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October 2008

September Newsletter

The September version of the WikiProject Earthquakes newsletter has been posted! Be sure to check it out! — Ceranthor [Formerly LordSunday] 14:14, 4 October 2008 (UTC)


I don't know if this is your real birthday, or if it's your wikipedian birthday. Either way I wanted to wish you a happy birthday! Thanks and Happy Editing! ⊥m93 (TALK) 21:17, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Tropical cyclones WikiProject Newsletter #21

Number 21, October 4, 2008

The Hurricane Herald

This is the monthly newsletter of WikiProject Tropical Cyclones. The Hurricane Herald aims to give a summary, both of the activities of the WikiProject and global tropical cyclone activity. If you wish to change how you receive this newsletter, or no longer wish to receive it, please add your username to the appropriate section on the mailing list. This newsletter covers all of September 2008.

Please visit this page and bookmark any suggestions of interest to you. This will help improve monitoring of the WikiProject's articles.

As a result of an extended Wikibreak, I will not be able to work on the next month's newsletter. Other users are welcome to get it together. ♬♩ Hurricanehink (talk) 03:53, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

Storm of the month

Hurricane Ike 

Hurricane Ike was among the costliest Atlantic hurricanes on record, based on a preliminary damage estimate of $31.5 billion (USD). The ninth named storm, fifth hurricane, and third major hurricane of the 2008 season, Ike developed on September 1 in the tropical Atlantic Ocean. Maintaining a generally westward track throughout its duration, Ike reached Category 4 status on the Saffir-Simpson scale, moving across the Turks and Caicos Islands at that intensity before weakening and crossing Cuba; heavy damage was reported in Cuba, which was still recovering from Hurricane Gustav just weeks prior. Gustav later moved across the Gulf of Mexico and struck near Galveston, Texas, where its effects were estimated as the costliest hurricane in Texas history. Further inland, the storm brought high winds and widespread damage, and its impact reached as far as Canada. Throughout its path, Gustav caused over 100 deaths, mostly in Texas and Haiti, and several hundred remain missing.

Other tropical cyclone activity

  • Atlantic Ocean– In addition to Ike, two hurricanes from the previous month, Gustav and Hanna, lasted into September, both striking the United States. Tropical Storm Josephine formed while Ike and Hanna were active; it remained away from land and dissipated four days after forming. The tropics were quiet in the Atlantic for about 10 days after Ike dissipated, until Hurricane Kyle formed north of Hispaniola; its precursor brought heavy rains to the Greater Antilles, and Kyle ultimately became extratropical as it moved into Atlantic Canada. At the end of the month, Tropical Storm Laura formed from a subtropical cyclone far away from land; it persisted until early October, when it lost tropical characteristics to the southeast of Newfoundland.
  • Eastern Pacific Ocean– The month in the eastern Pacific Ocean was the quietest on record, in terms of ACE index. Early in the month, Tropical Storm Karina lasted for two days without affecting land. A few days later, Tropical Storm Lowell formed and later affected the Baja California peninsula and mainland Mexico as a tropical depression; its remnants merged with the remnants of Ike.
  • Western Pacific Ocean– Five named storms developed in the western Pacific, beginning with Typhoon Sinlaku which became a powerful cyclone before weakening and bringing heavy rainfall to Taiwan; there, it caused 11 deaths and heavy damage, and it later affected Japan. The second storm of the month was Typhoon Hagupit, which caused $1 billion (USD) in damage and 68 deaths when it struck China. Typhoon Jangmi was next, which brought further damage and deaths to Taiwan. Two more tropical storms developed during the month; Mekkhala formed in the South China Sea and caused heavy damage in Vietnam, while Higos moved across the Philippines and later struck China.
  • North Indian Ocean– One deep depression formed during the month, which moved ashore in the Indian province of Odisha; it caused 25 deaths from heavy rainfall.

Member of the month

The September member of the month is CrazyC83, who has been a steady editor within the project for the past few years. Lately, the user's contributions include maintaining the current season articles, which is the biggest workload for the project. In the past, however, CrazyC83 was very active in writing articles, and was a proponent for all storms in the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season getting articles. Of note was his contributions to Hurricane Juan, which brought it to featured status and later to the main page.

Storm article statistics

Grade Jun Jul Aug Sep
  FA 41 42 46 47
  A 18 18 18 19
  GA 135 139 147 161
B 96 15 15 17
C 3 98 99 107
Start 208 202 197 201
Stub 9 10 15 19
Total 510 524 537 571
ω 2.87 2.94 2.92 2.92
Less than C
42.5 40.5 39.5 38.5
GA or better
38.0 38.0 39.3 39.8

Project News
Overall, the project has had a relatively uneventful month. One of the most noteworthy events was the selection of 32 tropical cyclone-related articles, that were chosen as part of Wikipedia 0.7. Wikipedia 0.7 is a collection of English Wikipedia articles due to be released on DVD, and available for free download, later this year. While many of the selected articles are of featured or good quality, several require substantial cleanup and expansion.

In other news, a handful of changes to project standards have taken place. Per a consensus on the project's talk page, the section of each tropical cyclone article previously entitled "Storm history" has been changed to "Meteorological history", thanks in part to Plasticup's bot which preformed the hundreds of edits to execute the change. In addition, a discussion is ongoing regarding the necessity of List of storms in the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season, and similar articles for other seasons.

♬♩ Hurricanehink (talk) 04:00, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

RfA thanks

  Hello AstroHurricane001. Thank you very much for your support in my recent Request for Adminship, which was successful with 111 supports, 0 opposes, and 0 neutral. I have to say I am more than a little overwhelmed by this result and I greatly appreciate your trust in me. I will do my best to use the tools wisely. Thanks again. Regards. Thingg 02:01, 12 October 2008 (UTC)

Long word

Hi. Where did you come across nordostersjokustartilleriflygspanningssimulatoranlaggningsmaterielunderhallsuppfoljningssystemdiskussionssinlaggsforberedelsearbeten?

Or is it invented by you? Sewnmouthsecret (talk) 15:55, 14 October 2008 (UTC)

Status report on the Country outlines (Around the World) project

Penubag has been hard at work developing awards for this project. He has completed a very professional looking medal, and is almost done with a trophy that is truly awesome - both of these awards are visually stunning.

I and a few others have been working steadily on the country outlines - one for every country of the world! They're shaping up nicely. So far, 28 of them have been moved to article space - these aren't complete, but they are complete enough to be made available for readers to benefit from them. The rest of the set still includes temporary data that was generated by template (because it matched most but not all of the countries), and before the lists can be moved to article space, all the temporary data needs to be checked for accuracy, and if incorrect it needs to be replaced with correct information.

The effort on the lists has been on 3 fronts:

  1. Working on the lists in article space to complete them so they will be good examples for editors working on the rest of the set.
  2. Adding or correcting other data (fixing redlinks, filling in blanks, etc.). The main type of work participants in "the contest" will be doing. The reason we're doing this is to get a feel for it, to develop the fastest methods for each type of task, etc.
  3. Improving the overall design and implenting changes on all 247 pages, whether in article space or not.

There has been some opposition to us running the contest based on edit counts or iterations. The concern is that we should reward quality work and not quantity, for fear of crappy edits done quickly without thought. I pointed out that the collection of pages are drafts in the Wikipedia namespace (therefore posing no danger to article space) and that most of the work needs to be done with power tools like AWB and Linky (which are specifically designed for repetitive work), but the reply was that we shouldn't set the precedent of rewarding barnstars for numerically-based tasks, and implied the threat of continuously MfD'ing the contest if we attempted to do so (like they did with the Awards Center - I was very surprised and disappointed that participants didn't step up to defend it). So we need to be careful in determining what exactly the awards will represent, and how they will be awarded.

Since rewarding iterations (passes with AWB on all of the pages in the set) are out, we really don't need the globe in stand anymore. Two awards should suffice.

Once we get started with the contest, I'd like to kick the whole thing off with a round of medals for those dedicated few who have worked hard on the project so far.

What do you think of all of this?

Your comments and suggestions are most welcome.

The Transhumanist 23:20, 22 October 2008 (UTC)

Hi. First of all, I think this project will be great for improving Wikipedia's coverage of world topics. I'm still currently busy in real life, so I probably won't have much time to actually work on the project. However, please let me know if there's anything that I might be able to assist with, and great job to you and everyone else who worked on the awards and other items. Thanks. ~AH1(TCU) 00:21, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for the encouragement. By the way, what kind of things do you have time to assist with? The Transhumanist 00:24, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

OK, we need your help on this...

On all the pages listed at User:The Transhumanist/Country list, the "History of x" section needs two subheadings, in this order:

=== By period ===


=== By field ===

A few already have them and can be skipped.

For the rest, if there are links in the section, those links need to go under one of the two subheadings. For instance "* Economic history of x" and "* Military histoy of x" go under "By field". If they don't fit in either, the links should precede the subheadings.

The placement of the subheadings can be done with AWB (using [[wp:REGEX|regex and its "\n" code for new line) or Linky.

Thank you for volunteering.

Good luck.

Have fun.

I look forward to you reply on my talk page. ;)

The Transhumanist 01:56, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Earthquakes Newsletter

Be sure to check out the October version of the WikiProject Earthquakes Newsletter for updates and news. Thanks, — Ceranthor  (Sing) 23:21, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

Another country outline moved to article space!

Topic outline of Zimbabwe is now in article space. It still needs images and some bluelinking, and is undoubtedly missing some relevant links.

Please take a look at it. You will no doubt spot things you can easily fix that I overlooked.

The Transhumanist 19:47, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Re: Country outlines

Hi. The topic outlines look like a great idea, and eventually they could all be linked to the main country article and assessed when more are moved to article space. I see that the articles are still missing a lot of information, such as lots of "[[]]" being displayed, and many red links are present and the articles might need a few more citations. Also, topic outlines are great for countries, but there are also non-independant and disputed regions in the project's country list, and for those areas, which areas need topic outlines and which don't? Some of these may seem controversial or POV to some especially if there are flags that are not officially recognised. (For example, Taiwan is not recognised by the United Nations as a country, and the topic pages for Somaliland, Kosovo, Azkhabia etc all indicate that they are disputed.) Most of the topic outline drafts under construction have enough blue links and are almost ready to start being moved to mainspace. However, as I noticed in topic outline of Zimbabwe, many "main articles" and other links which are part of the topic are still redlinked, and even though I'm more of an eventualist than an immediatist, more of those links should be either created or removed before the topic outlines are directly linked from the main country articles. Also, some topics in particular are not relavent or too insignificant to be applicable in certain country articles, for example some countries don't have glaciers, some religions are too minor or not practiced in certain countries, etc., and if humor is included, some countries don't have special comedy or country-specific humorous traditions, and also most countries' English dialect would spell it "humour". Overall, however, the outlines are in good shape and are a great contribution to both the Around the World project and to the geographic coverage of the encyclopedia in general. Thanks. ~AH1(TCU) 20:58, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

The project was based on and includes everything on the List of countries. The lead section of that article explains the context well. The outlines themselves clarify the precise type of entity the political division presented is.
Most of the outline drafts have some incorrect data in their government branches sections that needs to be corrected before they can be moved to article space. Not all countries have a president and a prime minister, for example. The data was placed there by template during creation in order to match the most countries possible and thereby minimize the work load.
Also, the lead sections should be converted mostly to outline content (and placed where appropriate throughout the outline) and trimmed down to essential prose (such as the most well-known identifying characteristics of the country).
Keep in mind that in addition to being outlines, these pages are country profiles sharing a standard format. This facilitates easy comparison of countries to each other. Also keep in mind that kids will be making use of them too. If a country doesn't have glaciers, that entry should simply say "* Glaciers of x: None". That way the pages can be used to quickly compare countries. Also, it removes the ambiguity of whether or not we simply haven't added the information in yet. For example, if we leave the glacier entry out, then the reader may not know if the country has no glaciers or if we haven't made a page for those yet. (Not having it in there at all implies that there aren't any, as if the page were complete, while a redlink just shows "we're not done yet"). We covered this issue with respect to navies and countries that don't have them. We've been creating redirects for Navy of x for x's that have no navy (such as most landlocked countries) and have been pointing them to where the relevant information is (adding the information in where it was missing). The issue went to RfD and it was decided that the redirects should stay. Zimbabwe has no navy for example, but the link Navy of Zimbabwe works.
Concerning comedy, it would be humorous to put "* Humor in x: None". :) Most likely the humor of each country will be covered or redirected (to a parent country, a parent culture, or whatever). But it's most likely covered somewhere, and will eventually find its way to Wikipedia. With respect to religion, if a student were comparing countries to see how influential the major religions of the world are in each, the religion links would be highly relevant. Remember, we're covering the whole world with this set of profiles, not just the individual countries in isolation.
The issue of redlinks also pertains to removing ambiguity (as covered above) and standard format - they were chosen based upon how countries are covered on Wikipedia and how that coverage typically expands. If we remove them, it will be a monumental task to track these and add them back in later. That could double our workload, and this project is already being measured in terms of the man years it will likely take to complete it. By leaving the redlinks in, we help familiarize readers with the standard format, so that browsing this type of page becomes easy and intuitive. And we solve the problem of "where would an interested editor go to find out what is missing and needs to be added in?" The best response to that question is "on the page itself". Wikipedia is a work in progress, and the redlink feature was designed to bring a gap in coverage to the attention of as many people as possible to facilitate its being created. We shouldn't be ashamed of our gaps. :)
Concerning the standard page names for country expansion, those aren't covered anywhere but on this set of pages! So leaving them in also helps guide editors in to what to call those articles when they are created.
My bias is to move the pages to article space sooner rather than later (once the incorrect data in the government branches sections is replaced), to get these exposed to as many people who may work on them as possible. Otherwise, it will take our little team years to complete them. We've got to spread the workload out!
I hope I've addressed your concerns to your satisfaction.
The Transhumanist 23:53, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
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