Semi Protection

UESPWiki:Community Portal/Archive 9

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This is an archive of past UESPWiki:Community Portal discussions. Do not edit the contents of this page, except for maintenance such as updating links.

Upgrading swordplay article

I posted an idea at the Swordplay discussion article about upgrading it to just the base article of combat in oblivion, check it out! Western3589 17:52, 3 November 2007 (EDT)

Images Overlap Bulleted Lists

I have noticed for quite some time now that images overlap bulleted lists, hiding the bullets. See e.g. Morrowind:Aryon. I think this may have something to do with the z-order or margin/border settings on the site's CSS, but at the moment I don't have much time to play around with them. Can someone have a look please? --DrPhoton 03:39, 14 August 2007 (EDT)

Unfortunately, that's a browser-specific bug with Internet Explorer. If you look at the same page in Firefox, it displays perfectly. A slight change in the page coding makes a similar bug happen in Firefox and not in Explorer. There's no known way to make them display properly in both browsers. --TheRealLurlock Talk 10:27, 14 August 2007 (EDT)
I have found a way to overcome this problem which works both for IE7 and Firefox 2.0. See the line regarding div.tleft in User:DrPhoton/monobook.css. Unfortunately, I still can't make the list indent properly when it wraps around a thumb. --DrPhoton 03:47, 19 September 2007 (EDT)

Email Notifications

Since I realize most editors don't pay attention to the Administrator Noticeboard, I thought I should point out a problem that's been discussed at UESPWiki:Administrator Noticeboard#Email and Editing Problems (aka 5 minute bug). In a nutshell, from the point that UESP was moved to the new server (on August 21st) up until this morning (September 1st), email notifications have not been working. Although the problem was fixed this morning, it still means that any editors relying on email notifications to find out about changes to their talk pages and/or watchlists did not receive any emails during this time period. Therefore, you may want to double check to see whether you have missed any activity that has happened during the last ten days.

Also, if you registered a new account during the last ten days, you will not have received a confirmation email for the new account. You should now be able to request that a new confirmation email be sent, allowing email to be enabled for your account. --NepheleTalk 02:44, 2 September 2007 (EDT)

Is this happening again? I received an email about UESPWiki:Patrollers/Nominations but not UESPWiki:Reference Desk. I also received an email about User:Rpeh but not User:Daveh. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 23:04, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Interesting observation. One thing to double check is whether there had possibly been a minor edit done to one of those pages. When I was testing the notifications last time around, it was very quirky about minor edits. My recollection is that even if I had notifications turned on for minor edits, it wouldn't generally work. And if a minor edit happened and then a non-minor edit, I'd never be notified about the non-minor edit, no matter what my settings were. In other words, notifications can be somewhat unreliable any time there's a minor edit in the page history.
As for whether there's a more widespread problem, I don't have email notifications turned on and therefore I don't have any sense of whether whether there have been problems lately with email. But the site has been having some type of intermittent problem, where it just stops responding for a couple minutes at a time. One possibility is that email notifications that coincide with one of those time-outs get cancelled. Or else it's possible that there is some quirk that gets triggered occasionally by email notifications.... --NepheleTalk 00:22, 31 October 2007 (EDT)
That looks like what happened. I use my email notifications more often than the recent changes page, and there are a few pages on my watchlist that have had minor changes, which I was not sent an email for. Because I didn't get an email and didn't visit the page for the minor change, I am not sent an email for any subsequent changes, even if they are not minor. Any ideas? --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 10:43, 31 October 2007 (EDT)

Happy New Year!

You see, tomorrow's Rosh Ha'Shanah, the Jewish new year. Since I won't be online tomorrow, I thought I'd send my holiday wishes now, and here, rather than on every single editor's talk page. A happy and healthy new year to all of you!

There's a second part to the tradition, besides just wishing love upon you. I need to ask if there's anything I've done to offend, so that I may make amends. And you all need to know, for anything you've done (not that you've done anything wrong!), I forgive you all. Consider this my yearly karmic housekeeping. And again, may the coming year be sweet to you all! Somercy 10:13, 12 September 2007 (EDT)

Happy new year to you too!--Zoidberg 08:50, 13 September 2007 (EDT)


We've been very inconsistant on this site with the terminology used for money in the game. That's understandable, since the games themselves are not consistant. But I feel it would look better if we had some official policy on which term is the standard for the site. The most common terms I've seen used are:

  • Gold
  • Septims
  • Drakes
  • gp

Although other terms exist, some of them combinations of these, such as "Gold Drakes", etc. I've decided to put this to a vote. Choose the term you prefer, with a brief explanation why if you wish. After a consensus has been reached, this will be written up in policy somewhere. --TheRealLurlock Talk 15:07, 13 September 2007 (EDT)

Another thought just occurred to me - if we do go with "gold", should it be "Gold" or "gold"? I'm inclined not to capitalize it in most cases. (Except in rare cases when it's at the beginning of a sentence, of course.) Also, I should say that the main place I'm concerned about these terms is in official locations, such as quest rewards, charts, and other such formal constructs. "Drakes" and "Septims" might still be used in the text of a quest, just as they're still used in dialogue in the game. But for all official purposes, I'd propose "gold" (or "Gold"), just for consistancy. (Also, another argument against "septims" in this case is that "gold" takes up less room, and often space is a matter for concern in such things as quest headers and item charts.) "GP" or "gp" is smaller, but not used in the games, so it should probably be summarily banned in all cases. (Unfortunately, the Search function on the site does not allow you to search for strings of only 2 characters - I'm forced to search using Google, which is a bit trickier since it includes the old-site which can't be changed.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 16:44, 13 September 2007 (EDT)


  • Gold - Seems simple and neutral. "Septims" is Imperially biased, and might not be the preferred term among some people in the game. "Drakes" is ambiguous and might not be obvious to first-time players not familiar with the games. "gp" is just too short - and not a term ever used in the actual games. (It's more of a D&D thing.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 15:07, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Gold - Because That's what most players call it, and it is conveniant. --Playjex 15:53, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Depends - Not just to be difficult, I promise! I'd agree "gp" is right out, but let me explain my feelings on the other three. In British terms they would translate roughly as "notes", "pounds" and "quid" respectively (even though we now use pound coins rather than notes, except in Scotland). Drakes / quid is pure slang. Gold / notes describes what the currency is and Septims / Pounds is the technically correct name. "Gold" is by far the most common term in use (237 occurrences of "gold" in SI-inclusive dialogue, although some of that may be about other stuff). "Septim" is Imperially-biased and there are only five occurrences of the word with a lower case "s" but it's the official name. If we want to be "official", then this is the one to go for. For the record, there's only one occurrence of "drake" that I can find and no "gp" (this is only in dialogue, remember). So my "depends" is about the style we want to adopt. "Gold" isn't very encyclopedic but it would reflect typical usage; "Septim" is the correct term but is used vastly less and the other two can be discounted. This is now far too long so I'll finish by saying that if I'm forced to pick one, I'll go for "gold". --RpehTalk 15:55, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Update - Nephele makes a very good point below, which answers my "What are we trying to be?" question. I'll now definitely vote Gold. Of course now TES5 will use platinum just to spite us... --RpehTalk 00:12, 14 September 2007 (EDT)
    • It's similar to the US - "notes", "dollars" and "bucks". Our dollars still are paper (unless you count those Sacagawea coins almost nobody uses), and they do use the word "note" on them. ("THIS NOTE IS LEGAL TENDER FOR ALL DEBTS") Though the word "note" is almost never used anywhere else. "Dollars" is the standard term. However, I don't see necessarily that the word "Septim" is an analog for "Pounds" or "Dollars". In addition to the dialogue discrepency ("gold" is much more common in Morrowind as well, followed by "drakes" - "septims" is actually the least common of the three, probably because Morrowind isn't Cyrodiil, and they're a little wary of all things Imperial.), there's also the fact that the item in the games is universally referred to as "Gold". If you see it on the ground, it's called "gold". If you look in your inventory, it's called "gold". The only place "septims" is used is in dialogue, while "gold" is used both in dialogue and in pretty much every other aspect of the game. It is in this way that I see it as being different from "pounds" or "dollars". How often do you ever hear people referring to money as "notes"? I mean, you can say a "ten pound note" just as you can say a "ten dollar bill", but more likely you're just going to say "ten pounds/dollars", (or even more likely £10/$10) because those are the words in most common usage. Not so with "gold"/"septims". I think that common usage should prevail in either case, and in that case, the word is "gold". --TheRealLurlock Talk 16:16, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Gold - Based on what Lurlock just stated, it seems that current guidelines already point to "Gold" being the "right" answer. For names of items, the name as displayed in-game is taken to be the correct name, i.e., the name that shows up in your inventory, or when your mouse is over an item on the ground. That name is given preference over names that might appear in dialogues or elsewhere. For example, Saviour's Hide is being used as the official Oblivion name of this item even though it's generally referred to as "Savior's Hide" (no "u"). --NepheleTalk 16:42, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Septims - I think that because this is the official name of the currency, it's the one that should be used. I think it's not all that relevant which is used the most, because this can differ from game to game. --Zoidberg 16:48, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
    • Well, both Morrowind and Oblivion - which are the two most visited parts of the site - definitely use "gold" more often than "septims". And Morrowind at least also uses "drakes" more often than "septims". Were "septims" more common in the earlier games? I don't know, but I'm not sure it matters. Anyhow, there's yet another (and this time lore-friendly) reason why "gold" might be more appropriate. After the Main Quest of Oblivion is completed, the Septim Dynasty is ended, and thus in the 4th Era, they probably won't be naming their money after them anymore. (We'll have to wait until TESV comes out to see, but it seems unlikely that they'd continue using the term when there are no more living Septims in power.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 23:16, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Gold --Wrye 22:40, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Gold - I vote "Gold" as well, just because it's more commonly used. --Eshe 23:17, 13 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Gold - It seems to me that we should continue using terms that the game's programs use, not the name the game's characters use, whatever that may be. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 00:16, 14 September 2007 (EDT)
  • Septims - To me, saying 300 gold doesn't sound right, as gold is an uncountable noun. Gold pieces or gp would be better for me, but since these terms are not used in the games, I go for Septims, which is the official name of the currency. --DrPhoton 03:08, 14 September 2007 (EDT)
  • gold - To say "300 Gold" would irk me, personally. I'd be best with "300 gold," since in this situation, we all know that the term "gold" is equivalent to one septim or one drake. It's just easier. But, why is everyone trying to say "Dollars," rather than "dollars"? Somercy 10:19, 14 September 2007 (EDT)
  • gold --Mankar Camoran 15:33, 29 September 2007 (EDT)
  • gold - I say any variation of gold would do. Gold is more true to the original Dungeons and Dragons base. Most RPGs are based off Dungeons and Dragons and all the Elder Scrolls games are RPGs. Hence, gold should be used. Sir Sword 22:25, 12 October 2007 (EDT)
  • Septims AND Drakes - Septims is the official terminology, and that is enough in my opinion. however, Drakes is also a term often used in both Morrowind and Oblivion; slang for the correct word, like "Bucks" for Dollars in America and "Quid" for Pounds in the United Kingdom. Sorry to be so real-life, but that's the truth! The ambiguity of Drakes may be confusing, but the whole point of this Wiki is to educate people about TES, so that is what we should do! (HMSVictory 13:33, 7 November 2007 (EST))


  • Well, it seems that gold is the most popular option, so we should probably stick with that. This does not mean that the words "Septims" and "Drakes" are banned from use, however. I'm willing to make a compromise here given how strong people's opinions seem to be on this issue. Let's just say that in all "official" locations, such as in templates denoting quest-rewards, tables for merchants or items, etc., we should use "gold" for consistancy. (The whole purpose of templates is to provide consistant formatting, and that gets subverted when using different terms interchangeably.) Within the text of the articles, however, any of the three terms is still acceptable, since article-text is slightly less formal, and doesn't need to be consistant all the time. --TheRealLurlock Talk 10:02, 8 November 2007 (EST)
I think an encyclopaedic article has to be formal (and consistent) at all times. I rest my case. --Mankar CamoranTCE 10:18, 8 November 2007 (EST)

Ideal Character section in MW races

I think these are a bit too subjective, absolute and opinion-led at the moment. Certainly, they seem to put more emphasis on Skill bonuses than is needed, given that these bonuses are so small, and become inconsequential once the player has reached higher levels. I'd like to change the sections, but I've seen that reverts have been made in the past when different views have been edited in. I don't believe there are many objective standards on which anything can be based for Ideal Characters, so my suggestions would be:

- Remove them entirely. We're a wiki, Jim, not a Strategy Guide!

- Or, try to make them less absolute. If differing views are there, try to sythesize them, or simply include them all (though the later may lead to un-wiki untidiness).

THoughts?Hecerinde 01:00, 26 September 2007 (EDT)

Well, I know that there are deletionsts around, who'd get rid of several such pages...for myself, I find seeing what others have and can do useful. I don't know that there's a way to objectify them. Maybe include several differing archetypes of each race? Somercy 12:33, 27 September 2007 (EDT)

Cluttering Links

Moving this discussion here for community attention. I'm not that concerned about this particular set of edits -- it's more of a general point of what counts as cluttering links. --Wrye 13:24, 26 September 2007 (EDT)

Re my reversion of your changes to Prince of Madness... See Avoid Cluttering Links. It's not desirable to link to everything that's linkable -- rather only to the pages that are particularly relevant to the article. Cheers... --Wrye 18:46, 25 September 2007 (EDT)

Wikipedia has similar guidelines, but their articles have a lot of links. Shouldn't we have the same standard here? Also, not all the links you reverted were irrelevant, were they?
Actually, I got this linking idea after looking at some of Wikipedia articles. I think they are wonderful. What is your opinion on this? --Mankar Camoran 09:24, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
Wikipedia also has a lot more articles. You could pretty much link every word in a typical Wikipedia article and not get many red links. But obviously, they don't do this, as it would be really distracting. At any rate, the key word is always "relevant". It may have been a little overzealous reverting the entire edit, but going through them all individually would be a bit of a pain, considering just how many of them there were. Also, there's generally no need to link to the same page more than once within an article or section of an article. Just because the word "Bosmer" appears 3 times doesn't mean it has to be a link every time. The first time is sufficient, if you link to it at all. (This is a borderline irrelevant case - it should only be linked if it's some how beneficial to know more about Bosmers when reading the article.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 10:23, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
Thanks. That was very helpful. I will keep that in mind. --Mankar Camoran 12:06, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
Again, the topic under discussion is Cluttering Links (please read). The main point is not to mechanically link to everything that could be linked, but rather to link only to the items which is reader of the page is reasonably likely to want clarification and/or additional info on.
For Shivering:The_Prince_of_Madness, the final step of the main SI quest, you can assume that the reader has already played through (or at least read through) the previous parts of the quest. At this point most background information about SI is known and should not be linked to. Ditto for basic information about gameplay mechanics (health, cure poison, luck, attributes, etc.) -- all of that is known and should not be linked to.
Note that the judgement is what is relevant is dependent on context, and the context for a quest page is different from the context of e.g. an attributes page. E.g., on the page for Luck, it makes sense to link to other attribute pages and to spells, etc. that affect luck -- all of that is relevant at that level of enquiry. But it's not relevant on a quest page where it's assumed to be known background info.
So, specifically for Shivering:The_Prince_of_Madness:
  • SI Known Background (should not be linked): Shivering Isles, Sheogorath, Golden Saints, Dark Seducers, Mania.
  • General gameplay Known Background (should not be linked): Attributes, health, poison, cure, personality, luck, speechcraft, Bosmer, Khajiit,
  • Quest background. These are background info for the quest, but are strongly affected by this stage of the quest, so a link is okay: Greymarch, Forces of Order, Brellach, Pinnacle Rock.
--Wrye 13:24, 26 September 2007 (EDT)

Before stating my opinion, I just want to tell you all that I know what happened here in February (was it April?) very well. I personally think it was very sad. But rest assured, nothing like that is going to come from my side. All of you can feel very safe with me :)

Now, to my opinion. It is very simple. As you have rightly pointed out Wyre, the reader's convenience should be the main consideration. So, when I edit something I think from the reader's point of view. I only add those links which I genuinely believe will help the reader. I agree with you on SI Known Background (although I think there really isn't a problem if it is linked).

About attributes etc. I think they should be linked, because not everyone can be expected to know everything about them. Many people may need more info (I speak from experience here).

Another thing I want to tell you is, I am not an experienced editor. I don't know a lot about editing. But my sincere wish is to improve the quality of this site. I really think many articles are under-linked. I used to feel it when I was browsing this site some time ago. Therefore, my vote is for more links.

I hope that clarifies things. Now, it is for you people to decide on the issue. --Mankar Camoran 15:14, 26 September 2007 (EDT)

It's not so much a decision as a guideline. Links are the foundation of a wiki but if you link everything you link nothing helpfully (to misquote Frederick the Great). Wrye's summary is roughly what I'd suggest too; personally I'd say the links to Golden Saints and Dark Seducers are okay because they're in a section summarising rewards, but that's just me. Shivering:The_Prince_of_Madness is quite a special case as it comes at the end of a quest-line, and an expansion quest-line at that. I think it's fair to assume a reasonable amount of knowledge on the part of the player at that point. If you were linking, say, Unfriendly Competition - which is likely to be encountered early on - there should be more links. Similarly for a quest (The Ultimate Heist springs to mind) that benefits from excellence in a skill or attribute, the attribute in question should receive a link.
You've been doing some fantastic work on improving the links on the site and nobody wants you to stop doing that. A certain amount of discretion is advised though, as linking to too many words can become a touch distracting :-) --RpehTalk 15:59, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
My opinion: I don't see a problem with having links to things like SI storyline background, attributes, etc. I've actually used those links many times. My thoughts are that if it is discussed on the page then it is relevant to the page. But I also feel that there is no need for more than one link to the same page. One thing that I thought of while scanning the page in question, though; Shivering:Magic#Manipulate Weather explains Greater Powers (now), so there's no need for a link to Oblivion:Greater Power. The same would apply, for instance, with a link to Oblivion:Personality; that would eliminate the need for a link to Oblivion:Attributes. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 16:11, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
I basically agree that we should avoid having too many links and that the best way to do this is to limit ourselves to relevant ones. The problem, of course, is in deciding what's relevant and what the reader might want more information about as they read a particular article. In most cases, like NPC pages, this is pretty simple, but in other places I think it will be more complicated. I personally like to have more links than might be conisdered necessary because I have a researcher's instinct--I like to click on everything I find and see what else I can learn or might have forgotten. I realize that not everybody does the same thing, but I just wanted to point out that we might run into some problems if we decide to really crack down on this linking business. It's good to have a general guideline, but I don't want any wars over this. --Eshe 16:40, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
You took the words right out of my mouth, Eshe. I completely agree with you. I have a very similar mentality. I guess that explains all the linking! But I may need to go easy a bit. --Mankar Camoran 16:53, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
Again, relevancy is the key point here. If you're saying that somebody is wearing Orcish Armor, don't link to an article about Orcs. (You'd be surprised how often I've seen that.) Now, you might consider linking to an article describing Orcish Armor - maybe. But even that is common enough that it's not really that worthy of mention. Now if they were wearing some snazzy enchanted armor, you'd definitely want a link, because it's not just generic junk this time, but something potentially new and useful. (Of course, on most Oblivion articles, you can't really do that since almost all the gear is leveled, but that's beside the point.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 16:54, 26 September 2007 (EDT)
It's not just about relevance, although that's one of the major criteria. As I mentioned above, a quest should receive more links if it is likely to feature at the start of a player's game. The same is true of other pages. Again in the Oblivion context (it's what I know!) Oblivion:Vilverin was one of the first to receive a full walk-through because it's the first thing a new player will see upon leaving the sewers at the start of the game. As an example, it mentions that the "blue stones" are "Welkynd Stones", information that would be considered excessive almost anywhere else.
The simple truth is that there's no Right or Wrong answer to what has now become The Great Linking Debate. "One man's meat is another man's poison" sums things up admirably (if the ladies and vegetarians on the site will excuse my choice of quote), and it's up to the individual editors to use their best judgment. --RpehTalk 17:49, 26 September 2007 (EDT)

Oblivion Master Training Quests

The Master Trainers each have their own NPC pages, and the requirements for their training are alway on those pages, but in several cases, there are links to things like Alchemy Training on those NPC pages. And they redirect right to the NPCs! Confusing? Certainly! I'd like to propose that we actually create quest pages for the Master Trainer Quests. If for no other reason, so that there's not a link on Sinderion's page redirecting back to himself. Somercy 10:24, 28 September 2007 (EDT)

I agree wholeheartedly. I'm guessing that the reason it was done like this was that there wasn't much information on the pages back in the dim and distant so combining the NPC and the quest may have been a good idea. With things as they are these days it seems odd and confusing to have the two things on the same page. And with all the Quest and NPC templates I don't think there'll be much of a problem with stub-like pages. --RpehTalk 10:34, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
Yeah, I suppose there should be individual quest pages for the master training quests. They could have a similar layout to the Darkness Eternal quest page.--Willyhead 11:10, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
I too think it is a very good idea. Having them on the NPC page is a bit odd. --Mankar Camoran 11:43, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
For reference, past discussions about this issue are at Oblivion_talk:Master Training#Redirects? (note, however, that some parts of that discussion are obsolete. In particular, it is now possible to do redirects to the middle of a page. Also, the layout of the Master Training page was quite different back then, for example [1]).
I'm not really in favour of separating out the master trainer quests. I'd rather just fix the one or two cases of bad links.
One reason is the problem of the pages becoming stubs. Even with quest and NPC templates, many of the master training quest pages will end up being ridiculously empty (for example, Oblivion:Illusion Training or Oblivion:Mercantile Training). There won't be much of anything to fill the quest template (no image unless you just want to repeat the NPC image; one section in the TOC).
But the bigger problem in my mind is that you end up with two pages containing the same information, which is much too difficult to maintain. When there were separate NPC and quest pages for some of these quests, readers still expected to find the quest information on the NPC page. Even if the two pages start with identical information, over time different information gets added to the two pages, and you end up with a situation where neither page has complete or accurate information. Compare for example Heavy Armor Training and Pranal. Or Block Training and Andragil. In each case, those were the versions of each page available at the same time (right before I merged the information into a single page). Look through the page histories and you will find many more examples.
At any rate, that's why things are organized the way that they currently are. --NepheleTalk 15:17, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
I'd be willing to take this on... my proposal: I'll go through the Master Trainers' NPC pages, check "What Links Here," and change any that should be pointing to Oblivion:Master Training rather than the NPC page. Any objections? --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 19:49, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
Ummmm... I'm not sure I understand why it's better to have a link to, for example, Oblivion:Master Training#Acrobatics than to Oblivion:Acrobatics Training. The Acrobatics Training link takes reader directly to the page with the most information about how to complete the quest, rather than to a summary table with no details about the quest. Even if for whatever reason people think that going to the Master Training page is more appropriate, then it would be far better to simply change the redirect on the Oblivion:Acrobatics Training than to change every single link to the redirect. Then if, as a result of this discussion, Oblivion:Acrobatics Training is turned into a standard quest page instead of a redirect, again, none of the links to the page need to be updated. I'm just really missing what advantage is being gained by these changes.... --NepheleTalk 22:18, 28 September 2007 (EDT)
The old links illustrating the duplicate information problem are interesting and I agree we'll probably get something similar happening every so often. I think the problem will be obviated in the new design though - it took me a moment to find the training link on Pranal's page whereas we'll be giving 'em a big ol' Related Quests section. Keeping the information off will then be the job of your friendly neibghorhood patrollers! As to the advantage of the proposed switch: I'm simply of the opinion that Quests should be on Quest Pages rather than NPC ones. It will help to simplify what is currently a bit of a spaghetti mix of pages, sections and redirects too. This area of the site seems to have grown a bit organically, hence things like Sinderion's page linking to itself. Once proper quest pages are in place then Oblivion:Master Training can be deleted too. --RpehTalk 05:59, 1 October 2007 (EDT)

Unofficial Oblivion Patch

It is said that no idea is ever too stupid to discuss, so here goes...

Of the multitude of patches, mods and tools that exist for the games, the one that probably gets mentioned the most on the site (with the possible exception of Wrye Bash!) is the Unofficial Oblivion Patch. The latest example is here. The patch is almost invaluable as it fixes so many of the problems people have with the game. What do people think of mentioning these on the relevant pages? I know we don't usually promote 3rd party mods and I know this is only of use for PC users, but it might help preempt some of the queries we get and might help a lot of people. --RpehTalk 09:11, 3 October 2007 (EDT)

It certainly is worth discussing as it will be helpful. But I personally don't prefer unofficial stuff, may be I am wrong, but that's just my preference. I actually think the policy of this site of not promoting 3rd party mods is very good and we should stick to that. One reason is that there are too many of them and if you include one many others may creep in. --Mankar Camoran 11:21, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
This is a continuation of an active discussion topic. I've copied the above to the Mod Info in Articles. Please continue discussion there. --Wrye 15:47, 4 October 2007 (EDT)

Problem with Commas

I added to the infobox on Oblivion:Henantier that he is essential until Oblivion:Through A Nightmare, Darkly is completed. The raw text I entered was:

  • Until [[Through A Nightmare, Darkly]] is completed

I also tried:

  • Until [[Oblivion:Through A Nightmare, Darkly|]] is completed

As you can see on this version of the page, when I save the changes, it changes the raw text to:

  • Until [[Oblivion:Through A Nightmare, Darkly|Through A Nightmare]] is completed

Just wondering what's going on with that. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 13:45, 3 October 2007 (EDT)

I've noticed this before. Whenever there's a comma (or a colon) in the title of a page, you have to specify the whole link, with the pipe to make it display correctly. Thus, in this case, you'd need to say [[Through A Nightmare, Darkly|Through a Nightmare, Darkly]] to get the proper link. I think it's a feature designed to ignore stuff after a comma or colon, as if it's a sub-page. It IS rather annoying. I'll talk to Daveh about fixing it. --TheRealLurlock Talk 15:06, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
Notice that this also happens with hashes '#' and parenthesis '(', and maybe any non-alphanumeric character. While it is desired to fix this behaviour for commas, colons and hashes, you still want to keep it for parenthesis, which is being used widely for disambiguation. --DrPhoton 03:48, 4 October 2007 (EDT)
This is actually a problem in the underlying MediaWiki code and not the new code that Nephele added to help make auto-linking easier. For example, try making the following link on Wikipedia or another wiki:
  [[Some Page, Title|]]
You'll end up with the same Some Page link title. I'll continue poking around and see if there's an easy solution. -- Daveh 12:42, 6 October 2007 (EDT)
Ah, I guess the auto-linking thing made linking so much easier I didn't notice the problem was there before. I agree that it's okay with '(', (It's invaluable for the number of times I've had to link Vivec), but for pretty much any other character it just becomes an annoyance. One other optimization that might be useful is if there's a '#' in the link, it should automatically title the link to be whatever is AFTER the '#', not before it. Thus: [[Oblivion:Artifacts#Azura's Star|]] should look like Azura's Star, but instead, this formatting doesn't even result in a link at all, and instead you're forced to type out "Azura's Star" twice in order to create this link. --TheRealLurlock Talk 14:38, 6 October 2007 (EDT)
Just to clarify: the behaviour with the commas is a wiki feature not a bug. The wiki software has explicitly added code in order to enable this feature. The intention is similar to the parentheses: in standard wiki, text after a comma in a title is assumed to be extra information that isn't really part of the title.
As for other punctuation there are a few different things going on. Hashes (#) are not supposed to be part of wiki titles, because they have a special meaning within URLs: the part of the text after a # is an anchor within the page that you want to link to. This is a standard part of URLs, and I don't think we should be tweaking the code in order to allow # symbols to be part of titles. Other symbols that are never supposed to be part of wiki titles include []{}.
Colons (:) are only treated differently the first time they appear in a link, because they are assumed to separate the namespace from the rest of the title. Any colons after the first one are treated as standard text, and will be duplicated in the label for any link.
So I really don't think we want to be messing with the punctuation other than perhaps the commas, and even for commas it seems like we should have a bit more discussion as to whether or not everybody agrees it's a wiki feature we will never want to use on the site. The special treatment for commas can be taken out pretty easily, just by removing/commenting out two lines of code. I just don't think we should be rushing to the conclusion that the treatment of commas is a bug that has to be fixed without a bit more consideration of why the wiki software included this feature in the first place. --NepheleTalk 20:21, 6 October 2007 (EDT)
I was guessing it might be on purpose from the way the code was written but I couldn't find any explicit documentation/notes to that effect on Wikipedia or MediaWiki. There are definitely some articles on Wikipedia where the comma is actually part of the page title, like 0,1-simple lattice. -- Daveh 20:30, 6 October 2007 (EDT)
See Piped link on wikipedia. One example provided is that a link to "Boston, Massachusetts" will be labeled simply "Boston", because the text after the comma is deleted in the label. --NepheleTalk 20:51, 6 October 2007 (EDT)
Well, I wasn't doubting that it was a feature. It's just a feature that in our case turns out to be more annoying than useful. I don't think there's a single case on our site where a comma in a title is something we'd want to truncate in a link. I can see how it's useful on Wikipedia, but we don't have links like "Boston, Massachusetts" here, so there's really no need for this. In fact, in almost every case where we do have a comma in the title, it's the text AFTER the title that we're more likely to want displayed, rather than the text before it. (E.g.: Morrowind:Bal Molagmer, Books for Vala.) But more often than that, we really don't want to truncate it at all. I'd be all for removing that feature that's burned me on multiple occasions. --TheRealLurlock Talk 22:06, 6 October 2007 (EDT)

Quick Note

If anyone has time, I just posted a few questions on Oblivion Talk:Essential NPCs. Swing by a take a peek. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 18:44, 3 October 2007 (EDT)

Marking Official Mods

There's been a thought bouncing around for a while that it would be a good idea to mark official mod information more clearly. This would only be for the mods that don't get their own namespace, so Knights of The Nine and Mehrunes Razor would be affected but Shivering Isles wouldn't.

I've created a couple of templates to show you what I mean. Check out this and this (I'm using the faction pages because they're fairly low traffic, rather than diving in and using the Places or People pages).

What's the opinion on this? Are those icons enough? Too intrusive? Not prominent enough? Is the whole idea unnecessary? My opinion is that we need to integrate some of the mod info into the rest of the site much more thoroughly than has been done so far, but it also needs to be marked as not being part of the standard game. I think this is a reasonable way of doing that. 04:44, 7 October 2007 (EDT)

I totally agree with you. We certainly need to integrate them more. And I really like what you have created there. They seem perfect. --Mankar Camoran 09:42, 7 October 2007 (EDT)
This project seems to have gone into its shell. Has any decision been taken on it? --Mankar Camoran 09:36, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Well I've now created a {{Mod Battlehorn}} template too and used it in a couple of places with no complaint. Does anybody have any problems with this or shall we start going ahead? --RpehTCE 09:42, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
I think if anybody had problems they would have objected by now. Seeing that no one has objected may be there are no problems. --Mankar Camoran 09:59, 18 October 2007 (EDT)

Old UESP Site

Before UESPWiki, there was... UESP! Although most of the old site was copied over to the wiki as part of the wiki's initial creation, the copy was not complete. But figuring out what content didn't get moved over to the wiki at this point is stymied by a lack of knowledge: there are no records of what has or has not been copied. I'd like to set up some wiki pages documenting what exists on the old site and whether or not the content exists on the wiki. I realize we have no shortage of active and incomplete projects right now on UESP :) But I figured it wouldn't hurt to set up the pages, then anyone who happens to be in the mood to work on it would be able to.

I've now compiled a list of all the files available on the old site. My idea was to create pages like UESPWiki:Old UESP Files/Morrowind with tables listing all of the files. Editors could then start filling in whether or not the files are available on the wiki. For now I was thinking of just figuring out the basics of "yes it's been done" or "no it hasn't". Obviously there will then be the question of what to do with any files that haven't been copied, but I don't think that needs to be answered right now.

So any thoughts? In particular, does the format of the page look like it would work, or should it be revamped somehow before I fill it with hundreds of files? --NepheleTalk 01:46, 18 October 2007 (EDT)

I am not really knowledgeable about formatting, but it looks good from an amateur's point of view. --Mankar Camoran 09:43, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Whoops - I meant to post here after our discussion on IRC earlier. Yes, I think it's a good idea. Moving the old stuff across has been something I've kept looking at then looking away again, partly because there's no clear map of what needs doing. This should be a great help. --RpehTCE 09:45, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Sounds good to me, though I fear that this will be more of an exercise in confirmation over addition to the wiki. I think most of the valuable content has either been moved already or replaced by new content added without knowledge of the content's existance on the old site. Still it does need to be done.--Ratwar 11:00, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Some followup that I ran out of time to properly research and add last night.... Primarily to explain why I'm increasing convinced that it's necessary to go through the painful process of checking some 1175 (at last count) pages.
I agree that most of the content probably has already been moved over, in particular for Morrowind pages. However, for older games and Tamriel I'm convinced that there are missing chunks. Users are constantly finding missing pages and adding them piecemeal to the wiki. For example, all of the Battlespire quest pages were only created this April, presumably after User:YessMaster happened to discover that they hadn't previously been moved. I recently copied over a bunch of maps (most of the maps on Lore:Maps, a couple others on Morrowind:Maps, Daggerfall:Maps, etc) that had never previously been moved over... including maps as important as the standard game map of Vvardenfell for Morrowind. A couple of weeks ago User:Nirreln added the "Daggerfall Files" link to the bottom of Daggerfall in order to make it at possible to find a set of files still hosted on the old site. The Lore:Bestiary pages were only created last December, and done basically independently of the old site's Tamriel Monster pages; probably the information from the old pages has now been made obsolete, but nobody has ever checked.
And I'm sure there's more missing information. There are forum posts complaining about missing information on older games (and this was posted after the Battlespire walkthroughs were added, so presumably it's not referring to that set of missing walkthroughs). The Lore:Places pages were created independently from the old geography pages, and almost none of the old information has ever been incorporated into the wiki as far as I can tell. Compare for example Lore:Places_K and Geography K. A wiki search on some of those place names comes up completely empty (Khibi, for example).
It really bugs me to have information divided between two places and as a result feel that it's necessary to tell readers that if they want complete information on a game such as Daggerfall they need to search through two sets of pages to find all the UESP information (and there isn't even a functional search engine for the old site to facilitate finding info). At the least, it would be good to have a wiki page listing the old site pages that are missing from the wiki, to make it easier for readers to find the missing content. Of course, long term it would be good to make the old site obsolete (or at least merely of historical interest).
So that's my pep talk to motivate other people to do all the hard work for me ;) --NepheleTalk 12:05, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
I've gone ahead and dumped out a complete list of all the files, see UESPWiki:Old UESP Files and subpages. Ensures that the data doesn't get lost somewhere on my computer never to be seen again... ;) --NepheleTalk 17:56, 18 October 2007 (EDT)

Tamriel: Museum of Artifacts

I have noticed plenty of pages talking about it, but there seems to be no central page about it. There are also (at least) three pages that repeat similar information, so I ask, should the museum get its own page? Some pages with repeated content:

Actually, Museum Artifact Prices: Mournhold Museum is just a redirect that takes you to Tribunal Services:Mournhold Museum, so there's only two place that really talk about the items. I think both of the pages need the information, so I don't see the redundancy as a problem. I also don't see the need for a centralized page. --Ratwar 20:59, 18 October 2007 (EDT)

Category Organization

For the sake of consistency, it seems like a community discussion is necessary about the preferred way in which to organize and name categories. In the system I've been tending to implement with categories, a category's name includes the parent categories, separated by "-" symbols. So for example Category:Oblivion-Places-Caves is a subcategory of Category:Oblivion-Places which in turn is a subcategory of Category:Oblivion. Although it's perhaps not implemented completely uniformly, any reorganization that's been done has generally tried to increase the consistency, especially across namespaces. So Category:Oblivion-Creatures-Daedra, Category:Shivering-Creatures-Daedra and Category:Morrowind-Creatures-Daedra were all set up the same way.

However, Lurlock evidently prefers a different naming system, and has just reorganized all of the Morrowind creature categories so that they are no longer consistent with the organization used in the other namespaces. Before this effort goes too much further, I'd like to find out what is preferred overall so that we can hopefully all work together in the same direction. --NepheleTalk 19:15, 25 October 2007 (EDT)

I'm personally in favor of using the parent categories in category names (ie: Morrowind-Creatures-Ash Creatures instead of Morrowind-Ash Creatures). I think for the sake of consistency it's easier to stick to this system, since as far as I can tell most of our categories are named that way. In any case, the sheer number of "Factions" categories that would have to be renamed should be enough to scare anywone away from any massive overhauls. Another bonus of this system is that for some reason it feels much more organized, which is always a good thing :). --Eshetalk19:32, 25 October 2007 (EDT)
I'm not too familiar with the categorization sustem, but let's see if I can apply this to something I'm familiar with; Say for instance the page: Oblivion:Tutorial. With the current system there are links to Oblivion:Oblivion, Oblivion:Quests, and Oblivion:Main Quest. If the system Lurlock is proposing would eliminate the Oblivion:Quests link, then I'd be in favor of keeping it the way it is. Or am I totally confused? --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 21:21, 25 October 2007 (EDT)
Okay, let me just explain a few reasons behind my logic here. First of all, with all the new categories that are being created, there's a problem with the category sections become just too long and unweildy, especially when you look at some things like Category:Bloodmoon-Factions-East Empire Company-Ranks. It ends up just being a huge block of hard-to-read text at the bottom. My specific reason for this recent change, however, was because the Morrowind:Creeper and Morrowind:Mudcrab Merchant pages were creating abnormal categories due to their use of the NPC Summary template, for which "Race" and "Class" are required fields. Rather than create categories which would contain only one creature in each, I opted to merge them with the existing creature categories. However, the NPC Summary does not give you the option to add a "Creatures-" before the category name, so I figued "Morrowind-Beasts" was good enough. (Also, some of them look pretty ridiculous, like the aforementioned "Morrowind-Creatures-Ash Creatures". Having the word "Creatures" appear twice in the title just seems redundant. If there were maybe some way to make the namespace not display in the categories, it might be somewhat better. You don't need to have something say "Morrowind-Creatures" if you're already on a Morrowind page. (Obviously, we can't rename the category to just "Creatures" as that would cause conflict between games, but if we could make it just not display the namespace part, it would be a huge help.) I just don't want to end up with articles that have a category bar that looks like the one on this page. --TheRealLurlock Talk 22:43, 25 October 2007 (EDT)
Keeping the parent categories in the category name is my preferred option. It helps explain the organisation of the site and makes it clear how different articles are related at a glance. I think the new system is putting the horse before the cart: because of problems with the NPC template on two pages that don't describe NPCs, we have to change everything else? The same is true of Morrowind-Creatures-Ash Creatures - it's only a couple of categories that have this problem so why change everything else? To be honest I'm a bit disappointed this has been implemented so hastily. There was a brief discussion about this on IRC the other night so you knew that changing category layout was possible and indeed had already been done in a sandbox, and in any case, this sort of thing should really be discussed on the site before seeing the light of day. --RpehTCE 04:19, 26 October 2007 (EDT)
Fine, revert it all, I can see I'm out-voted. I'd like to then propose a new template to deal with the problem with the NPC Summary template. Call it Template:Creature Summary maybe, and use it on pages for unique creatures such as these. It should have all the main features of the NPC Summary, but with categories and a few other things changed to be more creature-specific. I can think of a few other pages I'd use it on as well. Any named boss-creatures could use something like this as well. You'd have to add fields for their attacks and such, but shouldn't be too hard. --TheRealLurlock Talk 10:42, 26 October 2007 (EDT)
A separate template for special creatures would be a good idea. The new Battlehorn Castle mod has already led to a couple of cases where it would be useful. Secondly, since this seems to have moved up the agenda, here is the latest version of my category layout changes. It now splits the categories into columns (two when more than four categories are present; three when more than eight) and removes the first "XXXXXX-" from the category name where it exists, although it is still shown on mouseover. If you want to see it in action for yourselves, create your own CSS and JS file in the style of this (css) and this (js). The one major drawback is that it uses JavaScript and so the formatting doesn't kick in until the page is totally loaded. This can look somewhat odd when the site is slow. Anyway. Let me know what you all think. --RpehTCE 13:29, 26 October 2007 (EDT)

No Ads

The ads that are usually in the bottom left corner of the page aren't showing up. I wouldn't complain, but IE doesn't consider the page loaded until the ads come up, so I have to hit the "stop" button before I click on any other links, or else it takes forever. Just wanted to mention it. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 16:59, 26 October 2007 (EDT)

Don't know what else to say, except to stop using a sucky browser like IE that forces you to load pages before leaving them. Maratanos 17:02, 26 October 2007 (EDT) this permanent or just happens once in a while? I know occasionally the Google ad/analytic servers are a bit slow which causes the ads to be delayed or even time out. If it happens for you all the time, however, this is probably not the cause. -- Daveh 18:11, 26 October 2007 (EDT)
Just started happening today. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 18:49, 26 October 2007 (EDT)

Other Language Versions

At least Morrowind and Oblivion games were translated to languages other than English. Would it be possible to create some other language editions of this Wiki, as Wikipedia does? Remigiu

Anything is possible... as long as the knowledge and will are present. Personally, I speak English and a bit of French but nowhere near enough to start translating this sort of thing, and that's going to be the reaction of most contributors to the site. Wikipedia manages a reasonable number of non-English articles because there are enough people using that site capable of either writing or translating as required. If you feel up to the job of doing the same for UESP, I'm sure nobody's going to object! --RpehTCE 16:12, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
If we do get to it, I could do Russian. I'm sure my parents wouldn't object: I could use the practice. However, that is a massive project, and we have like what, over 10,000 articles now. Most are going to be easy to translate, as they are redirects or categories. There is also the problem of name translation. We don't have the "th" sound, so some names will be Romanized. (One example: the name Heath might translate to Хив (Heev)) However if we do do languages, I suggest starting with spanish/french as they are commonly learned in high school. If we really plan on doing that, lets compile a list of people who speak diferent languages and see what we can do. Vesna 17:41, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
There are several things that would need thinking about before a large-scale translation effort could be started. Three questions spring to mind:
  1. How is it organised? Do we have a different namespace or an entirely different URL ( Does it all run off the same server? Is that possible? Who pays for it?
  2. How should consistency be maintained? What happens when a page in the English section changes? What happens when a page in the Russian (etc) section changes?
  3. Who patrols it? Since it looks like you're well on the way to becoming a patroller that's not a problem in the case of Russian pages (except when you're not around) but what about other languages?
I'm not trying to pour cold water on the idea because I've often thought the same myself, and would have asked the question if my language skills weren't limited to asking my way to the library in French. It must be recognised, though, that changes on any large scale would be expensive in time, money and effort. It might be better to focus on the things we do well. --RpehTCE 17:56, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
I must admit, there is a lot I didn't think about. I know the URL would have to have .ru somewhere. Since I am on the site literally every day (even if I don't make edits I still check in so to speak), maintaining two languages wouldn't be a problem for me. I figured that when people from other countries find their respective language, at least some will start to edit, helping mantain that branch of the site. The people who speak multiple can check here (the original site) for any mandatory changes. But thats just me going on and on again. Sorry, I can be unrealistic and impatient at times. Thanks for pointing all that stuff out. :-) Vesna 18:14, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Nothing wrong with asking! The reason I suggested is that since Daveh already owns, it's free. If you want to use you'd have to register it separately - and it might be tricky to get a Russian domain to redirect to a Canadian server (probably not, but you never know). Then there's the chicken and egg - I'd guess there would need to be some content before anybody would commit to doing the work to set it up, but it's tricky to get the content before we have the setup! There are other ways of doing the content though, tovarisch. --RpehTCE 18:35, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Oh, and I'm just curious, will there be a problem with some computers showing the Cyrillic alphabet as question marks? On many sites that translate from Japanese for example show the kanji as squares. Vesna 19:16, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Yes, there will. I have my PCs set up to handle as many languages as they can but from experience, you get strings of question marks if that is not done. I'd even say that - for western audiences - the vast majority will have that problem. --RpehTCE 19:30, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Although if you think about it - anybody who speaks enough Russian that they'd prefer to read this website in Russian rather than English will probably already have their computer set up to properly display the Cyrillic alphabet. English speakers might have display problems on the Russian site, but why would they be on the site in the first place if they don't read Russian? As far as the name translations, I wouldn't go about guessing what the Russian transliterations of the in-game names are, as you're likely to be wrong half the time. I'd double-check them against an actual Russian-language copy of the game (assuming one exists) to make sure they match what's in the game. Otherwise, you're bound to run into trouble when certain names don't match. Translating other stuff won't be a problem, most likely. But anything involving names or text that actually appears in the game, you want to get right, or there's just no point. As for figuring out which NPCs are which, my guess would be that the FormIDs are likely to stay the same even in foreign-language versions of the game. Though we'd need somebody with two different language versions to verify that, and either way, it's a lot of work. Wish I could help, but the US edition is all I've got, and I don't speak any Russian. (I speak a fair bit of French, but even then, I don't have a French version of the game, so there's not much I can do.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 22:32, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
I can get a game from Russia. Due to currency changes between countries it doesn't cost any more than 5 dollars there. One of my friends will be going there for the winter and I can ask him to get me a copy. (Maybe it costs less cause most issues are pirated...) If that doesn't work, I can always go to a site that hosts russian elder scrolls guides (many exist, and those were the ones I refered to at first) and email one of the people there. Or simply email my friends back in russia that have the game and ask them questions or get them to contribute to the site. The names wouldn't really be a big obstacle. Vesna 17:57, 3 November 2007 (EDT)

Missing Pages

Some pages are missing/empty, e.g.

This page is not empty. It's rather large and slow-loading, so it may not be loading properly on your computer, but it's definitely there. It's possible that all the Daedric text on the screen may be bogging the page down. I've been considering other ways of displaying that which don't have this problem. --TheRealLurlock Talk 12:17, 13 November 2007 (EST)
I can see it now. And it loads fast. But the last week this page (and some others) was always empty. Strange. 03:53, 14 November 2007 (EST)
Please let us know if you notice pages that appear to be empty. There is some quirk that occasionally causes pages to not load in IE, and that's what was happening in this case. We don't know what triggers this problem, although it's easy to fix once we know about the problem page. So we really just rely upon readers who use IE to let us know when it happens (unfortunately, many of the editors use firefox, so we don't experience any problems). --NepheleTalk 12:39, 14 November 2007 (EST)
Well, it was definitely the over-abundance of Daedric characters that did it. When GuildKnight and I replaced the separate-letter inscriptions with single-images for each inscription yesterday, it reduced the page size by almost 60K, and made it load MUCH faster. Something about the way the wiki handles large numbers of images (even if it's the same 26 images used over and over) makes it a bit of a problem for IE users. (Though there's now 39 different images, more than the 26 or less that were there before, the total image count, including duplicates, is much less, which appears to be what matters most.) Unfortunately, this method won't be quite as practical for the other pages making heavy use of Daedric, e.g.: Message from Master Aryon, Response from Divayth Fyr and Bible of the Deep Ones, since they contain large blocks of text, rather than simple inscriptions. I'd considered two possibilities for this.
One would be to let the users download and install the Daedric font, and then just display Daedric as regular text using the font. Those who choose not to download the font would just see the same text in standard Arial or whatever the default is. But we'd place a note at the top of any page using the font directing people to where they can download the font. This method has the advantage of quickest load-time, since it's just text, not images. Unfortunately, it also requires the user to download and install a font in order to see the Daedric text, and some people might not want to do that.
The other possibility would be to screen-shot these books in the game, and just have a single image per page instead of each letter being a separate image. This has the advantage of being universally viewable by all visitors, and also authenticity of appearance to what's in the books. It does have a few drawbacks, however, in that it still means loading a full-screen sized image, and the text can then not be copy/pasted. It will also be missing the X and Y since the in-game font does not have these letters. Finally, it is more labor-intensive to produce.
A third possibility would be to combine these two methods. Have a page with the Daedric font text displayed, and put a note on the top saying that if this text appears in English, you can either download the font, or click here to see an in-game image version of the book. This is sort of a best-of-both-worlds approach, in that you get the nice, fast-loading text-only page by default, and then have the option of either downloading the font to make it display properly, or you can click on the image version if you don't want to bother with fonts but don't mind a slow-loading page. --TheRealLurlock Talk 15:05, 14 November 2007 (EST)
Or we could go with option 3, but link to an image like the one I have ready to upload, a screenshot of the daedric text from the current page, but it's 160KB. --GuildKnight (Talk) contribs 15:33, 14 November 2007 (EST)
I like option 3; it sounds like a good compromise. I'd vote for an in-game screenshot over a screenshot of the wiki page, just because it has a bit more significance. --NepheleTalk 15:40, 14 November 2007 (EST)

Tamriel Dictionary Content

On the Task List, I orginally said that the following needs to be done for all [[Lore:Dictionary A|Tamriel Dictionary]] pages:

There are many other words that need to be added to the dictionary:
* All names for all Races
* All Gods
* All Flora
* All Places
* All Animals
* Name for all place types (i.e. ruin, cave, fort, dungeon, camp, etc.)

Now that editors have started following my instructions, though, I've started to second-guess myself. (Thanks everyone who's been helping! And sorry for being inconsistent!)

My new thinking is that copying information from other pages onto the dictionary pages leads to duplicate information. And duplication just causes headaches in the long run, because corrections/updates only ever get made to one copy. So it's a lot of work that ultimately does not benefit readers.

What I'm now proposing instead is that the dictionary pages only contain words that are not listed anywhere else in the Tamriel pages. So no creatures, gods, or flora will get listed in the dictionary. We can add a statement to that effect on top of each dictionary page (via the Dictionary Header) so that readers do not expect those pages to be a comprehensive listing. For people who want a complete list of every word that is defined anywhere in the Tamriel namespace, I've now put together the All Terms category. So readers who come across a random word and have no idea whether it's a race, creature, god, or place can use the category listing to find the word.

So does anyone have any objections to me overhauling the scope of the dictionary contents half-way through the process? --NepheleTalk 14:22, 17 November 2007 (EST)

Not an objection so much as an... adjustment. A dictionary should really contain all words specific to the game but I'd agree that we don't want to see duplication. Wouldn't the best compromise be to have all words in the list but have just a "See (link)" entry for most of them? Apart from anything else, if some words aren't included we're just going to get people adding them. --RpehTCE 15:59, 17 November 2007 (EST)
Update: I've gone ahead and added a blurb to the top of each Dictionary page with a link to the new All Terms category. The details can still be tweaked, of course, but I thought that advertising the category would only help readers.
I have no objections to "see (link)" entries on the dictionary pages. It's possible the entries would be somewhat redundant (especially if readers find the category listing helpful), but there wouldn't be any maintenance or other long-term problems introduced by adding such links. Especially if the links use the redirects that have been set up (so that, for example, if someone later decides that Tiber Septim needs his own article, the link doesn't need to be fixed).
So my reaction is if someone else wants to do the work to add those links, fine by me. (But I'm unlikely to dive in and start doing it myself!) --NepheleTalk 18:05, 17 November 2007 (EST)
I will be happy to add those links (that's what I like doing most), but I can't do it at once. It will take some time. Another thing, don't you think encyclopedia is a better word here than dictionary? --Mankar CamoranTCE 08:53, 18 November 2007 (EST)
I just added one link: [[Lore:Dictionary_A#A'tor]]. I would like to know, is this the correct way to go about it? --Mankar CamoranTCE 09:34, 18 November 2007 (EST)
I tweaked the entry you added in order to make it match the format used for the other dictionary entries and also added the information that it's a person's name, just so that readers get some idea of where they're going to jump to if they click the link. I think that works somewhat better, although if there are any other opinions, it's probably best to sort out the format now before a few hundred of these have been created.
As for encyclopedia/dictionary, that's probably part of the uncertainty with this project. I suppose I'd say that the entire Tamriel section is like the encyclopedia. But at this point at least, the dictionary section has been set up to be really dictionary-format entries. I don't think we want to start adding lengthier information into the dictionary section; anything that requires a longer entry (i.e., an encyclopedia-style entry) I'd say should have its own article. --NepheleTalk 21:05, 18 November 2007 (EST)
It looks really good now. The link I added didn't really look good to me, so I thought I would better ask what needs to be done. Thanks for showing the way.
About that encyclopedia/dictionary thing, now I think dictionary is the appropriate word for the reason you have given. --Mankar CamoranTCE 08:21, 19 November 2007 (EST)

Revamping Templates

With our articles and formatting gradually becoming more complex, we've been introducing more and more templates. Unfortunately, that means we've started to hit some of the limitations with templates. There are two critical types of problems that have been occurring on pages with too much template content:

  • Disappearing templates: some pages stop even trying to include any more templates; the end of the page turns into a list of the templates that should be there instead of actually showing the templates. This problem has cropped up on pages such as Oblivion:Places and Morrowind:Artifacts/new (although it has now been fixed in all cases, using techniques described below)
  • Unable to save: saving some pages requires too much server CPU. When the server is busy this can lead to frozen connections, 503-type error messages for the editor trying to save the page, and the page becomes impossible to save.

The good news is that the first problem can be fixed. The bad news is that the second problem can't really be fixed. This post is primarily to share what I've learned about fixes and/or workarounds. It also contains one proposal for some changes that can be implemented (are in the process of being implemented) to our templates.

Disappearing Templates
The first problem is a side-effect of controls put in place in order to prevent DoS-type attacks, as explained in wikipedia's article on Template limits. A couple of highlights from that article:
  • If a wiki article is behaving strangely, one place to turn for information is the HTML version of the article (in your browser, select View->Page Source). When the wiki software hits problems, it may embed error messages in the HTML.
  • The problem is caused by the cumulative length of the included templates, not the number of templates.
The easiest fix for this problem is to move everything that appears within the "noinclude" section of templates (i.e., all the template documentation) onto a subpage; a.k.a. Wikipedia's Template doc page pattern. For an example, see Template:NPC Summary which now has its documentation at Template:NPC Summary/Doc. Besides the basic advantage of fixing the immediate problem there are some peripheral advantages to this layout:
  • Template documentation can be updated/expanded without forcing all pages that use the template to be purged and regenerated.
  • Sensitive/frequently used templates can be protected (or semi-protected) while still allowing the documentation to be freely edited. (Note there is a separate discussion about adding protection to more of the site's templates).
  • If the template categories and other peripheral information are also included in the /Doc subpage, then these advantages also apply to the categories, etc.
The primary disadvantage is that now there are two pages. So when creating a new template, two separate pages need to be created; when adding a new parameter, the parameter needs to be added to both the template itself and separately then get added to the /Doc subpage.
Given that this change was necessary to fix some problem pages, I've already implemented it in a few dozen places. The proposal is then to start implementing it more widely. It doesn't need to be done to every template on the site. The main candidates would be those that (a) have documentation, (b) are used widely enough to trigger problems, or (c) are protected. The procedure is pretty straightforward:
  1. On the existing template, cut all the text contained in the <noinclude>...</noinclude> section (leave the noinclude tags in place)
  2. Insert {{/Doc}} inside the noinclude tags; save the template
  3. Follow the red link you just created to edit the new /Doc page
  4. Insert all the text that you cut from the template
  5. Put <includeonly>...</includeonly> around any category tags
  6. Save the /Doc page and you're done!
Note that we're not (yet) getting into all of the other templates that wikipedia uses on the documentation subpages.
There are some other tricks that can be used to improve template efficiency, which I've been experimenting with in various places. But I don't think that other editors need to spend any time worrying about the more obscure techniques. At least at this point, just the /Doc subpage trick reduced the pre-expand size of the problem pages by about 75%. I'd say it's best to just get templates written to do the job at hand in whatever way works; if there are problems later, then we can deal with problems later. Some of the other changes I've been implementing are primarily to address other, unrelated template details that had been bothering me (and for which I happened to come across wikipedia fixes while I was doing some of this research). Anyone who's curious about the whys and whats, feel free to ask :) Otherwise, I won't bore everyone with gory details!
Unable to save
A few editors have hit this problem, where trying to save a page containing many templates becomes nearly impossible (most recently on Morrowind:Merchant List). Any attempt to save the page just leads to a time-out error, and the save doesn't register. Meanwhile, UESP can refuse to respond to any other connections from that editor. As far as I can tell, what is happening is just that it takes too much CPU for the server to expand the article. Expanding each of the templates on the page takes a small but finite amount of CPU (querying the database to get the template, inserting, processing the new text, etc). If the server tries to do this when simultaneously busy handling 50 other threads, it can just take too long. If it takes more than 900 seconds to attempt to save the page, apache ends up killing the request before it is complete.
Fixing the Disappearing Templates problem will not fundamentally do anything to fix this second issue. As far as I can tell there are only two courses of action:
  • Remove unnecessary templates from the page. I'm not trying to say that we need to start in general cutting back on template usage. But if someone has trouble saving a particular page, then on that one page something needs to be done. The types of templates to look at eliminating are ones like Template:ID or Template:FC: ones where the template is simply a shortcut method of inserting a standard chunk of text. Although these are the easiest for the server to handle, it still takes time to do the basic tasks of retrieving the template content and inserting it.
  • Only try to edit the page when the server is less busy. If the server is only juggling 10 requests at once instead of 50 requests, then it should be possible for the server to process the page in less than 900 seconds.
Both of these are really just workarounds rather than actual fixes, but all that I can come up with. Unless there are some other ideas out there...

--NepheleTalk 17:48, 17 November 2007 (EST)

Editing Faction Articles

I have found that it is impossible to edit the opening paragraphs of many articles, as instead of text on the edit screen appearing, I see { { Morrowind:House Telvanni } } (Without the spaces) or something similar. Why does this happen, and how can I still edit the article? (HMSVictory 12:00, 20 November 2007 (EST))

That's what's called a transclusion - it's pulling the content from another page. The way I use to edit such pages is good ol' copy and paste. Take the transcluded page name and paste it into your browser bar after the "wiki/" bit. So, in the example you gave you would end up with Telvanni, which will load the article and then let you edit it. If there's an easier way, I'd love to hear about it! Oh - while we're at it, using <code> and <nowiki> tags will let you enter things like {{Morrowind:House Telvanni}} without problems. :-) --RpehTCE 12:07, 20 November 2007 (EST)
Easier way: Edit the page (whole page, not just a section), then scroll down to below the edit window and you'll see a section that says "Templates used on this page", complete with nice links to each of the pages transcluded on the current one. --TheRealLurlock Talk 12:14, 20 November 2007 (EST)
Thank you both for your help! Good to get that sorted out. Hey Rpeh, I thought you had left?

Vandalism To My Page

I have recently noticed multiple vandalism attempts to my Userpage. They are coming from multiple IP adresses, but it is likely to be the same person. Is there any way to protect my page from this (Semi-Protection)? I believe that there will be more malicious editting to come. --HMSVictory 10:45, 28 November 2007 (EST)

I've just done it. That should keep the anonymous users away at least. The block will expire at the end of the year by which time, with a bit luck, they'll have gone away to bother another site. As an aside, protecting pages is an admin-only function so you're probably best off asking on the Administrator Noticeboard, although I imagine this is on everybody's watch list anyway. --RpehTCE 10:52, 28 November 2007 (EST)
Thank's Rpeh! The only thing is, which pages link to the Administrator Noticeboard? --HMSVictory 11:57, 28 November 2007 (EST)
Not many, but the easiest to reach is the Recent Changes page, a link to which you can find at the top left of the page under the search box. On that, look at the top right for the link to the admin board. --RpehTCE 12:03, 28 November 2007 (EST)
There also happens to be a link at the top of this page, where it says "If you have a request that requires an administrator, you may want to post your comments on the administrator noticeboard." --NepheleTalk 18:24, 28 November 2007 (EST)
So there is. That's rather embarrassing! I'll be asking "What gate?" next... --RpehTCE 02:25, 29 November 2007 (EST)
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