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incomplete edit[]

It stops abruptly and is unsigned; I suspect some glitch rather than intention? --◄mendel► 01:32, August 27, 2010 (UTC)

The unsigned part was unintentional. (I had written more, but then realized it wasn't adding anything to the discussion and deleted it from the preview. Naturally, the ~~~~ went out with the bath water.)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 01:49, August 27, 2010 (UTC)


You only use commas to set off non-restrictive (parenthetical) appositives. In this case, your subsequent edit made it quite clear that the quest name was the restrictive (essential) appositive — it was the part you kept, while you were able to leave out "the primary quest" without changing the meaning — thus it was incorrect to set it off with commas. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 01:03, September 1, 2010 (UTC)

That sounds good. However, my take is that the original suggested that the important point was that it was a primary quest. Commas or not, it failed the newspaper editor's rule of avoiding unnecessary adjectives. (Although some would write that as, avoid adjectives.)
Anyhow, the point of the edit was to avoid the debate. The point of the edit summary was to poke fun at the person who called the original grammar, "incorrect," not so much b/c I thought it was a bad edit. (Although I admit to a prejudice against seeing that many adjectives/nouns strung together w/o any punctuation.)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 02:50, September 1, 2010 (UTC)
The thing here, though, is that "primary quest" is a standard phrase used by the game, it is part of the game's jargon. Isn't jargon necessarily exempted from editorial rules like that? Also, identifying it as a "primary quest" emphasizes the fact that you must play through the storyline past a specific point in order to vanquish the area; to someone who doesn't already know that AGTF is a primary quest, the current wording might make them think they can just get a run out there, complete some dinky side quest, and then be able to vanquish. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 03:45, September 1, 2010 (UTC)
The critical question you ask is, "what about letting peeps know that they have to play through storyline to specific point?" I thought about that before I removed the phrase and I'm rethinking it. On the whole, I imagine that ppls who get to the VQ point have either completed the quest or know that it's in the storyline (esp. w/the various bounties etc around). On the other hand, how hard would it be to find a phrasing that avoids the appositive and too-many-modifiers issues and gets the job done?
I think the editors that eschew adjectives would argue that jargon is out, too, b/c we can find plain-speaking words that manage to convey the same meaning. So, what about,
  • In order to VQ the area, you must have progressed the eotn storyline through completion of AGTF.
The phrasing could be better, but that gets the idea across in about the same # of words and w/o anyone else stumbling over grammar.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 04:42, September 1, 2010 (UTC)
(edit conflict) You'd need to look up AGTF anyway in order to find out where to get it, and what the prerequisites are; this is the point where you'd learn it's a primary. (Or you would if the quest page mentioned it; as it stands, this point can only be deduced from the navbox.) And you'd also learn there's a single prerequisite quest, so it's not actually very deep into the storyline?
There's more important info the note is lacking: Why does the quest have to be completed? Does it unlock some area? Do I have to have completed it at some point in the past, or does it need to be active while vanquishing (it's a repeatable quest)? Is it enough if one party member has it? --◄mendel► 04:56, September 1, 2010 (UTC)

The rush[]

When we have a question we can decide, and one we can't, I think it folly to delay the first decision waiting on the second, especially given that many Internet/wiki projects get stuck indefinitely. (And seen in the light how long that first decision has already been delayed.) Deciding the merge now doesn't prevent you from organizing teh material better in any way; it requires another decision process, but we have one now (and need the new one then when prototypes/mockups are available), so we're not actually saving any effort; not deciding the merge now just means we had a lot of talk and no result to show for it. --◄mendel► 17:26, September 1, 2010 (UTC)

Erm, I think I mentioned that I thought the two questions were linked. You disagree, which is fine. But that doesn't mean we couldn't have waited another few days, as I requested, in order for me to present a proof-of-concept of an alternative way of accomplishing the stated goals of the merge.
I don't see indefinite delays being a risk here. Nor is the original decision "delayed" — there was no consensus yet to merge (pretty much 1-2 people's opinions arguing for it, another against). So, again, why the need to rush into a decision today?
I do see that, having made a decision to merge, that it will be much harder to undo. I generally believe that the burden should be on the vanguard to prove the need, not on the conservatives to support the status quo — even I would find it hard to support unmerging after the fact. That is (imo) extra effort.
Finally, why are we having the discussion on my talk?  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 23:10, September 1, 2010 (UTC)
We are having the discussion on your talk because it is meta to the discussion actually going on. I didn't want to mix the meta-discussion with the discussion.
I don't see the link between the questions that you claim. The pages are now in "state A", the "simple" merge would be "state B", and your proposal might be "state C". I don't see that it's any harder to go from B to C than it is to go from A to C, unless you want to argue that the advantage of C over B isn't as clear as the advantage of C over A -- which implies that you prefer B over A; also, you wrote, "I agree the current system is bad."
Given that, I see Rose, Darksyde, Dr Ishmael, Jon, myself and yourself in favor (more or less).
Vipermagi proposed adding the artisans to the material pages, which would probably entail taking the material's line from the Artisan table, and the relevant artisan's lines from the artisan list table. This can be done merge or not, and would probably lead to the materials table being removed from Artisan, while the artisan list might stay on. This means Vipermagi really hasn't spoken either way on the merge. So I do see a consensus to merge, at least if I can get you to admit that you really don't oppose it. ;-P
Your wrote, the burden should be on the vanguard to prove the need -- Rose expressed the need; Darksyde seconded. By subject matter, the list is more appropriate to the Artisan page than the materials table is. --◄mendel► 07:08, September 2, 2010 (UTC)
Hmmn. I don't see it. The argument is that it's hard to find where to go to craft — I'm saying that such info is entirely disconnected to merging or not. I would therefore like to postpone the question of whether a merge is sensible until we have addressed that more important issue. I believe that it is likely that no one will care about merging afterward.
In other words, merge is a means to an end and, if we find another (better) means to that end, the merge itself becomes its own issue. So, yes, from my point of view, it's all linked. Taking it to "state B" would, in fact, make it all but impossible to get to a state C that has unmerged pages and yet solves the hidden NPC issue.
Accordingly, for me, this discussion is directly related to the issue rather than a meta discussion about the discussion itself.
Finally, I still don't see any harm in waiting another short while. I think it folly to delay...given that many...projects get stuck... — that usually happens when ppls aren't seeing the bigger picture and no one is boldly taking steps forward. My argument is that the bigger picture might be better addressed by a non-merge solution and that, should we merge now, we might actually find it harder to see (let alone implement) that alternative.
Mind you, I might be entirely wrong, but can I ask your indulgence for a wee bit longer? Thanks.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 15:42, September 2, 2010 (UTC)
Would a week be ok? --◄mendel► 19:44, September 2, 2010 (UTC)

dungeon chests[]

Please see sections 6 and 7 on Template talk:Dungeon chest contents. --◄mendel► 08:43, September 6, 2010 (UTC)

blank parameters[]

Why are you leaving all the blank parameters in the ItemInfo template? It's not necessary, and for the icon parameter, it completely screws up the icon display. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 03:55, September 22, 2010 (UTC)

Erm, it's not clear to me when a parm should be blank, when not. I didn't see anything odd in the display when I previewed, so it didn't seem like a problem. However, this is exactly why I stopped after doing only a few — give you a chance to repoint me.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 05:20, September 22, 2010 (UTC)
As a general rule, it's a bad idea to supply blank parameters to templates. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 13:34, September 22, 2010 (UTC)
Also as a general rule, it's a bad idea to use {{PAGENAME}} and other page-related "magic words" directly in an article. If the content gets transcluded somewhere, it will reflect the name of the page where it is transcluded, not the name of the source page. You can, however, subst: them like templates, so you can simply copy [[{{subst:PAGENAME}}]] from page to page as you edit.
In the template itself, you seemed somewhat inconsistent with a couple parameters. Sometimes you included the plural, sometimes you didn't; sometimes you said it was stackable, sometimes you didn't. Sometimes you included the plural but then said it wasn't stackable! Was it simple fatigue/sleepiness?
Other than that, I like what you did in cleaning up the articles. Thanks for helping! —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 15:43, September 22, 2010 (UTC)
  • {{PAGENAME}} was inattention (sure, blame it on being tired). I meant to replace those with bracketed links from the copypasta and erm, forgot. (Actually, I probably was indecisive about subst: vs outright replace and postponed the decision until ...whoops — my apologies for that.)
  • Plurals vs stackables: is there harm done to have a plural w/o stackability=yes? I thought better to err on having the plural, when it was/would be different. I figure it was easier to have the plural than to have to add it later.
  • Stackability generally: when I was 90% sure (verified in-game or recent usage), I put yes or no. When I was unsure, I left it blank as a mnemonic to check later...and forgot to let you know that was the plan.
  • Standard text: you probably noticed I used a standard phrasing to introduce the items, basically following your lead in trophies etc. I'm not 100% convinced it's the best wording, but I think it's better than what was there before...and standardization encourages the next editors to follow a similar lead.
    • Let me know if you have a feeling about the text, for the next set of quest items.
  • {{section-stub|what's missing}}: since you touched many of the articles, you probably noticed that I typed in a "what's missing" in the section-stub, so that it would be more obvious to others what was needed.
    1. Should that template be setup to display the "what's missing" text (along with the stub notice)?
    2. GWW auto-categorizes the stubs for different types of articles. I think the idea is to make it easier for someone to systematically review all similar articles w/section issues. I suspect that's overkill here (and there, for that matter), but: it might be useful to provide some filtering. Any thoughts on that? Or best wait to finish the 250 other projects you have in mind?
Sorry for creating extra work for you, but I do hope you ended up doing less than you might have otherwise. (I'm working at making your life easier, even if it doesn't appear that way ;-)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 20:59, September 22, 2010 (UTC)
I think that explains most of what I was unclear about, especially with the plural/stackable stuff. Your standard text looks fine.
Stubbifying: Since none of those articles actually have sections anymore, you should probably be using Template:Item-stub instead. Section-stub is intended for use in larger, mostly non-stubby articles, where you want to specifically point out which part of the article is stubby. Using the Item-stub will also categorize it to Category:Item stubs, which I think covers your concern at #2.
For #1, displaying additional notes with the stub template, I'm thinking that's not necessary. Anyone who edits the article would (hopefully) notice the comment where you have it now. If you wanted, we could even do a quick DPL listing to summarize those "notes" from all pages that use a certain stub tag. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 21:29, September 22, 2010 (UTC)
Cool. Thanks for quick reply. (I get confused for some reason about which stubs are relevant when — I would prefer just being able to use {{Stub| major/minor | explanation}} — I don't think the average person cares about the distinction between an item, weapon, section, or article stub beyond the fact that some articles need a lot of help, some don't.)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 21:38, September 22, 2010 (UTC)

bad idea[]

Some members that contribute here are banned on gww due to the Cabal that's going on there. It's irresponsible people there, who do not understand the concepts nor what a real discussion, etc. is compared to what they want to claim is Trolling, hostile, etc. They have run off many contributors from there that came here. It would be ill-advised to mention gww again. Please don't. The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) 22:15, 2010 September 30 (UTC).

31.114, your point belongs on the page where the option was brought up. It is an option that we do have; it ought to be discussed, and there are reasons for and against that ought to weighed. You have excellent points against, and there is currently little chance that GuildWiki would go that way, so there's no cause to get upset. You already know that the way to deal with opinions you don't like is to argue against them. Please don't try to silence them. --◄mendel► 08:49, October 1, 2010 (UTC)
is cabal the new word for "people trolled poorly, got banned and want someone to pin the blame on?" if so, i can totally cut my word count per post down. -Auron 12:33, October 1, 2010 (UTC)
@31.114 Honestly I'm not at all sure what it is you are trying to tell me. I am sorry that you (and others) have had a horrible experience at GWW, but I hope that you can respect my point of view, too.
At this moment in time, contributors at GWiki have three choices: stop contributing to a GW wiki; contribute to GW Oasis@Wikia, or move to GWW. I think everyone should be entitled to review all three possibilities and has the right to make their own choice.
I hope that this wiki is able to create a superior fourth option: to move to a new host. I would like to be able to help with such a move and to travel with GWiki to the new location. At the same time, I recognize that some people will choose one of the current three directions.
I also recognize that GWW has trouble implementing its concept of a Big Tent that includes all comers. (There is, for example, a small group interested in quashing anything that implies criticism of ANet or the actions of its staff.) But that's true of any community made up of human beings: it's flawed and imperfect. I think it would be worse if people such as myself stopped contributing there.
Given what I know today, I am unlikely to stop mentioning GWW just because one anon think it's a bad idea. Of course, I might be missing some of the facts you have at your command and which might change my opinion. Please use this space (or email me) to help me to understand why it is wrong for me to consider all possible options to respond to Wikia's new direction. Thank you.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 16:41, October 1, 2010 (UTC)

Re: Redlinks[]

← Moved from User talk:Tennessee Ernie Ford#Re: Redlinks

Please do not create blank stubs. Redlinks encourage users to create content, blank pages look unprofessional. Feel free to create the page with a short description as a placeholder, however -- RandomTime 18:17, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

Sigh. Had you waited another few minutes, you would see me remove the stub and put the content in. I can only work on so many things at once. (Plus, if you look at the article I was working on, you'll see that there are indeed some red links, exactly as you would have me do.:-) .  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 18:29, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
A case for GW:DID? ;) --◄mendel► 19:16, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
I suppose it was rather rapid. Sorry -- RandomTime 19:20, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Perhaps GW:DIC; don't immediately create. Why first create a stub, and then replace the stub with content? To me, it would make more sense to just postpone article creation to add in the content on creation, but, I am not TEF; my brain works differently :p --Vipermagi 19:24, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Naw, RT was doing the right thing. GW:DID doesn't apply. (And, even if it did, RT didn't cost me any time; no harm, no foul.)
I think I was going back/forth between turning that page into a redirect or making it a tiny glossary page. {{stub}} was a reminder that I wanted something more substantial. But, it wouldn't have cost me anything big to have typed in a short <!-- comment --> (or as RT suggested, even a short description).
tl;dr RT did the right thing. So, I really owe you the apology: RT — sorry.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 19:29, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
Eh, it seems now that I think I was wrong, as I knew you were probably going to improve, and therefore I was being pragmatic about it. When I want something done, I bring the edit window into it's new tree, and wait to do it - but that's me. I was being unreasonable, where I could have easily not deleted and put a message on your talk. tl;dr, I was wrong, you were right. -- RandomTime 19:37, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
Viper still has a valid point, though - creating an empty article, even if it is merely temporary, doesn't really serve any purpose (other than to confuse the admins). Our running-guide helper has it right, putting some content into new articles when he creates them, even though they're far from complete. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 19:41, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
I've understood the idea of GW:DID to be that people in the throes of creation shouldn't be focusing on how what they do looks to other people. There's time to do that when you're done with the job and sit back. To get stuff deleted under your fingers as you are putting something together, or to get sidetracked by talkpage messages hampers the creative flow. We don't want to do that, so it's better to tolerate something that's unfinished (for a short time) rather than disrupt the creator. When the creative urge seems to have run down is the proper time to "mop up" the pieces that fell by the wayside.
These kinds of situations don't come up very often on GuildWiki, mostly because the wiki is largely "complete". --◄mendel► 20:46, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
Erm, I thought I agreed that RT was correct to delete, and I agreed that Vipermagi was correct to suggest that there was little point to stubbing an article that I planned to add soon/soonish, and that RT agreed that there wasn't any rush to delete. Everyone involved acted in good faith, agreed that others were acting in good faith, and still agreed to adjust their behavior accordingly (given their agreement with the fundamentals). So, with so much agreement, what exactly are we now discussing?  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 10:04, October 6, 2010 (UTC)
It wasn't real obvious that you had actually acknowledged Viper's point, that's the only reason I reiterated it. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 13:15, October 6, 2010 (UTC)

Move related tasks[]

← Moved from #No longer contributing to Wikia after 20 October 2010
Please apply your flowery language skills to {{Delete me from Wikia}}. This will be the "tag" for userpages to be deleted after da moooove. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 04:12, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

Thank you![]

As AFK User_talk:Felix_Omni#Much_wub. pointed out, nobody has thanked you yet for all your trouble and time. As I support the move, I would like the thank you. Thank you!one1 Arnout aka The Emperors Angel 16:55, October 7, 2010 (UTC)

Why thank you! TBH, I really haven't done much more than summarize everyone else's hard work. (As you have probably noticed, others are doing very heavy technical lifting (Ish/Mendel), politicking (Felix, RT, et al), research (Ish, Felix, Mendel, RT), financial (Gig), and the all-important picking apart details (above plus Jon, Gig, Naz, The Naz, yourself, and, ironically, Sannse)). I'm pretty sure this move would be successful without my help; I'm positive it wouldn't even happen without the others I've listed. We are lucky to have an awesome group of people here.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:10, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
I'll thank The NAZZZZ too. But I do think you deserve to be thanked. Otherwise I wouln'd have done it. Arnout aka The Emperors Angel 17:30, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
Crud — I knew I left of two people. Naz is one (I have added him in). Who is the other? (And thank you again :-)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:34, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
Aye, thanks. Sorry, hard to be organized when editing a wiki once you fall out of the habit.
Organization is key, so don't go and be-little your own efforts like that :) A F K sig 2.jpg A F K is pro-AWA! 17:40, October 7, 2010 (UTC)

Like hi there.[]


I've done everything there is to be done in Guild Wars and... well, when younger, less mature and testing boundaries, bored, (whole load of things can go here) I earned myself a reputation here at GuildWiki. So I no longer play the game and... with the way things are I feel little reason to be active. I've been watching the latest disaster and simply had to log in to thank Felix, who I gathered from maybe-right sources that he was a big player in picking up the pieces.

I'll always respond as soon as I notice any talk page message / e-mail from you, and I'll always welcome both.

How are you, my friend? A F K sig 2.jpg A F K is pro-AWA! 17:10, October 7, 2010 (UTC)

Heya! I'm glad to see that you are alive and well (if not great). (PS give yourself credit: near as I can tell, you have twice re-invented yourself and started one of the funniest sites in wikidom; wouldn't surprise me in the least to see you at GWW2 or GWiki2 as The Un A F K or some such.) IMO, you are correct that Felix is among the short-list of contributors here without whom the move would not happen (or go very poorly if it did).
Are you still playing MMOs at all? How are you satisfying your RPG fix?  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:21, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
(EC) I flirted with yet another EVE Online trial. Two days and a few hours left. Still with the all-important decision to make.
I've also, with no MMORPG I've particular interest in exisiting, gone over to WoW where RL pplz hang out. It's something else to have in common with them, so /shrug.
On other news I'm currently installing LOTRO (free = good). If it seems promising (everyone I know has wanted it to go die in a fire) then I might pay up.
And finally I've been running around with games from other genres as well. Started playing Dawn of War II again, but won't be for long I imagine. Got Dead Space from a friend, but that'll likely be a two-three day thing at most. Thinking about investing some time in Warcraft III and StarCraft II so... yeah. Busy busy.
Also, an old flame of mine, I've been playing Freespace II again. It will forever be my favourite game, despite being the wrong side of a decade old. While basically an older Eve Online, since the franchise was commercially abandoned due to legal issues, a community has gotten its hands on the source engine and has been responsible for all sorts of brilliant ideas which they've gone about implementing. Perhaps most impressive of all is replacing the old low-res models and making the game look brand new. You can buy the game for about $3 these days, so if you're bored and in anyway interested in space simulators I could give it no higher recommendation. If you get Freespace II you can download the original Freespace for free, should you be in anyway interested (It's free for a reason, tbh, and hasn't gotten the love that the second game in the series has, but free is free).
I looked at your edit and didn't think I'd have much at all to respond with so... yeah. Sorry about that.
How are you keeping yourself busy? :) A F K sig 2.jpg A F K is pro-AWA! 17:39, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
WoW (pun intended)! I heard some people found a way to host their own no-monthlies World of Warcraft, but didn't realize there were other games where ppls had done the same. I think I have too much to do in GW to consider dedicating some hard drive space to another game (although I will certainly buy the next Elder Scrolls). Conceivably, I might join a current pay-to-play that cost $50-75/year including the download of the client; I absolutely refuse to pay twice or to pay twice as much in total costs. ANet has proven that you can get millions of satisfied customers w/o charging $100s.
My main toon has hit 28 titles. One is consumable-based, so no trouble at all. The remaining titles are... very far away and cannot be done simply be executing a series of unique tasks. (My favorite was skill hunter — you get to go everywhere, increase your chance of a variety of greens/hour, and each outing progresses the title quickly. The worst was Proph VQ: so little benefit, so tedious to acquire.) So, I'm considering becoming an ordinary farmer and repeating the same area until I become efficient. Previously, the longest I've been able to do that is about 45 (raptor farm) to 90 minutes (creating new toons to run Chahbek Village takes me about 5 min, including zoning); I just get bored too quickly.

Oasis is a good thing[]

I submit that it is not. Everything that Oasis leads you to believe is wrong and geared to Wikia's vision of a community; it doesn't fit with working communities.

  • Wiki activity lacks display of Project: namespace and any other namespace, including user talk. You can't catch vandals with it, and it strongly reminds me of the "community" on Wikianswers that doesn't use these types of pages either.
  • MyTools is just bad interface, the list is completely unstructured, and you can't count on users being shown the "Good ones".
  • "Photo attribution" that doesn't really give teh creator credit makes open source seem like "upload what you want, no matter where you got it from".
  • Blog comments and article comments are impossible to keep track of unless you keep rereading your blog. They don't appear in any watchlist, and you can't see them in context from RC.
  • Don't get me started on the RTE.
  • The skin is geared more towards readers than editors, and I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't very effective in turning readers into editors. It may be effective in getting more people to leave comments, but whether that translates into more community participation (and more signups) remains to be seen.
  • Wikia will not be able to leverage any people moving trans-wiki well until it complete rethinks its "community" central policies.
  • In a nutshell, the skin is made for the "casual user". Casual users don't make wikis.
  • People report eye problems because the font size is so small.

Feel free to point out that I'm just being pessimistic. :-P --◄mendel► 21:13, October 7, 2010 (UTC)

I agree. You should see the font that the name is in. It is horrible! Even the background does not fit a wiki. User Ariyen sig icon.gifriyen 22:20, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
Font and background can be configured, though admittedly what you're seeing comes with the theme designer. --◄mendel► 06:19, October 8, 2010 (UTC)

(edit conflict)

Wikia isn't about wikis anymore, so I'm trying not to measure their execution against my criteria. We're not the target audience. So, although I think your description of the tool set is mostly accurate, I think Wikia is indeed headed towards casual communities, or those dedicated around a single, narrow and short-term goal (e.g. family reunion). To make this happen, Wikia needs to standardize and simplify their interface and setup tools of little use to us. Even given this, would you or I advise them to do it this manner? Probably not.
Well see some interesting test cases over the next few months: Tardis (Doctor Who Wikia) is not moving (seems more trouble to them in the long run) and we'll see if they can generate enough smaller sites (in fact, maybe that's what they were seeing the last 12 months — more eyeballs at micro wikis).
(Ohai, Ariyen: how are you?)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 23:04, October 7, 2010 (UTC)
Grant it, this may benefit the wikis like Farmville and Alice in Wonderland. However, I strongly do not feel this will benefit big wikis like this one. Not when a lot of hard work will or may be messed up when Oasis takes over. I have seen my userpage looked messed up in Oasis as well as a few more pages and I don't see a lot of benefits at all. I don't see quite so many wikis coming here either for gaming. User Ariyen sig icon.gifriyen 02:45, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
I agree w/you Ariyen: this is bad for gaming wikis of any size. But, I really don't think Wikia is about wikis anymore. They might even be glad to see the whiners and whingers like us go, leaving the site filled with a higher percentage of groups that get something out of the new direction.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 02:53, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
It's been mentioned that they might be attempting to emulate geocities. ;-P (In fact, I believe "wikicities" was their original name, and that's why we do w:c: for interwiki links.) --◄mendel► 06:19, October 8, 2010 (UTC)

I've got a new theory about why Wikia introduced the floating toolbar. (The old theory is that they copied it off mine but did it wrong.) They found out that the fixed width and wide sidebar made pages so long that serious scrolling up was required to get to the page toolbar. (It still begs the question why they only put half of the useful stuff in it.) --◄mendel► 06:52, October 8, 2010 (UTC)

Floating seems cool, so they made the toolbar floating. (Your version is somewhat more plausible from a what-purpose-does-it-serve storyline; mine fits more of the design sessions I've sat in.) As for why they only put some stuff in it, again, I'm trying to look at it from the viewpoint of what their goals are. Simple is first on their agenda...and sometimes, they get so carried away with that they usefulness is lost. I think Following is an example of that. It looks friendlier than the watchlist, but that's b/c they took everything out of WL that made it such a great tool for us. But reviewing their rollout of same (and reading their blogs), one definitely gets the impression that they thought it was the greatest thing since CSS.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 08:07, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
Mmmmh-hmmm. I'm a bit loath to explain these features by incompetence. --◄mendel► 13:39, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
There's the old saying that's true (as well as witty) that the camel is a horse that was designed by a committee. That's not incompetence, that's losing sight of the original goal. Also, the camel, not the horse, is best suited, of course, for the course that's designed for a land in the sand. Which has been my central point about Oasis: it's not meant to be helpful for sites like GWiki (and certainly not for PvX).
A possible good Guild Wars use for the new Wikia might be for organizing a multi-guild alliance. It covers their modest information sharing needs (favorite farms, teams, special events), sharing progress (blogs), chats (forums), and so on. So, bad for GWiki, but perhaps great for a specific guild...or 1000 guilds.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 15:30, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
A good thing.
Please define thing.
A good option for other types of community / project? Sure, options are good.
A good thing to force on wikis which weren't intended to provice such a service (namely all existing Wikia wikis)? Hell no.
Something to bear in mind is people don't always state exactly what they mean. While people are talking about how good the new skin is, they are doing so in context of Wikis designed mostly to be a single topic based Wikipedia clone. Which the new skin does not cater for, and thus has no business being forced on such projects. A F K sig 2.jpg A F K is pro-AWA! 16:06, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
I guess I haven't been clear enough: Wikia has every right to re-invent themselves in an effort to become highly profitable (instead of barely breaking even) and I will continue to measure those efforts as objectively as I can. That new direction has nothing specifically to do with wikis and we can no longer evaluate Wikia on the basis of how well they support that one tool out of many.
At the same time, this new direction is terrible for GWiki. Whether we remain, move or self-support, there will always be a tension between the hosting service and this community. As long as the vested interests of the host run parallel to our mission, the tension is easily mitigated. In this case, the new Wikia will require that we re-invent our format rather than maintain our focus on content (not the least of which is whether there ought to be a GWiki 2).
I think it is no contradiction to say that Oasis is good for Wikia, but bad for established communities here that are dedicated to maintaining encyclopedic knowledge-bases in an easily-digested format. Apparently, those provide little benefit to the corporation (but do add to their expenses). Wikia has no obligation to us; we have none to them. (Of course, it's far easier for them to let us go than it is for us to move, but that's the nature of the relationship between producers and consumers.) Even if Wikia provided us help converting to the new format, it's clear that their needs and ours are now in conflict; things are only going to get worse. Thus, it's not the skin which is the problem for GWiki; it's the new mission of Wikia that makes it sensible for them to impose a skin with its requirements.
In all this, I haven't said whether I think Wikia has acted morally or in good faith with us because I think that's largely irrelevant to the questions that interest me: can the new Wikia succeed? (Yes, I think so) and how should GWiki respond to the new Wikia? (by moving to a Galaxy Far Far Away).  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:17, October 8, 2010 (UTC)
We still have Monobook. Why can't we keep Monaco? A F K sig 2.jpg A F K is pro-AWA! 11:40, October 9, 2010 (UTC)
Because Monobook is a very simple and stable skin that requires very little effort on Wikia's part to support. Monaco is was a very complex and dynamic skin with a lot of extra features that did require a lot of support.
Also, because they're not allowing wikis to set Monobook as the default for all users anymore (outside of the Answers universe), they are no longer obligated to perform any support for it at all. "Oh, your Monobook isn't displaying right? I'm sorry, that's a personal issue that I don't have to help you with anymore." —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 13:23, October 9, 2010 (UTC)

Now that's interesting. Since we'll be forking, I assume there'll be a fractional community left behind who are going to run . If what you write is true, that remaining community will have to orient this site towards something more in line with the New Look - you suggested something like Guild Wars Guilds (which would profit from traffic driven here), maybe with a promise of more freedom in how pages can be made and what they can contain. Maybe we could have article comments enabled and make this a "game guides and discussion" type of site. Scrap the encyclopedic approach, socialize the web2.0 out of it. What do you think? --◄mendel► 20:06, October 8, 2010 (UTC)

Forks and knives?[]

So, there are two ideas in Mendel's post above.

  1. Could Oasis/New Wikia really be a good place for certain types of communities? As TEF suggested, perhaps embracing the full set of tools would be perfect for a large alliance and be much better than the current kludge of forums that most groups use.
  2. Once GWiki forks, is there a better or alternative use to which could be put?

Obviously, I think (1) is plausible. But should this wikia site be re-aligned to support that? I don't think so for two reasons. (a) I think each guild/alliance is going to want to be independent. Which either means creating a Guild space within a single Wikia site (which defeats the benefits of standardization) or every alliance taking its own subdomain. (b) I find it hard to imagine that Wikia would allow us to repurpose without claiming (perhaps unfairly) that we were doing it to prevent the competition. Plus, we really have enough to do to prep, move, and deal with the aftermath. (Or, perhaps I don't understand what Mendel has proposed, above.)

Instead, I think we would be better off spending time reaching out individually to each person who contributes here now and giving them good reason to move with us. In 3-6 months, if this site starts to lose traffic (and starts to flourish), then it might be worth helping who ever has remained here to reorient the site to something else with symbiotic relationships with both Wikia and GWiki.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 01:48, October 9, 2010 (UTC)

I doubt this site will lose traffic (much); whatever traffic it loses will be shortly after the fork; it makes no sense to have a third encyclopedic English Guild Wars wiki open; so if the remaining community doesn't want to compete with the other two (who will remain? maybe people who want to figure out what purpose the new skin can be put to?), then it should find a purpose of its own.
If we turn Wikia into an "alliance wiki farm", then it would still be good to have a central page that provides
  1. a directory
  2. a template repository (to be carved out of GuildWiki?)
  3. help forums
  4. a graphics repository (good use of the GuildWiki legacy)
  5. guild pages (else move your page every time you change alliance)
That is, if alliances wish to run sites that they can't password-protect any part of. --◄mendel► 05:50, October 9, 2010 (UTC)
There is already a guild wars guilds wiki on Wikia. It was the project of Shadowphoenix, for those that remember her. Felix Omni Signature.png 05:55, October 9, 2010 (UTC)
Even if there wasn't, it seems like a conflict of interest for GWiki to discuss re-purposing Shouldn't it be up who ever decides to stay here how or whether to evolve this site? And isn't up to the marketplace to decide whether the world needs 3 sites? Wikia has earned losing this site, so I would prefer them to pay the price by them losing it after it becomes too hard to maintain. OTOH, maybe some disgrunted GWWers would prefer to take this place over and recraft it in their image. It will be interesting to see what happens.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 06:48, October 9, 2010 (UTC)
I'm not abandoning GuildWars@Wikia. It's my responsibility. Felix Omni Signature.png 16:05, October 9, 2010 (UTC)

Flattery will get you everywhere[]

This section will not be archived on or about 19 October 2010; it will be left to help explain my lack of presence and why the rest of the page will remain empty.

Re this. I thought your quote summed up my feelings quite succinctly. It's not awful, it's the principle that we're slaving away voluntarily and they're trying to squeeze profit out of it at our expense. Although if it's a problem I can remove it. Gboyers talk 07:20, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

I'm glad it was useful to you, I just had no idea anyone besides us Guild Wikians were looking :-) I wonder if all the groups thinking to move could work together to leverage more support from some potential host. Where are you guys thinking of going?  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 07:30, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

We've arranged to host ourselves, with the assistance of a large GTA fansite. This gives us complete control over everything, something we lack now. We might need some adverts to pay for the hosting, but they would be sensitive, and nowhere near as obtrusive as the Wikia adverts. I toyed with the idea of helping host other wikis, but if Wikia need that much money to run, we probably would too, and then we'd essentially be back where we are now. Gboyers talk 08:50, October 6, 2010 (UTC)

Awesome! And I agree: you're in the business of providing a good knowledge base for GTA; figuring out how to host other wikis isn't (at the moment) sensible.
However, Wikia's cash needs are different; they aren't trying to just host wikis anymore (and that's partly why they need to make more money). There are lots of hosting farms, a fair number of various sorts of wiki farms and they would like to create something that probably doesn't exist yet. In fact, it might end up being very cool, but it's not wiki hosting. Which is what GWiki needs, as well as GTA wiki etc.
Thanks for letting me know how you guys are doing. Good luck!  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 09:37, October 6, 2010 (UTC)

Active discussions[]

This section will be archived on or about 19 October 2010.

Archiving active discussions is a bad habit. If you dislike having it on your talkpage, the proper thing would be to ask the participants to move it elsewhere. I know there's been precedent for trying to end discussions by archiving them, but it never earned the people who did it much respect. --◄mendel► 20:46, October 9, 2010 (UTC)

I myself am not too sure why you wanted the discussion ended, TEF. Watsup? Felix Omni Signature.png 06:42, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
The purple elephant martians in his head told him to.--Łô√ë Roar.îğá†ħŕášħ is hosting a Card Creation Contest! 07:06, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
I have a pretty good idea why, since TEF sent me two emails that allow me to make inferences. Ask me on irc. --◄mendel► 07:15, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
Actually, Mendel, the topic of the email has nothing to do with it. I've been consistently archiving everything every few days; I want people to get used to there being nothing here. (The two exceptions relate directly to my reasons for leaving.) It didn't occur to me that it would be controversial. How this translates to my having a habit of of archiving active discussions, I'm not sure; I barely have a habit of archiving at all. The habit I do have is of removing my popcorn out of the frying pan/microwave too soon. I got overly anxious about cleaning up and I forgot the purpose of a talk page; I was hasty to remove the last thread.
I wish you wouldn't jump to conclusions. Worse, even if you were right (and I was archiving in a misguided attempt to end a conversation), what reaction did you think would be reasonable for me to have after your post? It's accusatory. It's gratuitously critical. It presumes a nefarious motive. It leaves little room for me to maneuver and almost no way of saving face. If you were correct in your assumption, it almost begs me to become defensive in response, which I doubt was your intention.
What was wrong with assuming good faith and simply asking me to revert myself? For example, "TEF: did you mean to end this discussion? I thought it was productive and not ready to be retired. Could you restore it, please?"  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 09:23, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
"Oh, have I done that twice now? You've got a point, I'll try to stop doing that in the future. I didn't intend to end the discussion, I thought it was finished." Or discuss.
Your last edit was similarly soon, that's why I'm cautioning you against acquiring this as a habit. To read me to say that you already have it and consciously practice it is bad faith on your part. The fact that you didn't archive everything (well, your self-statement wouldn't be expected to have been) coupled with your emails led me to think a reason likely; by no means a firm conclusion; and that's how I phrased it. I'm telling you how others will view your action, even not knowing the emails, because of past precedent; and you won't be able to defend yourself against this impression if it is wrong because you don't know it exists. So I voiced it. (I was under the impression this has been brought up with you before, but now that I'm looking for it, I can't find anywhere, so I'm probably mistaken about this.)
What would I have been accusing you of? Of wanting a discussion on your talkpage to end? That's perfectly legitimate, and in fact I imply it is by suggesting a way to achieve this. --◄mendel► 12:44, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
"Archiving active discussions is a bad habit." That sure sounds like you're accusing Ernie of already having that habit, I wouldn't call it a bad-faith assumption on his part. However, you are right about the impression that Ernie's action gave - the discussion was far from being archive-ready, yet he archived it without any specific reason. Still, you really need to stop being so harshly critical of people. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 16:07, October 10, 2010 (UTC)
(1) The tone of a post can be accusatory without the post itself being an accusation. (2) Twice hardly makes a habit and since no examples were linked, the originating post gives a darker impression than is accurate. (3) Rather than defending my honor, you called attention to the very actions that you say might give others cause for concern. (4) You ascribed a negative motivation to my actions in writing, "I know there's been precedent for trying to end discussions by archiving them..." (5) You presumed a deeper motivation for wrong behavior by interpreting the archiving through the color emails no one else has seen; at best, that's somewhat paternalistic (as if I couldn't explain this myself) and at worst, it cements the impression you said that you wanted to avoid people having (as it provides a reason for inappropriate actions).
I'm not saying your own motivation was bad. I am saying that your execution missed the boat. I can't respond with "oh, have I done this twice now" because you didn't actually say, "hey, TEF, you've done this twice now;" your post implies that it's a bigger issue than two occurrences.
You have asked many times for people to let you know when you write something that rubs folks the wrong way. I'm trying to do so now. Obviously, since I am upset about the original post above, I might be doing a poor job of it. The key point is that one can be critical without criticizing. The originating post emphasizes the negatives and depends on interpretation of actions. Again, what was wrong with asking me if that was what I intended? If you really think it's necessary to go into detail as to how it might come across, then it would be really helpful if you made it plain that you didn't have that impression yourself.
Unfortunately, your action in moving the post (rather than reverting or asking me to revert) makes it seem like you really did think I was trying to force an end the conversation. (Coincidentally, the moved conversation has had no new posts; I don't know if that means it really was over or if people lost track of it, even though those participating follow both your talk and mine.)
In case it got lost in the above:
  • I have not ever, I do not now, and I will not ever attempt to end a conversation by archiving it (or even by moving it w/o proper bread-crumb trails).
  • I will not be so hasty in archiving conversations (regardless of whether my motives are pure).
I apologize for any confusion caused by my hastiness. It really didn't occur to me that peeps were still interested in the convo (and, of course, it should have — I forget that my losing interest in it doesn't mean that others have, too.)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 19:01, October 12, 2010 (UTC)
Join me, TEF, in never archiving again, and together we shall spit in the collective eyes of archives and rule the wiki as father and son. --Macros 19:53, October 12, 2010 (UTC)
^Move to support. Arnout aka The Emperors Angel 20:07, October 12, 2010 (UTC)
Must. Not. Give. In. To. Dark Side.
(But: Their. Light. Sabers. Are. Much. Cooler.)  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 20:09, October 12, 2010 (UTC)
Join the Dark Side! I know you want red glow sticks :) –User Balistic Pve sig.pngalistic 22:39, 12 October 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for your feedback. My initial post was intended to be ambiguous, but I see it's not come across as such. I must work on that. Aside: The ambiguity (when it works) has 4 modes: the matching ones are "good faith editor responds to good-faith criticism" and "bad-faith editor responds to bad-faith warning"; the two non-matching ones are "bad-faith editor responds to good-faith criticism", which is not really a problem if they got the message, and "good-faith editor responds to bad-faith warning", which happened here and tends to cause disruption. I prefer to keep replying ambiguously to ambiguous actions; to me, AGF means "allow good faith", not the stronger assume. I can see how people's problems with that attitude might stem from the desire to decide, rather than act in uncertainty.
My own take is that I should have focused on the effect of your action, rather than thinking about possible intentions; that would have allowed me to phrase an unambiguous message and leave the intention issue unresolved: When I wanted to reply to the Forks and knives? section, it was already gone, leaving me at a loss where to place my reply. I finally opted for copying the whole conversation over to my talk. I was wondering whether you wanted that conversation or closed, or not longer be involved with it. I'd be happier if you checked that talkpage sections have been inactive for at least a few days before archiving them. --◄mendel► 10:40, October 13, 2010 (UTC)
Or... you could simply ask, "Why did you archive section X? I didn't think we were done discussing it yet." No need to bury your actual point under a crapton of extraneous verbiage. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 13:10, October 13, 2010 (UTC)


This section will be archived on or about 19 October 2010.

You've compiled an excellent analysis of our weaknesses and strengths on your userpage. --◄mendel► 00:25, October 15, 2010 (UTC)

Thank you.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 00:30, October 15, 2010 (UTC)

Pro-active archiving[]

This section will not be archived on or about 19 October 2010; it will be left to help explain my lack of presence and why the rest of the page will remain empty.

I am not leaving GWiki, but, as noted above, I feel my contributions are now ultimately in service of Wikia's new direction. And, unfortunately, Wikia's new direction does not work to our benefit.

Accordingly, sections on this page will be aggressively archived on or about 19 October 2010 (unless otherwise noted). After that, if you want to engage me in a conversation, send me an email or contact me at the official wiki (at least until GWiki moves to new digs). I apologize in advance for any inconvenience this might cause.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 01:16, October 17, 2010 (UTC)

Key editors[]

I wrote elsewhere: We have no "key" editors. There are no keys. All editors are equal, barring ability. Please don't suggest otherwise. I'd like to somewhat contradict myself and tell you that you are, of course, one of our key editors. :)

You are a key editor because you do things, lots of them, and you do them right most of the time.

That's not what my point was about, though. I'd be hard pressed to define a line what makes an editor "key" or not; and I wouldn't even presume to be able to decide if a budding editor is "key-in-waiting" or not. So while we definitely do have key editors (e.g. you), making that distinction serves no practical purpose (except maybe to compliment people on their value for our wiki). Thank you! --◄mendel► 05:36, October 19, 2010 (UTC)

Thank you. And especially thank you for taking the time to say so :-)
"Key editor" was a dumb phrase to use. What I was trying to get across was that, if there's a root cause of a problem affecting dozens (or 100s) of pages, it makes more sense for one person to try to tackle fixing the css than to have lots of people apply individual solutions to individual pages. I couldn't figure out a way to get that across quickly, so used a short-hand ("key editor") hoping someone would fix the phrasing. That was the practical distinction which got lost b/c I was hasty in putting something together.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 07:11, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
I do that all the time. Try to get the basic point across, and let someone who is more eloquent get the phrasing just right. Actually, TEF, you're usually the one that cleans up after me :P --Macros 07:40, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
You have always been and will be a great inspiration to me. You are one of the few true editors that guild wars has. User Ariyen sig icon.gifriyen 08:15, October 19, 2010 (UTC)

Post-fork (move?) clean-up[]

← Moved from above
(Possibly should be moved to a project-page for clean-up.)

Ah, ok. Well, it is probably a good idea to organize the post-fork cleanup. What needs to be done will depend on how much the remaining community decides to re-invent the wiki; and if it is unclear whether problems can be addressed via site css, page editing, or not at all, maybe a better method of organizing this effort is needed (e.g. a page/forum where problem types and solutions are listed and discussed). Even "key editors" have to get organized somehow. ;) --◄mendel► 12:22, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Here's a good place to start - everything in Category:Skill type quick references. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 12:36, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Well, that probably calls for rewriting the templates that display the tables. --◄mendel► 12:47, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Well, duh. o.O —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 12:57, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
So, put the problem tag on the template page? ;-P --◄mendel► 13:06, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
That wouldn't really be noticeable, and it leaves the QR pages without any indication that the layout issues have been noted. Meh, I don't really care anyway. :P —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 13:22, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Sure it's noticeable if you put it on the header template for the QR tables so that it gets transcluded. --◄mendel► 13:48, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
I think a general site notice is better for things that are systemic, like the QR tables. Henchmen are always going to see the site notice (at least once), so that covers anything that looks ycch under Oasis. {{Oasis}} (or whatever it's called) should be applied sparingly.
I also worry about someone editing a page (template) to look good in Oasis, without checking to see how it looks in Monobook (or even Monaco).  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:21, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
The latter is going to happen anyhow as editors are using the new skin. One type of problem might be floating boxes lining up fine with the fixed width, and this layout breaking with more horizontal space available (want to guess when Wikia is going to up the 1024 pixel limit? in two years? three? or drop the few pixels that make the pages have a horizontal scrollbar at 1024px resolution?). --◄mendel► 17:33, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Yes, it's going to happen, but can we do anything to reduce the rate at which it does? (This was one of my motivations in tagging pages, so that people would realize it wasn't the page, it was a systemic problem with an addressable root cause, i.e. the page might not have to be edited at all.)
Incidentally, is there any way that the css/js could tell which skin is being displayed, and adjust the look of a class/html-tag/etc accordingly? Is that more trouble than it's worth?  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:40, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
What we can do is set monobook to fixed width, but that'd be bad.
CSS is simple, Monobook loads MediaWiki:common.css and MediaWiki:monobook.css, while Oasis only loads MediaWiki:wikia.css. I think it is similar with the JavaScript; and at any rate, the skin is listed as a class on the body tag, IIRC. --◄mendel► 18:07, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
<body> classes : skin-monobook and wikiaSkinMonobook ; skin-Oasis for NWL (strange, they insisted at one point that "Oasis" was only one theme for the "Wikia" skin) ; and even though it's going away, wikiaSkinMonaco for Monaco. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 18:18, October 19, 2010 (UTC)
Clearly, there's little point in trying to make Monobook look like Oasis (why maintain two skins with the same things borked?). But: is there any value in making things like class="stdt" assume fixed width in Oasis, but variable width in Monobook? This won't solve the issue for tables with lots of columns, but it will help things look better for lots of other articles.
Another thought that I had: set things up so that we can display tables on a page without any of this wiki's toolbars/navbars, i.e. something like the pop-up for images that Wikia added some time ago. So, you go to an article that has a large table, you click on an icon ("show full-size) and it takes you to a new page (or new window?) which displays just the table (and, o/c, anything that GW@Wikia is required to display by the EULA).  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 18:31, October 19, 2010 (UTC)