WeRelate talk:Categories project

Portion of Watercooler discussion that started this category project, portion of categorization discussion on Repository Portal talk page, and discussion portion of project page moved to and consolidated with this project talk page on 8 April 2010.


Topics


Shared research vs. Surname in place [17 January 2010]

We have 2 categories that appear to overlap: Category:Shared research pages and Category:Surname in place. The Shared research page says that "Surname in place articles are now referred to as Shared research pages." The help on each of these pages conflict... does anyone know what the most current decision is? I'm asking, because I am trying to make category pages for the automatically created red-links at the bottom of my person pages. Thanks!--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:10, 9 January 2010 (EST)

I don't know 'the most current decision,' but I do hope we keep the Category:Surname in place because I think that is most descriptive. 'Shared research pages' can be anywhere and everywhere, but nailing the info down to a certain place seems to me to be the most helpful. And if the folks migrate on to another place that can be noted. It does seem to me that Surname in place categories should be automatically generated and I thought they were; but I'm not sure now if that has been consistent. --Janiejac 18:07, 9 January 2010 (EST)

I'd also like to see the "Surname in Place" Category survive, it certainly helps "target" a family to a specific area for organization and makes it easy to find. Delijim--Delijim 08:57, 10 January 2010 (EST)


I've been experimenting a bit with some ideas to organize our Surname categories. I believe this is an underused feature here at WeRelate, but one that could be very useful. I began with a popular surname, Smith. This category automatically contains the pages that reference the Smith surname, (families, people, users, etc). I also created a few subcategories that appear at the top (Smith in Massachusetts Smith in Canada, etc).

To further organize these categories, I would like to propose a change. We currently link surname categories to Category:Surnames via pages such as Surname "A" and Surname "B". I believe this is unnecessary. We could eliminate these extra 26 category pages completely, and allow every surname to appear simply under the Surnames category (similar to Wikipedia). For ease of navigation, we could use a table of contents template.

I'm still thinking about Category:Surname in place... It doesn't seem to make sense to link our Surname in place pages to this category. As seen with Smith above, they could be linked to the relevant surname category only.--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:11, 11 January 2010 (EST)


If you look at the history, the Shared Research Pages category was a manually created category by Beth in Feb 2008. If the reason for creation is valid as intended (i.e. "Shared research pages contain information about people having a particular last or surname living in a particular place"), then Jennifer (JBS66) is correct in her observation above; the category seems totally redundant and unnecessary as it would serve the exact same purpose as the Surname in Place category which is a more user-friendly automated function. Additionally, the Shared Research Pages category contains only two linked pages, both of which also link to the Surname in Place category. The Surname in Place category has 54 connected subcategory links and 361 article links, making it far more useful and resourceful.
Rather than moving or redirecting the Surname in Place category links to Shared Research Pages category, I would be in favor of deleting the Shared Research Pages category altogether. It seems to serve no useful function and in my opinion is not a value added category to WR and causes confusion (as proved by Jennifer's initial inquiry). --BobC 09:22, 11 January 2010 (EST)

I generally like Jennifer's idea. I'm a visual person, so need to see this in outline form. Jennifer, if I understand you correctly, the hierarchy categories would be this:
  1. Surnames
    1. Surname (e.g., Smith)
      1. Surname in Place (e.g., Smith in California)

Only downside I see to this is that Jillaine Smith, born in California, would appear (if I were dead) in both the Surname in Place category as well as in the Surname Smith category. Ideally, the system would identify that I was born in California and place me only in Surname in California, and place in Category:Smith only those Smiths who have no birth place listed. Oh wait, am I confusing Surname:Smith with Category:Smith? I think the problem is still the same. I'd appear in both Surname:Smith and Category:Smith in California. How do we deal with that? -- Jillaine 09:44, 11 January 2010 (EST)

I don't see a problem with a name appearing in both the Surname in Place category and the Surname Category -- both serve a very useful purpose for different reasons. For example, if you look at one of my ancestral Surname in Place pages (Schonauer in Berks, Pennsylvania, United States), an auto link to the Surname in Place category was created upon initial entry. I then manually added a link to the Schonauer Surname category in the text block. That's how I dealt with it. --BobC 09:57, 11 January 2010 (EST)
 :I like Jennifer's idea of using that table of contents template!! That would make several categories much easier to navigate. As time goes on those pages that use just the letters of the alphabet will get terribly long and the need for table of contents template will be even greater. I am not programmer enough to know how much trouble it will be to make such a change but better now than a year from now. Anything that will make this site easier to use gets my vote!
If I clicked on 'Surname Smith' the next logical subcategory would be 'Smith in some State'. All the more reason to keep Surname in Place pages and not call them Shared Research pages.
There's a common v. rare surname issue here. I can see how it would be nice to "unclutter" the Smith category by putting the people with associated places in other categories, but if you have a really rare name like, I don't know, Gerlicher, it's nice to see at a glance if there are any such people entered on the site.--Amelia 12:55, 11 January 2010 (EST)

Here is the hierarchy I am thinking of (same as you detailed above Jillaine, just with links)

1 Category:Surnames
2 Category:Smith surname
3 Category:Smith in California

What tends to become confusing, I believe, is there are both Surname in place Categories and surname in place Articles. The categories are automatically generated, the articles are user created. I propose to no longer link Surname in place Category pages (like Category:Smith in California) to Category:Surname in place --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:23, 11 January 2010 (EST)

Not exactly true in all cases, Jennifer, because the Surname Research Links you create in your personal Profile Page creates Article Pages, which in turn automatically link to the Surname in Place categories (both the general category and to the individual surname category) as well as to the Surname Category itself. The category line on the article page looks like this sample Surname in Place page:
Image:Sample Category Link 2.GIF
So, as you see, it is important to know what is a bot function and what is a manual function. --BobC 11:36, 11 January 2010 (EST)

I will admit that I am confused on where to properly direct the surname Articles... I also wonder what will happen when we generate too many surname in place Categories. Say we have a few hundred Smith in place categories - will it become confusing? --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:23, 11 January 2010 (EST)

NOTE: I added the table of contents template to the Category:Surname in place to test it out.--Jennifer (JBS66) 10:36, 11 January 2010 (EST)
Is there a template showing just the 2 digit state designations that would be helpful?
Janie, the pages underneath this category are sorted by page title (in this case, surname). Clicking on a letter in the table of contents jumps you to the first occurrence of that first letter in the page's title.--Jennifer (JBS66) 10:57, 11 January 2010 (EST)
Jennifer, the template is mahvelus, simply mahvelus. Jillaine 11:19, 11 January 2010 (EST)

Well, I am going to be bold... I'll take the first organizing step and start eliminating the Category:Surnames "A"-Category:Surnames "Z". --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:45, 11 January 2010 (EST)

We have a third category named Category:Surname in Place. Capitalization requirements in the wiki are annoying. Who can remember what is capitalized and what is not? --Beth 21:53, 14 January 2010 (EST)

I found the origination and original definition of a Shared Research Page: Within the User Pages Help page the question is posed...

What is the difference between user pages and shared research pages?
  • User Pages are password protected, so that they can only be edited by the original creator
  • Shared Research Pages are community pages that can be edited by any registered WeRelate user

While it looks as if the decision has been made with regard to keeping the Surname in Place pages, I hope this helps refocus what so-called "Shared Research Pages" were meant to entail and encompass at WR. --BobC 14:50, 17 January 2010 (EST)



When use Category vs. Article [24 September 2010]

Above, Jennifer (re)raises the question of when do we use the Category:(Surname) in (Place) and when do we use an Article (Surname) in (Place).

I have preferred to edit the relevant Category page so it's all together. But in some cases, the narrative before the auto-generated list of pages becomes too long. Here are some examples of each:

Category:(Surname) in (Place) (Surname) in (Place) articles
Category:Schlenker_in_Schwenningen Brown in Missouri
Category:Fuller in Massachusetts Townsend in California
Category:Taylor in Massachusetts Taylor in Massachusetts
Category:Barber in Massachusetts Jackson in Queens, New York

I would limit categories to their intended purpose, to provide a visual structure for WeRelate's contents. I would put extended descriptive text, such as that on Category:Taylor in Massachusetts on it's own article page (Taylor in Massachusetts) (which does link back to the category).--Jennifer (JBS66) 11:36, 11 January 2010 (EST)

This part above is KEY to our (and others') understanding of the distinction between category pages and article pages, and because I don't think I've fully appreciated this before, I'm going to repeat it:
I would limit categories to their intended purpose, to provide a visual structure for WeRelate's contents.
Now I'm going to clean up the category pages I've messed up. Thanks Jennifer! Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Jillaine, you didn't "mess up" anything. I suppose in theory I agree that Categories are just for "structure". But three problems here. First, you can't get a visual structure when there are hundreds of entries in a category. That's just a category that exists only for taxonomy structure purposes. Second, these surname in place categories link on EVERY PERSON PAGE. That makes them prime real estate and MUCH more likely to be seen than any articles on the subject. Third, the people as listed in category pages are incomprehensible since they lack dates. I therefore think it's really useful to do things like in the chart above (see also Category:Harrison in Virginia or Category:Arnold in Rhode Island). They aren't full surname in place articles, but I wouldn't have a problem with them being that way.--Amelia 13:55, 15 January 2010 (EST)
I would prefer to see WeRelate adopt a procedure similar to both Wikipedia and Familypedia. They use a template at the top of their category pages, directing users to the appropriate article on that subject. (ie Category:Canada and Smith (surname)). It saves a lot of confusion for users wondering where to put their information - categories or surname pages or an article, etc. --Jennifer (JBS66) 15:37, 15 January 2010 (EST)

While I generally haven't have a problem with enhancing the category page with additional manually added information, I agree with Jennifer (JBS66) that the additional information on the Taylor in Massachusetts category page would be better served on the Taylor in Massachusetts surname in place article page. This category page in particular, probably because the categorized links extend beyond 200 in number (i.e. multiple pages), demonstrates the "problems" that can appear when a lot of manual input is added to a category page with hundreds of linked pages. The manual input shows up at the top of every category page as the user scolls through the pages, and the linked pages, for which the category page is designed to highlight, are at the bottom of each page under the manually inputted material, which is duplicated with each page turn.

Category:(Surname) in (Place) (Surname) in (Place) articles
Category:Taylor in Massachusetts Taylor in Massachusetts


You're a good sport, Jillaine. If you'd like some help combining the manually-inputted information on the Taylor in Massachusetts category page with the Taylor in Massachusetts surname in place article page let me know. --BobC 18:05, 15 January 2010 (EST)


Just in case you have any need to know how confusing this is I offer the following:
Category:Surnames, click & go to SubCategory Surname:"J"

there is NO category for Jackson (surprise to me!) so to see where it would go if it were there, I clicked on Justice and it took me to the Justice Person & Family Pages which is fine.
So to see where the chain to Jackson was broken, I tried to work backwards from that ARTICLE I created 'Jackson in Queens, New York'. The automatic categories assigned were Category:Jackson surname, and Category:Queens, New York, United States and Category:Jackson in New York. (On the article pg the link is blue!)
A click on the Category:Jackson surname took me back to that category page with family and person pages AND ALSO had a link to another article page I created named 'Surname Jackson' which was meant to be like an overall research page with links to every Jackson in state article, also links to external Jackson web sites and (coming) a page for Jackson DNA. So I get very confused and probably manage to get others confused also.
So somehow Jackson surname should be listed under "J" and if anyone wants to suggest I do something different to distinguish between articles and categories, I'll listen! I had manually added Category:Surname in Place to the 'Jackson in Queens, New York' article. When I clicked on 'Surname in place' I first thought my article wasn't listed because the first thing you see on that page is subcategories - and no, it wasn't there. But when I scrolled further down on the page, yes, it IS listed among the articles. If we're going to have subcategories at all, shouldn't all articles be listed in subcategories? (Give me A for effort but I get an F in wiki! That's all for now!) --Janiejac 14:14, 11 January 2010 (EST)
Janiejac, the issue here is that Category:Jackson surname didn't have a [[Category:Surnames]] assigned to it, so it didn't show up as a subcategory. I see that Jennifer just added [[Category:Surnames]] to the Category:Jackson surname page so it does show up now. I agree that having to add this category is annoying. Not many people would know to do this. (More about this below.)
Also, subcategories are listed before articles on a category page. It takes awhile to get used to, but I think it's a good idea to separate subcategories from articles in a category.--Dallan 00:07, 15 January 2010 (EST)

Dallan's Poll on Surname Questions [27 January 2010]

I really like where this is going! I have a few questions and ideas.

1. Should we remove Category:Shared research pages? It's not needed anymore, right?

Correct. I vote "yes" REMOVE. Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
I also vote YES to remove Category:Shared research pages--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:57, 15 January 2010 (EST)
For the reasons I stated above, YES. --BobC 13:05, 15 January 2010 (EST). I'll amend my original thought to: Yes, remove as a functioning category. I would like to see the term revert to it's original use as stated within the User Pages Help page from Feb 2008 identifying the difference between user pages and shared research pages, where is stated, "Shared Research Pages are community pages that can be edited by any registered WeRelate user," versus "User Pages are password protected, so that they can only be edited by the original creator." --BobC 09:56, 19 January 2010 (EST)
YES --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

2. Do we want to have Category:Surname in place? It seems like this category will start to become very large. Would linking the subcategories and articles just to the appropriate surname categories be sufficient?

It seems that the purpose of such a page would be to list all of the "Surname in place" pages? Would such a list be useful? Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Yes, keep the Surname in Place category. Yes, it will become large. I would say to link both to place and name; that way those searching for the name would be able to discriminate by place, and those searching places would be able to see and easily link to names. --BobC 13:05, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES and YES --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

3. To simplify things, I'm thinking that the user pages should link to the surname in place category pages, rather than a surname in place article, and that creating a surname in place article should be the exception rather than the rule, to be done only when there is too much material to comfortably fit on the category page. If we agree on this, I can ask one of my children to cut-and-paste the material from all but the long surname in place articles to the corresponding category pages and to update links to point to the category pages.

At first I agreed with this, until Jennifer posted this reminder about the purpose of Category pages: to provide a visual structure for WeRelate's contents. I'm with her on this unless someone makes a strong case otherwise. Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
I feel that we should not be placing extensive text on category pages. Categories are intended as a finding aid, not an article. At Wikipedia, they generally contain only a brief description of the category, along with the automatically generated contents. --Jennifer (JBS66) 12:57, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Not sure which is more effective or preferential. Creation of an article within the User Page also creates the Surname Page (see Beth's inquiry on the Surname Pages and Links topic below). Personally, I like having the multiple linking of categories to articles and surnames in place. Many people don't use that feature though. --BobC 13:05, 15 January 2010 (EST)
NO. "long" is arbitrary, uniformity is simplicity, same rules for everything. Either insist on separate article if any text to be added, or text is always added to category. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
We rely on judgment a lot here, so I'm fine with keeping only "long" "articles." The worst solution would be to insist on articles -- if they aren't linked to the right category page, they would never be found, and how are you going to stop people from editing categories anyway? Having the category links on person pages change to blue when there's content is a great way to clue people in that some possibly interesting content has been added.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
To answer the question, "how are you going to stop people from editing categories" - well, you do that by maintaining the namespace. Just as volunteers monitor recent changes in place pages, image pages, etc... we should be monitoring the categories space for use that does not fit in with its function.
Your comment about links changing to blue when there is content is confusing to me. The links should be blue in a properly maintained wiki, and it is not because they contain content. Referring to a wikipedia article, describing the intent of categories:
  • Categories are a tool for browsing: they function as a table of contents, leading users to the articles on a specific subject.
  • Categories are a means of classifying articles
  • Categories are an index of a subject
  • Categories are a database search
  • Categories are an index of other categories
The TOC, when used properly, helps us to relax any concerns about category pages becoming too long. "In mid 2005 the category table of contents template, {{CategoryTOC}}, was created. With the table of contents it became possible to navigate through very large categories with a few clicks...there is no longer any reason that categories need to be small." Now, with WeRelate's use of the namespace in listing category pages, it makes the TOC nearly useless. This will essentially direct users either to F for Family or P for Person.--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:34, 19 January 2010 (EST)
I think Jennifer has discovered the root of the problem. If we think of a category as the title of the chapter of our book, maybe we wouldn't try to include the whole chapter as part of the title. If we stick to that it should eliminate a lot of the confusion. I'm visual - I'd like to see this laid out somewhere in outline form.
The book has a title, the TOC has names of chapters (categories) which includes 'index'. But the content of the chapter is not included in the TOC. The chapter or section called 'index' would be the Surnames. Surname category pages could talk about the origin of the surname and have links to Places (countries, areas, states). I don't know if we would need a further breakdown or if further info would be the articles themselves. That would probably depend on the intent of the author. Am I missing something? --Janiejac 09:27, 19 January 2010 (EST)
Janiejac, I really like your analogy to books! The example is valid - just as you would not consider listing a book's contents within the index or table of contents, you would not place article contents on category pages. You can list them (by placing a link to the category) to your heart's content... For those of us who are more visual, I have placed a rough outline of WR's current category structure at Categories_project.--Jennifer (JBS66) 10:02, 19 January 2010 (EST)
Thank you for posting that outline! Clicking on some of those links emphasizes the need for some reorganization or cleanup. There is a category:Family Pages that has only 3 articles in it! The is a category:Products that has only 2 subcategories in it: (1) is 'Books' which has a SOURCE in it and (2)is 'Software' which has one article. Oh, there's more, so lets move over to Categories_project to see what should be or can be done. --Janiejac 11:10, 19 January 2010 (EST)
I think we're emphasizing some organizational ideal over actual usability. Wikipedia, frankly, is not the ideal here. They have excessive numbers of categories that do not provide a useful browsing experience. So do we. Right now, we have a system in which 1) red category links means a category with just articles in it; and 2) blue category links means a category that humans have maintained and therefore might have some useful content worth clicking on. I would like to keep that distinction, although I know I'm going to lose. The reason is that I would like to encourage people to CLICK on categories and get something USEFUL out of it. I've done the following things to make these a useful experience, and all would apparently be jettisoned with no good replacement for no good reason under the 'all or nothing' theory.
  1. Putting information on famous or early ancestors in a place (say, Arnold in Rhode Island). I understand that this can be done through articles, but that's an unnecessary step that just hides the content.
  2. Adding Wikipedia templates for content so that other WP templates link to the category instead of WP (like this one. Doing this on an article page would completely defeat the purpose. It has to be a category to provide any usefulness over just going straight off to WP.
  3. Adding information about what the category is for. Like Category:Notable people. This can't be done any other way, and is an approach used by WP.
  4. Adding information about the people in the group in a more useful way than the 'alphabetized by Person' list that's generated automatically (the reason that the Great Migration ships add the template).
Even if I didn't think that it materially degraded the user experience to ban content on categories, I don't think it's a good use of our time to remove this useful content and prevent other people from doing it, and I'm going to be more than a little upset if my efforts are just deleted without more input than just the 2-3 people speaking in this discussion.--Amelia 10:28, 27 January 2010 (EST)
Amelia, I don't mean to speak for Janiejac, Jennifer or anyone else who has piped in on this topic, so I hope they correct me if I'm wrong. From what I've read, I don't think anyone is suggesting that you cannot put an explanation or definition of the category at the top of the category page, such as at the top of Category:U.S. Secretaries of State and Category:Notable people. What doesn't belong on the category page is a lengthy discourse on the category topic. Let's say there's a category for Mayflower passengers. The category page should define what the category includes and excludes, but shouldn't have a treatise on why they sailed, the hardships they endured, etc. That type of material would be better suited to be in a separate article, though you could link to that article from the Mayflower passenger category page. --Amy 10:50, 27 January 2010 (EST)
I did agree with you, which is why I didn't get excited the first time and agreed with a compromise version of Dallan's proposal -- short information at the top is fine, but long articles should go somewhere else. But then this discussion was described here as a proposal to ban manual editing of categories.--Amelia 11:07, 27 January 2010 (EST)
I took that discussion to be referring to the "(surname) in (place)" categories/articles, not to all categories. It appears we need some clarification as to the scope of that proposal. --Amy 11:47, 27 January 2010 (EST)
It is my understanding and belief that, just as Amy stated, a concise definition of the category's contents is appropriate. What I believe we are trying to prevent is anything that resembles an article, such as Category:Taylor surname. While this is great information, it does belong on a separate page. Dallan had another observation regarding extensive text on category pages at the project talk page. He said: "I was on the other side of the fence before (put the content directly on the category page), but after being reminded that it shows up every time you page forward or backward in a category (e.g., Category:Taylor surname), I agree it's better to put it on a separate surname-in-place Article, with an obvious link to the article at the top of the surname-in-place category page." --Jennifer (JBS66) 15:33, 27 January 2010 (EST)
To reference Wikipedia's description of What goes on a category page?: "Category pages exist to be a convenient cross-reference to related articles and other categories. A category page should contain a brief description of the purpose of the category. A prominent link to the most important article in the category is usually a good idea, but please avoid copying large quantities of text or images from an article to a category page." --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:42, 27 January 2010 (EST)

4. Most surname in place category pages have never been created, even though they contain links to pages. The Category:Smith in Minnesota page doesn't exist for example, so it doesn't show up as a subcategory in Category:Smith surname. Should I write a program to automatically create surname and surname in place category pages when they contain a link to a page, and to automatically assign the category pages to the appropriate "parent" categories (to address Janiejac's issue above)?

This would create quite a few more category pages. At one time I worried (and I still do) that doing something like this would have so many automatically-generated category pages that they would drown out the human-created category pages, which are likely to be much more interesting. But not having the links (e.g., a link to Category:Smith in Minnesota from the Category:Smith surname page) makes it seem like we don't have any Smith's in Minnesota, so this doesn't seem right.

I like it as it presently is, but I may be in the minority in trying to make every red link blue. But you may be right in dealing with a volume of unutilized article and category pages created automatically that overwhelms the manually created pages and categories. --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES. If there is a page linked to it, the category page should be there to list that person as a member of the catgeory. Don't create empty pages, but yes on the ones with members. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Frankly, I'd prefer we didn't start turning category links blue when they have no content, but I've lost that battle with the "A Surnames" stuff. So go for it.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
I vote NO. Leave the red links until the pages are manually edited by a user.--Beth 18:18, 27 January 2010 (EST)

5. What do we want to do about the "place" categories (see Category:Virginia, United States for example)? Do we want them at all? If we keep them I assume we'll want to automatically-generate category pages for place categories as well.

Keep the place categories - absolutely! However, our place categories are currently taking 2 different forms (ie Massachusetts, and Massachusetts, United States see Category:United_States). We need to stick with one, perhaps we should look to follow Wikipedia's lead on this?--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:57, 15 January 2010 (EST)
I think the Virginia page you cited above is a perfect example of why we should keep that category type (e.g. multiple subcategories -- most of them counties -- and almost three dozen articles and one image). I don't see any problem having county placename categories as subcategories to state category pages. It provides multi-level avenues for research and categorizes pages in a logical heirarchy. --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES. Seemed redundant at first, but What Links Here on a Place page is too unfocused. Need some way to say that these pages are important to Virginia, though why Whyte Robert Rumgay's picture is in Category:Virginia or some of the other things are there is beyond me. The stuff that is there should be of use to almost everybody interested in Virginia, not because the linked item is simply in Virginia. Also, Virginia and Virginia, United States are the same thing, the one named plain Virginia should not exist. The names of these should follow the place hierarchies and Virginia, United States should be a subcategory of United States. People placing things in categories should use the smallest one possible (though this may cause problems regarding historical vs WeRelate place names - people may want categories that represent a place in a subset of time?) This needs some organization and some rules to avoid getting out of hand. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Yes, but as noted above, these should be human-edited to have content of interest to people interested in Virginia. Auto-generating anything is unlikely to go well.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

5a. Do we want to make the "surname in place" categories subcategories of the corresponding "place" categories as well as subcategories of the surname categories?

Oooh. Nice idea. (That's a yes from me.) Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Definitely yes. Will volume be a problem? --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES if possible. Would suggest adding subcategory to the Place called Surnames, and linking surnames in place to that subcategory, not directly the main place category. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Yes. I like Jrich's suggestion, because volume will be a problem.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

5b. Do we want to add Source, Person, and Family pages to "place" categories?

Please provide an example; having difficulty visualizing this. Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
I'm not sure what you mean. Aren't there other routes to make the connection and search for information between those pages? Or are you talking about categorizing family and person statistical events (such as birth, marriage, death) to places? In that case I might see a value. In Wikipedia, a person's birth or death date can be categorized under "1920 births," "2003 deaths," or "People from Seattle, Washington." --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
NO. That can be done using What Links Here on a Place page. Place categories ought to be used because there is something that is pertinent to/symbolic of/important to that place, not because it is simply there. Somebody would go to a Virginia category to find important pages to view if one is interested in Virginia, like, I don't know, prominent people in history, emigrant families, important books, articles on Virgina history. A list of the millions of people who have ever lived in Virginia would not be useful unless each such category gets automatically created with a subcategory structure to make it easier to manage. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Only if you can limit it to towns and counties. It would be a mess for states and countries. And it seems if we add the surname in place categories as subcats of place categories that takes care of it. Don't do both.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

6. I'm thinking I'll need to re-work how page links are listed in category pages. It seems like someday we'll want to be able to filter by namespace so that you can display just the Person pages for example. I'm wondering if we also want to display separate alphabetical links for each namespace, so that Person pages get filed under headings like "Person A" and "Person B", or maybe subheadings "A" and "B" under a larger "Person" heading, rather than the current approach of putting all people under "P".

Yes on filtering by namespace. And I think yes on the second part. Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Yes, that filter or additional automated feature could help narrow searches done via category pages for users. That also raises the issue of how more expert users input and edit the category manually to force it into the right place on the category screen by adding the desired alpha character(s) after the category name. But by doing it manually though, some categorized links are alphabetized by user-provided information and most others are automated by page type and then by alpha/numeric designation. I appreciate the flexibility, but it may cause confusion to some. --BobC 23:40, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES and YES --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
YES please. I notice {{Defaultsort}} isn't supported here, but perhaps autopopulating that could accomplish this? And have it be human-editable for special circumstances? Like right now the U.S. Presidents are in date order...--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

6a. Do we want to list the person's full name (and maybe birth & death year) instead of their page title in category listings?

Hallelujah! Hallelujah! h...h... hallay looo yuh! (I've wanted page titles to do this for a long time; since we can't have that, it would be MAHvelous to have it this way on the category pages. Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
For Person Pages, yes. Not sure about Family Pages. --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES and possibly in more contexts than just Category lists (instead of displaying page title)? --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Yes this would be much more useful --Judy (jlanoux) 11:55, 17 January 2010 (EST)
To quote Jillaine, Hallelujah!--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

6b. Do we want to sort person/family pages by surname, then by givenname, then by birth year, then by death year in category listings?

Sure. Will this slow display down too much though? Jillaine 12:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)
On family pages, will that mean there be a separate category sort for both husband and wife? --BobC 13:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
YES. --Jrich 10:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Yes --Judy (jlanoux) 11:55, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Yes. Are you going to have birth and death years for family pages? It seems like marriage date would make more sense.--Amelia 19:15, 17 January 2010 (EST)

--Dallan 00:07, 15 January 2010 (EST)


I'm overwhelmed! Too many suggestions for change at once :-) Can we take this project in smaller steps? Perhaps we could begin with creating a Categories project page. It would allow a centralized place for dicussion, and users could sign up to help create/maintain the category structure. We could then rename just the surname category pages automatically and assign those to the parent Surnames category.

On another note, it appears that image pages that contain surnames with spaces are categorized differently than person/family pages. One example is Image:1753-10-14 Trouw Egidius van Euwick x Elisabetha van Hedel.jpg. The surnames on the image are categorized under both van Hedel and simply Hedel.--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:59, 15 January 2010 (EST)

I agree with Jennifer - when I'm already confused on this subject, all this detail is very overwhelming. I also like very much her comment: "I feel that we should not be placing extensive text on category pages. Categories are intended as a finding aid, not an article." I find articles in categories, even in subcategories. So can we break it down into smaller bites and come up with short definitions of each type of page and whether the pages are automatically generated or user generated? --Janiejac 13:13, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Ok, I created a WeRelate:Categories project page. I just need a bit of help here... how much of this conversation do we move over?--Jennifer (JBS66) 13:44, 15 January 2010 (EST)

I've been thinking about a couple of points regarding this categorization discussion.

  1. Janiejac has brought up a nice point on the Categories project page. Along these same lines, I noticed a number of new surname-in-place category pages that were created last night. These pages link only to the surname in place category and to neither the surname or place they are representing. I suggest that we develop a standard template for our surname-in-place categories, link them to the appropriate surname page, and possibly eliminate the Category:Surname in place altogether.
  2. I have concerns about Dallan automatically creating our surname and surname-in-place category pages. Yes, it would be nice to have this repetitive task handled automatically. However, I think the WR community would benefit from undertaking this project ourselves. It would help us to strengthen our sense of community and develop a stronger knowledge of the workings of this site. Instead of automatically creating incorrect pages like Category:? surname of Category:Moore in NY, we would learn to be cleaning up our messes and properly maintaining the site. There is a daily generated list of wanted categories. Going through this should be a part of regular site maintenance.
  3. In a previous discussion on multi-part surnames, Dallan suggested putting 'dit' names (alternate names common in Quebec) in the surname field. This translates into possible category pages such as Category:Destroismaisons Dit Picard surname. I suggest creating another option in the alternate name pull-down for dit names instead. Then each name would go on a separate line, and two independent categories would be linked.
  4. I am wondering about our automatically generated categories. These are hidden on our pages, and I wonder if that takes away from people learning how categories work. One idea might be to still automatically generate the category, but place the actual [[Category:title]] text within the text box.
  5. In addition to surname-in-place and shared research categories, we also have a Category:Family Exchange and Help:Family Exchange Pages. This seems like another case of overlap that needs to be sorted out.--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:43, 17 January 2010 (EST)

Surname pages and links to person and family pages [17 January 2010]

Are person and family pages supposed to be linked to the applicable surname page? If so person and family pages are not presently linked properly. I checked the Coker surname page and only one person page is linked. I checked the Gay surname page and no person pages are linked. --Beth 21:43, 14 January 2010 (EST)

I see quite a few Coker's listed.--Dallan 00:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Yes, under category surname they are listed. Are the person and family pages linked to the category surname page and not to the surname page?--Beth 11:32, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Beth, this is too easy. Please check your User Page. If you notice in the names you are researching on the far left side, all of the names were input by you as surnames you were/are researching. All of the Coker names/links were red because you hadn't linked to the articles they automatically created when you entered the surnname data; the McGuire and McCullough names are in blue because the articles they automatically created you must have changed in some way at some time. To illustrate this, I clicked on the three Coker surnames in Texas, Oklahoma and California. When each article opened all I had to do was edit and save, and this action automatically linked those article pages to your Coker surname page (as can be seen on page 2). I'll let you do the rest of the Coker Surname in Place pages. After you do so I think you'll agree: it's too easy. Right? --BobC 21:02, 15 January 2010 (EST)

Beth is raising a related issue for me. I think we've discussed it elsewhere, but I no longer recall. WHY do we even *have* Surname article pages? They are not linked to from person pages-- those go to the relevant surname *category* page; the bulk of them only list alternative spellings; and they are only linked to from articles when one fills out the Surname field in an article. Wouldn't it be better to have all those alternate spellings as narrative in the upper part of the Category page for said surname and get rid of Surname pages altogether? Jillaine 12:52, 15 January 2010 (EST)

I think we need to look at the purpose of both page types: the Surname Page identifies related (or unrelated) surnames (each having their own surname page and category page) under different spellings. They can be used as an article page (or as a research guide for that name) letting users and contributors add information about that surname; and as indicated by the Surname Portal it can be utilized as a one-name study regardless of known or proven family or ancestral connection. The associated category page is intended as a finding aid within the WeRelate community; while it too can be manually enhanced to include user-contributed data, it's purpose is primarily to group pages of similar content at WeRelate. I see good uses for both and good reasons for keeping both. --BobC 13:59, 15 January 2010 (EST)
The alternate spellings on the pages within the Surname and Givenname namespaces (such as Surname:Smith or Givenname:Jennifer) work along with the search function to return close matches. There are more details at Help:Name pages--Jennifer (JBS66) 14:12, 15 January 2010 (EST)

Bob, your explanation is clear and I do understand the difference in the surname pages and surname category pages. However; I am concerned about the complexity of this site. As I recall, one of the reasons we decided to eliminate the surname in place pages were because the red links that were automatically generated on the user profile page were confusing to users. Users do not know what they are for and do not understand the difference between the surname page and the surname in place pages and/or categories. How many users actually check the categories? What about the categories that the user has to manually enter on the related page to have the page even show up in the list of categories. Somehow we need to simplify this process. I am sure that some users simply give up from exhaustion. I am not recommending that we eliminate the surname in place pages but somehow we need to make it easier for users to differentiate between surname and surname in place pages and the corresponding categories. I believe that most new users would intuitively look for links to people on the surname page and not on the category page . --Beth 19:33, 15 January 2010 (EST)

Hi again, Beth. I'm sure based on your experience level you do understand the difference. I was actually addressing the issue that Jillaine raised in her comment above, and secondarily to other people who may not understand the primary purpose of both page types. Since I only joined WeRelate last year I may not have read the discussion you are referring to about replacing the Surname in Place pages, but I believe the discussion about the subject above clearly indicates concensus otherwise at this point in time. I respectfully disagree with your viewpoint that we need to "dumb down" WeRelate; I think instead we need to educate. --BobC 21:15, 15 January 2010 (EST)
Bob, just in case you overlooked this in my last entry, I stated that I was not recommending the elimination of surname in place pages. I also do not consider simplification to be synonymous with "dumb down". That would depend on the method of simplification implemented. --Beth 09:03, 16 January 2010 (EST)
Actually I didn't overlook it, I disregarded it because it contradicted your previous observation, and I quote, "One of the reasons we decided to eliminate the surname in place pages were because the red links that were automatically generated on the user profile page were confusing to users." You also wrote on the Category talk:Surname in place, "This page needs to be renamed. --Beth 14:50, 22 February 2008 (EST)." I just wanted to correct the record. Hopefully Dallan's response to this question has put this issue to rest and we can now proceed with (or revert back to) the more popular and conceptually accurate Surname in Place usage. Thanks for bringing this issue up for discussion. --BobC 11:34, 16 January 2010 (EST)
By all means proceed with the more popular surname in place usage. Obviously my message was unclear to you, sorry sometimes I have problems selecting the correct words to clarify my meaning. In Feb 2008, I had been an active user of WeRelate for approximately 3 or 4 months, and I did recommend renaming the surname in place pages. That is precisely why I stated in this discussion that I was not recommending the elimination of the surname in places. I changed my mind after reading the support that all of you exhibited for the pages to remain. Trying to to make the record clear.--Beth 09:39, 17 January 2010 (EST)
Bob, if we can't make it simpler to use, folks aren't going to hang around long enough to get educated! If folks stay long enough and struggle through enough to get educated, that is a plus, but it is not the purpose of this site. WeRelate needs eyes on the site for the ad income; if it is easy enough to use, folks will stay and maybe learn from more experienced folks along the way. Someone told me one time, you fish with what the fish like, not with what you like. Our potential users don't want to struggle with complexity. How many have already dropped out??
But it will surely help if we can come up with a clearer definition of pages and then put that in the TOC of help. I like Jennifer's definition of categories as finding aids. My understanding of articles is that they are for discussions, historical or genealogical. But after being here a year, I'm just now figuring this out. I still am unsure when categories are automatically assigned and when they are user generated. --Janiejac 10:09, 16 January 2010 (EST)
Like any program or application, WeRelate has a learning curve. I don't believe it is WeRelate itself that is so difficult to use for most people, it is the wiki framework. When you and I joined WeRelate we didn't know everything about it in a week, we learned the ropes, through Watercooler discussions, through perusing old archived posts, through adding our own GEDCOM data, through editing our FTE file, through becoming involved in Portal additions, and through contributing project work of various sorts. I'm still learning new things and capabilities of WeRelate. The free form of WeRelate is what draws me here. If I wanted the predefined structure of an inflexible template with no ability to make choices or no ability to modify the appearance of my data I would have stuck with Ancestry.com.
I agree with you about coming up with clearer definitions and usages of pages; that is explanation and education, and helps foster consistency. Implementing the WeRelate talk:Support page is a helpful way to answer basic utilization questions; multiple video and text tutorials giver new users a place to learn the basics; multiple help content pages such as Help:Contents are educational tools useful for new users or experienced users branching into new areas. Can we come up with more helpful recommendations for Dallan to simplify the use of WeRelate? Sure we can, and I'm sure he welcomes any and all ideas.
But to go back to some of the areas that are causing people concern, such as red links on a page, just because they don't know what to do with them, should Dallan entertain a motion to eleiminate them? Those red links are there as automated hints for possible expansion of information. People don't have to use them, but they can if they want to. They are an avenue for recording further research. Just because someone is confused about the difference between an article and a category under the same topic heading, do we eliminate one of them so they don't have to make a choice? My thought is we define the overall scope of each and let them use them the way that best suits their needs and abilities.
But this whole discussion of Shared Research Pages vs. Surname in Place articles, Categories vs. Article, and links between Surname Pages and associated Person and Family Pages, are not coming from new users; they are coming from experienced users, saying it would confuse new users. Possibly. So Dallan took the time to put out a series of questions, and to this point only two others besides myself responded to his specific questions. 'Nuff said.
BTW, Janie, I appreciate your fine work with Surname in Place articles, such as on the Jackson line. Now just hit those Surname in Place red links on your user page and the world will be a better place. :) Take care. --BobC 12:13, 16 January 2010 (EST)
Oh! I just learned how easy it is to 'fix' all those red links. I've been leaving them red because I thought I had to add some text to that page. Not so - just click edit and save! Duh! Maybe some more precise automatic wording across the top of the red pages would instruct wiki-challenged folks like me. --Janiejac 04:23, 17 January 2010 (EST)



Categories - Overview

Overall: I see there is no way to 'back up' to get to the parent category. We've depended on the browser back button but that won't work if you are starting from the bottom. So does there need to be a way to go back up the framework? I realized this when I was looking at the Category:Special Projects and wanted to know in which parent category it was placed. So there is currently no way to determine that by going back up the chain. I think we should be able to navigate up and down the categories. --Janiejac 08:50, 20 January 2010 (EST)

Categories do not always appear in a nice, clean hierarchy structure. Just as a page may appear in multiple categories, a category can also appear in more than one category. So there is not always a direct line, like... A --> B --> C. At the bottom of the Category:Special Projects, it lists the categories that it appears in, in this case Category:Browse. That is probably the best way to go back up the line. There is a very handy little bit of software Dallan could consider installing that would provide a more visual view of our categories, it is called CategoryTree. If you go down a little bit on that page, in a box on the right is a sample. WR can't install this until the software that runs WeRelate, MediaWiki, is updated. This is long overdue, and I sincerely hope it moves to the top of his list soon.--Jennifer (JBS66) 09:04, 20 January 2010 (EST)
Actually, you could just follow the category link(s) at the bottom of the page to go to (or return to) the parent category or categories. Remember in this category linkage there may be several category chains: for instance, as Dallan pointed out, and consensus seems to want, the parent categoies for Category:Surname in place will (or should) be Category:Smith surname (as an example) as well as the specific placename chain. --BobC 09:07, 20 January 2010 (EST)

See Category:Founders of Hartford, CT - I see that for linking purposes when person pages link to categories the person pages get called 'articles' on the category page. Maybe instead of saying "There are 96 articles in this category." the text should read "There are 96 PAGES linked to this category". Because even sources and repositories get linked to the various categories and on the category pages they are all called 'articles'. We need to be consistent with what is an article and what is not. --Janiejac 08:50, 20 January 2010 (EST)

The text "There are # articles in this category" is the default with our MediaWiki software. You are right though, this terminology does conflict with WeRelate's use of the word article. This text can be changed on this page MediaWiki:Categoryarticlecount, by Dallan or an admin.--Jennifer (JBS66) 09:24, 20 January 2010 (EST)
I changed this text to read: There are # pages in this section of this category. This reflects the wording in the newest version of MediaWiki--Jennifer (JBS66) 15:28, 20 January 2010 (EST)

Shared research pages category


Surname in place category

Is this the concensus for the naming of articles in this category?

  • Surname in state
  • Surname in county, state

When one creates an article in this category which if any categories are automatically created? Does one need to create an empty article named Surname in United States? --Beth 18:45, 20 January 2010 (EST)

Beth, I *think* we're going to end up asking everyone to add United States to such categories. It's not my preference, but I haven't been taking a world view. Right now it's a mixed bag with some categories adding United States and some not. And that makes for confusion. I noticed on my home page the links in the list of places I'm interested in remains red unless I redirect articles to a page that has United States appended to the title. So I don't think a 'final' opinion has been decided; and I could be wrong on that. Personally, I doubt the advantage of any category or article named Surname in United States as not being focused enough to be helpful. But sometimes I don't see the big picture. --Janiejac 13:43, 24 January 2010 (EST)
Let's not overreact and talk about manually changing something of this scope and degree, Janie. Beth, my suggestion would be to look at your own User Page to see how WeRelate automatically creates, handles and links these pages. As I wrote you elsewhere, I started the process for you on you Coker surname from Texas, but you have not yet carried it forward to that line or other red-linked Coker lines. When I saved your Coker article page above it automatically created the following categories: Category:Coker surname, Category:Texas, United States, Category:Coker in Texas, and Category:Surname in place. You now have four links to that "empty article."
No, you don't have to create an empty article, but by doing so you create links that might help others link to your research and to you personally. But why wouldn't you want to add information to what you know about your Cokers from Texas? You initially added that data on your user page, and you knew enough of them and their lives to show a surname connection to that place at some point in the past. Why not add some information to the page so it is not an empty article? --BobC 09:45, 25 January 2010 (EST)
Thank you for your help. I have not finished the process that you started on my user page because I had decided to leave the red links until I decide to utilize the surname in place pages. Category:Coker in Texas is not automatically linked to Category:Coker in United States. --Beth 10:19, 25 January 2010 (EST)

Oh my! Would somebody clean this up?? Category:Jackemeyer_Spadholtz,_Sinram,_Lepper,_Paulmann,_Franzdorf,_Dierks,_Gerken,_Koch,_Luehrs,_Roemer,_Kikuchi,_Tapati,_Palenapa,_Samonte_in_Alsace-Lorraine Category:Jackemeyer_Spadholtz,_Sinram,_Lepper,_Paulmann,_Franzdorf,_Dierks,_Gerken,_Koch,_Luehrs,_Roemer,_Kikuchi,_Tapati,_Palenapa,_Samonte_in_Alsace-Lorraine

This just doesn't look right to me! --Janiejac 13:19, 24 January 2010 (EST)

Done (I deleted), the user had put their surnames all together in one line on their user page. Great example here of why we shouldn't start automatically creating Surname and Surname in place pages.... --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:28, 24 January 2010 (EST)

Family Exchange category

Jennifer, I thought 'Family Exchange' pages were just another name for 'Shared Research' pages. Earlier when Beth was setting these pages up, there was a discussion about them. I don't recall exactly, but I think the name came down from training earlier genealogists received, but I've a notion that current Internet genealogists don't understand the term. --Janiejac 00:59, 16 January 2010 (EST)

Janie, as per the discussion on the Watercooler page which started this separate discussion page, Family Exchange is another name for One-Name Study, I believe I read it was designed by a Beth a year or two ago to mirror the format she saw and liked on RootsWeb. (See the Surname Portal for more information and details on the connections between Surname Studies, One-Name Studies and so-called Family Exchanges.) The Shared Research category was meant to replace the Surname in Place pages (both its articles and categories). Both the Family Exchange category and Shared Research category were little used, in my guess, probably because the titles didn't accurately reflect their purpose as much as the other more used and accepted categories a couple zealous users had hoped to have replaced, and because potential users of these pages/categories were/are confused by their intended purpose. That's my understanding of it. --BobC 13:01, 17 January 2010 (EST)

When I click on Category:Family Exchange to read the purpose of these pages, it sounds to me like 'Shared Research pages' which I think we've just about decided to discontinue. The Family Exchange link says "Articles pertaining to surname or one-name studies should be placed in this category." Why couldn't this info be placed in a category called "Surname:Smith"? Then on the category:Surname:Smith page there could be subcategories category:Smith in AnyState. A template could be used to click to individual state pages. --Janiejac 00:59, 16 January 2010 (EST)

Very wise and sensical observation. Once again, please review the Surname Portal for details. --BobC 13:09, 17 January 2010 (EST)

I'm thinking that further breakdown perhaps should be discouraged as generating too many subcategories, but instead folks could create ARTICLES titled "Smith in AnyCounty, AnyState". But here's where it gets all confusing: should a page titled "Smith in AnyCounty, AnyState" be a finding aid page or will it be a discussion of various Smith families in the county? --Janiejac 00:59, 16 January 2010 (EST)

In your example, the User Profile page automatically sets up Surname in Place articles ("Smith in Benton, Arkansas, United States") which are initially in red until you click on them. When you add to, update, and/or save the Surname in Place article it automatically creates the Surname page ("Smith surname"). The article page is the data page and should link to the category page ("Category:Smith in Arkansas") and the surname page should link to the surname category page ("Category:Smith surname"). In my opinion, I wouldn't discourage any further breakdown if it serves the purpose of the user and the community and better links multiple pages with common subject themes. In other words, if there was only one Surname in Place article for Benton County, it would not be necesssary to set up a county category; the Surname in Place category by state should be sufficient. --BobC 13:22, 17 January 2010 (EST)

I've a notion that only experienced users are going to create categories. Most of us will stick to creating articles. Especially if it is emphasized that categories are finding aid pages and articles are for discussion pages, historical or genealogical. --Janiejac 00:59, 16 January 2010 (EST)

You may be correct. But as users become more saavy and better educated in the advanced features, then they will be used -- as long as they are avilable to be used. There seems in these discussions a small group here who don't want others to have that opportunity if they themselves don't use the feature or don't understand the use or capability. That seems sad to me. --BobC 13:30, 17 January 2010 (EST)

And I've messed up your plan to keep this broken down by topic. Sorry, that's just the way my mind works. I hope others will come over here to add their thoughts. Just writing this out has helped me. Of course, if I've figured it out wrong, somebody set me straight! --Janiejac 00:59, 16 January 2010 (EST)


There are currently 14 major categories with Browse as parent category. Among those 14 categories is one called 'Family Exchange'. Family Exchange currently contains no subcategories; 10 articles are linked to Family Exchange. This category is currently considered for renaming. The following is copied from template for Family Exchange: "The purpose of this exchange is to facilitate the research of the {{{surname}}} surname."

It looks like that would be an acceptable description of Category:Surname Anyname. I wonder why they didn't just use that as it was already available. What was the purpose of setting up a new Category:Family Exchange? I think we still need to distinguish between finding aids or indexes and discussion articles. --Janiejac 23:50, 19 January 2010 (EST)

Once again, Janie, I agree. Since the couple people using the category do not seem compelled to make a change, and I do not want to step on any toes, I changed the parent category to Category:Special Projects since that seems the most pertinent to what the category seems to be. --BobC 09:21, 20 January 2010 (EST)
Ah, yes! Category:Special Projects should be the parent of Category:Family Exchange! Sounds logical to me. I've have in mind a similar project I hope to do and would put it under Special Projects. --Janiejac 19:12, 20 January 2010 (EST)

Place categories


How images are categorized

Currently, it appears that images are categorized by surname, surname in place, specific place location, and copyright.

This is creating "wanted categories" such as: Category:Bethlehem Cemetery, Madisonville, Hopkins, Kentucky, United States. Is this the best way to categorize images? Would the parent category for this be Category:Madisonville, Hopkins, Kentucky, United States?--Jennifer (JBS66) 16:54, 19 January 2010 (EST)

While categorization of images seems to be a pretty much ignored area, the more I'm working with adding images to some of the people in my family tree here at WR, the more confusing it is getting for which images have been added and which ones I yet need to add. Any other suggestions?

The observation above is that WR categorizes images by surname, surname in place, specific place location and copyright.

  • Categorization by copyright is of little practical use to me.
  • I fear an image would get lost categorized by specific placename location.
  • Categorization by surname in place might be better but would probably be too isolated.
  • Categorization by surname would probably be the best other alternative of the four.

Personally, I would rather categorize images by major family grouping, but that might run counter the community protocol established by WeRelate (although that method is not encouraged, it is used and condoned). --BobC 15:02, 23 March 2010 (EDT)

I posted a possible solution under the How deep should place-related categories be? section of the talk page. If we followed something similar for images, then images would be categorized under Category:Images in placename (which would be a subcategory of Category:placename). And we could also put them under Category:Images for surname (which would be a subcategory of Category:Surname surname).
Or what if we didn't categorize images at all and made navigating around your contributions list better?--Dallan 19:15, 24 March 2010 (EDT)
I find the latter idea intriguing (your amended observation of "radical" was apropos I think) and more on the line for what I am thinking. I'd like the ability to cross reference WR image space names with the original image filename on my computer and with the individaul or family with which associated -- without having to manually create a separate list. Perhaps that is being too self-centric versus community-collaborated, but I need it as a temporary device or monitoring aid until my collection of images are loaded and matched to people and family pages in WR. Perhaps a notepad at my desk or an Excel spreadsheet would work as well, I'm not sure.
Not sure your thought of a Category:Images for surname would be effective or useful as a subcategory to the surname category, because images are already separated within each surname category. Possibly with volume will come the need for such a subcategorization, but I don't think it is needed at this time (not to mention it would just segregate the images another layer removed from the surname category page). I could see the eventual usefulness of a Category:Images of <Surname> surname in placename subcategory at some point though.
Appreciate you taking my musing seriously and putting thought into my question. --BobC 00:45, 25 March 2010 (EDT)

Categorizing images by copyright could be a useful tool for administrators, though I agree, perhaps of little use to others. Couldn't we add the Hiddencat "magicword" (by way of a hidden category template) to the categories under Category:WeRelate content licensing. This will cause them to be invisible to users on image pages, but still accessible. Also, just to note, Wikipedia states: "Images are typically put in categories that contain only images, under the parent category Wikipedia images." I haven't thought about how that might play out here.--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:48, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

Well, we can't use wikipedia's hidden category template verbatim, due to parser functions, so I made a replica Template:Hidden category. --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:14, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

Categorizing images by copyright is something I copied from wikipedia, but we can get what we need by searching for the license words with the search engine. So it's probably no longer necessary.

Images are less collaborative than other types of pages since they're uploaded by one individual and not edited. So I think you could write your original image filename in the text of the image page. And you could list the person to which the image is connected in the person field of the image. This gets you the information that you're looking for. And you could list all images that you've uploaded in your Contributions list. The problem is that you'd have to click on each image to see the original filename and who it's linked to. The only other thing I can think of would be to create a User page for listing all of the images that you've uploaded, along with their original filenames and who they're linked to. You'd have to maintain that page by hand, but at least the information would be available all together. I don't think categories would be of much use here.--Dallan 15:37, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

Thanks for the input, effort and suggestions from the both of you. --BobC 16:08, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

How we list pages in a category


Category Structure & Analysis [12 February 2011]

(Not all levels are displayed -- highest three levels identified in most cases)

Category:Contents (Replaces Category:Browse) - (See talk page discussion)
  1. Category:Administrative content - (See talk page discussion)
    1. Category:Administration (Replaces Category:Community)
      1. Category:Administration_of_this_site\ (See talk page for discussion on this change.)
      2. Category:Banners
      3. Category:Pages written in non-English languages
      4. Category:Pages that cross-reference Wikipedia
      5. Category:Policies
      6. Category:Templates
      7. Category:Temporary categories
      8. Category:WeRelate content licensing
    2. Category:Maintenance (Replaces Category:Content_cleanup)
      1. Category:Approximated dates
      2. Category:Date with no source
      3. Category:Disambiguation (no subcategories)
      4. Category:Questionable
      5. Category:Source citations needed
      6. Category:Speedy Delete
      7. Category:WeRelate_ToDo (See talk page discussion)
    3. Category:Highlights
      1. Category:Featured_Article (no subcategories)
      2. Category:Genealogy_Well_Done,_Sources (no subcategories)
      3. Category:Press releases
      4. Category:WeRelate_Newsletters (no subcategories) (See talk page discussion)
    4. Category:Help
      1. Category:Help needed (See talk page discussion)
      2. Category:Research guides - Placement of this category under Category:Help is probably not appropriate, because the category contains specific information relating to genealogy research and would be more appropriate as a subcategory to Category:Finding aids rather than to this general administrative Help-type category containing topics relating to creating, using, modifying, and maintaining pages at WeRelate. --BobC
    5. Category:Portal (See talk page discussion)
    6. Category:Users
      1. Category:Users by language
        1. Category:User en
        2. Category:User fr
        3. Category:User nl
  2. Category:Genealogical content - Formerly Category:Shared research pages (See talk page discussion)
    1. Category:Places (Replaces Category:Continents and oceans) (See talk page discussion)
      1. Category:Africa
      2. Category:Asia
      3. Category:Atlantic Ocean
      4. Category:Caribbean
      5. Category:Central America
      6. Category:Europe
      7. Category:Middle East
      8. Category:North America
        1. Category:Bermuda
        2. Category:Canada
        3. Category:Greenland
        4. Category:Mexico
        5. Category:Saint Pierre et Miquelon
        6. Category:United States (The states underneath United States appear twice in 2 different formats; needs to be fixed)
      9. Category:Oceania
      10. Category:South America
      11. Category:Cemeteries (Individual cemeteries will also be listed as subcategories of specific placenames)
    2. Category:Surnames does this category function as the iii that was deleted? If so, then maybe we don't need i either. Where do we want that list of created surname categories to be, here or as a child of this cat? --Janiejac 15:21, 22 January 2010 (EST)
      1. Individual surname categories: A list of the surnames on WeRelate (if category pages have been created)
      2. Category:Surname in place (Category is also a subcategory of individual placenames)
      3. Category:Lists of Surnames (See talk page discussion)
      4. Category:One-name studies (See talk page discussion)
      5. Category:Patronymic names (See talk page discussion)
      6. Category:Pseudonyms (See talk page discussion)
      7. Category:Disambiguation (See talk page discussion)
    3. Category:Sources
      1. Category:Cemeteries - 16 subcategories, 92 articles Suggest 2 new subcats, Cemeteries by location, and Cemeteries by religion (to replace religious cemeteries) Jennifer. How about the following? --BobC
        1. Category:Cemeteries by location Nice, I like this. --Jennifer
          1. Category:American cemeteries abroad
            Category:Cemeteries by country Future expansion idea. Regarding the Cemeteries of below, if we want to look at Wikipedia Categories by country as a guide... these would be entitled Cemeteries in country. --Jennifer
          2. Category:Cemeteries of Argentina
          3. Category:Cemeteries of Australia
          4. Category:Cemeteries of Canada
          5. Category:Cemeteries of France
          6. Category:Cemeteries of Haiti
          7. Category:Cemeteries of the Netherlands
          8. Category:Cemeteries of the United Kingdom
          9. Category:Cemeteries of the United States
        2. Category:Cemeteries by type What type? What is the attribute? --Jennifer. I think it should be as open and broad as necessary and appropriate. I would say any type at this parent level, and let users and contributors break the type down to specific attributable types, such as religions (I see you want this category in its own equal level category to this one whereas I think it should be included as one of the "types"), private and family cemeteries, community and government cemeteries. --BobC
          1. Category:African American cemeteries
          2. Category:Cemeteries with separate interment pages
          3. Category:Family cemeteries
          4. Category:Government cemeteries
          5. Category:Private cemeteries
          6. Cemeteries by religion Just a suggestion... I think the content will grow enough to warrant this --Jennifer. See my comment above. I think this category should remain a subcategory under "type." It can and probably will grow, which is okay, because religious cemeteries are appropriately a "types" of cemetery. Any comments or input from others? --BobC
        3. Category:Cemetery records
      2. Category:Census records - 2 subcategories, 171 articles
        1. Category:U.S. census
        2. Category:Census of Canada
      3. Category:Church records - 168 articles If we have "Category:Cemetery records" as a subcategory under "Cemeteries" then we should probably have "Church records" as a sub under "Churches." --BobC
      4. Category:Churches - 4 articles
      5. Category:County Records Checklists - 4 articles limited scope (one user) Jennifer. I agree to some extent. I think articles are grouped well and need categorization, just not here as a primary source category. I will recategorize as a Finding Aid and move to that category below, as the articles contain worthwhile information to assist in finding genealogical information in the counties listed. --BobC
      6. Category:Directory records (Formerly Category:Directories) - 2 subcategories, 33 articles Suggest change to Directory records. This is a bit messy, needs to be sorted out. This appears under both sources and finding aids. Also, telephone subdir appears under a cat and its parent (not recommended)' Jennifer. No problem with changing category name. Finding Adis has been removed as a parent category. My thought of Category:Finding aids is that the category should refer to pages relating to sources that contain information and/or pertain to resources that are designed to assist users in finding relevant genealogical data and more direct sources of information; not in and of themselves containing genealogical data directly pertaining to people or families. They should be publications, websites and resources designed to locate or interpret specific information. With that in mind, then articles within the Directories category would contain names and data that can be used for genealogical research on specific people and families, such as City Directories and Telephone Directories do. On the other hand, a book entitled, "Locating, Researching and Interpreting City Directories of the United States" would be a Finding Aid rather than a direct source of family information. --BobC
        1. Category:Community directories
        2. Category:Telephone directories - 4 articles
        3. Category:Who's who directories - 1 article
      7. Category:Ethnic and cultural - 9 subcategories, 25 articles
        1. Category:African American (Formerly Category:African-Americans) - Suggest change to African American Jennifer. I have no problem with that proposal. --BobC
          1. Category:Freedmen's Bureau Records Source Guides
        2. Category:American Indians - Suggest change to Native American Jennifer. I would prefer to keep it as is. The primary reason is because, as the Wikipedia article on the subject reports, "According to a 1995 US Census Bureau set of home interviews, most of the respondents with an express preference continue to refer to themselves as American Indians or Indians." To me that should be reason enough. --BobC
        3. Category:Armenian (Formerly Category:Armenians) - Suggest change to Armenian Jennifer
        4. Category:Danish - If we are going to accept Category:Nordic as a valid category, then this Danish category should be placed as a subcategory under it. Agree? --BobC
        5. Category:Freedmen's Bureau Records Source Guides - Seems out of place Jennifer. I agree. Any ideas? --BobC. Since this category with its two article pertains to Category:African American history, I have added as a subcategory to that category above. --BobC
        6. Category:Jewish - Is "Jewish" an ethnicity, cultural entity or religious reference? If religious, should this category be placed elsewhere? Would we place articles containing "Amish" or "Catholic" references under the Category:Ethnic and cultural category? While all these religious groups have various degrees of cultural influences, should those subcategories go here? All input welcome. --BobC
        7. Category:Nordic (Formerly Category:Nordic peoples) - Suggest removing, place contents under Swedish or Danish Jennifer. I don't agree. Ethnicity and culture do not always follow the same precise boundaries as geographical countries. As the description of this category page says, It "is meant to contain articles that relate collectively to the ethnicity and culture of the peoples of the Nordic countries: Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and the Åland Islands." Although in the U.S. the useage of the term "Scandinavian" is often used synonymously with "Nordic", this is apparently not true within the Nordic countries. I guess I would opt to discard the word "peoples" after "Nordic" in the category title instead. --BobC
        8. Category:Scottish (Formerly Category:Scots) - Suggest change to Scottish Jennifer. I agree. --BobC
        9. Category:Swedish (Formerly Category:Swedes) - Suggest change to Swedish Jennifer. I agree. --BobC If we are going to accept Category:Nordic as a valid category, then this Swedish category should be placed as a subcategory under it. Agree? --BobC
      8. Category:Family bibles - 2 articles
      9. Category:Family histories - 31 articles
      10. Category:Finding aids - 6 subcategories, 84 articles This category should not contain genealogical data directly pertaining to people or families, but resources to locate specific information. --BobC
        1. Category:County Records Checklists - 4 articles
        2. Category:Directories - 2 subcategories, 33 articles Listed appropriately as a direct subcategory under Category:Sources above. --BobC
        3. Category:Educational institutions - 1 article
        4. Category:Finding Aid (See talk page discussion)
        5. Category:Freemasonry - 1 article, seems out of place as own category --Jennifer. I have been thinking about creating the more broader category(ies) of Lodges and Religions, either together or separately. We have separate religious cemetery categories and church records, perhaps we need to look at categories for religions and religious entities. Looking at a similar categorization of religion at [Wikipedia] shows this could be an imposing project in itself. Do we try to tackle it or ignore it? Your thoughts? --BobC
        6. Category:Publishers - 1 article, vote to delete for now (re-evaluate when we begin categorizing sources and repositories) --Jennifer. I'll take a look at it. --BobC. I moved this category down to the new Repositories Category. --BobC
        7. Category:Research guides - 98 articles
        8. Category:Research services - 3 articles
        9. Category:Telephone directories Added as subcategory under Category:Directories above. --BobC
        10. Category:Town and county homepages - 3 subcategories, 428 articles
          1. Category:England, South East England town and county pages removed, contained only 1 source --Jennifer
          2. Category:United States, California town and county homepages
          3. Category:United States, Massachusetts town and county homepages
      11. Category:Funeral homes - 177 articles
      12. Category:General history - 6 articles Duplicate entry. Is correctly listed as a subcategory under Category:History below. --BobC
      13. Category:Heraldry - 2 articles See Categorizing_sources_and_repositories comment --Jennifer
      14. Category:Historical societies - 2 subcategories, 454 articles
        1. Category:Ethnic, cultural and religious historical societies - 4 articles
        2. Category:Geographically focused historical societies - 6 articles
      15. Category:History - 1 subcategory, 5 articles
        1. Category:General history - 6 articles
      16. Category:Land records - 31 articles
      17. Category:Legal records - 1 subcategory, 41 articles
        1. Category:Freedmen's Bureau Records Source Guides
      18. Category:Libraries and archives (Replaced by Category:Repositories category chain. See talk page discussion.)
      19. Category:Manuscripts - 8 articles
      20. Category:Maps and gazetteers - 23 articles
      21. Category:Message boards and lists - 142 articles
      22. Category:Migration records - 46 articles. Listed as a subcategory of Category:Migration within Category:Special Projects. Please read comments at that category. --BobC
      23. Category:Military - 5 subcategories, 99 articles
        1. Category:Deceased Veterans of North Carolina
        2. Category:Military Units
        3. Category:Militias
        4. Category:U.S. Civil War
        5. Category:Veterans' organizations
      24. Category:Newspapers - 3 subcategories, 68 articles
        1. Category:Historic newspapers
        2. Category:Newspapers in Canada
        3. Category:Newspapers in the United States
      25. Category:Obituaries - 16 articles
      26. Category:Occupations - 12 articles
      27. Category:One-name studies - 2 articles (See talk page discussion)
      28. Category:Online - 1 subcategory, 4 articles - Questionable usage, along with associated "placename." See WeRelate_talk:Categories_project#Really_Odd_Categories for discussion. --BobC. Suggest deleting --Jennifer. I agree. I think the same criteria we applied to Category:Websites should apply here. --BobC
        1. Category:Digital libraries, archives and museums Appears elsewhere
      29. Category:Other records - 3 articles
      30. Category:Periodicals - 7 articles
      31. Category:Products (See talk page discussion)
      32. Category:Research guides - 98 articles How are Finding aids different from Resource guides? Jillaine 11:30, 5 February 2010 (EST). You bring up a good point. This category should probably be a subcategory of Category:Finding aids. --BobC
      33. Category:Research services - 3 articles. This would better fit as a subcategory under Category:Finding aids. --BobC
      34. Category:Town and area histories - 30 articles
      35. Category:Town and county homepages - This category (and its subcategories) seems better categorized as subcategory to Category:Finding aids because of content of pages linked to it. Pages also are appropriately linked to placename categories. --BobC
      36. Category:Vital records - 2 subcategories, 248 articles
        1. Category:Canada Vital Records - replaced with Category:Archives in Canada Jennifer
        2. Category:United States Vital Records - replaced with Category:Vital records in the United States Jennifer
    4. Category:Repositories (See comments for deleted Category:Libraries and archives above. See also Categorization of Repositories discussion at the Repository Portal Talk Page for full categorization chain.)
      1. Category:Repository in place (See comment above.)
      2. Category:Publishers (See comment above.)
    5. Category:Special Projects
      1. Category:Cherokee Heritage Project
      2. Category:Daughters of the American Revolution
      3. Category:Drayton Family Slave Genealogy
      4. Category:Family Exchange
      5. Category:Filles du roi
      6. Category:First Families of Louisiana
      7. Category:Founders of Hartford, CT
      8. Category:Georgia - Think this is here as a project to disambiguate page & move contents --Jennifer. As you noticed, this was not an actual project, but an automated ambiguation bot for all "Georgia" placenames without further location information. I corrected a number of the article and repository place names, and all that are remaining are the user pages. I moved this category under Category:Disambiguation as a maintenance (clean-up) item. --BobC
      9. Category:Headpiece - only has 1 image --Jennifer. Could not tell whether or not this was part of a special project, but it seems to be used as a banner space and therefore inappropriately assigned here. I moved it as a subcategory to Category:Banners above as an administrative area. --BobC
      10. Category:Immigrant ancestor only has 1 item --Jennifer
      11. Category:Migration - My thought is that this category may have itself "migrated" from a Special Project to a more general category with multi-varied subject subcategories, as shown below. It may warrant being moved up as a subcategory of Sources. Opinions? --BobC
        1. Category:Migration records
        2. Category:Gone to Texas
        3. Category:Puritan Great Migration
      12. Category:Notable people
      13. Category:Southwest Virginia Project
      14. All Special Interest Portals as listed on Portal:Community (Also included under Portal category above.)
      15. All Community Projects as listed on Portal:Community



    Comments

    Now, the hierarchy is a little bit deceiving, as pages can appear in multiple categories, as appropriate.

    Also, category pages need to be manually created. If they are not, they will not appear on a 'parent' list. ie: Category:Marshall surname is not created, thus it does not appear in the list of Surnames.


    Thanks for the breakdown. --BobC 13:34, 19 January 2010 (EST)

    Personally, since our states are under the parent Category:United States, I'll vote for dropping the words 'United States' from the state categories as being redundant. I would think if the parent category is United States, then the next level down would be the state without the appendage of United States. I just don't think that would confuse anyone. It seems obvious from common usage that folk don't add the country to the state. Since some dislike adding the country, Dallan hoped to ease the frustration by making it an automatic process when adding places. But when we create categories and articles, we still don't add 'United States'; so now we have a mixed bag. I think we don't need to add the parent category to the state category. We don't do that with other categories do we? Sigh . . .(I have a notion this battle has been fought before.) --Janiejac 18:11, 19 January 2010 (EST)
    Even though Category:Georgia has the parent Category:United States, this does not appear in the category's title, thus leading to confusion. We could adopt Wikipedia's solution and disambiguate when confusing, see Wikipedia:Category:Georgia However, I also agree with ceyockey's comments at Help_talk:Categories#United_States_state_categories.--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:12, 20 January 2010 (EST)
    In more closely reviewing our place categories, I suggest keeping the format Category:State, United States. When a person enters a place on a page, say Massachusetts on a Repository page, that is automatically matched to Place:Massachusetts, United States. In addition, a category is placed on that page, titled Massachusetts, United States. Adopting Category:Massachusetts would be counter to this system. --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:12, 23 January 2010 (EST)

    Please review my suggestions for new category heirarchy above. Comments and further recommendation welcome. --BobC 10:57, 20 January 2010 (EST)


    Further Changes

    I would like to recommend further categorization as follows for the categories under the "Continents and Oceans" category to encourage a better defined heirarchy of categories. I think this would also be a good place to utilize the recently controversial Shared Research Pages category to something closer for what it was originally designed:

    1. Category:Community OR Category:Contents as suggested earlier. Community is good; Contents is more descriptive. --Janiejac 14:08, 20 January 2010 (EST)

    1. Category:All Users Could Dallan automate adding this category to all user pages?
      Dallan wouldn't need to add this category to all individual users, because this would be a parent category. All english speaking users would have the Cateogry:Users en as the category on their individual User page. --BobC
      However, if we ever want to expand to include categories such as Category:Users by location or Category:Users by skill, then keeping Category:Users would be necessary. Also, I was modeling this structure on Wikipedia and the category titles of the user language template.--Jennifer (JBS66)
      1. Category:Users by language Will be needed when we upgrade MediaWiki and begin using language templates
        This category would not be needed, as it would be redundant. All we would need are the subcategories below listed as a category to each user. --BobC
        1. Category:Users en
        2. Category:Users fr
        3. Category:Users nl

      4. Category:Yet to be named (possible subcategories of Category:Administration_of_this_site)

      1. Category:Disambiguation So far, this is only used for Surnames. Perhaps we could have this be a subcategory of both Category:Administration of this site AND Category:Surnames. --Janiejac 14:08, 20 January 2010 (EST) . You're right, there's no reason is can't serve as categories under both areas. Thanks. --BobC
      2. Category:Help
      3. Category:Products
      4. Category:Templates
      5. Category:WeRelate content licensing

      Further input or comment encouraged. --BobC 13:34, 19 January 2010 (EST)

      Bob, I added some ideas for #1

      I would also like to consider something like the following, not entirely sure where it would link to:

      Category:Married by country
      Category:Married in Canada
      Category:Married in France
      Category:Married in Netherlands
      Category:Married in Friesland, Netherlands
      Category:Married in Ferwerderadeel, Friesland, Netherlands

      Same could go for Born in and died in...--Jennifer (JBS66) 14:28, 19 January 2010 (EST)

      Thanks Jennifer, I amended your additions above as noted in green. Please review and comment. --BobC 14:53, 19 January 2010 (EST)

      There are also a number of orphan categories that will likely need to be included in the above or moved.--Jennifer (JBS66) 15:22, 19 January 2010 (EST)


      Changes made to structure and category names as discussed above. Please review and comment as appropriate. --BobC 15:19, 20 January 2010 (EST)



      Category:Disambiguation

      Category:Administration (of this site) No. 4 above

      Category:Disambiguation

      This seems out of place to me as disambiguation is more of a study of surnames; not of administration. I checked all 10 articles under this category to see how they were being used. Nine of the 10 articles had only one category attached, that of Disambiguation, and the 10th used both Disambiguation and the surname. IMHO each of those pages should also be listed under the proper surname category just so other people searching those surnames could find these pages.

      Even Category:Products doesn't seem to fit under Administration. Looking at what is there, one is really a source and should be moved; the other is a description of genealogy software. If we even want to include that kind of information it could/should be titled Category:Software. The word 'Products' doesn't tell me enough of what is there. Do you think we're going to have various other 'products' that should have articles written about them?? So do we even need that category?

      But I like this title Category:Administration and there are probably a lot of other categories that should go under Admin also.

      I'm not an administrator but I keep throwing my two cents in because this has been so confusing to me. If you can get it simplified enough for me, then you've probably got it right. Until then, I'll keep saying where I'm bothered. As for adding 'married in' and 'born in', can we leave adding categories until after the ones we already have are reorganized and cleaned up? (I forgot to add my name; so here it is but time is not right) --Janiejac 17:31, 19 January 2010 (EST)



      Category:Surnames

      No wonder I'm confused: We have under the parent category of Browse 14 main categories, first being

      1. Category:Surnames which has a great little alph template for clicking to go directly to first letter of Surname you want.
      2. If I click 'J' it takes me to the first instance of the subcategories beginning with 'J' but these subcategories don't have the word category or subcategory in their title; example "Jackson surname".
      3. When I click on "Jackson Surname" it links to Category:Jackson surname.

      It seems to me that #2 is redundant and non-descriptive. Why not delete step #2 and be taken straight to Category:Jackson surname? --Janiejac 00:19, 20 January 2010 (EST)

      The subcategories don't have the word Category: in the title because subcategory listings display a bit differently. Within other categories, you will see Person: or Family: (the titles of the namespace). This does not happen with subcategories, you just see the title of the page, without the preceding namespace title.
      So, when you click on J - that is just a handy way to jump to that letter, you are still in the Category:Surnames, so no step to delete there. When you get to J and see Jackson surname... that is really Category:Jackson surname. It is just missing the Category: prefix as I mentioned above. So, in essence, you are being taken straight to Category:Jackson surname. --Jennifer (JBS66) 08:03, 20 January 2010 (EST)

      Orphan Categories

      I just found one of 'my' categories listed on your list of orphan categories! I clicked on it and found a category someone had suggested to me to help me find my pages. I used it briefly, then forgot about it! I still like the idea, but if this category is kept, I need to remember to manually add it. Ugh!! Category:Janiejac's Trees And if I begin to upload my whole data base, I'll probably not get around to adding it to each page. So what to do with this??

      I still think the idea of this type of category being helpful is legitimate. I wonder if the suggestion could or should be made to ask Dallan to automatically add this type of page to all uploaded GEDCOM pages. It would not only be a helpful index of our own pages, it would also be an indicator of who first uploaded the page and a helpful way to find out what else or who else this user is interested in. So I like the idea of this type of category, but is it too much to add automatically? I don't see any downside to this. --Janiejac 17:31, 19 January 2010 (EST)

      Now this battle Janie... has appeared before :-) See this discussion about replacing trees with categories.--Jennifer (JBS66) 18:17, 19 January 2010 (EST)
      No, I did not consider the category to replace trees (that's a different topic altogether in my mind). I envision Category:Janiejac's Trees to be a category assigned automatically to only the pages I generate by uploading GEDCOMs, sort of an alpha index of all pages I created. If I create a page manually, I would have to add the category manually. It would not replace trees. The only potential problem might be if I matched, then merged, another page and so we both (or several) users might have a category attached to one page. (So far, I haven't had many matches so I hadn't thought that would be a problem. But perhaps it would be down the road.) If I match, then merge a person or family page during upload, am I automatically added as a watcher to the merged page? If so, then the Category:Janiejac's Trees function would work well IF it is only allowed on NEW pages the user uploads. Hmmm. One shouldn't go around putting your category on other user's pages, but how would you stop people? So I like the idea but don't know about implementing it.

      Can I get a list of 'my' watched pages? I guess such a list if sorted alpha would meet the first part of the same function but it would include more than just the pages I created. I did a quick glance at the help pages and didn't find any instructions for getting such a list. --Janiejac 20:13, 19 January 2010 (EST)

      Janie, do you mean your watchlist? This is accessed by going to My Relate, Watchlist.--Jennifer (JBS66) 07:54, 20 January 2010 (EST)
      No, I didn't mean a list of 'Recently-changed watched pages' which is what I get when I click on Watchlist. I mean a current list of all pages I have created. I was hoping such a list would be an acceptable substitute for Category:Janiejac's trees. I don't want to wade through all the detail of all the changes on pages I watch. I watch a lot more pages than I have created and just want a reminder of pages I have created. That's what Category:Janiejac's trees was supposed to be, but unless it can be automatically added when GEDCOM is uploaded, I won't go back to manually add it. Hmm - a work around would be to add the category only to the root family of each upload. Hasn't any body else wanted a list of their created pages? How do other folks handle this? --Janiejac 09:34, 20 January 2010 (EST)

      If this is morphing into a feature request for the ability to see X person's created pages, fine, but if there's still a request that we permit "John's Tree" as a category, we need to deal with that as part of any project on categories. There ought to be a criteria for creating categories, and to my thinking it should exclude anything that's of interest only to one researcher (and his/her immediate family). User-specific data like this is incompatible with the policy of deleting user ID's, etc; it needs to be done behind the scenes.--Amelia 22:49, 22 January 2010 (EST)

      Yes, I can see now that categories such as "John's Tree" or "Janiejac's Tree" would not be practical or advisable to include in the framework of categories. "Janiejac's Tree" was created to meet a need and that need might be better addressed by a feature request. Though I don't know if the system has the ability to create such a list or not. --Janiejac 11:00, 23 January 2010 (EST)


      I started yesterday adding parent categories to some of the orphan categories. Today I found an orphan Category:Questionable. This category has quite a few person or family pages and also the link to the template "Questionable information found here". It's a good category, just needs have a parent category. I *think* this template is sometimes added by the author or more likely by someone who has seen something that doesn't appear logical and needs more work. So where to place it in the framework? --Janiejac 13:51, 22 January 2010 (EST)


      Category Index page

      Came across this - might be helpful WeRelate:Category index--Jennifer (JBS66) 09:55, 20 January 2010 (EST)

      Thanks, Jennifer. I'm aware of the page as it had been referenced at least twice elsewhere in the discussion. That's where I think the agreed upon results of this discussion should end up, modifying that list. I had hoped we could have moved the discussion on this subject that had begun on the Watercooler to the Category Index talk page, but I didn't move fast enough and it had been moved here instead. Hopfully looking at that page will assist others to view where we're trying to get to. --BobC 11:29, 20 January 2010 (EST)
      Yes, Thanks from me too. That is very helpful. I am learning a lot just going through this process! But I am still going to hit this page with a lot of questions! The Index page is titled WeRelate:Category Index. So what kind of pages get titled with WeRelate and colon? The menu on the page itself says it is a Project page. So should it be linked to both the Admin category and the Special Projects category? I think this would be a good addition to the Help category. Hmm I need to study this some more! --Janiejac 12:02, 20 January 2010 (EST)
      It appears that pages in the WeRelate: namespace have to do, generally, with the administrative operation of the site. There are currently 163 pages in that namespace, and they can be searched from here.--Jennifer (JBS66) 17:58, 20 January 2010 (EST)
      I suppose I see this page can assist in organizing an even larger project. Not just the initial category indexing, but also developing teams and strategies to maintain our Wanted Categories.--Jennifer (JBS66) 11:39, 20 January 2010 (EST)


      Extracts of Analysis [7 April 2010]

      The following paragraphs regarding discussion of specific category areas were moved from the analysis portion of the discussion above upon "agreeement," "resolution," "closure" and/or "nonapplicability," kept here as part of the record of the discussion.


      Category: Products

      Category:Products - Below, Janie questioned this usefulness of this category. Seems the contents are better suited under Category:Sources --Jennifer Please review the contents of this category again, Jennifer. I might agree with you if it contained real sources, but the two items it does contain are Ancestral Softworks software application designed to convert GEDCOM and supporting files into PDF files, and Emily Anne Croom's book, "Genealogist's Companion and Sourcebook," which I would consider to be a finding aid. So I think this could be a category assigned as a subcategory within both the Help area and Source area. Is that a compromise you find acceptable? Thanks. --BobC Both items in this category strike me as out-of-place. They were both created/categorized by one user and go against current WR convention. The Source, I would agree, is a finding aid. However, as none of our current sources are categorized, why include this lone item here? Perhaps, in the future, WR will automatically categorize sources based upon the Subject selected. Regarding the software, this is the only article (that I could locate), of its kind. Perhaps the info from that page could go here? --Jennifer. I concur -- good calls. Information from two files moved to Category:Finding aids and Genealogy_Tools_Research_Guide. The former associated but now unused categories are now tagged for Speedy Deletion. --BobC


      Category: One-name studies

      Category:One-name studies - Please look at this. I know there are more one-name studies that should be linked here. I would place this under the parent Category:Special Projects. Ah, this is also listed under Category:Sources. I can understand it if it is put under both Surnames and Special Projects, but under Sources?? --Janiejac 19:30, 20 January 2010 (EST) I too am surprised there are not many more sources categorized here. I don't agree that this category should be placed as a Special Projects, because it is not, at least based on its present contents. Category:Family Exchange is clearly a user-initiated WR Special Project, but this One-Name Studies category holds a single surname source (at least at this point in time); so as I see it, it could be justified as a subcategory of both the Surname category as well as the Source category. --BobC I think this is another case of one user who created categories (which was great!). However, we don't yet categorize our sources, this category's sole item. When WR gets to that point, we can decide on the proper structure. Now, I vote to delete. --Jennifer Ah, I was remembering all those names listed on Portal:Surname Studies. I thought they were all One-name Studies and they aren't. So OK to delete; but I'll bet someone will create it again because it is a well-known description. (I don't understand it under Sources but that's OK) --Janiejac 23:08, 21 January 2010 (EST) Let's split the diff on this one, delete from here and keep as a sources subcategory, because I do want to populate the category myself with quite a few of the one-name external sources I've found that I want to add as source pages here at WeRelate. Okay to leave at sources category? --BobC

      I was considering that it was a One-Name Study created here at WR and if so would probably be a Special Project. I had not considered using a One-Name Study from somewhere else as a Source. But yes, if that is the case, then it should be listed with Sources as the parent category. If the One-Name Study is created here, then it could be placed under Category:Surnames or Surname:Anyname as parent category. So you've got my OK to remove it from Special Projects and put it under both Sources and Surnames. --Janiejac 15:45, 22 January 2010 (EST)


      Category: Lists of Surnames

      Category:Lists of Surnames - please discuss the difference between list i. and list iii. It looks like both would be lists of Surnames. --Janiejac 17:00, 20 January 2010 (EST) Looks like this category should be deleted. Only contains 1 source which we could categorize under sources somewhere--Jennifer. Excellent observation. Single source file recatagorized correctly under Category:Ball surname and otherwise unused category tagged for Speedy Deletion. --BobC


      Category: Portal [27 February 2010]

      Category:Portal - Since Sources, Surnames, Users are all plural, should this be titled Portals?--Jennifer. Possibly if you were being totally grammatically correct referring to a group, but since that is the title of the singular category page, I think it is correct as stated. Each of the portals within that category (e.g. Source Portal, Surname Portal, Place Portal, etc.) are also singular. --BobC That makes sense. In light of that... I'd like to put the idea out there to rename Category:Surnames to Category:Surname. The reason is, when I go to create a parent category, I often look at the child I am currently in. Thus, if I am at Swart surname, logically, I would think to name the parent Surname. --Jennifer. You have a point. I can't say it matters to me one way or another. But if that change is justified, then I could also say the same about the Sources Category below also. But both of those possible category name changes are well beyond our ability to do manually. Leave it to Dallan to decide if necessary and appropriate. --BobC

      This topic makes me ask: Why do we need a category for a namespace? Isn't the purpose of categories to help people find pages in that category? In the case of Namespaces, one could just as easily use Search, select the desired namespace and not put any qualifiers in. Wouldn't that generate the same results? What does adding a (Namespace) category add? Jillaine 11:24, 5 February 2010 (EST)
      Categories provide an alternative way to search for content. They group pages together in ways that you would not find through a search alone. Categories are a function of the software that runs the site (MediaWiki) and they are commonly utilized at Wikipedia. To quote WP "There are two ways to look things up in Wikipedia: by searching or by browsing", categories allow you to browse. --Jennifer (JBS66) 11:51, 5 February 2010 (EST)
      Jillaine makes a good point. I don't think it hurts to have categories for certain namespaces; I'm not sure how much it helps though. If you want i can rename surnames to surname and sources to source, as a low priority.--Dallan 21:53, 27 February 2010 (EST)

      Category: Help needed

      Category:Help needed - Doesn't look like this has been used in years --Jennifer Just added this category to the WeRelate talk:Support page, so it is now being used. Think that is appropriate, as the page had not been categorized previously. --BobC Looking at the old history on Help:Help_needed, it looks as though this category, and the corresponding help page, were ideas created in 2006. Solveig noted when she deleted the help page in 2007 (no longer using). The text on the category is also not current convention, as we no longer encourage users to leave questions on place pages. If we agree, I can go ahead and delete the HELP notes on the few pages in that category. --Jennifer. Okay, nominated for Speedy Deletion. --BobC


      Category: Disambiguation

      Category:Disambiguation - Wikipedia has Disambiguation under Administration. As it can disambiguate more than just surnames, it probably doesn't belong here--Jennifer. If you read below, as User:Janiejac pointed out, the Category:Disambiguation as here used contains only disambiguated surnames. Perhaps, the category should be expanded to reflect surname, places, and other terms, and each put under a separate category. --BobC 13:10, 20 January 2010 (EST) As Janie pointed out below, we can use it for both areas. --BobC


      Categories: Patronymic names & Pseudonyms

      Category:Patronymic names and Category:Pseudonyms - 1 subcategory each. We may want to delete this and pseudonyms for now. Again, they were created by one user and don't really seem to fit in IMHO. Jennifer. I agree. Information transferred to former linked surname category pages and both categories nominated for speedy delete. --BobC


      Category: Shared Research Pages [29 January 2010]

      Category:Shared research pages - Pardon me if I overlooked this discussion... I am really missing the point to this parent category. It seems to me that ALL of WR is shared research (save for User Pages), it's a wiki. When I am looking for Places, I don't think to look under here, same for Surnames. --Jennifer. Agreed, I thought we'd about decided not to use Category:Shared research pages. I think Bob thought this was using it for a different concept than before; but I don't see the real need for it. Tell us again why this might be helpful. --Janiejac 19:40, 20 January 2010 (EST) It was agreed that we would no longer use it as a replacement for Category:Surname in place. As I've indicated elsewhere, the original declared use of Shared Research Pages was defined as "community pages that could be edited by any registered WeRelate user" (versus password protected User Pages which could only be edited by the original creator). I think this division most closely mirrors that original designation and is appropriate, as in Shared Research. Yes, as Jennifer pointed out, all WR is shared, but Administration, Help and User pages are not really Shared Research. Whatever we decide to call this category, the heading would equate closely with Wikipedia's "Encyclopaedic content". If there is unanimous objection to the Shared Research name, we could consider using the no-longer used Community category. I invite Dallan's opinion on this usage as well. I'm reminded of the saying, "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." --BobC

      I do not understand this category. How does it help people find something? It's too vague as named. (So is "community" for that matter. I suggest we delete it. Jillaine 12:27, 29 January 2010 (EST)

      Category: Places [5 February 2010]

      Category:Places (Replaces Category:Continents and oceans) - Vote to move Places underneath Category:Contents Jennifer. I don't agree, Jennifer. Looking at the definition of "Categorization," it is the process in which ideas and objects are recognized, differentiated and understood; it implies that objects are grouped into categories, usually for some specific purpose. Ideally, a category illuminates a relationship between the subjects and objects of knowledge. Places are clearly "Encyclopaedic Content" (Wikipedia's term) and should be given equal weight with other encyclopaedic content here at WeRelate. We have an existing template for that encyclopaedic content: within the WeRelate Community Portal, the primary portals consist of Person, Family, Article, Place, Repository, Source, MySource, and Image, all encyclopaedic content given equivalent status. Category:Places is a integral part of Shared Research (using the term both conceptually as well as categorizationally), along with Articles, Surnames (i.e. Persons and Family), Sources (i.e. Sources and MySources), and the yet to be utilized Repository category. That's my humble opinion. --BobC I believe by Encyclopaedic content, you may be referring to Wikipedia's Category:Contents page (their top-level category). However, even though it shows on the page's overview, Encyclopaedic content, Navigational content, and Content maintenance, the categories themselves are not broken down in that manner. Categories deemed to be Encyclopaedic content, such as Articles, Glossaries, and Lists are still directly underneath the main Contents. I am not trying to make places more important then other categories, by any means. This is just a part of the larger question, "What is the point of a Shared Research category, when this entire wiki is shared?" --Jennifer While I see your point that the entire wiki is "shared" (as in available to be seen and used), Places is specific genealogical content for which other genealogy content (such as People, Events, Sources) would be worthless (or worth substantially less). I know you don't like the term, "Shared Research," but if you look beyond the words, the term should be thought of as genealogy research shared between users, as in the information contained in GEDCOM data files imported to WeRelate or between programs. That clearly does not include or equate to the program's administrative information, programming data, help-related articles, or even the users themselves. Places are not exclusive to Shared Research (i.e. Genealogy Data or whatever moniker we decide to name this major category grouping), but totally inclusive within this category. That's why I would vote to keep it attached to it as a subcategory. --BobC I think we need a better term, then. Using Bob's definition of "Shared Research" pages, I have a similar project that I've recently started (over here anyway; it's been going on for years at Rootsweb). Specifically, Our Schwenningen Ancestors. I've even created a category for it, because ultimately, I want all pages related to this project grouped together; that includes person and family pages as well as articles. The intent is to encourage all descendants of this town to work together to document descendants, especially those who emigrated to the U.S. In this sense, this is "shared research" yes? But it's also a "special project". And there will be an uploaded GEDCOM that will be part of this project. So is THAT the kind of thing you're speaking about? Jillaine 13:28, 25 January 2010(EST) . Jillaine, we resolved the "Shared Research pages" question at the talk page with Dallan's assistance and I moved its discussion to that page as a closed and resolved topic. On this topic thread we are discussing the placement of Category:Places. If you have a opinion on this topic, I invite you to share it. Thanks. --BobC

      My opinion is the same as I posted above about Category:Portals -- why do we need categories for namespaces? Jillaine 11:27, 5 February 2010 (EST)

      Category: WeRelate_ToDo

      Category:WeRelate_ToDo - (no subcategories)I would have hoped Dallan's to-do list would be listed here. Is it someplace else? --Janiejac 22:48, 21 January 2010 (EST) Dallan's to-do list is here. It is the first item listed in the category. --Jennifer Somehow I missed that! --Janiejac 15:05, 22 January 2010 (EST)


    Category: Help

    Category:Help - Where is that index placed? I think it is an article, but to me it is more of a finding aid; so perhaps it ought to be a category?? I'd like to find it in a more prominent place since it is sort of a table of contents. Would folks use it as a navigational tool? Or would it need to be rewritten as a category? --Janiejac 17:27, 20 January 2010 (EST) OK if I go to the index & add Category:Help to it? --Janiejac 22:48, 21 January 2010 (EST). If you've found it feel free to add the Help Category. I see no problem if it is an article, because this category already contains 70 articles and only the one subcategory above. --BobC Done. --Janiejac 15:05, 22 January 2010 (EST)


    Category: WeRelate Newsletters

    Category:WeRelate_Newsletters (no subcategories) - this one looks obsolete to me --Jennifer. Do you mean to say you think the category itself is obsolete or the file contained therein is aged (4 yrs old)? --BobC


    Category: Content Cleanup [5 February 2010]

    Cagtegory:Content_cleanup - Would anyone object to renaming this as Category:Maintenance? --BobC

    No objections; assume it would be under the overarching category of Administration? Jillaine 11:28, 5 February 2010 (EST)

    Category: Contents

    Category:Contents - Would anyone object to naming this as [[:Category:Community Content]]? --BobC. I would prefer to keep the root category broad and brief. I like Contents --Jennifer


    Category: Administrative content [5 February 2010]

    Category:Administrative content - This is a proposal. Any comments? --BobC I like this. Fits well with the Genealogical Content below. One small thing... Wikipedia titles categories with lower case letters unless it's the first word or proper noun. --Jennifer

    Why not just Category:Administration? Jillaine 11:29, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    Because, as you can see here, there already is a category with the name Administration. Bob was creating a higher-level category to contain all administrative content. Also, there is a category (at the same level) named Genealogical content, so the title Administrative content aligned well with that. --Jennifer (JBS66) 11:39, 5 February 2010 (EST)

    Category: Finding Aid [27 February 2010]

    Category:Finding Aid - This is going to get confusing, having Category:Finding Aid as a child of Category:Finding aids. --Janiejac 15:12, 22 January 2010 (EST). Correct. All article pages recategorized correctly and now under Category:Finding aids category. --BobC

    How are Finding aids different from Resource guides? Jillaine 11:30, 5 February 2010 (EST)

    If the system can generate a list of created surnames, why can't it create a list of created categories? Ah, but creating a list of created categories in outline format may be another thing altogether. Wish list! --Janiejac 15:45, 22 January 2010 (EST) </font> </font>

    I'm pretty sure Dallan could program it. See Special:Categories, Special:Most linked to categories, Special:Uncategorized categories, Special:Unused categories, Special:Wanted categories, and Special:Articles with the most categories for special advanced sorts related to category usage at WeRelate. --BobC 02:21, 23 January 2010 (EST)
    What would you like?--Dallan 22:00, 27 February 2010 (EST)

    Category: Libraries and archives

    Category:Libraries and archives 2 subcategories, 549 articles - Okay, time to resurrect the controversy. We've discussed this at length during the Source Renaming Project last year. I believe most of the categories below are actually Repositories rather than Sources. Dallan brought it up with his question of categorizing respositories and creating a Category:Repository in place Category:Repositories in place category. Looking for other viewpoints. --BobC.

    This category replaced by Category:Repositories and the following related subcategories per Dallan's remarks. --BobC 20:19, 7 April 2010 (EDT)
    1. Category:Libraries, archives and museums by location - 21 subcategories, 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories by location)
      1. Category:Digital libraries, archives and museums - 5 articles
      2. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Alaska, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Alaska, United States)
      3. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Berlin, Germany - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Berlin, Germany)
      4. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of California, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in California, United States)
      5. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Illinois, United States - 2 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Illinois, United States)
      6. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Indiana, United States - 3 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Indiana, United States)
      7. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Iowa, United States - 4 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Iowa, United States)
      8. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Louisiana, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Louisiana, United States)
      9. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Maryland, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Maryland, United States)
      10. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Massachusetts, United States - 6 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Massachusetts, United States)
      11. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Minnesota, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Minnesota, United States)
      12. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Missouri, United States - 0 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Missouri, United States)
      13. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of New Hampshire, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in New Hampshire, United States)
      14. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of New York, United States - 4 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in New York, United States)
      15. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Ohio, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Ohio, United States)
      16. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Ontario, Canada - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Ontario, Canada)
      17. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Pennsylvania, United States - 2 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Pennsylvania, United States)
      18. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Scotland - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Scotland)
      19. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Texas, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Texas, United States)
      20. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Virginia, United States - 3 repositories listed (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Virginia, United States)
      21. Category:Libraries, archives and museums of Wisconsin, United States - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Repositories in Wisconsin, United States)
    2. Category:Libraries, archives and museums by topic - 5 subcategories, 0 articles (Replaced by Category:Repositories by focus)
      1. Category:Ethnic and cultural libraries, archives and museums - 13 articles (Replaced by Category:Ethnic and cultural repositories)
      2. Category:Libraries, archives and museums devoted to specific events - 1 article (Replaced by Category:Event oriented repositories)
      3. Category:Libraries, archives and museums devoted to specific historical periods - 1 subcategory, 1 article (Replaced by Category:Time period oriented repositories)
      4. Category:Libraries, archives and museums devoted to local history - 6 articles (Replaced by Category:Local history repositories)
      5. Category:Libraries, archives and museums devoted to specific organizations - 2 articles (Replaced by Category:Organizational repositories)

    Whoah, the colors!!!! [23 January 2010]

    This page (above) is REALLY difficult to read with all those colors. Jillaine 20:45, 22 January 2010 (EST)

    Regret you're having difficulty with it, but it suited our purpose in consolidating and identifying short remarks one after another from different users while attempting to abbreviate the length of the discussion and not adversely affect the appearance of the category chain. --BobC 02:29, 23 January 2010 (EST)


    Edited Category Pages to Deal With [27 January 2010]

    It appears that the current proposal is to disallow the manual editing of Category pages. That means that there are some existing pages that need to be dealt with. Let's list them here. (Remember to place a colon (:) before the word "Category".)

    I'll start with those on my Watchlist: Jillaine 21:04, 22 January 2010 (EST)

    I finished the category pages on my Watchlist; need others to add pertinent Category pages to this list. Jillaine 12:50, 24 January 2010 (EST)
    Whoa! Where is this "current proposal"?? I strongly, strongly disagree with this! And what are the ones below about?--Amelia 23:43, 24 January 2010 (EST)
    here -- Jillaine 11:01, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    There is no input from Dallan and no input from more than about 3 people that I can see. It may be a proposal, but please do not act on such a destructive and unfortunate path until there is some sort of better guidance.--Amelia 10:31, 27 January 2010 (EST)
    Amelia, I am one of those "three people" who have provided input to this topic. There is absolutely no proposal or suggestion anywhere to "disallow" the manual editing of category pages, so the above statement is not only misleading but erroneous, and I am striking the statement. I too would have been upset had I read that without knowing the background of the Watercooler discussion or the more detailed project page. As I read the link provided by Jillaine above nowhere does it mention elimination of manual-edit capability of category pages, only highlighting pages where excessive user-inputted data was added to certain category pages which would have been better suited on separate article pages. The primary gist of this whole discussion is organizational, analyzing category structure, and relooking category title nomenclature to more adequately describe related contents and develop common-sense heirarchial relationships between categories. And thankfully Dallan has now provided input into this discussion. --BobC 17:09, 27 January 2010 (EST)



    Surname Categories [27 January 2010]

    (Should these be moved to articles in the Surname: namespace?

    In my opinion, the Taylor category page above is an ideal candidate for moving its user-added contents to a separate page, such as an article page or a surname page. It's a good example of a lengthy category page that loses its effectiveness as a category page because the user-added contents are at the top of each page turn. As an added benefit, by moving the contents to a separate page, it would be an excellent start to a Surname or One-Name Study. Regarding the second example above, I don't see any problem with the St. John category page. --BobC 17:44, 27 January 2010 (EST)

    Surname-in-Place Categories [26 January 2010]

    Where should edited content from these category pages go? Should they be moved to new Surname in place article pages, or be added to the appropriate Surname page?

    This question is not clear. Who asked it and when? Do you mean 'edited content' was taken off the category page and you want to put it in an article? Or are you wanting to move the category page to be located under a different parent category? The parent category should be Category:Surname in place. Janie's opinion.--Janiejac 00:59, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Janie, I'm basing this on our Watercooler discussion about removing editable text from the top of Category pages, thus returning category pages to their initial purpose. Jillaine 11:03, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    I agree that the original 'edited content' on those pages might be better formatted as separate Surname in Place articles to comply with the indended use of category pages, but may get better exposure included on the Surname in Place category page because it will be displayed on each category search for that surname in place. I personally am hesitant to move that editable content in those category pages having not created them if the content was created by another user or if the page is being watched by someone with a direct relationship to family line. I moved the Taylor in Massachusetts content formerly within the Category:Taylor in Massachusetts page as an example of the method for doing so and effectiveness in doing so. Does anyone object to me doing the other pages listed above? Unfortunately, as much as we say WeRelate is a genealogical community of jointly shared research, some still feel a degree of "ownership" to "their information" and get upset by others making changes. (Take a look at some of the critiques Beth has received on her User Talk Page regarding some of the changes she has made and you'll see examples of what I'm talking about.) --BobC 14:42, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    I was on the other side of the fence before (put the content directly on the category page), but after being reminded that it shows up every time you page forward or backward in a category (e.g., Category:Taylor surname), I agree it's better to put it on a separate surname-in-place Article, with an obvious link to the article at the top of the surname-in-place category page.
    FWIW, I don't think that we should pander to people who believe that WeRelate is their own personal website. We need to do what's best overall. There are a lot of different ways to use WeRelate, but a common foundation has to be that it's a community website.--Dallan 15:06, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    All user-inputted contents for the above category pages transferred to associated article pages. Jillaine, please take note so you can add yourself as a Watcher for those new articles since they seem to be in your area of interest. --BobC 15:09, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Misc Categories [25 January 2010]

    No, please leave it the way it is for now until a broader concensus is reached. At this point, Category:Research_guides is a single page (one link) category and the edited content fits well within the page. The page also has 21 links to it which would be disruptive if moved to its own article. --BobC 09:19, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Outer-level Categories [26 January 2010]

    By "outer-level," I mean that their purpose is solely to organize *other* (sub)categories.

    Jillaine, I don't believe any final decision has been made. Personally I like to use Category:Surname in place so I hope it stays around. Just a brief outline, I think this is the current suggested set up. This outline has been revised somewhat. See if this is more accurate and is what everyone wants.

    Category:Shared Research pages

    Category:Places
    Category:Surnames... (list of ALL surnames with alpha template for ease of selection. Articles with surnames are automatically added to this category.)
    Category:Swart Surname...
    Category:Swart in place why is this even necessary?
    Category:Swart in Massachusetts - this category is automatically added to articles with surname in this location
    Category:Swart in Netherlands - this category is automatically added to articles with surname in this location
    Category:Swart in New York - this is category automatically added to articles with surname in this location
    Category:Disambiguation... (list of all disambiguation articles having to do with surnames; alpha template can be used if it gets too large)
    -- Jillaine (and someone else) thinks this should be a subcategory of Category:Any Surname or at least Category:Surnames since that is what disambig pages are usually used for.
    Category:Sources
    Category:Special Projects

    (Wouldn't "special projects" be a subcategory of Shared research? Jillaine 11:07, 25 January 2010 (EST)) Yes, my indenting was off. I fixed it. --Janiejac -- 01:26, 25 January 2010 (EST) edited version --Janiejac 19:41, 26 January 2010 (EST)


    I wonder if there is a bit of confusion here... Category:Surname in place and [[:Category:Surname in place]] are two different things. [[:Category:Surname in place]] refers to categories such as Category:Gale in Massachusetts, Category:Surname in place refers to the larger category attempting to house these individual Surname in place categories.

    I think [[:Category:Surname in place]] should be a subcategory of the individual surname. I created that following examples: Category:Swart in Massachusetts. Category:Swart in Netherlands, and Category:Swart in New York are all subcategories of Category:Swart surname. I think adding these pages to the specific place categories would also be nice. --Jennifer (JBS66) 12:09, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    As I stated in a response to User:Beth on the same subject elsewhere using her user page as an example, the automated Surname in Place articles, once saved, automatically creates or adds the page to (1) the surname category, (2) the placename category, (3) the surname in place category, and (4) the actual Category:Surname in place category. --BobC 14:30, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Uncategorized Categories [7 April 2010]

    The list of Uncategorized categories--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:39, 23 January 2010 (EST)
    Jennifer, it looks like a number of these are "Surname in place" category pages. Should they be categorized under "Surnames" or "Surname in place"? (didn't we decide to get rid of the latter?) Thanks. Jillaine 12:17, 24 January 2010 (EST)
    Get rid of Surname in Place? NO! Discussion yes, decision, no! Please be careful, it's blanket questions or comments like that that gets people's hair raised. --User:BobC 17:26, 27 January 2010 (EST)
    Sorry... -- sheepish
    I have added some comments beside the titles. I'd be willing to add parent categories tomorrow to some of the in place categories but wonder how strong the sentiment is to do away with those categories. I like them and wonder about any discussion to get rid of them. Did I miss something? --Janiejac 01:39, 25 January 2010 (EST)


    Family Categories

    Relating to these so-called Family Categories above (extracted below), my opinion is those categories are the same as Janiejac's Category:Janiejac's Trees for which she was chided for creating and staking a claim for her own category for the trees she was working on.

    If we are going to ask one user to drop their personal claim to a category then WR administrators should ask the same of the other users who've layed claim to the categories specified above, or explain to everyone how the situation is different and how these category pages are justified.--BobC 13:43, 4 February 2010 (EST)

    I think they are unlike a category with a specific username in it because they purport to be descendants of particular people who could have lots of descendants. But they are still problematic because they simply don't scale -- at buildout, every person having a category for even all of their ggg-grandparents would be terribly annoying. We do need a rule about when user-created categories are appropriate, and since these all took a lot of work, we should probably leave them be in the meantime.--Amelia 14:25, 4 February 2010 (EST)
    So what you are saying is that the criticism of Janie's category file was the filename itself rather than the concept of personal ownership like we were lead to believe. If she would have renamed it Category:Jackson Family instead of Category:Janiejac's Trees it would have been alright? I'm not sold. I would offer the same advice I gave to Janie to overcome the criticism, and that would be for the authors to create their own user page article(s) linking those ancestral lines, whether in plain narrative format, ahnentafel format, or linked file format. --BobC 17:07, 4 February 2010 (EST)
    I missed this originally, but since you completely misconstrued my response, I'm going to try again. The difference between these pages is that X's trees (to be more generic) is defined by the interest of a single present-day user. That's both inappropriate to the wiki and non-scalable. "Thomas Root Family" is the descendants of a 17th century couple, of which there are presumably thousands (Jillaine's suggestion below). That's not inappropriate for the personal interest reason; but it doesn't scale because every person page would theoretically have thousands of categories. There are dozens if not hundreds of categories that single users have set up without asking anyone; that simple fact does not make a difference one way or the other.--Amelia 22:25, 27 February 2010 (EST)
    I wonder if something completely different would be appropriate? Something like Category:Descendants of (full name) as in Descendants of Edmund Rice (1638) and recommended for direct-line descendants of an emigrating or famous ancestor? Jillaine 11:41, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    FWIW, and I know I'm coming into the conversation late, I think until we have a better way of displaying descendants of a given person (which I hope we will someday), we need to keep these family categories, but certainly not encourage them. Once we have a way to display descendants we need to remove these family categories, because they definitely don't scale.--Dallan 22:09, 27 February 2010 (EST)

    Really Odd Categories [23 January 2010]

    Wondering if these could be removed? Or... ?? Jillaine 21:04, 22 January 2010 (EST)

    I would agree this is an odd one; thanks for pointing it out. I see Ceyockey created this category as well as a Place:Online place name explaining, "This place and the corresponding category is primarily for use with online Repositories and digital archives." And then added, "Its use outside that context should be avoided presently." So it seems to be used as a somewhat unorthodox naming convention to suit the limited flexibility of the repository namespace when no true place could be identified because of the repository's location on-line rather than at a physical address. Although my preference would be to leave the Place block blank and just include the URL on the repository page, I think this is one that Dallan would need to weigh in on. --BobC 02:07, 23 January 2010 (EST)
    There is now only 1 subcategory and 2 pages referencing this Category:Online. I vote to remove the category and the place name. The place title is causing problems with pages that use the abbreviation ON for Ontario and it's only referenced by one Repository:Genealogy Gems page. I would also tend to leave the place field blank when entering repositories without a specific location. Personally, I don't think Dallan needs to weigh in... --Jennifer (JBS66) 09:44, 23 January 2010 (EST)

    Categorizing sources and repositories [23 January 2010]

    This is meant as a footnote comment to various categories on the main page.

    It appears that Dallan automated some limited category creation within sources and repositories. For the most part, sources and repositories are not currently categorized. I think when we do decide to categorize them, it will likely be based upon the Subject and Ethnicity pull-down fields. So, having a category like Category:Heraldry is out-of-place with our current scheme. I vote to remove these categories for the time being. If and when we begin categorizing sources and repositories, we can communicate as a team about the proper titles. --Jennifer (JBS66) 08:08, 23 January 2010 (EST)

    I put a list of WeRelate's current source subject drop-down boxes on my Sandbox page for reference.--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:47, 23 January 2010 (EST)

    Auto-generated categories for place pages [23 January 2010]

    It appears that auto-generated categories for place pages do not derive their titles from the Located in fields. This is particularly evident in both France and Portugal, which underwent significant renaming. One example in the U.S. is Place:Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut, United States, the category on this page being Category: Hartford, Connecticut, United States. However, for the page Place:Hartford, Connecticut, United States, the category is also Category: Hartford, Connecticut, United States. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:37, 23 January 2010 (EST)


    Help Dallan understand [26 January 2010]

    Hi,

    I've read through the comments on the watercooler, the primary page, and this page. Can you help me verify that my understanding is correct, and answer some additional questions? (I'm sorry for the long post.)

    Appreciate you weighing in on this. I'll try to go through your questions on-by-one. --BobC 14:59, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Root category for non-administrative content [25 January 2010]

    "Shared research pages" appears to be the root category for genealogical content as opposed to administrative content. If so, should this category be renamed "genealogical content" or "community content" or something else?

    Although I prefer the former, given the choice between the two latter alternatives, I would go for "genealogical content" as a compromise with Jennifer who feels that this whole site is "shared" -- I don't want to start another round of lively debates with her that this whole site is a "community."  :) --BobC 15:07, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    Bob, glad you thought the debates were lively :-) I did too... thanks for remaining respectful, open to ideas, and being willing to compromise! Dallan, I do think Genealogical content sounds workable. --Jennifer (JBS66) 15:20, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    If by Genealogical content we are distinguishing from Administrative content then yes, that makes sense. Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Surname in place categories [30 January 2010]

    I'm assuming that a surname-in-place category like Category:Smith in New York should be a sub-category of Category:Surname in place and Category:Smith surname.

    I do not think we need a Category:Surname in place. It seems unnecessary; most people would seek a (Surname)-in-(Place) through either the Surname category or the Place category. Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Should it also be a sub-category of Category:New York, United States? If we do this, we'll overwhelm that category with surname-in-place sub-categories. It seems like it would be better to make it a sub-category of Category:People in New York, which would be a sub-category of Category:New York, United States?

    I think this last is a good idea. THen we'd have:
    1. Category:New York, United States
    2. Category:People in New York (apparently we don't need the "United States"? -- I think we probably need to be consistent and add United States to every country. Also, this category would probably be a sub-category of Category:People in United States, right?--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    3. Category:Smith in New York
    we'd also have:
    1. Category:Surnames
    2. Category:Smith
    3. Category:Smith in New York
    (I'm a visual girl.) This would help people find what they're seeking through two different ways. Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)
    Would we want to introduce a surname-in-country between the surname and surname-in-state categories? It seems like we would. So we'd have
    1. Category:Surnames
    2. Category:Smith
    3. Category:Smith in United States
    4. Category:Smith in New York, United States

    Should we also have three additional sub-categories of Category:New York, United States: Category:Births in New York, Category:Deaths in New York, Category:Marriages in New York, which would list people born, died, and married in New York? These seem a bit redundant to me if we also have a Category:People in New York listed under Category:New York, United States?

    I think the "People of State" category fix is a perfect solution to overwhelming the placename category with surname in place article and category links. So you are talking about limiting these category Event Places to states? Would you consider going down to county level if the states are overwhelmed with vital statistics data? And these data elements would be obtained by bot automatically, correct? --BobC 15:15, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    I would consider going down to the county level for the US if the surname-in-state categories become overwhelmed. I wouldn't do this lightly though, because it would mean editing nearly every page in the wiki -- changing the category from surname-in-state to surname-in-county. This could be done automatically by a bot; it would just take a long time. See the discussion on "Place categories" below.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    Sorry, but I'm still confused on the need for Category:Surname in place. If I understand correctly, it will contain ALL surname-in-place categories? It will be sorted alphabetically by surname in a list such as:
    Smith in Albany, New York, United States
    Smith in Netherlands
    Smith in New York, United States
    Smith in United States
    Swart in Massachusetts
    Swart in Netherlands
    Seems if I wanted to find Smith in somewhere, I would go to the Smith surname category. If I wanted to find who came from Albany, New York, United States, well, this list wouldn't be helpful. --Jennifer (JBS66) 15:31, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    Hi Jennifer. Are you questioning the need for the Surname in Place category listing itself or the "Surname in Place" articles in general? If you accept the premise that Surname in Place articles are cogent and are a value added commodity to WeRelate, then why not categorize them? At the present time there are 79 Surname in Place subcategories to the Surname in Place category and includes 369 articles, which in my book totally justifies having a parent category. Yes, you probably would be able to find a particular surname through some other route, by why not have multiple avenues to approach a research topic. Library card catalogues as well as Internet search engines have multiple ways to search on a particular subject, by author, title, or keyword; and there is the Systematic catalog, a subject catalogue sorted according to multiple systematic subdivisions of subjects. To me that is very similar to the categorization we have (or envision) here. --BobC 09:55, 26 January 2010 (EST)
    I think Jennifer and I are saying the same thing; we do not see a need for the category that is specifically called Surname in Place. Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)
    That is what I am saying. I don't see the usefulness in having Surname in place as a top level category. I do understand the need to find items from multiple avenues. In the ideas that I posted here, you can find Vital Records in a variety of ways. Surname in place, however, doesn't exactly seem like an "entity" to me. It is a term used to describe People in Places. Considering that, I would tend to sort them underneath both People and Places. --Jennifer (JBS66) 06:42, 27 January 2010 (EST)
    I also don't see much of a need for Category:Surname in place. I agree with with Jennifer and Jillaine that categorizing specific categories like Category:Smith in New York, United States under Category:People in New York, United States and Category:Smith surname seems sufficient. I'm not sure why we would also want to categorize it also under a top-level category named Category:Surname in place. But I'm ok if others want to keep it. Having the additional top-level category wouldn't really hurt anything.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)


    Surname in place articles [30 January 2010]

    I like the idea of including a template at the top of each surname-in-place category that has an A-Z list for jumping to a particular place in the list. The template could also add the surname-in-place category to Category:Surname in place and the appropriate surname category. I also like the idea of the template including a link to create a surname-in-place Article for discussion text about the people living in the area. that way the text on the category page, if any, can be limited to short instructions about how the pages are organized (if necessary), so it doesn't get too long.

    Is it possible to include the A-Z template only on category pages that exceed one screen page? Most individual surname in place categories relating to one surname in place will not have more than one screen view page so there would be no need for the template.
    I'm not sure how to do that, unless we had two templates for people to choose from.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    Not sure detailed instructions are appropriate in the template or as part of the header for each category page, but a link to the Surname in Place Help page might be more effective for those needing more thorough help and assistance. --BobC 10:13, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Surname pages [31 January 2010]

    I'm assuming we'll have categories for each surname like Category:Smith surname. I'm trying to figure out where surname pages fit in. Should we have the template on surname category pages (e.g., Category:Smith surname) include a link to edit or create a Surname page (e.g., Surname:Smith)? This seems reasonable to me. It seems like Category:Family Exchange should be removed in favor of using Surname pages?

    Regarding the links to surname pages, doesn't this already happen with the automatic category you've created on surname pages? Surname:Smith is automatically contained within Category:Smith surname, even sorting at the top. Having a template at the top of surname categories would be nice, especially for categories that do not have a corresponding surname page, like Category:Cuperus surname. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:03, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    Category:Smith surname does link to the surname page, but it's listed below the sub-categories so it's not that easy to find. What I'm thinking of is a link at the top of the page, as in http://familypedia.wikia.com/wiki/Category:Smith_%28surname%29, which would take people to the Surname:Smith page if they wanted to talk about the Smith surname, similar to what you suggested for surname-in-place categories: a big link at the top of the category page that would encourage people to create a surname-in-place Article if they wanted to talk about a surname in a particular place.--Dallan 14:12, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    Yes Dallan - that would be great! --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:15, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    Dallan, wouldn't a template such as this require the installation of the StringFunctions extension (due to the way we've named our pages), or do you have another suggestion?--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:35, 28 January 2010 (EST)
    Well, I was thinking that we'd have to pass in the surname as a parameter to the template, as in {{surname-category-header|Smith}}. But I could look into installing the StringFunctions extension so that we could do this without passing parameters.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    If you do install StringFunctions, this is the code that I was thinking would work: [[Surname:{{#sub:{{PAGENAME}}| |{{#pos:{{PAGENAME}}| surname|1}}}}]]. We need to find a way to link Category:XYZ surname --> Surname:XYZ in a template, thus, the surname part of the title needs to be removed. --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:03, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Place categories [30 January 2010]

    How "deep" should the place categories be? Currently if someone says they're born in "City, County/District, State/Province, Country", they Person page is added to a surname-in-place category for the state if they're in the US, or for the country if they're outside the US. For example, a Smith born in London, England and died in Albany, New York would be added to Category:Smith in England and Category:Smith in New York. Is this too high? Should we categorize at the state level for non-US countries as well? Should we categorize at the county level? Note that we don't usually have a county level outside the US, so we can't categorize non-US places by county very reliably. (UK counties are first-level divisions, so for the purpose of this discussion they're like states.)

    Similarly, what about source pages? If I have a vital records source covering a particular town, should it be categorized at the state level, at the county level, or at the town level? That is, should a source for death records covering just the city of Albany, NY be categorized under Category:Vital records of Albany, Albany, New York, United States, Category:Vital records of Albany, New York, United States, or Category:Vital records of New York, United States? How often are sources town or county-specific?

    I think my personal preference is to categorize at the state level for all countries (not just US). So for example under Category:New York, United States we'd have Category:Smith in New York, United States, which would list Person and Family pages, Category:Vital records of New York, United States, which would list Source pages, and Category:Places in New York, United States, which would list Place pages for towns and counties in New York.

    Do we want to rename surname-in-place categories to add the ", United States"? I think this will be necessary if we decide to add categories at the state-level or below for non-US.

    I would say NO to categorization of Surname in Place categories at the county level.
    I just want to second this "NO". For breaking down by county, use a surname in place article page, as I did with Taylors in Massachusetts. Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)
    I think there is enough of cross referencing and depth between the Surname-in-Place articles and Surname-in-Place categories categorized by state right now if properly utilized as designed. For instance, my Cole in Sevier, Arkansas, United States article is categorized at four categories:
    • (1) Category:Cole surname in which the article (along with other Cole Surname-in-Place articles) is easily found alphabetically,
    • (2) the Category:Sevier, Arkansas, United States placename category in which the article is placed automatically,
    • (3) the Category:Cole in Arkansas Surname-in-Place category which shows all Cole Surname-in-Place articles alphabetically with multiple counties identified in their titles, and
    • (4) the Category:Surname in place category which shows both the Cole Surname-in-Place category (manually entered) and the Surname-in-Place article.
    While it might sound contradictory to my thought above, I think source document categorization should begin at the level of origin. For instance, if we are using a city voter's list for Chicago, that source should have as it's primary category, "Voters lists of Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States," with a parent category, "Records of Cook, Illinois, United States," and then "Records of Illinois, United States." My thought is that the base category ("Voters lists of Chicago...") should also have "Voters Lists" as a parent category.
    Using your example above with the category identifying the vital records of the city of Albany, the parent category should be "Records of Albany County...", then "Records of New York..." with the category "Vital Records" as another parent category to the base category.
    Does that make sense?
    I'm not sure we want to categorize sources at a different level than people. I think that might be confusing. I could be talked into it, but I'm not sure how helpful it would be to categorize sources that finely.
    Also, some countries (e.g., Luxembourg, Aruba) are so small that we don't even have good first-level divisions, so I think we'll have to categorize people & sources at the country level in those countries.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    While somewhat more cumbersome, if we want to pursue internationalism, both in useage as well as in documentation, then we would need to add the country name for all categories. .--BobC 15:56, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    I agree. So we'd need to eventually rename categories to be Category:Smith in New York, United States, right? I can have a bot do that when we're ready.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Categorizing Sources [25 January 2010]

    How should sources be categorized? Should they be categorized by place, by subject, and/or by a combination of place and subject? That is, should we have a New York deaths source be categorized in Category:Vital records, Category:New York, United States, and also Category:Vital records of New York?

    I would add: do sources need to be categorized at all since they already have Type pull-down menus? Jillaine 15:07, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    I think my preference is to categorize them by the combination of place and subject (e.g., Category:Vital records of New York), and to have this category categorized under the place (e.g., Category:New York, United States), and also categorized under the subject (e.g., Category:Vital records).

    What about sources that specify a surname (e.g., family bibles, published family tree books)? Would we categorize them under a subject-in-surname category (e.g., Category:Family bibles for Smith), which would be categorized under the surname (e.g., Category:Smith surname) and also under the subject (e.g., Category:Family bibles)?

    As stated above, I think the base category should be descriptive of the sources it contains at the place it was created, and its parent categories more general. The base category identifying "vital records" or "telephone directories" of a specific location should have as a parent category "Records of ..." or "Documents of..." as the parent location where all records or documents are linked, as well as to Category:Vital records and Category:Telephone directories.
    I can see you are leaning for dual categorization which seems to make sense to me. Throughout this discussion of categorization heirarchy you can tell some want to have a concise roadmap embedded in concrete of an unchanging (and unchangeable) category tree. I like the flexibility of being able to have or create multi-parent category designations, if it suits our needs. If a category such as Category:Family bibles for Smith surname contains only two articles or sources, so be it. As you said, if that same category links to both Category:Family bibles and Category:Smith surname, then we have greater cross-reference, linking and research ability. --BobC 16:22, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Categorizing other types of pages [26 January 2010]

    What about repositories? Categorize directly under the place (e.g., Category:New York, United States), or do we want to create a Category:Repositories in New York, United States?

    Yes, I would like to see repositories categorized under a "Repository of State" category as shown above, and then linked to the state placename category as its parent. Using your example above, all individual repositories for New York State would identify Category:Repositories in New York, United States as their category link and that category would show Category:New York, United States as its parent category. --BobC 10:33, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    What about images? Don't categorize automatically, but let people categorize them manually if they want?

    In my opinion, yes. --BobC 10:34, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    What about articles? Categorize under a surname category if just a surname is listed, under a place category if just a place is listed, or under a surname-in-place category if both surname and place are listed?

    Yes, that sounds pretty much as the way it works now, and that seems to be effective. And of course, allow for flexibility to add further category links manually. --BobC 10:35, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Auto-create category pages [25 January 2010]

    Should we have the system automatically create the wanted categories, adding the templates and parent categories as necessary, or do we want to create them manually by watching the "wanted categories" page?

    Please don't :-) Look at some of the stuff that comes in with Gedcoms... (taken from Special:Categories): Category:Birkett in Presbyterian as a child. She adopted her husband's Methodist religion before marriage., Category:Bishop in 415-24-3912 (issued in TN), Category:Bishop in Shipping Clerk - Dover Manufacturing Company...
    These really impact our abilities to maintain the Wanted Categories. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:13, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Miscellaneous [31 January 2010]

    In the future, people would like the system to add the categories the page will be added to, to the bottom of the text of the page, so that it's more transparent which categories a page is being added to, instead of the current practice of adding pages to categories "behind the scenes".

    I think this will allow people to become more familiar with what categories are and how they are used. Perhaps placing them underneath a comment line, such as <---Categories (some description)---> would be helpful. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:20, 25 January 2010 (EST)


    We don't want to add a category for "Dallan's tree". If you want to see all of the pages you're watching, you can click on Watchlist in the MyRelate menu, then on "Show and edit complete watchlist".

    I already have a Category:Janiejac's Trees that I'm trying to figure out what to do with. Using the watchlist is not a good substitute as it has a LOT more watched pages than my list of created pages. *Category:Janiejac's Trees has only pages I've created.
    I first thought having everyone have a category like this would be useful for finding out what other pages other folks had created or uploaded but later realized this would eventually overwhelm the system and could be accomplished by going to their profile, but that is sort of a work-around. When I saw a person page I was interested in, I clicked the menu 'trees' thinking I could see the tree this page belong to - but no, that menu item means I can add this page to one of 'my' trees. Sigh. BobC has suggested I move the info and links on Category:Janiejac's Trees to a new user page, so I'll go work on that. Having the category was easier though. --Janiejac 13:12, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    What might be handy in the future is the ability to filter the Watchlist by tree. Then, you could create a tree called Pages I created, and another called Pages I am interested in, and filter the Watchlist by that tree name. --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:18, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Example [30 January 2010]

    Just to give an example of what I'm asking about, and not as a specific proposal, here's an example category hierarchy:

    • Shared research pages / Genealogical content
      • Surnames
        • Smith surname
          • (Surname:Smith page)
          • Smith in United States
            • Smith in New York, United States
              • (Smith in New York article, if it exists)
              • (Person and family pages, and user pages listing Smith and New York as a research interest...)
            • Person and family pages that just list United States as an event place without specifying a state...
          • Smith in Unknown
            • (Person and family pages that don't list any place...)
          • Family bibles for Smith
            • (Source pages...)
      • Surname in place
        • Smith in United States (same category as above)
        • Smith in New York (same category as above)
      • Places
        • North America
          • United States
            • (Place:United States page)
            • New York, United States
              • (Place:New York, United States page)
              • People in New York, United States
                • Smith in New York, United States (same category as above)
              • Vital records in New York, United States
                • (Source pages...)
              • Places in New York, United States
                • (Place pages...)
              • Repositories of New York, United States --BobC
            • People in United States
              • Smith in United States (same category as above)
      • Sources
        • Vital records
          • Vital records in United States
            • Vital records in New York, United States (same category as above)
      • Repositories --BobC
        • Repositories of New York, United States --BobC
    One thing that is misleading about the hierarchy: Say Unknown Smith is from New York, United States. They currently appear in both the Smith surname category, and the Smith in New York, United States category. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:27, 25 January 2010 (EST)
    I agree. I'd need to change the code to not put Person/Family pages directly into the surname category anymore, but to put them only into surname-in-place or surname-in-unknown categories.--Dallan 14:50, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Question/comment about "sources" above: Would you plan to categorize all source types separately for all jurisdictional levels? For example:

    • Genealogical content
      • Sources
        • Census records
          • Census records in United States
            • Census records in New York, United States
              • Census records in Albany, New York, United States
                • Census records in Albany, Albany, New York, United States
        • Church records
          • Church records in United States
            • Church records in New York, United States
              • Church records in Albany, New York, United States
                • Church records in Albany, Albany, New York, United States
        • Property records
          • Property records in United States
            • Property records in New York, United States
              • Property records in Albany, New York, United States
                • Property records in Albany, Albany, New York, United States
    etc. etc. etc...

    --BobC 11:09, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    Personally I'd prefer country and state-level only, to be consistent with how we're categorizing person and family pages.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Sources in Place sub-category [30 January 2010]

    After looking at the above example, I'm wondering if we want to have a "Sources in Place" category under each place, and list the sources by subject within that category. For example, the Category:New York, United States would look like:

    • New York, United States
      • (Place:New York, United States page)
      • People in New York, United States
        • Smith in New York, United States (same category as above)
      • Sources for New York, United States
        • Vital records in New York, United States
          • (Source pages...)
      • Places in New York, United States
        • (Place pages...)
      • People in United States
        • Smith in United States (same category as above)

    --Dallan 13:53, 25 January 2010 (EST)

    Yes, that is a very reasonable, rational and useful extension of categorization of sources. Can you do that through an automated process, both for existing sources and for new sources? --BobC 11:23, 26 January 2010 (EST)
    I could. I can create source-in-place category pages automatically for existing sources. I can also create them for new sources, unless we want to rely upon people monitoring the wanted-categories special-page and create the wanted categories by hand, as has been proposed for surname-in-place categories.--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Another view [24 March 2010]

    I looked more closely at Wikipedia's method for categorizing their pages. I came up with some ideas, and placed them here: User:JBS66/Categories. Perhaps it's just the way my mind works, but this category structure seems like it could be more expandable in the future. I also like the use of Wikipedia's "topics" (I called them attributes) to define categories. Anyway... maybe we can pull some ideas from here. --Jennifer (JBS66) 19:35, 26 January 2010 (EST)

    I am wondering if we could take a closer look at Wikipedia's Category naming conventions and my notes at User:JBS66/Categories. I want to be careful not to reinvent the wheel, and I have a hunch we may be missing some key ideas that Wikipedia employs. I also fear that we are not building in enough room for expansion. --Jennifer (JBS66) 12:34, 29 January 2010 (EST)

    I think it's worth looking at what Jennifer has developed here. She definitely brings up a good point about expansion.
    Overall I like it. A comment and a question:
    I think my preference would be to remove the county-level categories, and maybe to place the vital-records-in-place and census-records-in-place categories under a sources-in-place category.
    What is the difference between the people-of-place category and the surnames-in-place category?--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)

    Looking over the structure again Dallan, I see that People-of-place was unnecessary. I replaced people with the word surnames.

    I worked on a sample structure for surnames for the Netherlands based on the ideas referenced above. It quickly became apparent that we cannot direct Category:Smith in Connecticut directly to Category:Smith surname and Category:Connecticut. We need intermediate subcategories.

    --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:54, 3 February 2010 (EST)


    What if we remove the Category:Surnames by location from the hierarchy? It seems like Category:Surnames by country would be the only sub-category of Category:Surnames by location, so we could go right from Category:Surnames to Category:surnames by country.

    Alternatively, what if we removed the entire subtree under Category:Surnames by location, since this is available under the place hierarchy, leaving just

    or maybe

    --Dallan 23:21, 27 February 2010 (EST)


    Dallan, of your suggestions, I am most partial to:

    I think keeping Category:Surnames by country would be helpful, as this opens up the possibility of having additional Category:Surnames by something in the future. It seems that we are in agreement that pages such as Category:Algra in Netherlands would be directed to both Category:Algra surname and Category:Surnames in the Netherlands.

    This looks pretty good. My only thought is that Category:Surnames by country will get lost amidst all of the "Surname surname" categories. How about the following modification?

    One note regarding the automatic surname-in-place categories that are being created. Should we consider creating them from the redirected-to location, instead of the location typed on the person page? Here is one example. Instead of the category being Category:Ackley in IL, it should be Category:Ackely in Illinois, United States. I also notice that pages such as this, the category is Category:Ackley in Conecticut instead of Category:Ackley in Connecticut, United States --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:33, 10 March 2010 (EST)

    I agree. I'll make sure that's happening everywhere.--Dallan 18:37, 24 March 2010 (EDT)

    Ethnic and cultural [27 February 2010]


    I have concerns about this structure. Wikipedia limits their book category to subcategories such as Book by language or Book by country. We need to be careful when assigning categories dealing with ethnicity (see Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Categorization/Ethnicity, gender, religion and sexuality). It just seems rude to me to assign a category entitled Swedes. --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:30, 29 January 2010 (EST)


    While I appreciate the interest and intensity that many of you are putting into cleaning up the categories, I think categorizing Sources is a different beast altogether, and would rather see our energy (and Dallan's) focused on some the priority issues we've identified elsewhere. Is this really the best use of our time? -- Jillaine 13:42, 29 January 2010 (EST)
    It's pretty easy to categorize sources automatically by place, surname, and subject. As long as we don't want to get any more detailed, we can generate the category names directly from the place, surname, and subject field values of the Source. This means that sub-categories of Category:Ethnic and cultural if any, would probably need to come from the values of the "Ethnicity/Culture" field (e.g., Swedish, Scottish).--Dallan 01:45, 31 January 2010 (EST)
    And by Type as well? Jillaine 12:00, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    Regarding categorizing sources: You mention that when we do begin categorizing sources, their titles will be derived from the drop-down boxes that currently exist on source pages (which I have listed here temporarily). That being said, the work that is currently being done on categorizing and renaming source categories may be incorrect. One example is Category:Nordic. Nordic is not listed as one of our Ethnic/Cultural options on source pages. Another example are sources listed under Category:General history. I feel that we need to start fresh, and begin looking at the source fields and discuss how categories from that might be derived. --Jennifer (JBS66) 11:45, 4 February 2010 (EST)
    Okay, Jilliane, if my time were your time for the next 24 hours, where would you have me focus my energy as a better use of my time? --BobC 14:39, 4 February 2010 (EST)
    Next 24 hours? I'll need some snow-shoveling done... Oh... you mean on WR? ;-) I'd rather see us focusing our attention on more immediate things that will attract and retain more participants. There's been discussion of a revised data entry screen. What's the status on that? Where can Dallan best use our input on those to-do items that we have been helping him prioritize? (I don't think organizing categories is on that list.) Jillaine 12:00, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    Actually, on Dallan's to do list, he crossed out two other category related items and stated "I'll implement what is decided at WeRelate talk:Categories project". In addition, there are a few other category organizing tasks on that list. --Jennifer (JBS66) 12:40, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    Thank you, Jennifer. Let me add for those who may be questioning the need for and the impact of the discussion at the WeRelate:Categories project, there is both a need and an impact, and not in disconnected isolation. In fact nine different category-related items are mentioned on the ToDo list, which illustrates our discussion of category-related issues is not a non-existant priority. We have discussed at least a few of these items in some form and contributed to them in some fashion (or probably will during the course of our discussion):
    1. Utilizing a new MediaWiki version to improve ability to create templates and category trees
    2. Question of whether or not articles should link to surname category pages rather than surname pages
    3. Having blue category links if there are pages in category
    4. Placing surname and place fields on Category pages
    5. Automatically-generated watchable category index
    6. Notification when new pages are added to categories
    7. Systematic generation of a list of categories (like a list of created surnames)
    8. Creating a list of categories in outline format
    9. Request not to put photos in license categories except for "review needed"
    And as Jennifer encapsulated so well above, Dallan's decision not to remove autogenerated categories was based primarily on the discussion at the WeRelate:Categories project and here at the talk page; furthermore his decision to implement what is decided here shows the real impact of what we were/are doing. So with respect, as much as I'd like to help you shovel snow out of your driveway Jillaine, given the choice between working with my back in the cold with a shovel and working with my mind in the warmth of my office by my keyboard, I'd rather contribute where I think I can make a bigger impact to the WR community. Good luck to you though and stay warm. --BobC 14:41, 5 February 2010 (EST)
    Up until now we haven't have a good handle on categories. I appreciate the work going on here. I'm hoping that having a more-usable category hierarchy will help, in addition to the other things on the ToDo list.--Dallan 23:49, 27 February 2010 (EST)

    Administrative Content [6 February 2010]

    Bob, with your idea for a new category titled: Category:Administrative content, we may be able to simplify things a bit within that category.

    Right now we would have: Old

    • Category:Administrative content
      • Category:Administration Why can't this be the outermost level? Jillaine 12:03, 5 February 2010 (EST). Jennifer answered above. --BobC
        • Category:Administration_of_this_site seems redundant now concur Jillaine 12:03, 5 February 2010 (EST)
        • Category:Content_cleanup
        • Category:Highlights what is this? Jillaine 12:03, 5 February 2010 (EST). Please review the category at the project page. Can you suggest a more appropriate name? --BobC
      • Category:Help still not seeing point of this and other namespace-named categories, including those below.Jillaine 12:03, 5 February 2010 (EST)
      • Category:Portal
      • Category:Users

    Proposal: New

    • Category:Administrative content
      • Category:Administration what i said above Jillaine 12:03, 5 February 2010 (EST). A better suggestion is always welcome. --BobC
      • Category:WeRelate cleanup categories Maintenance
      • Category:Highlights
      • Category:Help
      • Category:Portal
      • Category:Users

    --Jennifer (JBS66) 07:42, 30 January 2010 (EST)


    I like it, but if we are talking about changing it to that degree, I think then the Category:Content_cleanup should be simplified to Category:Maintenance rather than the more lengthy and redundant sounding "WeRelate cleanup categories" you suggested, since many categories will have subcategories assigned to them and all are WeRelate categories. Anybody else want to weigh in? I don't want Jennifer and I to be accused of trying to create a WeRelate oligarchy here. --BobC 16:22, 30 January 2010 (EST)

    Maintenance is fine, I have no problem with it! I think I was focusing so much on the structure, that I forgot to edit that to reflect your suggestion. --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:31, 30 January 2010 (EST)
    I added the changes to the project page. --BobC 19:40, 30 Janaury 2010 (EST)

    More on categories [6 April 2010]

    I have been working quite a bit with categories over the last few days, and have a couple of questions/suggestions:

    1. I cleaned up and removed the duplicate state categories under Category:United States. There were items under two different categories (ie Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania, United States). All of the items under just the State category were either Images, Users, or Repositories. I opened each page and that served to refresh the place names automatically, thus making the state-name-only category obsolete. Dallan, I assume this automatic place matching is new since these users & images were created, and that new pages will correctly categorize?

    2. Could we add some text under Surnames and/or places you are researching on User pages? Users are still putting alternate names in the same surname field, and multiple places under each place. If we could have a clearer cue for them, without having to click on the question mark. Also, we will need to tweak the instructions based upon our decision of the following: What place-level are we going to limit surname-in-place pages to?

    3. I think we need to consider adding additional subcategories under each state. Following Wikipedia's lead, one such subcategory is Category:Pennsylvania counties (for each of the states). Another suggestion is to add Category:Users researching Pennsylvania, or something similar, to clean up the listing of Users under each place.

    4. Is there any way that we can easily rid the system of Wanted categories that use red-linked places? Having Category:Biron in MAINE, Category:Biron in ME, Category:Biron in Maine could be solved if we used the redirected-to place name, and did not create categories for red-linked places like Category:Bixler in Charter Member of the Purple Cane Farmers Alliance..

    5. How difficult would it be to change user pages to include the words United States in their categories?

    6. Place page categories - there is something odd with how the automatic-categories are being generated. All of France is messed up because of our recent renaming. Are the categories using the data from the Located-in field?--Jennifer (JBS66) 13:01, 14 March 2010 (EDT)

    Re, I think, No. 1. Edits to my page that supposedly "edited place(s) to reflect full place page name" completely messed up my page, and I can't get it back. I used to have several of my surnames linking to surname in place pages (that reflect a LOT of work). Now they link to red empty category pages. And if I try to revert, the system "knows better" and makes them into categories again. Why is this, and can I get it back? I'm not going to debate the merits of category v. article pages, again, but those empty category links are worse than useless right now, so I would like to know how much work I have to fix it. --Amelia 23:52, 15 March 2010 (EDT)
    If you had opened and closed your user page, it would have had the same effect. I did not manually add United States to those fields, I let the system do what it was programed to do. Looking at the difference between the two versions, it appears that what changed were the Articles under the Researching section, not the categories. So, the link to the article Morrow in Warren County, Tennessee was changed to a link to Morrow in Warren, Tennessee, United States. This follows the fact that Dallan wanted to add United States to surname-in-place articles and categories. Dallan did mention that at some point in this process, he will be creating a bot to rename these pages, but in the short term, won't renaming your own surname-in-place articles solve your problem? --Jennifer (JBS66) 08:02, 16 March 2010 (EDT)
    Well, that goes to my question as to what and how much work is required to fix. I haven't been following whatever the rules are on naming these things since others of you care much more and I don't agree with what seems to be the majority view, but if the fix is adding United States to the article titles, than that's what I need to know.--Amelia 12:19, 16 March 2010 (EDT)

    The categories and articles ought to be using the redirected-to name. I'll make sure that they do everywhere (e.g., user pages, images, repositories).

    I'll also add some text under surnames and/or places you are researching to direct people to enter a single surname and a place.

    Regarding the place-level we limit surname-in-place pages to, that's a really good question. I put that in a separate topic below.

    Regarding subcategories under each state, are you suggesting separate sub-categories for each namespace; e.g., Users researching state, Surnames in state, Sources in state, Images in state?

    Regarding removing wanted categories that use red-linked places, I'll change the code to not create a category link if the place isn't found. That should solve the problem going forward.

    Regarding adding "United States" to user page categories, I'll do that as well. I'll have to figure out an easy way to modify categories on existing user pages without sending out notifications.

    The categories for Place pages come from the title. I'll take a look at France and see what's going on.

    I'll also start renaming existing categories and surname-in-place pages to use the new naming conventions, so the links will work again.--Dallan 18:37, 24 March 2010 (EDT)

    Dallan, when you say renaming existing categories do you mean automatically renaming a page like Category:Smith in Connecticut to Category:Smith in Connecticut, United States? Or, do you mean changing the automatic categories at the bottom of pages read Category:Mason in Maine, United States? If it is the former, I thought that MediaWiki didn't recommend Category redirects. What if we change the categories references first, then see where we are with the existing categories that are not correctly named? On another note, I noticed that when I delete a category that contains a link to a parent category, the deleted reference still appears in the parent list. I need to first remove the text from the category page, save, and then delete the category. Just thought that was odd.... --Jennifer (JBS66) 09:12, 26 March 2010 (EDT)
    I hadn't realized that. Thank-you for pointing it out. Going forward, I think we need to make sure that pages are getting added to the full-placename-categories. And if there is any text on the old (partial-placename-categories), it will need to be copied to the full-placename-categories so it isn't lost. But maybe you've already removed such text into separate articles (I haven't checked)? Also, we can certainly rename existing surname-in-place articles to use the full placename convention.--Dallan 16:58, 26 March 2010 (EDT)
    I have not moved that text to articles. If I'm not mistaken, I believe Bob C has, though I don't know the status. Regarding pages being added to the full-placename-categories - that won't happen until the automatic categories are updated, right? --Jennifer (JBS66) 07:08, 1 April 2010 (EDT)
    Right.--Dallan 13:53, 6 April 2010 (EDT)

    How deep should place-related categories be? [6 April 2010]

    When we assign categories to pages, the current practice is to assign:

    Do we want to continue doing this? This approach means that all Smiths living in the state of Illinois are put into the same category. And anyone living in the city of Chicago is put into the same category. Based upon the above discussions, it seems like we want to do the following instead:

    Or should we go down a level deeper -- generate categories for the first-level division (state/province/etc.) of any country (US or otherwise): e.g., Category:Smith in Bayern, Germany?

    If we did this, state-level categories would need to belong to country-level categories, so Category:Smith in Bayern, Germany would belong to Category:Surnames in Bayern, Germany and Category:Smith in Germany. Also, I assume that people with events in Bayern would belong to Category:Smith in Bayern, Germany but would not belong directly to Category:Smith in Germany. People with events in Germany, but without mentioning a specific state in Germany, would belong to Category:Smith in Germany.

    An example hierarchy (extending one discussed above) might be:

    This seems to be getting pretty complicated however. What do people think?--Dallan 18:37, 24 March 2010 (EDT)

    I don't see a need for "Category:Surnames by country" unless there is going to be another subcategory entitled "Category:Surnames by state" or "Category:Surnames by county". Also no need for "Category:Surnames alphabetically" -- it should sort alphabetically anyway (or could be forced to). "Category:Surnames in the Netherlands" seems like overkill as a subcategory under "Category:Netherlands", because how many other subcategories would you have under it: "Category:Places in the Netherlands"? "Category:Cemeteries in the Netherlands"? "Category:Churches in the Netherlands"? Possibly, but I don't see it!
    The list above really doesn't work well for me. --BobC 13:38, 25 March 2010 (EDT)
    If you take away the Category:Surnames by country, then you are left with:
    Which means that the Surnames category will be flooded with not only individual surnames, but also every country those surnames appear in. Also, the idea that Category:Surnames by state or Category:Surname by county would follow underneath Category:Surnames doesn't make sense to me. Category:Surname by country is an aptly-named category for the items it contains, surnames followed by country. What some seem to want to do is take all the Sources, Places, People, Repositories, Users, etc and dump them into the general place category. Here we are looking at the Netherlands which is relatively sparse. Try one like Category:United States, where it will soon become a disorganized dumping ground. I would much rather see pages underneath like: Category:Users researching the United States, Category:Repositories in the United States, and Category:States in the United States. My overall concept is this: I have an item to categorize, something... anything! What is that item? Describe that item in the category title and put it in a proper container. Category:Florida, United States, what is that - a state. Ok, then put it under Category:States of the United States. You have the categories for cemeteries organized in this way, you don't throw every cemetery into the parent category, you contain them like: Category:Cemeteries by country, Category:Religious cemeteries. Better to plan ahead for growth now rather than wish we did later. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:18, 25 March 2010 (EDT)
    Hi Jennifer. I have absolutely no problem with the result above (at the start of your response). And the I think the cemetery categorization example is logically formulated, but your "Surname in country" argument is not, considering how the category is comprised. But really, isn't your underlying motive is to have Category:Surnames by country replace Category:Surname in place? I think that is ill advised considering its ease of use, popularity and flexibility. Category:Surname in place is very flexible and adaptable to multiple geographical levels; Category:Surnames by country is not as flexible and is more limiting. --BobC 10:48, 26 March 2010 (EDT)
    Bob, I don't generate opinions based upon "underlying motives". I look for solutions that make logical sense. Yes, the cemetery categorization example is logically formulated, here is that structure hierarchically:
    hmmm, this is looking somewhat familiar...
    Nowhere do I see where all of the cemetery pages are assembled under a page titled Category:Cemeteries in place. Furthermore, I believe that 3 administrators and an active user questioned the need for your top-level Category:Surname in place, which is, I note, not part of the hierarchy that has been proposed in the "How deep should place-related categories be? " or the "Another view" discussions above.
    If you think a category like Category:Surnames by country is so "limiting", then why did you create one for cemeteries?--Jennifer (JBS66) 12:01, 26 March 2010 (EDT)
    Another Try
    Jennifer, I've tried unsuccessfully and incompletely to respond at least twice to your comments and observations above, but discarded the responses because of my failure to completely and succinctly put into words what I visualize in my head related to this subject. Rather than try to continue tackling the topic at hand with examples related to places, cemeteries, surnames, etc., let me present examples that hopefully will better show you my train of thought. Please be patient with me, as my attempt here is not to dummy down in condescension to you, but for my benefit to illustrate the point in my own head more clearly.
    If we were dealing with food as a category chain, let's take a look at what it might look like:
    • Category:Food
    Would we then need a subcategory titled Category:Food by type? My thought is that it would not be needed (because it would probably be the lone subcategorization of "Foods by..."), unless we also wanted to further subcategorize (as in Foods by color, Foods by nutritional value, Foods by country of origin, Foods by taste or Foods by source). In my opinion, the logical approach would be to subcategorize the primary category as follows:
    • Category:Food
      • Category:Animal foods
        • Category:Meats
        • Category:Dairy products
      • Category:Plant foods
        • Category:Vegetables
          • Category:Root vegetables
          • Category:Leaf vegetables
          • Category:Stem vegetables
          • Category:Inflorescence vegetables
        • Category:Fruits
        • Category:Seeds
          • Category:Cereals
          • Category:Legumes
          • Category:Nuts
    Keeping the above illustration in mind, here again is what you are proposing:
    What is the purpose of Category:Surnames by country? It is a sole subcategory (outside of the surnames themselves), therefore redundant and not needed, is it not? Whereas, in the cemetery example you cited, you really didn't paint a full picture of the subcategorization used. There are in fact multiple subcategories for the use of Cemetery by... (or variations thereof) as follows:
    Additionally, in the example you are proposing for use, it does not even follow the Place category heirarchy, as the primary place subcategories are listed by continent, not by country. So if you then account for surnames by multiple level places, are we not then going back to the Surname in Place concept?
    So with that in mind, here is my recommendation for your example above:
    That's my take on it. No foolin'. --BobC 13:24, 1 April 2010 (EDT)
    The potential issue with this approach is that Category:Netherlands would contain subcategories like Category:Algra in Netherlands and also Category:Friesland, Netherlands. Surname subcategories would appear interspersed with place subcategories in the (very large) list of subcategories. Someone wanting to peruse just the place-subcategories of Netherlands will have difficulty finding them among the surname-subcategories. That's the benefit you get by interjecting Category:Surnames in Netherlands and Category:Places in Netherlands sub-categories under Category:Netherlands, and put the surname-subcategories and place-subcategories under the appropriate namespace-subcategory.--Dallan 13:53, 6 April 2010 (EDT)

    Ask yourself if you are researching a family, what will you start looking for; a surname or a place? I would not be interested in looking first in places; I would look for surname and see what places that surname could be found in. I want to find a particular surname in a place but I have no need to know ALL the surnames in any place. Does anyone see a need for that? Am I missing something? But categorizing Sources need to be by both surname and location depending on the subject matter of the source. --Janiejac 21:18, 24 March 2010 (EDT)

    I would suggest that the surname in place category (highlighted in green above) should not only link to the surname category line but also to the placename category line. --BobC 13:24, 25 March 2010 (EDT)

    I have to draw a little diagram when I think about this question, which is probably a sign that the category structure that I proposed is too complicated.

    The difference between the category structure directly above and the one that I proposed is that the structure directly above drops the "surnames by country" hierarchy under Category:Surnames. You can no longer browse a list of all surnames in a particular country starting from Category:Surnames, but the resulting simplification is worth it I think.

    Here's the open question: If we're going to list surname-in-place categories under both surname and place super-categories, should we put the sub-categories directly under the place category, or should we interject "namespace in place" categories?

    For example, would you rather have:

    or

    My vote is for this option. --Jennifer (JBS66) 18:45, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

    Another approach is to only include place sub-categories in the place categories. That is,

    This is simpler still. But we lose the ability to navigate from a place category to the corresponding surname or source category (e.g., from Category:Netherlands to Category:Surnames in Netherlands or Category:Sources in Netherlands.--Dallan 16:55, 26 March 2010 (EDT)

    Shouldn't we consider the Place category heirarchy in accounting for places by continent first rather than going straight to places by country? --BobC 15:20, 1 April 2010 (EDT)
    We could (and probably should) do that.--Dallan 13:53, 6 April 2010 (EDT)

    A different approach for surnames and places [6 April 2010]

    I'm still concerned about the complexity of the sub-category hierarchy for surnames and places. It seems that once we decide to mix surnames into the place subcategory tree, either

    1. we have to inject artificial namespace-in-place subcategories into each level of the place hierarchy, or
    2. we have to live with surname, place, source, etc. subcategories of each place category being interspersed.

    Neither option will seem simple to a newcomer. I'm sure we'll be able to come up with a solution that works, but I also wonder about a completely different approach. What if these surname + place category links at the bottom of pages were instead links to filled-in search results pages, and we spend time to make the search results pages more navigable (more results per page, better browse capability)? That would address two problems at once: better navigation and better search. Take a look at a prototype for searching FamilySearch's catalog. Click on the places at the left and note that as you navigate down the place hierarchy, the counts on the other fields are updated. What would this experience be like if these were WeRelate pages instead of catalog items, and if one of the fields on the left was Surname? We couldn't list all possible surnames in a single list, but we could list them 3 letters at a time, so a possible expanded hierarchy could look like:

    • A
      • Abb
        • Abbott
          • Abbottsen (6)
          • Abbottson (12)

    As you navigated into the surname hierarchy, the counts on the place hierarchy would likewise change. This would provide a surname-in-place browsing experience, where you could browse into either or both hierarchies, but it wouldn't require maintaining a complicated category structure, or maybe it could allow us to have a simpler category structure where we listed only places in the place hierarchy, and not surnames as well.

    It's a thought. The latest version of solr (the search engine employed at WeRelate) allows for these deep "counts" hierarchies, so they're a possibility now.--Dallan 13:53, 6 April 2010 (EDT)


    Categorization of Repositories [10 April 2010]

    I offer the following categorization chain for Repositories, an area I think has been much neglected here at WeRelate, and invite input and suggestions for others interested in the topic:

    Location categories shown above are examples for worldwide use (by continent, country and state/province). Some of the categories are presently in use (shown in blue) and others would be new if adopted (in red). Ideally, individual repositories could have multiple categorizations: by location, by focus and/or by type. Thanks.--BobC 23:15, 2 April 2010 (EDT)

    You've certainly put a lot of thought into this proposal. This is definitely an area on WeRelate that needs attention. I want to offer a couple of observations.

    1. I used a great free online tool to help visual this a bit differently. The site is called Mind42. For comparison purposes, I created a visualization of your Repositories proposal along with an incomplete outline of how Wikipedia categories Museums. I note a theoretical difference between the two. This proposal (as well as the items we've been discussing at the categories project talk page) have a large-to-small aspect. By this I mean: By location-->By continent-->By country-->By state-->By county. In contrast, the WP layout is more spread out, with By continent/country/city/state, etc each coming off the main hub. This occurs with many of WP's by country or by city categories. I'm not really ready to say which one is better, but WP's layout is certainly worthy of examination.
    2. Following Wikipedia's rules for category names, landmarks (cemeteries, museums, libraries) would be in country rather than of country. Not trying to be nitpicky really! I'm just trying to not reinvent the wheel and use WP as a rough guideline.
    3. If I look at Library of Congress both here and on Wikipedia there are subtle differences. You are placing it under Category:Government archives, which I think will quickly become a category in serious need of diffusion. It also makes me ask - which Governments? Are we going to put all the world's governmental archives within this category? Wikipedia addresses it differently, using categories titled "Archives in the United States", "National Historic Landmarks in Washington, D.C.", or "Library museums in the United States" where the location is defined in the title. Note: WP does also assign it to "Film archives" which is a very small category, and specific enough to not require diffusion in the near future. --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:55, 3 April 2010 (EDT)
    Appreciate your input.
    Response to #1: Your two PDF references/files did not open when linked. I looked at the Mind42 application itself, and while I can see its use for certain decision-making alternatives, it was not helpful to me in visualizing this any differently. "Large to small" works both in my mind and in practical use for categorization of this sort. --BobC 02:07, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    Interesting they didn't open for you. Here is a link to their direct page here: Repositories proposal and categories Museums --Jennifer (JBS66) 05:31, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    Got them this time. I'm at work so maybe it was the version of Adobe on my personal computer which is not as updated as the one at work.
    When looked at side-by-side, my proposed repository chart looks clean, well-organized, concise and non-extraneous; whereas the WP museum chart seems much more busy, somewhat convoluted, and lacking organized heirarchial flow. (My opinion, albeit with a possible bias!) Interesting to note though, it identifies a category entitled "Lists of Museums by Place." Transposed into our repository category subject, wouldn't that become Category:Repositories in Place? This has been talked about previously, so I'll add it to the list above. But that seems to be the only plus. --BobC 12:47, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    WP has 3 basic ways to find info, searching, categories, and lists. The "Lists of Museums by Place" you reference is not underneath any of their location categories, it's under their Lists of category. It organizes their many list-type pages such as List of museums in Alabama.--Jennifer (JBS66) 13:38, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    Response to #2: No problem with preposition useage, one or the other or even both. I look for WR function, not for WP compliance. I guess I just don't look at Wikipedia as the be-all and end-all for every situation we face here or as the ultimate epitome of wikidom for every possible improvement we could make here at WeRelate. It's just another online resource created, edited and modified by regular people like you and me and Dr. Phil and even Joe Schmo who never graduated from high school, all with a yearning to add a viewpoint to the ethernet. --BobC 02:07, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    Response to #3: Although I see your point in potential (I wish WR would have the problem of over-infusion for any particular category), I don't see it in reality for a long time coming. Even so, the potential growth problem in this category could be averted by subcategorizing the "Government Archives" category into the areas shown. I hesitate dividing this category into particular geographical boundries, because that overlaps the function of the "Repository by location" category, and I think it benefits everyone to keep the three areas separate (by location, by focus, and by type), even though any particular repository could be under two or even all three major categories. Since there are only about 3100 counties in United States, I don't think that level would be in "serious need of diffusion," as you say, for quite some time (even with other countries' county-level repositories added to it). --BobC 02:07, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    I like this proposal. If we were to add the place-oriented categories to the corresponding Place categories, would I assume that we would want to add Category:Repositories in North Carolina, United States as a subcategory of Category:North Carolina, United States? And if we did this, would we want to have parallel subcategories: Category:Sources in North Carolina, United States, Category:Surnames in North Carolina, United States (or perhaps Category:People in North Carolina, United States), and Category:Places in North Carolina, United States? That's what I was trying to get at in my comments at WeRelate talk:Categories project.--Dallan 14:05, 6 April 2010 (EDT)
    Exactly. And thanks for weighing in on the discussion. I would add that each repository category level (i.e. at country, state, and county level if needed and used) would be linked to the parent placename at the same level; and I like your suggestion to link Sources and People likewise, although that is beyond the scope presented and discussed here.
    Here is a graphic example of what I envision. (BTW, thanks to Jennifer for providing the link to Mind42 used in creating the graph. I thought the application would be more of an inutitive aid the way she described it, but it provides a good visual in any case.)
    My question to you is, how much of this category creation can be automated? Would we need to handle existing repositories differently than new repositories?
    Thanks again. --BobC 15:45, 6 April 2010 (EDT)

    There are three things that would have to happen to automate this:

    1. The right category could have to be added to the bottom of the Repository pages.
    2. The category page could be created automatically if it did not exist
    3. When the category page was created, a template could be added automatically to the page to place the page in the right super-category(ies).

    The question is, which (if any) of these things we'd like to have happen.

    I think it would be better to continue this conversation at WeRelate talk:Categories project.--Dallan 21:19, 8 April 2010 (EDT)


    Request for category move [1 August 2013]

    Requesting move from Category:Cemeteries of Yorkshire,England to Category:Cemeteries of Yorkshire, England (space added after comma). Thanks for considering this. --ceyockey 21:40, 31 July 2013 (EDT)

    Ceyockey, if there's some reason you think this needs approval, please explain, otherwise I can't think of a case where approval would be needed for a typo, so go for it.--Amelia 22:56, 1 August 2013 (EDT)
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