Portal talk:Community


What is the naming convention for templates? [13 September 2009]

A suggested convention for naming templates associated with these portals is:

  1. If the template is to be used on multiple portals use a prefix, e.g. portal-footer or p-footer? Remember capitalization matters.
  2. If the template is to be used only on one portal use a prefix specific for that portal, e.g. CBB-Discussions (used for the "Community Bulletin Board" announcement area.
Final decision:

I am new to this trying to contact a person that has changed my gene. info how do I get in touch no place to type when I click on her link--Valn50 11:46, 13 September 2009 (EDT)

Valn, When you click on their name, you're taken to their User page. Once there, click on the "Talk" link, then "Add a topic".
jillaine 16:43, 13 September 2009 (EDT)

What other links can be used within the "other links section"? [6 February 2009]

What do we think about changing "topical" to "genealogy"? The genealogy section then could be a jumping off point to various related topics. --Ronni 15:46, 5 February 2009 (EST)

I changed the footer template and the text on the Community Portal page from Topical to Genealogy.--Jennifer (JBS66) 10:59, 6 February 2009 (EST)

Final decision:

Explanation on Sections

The Front Page News section is Dallan's news announcements that he places on the main page.

Current Discussions and Current Projects and two different templates that users can edit to add their own news items without editing the Community page itself. The Community Portal should be "protected" with only admin type people editing it.

The Did you know section is a template that Solveig maintains and it also appears on the main page.

Other sections to add

  • A "How you can help" section

Guidelines and Help section [5 February 2009]

It looks a little crowded to me so I tried to narrow it down from 4 columns into 3, but I couldn't get the last column to "disappear". Just had blank space there. I changed the colspan to 3 and that did nothing that I could tell. Still learning what all the coding means. :) --Ronni 16:15, 5 February 2009 (EST)

I tried a few ways to eliminate that column. I didn't save it yet though. If the final version is on a page without ads, then we will have the room to expand and it shouldn't look so squished.--Jennifer (JBS66) 17:40, 5 February 2009 (EST)

Footer [5 February 2009]

Are we keeping both the Other Portals section and the WeRelate Portals footer?--Jennifer (JBS66) 18:13, 5 February 2009 (EST)

I think we need a link-directory closer to the top, but I see nothing wrong with keeping the footer one as well. Maybe even add more links to the footer one. Maybe an email addy to ask questions, report problems, etc? --Ronni 18:49, 5 February 2009 (EST)

Portal as its own Namespace [6 February 2009]

Apparently, Wikipedia has a custom Portal Namespace Wikipedia Portal.--Jennifer (JBS66) 19:13, 5 February 2009 (EST)

I was just looking at FHLC's instructions and templates on creating portals. Pretty cool. --Ronni 12:13, 6 February 2009 (EST)

Edit Page of Portal Pages [24 February 2009]

I don't have admin access so I can't see the edit page of these great portals but will they ultimately be forms like the add person page or will they be using wiki code for making tables?

I suppose if admin access is required to edit them, most admins will know how to edit that table code, right? I more or less figured it out on Amelia's great migrations ships page, but it's pretty kludgy and can easily be messed up. (BTW, html code for tables is even worse.)

It would make life simpler for everyone in the long run if these portal table pages were converted to backend forms that then filled in the appropriate sections; however I don't know what's req'd to achieve that.

And I would LOVE to use some sort of template for the great migration topical portal, but dread having to manage wiki table code.

Which raises the question: will ALL portal pages of whatever type require admin access?

This is great work ladies. I look forward to contributing however I can.

jillaine 08:12, 6 February 2009 (EST)

Right now they are made up of manual code (html) in this case. I doubt they'll be turned into a form because a "portal" is like a homepage for a specific topic and with that some creative expression is used. Actually, the freedom of that creative expression is what is making this such a fun thing to work on. Right now, Jennifer and I are thinking the portals dealing with the namespaces and the community portal should only be edited by admin folks. The Genealogy portal can perhaps be edited by everyone since it'll serve as a jumping off spot for all the Genealogy projects, etc. But no, portal pages in general can be created and edited by anyone just like a regular page. We're thinking they'll be placed in the "Article" area of WeRelate which isn't prefaced with a namespace, but we're waiting on Dallan to answer some questions we have about that. Are we going to have a portal namespace for instance? That will effect how we name and title the new portal pages.

As to a form, we can make an "empty" portal, which Jennifer has done pretty much already with all of the namespace portals and whenever someone wants to make a new portal they would just select all, copy and then paste. As a matter of fact Jillaine, we could do that now if you want. We can copy one of the portals to a "sandbox" area under your user name and you can play around with it.

--Ronni 12:11, 6 February 2009 (EST)

Please do, Ronni. I'd like to play around with it for the Great Migrations portal page. And I hope Dallan supports the idea of a Portal name space since WP and the LDS are both using same. jillaine 21:43, 6 February 2009 (EST)


Thanks for all your suggestions and support of this topic! I think I'm going to need to wait just a bit before I can make a template more public. I need to find out if it needs to be in HTML or wiki code format. When I get that answered, I can pass it on to you!--Jennifer (JBS66) 06:29, 7 February 2009 (EST)

Getting in late here, but I'm assuming there isn't a question anymore about whether the templates need to be in HTML or wiki code format. If there is, my vote would be for either one. My personal preference is to use wiki code generally, although sometimes I use HTML for tables.--Dallan 17:18, 24 February 2009 (EST)

Overall Design [7 February 2009]

In a former life, I was a web site designer/editor. As a result, I learned a great deal about "usability" - so I bring that frame to this work. I can't help it. Based on that experience, I would advise that portal pages not be too "long" (vertically). The purpose of portal pages is to help people find things, to bring things buried deep in a web site to greater attention. If too much scrolling is required, you'll lose people, or they'll have difficulty finding what you want them to find. This issue is more important on "entry" pages (like portal pages) than on pages where one expects to find more detail and hence scrolling. So be wary about how many "screens" are required on a portal page. Ideally, it's one screen; that can be pretty difficult to do, though. But the point is to try to keep it to a minimum. jillaine 08:21, 7 February 2009 (EST)

I appreciate your comments Jillaine, and in general I agree. However, it would be hard to put all the info on one page view. I used Wikipedia's community portal as a guide. Granted, they have tons more info to put on a community page, but the idea here is that folks need to go to one area to find what out what's happening. The "Bulletin Board" section will expand as people have news items to share, so the page has the potential to grow in length, but notice that section is closer to the top. The guidelines, helps, etc are at the bottom. For those folks that don't want to scroll, they *can* find that info elsewhere, so they haven't missed much. For those folks they do scroll, they've got a nice representation of the guidelines, etc. Looking at the overall design again, the important sections like news items, discussions, projects are listed in the first page view, or very close to it.

(As an aside: the "Other portal" section at the top, could be shorter in length)

Another issue we have with the size is that we just don't have that much room to work with for a page like this. We have a large border on the left that won't be used for a portal page and then we have the ads on the right that we have to work around.

I do wonder if the colors can be toned back a little. Too many colors, too much distraction?

I don't see the other portal pages being as long as the community portal because I can't imagine there would be a lot of info needed on them. However, I will not be offended in the least if you want to work on a more practical design for the community portal. In any case, thanks for your comments, Jillaine! --Ronni 13:23, 7 February 2009 (EST)

Are the boxes too wide now? [12 February 2009]

We could keep them as is, or make them a bit narrower and add a third column (that is narrower than the other 2).--Jennifer (JBS66) 11:13, 10 February 2009 (EST)

I made them a bit narrower, rather than the same width as the header box.--Jennifer (JBS66) 06:47, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Featured Box [24 February 2009]

Should we eliminate the featured box on the Community Portal? I think it competes with the main page's Featured Page. I think we should keep the featured boxes on the other portals, perhaps title them differently?--Jennifer (JBS66) 06:51, 12 February 2009 (EST)

For me this raises a question: What's the difference between the home page and the Community Portal? -- jillaine 08:34, 12 February 2009 (EST)

The community portal is going to be accessible from a link off of the home page. Note: I decided to remove the featured page box - can always add it back later if necessary.--Jennifer (JBS66) 10:42, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Then if the community portal is linked to from the home page, why are we having a (rather large) section that highlights the blog-- isn't that already highlighted on the main page? jillaine 13:42, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Good point. The blog and featured FAQ have been removed from the community portal page.

Also, the portals are no longer protected - although the community portal may become protected at some point in the future. So please feel free to flesh them out!--Dallan 17:18, 24 February 2009 (EST)

Portal Namespace

I see that we now have a Portal namespace. Cool.

Question: Will ALL portals be in the portal namespace? Or just the "namespace" Portals (Person, Family, Article, Source, etc.)? -- jillaine 08:34, 12 February 2009 (EST)

I think all portals should be in the Portal namespace. Portals should all be findable somehow from the Community portal. I noticed that Wikipedia has a list of Featured portals and then a longer list of all portals. This seems like a good idea.--Dallan 17:18, 24 February 2009 (EST)

Genealogy Portals [22 July 2009]

How should the Genealogy/Topical portals be organized? Would we keep the Genealogy Portal link, but that would link to a Directory of Other Portals? Then how would we structure each portal (like The Great Migration), would it be a subpage of Genealogy?--Jennifer (JBS66) 14:25, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Should we discuss this over at the talk page for the Genealogy portal?--jillaine 14:33, 12 February 2009 (EST)

I was hesitant to since this is the only portal I haven't moved over to the new namespace yet.--Jennifer (JBS66) 14:34, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Ah... that's probably a wise idea. I started talking about it over there, and since doing so, I realize there might be a need for TWO different spaces:
  1. Werelate-related projects (admin, volunteer, maintaining, etc.)
  2. Pointers to good genealogy-related help (how to do good genealogy generally; sources for doing so, etc.)
Those may be two different portals OR if not, those are two sections of a "Genealogy" portal.
As for the old "Topics" idea, now that I understand how Article "namespace" works, I think topics should go in the Article portal.
My $.02
-- jillaine 14:58, 12 February 2009 (EST)

We could use a "Genealogy" portal to feature the other portals, or we could list featured portals on the Community portal page and have a Category:Portal page to list all portals. If we had a Portal:Genealogy page to list the other portals, what would you think about titling it to say "All" or "Index", or "Other"?--Dallan 17:18, 24 February 2009 (EST)

I want to revive this discussion. I'm coming across sources (not Sources) of good advice for doing genealogy, and I thought it would be good to have an area on WeRelate where people can find such information.

But where should it be? For example:

University of Nottingham's Learning Skills for Historical Documents

The purpose of this resource is to provide guidance and assistance for researchers. Using original records for the first time can be quite daunting. The handwriting can be hard to read; unfamiliar words and phrases are often used; and it can be difficult to know which documents to use in order to find relevant information.

These web pages are divided into two sections:

   * 'Historical Skills' units give advice relating to using and
     understanding old records.
   * 'Document Skills' units provide explanations and examples of
     particular kinds of records.

Each unit uses examples from the collections held by Manuscripts and Special Collections at the University of Nottingham. The images within each unit are illustrative, and the examples are not intended to be exhaustive. Each unit includes a bibliography listing further reading for researchers who need a more comprehensive approach. Researchers wishing to search the material held by Manuscripts and Special Collections to find further examples will need to use the Manuscripts Online Catalogue <http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/mss/catalogue>.--jillaine 09:09, 22 July 2009 (EDT)

Never mind; I'll use the Research Guide Category. It just seems really under-used/promoted. jillaine 09:39, 22 July 2009 (EDT)

Can I have a copy? [15 February 2009]

Jennifer and Ronni,

Any chance you'll give up a copy of your current portal code?

I've been using your original code for my Great Migration portal, but am quickly running up against limits to its formatting. I need more "boxes".

But it occurs to me that you may wish to be using your current portal code only for the primary portals, and not for user-driven topical portals. Is that true?

If not, and you're open to having this code used for any portal, I'd sure like a copy.

I created User:Jillaine/Sandbox2 as a container if you're willing to dump the code in there.


-- jillaine 08:02, 15 February 2009 (EST)

I see no reason to limit this template's use. I need to create a slightly different template though (easy enough). Here is the current template. I was thinking that you might still want the same header, left content, and right content boxes, but do away with (or alter) the footer.--Jennifer (JBS66) 08:35, 15 February 2009 (EST)

Hi Jennifer, I'm online this afternoon in a hit-or-miss way, but not enough to be walked through anything-- thanks for the offer. I'm taking a break from house cleaning before our 6pm guests show up. I hate house-cleaning and I'm annoyed that the hubbie isn't helping out, so I'm being a "brat" and logging in. Sigh. Yeah, I'm being about five years old right now.

Thanks for the further explanation on my talk page. I figured something wasn't right with what I tried at User:Jillaine/Sandbox2 so I attempted to view source on the Community portal and copy paste into my sandbox2 and as you see, it's a mess, and doesn't work.

Let's say "no" on the portal footer for now. I can always add it back later.


Gotta go; hubbie's here. ;-)

-- jillaine 15:36, 15 February 2009 (EST)

Yeah, I rather be computing then cleaning any day!

I put some code on your User:Jillaine/Sandbox3 page. Basic instructions on its talk page. Let me know if you have any questions! Have a great dinner!

--Jennifer (JBS66) 16:01, 15 February 2009 (EST)

Where is the Current Projects template? [25 August 2009]

Where did you hide this one?--Beth 17:35, 20 August 2009 (EDT)

It's at Template:CBB-Projects. (It looks like you found it.)--Dallan 00:59, 26 August 2009 (EDT)

Turn this portal into a "what can I do now" page [16 September 2009]

I'd like to feature this portal more prominently as a "What can I do now?" page for newcomers to WeRelate. So far, I've changed the link to this page on the homepage to "Start collaborating". I'll probably also add a link to this page from the "Help" menu.

So I was "bold" and re-arranged the sections, added links to each of the namespace portals under the featured portals section, and moved the sections about nominating pages, spreading the word, and what links here to WeRelate:Featured page nominations, Help:Spread the word, and Help:FAQ respectively in order to shorten the page.

Feel free to change things back if you don't like what I did. Let's see if we can turn this page into something that is a great "jumping off point" for a newcomer, which means it should provide links to the various common activities and community projects at WeRelate without being overwhelming. Thank-you!--Dallan 12:13, 7 September 2009 (EDT)

Oops. Should have read this more carefully. But since you did say that we could put it back... this page is just so darn FULL, and we list the key portals already in the top bar and at the bottom of the page. So to also list them in the "Featured Portals" box seems overly redundant and repetitive (not to mention greedy use of valuable "real estate") ;-)
I think it's a great idea to get much clearer about what this page is for. Most of the time, it looks to me like an alternative home page for WeRelate. In that sense, I'm confused by this page (which is why I've asked for others' feedback about what they see as its purpose).
I do like the "what can you do next" idea. Is this the place for it, though? I think I'm still confused about what Portal:Community really means. jillaine 23:33, 16 September 2009 (EDT)
Hi Jillaine, I don't know a thing about portals, but when this one was first created I thought it was going to replace the home page so I understand your confusion. I have grown use to the page since so it is not as confusing. --Beth 23:38, 16 September 2009 (EDT)

Too much on the main Portal page? [17 September 2009]

Due to Dallan's recent edit, I found it difficult to find things on this page. I'm thinking there's just way too much for anyone to really get engaged with this page. If I'm the only one, I'll drop it, but if others feel the same, I'm happy to work on how to tighten this page up. In support of that, please include in your response to this message what you see the primary purpose of the Community Portal to be. Thanks jillaine 13:26, 16 September 2009 (EDT)

To direct one to the different communities on WeRelate. --Beth 22:32, 16 September 2009 (EDT)
I look at this page as a "table of contents" to help people who are new figure out what they can do here. We can't easily put this information on the homepage because that is already pretty full with the featured article, news, etc. I actually removed a bunch of stuff from the page during my last edit because I thought it was too busy, so I'm glad to have more removed. Current Discussions could probably be removed for example, along with the "Copyrights and Licenses" links and some of the "Administration" links. We ought to link to the WeRelate talk:Watercooler and the new WeRelate talk:Support page somewhere though.--Dallan 23:02, 17 September 2009 (EDT)

Header for the Community Portal Page [22 September 2009]

I noticed that "Ethnic American" is listed with the other portals in the header box. How do we decide what goes in that box, and what goes in what was the Featured Portals (which I just renamed "Special Interest Portals" in order to de-dupe some of the text on the page)? Seems like we should probably keep the "main" portals in that section, and list others in the "Special Interest Portals" box. Thoughts? jillaine 23:28, 16 September 2009 (EDT)

I like the change in title. Somewhere on this page I'd like to highlight the namespace portals for articles, people, places, sources, and maybe images, since they represent common "things you can do". I know they're listed at the top and also in the footer, but I'm starting to wonder if this is the right approach. The portal lists in the header and footer won't expand well if we have 20 portals someday. And if we have 20 portals, how will we choose which ones to put in the header and footer? Would it be better to have a single link on the other portal pages back to this page, where all of the portals are listed? Also, would it make sense to have a "general portals" or "getting started" or even "types of pages" box that lists the portals for people, articles, places, sources, etc.?--Dallan 23:02, 17 September 2009 (EDT)
Well, I just have a statement. One could compare this Wiki to their own genealogy program. On the Wiki however it all seems to be separate namespaces; person, family, places, sources, images, notes (articles). I understand that but maybe if we could somehow show a relationship between the genie program and a wiki it might help. With the genie program you really don't think about the various namespaces. You just click from screen to screen and enter your data.--Beth 01:09, 18 September 2009 (EDT)
Mmm... Until I read Beth's comment, I was thinking that the top horiz. header should just include links to the "namespace" portals. That way, it would never get too big. And that we then have the separate box for "special interest" portals. But Beth's point is far more user-focused. And actually, now that I think about it, may draw into question the need for a portal for each namespace. (Dallan, do you have any stats as to how much these are being used?) My recollection is that we were trying to help people understand the different purposes of the name spaces, but perhaps our solution (portals for each name space) is not necessarily the best way to do that.
Beth, I'm intrigued by your idea to help people think about the relationship between this wiki and their genealogy program. I wonder if we might explore what that would look like in some other sandboxy area. I'll start a topic below to collect bullets of what that might look like, and if we gain enough interest, we could then move it elsewhere. jillaine 07:53, 18 September 2009 (EDT)
We don't necessarily have to have portal pages for each namespace. I think it could be helpful to have portal-like pages explaining how to use people, sources, images, and maybe places, since that's what newcomers will probably start out using. Having portals for other namespaces like repositories and categories might be a useful way to convey how to use those namespaces as well, but they don't need to be as visible. I like the idea of showing the relationship between namespaces and a desktop program.
As for stats, so far this month the community page has gotten as many hits as all of the other portal pages combined. After Community, the most-frequently visited portals are Surname, Family, Person, Ethnic American, Puritan Great Migration, Cemetery, Source, Place, and Image.--Dallan 11:23, 22 September 2009 (EDT)

Your Genie Program and WeRelate [22 September 2009]

(Not saying this is the title; feel free to change)

Place your ideas here for what it might look like to show a relationship between the genie program and the wiki.

  • entering people (including entering and navigating people and families?)
  • citing sources (including info on Sources, MySources, and Repositories?)
  • adding images

Going beyond desktop genealogy as another header?

  • adding places (and cemeteries?)
  • sharing/collaborating?
  • contributing to research guides?
  • participating in one-name studies?

jillaine 07:53, 18 September 2009 (EDT)

I added a few.--Dallan 11:30, 22 September 2009 (EDT)

Fonder Family from Belgium [20 April 2011]

welcoming any fonder family members .Please message me.--JuliaFonder 05:56, 20 April 2011 (EDT)

Ancestors from Semriach, Austria [22 July 2012]

I am looking for Janisch/Yanisch, Gerlich, Schmeiser, Schuman, and Nikl ancestry in Austria and Sudetenland.--RachelJ 23:20, 21 July 2012 (EDT)

This page isn't the best place for questions like this. The best way to find relatives is to create Person pages containing what you know, and ask for more information.--Dallan 06:56, 13 August 2012 (EDT)

[30 July 2016]

--Lkosoff 01:25, 30 July 2016 (UTC)

searching Susanna (Peters Millett [7 August 2018]

I am searching family information/photographs for Susanna (Peters) and Artemus Millett for a friend of mine living in Payson, Arizona. Artemus Millett is his Great Great Grandfather. I would love to talk with anyone who could give me more information on Artemus and the work he did during his time living in Ernestown, Upper Canada from around 1829 to 1841.

I am searching for the burial place of Susanna Millett and more detailed information on the buildings and stoned arched bridges that Artemus built.

Hoping to hear back from someone who can help me.

Regards, Nan Spencer--Nan spencer 16:36, 7 August 2018 (UTC)