Template talk:Category diffuse

Latest comment: 4 years ago by CapnZapp in topic template lacks instructions
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Creation noticeEdit

This template was created in the spirit of WP:ʃ. Cwolfsheep 23:15, 3 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • catdiffuse is a bad idea. the reason it is a bad idea is because not everyone categorizes things the same way because they don't think of them the same way. large top categories catch this fault in human cognizance. I think forcing subcategorization and the ongoing tendency to remove redundant categories is causing havok at many levels. I think the template should be referred to policy.--Buridan 11:16, 6 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I also think this template is a bad idea. Large categories are not inherently bad. Many categories are better left large than chopped into many small irrelevant sub-categories. --Samuel Wantman 06:09, 10 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Large categories are inherently bad if you're trying to find something you don't know the word for, and that's the main reason I use categories. The more articles in the narrowest category, the more I have to look through. —Keenan Pepper 17:15, 13 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This template is excessively intrusive and also defeatist. We will get on top of things over time. Also, telling people that they can't remove a template is a totally unacceptable assumption of dictatorial powers. I will remove that instruction, and I will also remove the template from any category I see it on. Chicheley 13:01, 15 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Okay, I'll add it right back to any category you remove it from, and we can have a jolly revert war! Or we could do something constructive instead... —Keenan Pepper 00:47, 16 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Three-prong approach to category sortingEdit

{{verylarge}} should be used for one-time cleanup; {{catdiffuse}} should be used if people are likely to keep adding to the category; category tagging is pointless for template-driven categories that cannot be recategorized. Cwolfsheep 02:31, 18 September 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Would it be OK if I removed the phrase "to avoid becoming too large" from the template. Some categories require diffusion, while others should be large lists anyway. This may also solve Samuel Wantman's problems with this template. Dr. Submillimeter 13:31, 9 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

An alternative?Edit

I've created an alternative to CatDiffuse that I think is much more user friendly, and not as self-referential. I'm not sure many editors are going to understand what "diffuse" means. The atlernative I created is called {{Topic category}}. It is intended for topics that are meant to contain articles yet have the more specific articles diffused to the subcategories. The way I've stated this, it also helps someone using the category for browsing. I've installed it at Category:Computer languages. There is also some other varieties of templates for labeling categories at Wikipedia:Category types. -- Samuel Wantman 08:57, 11 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Consider Category:Programming languages. This too has a cat diffuse tag, but I don't quite understand what the consensus is about this category. My suggestion would be to break this into two categories. There would be an index category called Category:Programming languages would contain all the programming languages (which is what it looks like it has now), and all the subcategories would be moved to a navigation category called Category:Programming languages by type. All of the existing subcategories would be populated without depopulating Category:Programming languages. I used to be a programmer, but the subcategories are for the most part unfamiliar to me, and I suspect they won't mean much to many users. So it would be useful for browsing to keep both the larger and smaller groupings populated. If people don't want the duplication then Category:Programming languages would be depopulated, and remain as just the navigation category. In my suggestion the category gets diffused into the grandchildren subcategories without being deleted, and in the other the category gets diffused into children subs and depopulated. -- Samuel Wantman 11:26, 11 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would suggest adding text to {{Topic category}} about placing articles in the subcategories. Some categories still need to be diffused. Dr. Submillimeter 21:03, 12 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There is an option to add a line that says "Articles about <<parameter>> can be found in the subcategories." In the example posted in Category:Computer languages it says "Articles about specific languages can be found in the subcategories." Is it enough to say that the articles "can be found" in the subcategories? I should hope that our editors can understand that "can be found" also means "should be put". I'd rather word these templates for the benefit of the person browsing the category, rather than the person doing the categorization. Some categories seem to have comprehensive instructions on categorization. These should either be on the talk page, or there could be a link in the templates I've proposed that would open up detailed instructions on categorization for the editor. Do you think that is needed? -- Samuel Wantman 01:23, 13 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I like your suggestion. However, I think some categories will also need broad warnings that the categories need maintenance, in which case {{CatDiffuse}} will be needed. Perhaps both types of templates can be used? Perhaps someone else can comment? Dr. Submillimeter 10:31, 13 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If CatDiffuse were reworded and placed on the talk pages of categories along with a Category type tag, I wouldn't have a problem with it in some cases. I don't think it should be used with large index categories. Depopulating of large categories should be discussed. -- Samuel Wantman 08:43, 15 January 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Self-referential and should be moved to Category talk: space?Edit

This tag strikes me as highly self-referential. It is essentially a "clean-up" type banner, similar to the kind that warn that an article lacks sources or is NPOV, even if the category essentially doesn't have anything wrong with it (just might do if people don't keep an eye on the category). Categories are for browsing by readers - they are not primarily a tool for editors. Instructions about moving categories are for editors not readers! Can this not be moved to "Category talk:" space instead, like WikiProject tags would be? TwoMightyGodsPersuasionNecessity 23:24, 12 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That would be reasonable except that few people read talk pages anymore and almost nobody reads category_talk pages.
If am browsing through my areas of interest and find a category (or any other page) [edit: which says on its talk page that it] needs work, I'm unlikely to notice. If I browse through Category:Categories requiring diffusion most of the categories (or category_talk pages, potentially) will pertain to topics I know very little about. The status quo provides a sort of common ground.
Once upon a time a blue link for "discussion" meant "a discussion page exists and it contains discussion". This is no longer true half the time.
CharlotteWebb 11:04, 13 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I can appreciate the problem - however, when I'm browsing Wikipedia as a reader I find them very distracting or even irritating, in that they are clearly addressing me as an editor. If I was a "lay reader" who had not experienced the perils of editing, then I would be both distracted and confused. A particular issue is that this template blares out on our most vital categories, the ones which we precisely expect our readers to head for! Moreover, it continues to blare out even if the category is actually in good shape at the moment (it only warns of a potential problem). What if I put a warning tag on all the most-visited articles in Wikipedia, regardless of their current quality state, declaring that "This is a highly-visited article and therefore care should be taken during when you are editing it"? I'd get people come down on me like a ton of bricks... but conceptually I can't see why Category: space shouldn't be treated the same way, as it's primarily a place designed for use of readers not editors. To be honest, in most cases it is immediately obvious which categories may require diffusion. TwoMightyGodsPersuasionNecessity 11:40, 13 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
TwoMightyGods: Oh, that brings up an interesting idea. For some message boxes it would be better if only logged in users see them. (Well, there are anon editors too, but they don't need to see most of those boxes anyway.) And we can hide things by using CSS. So I took a look and compared the generated HTML code for some pages when I was logged in and when I was not logged in. Unfortunately MediaWiki does not add any class in the body tag or similar that marks if the user is logged in. So currently we can not detect in CSS if the user is logged or not and hide/show boxes accordingly. But it might be an easy thing to add to the MediaWiki system. I should perhaps add that to another related feature request I am thinking of doing.
Another option would be that they add a magic word that returns if a user is logged in or not. (Just checked, there seems to be no such magic word currently.) Then we could use parser functions in the template code instead to hide the message box. Although that would cost a little more server load.
But anyway, I agree with CharlotteWebb that putting these message boxes on category talk pages won't work. (Even though I think that article message boxes really should be on article talk pages since they are self references.) And from what I understand mostly editors use categories, so I think we don't need to be too accommodating to the occasional readers that use the category pages.
--David Göthberg (talk) 15:41, 13 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh, it can be done. If anybody gives you the usual crap about "it breaks caching" you can remind them about MediaWiki:Anonnotice which, though it is currently blanked, would otherwise appear for anons only. — CharlotteWebb 16:24, 13 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I would very strongly support a feature request and I agree that putting it in Category talk: would work much less well for editors, but it's the reader we must put first. I'm not sure about the statement "from what I understand mostly editors use categories" - the number of presently active editors is probably counted in the thousands, compared to millions of readers, so even if categories are only used by a minority of "advanced" readers they might be in the majority. It'd be interesting to see if there any statistics on the number of readers who actually use the category system for browsing. It's worth bearing in mind that its function is to be an aid to readers! One thing I don't like about notices addressing the reader as if the reader was an editor, is that it might give the impression to the reader that they've come to the "wrong place", that they've inadvertently stumbled on Wikipedia's back-room machinery rather than a place where readers are meant to be. We're certainly not going to encourage users to make use of the category system (which is one of Wikipedia's most powerful advantages over other encyclopaedias) if we jam up the most important categories with editing instructions. Content categories, portals and articles are the "reader's end" of Wikipedia and ought to be made reader-friendly not editor-friendly. And we absolutely must put readers first, since it's them we are meant to be building the encyclopaedia for! CatDiffuse seems more egregious to me than e.g. NPOV warnings or "lacks citations" notices on an article, because those at least warn the reader of a problem with the article, whereas CatDiffuse doesn't contain helpful information for a reader, just a warning/instruction for editors, and is applied to categories even if they are currently AOK but just might deteriorate later.
In the short term: can the text CatDiffuse be written in a way which makes it more reader-friendly and less editor-focussed? I.e. can we pull out a notice that can inform readers usefully about the nature of this category (e.g. "Most of the articles in this category are actually stored in the subcategories listed below") which serves as an instruction "by proxy" for editors to unclog the category when necessary? Or even, being really radical, completely remove the warning notice for CatDiffuse, and just rely on the fact that it logs categories in the hidden category "Categories requiring diffusion", which is visible to editors but not readers?
In the long term: I would definitely support a feature request that would make allow us to make certain warnings and notices (in particular, those which do little to inform the general reader) visible to logged-in editors only. TwoMightyGodsPersuasionNecessity 15:42, 16 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Reading the bit about "back-room machinery" I should emphasize that we do want even our most casual readers to consider becoming editors. The fine line is intentional and I would have a difficult time supporting any measure aimed primarily at thickening this distinction. — CharlotteWebb 19:47, 16 July 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I just realised we can use javascript to hide boxes and other things for IP users. It would just take two lines of code in MediaWiki:Common.js. The code would insert one line of CSS code in the page, if it is an IP user. Then we could mark any items we want hidden with the same CSS class. We already use that trick to hide some things in the edit window. Take a look at this line of text:
This text will not be visible in the edit window preview, if you have javascript enabled.
Most users probably have javascript enabled nowadays. But the few that have it disabled will of course still see the boxes, but for them that simply would mean no change compared to today.
--David Göthberg (talk) 09:22, 17 November 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Make a hidden categoryEdit

Since this is a maintenance tag it should be a hidden category rather than giving the warning notice in the category itself. -- Alan Liefting (talk) - 04:15, 10 September 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Reference to subcat diffusionEdit

{{Editprotected}} I think a reference to subcategories should be in this template (italics new):

Eekerz (t) 20:23, 29 September 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've lowered the protection so you can make the edit yourself, if you wish. — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 09:14, 30 September 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks. —Eekerz (t) 14:17, 1 October 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have removed your addition. Moving sub-categories to other sub-categories is relevant to every category, meaning this template should theoretically be placed on every category page. McLerristarr | Mclay1 13:04, 9 December 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Make smaller and move to the rightEdit

Given the message in this template and that editors are a very small subset of the total WP readership I feel that this template should be less obtrusive. I would like to see it in a similar style to the interwiki boxes such as {{commonscat}} (although I would like to see an even lower visibility than that!). -- Alan Liefting (talk) - 05:07, 30 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Problem with parametersEdit

I noticed that on the page Category:Service companies of the United States, the interwikis (which are valid) showed up as red links within the body of the page rather than in the nav column on the left. I realised that the problem must be caused by the template {{catdiffuse|Companies}} and removed the parameter; after that, the page displays normally.

Template:Catdiffuse is one of many pages that redirects here.

Please can someone who understands parsing (i) fix this template to avoid problems when a parameter is added, (ii) add documentation on what the parameter is for and how/when to use it? – Fayenatic (talk) 18:41, 10 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I can't replicate the problem, I think, if the interwikis were showing red, that it may be related to the bug described here: WP:VPT#Killer whale: what has gone wrong with the interwikis on this page? But I'll still check the cat suppress function, but I'll have to do it later on today when I have a chance. --Funandtrvl (talk) 18:52, 10 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah, right, it does look as if it was a symptom of that wider caching issue, which I hadn't noticed elsewhere. Good, consider it fixed. My part (ii) might still be useful, though. – Fayenatic (talk) 19:12, 10 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Notice boxEdit

The notice box has been removed today with the justification "It is an editor tool so a hidden cat is all that is needed." I propose to reinstate the box as it is useful, particularly as it is different from {{container category}}. – Fayenatic London (talk) 13:51, 14 May 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Container v Catdiffuse v New templateEdit

I've proposed a few things at Template talk:Container category that should hopefully address some ongoing concerns. SFB 10:42, 12 July 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Combining diffusing and non-diffusing boxes?Edit

There should be a way to combine boxes when more than one of the following templates appears on the same page:

As it stands now the boxes take up way too much valuable space on the top of the category page. See for example: Category:Scientists Ottawahitech (talk) 13:48, 8 January 2017 (UTC)please ping meReply[reply]

template lacks instructionsEdit

The template currently does not contain any help. Consider a category such as Category:YouTube channels. The template tells the editor the category "...should directly contain very few, if any, pages and should mainly contain subcategories." But the category contains dozens and dozens of individual pages! What does the policy/guidelines say? What type of subcategories should be created? And so on.

Please don't answer by providing examples of Youtube categories, that's just an example. My point is that our template would be much improved if it contained some instructions on what to do and how to do it. Any help or link would improve the template IMO.

The irony is that the template's documentation already contains a pointer to a relevant editing guideline. I propose a simple addition at the end of the text to say "For more information on how to maintain this category, see WP:DIFFUSE" (or, of course, some similar but even better direction) CapnZapp (talk) 08:38, 19 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That is, a template that looks something like this:

Reading more about WP:DIFFUSE, I realize that what is going is that someone has deemed this category sufficiently large to warrant subcategory diffusion. As in an arbitrary (but hopefully well-founded) human decision. This to make it clear why this template is on one category page but not another. That is, to make it clear there's nothing specific about this particular category (where this template is found) - it's just 1) large and 2) someone has deemed it "too large".
In other words, the current wording gives off the impression the template is some sort of system message. But when you come to think about it, at the end of the day, all pages must be categorized somewhere, so which categories get this and which does not is about editor judgement and not anything else (such as policy demands or technical limitations). I believe the template would come across as much friendlier and ultimately more understandable if this was made clear. And my proposal does just that - it makes it clear someone has made a judgement call (which can then be discussed just like normal). Regards, CapnZapp (talk) 08:48, 19 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]