Wikiversity:Colloquium/archives/October 2009

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Volunteers still needed!

Hi all,
Although we soon will remove the centralnotice that is up, the Wikimedia Foundation is still looking for volunteers to serve as subject area experts or to sit on task forces that will study particular areas and make recommendations to the Foundation about its strategic plan. You may apply to serve on a task force or register your name as an expert in a specific area at

The Foundation's strategy project is a year-long collaborative process which is hosted on the strategy wiki, at Your input is welcome (and greatly desired) there. When the task forces begin to meet, they will do their work transparently and on that wiki, and any member of the community may join fully in their work. This process is specifically designed to involve as many community members as possible.

Any questions can be addressed to me either on my talk page here or on the strategy wiki or by email to philippe at

I hope you'll consider joining us!

Philippe 02:05, 1 October 2009 (UTC)


Greetings! Just a short link about the interesting approach of some people to digitize pre-computer age books at: (w:reCAPTCHA) --Gbaor 12:17, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

Purge link in a template

How could I add a "purge" link in a template such that it works once transcluded/substituted. e.g., on this template {{Coin toss}} - refresh works in the template, but not at User:Jtneill/Random. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 06:05, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

I think that issue was solved for tabbed portal... I am familiar with the template, so I will look it up and get back to you--Graeme E. Smith 16:09, 1 October 2009 (UTC)
Try {{purgepage}} --Graeme E. Smith 16:12, 1 October 2009 (UTC)
You can also use something like Wikiversity:Colloquium?action=purge. --mikeu talk 14:22, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
Thankyou Graeme and Mike, that's great. I used the syntax from {{purgepage}} and it works nicely Smiley.svg -- Jtneill - Talk - c 10:05, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

Requesting rename of "Hungarian Notation"

As is already mentioned on the corresponding Talk page, Hungarian Notation actually refers to the practice of writing CamelCase (see the Wikipedia articles [[[w:Hungarian_notation]]] vs. [[[w:CamelCase]]] on these topics). It would be nice if someone with appropriate rights could rename this page.

I agree, the content is about CamelCase and have renamed the page. BTW, renaming a page is something that anyone can do. --mikeu talk 12:55, 12 October 2009 (UTC)


As has recently been discussed, we have a large number of policies sat at the proposed stage. I would therefore invite any comments regarding Wikiversity:Rollback so that we can consider making it an official policy. I understand it was previously tagged as an official policy but no community discussion took place prior to that and so the status of the policy needs clarifying. Adambro 14:14, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

In order to keep the discussion about this proposed policy in one place, I have moved the recent comments to the talk page. I think this makes more sense than leaving them here because it makes it much easier for someone to understand how a policy progressed. It would be harder for someone to find relevant discussions if they are carried out elsewhere. I should have made it clear in my earlier comments that they were intended to direct interested users to the rollback talk page to discuss that policy, rather than to discuss it here. Adambro 16:58, 12 October 2009 (UTC)


This page caused a problem at Wikipedia because a lot of it wasn't really notable, but it's a valuable educational resource. Is it ok to host it here? Hipocrite 17:15, 16 October 2009 (UTC)

I don't see why not... --SB_Johnny talk 22:34, 16 October 2009 (UTC)
There seems to be some exciting stuff happening here nowadays concerning web design, web 2.0, etc.. Many articles.
There is some interesting educational stuff happening at various wiki farms. Wiki farms are participatory by definition and are shared learning experiences. There is some collaboration also with school teachers. So there is both formal and informal education going on.
Would there be any problems with keeping the longer version of Comparison of wiki farms here? That is the version that was copied to here. Please see also:
Talk:Comparison of wiki farms --Timeshifter 01:08, 17 October 2009 (UTC)


I think we could give ourselves a boost by creating usergroups that can help people network and find collaborators. A namespace dedicated to this would probably be helpful, but regardless it would rely on categories and DPL.

I just created Usergroup:Temple University, Usergroup:Parents, and Usergroup:Wikipedia Review as examples pertaining to me, but this could include nearly anything.

Somewhat inspired by the "Networks" on Facebook. --SB_Johnny talk 18:40, 18 October 2009 (UTC)

  • just a usergroup for University associates in general? --Gbaor 09:13, 19 October 2009 (UTC)

Any physicists, specializing in QM out here? I need your input.

Not sure if this is a right place to put a peer review request. An article needs peer review by some physicist specializing in the quantum mechanics. Can someone give us some input, please?

See: User:Dc987#Reasonable_Deviations_Thought_Experiment. Can somebody point out the fallacy of this thought experiment? --Dc987 08:41, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

Policy discussion at en.wikipedia

Hey guys, a reference to Wikiversity was inserted in an en.wikipedia policy page last month at w:Wikipedia:What Wikipedia is not. It didn't get support on the talk page and I just removed it, but maybe this is something you guys want, I'm here to ask. When pages are deleted or material is removed from Wikipedia, sometimes the explanation given is that it doesn't comply with this policy because it appears to be "Primary (original) research such as proposing theories and solutions, original ideas, defining terms, coining new words, et cetera." The new text recommended: "For a wiki that is a repository of original research, visit our sister project Wikiversity. Original research should be transwikied there." I've deleted a lot of material as OR, and I've never seen any that I think Wikiversity would want, but I suppose it's possible. Is this something you want us to start recommending? It would present some difficulties, but I'm open to the idea if you want to pursue it. Dank55 14:37, 23 October 2009 (UTC)

One of the reasons that Wikiversity split from Wikibooks, was the need for a place for original research. As an Original Researcher, I have been pleasantly surprised by the support I have received here. Judging the Quality of OR in its early stages is difficult, and often seminal work looks like the researcher is crazy or kidding, just because it IS original. I wouldn't judge the quality of an OR posting until the research begins to mature. As a result, I suggest that it might be nice to have a transfer policy between the other projects that dislike OR, and Wikiversity, but from personal experience, Transwiki, might not be the way to go, since it involves sysop agreeement, and can be quite complex to arrange when sysops are busy. --Graeme E. Smith 15:18, 23 October 2009 (UTC)
Okay, the two categories that are most likely to contain the pages we're talking about here are new promotional pages for speedy deletion and New non-notable pages for speedy deletion. We delete a lot of those every day. Original research sometimes shows up on established pages, but it's not as much and harder to find. Please let us know at w:Wikipedia_talk:What Wikipedia is not if you see pages that you like. If you can give us a clear enough idea what it is we should be looking for, then we can take the conversation further. Dank55 15:53, 23 October 2009 (UTC)
I left a message there. AFAIK there's no reason we can't just give the admins who watch CSD the custodian tools here as well so that they can import the material. If any of them take up the offer, let's do some community mentoring. --SB_Johnny talk 16:00, 26 October 2009 (UTC)

I put a link to Wikiversity:What shall we do with Wikipedia? page there. We will see what happens. --Gbaor 14:05, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

Authoring groups

-- 02:27, 1 November 2009 (UTC) Hi iam chandrasekhar,new to this wikiversity i was aware of wikipedia plz tell me how i can use this in good manner

Hi cnadrasekhar, it would be a lot easier to respond to you, if you opened yourself an account, as that would automatically give you your own User area that you can experiment in, without damaging others work, and it comes complete with a talk page where you can be privately coached on how to use the system. Once you have been active for a while, one of the custodians will send you a message on that talk page that includes some beginning advice. As well you might want to take a course on the Wiki Language so as to become fluent in it. There is another wiki that offers seminars on wiki language called Wikieducator. It is not a hard language to learn, but some aspects of it are tricky. There are a couple of policies that you should know such as "Assume Good Faith" and "Edit Boldly" but these are not a license to damage others work, and there is a very active group of editors, that are working hard to improve the quality of the works here, so vandalism and other forms of self-expression at the cost of the institute will be very quickly detected and dealt with. Essentially Wikiversity is a learning resource base, for teaching from a young age up. We encourage all ages to get involved, so you are very welcome. --Graeme E. Smith 14:31, 1 November 2009 (UTC)

--Snoozebob 18:45, 3 November 2009 (UTC)my key board does not have that symbol


Hello everyone. I'm wondering what can be done to improve the way WV displays on smart phones. I'm currently editing using the Google Android, I haven't checked the iPhone, but expect the same issues. Why does WP display better? Can the data of WV be made so that 3rd parties can easily develop sites or apps that display WV better. I have tried to use YahooPipes to reuse content but either I am too basic, or WV content is a little inaccessible. . Such as no RSS. --Leighblackall 08:29, 19 October 2009 (UTC)

The reason Wikipedia displays better is because it has implemented the Wikimedia Mobile. I'm not sure what it takes to get the implemented on Wikiversity... Leighblackall 08:49, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
Leigh - thanks for finding this out - curious, have you tried mobile access for the other sister projects? -- Jtneill - Talk - c 09:11, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
No I haven't JT, but the lead developer tells me its only on WP, and due to my enthusiasm, assures me that WV is next. He says he's very busy and might be hard pressed coming back to it soon :( He's given my this technical specification though. Do you know anyone in Wikiversity who could make sense of it and use it to make ready from Wikimobile? Leighblackall 12:24, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
A relevant tweet from to is -- Jtneill - Talk - c 01:01, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
Also, suggest we start Wikiversity:Mobile and eventually (no hurry) fork the development discussion to there. I'm a mobile neophyte, but happy to help and one day will be keen to get an android and experiment. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 01:04, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
There is no reason we cannot build our own test environment, and make the changes from the distribution. This might effectively lead to wv's own development environment for education-based development. This would no doubt excite "real world" educators, which is the only direction for wv growth that I support, which is educational support.
I personally feel the need for:
  • Messaging widget that could start in the upper corner over the "capital dome" (which I think is a biased symbol, how about a Platonic tree?) and slide down the side of the page if the user desires.
  • Citation support tools (especially photographic evidence) to make it really, really easy to back up writing. One would would start by linking text to contextual support, and then a form could could result from the links to easily create the citations section, further leading to an extended reading page or an annotated bibliography page. I would want to streamline photographic referencing for citations as part of this (but not as part of normal "up loading").
There is a desire to implement WYSIWYG everywhere in wikidom; I oppose it. The only web editing tool that has evoked technical jealousy in me is Ning's editor. I would extend something like it for citation support (see above), and perhaps comparative table building.--JohnBessa66.pngBessatalk 16:19, 12 November 2009 (UTC)


AcaWiki AcaWiki is like "Wikipedia for academic research" -- Jtneill - Talk - c 14:00, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

Have had a look, some interesting aspects:
Don't like the captcha for external links! And the restrictive userform/template. And it looks like its only for posting summaries of research - not for original research? -- Jtneill - Talk - c 14:13, 9 October 2009 (UTC)
Maybe they could merge with Wikiversity. Wikiversity could become an organization that bundles several individual efforts to make one larger successful.--Daanschr 19:00, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
Magnus Manske is a prominant Wikipedian.--Daanschr 19:01, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
Is he behind AcaWiki? -- Jtneill - Talk - c 02:00, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
I do like the tagging/organisation etc. e.g., here for psychology - how is that achieved? -- Jtneill - Talk - c 02:00, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
"Maybe they could merge with Wikiversity" No, no, no! Bigger is not better: quality over quantity! We have it going on pretty well here, maturing in ways no other wiki--or site even--has.--JohnBessa66.pngBessatalk 15:46, 12 November 2009 (UTC)
Manske is one of the most prominent programmers of the Wikimedia Foundation. He could have made the tagging option. I am not a programmer, so i don't know how to make it. Manske is the first name mentioned in the first link you provided.--Daanschr 07:20, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
Wikiversity should only do tagging with subjects which are worth looking at, finished products.--Daanschr 07:21, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
I started using the Category as a form of tagging.. what do you think? Leighblackall 08:55, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
When I was studying eduction, I found that there are two catagorization systems, mind mapping and concept mapping. Mind mapping is purely hierarchical, and concept mapping joins "tags" to create spaghetti. Concept mapping is called "webbing" in primary education.
In the late 90s, I did a lot of research and programming with Perl to implement complex structures for categorizing information for systems management. What I created was a complex structure of hierarchical categories (hashes of hashes leading to arrays of data), and implemented links to show how information interrelates between the hierarchical categories. --JohnBessa66.pngBessatalk 14:32, 13 November 2009 (UTC)

What role does Wikimedia have to play in educational content? What content beyond encyclopedic content can/should Wikimedia provide?

What role does Wikimedia have to play in educational content? What content beyond encyclopedic content can/should Wikimedia provide? ( --fasten 14:09, 26 October 2009 (UTC)

This is an important page on - Emerging strategic priorities/ESP 3 key questions#Educational_Content - I've just responded to all questions - previously Wikiversity was barely mentioned. Please contribute. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 15:24, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
There is a central role in this discussion - and in the interpretation of the "educational" description we assign to our mission - to be played by Wikiversity. Currently, despite WV's steady progress, it is not used by most of the 'experts' in the OER community, and often Wikipedia is used instead as the canonical example of how wikis can be used in education. A clear set of goals and priorities for WV itself would help mold this discussion; and active participation by Wikischolars (or however the naming discussion resolves itself :) in strategy topics across the board would provide a most welcome balance. Personally I think some of the project-based explorations taking place on WV [how to associate materials from related classes, how to provide semi-realtime support for people studying a topic or course together, &c] are taking place on many other self-study or 'educational non-profit' sites who a) just want to improve education and don't see anyone else trying the free collaborative approach they have in mind, and b) aren't aware that WV exists or that it is open to public collaboration. Sj 13:58, 12 November 2009 (UTC)
I am going to a one-room schoolhouse reunion this month. The reunion is sponsored by the local historical society, which is interested in actual community restoration. I have proposed the constructivist idea of "restoring the historical community of knoweldge" by actually re-opening the one-room school. Objections by educators to this idea (I have introduced the idea to widely) is that the school would be educationally isolated and that the older students would be held back. The isolation problem could easily be resolved by using wv to structure expanding knowledge.
According to locally gathered historical information, the school offered a better education than the large nearby grade school. When the one-room school closed and the one-room students went into the larger school, they were chided. But the grade school students were surprised to find that the one-room students were, in fact, more successful. The one-room students actually educated each other, and because learning cyclically builds on previous learning (using what are called milestones in project development), the older children reinforced their understandings by teaching the younger, and then themselves sought more complex implementations of their learning based on their successes and confidence.
If I succeed in creating interest, I am going to propose wv as a structure for developing the learning. This, of course, will span decades--if I am successful!--JohnBessa66.pngBessatalk 14:55, 13 November 2009 (UTC)
Update: the reunion was a failure from the perspective of restoring the school house. The reunion was moved from the community to another town, where its meaning was diluted to some other purpose less focused on the community, and more on the person who "wrangled" control, and she pretty specifically displayed opposition to any physical restoration. Not that the concept is dead, but that some deadwood, or perhaps corruption, has to be removed. This puts the focus back on the local church, the original organizing body (1845), which has an emotional critiera. I initially hoped to avoid centering around the church, even though the church is my connection with the community. I will advise when I start a page on this type of school-house revival. Legally school-houses fall under home teaching, and are legally supported. And their relationships to colleges are purely based on SAT testing. If you want to meet the community, here is a page about its apple fest--JohnBessa66.pngBessatalk 17:21, 2 December 2009 (UTC)