UTC)

New focus

I have made Wikipedia:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/biographies the new weekly focus, after moving it to its own page. We should be able to get through it very quickly with a few more helping hands, as there isn't much left to do, and what is there are often simple (and useful!) redirect or articles that can be made easily. Martin - The non-blue non-moose 11:53, 5 September 2005 (UTC)

I may have missed some of the discussion, but — is there really an implied intention to add "Doe, John" as a redirect to "John Doe"? Or is the rule that only one of the links on any line of this list should be blued? I know we agree redirects are good, but... David Brooks 17:47, 5 September 2005 (UTC)
No, the "Doe, John" links are only there because thats what the original (copied) list was like, magnus then converted them to "John Doe" but left the old ones in case they weren't converted propoerly (I assume). Anyway, the moral of the storey is that you don't need to create the "Doe, John" redirects, but it is at your discretion, personally i never do. Martin - The non-blue non-moose 18:10, 5 September 2005 (UTC)

Medical encyclopedia, medical terms

I am working offline on a descendent project - List of medical terms. It will compile information from various sources, but leave me a message if you are interested or have suggestions. Reflex Reaction 19:11, 7 September 2005 (UTC)

I have compiled some of the medical terms if anyone is interested in working with it. It will need some work, but is a decent start. I would work on it more, but I have been busy with the Catholic Encyclopedia project. Some more info is here ---- Reflex Reaction 15:53, 11 October 2005 (UTC)


Has anyone looked into Easton's Bible Dictionary? --Tydaj 23:05, 11 September 2005 (UTC)
I went ahead and started a project page: Wikipedia:Easton's Dictionary topics --Tydaj 02:04, 12 September 2005 (UTC)

Crossover lists

I've found several cases in the 1911xmusic list where the link points to an article based on 1911 that has no relevant musical content. I suppose that's just another case of the inherent problem with these lists; their initial creation removed blue links without them necessarily being a topic match. Still, that's no reason not to be vigilant with those we supply in the crossover lists. David Brooks 15:28, 14 September 2005 (UTC)

MathWorld's reply

Today I received a reply from MathWorld:


Thank you for your mail. We appreciate your effort to secure proper  permission before using our material.

Our lists *do* represent  original works of authorship and, as such,  enjoy copyright  protection. Further, the value of our editorial work  is evidenced by your desire to incorporate the material into your  project.

We understand your need for such a list, and we would very much like  to support Wikipedia -- as I am sure you would like to support the  continued development of MathWorld. It is worth noting the relative  dearth of links to Mathworld from Wikipedia.

Regardless, it isn't obvious how reproducing MathWorld (which already  offers unfettered, free access) furthers the goals of Wikipedia.

Are there other areas of mathematics/science that are in greater need  of free web-based exposure that we could help Wikipedia develop?

Benson Dastrup
Wolfram Research, Inc. 

Does anybody knows what this means? --R.Koot 20:56, 21 September 2005 (UTC)

It's a firm and competitive "no". It denies any value in Wikipedia's open license. In that light the last paragraph is really offering to add content to MathWorld, not Wikipedia. Nevertheless, Mr. Dastrup will find a detailed answer to his question on pages such as Wikipedia:Requested Articles. --Hoziron 03:28, 23 September 2005 (UTC)

Antarctica gazetteer

In a discussion on Talk:Extreme points of the world, I found a link to the USGS gazetteer of Antarctic geographical names (warning: large file). I believe this file is created by the USGS, and is therefore public domain. The entries are quite detailed and interesting, and would make nice wikipedia articles. The only problem: there are over 14,000 of them.

I've uploaded the first 100 to Wikipedia:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/Antarctica/A1. Do people think this would be a worthwile project? Eugene van der Pijll 18:24, 27 September 2005 (UTC)

I opened the page, thinking the information would not be so great, but wow I think it is awesome. We really should import it into Wikipedia. To my mind, the only question is how to organise it. As you hint at, 14,000 separate, relatively short, articles might raise the eyebrows of those with itchy deletion fingers. One possibility is to group places according to their line of longitude - there would be ~14,000/360 = ~40 entries per page which would seem ok. (Additionally we would create redirects). That's just one idea - but I to be honest I would support any idea that gets the all the information in. Great find Eugene, Pcb21| Pete 18:55, 27 September 2005 (UTC)
I like it too, if we are 100% sure it is public domain then it will be a great project. Martin 20:19, 27 September 2005 (UTC)
These descriptions are also produced in GNIS searches ([1]), and according to the [GNIS FAQ], that means they are public domain. I think we're pretty safe here.
On the number of pages: I don't really like the idea of grouping by longitude. Many of the entries have natural groupings: islands in archipelagos, mountains in mountain ranges, etc. I'm not against that kind of aggregation. We will end up with more than 360 articles, but I don't think that would be a problem. Eugene van der Pijll 21:00, 27 September 2005 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/Antarctica and Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/Antarctica. Eugene van der Pijll 21:24, 27 September 2005 (UTC)
Yes I did wonder about more natural categorizations... clearly its a more labour-intensive task whereas the former is pure bot work. (Your script is nifty btw). I wonder if perhaps longitude is a reasonable first-step - to make the later human work easier. Obviously there will be some problems of geographical objects overlapping a degree... Pcb21| Pete 22:07, 27 September 2005 (UTC)
With the dynamic map at, it's not that difficult to categorize those names. See Dailey Islands and Franklin Island (Antarctica) for some of the results. Eugene van der Pijll 00:25, 28 September 2005 (UTC)

Odd article names

I'm wondering what to do about article names on the Hotlist that will never be useful as redirects because they make no sense. I'm thinking of, for example, Hotlist M8 #109, Milieu, and Moment Race. This must be a garbled version of Race, Milieu, and Moment (I assume a script mistook it for someone's name), which should have an article and I'll create one shortly. But should I really create a redirect to it from the weird pagename? Guidance would be appreciated; thanks. Chick Bowen 01:01, 29 September 2005 (UTC)

No need - just remove it. :) Ambi 01:12, 29 September 2005 (UTC)
OK, thanks. Chick Bowen 01:41, 29 September 2005 (UTC)
On some pages we have started the practice of creating a new section at the bottom for entries we don't think should be included (as opposed to just removing them) because this will help for later "auditing". If you want to be really conservative you could do that, but simple deletion is acceptable too. Pcb21| Pete 12:03, 29 September 2005 (UTC)

Units list

I've got a cool unit lists that can be included in this project. [2]. Enjoy! =Nichalp «Talk»= 18:05, 1 October 2005 (UTC)

Some nice encyclopedic entries, but the usual problem: "We welcome links to our site and fair use of its contents, but reproducing whole entries, illustrations or entire tables from requires written permission from Sizes, Inc." [3]. Even lifting out the TOC would be problematic. David Brooks 19:21, 1 October 2005 (UTC)
They can't copyright information. Copyright infringement means that copying text verbatim is illegal. That information does not really belong to them (contrast to table of contents of Nat. Geo. magazines). =Nichalp «Talk»= 08:38, 2 October 2005 (UTC)

Orphaned crossover descriptions

"Automatically generated lists with topics wanted in two or more of the above topic lists" is no longer accurate; two of the lists no longer exist. And the descriptions of those crossover lists also refer to those legacy lists. The references should be removed. I can't judge whether we should remove the lists themselves or if they have enough original work to be "safe". Comments? David Brooks 06:34, 8 October 2005 (UTC)

Articles missing from es:wiki

You have lists on Articles missing from the French Wikipedia and from the German Wikipedia. I was wondering if it was possible to create such a list for articles from the Spanish Wikipedia, as that would be very helpful with our efforts at Spanish Translation of the Week (we currently have over 80 translators listed on the project page). I'm pretty sure we can tackle this if we have a list. Tell us on the SPATRA talk page, and thanks. Titoxd(?!?) 07:02, 9 October 2005 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles/es. Eugene van der Pijll 11:48, 9 October 2005 (UTC)

Personal names - correct procedure?

I am not clear as to the correct procedure when linking personal names, where Wikipedia has a totally different naming convention to earlier (non-internet) encyclopaedias.

For instance in Wikipedia:Evangelical Dictionary of Theology/D I had three options:

  1. create a redirect page for such items as [[Dabney, Robert Lewis]]
  2. link thus [[Robert Lewis Dabney|Dabney, Robert Lewis]]
  3. show a link after the EDS article title thus [[Dabney, Robert Lewis]], see [[Robert Lewis Dabney]]

I chose the second of these as it seemed to tally better with other usage throughout Wikipedia, but other editors of that page chose the third. This project page seems to suggest the first but is not clear (under "Find a matching article" there is the paragraph starting "Click on the red link" but also the paragraph starting "For biographies, there are lots of ways to write someone's name"). --PeterR 07:45, 10 October 2005 (UTC)

Create redirects. Pcb21| Pete 12:17, 10 October 2005 (UTC)
If you also wish to be thorough, a search in Library of Congress authorities will usually provide the forms of a personal name, often with sources for each. That's often a good way to disambiguate personal names and obtain dates, as well. --Hoziron 18:42, 10 October 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for the tip - have made a note of the link. Pcb21| Pete 21:06, 10 October 2005 (UTC)

Probert Encyclopedia

Probert Encyclopedia [4] is a short entry encyclopedia (most entries are shorter than 500 words) with over 125,000 entries. Has/can anyone contact the author about using content from his site in wikipedia? The material is copyrighted, though there is an earlier version that is floating around that is available for download. On the wikipedia page, it is listed as for personal use only, but on his website faq [5] it states: "Other sites you find on the web are unofficial hosts of an early public domain edition of the Probert Encyclopaedia released through the Simtel network of freeware and shareware." (emphasis mine) While the current list would be ideal, an older version (if public domain) could be used to generate a topic list for this project, and the articles could be used for stubs at the very least.

On a side note I am so bad at creating more work than I am capable of doing, I've had a hand in the Catholic Encyclopedia and the Hotlist and have a list medical terms ready to go. Reflex Reaction 05:17, 13 October 2005 (UTC)

I thought Wikipedia:List of Encyclopedia topics already contains Probert? Pcb21| Pete 10:55, 13 October 2005 (UTC)
Me too, ask Magnus to make sure though. Martin 11:02, 13 October 2005 (UTC)

Congressional Biographical Directory

Do any of these lists already incorporate the U.S. Congress bioguide at ? How about Political Graveyard? Or the "Famous People" section of ? — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-17 03:45

Template talk

I think that the template needs to be updated again. Projects that have stagnated Jewish Encyclopedia and Music topics should be removed, but new or active topics like Gutenberg or Eastons should be added. --Reflex Reaction 18:16, 17 October 2005 (UTC).

Go for it! Martin 18:34, 17 October 2005 (UTC)
Seconded. – Quadell (talk) 22:21, 17 October 2005 (UTC)


I've talked with the founder of Find-A-Grave, and he has provided me the list of "famous people" from their site. I've wikified it. The only problem was that he didn't want the mirror sites of Wikipedia to copy the list and spread it around the internet. It appears that if I put the list on a subpage of my User page, such as User:Brian0918/Sandbox, then it won't get copied. If anyone knows whether or not this is true, let me know. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-18 00:43

  • I just got this reply from the founder. He knows about third party sites copying and everything, but he still says:
"Go for it...I'm not worried about it, anymore...The whole point of the web is to get as much organized info out there as possible...Use it as you see fit... Thanks and best of luck with the project!"
  • So, I guess that's all there is to it. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-18 00:45
    Wow, thats really decent of them. Martin 09:13, 18 October 2005 (UTC)
    Send him a thank-you note :) Titoxd(?!?) 16:32, 18 October 2005 (UTC)

Dictionary of New Zealand Biography

I found the online Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, and though they don't list all the names anywhere, I still compiled a complete list from their contents, and wikified it. As you can see, New Zealanders aren't represented very well on Wikipedia (I've never been to NZ). We should probably keep the list under my user space, so that Wikipedia's mirror sites don't start copying it around. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-20 05:16

Black History Biographies

I've also created a list of people related to black history, according to Britannica's Black History site. It looks like we have almost all of these articles already, so the hardest part of this will probably be the pruning. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-20 06:34

History of Ideas Encyclopedia

Also made a list of people in the online "History of Ideas Encyclopedia". Most of them appear to be in Wikipedia. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-20 07:24


If you create an article that appears in this list, don't forget to include in the top of it, the message {{Missing articles}} . This template shows:

{{Missing articles}}

[Unsigned comment]

This is not practice, and should not be done. Martin 21:37, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
I guess it is ok to include it on talk pages? Pcb21| Pete 16:35, 27 October 2005 (UTC)
You need to use + for spaces, not _. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-10-21 21:21
Adding a template {{Missing articles}} to missing articles that have been created is a terrible idea. The template {{Mea|Novi_Ligure}} is an idea already used on the hotlist page. Martin 21:26, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
More terrible is the red-colouring of the just created articles. We would create a discussion page when after a deletion, these ex-Missing articles are missing' again (red again)  ;) . For this pourpose is this template. The template mea perhaps was created, but wasn't used.
Created articles have blue links, you can also look at the history of the page to see all the artices that have been made already and removed from the list. Martin 21:47, 21 October 2005 (UTC)

Reorg and additions

I hope I haven't raised any hackles with the reorg of the project page. I tried to keep the main focus as the missing encyclopedic pages but there are so descendant projects they tend to dominate the page, (it looks like you may be right Bluemoose). I hope that the categorization and alphabetization will make it a little easer to get around and know what is going on. Feel free to adjust my "conservative estimate" of how many articles and redirects this project has created, I've only been here for ~4 months and I know that many of you were working hard way before I even knew that wikipedia existed. --Reflex Reaction 15:17, 27 October 2005 (UTC)

Problem lists

After doing the reorganization of the page, I think that some projects either do not belong on this list or should be listed less prominently ("See also" links). I personally think that many of these projects have been listed here because they share the goal of WP:MEA but are not appropriate for listing under its umbrella. I think the dividing criteria should be whether it is appropriate for the page to have the project template.

Not our lists - these are other groups lists that have been added here

Unknown parentage

Generic redlinked lists - There are many lists with redlinks that need to be created but we have specifically have focused on encyclopedic articles.

I also think that some of the above lists can be retained if we "make them our own", but I think that the project has gotten away from its original goal of coverage of missing encyclopedic articles. I have avoided any list that has the {{Template:Project missing articles}} because they were clearly created for this project and identifying topics worthy of coverage. Comments or complaints are welcome. --Reflex Reaction 18:22, 31 October 2005 (UTC)

I agree, putting them in a "see also" would be better, we can then add the requested articles pages and other similar ones. Martin 19:19, 31 October 2005 (UTC)
Me three. – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 20:50, 31 October 2005 (UTC)
Me four. --OpenToppedBus - Talk to the driver 16:15, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

Everything 2

I know it has its problems, it's POV, many of the topics are unusable, there are varied copyright issues to wade through, but has anyone considered getting a topic list from While not encyclopedic, it certainly has incredible amount of coverage about topics that even wikipedia has ignored. For example, I used this entry to help expand the wikipedia entry. I know that we have lots on our hands at the moment, but Y.A.D.P.T.O.A.F.P.W.O.B.O.A.B.W.O.O.P (yet another descendent project that only a few people work on because others are busy working on other projects) does not seem to hurt the larger project overall.

I have looked around their website to see if I could find an e-mail where I could get in contact with the organizers of the site to get permission to use their index of articles/nodes, without much luck. Are there any previous or current contributors to everything2 that might be able to put me or another WP:MEA person in contact with one of the directors? --Reflex Reaction 18:19, 2 November 2005 (UTC)

  • I agree, we should have as many lists as possible in the project. That way, if someone is wikifying an article, they come to a red link, and they check "what links here" to find that it links to the "missing articles project", they'll be more inclined to start the article and/or join the project rather than if they click on it to find that nothing links there. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-2 18:37
    • I'd rather reap the benefits of having a lot of people working on a small number of projects. In the past this has proven a great way of generating team spirit which had a positive effect on the amount we got done. Pcb21| Pete 20:09, 2 November 2005 (UTC)
      • Well, I figure that we should make as many lists as possible, but that the people who are actually in the project should all focus on one section of one list at a time. The other lists are for future work or to encourage non-members to create new articles or join the project. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-2 20:35
You both embody the exact conflict I'm having. One side of me says why not have as many lists as possible that way the work will be there whenever we get to it and it gives more options for personal preference. The other side of me says, that project X will never get done if the new projects Y and Z keep taking away interest and we may just stagnate into a bunch of partially finished projects because of the overwhelming load of things "to be done". I know that my own personal project (Catholic Encyclopedia) would not be nearly so far without the help of the 1911 project which had significant overlap in topcs. In the end though I'm leaning toward Brian position and would like any help in creating the project. --Reflex Reaction 20:58, 2 November 2005 (UTC)
How likely is there to be links to articles we don't actually have - and would want to have? Ambi 00:32, 3 November 2005 (UTC)
I don't know quite yet, everything2 has over a million write-ups on ~500,000 topics, there will certainly be some very interesting topics that should be covered but haven't been covered in wikipedia. This is an aside, but I don't think that wikipedia will ever get more than ~2,000,000 articles. There simply isn't that much encyclopedic content, but I think that a list like this will make sure that we cover all the encyclopedic content by looking at what other article/writeups have been written about very specific topics. But that is not the question for now, the current question is can we gain access to that content? If we can't get to a TOC, then the argument is moot. --Reflex Reaction 03:31, 3 November 2005 (UTC)
I think the limit is much higher than 2 million. We are weak in the area of older books (if newer books which have little or no impact on the world get their own articles, then why can't older books which have had more impact), actors, organizations, and, as you go back even further, people and whole societies are still nonexistent according to us. We are extremely weak in the areas of non-Western history, culture, society, people, anything. I think the limit is upward of 5-10 million articles, at least. 2 million is waay too low. That just goes to show you just how much information is missing from traditional encyclopedias like Encarta or Britannica. The line of notability is much higher for non-Western and/or older anything, versus Western anything (ie, non-Western things have to be comparatively more notable than Western things in order to get the same ranking as relatively less important Western things; e.g. the ancient Egyptian equivalent of Britney Spears wouldn't have her own article, whereas Britney Spears has 500 , both the fact that it's old and that it's non-Western work against it). My point is that everything should be on the level, regardless of time, regardless of location. The present isn't any more important than the past, and non-Western places that have impacted the world just as much as Western places (or even if they have not) should be alotted just as much space as Western places. </babble> — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-3 05:58
I am glad Ambi said it so that I didn't have to... there is a lot more chaff in E2 (in the sense of wheat=encyclopedic and chaff=not) than there has been from the other lists. We will be making a lot of work for ourselves by including this list for relatively little gain. We should concentrate our fire on lists where we get our biggest bang for the buck.
On the other point, I agree with Brian, Wikipedia could easily 2m articles, even if we continue to get more agglomerationist/deletionist. Pcb21| Pete 08:48, 3 November 2005 (UTC)

I dont think there is a limit :) I hope not at least. Maybe theres some kind of list of everything2's most written about articles that could be useful rather than every article theyve done. Astrokey44 09:44, 3 November 2005 (UTC)

That is the other good thing about everything2's content. Everything is ranked, including individual articles and writers. Particulary good or prolific authors/articles could be sorted through first or just the most highly ranked articles. I don't argue that there will be chaff but I think that there is substantially more wheat than most people (especially wikipedians) give it credit for. I will check the editors of the everything2 article and other related articles to see if they know any information about contacting the editors. Again most of this argument will be moot if we cannot use the content. --Reflex Reaction 15:59, 3 November 2005 (UTC)
Some of the content there is released under different licences, maybe they have a list of public domain/GFDL articles?. I also think that there is alot of good material there, but the problem with that (as with much of the internet) is theres too much information and its difficult to sort through - which is what makes wikipedia so useful. Astrokey44 05:27, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
Hi. I'm a Content Editor at everything2 (i.e. a second-tier administrator). Reading the rest of this discussion leads me to think some points about E2 need to be clarified. I would agree that there is a substantial amount of encyclopedic content on E2, but even these writeups are likely to include POV or at least references to personal experience, as this is encouraged on the site. The writing style is in many cases likely to be less 'dry' than is required here. The copyright in every writeup is owned by its (sole) author. The only case where they may be released under the GFDL or other is where the author has specifically granted that licence. This is rare, as there is no inbuilt mechanism for doing this, so it would need to be stated in a footnote or on the author's homenode (user page). This also means that there is no list of PD or GFDL writeups. It is true that there are a number of ranking mechanisms for identifying the best writeups. e.g. the very best topics, chosen by the admins and good writeups chosen by all experienced users. However the criteria for these selections may be quite different for what is considered high quality here. E2 and WP are probably best considered complementary, as they have differing aims and fill different niches. -- ascorbic 17:08, 5 November 2005 (UTC)

Since you referenced the E2 article, shouldn't that source be credited?

High schools

You wouldn't delete me, would you? I'm a little uneasy about having a list of US high schools under the auspices of this project. There is undoubtedly still controversy in Wikipedia as to whether schools are encyclopedic per se, and they still frequently turn up on AFD. I'd feel much happier if we were to focus on those things which are definite gaps in coverage rather than issues which many people believe we shouldn't include at all. (To save you looking up my record, I should state my own position on schools. I am definitely convinced that anything below high school level should only be included if it is noteworthy for some reason other than just being a school, and will vote against these if I happen to spot them on AFD. I am more ambivalent about high schools and tend not to vote on them at all.) --OpenToppedBus - Talk to the driver 16:14, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

  • Actually, the controversy is pretty much over. Besides, there are countless articles on our lists that are positively not encyclopedic, but they're still on our lists, and nobody has complained about them as you are about this. The lists of high schools also list cities, many of which are red links, and so these lists serve another purpose unrelated to high schools. These are just lists of possible article titles, nothing more. As the discussion above shows, nobody has to work on any article if they don't want to. We focus attention by means of choosing one section of the Hotlist to work on weekly. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 16:46

I also don't think the list of high-schools belongs here. (It should go in the See Also, in my opinion.) The list isn't from an encyclopedia. I would equate this to a list of Pokemon, for instance. – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 17:13, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

  • The Missing Articles project has numerous lists not from encyclopedias. That's why we have a section called "lists not from encyclopedias", which this is under. (Well, it was called that; now it's just been renamed "other lists") — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 17:30
    • Except that the "History of Ideas Encyclopedia" and "Music Encyclopedia" are, in fact, encyclopedias.

I've added a disclaimer to the main high school page to clear up the confusion. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 17:30

Could we get some more opinions from other people about whether the highschool list is appropriate to have here? – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 18:25, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

  • Why are you only concerned about the high schools listed here and not about the other items listed in the project which are clearly (even to the most inclusive of inclusionists) undeserving of their own articles? — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 18:44
I think some of the discussion from here and the previous discussion about everything2 are appropriate. The goal of this project specifically is to create content about material deemed encyclopedic. The result from every AFD about a secondary school in the last two months has been keep Not a single secondary school nominated for AFD has been deleted, so according to that criteria, every article about a school on the list would survive an AFD and be deemed encyclopedic. The list itself is also encyclopedic, though very limited in scope, so I do not think that it is equivalent to a Pokemon list. Do I think that adding yet another list is problematic? No not really, because everyone is already working on topics that interest them and there is plenty of work to go around. But the "true" general encyclopedic lists are quickly approaching completion Nuttall - 99%, 1911 - 86%, and Hotlist 23% in just over two months. I think that the Hotlist will be over 90% about a year from now. Work attracts work, and many people are working on the hotlist or nuttall because the numbers keep going down and it's interesting work. When those lists are done why not have work (lists) waiting in the wings when that goal is reached? Many of the lists which have stagnated, (Music, Jewish, and Mactutor) will become active when the main focus is finished. --Reflex Reaction (talk)• 19:16, 4 November 2005 (UTC)
The result from every AFD about a secondary school in the last two months has been keep
Actually, the result from those AFDs is no consensus. Do not confuse a default action with consensus opinion. Chris talk back 20:19, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for your correction, it was not my intent to decieve or mislead. --Reflex Reaction (talk)• 16:58, 7 November 2005 (UTC)

I think there's a difference between "encyclopedic" meaning "it would survive a VFD" and "encyclopedic" meaning you might expect to find it in a paper encyclopedic. I'm not saying high schools are generally unencyclopedic in the first sense; I'm saying they're generally unencyclopedic in the second sense. As I understand it, the purpose of this project is to "better organize the completion of articles found in other encyclopedias but missing from the English Wikipedia." So a list of high-schools doesn't count. Neither does a list of Fortune 500 companies (although you're more likely to a Fortune 500 company in a paper encyclopedia than a high school in Utah). In my opinion, any lists of topics not found in encyclopedias is outside the stated scope of this project, and belongs at the bottom in the "other lists" section. – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 21:02, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

Oh I completely agree with you Quadell, there is a big difference between "paper encyclopedic" and "wikipedia encyclopedic". The focus should be has been and will remain on the encyclopedic lists: Hotlist, 1911, General etc. The other lists removed were because they were not associated with this project (no template) because they were either in article space (List of Native American tribes) or were clearly someone else project with a similar goal. The one list I created (large companies) existed for many months without much apparent activity, but I recreated on the off chance that someone would be inspired by it to create an article. If you look through the contributions of the descendent projects you typically only see a few or a single user, because they tend to be pet projects of a single user who wants to identify topics of note. Brian has been quite active in creating lists, but he also tends to be the only person active in pruning the lists within the project. Will I ever contribute to his subproject? Likely not. Will he attract a few users to contribute every so often? Likely yes. The problem is that there are many other unencyclopedic lists have been here for months (Gardening for the Million, Mactutor, music) without significant development or complaint and that has set a precedent for his lists. I personally think that there are way too many lists out there now, and no more lists AFTER this one (unless it is another general encyclopedia) should be included. Does that work for anyone? --Reflex Reaction (talk)• 22:07, 4 November 2005 (UTC)
Actually, I also requested's list of colleges, which would be useful to us (moreso than the list of high schools). Maybe I'll merge the two into "lists of educational institutions" or something like that. As long as we tell people where to focus, and they actually focus there, I don't see the problem with so many lists. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-5 03:19
From past experience, we've some pretty garbled lists with regards to obscure state colleges in the US, so this would probably be useful. Having seen the data these often come up with for the UK, though, I'm not convinced quite how accurate they are... I've seen one list which named my university twice, but only included half of its colleges (and listed two entirely unrelated institutions as colleges). So, we shall see :-). (Incidentally, does facebook have lists for Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales? Right now it's just England...) Shimgray | talk | 20:19, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
  • I've moved things around on the project page for accuracy and consistency. Maybe this will make the debate moot? Please comment on the changes - they're a bit bold, but they seem useful to me. – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 21:25, 4 November 2005 (UTC)
  • That is your own person opinion, and one that I don't find is supported by members of the project. It may have been the original intention of the project, and thus deemed the wording, but now that more individuals have come to the project, as have more relevant lists, the project goals have been expanded. Since when are we supposed to be hindered by the ability of paper encyclopedias to make a profit while minimizing the expense on paper? There is no sense rehashing old arguments here. The fact that high schools have survived VFDs shows that, regardless of whether paper encyclopedias contain a topic, we should contain the topic. Also note that Britannica 2004 is not the paper edition, but the online edition, which has more content. I'm fine with your changes to the main page. I have also expanded the "goals" section to account for the progress that has been made on the project in the 1 or 2 years since the "goals" section was written. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 21:28

I like your change to the "goals" section. I suspect we disagree less that you might think. Thanks for all your work on this project! – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 21:51, 4 November 2005 (UTC)

I'm sorry but I hate the redesign, the content change is great but I like having the lists at the top, moving them to the bottom is just going to make it difficult to get to. --Reflex Reaction (talk)• 22:13, 4 November 2005 (UTC)
How about this: Since the names of the encyclopedias/lists are so short, we could make a 3 column table, and put the most important stuff in the left column, and the lists in the right column. Then everything will be easily accessbile, but still categorized by importance. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-4 22:19
It's looking pretty good.. I notice we've lost the biographies list; any idea where that should go? Shimgray | talk | 02:41, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
Fixed. I don't know when/how it disappeared. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-5 03:16

I contend that an article is only really "missing" if it should be here and isn't. Occasionally things turn up in the lists that it turns out either shouldn't be there, or should point somewhere else (e.g. some of the computing terms should probably redirect somewhere, e.g. 10(00)Base* should probably point to somewhere in the vicinity of Ethernet. Most of the other lists appear to be a conglomeration of "things which should probably be here", divided up into subjects, or things like the 1911 list, which are from a highly-reputable source. The high school list isn't weeded out from things sourced from elsewhere which should probably be in, but simply a list of schools, the majority of which likely shouldn't be in, since most of them will fail things like WP:V and WP:RS. Unfortunately, the cabal (no, not that cabal :-) seem insisted on continuing to disrupt WP. Chris talk back 20:13, 5 November 2005 (UTC)

  • Riiiight... Are you contending that the only verifiable source of knowledge is Google? I would contend quite the opposite, that Google, and its contents (the Internet), are very unreliable and most often not verifiable. Or is it merely our job to check to make sure Google has heard of it, and thus push the question of verifiability/correctness off onto someone else? If one student from each of these schools scans the page of his phone book with the school's various phone numbers in it, or even just cites any findable city-produced document referencing the school, we have verified it with a reliable source. The same can't be said if someone Googles for a random topic and just cites a random site as a reference. Now that I've shown that in fact all of these can be verified (requiring a small amount of work, do you have any other reasons for making such broad, sweeping judgments? — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-5 20:35
    • Your aim is poor, as you appear to have missed the point entirely. For a moment, let's forget about where information is coming from. Any article that could be written about me, or the train I ride home at Christmas (the specific unit itself, not the type), or the building I live in, etc. could be easily verified. My birth certificate, with the date and place birth, is available from the Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths in the district of my birth, or from the Public Records Office. My educational record can be checked by calling up the schools I have attended. My employment history can be checked with HM Revenue & Customs taxation records. My various achievements can all be verified by calling up various people in various offices. You can even get copies of my stint on local radio. Any information which turns out to be false will be verifiably so, e.g. any statement saying I attended Eton College can be falsified by getting in touch with them, they'll happily confirm that I never went there. In the case of a school, information about its facilities, curriculum, members of staff, enrolment, former pupils, achievements, and history can all be found either by consulting public records or by visiting the school to find out for yourself. There we go, the information can all be verified, therefore we might as well keep it. Now, let's come back to reality, where we do have to consider where information is coming from. Things such as calling up my old school, digging up my birth certificate, visiting a school to find out what colour the gymnasium walls are, etc. are original research. Since no information is available in the usual reliable sources (national and regional but not local news, journals, books, etc.), we would have to go find out for ourselves. This is not verification, this is original research, and we already have a policy against that. I don't consider local news to be a reliable source, since typically a town's local paper has more space to fill than it has news to fill it. That, and they're generally not very good at getting their facts right (as anyone whose local paper has a habit of reporting some supposedly "bad" news and immediately starting a campaign to rectify it will know). Chris talk back 22:39, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
      While we're at it, I notice that the source for the school list is I thought that these lists were to be generated from worthy sources. Britannica has a high degree of authority. If something appears in Britannica as a main title, then we certainly need to cover it. Places such as FOLDOC and the lists of computing terms you've used as sources have some authority. Chances are, if they've heard of it, lots of people have asked. is a commercial networking service, not an almanac. It therefore is not an authority on schools, and places it knows about should not be considered to be "missing". The disclaimer is worthless. Chris talk back 22:48, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
      • For the record, I disagree about your definition of Original Research, and I disagree with your dismissal of local news. I don't think looking up your birth certificate or your other public information is OR, any more than using any other source is. For me to say "I was there when you were born, and I saw it happen, so I know Carmen Electra was your mother" is OR. But for me to look up your birth certificate is not. Also, local news sources are sometimes inaccurate, as is the New York Times (though much less often). But that's why we cite sources - you can choose to believe a source or not. Those sources shouldn't, I think, be discarded. (This argument doesn't apply to the source of lists, such as Facebook; only to sources for articles.) – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 22:56, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
        • I believe this is original research because it involves finding out something which is not published elsewhere, and collating such information for the first time. What goes onto Wikipedia should not come as a result of research, but as a result of collating research that has already been done. From WP:NOR
          The phrase "original research" in this context refers to untested theories; data, statements, concepts and ideas that have not been published in a reputable publication; ...
        • Information gleaned purely from public records will invariably have not been published before (otherwise we'd be looking at the published information to do the verification, and not the original records). Still, much of the cruft that ends up in the school stubs (and these things rarely undergo serious expansion without the threat of an AfD nomination) comes from interpreting the school's website, something that definitely is original research. Chris talk back 23:39, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
          • I think you're definitely pulling at strings with these random arguments. The wording of Original Research, in particular, was written specifically to stop the various physics crackpots that were running loose on Wikipedia. The people who chose that wording were not thinking about lists of schools published on websites, but about data and theories published in journals. To assume that such wording is not only final, but that it automatically applies to all situations by its very existence, is irrational. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-7 17:25
            • Are you somehow implying that because the policy was designed for physics cranks it should not be applied to anything else? Well excuse me for using this computer for contributing to an encyclopaedia, instead of its designed purpose of calculating ballistics tables ... More importantly, how does this change the fact that to label the entries on the list as "missing articles" is misleading. The other lists are mostly missing entries (articles and/or redirects), whereas this one has only a few subjects that could reasonably be encyclopaedic, and thus be "missing". Chris talk back 01:19, 8 November 2005 (UTC)
              • Unless you plan on going through the list to determine which articles should definitely have their own entry, this is the best we have. It is better than starting with nothing and assuming that our encyclopedia is complete. That is why the project exists. On every list there are some articles that are not encyclopedic (and on some of the science/math lists, this is very common), but we still keep the list because it's better than nothing. If you would like to propose a name change to the project, go for it. Things can always be changed. There is no need to run around screaming DELETE because the you don't believe the list fits perfectly under the title of the project. I am a member of the project, I requested the list on behalf of the project, I formatted the list on behalf of the project, I uploaded the list under the project space. Project scopes can change (although it appears that this project already expanded to contain lists such as high schools months ago). That's why there is an edit button. I will wait for others to reply to your statements before I continue this back-and-forth business. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-8 01:42
  • What a shame that it is a thread about bloody high schools that gets this talk page hot again! Imagine how good Wikipedia would be if such heat was instead emitted as light in the article namespace. Pcb21| Pete 17:17, 7 November 2005 (UTC)
    Imagvine how much better still it could be if all these deluded folk that spend all their time turning any school article nominated for deletion into a worthless stub that is never expanded (thus causing serious harm to Wikipedia's chances of being taken seriously amongst high academia - people who could make a serious contribution in technical articles where WP is seriously lacking), instead invested their energy into articles that people will actually want or need to look up, instead of schools which don't meet the high expectations to which we hold every other sort of article. Chris talk back 01:28, 8 November 2005 (UTC)
    Imagine how much better your time would be spent if you were expanding articles that you believe are worthy of the encyclopedia, rather than bickering on talk pages. How about creating either Language, Military history, or Culture of Sudan, for starters. — BRIAN0918 • 2005-11-8 01:42
    Unfortunately, I know nothing of Sudan, other than the fact that it may be hazardous to your health when ingested. I have, however, been working through the R section of the hotlist, which (unlike your list of schools) does seem to fit the description of articles that are "missing". I would happily continue working through the "R" section, but unfortunately people keep trying to introduce unworthy subjects by the back door by claiming that they are somehow "missing" from WP. Chris talk back 02:56, 8 November 2005 (UTC)