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How do we name pages?

Traditionally, we have “smashed words together” to name new pages (CamelCase), believing in AccidentalLinking.

Some people have struggled against this. An early effort was CleanLinking.

It seems that these days (in terms of the WikiRevival), the FreeLink is more popular: explicitly using [[double square brackets]], possibly providing [[page name|an alternate name]].

Clearly, on a wiki such as this one where a NearLink might as well point to MeatballWiki or WikiWikiWeb, the power of the old names is still strong.

Therefore, no consensus exists.

We probably agree to capitalise page names.

We never talked about the sort of capitalisation we’d use if, if we were to use free links. We haven’t decided between strict capitalisation (only the first letter and proper names) and title case (almost all the words are capitalised). Wikipedia uses strict capitalisation, e.g. “Project Gemini” (roper names are always capitalised) and “Human spaceflight” (only the first word is capitalised).



I would think:

  • by default, name pages as if they were titles in an news article
  • an exception: if a given word would NEVER be capitalized

I used “pmarkup” because it’s the name I gave to my markup – it was important that it’s a lower case “p”, because it’s mimicking HTML conventions.

Similarly, “Perl is not perl.” Because perl is the interpreter, and Perl is the language.


It occurs to me that, as long as we’re revisiting page naming, and markup language, we may as well think about “how do we structure a page?”, “how do we structure categories?”, “how do we structure thread-mode?”

That said – I have no idea if the effort to continue in CommunityWiki, here in late 2020, will continue or not. :,(

I talked with TimurIsmagilov by Discord, but haven’t heard from him since, or seen him around here. I hope I didn’t scare him away! I thought it was a cool conversation.

  • TimurIsmagilov: I’m still here and you haven’t managed to scare me away

Alex Schroeder: If only we knew how to structure all these things, haha. I’d say we try to keep consensus or the particular points made at the beginning of the page, using section headers to separate them, and we keep all the discussion at the end, after a level 2 “Discussion” header.

There’s still DenotingAuthor, of course.

TimurIsmagilov: As for discussions, why don’t we abandon them and just write the questions mid-text with some indentation? I use bullet list for that. A quote may also be used, I guess.


I agree with Alex, strongly. In fact, we talked through this very issue in the early days of CW, and rapidly reached consensus. I’m sure the pages are still around explaining why.

Hang on a moment, … looking, …

Yeah, here it is.

TimurIsmagilov, please read this: TurnBasedVsInterruptedThreadMode

I wouldn’t mind revisiting that discussion, and we could make a new page for our contemporary discussion.

I think I would add some additional points:

  • Not changing somebody else’s wording is really important.
  • Not changing somebody else’s context is really important.
  • Adjusting proportionality of response consciously is important.
  • “Riding” somebody else’s argument easily becomes confrontational, and counter-productive, from a human stand-point.

On that last point – If somebody says 10 things, and after every sentence gets an interrupting rejoinder, it lends to the impression that the person hasn’t really been heard, and that there’s just a response because a response is possible, without a period of reflection or internal deliberation.

If the topic is “Yes, but I want the related things grouped so that refactoring is easier,” – I think we’ve also addressed that argument before somewhere. And I think that we already figured out the answer to reworking problems, which we worked on to an extraordinary degree – CategoryReworking, anyways, and having a turn-based vs. interrupted thread mode doesn’t really impact the reworking either way.

TimurIsmagilov: Thanks, I added a response there.


Define external redirect: wikirevival

EditNearLinks: MediaWiki MeatballWiki WikiWikiWeb FreeLink AccidentalLinking CamelCase