User talk:Chris Day/Archive 7

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Chris' Talk Page

I am an editor in the biology workgroup | 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Current talk page (94,027)

Useful links on Citizendium

Cool template

Check out Sophophora and {{Clade}}. J. Noel Chiappa 11:36, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

what is our comparison way of doing this type of workgroup statistics?

I saw this the the wp:med site

and then inserted in to their "project" here:

What is the CZ equivalent to that type of stastics table? It seems pretty useful. I especially like how it is easy to get to the "unnaccessed" articles. Tom Kelly 16:21, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

We have the Checklist-generated categories for Health Sciences (see the bottom of the workgroup header). Wikipedia seems to have a bot that counts the number of articles in each category and then updates the table. We'd have to do it manually here is the current state:

805 Articles
4 Approved [0]
46 Developed [1]
289 Developing [2]
395 Stub [3]
63 External [4]
46 Advanced [0-1]
339 Nonstub [0-2]
734 Internal [0-3]

Note that the number of articles is 805 but those with status of 0,1,2,3, and 4 is 797. From this you can infer there are eight Health Sciences articles that do not have a designated status in the metadata template. Chris Day 16:35, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

Just noticed that approved articles are not added into the advanced [0-1] category. I've fixed that now. Chris Day 16:56, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

Definitions meet hover

Check out this, and my reply here. J. Noel Chiappa 11:55, 4 June 2008 (CDT)
PS: Time to archive your talk page! (I just got done doing mine...) J. Noel Chiappa 11:55, 4 June 2008 (CDT)

IsoData and Properties differences

Hi Chris, I looked at your work on the {{Props}} and {{Properties}} templates.

FYI:I changed the {{Properties}} call in {{Props}} back to make it a table entry. Now the problem with the curly braces is back. (the closing braces get included in with the last data "segment".) Curiouser and curiouser. Not sure if this is an indication of what is going on with the data parsing, or if this is an all new wierdness. I also changed some of the {{!}}'s back to pipes, and put a carriage return after each data member in the :List (oh, and I pointed Props back to "Material/Properties/List"...just trying to keep this as simple as possible...

PS: Thanks for taking time to look at these templates...your help is appreciated.--David Yamakuchi 13:15, 5 June 2008 (CDT)


Chris, I am not sure quite how to define protein, but they are basic building blocks of muscle, for example, and also cells walls, etc., and of course that still leaves all of the enzymes. David E. Volk 15:56, 5 June 2008 (CDT)


"Credit" where it's due  :-) ...You solved it. Kudos to you Chris. The conditional stuff looks like it works ok now too. --David Yamakuchi 16:12, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

So, I'm curious - what was the problem? I see you put the table inside the conditional - was that it? J. Noel Chiappa 16:26, 5 June 2008 (CDT)
Never mind - I saw your message to David. So it was the table, huh? No idea why that fixed it - unless there's something to my theory about the parser/preprocessor getting confused between the "|" in the table, and the "|" used in template calls to separate arguments. J. Noel Chiappa 16:34, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

Properties Template

I think I may have stepped on your edit...sorry. I think I have the calls to the data pages worked out, but I'm about to walk out the door for the weekend, so I just wanted to put the thing somewhere so someone doesn't duplicate effort.--David Yamakuchi 16:18, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

I'm out for the weekend now if you'd like to keep going. Sorry about the confusion, but I'm late....:-(--David Yamakuchi 16:23, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

Hi Chris,

You asked a couple of good questions...let's take them one at a time...

  • would it not be more appropriate at Unobtanium/Properties/Atomic Mass

I thought about this one to the point that I had decided that it was exactly the thing to do...and then I didn't implement it that way. In fact, it was so bad I caught myself a number of times almost errantly introducing exactly that syntax...probably just up too late to be quite frank...sort of like right now...

Anyway, the bottom line that I came to in my reasoning is that when we store these types of data in subpages of a material article, that simple fact in some sense already says that it is a property of the material. Or we can just look at: P.R.O.P.E.R.T.I.E.S. ten letters that are just not really necessary, and then ten more each time you retrieve the data...well you get the idea, why make the name longer than it needs to be?

  • why not have all the properties on one page, similar to the switch you have for the isotopes, would that not be simpler?

I think you actually discovered the exact path leading to the move to seperate the properties onto their own pages...Let's see if I can recap...

The physical properties template got big fast...real big. And all indications were that if the scheme were to continue, it was going to get nothing but worse. The real problem with having all the data on a single template with a switch to give only the data called, is that the wiki "compiler" has to load the entire template every time you want even a small bit of info.

This is especially a problem if you are trying to list the whole set of data...the size of the pre-expand data grows at a rate of n squared (each time you add a bit of data, it gets called into memory...with every bit of data) this is perhaps not a good scheme for a large database...maybe it's ok for a small one. It is even more obvious what the answer is when we compare it to the pre-expand size growing at a rate of plain old n if we just store the data in regular pages.

The thing is, as you point seems like there should be one page a reader can go to to see all of the data at once. Of course, by this we don't mean the main article mind you...that one then would be too cluttered. Thus the Isotopes subpage, or the properties subpage, or the MSDS, or whatever you want to call it...I'm not real sure we won't want both an MSDS and a Properties page for most "materials" with some duplicated info in many if not all cases.

Now, if you look closely back at the old versions of the IsoData template, you might find where I first tried this scheme by breaking out the data for 6Li in it's own template. I was having trouble with Lead's Isotopes page (Lead, I seem to remember reading somewhere, has the most stable isotopes of any element, and also has a great many long-lived radioactive was a good test...but one which the scheme failed...miserably...the old n2 problem strikes again!)

In any event, it blew up the IsoData template because the pre-expand size was so big. The server would take a half hour to return the page and it was on the edge of crashing things I think. And Isotopes should be easier than physical properties...there are only so many of them. Apparently however, lead has enough of them to cause a problem...or perhaps I should say illustrate the problem.

Now, I'd already had the list idea worked out for the Isotopes, so I just decided to heck with it. If you want to know the Melting point for Foo, it can be found at Foo/Melting point. End of story. Things don't blow up and there is consistency and now that you have helped get the properties template working, we can show them all on a single page...Properties...or whatever people would like to call it. The downside for me is what it means is tossing out a bunch of templates (read as alot of work) I've been procrastinating :-)

There was one more thing with these properties tho...It's been buging me for a while and I think this fixes it too.

Let's say for the sake of argument that we want to compare the melting point of Hydrogen to the melting point of Iron. Obviously the actual measurements will be done at least somewhat differently, and probably quite differently indeed. With their own pages each property can easily have a significant amount of "metadata" attached. A :Foo/Melting point/Measurement_method page could give us valuable insight as to how we arrived at some particular measured or calculated number.

Sorry this post is so long but...well you asked. I think I'll copy and paste it into the Talk at {{Props}} for other folks as well.


--David Yamakuchi 02:25, 8 June 2008 (CDT)

Dismabiguation subpage

Umm, because I'm a moron unimaginative tree-shrew? :-) (The ref is to King Solomon's Ring - not sure if you've read it, wonderful book.) Mostly because that's the syntax WP used, and I didn't think to change it, but you're right, a subpage would be more in keeping with CZ style. Is there any technical advantage, past the ability to use {BASENAME} to get the term being disambiguated, to a "{Basename}/Disambiguation" subpage, over "{Basename} (disambiguation)"? J. Noel Chiappa 16:34, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

PS: I don't see any good reason to have a {{subpages}} header on a disambiguation page. For one thing, there's no main article page at {BASENAME}. For another, there are unlikely to be any other subpages that we need to get to through the subpage navigation bar. And special-casing {subpages} for disambiguation pages will just make it more complex, and for no good reason - it's kind of like making a combination hammer-screwdriver, just so you don't have to put one tool down to pick up another. I think people can deal with the concept that they have to use a different name on disambiguation pages.

I agree that it's a pain to have to put the pagename into {{dabhdr}}, but it we could get the strings: package installed, we could fix that. Still, I'm not against using a subpage - I'd be perfectly fine with either. But if there's a good reason to use a subpage, we should decide quickly, before too many "{Foo} (disambiguation)" pages get created. I'll see if Larry has an opinion. J. Noel Chiappa 06:07, 6 June 2008 (CDT)

Perhaps I got Chris wrong, but I had seen this in the context of the discussion on sub-subpages. So what I understood is that he proposed to have a "Foo" page and to include "Foo (tree)", "Foo (shrew)" etc. as subpages thereof. "Foo (disambiguation)" and what is now sometimes "Foo (general)" could then be put into "Foo" directly, and we would avoid all the redirects. Of course, then, we would require that if the "Foo (shrew)" subpage is open, a click on the "Related Articles" subpage link would automatically lead to "Foo (shrew)/Related Articles", and I have no idea as to whether this is any close to feasible at the moment. -- Daniel Mietchen 06:42, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
I think you misunderstood my idea. I was thinking of having the disambiguation page on a subpage of the disambiguated term not on the term itself. The term would still be a redirect, but in this case to its own subpage. I had not thought much of this new scenario you suggest and that might work too. Chris Day 10:16, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
I'm not sure that's such a hot idea, myself. Those are freestanding article in their own right, not in some sense 'part of' (in information terms) a related group of information; they are related by their names only (usually). Also, they will have their own subpages, etc, etc, so now we'll have some articles with the Biblio subpage at {Foo}/Biblio, and others at {Foo}/{Bar}/Biblio, which I think will also be confusing. J. Noel Chiappa 10:43, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
This was not what i was thinking. My rationale was to have everything the same as now except that Foo (disambiguation) would live at Foo/Disambiguation. The only advantage is that the subpages template can be placed there instead of the disambiguation templates (The disambiguation templates would be placed by the subpages template automatically). So, Foo would be a redirect and nothing else would exist at the Foo cluster (except Foo/Disambiguation), all the original subpages and metadata associated with the old article at Foo would have been moved to the disambiguated article at Foo, bar or Foo (bar). Does this make sense? Chris Day 11:56, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
No, I understood all that - my reply immediately above (at 10:43, 6 June 2008) was to Daniel's idea. I'm still thinking about your idea. My appeal to Larry for comments got no useful response; maybe one of us should have posted it on the Forum instead? J. Noel Chiappa 12:07, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
Ah, crossed wires. I think dialog here to think it through is a good start. If it is desirable then this can be a relatively minor amendment to your original proposal.
You're right that strings would solve some of these issues, at least i think so. Does strings allow us to do an argument along the lines of {{BASEPAGENAME}} - (disambiguation), with the output of Foo from an article named Foo (disambiguation)? Chris Day 12:11, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
Actually, I had to change my proposal a tiny bit in response to unhappiness from some editors, who didn't like having to have to look up and type tree (plant), etc, etc. I had originally proposed what you thought - i.e. pretty much all basenames, with a few exceptions, redirect to the disambiguation page.
However, to keep them happy, I changed it to be 'if there is a most common meaning, the redirect can be set to that meaning'. It basically transfers work from people who write articles, but don't feel like checking their links, to the people who are checking disambiguated names, and fixing articles which refer to them.
Since it kept the heart of my proposal (making it easy to find links to ambiguous terms) intact, I felt it was better to give ground on that, than to have some people unhappy. And once the new system is adopted, perhaps after a while we can revisit the 'set the basename redirect to the most common meaning' issue.
So that's why we have {{dabbox}} in use; on articles where the basename redirect points at that article, rather than the disambiguation page, that header is needed to send people who get there, by going to the basename, to the disambiguation page. J. Noel Chiappa 10:43, 6 June 2008 (CDT)
This makes sense now. It would be better if the template could be added automatically but, unfortunately, I don't see a way to actually detect where a disambiguation redirect points too. Chris Day 12:04, 6 June 2008 (CDT)

As a general rule, I at least would like to be specifically informed whenever any new subpage type is created, and given a pointer to an explanation of why it's needed. As I imply below in response to Richard, we generally require editorial approval for new subpage types. Please see CZ:How to add a new subpage type which is still in effect. I believe this should also be added to CZ:Bold Moves, if not put into CZ:Proposals. So--is there in fact now a "Disambiguation" subpage, and if so, where is it explained? TIA!  :-) And, sorry for not keeping up. --Larry Sanger 09:16, 6 June 2008 (CDT)

new subpage

Can we get a new subpage category called "Primary sources" --the history articles will be using it to include texts of famous documents. Thanks. Richard Jensen 17:23, 5 June 2008 (CDT)

Richard or Chris--please make sure that you run this by the Editorial Council. It does not have to be a big deal (it could be passed by acclamation perhaps), but I do not want new subpage types made simply because one editor asks one technical guy. The general idea looks good to me, as long as we distinguish this type clearly from both Bibliographies and from Works subpages. --Larry Sanger 08:38, 6 June 2008 (CDT)

Wierd bug

Check out {{Dambigbox}} and see if you have any idea why that fix I just made (to allow a blank first argument, and use the {PAGENAME} if so) doesn't work. The odd thing is it works fine when you display {{Dambigbox}} (as you can see), but when you use Dambigbox on some other page, it doesn't. Wierd... J. Noel Chiappa 11:05, 6 June 2008 (CDT)

Wow!!! Do we really need all of this?? Or are you just seeking comments??

Chris, in your test layout of the Chemical Engineering subgroup, we now have:

  1. An alphabetic list in two colums of all articles, with the status of each article
  2. An alphabetic list in a single column, with the status and the definition of each article
  3. A list of all the articles in four columns, one column for each status category (0, 1, 2, 3,or 4) and without the definition of each article
  4. A listing of any subcategories in the subgroup (and the articles (pages) in those categories) without the status or definition of each article
  5. A listing of the page articles (pages) in the main Chemical Engineering subgroup without the status or definition of each article

For what its worth, I think that the only one we need is item (2) above with the following caveats:

  • Put a single space into the single column list to separate articles starting with A from articles with B from articles starting with C .... etc.
  • Include a one-line footnote (as I have done on my user page) to explain what each of the little status images indicates.

In other words, we would then not need items (1), (3), (4) or (5). The result would be quite a departure from the current style of listing articles in the various categories (which are modeled after the way it is done in Wikipedia) ... but I think it would be better than the current method. - Milton Beychok 03:43, 7 June 2008 (CDT)

Idea for another subpage

Chris, see Biology's next microscope: Mathematics and its Talk page.

What would you think about a subpage: Citizendium-developed open-access articles?

We could take an open-access article, give ample attrbution to article's originator, open it to group editing, monitored by the main Workgroup (or a select group of its editors).

For the article Biology's next microscope: Mathematics, we could subpage it to Mathematical biology, or subpage it to more than one main article (e.g., Biology, Systems biology, etc.).

Thoughts? --Anthony.Sebastian 23:03, 7 June 2008 (CDT)

Thanks awfully...

...for filling in items at the category:dogs.

I very much like the sorting by status; it's a quick visual and lets editors keep track of how things are coming/what should be worked on.

Naturally, the auto sort into the category in alpha order is vital, too. So I would say, keep at least these two functions. I'll explore the chemical engineering subgroup to see which other ones I like.

Aleta Curry 16:58, 8 June 2008 (CDT)

How to add a 4th category?

Chris, how does one add a fourth category to an article? The Metadata template doesn't seem to allow it. Can we simply add it on the Edit page of the Main page? Or what? Thanks in advance, Milt Beychok

It's not possible at present. Are you thinking about the EPA article? The practice, to date, has been to pick the three most relevant.. There have been a few discussions in the forum. I'll try and root one out. Presumably there are five possible workgroups for this article; in no particulr order, Biology, Health Sciences, Politics, Engineering and Earth Sciences. For the record, if it was me, I would have chosen Biology, Politics and Engineering. Chris Day 03:31, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

Properties Storage

Hi Chris,

Yes, I agree, the lack of a string parser in CZ is going to cause us some asthetic difficulties...almost certainly. But, I'm not clear that it would preclude the scheme I'm proposing.

FYI: The periodic table has become a sort of a back-burner project lately. I seem to have gotten into a much bigger issue here as a result of exploring it, and I think I might like to wait and see if or how this properties thing develops before I decide on how I would like to proceed...

You are of course right that a properties template can be made for each material with a switch/case to call up the relevant data for a user or template, and if we restrict the number of allowed properties, it can work ok...No huge pre-expand problems if the number of properties is kept small. I looked at that approach, and I have two concerns...

  1. Restricting the types of properties that work with our scheme just seems like a bad idea at a fundamental level. I'm not sure how inclined I would be to support such a scheme, at least with what I am aware of today. After consideration, I discarded the idea as not being as flexible as what we might hope for.
  2. The properties scheme is not just for elements. It seems like it should work for any type of material, and that would make choosing relevant "selected" properties even more difficult.

Also, I'm not sure I agree that the properties values, even for elements, will not change in the future. Someone may discover a new "mass error" or different way of testing/measuring, and things _will_ change...I've become more than certain of it...I guess "resigned" would be a better word.

Finally, I wouldn't be sure which of the properties other authors might want in their tables and charts, and I think if we can avoid restricting folks with "standard" properties vs. special properties we might be a lot better off. I say this in part because of what I have seen going on with the new subpages types which, BTW, I am a big fan of...naturally--David Yamakuchi 04:28, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

I should point out that many of my points are really a devils advocate argument. I do see where you are coming from. Chris Day 11:08, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

Check it out... {{PTofE}}

--David Yamakuchi 16:13, 11 June 2008 (CDT)

Using workgroup template as news feeder?

Hi Chris, what about using {{Workgroup}} (or a derivative) – on individual pages in the user namespace – to display Workgroup news (especially to do lists) that could be edited at a central location (pereferably the individual workgroup's homepage). -- Daniel Mietchen 11:59, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

That's a good idea and should be quite easy to set up. Chris Day 12:19, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

Help help help with metadata page

I'm messing up with Federation Cynologique Internationale. The metadata [[Template:Fédération Cynologique Internationale > Metadata]] doesn't work--is it because of the accents? Are we supposed to use accent marks in naming articles?

Also, this is a tricky naming one since the correct name is in French. It is *never* known by an English language abbreviation, it is ALWAYS the FCI, with non-French speakers struggling to get their tongues around Federation cynologique internationale, so I named it that, but...?

Aleta Curry 17:07, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

I'm not sure of the sequence of events here. But if you name the article with accents then the pagename field must have them too. Your problem was that the metadata page and article name did have accents but the pagename field in the metadata did not. Chris Day 20:58, 9 June 2008 (CDT)

property values

The table is resizable. If there is a need, we can just specify it to be wider and fit however many digits is deemed appropriate. I thought about another "feature" too...

Let's say someday we might want to specify the boiling point as not just a single number, but as a boiling point / pressure curve. The new "property" could be named 2dbp or some such and whatever wiki-wizardry needed to make it happen could be saved for later implementation.

For now, it seems like we fit a decent number of significant digits without the noble gas column running off the right side of my screen.--David Yamakuchi 17:49, 11 June 2008 (CDT)

density units

Hi Chris,

The density units (gpcm3nrt and gpcm3mp) I _believe_ specify density at the melting point and at normal room temp. Most (I think all, actually) materials will shrink and expand when heated and cooled. Water is an interesting example, it reaches maximum density at about 39 degrees F. Water will actually begin expanding again as it gets colder and forms ice. The ice formed is _less_ dense than the water (which is of course why ice cubes will float in your glass).

The conditions at which the properties are specified can be absolutely essential information if the data are to make sense. I'm just not sure what the right format for that is yet...--David Yamakuchi 08:50, 13 June 2008 (CDT)

Sorry my question was not clear. First, shouldn't the conditions be in brackets since they are not part of the unit? And why not use the backslash rather than p such that the units would be g/cm3 (nrt) or just use standard conditions then simplify to g/cm3? Chris Day 09:49, 13 June 2008 (CDT)
Done. Also, I changed nrt to STP to be consistent with my Chemistry book. I still feel like the format/method of storing the units could be improved tho...I just don't feel like I have it figured out all the way yet...--David Yamakuchi 10:09, 13 June 2008 (CDT)

reminder to comment

Hi Chris, two weeks are a long time here, and so I wanted to remind you to comment on Core Article structure and Disambigs and writing levels. -- Daniel Mietchen 10:02, 13 June 2008 (CDT)

You're right, I had forgotten. Chris Day 10:06, 13 June 2008 (CDT)

Need_Def and Mathematics_Workgroups

Hi. Do you know if there is a possibility to get something like a list of articles in the categories "Mathematics_Workgroup" AND "Need_def""? I tried the follwing modification of the URL: However, it did not give me what I wanted. Alexander Wiebel 12:17, 13 June 2008 (CDT)

OK will work now (see Category:Mathematics need def), but it will take a while to be populated. The categories get assigned very slowly when they are placed by a template. Chris Day 12:40, 13 June 2008 (CDT)
Wow, that was fast. It just asked if there is a possibility and didn't want you to make it happen ... :-) . However, it will be very useful and I like it very much. Alexander Wiebel 12:49, 13 June 2008 (CDT)


I'm sure we must have talked about this before, but we never very much, and certainly not sufficiently.

Basically, since we haven't made it clear what "subworkgroups" are, what they are used for, and how they fit in with overall plan for CZ, I want to nix any actual use of them at this point. Could you please make a proposal in which these mysteries are explained and we can discuss this? Or, motivate somebody else to make a proposal perhaps? --Larry Sanger 22:21, 15 June 2008 (CDT)

Yes. I've been procrastinating on it. Chris Day 09:50, 16 June 2008 (CDT)
Procrastinate now! Don't put it off!
Sub-workgroups might encourage more collaboration on articles. How? Haven't figured that out yet.
Biology: Botany Sub-Workgroup. Biology: Cell Biology Sub-Workgroup. Biology: Biography Sub-Workgroup. Seems like the list could continue indefinitely. Re Larry's caution.
Have E-mail list for each sub-workgroup, with automatic cc to Parent Workgroup list.
Perhaps just more Workgroups, and allowing many more categories on metadata template. Biology. Botany. Cell Biology. Endocrinology. All biology-related Workgroup editors in Biology. ?? --Anthony.Sebastian 18:26, 5 September 2008 (CDT)

template lens

I don't think it's using fact I'm not sure it's even working...I just copied it over from WP 'cause it looked kinda neat.--David Yamakuchi 11:38, 17 June 2008 (CDT)

After further investigation, I'm finding this thing can't even cope with a single alpha character. Only numeric values are handled....--David Yamakuchi 12:37, 17 June 2008 (CDT)

Genetic code

Chris, while that format consolidates the data into a smaller table, I think it will not be obvious to younger or inexperienced persons. I was thinking more of spacing between sets of columns, with bigger boxes and perhaps lose the borders if it looks ok once the table is wider. Perhaps we could have both forms? A condensed table like you made would be a handy thing to print out on my bulletin board as a quick reference guide! David E. Volk 14:35, 19 June 2008 (CDT)

Content-only workgroup tags?

Hi Chris--I notice that Category:Politics_tag, for example, includes all pages that are assigned to the Politics Workgroup. Perhaps there is a need for such a category (I'm not sure), but I do know that for most people such a tag would be more useful if it included only content, not the metadata, approval, etc., pages.

Also, why not just label them Category:Politics or, if there's something wrong with that, Category:Politics Content?

Finally, how about a global tag: Category:Content Pages? Then we can count that up and have an impressive-looking number.  ;-) --Larry Sanger 14:29, 21 June 2008 (CDT)

Need your help or guidance

Chris, I recently created the Density article and its associated cluster of subpages. Now I am concerned that there are many different usages of that word. For example, the article I created is about the chemistry meaning of density ... but then there is population density, residential density, electron density, optical density, electric charge density, etc.

Therefore, I would like to move the Density article I created to Density (chemistry) (including the Metadata page and all the subpages). Could you please do that for me? Or tell me how it is done and I won't have to bother you about moves in the future. Thanks, Milton Beychok 18:16, 25 June 2008 (CDT)

Thanks for the move. Milton Beychok 14:33, 26 June 2008 (CDT)

See Talk page of "Density (disambiguation)"

Chris, please see my posting explaining why I had "Density (mass)" redirecting to "Density (chemistry)" rather than to "Density (disambiguation)". Milton Beychok 11:51, 27 June 2008 (CDT)

Status images

Hi Chris ... I saw in the history that you did much work on the pl template. What do you think about this: Idea. -- Alexander Wiebel 08:41, 3 July 2008 (CDT)

Antibiotics alignment help

Chris, could you look at the Antibiotics page, "Tetracycline" section? I would like the two column list to appear beside the image, at least until I can type in some more text. Is there a way to box the column so that it only wants part of the page to make this work? Do I need to actually make a table to do that, or will the column function work somehow? Thanks, David E. Volk 14:10, 11 July 2008 (CDT)

Many thanks once again kind Sir. David E. Volk 15:49, 11 July 2008 (CDT)

Template explanation: almost perfect except that I am not

Today, I really tried to put to use your explanation of templates at Talk:Border Gateway Protocol, on the new article Convergence of communications. The explanation is magnificent.

I have one question. Using asterisks for bullets doesn't seem to work with r-templates. Are they incompatible, is something else preferred, or am I making some subtle syntax error?

Howard Howard C. Berkowitz 09:55, 14 July 2008 (CDT)

Suggest trial change default font-color for blank wiki-links


Suggest we try font-color #810541 as default for a while, as no one likes the pale slate-gray, and #810541 is a shade of red that seems easier on the eyes and less distracting than the old red.

It complements nicely the shade of blue used for wiki links that link to existing articles.

Until a consensus is reached.

--Anthony.Sebastian 23:06, 17 July 2008 (CDT)

I agree with Anthony Sebastian that we should try font color #810541. From what I see in the forums we seem to have reached a concensus, but it just doesn't seem to get implemented. How about being Bold and implementing Anthony's suggestion ... please?? Milton Beychok 01:30, 22 July 2008 (CDT)
Chris, let us know if you implement the change, as I will remove it from my Pinkwich5.css file/
Thanks, Milton. --Anthony.Sebastian 13:59, 22 July 2008 (CDT)
I believe that you are asking the wrong person. It's Larry or one of the technical support team you need to talk to to get the font changed. Chris only deals with subpages. Derek Harkness 19:45, 22 July 2008 (CDT)

r-template experiment response

Nothing too specific, just the ability to show one line as subordinate to another. I don't have any real preference as far as appearance as long as the concept of categories, subcategories, and sub-subcategories. (if you really want to see something confusing, see my most recent post to the military forum). Incidentally, where do you want me to respond? Howard C. Berkowitz 20:11, 18 July 2008 (CDT)

References: _Not_ available on request :-)

Hi Chris,

I was having another "it should work like this...but it doesn't" type seem good at helping to understand these :-) I wonder if you might help once again...

I was hoping to get the {{Unit}} template to display the units for materials' properties data (densities, boiling points, etc.) when appropriate, and truncate them on pages where we might want to do math with the numeric value. It seems to work those cases where we want to display the units, sometimes other information is appropriate to display as well.

Carbon/Boiling point is the representative example I was hoping you might take a look at. In this case there is a temperature, currently specified in Celcius, which is the information a reader would likely be looking for if they visit the page. The units symbol "°C" appears on the pages where it should (most pages), and does not where the template says it should be truncated (currently /Data and /Sandbox subpages).

The problem appears when I try and add additional information to the page. Since I think the stated number is correct only for one allotrope of Carbon, and is the temperature of sublimation, it is important to have some notes added to the data to clarify what it is saying. I've tried to do it with a <ref></ref> tag added to the "unit", but it is not behaving as expected.

The reference seems to work ok on the Carbon/Boiling point page directly, but when the page is "included" in other pages (which is the point) it seems to get lost somewhere. See Carbon/Properties for an example. I've looked at the "source" that CZ generates, and it appears that something is getting generated, but it can't be right because the reference doesn't appear. Any ideas why it might behave like that, or how to get it to do what I was trying to?--David Yamakuchi 13:39, 20 July 2008 (CDT)

Never mind. I think I've got something that works for now...--David Yamakuchi 20:56, 22 July 2008 (CDT)

DNA/Draft approval

Hi Chris, Haven't been able to do much more because of other obligations, but it seems to me that the changes to DNA found in the draft article may be ready for approval. Can you innitiate that process? Thomas Mandel 07:48, 22 July 2008 (CDT)

Changing default font-color for wiki-links with no article started

Chris, I saw your note on the stating that font-color #810541 looks fine to you as a default. The responses above yours in accord. So how do we go about changing the default, at least for a trial period? Can you do it? If not, who do we ask? Thanks. Anthony.Sebastian 15:11, 1 August 2008 (CDT)

Eduzendium Workgroup tag

Is there an EZ tag somewhere? What I'm looking for is something like this - currently, it only lists the course pages, not the individual articles created in the framework of the course. Thanks, -- Daniel Mietchen 18:04, 13 August 2008 (CDT)

Core Article structure

Hi Chris, glad to see you back here. May I use the occasion to remind you of our interrupted discussion about Core Article structure? Meanwhile, I have put it here so that others can more easily join.

I would also appreciate some more thoughts on this discussion about potential reuses of the Biology Week logo, as well as on its fine-tuning prior to the week (e.g. linking the newly inserted images to some suitable and possible yet-to-be-written articles).

Thanks, Daniel Mietchen 15:55, 28 August 2008 (CDT)


Chris, welcome back! I know you have a full plate of things to do ... and I don't want to be a nag. However, I would really appreciate finding out the current status of implementing subworkgroups which is a subject near and dear to my heart. Please give me at least an estimate of when you expect to finish geting it done. Thanks, Milton Beychok 12:36, 29 August 2008 (CDT)

Finding pages?

Hi! I think you know a lot about the technical stuff around here, so maybe you could help me out. I'd like to be able to go to the CZ:Monthly Write-a-Thon page conveniently. There is a redirect, CZ:Write-a-thon, which exists, but when I type the name of the redirect into the search box and click "go", it says the page doesn't exist.

Similarly, if I want to go to a user talk page, I think I can't get there by typing "User talk:..." into the search box, but have to type "User:..." into the search box and then click the "discussion" tab.

Could you help me understand what's going on and how to navigate around here? Thanks. Catherine Woodgold 07:58, 2 September 2008 (CDT)

ASEAN reformatting

I didn't know you could do what you did with align right. Is it possible to narrow the TOC box slightly so there is more whitespace between the table of contents and table of members, and also to align the tops? That would make it perfect. Your change is, however, an improvement--I just wasn't aware it could be done.

(Yes, I am going to be digging further into the R-template, but I need to spend a time with support first -- my print spooler is definitely ill). Howard C. Berkowitz 05:13, 7 September 2008 (CDT)

Howard, I don't know of any way to manipulate the TOC's dimensions. I could put in a buffer to the left of the table. That might have the effect of forcing the TOC away. I'll try that. As for knowing these about these tricks, you will pick them up by trial and error. That is how I have figured most things out. Chris Day 08:04, 7 September 2008 (CDT)

moved lists

Thank you. Minhaj Ahmed Khan Lodi 12:20, 7 September 2008 (CDT)

Misplaced subpages

Gremlins? I have no idea why it's there.

It fits with everything else today -- I put SP3 on my HP/Compaq machine, which turned out to be an utter disaster -- HP says they don't support SP3, and printing was crashing everything. You'd think they would talk to Microsoft, and when Microsoft did auto downloads, it wouldn't recommend SP3 for a HP machine. Much patching to get SP2 semi-working again, although I may have lost printing. Then, my Kaspersky antivirus is getting an apparent false positive and deleting a piece of HP-specific monitor code, which reboots the machine. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:21, 7 September 2008 (CDT)

So far, the deletes have been fine. I've been on something of a rampage myself, variously cleaning up some intelligence-related material, of which I was the initial author, from the Other Place. I may decide to cut back radically on some of the regional activity, where other material doesn't pass my smell test and does pretty well on tinfoil hat.
Also, I'm trying to clean up some varied military history things, as well as addng a good deal of computer content (a very good thing when I have to study a subject for a potential contract), some new military (and tightening some of my old), cross-linking, some medical, etc. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:44, 7 September 2008 (CDT)

MSDS/Properties subpages.

Hi Chris,

My opinion is that we should add _both_ a Properties, and an MSDS as permanent subpage types. My reasoning is as follows:

  • It has been common practice in industry now for many years to have MSDS's for materials. This has become important information, and different manufacturers (or suppliers) can provide different information about the same material. A wiki repository (with discussions etc.) could be quite useful in clarifying important safety information. I think we will want that.
  • It is important to note that the information contained on an MSDS will likely be repeated elsewhere in the cluster (main article, properties, etc.). That is ok, but with a caveat: Someone looking for an MSDS will want that information, but probably wont want to have to page thru an entire article to find it...that's why it's ok...the caveat is keeping info consistent between the different pages becomes more difficult.
  • All things have properties. It goes with being a thing. A standard way to get to a list of known properties for a given thing seems like a good idea to me. I'm still working on an easier way to add new properties (currently an author would have to edit two for the new property, and then the list of properties if it is not already there). I've been compiling a list of "standard" properties in the form of a " blank" template to help with this. Calling the page "Physical Properties" might also make sense, but simply calling it "Properties" is desirable for being both more general, and more succinct.

Sadly, I have not spent the kind of time I would like on this recently due to work obligations. Winter is our slow season, and perhaps this can change again soon. Thanks again for the help and guidance getting this going.--David Yamakuchi 09:52, 8 September 2008 (CDT)

If we have a general "Properties" subpage type, it needs to be discussed either via the CZ:Proposals system or the Editorial Council. Such discussion isn't absolutely required in all cases--I imagine there might be some perfectly unobjectionable subpage types that Chris might set up out of his own highly commendable initiative--but it is true in this case, because I object! Personally, I find the idea of a general "Properties" subpage rather incoherent. Yes, everything has properties. Properties are generally (not always) described by predicates of declarative sentences, and sentences are what go in the main articles. To propose a properties subpage type is akin to proposing a "Knowledge" subpage type, or "Relations" subpage type. Yes, there is knowledge about almost everything, and everything has some relations to other things. But explaining all that is what encyclopedia articles are for, right?

Now, if the notion you're after is not best described with "properties" but instead with "quick facts"--something like that--then that is simply what "Catalogs" are for. In this case, however, "Catalog" does not evoke what we want, I'm afraid. Scientists won't know to look for the chemical properties of Oxygen under the "Catalogs" tab, I'm afraid. I think finally--I've gone back and forth on this myself--that "Tables" would be a better description than "Catalogs." I'm inclined to think we ought to rename all Catalogs pages to Tables. This would obviate the need for a Properties subpage, at least a general Properties subpage.

Finally, if Properties subpages are intended strictly for tables of chemical and physical properties, I'd be inclined to use "Physical Properties" as David suggests, not the current "Properties". This makes much more sense, although here we should bear in mind that we are quite simply making a type of Table subpage. That would be all right, I suppose. --Larry Sanger 10:07, 14 September 2008 (CDT)

Smaller Biology Week header?

Hi Chris--it's very cool that the Biology Week header popped up suddenly on all articles. But could you make it smaller--just one bold line? Maybe use just the square "Biology Week" logo from the middle of the montage? --Larry Sanger 10:35, 14 September 2008 (CDT)

Will you delete my User Plan and roll-up

Chris, I need to start over with User Plan and roll-up. Will you delete existing for me, please. --Anthony.Sebastian 14:54, 14 September 2008 (CDT)

Me too! Me too! Seriously, it often takes me longer to fight the user plan template than to write the article. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:16, 14 September 2008 (CDT)
Howard, your userplan looks in good shape too. Why would you want to delete it and start over? Chris Day 15:28, 14 September 2008 (CDT)
To be honest, Chris, it's months out of date, and I find it very cumbersome to use. I commented it out because I hated to look at it being so unsynchronized with what I was doing; I'm really not sure I'll restart using it. At this point, why waste disk space? Howard C. Berkowitz 15:33, 14 September 2008 (CDT)
Now I understand your logic. You want it deleted for good. For some reason I interpreted it as "delete it so I can recreate it". I still think that is what Anthony wanted, or am I confused? Chris Day 19:58, 14 September 2008 (CDT)

Chris, yes my User Plan seems to have remedied itself. Thanks for checking on it. I will try to keep it up, but it slows my productivity. Perhaps it will just take time. --Anthony.Sebastian 20:19, 14 September 2008 (CDT)

Seriously, I appreciate your having clarified my own thinking. Yes, I think for me, not Anthony, it's not the right tool for me. Were there more active collaboration in some of the areas where I'm working, it might be helpful, but I feel as if I'm giving status reports, in what for me is an awkward format, that no one is going to read for information. I've already been a civil servant and a government contractor, which gave me more opportunity to submit unread material than CZ can approach. If someone sees a way in which my using the system would encourage collaboration, great! I'm open to it. So far, however, I've never had a comment that seemed related to it. Maybe it would be a wonderful tool with a larger number of authors and editors. I happen to like Milwaukee power tools, where others like the commercial grades of other drills. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:27, 14 September 2008 (CDT)


I didn't quite understand all the pipes and fields in the KC-135/SR-71 article, but I did put additional refueling information into SR-71 Blackbird. Please check me on this. Howard C. Berkowitz 04:40, 16 September 2008 (CDT)


Chris, re, speaks of "the list below", but has no list below. Seems confusing. --Anthony.Sebastian 21:38, 16 September 2008 (CDT)

Thanks for catching those typos

Chris, thanks for catching those typos in American Institute if Chemical Engineering. Milton Beychok 01:57, 17 September 2008 (CDT)

Approval by Berkowitz of American Institute if Chemical Engineering

Before Howard nominated the article for approval today, he relocated the TOC ... with which I have no problem. However that left the reference [2] hanging at the beginning of the third line in the second paragraph of the introduction section. I would like to change the word "about" in that paragraph to "approximately" because that would move the reference [2] so that it was not at the beginning of a line. Would that mean that the approved version has to be re-dated? If so, am I allowed to do that or can you or someone else do it? Please let me know. Milton Beychok 15:49, 17 September 2008 (CDT)

Please join us for Biology Week!

Hello Chris,

I am giving you this personal invitation to join us this week for Biology Week!

Please join us on the wiki and add or edit biology articles. Also, please let your friends and colleagues who are biologists, biology students, or naturalists, know about Biology Week and ask them to join us, too. Any way you can help make it an event would be most welcome. Think of it as a Biology Workgroup open house. Let's see if we can kick up activity a notch!

Thanks in advance! --Larry Sanger 12:14, 22 September 2008 (CDT)

Welcome to CitizendiumArticles related to flightInvertebrate biologyPopulation biologyHumanArticles related to DNAArticles related to pollenCZ:Biology Workgroup/Biology WeekArticles related to chloroplastsArticles related to treesArticles related to bacteriaArticles related to fungiEvolution of CetaceansBig catArticles related to metabolismInsectCore articles
The first Biology Week took place here from Sep 22-28, 2008.

How do I link to the Chemical Engineering Subgroup


I just posted a welcome message to a new user (User:Douglas M. Jackson} who is a fellow chemical engineer. I wanted to include a link to the Chemical Engineering Subgroup so that he could see the articles therein, but I couldn't get one to work. I finally had to give him the complete url.

I tried [[Category:Chemical Engineering Subgroup]], but it didn't work. Then I tried [[Chemical Engineering Subgroup]] but that only gave me an inactive link.

At the bottom of the main pages of all the articles I have created, the listed categories include Chemical Engineering Subgroup, and when I click on that, it works. Why does it not work when I want to link to it in a Talk page message? There must be some way to direct people to that subgroup without having to give them the complete url ... and I am just too dense to find the way.

Thanks in advance, Milton Beychok 15:37, 22 September 2008 (CDT)

Thanks very much, Chris. You have now confirmed that I am dense. :>) Now for another question: when will the subgroups be officially sanctioned and implemented? Milton Beychok 17:43, 22 September 2008 (CDT)

Removal of a sentence in Arabidopsis thaliana (Thale_Cress)

Hi Chris, I came across the deletion of that sentence and reference regarding the symbiotic bacteria and didn't know why you've deleted it. I had to check the discussion page to see your comment. Please use the edit summary field next time to clarify your motives. Thank you! :) Yuval Langer 18:13, 25 September 2008 (CDT)

I was hasty and didn't not fully delete it when I made the edit summary. Nevertheless will try and use it more often. Chris Day 18:57, 25 September 2008 (CDT)

Getting there (Chemical Engineering Subgroup)

Looks great, Chris. Just one problem ... American Institute of Chemical Engineers/Draft shows up in "Articles" but does not show up in "Drafts". Regards, Milton Beychok 11:06, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Thanks for fixing that. Milton Beychok 14:25, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Three more chemical enginers joined in the last week


Three more chemical engineers joined CZ in the last week:

They are all listed in Category:Engineering Authors at present. May I also add Category:Chemical Engineering Authors on their user pages? Or do you want to handle that? Milton Beychok 15:39, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Milt, I added the categories but I see no reason why you should not do this yourself for future members of your subgroup. I think we should be encouraging such groups to be self organizing rather than worrying about official authorisation. While you're here, can you think of a better name than subgroup? I am beginning to this this name is confusing since it would appear to preclude mutlidisciplinary groups and that should not be the case. Possibly we could call them minigroups? Chris Day 16:57,

26 September 2008 (CDT)

For that matter, I'd want to think twice before inviting some former submariner colleagues. They are ashore because they decided they had spent too much time in a subgroup. :-) Howard C. Berkowitz 17:17, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Chris, here are some suggestions arranged in the order of my preference (for what that is worth}:

  • Chemical Engineering Group: I don't see why we need "sub" or "mini" or any other prefix. This is the simplest and the best of my suggestions (in my opinion)
  • Chemical Engineering Interest Group: This is good (unless you think it too long)
  • Chemical Engineering Specialty Group: This may also be too long and I personally would prefer "Interest Group" rather than "Specialty Group"
  • Chemical Engineering SIG: The designation SIG (Special Interest Group) is used on a good many website

I really don't understand the concern about precluding multidisciplinary groups. The Engineering Workgroup is the mutidisciplinary group ... Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, etc. are subordinate groups within that multidisciplinary group. The same thing works for the Chemistry Workgroup as a multidisciplinary group... Organic Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, etc. are subordinate groups within that multidisciplinary group. And the same relationships could be found for Physics, Biology, Mathematics, and Health Sciences ... they are all multidisciplinary groups each with many subordinate groups.

Does this help? I hope so. Regards, Milton Beychok 18:13, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Not that we are hip-deep in editors, but interdisciplinary groups provide both a means of focusing/recruiting editors. The basic group structure, however, should always be open to review. Healing arts and health sciences may not be the best of distinctions, especially when there's the well-recognized area of Complementary and Alternative Medicine within the health sciences. Not that we have (as far as I can tell) any other active Military editors, but I am far more comfortable with electronic warfare than horse cavalry (in my limited experience, horses are large carnivorous beasts that breath fire at both ends). Howard C. Berkowitz 18:27, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

B's C's and M's and such

In the list below, ((is a missing meta-tag))

We have B61 (nuclear weapon)
We have B-17 ((bomber))
We have B-24 Liberator ((bomber)) -- which, when the Navy flew it, was the PB4Y (I think), and yet something else for the British
We have C-47 ((transport)), which was also the DC-3 airliner, which was officially the C-47 Dakota, which the British called the Dakota, and, when equipped with guns, was the AC-47
We have the M-1 Garand ((rifle))
We have the M1 Abrams ((tank))

See why I'd like to think about consistency? Howard C. Berkowitz 22:28, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

I think so but I'm not sure if it is a problem. For example, M1 tanks will sort under T, whereas M-1 rifle will sort under R, so they should not interfer with each other. And they can sort under under tank and rifle respectively even if it is not in their actual name. There is no reason why the abc field has to be the same as the pagename field. So one page "M1 Abrams" could sort under "Tank, M1 Abrams", the latter being the content in the abc field. Chris Day 22:35, 26 September 2008 (CDT)
OOps! Should have used double parens on the last two; neither has tank or rifle. Now, if we agree to do things that way (and either use, or don't use "names") inbetween, fine! There are assorted special cases, such as most military aircraft having names, although some "official" ones were never used, a few only have alphanumerics, and the British usually just have names...except when they don't:

B-17 Flying Fortress ((bomber)} Vickers Wellington ((bomber)} B-29 was the Superfortress, but the article doesn't have that name

The F-111 never had an assigned name, except that it was called the Aardvark, and no one was quite sure if it was a fighter or a bomber; the strategic version, in fact, was the FB-111 Howard C. Berkowitz 22:38, 26 September 2008 (CDT)

Rifle bomber metadata

"Just you wait, 'enry 'iggins. Just you wait"

Some of the problems will come with the aircraft that has multiple designations:

  1. Commercial: DC-3 (Douglas Commercial 3) [Transport]
  2. US Army: C-47, officially C-47 Dakota Transport, which was universally called the Gooney Bird
  3. UK: Dakota [Transport]
  4. US Navy: R4D [Transport]

Then, the U.S. Air Force tends to glorify fighters, so the F-117 stealth aircraft has a fighter designation even though it's a light bomber with essentially no air-to-air capability. The F-111, more bomber than fighter, at one point had a FB-111 designation for a more bomber variant. I suppose the British couldn't have adopted it as it never had an official name, although invariably called the Aardvark, with its electronic warfare variant being the Spark Vark.

Seriously, it can be hard to categorize a given aircraft as fighter or bomber, to say nothing of transports modified to carry bombs or guns.

Very few militaries ever heard of Linnaeus. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:56, 27 September 2008 (CDT)

Image for the Chemical Engineering subgroup banner


Chris: This is a very small image I drew that I would like to suggest as a replacement for the "gear" that is currently used on the left-hand side of the test Chemical Engineering subgroup banner. The "gear" is more appropos of Mechanical Engineering. The image I drew is more representative of the work done by most chemical engineers ... that is, converting laboratory chemical processes to large scale industrial processes.

My image is as small as I am capable of drawing it. It may be somewhat larger than the "gear" ... but not much.

What do you think? Can you use it? Milton Beychok 21:13, 27 September 2008 (CDT)

I knew that the gear was no good but it was something easy at the time. if you want to switch out the other figure that is possible too. Or adding a bit of colour, basically, I can change anything you like. Chris Day 21:21, 27 September 2008 (CDT)
As you suggested, I added a bit of color to the glassware and I also added some arrowheads. Yes, I would like it very much if you replaced the gear with this image. Thanks, Milton Beychok 02:30, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
Actually, I had already added a bit of color and changed the gear before you wrote the note above. It sounds as if you have not see the change on your screen yet. Try refreshing your cache and you will see the new banner image. I'll upload your new improved version too. Chris Day 08:54, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
Yes, I've now seen the banner with my image in it and it seems to fit very well. I would like to point out that what I see (on my 17-inch monitor) of the heading is "Chemical Engineering Subgro". The last two letters (..."up") are not visible. They are off-screen to the right. Would it be possible to use a slightly smaller font to rectify that?
When you have time, please upload into the banner that revised image of mine with the arrows and color. Thanks much, Milton Beychok 12:41, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

That is not a font problem but the size of the banner problem. It is currently 800 pixels wide. i could load one that is smaller and might suit your screen better (keep your eyes open for a change). This is not about the physical size of the screen but the resolution of the screen. My guess is that your screen is about 800 pixels wide or less. The one I work with is wider, about 1200 pixels, although it is physically smaller (15 inch). With the extra resolution it means I can see more on my screen. Is it possible you have it set at a lower resolution? It is possible to change the apparent resolution of the screen; reducing the apparent pixel width of the screen has the effect of making everything look larger. Chris Day 12:52, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

Chris, you've done it again! The banner looks perfect to me now. Yes, I do use a resolution of 800 by 600 pixels. I have used that for many years and I hate to even think about changing to a higher resolution. Thanks much once again, Milton Beychok 18:41, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

Useful information to keep in one place

I'm going to copy your note, since this is probably useful information more likely to be asked of you than me.

Hey Howard, I noticed you were doing a few cluster moves today and it inspired me to revisit another of my old projects to try and make it less complicated. If you do another move soon make sure you move the metadata template first. But leave the pagename field intact. You will see instruction on which specific pages needs to be moved as well as semi-automated links to speed things along. The very last thing to do is update the pagename and abc field in the metadata. Hope this helps you be more efficient. :) Chris Day 23:40, 27 September 2008 (CDT)

I haven't yet read the detailed notes, so I owe you a RTFM if you've already covered what I'm about to confirm. Per our earlier discussion (dare I say about Larry's explosion about nuclear weapons?), what I had been trying to do was put in (perhaps test) a naming convention for the more problematic military designations, especially the U.S. nasty habit of calling totally different things the same M-number or B-number.
Here is the sequence to what I've done. Let's start with a random example, of a WWII fighter aircraft, the P-47. It had the "official" name of "Thunderbolt", which was rarely used -- people called it, for reasons I don't understand, the "Jug".
Anyway, I intended to use the format, at least for major things like tanks and aircraft and very common things such as rifles (read the bullets below as the parts of the title)
  • Alphanumeric designation (e.g., P-47) (and yes, sometimes it's letter-dash-number and sometimes letter-number.
  • "Official" name, if one exists (e.g., "Thunderbolt")
  • Disambiguating term in parentheses (e.g., (fighter))
Here's how I did the move, which may be a misunderstanding of earlier discussions:
  1. Move the existing metadata for "article" to "article (name) (descriptor)"/metadata
  2. In the metadata page, change the sort field to descriptor, article (name)
  3. Move the (article) (and talk page) to (article) (name) (disambiguator)
  • While I haven't fully thought it out, I would probably use redirects, or possibly short articles with a little more explanation: see DC-3 (airliner), which is also C-47 Skytrain (transport), R4D (transport), Dakota (transport), and, as a modification AC-47 Spooky (ground attack). The reality was that C-47 transports were called Gooney Birds, except that the AC-47 gunship was "Puff, the Magic Dragon." I'm not sure about redirects for what people actually called such things, given the B-52 Stratofortress (bomber) is usually called the BUFF, which, in keeping with the CZ family-friendliness policy, stands for Big Ugly Fat...Fellow (yes, Fellow). (Actually, I think it's a rather good-looking aircraft).
I gather I didn't quite get it right?
There is another category not yet touched, of electronics that do not work as article titles, since their format is (most commonly) AN/XYZ-number(maybe letter). Since the AN (or sometimes TSEC) is an alpha constant, I name the AN/SPY-1 article SPY-1 and the TSEC/KG-34 KG-34. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:00, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

See B-52 Superfortress (bomber). Did I do that right? Howard C. Berkowitz 00:21, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
Not right, move the metadata to the new name before editing the actual data inside. Use the move tab at the very top of the page. I tried to fix it. You'll note that there is now an option to move the definition. However there are already pages populated for the article and talk page? Did you move those earlier?
If so, they this is what you need to do. Move the definition page and the metadata page to the new pagename too. Chris Day 00:26, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

I just read, voyeur that I may be, your description at Larry's talk page. It didn't seem to give me any different messages than I had had previously; just inconsistent names. Maybe I need to clear cache? Will try that.
Reading your note after the edit conflict, I did move metadata first, but don't think I touched definition; I'm certain I didn't for B-52, just (in order) metadata (with abc and name change) then article page to new name00:28, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
The problem is that the you did it half right. You changed the metadata correctly but you did not move the metadata template to its new correct name, you need to do that as well. In this case Template:B52/Metadata needed to be moved to Template:B52 Superfortress (bomber)/Metadata as well. Actually, I think I would not even have (bomber) as part of the name since it is obvious even without it, but you could use it as a sorting term in the ABC field.
Anyway, I just moved the metadata template to the new home but I also changed the pagename back to B52 (it was correct the way you did it but I thought in that format you would be able to see the notes at the top). To finish it of now, since the article and talk page have already been moved, you just have to move the definition page and then edit the pagename field to be EXACTLY the same as the cluster name. Chris Day 00:39, 28 September 2008 (CDT)


What disambig is no longer needed? (signed) *confused* (Hey, let's do this for a missile, and then it really can be rocket science) Howard C. Berkowitz 00:31, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

There was a template at the top of the page from when it existed at B52. It gave a message saying there are other meanings for B52 go to the B52 (disambiguation) page. Clearly that is no longer required (might be a wikipedia carry over). Chris Day 00:39, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
Actually, I'm not sure (bomber) isn't useful even without sorting. U.S. bombers usually but do not always start with a B (e.g., FB-111 and F-117), but the Russian (Tu-95, Tu-22M, and Tu-160) are all bombers, as are the Britisn (Avro Shackleton, De Havilland Mosquito, and Handley-Page Victor), as are the German (Ju-88 and Do-17)Howard C. Berkowitz 00:44, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
Definitely useful in the abc but that does not mean it has to be in the title, right? Although I guess it is good to make it slightly less cryptic. Chris Day 01:10, 28 September 2008 (CDT)


Unless there's something non-obvious I'm missing, F-47 should not be present even as a redirect. I've mentioned that U.S. military designations seem intended to cause insanity. If I put a speedydelete on a redirect, I was concerned you might not see it.

Until after the Second World War, Army/Air Force fighter aircraft used the letter "P" (for pursuit) rather than "F" for fighter. (Tne U.S. Navy did designate fighters with an F, but had a completely different system besides that)

In WWII, "F" aircraft were purpose-built photoreconnaissance aircraft ("F" for flash? I have no idea). Later, most reconnaissance aircraft were modifications of a fighter (RF-101) or bonber (RB-47); the few dedicated reconnaissance aircraft, such as the U-2 Dragon Lady, were sufficiently classified that no one wanted anyone to know they took pictures.

We haven't gotten into the reconnaissance modification of a B-47 Stratojet (bomber) being a RB-47 Stratojet (photoreconnaissance) or EB-47 Stratojet (electronic intelligence), have we? Bwahahaha! Or things like the Navy EKA-3, which started as an attack aircraft, was modified into a tanker (K) and then electronic warfare/electronic intelligence, and then was used by the Army in Vietnam for electronic intelligence -- while the same basic aircraft was the Air Force B-66 bomber (the Air Force generally didn't like to call things Attack), and the EB-66 electronic warfare aircraft (if the B-66 had a name, I don't know what it was. The Navy versions were Skywarriors, but actually called Whales).

I'm quite certain that the only P-series fighter that continued to be in U.S. service was the P-51 Mustang, which became the F-51 Mustang. I sincerely doubt any P-47s were designated F-47s, and the photographic series never went that high.

  • they're coming to take me away, away...*

Howard C. Berkowitz 13:48, 28 September 2008 (CDT)

I did not think too clearly when i made that rush of edits. I was fixing double redirects. For example F-47 redirected to P-47 that redirected to P-47 (thingy). So I then redirected F-47 to P-47 (thingy) since it is internally more consistent. However, slapping a speedydelete on the unwanted redirects will work too. Chris Day 14:05, 28 September 2008 (CDT)
A tragic image...he may be a Commie, but I feel for that MiG-17 pilot, desperately looking through the clouds, hoping he will find a definition pages...or an approval page...or an airfield page...before his fuel, or redirects, run out... I think I'll wait on the MiG-25, Su-25 and MiG-29 (I don't think I wrote articles yet on the MiG-23 and Su-27) Howard C. Berkowitz 02:33, 29 September 2008 (CDT)

Medical sign

Please see small question at bottom of User_talk:Robert_Badgett. Should the Sign page be renamed to Medical sign or Sign (Medical)? Whichever one you recommend, we can make the other one redirect to it. Thanks - Robert Badgett 10:58, 30 September 2008 (CDT)

News from the guinea pig

Hi Chris, the main surprise was that I was even more confused this time, even though I had gone through the process before. This was possibly due to a larger number of subpages involved in Data and Equation (as compared to Snake and Set) and to the missing links to delete or speedy-tag them. Please take a closer look, also at the order in which I finally did the moves, following your announces in good faith, and at the appearance of these two entries in the list. Another surprise was that a search for "unexpected popular" did not bring about MediaWiki:Movepagetext which I think would be the right place to explain the cluster move mechanics. Daniel Mietchen 08:18, 2 October 2008 (CDT)

Do you have an answer to the last two W-a-t questions? Daniel Mietchen 08:36, 2 October 2008 (CDT)

Tank you very much

Chris, I tried to use the cluster move template, which worked for parts but not all of M1 Abrams (tank), moving from M1 Abrams. The definition, in particular, wouldn't move; I kept getting error messages that it already existed (with the disambiguator) but, as far as I could tell, it did not.

You came up with a good fix when you merged the definitions and suggested I pick the best, but there still is a problem with the template. Putting on my musty programming hat, and not having worked with MetaWiki code, is there a way to have these error conditions, and what triggered them, to be logged for analysis? Screen shots would be awfully cumbersome.

Thinking about MediaWiki and your broader efforts to organize information here, I'm reminded of clinical decision support software I built -- when it does something "intelligent", it can always be asked to "explain its reasoning". Maybe that would be a prototype; there were procedures much like that in adding books to the collection when I worked at the Library of Congress -- without traceback, if a book was catalogued incorrectly, it was lost for all time once on "a" shelf. Howard C. Berkowitz 11:47, 2 October 2008 (CDT)

Hi thanks for the info. There is potentially a problem when the articles have been moved in a previous life, especially by cut and paste. Under such a scenario a redirect at the desired target can really screw up a move. This is nothing new but it becomes more obvious with such a tool. Some moves can only be done by constables with the power to delete. i suspect your problem comes into this class although i cannot be sure. Either way it is not too bad since the problematic pages that remain are tagged so I know exactly what needs to be fixed. With the old style of moves it was much harder to track down problems and fix; many subpages would get duplicated or go missing. This is very much a work in progress so it should improve with time. Chris Day 13:46, 2 October 2008 (CDT)

need your help again, I fear

Chris, I had moved "Vim" to "Vim1", and now I've tried to move it back and it's in some sort of limbo. My bad. Can you help? I've now learned (the hard way) that there is enforcement of capitalization of the article name. Very sorry for the churn. I promise I won't do it again!Pat Palmer 21:18, 2 October 2008 (CDT)

Tracking atoms

Chris, better wording, image description. Thanks. --Anthony.Sebastian 22:32, 4 October 2008 (CDT)

Note, I changed the hydrogen atoms from orange to black too. i think it is impossible to track the hydrogen in this case. Besides the major point here is the oxygen as an explanation for why it is important to show water on both sides of the equation. Chris Day 22:38, 4 October 2008 (CDT)
And that the oxygen molecules come from splitting water, not from the oxygen in carbon dioxide. I'll se if I can evaluate the data on the distribution of the reactant water's H atoms. --Anthony.Sebastian 23:03, 4 October 2008 (CDT)

Apropos The Kingston Trio

Given it's a musical group, aren't notes more appropriate than references? :-) Howard C. Berkowitz 00:22, 5 October 2008 (CDT)

Probably, I just deleted one of the sections. The references could be changed to Notes. It would still uses the <references/> tag though, if using <ref></ref> system in the text. Chris Day 00:26, 5 October 2008 (CDT)
Duh, that flew right over my head! Notes it is. Chris Day 00:41, 5 October 2008 (CDT)
Funny, I was thinking about this at breakfast this morning. What I think I'll do is to *return* the top 40 hits to the main text -- I think they're important for anyone doing a quick look at the article, BUT I will put a full discography into the tab section, hopefully for both their released singles and for their albums, in chronological order. If you have any serious objections to this, lemme know in this same space. Thanks! (As he whistles "The Merry Minuet", with its George Bush-like denouement) Hayford Peirce 11:13, 5 October 2008 (CDT)
More than "Merry Minuet" might wind up wikilinking. The fundamental architectural element inside the guts of electronic mail is called a Message Transfer Agent, and "MTA" is a very nice description of several types of infinite mail loops. While fewer and fewer students know the song, I do use it as a teaching parable.
Thinking back a long long time, when "Tom Dooley" came out, my then military school roommante -- not friend -- was the bugler. It was in the fall, as I remember, and immediately produced the Thanksgiving lament, "Hang down your head, Tom Turkey." 11:18, 5 October 2008 (CDT)
Hehe. If I ever do an article on MTA, be sure to remind me to get a reference in to the Message Transfer Agent. Or you can add it yourself. Hayford Peirce 11:21, 5 October 2008 (CDT)
Righto, Chris. I've just typed up a disco. in Wordpad and will import it in a while also with some more info. I know that there are many, many ways of doing this sort of stuff.... Hayford Peirce 12:13, 5 October 2008 (CDT)

How much is that Doggie in the CZ Window?

Oh, lookee, there's a little doggie running around the subgroup! Thanks, Chris--love it! Aleta Curry 22:21, 7 October 2008 (CDT)

I was just playing around. You can switch something else into that slot if you like. Especially when it starts to give you a migraine. Anything at Image:Dogs banner.gif will show up at that spot. Alternatively, you can have a whole banner like the chemical engineering subgroup, see Image:Chemical Engineering banner.jpg. You can uploaded to Image:Dog banner.jpg and it would displace the little dog. Chris Day 23:43, 7 October 2008 (CDT)

Metadata error?

Hi Chris--some of the newer articles to the dogs subgroup are not showing up. Scanning my memory banks, I think Hayford may have already complained about this, and I seem to recall that sometimes it takes a while for the little CZ Update Fairy to check the metadata pages and then file everything where it's supposed to be.

However, John Emms for example was created back in April and still hasn't made it into the subgroup. When you have a "spare moment" (ha, ha--which of course means please take some time out from your already busy schedule if you can manage to without cursing me out) can you have a look at the John Emms metadata page and see if I've made an error on it? It looks fine to me, but of course once one's brain has missed spotting a mistake, it will continue to miss it.


Aleta Curry 18:43, 8 October 2008 (CDT)

I doubt there is an error in the metadata. The problem is that the categories get updated automatically by the subpages template without the article actually being edited. From experience it takes a recent edit to update the category. This is also a problem on wikipedia when categories are updated autoimatically by a template. However, there it is less noticable since the articles are edited more often, even if only by vandals. I suggest you make a minor edit to the articles you want listed and that should do the trick. Chris Day 19:47, 8 October 2008 (CDT)
Okey-dokey--thanks! Aleta Curry 19:51, 8 October 2008 (CDT)

What happened to the "Move" tab?

I want to rename the CALPUFF cluster, but the Move tabs are not longer displayed! What happened to them? I tried to use the Move Cluster link on the Talk page, but I get a message saying that I don't have permission to move pages. How then do we rename a cluster? Milton Beychok 18:11, 11 October 2008 (UTC)

Someone must have made it a sysop-only feature by mistake. Chris Day 02:10, 12 October 2008 (UTC)
Shall we create an article page, so it can be watchlisted, for questions? The "material from Wikipedia" checkbox. Is that covered by the wikiauthor template? Howard C. Berkowitz 02:12, 12 October 2008 (UTC)
Sorry Howard, I'm not sure I understand the question? Chris Day 02:14, 12 October 2008 (UTC)
I'm suggesting a page -- call it CZ:RecentBugs on which reports can be placed, and workarounds when known. Right now, things are going variously to the Forums, where it's a tossup where something will be placed, and it takes searching. tends not to work for me; something is blacklisted about my emails, even though when I send them from totally different mailservers. I suspect it's because the originating address is in Comcast. Howard C. Berkowitz 02:21, 12 October 2008 (UTC)

What happened to Wikipedia content notice?

Chris, do you know what has happened to the notification of WP content at the bottom of Main article pages that contain WP content? And also what happened to the radio link at the bottom of the article Edit pages where we could click to activate that notification? Were those changes caused by the recent upgrade for MediaWiki? Milton Beychok 19:18, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

Thank you for the assistance with tables!

Chris, just wanted to say thank you for helping me out with my tables. I've been sandboxing them because they're obviously not my strong point, but I'm picking up a lot about how to code them properly with wikicode through your edits and I really appreciate your giving me a hand. Cheers! Louise Valmoria 20:41, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

how does one find inventory of uploaded images?

Chris: how does one find inventory of uploaded images, and search by user? Anthony.Sebastian 20:36, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

Chris, you gave me exactly what I needed. Add my thank you to your galaxy of such. --Anthony.Sebastian 22:58, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

Edit I don't understand

Editing ULTRA, you appear to have taken all categories off the article. I can see removing CZ:Live since it is nowhere near ready, but why the others? Sandy Harris 13:18, 20 October 2008 (UTC)


Chris, there are at the moment two articles "Ether" (chemical and physical). Both ethers are alternatively spelled aether (although I have seen aether much more for the physical than for the chemical ether. In chemistry aether is quite old-fashioned, but in physics it is still used). Now you made a redirect which refers only to the chemical aether. Could you please have it link to the physical aether as well?--Paul Wormer 16:13, 20 October 2008 (UTC)

In that case it should point to the disambiguation page. Does that make more sense? Chris Day 17:56, 20 October 2008 (UTC)

Access to CSS, etc.

See MediaWiki:Common.css. There's also a MediaWiki:Monobook.css, but it seems to be empty. The CSS, etc for the skins seems to come from someplace else, someplace that probably needs shell access to the server to futz with (with filenames like "skins/monobook/main.css"). There's also a MediaWiki:Common.js; all those files (MediaWiki: in general) are automatically protected, and need SysOp before they can be edited. J. Noel Chiappa 18:23, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

Got it. You're right i can edit them. Although i shouldn't. My access is limited to keeping the subpages template up and running. Plus there is a very good chance I could make a mistake. At least we know where the changes need to be made for future easy stuff. Chris Day 21:01, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Well, the skins are elsewhere (i.e. not in the MediaWiki: namespace - and not anywhere accessible via CZ, I'm pretty sure), but I presume Derek knows where they are since he (I think it's Derek, anyway) maintains the Pinkwich skin. J. Noel Chiappa 01:46, 24 October 2008 (UTC)
Derek is definitely the one to talk to with regard to the blockquote tag. Chris Day 03:38, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for fixing the nomination of Accidental release source terms

Thanks, Chris. Milton Beychok 21:46, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

New preprocessor

I see the new preprocessor has been installed. When did that happen? J. Noel Chiappa 21:56, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

It has? I didn't realise that was what the upgrade was about. It happened about two weeks ago. So now i don't have to keep writing the weird code to stop all the templates expanding at once? i.e the {{ {{#if:argument|A|B}}|parameters}} can be written as {{#if:argument|{{A|parameters}}|{{B|parameters}}}} with the same expansion size? Are there any other significant differences you know about off the top of your head? Chris Day 03:42, 25 October 2008 (UTC)

Actinides / Actinoids and Element Infobox

I picked up a linguistic variation somewhere - most of my basic chemistry texts (and the ones directed to high school students) say actinides. Happy to change my language use to fit in with the existing template on that one. Agreed that the info box needs a bit more documentation though. Have worked it out with a bit of practice (didn't realise until just recently that oxidation states were those mysterious no1, no2 terms!) and from modelling off the approved articles, but it would be useful to have some standards as well (such as length of electron configuration section - can this be placed into some kind of shorthand once you get to the larger elements?) and a standard set of terms for properties and uses. I've got a couple of references at hand to check what the most commonly used terms are, though. Louise Valmoria 04:59, 25 October 2008 (UTC)

Approval of Accidental release source terms due to be finalized today

Chris, the Accidental release source terms article is due to be finalized today and Matt Innis doesn't seem to be available. Are you authorized to do that? Or is there anyone other than Matt that does that task? Please let me know. Milton Beychok 03:13, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

I'm not authorized, you need a constable. Is Matt the only active one right now? Chris Day 13:22, 27 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks Chris! D. Matt Innis 00:58, 28 October 2008 (UTC)
Me, too. Thanks, Chris Milton Beychok 01:04, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Are you talking about moving THAAD from the talk page?

It looks like S-200 and THAAD both moved.

I moved the S-200 metadata first, then the main page and all subpages.

With THAAD (spelled out), I tried to cluster move from the main page and got a very confusing message. It appears, however, to have moved, but I could be wrong. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:15, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Biology/health sciences question before possible cluster move

I created Granulyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, using the spelling in the FDA and several research papers, and said to myself, "self, that doesn't look right". So, I confirmed that MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) does, indeed, use granulocyte, as do most of the textbooks that are immediately at hand.

Should there be a CZ policy on this for the relevant groups, definitely Health Sciences and perhaps Biology (and others)? I'm inclined to say MeSH should be the final authority on names, although not necessarily on such things as sort sequence. There may be case-by-case exceptions where MeSH has a really obscure term for a term of ordinary technical obscurity, but I'm inclined to go with MeSH unless there is a strong reason not to do so.

What do you think?

If you think it should be "granulocyte", I understand the move cluster procedure, at the moment, should be:

1. Go to Metadata and move it. Do not change names no matter if the template complains; I assume that means it accepted the name with which it is unhappy.

2. Go to the main page and do a cluster move.

3. Go to the old metadata and manually edit it to speedydelete.

Howard C. Berkowitz 15:02, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Two minor bugs you may want to fix

  • When an article's Metadata page is edited (to revise the status or add a category or etc.), the preview button does not work properly. It only shows the page as it was before being edited. The only way to see the edited page is to save the edited page.
  • When I go to the Category:Engineering Workgroup and click on the "Draft" link, it displays 11 articles (which is correct). But if I click on the "Approved" link. it only shows 10 articles (which is incorrect). For some reason, one of the approved articles (Ammonia production) does not show up. The same thing happens at the Category:Chemistry Workgroup and for the same Ammonia production article. I suspect it may be something to do with how the approval of that article was finalized.
  • The "Approved" link has this notation right next to it: [0]. Why is it zero and what is it supposed to be telling me?
  • I don't understand why both a "Draft" link and an "Approved" link are needed. Are they not one and the same? In all of the other workgroups I have visited, the "Approved" link and the "Draft" link display exactly the same articles ... so why have both links?

I just thought you might want to look into the above items. Milton Beychok 18:27, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Approved articles are static but draft articles are not. While the list is the same the content os potentially different. However, I have been considering getting rid of the draft link I agree the redundancy factor is quite high.
Re: the Ammonia production problem. this is due to the fact that Matt set the status to zero after protecting the article. The result is that the categories changed on the article and there has been no edit since. But the new categories placed by the subpages template do not kick in until there has been an edit to the page (this is something that needs to be fixed but might take too much computer power to justify). i will edit the page so the approved categories get set correctly. Chris Day 20:03, 28 October 2008 (UTC)
Regarding the first bug you note. This cannot be fixed as even in preview the page is reading data from the unedited page. There is no way to fix this issue as far as I'm aware. Chris Day 20:08, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Where did Category:Mathematical functions come from?

Chris: Take a look at Category:Mathematical functions. Where did that come from? Can anyone just create a category and collect articles in it? I thought that was only so in Wikipedia. Milton Beychok 02:39, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

No, we don't use categories. Only ones placed by the subpages template. I suppose there is no reason why a mathmatical functions subgroup for enthusiasts could not exist. Citizendiums brand of categories is well developed Related Articles subpages. Chris Day 02:57, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

I agree that there is no reason why a mathematical functions subgroup could not exist. But the fact remains that someone created a Category:Mathematical functions and it is in use as of this moment in time. Perhaps some notification is needed that creating categories is a no-no. Is there anything you can do about this? Milton Beychok 04:02, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
I already left a note on Dmitrii's talk page. It appear to be a minor misunderstanding. You'll see this a lot from authors with experience on wikipedia. Chris Day 11:34, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Definitions without articles

Ooh, clever. I like that stuff very much. J. Noel Chiappa 16:47, 2 November 2008 (UTC)