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Persistence of content [#2487]

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ArnoHollosi: Persistence of content (2011-01-17 18:18) [#8262]

Willemien's idea of "weeding out old talk pages" or unwinding systematic joseki somehow make me feel uneasy. For no other reason than preservation or persistence of information, I do not really like deletions.

While I never heard deletion requests on e.g. discussion sites elsewhere[1] (be they go related or not,) somehow inside a wiki one feels the pressure of those additional, obscure, and outdated pages. They "take up too much room[2]." I wonder why that is so? I'd really be interested in an answer.

Are you preferring the [ext] WikiNow? Or are you an archivist and archaeologist? Why?

Here's a random idea: instead of deletion, archive pages: if you know the URL, the pages are still reachable, but they do not show up in (default) search results and can no longer be edited. Whether links to them should still work, I am unsure. Knowledgeable deshis can still "view source" for copy & paste. If you're a librarian (or a deshi?) you can revive the page from the archive. Same could be done for forum threads.

[1]: apparently, L19 is even considering importing the old godiscussion threads.

[2]: whatever that means in the online world.

tapir: Re: Persistence of content (2011-01-18 11:30) [#8265]

I am not sure what Willemien means with weeding out talk pages. If it is comments announcing a mistake on the page which is fixed for years now but which still persists on a forum page, I have no problem with that. If it is about deleting discussions just because they are old, I would have doubts. With the Systematic Joseki I raised the question for a long time. There was never anyone actually taking it up again, or arguing to keep it. E.g. Xela on the request page commented that we usually don't delete pages on SL and there was already a discussion on Systematic Joseki / Why, why not? That even Reuven agrees now, who was one of the more active proponents of Systematic Joseki approach, makes me believe I am right on this issue. Proposing deletion of Systematic Joseki in 2003 would have been interference and an attempt to enforce policies of relevance or a certain approach on a specific subject. Proposing to remove the content pages, while keeping the project pages intact now - is cleaning up after a failed attempt. Think of it like a cross-page WME, in fact since last year a lot of work has been done on joseki pages, unwinding the systematic joseki is just part of it. If indeed navigation / orientation is one of the main issues I feel this is necessary.

The 5-5 point Systematic Joseki pages I did remove already did not contain much tangible information above the other pages on those joseki we have here, though sometimes quite a lot disinformation. (Results from a database search in a position - without regard for who was moving next. I tried that out before removing them.)

All this is obviously not about physical space. But if the beach we want to play on is covered with investment ruins made from concrete I certainly would not feel welcome to construct my sandcastles there. Let us simulate some wind and waves here. (Not too much, though.)

Added later: We had a request for time-limited pages a while (one year, two years?) ago. To me this indicates that the persistence of everything written on SL can be an obstacle to contribution as well. I mean, I feel uneasy when in public lectures a proud fast improving beginner keeps asking the professional silly questions, basically silencing him on the points he wanted to convey. The more humble readers of SL may similarly prefer to ask their questions elsewhere. Personally, I feel very comfortable that now as a librarian I can instantly delete the worst of my contributions without asking anybody. (And I don't want anybody to unearth them, even if it is not to make fun about my kyu scholarship.)

willemien: Re: Persistence of content (2011-01-18 01:20) [#8266]

It is more to remove what is really not relevant anymore, - Questions on talk pages that are not relevant anymore. (at the moment there is a discussion on how paths work [ext] when the discussions have had results the discussion is out of date and not relevant anymore (ok i will wait some time but in 2012, the discussion can be removed. (or maybe move it to an otherplace like "old discussions on the way SL works" but surely not on the how paths work page

- Questions that are on the talk page and are answered on the main page can be removed.

Off topic comments - move them to the topic they belong ect.

It looks contradictionary that here were we are trying to get persisting information while message boards like l19 don't have the problem. Readers here expect to find the relevant (and reasonably up to date) information for whatever context they look. Readers on L19 who use the search function are archivist and archaeologist they want to know what was said about a subject longer ago. (sometimes i do use it) but also only if they could not find it here.

Hope i have not make all clear

axd: Re: Persistence of content (2011-01-18 09:54) [#8267]

A slightly off-topic comment: I'd wish the SL wiki history would be "time-jumpable".

That is, when you go back in time (in a page history), the links there also link back to the pages as they existed then.

This would give a new dimension to the concept "persistence".

tapir: Re: Persistence of content (2011-03-09 23:30) [#8358]

I disagree. I don't like SL to specialise as freak show for antiquarians. I am historian by profession, btw.

+ Some pages are indeed deleted turning such an endeavour impossible, as you would lack the starting point for your journey backwards.

axd: Re: Persistence of content (2011-03-10 10:53) [#8360]

This "history-true" feature is a technical detail, but IMO the concept is sound because it provides a much better context; to me it is a fundamental improvement of the wiki concept. For example, now on SL, discussions often refer to page content that changes, making those discussions meaningless after a while unless one can go back and look at the subject page at the time of the discussion.

This obviously won't work in a wiki simply stored in a database. I can't remember which wiki it was, but it did provide "time-navigating" features because it used Subversion to store wiki pages.

When pages would be deleted, they would continue to be accessible in earlier versions of the wiki. The design of SL limits this feature to pages; when an admin decides to delete a page, the page is physically gone - I don't think this is the ideal way to manage pages (certainly not when there is an alternative that can preserve time-bound information).

This feature would make removing irrelevant stuff more easy, because it can be reverted at any time. Now, the decision is more difficult to take.

tapir: Re: Persistence of content (2011-03-10 12:37) [#8361]

Not sure about the physically gone part. Afaik admins can still access (as opposed to librarians). I agree that irreversibility of page removals discourages removals even of the most obsolete materials. (But in my opinion the decision often isn't difficult at all - the SystematicJoseki pages I removed yesterday e.g. were basically some simple Joseki lines covered elsewhere and database queries made on smaller databases resulting in priority claims not supported by today's larger databases. The problem is that you can't count on feedback, if you propose sth. and then have to decide on your own.)

In my eyes wikis are based on two premises collaborative writing and reversibility to reduce tension and enable collaboration. So i sort of like the idea of time travel wiki, but when reversibility reaches a point where every new writing is just another time layer and not even a privileged one, it loses its function. To me the feeling that everything I write now, will be easily (looking up the page history is different and done for editing purposes usually) accessible eternally, would be a great deterrent to any contribution. Imagine those people who were asking for time-limited temporary pages with auto-removal. Also what do we do with spam, when all time layers are equal editing out won't suffice anymore and we need to seriously start erasing versions.

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