Wikipedia talk:Main Page/Test

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New layout for the Wikipedia Main page[edit]

You know what'd be nice? A tasteful image with "Wikipedia" or "wikipedia" or something, stylized, at the top. Anyway, it's just my 2c. :) Dysprosia 05:57, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Would anyone mind/think it useful to upload a sample image for people to look at, or is an image a Bad Thing? Dysprosia 09:18, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)
You mean in addition to the WikipediA text and logo on the left? Very small images aren't inherently BTs, but I think I need a visual to see what you're getting at/where it would go. Elf 16:48, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Here's something I drew up. Please don't laugh and point at me :) Image:Wikipedia_sample_header_image.png Dysprosia 05:11, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I would add more whitespace margins inside the two main boxes, they look a little crowded right now. And maybe move the "Welcome" box a little lower to the center two boxes and make the width the same as them, too. - SheikYerBooty 06:03, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

This works now in Moz. Dose it work in IE, too?—Eloquence

The "Browse Wikipedia by topic" section has got some subpar articles and has got to go. It leaves a bad impression on other people when we link to articles that suck. --Jiang

note Main Page/iTemp. --Jiang
Aren't How-tos denigrated in favor of wikibooks? Tuf-Kat
Eventually, but over 90% of them are still here. By the way, I like the page. Gentgeen 10:12, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I agree the "Browse" section needs work. Any takers?—Eloquence

I love it. It is a lot more interesting to read that the current main page, which is nothing more than a list of links. A move to something more dynamic is long overdue. Brings back memories of my beloved temp5. :) It might be worth looking at Talk:Main Page/Layout design and Talk:Main Page/Temp5 for the criticisms made of the last round of main page suggestions to see if those still need to be addressed, and to prevent the same objections being raised again. Angela

I much prefer it to the current one. The focus on the actual articles is beneficial, and it generally looks "slicker" (good amount of white-space, pictures, not too many links). - snoyes 06:24, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Oops, I forgot to say that I liked it over the current page and that it looked find in my bleeding edge build of Firefox. -SheikYerBooty

I like this page. It's really nice. Nico 08:28, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I'm not sure I like it, my first impressions are "who is this aimed at"? It feels a bit like it's aimed at children, is it? And who should it be aimed at? Also, I think the "Welcome! Wikipedia is a multilingual project...." has lost the key point that anyone can contribute, please add that bit back. As it stands I get the impression that some group of multilingual people somewhere are creating the encyclopedia, but that my role is to use it and behave! :) fabiform | talk 09:29, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I like it! However there is too much focus on daily content updates, IMO - a bit different wording would be needed so we don't get mud on our face if we update a section too slowly. For example "this day in history" should be replaced by "Recent anniversaries" or something like it. --mav 10:53, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I like this layout quite a bit, but I think there should be a slight bit more focus on "permanent content" and a slight bit less focus on "transient content". That is, more featured articles, more "did you know?", and so on, and a bit less recent deaths, anniversaries, and "in the news". Not that we should get rid of the latter, they just shouldn't be 3/4 of the main box. --Delirium 11:10, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

Graphic appeal is much improved. Separating "community issues" from "article navigation issues" is an excellent idea. Highliting specific articles with a summary and picture shows that someone understands the basics of marketing. (You don't develop interest by showing long lists, rather you pick a couple of your best features and display them as attractively as possible.) Puting the intro in a box and reducing its print size is a great idea. Just a couple of suggestions: Can we eliminate the header that says Main Page, Wikipedia the free encyclo? It is completely redundant, it uses valuable space, it introduces white space in a graphically unappealing area, and it robs the page of initial impact (Any advertising layout or copyeditor will tell you that to gain the interest of the viewer you have to grab them with your best copy in the top-left section of the page). Just one last comment, this may just be a reflection of my personal biases but I would like to see links to Finance and to Marketing in the applied arts section. These sections of WP have developed substantialy in the past 10 months, so much so that finance is the root page for 275 articles and marketing is the root page for 201 articles. Good work on the new main page. mydogategodshat 11:23, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The layout looks nice, and I agree it's a good idea to present more refined articles instead of community content. However, if I am not mistaken, there is nothing to tell the reader that Wikipedia is a place where you can edit any article. There is a link to the "community main page", but IMO that's not enough. Even with the current state of things there are occasional remarks on talk pages, village pump etc. from people who complain about this or that factual mistake because they don't realize that they could remedy it themselves. We should always make it as clear as possible that Wikipedia is free to anybody who would like to contribute. Kosebamse 11:41, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think separating "community issues" from "article navigation issues" will work if it is implemented well. This will entail including links to the "community main page" everywhere that it is reasonable to do so. mydogategodshat
I agree with the separation, but I also think we should mention up-front that this is an editable encyclopedia, which is sort of our claim to fame. It only takes a few words to do so. --Delirium 12:10, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)
What I like most about it is the pictures. They make it friendlier somehow.Exploding Boy 12:20, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

I like it and I don't like it. The new layout is nice, but I am not sure how I feel about the community links being elsewhere. I realize that people can just click on the prominent link on the first paragraph, but that's not enough exposure. Then again, having all those links in the main page clutters things up, and I doubt that many people click on those links anyway. It'd be nice to have some stats on how many anons or new users click on the community links as opposed to the other links. The stat thing could actually be good in determining just what we should put on the main page in general, but I doubt it will happen. I just noticed that the interwiki links are also missing. In my opinion that is a bigger deal, we should figure out a way to put them in the main page somehow. Maybe through flags, but they need to be there as of now since there is no portal and most people show up here. Dori | Talk 14:26, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

Wow, thanks for all the feedback! And most of it is positive, too. OK, here's some stuff I intend to change based on that:

  • Make it clearer that Wikipedia is editable - not too much, just a few words in the intro para.
  • Be a bit more vague when it comes to suggestions of daily updates ;-)
  • Re-introduce the language links -- I'm thinking a box between the two boxes in the middle and the "Browse Wikipedia by topic" box.

If anyone else wants to work on this, please do. I'm not 100% happy with the colors yet - any suggestions in that department?—Eloquence

Where would you suggest people work on alternatives--same page, or create subpages with variants? Elf 16:53, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I like it. Looks nice! Good white space, so not so intimidating. Some of the appeal is the included pictures; we'd always want to be sure to have a couple of article references with pictures like this. My thoughts:

  • Probably don't need to list all the language versions on the main pg, but shd at least have one link like "Choose your language" quickly goes to where they're all listed.
  • Squished page to fit in approx laptop space and larger font size makes it look choppy. Even on big screen, with this layout, font size looks big for main boxes. I don't want to start a huge discussion about adjustable font sizes and so on, but I think they shd be a wee bit smaller.
  • Agree that it shd place more emphasis on existing knowledge rather than breaking stories, since we're *not* a news site. Just switch sides?
  • Agree that "You can add/edit stuff yourself" feature shd be clearer and more prominent. I like the temp5 "Welcome newcomers" box--small with just a couple of links but gets attention.
  • Agree that sister project links shd be more prominent--I never even noticed them originally til I'd been on for over a week. :-)
  • I use the community links from the main page all the time cuz it's easy to get there, but I don't think they inherently need to be on main pg. If we added a sidebar link under Main Page to Contributors' Page Contributor Help or some such, I could still get there with just a click.

Elf 16:45, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Main Page/Test looks pretty good to me. I would point out that the anniversaries section is much shorter....I kind of like the variety we get on the current main page, and the test version seems to truncate that too much. Also, has anyone considered how this layout would work on occasions when the "in the news", "featured articles", etc. don't have associated pictures? I want to make sure we don't get locked into focusing only on articles with nice little thumbnails -- we've got plenty of excellent imageless articles, and many of them will remain that way for the foreseeable future. The only other major point I notice at present is that the sister project links are gone, but I know there must be an exaplanation for this....still, I'll want to see how they are coordinated with the present test page. Good work! Jwrosenzweig 17:10, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I was gonna say the same thing as Jwrosenzweig about picture-less articles, and I also wonder about the summaries of the featured article... Perhaps, as a final prerequisite to becoming a featured article, there needs to be such a summary ready to go on the talk page. Tuf-Kat 17:49, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

Having the top two boxes the other way around makes a surprising difference, I like it a lot better. :) Still need to get the immediacy of "anyone can edit anything" back, and I agree with the points just above about pictureless articles and snappy paragraphs for the front page. fabiform | talk 18:28, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I dislike it. It feels less information-dense and it also feels as if less of the page fits on (say) a 1024x768 screen. I don't know if those impressions are objectively true, but those are the impressions I get. And I very much dislike moving the community material off-page. I view with great alarm the loss of the front-and-center invitation to "Visit the help page and experiment in the sandbox to learn how you can edit any article right now." Edit any article right now. Edit any article right now. I know the community stuff is only a click away, but it feels to me like a loss of focus and blurring of vision. Just my $0.02. Sorry. Dpbsmith 20:32, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Boss! This is the way to hook more readers! I think the community stuff could still be side-by-side with the top-level topics down below, plus maybe add some kind of big arrow kind of thing pointing down so that people realize the page is longer than one screenful. My one bit of apprehension about content is that the current events stuff might tempt too many people to play amateur journalist instead of encyclopedist, but I suppose that's not a new problem (perhaps a second link to background subject?). It would be cool to have some quasi-current events that are scientific publications/discoveries that don't necessarily make the news-for-a-day cycle. Stan 20:56, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

This page is great! Like Angela said above, it makes me nostalgic for mp/temp5, but this version has an even cleaner layout. I made a couple minor tweaks to the whitespace: added 1em padding inside the boxes, and shaved off a few pixels between them. Hopefully this doesn't mess anything up :) -- Merphant 22:31, 16 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Yes, this is good - hopefully this will get all the benefits of Main Page/Temp5 without the downsides. Great stuff! :) Martin 00:10, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It is definitely good. But a couple of things come to my vision:

  • Do the sections need to be numbered? I can see no reason for it and it gives a kind of "forced structure" to the reader.
  • The rightmost bracket of the top-rigth [edit] button appears out of the box in my mozilla 1024x768.
  • I notice that, as lines are very short (especially in the right column, news), there appear several "large whitespaces", which is clearly ugly typesetting.
  • I'd rather put just a link on the main word and at most another one per item. (For example: Mozart was..... just linking to Mozart and probably classical music or similar).

My 2c and congratulations to whoever did it. Pfortuny 18:40, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Aren't the sections numbered because you've decided in your settings to have sections numbered? They aren't numbered for me. This is just a consequence of using proper headers rather than randomly picking bolds and size increments and hoping that it'll work. Martin 00:57, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Quite probably. As a matter of fact <shame>I do not know</shame>. Pfortuny 13:29, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Link format advantageous to descriptive format[edit]

We can maintain the current list of links. Instead of providing a description which could become a difficult to maintain thing, we could add graphics for the sections and keep the descriptions brief if they are kept. --Hemanshu 15:34, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Why do you think a description would be difficult to maintain? Martin 00:55, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

As soon as a description comes in, POV comes in, edit wars come in... etc. not suitable for main page - Hemanshu 07:55, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

A useful technique is to steal the first para from the page in queston, which is normally as neutral as anything in Wikipedia, and most sysops are intelligent enough to avoid edit wars. Perhaps we should avoid putting controversial articles on the front page? Martin 14:09, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Images might be problematic for now[edit]

I don't think we can allow images to be on the main page. Right now, you cannot protect an image. So if a vandal came along, created an account, and uploaded a goatse image with the same name as the one the main page, it would show up despite the protection on the main page. I just tried testing this with File:Goodtest.PNG (the good image is green, the bad one is red). Despite protecting the image description page, the bad image was uploaded successfully. Irod 18:24, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC) -- This was me by the way Dori | Talk 18:25, Feb 17, 2004 (UTC)

It wouldn't be irrevocably damaging, and we could easily remove the images for the duration of the attack (maybe as long as a few weeks, if they're really persistent). I'd rather take that fairly small (IMO) risk, considering the benefits that images bring. Note that vandals can't change the sizing now that we're using auto-resizing, which curtails the risk.
That would depend on us being happy to let the vandal gain a temporary victory in forcing us to de-image the main page... but I'd rather than that let the vandals gain a permanent victory in forcing us to de-image the main page. If that makes sense. Martin 00:53, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)
This is similar to vandalism in the MediaWiki namespace - bad in theory, rare in practice. Let's deal with cases like that if they actually occur.—Eloquence 01:35, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)
Ah, I see you gentlemen have not been traumatised by having seen the aforementioned picture :) I am not saying it wouldn't get reverted quickly, but for the amount of time it stays up there it could do some real damage (not just to the people who view it, but to our reputation too). And if somehow we get a spider at the time that does a static grab of everything on the page and plasters it somewhere, that would be horrible. I realize that the last possibility would be quite a rarity. I am just trying to make this vandalism possibility known, and IMO our hands are tied in not providing images on the main page until images can be protected too. Dori | Talk 03:39, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)
I'm firmly with Dori here. -- Jmabel 02:52, 19 Feb 2004 (UTC)

CSS question[edit]

I'd like to reliably reduce the left margin for the list (UL) elements, without changing the global stylesheets. Any ideas how to do that? Could margin-left:-1em in a surrounding DIV break something? —Eloquence 09:53, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)

In case no one suggests a decent way of doing it, you could simply fudge it by making a list without bullet points...

On February 16, 1959, '''[[Fidel Castro]]''' became [[Prime Minister]] of [[Cuba]].<br> On February 16, 1918, '''[[Lithuania]]''' declared its [[independence]].<br> On February 16, 1912, '''[[Nikolai of Japan]]''' (a saint of the [[Eastern Orthodox]] church) died.<br>

(It doesn't look quite as bad as the markup suggests, and all that "white" space really has to go!) fabiform | talk 10:24, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

When should this go live?[edit]

According to Wikistats we should be hitting the 1/2 million project-wide article mark in about a week and a half. It would be real neat to distribute the press release at the same time. Much work needs to be done fast to make this happen. --mav 10:00, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Well, if you agree, we can have a vote on the new combined pages fairly soon. As long as nobody gets the bright idea to create 12 variants of this page we could be done in a couple of days. I'll have to actually create the community main page first, though.
I thought a bit about using "Anniversaries" instead of "This day in history". I think "This day in history" is catchier, and I believe with > 160 sysops we should be able to keep it up to date. What do you think?—Eloquence 10:03, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)
The community main page would also need to be up to scratch before a vote, it's not just for the regulars, it's to encourage people to become contributors. :) fabiform | talk 10:29, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)
This day is going to be different in different parts of the world. Experience so far has shown that the Anniversaries section is updated in an ad hoc way - sometimes it is up to date and sometimes it is a day or two behind. So for now at least I think we should nix "this day". --mav

Community Main Page[edit]

OK, I've got a first demo of the community main page at Wikipedia:Main Page. Comment away (on the talk page over there), and please help me in filling in the links.—Eloquence 13:23, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)

To go along with that, I boldly rearranged the wording & emphasis in the top box to focus more on "You can edit"--whatch'all think? Elf 00:38, 19 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I think it looks a little too extreme. I prefer it when just the you is bold.—Eloquence

I tried it with only "you" and the word is just too short and gets lost in the paragraph. I toned it down by removing bold from "right now". Elf 16:51, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Did you know ...?[edit]

I don't like this section and think it should either be removed or moved the community main page. That would give more room for the historical events section (which I think is a much higher priority). What does everybody else think? --mav 10:48, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I actually like it. I think our main pages give too much space to historical events, which I frankly don't think should be on the main page at all. Who cares that a certain event happened some even multiple of 365 days prior (plus some leap years)? I'd rather pick some interesting things and highlight them, regardless of date-related concerns, and aren't subject to the problem that they give undue weight to historical events over other important things that don't have convenient dates associated with them (e.g., mathematical, philosophical, or scientific concepts). --Delirium 10:53, Feb 20, 2004 (UTC)
I like the historical section. Two main reasons: 1) it's a good way of linking to the articles people may come looking for/be interested in on major anniversaries (e.g. one year after a major tragedy, someone hears a mention in the news and comes to wikipedia to find out more about the topic in general, link on the first page is convenient). 2) In a sense it's another (sort of) randomised way of highlighting articles, people may not care that such and such happened exactly 79 years ago that day, but might be interested in reading about the topic when prompted - it is also a good way to force a rapid turnover of random articles linked from the main page, and with a minimum of effort required from the admins (they have a different list of articles to pick from every day, after all). fabiform | talk 11:28, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I like the current mix. History isn't the only kind of knowledge we've got here, and it gives us a chance to point out fun facts that aren't necessarily featured articles. Elf 16:05, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
In retrospect, I agree with Elf. I think we should have both: the anniversaries section semi-randomly points out interesting historical things, but we should also point out interesting things that don't have dates associated with them. --Delirium 23:06, Feb 20, 2004 (UTC)
What do you think featured articles is for? --mav

The idea here is to use "did you know" to feature interesting new articles which have not yet undergone peer review. This could also be used for scientific findings which do not make the current events section, for articles imported from public domain sources etc. - generally the kind of stuff that normally doesn't get much attention.—Eloquence

I like the "Did you know" section (although I'm not sure about the name). I like it because it gives some balance to the page: Without it, the site looks more like an e-magazine than an e-encyclopedia. mydogategodshat 03:45, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I'm very much in favour of "did you know?". It's just the "new articles" section from the main page, but done better. Let's keep it. :) Martin 14:04, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Choose your language[edit]

I moved the languages to their own box because they're not "topics". I mirrored the color at the top deliberately. We still need a link or pseudo button ("Choose your language now") at the top that pops the screen directly down to the language list. I'll stick a kludgy one into the top box somewhere but I hope someone comes up with something better because I don't want to distract from "you can edit right now". Elf 16:23, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC) (OK, I stuck one in, but I couldn't quite get the effect I wanted--over to the lower right instead of the lower left. I don't have time to play with it (wish I did). Elf 16:45, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC))

And, oh yeah, I used nested DIVs which is probably going to even more grotesquely annoy browsers that implement them badly. Elf 16:52, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
It does look a bit squished up to me. I'm not sure that "choose your language" is going to be very intuitive to non-English speakers And therefore is it at all useful?). I know that images of flags are naff, perhaps we could create a long thin banner for that box which had something representing a whole load of different languages (sort of like the wikipedia logo does) which people could click for the language options. I've already thought of a bunch of problems with this idea, but perhaps it will inspire someone else to come up with another suggestion! fabiform | talk 18:04, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Good point about non-English speakers. Elf 18:49, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC) Continuing that thought--there must be a universal symbol for "languages" or "translation"--like the universal handicapped symbol, or the universal big question mark for "information" or the universal signs for first aid, escalator, etc. Does anyone who travels thru international airports a lot know? Elf 19:33, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
A speech bubble with random foreign characters in it perhaps? fabiform | talk 20:22, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)


Wow! This is neat, Elf! However, the top most box overlaps the [edit] link. - UtherSRG 16:43, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It did that before I got here. :-) I have no clue why--it's generated automatically by Wiki and I don't know what markup it is having relationship issues with. Elf 16:47, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Fascinating. *raised eyebrow* You should take a look at my experiments on Wikipedia:Sandbox. - UtherSRG 19:01, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
?I don't see any relevant stuff there at the moment??? *Both eyebrows wiggling* Elf 19:21, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Look at the page history. I have several versions there for you to look at. - UtherSRG 19:38, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, this looks much cooler than Main Page... someone should polish it and move it :-). ugen64 03:18, Feb 21, 2004 (UTC)
I added __NOEDITSECTION__ to stop the edit tags appearing. The same thing is done on the current main page. Sections can still be edited by right clicking them if you have this enabled in your preferences. Angela. 14:31, Feb 21, 2004 (UTC)

Cooking --> Cuisine[edit]

I replaced the link to Cooking with Cuisine as the recipes and cooking techniques are in the process of moving over to wikibooks, but the various cuisine pages will remain here (or perhaps be both here and there). Cooking can is linked to from Cuisine, so it's only one step removed from the new main page. Gentgeen 17:24, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Any objections to using this page?[edit]

Aside from the image protection issue, which I think I can resolve fairly easily, are there any other objections to taking this page live? I think we might have something approaching consensus here.—Eloquence 04:30, Feb 21, 2004 (UTC)

Agree - mydogategodshat 04:42, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Agreement from here too. Should we announce it somewhere (Village Pump?) so people not following this page can give their input? --Delirium 05:20, Feb 21, 2004 (UTC)
As I said earlier, bolding only the "You" gets lost in the full paragraph at the top of the page. For new users, "Community page" doesn't mean anything, but "You can edit..." at least should stand out. Otherwise, I think it's looking good. Elf 05:24, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Oh, yeah, there's still the issue of the automatic [edit] floating halfway out of the top box--and on the community main page, it's all the way out. Do we care? Can it be fixed? I looked at UtherSG's sandbox history pages but I don't think I identified a solution that leaves the text frames lined up correctly. Elf 05:30, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The [edit] link problem is fixed now (see above). I agree this should go live, and sooner rather than later to prevent the issue of Main Page/Test2, Main Page/Test3 etc etc appearing and nothing ever happening. :) Angela. 14:34, Feb 21, 2004 (UTC)

I think it looks great. Anyway, well done. It's a lot more dynamic and interesting to newcomers than just a whole bunch of tiny little links - there's something there for them to look at and actually get an idea that yes, this is an encylopedia! I'll have to check out the community page too. (btw, I like the idea of seperating the community links from the rest, because I use them a LOT more than the info links, so the easier it is to get at them the better.)KJ 11:31, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

How does this usually work... do we set up a formal poll and advertise it all over the place, or just go live once people on this talk page are happy? (I'm happy with making this the real main page now, it's looking good!). And, just out of curiosity, will the community main page be protected? fabiform | talk 14:43, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I propose mirroring the way the current main was done - just do it, and then edit war for a bit with Cunctator. :) Martin 16:33, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Let Cunct know the change is coming before it happens so he can express his views. Edit wars, especially on the main page, are bad. I support both pages going live. Gentgeen 17:09, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
We should above all not go live on the same day as the press release. We either do it soon, so we have time to settle in, fix any problems etc, or do it afterwards. :) fabiform | talk 17:19, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
This page is still missing much of the old community section including Writing Articles and About the Project. I think that those need to be on the main page to facilitate newcommers learning about the project. Jrincayc 22:49, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The community stuff has been moved to a seperate main page - here in case you haven't seen it yet: Wikipedia:Main Page. Note that each links to the other. fabiform | talk 23:03, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Sorta okay. The main page does not seem to have any link to the FAQ, or the about page. There should probably be a bit more community stuff on the main page. Jrincayc 23:55, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Note that there are "Help" and "About" links on every page.—Eloquence

"Obituaries" instead of "Recent deaths" ?[edit]

How about "Obituaries" instead of "Recent deaths". I find "Recent deaths" kind of jarring. "Obituaries" or something like it would seem more tasteful. In the current main page, this phrase is somewhat buried (no pun intended), but the new layout puts it right there up front. Bevo 17:43, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

It was Obituaries, and I changed it to recent deaths. Having checked the meaning of the word in the disctionary I think perhaps I was wrong though, so feel free to change it back. :) fabiform | talk 17:48, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
OK, I made the substitution. Bevo 18:08, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)
User:Maveric149 reverted my change with this comment "They are NOT obituaries - they are articles; Wikipedia is not a newspaper". By this reasoning, we should not include the list of "Recent deaths" at all, or certainly not "In the news", "more News...". I'm changing it back! (I usually don't get this animated over simple wording, but I think I need a better rationale for "Recent deaths" over "Obituaries" than I see so far.) There may well be a better set of words to use than either of these, and I want to keep trying to keep this discussionn alive before the new page is put into use. Bevo 14:35, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
After reverting, I find that I agree with User:Maveric149 about the "More recent deaths..." label. That in fact is a link to a list of articles, not obituaries. But I do like the caption "Obituaries" for that frame on the Main page as that is what is is, a list of very terse obituaries, in the only place in the Wikipedia that is in fact a newspaper-like presentation (and clearly marked as such). Bevo 14:45, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I find a dedicated section here rather jarring, regardless of the name. That said, I recognize that recent deaths always trigger new articles and activity, so there probably needs to be some recognition of that.

How about "Featured Biographies", located in the same spot, but using a new background color. This would be where more promenent recent deaths go, with the remainder being put in the "In the news" section. I'll grant you that it's a bit euphamistic. However, good new biographies of living people or those that died a long time ago can also go here (e.g. the Mozart article), so it may steer things in a less maudlin direction. It'll also give us two spots to feature good articles -- RobLa 00:18, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The different skins[edit]

I was just playing with the different skins available in my preferences for the first time. Some of the boxes on this main page overlap slightly when I'm using the blue skin (in IE). fabiform | talk 18:02, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I like this one a lot. Where can I state it more formally ? Anthère0

Great work[edit]

I applaud the efforts of all the individuals who have contributed to the new main page. It is much better than the current one. Perl 22:45, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I reworded the intro, and replaced "learn" with ascertain. Ascertain is a more appropriate word because it means "to discover with certainty, as through examination or experimentation." Perl 23:16, 21 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think the fact that you have to explain what it means is a pretty good indication that it's not a better word. ;-) —Eloquence 00:30, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)
Everyone knows that it means to learn. I just included the definition because the "experiment" part was particularly useful. Perl 00:42, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Will the new layout be ready for the press release?[edit]

We will be hitting the 500,000 milestone by Monday (if not already). I have proposed that the English Wikipedia version of the press release be distributed on Wednesday 25 February. Can we go live with the new page at the same time? -- mav 00:53, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

If nobody insists on having a vote, I think so.—Eloquence
I'll happily insist on having a vote. This looks significantly less good than what we have now. Placing the description of the project in an ad box at the top of the page is a particularly bad idea. If the vote means we keep something effective for the press release duration, that's a welcome side-effect. Jamesday 10:00, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I don't see why we need a vote. If people have suggestions to improve it, they can make those, but there's no need to revert to the old page just because there might be some things wrong with the new one. Angela. 22:00, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

All main pages seem ugly to me[edit]

Plain vanilla main page[edit]

See Wikipedia:Plain vanilla main page. Optim 02:54, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

discussion moved to plain vanilla talk by Optim

New articles: question and proposal[edit]

Would it be possible to feature more than one new article in the "did you know" section? For reasons of variety.. i.e., several articles on different subjects to grab as many interests as possible out of the day's crop.

If this isn't feasible due to space constraints, might it be possible to organize a sort of "selected new articles" page (in a complimentary style to the main page, with short summaries and pretty pictures) that would link from the main page? This would be a place to put recently created articles that have been cleaned up, verified if necessary, and that are "ready for the masses". The "raw" list of new pages isn't particularly user-friendly, a point I might as well raise while we're on the topic of reader usability.

Now, I know this would mean a lot of maintenance. I'd be willing to take it on if others feel such a page would be of use to Wikipedia's community and readers. Personally I think it'd be neat to have a user-friendly place to put a spotlight on what's new and give the excellent and hard work of our contributors some exposure. This would not only foster peer review, but it'd reflect positively on Wikipedia as a whole. Much better than leading our readers to a list of stubs. What does everyone else think?

In any event, I like the new format from an aesthetic standpoint. The current main page has brevity on it's side, but as others have said, we're aiming for mass consumption. Nice work. Hadal 03:44, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I think that a new article spotlight with summaries would be a great idea, if you're willing to maintain it. How about creating Wikipedia:New articles?—Eloquence 03:46, Feb 22, 2004 (UTC)
*Gulp*.. I will, if everyone agrees with the proposal. Your vote of support is quite encouraging, of course :). I'll have to think about the layout and play with the code, as that isn't a strong point of mine. Hadal 04:44, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Fireteam proposition[edit]

I have made a proposal at Wikipedia:Main Page fireteams. Perl 16:06, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

There is an assumption stated at that new page about the new Main page requiring more attention and time to keep it current. If true, then maybe we should consider the KISS principle before we commit to this level of complexity. It may also turn out that the new page is not overly complex, and in that case we don't need that bureaucracy. To tell the truth, I'm not aware of how the current Main page is attended to. Do we already have that sort of team structure? Bevo 17:19, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Take out the heading[edit]

Is it possible to take out the heading? This was already mentioned and I think it should be removed. It is redundant and causes visual problems. Perl 18:37, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

You mean the Main Page heading? Unfortunately that's not possible.—Eloquence

Positive feedback[edit]

This is a smashing good page. Deep-six the old one immediately; this one is far superior. I love it! Davidcannon 22:59, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Me too theresa knott 23:11, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Yes I agree. Lets replace the old one immediately. Perl 00:57, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Let's wait for Wednesday 25 February - that's the day we will be distributing the press release. --mav 10:07, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Argh, so we'll be ironing out bugs and tweaking on the day we have a whole load of extra traffic? I think it should be changed on the 23rd or 24th (i.e. right away) and allowed to bed down/settle in for a day. fabiform | talk 12:33, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)
OK - fine with me. :) But some people may yell and demand a vote. That may delay things. --mav

Internet Explorer with Cologne Blue skin[edit]

There are various problems with this combination, which will need to be fixed if you use this version. IE is used by most people on the web. Looks lovely in Mozilla and Opera though! ChrisG 22:45, 22 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I don't have Windows, so I can't debug this. Can anyone with access to IE 6 try to locate/fix in the display under the Cologne Blue skin?—Eloquence 01:51, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)
OK, I've done my best to fix this by adding some more white space. It now looks good to me in Cologne Blue using IE6 - tell me if it's still bad for you. Note to others, please don't take the extra blank lines and top-padding out; it's needed badly in the above combination. :) fabiform | talk 02:56, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)


I created Template:Holidays and added it to this diff (I self reverted). I think it is a great idea and would tend to balance the length of the two sides of the table. Holidays also make more sense on the news and obit side of the table since they are 'in the now' so to speak. Any objections to me adding this section? I promise to help maintain it. --mav

I suspect that "In the news" might get pretty long on active days. We might have to turn it off then.—Eloquence
No objection. I like the holidays section. Angela. 22:00, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

Taking it live[edit]

If we want to take this page live, we should do it today, to see how strong the inevitable counter reaction will be. I suggest the following procedure:

  1. Refresh page
  2. Exchange Main Page, add notice on top saying that this is the suggested new page and feedback should be given on Talk:Main Page instead of reverting
  3. If strong objections, vote with 24 hours deadline (should get votes pretty quickly)

If majority votes against, old Main Page will be the standard again on Wednesday, when the press release goes live.

Mav, Jamesday, do you agree?—Eloquence 17:28, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

That is a very sensible suggestion. Either take it live today or wait until long after interest due to the press release dies downtheresa knott 17:32, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Sounds good to me. --mav 17:43, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Go for it, I'd like to see how it turns out. Dori | Talk 17:45, Feb 23, 2004 (UTC)

We just need to make sure that all the sections are updated. I'll work on the history section. --mav 17:45, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

History section ready. How are the msgs going to work with our caching system? Will we have to edit the Main Page once a day to refresh the cache and thus update the msgs for anons? --mav 19:09, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

This all sounds great. :) And it'll get the attention of all the users who haven't heard about it yet so we'll get a better idea of what the whole community thinks. fabiform | talk 19:32, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Going live now? -- Kaihsu 19:35, 2004 Feb 23 (UTC)

We have gone live. Perl 20:03, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Tip of the Week...[edit]

Somewhere on some prototype, I saw a section of the Main Page titled "Tip of the Day..." Daily tips might be too much, but i like the idea of including a Tip of the Week. Can we add that to the new Main Page? Kingturtle 22:49, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Tip of the day is on Wikipedia:Main Page by the way (the community main page). fabiform | talk 22:51, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)