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ASL indexEdit

I thought you might be interested in Tom's recommendation at User talk:Positivesigner, "... assign Sign Writing pictographs for each [symbol in his sign jotting system]. The lookup would be visual enough to not even need to know English and it would be general enough to isolate a group of similar signs in a few steps. My code would not be seen except by the computer programs we use to create the slightly-inaccurate Sign Writing indicies. Once the entry is located, you can have it translated from a video to Sign Writing, PSE, and English."

I'm excited about the possibility of creating a useable index, as the current system still doesn't seem terribly easy to maintain or even to navigate. Your feedback is welcome. —Rod (A. Smith) 18:41, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Why use the current system for the index? If we're switching to ASLSJ, do so for the index, too. Or am I missing something? In any event, I think that since SignWriting (the real thing, not our version) will, I hope, be Unicode characters, we'll be switching over anyway, so any current system is temporary and need not be ideal; so we might as well leave it the way it is for now even if we do think ASLSJ is better.—msh210 18:47, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
No, I don't think a full conversion to ASLSJ (temporary or otherwise) is on the table, because it doesn't seem to solve any problems of the current transcription system. Tom's recommendation was to combine SignWriting symbols with ASLSJ just to organize (and automatically maintain) our sign language indices. I'm sketchy on the details, but presumably the reorganized index would make it easier for a reader to find the entry for a sign of unknown meaning. I told him to be bold with one or two of the existing Index:American Sign Language pages, so we can at least see how his vision might unfold.
Browsing around the Internet, I cannot find any new information on the integration of SignWriting into Unicode. The layout issues seem so much more complex than Unicode combining characters can accomodate, so I suspect it will be several years, at least. —Rod (A. Smith) 20:37, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
I have a working solution for encoding Binary SignWriting to Unicode. Binary SignWriting uses sequential 16 bit codes to represent the spatial information needed for SignWriting. You can read about the plane 4 solution. You can view the Hello world. page. You can view the BSW JavaScript library (see function char2unicode). I'm currently rewriting the SignWriting Image Server to use Binary SignWriting rather than comma delimited data. It should be ready next week. -Steve 12:49, 08 May 2009 (UTC)
SignWriting Image Server beta 5 has been released to view and download. Section 3 has the Binary SignWriting definition with ABNF for data and Regular Expressions for tokens. -Steve 19:35, 21 May 2009 (UTC)
I am wondering how many places need updated when I add a new entry to the ASL terms on Wiktionary. It seems the term ASE-RED (insert super-long entry title here) was automatically added to and has links at the bottom of the page to Category:American_Sign_Language_adjectives and Category:ase:Colors. But it had to be manually added to American Sign Language gloss term RED and American Sign Language index 1-handshape.
I apologize that I do not understand the Wikipedia-style templates very well. Do you know if there is a way to have these extra places automatically updated to include new entries?—⁠This unsigned comment was added by Positivesigner (talkcontribs).
@Positivesigner, I imagine that that should be doable by a bot, but I can't do it myself. Perhaps someone can help at [[WT:GP]].​—msh210 00:26, 5 March 2017 (UTC)

Spelling the unspelledEdit

You mentioned that someone who doesn't know how to correctly title a page may put it under the "sign gloss" namespace. I feel that I could create a title for a sign-word page. But that does not necessarily make my title "correct." Is it first come, first serve? If someone feels it doesn't match the existing pattern, does that make it wrong? If I feel the pattern is wrong, how would I get a change approved?

I currently don't see how the phoneme / hold-move structures are helping to accomplish the overall goal of being able to "lookup the correct spelling or meaning" of a sign-word in a two-dimensional medium. Indeed, the goal of an orthography is to ease the flow of thought from mind to paper and paper to mind. Does the entry "A@InsideShoulderhigh-PalmBack-FlatB@NearCenterChesthigh-PalmDown Frontandback" help anyone to do that? If a new signer sees a person speaking in ASL, is there any chance they could "sound out" the spelling to find the meaning if they don't understand about the spacial aspect of ASL grammar?

My biggest problem is that I don't know anyone to talk to about some different ideas I have for these issues, or to whom I can express my concerns. I was e-mailing Rodasmith regularly at the end of 2009, but he told me that he had some better things to do. So that's why I'm writing to you here. Thank you for your patience. - Positivesigner 03:06, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Regarding your first point, we need canonical page titles. There's some discussion about this at [[User talk:Rodasmith#another ase entry, and some ramblings about dimensionality]]: what directions can be assumed and not included in titles. If we're keeping our current page-title system, this should be codified.
By the way, as discussed in the past somewhere, if and when SignWriting is included in Unicode, all the entries should be moved to SignWriting titles.
You're 100% right that it's very hard to find an entry by looking it up directly; as you know better than I, [[Index:American Sign Language]] is meant to ease looking up entries. Note incidentally that the difficulty of looking up a word one hears is not limited to sign languages; a Soundex-like search mechanism would be a wonderful addition to this site.
No one to talk with is a function of there being no ASL (or other SL) editors. If you have a specific idea you want implemented, I suggest you raise it at [[Wiktionary talk:About sign languages]] and point to it with a heads-up at the talkpages of the various SL editors (Rodasmith, Di gama, ECUgrad96, Neskaya, me, perhaps others); even absent editors might have an e-mailed notification in place for edits to their talkpages. Seeing support there, implement it; or, seeing no opposition, bring it to the Beer parlour. I think that'd usually be a good way to do it. If what you have is not a specific idea to be implemented but a concern to be discussed, then, again, bring it to [[Wiktionary talk:About sign languages]] with links from editors' talkpages. I don't know what else to tell you, I'm afraid; there just isn't much of a community of SL editors here (to put it mildly).​—msh210 08:07, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
Or just being it straight to the BP, bypassing the SL talkpage, perhaps. Few people will care, and it will clutter up an already cluttered BP, but at least more people will notice it.​—msh210 16:12, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Maths wordsEdit

Hi there. I see you are a mathematician. There are lots of difficult maths words in Category:Citations of undefined terms - (



and so on). It would be good if you could shed some light on any of them. Cheers. SemperBlotto (talk) 08:19, 3 December 2012 (UTC)

There are also a few mathematical terms to be found at User:Metaknowledge/Todo, like position vector and θ-intercept, although I daresay I could define those (but not without fear of having forgotten my geometry and thus of making a definitional error). —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:51, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
I know of an SOP meaning, and of no non-SOP meaning, of position vector; same for θ-intercept. I can look at the two lists mentioned; thanks for the links. Any way the math terms from the undefined-but-cited list can be listed separately? (Not sure how that can be done: is there some criterion that marks them, like a citation from the arXiv or a particular editor?)​—msh210 06:24, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, we do have , you can RFD it if you like. Similarly, "position vector" is about as SOP as , IMO. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:26, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, x-intercept is IMO SOP also. As for unit vector, that's a vector with unit length, not at all clear IMO from the parts; position vector OTOH is a vector that signifies/marks a position.​—msh210 07:14, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
What, will they get it confused with all those vectors floating around with a direction of 1? What else could it be? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 07:21, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
If someone started talking to me about a "2 vector", I'd have no idea what he meant, and would have to guess it were a vector all of whose components were 2.​—msh210 07:26, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for going through my list! (octachoron too?) —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 07:04, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Hm…. I see various online sources and just two bgc books are defining it as a hypercube in four dimensions, and I see no other definition for it, but I'm not sure it's attested. But if it means anything, then I suppose it means that  :-) .​—msh210 07:10, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

too, if you please. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:46, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

Nah, it's SOP: see -gon.​—msh210 00:42, 4 January 2013 (UTC)
But compare [[talk:n-tuple]] and [[talk:n-dimensional]].​—msh210 02:51, 4 January 2013 (UTC)
You wouldn't happen to be able to define "pseudocodeword", would you? - -sche (discuss) 08:13, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm afraid not. It seems to be used in the mathematical theory of error detection/correction, and to be defined in terms of some sort of graph (in the graph-theory sense, not like the graph of a function from analytic geometry) — but that's about all I can say. (It's also sometimes spelled pseudo-codeword, unsurprisingly, and I didn't check which is more common, or was at various times.)​—msh210 18:30, 15 February 2013 (UTC)

template greppingEdit

see also

-- Jeremyb (talk) 06:20, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

Many thanks.​—msh210 18:33, 14 February 2014 (UTC)


I've read a few actual adult books in Hebrew now (as opposed to just newspaper articles and whatnot), and I've found that a number of things I'd thought were archaic, because I only knew them from the liturgy, do actually occur in formal-but-not-archaizing Modern writing. For example, you asked about nitpa'el once, and I recently came across a real example, on page 173 of Memories After My Death, Yair Lapid's first-person biography of his father Tommy Lapid. After mentioning that Abba Eben was going to a secret meeting in Argentina, he explains why; he states that relations between Israel and Argentina were tense at the time, due to the abduction of Adolf Eichmann, and writes:

אבן, שכיהן כסגן ראש הממשלה, נתבקש לגייס את יוקרתו הבינלאומית הידועה כדי לפתור את המשבר.

I do still think it must be pretty rare, though, firstly because I think this is the only Modern example I've come across, and secondly because after you brought up nitpa'el, I asked my father about it, giving some forms listed in my dictionaries, and he said that he would only understand those forms as 1p future, never as 3ms past. (I'm sure that he actually would have understood them in context, but he didn't recognize them on their own.)

RuakhTALK 07:56, 25 February 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for the info. I don't think this changes AHE policy at all, though; do you?​—msh210 15:52, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
I haven't looked; I'll take your word for it. The purpose of my comment here was merely to correct something that I think I once told you and that I now think was mistaken. (Oh, and to provide a possible quotation, if one would be useful.) If this correction results in an en.wikt policy improvement, then great; if no such improvement is needed, also great. —RuakhTALK 07:58, 26 February 2014 (UTC)
Incidentally, while I have your ear eye: FYI, I've just RFVed a sense you added.​—msh210 15:57, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
Just thought I should mention that I recently accidentally came across an article titled “Developments in the Hebrew verbal system of Israeli children and youth” by Aaron Bar-Adon (1978) and it had this to say about nitpa'el:
nitpaˀel (nitCaCeC) is rare in younger Hebrew, although it is in frequent use in formal Hebrew, and to some extent also in the informal speech of adults. Sometimes one has the impression that the speaers conceive of nitpaˀel (which was originally a variant of hitpaˀel, under the impact of Aramaic, since the time of Mishnaic Hebrew) as a ‘combination’ of nifˀal and hitpaˀel, as if to enhance the passivity of hitpaˀel (which, as mentioned above, is now taken to be mainly a reflexive and reciprocal binyan, while originally it did have the passive meaning!). Thus, in hitka(b)bed ‘he honored himself; he had the honor; he was honored’, some speakers perceive more the first one or two meanings, while in nitka(b)bed they will perceive more exclusively the last connotation, ‘he was honored’, in the passive. At any rate, nitpaˀel has so far been rare in younger Hebrew. One would expect some productivity in that area too.
--WikiTiki89 17:34, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
Interesting; thanks. AHE says we treat it as a separate entry if its meaning differs from the hitpael. Apparently, that's most often true — at least according to Bar-Adon.​—msh210 22:54, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
I don't know if you can say that the meaning "differs", they just have different connotations. I think the definitions in the entry for הִתְכַּבֵּד‎, based on Bar-Adon's definitions should look like this:
  1. (usually hitpa'el) he honored himself
  2. (usually hitpa'el) he had the honor
  3. (usually nitpa'el) he was honored
Splitting the definitions onto separate pages will make it harder to convey this information. --WikiTiki89 06:10, 26 February 2014 (UTC)

Hebrew transliterationEdit


I realise Hebrew can't be transliterated 100%, even with vowel marks but which one is incorrect - Module:he-translit or WT:HE TR? Maybe one or the other should be fixed or both? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:25, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

@Atitarev Can you point out where you see a problem? --WikiTiki89 20:12, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm not aware of the problem. I'm referring to the maintenance notice on the module. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 20:22, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Nothing is "incorrect". The module simply cannot transliterate words that have ambiguous letters or vowels, or lack vowels entirely. The consensus thing is less of a problem, since even though there is no consensus, there is a current common practice. --WikiTiki89 21:05, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
OK. So, you agree with the wording of the maintenance notice? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 21:45, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I personally don't, but I don't care about it that much, as long as the module is not used until it can somehow be fixed (such as by using separate Unicode characters for the two qamatses). --WikiTiki89 21:50, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
WT:HE TR, even ignoring the 'scholarly' column, is not followed: consensus I think is to transliterate פ as f, which it doesn't seem to indicate, and I don't think anyone transliterates ח as kh. (And there may be more errors, also. Those two jumped out at me.) Module:he-translit copies the latter of those two errors and introduces its own: (a/o) for kamats, which is (pretty much) never ambiguous but always either a or o, and h for ה even word-finally. (And, again, there may be more errors, also. Those two jumped out at me.)​—msh210 04:39, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
The פ error at WT:HE TR was my fault from when I added the scholarly column to the table; I just fixed it now (the scholarly transliteration is actually used in some etymology sections). But "kh" is used for ח quite frequently. I don't think that the "(a/o)" thing implies that any individual kamats is ambiguous, but that a script cannot possibly distinguish them without knowing the morphology of the word; I don't think that "(a/o)" was actually intended to be used as a transliteration, but as an indication that the transliteration is not known by the script. Omitting word-final ה was probably just an oversight in the script and not intended to be a change to the transliteration system. To me, all this is an indication that the Hebrew cannot as of yet be automatically transliterated, and not that the module is flawed. --WikiTiki89 06:55, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
Ping. Fair enough. But the distinction in your last sentence is one without a difference: if Hebrew can't be machine-transliterated, then any script that attempts to do so is automatically flawed.​—msh210 03:42, 25 April 2014 (UTC)
Ping. Oh, and another error in the module is that it doesn't mark stress.​—msh210 05:44, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Stress and kamatz (a/o) are not errors, it's simply not known for sure. Cyrillic based languages, BTW, use acute accent to mark stress, in Arabic, marking stress has been abandoned, as it is predictable or may differ substantially in dialects and depends on whether ḥarakāt are pronounced (very formal or Qur'anic Arabic) or not. The purpose of this and similar modules would be to transliterate as close as possible and match WT:HE TR to the maximum, in cases when people are not familiar with the script and no manual transliteration is provided. Any omissions were not intentional. I prefer "kh" for ח, as "ch" is misleading and it seems that "kh" is used quite often here and elsewhere. Any missing characters should be added to the module and for (a/o) we could use a default "a", a more common reading, which could be manually replaced with "o", same with other ambiguous cases. Please consider creating "{{he-xlit}}" (with a disclaimer). If we have an approximate pronunciation tool, it would be easier to find the correct one. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:35, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Unlike in Arabic, in Hebrew stress is phonemic. Usually it can be determined from the vowels, but not always; consider the minimal pair בָּנוּ(bánu, in us) vs בָּנוּ(banú, they built). And stress of borrowed words is all over the place in Modern Hebrew. --WikiTiki89 18:39, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
I understand this. Stress is another thing that has to be done manually. Still, "banu" (without a stress indication is better than no transliteration at all, don't you think? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 22:28, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes, but "b(a/o)nu" is not. --WikiTiki89 22:34, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
I tried to explain the usefulness of such a (automated) transliteration method below. I'm not suggesting to use it in the main space. However, if one sees "b(a/o)nu", a person (like me) may search for "banu", "bonu" and find the right transliteration. Especially if one knows that most likely it's "banu", not "bonu". I have transliterated a number of Hebrew words that way in the past - found basic letters, then searched and edited (can't remember the exact words). User:ZxxZxxZ seems to agree with this or has a similar opinion. I can now transliterate with some level of certainty ביומטריה‎ - "biyomet'riyah" (?) (do you think it's better than nothing?). Finding forms with all vowels always helps (I found בִּיּוֹמֶטְרִיָּה‎ on Hebrew Wiktionary). I'm not actively working with Hebrew and not learning it but I don't like so many words having no transliteration. Does it make sense? I know some people will say - don't touch Hebrew entries, if you don't speak it. I don't hold such views for editing in any language - mistakes do happen, someone may correct them. If an editor makes a lot of mistakes, he/she should stay away and learn. I'm very thorough with languages I don't know or don't know well and I welcome any corrections - everything I edit is on my watchlist (huge). --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 23:11, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
One counterpoint is that it is much easier to find and fix entries that don't have transliterations than it is to find and fix entries with incorrect transliterations. But I agree that you don't have to know a language to do basic editing in it. Just to point out one mistake I've seen you make: words in the construct state almost always have internal vowel changes (unlike Arabic where only in rare cases the last vowel changes, ignoring the loss of nunation), for example דָּבָר(davár) > דְּבַר(d'vár). So be careful when transliterating or adding vowels to compound words. --WikiTiki89 23:27, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Thank you. Yes, that's a valid point. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 00:14, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
Re "I'm not suggesting to use it in the main space": where, then? By the way, a kamats is always a except before a dagesh or sh'va or maqaf or mater lectionis + maqaf or word-final unvowelized non-mater: only before one of those is it ambiguous. I assume Lua can capture that? In any event, I think a transliteration with "(a/o)" is awful in any public-facing (i.e. content) namespace.​—msh210 06:54, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I think there are more exceptions, and it would be impractical to take them all into account. For example שָׁרָשִׁים is an alternative of שֳׁרָשִׁים (also, can you give an example of "mater lectionis + maqaf"; I'm not sure what you mean). --WikiTiki89 07:19, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I think the first kamats in שָׁרָשִׁים is disputed a/o (and, funnily enough, this might be the one reasonable use of "(a/o)" in a translit  :-) ), but I take your point. Re mater lectionis + maqaf, see e.g. בראשית ל א, havo-li.​—msh210 07:34, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I always thought that הָבָה־לִּי is háva-li, with the doubling of the ל being similar to the doubling of the מ in לָמָּה(láma). --WikiTiki89 16:09, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
Here's what I mean. Current entry @בִּיּוֹמֶטְרִיָּה‎ doesn't provide transliteration or vowelisation. By using the translit module I can see it's something like "biyomet'riy(a/o)h". It's obviously "biyomet'riyah", at which one can arrive using a translit module. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:53, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Actually it's biyométriya (sh'va nakh after the tet, no mapik in the hei). —RuakhTALK 05:28, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

{{he-usage-begedkefet}} and "modern speech"Edit

This is an improvement for words starting with bet, kaf, or pei, but I'm not sure it works for words starting with gimel, dalet, or tav.

(I guess that problem was already there in the subsequent sentence, but I either didn't notice or didn't remember it till now.)

Should we have two separate templates? Or maybe the template should take the actual first letter as an argument, and do some intelligent stuff accordingly?

RuakhTALK 04:55, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

Re your first paragraph: Oh. Oops. Right. Thanks for catching that. But the truth is that I think my most recent edit was in error and the "modern texts" was correct the first time, since such modern texts as include vowels (kids' books and liturgy and maybe poetry(?)) follows that rule. I'm rolling back. But feel free to disagree and to unrollback. But you're right, certainly, that the remaining instance of "modern speech" is misrepresentative of modern pronunciation for three of the consonants.

Re your last: I like your second idea better. It can default IMO to {{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}} (if PAGENAME is parsed before padleft).​—msh210 05:29, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

Ping.​—msh210 05:16, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Sounds good. Is it all right with you if I put that logic in a module? It's unwieldy to make a lot of references to {{{initial|{{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}}}}}.
Re: "if PAGENAME is parsed before padleft": I imagine that the parsing proper happens in a single pass, and the evaluation/expansion mostly seems to follow a sort of call-by-name strategy that makes it hard to say what happens "before" what, but yes: {{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}} evaluates to the first character of the page-name.
RuakhTALK 06:11, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Certainly (in answer to your question).​—msh210 06:23, 24 June 2014 (UTC)

Closing votes a few hours beforeEdit

Please don't close any votes before 23:59 (UTC). In the last day, the end date gets highlighted in red in the vote box, people voting at the last minute is a common sight. (It's unlikely since the vote got already extended once, but still.) --Daniel Carrero (talk) 21:44, 5 February 2016 (UTC) --Daniel Carrero (talk) 21:44, 5 February 2016 (UTC)

@Daniel Carrero, people extend a vote before it's up. Therefore, it only makes sense for a closing admin who thinks the vote should not be extended to be able to close it then also. Otherwise, he is allowing anyone who thinks it should be extended to do so without recourse. I'll comment further at [[Wiktionary:Votes/pl-2015-11/Short blocking policy]].​—msh210 16:50, 8 February 2016 (UTC)


Your "hack" still compounds the font increase. Even though it is consistent internally, it is still larger than our normal Hebrew-script text. Anyway, I think you're just being too technical about it. The language of the Talmud makes heavy use of code-switching between Hebrew and Aramaic to the point that it becomes impossible to accurately judge for every word whether it was "in Hebrew" or "in Aramaic". I don't think we need to be worried about making sure that each individual word is correctly tagged. It would suffice to call the whole quote Hebrew. --WikiTiki89 22:35, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

It's larger than normal, yeah, but it doesn't look bad now.

If we're going to (incorrectly) call it one language, it should be the quoting language not the quoted language, right? That'd be Aramaic. (Like we would say the sentence "My favorite word is internacionālistēm." is English.)

Oh, and have a ping, since it's been a little while since you posted here.​—msh210 18:01, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

But this isn't a simple instance of Hebrew quoted within Aramaic, this is more like Hebrew quoting Hebrew and then switching to Aramaic after the quote and quoting a few more Hebrew words. It's typical code-switching, and code-switching is not straightforward to pick apart. The only words in this whole quote that are for certain Aramaic are אימא (I will say) and ס״ד (You think?). More importantly, what do we gain from being "correct" about this? --WikiTiki89 18:19, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
The overall context is Aramaic. The Hebrew is all quotations in that context. (That's true of most instances of code-switching within the Babylonian Talmud in my experience.)

What we gain from using both language codes is (allegedly) that screen readers can read it right, and SEO. I don't know of any gain from using one language code or the other if we're going to use only one. And have another ping.​—msh210 18:16, 13 April 2016 (UTC)

Just because most of the non-quoted text in the Babylonian Gemara is Aramaic, doesn't mean that all of it is. Who according to you is quoting the introductory words "ר׳ אליעזר אומר"? And no screen-reader is ever going to be able to read Talmudic Aramaic (at least not without a lot more metadata to help it out). And I don't see how this could possibly help with SEO. But even if there were a better reason for the language tags, our current language tag system would be insufficient to indicate the linguistic reality of this text. --WikiTiki89 18:41, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
The flowing text of the Talmud quotes passages from the Mishnah. Same as when a modern, English non-fiction book uses a foreign-language chapter epigraph: it's quoted foreign text in a larger English text. Who's quoting it? The author of the book. And have yet another ping.​—msh210 18:48, 15 April 2016 (UTC)
Except that the Talmud doesn't have an "author". It's a collection of notes and quotations from various rabbis. So the second half of this passage is no less a "quotation by the author" than the first half. I don't think the outermost frame can be said to be in any language. What do you think of this compromise: diff? It solves all the technical and logical issues I had with it, save for the fact that it cannot be replaced with {{ux}}. --WikiTiki89 19:03, 15 April 2016 (UTC)
Great; thanks.​—msh210 19:54, 15 April 2016 (UTC)

Pinging rulesEdit

This does would not be recognized as a ping. See mw:Manual:Echo for the rules about what is required to successfully ping someone. --WikiTiki89 20:13, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

Thanks for letting me know. But, looking at that page, I don't see why my edit wouldn't 'a' pinged him.​—msh210 20:58, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
It breaks both "The diff chunk must be recognised as an addition of new lines of text, not a change to existing lines." and "The user must sign his or her message; the message cannot contain any other signatures." --WikiTiki89 21:06, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
Ah, because it was an edit to an existing post. Duh. Thanks. DCDuring, see the diff linked to above. :-)​—msh210 21:10, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
Thanks. DCDuring TALK 21:25, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

Replacing l|en with square bracketsEdit

Hey, just curious about this diff. Why is it better to use square brackets than the {{l}} template? I understand why some people prefer to type it in square brackets initially, but once the template version is there to remove it seems like needlessly reducing the information density of the markup. Thanks. - TheDaveRoss 20:03, 27 September 2016 (UTC)

It simplifies the wiki markup so editors can read it more easily (and new editors are not as scared off by it). And there's minimal (usually no) information or user-interface loss: the word is marked as English anyway in the HTML (it inherits that from the page), and the link goes to the top of the page (which for most English words is the English section; even where it's not, people seeking the English word will often be interested in the ==Translingual== word also). Moreover, the edit is no skin off my back, since I have a script that does it for me automatically (though I don't edit only for the purpose of changing {{l}} to brackets; in the case you linked to, I was fixing no-language-parameter {{homophones}} templates).​—msh210 13:28, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I oppose these edits, you should stop and revert them. —CodeCat 13:34, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I assume the second half of that sentence was an expression of your opinion (and therefore almost redundant to the first) and not an expression of what you consider to be policy/convention, right? By the way, Wiktionary:Votes/2016-07/Using template l to link to English entries opposes automatic conversion of brackets to {{l}}, though doing so in 'nyms lists only is still subject to Wiktionary:Votes/2016-08/Using template l to link to English entries from English entries; if the latter passes, I'll certainly stop changing from {{l}} to brackets in 'nyms lists (and will probably change my JS to change brackets to {{l}}).​—msh210 13:59, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
The information which is removed is the language target of the link in the wikitext. Not all readers will render the page using the MediaWiki engine, so the way the HTML is rendered is not the only concern. I would rather the links be left as they are, or at very least converted to a language specific square bracket link. - TheDaveRoss 13:52, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure that third-party renderers' user interface needs to take priority over our own editors' editing interface. Maybe so. If you know of a past BP conversation on this topic, or start one, please let me know.​—msh210 13:59, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I know that there have been votes expressing the desire to convert links the other way. I am of the opinion that we need to work harder to make the content accessible, including - even especially - to third parties where the audience really is. - TheDaveRoss 14:06, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I was assuming you realize already, but am writing to clarify in case that's not the case, that I do this only for English words, and only in the ==English== section.​—msh210 14:03, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I was not aware, but that does not change my opinion that the more specific link is better than the less specific link. - TheDaveRoss 14:06, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
I just want to point out that even if that vote fails (the vote is about whether a bot should replace plainlinks with templated links), there still seems to be a consensus that the templated links are preferable. --WikiTiki89 18:10, 5 October 2016 (UTC)


Hey, Special:Contributions/Roslyn is appealing their block (from a long time ago). Based on a brief reading of their actions I can see why you chose to block them, but they are probably right that it didn't need to be indefinite. What are your thoughts? - TheDaveRoss 14:51, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Having read the ticket and reviewed the blocked editor's actions, I still see no reason that they should not remain blocked. They never listened to anyone else, and seem intent on continuing where they left off. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 18:32, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge: There are a number of problems I see with this scenario.
  1. The users first block was indefinite, despite that their edits could easily be construed as good-faith attempts by a person unfamiliar with our standards and practices.
  2. They re-added reverted material a number of times, but that may well have been because nobody bothered to communicate what was happening to their edits until a couple of days into the conflict.
  3. Prior to being blocked, they attempted to initiate conversations with other editors about the changes they proposed and were met with silence.
We assume too often that the people on the other end of conflicts are as experienced as we are, and we assume that poor edits are also bad-faith edits. While I don't think that this person's attempted contribution was correct, our collective handling of the situation was miserable. This is a case study in how not to treat new editors, and is also an excellent example of the Wiktionary welcoming committee.
Perhaps this conversation should move to the BP if Msh is not around and we want to discuss it further. I am interested to hear from others about whether I am off-base in my reading of the situation as well. - TheDaveRoss 18:47, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the ping, TDR. I just reviewed Roslyn's contributions and surrounding discussion. I don't see the appeal you speak of; if it seems (from the appeal) that the new editing will be accompanied by better practices than those of nearly half a decade ago, then I see no reason not to unblock with the understanding that a repeat performance will have the same result as last time, and fast. Pinging also Metaknowledge.​—msh210 20:48, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, that was unclear, they appealed via OTRS. - TheDaveRoss 00:41, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Math termsEdit

Hi! Do you know how to define any of the various math terms in Category:Requests for definitions in English entries, like semiabelian, semicalibrated, semicanonical etc, quasibialgebra etc, or subriemannian etc? (In some cases it seems like "Partially ___" or "Having some of the characteristics of being ___" seems like it might cover it.) - -sche (discuss) 23:25, 7 February 2019 (UTC)

I hope to check out that list when I have a chance. For now, just a note about semiabelian. It doesn't merely mean "somewhat abelian" in any which way: rather, there's a specific sense in which the object so described is somewhat abelian.​—msh210 05:24, 10 February 2019 (UTC)


Hey. Can you check סמס please? It's the pick of the bunch of the remaining Hebrew Tbot entries that haven't been checked in over 10 years --Java Beauty (talk) 21:36, 6 September 2020 (UTC)

@Java Beauty, I just removed the Tbot tag, since I know it's correct, but I was unable to add any info beyond gender.​—msh210 10:25, 9 September 2020 (UTC)