Village pump/January 2004 archive 4

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List of United States Highways

I'm a map nut, so I love sites like this one -- it lists every US highway, past and present. I've updated the List of United States Highways article with the information, and I am considering creating an article for each highway -- at least the current endpoints, and adding more information as I have time.

However, I came across a discussion of problems caused by the Rambot-generated list of all US cities and towns. Personally, I like these articles, and I'm happy to do what I can to add more information to towns I know something about (see Hazard, Kentucky). But adding a Wikipedia article for each US highway may cause some of the same problems -- such as filling up the "Random Page" option with special-interest topics.

Would appreciate the advice of seasoned Wikipedians! Thanks. --Robertb-dc 17:34, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I don't know if I'm seasoned. I say go for it. Yes, the cities and towns of the U.S. are somewhat cluttery, but it's also nice to be able to have a completed link where possible. Anyway, I say "Yay!" to the highways, but the only thing maybe worth noting is how many different ways the names of highways can be phrased. There will probably be a lot of redirects too, but anyway: Go for it. jengod 20:37, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback! I've created a few sample articles for folks to check out, if they're curious. The main features I'm trying to include at this point are:

  • An introductory paragraph with at least one sentence of interest to road geeks like me.
  • Termini, with links to the endpoint city and highway. If the town doesn't show up in Wikipedia, I'll use MapQuest to find a nearby town to reference. This happened with US 380 -- it ends in San Antonio, New Mexico, which seems to be a small junction south of Socorro.
  • List of states traversed by the route.
  • Links to "parent/child" and "sibling" routes.
  • Link to the matching Endpoints of US highways page. Each route has its own page on his site, and he goes into much more detail than I'm attempting!
  • Stub boilerplate: {{msg:stub}}

Here are the samples:

Not surprisingly, I'm already wishing I didn't have to type United States Highway xx over and over! I wonder what would be the effect of changing to a shorter convention, perhaps US Highway xx -- or even US xx (not likely)?

Suggestions and comments welcome. Thanks! --Robertb-dc 00:29, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

If you want it short, it should be U.S. Highway xx (with the full stops), since this is an American topic. --Jiang 00:35, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
It looks like it's pretty easy to "Move this page". If there aren't any objections, I may go ahead and move the United States Highway xx pages that currently exist to U.S. Highway xx. By the way, does the capitalization still appear correct? Or should it be U.S. highway xx? Are any other countries' highway systems documented in Wikipedia? --Robertb-dc 17:35, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
There might already be some such articles about. I know I stumbled on Interstate H-3 located in my neighborhood, and was able to expand on it. Whoever set up the original Interstate articles had a layout format developed - Marshman 02:37, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Comparing my page with the Interstate pages, I think I'll incorporate some of their design concepts -- especially breaking up the page into sections. I can't quite use the same section headings, because some information (mileage in particular) isn't as readily available or reliable for US routes. But thanks for reminding me to look at existing examples! --Robertb-dc 17:35, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
What exactly do you mean by "used with permission?" Anthony DiPierro 03:09, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I asked the owner of the Endpoints of US Highways page for permission to use his information in Wikipedia, and he said it was fine. Would there be a better way to express this concept? --Robertb-dc 17:35, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Since there's no objection, I will begin moving the United States Highway xx pages to U.S. Highway xx. I'm using this capitalization because it distinguishes "a specific route" from "a route in the United States"

Meanwhile, I've been refining the template. Here are some examples:

Comments welcome! --Robertb-dc 16:56, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I've moved all existing US Highway pages to the new naming convention, and modified all the links on the List of United States Highways to match. Please feel free to leave any further suggestions on my Talk page. --Robertb-dc 01:08, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Academie francaise

Could I solicit some opinions on whether Academie francaise ought to be moved to French Academy? Other editors argue that it is usually known in English by its French name, and therefore should be exempt from the English-headings convention. Adam 23:54, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I think that as a proper noun, it's usually known in English by its French name, and that its French name is sufficiently close to English not to be confusing. Obviously, appropriate redirect from French Academy is in order, though. -- Jmabel 00:18, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
If it is known in English under its French name, then leave it there. Our "use common names" policy prevails. --Jiang 04:41, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I think it's commonly known in English by its English name. I've typically seen news articles refer to the French Academy making pronouncements rather than the Academie francaise. Google shows ~4300 hits for "Academie francaise" when limited to English results, and ~11500 hits for "French Academy" -science -sciences (to avoid getting the French Academy of Sciences results mixed in). So I'd say go ahead and move to French Academy. As an additional data point, the English title is where the current articles in the Columbia and Britannica encyclopedias (and the 1912 article in the Catholic Encyclopedia) are located. --Delirium 04:58, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)
Normally, I like the Google test, but one look at the Google results and the problem with the logic in this case becomes apparent. Among the first ten supposed "hits" in googling "French Academy" -science -sciences are references to the "French Academy in Rome", the "Mary W. French Academy Elementary School" (twice), and the "Arden O. French Academy for Leadership Studies" none of which are the "Academie francaise". It is possible that the pattern is different farther down, but I've only got so much patience. All this particular test case proves is the unsurprising fact that the English word "French" is often followed by the word "academy", not that it's the more common name for the Academie francaise. -- Jmabel 06:16, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
In UK usage I've never seen anything other than Academie francaise used, so I would urge leaving it where it is. -- Arwel 10:11, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I"ve also never seen French Academy except in the context of schools for teaching the French language, which may be where the Google majority comes from. I'd leave it. Maybe add a French Academy redirect. Is Academie francaise a proper name which should be Academie Francaise? Jamesday 12:02, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
This should stay as Academie francaise. The Academie itself prefers the lowercase "f" and to English it makes no real sense. Bmills 13:01, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
It may be useful to point out that the web site also uses French diacritical markings on its name: Académie française, not simply Academie francaise (which is a redirect). --Robertb-dc 19:13, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia and Reading Software

Considering that we usually don't put some punctuation (; . , :) after headings (section titles), List items, See also listings where a list is utilised, etc etc... I am afraid to say that the current Wikipedia style seems to be unfair to Reading Software (software which converts text into voice, Example: Adobe 6). Reading Software uses the punctuation to make pauses, and cannot get into account the document's markup and format (headings etc). Lately I started putting : after headings and ; or . after list items, but I found the visual result disgusting and hard-to-read. If I don't use the punctuation, the problem is that Reading Software cannot recognize the necessary pauses and as a result the listener has trouble understanding the meaning. I would like to find some way to incorporate some hidden punctuation into the articles, which will be used only by reading software but will be invisible to the user who reads the text on the screen or paper. Do you have any idea on this? If impossible, I propose to think about the issue of reading software and decide on whether punctuation should be used and what kind of punctuation, as an effort to optimise our writing style for Reading Software. Thank you and may you have Peace Profound, Optim 01:25, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Headings in Wikipedia are marked as headings using the relevant standard HTML markup. List items in Wikipedia are marked as list items using the relevant standard HTML markup. (Assuming the contributors use the correct wiki-markup, of course.) If the screen-reading software can't correctly interpret standard HTML markup, I don't see that it's our problem. —Paul A 01:56, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I too would say this is the job of the reading software, but you can do this with the CSS, hiding the offending items for visual formating and showing in the @aural[1] ~ Mlk 03:16, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)~

Horizontal line divisor on articles

I have noticed that apparently using HRs on articles is against the MoS guidelines. My question is, what about external links and references? should they include an HR if the article and the links or references are too long? --Maio 02:21, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)

No. The only place to use an HR (IIRC) is if there is an alternate meaning, see for example London. --snoyes 03:20, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
For the article London, the HR isn't really needed either (see California [2]). Independence [3] may be a more useful sample. BTW some of the templates include HRs that aren't really for disambiguation, e.g. WikiProject Countries. User:Docu

Watchlist timeframe

How to redirect to Wiktionary (et al) within Wikipedia

How to redirect to

Thank you, 09:33, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Interwiki redirects are generally considered a bad thing. See m:Redirected user pages considered harmful for a related discussion. You can link to Wiktionary using Wiktionary:Page name. Angela. 11:56, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)

Hmm. Testing 123: Wikiquote:Main Page[4], Wikisource:Main Page[5], Wikibooks:Main Page[6], Wiktionary:Main Page[7]... Might be nice for certain areas (Linux, Star Trek) to be able to link to OpenFacts:en:Main Page[8], MemoryAlpha:Main Page[9], etc. Would be nice for these InterWikis to have something along the top/bottom of page, like interlanguage links (maybe call them “Related Wikimedia”, “External Wikis”), but that's just IMHO. I'm sure people have mentioned this elsewhere, though.. —Mulad 21:07, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Time Zone

In the User preferences page, there is an option to offset the UTC time to your own time-zone by specifying the offset hours. This field does'nt seem to take decimal values. My time is ahead of UTC by 5.5 hrs. How do I set myself to this time? Or indeed if this is a new software request, can somebody move this to the appropriate area please? I guess it should permit offsetting by a difference in multiples of 15 minutes if one goes by the listing here.(Chancemill 11:13, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)

The best place is to go to SourceForge to submit feature requests. There are instruction at Wikipedia:Feature requests. I've submitted this for you. You can find it here. Angela. 11:56, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)~
Thanks very much. Chancemill 13:19, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)
This has already been requested. -- Tim Starling 13:28, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)

When to link

Is there "official" policy on when to link and when not to? I assume when a word should be linked, it should only be linked at the first occurence. What about years, though? Should they be linked more than once if they refer to completely separate events in the article? Is there a page with such information and more? --Spikey 17:21, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Don't link everything ! --snoyes 18:19, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

automated footnotes

We need an automated way to add Footnotes to an article. The manual way is annoying and difficult to maintain. Anthony DiPierro 20:24, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

This is an excellent suggestion, and I second it. Something simple akin to the current # (pound) syntax would be great. --snoyes 20:37, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Agree. Dpbsmith 01:12, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

You might want to go to Wikipedia:Feature requests to make the request. RickK 04:45, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Good point, I probably put this is the wrong place. But while it's here, maybe we should talk about if this is something we want, and how it should be implemented. Doesn't seem that hard to code up. In fact, I'd probably even be willing to code it up myself. Anthony DiPierro 08:31, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I'm not sure footnotes are suitable for screen media -- Tarquin 12:14, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I think there is good replacement for footnotes (which are indeed archaic): expanding thing, such as

.footnote {color:grey; font-weight:bold; }
<script language="javascript">
  document.styleSheets[0].insertRule(" @media screen { .footnoteBody { display:none; } }",0);
 function expandOrCollapse(what) { ... }
<a class=footnote href="javascript: expandOrCollapse('stuff');"> 
   [opinions] </a>
<div class=footnoteBody id=stuff > 
   Not everybody shares this opinion. Traditionalists and 
   Additionalists completely disag... </div>

This expands would be great for disclaimers, stubs, etc. too (short description and when you click long description inline). ilya 04:27, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Footnotes may be archaic for the standard user, but whatever the solution is should carry over to the "Printable version" page. Does Wikipedia use javascript for any other markup? Seems this would be a bad thing to start if not. Anthony DiPierro 08:31, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I changed the code so that

  • without JavaScript all footnotes will be displayed
  • with JavaScript won't and you can click to expand
  • with browsers not compliant with CSS2/DOM probably initially they will be visible, but this is not a critical point
  • for printing they all are displayed in any case
    • as for printing: W3C standart for this stuff — there should be no link 'Printable version', instead browser must automatically change style when printing page, exactly what I've made.

Wikipedia uses Javascript for example in Contents show/hide. ilya 21:17, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

OK, if footnotes are obsolete, exactly where and how does one cite the source for a specific statement that requires a citation? URLs are nice, but not every datum is available on the Web, and it can even happen that a book or journal might carry more weight as a source than some Website. (No! Can't happen.) Put the name of the book in the References section? Mention it somewhere in the Talk page among all the flame wars? Such things as these don't work if any reader really wants to know the specific basis for a specific statement. Does anybody care? Dandrake 06:06, Jan 18, 2004 (UTC)

It probably would be nice to come up with a standard for this (if there is one, I haven't found it & would someone please tell us? If not, sounds like a good WikiProject for someone with an editing orientation). Barring that there is a real standard that I'm unaware of, the following is what I believe to be a reasonable suggestion. If you are drawing content from a book, especially controversial content (given your reference to "flame wars"), mention of that book belongs in the article as a reference. Square brackets with a brief but unambiguous (given the reference section) citation after the relevant quotation or paraphrase seem to me like a decent solution. For example, given that there is exactly on book by a "Hyde" in your references, then "[Hyde, p.123]" in the article is clear and brief. If there are two or three referenced works by the same author, you might need something like "[Hyde, The Gift, p.123]", but only in your references would you write out "Lewis Hyde, The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property, ISBN 0394715185." At least this should be unambiguous, not too cluttered, and provide enough information for someone who needs to sort it out later if we adopt a standard. -- Jmabel 07:29, 18 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Guess what day it is on thursday?

So are there any special plans for January 15? -- Jussi-Ville Heiskanen 20:33, Jan 13, 2004 (UTC)

We had better get writing... we are 300 000 articles behind expectations ;) Stewart Adcock 21:24, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

problem with the polish version

Only a small one.

On the main page, it says W encykolpedii 'wolnej' (in the free encyclopedia) This is incorrect, if you mean free as in no cost.

It should say w encyklopedii 'darmowej' which means gratis.

It is actually meant to say free as in freedom, not free as in no cost. (Even though it is no cost as well.) There's probably an article that explains why, somewhere...   21:58, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Please see Free Software. --Brion 03:35, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Steven Spielberg birthdate --> Wikipedia:Reference desk

Structure Templates

I was for the lookaround for a summary of special page templates/boilerplates. The ones i could find were on Wikipedia:WikiProject and Wikipedia:Boilerplate_text .. it took some time to get there, possibly i didn't know at first what i was looking for .. so are these two the main entry points .. shall we straighten the search path (i interlinked the two) ?

Removal of items from Votes for Deletion prematurely

Moved to User talk:The Fellowship of the Troll

accuracy disputes

The mysterious User:Zw insists on placing a notice saying "The factual accuracy of this article is disputed" at the anti-Zionism article. This article was the product of a lot of work by me, Danny, Zero and even RK to achieve a balanced and NPOV outcome. So far as I know its accuracy is not disputed by anyone except Zw, and even he doesn't actually say what accuracy issues he has with the article. I don't want this tag on the article, but if I remove it he just puts it back. Suggestions? Adam 06:19, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I'd say that this is equivalent to the SCO case (for those of you who follow the linux news). If you accuse someone of some wrongdoing you have to provide evidence and prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accusation is correct. You can't say "I dispute the factual accuracy of this article, but I won't tell you exactly which facts I dispute." Someone making a claim like that gets their case thrown out of court. --snoyes 06:31, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
User:Adam Carr is not telling the truth. I made an attempt to make the introduction neutral, instead of only presenting zionist's POV on anti-zionism. This article is, indeed, about anti-zionism, and I think also anti-zionist's point of view is highly relevant. User:Adam Carr, however, simply removed all attempts to present other views than his own right-wing. Please see the history. Zw 07:08, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Firstly, it isn't "my" article, but a cooperative effort by a number of people of differing views. Secondly, the article gives a very full account of the views of opponents of Zionism of all kinds. Thirdly, I think anyone who is interested enough to view the edit history of the article will see that Zw is not seeking to add to the factual content of the article, nor has he challenged the accuracy of any statement in the article. All he has sought to do is to insert propagandistic, rhetorical (and poorly written) material into the opening paragraph - the usual behaviour of those whose interest is making political points rather than writing encyclopaedia articles. Adam 07:35, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The article does not give a very full account of the views of opponents of Zionism of all kinds. For instance, the word 'racism' is not mentioned in your version at all, although anti-zionists widely consider zionism "racism", and anti-zionism "anti-racism". In an article dealing with anti-zionism, their point of views are relevant too, and in my opinion more relevant than zionist propaganda. That is exactly what the whole introduction of your version is.

We all should remember that the subject of the article is not "Zionist's POV on anti-zionism". The article about anti-racism is not written from a racist point of view, huh? Zw 07:54, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The word racism appears twice in the unvandalised version of the article, at the appropriate place. I doubt you have actually read beyond the opening paragraphs. Calling me an "Israeli revisionist" shows that you know nothing about me or my views (which is as it should be, of course). It also shows that you are not interested in co-operative editing, only on forcing your illiterate propaganda into this article. If you persist in this course I will ask to have the article protected. Adam 08:19, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Adam, calling other users illiterate is not nice. Please don't do that. How is Zw supposed to become cooperative if we do not treat him in an open and cooperative fashion?—Eloquence

Have you read the edit history? He has shown no interest in cooperation, he's only interested in forcing his political views into the opening paragraph of an article on a controversial topic. And I never claimed to be nice. Adam 08:52, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Adam Carr says above "so far as I know its accuracy is not disputed by anyone except Zw". Well you can add my name to the list as well. The definition of Zionism at the top of the page is ridiculous and POV. In 1975, over two thirds of the world's nations agreed to a resolution in the UN General Assembly that said "Zionism is a form of racism". If the fact that two thirds of the world's nations stood up and equated Zionism with racism doesn't merit being discussed as a counter-view to the Panglossian definition of Zionism at the top of the anti-Zionism page, I don't know what does. -- Lancemurdoch 17:25, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Do Zw and Lancemurdoch hold that Zionism is neither "a political movement among Jews which holds that the Jews are a nation, and as such are entitled to a national homeland", nor "a movement to support the development and defence of the State of Israel, and to encourage Jews to settle there"? Merriam-Webster defines racism as " a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race" or "racial prejudice or discrimination." Zionism does not obviously fit this definition. If Zw and Lancemurdoch are to claim that Zionism is racism, they should substantiate their claims.
Furthermore, I think the claim made in Resolution 3379 attempts to be a description of Zionism, not a definition of it. It does quite poorly as a definition. Lastly (granting for the sake of argument that it is a definition), the fact that a majority of the UN General Assembly (it's only a two-thirds majority if one ignores the abstentions) decided that Zionism is racist does not mean that the competing definition should be expunged. It should be given a more or less equal hearing. --Smack 22:16, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I don't claim anything. Please see my version of the page in the page history. Opposite Carr, I mention different views on zionism in the introduction, including "a political movement among Jews which holds that the Jews are a nation, and as such are entitled to a national homeland" and "a movement to support the development and defence of the State of Israel, and to encourage Jews to settle there".

Could someone please add a dispute notice to Anti-zionism? Zw

Excuse me for not accepting either the relevance or the moral validity of a vote cast 28 years ago by a majority consisting mostly of Communist states and third-world dictatorships, a vote taken mainly as a means of annoying the US, and which most of the same countries, in the meantime having become democracies, had the decency to repeal almost unanimously some years later. In any case the UN resolution is discussed fully at anti-Zionism. Zionism is (surprise, surprise) an article about Zionism. The ideological axes that people like Zw and Lancemurdoch are trying to grind over this article should be obvious to all. Adam 23:41, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Mr Maltin -->> Wikipedia:Reference Desk


There are Unicode points for standard letters with macrons, ā, for example, but where are the points for letters with both an accent and a macron? They must be in there somewhere. I can't believe they would leave them out when they have a million or so points. I can generate a macron over an accented letter using the modifier: á̄ (á&#772;), but depending on your browser this will be rendered in one of several shit ways. What can I do? CGS 09:50, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC).

I believe the Unicode standard only have real codepoints (as opposed to using modifiers) for accent-combinations, which are actually used in some language. Does any language use the á̄? I believe all latin letters with multiple diacritical marks are in the table Latin extended additional. It does have eg. the ṓ (note, even worse rendering in some browsers). Rasmus Faber 10:20, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Yes they're used in a real language: Latin. "habé̄mus", "we have", for example. That's how I came to notice that it wasn't there in Unicode. CGS 10:44, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC).
Is the letter a used with accent and macron, too? Both ḕ and ḗ are in Unicode (but probably render badly with most browsers). These are equivalent to combining ē with the combining character for an acute accent, ie ḗ (&#275;&#769;), which actually renders OK. Rasmus Faber Rasmus Faber 12:49, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
In my browser both render, but the pre-combined character looks very different from e-macron with acute (Font problem, not user agent). For test reasons, compare e+acute+macron all seperately encoded below (as the Unicode guys want it done). — Jor 13:20, 2004 Jan 14 (UTC)

Since when does Latin have either accents or macrons? This would have been news to Cicero. Adam 12:40, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

  • Latin doesn't, but modern-day students sometimes use them to indicate long and short vowels for their own convenience. Bmills 12:53, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Not only modern-day: the macron has long been used to indicate stress in vowels. Compare also languages like Māori. (If I write that Māori, the macron isn't rendered at all. Probably some font issue…) — Jor 13:20, 2004 Jan 14 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I can see the macron on both of those. (I'm using IE6/Win; I tried a couple of different fonts and I could see it in all of them.) —Paul A 01:03, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I was mistaken: it is rendered for me as well in the second case, but the macron overlaps with the top curl of the 'a'. I had to enlarge text size a whole lot before I noticed. :) — Jor 22:49, 2004 Jan 15 (UTC)
Unicode philosophy is to only encode the base glyph, and let all diacritical marks be made through combining modifiers. E with acute accent and macron: é̄ (e + &#x0301; (combining acute accent above) + &#x0304; (combining macron above). In theory this allows infinite combinations, such as o with acute accent, and ogonek: ǫ́ — in practice many fonts will only display those characters for which pre-rendered glyphs exist. This is one of the reasons Unicode includes glyphs for most combined characters which actually are used. (Another reason is the ISO 8859 tables were remapped in Unicode, and as such many pre-combined glyphs were encoded). — Jor 13:10, 2004 Jan 14 (UTC)

Fleet -->> Wikipedia:Reference Desk

Need some help linking to an image

Over at Operation Downfall (the proposed 1945 Allied invasion of Japan), I added a map I scanned out of a book. The map is great, but way too big for the page (can't be shrunk, either, or details would be lost). So I uploaded it twice, a smaller version and a larger version (I know I could have uploaded one and used html to resize it, but that would make page loads extremely slow. I figure bandwidth is more precious than server storage). In the caption, I added a "Larger version" link to the bigger picture. But I can't figure out how to do it with internal wiki links - it's an exteral links right now. I'd be grateful is someone could lend a hand. →Raul654 13:14, Jan 14, 2004 (UTC)

Quite simple. Instead of [[Image:LargeImage.jpg]] just use [[Media:LargeImage.jpg|Larger Imager]]. However are you sure the image is copyright-free? Because a scan of something copyrighted is still copyrighted - and the book is probably too recent to be in public domain already. andy 19:52, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
It is still copyrighted (copyright date - 2003), but copying a small amount of it (one map out of 600+) is covered by fair use, is it not? I put all the details here. →Raul654 20:15, Jan 14, 2004 (UTC)
IANAL, but I think that the maps could each be considered a copyrightable work. So copying one of the 600 wouldn't necessarily be fair use just because there are 599 others. Andrewa 23:32, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Watchlist down

As seen on my watchlist:

  • This feature is disabled for performance reasons. New servers have been ordered and should be installed within the next 14 days.

I suspect in about 14 days we all shall have the fun of cleaning out numerous vandalisms. Jrincayc 21:19, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

We'll also get to stress-test the new servers since we'll all be loading 14 days' worth of watchlists. -mhr 22:32, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Happy Wikipedia Day! What more can I say? <KF> 23:33, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)
(See current message) Is it good advertising to have a message asking for donations replace the watchlist, considering that there have been donations already, and the current problem is that some servers haven't arrived yet while others are being fixed, not a current lack of money? (This isn't in any way a complaint, just a comment.)   01:44, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I agree, and I'll go ahead and complain: I find the current watchlist message distinctly irritating. It almost reads like a protection-racket extortion note -- "youse could always make, ya know, a donation to keep this kind of ting from happenin' again. . ." In any event, it's self-defeating: the time to ask people for money is exactly not when you tell them they can't have what they want. Jgm 02:15, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I heartily agree. But don't fret, it's a software message editable with the MediaWiki namespace. Just put something in MediaWiki:Disabled. That article is currently non-existent and unprotected, it might be a good idea to change both. -- Tim Starling 02:20, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)
Thanks Tim. I just created it and made it a bit less "threatening", while leaving the donation link. What do you guys think? If someone who is not a sysop wishes to make changes, say something on the talk page, and mention it here or to one of the Administrators. Dori | Talk 02:41, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)
I mentioned it to Tim when he changed the off peak hours and he unprotected it so I could add the latest hours. Hopefully someone will update it if the hours need to be changed again. It is in a pretty obscure place for a vandal to find, so hopefully it'll be safe enough unprotected. Jamesday 15:43, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Happy Wikipedia Day

May all of you have PEACE PROFOUND and Master Your Life! .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. Optim 01:21, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC) .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·. .·.

Watchlist proposal

As some people pointed out, having the watchlists down for weeks is going to create a major backlog. I propose that we enable them during the off peak hours of (GMT -5) 1 AM to 7 AM. That would let us get to the articles that need it without making the latency situation worse. →Raul654 02:07, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

That sounds good. WormRunner 05:40, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Particularly to us antipodeans. Adam 08:17, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Would it be possible, during the times that the watchlist mechanism is disabled, to have the link display the list of pages on one's watchlist, so that one can at least have access to them? Phil 08:22, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)
You can achieve a similar result using My Contributions, which gives you a list of articles where you have been having recent dogfights. Adam 08:50, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Which works for pages with 'dogfights', but less well for talk pages etc. Elde 20:41, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

But it has to be said that the performance improvement is remarkable. Bmills 13:29, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Ah! Think of the possibilities! I bet Wikipedia would really fly if we turned off "recent changes". >:-) only. -- Jussi-Ville Heiskanen 15:51, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)
And then restricted editing of articles to an approved subset of the list of sysops. Bmills 16:45, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

If I've done my coding correctly, watchlists and various other features will now be enabled between 04:00 and 14:00 UTC, which is off-peak according to [10]. If I haven't done my coding correctly, the site will crash in 2.5 hours time ;) -- Tim Starling 01:37, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)

LOL - very funny. Thanks a lot Tim. We all appreciate it. I've been going through withdraw without my watchlist :) →Raul654 01:44, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)

Nice to have it back, but it has really slowed down response time for me. Anyone else? Bmills 09:42, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Does this have something to do with the "saved watchlist" message that I'm seeing when I view Special:Watchlist? Where on earth can I find a complete list of files that I'm watching? The watchlist sure isn't showing them. --Cryptographite 14:09, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Maybe I should come back in 6 months or so and find out if WP has become usable. Mbstone 22:26, 18 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Can we turn watchlist off now? I can't work today at all. Bmills 10:14, 19 Jan 2004 (UTC)

  • Me neither. It's taken hours to get back here to say this, but it prompted me to make a donation to wikimedia, and my solitare game is improving while I wait for pages to load, so some good has come of this. Fabiform 23:34, 19 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Preferences - Date format

In the Special:Preferences, there are currently four date formats. The fourth at first looked like the default ISO date type string YYYY-MM-DD, but in actuality it is the weird YYYY-DD-MM. Since the example date January 12 is used, this isn't immediately clear. Therefore I've two suggestions: 1) Change the example date to January 13 (no month can have #13), and 2) Change the fourth option to the correct ISO date string, or at least add this option. — Jor 02:54, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

No it isn't, it really is ISO YYYY-MM-DD. What does this look like to you: January 20, 2040? And the example date is January 15, otherwise known as Wikipedia Day. Happy Wikipedia day everyone. -- Tim Starling 03:35, 2004 Jan 15 (UTC)
Odd. What was I looking at then? *confused* — Jor 15:12, 2004 Jan 15 (UTC)

I'm not 100% certain, but I think the date that is displayed is the current date. Today it happens to be January 15, but tomorrow it will be January 16. -Anthropos 22:57, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

No, it's always January 15. At least, it was when I wrote the feature. I don't think anyone's changed it since. -- Tim Starling 23:23, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)


Moved to Wikipedia:Reference desk

Better way to manage lists of people?

Not knowing anything about how the code works, but looking at a lot of people articles appearing on multiple lists, sometimes the same list, indexed different ways on different articles, I wondered whether anyone has looked into more efficient ways to manage the data. I guess I'm thinking of some way to automatically generate the list based on tags on an (ordinarily) hidden subpage or something. e.g. Tony Blair would have a sub-page Tony Blair/lists which would contain tags like {List of UK Prime Ministers}, {List of Members of the UK Labour Party}, {List of Members of the UK Parliament} etc. I'm sure that isn't the way to do it, but you get the idea? Any dice, or has this come up already? The Fellowship of the Troll 07:41, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The much-awaited Category system should help with this, when it finally gets switched on. Apparently it's working over on the Test Wikipedia, although since this was wiped clean a short while back there's no longer any test material. Phil 10:24, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

Take a look at to see what I mean. Phil 10:32, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)
Ha - who knew? Great! The Fellowship of the Troll 18:48, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

User Ban

What are the policies on user bans? I have NO tolerence for Nazi's, and less for people like ZW et al.

Unless they are vandalizing pages or trolling, we don't ban people. →Raul654 15:14, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

From what I've seen in those 2 user's "contributions" I feel that it not only qualifies as vandalizing AND trolling, but also racisim to the point of illigality in most countries. who is the admin here? who do I contact that has the power to make a final decision? Pellaken 15:25, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I have NO tolerance for people who can't use the apostrophe properly. That doesn't mean that I can have you banned. CGS 15:27, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC).

This is a serious situation, and I would like to take it to the top. If you want to discuss my english skills, then do so, but do so elsewhere. Pellaken 15:30, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Yeah, your English skills are irrelevant. I was pointing out that we can't ban people because we have "NO tolerence" for them, as was your original complaint of ZW. Legality is a different issue, but your personal opinion of someone's politics (nor their grasp of punctuation) is never a reason to have them banned, and censorship based on politics and other similar things is not something that Wikipedia takes kindly to. CGS 15:39, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC).

So, anti-racism is now "racism"? War is peace etc.? Well, you get used to all this ridiculous doublespeak Zw

I do not like Nazi's and I wont lie about that, but my opinion is not the law here. There must be some procedure to judge these things, and I would still like to either know what that procedure is. I am assuming there is an admin, or a council of moderators that decides these things, and I am wondering who they are. Pellaken 15:43, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I have replied to Pellaken's question here. I believe I have stated our usual policy correctly, but anyone is of course encouraged to add to what I have said. Hopefully this can be resolved peacefully. Jwrosenzweig 15:48, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I am satisfied with the responce, thank you very much. Pellaken 15:53, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Zw is not a Nazi and it is a stupid and offensive accusation to make. He is however a dogmatic and unco-operative inserter of grossly POV material (anti-Israeli in his case, but the topic doesn't really matter) into articles that other people have put a lot of work into. Both Zionism and anti-Zionism have had to be protected from his depredations. I don't think he should be banned but I do think he should be warned off in some way. Adam 02:25, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I never said he was a Nazi. I said I dont like Nazi's and that I think what he's doing is wrong, but I've never called him a Nazi. Pellaken 03:21, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Legalities of article copying

Look at

It is a verbatim copy of History of Norway. The only reference to Wikipedia on the nationmaster page is on the very bottom of the page in a font so small, I had to copy the text to another program to read it.

GnuFDL, Section 2: "...You may not use technical measures to obstruct or control the reading or further copying of the copies you make or distribute...."

Is small text that is pixelated out of recognition on my monitor considered a technical measure of obstructment?

You can find it all discussed at Wikipedia:Sites that use Wikipedia for content. andy 16:35, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

New pages

If you're missing Special:newpages, there is a list of the new pages created between 02:39 and 17:38 (UTC) today at User:Angela/New pages. Angela. 18:23, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

There is also an automatically generated list of recent new page creations at, but this only works when I am on IRC. Morwen 18:50, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

And JeLuf's which is updated every minute. Angela. 22:59, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)

Fast Meter? -->> Wikipedia:Reference Desk

How do I get a page annouced??

Help! I want to have the Ralph Yarborough page announced on Jan. 27th for the anniversary. Thanks!

Two things:
  1. Make sure the article meets the criteria specified on Wikipedia:Selected Articles on the Main Page
  2. Make sure the anniversary is listed on January 27 with a link to the article.
-- Viajero 21:01, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Admin help needed

Help! I got out of sequence, and hope to preserve appropriate edit histories. If someone would delete the redirects at Samuel Huntington and its talk page, I can finish sorting out the three needed articles. I plan to move the signer of the Decclaration of Independence here, with a reference to disambig. I've already created an S.H. (disambig} page and I'll sort out the other links, people named, etc. afterwards. Thanks, and apologies,, Lou I 22:43, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Samuel Huntington and Talk:Samuel Huntington are now deleted. Angela. 23:30, Jan 15, 2004 (UTC)


I started a new wiki-"game": WikiCookies. It's still in "beta testing" so the rules may change soon. So if you want to learn how to win WikiCookies, just read the "Secret Links" paragraph at my userpage :) .Optim 00:20, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC).


Could I clarify whether it is WP policy that the word "Cardinal" should appear in the titles of biographical articles about Cardinals of the Catholic Church, and if so, whether they should come before or after the Christian name. Thus, is it George Pell, Cardinal George Pell, or George Cardinal Pell? Adam 01:04, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

So far as the article title is concerned, it should be George Pell according to Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style_(biographies)#Honorific_prefixes. So far as inclusion in the text is concerned, I've seen a detailed discussion of the treatment of Cardinals somewhere but I can't find it now. Andrewa 02:10, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)
As far as I can tell, it was decided, by someone or other (anyone have a link?) to use e.g. George Cardinal Pell, as this is said to be "more correct" according to consultations with the Vatican. Apparently Firstname Cardinal Lastname was used prior to Vatican II, while now often Cardinal Firstname Lastname is used, but it was decided to use the older format for consistency. I personally would prefer George Pell, as I consider Cardinal more of a title than a name, with exceptions for historical cardinals such as Cardinal Richelieu who were known by Cardinal Only-one-name. But after a somewhat lengthy argument with User:Jtdirl (FearÉIREANN) over the issue, I eventually dropped the matter. I still consider Firstname Cardinal Lastname in running text to be somewhat awkward though. --Delirium 02:49, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)
I don't know the WP use in this case but used in the middle of a paragraph I would write Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger or Cardinal Ratzinger and NEVER Joseph Card. Ratzinger which is just their way of signing. In any case, if the problem is with the title of the article, I'd rather write one "Joseph Raztinger" and redirects from "Cardinal ..." and "Joseph Cardinal....". My 2c. Pfortuny 20:22, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)
As a former New Yorker, "Francis Cardinal Spellman" rolls off of my tongue a lot more easily than any other form of his name. I think Francis Spellman is the most appropriate article name, with "Francis Cardinal Spellman" next. In his lifetime no one called him Cardinal Francis Spellman. (No wikipedia article on him exists, but a search shows that we do, indeed, always call him "Francis Cardinal Spellman".) -- Jmabel 01:43, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)
IMO this sort of thing is already covered well in the style guide referred to above. Andrewa 16:31, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The two Georgias

Is it not an astonishing coincidence that both the Republic of Georgia and the State of Georgia have recently adopted new flags? Adam 03:14, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Synchronicity ? :) Optim 02:21, 19 Jan 2004 (UTC)


I am quite surprized that Martin Luther King's birthday was not included on the anniversaries for today.

Birthdays don't go there. Only event-oriented anniversaries do. See Wikipedia:Selected Articles on the Main Page. --mav 07:32, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Isn't Martin Luther King Day an event? Adam 10:20, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Yes. But that is on Monday. That article is also a bit stuby and may not be listed due to that fact. --mav

"You have new messages"

Two people have left messages for me tonight, but I got no message and only noticed because I saw Mav's edit on Recentchanges. Has this been disabled for performance reasons? Tuf-Kat 05:20, Jan 16, 2004 (UTC)

It seems to be working for me... --mav 08:59, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I have the reverse problem: I check my messages, but the "Y.H.N.M." message doesn't go away. Vacuum 02:14, Jan 21, 2004 (UTC)


Can we please keep the display of usernames we sign our comments with as simple as possible. We're starting to see things like tex formulas and annoying colours (even light-grey - which is horrible to read on a white background). The next step in this arms race is obviously embedding images. I know we all yearn for attention, but perhaps writing a couple of "brilliant prose" articles is the most wiki-way of getting that attention. Thanks, snoyes 07:15, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I think the user you're referring to pipes their signature, which I think is unhelpful in itself even if it's kept simple, and which a number of other users do too. I don't want to discourage creativity, but I do want to encourage focus on the goal of providing articles. I don't see how this sort of individualism furthers that goal. Andrewa 08:53, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Troll test

I would like somebody to make a page called Troll test, where we can follow a procedure to see if somebody is a troll. I was reading the Wikipedia:Internet trolling phenomenon article (I know its controversial) and contrasting it with what is put on internet troll, and trying to compare it to my own experiences of people being unfriendly, unreasonable, etc... Anyways, I would like a test made, or a set of criteria (if they meet 4 out of five of these specifications, they are a troll). This touches on a broader issue on the wiki, of what to do when somebody makes you upset, calls a name, etc..., without necessarily being a troll, but rather just any of us when were being wrong. On top of it, what can you do if there IS a troll? And how can you tell? All this stuff needs solving, but all I'm expecting (and only half-way, maybe I'll have to make it ;) is for somebody to make an article called "Troll Test (or something very similar, that tells you how to test a user to see if they are a troll, with some certainty (oh and if this is a bad place to be doing this, can you tell me where to go?) User:JackLynch 07:27, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Interesting idea. If implemented, I suggest instead we call it Trolling Test, which resonates better with "Turing Test" (or is that Turing test?)168... 07:32, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)
hmm... I thought Troll Test had a better ring, but who cares, they could both link there. Glad to hear you like my idea! JackLynch 07:36, 16 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Help needed

moved to Wikipedia:Reference desk