The source code of an article may contain comments: text seen by editors but not (normally) by readers of the article.
Comments are lines beginning with one ‘%’ and a space and are seen when editing the article. They are only displayed to users reading the article if they are logged in and have activated the option:
- User Preferences – Preferences – Browsing – Show comments
In this case they appear in grey-on-white text.
Comments may be interleaved with normal source text; in this case the text, when comments are suppressed, flows with no extraneous line breaks.
The main purpose of comments is to help oneself or other editors of the article, ee.g.:
- To explain a mistake they may be tempted to make when editing the article.
- To explain why the article is formulated or formatted as it is.
- To maintain a To Do list.
- To conduct part of the discussion with which one does wish to bother casual readers.
- This has the advantage that it can be right next to the text discussed rather than relegated to a Discussion section or sub-page or to the forum of the article.
One can also (ab)use comments to leave a remark for a specific other editor one expects to edit the article or to view it with comments shown.