Wikiversity:Colloquium/archives/October 2007

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Pomology textbook

Hi people, I would like to invite all of you interested in writing textbook about fruits to a project on Wikibooks called Wikibooks:WikiProject:Pomology and its text book called Pomology. The aim of the project is to create a pomology textbook for undergraduate and graduate students of Wikiversity an other people interested. It will not be an easy work, but I think that with a help of more people, we will be able to released it one day. All people comeing to help - even with a small edit - are invited!!! You can support us also by a specific picture or drawing, which we will also need. So see you on Wikibooks. --Juan 20:52, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

Juan, why not start a local learning project related to w:pomology with discussion space, exercises or activities, or whatever attracts participants and encourage them to contribute to and use the textbook at Wikibooks?

Its already in here my friend (see Topic:Pomology), but there are no participants. Anyway right now, I am studying teaching methodologies, so I think I will just refresh Spanish course here on Wikiversity only.--Juan 16:35, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

Another good resource

Rayc's post in the section above me made me realize I had a really good resource sitting in my bookmarks which I had forgotten about! I don't know if it will be of any use to anyone, but the University of Michigan Initiative on Disability Studies (UMInDS) has all of its courses archived here, including recordings of lectures. Just wanted to share. --Luai lashire 01:43, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

See also Hunter-gatherers project. --JWSchmidt 01:57, 4 October 2007 (UTC)
Oooh, shiny project. :) Thanks, JW. --Luai lashire 21:59, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

UC Berkeley posts full lectures to YouTube

Now, to go along with the open courseware notes we have some full lectures to go with it. Anyway we can start using these, either as off site links, or as onsite material (presuming some sort of GNU video license?)--Rayc 22:26, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

Where is the magic decoder ring? Here is a great title: "AST 210/EE 213 - Lecture 27". --JWSchmidt 23:01, 3 October 2007 (UTC)
C'mon, isn't it obvious? They are freeing the content, you have to take a paid tutorial to navigate the course structure and know what to take. Historybuff 21:39, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

The Solar System study module

Hi everybody! I would like to invite all the people interested in astronomy, primary school education and audiovisual education to the work on The Solar System study module for young learners.--Juan 16:48, 7 October 2007 (UTC)

Update for the Bloom Clock

The Bloom Clock has now been ticking for over a year (it started last August), and has evolved over time to make use of a large number of (sometimes complicated) templates, categories, and the DynamicPageList feature. The clock is now running down for the northern temperate regions, but there's still flowers blooming closer to the equator, and of course it's springtime in the Southern Hemisphere.

The major development of the clock during the past 6 months or so has been the setting up and creation of the dichotomous keys. The keys are for a particular region, and vary in complexity from "plants blooming in this month in this region" to far more complex keys like "herbaceous plants with simple, alternate leaves blooming in this month in this region". As more plants are added and described, more complex keys can be created (the general goal is to break up any key that has more than 20 plants on it).

To keep things going, I'd like to encourage anyone living in a climate where things will be blooming over the next several months to give it a try (the far north will stop seeing blooms within the next month or so). I've made a "standing offer" to organize and create the first DPL key for any user who logs at least 10 plants during a given month in a given region.

Also, for those of you who are students or otherwise involved with a "brick-and-mortar" school or university, please get in touch with the horticulture, agriculture, or ecology departments, and show them Bloom Clock/Class Projects. Horticulture programs in particular often assign bloom logs to students in taxonomy classes, and it would be wonderful if their students could participate here instead. --SB_Johnny | talk 12:28, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

If anyone wants to see what a dichotomous key looks like, here's an example: Bloom Clock/Keys/Southeastern Pennsylvania/October. --SB_Johnny | talk 14:15, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Wikimedian Demographics

I've been fiddling with this idea for about a year now, and started a "stub project" yesterday for creating surveys and polls to learn about "We, the Wikimedians" (I had thought of naming the project that, but it seemed perhaps "too American").

It needs a lot of work, but the theory is this: participants add a specifically titled page to their user space, then just add templates with questions to answer. The answers add categories to that page, and we can then use DynamicPageList to get correlative results (for example, using the basic survey and the GFDL vs. CC survey, we could see whether the contributors to different projects tend to have different feelings about the licenses). Have a look-see at User:SB_Johnny/Survey_responses to see what it looks like so far.

The to-do list includes:

  1. Discussion pages for the issues we poll about. This could be done on the topic's talk page, linked into WV blogs, etc.
  2. Getting some graphics involved. For example, maybe the template could add userboxes as well as categories (using the same example: a box for "primarily wikiversitan" and a box for "prefers GFDL")
  3. Seeing if the quiz extension can be modified to do this, and so get rid of the need for templates.
  4. Coming up with some sort of guideline and/or vetting process to come up with a monthly list of "official" surveys (of course there can be lots of unofficial surveys... do you drink coffee or tea?)
  5. Informing our sister projects (I'll leave a message for the 'bookians today).
  6. Recruiting a talkpage message bot if people want reminders of new surveys.

Probably many more things to think about, but that's a start. --SB_Johnny | talk 12:24, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

how do you start a research project?

--Tober 21:10, 12 October 2007 (UTC) Hi

I'm new to wikiversity, and would love some help. I would like to open a research project on how to convert food and organic waste into decent ethanol cheaply, and on a basis that would be viable on a local or community basis. But I don't know how to do this, as I am a paper-pusher by profession and know less about science than the wiki world.

Also, I would love to see a project into El Nino/La Nina started, as we had the wettest winter and summer on record in Ireland, as was predicted based on El Nino 2006.

Wiki is the way of the future....


Feel free to start new pages for new projects. If you start a page for a research project, think about listing it at the Research Portal and other relevant portals. In the case of the ethanol project, you might want to make links to your new page from some other pages such as Renewable energy systems and Sustainability. Once you have a start on your new page, think about linking to it from other webpages such as related Wikipedia pages (by using w:Template:Wikiversity). --JWSchmidt 23:06, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Sorry for the redundancy. JWSchmidt covered some but not all of what I was adding. A way to get started on ethanol is to setup a learning projectWikiversity:Learning_projects or portal. Add some interesting/enticing information. Then link to your portal from various related pages such as schools and topics. Be sure to add a link at the learning projects index. Portal:Learning_Projects You might have to create some of the topic pages (as stubs if you know little about the topic) such as pyrolysis, etc. Sorry, pyrolysis is biodiesal from waste. Then making periodic entries or changes might attact some interest from people scanning the recent changesSpecial:Recentchanges page. As an example of how the interlinking might work you might consider starting a stub at Lunar Boom Town for ethanol for drinking alcohol, energy storage, industrial solvent, or motor feul. Include links to other lunar businesses you will depend upon for raw materials (farms, glass molder, etc), link to your new research project and hope the stub attracts some attention from other interested parties. A key to attracting attention in the Wikimedia software environment is making regular additions or changes to your project so that it comes up periodically in the recent changes page. Another key is to leave some encouraging messages on the talk page of anyone who makes some changes or contributions (contributing users available from history tab on the page in question). Good luck! Mirwin 23:15, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

Wikiversity:Banners and buttons

Please look there and use them! --Michael Reschke 21:26, 19 October 2007 (UTC)

Images with no license information

Setting whatever discussion is ongoing on the local policy, is there support for adding {{subst:nld}} to untagged images? It will be useful to have them categorized regardless of the outcome of the policy discussion. I can do it for you over the next while if there is support to do so. Alternatively, I could just categorize them, without using the template. Then, depending on the outcome of the policy discussion I could do a 2nd run to replace the category with the template. Either one is doable, provided there is support. Mike.lifeguard | talk 12:05, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

Wikiversity certainly needs an organized way to try to get license/copyright information for uploaded files. So far we have just deleted files that are obvious copyright violations. We need a version of Template:Nld that his links to Wikiversity learning resources about how to license uploaded files. I would be happy to draft such a version that does not have links to Wikibooks. I think we should develop pages such as Uploading files for this purpose. We need to craft a Wikiversity deletion policy for files (see discussion at Wikiversity talk:Deletion policy#Media file deletion). I don't think we should adopt the Wikipedia system for dealing with uploaded files. Many of the older media files at Wikiversity were clearly created by the people who uploaded them for use at Wikiversity and use of Template:GFDL-presumed is an option for such files. In addition to the need for looking through existing files and asking their creators to add license/copyright information, the related problem is that our upload process allows Wikiversity participants to continue to upload files without license/copyright information. I think we should change that so as to teach Wikiversity participants about licensing before they do file uploads, then when they upload files we could require that they provide license/copyright information. This would short-circuit the silly game of letting people upload files just so that they can later be deleted because they lack license/copyright information. I think we can craft a solution that is suited for Wikiversity by adopting a good faith assumption about Wikiversity participants: that they can learn how to correctly license their own media files. --JWS 13:38, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
We do need a way to automatically convert data from older templates (or bad templates) to the current format of the day. Same for images uploaded before there were any templates. There usually is enough info to update the info without trying to track down authors currently on vacation. (When I see the word "me" on a picture uploaded by Sebmol, I am intelligent enough to figure out the entire license/copyright info. It ain't rocket science!)
Also, it is important to come up with templates which have more meaningful info such as which lessons the illustration is designed for. Similarly, the category is not handled well.
And above all, there should be an automatic date stamp. Having to type today's date a thousand times is stone-age technology. My attempts to automate this have been unsuccessful. Robert Elliott 15:13, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

None of this addresses my question, but instead sidesteps the first sentence. I don't care what template is used. I don't care whether it's simply categorizing them for later reference. I don't care whether you want to require people to learn about licensing etc. before uploading. All of that is not what I asked about. Do you want untagged/unlicensed images tagged with {{subst:nld}} (or some other template) and/or categorized? Mike.lifeguard | talk 18:17, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

(edit conflict with Erkan, below) Mike, if you want to add a category and/or template, just be bold and add it. Please also remember to be civil as well... Wikiversity has a strong tradition of being collegial, and we'd really like to keep it that way. --SB_Johnny | talk 18:46, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
"I don't care....I don't care...I don't care" <-- I think this is a good summary of what is wrong with the "Wikipedia approach" to deleting uploaded files and why Wikiversity should do things differently. At Wikiversity we can educate participants about licensing files and we only really need to "get excited" about files that are copyright violations. We can take our time dealing with files lacking licenses and deal with them and their uploaders in a reasoned fashion. --JWSchmidt 19:15, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Well, nld I do not like - why do we "punish" users when the wiki system allows to upload files without licence? The advantage of categorizing or some other template would be, that the user who uploaded the file perhaps looks at it again (when it is in the watch list) and adds a licence. So categorizing would be ok - if I should select between the above options. Perhaps we can use the untagged tab somehow ?
The German Wikiversity also faces the same problems with pictures without licence info. And probably any Wiki does :-( In that case a learning resource about how to license uploaded files is appreciated. Well, then we "just" need the new users to read/view it and proceed as we recommend :-)
The prob really is that we are using our time to treat this problem afterwards. I think we can use our time for other things better. Otherwise in the end it just leads to frustration and people do not look at picture issues anymore. Why can't the upload mechanism be constructed so, that without licence - at least for new files - it is not possible to upload ?
BTW: Robert do you have some examples for your templates ? If a user uploads a pic and tells "me" or something else, that is no proof of something. I believe the user when I see the user in reality. ----Erkan Yilmaz (my talk page, wiki blog) 18:31, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, keeping it friendly (and even educational) is good, but the image licensing thing is really more of a legal matter, in that we can't allow Wiiversity to be used as a web host for stolen images. People generally don't think of it as stealing, but even if unintentional, it is a violation of someone else's rights. --SB_Johnny | talk 18:49, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
"we can't allow Wikiversity to be used as a web host for stolen images" <-- We do not want to host anything "stolen", be it text or a media file. We also need to avoid copyright paranoia, particularly when such paranoia leads to violations of a fundamental rule called Assume Good Faith. --JWSchmidt 19:07, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

erase more detailed descriptions

Reminder to Mike.lifeguard: The template below has not been approved. It is only a rough version of what we will eventually adopt. Therefore it is not a good idea to erase more detailed descriptions and just to replace it with this rough template. Robert Elliott 11:32, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

|other_versions= (optional variable, can be left out)

  • Is there an example of a file page where a file description was erased? --JWSchmidt 13:47, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
I assume you mean this? I don't think any information was lost, and it is a lot easier to read and edit now. The {{information}} template is actually used on all wikimedia projects, in part because it makes things easier to move to commons (as that image probably should be, since it's PD). --SB_Johnny | talk 15:10, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
If you're going to leave me a reminder, do so on my talk page please. Mike.lifeguard | talk 17:13, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
btw, I did categorize (not using {{subst:nld}}, since apparently it is evil) some of your untagged images; the rest follow in fits and spurts as I have time. Do with the categorized images what you will. Mike.lifeguard | talk 17:16, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
With respect to the "evil Mr. Nld", I think we will be able to make use of similar template that is better suited to Wikiversity. In particular, I would like a template that 1) links to a page where people can learn about how to license their files (such as Uploading files, 2) makes clear that efforts must be made to contact the person who uploaded the file, 3) in cases where the files are not known to be a copyright violation, the files need to be listed at Wikiversity:Requests for Deletion before they are deleted, 4) I think we can promote the use of common sense about "non-deletion options" such as Template:GFDL-presumed. When we figure out how best to deal with files lacking source/copyright/licensing information, it will be useful to have them categorized so that we can easily find them. --JWSchmidt 17:37, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry for coming off like such a jacka$$. I'm just trying to be helpful. Mike.lifeguard | talk 20:12, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
We have been putting off dealing with this matter for over a year. Thanks to your efforts we are finally getting around to thinking about it now. We're just trying to find a solution that is good for Wikiversity. I think our only need for speed is when we are dealing with known copyright violations. --JWSchmidt 23:00, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

Book reading clubs

Hi all,

I used to be active a year ago and i come back!

What i propose is to start book reading clubs. Groups of people who read several books on a topic and discuss the contents. That is one of the basic activities of a university, at least at my university. Internet is lacking the resources for the moment, so most knowledge has to be attained from reading books, the old-fashioned way. Partly, this could be a recruiting activity, because members of book reading groups could help improve Wikipedia articles and atract people who edited on this articles to read books. One of the main goals would be to improve the quality of knowledge on the internet.

I am working fulltime at the moment, and it is a job with a lot of freetime. I need to keep order in a computerroom. Most of the time, i can do something for myself. So, i will have plenty of time for this. Hope i can interest others as well.--Daanschr 17:48, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

The Wikiversity project proposal included the idea that Wikiversity learning resources should include reading lists: "Each subject area (or 'course', 'project'), essentially, each community, creates a web of resources that would form the basis of discussions and activities within that field of Wikiversity". I've created several Wikiversity learning resources that have "assigned reading" (sometimes just one book; example) and page sections for discussion of the assigned reading. My interests tend to be rather esoteric, but I think it would be great to start "book reading clubs" for popular topics that might attract larger audiences. --JWSchmidt 19:13, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
Sounds like a good idea to me. Perhaps we could get started by establishing a Portal for book clubs and then in the initial discussion try to find a book/subject that several of us here already are interested in reading to establish the initial reading groups. We might also use the Portal to identify wikibooks at Wikibooks or other online books of interest to several people for "proofing" or "editing" activities. If we picked a topic of interest to several wikibook authors it might help us get started. We could approach them at their colloquium and invite interested authors to come talk to us about proposed reading topics. We could also ask these folksw:Wikipedia:Article_Rescue_Squadron to participate by proposing topics of use to them in improving articles. Obviously any applicable Wikiproject could be approached on their talk page if a group or topic gets established to solicit participation. If this experiment proceeds perhaps the topical discussion groups could be placed prominently on the front page here at Wikiversity to see if some foot traffic would attract attention. Personally I am going to limit my participation to topics of use to me in helping Lunar Boom Town develop but that covers a very wide range .... in fact most human activity .... so that is not a huge limitation. A set of extended discussions like this could be very valuable in that it should produce many internal as well as external links and might thus start to generate some google hits for Wikiversity. We need some common activities and active local areas to generate and maintain an enjoyable atmosphere here at wikiversity. I think people are currently getting bored and wandering off because the place is so immense (how can it not be covering as it does human knowledge and activities) and at times it feels very lonely and isolated when browsing the stacks. Mirwin 05:38, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Mirwin, i agree with you and like all your ideas. I have to do a lot of homework today (my graduation as master of arts in history is next week on friday). Afterwards, i will be highly available. I especially agree with you about creating a nice group atmosphere. What is needed for a place like Wikiversity, is that people can become friends and get committed to eachother. That is only possible with activities that make people enthusiastic and with regular meetings. Of course, the activity must be fun enough to keep people hanging around. Wikiversity is all volunteerwork, so we have to ensure that people can spend their leisure time pleasantly. (I got too much leisure time at the moment, need to find a job with more fullfilment:-)--Daanschr 08:11, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
A whole list already. That would be a good start to begin with. Being a history student, i was immediately attracted by the course on Hitler's Germany. I have the impression that this course broke down in january 2007 and isn't active anymore. I propose to shift the active from the inactive groups.
Not all topics on the list involves reading groups. Hitler's Germany is a course. A course is different from a reading club, so it would be better to seperate these two institutions. A course, like Hitler's Germany has a strict timeschedule, it involves papers and a teacher with students. A reading club can easily change from one subject to another, compared to a course. It doesn't need a teacher.
The main priority should be to commit people to a course, reading club and Wikiversity in general. Hitler's Germany was a failure, both as an empire and as a course ;-). I could invite all users on Wikiversity to join the reading clubs and think of topics they want to discuss about. When stable reading clubs are established, than they can recrute new members from Wikipedia and other places on the internet and common daily life.--Daanschr 07:54, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, John. I should have read more carefully. The header says 'existing learning resources', so it isn't about active reading clubs.--Daanschr 08:01, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
Are there courses that are running well? I have the impression that several courses have not started or have quickly been abandoned.--Daanschr 08:10, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
  • The list of existing learning resources at Portal:Reading clubs provides some examples of Wikiversity learning resources that involve "assigned reading" and discussion. "Are there courses that are running well?" <-- The Wikiversity Main Page should make clear that Wikiversity is just getting started and learners need to participate and start forming learning communities. It is a serious error to have the current main page which leads people to expect to find content. I've been arguing for the past year that the main page needs to be changed. I think we should try to establish one active reading group and a system for helping other such group to become active. All such efforts are probably not really ever going to be a success until the main page is changed. The current Wikiversity main page was made by people from Wikipedia who knew nothing about this project. They made a main page that would be suitable for an established project like Wikipedia. There are some ideas for changes to the main page at Main Page/Draft version 0.2. --JWSchmidt 17:24, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
My graduation next week will take more work than expected. I thought it was all okay, but i am doubting about now. My topic has a strong tendency of creating controversial texts, so i probably will do little this week, but have plenty of time next weeks, though i will be searching for a new job.
I don't think there is much wrong with the main page at the moment. It is better to put more effort in networking and organizing people. At the moment, it seems that many projects are started, but hardly any of them are really running. I propose to invite all users of the english Wikiversity to join the reading clubs and to specificly ask what topics they would be interested to read and discuss about. Another round of invitations could be dealt with asking people to join reading groups in the most popular reading clubs. The moment these reading clubs get started, its participants need to promise to spend enough time in them, say react once a week for a couple of months untill a set date. It doesn't matter much, if people can get a book or read a book. Just the fact that an activity is working and is able to reach a deadline would be an achievement. If it becomes a succes, than new demands can be asked to enhance the quality. An actual school can start when teachers and experts are able to teach a class.--Daanschr 20:48, 28 October 2007 (UTC)

Just wanted to note that I think this is a great idea ... and in fact I was thinking about this very thing this morning in relation to starting a reading group around a particular book by w:Ivan Illich. Countrymike 23:39, 29 October 2007 (UTC)

"a particular book" <-- do you have a favorite in mind? --JWSchmidt 01:15, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
I do as a matter of fact; Deschooling Society Countrymike 02:33, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
Countrymike, i made a header for posting suggestions for topics for book reading clubs, see Topic:Reading clubs.--Daanschr 08:48, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
I will start making an invitation. What about:
Dear user of Wikiversity,
Do you like to join a reading club with the purpose of trying to create a structure of learning which could make Wikiversity to a succes? Participants of a reading club will discuss books on a certain topic untill a deadline has reached, after which another topic can be chosen. reading clubs will require a minimum of attendance, measured by a minimum amount of edits per week, though it could be allowed for participants who don't want to subdue to a minimum standard of participance. Leaving or joining a reading club will be free, though it depends on the requirements set by the reading club. For the moment, the main goal of the reading clubs will be to get Wikiversity running. To create a social network of people who can trust eachother in sticking around and who spend time together. These social networks could become the backbone for further developments on Wikiversity. Reading clubs can recruit people from outside Wikiversity in order to make Wikiversity grow.
At the moment there are no reading clubs established yet. We will try to catalogue some topics, in which people are interested to discuss about. A second invitation will be send once a couple of topics have been determined. You will be invited to join the reading clubs, dedicated to these topics.--Daanschr 15:31, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
Would this be sent by email to past Wikiversity editors who have drifted away? --JWS 16:06, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
My idea was to send this to every user of Wikiversity.--Daanschr 16:10, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
The amount of users is incredibly large, so i guess it would be best to contact all those who put a text on their user page first. Well, i got something to do at my work!--Daanschr 19:17, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
I will send only one message to all users who made the effort of creating their own user page. This message should be short and to the point.--Daanschr 09:06, 31 October 2007 (UTC)
The large amount of users indicates that many people are interested in Wikiversity initially. If Wikiversity offers something people can stay interested in, than it could grow very quickly. Not that growth should be a something worthwhile. My main goal is that Wikiversity can become something i like to spend my leisure time in in a pleasant way. A very modest goal. I like to read books and i like to discuss them, being busy with knowledge and learning.--Daanschr 12:14, 31 October 2007 (UTC)
Another attempt:
Dear user of Wikiversity,
Do you like to join a reading club, where you can read and discuss literature? Reading clubs could have active and inactive participants. Active participants could be required to edit on a regularly basis untill a deadline is reached and another topic can be chosen for reading and discussing. Hopefully, reading clubs can ensure a social network on Wikiversity of people cooperating with eachother and becoming friends, while discussing knowledge.--Daanschr 09:02, 1 November 2007 (UTC)
I like this invitation. It is short and to the point.--Daanschr 09:04, 1 November 2007 (UTC)
Sorry for the flooding. I will keep a low profile. Did discover though, that the users here come from around the world, predominantly from Pakistan and India. Allthough only in the A section.--Daanschr 18:21, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Request for page protection

I've got an RPP on Template:Sisterprojects. It's an obvious one to have protected especially as the project gets more hits, and it's been tking heavy hits with vandalism (anons and newbies). Honestly I think [edit:sysop - move:sysop] is appropriate as Wikimedia sister projects are not going to change quickly. It's an obvious target for nonconstructive edits --Pumpmeup 07:21, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

Hello Pumpmeup, thank you very much for your interest.
At Wikiversity we try to be different than in the "normal" world. We want people to take part here and therefore limit them as less as possible in their freedom. We trust people. Could be seen as a metaphor: we let our doors open while we go to sleep. Who would do this in real life ? Here one of our major strength/foundation is: Wikiversity:Assume Good Faith.
(btw: as I see there were only few "test edits". And the last one was in April.)
What do others think on this issue ? ----Erkan Yilmaz (talk ?, wiki blog) 15:48, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
I don't see any harm in protecting it, to be honest. Unless a new project is started or a logo changes, there's really no need to alter it at all. --SB_Johnny | talk 22:38, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
Believe me, I'm all for trusting the newcomers and assuming good faith, and they have a whole mainspace to do it in where we can revert it easily without losing face on the main page. --Pumpmeup 01:13, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
As I see the majority of the discussion partners are for protecting, so just let's protect it then. My reasons for not protecting were (and I consider the page also as important):
  • when regarding v.nd.l attacks since April, they seem not fixated on that page, but other pages.
  • So, if it happens in the future again, why not protect it then ? Otherwise we could go through all important Wikiversity pages and protect them for a "just in case" scenario. On the other hand there were already such "test edits" and therefore it could get protected status. ----Erkan Yilmaz (talk ?, wiki blog) 06:16, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Adapting "Visual Novels" to teaching classes

I've decided to try to use Ren'Py to create a visual novel for teaching my Blender class. It will allow for me to script a class like environment for the class with a teacher, and use many blender screen shots at the same time. The software is reads from a script file, and produces something much like interactive flash programs. I would really like it if some people took a look at there demo file and thought about how easily it could be used if you just scripted a class instead of a novel. I think this would be a great thing for wikiversity to try. --V2os 01:58, 28 October 2007 (UTC)

Please provide us with an example so we can see how this would be used at Wikiversity. --JWSchmidt 21:02, 28 October 2007 (UTC)
I have a demo ready, but I need a place to upload the folder or a zip file.--V2os 18:36, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
User:V2os sent me the demo by email attachment (sent as a .zip file). I got it to work in Windows XP but not Mac OSX (see below for update). If you want to get a copy of the demo, send an email to V2os or me. --JWS 19:53, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
I have actual builds that don't require copying and pasting into a ren'py directory now, they're also is newer and somewhat different from JWSchmidt's. Please mention your OS (Windows, Mac, or Linux only) --V2os 15:13, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
The Macintosh-compatible version works. See the screen shot (to the right). --JWS 16:21, 30 October 2007 (UTC)


I wanted to know, after coming over from wikipedia, if there are any scripts I can use, like Twinkle and AVT. J-stan 21:37, 29 October 2007 (UTC)

Wikiversity does not currently require scripts to deal with vandalism. We would rather you focus your efforts on developing learning materials as is the purpose of Wikiversity. Due to the scale of Wikipedia, the manpower cost of maintaining such scripts is justified, however Wikiversity does not have a significant vandalism problem (yet?). We currently monitor RC manually, and to an extent use w:WP:MWT. --Draicone (talk) 22:26, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
We try to be very welcoming to new editors (see Wikiversity:Welcome templates). We just revert obvious vandalism and move on (see Wikiversity:No shrines for vandals). If a vandal needs to be blocked, tell a custodian at IRC #wikiversity-en or a Steward (#wikimedia-stewards). --JWSchmidt 01:39, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
FWIW, POPUPS does work on Wikiversity. AmiDaniel (talk) 02:02, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Preliminary alternative to Sandbox Server - flexible shared server space?

While discussing a certain proposal with JWS on IRC recently, I discovered the new proposal for the Sandbox Server and would like to propose a temporary alternative. Despite my blatant objection to the proposal in its current form, I am interested in providing server resources to Wikiversity educators and students to assist in the implementation of courses.

My proposal is this: we setup an external data repository and services hub in a simple shared server environment. This would include web hosting for web design / web scripting purposes, QT media streaming, a Jabber server for communication, an SVN server for the programming-style CS activities and a simple and unbureaucratic (sp?) set of guidelines to manage it all. We can either source these from a low-end (and cost effective) service provider, or I can provide and manage these in the short to medium term.

This is effectively a cut-down version of the sandbox server proposal, and would provide for all our needs in the near future. Should this prove popular, we would be able to justify the sandbox server proposal knowing that there is a need for it, we have people who will use it, and it can be managed and kept under control.

Admittedly, it will not provide everything we need — for example, I cannot currently provide root access (although that can be arranged if desired) — however it is a slightly more realistic attempt at the shared server proposal and would provide us with an effective pilot project to measure demand and usage patterns.

Please provide any feedback you can think of, including flames along the lines of Stop "Borrowing" My Sandbox Server Proposal if you must, or any requests for clarification. I may post my chat log with JWS later if I can find it just to clarify our discussion to the community. --Draicone (talk) 03:22, 29 October 2007 (UTC)

I see no reason to avoid using the "Sandbox Server" name. I started Topic:Sandbox Server 0.5 as a work space for developing the idea. --JWSchmidt 06:59, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
I was wondering if we could add an Asterisk server to round out the proposed activities. I am glad to see that some steps forward have been taken, and I will help advance this if I can. Historybuff 15:56, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
Did you ever send an email to User:Draicone? We should probably try Jabber. --JWSchmidt 20:05, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Random resource

What do you all think about having "Random resource" below "Random topic" on the sidebar? Any opposition? --Remi 21:06, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

"Random page" might be better, assuming it works in all namespaces (I'm not at all sure about that though). --SB_Johnny | talk 12:29, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
"Random page" searching everything bar MediaWiki, Wikiversity, User and talk namespaces would be great --Pumpmeup 03:18, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
I wonder if a chaos skip logo on the main page of some technical portal would be interesting to people if their experience was created page combination of community metrics, polled desired, and personal hard constraints. When click it you would blink blink blink flashed imagines in your eyes. Selected by computers not some asshole trying to brain wash you. I mean how is that flash flash flash going to compete with the idiot boxes long term domination. We are some of what we choose to see? Then work a few of the personal suggested tasks your personalized system serves up before proceeding .... might allow someone to figure out how to start managing the global ecology and glop grid in attempt to play stabilize long term climate. Yep! Weather Contol! So off I scamper with snicker back to boardgames.

See expensive hand tailored pieces can be created and tracked. Folgers coffee jars might a great toy box for shipping and long term organizational expansion. Problem is not every kdi has a rich uncle who has purchases thousands of dollars worth of video game packaging. Mirwin 00:40, 28 November 2007 (UTC)


If you want them, these files are currently marked for transwiki from wikibooks to wikiversity:

  1. b:Image:Astronomy Student Mini-Outline.pdf
  2. b:Image:One bit AI.pdf

Mike.lifeguard | talk 18:41, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

I uploaded them to Wikiversity and added them as examples at Wikiversity:Wikimedia Garbage Detail. --JWSchmidt 22:39, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

There are some unused files that you may want:

  1. b:Image:Wikiversity-school of engineering-engr321-Solar sail materials appendix b1.jpg
  2. b:Image:Wikiversity-school of engineering-engr321-Solar sail materials appendix b2.jpg
  3. b:Image:Wikiversity-school of engineering-engr321-Solar sail materials thermal requirements appendix c.jpg
  4. b:Image:Wikiversity-school of engineering-engr321-material properties appendix d.jpg
  5. b:Image:Wikiversity-school of engineering-engr321-Solar sail materials mohr's circle appendix b2.jpg
  6. b:Image:Wikiversite-banner small.png

Mike.lifeguard | talk 00:12, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

I definately want the solar sail files for use at Lunar Boom Town. I am unsure what to do with the files, where they go. Do they go in a subpage directory or stay where they are? 10:13, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Theese all seem to be GFDL... is there any reason they should be reuploaded here rather than on commons? --SB_Johnny | talk 11:22, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
Actually it would be excellent if they were placed on commons. I just feared they might disappear before I can use them. But then again I have orginals and they are in the histories so some of us should be able to find them or recreate something closely approximating them for the purpose at hand. So in answer to your question I guess I have mastered my fears well enough that it makes me pleased you are willing to do the work of relocating them for me as I have some other sticks in the fire right now. Thank you very very much! Mirwin 00:46, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

They are at commons under the same filename. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 13:51, 10 December 2007 (UTC)