Template talk:Explanation

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This template is the second (if not the first one) that this wiki certainly needs! Thanks, Brooks. I would only give it some other name, more in the spirit {{todo}}, {{stub}} (as in wikipedia; probably doesn't fit here very well) or "To be completed (this article needs to be completed)".

I would sometimes need a TODO template which could be added in a document more than once, but without adding the category five times. Handling this would probably belong to the mediawiki itself, but as it is much more complicated to implement it there: let's just make two identic templates and use the one with category exactly once per page. (I would add some "TODO" remarks simply in the middle of text, perhaps one for every incomplete section on the page.) This goes mostly to the pages that I make and leave "in the air" for some (possibly infinite) amount of time.

What is the advantage of putting the template into the Talk page? I would leave it right in the middle of the text where needed.


I'm not sure it's worth the trouble of having two TODO templates to handle this; the problem is that if someone clears out a TODO item and deletes that instance of the template, they need to remember to see if it's the one including the category, and if it is they need to change one of the others to include the category. That seems likely to get forgotten, leading to pages with TODO items that aren't on the TODO category list. Specifying the category multiple times does cause it to show up multiple times at the bottom of the page, but it doesn't cause it to get on the category-page list multiple times (I just tried this in the sandbox), so I think it's easier just to not worry about it -- after all, it only causes a problem on pages that are unfinished!
My reason for putting the "Explanation" template on the Talk page was that I was initially thinking of it as something that would be used along with a bit of description of what needed to be added -- see, for instance, the Talk:Description page. Just putting it in the text makes it too easy to leave out the explanation of what's needed -- and I wanted to avoid the problem of people putting it in without explanation, and other people wondering exactly what was needed. (But after going through a few pages, I got lazy and it started seeming rather obvious what it meant in cases like Flush bottom, so I just used it directly in the page with no text.)
I don't know if we want the "Explanation" and the "TODO" templates to be the same or not. To some extent, the "Explanation" one is good for putting with someone's else's page where one's not too certain whether the original author agrees that it needs more work, while the "TODO" would go right on the page, and mostly be used by the original author. Or something like that....
In any case, I don't think it would be too problematic to go ahead and create a TODO template, and keep using both, and then see after a few weeks whether it seems useful to keep both or to merge one into the other.
--Brooks 02:33, 4 Sep 2005 (UTC)
  • Update: I've created a ToDo Template and the associated category. After playing with it, I think it probably should just supercede the Explanation template/tag, but I'll wait for a few days to see if I still agree with that later. In any case, the TODO tag exists now, and works well (I think!). Have a look at the associated talk page for that template for more details. --Brooks 04:37, 4 Sep 2005 (UTC)