WIP wiki cleanup and update

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8680
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by 8680 » April 26th, 2014, 12:46 am

iceiceice wrote:We certainly haven't been secretly tossing wiki pages in the middle of the night, we've been pretty vocal about the wiki cleanup operation.
I wasn’t alleging that you had; the blame, if any, is fully on me for not having paid attention to these forums for months.
iceiceice wrote:Do you really want to archive random pages like this? http://wiki.wesnoth.org/Canvas_Next
Yes, I think it’d be a shame to delete it. I think it’s a shame that the Python AI pages were deleted, too, given their potential historical value.
iceiceice wrote:You rapidly see how hard it can be to decide what to do with the random crap that ends up on the wiki.
Given that, as far as I know, Canvas is ancestral’s personal project, I’d say Canvas_Next ought to be at User:Ancestral/Canvas_Next (in a user-space, it would also not come up in the search results by default). Regardless of whether it gets moved there (or any similarly personal page gets moved to its author’s user-space), I think we ought to encourage people to put such personal pages in their user-spaces.
iceiceice wrote:It is much, much easier to just mark things for deletion and see if anyone complains. […] No one has yet complained that they needed any info in particular that was removed.
It seems to me to be a safe assumption that the majority of people who might complain won’t be checking Category:Candidates_for_deletion routinely, or at all. And if people in the future could have used information in a deleted page, I doubt they’ll know what they missed.
iceiceice wrote:I guess we could potentially archive things off-line instead of deleting?
Yes, we could, optimally via Special:Export, with which I’ve exported the pages in Category:Candidates_for_deletion and Category:Obsolete.
AI wrote:Is the obsolete category a subcategory of candidates for deletion?
Yes, it is.

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iceiceice
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 26th, 2014, 1:19 am

8680 wrote: It seems to me to be a safe assumption that the majority of people who might complain won’t be checking Category:Candidates_for_deletion routinely, or at all. And if people in the future could have used information in a deleted page, I doubt they’ll know what they missed.
Yes, but they may notice that the page was added to that category at the bottom of the page. If they are watching the page as AI said they should get an email afaik. Also, in most cases I even add a note at the top, "What is this? I'm proposing to delete." or something to that effect.

http://wiki.wesnoth.org/AI_HotRedeployment

(Note: I added all of the categories that one is currently in, previously it was an orphan.)

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vultraz
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by vultraz » April 26th, 2014, 1:35 am

I am against historical value. The wiki is for people looking for up-to-date information on creating content and playing Wesnoth. The Python AI stuff didn't even exist anymore, hence it's deletion.
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by shadowm » April 26th, 2014, 1:57 am

iceiceice wrote:If they are watching the page as AI said they should get an email afaik.
Citation needed. Manual:Watchlist on mediawiki.org doesn’t say anything about email, while Help:Watchlist only mentions the term for an analogy.
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iceiceice
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 26th, 2014, 2:30 am

shadowm wrote:
iceiceice wrote:If they are watching the page as AI said they should get an email afaik.
Citation needed. Manual:Watchlist on mediawiki.org doesn’t say anything about email, while Help:Watchlist only mentions the term for an analogy.
Ok, I was wrong about that, but IMO that would make much more sense. Many other services, and services that we use, like GitHub, do exactly this when you choose to watch a page or project. So I'm not sure why mediawiki doesn't do that.
Vultraz wrote: The wiki is for people looking for up-to-date information on creating content and playing Wesnoth.
Vultraz is exactly right about this. 99.9% of wiki viewers are users who want to learn to play the game, or budding umc devs who want to create content, learn what WML is, use it, and troubleshoot problems. ReferenceWML is not just something convenient we provide, it is the *only* documentation on WML, and it is *mission critical* to the project that it be accurate, up-to-date, and readily available.

Historical value just needs to take a back seat here. Irrelevant / out-of-date pages from years and years ago are frankly interesting only to devs / old timers who want to take a walk down memory lane. Hopefully there are fonder things on memory lane than this page: http://web.archive.org/web/201304010655 ... SampleCode

And I still think that there are many more productive avenues for an archaeological dig than dead wiki pages like that one. Rather than wiki.wesnoth.org, stuff like that, should it be saved, should appear at historical.wesnoth.org, or graveyard.wesnoth.org perhaps. Or perhaps just committed to "attic" in the repository.

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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by Chewan » April 26th, 2014, 1:41 pm

:lol: … Thrilling!
Links to "archaeological dig in the graveyard" or "treasure hunt in the attic" in the spirit of BfW,
and to stimulate attention on the wiki ... and its permanent need for update and helpful content.

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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by zookeeper » April 26th, 2014, 4:56 pm

Yes, up-to-date information takes priority, and I don't think anyone objects to outdated or abandoned pages being marked as obsolete so as to not confuse casual users. However, outright deleting pages simply because they're not current does cause the loss of any historical value they might have.

I strongly disagree with the idea that the wiki is only for "up-to-date information on creating content and playing Wesnoth". Yes, that is overwhelmingly its primary purpose, but it also serves (and IMO should continue to serve) as a long-term sketchbook for ideas and miscellaneous bits of information. I don't mind deleting pages that are obviously useless, but I think it should be done on the basis of whether that page contains information that 1) might conceivably be of some use to someone at some point and 2) does not exist elsewhere. Does a tutorial on how to write a Python AI fit that criteria? Probably not. How about a page containing plans for a UMC campaign that no one's ever made? Depends on how fleshed out and non-trivial the plan is; if it's good, then it might be useful to someone eventually, if it's a one-liner like "my name is billy and i want elves and orcs to fight and then they have to kill a big enemy" then it won't.

Let's consider the aforementioned Etiquette page: I didn't know such a page existed, or had long since forgotten about it. That said, the ways people ought to address each other in-universe seems like a very common question, and that page has material about it that apparently doesn't exist anywhere else. That is the page I'd like to be linked to if I ask those kinds of questions! It wouldn't matter to me if it's finished or canonical or not, I'd be glad for any relevant information and ideas as opposed to having none at all.

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iceiceice
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 26th, 2014, 7:58 pm

To me, "long-term sketchbook for ideas and miscellaneous bits of information" is a subset of "information on creating content".
There's nothing wrong with "long-term" as long as it is actually connected to some existing or WIP content IMO (edit: or is *active* WIP itself). But if there's no connection to anything that's actually a part of the game that's when I would start thinking about deleting.
zookeeper wrote: It wouldn't matter to me if it's finished or canonical or not, I'd be glad for any relevant information and ideas as opposed to having none at all.
I guess my thought was that, its fairly easy to make up possible etiquette rules for a universe. Indeed it looks like the whole page was written in about an hour and twenty minutes, and that's the total of its history. What would take a lot of work is summarizing the etiquette rules that are actually used in campaigns. The page itself doesn't say which it is, leaving the readers guessing.

If you don't mind content with no connection to actual wesnoth campaigns, how would you feel about a DnD campaign etiquette guide? You might be perfectly happy with it as a search result, but to me that still doesn't mean it should necessarily appear on the wiki. If the page were at least clear about what the content is that would also have made it more useful to readers, not just have made my task easier. I've already agreed that it shouldn't actually be a candidate for deletion, knowing what I know now.

The python AI tutorial could also be useful to "someone, someday," for instance, if someone decided to try to write a C++ ai tutorial, they might glance at the old python tutorial for guidance. That's literally the only use I could think of though. It shouldn't be a search result at all except pretty much for that one guy. Is it worth it? I'm not sure if I really support the "might conceivably be of some use to someone at some point" standard.

Idk, you try classifying 100 uncategorized wiki orphans, then come back and tell me if you still think it's bizarre that I seriously considered Etiquette as a candidate for deletion. I don't think I did any harm simply proposing it. Edit: I was simply triaging wiki pages, I didn't actually delete anything, Vultraz was the trigger man. If I fail to nominate a page that should actually be deleted, then that might be a missed opportunity. If I nominate something that shouldn't be deleted, well, Vultraz is not a mindless automaton, he will use his own judgment. The system seems to have worked pretty well.

P.S.
I found a duplicate on the wiki of the SavegameCode page that we deleted: Summer_of_Code:SavegameCode
I have marked it obsolete, and I have made an offline backup of it using Special:Export.
I imagine we may get rid of it soon, since it is an orphan, most of this stuff is in savegame.cpp nowadays, and there doesn't seem to be much point in updating it.
So if you want to take a look please do so.

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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 27th, 2014, 4:19 am

I'm posting again here because I really feel that something has been lost in the discussion so far.

When you have a page like Summer_of_Code:SavegameCode which appears, as an orphan, without any discussion or note of glaring obsolescence, it may be only a minor inconvenience to a developer like me, who will look at it, try to determine if it is useful or helpful to me, and check the code in maybe 2-3 minutes to determine that it is garbage. However, over many people, over years and years, that wasted time adds up. Most likely every person who has ever thought about trying to fix any of the bugs regarding savegame files, that persist in stable to this day, has stumbled across that page at some time and had their time wasted. Time that they could have and would have spent doing something useful for the project. This harms the project in a very real way.

Now, when it happens to you, you may make a mental note not to look at that page, but then you leave it for the next guy. Why? Well, it's a small community, you don't know who made the page, you don't own the page, you don't necessarily want to go out of your way to piss off somebody. It's not your job to clean up the wiki.

Until Vultraz decided to make it his job to clean up the wiki, no one was doing this stuff. And the build up of useless, time-wasting pages was getting to be pretty staggering. By my estimation, there may only be 100-200 pages on the wiki total that are truly essential. And we had nearly that many pages that were either devoid of content, duplicates, totally obsolete and beyond salvaging, or partially obsolete but badly in need of maintenance and without proper notification of this. Pages that for 99% of viewers, to look at them at all is a waste of time. It shouldn't be possible to find pages like that on the wiki at all. It certainly shouldn't be the typical case.

Whose fault is this? We could say that, when you make a wiki page, it's your job to keep it up to date or delete it when it's no longer useful. But for many reasons, that is impractical. For the system to be sustainable, we actually *rely* on people to go through the wiki and flag pages that are broken and shouldn't be there, or obsolete and need maintenance. If no one will do this, I am happy to go around from time to time and say "I looked at your old wiki page for 5 minutes, and at the end I still had doubts about whether it belongs on the wiki today, so I have flagged it for possible removal", without apology. That is how wikis work, you edit ruthlessly. We need more people to perform this kind of triage on a regular basis.

We should be thanking Vultraz for stepping up to what promised to be a thankless task. If people are really bothered by the permanent deletion of these pages, we need to designate a place (there have been many options mentioned in thread so far) for where to deposit their exported records. But the clean up process should continue unabated, for there is still much work that remains.

I have attached a cartoon which I made which explains in simple terms the historical events of the last month or so.
Attachments
wiki cartoon 800x1000.jpg

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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 27th, 2014, 7:43 pm

I want to point out another page I found relevant to the discussion: Wesnoth_Categories

Apparently the last person to do a major wiki cleanup was ESR in 2008. He writes:
ESR wrote: There is enough content on the Wesnoth wiki to make systematically editing it quite difficulty. ESR did a sweep of the entire All Pages list during the run-up to 1.4 and found a very large amount of cruft -- over 70 out of approximately 400 pages that were junk or obsolete, and a lot of links that had not followed page revisions as they should. A large part of the reason these pages fell through the cracks is poor site organization.
ESR wrote: If you are a wiki moderator, one of the things you should do occasionally is look in that uncategorized bin and consider what should be thrown out, what should be moved to an existing category, and what (if anything) requires a new category.
We are way past the point that we can rely on superman to read the entire wiki and decide what to keep and throw out, we need to adopt a better system that relies more on the users. And I think it should be clear that things do need to be thrown out periodically.

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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by Chewan » April 27th, 2014, 9:45 pm

ESR referred to wiki moderator!?
Has there ever been a person in charge of the wiki and its clean ups? :shock:

BTW, your cartoon speaks louder than words, great prospects!
But there is no need in hiding your own light under a bushel, iceiceice.
Maybe you´re not that superman either necessary to save the wiki
from being smothered in random crap, but your fight against
the garbage monster should be mentioned too.
Spoiler:

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iceiceice
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by iceiceice » April 27th, 2014, 11:58 pm

My own role was relatively minor, more like one of the "Planeteers". Like I said, we need more such planeteers. None of this would have happened if Vultraz had not initiated this project / this thread.
Chewan wrote:ESR referred to wiki moderator!?
You know I'm really not sure where those guys are, I fear they may have all been killed in action by the dreaded garbage monster :shock:

Edit: Or perhaps hypnotized. Here is another awesome giant squid image I found while foraging on the internet.
Spoiler:
Spoiler:
Last edited by shadowm on April 28th, 2014, 5:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Enclosed large image in a spoiler.

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vultraz
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by vultraz » April 28th, 2014, 10:32 am

I and shadowm are the only wiki mods I know of :P and thanks for the comic iceiceice; glad you guys appreciate my work. And yes, I do judge before deleting pages. Etiquette was one I was going to save.

I will be in Paris for the next week or so, so I won't be able to work on this until I return. Please continue flagging pages, and I'll dal with them when I return.
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rjaguar3
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by rjaguar3 » February 9th, 2015, 12:20 am

Can someone please block Wiki user Alexcross, whose five contributions are entirely spam? Thanks.

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vultraz
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Re: WIP wiki cleanup and update

Post by vultraz » February 9th, 2015, 12:14 pm

rjaguar3 wrote:Can someone please block Wiki user Alexcross, whose five contributions are entirely spam? Thanks.
Thanks for pointing this out. I've deleted his spam pages and blocked him.
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