Wikiversity:Colloquium/archives/September 2008

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Official Election Notice

The 2008 Board election committee announces the 2008 election process. Wikimedians will have the opportunity to elect one candidate from the Wikimedia community to serve as a representative on the Board of Trustees. The successful candidate will serve a one-year term, ending in July 2009.

Candidates may nominate themselves for election between May 8 and May 22, and the voting will occur between 1 June and 21 June. For more information on the voting and candidate requirements, see <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Board_elections/2008>.

The voting system to be used in this election has not yet been confirmed, however voting will be by secret ballot, and confidentiality will be strictly maintained.

Votes will again be cast and counted on a server owned by an independent, neutral third party, Software in the Public Interest (SPI). SPI will hold cryptographic keys and be responsible for tallying the votes and providing final vote counts to the Election Committee. SPI provided excellent help during the 2007 elections.

Further information can be found at <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Board_elections/2008/en>. Questions may be directed to the Election Committee at <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Board_elections/2008/en>. If you are interested in translating official election pages into your own language, please see <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Board_elections/2008/Translation>.

For the election committee,
Kwan Ting Chan

Wikipedia discussion

We've run across a class of editors at Wikipedia who want to do something with the software. I've explained to the professor of the class that Wikiversity is a free textbook project and that there are other services like ScribbleWiki for just having one's own Wiki. He seems to have taken an interest in Wikiversity though and has asked some rather specific questions. Could someone better acquainted with this project stop over there w:Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard#It.27s_that_time_of_year_again.2C_more_college_classes_to_keep_an_eye_on... and explain things to him? Thanks. MBisanz 08:56, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

  • I left a message over there, but that thread is hellishly long and I couldn't really connect together what you were saying with what the thread says. Perhaps the course facilitator could post a short summary of any outstanding questions here? --McCormack 09:09, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
    • I think he got your message and will be showing up somewhere over here soon. Thanks for stopping by to welcome him and all. MBisanz 11:47, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
"Wikiversity is a free textbook project" <-- that sounds like Wikibooks. Wikiversity has a much broader mandate...Wikiversity participants are free to explore new ways to use wiki technology to promote learning. We have Topic:Sandbox Server 0.5 and a sandbox wiki for software experiments. --JWSchmidt 14:56, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

I never wrote "textbook project"; what I meant was lecture notes or class notes, not textbook. The quotation above ("Wikiversity is a free textbook project") was not by me. There is a misunderstanding here. (I am real busy so I don't always monitor the wiki pages, unless some students inform me about some messages) Eml4500.f08 20:58, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

Unless you have a specific reason for wanting to use Wiki markup as your scripting language, you might be better off using Google Docs, Google Knol, or Blogger. I have found Google Knol to be very easy to use. —Moulton 21:06, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
Knol and wikiversity are very different in their basic design, structures, purposes and communities. In particular, Knol follows a rigid forum structure and does not allow editors structure the website or its contents in the way they want. As in the google tradition of emphacising stronger search in favour of better structure, there are no categories, subpages or templates which are instrumental in our community interactions. Hillgentleman|Talk 01:32, 4 September 2008 (UTC)
If, as the professor says above, all the students require is a place to write lecture notes or class notes (as opposed to constructing a full-blown online course), then Wiki is probably not the best structure for that limited purpose. I use Blogger for writing up notes on some episodic lesson. —Moulton 01:52, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

The two courses by one instructor are now at WikiVersity. See User:Eas4200c.f08 and User:Eml4500.f08. The learning resources are to be created over a series of separate classes. This first class will probably be more about the course than creating learning resources, but as the course is repeated over and over, the learning resources should become a greater and greater part of the projects. I would like to be sure that the instructor and students understand that everything they write here is copy-left. Has anyone verified that is so? WAS 4.250 22:34, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

The professor has his own mediawiki wiki for personal use, so I suspect he has a good understanding of the wiki way (since the GFDL ships with all copies of the software). MBisanz 02:27, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

Greetings everyone. I quote here my first answer to an inquiry over at wikipedia (Eml4500.f08 (talk) 15:30, 2 September 2008 (UTC)) for your info in case you did not see it: "... some goals related to wikipedia are (1) introduction to the use of wikipedia for learning and research, (2) to train future contributors to wikipedia, and (3) to create and develop open course contents for wiki sites such as wikiversity." You can change "wikipedia" to "wikipedia/wikiversity".

Yes, I do know the wiki way, and want to train students to use mediawiki in general as a tool to collaborate and then to contribute to wikipedia and wikiversity. Another advantage of learning mediawiki is to learn to write equations in the latex way (almost) for those interested in using latex, which I use almost everyday.

And yes, I can install mediawiki as I did for my mediawiki site, but I don't have time and resources to do this installation and the system management (back up the databases, managing accounts, find a computer and set up a backup server in case my main server goes down, etc.). As I said, I am real busy with many tasks to do beside teaching these two courses with close to 200 students. Occasionally, I would drop by this wiki page when necessary... Thank you. Eml4500.f08 13:13, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

Please Be bold and let your students edit pages in the Wikiversity main namespace. A copyright violation can be corrected just as easily on a main namespace page as on a user subpage. I doubt if there is a way to prevent your students from editing the main namespace. Anyhow, your students are welcome to edit in the main namespace as long as they are learning. --JWSchmidt 15:53, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

Message from the editor

I got an eMail from the editor, Erkan Yilmaz, But there doesn't seem to be a return eMail address, unless I just send it to wiki@wikimedia.org.

I go to the websites listed in the email: mail: http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Special:EmailUser/Erkan_Yilmaz >> a general page about Wikiversity. wiki: http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/User:Erkan_Yilmaz >> a general page about Erkan

How do I send a response to Erkan? --IHSscj 21:36, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

You can write here or at User talk:Erkan Yilmaz or email. I guess this is about this comment (you can also reply there which is best, so others don't ask again same questions in the future again) ? Or you can contact me also by chat (see signature), ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 21:41, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

I was tryiong to respond to your request: "perhaps you could provide more info about the edits ?" What info were U thinking of? Since U sent that eMail, I have finished editing the document, except that it still needs the Appendix. The Appendix, a speech by Willie Lynch, is available on a website, so that will present problems w/ permission. But they might just give us (the author & I) permission.

As discussed: please contact the OTRS team. Thanks, ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 12:52, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

Community Portal 0.5

I'm having problems with correcting a number of Alignment issues with the new layout which I'm trying to do - I've tried numerous times to get it fixed but without success. In the Section Time Dependent to Ongoing should be aligned to the right underneath the To do List - and section Resources to Related communities section should be aligned to right under the Guidelines, help, and resources - what am I doing wrong, which is preventing this from happening. DarkMage 09:33, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

Do you mean something like this ? If not, a picture might help to illustrate it more. ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 15:03, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
The alignment which I'm trying to do is displayed on the Wikiversity:Browse page, if you view the By School Subject and the By University Faculty section both of the alignment is left and right and are still under the main header of the Major starting points section but underneath - as stated in my first comment is it possible to get the Time Dependent to Ongoing section including the others as mentioned to do the same. DarkMage 17:45, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

Separation of Church and State

I was just thinking about the whole "anti-ID cabal" issue that Moulton and JWSchmidt have gotten into lately, as well as the Darwinism as Religion and related projects, and this got me to thinking about religion and secularism in general. I think it might be interesting to have a Separation of Church and State project where issues of religion vs. secularity are discussed; what is the ideal balance? What is proper "separation"? Examples: In France, it is illegal to cover your head in school because this violates the separation of Church and State in France. In Canada, it's illegal for Muslim women to vote covered; in both of these cases, Secularism trumps Freedom of Religion. The issue is not so clear, however: In the United States, religious groups regularly participate in politics, and political figures regularly talk about their religious persuasion. Congress prays, and the currency says "In God We Trust". In Switzerland, they would call this a lack of separation of Church and State. However, in Switzerland, certain ministers of religion are paid by the Swiss government; they are paid out of funds collected specially from religious tax-payers, but they are on the government's payroll. In the United States, this would be seen as a lack of separation of Church and State. In both countries, some of the things done in France and elsewhere are considered violations of the Freedom of Religion. At what point do Church and State become too separated? Has China gone too far in forbidding public sharing of most religion, going so far to arrest and detain those who have pictures of the Dalai Lama? At what point do the two become too conflated? Has Iran gone too far in upholding Sharia law by sentencing to death a group of converts to Christianity? These are all questions I'd like to explore, but I don't feel I could do another project justice at the moment; I already have my hands full. The Jade Knight 08:04, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

Please see this article on The Separation of Church and State, which I wrote in the wake of the Kelo Decision a few years ago. —Moulton 11:37, 6 September 2008 (UTC)
You seem to highly value your own work, I've noticed. The Jade Knight 13:44, 6 September 2008 (UTC)
Do you not craft work of your own that you consider a valuable use of your time and creativity? —Moulton 14:33, 6 September 2008 (UTC)
It's just an observation. I write, of course, but when it comes to learning materials I'm a bit more eclectic. The Jade Knight 01:39, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
"Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship, and observance." I suppose some people adopt the position that freedom of religion means they have the right and duty to kill, but does freedom of religion "trump" other social obligations? Another example is polygamy. If polygamy is your "religious practice" does that mean you can practice it in a country where secular law makes polygamy illegal? --JWSchmidt 14:20, 6 September 2008 (UTC)
Well, isn't that the question, though? What about illegal drug use? Sometimes exemptions are given to religions (for example—alcohol laws and Communion/Eucharist), sometimes they are not (polygamy is a case in point). What makes this more difficult for a Christian society is the fact that the Bible has a clear example of religiously motivated civil disobedience being praised. But moreover, what should the law be? What is proper separation? What is not? When and why should religious exemption to law be given? The Jade Knight 01:39, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
Your question, "What should the law be?" is predicated on a very important assumption. Can you state the fundamental assumption underlying your question? —Moulton 07:13, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
What assumptions? It is a simple question. Perhaps you are asking, what are my assumptions about the purpose of the law, or the role of religion, or the inherent ethicality of the interaction of religion and government? I do not understand. The Jade Knight 12:33, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
Your question is a simple one to state, but it's only meaningful and answerable if the underlying assumption is valid. I put it to you that there is an assumption underlying your simple question that you have not recognized or reckoned. Were you to do that in a conscientious manner, I dare say you would be obliged to withdraw your question in favor of a more meaningful an interesting one. —Moulton 01:37, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
Right now I'm only waiting for you to tell me what this underlying assumption is which I have not recognized or reckoned. The Jade Knight 02:32, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
Your question, "What should the law be?" assumes that the architecture of humankind's socio-cultural regulatory structure should be expressed in terms of rules or laws. If you ask, "What should the architecture the regulatory structure be?" you will no longer get the same answer that occurred to Hammurabi of Babylonia some 3750 years ago. See, for example, this analysis of the fundamental flaw in Hammurabi's idea. If you prefer a less scholarly treatment of the same insight, see this muse instead. —Moulton 11:17, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
The discussion: should mankind be ruled by governments or even the rule of law? is beyond the scope of the question I'm asking here; certainly, if there were no laws, there would be no laws for or against the establishment or religion. However, there are laws, and will continue to be laws for the foreseeable future. Therefore, the underlying assumption is certainly valid for my purposes; I am not asking what should be in a lawless Utopian society, but rather what should be within the context of current political frameworks, and perhaps more appropriately, how beneficial and/or effective are the various positions on this issue found in various national models? The Jade Knight 11:39, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
The answer to your question, as originally stated, is "Mu." The Assumption of Hammurabi is now known to be an utterly idiotic relic of the past. Your better question, "What should be within the context of current political frameworks?" does have an answer. What should be developed within the context of current political frameworks is a forward-looking program to evolve humankind's anachronistic and demonstrably dysfunctional socio-cultural regulatory system to a functional regulatory model, grounded in academically defensible theory and practice. —Moulton 11:58, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure the Maoist/Bolshevik model is really a separation of church and state, at least not in the sense used in the US. --SB_Johnny talk 13:05, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

Something like 2500 years ago Herodotus observed that "Custom (culture) is king of all". Logic and evidence will not change what is acceptable or not acceptable in various countries with regard to religion versus government. In fact in most of the world at most times, religion and culture have been so intermixed as to be indistinguishable. Is bowing one's head while praying religion or culture? Is Sunday in the US being part of the weekend religion or culture? Revealed religions have some parts of culture that are due to religious texts, but even then culture picks and chooses which parts of revelations "from God" to respect and which to ignore. The Bible clearly says to not allow witches to live. Seen anyone killing people who declare themselves to be a witch lately? Thought not. WAS 4.250 00:15, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

We still have witch hunts. We just don't crush them under a ton of stones anymore. Now we crush them under a ton of words. —Moulton 01:37, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
I thought Herodotus was speaking about habit, rather than culture? At any rate, I think religion becomes culture, and sometimes culture can become religion, as well, though I think it's more the former than the latter. But concepts of separation of Church and State I think are largely based on tradition, and perhaps just as much, fear, in the US at the moment.. The Jade Knight 02:32, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
The observation that culture becomes religion can be seen in cultures like the English Language Wikipedia, where the culture has regressively evolved into the Internet's premier Massive Multiplayer Online Narcissistic Wounding and Mugging Game. —Moulton 11:17, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

Community Portal 0.5

I'm having problems with correcting a number of Alignment issues with the new layout which I'm trying to do - I've tried numerous times to get it fixed but without success. In the Section Time Dependent to Ongoing should be aligned to the right underneath the To do List - and section Resources to Related communities section should be aligned to right under the Guidelines, help, and resources - what am I doing wrong, which is preventing this from happening. DarkMage 09:33, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

Do you mean something like this ? If not, a picture might help to illustrate it more. ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 15:03, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
The alignment which I'm trying to do is displayed on the Wikiversity:Browse page, if you view the By School Subject and the By University Faculty section both of the alignment is left and right and are still under the main header of the Major starting points section but underneath - as stated in my first comment is it possible to get the Time Dependent to Ongoing section including the others as mentioned to do the same. DarkMage 17:45, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

Comment from User:Paul

My name is Paul and I would like to tell you a little about myself and how I got involved in Abaya School in Ethiopia. Two years ago I was invited to help with the setting up and running of the Arba Minch Festival of a Thousand Stars http://www.gughe.org/. Arba Minch is a city located in the province SNNPS (Southern Nations Nationalities and People's State) in South Ethiopia. Through my involvement in the festival I got to know the head teacher, staff and pupils of Abaya School, also in Arba Minch. I returned the following year to see if I could help the school and discovered that they have 2210 pupils and fewer books than I have in my office. I did what I was able to do during that visit which was a drop in the ocean. I managed to get a few hundred random books shipped to them with the help of the British Council and bought them some much needed equipment. Books, however, are not practical due to the remoteness of the region and the high cost of shipping. I promised to return this year and try to take the project forward. I have invested in a 320MG portable drive and my idea was to fill it with Wikiversity and related content. Teachers are currently relying on memories of books they borrowed during their training to develop lessons. My vision is to make Wikiversity available to them. They have two good computers and I am hoping to take some laptops with me. There is no internet connection and one is probably not going to be available in the foreseeable future due to political constraints, and technical problems like the lack of phone lines and unreliable electricity source. I am not well educated myself and my computer skills are somewhat limited. For this reason I need help in deciding what to download and how to achieve it.

Retrieved from "http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/User:Paul"(The preceding unsigned comment was added by Paul (talkcontribs) )

Great question and need. Perhaps this should be created as a separate project. Wikiversity is a very promising place, but also quite nascent. Given the practical needs here, I wonder whether to start with some Wikipedia CDs might be useful resources? w:Wikipedia:Wikipedia-CD/Download. I would like to think that the Wikiversity community could make a practical difference, Paul. Please let us know anything we can do. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 11:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Present your project

Hello,

do anyone of you folks is interested in make a presentation of your project on the next Wikimania? The next Wikimania would probably held in July in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The actual date is not confirmed yet. Traditionally in February there would be a Call for Participation, where you can submit your talks and about in April you can request for a scholarship to finantial your flight and accomodation as a speaker on the conference. I would like to see someone of you folks to make a presentation of your project there. Is anyone interested in this and can prepare for a presentation?--Wing 08:56, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

I'd be interested, though the only significant project I've started here is the History of Ireland through Song, and that hasn't really taken off yet. Mostly I've been busy being a bureaucrat for the School of History, English Language Division, and French Department. The Jade Knight 12:29, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
I think User:Cormaggio plans to attend Wikimania 2009.
Interview (alt. mp3) with Cormac Lawler from Wikimania. (2008) (13m:24s)
--JWSchmidt 14:51, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

Was now added to Wikimania 2009, ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 17:44, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Lets become a researcher

You dont need to have several digrees or to know a lot. Now you can participate in the project of Plant tissue culture lab and became a researcher. Just study a few pages on Wikipedia. The aim of this project to offer the participants to discover what is a science and and the same time to discover undiscovered things. Dont be affraid and come, the biorobot will do everything for you, you are warmly welcome!.--Juan 15:34, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

VotApedia

This is a MediaWiki we could explore collaboration with: http://www.votapedia.com. "VotApedia is an audience response system that doesn't require issuing clickers or need specialist infrastructure.". It can use mobile phones instead of clickers for collecting audience responses. The system is developed by CSIRO, which is the major government-funded science-research body in Australia. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 03:03, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Disturbed

I am disturbed by much of the recent happenings on Wikiversity; just as Wikiversity has been disturbed by the presence and conduct of the "ethics" project, and some of its participants and offshoots. We've come to a situation where people refuse to talk to each other, verbally attack each other personally, and generally act as if civility is not a core Wikiversity/Wikimedia principle (which it is).

I am disturbed by what has been evoked in the name of "learning" and "scholarly" practice. I think it is all too easy to justify a learning/scholarly project by saying that it attempts to facilitate learning about a given topic, but I think it is also necessary to specify how this resource intends to facilitate learning. (I place emphasis on the word "how": by what process?; under what framework?) And, very importantly, it is also important to reflect on how a learning resource might contribute to an actual practice which hinders the intended learning, or which has other negative, perhaps unintended, consequences. An inquiry into ethics on the English Wikipedia could be a very interesting and productive learning project; and the same could be said of an inquiry into the actions of an individual on Wikiversity. However, what has been done on either front recently seems like a platform to make sneering and often veiled (however thinly) accusations against people, which does nothing to promote civility or scholarly practice.

I am disturbed that "action research" has been degraded to the point that it is seen as a synonym for "abnormally disruptive behaviour" [1] - though, from what he has seen, I don't blame Salmon of Doubt from drawing that conclusion. I would like to reclaim action research as a practice fitting for genuine collaborative learning, premised on honest and open discussion. To do this, (amongst other things) we need to build self-awareness of how our actions affect others - and not simply critique others' actions.

Many other Wikiversity participants are disturbed - SB_Johnny saying "our well is being poisoned" [2]. Wikiversity has been notably tolerant of material of questionable educational use - and this may well be a product of our intention to include as many types of learning resources, activities, participants, and communities as we can. But even within our very broad scope and pedagogical outlook, we surely cannot continue to tolerate actions that contribute to what I would call a toxic culture within Wikiversity. (Is it ironic that the ethics project has arisen out of a certain toxicity within Wikipedia?) There are clearly boundaries for what can promote learning - or, to put it another way, there are clearly actions that do not facilitate the creation of a scholarly environment.

I've just returned to Wikiversity after a week's holiday - and things are markedly worse than when I left (and they were bad enough at that time). Actually, I'm not just disturbed by what I've seen - I'm disgusted. This is not what we set up Wikiversity for. I urge everyone involved in the ethics project and deletion discussions - and anyone else who is interested - to commit to an open, honest, and reflective learning process about recent events on Wikiversity, and to develop out of this a set of principles about what is acceptable and unacceptable on Wikiversity. Cormaggio talk 14:11, 10 September 2008 (UTC)

I am more perplexed than disturbed, but only because I have studied and struggled with the toxicity of the WP culture longer than many others here. I see the problems of the erosion of civility to be appropriate subjects for study within the context of a study of Applied Ethics. The instances of incivility that you allude to are ethical conundrums that we explore in our Colloquium Series enroute to devising best ethical practices for dealing with them.
I urge everyone involved in the ethics project and deletion discussions — and anyone else who is interested — to commit to an open, honest, and reflective learning process about recent events on Wikiversity, and to develop out of this a set of principles about what is acceptable and unacceptable on Wikiversity. Cormaggio talk 14:11, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
I endorse this proposal. If you can suggest the appropriate project page on Wikiversity where we can undertake this exercise, I will initiate the discussion to develop a Community Social Contract along the lines that you envision.
Moulton 14:33, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
It's partly this kind of steadfast refusal to own up to any responsibility for your own actions - and labelling everything as something "perplexing" and somehow not connected to you directly - that I see as part of the problem. Cormaggio talk 16:17, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
If you can suggest the appropriate project page on Wikiversity where we can undertake the exercise you propose, I will initiate the discussion to develop a Community Social Contract in pursuit of mutually agreeable terms of engagement. —Moulton 17:39, 10 September 2008 (UTC)
One (fun-ish) way I approach this kind of stuff (mostly in my own mind) is by assuming and expecting that everyone's behaviour will be irrational and uncivil. Anything that isn't, then, is a pleasant surprise. To explain this perspective a little more, see this op-ed piece by Hugh Mackay (an Australian social psychologist) on irrationality]. It starts off with an invite to "Try this simple experiment, for just a week. Assume that all the people you encounter - family, friends, colleagues, fellow road-users - are irrational beings...". Otherwise, folks, I fear that we will be perpetually disappointed in one another! -- Jtneill - Talk - c 03:08, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
I really appreciate your comments here. I'm aware that I'm one of the people involved in this problem, and I'd be more than happy to discuss this. I agree that this is a problem, and I, frankly, don't know what to do about it. A new example of this sort of problem has been explored over at Albanian sea port history. Compare the page before (but after JWSchmidt got to it) and after my edits; at Student Union I tried one approach: reverting. At this page, I've tried another approach. Neither seems desireable, in my opinion. The Jade Knight 03:48, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Wikiversity needs a "professional detachment" policy; the problem with the ethics project is that it has none. Hesperian 07:15, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

How could you possibly enforce such a policy? The Jade Knight 07:31, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
I would argue that we should not allow our principles to be subdued by pragmatic issues like enforceability. i.e. our principles are our principles are our principles, whether we can enforce them or not. But I also think that a policy statement on this is itself a baby step towards enforcement, because it gives people something that they can point to as a reason why a course may be inappropriate. You gotta start somewhere. Hesperian 13:01, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the comments, and a special grin to Jtneill. :-) I've started a project about Learning from conflict and incivility - I urge everyone involved, and anyone who is interested, to participate. Suggestions are very welcome - I wonder how we could capture more suggestions like Hesperian has offered? Cormaggio talk 11:00, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Function / expression problem

I've been on #MediaWiki IRC trying to working out some stuff which I'll dump below, with names edited out - am hoping this might tease a solution out of someone! :)

 <jtneill> wondering how i could get the mathematical addition of two parameters {{PAGESIZE:User:{{{1}}}}} and {{PAGESIZE:User talk:{{{1}}}}}
 <jtneill> here's the template i'm working on : http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Template:SPP/Participant
 <1> {{#expr:{{PAGESIZE:User:{{{1}}}}}+{{PAGESIZE:User talk:{{{1}}}}}}}
 <jtneill> fantastic thankyou - let me try that :)
 <jtneill> hmmm... this works to work when i do a simple example in the template; but when it for a larger page i get "Expression error: Unrecognised punctuation character ",""
 <jtneill> here's the page with the error: http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Social_psychology_(psychology)/Participants#Profile_list
 <2> jtneill, the numbers can't have any commas in them. Try, IIRC, 0 . . . but I have no idea if that works.
 <2> Or is it :R?
 <2> Or does that not work at all?
 <2> There should be some way to get it, anyway.
 <jtneill> aha, no commas, gotcha, lemme try some more
 <jtneill> @2 no luck with R or :R but now i'll go hunting some more about #expr
 <jtneill> i read http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Help:Calculation but didn't a way to strip the commas for {{#expr:{{PAGESIZE:User:{{{1}}}}}+{{PAGESIZE:User talk:{{{1}}}}}}} to work
 <3> there should be a string replace function IIRC
 <jtneill> IIRC sounds good (don't know what it is) but i'm now searching
 <3> if i remember correctly
 <jtneill> maybe i can use #replace ? http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:StringFunctions#.23replace:
 <3> sounds feasible
 <jtneill> hmmm... looks like the StringFunction extension is not on Wikiversity or Wikipedia

-- Jtneill - Talk - c 14:31, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Category redirects

Dear all! Just a short note: Please use {{Category redirect}} instead of the common redirect (#REDIRECT[[]]) on category pages. If you don't use this "soft type redirect" some pages should be lost in the system (well, maybe not lost, just very hard to find). For example look at: Category:European history (yes, you need to click the redirect page) I didn't corrected this, that you can see what I meant. Hopefully I will also return to editing soon after this really hectic autumn. Greetings, --Gbaor 13:07, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

What does {{Category redirect}} do, exactly? The Jade Knight 13:38, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
If I understand correctly the {{Category redirect}} is a way to redirect users to the correct categories - duplicated categories which have no use on wikiversity could use the {{Category redirect}} link - see [[Category:Sciences]] which is a duplicate of [[Category:Science]] and the Sciences category includes that particular template which is more advance than the standard template. DarkMage 17:40, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
But what does it do? Is it just a pretty picture and some text? The Jade Knight 06:18, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
A redirect just redirects you to the correct pages or categories, although it does include text and an image - but that's common in a template, think of Template:Delete - that itself includes text why?, well for one it insures people how to use that particular template, and explains to them what they should do - that redirect template is no different than the standard deletion template, as with the image in the templates - users do that so it doesn't lets say look bland or boring like a number of templates do on Wikiversity. Text is required in a lot of templates, some of them inside the actual template is only instructions on what to do, or certain users create his/her own templates in there userpage or subpages - view my userpage for example, that itself is a userpage template although yes it was pre-made on Meta-Wiki but mine is a modified version and I've changed it to the way I like it, others on there userpage or subpages include some templates which allows them to place text in them - I don't think there's anything more to say about what a redirect link does, it just redirects you to the correct page. DarkMage 11:04, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
So, the category redirect template is different from a normal redirect template only in that:
  • It does not redirect you.
  • It contains more text (and stuff).
Yes? (I've posted a request for coded category redirects; it would be wonderful if we could actually get functional category redirects. The Jade Knight 11:35, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
That is true, it doesn't redirect automatically to the correct category with the new template - though the standard one #REDIRECT[[]] does still work. DarkMage 11:40, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
The problem is that even if you make a category page redirect to another category page, the pages in the category aren't redirected. I don't think "functional" category redirects are coming any time soon... this has been on the wishlist of the Commoners for years (for example, it would be great if you could categorize as "butterfly", "mariposa", or "schmetterlingen" and have them all end up in the same category). Commons employs bots to switch pages from redirect categories to real categories. There is, however, a change in the interface on commons that lets you see if a category has content (number of files, subcats, and pages), so perhaps we could get that enabled here? --SB_Johnny talk 11:54, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
The "category redirect" template is a kind of "soft redirect" (i.e. you need to click the link to go to the page it redirects to). The reason why it should be used on category pages is, that if you use the common redirect, than it takes you to an another category, than you want to go. Example: if you go to British Empire and click its category Category:European history, you find yourself in Category:European History (note the small, but important difference between these two cat.s), and this page is not there. This is because this page is categorized elsewhere, along with few another pages. So to sum up: {{category redirect}} is used to direct readers attention to the correct (unified) category, even if there are slight differences between spellings. For the future also the "wrong" categories should be kept, because there is a good chance, that someone categorizes a page as "European History", and in this case he will know what to do. (inserted again after edit conflict :)) --Gbaor 11:57, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I see. I suppose this makes unfortunate sense. The Jade Knight 12:14, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

TinyURLs

I get a spam block on trying to add URLS like this (http)://tinyurl.com/5pusva to pages. Not a big deal, but it would be nice to be able to use tinyurls. Any suggestions? -- Jtneill - Talk - c 06:23, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

I'm guessing this is something you'll need to talk to a Bureaucrat about. Anyone? The Jade Knight 06:48, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
Tiny url is blacklisted on meta:spam blacklist. You may try to ask for it to be locally whitelisted. Hillgentleman|Talk 07:52, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
Aha, thanks. Have added a request for local whitelist to meta:MediaWiki_talk:Spam-whitelist#tinyurl.com_for_Wikiversity. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 17:16, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
I would not recommend that. Tinyurl would allow someone to bypass any legitimate blacklist entry. Just use the full url to the site instead. --mikeu talk 02:37, 13 September 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, Mike, appreciate it. In the end, I got a way sorted on that link to the meta discussion listed above. Wasn't thinking straight at 3am! :). All I need to do is create a shorter named page as a redirect. I started down this path because of problems emailing a long Wikiversity page name. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 02:44, 13 September 2008 (UTC)

Database error

Last couple of edits, I've been getting:

 Database error
 From Wikiversity
 A database query syntax error has occurred. This may indicate a bug in the software. The last attempted database query was:
   (SQL query hidden)
 from within function "ExternalStoreDB::store". MySQL returned error "1290: The MySQL server is running with the --read-only option so it cannot execute this statement (10.0.2.108)".

-- Jtneill - Talk - c 15:30, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

Which page and which edits did you do ? I just did a small test edit on sandbox, error didn't happen. Let's see if this can be reproduced (to report at bugzilla), ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 17:32, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
In regard to Jtneill's defence I've been receiving some error messages earlier on today - all I did was just viewing my watchlist and clicked something like (→Conflict and incivility: new section) but on the arrow and received something like what Jtneill received, thought I might have been the only one receiving the message but it looks like other's have been receiving similar messages. DarkMage 18:29, 12 September 2008 (UTC)
It hasn't happened again to me again; will note time and page if/when there is a next time. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 02:45, 13 September 2008 (UTC)

Second opinion on categories

As I review and revise the History cat and subcats, I expect I'm going to have categorizing questions. I'll list some of them here; I'd like additional opinions, and I doubt many people are watching that cat pages. So, first one:

New one:

Perhaps I'm being obtuse, but what are the questions precisely? thanks - KillerChihuahua 13:45, 13 September 2008 (UTC)
At the links; I'm posting the links here to get attention to them. The Jade Knight 04:11, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
Replied, hope it will be of help, ----Erkan Yilmaz uses the Wikiversity:Chat (try) 11:23, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

New probationary custodian

Please feel free to comment/ask questions about User:Ottava Rima at Wikiversity:Probationary custodians.
--JWSchmidt 04:10, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Nice idea, placing it into it's own mainspace - I've already placed a question to the user. DarkMage 15:05, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Wikimedia Server Error's

Was with wikimedia these days, I've been getting a number of server error's even when posting this comment or monitoring user activity from the Recent Changes, I've been getting them. DarkMage 15:20, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Albert Einstein

I invite all to participate or comment on Albert Einstein as describe in the proposal. Dzonatas 17:15, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Extension to the civility policy

Below is an urgent draft extension to the civility policy, governing outing and mentioning the names of other users in inappropriate places. Please discuss and vote. The events of the last few weeks have been bizarre and unacceptable, and it is incredible how editors of high standing have been drawn by others into talking about each other all the time like a bunch of schoolgirls. We are all responsible for this, because even those of us who haven't been talking about each other are nevertheless responsible for letting the others get away with it. Wikiversity needs a return to a much higher ethical standard. If you feel this policy affects you, you're probably right - it affects us all. Give yourself a good caning for your sins, then vote for the policy and stick to the policy. If you don't vote for this, then reflect on how Wikiversity has become the laughing stock of the rest of the Wikimedia Foundation. Yes - the policy is severe - and we need it to correct ourselves. I've added voting and discussion sub-sections below the green box. --McCormack 17:20, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

1st draft

2nd draft

The second draft is the version we are currently working on. Please feel welcome to edit this so that we can form consensus about what it should be. --McCormack 06:39, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Voting on the first draft of the civility policy extension

Please only vote in this section. Discuss in section below.

  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Changing from Strong support to oppose due to reading comments below. DarkMage 17:36, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support --mikeu talk 17:44, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose -- I can't accept this as-is. With a few changes, I may support. Dzonatas 17:50, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
    You could create a fork on a subpage and mark in your change proposals. --McCormack 17:58, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose See comments below. —Moulton 18:30, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • This is not how Wikiversity makes policy and I won't dignify it with a vote. If anyone takes these proposals seriously, move them to Wikiversity talk:Civility and Wikiversity talk:Privacy policy and let the community participate in the normal process of policy creation. --JWSchmidt 19:33, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • I have reservations that the unintended consequences of the above will represent a net loss to the project, however I'm a big fan of trying things out to see how they work. In particular, I think it's healthy to give things a go, even if we honestly feel they're bad ideas - we'd probably learn something. I'd support a month's trial (or somesuch) with a sunset clause (writ in stone).. then let's talk about it :-) Privatemusings 21:00, 14 September 2008 (UTC)it strikes me there may be 'autonomy of the community' issues emerging at the mo too, 'how Wikiversity does things' seems to be up for analysis a bit....?
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Let's not make rash decisions in haste, as has already been done to lead to these sort of situations. Much more discussion is needed. --darkYin yang.svglama 21:08, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
Initial vote closed now - see below. --McCormack 06:40, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
  • I'm going to vote anyway: Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose; though I support the "Outing" policy, the rest is far too severe; I would support the rest, perhaps as a guideline, but definitely not as policy. The Jade Knight 09:03, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Winding the first vote up

It's clear we need to work on this some more. I've created a second draft on a subpage and also opened up a talk page for discussion. --McCormack 06:39, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Discussion of civility policy extension

Changes that I feel are needed:

  • Outing: What is described in the proposal only covers a portion of what outing is about. The proposal describes breaking anonymity rather than outing itself. Outing happens when someone's reputation is being ruined or statements that are made to form out-groups. People tend to break anonymity to name people, which have already been subjected to such outing statements. I hate to see this be supported and misinform what outing is about. People will misuse the word more, and that would lead to more problems. Perhaps, a definition should remain on its own page: WV:OUTING.
  • The appropriate and not appropriate: I generally agree with what is listed, but the style it is listed can easily lead to loopholes. The spirit is obviously there. Consider some recent experiences and you find those that argue to the letter. There is some other policies here that are not being fully supported since they haven't been fully improved as requested, yet they obviously carry a spirit to them. I have seen comments made to the effect that people will just not even abide by such policy until it is perfected supported by everyone. I don't have quick response to re-layout the appropriate and not-appropriate items, so, sorry, I'm just going to mention it for now.

Dzonatas 18:05, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

  • This has not been carefully thought through. Most editors who do not self-disclose on-wiki have, over the years, published off-wiki disclosures in many venues including foundation mailing lists, off-wiki forums, other wikis (including old archival wikis) personal blogs and web sites, in Facebook and sites like Linked-In, in IRC or Skype sessions, in other e-mail, etc. In many cases it's a trivial connect-the-dots puzzle with no more than a few dots. Are you gonna bar the first such dot in a connect-the-dots chain? Usually the first dot is Google with the user's on-wiki avatar name. The famous Kevin Bacon game reveals that almost any page on the Internet can be reached from any other page in a chain of no more than 6 clicks total. You cannot legislate against solving trivial connect-the-dots puzzles that any child could solve. The proposal doesn't nothing more than create a billyclub for adversarial editors to bash each other with. Moulton 18:29, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Proposed addition. Special exception: Wikiversity users who have called another Wikiversity participant a "troll" and/or said to another Wikiversity participant "I'm not going to talk to you" are not protected by this policy.

    This special exception to the proposed policy is need in order to prevent a few Wikiversity participants for continuing their practice of disrupting the project while refusing to discuss their own bad behavior. Frankly, I would prefer a stronger version that says "Wikiversity participants who call fellow participants a "troll" and/or who say "I refuse to talk to you" are expected to retract such statements and apologize. Those who fail to apologize will be asked to leave the project. --JWSchmidt 18:43, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
It's entirely possible that people may need to call a spade a spade from time to time. It's also entirely possible that people can in good faith come to the realization that conversation with another user will not be constructive. --SB_Johnny talk 21:44, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm also a big fan of labeling things, and if you are working with a newly observed plant being added into the Bloom Clock project then it might be okay to apply a label and move on. I do not understand how that strategy works in a learning community where everything depends on collaboration. People seem to often apply the label "troll" when they feel that another person is persistently off topic. In my experience, feeling that another person is persistently off topic often arises from an honest difference in opinion about what is on topic. At Wikiversity we have a mission and it should be possible for people to keep talking and explore honest differences in opinion about which topics fit with the project's mission. --JWSchmidt 22:38, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
    • What about labelling in general? What if you call an entire group of Wikiversity participants as "trolls"? (Ie, "those that work over at Topic:Psychology are trolls" or "Those who support forking this page are trolls", etc.) And what about other names, besides trolls, which seem to have negative connotations? Is it okay to call people morons? Racists? Barbarians? The Jade Knight 09:08, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Japan high school songs

Comparing Okanosata's contributions Special:Contributions/Okanosato and betawikiversity:User_talk:Miyazaki, I see much similarity. Hillgentleman|Talk 02:13, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Hillgentleman, you seem to be on top of this. I'll take your lead on what to do next. --HappyCamper 03:58, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
In August, Miyazaki and users from the same ip-address (usercheck requested on meta) had been uploading school songs and baseball scores on beta:. We were concerned about the copy-rights of the songs, and that study projects in Japanese should be hosted in ja:. We tried to talk to them but they refused every attempt to communication. We are told that this behaviour has appeared in other wikis also (either b:ja: or w:ja:). We blocked Miyazaki, Miyazaki1, Miyazaki2, for limited terms, and a few more. But they/s/he kept coming back. So in the end I put all such titles in a cascade (see betawikiversity:special:prefixindex/wikiversity:nospam/) and then used the titleblacklist also (only as a temporary measure). However, it is up to the English wikiversity to decide what to do with these materials. If there are students interested in Japanese school songs, there may be something than we can do about it, if we can settle the copy-right problems. Please feel free to ask me on beta if you have more questions. Hillgentleman|Talk 05:20, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Student union Participants

Due to me updating the Student union page and also re-organizing it all I've created a Participants list including a list for users who are willing to maintain the Student Union project - if anyone is currently participating in the project please add your username to the Participants list - I've explained it in the Introduction, this is only optional but will easily identify those who are taking part of the project and those who are maintaining the pages. DarkMage 20:26, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Moulton's three day task

Moulton has completed his three day task and I have started the trial Peer Review process now. I have introduced Part One at this time. Tomorrow, I will introduce Part Two, and then Friday I will introduce Part Three. If you would like to participate, do not feel rushed, as I will wait until Monday to start the community wide discussion on the matter, so you can take your time.

Links: Ottava Rima's Exercise and Peer Review. I would ask that all responses are kept in separate subheading following the same format at this time, and not to discuss other responses until the end of the process when this is opened for a larger, guided discussion and analysis. Ottava Rima (talk) 20:26, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Teaching Assistant in France Survival Guide/Directory

Was anyone aware we were hosting this?! It isn't connected to any current Wikiversity projects, but is, in fact, tied to b:Teaching Assistant in France Survival Guide. I'm willing to bet most of the users that come to that page have no idea of what's even available here at Wikiversity (or perhaps even that they're at Wikiversity!) The Jade Knight 11:17, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

In principle, I would think that interaction b/w WMF project pages would actually be desirable. Whether it is in the specific case may well be up for discussion. But I suspect WB wouldn't host learning-related content, whereas WV might well be happy to host such a professional network list which is related back to a WB book. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 12:03, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm not complaining about the interaction; I'm just thinking we ought to do something to encourage more interaction. The Jade Knight 12:38, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
Ah, yes, I see - make it more obvious what's going on, yes, sure, good idea. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 13:48, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

I actually found it several weeks ago, but I didn't know there is some connection with any other project or resource. Now it is also categorized at WV.--Gbaor 05:55, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Cleaning up Ethical Management of the English Language Wikipedia

Please note that this section has been moved to Wikiversity:Colloquium/Wikipedia Ethics. This note is for archiving purposes. Hillgentleman|Talk 12:48, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Not using unified account

I have problems with the comment 'not using unified account' in my user file 'my preferences'. I wanted to fill in the table 'Login unification status' nn.wikipedia.org (home wiki). But my normal password (the only one I use with wikipedia or wikiversity is not accepted. Can you help? --Roger 14:32, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Good on you, Roger, for finding the Colloquium! I found it a scary place at first :) (and sometimes it still is!). Anyway, see if this helps m:Help:Unified login and let us know here if it doesn't. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 14:41, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

-- Roger to Jtneill. Thanks for your help, I tried to unify my login but didn't manage to. There must be another Roger in Wikipedia somewhere. So I'm now Roger in wv (wikiversity) and Roger18 in wp (wikipedia). I hope sometime I will have a unified account with one name everywhere in the wikies.--88.64.84.130 18:28, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

User:Ottava Rima

As per recent events, I hereby give permission to any Bureaucrat to request a revoke of my Custodian privileges. This authority was reserved for JWSchmidt during my Candidate for Custodianship process. Because of JWS being blocked, I feel that my Custodianship could come under question. I was first brought over by Moulton and JWSchmidt to provide advice on a situation that later brought about the above user's censure by this community. I feel that my origins here and my process to becoming a custodian may be tainted by this, and I would seek to remedy this immediately. If the community feels that they can trust me and wish for me to take on the mantel that was originally asked of me sometime in the future, then I will be willing to enter into the process once again. There are many who many look at some of the recent events as a fundamental problem that needs to be addressed, and I do not wish to add any problems in the remedying of this. I hope that the matter will be solved quickly, and that the community's decision will be the best for all involved. I would like to apologize to the staff here, to the Wikimedia Foundation, to Jimbo Wales, and to other users who may have had to deal with this recent situation, and I apologize if I have contributed any to the furtherance of this situation, as has been alleged by at least one participant in this community. I will still be willing to help out and contribute in any way that I can, and I am willing to take all steps necessary to further the ends of this community. Ottava Rima (talk) 22:05, 19 September 2008 (UTC)

I am happy to act as a stand-in mentor for Ottava for the time being. I will be his mentor over the long term as well, but recommend he find someone with more keyboard time (I'm busy this time of year). --SB_Johnny talk 00:12, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
Thank you. I would be willing to take on multiple mentors if there are those who would be willing. Ottava Rima (talk) 00:18, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm glad you've found another Mentor and that you're so willing to resolve this, Ottava. The Jade Knight 02:19, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

Referencing, how-tos

Hi, I have 2 questions:

  1. How is it with referencing here on Wikiversity? In my opinion, all content here should be refed the same way as it is for instance on Wikipedia. How can one learn from original research?
  2. Does WV accomodate how-tos? If so, where?

Thanx for answers! Regards --Kozuch 07:30, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

Couple of thoughts on this; referencing is somewhat looser here on WV than on WP (like many things) and although that struck me as a little bit odd at first, I've come to realise that it is far better to accept a half-decent reference in whatever format, then go about tidying later. So, Kozuch, don't be put off - feel free to wikify referencing you see here and we can do with some of the consistency lessons and guidelines from WP. But there will need to be some freedom and flexibility. For example, I myself use and encourage use of APA style with my students. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 07:50, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
Indeed—and one can learn from original research quite easily; all research was once original. Wikiversity provides many different ways of exploring things. Now, if you see material which appears to be inaccurate, you may wish to bring it up respectfully. If it's something in the School of History, I'd be happy to look into it personally. As for your other question: It does accomodate how-to's, though you'll find more of those on Wikibooks. The Jade Knight 08:30, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

Wikimedia Server

I think wikimedia is playing up again, When I was going to respond to Moultons comment on his talkpage - it looks like it won't work for some reason due to this message:

Unable to store text to external storage Backtrace:

  1. 0 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Revision.php(724): ExternalStore::randomInsert('?????W?%?????Z*...')
  2. 1 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Article.php(1501): Revision->insertOn(Object(DatabaseMysql))
  3. 2 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Article.php(1355): Article->doEdit('==Archives==??*...', '/* Question for...', 102)
  4. 3 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(1013): Article->updateArticle('==Archives==??*...', '/* Question for...', true, true, false, '#Question_for_D...')
  5. 4 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(2366): EditPage->internalAttemptSave(false, false)
  6. 5 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(454): EditPage->attemptSave()
  7. 6 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(339): EditPage->edit()
  8. 7 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Wiki.php(494): EditPage->submit()
  9. 8 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Wiki.php(59): MediaWiki->performAction(Object(OutputPage), Object(Article), Object(Title), Object(User), Object(WebRequest))
  10. 9 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/index.php(93): MediaWiki->initialize(Object(Title), Object(Article), Object(OutputPage), Object(User), Object(WebRequest))
  11. 10 /usr/local/apache/common-local/live-1.5/index.php(3): require('/usr/local/apac...')
  12. 11 {main}

Should this be reported to Bugzilla, because of this it seems I cannot post a reply in that particular section? DarkMage 07:41, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

I just got a similar message on trying to post a message to User talk:Draicone. After getting it, I went "back" in my browser, hit save again, and it worked OK.

Internal error From Wikiversity Jump to: navigation, search

Unable to store text to external storage

Backtrace:

  1. 0 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Revision.php(724): ExternalStore::randomInsert('?Z?n?F???=EE?,)...')
  2. 1 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Article.php(1501): Revision->insertOn(Object(DatabaseMysql))
  3. 2 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Article.php(1355): Article->doEdit('Welcome to Wiki...', '==Moodle== ...', 98)
  4. 3 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(1013): Article->updateArticle('Welcome to Wiki...', '==Moodle== ...', false, true, false, '#installing_pro...')
  5. 4 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(2366): EditPage->internalAttemptSave(false, false)
  6. 5 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(454): EditPage->attemptSave()
  7. 6 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/EditPage.php(339): EditPage->edit()
  8. 7 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Wiki.php(494): EditPage->submit()
  9. 8 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/includes/Wiki.php(59): MediaWiki->performAction(Object(OutputPage), Object(Article), Object(Title), Object(User), Object(WebRequest))
  10. 9 /usr/local/apache/common-local/php-1.5/index.php(93): MediaWiki->initialize(Object(Title), Object(Article), Object(OutputPage), Object(User), Object(WebRequest))
  11. 10 /usr/local/apache/common-local/live-1.5/index.php(3): require('/usr/local/apac...')
  12. 11 {main}

-- Jtneill - Talk - c 12:17, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

I had this kind of error 5 times in a row (by going "back" and retrying -> repeatedly) on trying to edit Social psychology (psychology)/Assessment/Essay/Topics. I gave up on the edit, refreshed the page, and then did the edit again, and it saved OK. Ironically, then, same problem on trying to post this... -- Jtneill - Talk - c 13:38, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

Well for now it seems to have stopped, though I wonder if MediaWiki is having problems and needs to be fix by the developers, or it could possibly be a glitch in the software which MediaWiki runs from. DarkMage 19:26, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
Hmm, this problem seems to be Global - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Help_desk#Internal_error. DarkMage 20:32, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

International law and advices

--59.96.99.158 10:39, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

Hello, for anything to do with off-topic discussions please go to the Help Desk, but if you require information about Law please see Law. DarkMage 10:02, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Is it possible to usurp accounts?

Is it possible to usurp accounts on Wikiversity in order to deal with SUL conflicts? I've looked all over and cannot find the page to request it. Matty (temp) 08:56, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Welcome, the best place to go to for Usurp request or Changing your username is Wikiversity:Changing username a Bureaucrat will then process the request if it qualifies for usurp - however due to some situations happening on the site it maybe longer than usual before the request gets filled. DarkMage 09:37, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Respect people

Please see Wikiversity:Respect people and vote on the talk page. This proposed policy compliments Wikiversity:Civility by addressing issues concerning respecting people (including both other Wikiversity participants and people you write about). --mikeu talk 02:24, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Shouldn't this also be added to Wikiversity:Announcements since the page connects to a lot of userpages even learning resources - many people may not view the Colloquium. DarkMage 19:20, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Block of Moulton for incivility

After discussion with other admins, in which I was requested to personally make this block, I have indef blocked Moulton from this project. It is my belief that he was not here in a good faith effort to create learning materials, but rather was here to carry out his ongoing campaign against people who he thinks treated him unfairly at Wikipedia. After reviewing his case at Wikipedia, I think this is clearly not the case: he was properly blocked at Wikipedia, and should be blocked on sight from any Wikimedia project where he surfaces with a similar agenda.

I would recommend that a significant number of the attack pages be deleted, and the project protected at least for now, pending a good community discussion of what something like this should look like.

There are always difficult growing pains for young commuities; I have seen it in many languages and many projects. I encourage Wikiversity to review the "ethics" project - which, it seems to me could be an interesting project if handled appropriately - with an eye towards developing principles for dealing with such projects in the future. One idea that I would like to propose is an explicit ban on "case studies" using real examples of non-notable people, in exchange for hypotheticals. I would also like to encourage you to consider clarifying the scope of Wikiversity to make it more clear that it is not a place for people to come and build attack pages in the guise of learning materials.

In any event, I hope that my action here will be viewed as helpful. I did not act quickly, but only after discussion with important people, and only after hearing that 3 bureaucrats support this action. It is not my intention to be the "God King" of Wikiversity, although I do request that this block only be overturned upon a very careful consideration of the possible implications for the future of the project.

The first major internal conflict and ban is always tough. My thoughts are with you, and I wish you well.--Jimbo Wales 19:18, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

I guess there goes my project that I assigned to Moulton to try to get him to understand his actions and to start having him contribute in a meaningful way. The original proposal for it can be found here. I wish this would have come after the three day period and after the Peer Review process would have begun. Ottava Rima 19:21, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I support this block - albeit reluctantly. I feel that many of Moulton's actions within Wikiversity have been profoundly uncivil - even though others have been very welcome. I am dismayed by the tone of activity since the introduction of the "ethics" project - much of which I have felt to be deeply unethical (such as the posting of personal information, and, of course, making what seem to be deliberately provocative and uncivil comments). I am still very much interested in exploring how we could make a contribution to Wikipedia by studying it - however, we still need to put a lot of thought into it to make it workable in practice. I think this is just the beginning of a long learning process for this community, and hopefully the beginning of the end of the divisive activity we've seen of late. Cormaggio talk 19:41, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
While I'm sad to see him blocked and think he does have some valid points to make, I also think he very largely brought his own situation upon himself by his own insistence on taking a hostile attitude towards anybody and everybody who opposed him. Some of those opponents have used unfair tactics against him too, but that doesn't excuse his own bad behavior. But as for the proposal regarding case studies only using fictional cases instead of real ones with real names, there's the "no win situation" in that, while if you use real names you risk unfairly dragging people's names through the mud and stirring up unnecessary drama around them, but on the other hand when you use made-up cases, you risk being criticized for contriving a case that supports whatever point you're trying to make, possibly with unrealistic attributes not resembling anything in the real world. Dtobias 19:45, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I largely agree with Dtobias. The Jade Knight 09:12, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

(Edit conflict) Jimbo, this was completely uncalled for and is a great miscarriage of justice. This was not deserved and had little justification. There was no attempt on your part to negotiate with Moulton, just a secret discussion with people who were probably on your side or members of the ID clique.

This was a unilateral abuse, based on a discussion that is not linked or was secret. It was not right to go blocking him, this is total abuse. Please rethink your actions. I am not familiar with the full situation, but I know that it is wrong for you, because you are the co-founder of Wikipedia, to go to another project and appoint yourself presiding lord. Your discussion with very important people illustrates a clear association with a clique of anti-Moultoners and a clear intent to harm. I hope you rethink your decision and unblock this editor.

I have seen some of Moulton's edits here and they seem like genuine efforts to expose corruption. Just because he does not expose it while bowing down to authoritarianism in Wikipedia does not mean that he should be banned for dissenting. You won't ban Just 'zis Guy for being the rude troll that he is, but you hesitate not when banning someone who disagrees with your posse. Jonas Rand 68.96.213.118 19:48, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

To clear up some potential confusion from the above - Jimbo has had prior involvement with this issue, and such correspondence has been kept (to this point) mostly off of Wikiversity. It came out then that many people disagreed with what Moulton was posting here (including links to other websites). If you agree with Jimbo or not on the issue, it is at least fair to acknowledge that Jimbo did not come out of no where, but has been connected in some way to this for a few weeks now and was one of many interested and involved parties. Ottava Rima (talk) 20:06, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

And to you Dark Mage: Merely sucking up to Jimbo as a loyal follower, just because you trust him as infallible and because Moulton "exposed" people's real names is not right. You need to think for yourself, not with Jimbo. As for KillerChihuahua's name, it was revealed (I believe) on Amazon.com, and on Wikipedia-Watch.org. Jimbo, why don't you ban User:Salmon of Doubt, as an obvious troll account used to harass? Jonas 68.96.213.118 19:54, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Reluctant support from me too: Moulton has a very hard time getting along with others, and while he's been recieving abundant good advice on the irc channel, he hasn't been following it (I'm afraid he's getting bad advice too, but that's a different issue). I hope Moulton will take the opportunity to give Ottama Riva's approach a try, using his talk page as his place to post. I hope the rest of us can take the opportunity to do some serious house cleaning and make a serious effort at creating a policy structure that allows the kind of work Moulton has been engaged in, while at the same time maintaining a welcoming environment where people will not feel that the community turns a blind eye on inappropriate behavior. --SB_Johnny talk 19:57, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
SB_Johnny, I agree with you, except that I think he shouldn't be forced to use his talk page. I think he should be unblocked, and then he can try OR's mentorship. But he shouldn't be banninated forever. 68.96.213.118 20:01, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
This isn't Wikipedia. "Indefblock" doesn't necessarily mean "banninated forever" (though it might) :-). --SB_Johnny talk 21:15, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I generally agree with you, SB_Johnny, though I'm more neutral as to the block; I dislike that it came about in such a fashion, though I do agree that Moulton had engaged in some behaviors which contributed to it. I would like to see him given some method of contributing productively in a limited fashion so that an unblock could be created at the earliest reasonable opportunity. I dislike seeing users blocked from a project, when they even give a reasonable semblance of productive contribution. The Jade Knight 09:21, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Everyone at Wikiversity has been firm in telling Moulton that Wikiversity does not welcome his interest in private/personal information that wiki users want to keep private. In response to Moulton, the Wikiversity community crafted new parts for the privacy policy and I asked Moulton to take the intent of the privacy policy to heart, even while the community stalled out short of making this official policy. Moultan was recently given a short block for using a name at Wikiversity, apparently the real name of a Wiki user who did not want the name mentioned. I believe that Moulton was able to "take the hint" from that "warning block" and was ready to participate in Moulton's three day trial research project which was being set up by Ottava Rima. Moulton knew that something like this would happen if he continued to show an interest in private/personal information that wiki users want to keep private. I believe that Moulton felt compelled to try to martyr himself, frequently comparing himself to people like Galileo. I hope that we can continue with our studies and that Moulton will make a promise to stop showing an interest in private/personal information about wiki users. --JWSchmidt 20:34, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I'll agree to support Moulton's unblock if he follows JWSchmidt's advice I and other editors don't want users being blocked if there is another way round the block like what JWSchmidt stated then lets do it so long as Moulton agrees to it and other editors, in regard to 68.96.213.118 comments regarding my previous comments I am not loyal to anyone and my support for this block is very weak, the reason why I asked Jimbo if he'll be active here is because he is more experienced in these sort of matters and have a huge say in the foundation and it's policies - if we're not sure on what policy is acceptable to the site then we could ask Jimbo what is acceptable under the foundations rules that's all, so think before you start assuming that I'm loyal to someone when I'm not loyal to anyone, nor do I intervene. DarkMage 20:43, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
EditConflict Point taken, statement retracted. Just call me Jonas. I think people should be more willing to negotiate with Moulton and stop being crybabies when someone calls KC by her first name, open to all. KC didn't block or warn Moulton, or censor the name, where did she say not to use it? If this incident is enough to warrant an indef block, people need to grow thicker skin. 68.96.213.118 21:21, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
I oppose any unblock before the dust settles. I just got of the phone with Moulton, and he's not taking it personally or hurtfully. Let's think, 'k? --SB_Johnny talk 21:15, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
Did he say he accepted the block? Did he care if he was unblocked? 68.96.213.118 21:21, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
It is very unfortunate when an editor with the potential to be a valuable contributor to wikiversity is blocked. I had hoped that it would not come down to this, but I do support jimbo's action. The incivility has been more than a distraction, it has been an impediment to learning. It is also disappointing to see a learning project strive for scholarly discourse, but fall far short of that goal. We can do better than this. --mikeu talk 21:30, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

I've only been active here for under a week, and have tried to immerse myself into the Wikiversity culture as much as possible. My initial assessment is that this Ethics project, and specifically Moulton, has been allowed to dominate the entire English Wikiversity, at the expense of other learning projects here. Some of the sysops here, specifically JWSchmidt, appear to be reveling in the opportunity to denounce and investigate the sysops of English Wikipedia, and that is an indictment on them, as English Wikiversity will one day (hopefully) be as big English Wikipedia and I can assure the sysops here that they will find they will not always look like saints as they try to keep things orderly. I applaud Jimbo stepping in and saying "enough is enough". Moultons time and energy are not wanted if they remain focused on pulling apart his "bad" English Wikipedia block. The Ethics project can be profitable, but not if it is a vehicle to obtain retribution against English Wikipedia. If Moulton wants restitution, then he can obtain that by working on other Wikiversity learning projects, or other WMF projects. An unblock should not be done until this 3 day Ottava Rima trial is finished, and only consider if Moulton voluntarily takes a break from the Ethics project for at least a week, and then keeps it on the backburner for at least a month. John Vandenberg (chat) 22:35, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

"Moulton, has been allowed to dominate the entire English Wikiversity" <-- Been allowed? At Wikiversity the participants study the topics that they are interested in. Speaking only for myself, I've studied Wikipedia for years, and I intend to continue studying Wikipedia. I worked to develop Wikipedia Studies at Wikiversity long before I knew the Moulton existed. When I learned of the existence of the Ethical Management of the English Language Wikipedia project I investigated the project and started participating. I firmly believe that I would have joined a similar project had it not included Moulton. I hope we can persuade Moulton to move past his interest in the issue of anonymity. I think he feels strongly that it is ethically irresponsible for Wikipedia to allow editors to put false information into BLPs while being protected by anonymity. I'm interested in thinking about and discussing ways to improve BLPs at Wikipedia and I hope Moulton can redirect his energies towards collaborative efforts to improve Wikipedia. "specifically JWSchmidt, appear to be reveling in the opportunity to denounce" <-- It would be interesting to know the prism through which John Vandenberg is ascertaining such "appearances". I have publicly (in wiki) described my feelings about my study project. Those feelings can best be described as feeling sick while reading the edit history of Wikipedia pages where the BLP policy was violated. Yes, I feel sick when I see biased BLPs that exist only to put a false negative label on a person. This is not a matter I can "revel in". John Vandenberg <-- please, can you tell me exactly what gives the appearance of "reveling"? As a Wikipedia editor I have devoted a significant amount of time to biographies, including working to correct problems in BLPs. I am studying problems in BLPs and thinking about ways to improve Wikipedia BLPs. "Moultons time and energy are not wanted if they remain focused on pulling apart his "bad" English Wikipedia block." <-- Moulton's interests are describe clearly on his user page. --JWSchmidt 03:07, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
It is great to see that Moulton has been blocked, his efforts have clearly been disruptive in my opinion. I've seen how he's moved from project to project (not just Wikipedia and Wikiversity) as he's been blocked. John Vandenberg makes some good points but, whilst I've not being following every twist and turn of this story, I can't say I'd like to see Moulton editing anytime soon. I have to take JWSchmidt's comments with a pinch of salt considering his clear negative attitude towards Wikipedia editors in general. It is a great shame that he and perhaps others have allowed Wikiversity to be distracted from writing true educational resources by "studying" the behaviour of Wikipedia editors. I look forward to seeing users refocus their efforts in more productive ways as a result of this block. I thank Jimbo for taking this action. Adambro 08:56, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
"clear negative attitude towards Wikipedia editors in general" <-- I am a Wikipedian and I think the vast majority of Wikipedians are great. I do object to attempts to apply Wikipedia methods to Wikiversity when they do not suit this project. --JWSchmidt 09:17, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
"The first major internal conflict and ban is always tough." But, don't cry. Now that it's done, every time afterward is going to feel good, even amazingly pleasurable. Sounds like Wikiversity just got its cherry popped. -- Thekohser 11:16, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't make me "feel good" to see a contributer blocked, as I and others have stated above. I see that there were many chances, and warnings, to participate in learning projects in a civil manner before any action was taken. Suggesting that this block would give someone pleasure might be construed by some as not assuming good faith, esp. given the expressions of regret posted in this thread which clearly indicate otherwise. --mikeu talk 14:29, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Adambro, if Moulton had the level of power as say, Jpgordon, and you were a nobody, then you would be blocked for incivility towards Jpgordon, if Jpgordon wasn't blocked, but if you said you would be glad if he was. And, Moulton or JWSchmidt didn't have a "bad attitude to Wikipedia editors in general". They exposed corruption and got censored for it, like what would happen in a Sovjet prison camp.

Adam, your comment is quite rude to anyone who gives criticism of Wikipedia without fluffing up Jimbo, saying that this is proper treatment, for all their chances to come to an end, and be banned for an infinite time, even when another editor has a plan laid out to mentor them. Your comments are unhelpful and are not making the situation better. In your view, every critic of Wikipedia should be banned. This is not in the spirit of accepting criticism.

Yours,
Jonas Rand 18:30, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Personally, I don't think this was handled very well. I'm not surprised Moulton was blocked, and the ethics project did need to be revamped, but the swoop-in block and decrees by Jimbo were, from my perspective, not a good method. It would be one thing if Jimbo regularly addressed civility issues, but this seems pretty one-sided considering the crap that editors regularly get away with on WP.

I know that the over-the-top inclusionism that has historically been the rule on Wikiversity has made it difficult to deal with the issues with the ethics project, but was this really a good answer? Sχeptomaniacχαιρετε 21:09, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

I agree with Sχeptomaniac that this was not handled very well at all. As a custodian myself I had no idea that blocking Moulton was really even being considered. While I was getting a bit tired of the dominant discourse around the Ethics project it was my perogative to follow along if I wanted to or not. The fact that Jimmy Wales can enter into WV, create an account and with his first 'edit' block a new yet somewhat prolific editor based on reasons brought with him from WP just doesn't seem right to me. Countrymike 21:24, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
I also agree that this was not handled very well at all - though I fully believe that it was justified. Incidentally, Moulton was also blocked from the wikiversity-en IRC channel yesterday. I'm going to develop a page about this, where I'll try to be as transparent and thorough about the circumstances leading up to Moulton's blocks, at User:Cormaggio/Moulton's block. Cormaggio talk 08:41, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
Although a number of users are against the block and those who are in favour, it has come to my attention that the foundations policy states that revealing any personal/private information goes against the very core of it's policies including violating the Data Protection Act which strictly forbids people in doing this no matter how Moultan gained the information the policy and the law still applies, although my support for the block is very weak - though I'm now starting to support the block which Jimbo has done, IP 68.96.213.118 your comments are welcome since you've been participating in the dicussion - though next time if you join in the discussion please don't be uncivil towards other editors who have the right to express his/her view in this even in the first comment which you've mentioned about me - that was both uncivil and unprovoked, I'll be willing to forget that comment if you start to remain civil to other editors (including) me - if Moulton does get unblocked for what any reason I may oppose or support it depending on the situation though at the moment I'll support this block. DarkMage 10:11, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

What's going on here?

If, as Jimbo's comments regarding the block suggests, custodians privately asked him to make the block, rather than do it themselves, it does not bode well for the health of this project, IMO. I find it very troubling that no-one who asked for the block privately has disclosed that information. Is the only way to deal with disputes here to go behind others' backs? Sχeptomaniacχαιρετε 00:00, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

I consider Jimbo's threat to ban me for reverting Centaur of Attention (almost a month earlier) to be way out of line as well. I'm not alone in regarding Centaur's edits as bordering on vandalism as well as attempting to impose a BADSITES-style policy on this site, and I'm extremely disappointed that Jimbo is backing his side against mine. Dtobias 00:07, 17 September 2008 (UTC)
I agree that it would have been better if a block request could have been made more transparently. It is possible that Moulton's "chummy" nature with JWSchmidt intimidated some users, as JWSchmidt seems to fully support what Moulton is doing, and JWSchmidt is a custodian. The Jade Knight 06:49, 17 September 2008 (UTC)
I have considered that it may relate to JWSchmidt's behavior, in which case the blame would partly lie with him for his part in developing the atmosphere. However, if fear of crossing one person is derailing things that badly, then it just underscores that there's a greater problem. Is there a process for addressing off-course projects and concerns about editors before it comes to deleting/blocking? I couldn't find one, so I would think it probably needs to be developed or better articulated. Sχeptomaniacχαιρετε 20:08, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

To diffuse this from getting out of hand above, I would like to state that I support the block, and that my only concern was timing. Although I was not consulted by Jimbo, I would have wholeheartedly agreed with the action at this time. Ottava Rima (talk) 19:55, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

I don't mean to be too confrontational. I'm not poking at things in order to agitate (though I know that can happen), but because I perceive something is wrong here, and I would like to narrow down what it is. Sχeptomaniacχαιρετε 20:08, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

"Moulton's "chummy" nature with JWSchmidt intimidated some users, as JWSchmidt seems to fully support what Moulton is doing, and JWSchmidt is a custodian" <-- I'd like someone to explain in plain English what is being insinuated here. If anyone cares about facts please read the truth here or come to my talk page and ask me a question or two. I'll also repeat here what I said above on this page, "Everyone at Wikiversity has been firm in telling Moulton that Wikiversity does not welcome his interest in private/personal information that wiki users want to keep private. In response to Moulton, the Wikiversity community crafted new parts for the privacy policy and I asked Moulton to take the intent of the privacy policy to heart, even while the community stalled out short of making this official policy. Moultan was recently given a short block for using a name at Wikiversity, apparently the real name of a Wiki user who did not want the name mentioned. I believe that Moulton was able to "take the hint" from that "warning block" and was ready to participate in "Moulton's three day trial research project" which was being set up by Ottava Rima. Moulton knew that something like this would happen if he continued to show an interest in private/personal information that wiki users want to keep private. I believe that Moulton felt compelled to try to martyr himself, frequently comparing himself to people like Galileo. I hope that we can continue with our studies and that Moulton will make a promise to stop showing an interest in private/personal information about wiki users." --JWSchmidt 21:05, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Moulton's talk page

Despite Moulton being blocked, he continues to make use of his talk page, why? If it isn't considered appropriate to allow him to edit here then I don't see why it is appropriate for Wikiversity to serve as a means of communication for him. Can't this page be protected? Adambro 18:24, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

It can, of course, be protected. We haven't figured out yet what's to become of the "ethics project" yet, or whether Moulton can be accomodated without causing unwanted damage to the project as a whole. There are a number of issues we're trying to address (including this one), and your input would be warmly welcomed. --SB_Johnny talk 19:00, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
Moulton's talk page was protected earlier today. This was done to prevent posting of personal information such as email addresses. There is now a discusion at Wikiversity:Request custodian action/Moulton's talk page to involve the community in how we should proceed. We are asking everyone to share their thoughts and opinions on this. Moulton's talk page will remain protected during that discussion. --mikeu talk 20:35, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

Checkuser note

Just to note that in the light of User:JWSchmidt having his checkuser status removed, User:SB Johnny has also has this status removed as there is a minimum of two checkusers required at a project. Stifle 14:10, 24 September 2008 (UTC)

Update: per the results of the recent Nomination for CheckUser a request has been submitted to grant CheckUser access to User:Emesee and reinstate User:SB Johnny. The request is currently "On hold pending identification" --mikeu talk 14:37, 24 September 2008 (UTC)
Other notes: User:SB Johnny requested his access be removed, until such time as another CU could be elected. Checkuser access had also been removed from User:Erkan Yilmaz at his own request. --mikeu talk 14:49, 24 September 2008 (UTC)

What should we do about JWSchmidt?

There is a very long thread on the topic: What should we do about JWSchmidt?

Wikiversity:Community Review#JWSchmidt

Inquiry

There is a very long thread here, ranging over a wide variety of topics: Jon Awbrey thread.

Removal of JWSchmidt's custodian status

Discussion moved to Wikiversity:Request custodian action#Removal_of_JWSchmidt.27s_custodian_status

Music and life

Just wanted to share Alan Watts on Music and Life: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ERbvKrH-GC4 (2:20 mins). -- Jtneill - Talk - c 14:11, 25 September 2008 (UTC)

Nice! Do you want to become YouTube hunter? :)--Gbaor 06:37, 26 September 2008 (UTC)

Content organisation matrix - difficulty and topic

I am quite confused by the various prefixes - there are Portals, Schools, Topics etc., some even redirection to each other. IMHO what whole Wikiversity needs is just to order all content into two dimension matrix: by "difficulty" and by "topic" (=real topic, not current Topic: preffix). Topic is something you dont need to take care about, it is set by a page name. Difficulty is what you have to take care about - so I would much rather introduce preffixes like "Primary:", "Secondary:" or "Tertiary:" to show the difficulty of the page on a topic, so that everybody would recognize it immediately from the URL. I know this is rather a complex stuff, but there ought to be a discussion about it. I feel Wikiversity is developing rapidly, so please tell me whether this has been discussed before.--Kozuch 10:55, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

This is a rather "vexed" issue; see Wikiversity:Namespaces for an overview and Wikiversity:Vision/2009. More specifically, feel free to contribute your ideas to Wikiversity:Vision/2009/Namespace reform. The problem probably with namespaces by difficulty is that much content could also cut-across levels or is informal (not necessarily fitting into any of these), so we tend to use categories to indicate difficulty (see Help:Resources by educational level), although this type of categorisation is not yet widely used. But no-one I think is entirely happy with the current namespaces. My personal preference would be less in School: and Topic:, and more in the mainspace, but that's far from a shared view. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 11:06, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
There can be many pages on a topic with different difficulty levels. Personally I don't like organization by school levels because of the overlap and dependency on geographical location which I think can make pages appropriate for any of those categories, making the categorization potentially useless for people trying to find pages on topics for their ability level. I think difficulty level should instead refer to beginner/novice/rookie/easy, intermediate/average, and master/expert/profession/hard. I also believe namespaces should have general uses, which I don't think difficulty levels satisfies, because more than one namespace would be needed to satisfy it. --darkYin yang.svglama 13:02, 20 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Kozuch, The school: and topic: namespaces came from the days when wikiversity was sitting in wikibooks. Such pages differ from "main namespace" pages, which host actualy contents, in that they are to be "community spaces": they are where you can organise study groups and learning activities (which are integral parts of wikiversity's mission). The traditional seperation of "primary", "secondary" and "tertiary" eductions are sometimes artificial, and may due to historical or psychological inertia (there are people who are comfortable with university mathematics and find secondary school history difficult; and then we often see motivated "secondary" students learning "advanced" topics, by themselves, or sometimes in summer schools). It would be great to see if Wikiversity (as we have see in wikipedia also, with a more specific scope) can ignore such articial barriers.
  • It is useful for everyone to classify topics with levels of difficulties, but a system with "lists of prerequisites" would be more informative than the rough labelling of "primary", "secondary", "tertiary" and "professional". Hillgentleman|Talk 15:51, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
I gotta see all the pages linked above, I just wanted to be sure there is a discussion going on about the whole content organisation. It is a damn complex thing.--Kozuch 12:27, 27 September 2008 (UTC)

Success and failure...

Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales on wiki success and failure (podcast) Emesee 06:21, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Hi, I like to pose a question of whether this is acceptable or ethical. I been creating content here Open_Source_ERP and a personal contact from a local university asked that i write materials for their degree programmes. Can i continue developing those materials online in wikiversity and still collect payments when they are used for such purposes? They accepted my OSS spirit of sharing knowledge and do not mind the materials been copyleft as well. They agree that their business is in making money out of direct classroom in-house education, conducting exams and teacher coachings and not monopolizing the materials i create. So is that ok? I don't mind writing offline, but online sharing is where my passion is. And now getting paid for real work is how i believe OS culture of Free as in air but not lunch is. --Red1 04:59, 27 September 2008 (UTC)

I cannot speak for the Foundation or the rest of the community here at Wikiversity, but especially considering that this is for a degree program, it seems it very might fall within the scope of Wikiversity (Wikiversity:Scope). At first glance, it seems to seem OK and acceptable. And as far as being ethical, that too at first glance, seems to seem OK. What comes to my mind (although we could make this as complicated, which I personally don't care to), is if everyone benefits and if no one is harmed? It seems like we (all the stakeholders) might benefit, and I have not thus far seen any harm. Emesee mobi 05:42, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
There's certainly nothing wrong with getting paid to write free content :-). The license we use (GFDL) does allow commercial use of content developed here,meaning that anyone can print it out or burn it to a disk and sell it. The only issues are that since it's a wiki, sooner or later someone will take an interest in it and you'll have collaborators (generally a good thing, but sometimes you'll spend nearly as much time figuring out the collaborating part as in the creating part), and that the printed versions need to include a copy of the GFDL (not exactly a huge hurdle, but it's 7 pages or so in print). I know some Wikipedians have created cd-r versions of the encyclopedia, and I believe Whiteknight has been doing some research into finding grants to support the creation of Wikibooks materiel. --SB_Johnny talk 07:26, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
But since this content is being developed for a certain program and probably used for a variety of courses, could it not be "protected", but certainly forked, if other users desired to adapt it to their own specific needs? Emesee mobi 07:36, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Been 'forked' is part of the concept of been open source, and i would welcome it,as long as the original source is stated somewhere. But can my sponsor who paid me be named as the copyleft holder or sponsor in my link above? Then the sponsor at least has positioned its merit, and any further copy or reference of it makes that even better - Red1 08:27, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Well, the copyleft "holder" is in a sense actually the Free Software Foundation (the authors of the GFDL), and the authors of the text. It's a bit more complicated than that, of course, but IANAL :-). The iffy thing is that Wikimedia projects do not allow "invariant sections", meaning you can't guarantee that someone re-using the content will discuss their endorsement (and that's probably a good thing, because it could be changed into almost anything over time). There's nothing wrong with noting their sponsorship of the materials though. I'll ask around and see if I can find someone a bit more versed in this. --SB_Johnny talk 08:32, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Ok, got one good suggestion. You could use an account named <your name, writing for company name>, and then have that on your userpage with a note that that's how you would like your contributions attributed. Would that work? --SB_Johnny talk 08:43, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for these responses that gives me some good sense. I might tinkle with some tabs or boxes that says, 'the author teaches this in University...' or 'conducted in the University of..', something not to the effect of 'direct' commercial advertising. The whole idea is to encourage Universities to keep on contributing to their own good image as well as Wikiversity in this mutual horizon. There will be equal risk that the participators ensure good quality and proper acceptance. I will explore as time goes by as what can be good AUP. - Red1 00:22, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Some folks have run into trouble on Wikipedia with this

My head is spinning a little bit. Have any of you ever heard of this guy who launched a business called "MyWikiBiz", where the GFDL content was paid for, but only published to a commercial site. Then, when other Wikipedians in good standing copied it into Wikipedia (with due attribution), Jimmy Wales went ape shit? You can read about MyWikiBiz on Wikipedia. And, you might want to invite JzG and Calton here to comment, because in my experience, it's their way or the highway. -- Thekohser 13:44, 27 September 2008 (UTC)

Full disclosure. I saw this thread on Recent Changes and raised it to Greg's attention. Greg has battled Jimbo on this very issue for a very long time. It's one of the recurring unsettled issues that has long been highlighted on Wikipedia Review. Because it's an unsettled policy in which Jimbo personally interfered (just as he personally interfered with the Ethics Project here), I thought it best that those who are naive on the subject be made aware that this issue has deep and disturbing legs. Moulton 14:42, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for clarifying that. Wikiversity is more akin to Wikibooks on these sorts of issues (many fully-written books have been donated to Wikibooks over the years)... as long as it's quality materials with a compatible license and fit within our scope, the problems Thekohser experienced on WP would probably not come up here (assuming of course I understand the problems). --SB_Johnny talk 15:34, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
In all seriousness, I suppose it is a credible argument to state that something would be acceptable in the Wikiversity environment that might be engaged with hostility on Wikipedia. Another notch in the "win" column for Wikiversity, and one of the reasons I still participate here. It seems to me, the less involvement Jimmy has with a project or enterprise, the more peaceful and successful it has a chance to be. -- Thekohser 16:00, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Sponsorship of materials could be regulated. All kinds of abuse is possible, when contents are sponsored. At the moment our community is too small, so we can see the sponsorship of material with money by a university as part of a gentlemen's agreement for the moment.--Daanschr 07:53, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

In my opinion, Thekohser's difficulties at Wikipedia are more a function of his personality than of the paid nature of his formerly proposed activities there. He often notes that there does exist paid activity at Wikipedia and tries to portray that as inconsistent, when actually what it shows is that it is not simply being paid activity that was (and is) the difficulty with his behavior at Wikipedia. Kind of like how Moulton condemns Wikipedia for being rules based and also for not following its own rules. People who condemn something for both being X and not being X are being emotional and not logical. WAS 4.250 14:08, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

In my opinion, WAS 4.250's theory of my difficulties at Wikipedia are about as tangible as his real-name identity. In other words, worthless. My "difficulty" became unworkable on the night of October 4, 2006, when Jimmy Wales reversed himself on an agreement he had proposed to me. Set aside all of the grumblings from JzG, Calton, you, and others, WAS 4.250, you weren't able AT ANY POINT between about August 20 and October 3, 2006 to stop my business from authoring GFDL content and getting paid for it. There were no "difficulties" until Jimmy Wales had an unflattering breakdown and deleted a perfectly viable and acceptable unpaid article about Arch Coal, which he mistakenly thought was paid for. In the big scheme of things, the joke was on Wales, and by you perpetuating this myth that I was having "difficulties" conducting business prior to October 4th, you're making yourself a part of the joke. I'm a bit surprised, frankly, WAS 4.250 -- you're normally more sage than this. -- Thekohser 19:37, 29 September 2008 (UTC)
The hypocrisy and double standards at Wikipedia are an observation that the rules exist not for the purpose of crafting an orderly process, but for the purpose clobbering one's opponents in the daily dramas of deciding what content to include in the online encyclopedia. There is nothing wrong with rules if one is seeking to define a game which is played on a level playing field. But I am not aware of any theory to suggest that an authentic encyclopedia can be crafted by means of such a game (even if it were a fair game). —Moulton 14:18, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
Hypocrisy and double standards exist everywhere. There is no place they do not exist. Your ignorance of "any theory to suggest that an authentic encyclopedia can be crafted by means of such a game" does not indicate that it can not occur. You do not know everything. Wikipedia is indeed crafted in a game-like way and millions of people find it useful and many studies have shown it to be more accurate than some widely used sources and only a little less accurate than Britannica. (I know Britannica disputes this but then they would wouldn't they?) WAS 4.250 14:47, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

Class at en.wp

Hi again, I seem to have run across another class using en.wp at [3]. It looks like they need to test the wiki software. Can someone here contact them to get in touch with their professor and move their activities here from Wikipedia? Thanks. MBisanz 17:22, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the note. I left messages for two of the students who have edits. link 1 , link 2 --mikeu talk 18:01, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Sharing on wikipedia.

Hello.
I just had an idea which is that we can make a page or something where all the people here would share their photoshop projects and info about how they could do that and so on. There r also many things we can share, such as powerpoint presentations, photos of models and such things..But I am not really sure if we can upload such things on wikipedia, especially that some of these have large sizes and so on...I hope that I hear from many people soon!..THANKS! --unknown001 12:12, 21 September 2008 (UTC) SEEMS NO ONE IS INTERESTED>>UH OH :( --unknown001 18:30, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Sounds like a great idea! Why don't you start it over at Photoshop or Presenting or whatnot? Now, you cannot upload such things onto Wikipedia, but it's perfectly appropriate (IMO, at least) to include them here. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 06:02, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

Reading Wikiversity on a Palm

I tried and can not get Plucker to create an ebook out of Wikiversity pages for me to read. I would love to be able to read the pages on my palm without using its browser. Is there any way to get palm readable ebooks of pages or a way to get Plucker to work with Wikiversity? (this question from new user: User:Sclewin)

Sclewin, It is an interesting idea. I don't know about Plucker, but may "printable versions" (e.g. [4])work? Hillgentleman|Talk 17:57, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
Hillgentleman, Thank you for your advice. Yes, printable versions will work with plucker, but only if I do each page separately, which can take a long time for some documents.--Sclewin 18:07, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Maybe we need to look into an extension like this mw:Extension:Collection? It seems to work on http://wikieducator.org -- Jtneill - Talk - c 08:42, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
Jtneill, I haven't used that extension, Here is one way (which may not be the simplest) to do it if you are interested:
1. set up your own wiki (if you haven't done it, and if you use windows, try mw:wiki on a stick, choose WOS which works better)
2. export the pages that you want to your wiki
3. install the extensions that you like, including the "extension:collection" that you want to use
4. play with your pages with your extensions. Hillgentleman|Talk 09:36, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
If printable version works for you, a lower-tech way is to create a list of pages (or a list of categories), and use a robot to fetch the html of these pages. Hillgentleman|Talk 09:39, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

Is it possilbe to get something like http://en.wap.wikipedia.org/ for wikiversity? It is very hard to read wikiversity pages on mobile devices. --A3pbe 19:09, 4 October 2008 (UTC)