Please take a look at
which has now become an index of all things that somehow contain "Forest"
in their name, including DeForest Kelley (an actor) and Forrest Gump. It
also contains dozens of links to places in the UK that we don't have
articles about yet and that have "Forest" in their name.
User:Pigsonthewing seems to insist on having these links on the page and
keeps adding more.
This is problematic because "articles" like this become free-for-all
linklists to add unstructured, useless information. It is also not the
purpose of disambiguation pages to be a list or an index of all things
with a certain text in it -- they are not search indices and are pretty
useless as such. If I search for "Forest Glade" in the UK, I don't expect
to find that page by visiting the "forest" disambiguation page. In fact,
it might make finding things more difficult for hapless Google visitors
who stumble upon such pages from search engines and find out that they
point to nowhere.
The purpose of disambiguation pages is to list articles with the same
title where I'd otherwise have no idea where to find them. And this is
made much harder by these chaotic linklists, as the actual information
that I want gets buried under a heap of "Oh, look, I found another name
with 'forest' in it" style crap.
I believe we should set a clear policy that
- Disambiguation pages should link only to pages that actually exist -
otherwise, if the subject is worth describing, it should get a brief
description *on the disambig page*.
- Disambiguation pages should only link to pages where there is a
*substantial risk of confusion* with the actual page title.
Currently, Wikipedia:Disambiguation makes no such recommendations.
On another note, I think that our articles on numbers, such as "one
hundred one", have a similar problem in that they become free-for-alls to
add completely useless information. For example, the article
tells us that 101 is "a .com URL that redirects to the Disney .go.com
website", and "in the title of the movie 101 Dalmatians, starring Glenn
Close". This is complete rubbish. Anyone who cares about the movie knows
where to find it. If we ever have a Wikitrivia site, that might be the
kind of material worth adding to it, but it does not belong in an
encyclopedia. In my opinion, all these number articles should be deleted
except where there's something really informative about the actual number
(such as the history of the number zero).
I'm going to my brother's wedding in Mobile, Alabama today and I will
be back Saturday evening. A few people have limited access to the
Paypal account to check the balance, and I hope they will update the
http://www.wikimedia.org/letter.html page daily or more often for me.
The Wikipedia is down again. If it's of interest to
anyone, I just got the following error message on the
A database query syntax error has occurred. This could
be because of an illegal search query (see Searching
Wikipedia), or it may indicate a bug in the software.
The last attempted database query was:
SELECT HIGH_PRIORITY length(cur_text) AS x,
cur_namespace, cur_is_redirect FROM cur WHERE
from within function "". MySQL returned error "2013:
Lost connection to MySQL server during query".
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Well, Tim is out of town. Jason is a couple hours away and there's no
way I'm asking him to drive down on Christmas. The colo does not have
24x7 staffing, so no one is there to reboot it for us today.
Therefore, we're doomed until tomorrow morning. Jason has a family
obligation tomorrow at 10AM, so he _could_ go down tomorrow afternoon,
but only if we can't get someone at the colo to do the reboot.
At least the website is serving cached pages, maybe if someone has a
chance, the cached-pages message could be updated to explain the time
we expect editing to resume.
>From now on when we think about how to spend money, we should think about
this morning, and think about redundancy, which is expensive but probably
necessary as we get bigger and bigger.
Brion Vibber wrote:
> While the new server is wonderfully fast, it's crashing way *way* too
> often. :(
> Has the memory been tested? What kind of warranty do we have? Will
> Penguin replace any defective parts? How long would this take?
> We *really* need a way to reboot it remotely. Somebody's going to have
> to go in on Christmas day just to push the reset button, and that ain't
> -- brion vibber (brion @ pobox.com)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: wikien-l-bounces(a)Wikipedia.org [mailto:wikien-l-
> bounces(a)Wikipedia.org] On Behalf Of Andrew Lih
> Sent: Monday, December 22, 2003 9:25 AM
> To: 'English Wikipedia'
> Subject: RE: [WikiEN-l] Redirects
> Tarquin wrote
> >A *very long time ago* I suggested we implement sysnonyms of the
> >REDIRECT keyword, that would indicate the type:
> >#DEPRECATED for subpages, etc
> >and plain old #REDIRECT would correspond to a "see also" entry.
> This is a great idea... Something that will help make sense of the
> all redirects" policy, which I've always had problems with.
Deprecated isn't a great idea; we want to restrict names to ones that
don't have meaning only within a Wikipedia context; they should have
meaning outside of Wikipedia. Such as
#REDIRECT (for alternate names of same topic)
#MISSPELLING (for misspellings)
#SUBTOPIC_OF (for redirects into broader topics, which I think is bad
practice but other people like)
Is there an established policy on the English Wikipedia as to what sort
of Redirects should or should not exist?
I used to maintain the point of view that having redirects all over the
place (as long as they always go to the intended article) can never do
any harm, and in fact they keep the pages accessible under old links
(i.e. deleting them would break links elsewhere on the Internet).
However, I remember having an argument about this on the German
Wikipedia mailinglist a few months back, and it seemed that their
prevailing view was that redirects should only exist in places where a
paper encyclopedia would have an item saying "see: XYZ", lest they
clutter up the "All articles" Special page.
What is the view of the English Wikipedia in this regard? Currently
there seem to be a lot of redirects that seem redundant, but as I said,
my view on this is that they do not do any harm.
As an example, should the following page be deleted or kept?
because the actual German name of the party is "Sozialdemokratische
Partei Deutschlands", not "Sozialdemokratischen" - that is an inflected
form (genitive or dative).
Or how about wrong spellings, should these be kept? e.g.
And what about ancient subpages, e.g.
>I don't think redirects should show up at all on the
>"All articles" page, if they do perhaps it should be fixed.
Yeah we should be consistant with our defintions as well and only list
'articles' per our automatic definition of what an article is: Over 0 bytes
in the main/content page/article namespace with at least one internal link
and without #REDIRECT in the text.
But I think an "All pages" function would be a useful thing to have in
addition to the "All articles" function.
-- Daniel Mayer (aka mav)
first of all, thanks to Angela for her reply to my previous question.
So, as I carried on browsing around for information, I came across this:
It says on that page:
"Please don't try to fix these by hand.
-- Tim Starling 00:09, Dec 9, 2003 (UTC)"
What does that mean? Are they going to be fixed by some sort of
automated bot? If so, why is that list even there? I'm confused.
While this may sound trivial, I'm fed up with User:126.96.36.199, who
insists on using his own idiosyncratic punctuation, even knowing it's
wrong, and even knowing that it's causing other people work to fix.
This is very irritating, especially since he's doing it deliberately
(as opposed to, for example, people for whom English is a second
language getting grammar wrong).
What can be done?
Allan Crossman - http://dogma.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk
PGP keys - 0x06C4BCCA (new) || 0xCEC9FAE1 (compatible)