Wikipedia:Simple talk/Archive 144

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Complicated words

I understand that articles should contain words listed in Basic English. But as I think about writing a typical article, I feel the need to use other words. Some that come to mind are "type" for a kind of object or concept, and "parts" for the constituents of an object or concept. What is one to do about such cases? How to tell when a non-Basic word is Simple enough? David spector (talk) 20:30, 17 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Generally, try to stick to the Wikipedia:Basic English combined wordlist as much as possible. When this can not be done, link the term if an article exists. Also, try to keep words as unambiguous as possible. When given a choice, use the word with as little different meanings as possible. Movie has one meaning, film has many and motion picture has one but is not as simple of a term so movie would be the best choice. As an article exists, it should still be linked to the first time the term is used. This handles many cases, but at times you will just have to wing it and hope for the best. Another, possible larger issue, is sentence structure. Short and precise sentences should be used. "Flowery" adjectives and big words to fluff up the language should be avoided. Keep it simple, direct and to the point. Pure Evil (talk) 20:56, 17 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@David spector: Good summary by @Pure Evil. It's true that the word lists aren't enough in many cases. Here are some other things you can do:
  • Use Wikipedia:Basic English combined wordlist as a reference instead of the more limited list you linked above.
  • Aim for an 8th-grade reading level. There are some websites that analyze text and give you a reading level.
  • When possible, replace a complex word or phrase with other words that explain it. You can also explain it, maybe in parentheses, after including the term.
  • Link to a related term, if the term itself doesn't have an article. If closely enough related, you can even create a redirect for the term, as I just did for Gastroenterologist.
There's one more that I hesitate to mention because I discourage its use, but I'll mention it anyway because it is used sometimes: linking to Simple English Wiktionary. That should only be done if Simple English Wiktionary actually has a page for the term. I discourage doing this for a couple of reasons. One is that it makes the reader have to go to a different site. The other is that there is often already a local page that can be linked instead, but even if there isn't it's acceptable to leave the link red here. If terms are linked to Wiktionary and we later have an article created that could be used, nothing and no one is checking all those Wiktionary links to see if they could be changed to point to the new article. We also lose the red link that could let us know an article that is needed here.
By the way, if you'd like to know some ways that this wiki is different from other Wikipedias, you can look at this list that I keep. The list itself is unofficial -- not policy or guideline -- but it does link to relevant policies and guidelines where possible. If you have any questions about it, feel free to ask. -- Auntof6 (talk) 21:25, 17 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Is there an editing tool that can be used to check a text for words that are not on the Wikipedia:Basic English combined wordlist? Kdammers (talk) 03:50, 18 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Kdammers: I don't know of one, but maybe someone else will. -- Auntof6 (talk) 05:14, 18 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Two cheap tricks: #1) Linking, like Ao6 says. I write lots of articles about frogs. Scientists use the term snout-vent length when they say how big an amphibian's body is, because then they can compare animals to each other without fussing with legs or tails. So I put The frog is 44 mm long [[snout-vent length|from nose to rear end]]. The casual reader gets simple words. The interested reader can click for the specific term.
#2) Don't translate from another wiki. Write from scratch. When you see that en.wiki used the exact right term (like saying "term" instead of "word," for example) it's soooooo tempting to think that no lesser term will do, even if you would have thought of "word" with no trouble working from scratch. (I write froggie articles here on Simple and then translate TO en.wiki, heh heh heh). Darkfrog24 (talk) 20:21, 19 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
As an opposing point, I almost never create from scratch. I find that doing so tends to leave out many important points and can lead to other issues. When discussing a topic, it is usually best to start with an outline of what is going to be said. Without one, the editor is more likely to ramble on. In this case, for me, the outline is the other wiki's page on the topic. It normally has all the key information that is needed, it just needs to be made easier to understand. This part requires a bit of skill and practice to translate and restructure syntax on the fly. The editor need to rewrite as they go and quickly decide what they need to keep and what can be edited out. Trimming sentence structures, rewording statements, linking words and terms, removing fluff.. over time it becomes second nature. This can often lead to a more thorough and accurate article and helps avoid original research and bias as the editor is not the source of the information only its translator. Pure Evil (talk) 20:45, 20 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you all for this great advice! David spector (talk) 18:17, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Desktop Improvements update

Making this the new default

Hello. I wanted to give you an update about the Desktop Improvements project, which the Wikimedia Foundation Web team has been working on for the past few years. Our work is almost finished! 🎉

We would love to see these improvements become the default for readers and editors across all wikis. In the coming weeks, we will begin conversations on more wikis, including yours. 🗓️ We will gladly read your suggestions!

The goals of the project are to make the interface more welcoming and comfortable for readers and useful for advanced users. The project consists of a series of feature improvements which make it easier to read and learn, navigate within the page, search, switch between languages, use article tabs and the user menu, and more. The improvements are already visible by default for readers and editors on more than 30 wikis, including Wikipedias in French, Portuguese, and Persian.

The changes apply to the Vector skin only, although it will always be possible to revert to the previous version on an individual basis. Monobook or Timeless users will not notice any changes.

The newest features
  • Table of contents - our version is easier to reach, gain context of the page, and navigate throughout the page without needing to scroll. It is currently tested across our pilot wikis. It is also available for editors who have opted into the Vector 2022 skin.
  • Page tools - now, there are two types of links in the sidebar. There are actions and tools for individual pages (like Related changes) and links of the wiki-wide nature (like Recent changes). We are going to separate these into two intuitive menus.
How to enable/disable the improvements
  • It is possible to opt-in individually in the appearance tab within the preferences by selecting "Vector (2022)". Also, it is possible to opt-in on all wikis using the global preferences.
  • On wikis where the changes are visible by default for all, logged-in users can always opt-out to the Legacy Vector. There is an easily accessible link in the sidebar of the new Vector.
Learn more and join our events

If you would like to follow the progress of our project, you can subscribe to our newsletter. You can read the pages of the project, check our FAQ, write on the project talk page, and join an online meeting with us.

Thank you! SGrabarczuk (WMF) (talk) 16:59, 21 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I tried to set my Appearance option to Vector (2022), but the entire Appearance tab is grayed-out and I can't make changes. None of the other tabs are grayed-out. David spector (talk) 18:25, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@David spector Usually they are grayed out because you have a global override. You would need to go back to the main wikipedia you work on to make the change or just on the bottom below the skins check the box next to Set a local exception for this global preference. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 20:58, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Relative clauses and gerunds

Is it recommended to use relative clauses or gerunds here? Which would be considered simpler? Is it important to totally avoid both of them?

For reference, a relative clause often starts with a word like which, whom, or that. A gerund is a verb ending with "-ing" that functions as a noun and can be some kind of modifier, although I don't know the exact terminology. For example, the sentence using a relative clause:

Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom, which gives a negative charge to that side, and a positive charge to the opposite side.

which could also be written, using a gerund, as

Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom, giving a negative charge to that side, and a positive charge to the opposite side.

or alternatively, separated into two sentences with a period, semicolon, or dash(?) as

Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom. This gives a negative charge to that side, and a positive charge to the opposite side.

Lights and freedom (talk) 23:25, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Lights and freedom I think 'Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom, giving a negative charge to that side, and a positive charge to the opposite side.' sounds much more simpler and -ing and other endings are in the simple english dictionary. However, I also feel the 1st one is just as good. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 23:29, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Another example of a relative clause:

Atoms that are used in nuclear fission, such as uranium, are heavier than iron atoms.

which could also be written as

Atoms used in nuclear fission, such as uranium, are heavier than iron atoms.

but I think the second version would confuse readers, is this true? Lights and freedom (talk) 23:43, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

as a non-native speaker I can see the second being more confusing. Gerunds can be many things, they can be nouns or adjectives. As for the first set of examples, I see the third option being the most simple, followed by the first. — *Fehufangą ♮ ✉ Talk page 23:47, 24 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
How to write Simple English pages tells what kind of sentences to use. Use simple ones. "Simple sentences are easier to understand than complex ones. The simplest sentence structure in English is subject-verb-object-period, subject-verb-object-period and so on. Try to use the simplest sentences that make sense."
Sometimes an additional word or repetition can link two short sentences to make the relationship clear and to add coherence.

Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom. This gives a negative charge to that side, and a positive charge to the opposite side.

Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom. This movement gives a negative charge to that side. It gives a positive charge to the opposite side.

signed --Gotanda (talk) 07:26, 27 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Its just me (also non-native speaker), but I have tried to replace gerunds with relative clauses, or whole sentences. To take the example sentence: Electrons sometimes move to one side of the atom. This movement gives a negative charge to that side. It also gives a positive charge to the other side.--Eptalon (talk) 07:43, 27 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, the also / other here really help. Sometimes the clearest, simplest writing gets longer. Gotanda (talk) 23:00, 27 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Request from a user (Associated acts) in template musical artist

Please remove "associated acts" from Template:Infobox musical artist. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Fhones (talk • contribs) 03:42, 25 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

{{Infobox musical artist
 | background        = person
 | honorific_prefix  = 
 | name              = 
 | honorific_suffix  = 
 | image             = 
 | image_upright     = 
 | image_size        = 
 | landscape         = <!-- yes, if wide image, otherwise leave blank -->
 | alt               = 
 | caption           = 
 | native_name       = 
 | native_name_lang  = 
 | birth_name        = <!-- leave empty if the same "name" -->
 | alias             = 
 | birth_date        = <!-- {{Birth date and age|YYYY|MM|DD}} for living people supply only the year unless the exact date is already WIDELY published, as per [[WP:DOB]] -->
 | birth_place       = 
 | origin            = 
 | death_date        = <!-- {{Death date and age|YYYY|MM|DD|YYYY|MM|DD}} (death date first) -->
 | death_place       = 
 | genre             = 
 | occupations       = 
 | instruments       = 
 | years_active      = <!-- YYYY–YYYY (or –present) -->
 | label             = 
 | current_member_of = 
 | past_member_of    = 
 | spouse            = <!-- Use article title or common name -->
 | partner           = <!-- (unmarried long-term partner) -->
 | website           = <!-- {{URL|example.com}} or {{Official URL}} -->
 | module            = 
 | module2           = 
 | module3           = 
 }}

per enwiki Fhones (talk) 03:42, 25 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Fhones Hi. Thank you for pointing this out. It does not need to be removed. It can be removed individually or left blank when it is used without causing any issues. There is nothing wrong with it being in the template, especially since it can be called in as a what is called a "child template". Thank you though for bringing your concern to us. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 04:00, 25 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: Actually, since we periodically refresh our templates from enwiki, we would eventually lose this parameter anyway. Enwiki removed it last month following this discussion. I actually think removing this could be good, because I've seen some articles that go way overboard with how many things they list as associated acts, and the association isn't clear. -- Auntof6 (talk) 00:51, 26 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Will it also remove the data with it or will it become orphaned, i.e. "associated acts=auntof6" and when cleared will it just say "auntof6" or will it remove that as well? If it removes all of it I do not see an issue, but if not, then all the articles that have that property would throw errors. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 00:53, 26 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Category:Pages using infobox musical artist with associated acts was created today to hold pages that use the parameter. We could use that to find articles that need to be changed. If we remove the parameter from the template, then nothing would display in the articles and we could take our time dealing with it. Some pages could just have the parameter removed, but with some we might want to replace it with other things. Maybe you'd like to read the enwiki discussion to find possible answers to other questions you might have. -- Auntof6 (talk) 01:03, 26 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Get rid of one to create 4 more works like a clock going back in time lol. I see the justification. Hopefully we could get a generated list through AWB and someone who has the knowledge to be able to remove that parameter and put it into another, however, the computer will not know if they are current or past or a spin off. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 01:11, 26 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Feedback and help on Atom

Hi everyone. We are trying to improve atom towards good article status. We are looking for editors to help out on the talk page, especially in the discussion at Talk:Atom#Lead. Thanks! Lights and freedom (talk) 21:08, 28 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Women judges from the U.S.

Hello all, I recently created the category "Women judges from the United States", to reflect the fact that probably about half of the "American judges" will be women. I also hooked the category in "American judges", and started populating it. The problem is though, "American judges" seems to be well-populated, with over 200 entries (still remaining). So If anyone got some free time, feel free to move a few women into the new category. Eptalon (talk) 13:01, 30 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Eptalon, for simplicity and consistency, shouldn't this be "American women judges"? After all, the parent categories are "American judges" and "Women judges". — *Fehufangą ♮ ✉ Talk page 13:22, 30 June 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I don't mean to be unhelpful, but "Women judges" is crass and ungrammatical. Likewise "Men judges". "Female" is the adjective for women, so the terms for categories should be "Female judges", and "Male judges". Being simple does not mean "being simple even if it's not correct".
Next I looked at the geographic word "American". If unqualified, it applies to the whole of the Americas. If intended for the U.S.A. the category would read "Female judges in the U.S.A." If the category includes Canada, it becomes "Female judges in North America". All this is standard use of the English language. Macdonald-ross (talk) 08:39, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Change to "Female judges form the U.S.", then? Eptalon (talk) 22:06, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Eptalon I would say "Female judges in the U.S." and "Male judges in the U.S." Our judges from the U.S., to my knowledge, do not go to other countries and be judges as they are only familiar with our laws from local to federal (depending on their appointment). PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 22:13, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
The problem starts with the American judges. If the American Judges are truly American, some are form Canada, and possibly some are from Mexico. If we truly wanted to introduce gendered categories, we'df need a Male American Juges, Female American juges (and possibly LGBT+ ones). Being gender-aware is a lot of work, that's why its not done for most categories. Eptalon (talk) 22:21, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I do not think we want to really go that deep into these categories though, do we? There are a lot of judges who do not release personal information about themselves. I also know here in California, all of their information is redacted including their license plates so they cannot be traced. I think if we leave it "in the U.S." we would not need to go deeper as we are not saying where they are from or their sexuality. So IMHO I think just the two I listed will be good enough coverage. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 22:27, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
All the more reason not to categorize by gender. -- Auntof6 (talk) 22:29, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 So should we just do U.S. Judges or do we have that (or something similar) already? PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 22:31, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Let's not get into the discussion about what the word American means. It's the standard used as an adjective form for the United States. That's how enwiki uses it for the judges category. If we want to avoid using the word as a demonym, we could do what Commons does and not use demonyms in page names at all. That would mean saying things like "Foo from the United States" instead of "American foo". -- Auntof6 (talk) 22:38, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: "In the U.S." means inside the borders. That could mean female judges from elsewhere who are visiting the US. If we have to categorize by gender, I think "of the United States" (we spell things out) would be better. -- Auntof6 (talk) 22:34, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 I agree on the United States. But I also wanted to point out that "From the United States" could mean the opposite of "In the United States." What if we did something along the lines of licensed, active United States judges, etc. That would take out both of the In and From portions? PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 22:42, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: "From the US" is not the opposite of "in the US". "From the US" can mean multiple things the way it's used here: it can mean the person was born here, lived here, worked here, or something else. "In the US" means inside the borders, no matter what they're doing or whether they lived or worked here. "Of the US" would mean judges that work in the US judicial system, which I think is what is intended by these categories.
I don't think we need to specify anything about licenses or being active. The category would contain people who are not active for various reasons: they might have been disbarred, or they might have died. Also, judges far enough back in US history might not have been licensed at all, but were still considered judges. -- Auntof6 (talk) 22:49, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 I can get behind the "Of the United States" with no issue. That would take the questions out of all of it. I only used that as an example, not meant to be the reasoning for all of what it may encompass. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 23:01, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Life

I was trolling through pages on racism, when I came on White Australia policy. It describes the many ways the government used to make sure it got "the right kind" of immigrants. One way was to give unwanted people tests in a language they did not speak. So I looked at the source, and found that it was unreadable!! Macdonald-ross (talk) 07:54, 1 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I need help

Changes not talking place even after following directions - https://simple.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:%E3%81%A4%E3%81%8C%E3%82%8B/common.css&diff=prev&oldid=8309112 Tsugaru let's talk! :) 21:55, 1 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Tsugaru: Remove the same thing from your global.css. NguoiDungKhongDinhDanh 23:04, 1 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks! Also is there another dark theme script I can use? --Tsugaru let's talk! :) 00:22, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@つがる - お久しぶりです!お元気ですか。 PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 00:28, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PostdamLamb: こんにちは!はい、元気ですよ!ひさしぶりですね!メーセージをありがとうございます。あなたは元気ですか。あなたの日本語は上手です!--Tsugaru let's talk! :) 02:35, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@つがる 私はよくやっています。私は翻訳者を使用しています笑! PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 02:38, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Haha! I see! Well it's a good software you are using! Also would you mind translating this message down below to English? I am not trying to be rude, but this is the Simple English Wikipedia, and I think we should refrain from not using English on discussion pages, just so everyone can understand. I wouldn't mind if this was a conversation on a user talk page. Thanks! :) --Tsugaru let's talk! :) 02:42, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks, @つがる. I agree with your comments. Even in English, though, it would be helpful if personal conversations were kept on user talk pages instead of here. Thanks, all. -- Auntof6 (talk) 03:09, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
That is why I stopped. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 03:10, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
After I posted this the translation below was posted. --Tsugaru let's talk! :) 02:43, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: 上のメーセージを見て下さい--Tsugaru let's talk! :) 02:36, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

{Message Translation for english speakers} PotsdamLamb said to me "long time no see how are you" and I responded to him "Hi. I am doing well Thanks for the message, how are you? Your Japanese is good!" Next message I wrote "Please see the above message" Note the translation may not be 100% direct, but very close --Tsugaru let's talk! :) 02:39, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I replied back "I am doing well. I am using a translator lol!" PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 02:40, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Weird things starting to pop up in articles

So the past couple of days I have seen some really weird things popping up in articles. One such example is in Chris Stewart where when you go into edit mode and go to the bottom you will see a mass of text that starts with {{Persondata <!-- Metadata: see [[Wikipedia:Persondata]]. -->. I have also seen box like things on Stephanie Morgenstern and you can see it on the bottom of the page where it has a succession and predecessors type box that is usually not used in actors articles. Typically I see those types of things in something that has some meat behind it like royalty, presidents, etc. Does anyone know what this about and where it is all of a sudden coming from? This just started happening about 3 days ago. Those are two I found today. Admins, any thoughts? Should they be removed if we find them? Thanks, PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 03:08, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@PotsdamLamb: The persondata template is a deprecated template that is still in a lot of articles. I remove it when I see it. It should not be added to existing articles, but it isn't causing any issues for the articles it's in.
The succession template can be used anywhere there is a succession of something. It's usually used in cases of political office or royal positions, but it can also be used for other things. It makes sense to me on the Morgenstern article. Auntof6 (talk) 03:16, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 Ok to both, but shouldn't the succession template be removed and the "| predecessor =" & "| successor = " in the Template:Infobox person be filled in instead like 90% of the other articles that have the infobox? PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 03:21, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: No. Look at the documentation for the template. The predecessor and successor parameters refer to things specified in the title or office parameters. Being the voice of a cartoon character is not a title or office. -- Auntof6 (talk) 03:24, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 Gotcha. thx PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 03:26, 2 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Greek Speakers/Readers

Does anyone here (fluent in English) know Greek? I need help with translation on an article that was brought over with a lot of Greek references so I can find the citations and fix the article. Please let me know. Thanks! PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 03:52, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@PotsdamLamb: What do you mean by "find the citations"? If you mean find them on the internet, it's very possible they aren't there. References can be from print media, not just online media. -- Auntof6 (talk) 04:06, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6 I understand that but without knowing the titles I can’t try to find anything to help improve the article or do the translation as you stated earlier. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 04:09, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: I don't understand what you're thinking at all, but that's OK. You seem to be saying that without translating the titles in the sources, you won't be able to do the translation. That seems circular to me. Even if you get the titles translated, they may not help you find anything. -- Auntof6 (talk) 05:39, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: Also, it might help others if you give a link to the article you're talking about so that anyone who has the skills can look at it. -- Auntof6 (talk) 05:40, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Battle of Nicosia Airport Is the article and all I need is the translated names of the citations please. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 06:22, 3 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
That won't solve the problem. If a source is really needed, it must be possible for the reader to read it in English. Sources which cannot be read are just gestures, because many readers will not be able to see that they do verify the text. Which is their sole point. If you are concerned to read it yourself, you will need a translation good enough to put in the article. Macdonald-ross (talk) 09:59, 7 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Discussion for South America stub

Greetings editors - I have started a discussion on possibly creating a South America Stub. Please do not post here, but instead join in on the discussion at the projects talk page. Thank you! PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 00:38, 4 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Results of Wiki Loves Folklore 2022 is out!

Please help translate to your language

Wiki Loves Folklore Logo.svg

Hi, Greetings

The winners for Wiki Loves Folklore 2022 is announced!

We are happy to share with you winning images for this year's edition. This year saw over 8,584 images represented on commons in over 92 countries. Kindly see images here

Our profound gratitude to all the people who participated and organized local contests and photo walks for this project.

We hope to have you contribute to the campaign next year.

Thank you,

Wiki Loves Folklore International Team

--MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 16:13, 4 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Explanation

I want to explain why I use "mya" in the text and infobox of biological pages. In En wiki they use mega-annum (Ma) for a million years. Now that is a term from Latin, which is no longer a subject taught in schools.

Instead I use "mya", which stands for "million years ago".

On the other hand, I continue to use the Latin names of animals and plants because they are the official names, and avoid the ambiguities one gets by using informal local names. It is always possible to add the common name in English if it is well known. One ought not invent a popular name just to avoid the Latin.

Macdonald-ross (talk) 09:38, 7 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Macdonald-ross: I agree with using scientific names because of the reasons you state. As for the mya abbreviation, I think that's likely to puzzle our readers unless you explain it the first time you use it. Abbreviations can be hard for English learners to understand.
What brought this up anyway? -- Auntof6 (talk) 10:41, 7 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Because it is different from En, who use Ma for milliard annum, which I think asks for something simpler on our wiki. In my father's time all good schools taught Latin at least at secondary level. Now it looks unnatural to use abbreviations based on Latin. I suppose we could use BC, but for something tens of millions of years ago that seems not right. To shift English wiki from their practices is an almost impossible task. I try and make these little changes quietly, in the hope that readers accept them in the way they are intended: to make the text easier to understand. Macdonald-ross (talk) 13:34, 7 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Auntof6@Macdonald-ross This is more a short code that the new generations use like lol, smh, etc. I do not think it should be used as such plus there is a singer with the name Mya. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 07:50, 9 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I know of that singer! I think "Ma" is a Latin language-derived term which means "Milliard". That is quite beyond our readers, and few schools now teach Latin. My use of "mya" is a commonsense solution, standing for "million years ago". I don't think there is a better solution. It is part of a broader issue, since many En wiki pages have vastly complex infoboxes which are far beyond the understanding of most of our readership. I've looked at virtually all the textbooks on (for example) vertebrate palaeontology, and not of those designed for ordinary readers uses Ma. Its use was a bad decision on the part of En wiki writers 20+ years ago, and we should not be stuck with it. The infoboxes are scary enough without that. Macdonald-ross (talk) 08:31, 9 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I think just using plain simple english language without short codes, acronyms, etc are better aligned with our goals anyways. I would say use it as full words. Million years ago. PDLTalk to me!OMG, What have I done? 13:49, 9 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@PotsdamLamb: It's actually an abbreviation that has been used for a long time, well before the ones like lol, etc. If I saw it used in the text of an article, I would replace it with the spelled-out words. Using it in infoboxes might be different: it would still be difficult for English learners, but space in infoboxes is tight. -- Auntof6 (talk) 21:20, 9 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Page Moves (rename title)

I do not think I have permission to move a page. What is the preferred process in Simple English wiki to rename a page title? An example is Nēnē which has a diacritic macron (ē) in it, and should most likely be called Nene instead. The English version of the article is called "Nene (bird)" and says "The nene, also known as the nēnē". Also all of the linked references call it a Nene, not a Nēnē (with the exception of the first reference which uses neither, calling it Hawaiian Goose, which is also correct). Actually, an argument can be made that calling it Hawaiian Goose (which is mentioned as an alternative name in the English wiki) is more appropriate for Simple English wiki. Ericwikman (talk) 00:07, 11 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Ericwikman: You can't move a page because your account isn't yet autoconfirmed. I believe that takes 4 days and 10 edits. If you plan to do more work here, you could just wait until you are autoconfirmed and move the article yourself.
As for the page name, I don't think it should be called just "Nene", because there are apparently other things called that (see en:Nene, a dab page). Naming it the same as the enwiki page should be fine, and we could keep the existing title as a redirect. -- Auntof6 (talk) 00:49, 11 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Understood. I'm not positive if I will do more work here or not, I really need to focus on my main work right now, so I'm working on this procrastination project instead. I grabbed the simple dumpfile of all articles, and the langlinks for all simple articles, parsed/imported the XML of the dumpfile and imported both into MariaDB and built a query to compare the Simple English title with the English title and there are 24,826 articles that the titles do not match (out of 280,053 simple articles linked to English articles out of 293,969 articles with the namespace of 0/main on simple). I'm guessing about 85% of the differences are fine/normal, 5% are punctuation/capitalization typos, 5% are linked to the wrong English document (like simple Fecund universes was linked to Lee Smolin which may have been fine when the Fecund Universes article was written, but Cosmological natural selection is a more appropriate link now (I fixed it on WikiData)), and 5% are not named appropriate for Simple English.
I'll put together a list of 100 examples or 25 in each of the above categories that I think need attention and then post it somewhere for review to get feedback on what changes I propose are worthwhile and which should be ignored.
It appears that the place to post that would be in my userspace as a WikiProject and link to it from Wikipedia:WikiProject. Is that correct? And then maybe announce when the WikiProject is posted in my userspace here to get feedback on the sample items? Ericwikman (talk) 09:17, 11 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Propose statements for the 2022 Election Compass

Hi all,

Community members in the 2022 Board of Trustees election are invited to propose statements to use in the Election Compass.

An Election Compass is a tool to help voters select the candidates that best align with their beliefs and views. The community members will propose statements for the candidates to answer using a Lickert scale (agree/neutral/disagree). The candidates’ answers to the statements will be loaded into the Election Compass tool. Voters will use the tool by entering in their answer to the statements (agree/disagree/neutral). The results will show the candidates that best align with the voter’s beliefs and views.

Here is the timeline for the Election Compass:

July 8 - 20: Community members propose statements for the Election Compass

July 21 - 22: Elections Committee reviews statements for clarity and removes off-topic statements

July 23 - August 1: Volunteers vote on the statements

August 2 - 4: Elections Committee selects the top 15 statements

August 5 - 12: candidates align themselves with the statements

August 15: The Election Compass opens for voters to use to help guide their voting decision

The Elections Committee will select the top 15 statements at the beginning of August. The Elections Committee will oversee the process, supported by the Movement Strategy and Governance team. MSG will check that the questions are clear, there are no duplicates, no typos, and so on.

Best,

Movement Strategy and Governance

This message was sent on behalf of the Board Selection Task Force and the Elections Committee

Zuz (WMF) (talk) 15:58, 11 July 2022 (UTC)[reply]