Organizational and technical specification for advanced Cite extension (first draft)
Update: Please take a look at the Meta Wikimedia page Wikidata.
I am describing here a set of technical and organizational specifications for Cite extension improvements. This is the first draft and you are welcome to comment it. If there are more interests in this issue, I’ll copy it on Meta Wikimedia (yes, on Meta because it is not only a technical issue).
- There is a need for at least two different categories of endnotes: references and notes. References are about sources, notes are about better explanation of the facts. The third endnote type should be “Further reading” (while it is not related to the present situation, it is related to the advanced version).
- So, people should be able to add <ref*>s and <note*>s.
- It should be possible to add a reference inside of a note.
- Without structural representation of the data, references are only decoration of the articles. Yes, it is possible to see what the source is, but source relevancy is not known by default. (The only way to know relevancy is outside of Wikipedia [or MediaWiki site].)
- So, we need a database representation of the references: Author name, source name, cited pages and all other bibliographic data. This should consist, for example, three level field categories (like “physics->theoretical physics->thermodynamics”; we should define them) and other relevant categories.
- And, of course, we should add “further reading” works in this database.
- Then, we need a possibility to describe sources:
- We need a relation of two sources: are they supportive, confrontative, with ambivalent relation, or they don’t have a visible relation (maybe some other, too?). This will give to us a possibility for one of the relevant measuring methods for seeing which authors/sites/etc. are relevant and which of them are not. This part of job should be done on the local project by (for example) administrators.
- References should go to the separate project (something like references.wikimedia.org). This project should have good localization possibilities (i.e. “Category:Physics” in English should be “Категорија:Физика” in Serbian).
- Thanks to such separation, it would be possible to make a group of trusted contributors and experts who would drive this project. This would make Wikimedian project much more relevant.
- Adding good or bad references may build contributors’ karma, which is also very useful for deciding which edits are relevant and which are not.
- Writing sources shouldn’t be ugly.
- Because of that I suggest making only one type of marking: something like “<ref name=”name” /> (and <note name=”name” />).
- When user writes this inside of the text and save it (or preview it), s/he should be able to click on the area and get a form in which s/he would able to fill reference’s (or note’s) data.
- Sources listings:
- Inside of the article.
- Inside of the relevant category.
- By author.
- By contributor.
- (By some other relevant classifications.)