Talk:Main Page

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Main Page Archives

Archive 1: $-\infty$ to Sept 24/08
Archive 2: Sept 25/08 to Dec 20/08
Archive 3: Dec 21/08 to Feb 21/09
Archive 4: Feb 22/09 to Jun 14/09
Archive 5: Jun 15/09 to Feb 21/09
Archive 6: Feb 22/09 to May 10/11
Archive 7: May 11/11 to Mar 28/12
Archive 8: Mar 29/12 to Oct 10/12
Archive 9: Oct 11/12 to May 18/13/12


Confirm Account Creation

What does everyone think about forcing account creation to be confirmed by an admin. --Joe (talk) 02:00, 27 May 2013 (UTC) Other options include disabling welcome bot (do we really need this anymore?) and setting it so that new users can't create pages. --Joe (talk) 02:03, 27 May 2013 (UTC)

I'm still a fan of the welcome bot.
How would it work? How does an admin guy know whether an account creation request is valid or not? Can we fix it so that if someone tries to edit a page, they are asked to write a post to (some page somewhere, on PW) where they introduce themselves and explain what they can contribute? Even a reply along the lines "I'm an anarchist who loves ridiculing mathematicians" would be an adequate reason to allow access - any obviously robotically generated request would be responded to by blocking the user. --prime mover (talk) 05:27, 27 May 2013 (UTC)
... and if we can, we should automatically block any user (and the domain they rode in on) who tries to post a page containing the words "Feel free to visit my website" as this is clearly the work of a particular spamming engine. --prime mover (talk) 05:59, 27 May 2013 (UTC)
We could make them submit a short bio or something on account creation. Just so long as they mention math/proofs then they can get an account. If they don't' write anything then they don't get an account. --Joe (talk) 17:59, 27 May 2013 (UTC)

I saw this proposed as a turing test question, which seems appropriate for a mathematical wiki.--Linus44 (talk) 10:14, 27 May 2013 (UTC):

In the following question, the correct answer is indicated by the capital letters. They spell out a word that rhymes with the correct answer. Ignore the literal content of the question and insert the number that sounds just like the word spelled out by the caps.
What is the Only correct aNswer to the following question
2 + 2 = __
No. That is a test that seems likely to result in weeding out dyslexics, which is not our intention. --Dfeuer (talk) 14:59, 27 May 2013 (UTC)

Whatever we do, we should do it soon; the volume seems to be increasing. No objection to getting rid of Welcomebot. No objection to sensible restrictions on unconfirmed users. One minor concern: we tend to block account creation from spammers' IPs indefinitely. Doesn't this risk blocking out legitimate new users if those users are assigned a blocked address by, e.g., DHCP? --Dfeuer (talk) 02:13, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

Do you even know how DHCP works? Every house (technically, router) has its own IP address and DHCP server; the DHCP manages internal addresses (192.168.x.x blocks usually) but does in no way affect the external IP. I deem the likelihood of someone buying a router that has been blocked due to a spam user and trying to register on $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$ sufficiently minuscule to gloss over it.
The problem is not WelcomeBot here, I don't see how it could be involved in this. Perhaps the ConfirmAccount extension could be a solution? It's a bit more work, perhaps, but it's preventive rather than enforcing work. — Lord_Farin (talk) 07:09, 29 May 2013 (UTC)
First off, a router may not have a static IP (I believe Verizon assigns one to mine dynamically each time it boots). Second off, not everyone necessarily accesses PW from a house, and some networks may expose dynamically assigned addresses (though this is probably rare). --Dfeuer (talk) 07:31, 29 May 2013 (UTC)
I've disabled account create for now. The confirm account extension doesn't want to work, I'll look into it. --Joe (talk) 17:27, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

Okay, I've setup the confirm edit extension. If anyone wants to setup groups for people to tick and stuff check out this page and let me know. Account requests can be found on Special:ConfirmAccounts (for those with access). Also, this extension can replace WelcomeBot, I've turn this feature on to try. --Joe (talk) 22:49, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

May I suggest adding a group of users who can confirm? Currently only bureaucrats can do so, but I would think any frequent or formerly frequent contributor to the site should be able to distinguish a real person from a spammer with sufficient robustness. --Dfeuer (talk) 23:09, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
I'll make it so that sysops can. Done.--Joe (talk) 23:10, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
Bureaucrats only still. --Dfeuer (talk) 01:05, 31 May 2013 (UTC)

Further issue: Special:RequestAccount refers to ProofWiki:Terms of Service, which does not exist (I was just pointed to this by the first entry in the approval queue). This needs to be fixed, as well as ProofWiki:Copyrights which I see every time I edit a page. — Lord_Farin (talk) 08:47, 31 May 2013 (UTC)

We have also been thinking of moving to CC-by-SA (on the grounds that it's most liberal) from the GNU FDL 1.2 but nothing's moved on that one. We needed to get an okay from the active users, and IIRC nobody objected. Except the contents of talk pages which were to remain under the personal control of whoever contributes to them. --prime mover (talk) 10:04, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
That's still my point of view as well. Alas, any time I would spend on writing some text for these pages would have to be shared under the "study avoiding behaviour" header, so I won't. — Lord_Farin (talk) 10:17, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
Interestingly, there is an open account request which complains about a lack of ToS. I'll try to make the change for the license later today or this weekend. Anyone have any ideas on how to go about these missing pages? --Joe (talk) 10:55, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
Just use the ToS from CC-by-SA? --GFauxPas (talk) 15:10, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
It is my point of view that the license for work done by no-longer-active contributors cannot be changed without their explicit permission. Yes, CC-by-SA makes more sense than GFDL, but we shouldn't really be playing fast and loose with a license change.... --Dfeuer (talk) 15:16, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
That's just tough. Who's going to tell? You? --prime mover (talk) 21:03, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
Strongly disagree. Locking pages into their current states goes against the whole point of what a wiki is. "If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly and redistributed at will, then do not submit it here." --GFauxPas (talk) 15:19, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
The users who contributed previously were releasing their work, to which they individually hold the copyright, under the terms of the GDFL. How are we to know that they would approve of it being used for purposes allowed under CC-by-SA that are not allowed by the GFDL? --Dfeuer (talk) 16:59, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
We don't care. --prime mover (talk) 21:03, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
"How are we to know[?]" Because this is a wiki. --GFauxPas (talk) 17:59, 31 May 2013 (UTC)

We could also just get rid of the ToS check box. I don't think we really need it. --Joe (talk) 17:11, 31 May 2013 (UTC)

One thing that pleads in favour of a ToS is that we can ask pre-emptively for consent regarding a change of licence, and include some basic things about the right for deleting inappropriate content (to be judged by admin/bureaucrat consensus) and may be some other things that may come in useful in the future. — Lord_Farin (talk) 18:34, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
I say just go to CC-by-SA and if people get upset then we tell them respectfully to swivel. But seriously, if a person does not want their material to be available with maximum freedom then let them feel free to delete it. If this makes a gap we will have a record of what they wrote so we can fill it. There are one or two pages I can think of which may fall into that category and if that happens I'm going to be the last one to cry. --prime mover (talk) 21:03, 31 May 2013 (UTC)


A minor point re:account creation: when requesting account is says "To protect the wiki against automated account creation, we kindly ask you to solve the simple sum below and enter the answer in the box", but then it's just a normal captcha. --Linus44 (talk) 08:46, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

Feature missing: warning on leaving edited page

The latest version of MediaWiki seems to have an important feature missing: the ability to warn the editor when a page has been edited but not saved. I rely on that extensively - as it now stands, if I have many windows open all with outstanding edits on them, just doing a "close" when I've finished will lose me everything. I have to remember to go through each of my open edits and explicitly do "save page" on all of them, in case I've done a small tweak when opening a page to pick up a piece of code for somewhere else. --prime mover (talk) 11:33, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

Terms of Service

I have added that ProofWiki:Terms of Service page as discussed above. Please feel free to comment and discuss this before we can declare it "live" on the News page.

This is a distillation of some suggestions put together by Lord_Farin in recent communication external to $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$. --prime mover (talk) 10:05, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

Oh yes, and we also need to amend the text in the paragraph that appears directly beneath the edit panel - I can't find it anywher (although still looking) - is it metaware with bureaucrat access? --prime mover (talk) 10:08, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Thank you, PM: that seems like a fine distillate of my ToS proposals. Let me recall the original licence change suggestion, in particular, the distinction I proposed between content and talk pages. I would like a paragraph devoted to the latter, which includes:
  • Exemption of the talk pages from the CC-by-SA licence, that is, their designation as essentially ephemeral;
  • A note on the possibility to file reasonable, specific requests for talk page (partial) hard-deletion by the bureaucrats (I would like a confirmation from Joe that this is in fact possible, and I would like to indicate that archetypal use would be for erasing ill-representative, tragic cases of hot-headedness c.s.);
so as to avoid potential quenching of the freedom of discussion on the talk pages by the prospect of them being released indefinitely on the internet, and to avoid us being legally bound to retain such abominations, should they arise.
It may furthermore be a good idea to explicitly require some sort of commitment in the direction of proper behaviour regarding politeness, refraining from ad hominem argumentation and other reasonable conditions on behaviour to stimulate a good climate on the site. (I say "explicitly" for it may be argued that users bind themselves to this by accepting point 2 of the ToS. Even if this is "reasonably within the intention of the ToS" as currently formulated it can't harm to point this out to users; we've had some nasty experiences in the past.)
That's it for now, thank you for your work on it. — Lord_Farin (talk) 13:32, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Upon reading ProofWiki:Copyrights, I notice that my points have already been addressed to some extent. A pointer towards this page in the ToS will suffice to deal with the first of my points as far as ToS is concerned. The remaining points on being ephemeral, deletion etc. should be formulated on the Copyrights page. — Lord_Farin (talk) 13:55, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
ProofWiki:Copyrights updated as appropriate. How does that work for you?
I wonder whether to extract the salient points of CC-by-SA and GFDL and list them as one-liner bullet points. --prime mover (talk) 15:07, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Looks good. Fixed minor typo. Furthermore, I've added a "I will behave" statement to the ToS. This should by and large cover anything we expect from new users. I think we should limit the time spent on this; we're not lawyers (not on duty, anyway), so the text needn't be flawless. We can always amend it if something comes up. — Lord_Farin (talk) 21:26, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
We still need to word some stuff about user pages in ProofWiki:Copyrights (and indeed to decide whether perhaps the users own copyright on their own page to the extent that copyleft does not apply). I'm out of my depth here. --prime mover (talk) 22:14, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

account request email

It might need a little work ... the quotes appear in my intray as T' and the link appears as S\,'. --prime mover (talk) 18:08, 3 June 2013 (UTC)

Possible bug in mediawiki

This may need to be borne in mind ...

You have page A and page B, and you see they need merging, so page A is merged into page B and A is turned into a redirect to B.

Someone else decides, no, A is a better name, and renames B so as to replace A again, so B is a redirect to A.

Having done that, all the page edit history of page A has vanished, and it appears may be irretrievable.

Note this for pages Probability of Subset of Event (page B in this case) and Probability Measure is Monotone (page A). I can no longer find the page history (going back to 2010) for Probability Measure is Monotone as it has vanished without trace. --prime mover (talk) 05:27, 8 June 2013 (UTC)

It's back now. Now I'm confused. --prime mover (talk) 05:50, 8 June 2013 (UTC)

MathJax link

The MathJax link at bottom right of all pages does not work. It tries to go to an https site, whereas the actual site is http. I'd fix it myself but I don't think I have access to that area of teh codez. --prime mover (talk) 06:50, 8 June 2013 (UTC)

I get the message that the SSL certificate is not trusted by my browser. — Lord_Farin (talk) 07:39, 8 June 2013 (UTC)
I've notified the MathJax people. I'd prefer to not have to point to their http site. --Joe (talk) 02:40, 9 June 2013 (UTC)

Account creation again: user biographies

We ask a prospective user to enter a few (or many) words about themselves when they request an account.

How about those words get added automatically to that user's user page? --prime mover (talk) 12:45, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

We can do that, what does everyone else think? --Joe (talk) 12:46, 10 June 2013 (UTC)
Fine with me. It seems the information in these biographies cannot be recovered otherwise, which makes this course of action even more valuable. — Lord_Farin (talk) 13:17, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

MathJax buxfixes

The latest version of MathJax has fixed the presentation bug on primed uppercase letters.

Whereas in the past, in order that the prime did not collide with certain letters (including $S$ and $T$), you needed to write them as S\,' and T\,', etc., that is, putting a tiny gap between the letter and the prime.

However, now S' and T' render adequately: $S', T'$.

So whenever you see S\,' etc., you should now be able to replace it with S' etc. --prime mover (talk) 20:45, 16 June 2013 (UTC)

gone slow again

Response time has deteriorated again, it taking several seconds to do what is usually instantaneous (e.g. load pages, get MathJax libraries up, go into Edit mode for a page, etc.) Is there something going a bit wrong? --prime mover (talk) 19:27, 16 July 2013 (UTC)

Nothing that should cause that unless there was a heavy load. I've increased some buffer sizes to hopefully limit some of the disk writing. Is this constant or intermediate. --Joe (talk) 19:47, 16 July 2013 (UTC)
Seems fairly constant at the moment. I'll see what it's like in the morning (UK time). --prime mover (talk) 20:48, 16 July 2013 (UTC)

Guess who's back

As of this day, I am back on the PW premises. I will need some time to get back up to speed, so please be patient regarding the large tasks I have taken on and postponed in the past months. — Lord_Farin (talk) 20:32, 20 July 2013 (UTC)

MathJax problem

It renders so far down the page but stops part way down with this:

Loading [MathJax]/jax/output/HTML-CSS/fonts/TeX/Main/Regular/GeometricShapes.js

... presumably trying to get the $\blacksquare$ symbol to come up. --prime mover (talk) 16:51, 22 July 2013 (UTC)

Further research: It's intermittent. --prime mover (talk) 18:44, 22 July 2013 (UTC)
Further update: it's woefully flakey. It seems to take a long time to load (a goodly proportion of a minute, maybe longer) and sometimes actually fails, giving a pageful of "Math Processing Error". Does anyone else have this trouble or is it that I need to upgrade my machine? --prime mover (talk) 12:22, 1 August 2013 (UTC)
I've updated MathJax, hopefully that will fix your issues. Otherwise, which browser are you using? Is it up to date? Do you have any plugins installed that could be screwing with the JS? --Joe (talk) 14:26, 1 August 2013 (UTC)
Chrome, yes, no. --prime mover (talk) 15:25, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

Seems to be okay at the moment. Maybe you fixed something. :-) --prime mover (talk) 18:34, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

Trigonometry

I've made some inroads into some basic trigonometry: refactored and tidied up the existing theorems, and filled out the basic stuff. There are some messy old theorems which I haven't done the hard slog on, because I'm lazy like that, so if anyone wants to finish off Sine to Power of Even Integer and its relatives, and Sine of Integer Multiple of Argument etc., then feel free. I may get round to them later when I'm recovered. --prime mover (talk) 21:56, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

Questionable proof structures

I've just read in P.M. Cohn: Algebra Volume 1 (2nd ed., 1974):

It is important to distinguish between '$A \implies B$' on the one hand and '$A$, hence $B$' on the other. The distinction may seem pedantic in cases where $A$ is true, but to ignore it can easily give rise to confusion. E.g. compare the following two statements about positive real numbers $x$ and $y$:
(a) $x > y \implies \left({x^2 > x y \text{ and } x y > y^2}\right) \implies x^2 > y^2$,
(b) $x > y$, hence $x^2 > x y$ and $x y > y^2$, therefore $x^2 > y^2$.
Here (a) is a conditional statement which tells us nothing unless we are told that $x > y$ to begin with. In any case, it is ambiguous: it is of the form $A \implies B \implies C$ and this can mean either $\left({A \implies B}\right) \implies C$ or $A \implies \left({B \implies C}\right)$, or more usually $A \implies B$ and $B \implies C$. With this meaning it is sometimes offered by some slipshod writers who intend (b) (which is unambiguous).

So how seriously does this compromise our house style which would structure the above proof like:

\(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \implies\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x^2\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x y\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \land\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x y\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y^2\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \implies\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x^2\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y^2\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    

? --prime mover (talk) 21:55, 11 August 2013 (UTC)

I'm not a fan of using $\implies$ outside of logic (pre-empting some inevitable hipocrisy here, I was being lazy). If it's troublesome, couldn't one write:
We have that $x > y$. Moreover,
\(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \implies\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x^2\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x y\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \land\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x y\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y^2\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
\(\displaystyle \implies\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle x^2\) \(>\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle y^2\) \(\displaystyle \) \(\displaystyle \)                    
Therefore $x^2 > y^2$. --Linus44 (talk) 20:42, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

An update on the ProofWiki extension for MediaWiki

It has been a while since I have last informed you all about the progress on the custom-tailored extension to MediaWiki that I (with the aid of Joe) have been developing for a long time now.

The big thing holding back implementation was the unfortunate problem of sections created using the <section> tag (part of the extension) not showing up in the ToC.

The news that I have for you is that there has been a hack to avoid this problem. This hack (which messes with the order of execution in the MediaWiki parser) has the drawback that it will completely disable section editing.

Knowing that we — in general — disapprove of section-wise editing because of spacing issues with this functionality, I was wondering whether it would be a problem (awaiting a better solution, developed in cooperation with MW devs) to sacrifice section editing for the benefit of having a working tag extension (which subsequently would allow me to resume restructuring the PropLog department (for which I need double transclusion)). So, please share your thoughts on this proposed trade-off. — Lord_Farin (talk) 15:32, 17 August 2013 (UTC)

My view is: go for it, see how it looks, see how it works, give it some solid examples. I would not miss the section editing ability, and IMO it's advantageous to us that it's not available.
As long as the results on existing transcluded pages can be made to look exactly as they do (or better) using the conventional technique, then we're good to go.
However, I will mention that I may not be an "early adopter", as I want to see how it shakes down first. --prime mover (talk) 16:00, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
The two transclusion mechanisms will exist side-by-side, because the new syntax is — slightly — more involved than the built-in version (I expect the new stuff to be replacing older material as need arises). So no worries there. I'll make sure to put up some documentation somewhere as well. — Lord_Farin (talk) 16:07, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
The new version of the extension is live (although people may still be shielded from it by MediaWiki and browser caching mechanisms). I have other occupations at the moment, but will start rolling out hopefully next week. — Lord_Farin (talk) 14:24, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

Bijection refactoring

The observant among you will notice that I have refactored the Definition:Bijection page. It now has 5 different definitions, all of which can be found in the source works that I have immediately to hand.

Still to be done: there are 4 source works in the Sources section of these pages which I do not have access to, which will need to be inspected to see which particular definition of Bijection is used in them.

These works are:

Can I leave it up to those who have these works to tidy this off?

Many thanks.

Work is going to start on the proof page which demonstrates that all these definitions are equivalent.

Once I've done that I may need to do a similar job on Injection and Surjection, but I'm fairly sure the range of different ways to define these is not so wide. --prime mover (talk) 16:42, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

I've covered the three books available to me — thanks for the notification. — Lord_Farin (talk) 07:09, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

Equation Template

I have just noticed that the equation template Template:Eqn may be misbehaving. There is a larger gap on the right hand side of the "o" column than there is on the left hand side. I wonder whether it's because of the "ro" column. I reckon we need to change this template so as to leave any column with no content widthless. Does "\(\displaystyle \)" take up any space? Let's see: "\(\displaystyle \)".

Difficult to tell at the moment, because $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$ is going through one of its awkward phases where it is taking all day to render anything. --prime mover (talk) 13:30, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Announcements

There are two nice announcements I would like to make:

  1. For the near future, development and deployment of the $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$ extension is complete;
  2. With the addition of User:Lord_Farin/Sandbox/Help:ProofWiki Extension, which contains the documentation of the extension, I consider the rewriting of the help section complete, and ready to be proofread.

I would like to ask all regular contributors to spend some time reading the proposed new documentation, and comment on it. You can start at User:Lord_Farin/Sandbox/Help:Editing and read along as you wish.

If no substantial objection is heard, I plan on replacing the currently live help section with this new one on Saturday. — Lord_Farin (talk) 17:14, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

It's definitely comprehensive. I will try and get round to doing the documentation of the missing sections (e.g. Linguistic Note) over the weekend.
I have taken the liberty of converting instances of ProofWiki to $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$ because it's fun. --prime mover (talk) 19:56, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
... but the edits I made to User:Lord_Farin/Sandbox/Help:Wiki Editing did not follow through to the parent page in the transclusion. It may just be a caching issue, but then I also did ctrl-f5 to clear the cache, and it didn't. --prime mover (talk) 20:02, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
To force a bypass of all caching systems (also the MediaWiki ones), you can append ?action=purge to the URL. Also, the edits have been effected on the parent page for me; thanks for doing it. — Lord_Farin (talk) 21:37, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
I have also added a note on Linguistic Note, such as it is. I may add some words to Historical Note another day. --prime mover (talk) 21:52, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Proofs of equivalence of definitions

As we gradually expand the paradigm of multiple definitions, we will also find ourselves expanding the battery of equivalence proofs, which are currently being created with names of the form "Equivalence of Definitions of (concept being defined)" or similar. All very well but having so many proofs whose names all start the same makes it difficult to find the one you want when typing it into the Search window.

I had a conversation with DFeuer a few months ago which ended inconsequentially in which we discussed this matter: I pointed out that "Equivalence of Reachable Definitions" was ambiguous in interpretation, while he correctly observed that at least having "Reachable" earlier in the name makes it easier to find.

So a proposal: how about we use the convention : "(Thing being Defined): Equivalence of Definitions"?

Against this proposal:

a) As a general rule we have avoided using punctuation in titles, therefore it presents a deviation from the consistent evolved style

b) That Prime Mover guy already uses too many colons in his work, it makes him come across as a clothy old professor in a college nobody attends.

In favour of this proposal:

a) It looks neat.

b) It does the job.

Comments? --prime mover (talk) 06:37, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

I don't like this proposal very much. I have the following additional arguments:
c) It's another monstrous pile of work.
d) Searching for "equivalence definitions thing" brings up the page (and you won't have to match the case).
So in my eyes, it's a lot of work without apparent benefit. I'd much rather have our pages consistently named and properly accessible via the various search engines (I like to think this is the case right now) and the effort put into making better and/or more content rather than change the structure of this content. — Lord_Farin (talk) 07:23, 31 August 2013 (UTC)
Fair enough. I will spend some time making what we have fairly consistent. We seem to have more pages which are "Equivalence of Defintions of ..." than "... for ...", for example -- I will continue to rename "for" versions to "of". I may build some templates for simplicity of maintenance. --prime mover (talk) 15:06, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

Brand new help section

I have been as audacious as to push live my complete rewriting of the help category. Follow the link on the left to explore it. — Lord_Farin (talk) 22:36, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

A true labour of love. Good job. --prime mover (talk) 10:30, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
I added some words on the use of "Let" and "Suppose", following a discussion in some talk page somewhere a while back. Feel free to check it and/or improve it. --prime mover (talk) 11:03, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
Looks good; nice addition. — Lord_Farin (talk) 20:41, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
Is there a reason why Help:Editing/House Style is now Help:House Style? The former is linked to in several places (e.g. main page, "Tidy" template, etc.) and before I/we go through and change all these, can I confirm that this is not an oversight and ask whether it ought perhaps to be Help:Editing/House Style instead? --prime mover (talk) 12:44, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
I did intentionally separate the two, because I feel the two are conceptually separate (note that they are also separate on the listing on Help:Contents). People eager to learn the page structure shouldn't be bothered by the intricacies of house style, and people eager to learn house style needn't be bothered with general page structuring. I should have checked the links, and for the most part I did, but this one eluded me. Good catch. — Lord_Farin (talk) 20:41, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
So there are over 2000 pages with broken links (most of them being the Welcome message on everybody's user talk page) - do we set up a redirect or do we move Help:House Style back to Help:Editing/House Style? If the former, we also need to amend the welcome bot to change the link to Help:House Style. My preference is to move it back to Help:Editing/House Style as I think the upheaval otherwise is just too much - and having such a redirect on so many pages is IMO suboptimal. --prime mover (talk) 20:51, 1 September 2013 (UTC)
Ok, I've moved it back. Redirect is in place. — Lord_Farin (talk) 10:51, 2 September 2013 (UTC)

Spambots learning?

There's an account request (uname Light, real name Mark) which is styled remarkably similarly to stuff which spambots generate in the pending requests. I let one through like this yesterday, but now I wonder whether that was also a spambot request. Can someone take a look?

This one seems genuine. At least the sbcglobal.net domain is real (related to Yahoo). A spambot wouldn't bother to write things that tailored to PW. Perhaps a human spammer would. But it's better to deal with those afterwards. — Lord_Farin (talk) 07:15, 10 September 2013 (UTC)

What to do with Definition:Logical Graph?

This page Definition:Logical Graph has been sitting here for a long time now, not being changed by its major proponent Jon Awbrey (and nobody else understands it at the moment). As I'm busy purging and rewriting the logic section, the page (and some of its siblings in the Axiom namespace) needs to be dealt with. Some options, in my order of preference:

  1. Move them into Jon Awbrey's user space and notify him on his talk page.
  2. Remove all categories from the pages, basically dropping them from view.
  3. Delete the pages.

Comments welcomed. — Lord_Farin (talk) 19:43, 11 September 2013 (UTC)

No. 3 works for me. After all, he copied it verbatim from his website, so it's not as if it doesn't exist somewhere. Haven't heard from him for a good 3 or 4 years. He doesn't seem to have a great deal of philosophical commitment to the ideals of this site. If there is any intellectual worth to this page (suite of pages, indeed), then it is extremely well hidden behind its verbosity and classical erudition. --prime mover (talk) 20:34, 11 September 2013 (UTC)
E-mail explaining the intent of deleting this content has been sent. — Lord_Farin (talk) 21:00, 11 September 2013 (UTC)
Deletion has been carried out. — Lord_Farin (talk) 14:10, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Stupendous amount of edits

Yes people, I know. My edits are utterly dominating the recent changes feed. In the interest of keeping the number of pages and redirects remotely manageable, I've introduced a new template Template:DeleteRedirect, which I've placed on over 500 old redirects today.

This template contains a warning for every soul encountering it to update the orginating link. Of course, before deleting, we will check for internal links, but external links are beyond our control.

With this template, we hope to be able to do a massive purging in a few months' time. This will involve permanent deletion of any page that has been deleted by an administrator in the past.

Depending on how much time I have to spend editing pages like a stupid monkey the coming days, more redirects will have this template added. There's a lot of work to do: The 500 done so far only comprise redirects on pages in the main namespace starting with A-E. That's right. Thousands and thousands of redirects are still waiting to be dealt with.

This procedure allows us to keep the site a bit cleaner without losing reliability for the outside world. — Lord_Farin (talk) 11:55, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

Should you wish to contribute, look for any oddballs in this list and endow them with Template:DeleteRedirect. You can roughly start at entry 200. — Lord_Farin (talk) 11:57, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Some redirects may be good redirects, so I would counsel caution here. Please do not blindly apply this rule to all redirect pages. Redirects to, for example, transcluded pages are good redirects. Redirects from pages with alternative names for common definitions are good redirects.
An immediate example is Beer's Law →‎ Beer-Lambert-Bouguer Law. As this law can be known as "Beer's Law" it make sense that there is a redirect in place, otherwise a user may search for it, find it doesn't exist, and create it. --prime mover (talk) 12:03, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
... but while I'm about it, might it be worth adding a category invocation to the DeleteRedirect template so they all end up in a subcategory of the "incomplete articles" category? Then (when we're brain dead and want a relaxing therapeutic task) we can address this list without having to hunt for them? (Although of course doing a "What links here on DeleteRedirect will do the job.) --prime mover (talk) 12:09, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
They are listed in Category:Delete (but this category is hidden by default -- you can enable display of hidden categories in your preferences). — Lord_Farin (talk) 12:30, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

Another few hundred later, G-I have been taken care of; one can start at around 250. There is also a "Proposed Deletions" header in the side bar now. — Lord_Farin (talk) 14:16, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

Side remark: The Template:DeleteRedirect approach has the effect of making the redirect count to the proofs total. It'd be sad if we went over 10k proofs because of this. So we might want to lower our deletion standard and get cracking. — Lord_Farin (talk) 14:31, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
I've deleted any redirect on a subpage, plus some which must have resulted from the early eras of $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$. This totals for around 100. — Lord_Farin (talk) 17:25, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Deleted redirects from archived talk pages and news pages etc ... we're going back and updating links on existing talk pages with impunity, but I wonder whether this is always a good idea.
In the news pages there are links going way-back-when to the very early days referring to proofs which have been renamed and therefore redirected. Is there a case for keeping these redirects - otherwise we will either (a) get broken links, which will show up on the Special:WantedPages list, probably not a good idea, or (b) we will need to amend the news archive - and do we want to be doing that?
Similarly, do we want to change things in the archived talk pages? Just a ruling needed here - if we do, then we do. If we don't, then we need to keep those redirects. --prime mover (talk) 09:40, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
I've been changing the archives, keeping context in mind: if it is specific to the name, I've left a note stating "This is deleted", if it isn't, I've updated the reference. There shouldn't be a problem with this. — Lord_Farin (talk) 09:48, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Suits me, it's the long-term simplest approach. --prime mover (talk) 12:15, 19 September 2013 (UTC)

Steady progress is being made by me and prime mover to clear the backlog of extraneous redirects. Many hundreds have been deleted or scheduled for deletion. We thank you for your patience, and apologise for big floods of change notification e-mails some of you may have been getting. — Lord_Farin (talk) 21:54, 19 September 2013 (UTC)

All redirects in the main namespace are dealt with, in the sense that they've been assessed, and it is decided whether to 1. keep them; 2. delete them; 3. flag them for deletion. The last category is subject to steady shrinking as deletions are carried out.
The Definition namespace will not be given this treatment at this moment -- the rush of the marathon has passed and some recovery is due. Thanks again for your patience. — Lord_Farin (talk) 21:08, 20 September 2013 (UTC)

Linode broken

It's taking minutes to finish loading each page because of "Waiting for www.linode.com". Is that caused by those damn fool Google Ads? I'm convinced this is what's getting in the way of smooth running. Is there a way of disabling them? --prime mover (talk) 21:42, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

New "Search Convenience" category

Titles with non-standard (A-Z) characters in them (e.g. Sierpiński's Theorem) can be difficult to locate. So I've added a category which contains redirects to such titles with the non-standard characters replaced by their standard Latin counterparts, e.g. Sierpinski's Theorem. Thus we can avoid having any Latinized (that is, mis-spelled) entries in the main category space.

The example picked was not a good one because typing "Sier" into the search field gives you all the Sierpiński-starting titles you want. A better one is Bézout's Lemma, for which (the existing) Bezout's Lemma has been moved into the Category:Search Convenience. Also the theorems named for Jerzy Łoś are an extremely good case in point.

Feel free to add such special-purpose redirects as you come to them. --prime mover (talk) 11:47, 29 September 2013 (UTC)

Good one. — Lord_Farin (talk) 13:00, 29 September 2013 (UTC)

Searching for definitions

Currently it's the case that to find - for example - the definition of a group, one has to search "definition:group"; "definition group" leads to nothing and "group" lists it as the 11th link; I think Definition:Group should count as an exact match for both of those queries, is there anything that can be done? --Ybab321 (talk) 11:18, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Yeah, the built-in search engine isn't quite set up for the Google experience most of us are used to.
Luckily, I've come up with some workarounds. See here for instructions. The biggest issue is that Google is always a bit outdated. But the advantage is that I find the relevant page in seconds by typing "pw definition group" in a new tab in Chrome or Firefox. Often, one gets away with abbreviating "definition" to "def", though not in this case.
Still, it's suboptimal. I'll ask Joe to look into alternative search engines for MediaWiki. — Lord_Farin (talk) 11:30, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Why didn't I think of that! Thank you very much, I now have "def" set up to http://www.proofwiki.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Search&search=Definition:%s --Ybab321 (talk) 12:45, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
The bone of annoyance is that MediaWiki is case sensitive, like a refugee from the last millennium. Unfortunately our house style for page names (down to my influence, unfortunately, done like that purely for aesthetic reasons) is anathema to the convenient searching for anything. I won't apologise; the villain here is MediaWiki for designing such a substandard interface. --prime mover (talk) 20:22, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Change of circumstance

I'm away from my usual office for about 6 weeks (abroad on a contract) and so will not have access to my usual library. However, I will still try to log in on occasion and continue work with the limited resources I will have. I will try to flesh out the syllogism work that I started the other day, but bear with me if it doesn't get finished immediately. --prime mover (talk) 23:35, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

Have safe journeys! — Lord_Farin (talk) 12:21, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

Source for maths books

If you're in Montreal, check out the Argo bookshop. Many, many Dover emprints. I bought 5 today, could have bought another 100. --prime mover (talk) 22:01, 9 November 2013 (UTC)

Automated Checking?

It seems a bit of a waste to compile yet another list of proofs, only to be "merely" readable by humans. Does anyone else besides myself see merit in adding meta-data links from proofs in ProofWiki to machine-encodings of the same (in the languages of say, HOL, Isabelle, other automated theorem solver / proof assistant / proof checker software)? How about actually picking a standard machine-readable format for proofs in ProofWiki, and embedding those on each proof's page? I'm very new to this field, so please excuse me if this is already done, and I just didn't manage to find it.

There are already plenty of machine-generated proof websites around, and all are more-or-less impenetrable to the reader. The whole point of $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$ is to provide a human-readable resource of proofs.
Having said that, considerable effort is being exerted to enforce a rigorous house style, in order to facilitate any future automation. (Some attempts have been made to go down this route, but dedication has been shown lacking.) The plan would be that the structure of the pages as they currently exist ought to be directly machine-readable. It would just be a matter of parsing out strings of the form "Let ..." and "If ..." and "Suppose ..." and so on. --prime mover (talk) 14:51, 12 January 2014 (UTC)

Idea/Strategy for the Proof before Each Proof

I'm proposing that the idea or a strategy of a proof is revealed, elaborated, and examined before each proof. Some of the proofs here are not the easiest therefore this kind of motivation or illumination behind the proof will certainly help. Some others have really unexpected or "magical" or "out of the blue" beginnings and starts that'd really benefit from this.

The revelation of ideas and strategies behind a proof will only boost and increase Proofwiki's aid, contributions, and worth, among its other pros.

Sounds like a good idea. We are limited by the writing skills of the individual contributors, of course, which has been the main limiting factor in the evolution of the site so far.
A "minimalist" approach has been taken as the guiding philosophy on $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$, and as such the aim is to remove unnecessary words and leave the result to stand on its own, but I can see the benefit of a strategy. In the overall structure of the site, we may even suggest another (optional) standard page section: "Proof Strategy", whether a 2-head or a 3-head to be decided.
Feel free to experiment with this idea in whatever pages you think may immediately benefit from this approach. --prime mover (talk) 14:03, 18 January 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for your support Prime.mover! I will try this.

Enhancement to the discipline of game theory

Does this merit inclusion in $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$?

[1]

--prime mover (talk) 01:56, 19 January 2014 (UTC)

"Also known as" section

Many pages have an "also known as" section which is more or less of the same structure throughout: "Some sources give this as ..." or "This concept is sometimes referred to as ..." and various other more or less complex circumlocutions.

User:StarTower has just cut through this contentless clutter by merely adding in the section (not sure which page it was now):

  • the other name

This does look like a good idea to me, it saves having to write a lot of pointless verbiage.

Here's another example I just did: Definition:Prime Factor.

Anyone? --prime mover (talk) 14:06, 26 January 2014 (UTC)

I advise against this move, as it detracts from our "use a full sentence" style; moreover one notes that there are often specific contexts in which a different name is used; the proposed new scheme does make it a lot harder to include such fine points in a natural manner. I suppose that in cases where this kind of distinction is not necessary, we can agree to allow for this new option to be used. Changing pages to accommodate for it is definitely not my cup of tea (if it ain't broke...) — Lord_Farin (talk) 08:20, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
This is addressed here, but is too long for this talk page and uses headings. --StarTower (talk) 16:06, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Spacing and white spacing

Can the amount of white space or spacing be reduced? Spacing lengthens posts and makes them harder to read.

Like on http://www.proofwiki.org/wiki/Subgroup_Superset_of_Conjugate_iff_Normal, at the end, do we really need two separate lines for "Hence the result. \blacksquare"?

And why not just put "let ... group" "let N be a subgroup of G" on one line?

And perhaps we don't need a new line for a math equation after : every time? For long equations yes. But for short ones, one line is better and easier to read.

Absolutely no room for compromise here. --prime mover (talk) 17:41, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Convert to Mathjax

If I copy content from here and paste it somewhere else, the links don't work somewhere else. Example. Try to copy the Theorem par from http://www.proofwiki.org/wiki/Subgroup_Superset_of_Conjugate_iff_Normal and paste it in http://www.texpaste.com/.

Then the $ $ is rendered. But all the links fail and just appear as messy text. Can something please be done about this? What can I do for the links to work after pasting?

== Theorem ==

Let $\left({G, \circ}\right)$ be a [[Definition:Group|group]].

Let $N$ be a [[Definition:Subgroup|subgroup]] of $G$.


Then $N$ is [[Definition:Normal Subgroup/Definition 1|normal in $G$ (by definition 1)]] iff:
: $\forall g \in G: g \circ N \circ g^{-1} \subseteq N$
: $\forall g \in G: g^{-1} \circ N \circ g \subseteq N$
I don't understand the question. --prime mover (talk) 17:41, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
It's because it's wiki markup. A nice feature to make editing pages easier (see Help:Wiki Editing). Nothing can be done about it. — Lord_Farin (talk) 08:47, 4 February 2014 (UTC)


"Properties of" and "Basic Properties of"

There are seven pages (near as could be established) like this:

There are far more pages like this:

Is there a difference?

If not, for uniformity, may the seven be renamed?

(Fortunately caught before Basic Properties of Coprimality Relation was made) --StarTower (talk) 13:37, 5 February 2014 (UTC)

No plans to do so, I can't see how it could be perceived as a high priority thing to address. --prime mover (talk) 13:42, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
I see the merit of these pages mainly as a mediator for those using a search engine for obtaining information and the precisely named PW pages which can actually be hard to find when you don't know they exist. Their precise names are not very relevant, as long as they describe the content. As such, I agree with PM that it's not worth the effort to change them. — Lord_Farin (talk) 13:48, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
The operation wasn't being delegated or distributed. It's not worth the effort of someone with a knowledge of how to rename pages, true. That being the only opposing reason, practice can happen. --StarTower (talk) 14:34, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
Ok, so you've moved them. That's fine. Please take the time to update the internal links. You can view them through the "What links here" page, accessible from the "Tools" menu. This is an important part of any change in name where the original name needn't be retained. Due to possibility of external reference, please don't delete the redirects, though. — Lord_Farin (talk) 14:42, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
Oh, man. Tedious. Didn't know that had to happen. Sorry. --StarTower (talk) 15:06, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
IIRC there was a reason for using "Basic Properties ..." as opposed to "Properties ..." and that was so as to limit the scope of the former. That's why I was not making any plans to change the name of anything. But then all the professional design decisions I've made over the last 10 years are all being overturned as a matter cf course, so I'm once again minded to resign my position and let you all get on with it. --prime mover (talk) 16:03, 5 February 2014 (UTC)

Database query error

I just entered the name of a page which does not exist yet into the "Search" box at the top right, expecting to be sent to a "Create" page for that page.

Instead I got this:

Database error
A database query error has occurred. This may indicate a bug in the software.

There is no problem embedding the name of a non-existent page in another page and then clicking on the resulting redlink -- that works perfectly happily (or at least I expect it will once I save it, haven't got that far yet). --prime mover (talk) 13:59, 9 February 2014 (UTC)

Okay so I'm a luser. I tried to open the page Definitions:Module Axioms which of course it's going to choke on. I'm skating on very thin ice here, I expect to get fired. --prime mover (talk) 14:22, 9 February 2014 (UTC)


Our host had to restart the server we're running on. Looks like some things did not come back up cleanly. Let me know if problems still persist. --Joe (talk) 14:41, 9 February 2014 (UTC)


Boundedness

I have just finished an exercise to refactor all pages on the topic of boundedness. I have carefully separated out the definition on a general ordered set from that on a subset of the real numbers in order that people who are following through a thread on real analysis will not need to be distracted with concepts from abstract algebra and order theory.

All definitions have been put into this same bucket, but I envisage that redirects be placed into the specific categories (e.g. Real Analysis, Mapping Theory etc.) to which they are directly relevant (this still has to be done but frankly I'm tired of it at the moment and need a rest). The general thinking behind this is that the categories do not need to be cluttered up with multiple links to the same page, so I thought if I put the redirects (which are the links we want to be used) in the relevant categories, then those are the ones which are more likely to be used by editors.

There may still be some stuff I missed -- either alert me to it, or if it's obvious, fill it in yourself. Oh yes, I haven't done "Bound of Real Sequence" yet, I know, not sure whether it will be needed. --prime mover (talk) 19:59, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Excellent work. It seems we have succeeded in lowering the local entropy of PW once again. It may even make sense one day...
I take it you have kept track of the sources during the course of this exercise? — Lord_Farin (talk) 08:33, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Yep, I think I've done that aspect. There weren't many sources: 3 that addressed the subject from an abstract algebraic point of view, and two that come from the real analysis direction (plus Rudin whose treatment is incomplete).
For my next trick, I am going to do a similar exercise to the mess that documents Neighborhood.
All in aid of providing a consistent and self-contained basis for Complex Analysis. --prime mover (talk) 09:52, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

Sidebar problem?

The sidebar is missing most of its content. There's 3 entries in the Main Page section, then it goes straight into the Tools section. I've checked and nobody's edited the sidebar so presumably it's choked on something it is suddenly unable to handle. Any clues, anybody? --prime mover (talk) 15:03, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

No problems here, neither on Chrome nor on Firefox, not even after purging the cache. No idea what is causing trouble, but these results suggest it to be local. — Lord_Farin (talk) 15:08, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Odd. It's the same for me on chrome *and* firefox, and after purging cache ... but it's okay on IE! I'll do a reboot and see what happens. --prime mover (talk) 15:19, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
unh! But making the last posting seems to have cleared it. Or maybe it was just opening it in IE ... Okay, crisis averted. --prime mover (talk) 15:20, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Logarithms: Peer review needed

I have refactored the Definition:Natural Logarithm page and restructured the basic definition proofs accordingly. Thus the concept with the real and complex domains have now been (in theory) reconciled.

Please feel free to go over this, anybody, and correct any mistakes / expand any over-terse arguments (in particular if you detect handwaving) and let me know if anything is seriously out of kilter. --prime mover (talk) 07:27, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

No problems detected except for the one where I raised an "explain" flag. More work will go into the same exercise for $\exp$, which seems to be slightly messier currently. But perhaps you want to address Definition:General Logarithm first. — Lord_Farin (talk) 08:00, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

Trig Function Overhaul

Another longish-term project: overhauling the Trigonometrical functions so as to bring it in line with the structure of the Exponential / Logarithmic Functions. Bear with it -- it will look a bit of a mess while the builders are in. --prime mover (talk) 06:42, 4 April 2014 (UTC)