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Joined 22 September 2008
en This user is a native speaker of English.
fr-1 Cet utilisateur peut contribuer avec un niveau élémentaire de français.
This user has a basic understanding of the Arabic abjad.
This user has an intermediate understanding of the International Phonetic Alphabet.
JS-2 This user has a fair command of JavaScript, and can understand some scripts written by others.
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Names and attributes must be accommodated to the essence of things, and not the essence to the names, since things come first and names afterwards.
1832, Galileo Galilei

Notwithstanding their influence, we apprehend, however, that dictionary-makers are on the whole an oppressed race, doomed to more than their due share of obscure drudgery. [] They may have had their romance at home — may have been crossed in love, and thence driven to dictionarying; may have been involved in domestic tragedies — who can say?
1864, Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine (volume 96), uncredited author

[T]he maximum number of revisions an author made is 237,600 for the English Wiktionary (user "Equinox") [] As an anonymous reviewer points out, this "sounds as [sic] an incredibly high number of revisions for one single user".
2016, Wolfer & Müller-Spitzer, How Many People Constitute a Crowd and What Do They Do?

Words, words, words, words! You may as well listen to the birds.
2000, Coil

About me

Hi. I've been on Wiktionary since mid-2008. My main interest is adding (legitimate) English words that we are missing. I seem to have done rather a lot of this.[1] In particular, I have added the missing material from Webster's 1913 dictionary (which has about 80,000 entries); created thousands of entries from lists of scientific terms, such as minerals, soil types, organic compounds, and pharmaceutical drugs; originated Appendix:Unicode (I fear I have birthed a terrible emoji monster); and added various words that I encounter in books, newspapers, and everyday life.

I'm on Wikipedia too, where I mostly make a fuck of a fuss about commas.

I have an HND in Applied Computing and a BA in English Language (dissertation on Euro-English in the demoscene). I'm a software developer for a charity that I like a lot. I've done some other sucky jobs too like telesales :)

  • Things I like: super-specialised senses of otherwise ordinary words (e.g. tick in birdwatching, policeman in chemistry); proper tagging of slang and rare senses; and words beginning with x.
  • Things I don't like: blind prescriptivism; made-up phobias; folk etymologies; any editing "agenda" (Islam, Anglo-Saxonism, gender studies, etc., to the exclusion of actual real-world usage); and especially spam and commercial bullshit.


Things to do, apart from adding words

  • Why doesn't my headset work? I could record a zillion words. Try it on another PC. If it's super-quiet and broken even there, buy a new one.
  • Ditto: deal with the initialisms and abbreviations that need a proper part of speech.
  • Go through Special:WhatLinksHere/&c. and replace those prissy, attention-seeking "&c." links with "etc."
  • Things not to do: finish my excellent desktop Wiktionary with loads of power-user shortcut keys, since templates change too fast and I would end up vandalising without knowing it. *cry*

Individual words to consider

Other places to get words

Features I would like to have

  • Some kind of high-level platform-agnostic API that exposes the dictionary as objects (if only a collection of subheadings), not raw text.
  • "Blame", as in software source control, to discover which user wrote a particular line of an entry. See Wikipedia:WikiBlame.
  • Standardisation of how templates work. Also, general accountability for templates, including pre-rollout consultation, testing, and backward-compatibility.
  • Fix the dumb issue where various plug-ins load sequentially and stuff keeps jumping around so you can't click it.

Unpopular opinions

  • We should get rid of (or drastically cut down) the misspelling entries. They are way out of control.
  • Having separate alt-form pages for variants that differ only by case (Bloggs' disease, Bloggs' Disease) is somehow aesthetically displeasing. Furthermore, we should not have separate pages for titles like Admiral and Dame; just explain the usage at the normal form.
  • I sometimes think that every word in a definition should be a link. Perhaps it could be done in a subtler way, like allowing right-click and "look up this word" anywhere. Sneaky bonus: editors don't have to bother deciding where and how to insert square brackets.

Wiktionarians I have met