Talk:Quantum mechanics

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Organization[edit source]

I moved the link to what was already labeled as the "essay" Quantum mechanics/Timeline down to the bottom and added Quantum mechanics/Photoelectric effect. This isn't the only way to organize this stuff, but it's good enough for me. The advantage of calling these "essays" is that it might encourage others to add their thoughts on the subject. --guyvan52 (discusscontribs) 11:40, 21 September 2014 (UTC)[reply]

"Essays," if attributed, are one way we avoid the kind of edit conflicts that are common on Wikipedia. We are still covered by WMF neutrality policy, but an essay is the opinion of the author, and, as part of our learning-by-doing mission, users are allowed to express opinions, as they would be in, say, a University seminar. And we can comment on those opinions, but generally we will not change them. We may tag fringe physics resources as such, "fringe" doesn't mean "wrong" or "bad." It might mean "emerging physics." Bottom line, the real conflicts don't arise over such tagging, but over *deletion* and *exclusion.* We are neutral through inclusion. If someone disagrees with your essay, they may comment on the Talk page, they may make some note on the page from which it is linked -- that may require consensus -- or they can create a competing essay. We might indeed comment that the author of one essay is a college professor and the other is Randy from Boise, but we don't exclude either and we don't demand proof of positions expressed. We can ask, though, for sources, we can discuss, etc., and all that process can be *highly educational.* --Abd (discusscontribs) 14:33, 21 September 2014 (UTC)[reply]
That means that it's up to the community as to whether an "essay" is to be deleted (for being unfit for Wikipedia) or declared suitable as a learning resource (because it is not only correct and relevant, but at the proper level for students). Apparently the next step is to sit back and see if this community emerges. I never thought Wikiversity would be built in a day... Thanks for all that you do for Wikiversity, Abd. --guyvan52 (discusscontribs) 21:11, 21 September 2014 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks, it's nice to be acknowledged. Yes, it's up to the community, in theory. In actual practice, it's up to the few users who participate in central process or watch these things. We used to see lots of deletion, and big arguments on WV:RFD. Hardly ever, any more, because we learned several things: we move resources to more appropriate locations, shaky resources used to all be in mainspace.
"More appropriate" can sometimes be user space, until and unless the resource is better developed. Some work is just find in mainspace from the beginning.
Then, we have increased use of Template:Proposed deletion. We have a lot of resources that might possibly be made into decent resources (which could be true for almost anything), but nobody looking at them, nobody following them, they attract spammers, etc. Proposed deletion allows plenty of time for someone to say they want to keep the page. Nobody interested, for three months, it may be deleted. No fuss. And if someone later says, "Hey, I wanted that", no problem. We would routinely undelete.
Now if someone insists on having their page in some featured position, there could be a conflict. It doesn't seem to happen. People do not seem to mind good-faith organization.
What we moved away from was judging what was "good" or not, or even "correct." If something is incorrect, fix it! I.e., mostly, balance "incorrect" with "correct." There is learning that happens in this. Indeed, part of the development of sophistication in science is learning to recognize errors, our own as well as those of others. If the goal is learning, mistakes are a good thing! --Abd (discusscontribs) 01:05, 22 September 2014 (UTC)[reply]