explain xkcd:Community portal/Admin requests

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Community Portal
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Proposals (+post)
Place for ideas and suggestions to improve the wiki's design and organization on general issues.


Technical (+post)
Technical issues regarding the site, including bug reports or MediaWiki extensions requests.


Coordination (+post)
Community-managed page for coordinating content editing and maintenance tasks.


Admin requests (+post)
Problems requiring assistance from an admin. User problems, changes to protected pages, etc.


Miscellaneous (+post)
Place for general chit-chat about virtually anything that doesn't fit anywhere else.

View all community portal sections at once here



Looks like someone's discovered us! There are several accounts with spam userpages already: User:VereGrube253, User:Sharon0H, User:RAndra, User:KathrynMwy, User:Ffmdcyz, and User:Pimarsolek23. What should we do with these? I'm all for deleting the advert and blocking the user, but I didn't want to do that without input (esp. from Jeff). --Philosopher Let us reason together. 01:59, 4 August 2012 (EDT)

  • Cold shoulder for spam. Jeff should give the final say, but I'll up-vote shutting down spam users accounts... and a policy statement that lays out the rules, such as user pages are for contributing to xkcd-related discussions. Off-topic subject matter must find a home elsewhere. In the meantime, perhaps roll back the spam, post an announcement on the problem user page, and mark protected. Thoughts? -- IronyChef (talk) 03:14, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
  • Delete and block. And some plugin (or whatever) to keep them from signing up. Spambots don't read announcements. --SlashMe (talk) 03:31, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
  • Delete the userpages (and spam edits) and block indefinitely. A vandal might be someone having fun but who can be converted into an editor if nurtured, but a spammer definitely has an agenda and we should have no hopes for them. Also we might need some captcha extension (I'd suggest using the ReCaptcha option). --Waldir (talk) 03:53, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
  • Delete and block. Spam cannot be tolerated. Captcha sounds good. Are they edits to actual comic pages or new pages? If someone wants to actually advertise, they can come to me. --Jeff (talk) 12:38, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
    From my experience taming spam in small wikis in the wild, spammers tend to use all sorts of techniques, from using different accounts to upload images (since there are more restrictions on that than on editing pages), to creating the pages in their user namespace and then moving them elsewhere, to creating the spam pages directly, to adding/replacing links in existing pages... --Waldir (talk) 12:51, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
    Do you know if there are any good anti-spam bots out there that could be persuaded to add this wiki to the list they patrol? --Philosopher Let us reason together. 16:20, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
    I don't know much about anti-spam bots, but if they work roughly as I think, I'd prefer us to try out extensions + user intervention before resorting to bots. I'd like to know generally how efficient automatic (trigger-like, rather than continuously or regularly running bots) can get at preventing spam. We should start with captchas. Then, if needed, we can add more: Bad Behavior looks interesting, and we can always restrict editing to registered accounts, coupled with email confirmation or OpenID. But these steps should be taken one by one, as needed, so we can measure what works and what doesn't. --Waldir (talk) 17:15, 4 August 2012 (EDT)
    Is this spam? User:BoyceX9 --Jeff (talk) 16:40, 6 August 2012 (UTC)
    Yes, so far they've been following the same pattern. Introducing themselves (with a completely different name from the account name), praise the wiki, say they wanna help... then ramble about "them" and "their" work, culminating with one or more links to commercial, shady-looking sites. --Waldir (talk) 17:25, 6 August 2012 (UTC)
     Done Ok, ReCaptcha is enabled. I believe I set it for all non-bots, non-admins on 'addurl', 'createaccount' or 'badlogon'. --Jeff (talk) 12:42, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
  • Can the extension be configured so it will only be applied to "new" users or accounts with an edit count of less than, say, 5? While I'd understand a captcha on the first few edits, after that, it gets annoying quickly, particularly when you get captcha like this. Omega TalkContribs 09:35, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
    I tend to agree. I've been an editor in several small wikis where spam also needs to be kept under control, and never "upgrading" past the captcha level does get annoying after a while. I suggest the captcha to be disabled for autoconfirmed users, and users who have a confirmed email (mw:Extension:ConfirmEdit#Configuration for details). Autoconfirmed status depends on a user performing a given number of edits, and having an account older than X days. Both are zero by default; I suggest setting them to 5 edits and 3 days (around 250 000 seconds). Here's how to do it. --Waldir (talk) 11:32, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Yes. I'll edit it. --Jeff (talk) 18:19, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
Seems like editing is disabled for anonymous editors. I think that keeps away a lot of drive-by editors who could be enticed to later create an account, while spammers have no problems creating accounts, as we've seen. Therefore, this restriction does more harm than good, IMO. if it makes the idea any more bearable, Captcha could be enabled for all edits by anonymous editors, even if they don't add links. --Waldir (talk) 21:23, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
Ok - anon edits has been enabled. I changed captcha so that all registered users don't get it on edits. Hopefully that makes it easier on everyone. --Jeff (talk) 02:32, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Is there a procedure for alerting admins of spam accounts? I've seen them slammed down quick enough, but if there's anything I can do to help? Blaisepascal (talk) 21:12, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

Add {{Spam}} to the top of the page. Omega TalkContribs 22:38, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

Let Me Know

Admins - Please let me know if any of the changes that you request aren't done correctly or if something needs to be changed back. Obviously, this is my first wiki hosting experience and I'm learning as I go along. I couldn't do it without you all and it is already far beyond my wildest dreams. Keep it up! --Jeff (talk) 15:53, 6 August 2012 (UTC)

Just a quick nod of appreciation for all your efforts! -- IronyChef (talk) 14:22, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
Same here. No matter how much I like to praise the merits of MediaWiki, setting it up for many common needs is undeniably still very user-unfriendly. I'm glad we're all supporting each other around here. --Waldir (talk) 16:25, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
Very nice.  :-) --Philosopher Let us reason together. 02:57, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
One question. I can't upload a file(no permission). Is it possible to get permission, or can you upload the picture for me? It is the alternate cover for what if(contains a t-rex chasig cueball). -Klyxm

"Edit this explanation" link on main page

On the main page, there's a link to "edit this explanation". However, it's hard coded to point towards comic 1091, not the most recent comic, as the template does. Instead, that link should be a part of the template, so it can point to whichever comic the template is displaying (the latest). Of course, an admin would be required to do this, as the main page is off limits to other editors. Omega TalkContribs 09:27, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Yes, it needs to be fixed. However, an edit link has to point to the actual page, not the redirect (the number), so we first need a way to automatically update the title of the last comic. User:TheHYPO suggested a template listing all comic titles and corresponding numbers, but that would still need to be updated manually whenever a new comic is added. I'm not sure there's a good solution for that. Perhaps that link could say "edit", but simply point to the comic page where editors would have to click the edit tab. Does that sound ok? --Waldir (talk) 11:32, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I agree with the above suggestion to have it link to the comic page. I find myself trying to click the comic name/title on the main page and expecting it to go to the wiki page for the comic instead of to xckd.com. This would provide at least one way to go to the comic page. Plus, some people may want to comment instead of edit the description. That said, we might want to consider renaming it to something else, like "Go to this comic" but more witty.--DanB (talk) 15:26, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Ok, temporarily changed to a plain (non-edit) link. Awaiting wittyness for definitive deploy :P --Waldir (talk) 15:41, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Thus, the temporary becomes permanent. Such is life. --DanB (talk) 13:42, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

Incorrect redirect

Either I, or whoever created the page (If it's me, I sincerely apologize) have created a 1024: Never page, which is wrong. I've moved it to 1042: Never, but there's still a redirect in place. Can someone, or if you'll tell me how I'll do it, delete that redirect page? I hope this is the right space to be posting this. lcarsos (talk) 03:57, 10 August 2012 (UTC)

 Done :) Also, I moved the thread to the appropriate discussion page (Admin requests) --Waldir (talk) 09:35, 10 August 2012 (UTC)

Main page: Error in counter

I noticed the counter for the number of missing comics on the Main Page was off. Looking into it, the equation is missing a parenthesis. It currently says {{#expr:{{LATESTCOMIC}}-{{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-3}}, but should correctly be {{#expr:{{LATESTCOMIC}}-({{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-3)}}. The reason for this is that {{PAGESINCAT:Comics}} will return 3 higher than the actual pages, as it counts subcategory. Thus why we're subtracting three. However, the missing parenthesis make it so we're subtracting (from the latest comic), the number of pages including those three pages, then subtracting those three pages again, thus making it 6 off. The parenthesis make it so we're subtracting the pages in the category without those three subcategories. If that doesn't make sense, just grab a calculator and subtract the latest comic from the number of comics the main page says we'll have, and you'll see it comes up six short. Omega TalkContribs 08:44, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

Good catch! I'll fix that :) --Waldir (talk) 11:38, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Actually you could also remove one from the current computed total, since there's no comic 404 (unless you imagine a page explaining the joke about that). - Cos (talk) 16:16, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
I was in fact planning on adding a 404: Not Found page with just such an explanation.
I have added a 404 page. Since the comic is non-existent, it isn't titled "Not Found", so I decided against creating a 404: Not Found page, or a Not Found redirect. Blaisepascal (talk) 18:40, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
Actually, if you view the source of xkcd 404 it *clearly* states: "<title>404 - Not Found</title>" :) I also added some more color to the 404 page (including a date and title). 403 was posted on March 31 and 405 was posted on April 2, so 404 would have been April 1, although really April 2 in keeping with the M/W/F posting schedule. Squeezing it in-between was an even better joke.--B. P. (talk) 19:06, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
Perfect, so nothing to change in the counter. (how on Earth did he manage to get that 404 fall on April Fool's day...?) - Cos (talk) 19:03, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
He didn't. By his standard M/W/F posting order, comic 404 should have been posted on 4/2/2008. He posted 405 on that date instead. There isn't a 404 page on xkcd.com. The HTML title element isn't from a special page he created for the comic. The page you get for the 404 page is the custom 404 error page for the xkcd.com site. Check out [1], you'll get exactly the same page. In fact, if you check out [2] and look at the actual http status code returned, it's 404, not 200 as you'll see for other pages with actual comics. It's not an actual April Fools comic, it's just plain missing. Blaisepascal (talk) 19:38, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
Ah, but it is. Granted, he did skip the number 404, but not by accident, and that is the joke. Gotta love Randall: he's so meta ! -- IronyChef (talk) 14:23, 23 August 2012 (UTC)
I agree it's a joke, and intentional. However, I think it's pure coincidence that it fell around April 1st. I think Randall would have done the same 404 joke even if it had fallen on June 31st instead. The joke itself is rather subtle, since people just looking at the site wouldn't see it, and people following the RSS feed wouldn't have seen it. The comic numbers don't appear on the pages themselves, just in the URL. The only people who will see it are people who are obsessive about looking at the comic numbers. Blaisepascal (talk) 14:55, 23 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, I still like the April 1 explanation better...  :) The whole "Posting comic #404 on Tuesday April 1 and making it look exactly like a regular xkcd '404' page" makes a much better story... Much better than "He accidentally skipped #404 and it just happened to have been around April 1, boy that could have been a good comic opportunity, too bad he was just clumsy and didn't realize the potential inside jokes the techies would have read into it..." --B. P. (talk) 20:16, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
The explanation above holds true: Randall went straight to 405 on his regular schedule, and xkcd 404 really does return an HTTP 404 result code. But that technical explanation aside, there is no doubt that Randall deliberately chose to do so, so xkcd 404 is an AFD joke, even if he never put (virtual) pen to paper to do so. As far as comic scheduling goes, you might say we got a freebie. BTW, there have been other instances of Randall modifying his schedule, the tribute to Steve Jobs being another example IIRC, so the MWF rule, while fairly stable, is not inviolate -- IronyChef (talk) 14:23, 23 August 2012 (UTC)


Any reason the Main Page was moved to explain xkcd from main page? I moved it back.
Any reason the templates aren't working?
--Jeff (talk) 02:27, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Something seems to have gone seriously wrong? Earlier, I was redirected to a non-existent version of a subpage of an old blog-style explanation. And now I'm getting "500 Internal Server Error" warnings when I try to use Special:RecentChanges to see what's happened lately. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 04:12, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, for one of the problems, something seems to be forcing template titles to begin with a lowercase letter? Which is weird, because all pages, including templates, begin with a capital letter. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 04:18, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
Here's what broke the templates: the change requested at User talk:Jeff#wgCapitalLinks. When we link templates, we've been using lowercase letters in the template links, relying on the software to be smart enough to know we meant the capital version. So {{xkcd}} and {{Xkcd}} would refer to the same template. The change to wgCapitalLinks allowed page names to begin with small letters, but at the same time made the software think that {{xkcd}} and {{Xkcd}} were different pages. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 04:33, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Hi guys, sorry about that. Mea culpa.

The main page was moved because then people reaching the wiki would see as first header the actual name of the wiki, rather than the generic mediawiki "Main Page". I assumed it would be an uncontroversial move, mut apparently I misjudged that.

As for the templates, it is only one instance of broken links due to the change to make links case-sensitive. This is mostly visible for templates because due to their very nature, they're used in many pages. We just need to move them to the lowercase titles (or create redirects from those, depending on which version is preferable as canonical; for instance, I moved {{Xkcd}} to {{xkcd}}, but {{Yesno}} to {{YesNo}}). The links couldn't be fixed prior to the configuration change because the software would point us to the capitalized version whenever we tried to access the lowercase version; a move wouldn't work as the target would be assumed as the same page.

I have no idea what broke Special:RecentChanges. Perhaps it was unrelated, or perhaps it was a hiccup as the software regenerated all internal links? I have no idea. It seems to be working now, anyway.

Again, sorry for the confusion. I hope you'll all understand it was a necessary hurdle to get over if we want to be accurate about capitalization issues (Xkcd vs. xkcd, S/keyboard/leopard/ vs. s/keyboard/leopard/, etc.) --Waldir (talk) 08:42, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

For the love of god, can we please undo this change? I'm completely unconvinced that case-sensitive first characters is beneficial for the wiki. There's a good reason that the default is case-insensitive (bearing in mind this only applies to the first character). If the concern is "automatic capitalization", there's ways to override the page title, where needed (for example, Wikipedia's page on iPods). However, case insensitive pages means linking and creating pages is now more complex. For what? For a handful of pages that need the first letter to be lowercase? The only pages I can think of that need that is the page on xkcd itself. Templates don't matter much, but if we're counting them, then there's the {{xkcd}} template (note: would need to be surrounded by noinclude tags, to prevent renaming every page the template is used on).
Now, why am I so venomously opposed to this change? Look at it this way: Explain xkcd (the "main page") and explain xkcd are entirely different links. At the time of writing, the all-lowercase alternative, which normally should work fine, does not. Why is that? because of this change. I'm sure that ten seconds after the first person reads this, we'll have a redirect there (I'm not going to, as if the change is reversed, god knows what will happen when two different pages are suddenly considered the same page), but that's not the point. The point is the sheer difficulty this change just created. If a page author forgets to create a redirect to a properly cased page (in the vast majority of cases, the page should be in sentence case. "xkcd" is one of the very few possible exceptions, and Randall himself stated that "Xkcd" is fine). Anyway, back to our author with his newly created page. We'll assume he's familiar with Mediawiki, and links to his page from another page. But he links in lowercase, as most links will likely be (the page on wikipedia is technically "Cabbage", but unless the word is at the beginning of a sentence, we'll be typing "cabbage"). Our page author, however, is confused. His link is coming up as a red link, even after triple and quadruple checking his spelling. Raaaage quit. And all for what? So one or two pages can be lowercase?
There's a very good reason why Wikipedia keeps this default on. In fact, multiple reasons. User friendly, practical, low maintenance... And the reasons to support case sensitivity? Pretty much nothing, since rare instances where a lowercase first letter is required can override the title with magic words. I know we aren't Wikipedia; we don't have their rules for consensus (though I wish we did), nor do we have their community, their careful array of checks and balances, and distributed rights. Yet, I think that such an incredibly controversial change without any consensus and without any real benefit doesn't suit this wiki at all. I ask that we undo the change or at least discuss it in depth. Come on, folks, this is rewriting an entire language because you couldn't spell one word. Omega TalkContribs 09:33, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
And now the main page has been renamed to "explain xkcd" (in all lowercase). The project namespace is also in lowercase. Yet, we still use the traditional "File" and "Template" namespaces (I don't think you could change their casing without editing Mediawiki's PHP files, though). In other words, moooore inconsistency. Can we puleeeeze sit down and discuss these changes? Can anyone name one reason to use case insensitive titling versus page title overrides on the one or two pages that actually need them? It's generally accepted that articles in media use "sentence case" (eg, "Case Sensitivity", not "case sensitivity"). Also, to be specific, this change only applies to the first letter of page titles, which are normally case insensitive (to ensure ease of use). Other letters are by default case sensitive (eg, "Hello world" is always a different article than "Hello World"). This is actually partially a technical issue (most programming languages, PHP included, are case sensitive). Omega TalkContribs 09:52, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
I think you're seeing this move as way more impacting than it is. Note that while on Wikipedia most of the pages cover topics that are objects or concepts for which it makes sense to write them down in lowercase, here the vast majority of pages are comic explanations, whose titles are capitalized (sentence case) anyway. Even several of the non-comic pages are always capitalized (the characters, Randall...), with the exception perhaps of topics (My Hobby, Velociraptors...) and a handful of others that might not be occurring to me right now. In total, these should be a fraction of the comic pages, and redirects can easily be created for them. Files are lowercase in virtually all original filenames from xkcd.com, and currently the occurrences of uppercase in their first letter derive primarily from copying the title from the file page. Now, files are lowercased so copying will pose no problems. Templates have also been moved to the lowercase versions, with redirects when appropriate, since most people use them in lowercase anyway.
As for the name of the wiki and project namespace, that's a completely different issue, and it was agreed on via discussion, and endorsed by Jeff, to be "explain xkcd" (all lowercase). This happened several days ago. Then, yesterday I moved the main page to that title, because I assumed it would be uncontroversial, as that is the wiki's name, and we don't have a header or anything, so it would serve as the primary heading of the main page, rather than mediawiki's generic "Main Page". Apparently that reasoning didn't resonate with everyone, so I'll move it back to "Main Page" for now. --Waldir (talk) 20:20, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
But you still haven't explained a single reason why this change was beneficial. The handful of pages that "needed" a lowercase first letter could easily have slapped a magic word onto the page to override the title. I'm still only thinking of two pages that would ever need a lowercase first letter (xkcd and Template:xkcd). We effectively just nuked every page to make those two pages a little bit more... fluid? What? And for the name of the main page, I do support calling it "Explain xkcd", although I don't see what it has to do with the whole uppercase versus lowercase discussion. The casing is inconsistent everywhere I see it. The explainxkcd website has a header in all lowercase, but then references the site in several other places as "Explain XKCD". At any rate, I fail to see the problem with "Explain xkcd", as sentence case has historically been used for page titles, particularly on Wikipedia. It's also much easier to borrow from Wikipedia's policies when naming and styling pages, as the vast majority of xkcd fans are likely also Wikipedia supporters. Why change what's not broke?
I'm just rather annoyed that one or two people are making every major decision without taking the time to discuss the pros and cons. Can we please sit down and discuss changes with consensus before we implement them, rather than having to argue about them after it's already done? Omega TalkContribs 20:42, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
I'm with you Omega on the discussion factor. Lets do that going forward to make sure we discuss any changes before they go in. Is the lowercase v uppercase still an issue now? Will reverting it break things all over again? --Jeff (talk) 16:07, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

Wrong File Names

Comic 1077: Home Organization has a bad image link. It's pointing to File:Home organization.png (lowercase 'O' in organization) which is a redirect to the correct page at File:Home Organization.png (Capital 'O'). AFAIK files are supposed to be first letter capitalized, the rest lowercase. Should the image be moved to the lowercase page? Please advise as to how to continue. lcarsos (talk) 23:09, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

I found another one. 1076: Groundhog Day. Same deal. File:Groundhog day.png is trying to redirect to File:Groundhog Day.png lcarsos (talk) 23:12, 14 August 2012 (UTC)
 Done: I moved both images to the lowercase versions and edited the comic pages.
Please use the original filename when uploading comics (i.e., lowercase and underscores), even though MediaWiki replaces underscores with spaces. Also, when creating the comic page, use the original filename, MediaWiki will again replace underscores to find the file. The advantage is that we will be able to replace the images with direct links to xkcd.com if this should become necessary or desired. --SlashMe (talk) 14:22, 15 August 2012 (UTC)
Some clever person has gone and tagged a bunch of pages that have this issue Category:Pages with broken file links lcarsos (talk) 17:11, 15 August 2012 (UTC)
 Done --SlashMe (talk) 20:18, 15 August 2012 (UTC)
I swear I've fixed this page before, but 1054: The Bacon the image is now broken using the new style. File:The bacon.png needs to be moved and cajoled to work right. Also, there's a few redirects that should be deleted The bacon and 1054: The bacon. Thank you for your work, you are amazing. lcarsos (talk) 22:42, 16 August 2012 (UTC)
Again,  Done. I don't think the redirects will hurt someone, so I keep them in place. --SlashMe (talk) 06:55, 17 August 2012 (UTC)


I would advise that an admin edit the MediaWiki:Talkpagetext message with something like wikipedia:MediaWiki:Talkpagetext, or more precisely like the message in bold on several talk pages, about signing comments.

That would avoid having to put it on top of every talk page, while also avoiding a not-so-nice message for somebody who came there just to read the comments.

Cos (talk) 16:11, 22 August 2012 (UTC)

So? Up? This does not seem a complex or controversial change to me...
There, I can make it even more simple for the lazy busy admins: here is a suggestion for the content of that system message: :-)
'''This is a talk page, so please add ~~~~ to the end of your comments to include your signature. Thanks!'''
Obviously, I would gladly do it myself if I could.
Thanks! - Cos (talk) 15:58, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
How's that? --Jeff (talk) 16:23, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
 :-D sorry, I can see that I unintentionally left a trap in my suggestion, this would have been better:
'''This is a talk page, so please add <code><nowiki>~~~~</nowiki></code> to the end of your comments to include your signature. Thanks!'''
About your version Jeff, I'm not sure the links to Wikipedia are really useful, especially since talk pages here are not exactly like on Wikipedia: on WP their only use is to talk about the corresponding page and not its subject, here they can also serve to talk about a comic which is the subject of the corresponding page. And if you choose to keep these links, then two of them need a double "wikipedia" prefix ([[wikipedia:Wikipedia:Signatures]]).
But that WPlinks remarks are no big issue anyway, the current version basically does the job so thank you for that.
Cos (talk) 17:06, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
I stole that right from MediaWiki... whoops. Ok, how about now? --Jeff (talk) 17:54, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
Looks fine for me :-) . If you want you can replace "the signature button at the top of the page" with Button sig.png ([[File:Button sig.png]]), but that's as you prefer. Thanks again! - Cos (talk) 18:57, 28 August 2012 (UTC)

New Page Creation Guide

Hey folks. Is there a guide for creating new pages, now that frequent users have had a little practice and the templates seem to be settled in? If not, anyone want to volunteer to start one? I've just been copying the latest comic and erasing its content. Perhaps we can start the guide by providing that. It should also be linked from the main page in the section encouraging people to add comics. --DanB (talk) 13:55, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

  • I support this. Two pointers: I have a page called User:Blaisepascal/newcomictemplate which has an empty template for a new comic, including an {{incomplete}} at the top, all the major sections (Explanation, Transcript, Trivia), and the {{Comic discussion}} at the bottom. I use it to simplify getting the format right. Lcarsos has also written a Ruby script which will, when given a comic number, will fill in the newcomictemplate with all the information which can be grabbed from xkcd.com (the number, name, date, image name, title text, and Template), as well as the redirect string. All that needs to be done before copy/pasting into explainxkcd is to proof-read it, add appropriate wiki links, and add an explanation. I think a guide should point out tools like this. Blaisepascal (talk) 14:51, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
A few more tips, remember that the Wiki software doesn't recognize single returns as new paragraphs, there needs to be a whole line between things you want to show up on different lines. And in transcripts, the Wiki software things anything enclosed in double brackets — e.g., [[ — is obviously a link so some other page on the wiki. Most people are deciding to simply take out the second bracket.
Also, please, please, please, please, please, add links to Wikipedia. Simply encase the word in {{w|My Phrase}} and the {{w}} template will pick it up and link to that article in Wikipedia. Be sure to click the links you are creating, sometimes Wikipedia's links are awkwardly case sensitive, and conversational capitalization will take you a "No page exists with this title" and won't give you any hints about the page you are looking for. If this happens use {{w|Conversational Capitalization|conversational capitalization}}. The first is the name of the article, the second is what will show up in the generated anchor tag.
Finally, as you are going through, if you are using Jeff's explanations from the blog, please go through and edit the sentences to not include personal pronouns, e.g., "I". Since anyone can edit (nearly) every article here, there is no 'I' and there is no 'we' if you are referring to anyone who's edited the article. We is referring to human beings in general on this wiki, and it would have to be a very special case to mean anything more exclusive than that. lcarsos (talk) 15:36, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the tips. Exactly the kinds of things I think should be in a guide, more specific for this site than Wikipedia's Editing Tutorial is. --DanB (talk) 19:48, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
I've started work on exactly that document. I'm currently keeping it at User:Lcarsos#Formatting. If people think this should be moved out to a real page I'll do that. Just tell me what people think a good name would be. lcarsos (talk) 20:10, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

Please ban User:Jjhuddle

None of the changes that Jjhuddle have made have been for the better. He has reorganized talk pages to fit his own formatting guides, removed perfectly good paragraphs from explanations, refuses to take constructive criticism, refuses to link to his user account in his signature, more often than not forgets to sign his posts, and is being a minor menace. lcarsos (talk) 20:05, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

 Done --Jeff (talk) 16:22, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
I might step into what is not my business here, but I can't help thinking that was a bit harsh.
Looking into his contributions, I see several changes that were perfectly constructive, maybe awkward sometimes, but usually in good faith "for the better". Sure there were mistakes as well, such as discussion reformatting or weird signatures, but (in my opinion) that's really no big issue, and on the whole asking here to ban him without first, for instance, warning him about that, seems pretty rude to me. Also lcarsos, where on earth did he remove perfectly good paragraphs from explanations?? the closest that I found was this, and frankly that can arguably be interpreted as an improvement (actually I would have done it as well).
So I don't know, maybe it's better to act quickly without thinking too much, in order to avoid lengthy, time-consuming debates; that was just my 2¢, do whatever you want with it.
Cos (talk) 17:45, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
I assumed that lcarsos has dealt with JJ Huddle over these issues and had finally brought it to us, but I'll leave that for lcarsos to answer. --Jeff (talk) 17:50, 28 August 2012 (UTC)
Let me give you a kind of chronology.
His first attempt at creating a page was actually quite good, his explanation needed a little work to explain things that people might miss, rather than tell what is on the page, but that is a common mistake in enough English classrooms, that I'll write that off entirely. His second page, made 5 days later, was a step backward.
  • Separate Title Text section despite using the {{comic}} header
  • Discussion section despite using the {{comic discussion}} template on his first attempt.
  • Explanation was better used as a transcript than as an explanation, when there was a perfectly good explanation that existed on the blog, all he had to do was copy and paste.
The last of which is what spawned my first post on his talk page. A rather long "welcome to the community post" offering some helpful (that's me talking about myself, somebody double-check me User talk:Jjhuddle#Welcome, and a little constructive criticism) tips. That was a week ago.
After that he fell off my radar until yesterday, I was doing some minor clean up when I stumbled on a talk page that had been completely revised to use bullet points. I delved into its history and found that it was him at fault. That spawned the second of my entries on his User talk:Jjhuddle#Do Not Change talk pages which was, admittedly, tersely worded. But I did note, that he had not posted a response to my first post. He must have seen the banner that one of the pages on his watchlist (His talk page) had been changed. But didn't post a response, he's been chatty enough elsewhere on the wiki (creating talk pages to ask where the new comic is; and inserting into actual pages, things that should have been in the talk page, which he did but was too impatient to wait for an answer), so I concluded that he wasn't going to take this seriously.
His changes to comic explanation pages usually replaces other words, not that they are better wordings, but that they are replacements: Michael Phelps, Hypochondriac's Nightmare, Vows. In both Clinically Studied Ingredient and Nightmare, he writes "It is not known..." which suggests that he should instead open it up to the community in the Talk page until it is decided, and an edit can then be made, once it is known. TheHYPO dealt with it in short order in Ingredient.
I had refreshed the Vows page when I noticed the talk section was done in bullet points rather than indentations, and the first line of the article (which had survived many edits) was gone. After checking the version history and seeing that Jjhuddle had been on both pages, I checked his contributions more thoroughly. I found that every talk page he had been on after 8 August he would go back and revise it to use bullets, despite the indentations working perfectly well to illustrate the threaded conversations (and in at least one case breaking them: Crazy Straws Talk, note the response to Erenan's post). Including the Star Ratings Talk Page where he literally added the "please sign your comment" banner and revised it to bullets, but never left a comment, and didn't add even meager signatures.
Then I undid the changes to both Vows pages. Having now looked through most of his edits, I felt that it was time to put a stop to his shenanigans. That is when I created the post on this page.
Was it harsh? Yes. All banning is. Was it rude? Probably. But so has his conduct been to the community. His kind of loose-cannon enthusiasm hasn't hardly benefited this wiki, and I bet that if he was allowed to continue, the majority of his edits would be undone. In a philosophy class I took, we had a debate about at what point a laundry list of grievances becomes actionable. We never did nail down an exact number (is that even possible in a philosophy class?) but we decided that everyone has their own instinctual limit, and should act on it rather than wait.
Cos, I suppose I should have said "removes/replaces content without adding anything more" instead of "removed perfectly good paragraphs", as it allows what I've discussed to be included in that umbrella.
lcarsos (talk) 22:55, 28 August 2012 (UTC)

Please block

Spam bot replaced Template:W with spam content. Please block IP.

On a related note. what is the best way to signal to admins/moderators an IP address that needs to be blocked for destructive/spam edits? lcarsos (talk) 18:05, 20 September 2012 (UTC)

(Temporarily) Turn Off Anonymous Edits (please)

We've had 50 anonymous destructive/harmful edits since the beginning of this slew. I think because of the popularity of 1110 the site is getting more attention than usual. Maybe if anonymous edits are turned off through the weekend that might get us through the storm. Please and thank you.

The full list for those that care:

  1. Template:W
  2. User:Joe Green
  3. 1093: Forget
  4. explain xkcd:Community portal/Miscellaneous
  5. Talk:626: Newton and Leibniz
  6. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  7. Category talk:Comics from June
  8. User:Lcarsos
  9. Talk:1038
  10. explain xkcd:Community portal/Technical
  11. User:Lcarsos
  12. User:Enginesoul
  13. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  14. User talk:Medotcom
  15. User:Waldir
  16. User:Jeremyp
  17. 1093: Forget
  18. User:BKA
  19. Talk:1097: A Hypochondriac's Nightmare
  20. User talk:
  21. 1093: Forget
  22. explain xkcd:Community portal/Miscellaneous
  23. User:Klamann
  24. User:IronyChef/TestKitchen
  25. Category talk:Electric Skateboard
  26. 1093: Forget
  27. Category:Pages with too many expensive parser function calls
  28. User:IronyChef
  29. 1093: Forget
  30. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  31. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  32. 1093: Forget
  33. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  1. 1093: Forget
  2. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  3. 131: Fans
  4. 1073: Weekend
  5. Talk:1094: Interview
  6. 118: 50 Ways
  7. explain xkcd:Community portal/Proposals
  8. 11: Barrel - Part 2
  9. User:Waldir
  10. Template:google custom
  11. Template:outdent
  12. 1: Barrel - Part 1
  13. User talk:Jtorba
  14. 140: Delicious
  15. User:Yirba
  16. 140: Delicious
  17. 1093: Forget

--A haggard undo-er of mischief lcarsos (talk) 22:15, 20 September 2012 (UTC)

Sorry - just getting to this now... how does it look now? Still garbage coming in? --Jeff (talk) 12:25, 27 September 2012 (UTC)
Just an FYI... it seems that the worst of the vandalism happened during the days when xkcd 1110 was current, and we had a bunch of anonymous vandals, though that has declined again. My only reservation on blocking anonymous edits is that outside of this exceptional window, most anonymous edits, by far, are of the good kind. (Right now, my only grouse in the Angel of Death category is that one person who registers with a Chinese name, and puts jibberish pages with links to some Mulberry bag outlet store...) What would seem more effective is being able to block where external links go to. Linking to xkcd.com or wikipedia.org seem reasonable, but anything else should be disabled, or at least requiring an admin's approval... Thotz? In conclusion, I will say a big tin star to Lcarsos, and the whole cast of regulars, in keeping the content here free of vandalism! (I've got to get myself one of those graphics, and post it on the appropriate user pages...) -- IronyChef (talk) 14:43, 27 September 2012 (UTC)

Object Cache

Hi Admins - The reason the site was down was the Object Cache database got to be over 1 GB in size and took down access to all databases, so needless to say, this cannot happen again. I've got but $wgMainCacheType set to CACHE_NONE. Is there anywhere else I can turn off the caching to the database? Jeff 12:34, 27 September 2012‎ (UTC)

Minor change to protected page

Hi - new here... I wanted to correct the text for comic #1153 (to change 'apparent paradox' into 'paradox', since the word means 'apparent contradiction') but the page is locked (I get 'This page has been protected to prevent editing' on the Source page). Is there some magic I'm missing, or have you blocked all pages due to malicious hacking? -- Yinna (talk) 07:09, 30 December 2012‎ (UTC) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Hi, I don't mean to question your intelligence, but were you by chance on the main page, and not on 1153: Proof? I don't see any protections on the explanation page itself, but we definitely have the main page locked down due to the number of spam bot changes we'd have to fix if it were not. The Main Page just has a view (called "transclusion" in wiki terminology) of the comic page, so if you were trying to edit the main page, it wouldn't have helped much because the actual text of the explanation is on the explanation page. If that's not the problem, do write back so we can get to the bottom of this. lcarsos_a (talk) 07:34, 30 December 2012 (UTC)


I'm not sure why I had to solve a captcha for adding an external link in this edit, but perhaps this can be fixed by adding www\.explainxkcd\.com to the captcha whitelist. -- 10:28, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

 Done, thanks for reporting. Let me know if it solves the issue. --Waldir (talk) 05:15, 1 January 2013 (UTC)
Test Seems to work. Thank you! -- 08:28, 1 January 2013 (UTC)

Comments out of date on comic page: solution

I've added my comments to discussion page of comic 191, but they don't show up on the main one. Can you guys hint on what I've done wrong? Thank you in advance. - E-inspired (talk) 16:24, 28 February 2013 (UTC)

Now it's happening to 954 as well :( - E-inspired (talk) 16:47, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Never-mind, figured it out myself. I had to click out of date fix on the main page of the wiki, though not sure why - E-inspired (talk) 18:51, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Mediawiki caches page transclusions, which is how we get the talk page to show up on the explanation page, and the latest comic on the main page. The cache eventually refreshes itself, but, if you want it to show up right away you can do a little url hacking to add the argument &purge=true onto the page the transclusion is occurring on. lcarsos_a (talk) 18:55, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Thank you Mr. Lcarsos for such a great explanation, I will be sure to use it next time. - E-inspired (talk) 19:48, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Actually, although adding &purge=true will likely work for other reasons (because adding &anything will avoid your own cache, let alone others) the correct thing to append is &action=purge. You know it is correct because it is removed afterwards, where as &purge=true is not. Mark Hurd (talk) 18:03, 13 April 2013 (UTC)

Captcha help


The page Special:Captcha/help tells people to contact an administrator if the captcha is "unexpectedly preventing you from making legitimate contributions". I just recieved a captcha asking me what the first name of XKCD's writer is. Now I know that most fans should know his name by now, you really can't expect every visitor or editor to this site to remember that, and in many cases a visitor won't know that sort of information at all.

I respectfully request that you arrange for that question to be removed from the list of captchas that appear for us IP users.

Thank you. -- 00:44, 28 March 2013 (UTC)

Oh, sorry, I actually contacted a beauraucrat when you posted your first message on my talk page, but I forgot to respond to you. That question *should* be pulled now. Davidy²²[talk] 12:26, 28 March 2013 (UTC)
Okay, thanks.-- 13:44, 28 March 2013 (UTC)

Scareware ads

I don't know how much control you have over the ads that appear on this site, but ads for companies that push "scareware" (blinking "Spyware on your system! Spyware on your system!) should be rejected if possible. The programs these companies try to scare you into downloading and installing are typically some kind of malware, and usually you have to pay for them, adding insult to injury (or is it injury to insult?) --RenniePet (talk) 01:12, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

The ads aren't something that wiki admins can control. Changing them requires server access, so Jeff is the person you ought to talk to. In any case, related discussion is occurring here. Waldir (talk) 17:35, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

Admins - Help me...

I do own a Gold Medal here and I do not care.

This Wiki is fun and I like it. But I also did stuck on some discussions no one else does follow.

So I will edit here in the future but STILL at the first time I'm trying to be kind. And also since I am only a human, I will be wrong sometimes.

So, admins help me for advice or I just will continue on my own.

--Dgbrt (talk) 22:13, 27 May 2013 (UTC)

Thumbnails - Admins help us...

There some config...php tricks to solve this broken thumbs, maybe I can help. Further more: I just only want to help. But it sadly seems we have no acting admin her anymore. --Dgbrt (talk) 22:01, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

Just tell me if there is a solution possible or not.--Dgbrt (talk) 20:47, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
Hey, Slashme, lcarsos and I are all still-active admins round here, and Waldir's an infrequently visiting bureaucrat. What do you mean by "broken thumbs" exactly? Davidy²²[talk] 00:01, 13 June 2013 (UTC)
Check this picture File:Cueball Walk 1360-1378.png and click the previews at lower resolution. You will get an 404 error (not found). But this feature would be helpful for embed large images at some pages. There must be something wrong at the "LocalSettings.php" file. Maybe this does help: Thumbnails not working.--Dgbrt (talk) 17:46, 13 June 2013 (UTC)
Not having server access, I can't determine the problem, but it has something to do with automatic thumbnail creation because I have manually created the 100 pixel thumbnails needed for the File History of File:Elaine Roberts.png and File:escher wristband.jpg by hitting thumb.php?f=Elaine_Roberts.png&width=100 and thumb.php?f=escher_wristband.jpg&width=100.
So that is the short term workaround for specific thumb sizes. Mark Hurd (talk) 15:17, 10 August 2013 (UTC)
I've created all the thumbnails referred to by File:meteor showers.png. The only extra points to make are the File History thumbnails aren't just 100 pixels wide, and to get the archived thumbs (for older file versions) you need to add {timestamp}%21 prefix to the file name and &archived=1 after.
This is based upon the URL rewrite rules listed here. Mark Hurd (talk) 15:52, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

Please delete this page

Please remove subaddressing from my account email user:tbc

I requested a password reset, but I forgot that my account still has an old email registered: [email protected] My ISP, pcisys.net née divide.net, disabled subaddressing during an email upgrade earlier this year. If a sysop could update that email to removed the plus sign so my account email is [email protected], I will be able to reset my password. Note that I am logged in from my iPad to write this, but since I need my password, which I have forgotten, to change it, I'm stuck. – tbc (talk) 13:38, 19 July 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure if you're still here. But, there is nowhere in the admin interface to change a user's email address. You'd need someone with access to the server, and felt confident writing their own sql statement to edit it. Try sending an email through the wiki to Jeff. He'd be the only one with the proper access to help you. lcarsos_a (talk) 17:23, 10 August 2013 (UTC)
Thanks, lcarsos. My problem is now solved. – tbc (talk) 05:31, 8 November 2013 (UTC)

BOT access

Hi, I did register a new account DgbrtBOT and I request BOT access for this. Right now I will do only manual uploads for mass sessions, the advantage will be that this uploads are hidden at the default "Recent changes" page. Before I'm using real bots I will test them at my local MediaWiki, because creating a reliable BOT is not easy and will be very careful on this.--Dgbrt (talk) 19:58, 26 July 2013 (UTC)

Sorry to keep you hanging for so long. DgbrtBOT has been added to the bot group. lcarsos_a (talk) 16:34, 8 August 2013 (UTC)
Many thanks, my request was mainly for picture uploads to 1190 Time, but maybe I will use this feature in the future. I will be careful, first tests will be done at my local TestWiki.--Dgbrt (talk) 18:36, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Where are all the admins?

Currently no admin seems to be active here on a regular basis. That's bad. There is SPAM content which needs a delete action, I only can remove some content, but it's still at the history. And who does clean up the cache when this page will have the next outage? Maybe I can help.--Dgbrt (talk) 22:04, 19 September 2013 (UTC)

Useless pages

Please delete:

--Dgbrt (talk) 11:55, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

disallow read access to server

Starting from this url http://explainxkcd.com/wiki/ the scripts and other files on the server can be read directly over the internet.

This could pose a security risk.

Doh! Fixing that now! Thanks. --Jeff (talk) 12:04, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Done. --Jeff (talk) 16:45, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

New board is still not working properly

Board is slow because many images like this from the visual editor [3] (just leading to the main page) and even the logo at the top most left is not working any more.--Dgbrt (talk) 18:31, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

Can you provide a screenshot? Davidy²²[talk] 20:56, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
I can't because it's working again. And a screenshot would not help much, you just can see some broken pictures. My first statement here did contain all the essential informations. I'm still not sure if that load balancing does work very well, but right now it does.--Dgbrt (talk) 19:16, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

Non-registered posting

I think there's a problem with non-registered posting, my IP address as shown with the 4 tildes is NOT the IP address I'm posting from... vs

This is your problem, the logs here just document the sender IP. Maybe your provider uses some proxy technologies. --Dgbrt (talk) 21:31, 20 November 2013 (UTC)
Uh, we're on it. Wrangling with lunarpages a bit, they're being slow to give us SSH access for whatever reason, and thy borked ftp too. Well, at least they're still faster than our old provider. Davidy²²[talk] 23:07, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Please delete this templates

Please delete this:

A playground should be somewhere else.--Dgbrt (talk) 21:47, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Unused, undiscussed. Easy deletions. Davidy²²[talk] 23:08, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

And there is a page Exoplanets with no need, we have Category:Exoplanets instead.--Dgbrt (talk) 23:03, 3 December 2013 (UTC)

That page is linked to by the list of all comics pages, in the comic names columns. Davidy²²[talk] 03:11, 4 December 2013 (UTC)
Oh yes, you're right. --Dgbrt (talk) 08:13, 4 December 2013 (UTC)


Please delete this category Category:Browsers and the discussion page. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:10, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Done Davidy²²[talk] 22:37, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for help! I can only do a request, and it seems I am still only getting a response by only one admin. No Lcarsos or any one else. That's bad. --Dgbrt (talk) 23:04, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Change to explanation for #1322

Just a minor change but the page is locked... the bit where it says "It is cold, the pond is frozen...", wouldn't it be more to the point to say "The sky is blue, ..."? Blue being implied from the word cold. -- ‎Guyon (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Page is locked? That shouldn't be the case. Try editing again. Davidy²²[talk] 08:57, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
It says "This page has been protected to prevent editing." --Guyon (talk) 16:49, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
You might be clicking edit from the Main Page. Try clicking 'Go to this comic explanation' and then click edit. Unless that's not your problem. lcarsos_a (talk) 20:02, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
I've tweaked the message that users get when trying to edit a protected page; hopefully that will help reduce confusion for new users. --Waldir (talk) 18:27, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

User Michaelrandolph

User:Michaelrandolph is spamming here.--Dgbrt (talk) 12:57, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

So he is. Quite well hidden too. Dealt with. Davidy²²[talk] 17:19, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

New user access

I signed up because I wanted to correct/enhance today's explanation, which seems to me to have missed the point. However, I don't have and "edit" tab, and the "view source" tab says the source is protected. Do I have to do something else to gain access? (I did confirm my e-mail.) -- Keating408 (talk) 22:05, 19 February 2014‎ (UTC) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Every explanation page on the wiki is editable by anyone, including people without accounts. It sounds like you're trying to edit the main page. While it looks like the main page is the explanation page for the latest comic, we actually transclude it there as it's probably the thing that most visitors want to see when they visit us. In the upper right hand corner, there should be a button that says "go to this comic explanation." If you can't find it, the "Latest comic" button in the sidebar also takes you there. Davidy²²[talk] 22:22, 19 February 2014 (UTC)
I tweaked the tooltip that shows up when you hover the view source link. Unfortunately I can't configure it to show a custom message for the main page only, but I suppose that's the protected page that most people attempt to edit (and that most new users are exposed to, anyway). Hope that helps :) --Waldir (talk) 18:19, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

New admin

Hi guys,

I've noticed Dgbrt is the 3rd most prolific user on the site, and has consistently been very active. What do you think about giving him admin rights? --Waldir (talk) 18:35, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

I have some thoughts on this, but I'd like to hear what Davidy22 thinks. Dgbrt is indeed a prolific editor, but I think quite a few of his edits are to put the incomplete tag on articles that other people think are finished, or edit skirmishes (if not edit warring) with other editors. I would like to see him make an effort to expand explanations rather than tersely stating that an explanation is incomplete in his eyes. I am very much aware that English is not his first language, and he writes English better than I do German. He is quite good at keeping editors honest when an Americanism slips into an explanation that makes it harder for the international community to understand the explanation, let alone the comic. But at the same time, it's frustrating to be chided so tersely about so fine a point.
I don't want to turn this place into political bullshit territory though. Dgbrt has contributed at least as much as I have. I don't want to think that my judgment in this matter is clouded by a sense of "us old boys" know what's best, but realistically it might be. He certainly has as much chops as I did and (if I may speak for him) Davidy22 did when we were made admins.
I reserve my vote until I hear what Davidy22 has to say. lcarsos_a (talk) 20:21, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Certain portions of his contributions are incredibly valuable, like the auto-update bot. We also need an active admin for the upcoming German translation wiki, and he's pretty much the best choice for that. On the other hand, rollback privileges come with adminship, and he has a habit of doing things like this and this, reverting a substantial amount of a new contributor's work because of errors that could be fixed in a matter of minutes, as well going slightly off-track in discussions with editors at times. He does seem competent though, and I feel like his communication issues with editors probably stem from his English proficiency, which won't be an issue when he's adminning the German wiki. Pointers to WP pages and experience should clear up the rest. I'd probably give it a bit more time, or wait until the German wiki launches, but that's just me. Davidy²²[talk] 21:59, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, guys. To be clear, I had no strong opinions either way, besides acknowledging the volume of his contributions, and started this discussion specifically so that the decision to grant him or not the admin tools was explicit and not made by default. Now, after reading what you both say, indeed the vague impression I had, that his editing style is often less cautious than ideal, was confirmed. I think we all agree that a gentler, less impulsive editing style would be desirable before adminship is considered. Particularly, a little more restraint in actions that may be considered somewhat aggressive (such as reversion of substantial edits) is important, since the (psychological) hierarchical divide that adminship creates would exacerbate the effect of such actions even further, especially in new users. Given that he himself (afaik) hasn't requested admin rights, I believe these observations will be useful for his future contributions, and as guidance towards the adminship path in case he eventually decides to request the tools. --Waldir (talk) 07:43, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Hold up. We're doing what? A German translation? That's FANTASTIC! Go the people who are organizing that! lcarsos_a (talk) 07:49, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Hrm. Maybe I should be talking to other admins more. In a few weeks, I'm planning on setting up a parallel wiki to this one, akin to the different language wikis that Wikipedia does. I've been planning this for a while, the incomplete explanation of the day things is supposed to polish up all our explanations so translators can just translate and they don't have to figure the comics out all over again. I decided on German because a) Jeff told me it it's our second biggest source of unique visitors, b) German words are very long and it'll be a good stress test for our layout and c) We need an admin there, and we have both an existing German admin and a very prolific, if not slightly abrasive editor to fill the role. I'm also going to finally run that upgrade to a newer version of Mediawiki that we should have done a while ago. Davidy²²[talk] 08:01, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Yay for new mediawiki version :) Also, I can vouch for User:SlashMe, I know him personally and he's a smart, technically competent and dependable person. Not sure he will have a lot of time available for explain xkcd though.
Regarding the German wiki, are you planning to use the Translate extension? It helps distribute the burden of translation over several people by allowing the translation of one paragraph at a time, it automatically calculates translation completion percentages, etc. On the other hand, here's what its authors have to say about content translation:
"The way the Translate extension splits up a page into paragraph sized units does not leave too much freedom for translators to change the content. This is usually a good thing and is ideal where continuity and consistency of content across languages is desired. It can be worked around, but in principle this way of doing translations is not generally suitable, for example, for Wikipedia articles, which usually are totally independent of each other. Even if they originally start as a translation from a different language, they usually begin living their own independent life from the original version. With Translate, the original page is always the main version, and new content cannot be developed in translated versions."
...so that's something to keep in mind. Besides, I'm not sure it works across different wikis. --Waldir (talk) 16:52, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Hrm. I'd like to do some variation on that, because I really want people to be using the original explanations as a base, but xkcd can sometimes use idiomatic language and it may be necessary to add paragraphs to explain things that might be specific to the English language. That extension looks pretty useful though, and it's probably better than my gameplan of "tell editors to copypaste the English version and go from there." Davidy²²[talk] 17:35, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
You knows me personally? No offense, but I don't think I've met anyone of you before. ;-)
You're right, I don't have the time I'd like to have for editing here, but I still have my watchlist and follow the discussions. (If you look at 1143, you'll know what keeps me busy.) I have thought about giving up my admin rights, since I rarely get to edit something, but I cannot let go. Also, I still have my bot account, which has currently nothing to do, but who knows what is to come?
When the German Wiki is ready, I can try to help over there as much as possible (I'm better at writing German texts, it takes ages for me to express myself in English). But I'm not sure about translating per paragraph, I like the independent Wikipedia style. --SlashMe (talk) 22:50, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Oh, sorry! I thought you were User:Slashme but I see now I hadn't taken capitalization into account :) --Waldir (talk) 23:06, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

Hi guys, I've had not much time the last few days so I'm seeing this discussion the first time today. I never thought about to request an admin status here — which would be different belonging to a German page — but Davidy²²[talk] is the only real active admin here. Maybe we do need more, fighting against Spam is just one example.

  • I would like to focus on German translations, that's really not easy even only on layout. My local Wiki tests still contain many red links.
  • If there is a schedule for that German page I would work on that much more — meaning no time to act as an admin here.
  • And be sure: An admin job is different to a general user – I know about this in many other situations.
  • BTW: My BOT is still working as expected by me. If Randall does an update the BOT could not handle nothing happens here. But if a classical layout is presented it will be here on time.

Just a few thoughts on my first reply here.--Dgbrt (talk) 23:47, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

Potential Edit War; we want to resolve it before it starts

Hello, Admins? User DgBrt and I are having trouble on the article 1292: Pi vs. Tau. At the rate we're going it's going to turn into an edit war and nobody wants that.

I believe the page should look like this: http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php?title=1292:_Pi_vs._Tau&oldid=63007

Dgbrt believes the page should look like this: http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php?title=1292:_Pi_vs._Tau&oldid=63021

I figure: who better to resolve this than the admins? 02:51, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

hrmgrglrgl admin powers should be reserved for moderation and dispute resolution, cuz using our powers to force what we think should be in a page doesn't necessarily lead to better pages. I was gonna leave you two to your own devices since you were managing to conduct content-focused discussion on your own.
Uh, usually we take title text headers out of pages that don't strictly need them. In this case, the section dedicated to the title text seems long enough to merit it's own header. The math seems straightforward enough, and the stuff in the explanation looks relevant enough. Maybe solicit help from a passing user or try to talk more about it. Davidy²²[talk] 03:14, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Ohh, some days not online here and so I did miss this discussion. Not a single reason at my statements are answered by this IP. I'm trying to keep the explains as simple as possible; there is really no need for some hundred numbers at a special title text section. And you can be sure I'm not on an edit war, I'm just looking straight forward to an better explain for non math people, maybe just curious about the language. The PAU page doesn't explain the essentials as it should be have done. --Dgbrt (talk) 22:46, 27 March 2014 (UTC)


It's still hard to figure out all the existing templates here. We don't need this personal ones here:

  • Template:line
  • Template:endline
  • Template:endbranch
  • Template:midbranch
  • Template:beginbranch

We don't need this; </div> is even shorter than Template:endline. --Dgbrt (talk) 21:39, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

I'll look at where they're used. A bit busy at the moment, should be done by the weekend. Davidy²²[talk] 21:44, 3 April 2014 (UTC)
This was only created by User:‎Daniel Carrero for using at the transcript for 1350, I tried to bring this transcript back to a TRANSCRIPT. this templates are not used anywhere. Many chaos here...--Dgbrt (talk) 21:50, 3 April 2014 (UTC)
It's true that I created those templates. I see they got deleted a while ago. I have experience in programming MediaWiki templates but I'm new here, so I'm sorry if I did anything wrong.
When I created those, I believed that the Transcript section of 1350: Lorenz would have a complete (or as complete as possible) tree of all the possibilites of storylines of the comic in question. When I started editing the page, said all-encompassing transcript was already in development, with a number of storylines already in place by other users.
This was quickly escalating and becoming more complicated: to follow a single storyline, one would have to scroll down a lot and they would likely have trouble looking for the next panel amidst of a sea of different panels. At the moment, that big version is at 1350: Lorenz/Transcript. (It's far from complete.)
Somebody else at the talk page had the idea of implementing hide/show buttons in the text to navigate the transcript, so the templates I created did exactly that. One would navigate the text the same way one would navigate the comic.
Basically, they work this way:
These stupid tiles... I'll just play one more game.
(text to hide/show)
Granted, with a lot of branches the code might look difficult to read anyway, but it would be difficult with or without the templates. Also, granted, while Template:beginbranch and Template:midbranch had meaningful codes, Template:endbranch is just "|}" and nothing else so it looks kinda useless at first sight. But that's only because the final code would be consistent and easier to read that way than if it were this way, with "|}" in the last line:
These stupid tiles... I'll just play one more game.
(text to hide/show)
Personally, I like the idea of leaving the all-encompassing tree at the separate page (assuming we would have that tree in the first place), much like the list of collected images from the comic is at 1350: Lorenz/Images, not at the 1350: Lorenz itself where they would use too much space. Daniel Carrero (talk) 00:59, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Ah, didn't know that. So things are fine then? Davidy²²[talk] 01:45, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
If there's not any problem, I'd still like very much to add hide/show functionality to the all-encompassing tree that is now found at 1350: Lorenz/Transcript. To enable me to do that, please restore Template:beginbranch, Template:midbranch, Template:endbranch, Template:beginline and Template:endline. (even though endbranch and endline only have </div> and |}, respectively, for the reason I stated above). There's no need to restore unused redirects like Template:line, I just created them while I was figuring out a good name for the final templates. (sorry for the beta garbage) Daniel Carrero (talk) 07:03, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Certainly. Done. Davidy²²[talk] 09:29, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Thank you! Daniel Carrero (talk) 10:23, 5 April 2014 (UTC)


Please delete this page The best way to Pick the Right Steam Irons. I did remove the content so far. --Dgbrt (talk) 21:00, 4 April 2014 (UTC)


Please add the following code to the end of the protected page MediaWiki:Common.css:

/* Collapsible tree in [[1350: Lorenz/Transcript]] */

table.branch span.collapseButton
   float: left;
   margin-left: 0px;
   margin-right: 3px;

It is a cosmetic change to the template I'm creating for the transcript of 1350: Lorenz/Transcript.

(Specifically, it moves the hide/show button of Template:beginbranch to the left. Results can be seen at User:Daniel Carrero/Sandbox, though this sandbox page could probably be deleted later.) Daniel Carrero (talk) 12:07, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

Wait, can't you just put that in a style tag in the template? Why do you need something in the sitewide css for that? Davidy²²[talk] 16:13, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
No, as far as I know. I'd also prefer using a style tag for those things (editing a protected page is a pain); that what I've been doing until now. (Template:beginline and Template:beginbranch have their own CSS styles for margins, text alignment and other stuff). But the fact is the show/hide button (<span class="collapseButton">[<a id="collapseButton3" href="#">show</a>]</span>) is created automatically for a table with collapsible class (<table class="collapsible">) and I don't have access to the code of the button itself. Daniel Carrero (talk) 16:29, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
We don't need this chaos here. I did revert the transcript of 1350: Lorenz to the explainxkcd standard, a complete transcript isn't possible at all. Further issues do belong to some explain but not to the transcript. And additional, we don't need that templates no one understands. Similar issues were handled without in 1190: Time in a simple way. --Dgbrt (talk) 18:55, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
Dgbrt, are you some sort of admin/leader here? I see you are basically giving orders and I'm not being sarcastic or anything - if you are expected to make decisions here I can respect that, no questions asked. Other than that not just I, but other people were working towards a more complete transcript and you just reverted our work.
I have one question: You mentioned 1190: Time but it does have a full transcript full of collapsible text. (full page is 215.749 characters) So why's it any different than a possible 1350: Lorenz with a full transcript full of collapsible text? Lorenz is in its initial stages, I bet if we got all the storylines at the moment, it would even be remarkably smaller than Time, even though Lorenz has the potential to become much bigger in the near future.
(P.S. Sorry if my request about Common.css above was too troublesome or anything, it's not that important to have the [show/hide] button at the left side, it just helps because it'd be closer to the actual line of text, but one can live without it)
Daniel Carrero (talk) 23:37, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
I actually suspect that the text in the comic isn't ever going to truly settle, which would make transcribing the entire thing difficult and require a fair amount of maintenance. At least, I think that's what dgbrt meant. I'm actually more inclined towards the explanation being a technical explanation of the comic, because I'm not convinced that it'll ever be possible to fully and properly document the transcript. We can try in a separate transcript page, and good luck if you want to try that. We have a full transcript for Time because that comic didn't have potentially infinite generated dialogue paths.
The table class is called leftAlign. I added it because that sounds like something that could be generally useful, but branch is a very specific name that ties the function of the class to your specific use-case.
Dgbrt isn't an admin, I am. He's just a prolific user. I probably should have been more specific the last time I gave him a warning about clearing chunks of other people's work. Did you manage to restore everything in Lorenz/transcript? Davidy²²[talk] 07:15, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm working here for pages that should be readable by readers not that euphoric like some uploaders here are. 1190:Time was different because that transcript was just straight forward, what isn't true for Lorenz. And I just did mention Time because collapsed parts could be done without new templates. Please keep this site simple as possible. --Dgbrt (talk) 22:31, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I understand, Davidy22. Yes, I managed to restore everything under Lorenz/Transcript. Just one more thing:
Initially I didn't see the format of 1190: Time, but it turns out that even though Dgbrt disapproves of having a full transcript of Lorenz, I agree with him that the format of Time is (even obviously) better than what I had in mind. (using divs directly in the page, rather than tables within templates).
Since I still would like to keep the full transcript of Lorenz, to ease things up a bit I copied the format of Time into Lorenz/Transcript. It's much more intuitive how to edit the page, especially now that I managed to automatically indent the whole thing. David, can you do this small edit in MediaWiki:Common.css to reflect that? (table.leftAlign span.collapseButton becomes div.leftAlign span.mw-collapsible-toggle).
div.leftAlign span.mw-collapsible-toggle
   float: left;
   margin-left: 0px;
   margin-right: 3px;
I hate to contradict myself after having asked you to restore the templates, but the truth is as I said, if we use this system they are not needed anymore. One can safely delete Template:beginbranch, Template:midbranch, Template:endbranch, Template:beginline, Template:endline and also Template:lorenz.
Daniel Carrero (talk) 22:44, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but templates can be "safely delete" is just some of the chaos I'm trying to prevent here. I'm using a local Wiki at my own computer for tests, because everything here is open to the public. Please consider this and understand why I'm trying to keep this page as clean as possible. I do not act against any user here, but I try to keep this site in a way that all readers will understand. --Dgbrt (talk) 23:56, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
Done. Dgbrt, mediawiki is a little more robust than you seem to make it out to be, it'll survive. Davidy²²[talk] 08:17, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
I don't like chaos. A new user (GREAT findings and investigations) is adding many templates, most of them had to be deleted later. And please consider the effects on this CSS-Style changes to other pages here. --Dgbrt (talk) 21:58, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
WP:FAITH, WP:BITE. Also, read the CSS if you don't trust it. Davidy²²[talk] 22:43, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
There is still a big misunderstanding. I do understand CSS-Styles, one change and it could affect other pages. But my major point was about the TEMPLATES, is every user here welcome to create it's own ones? Please do not focus on CSS, I'm talking about the TEMPLATES in the background. --Dgbrt (talk) 23:27, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes, every user is allowed to create any pages except in namespaces that are protected by default (i.e. the MediaWiki namespace). That's what it means for this site to be a wiki: not only the content, but also the structure of the site itself is collaboratively built (this is pretty much how we set up this wiki from day one, btw). Of course, this liberty needs to be balanced by common sense: if anyone has reasons to believe the complexity, correctness or usefulness of the new pages aren't adequate, they're free to raise the issue for the community to discuss (as you've done here). As Davidy22 mentioned above, it's crucial, if we want to maintain a healthy community, to be nice and welcoming to newcomers, and assume good faith from contributors. We don't need an overly restrictive policy except for obviously useless edits (e.g. blatant spam). --Waldir (talk) 23:28, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

Starting my reply on left. I'm happy about any new user — or, should I say worker — at this Wiki! So, let's talk about the content and keep the adds to the TEMPLATE section as small as possible. I just want to keep this site simple for new editors. --Dgbrt (talk) 21:30, 10 April 2014 (UTC)


I did remove this template Template:1360/list from 1360 because most editors do not understand — it's even not correct. The bad content is copied to the explain section and the transcript got a major rework by me. We don't need a template — used in explain AND the transcript — like this. And again: Most people do NOT understand. Please delete this template, the comic page will be still fine.--Dgbrt (talk) 19:38, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

Since it's been folded into the explanation, done. Davidy²²[talk] 21:21, 25 April 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. But there are still many major issues at that comic. I did clean up the transcript again but I still have NO idea for fixing the explain. Still looks bad, a reader should be able to understand AND to post some enhancements.
  • First: There are NO numbers at the picture...
  • Second: That content I just did move to explain it still wrong or incomplete.
I do aim on non destructive works here, but sometimes I have to realize that I have been wrong...
But nevertheless I'm sure to be not wrong on this issue to get the page readable but also editable.
If users asking how to edit, that's not nice. I can't explain how to edit those templates so there is just no need here for this.
--Dgbrt (talk) 22:59, 25 April 2014 (UTC)


The user User:PenelopIQK‎ is a spammer and should be banned. I did delete the content but I can't ban someone. Admins please help. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:14, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

Done Davidy²²[talk] 18:23, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Adding a new gadget

I would like to request that a new gadget, called "Purge action", be created with the code I have in my user space. This would entail:

This would be really useful because it provides a convenient way to purge a page, which comes up a lot when working with templates (including the discussion page transclusions on every comic page).

Thanks! APerson (talk!) 18:47, 11 October 2014 (UTC)

This seems like a feature with very narrow application, too narrow to add a new interface button that doesn't do anything for most users. You can use the custom javascript feature in the "Appearance" tab of your preferences if you want to use the feature yourself. Davidy²²[talk] 06:10, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
It's not an interface button; it's a gadget that produces an interface button and that can be enabled in the preferences. The purge feature has a whole lot of applications, including updating template transclusions, turning redlinks into bluelinks when a page is created, and updating subpages. These are very useful for power users, as well as other users who work with page creation or templates. In fact, one of the first things I did when I created an account here was looking through mw-prefsection-gadgets for the purge tab. So, to conclude, it doesn't add anything to anybody's page—except for those who turn the gadget on. APerson (talk!) 18:47, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
Here's an example of where this gadget could have been put to a good use: this discussion, in which the user could have used the proposed gadget instead of being told to use the &purge=true "hack". Such a purge of the comic page is necessary to update the transclusion of the talk page after almost every edit to every comic's talk page. APerson (talk!) 00:33, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
Fair enough, added. Davidy²²[talk] 05:21, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
Thank you! APerson (talk!) 14:09, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

" Despite all their peceived superiority and claimed belief "

Don't know if it's considered a big deal around here but it seems like User:Mulan15262 only exists to troll atheists. 22:25, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

That's one statement of opinion out of six comments that user has made here, which dispels your complaint that it's the only reason that user visits the site. I will only ban if a user's comments get personal, which User:Mulan15262 has yet to do. Davidy²²[talk] 23:50, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

revert and protect XKCD 1450?

Hi! The edit http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php?title=1450%3A_AI-Box_Experiment&diff=79655&oldid=79653 deleted a large amount of attempted technical explanation by me, on a page previously marked "incomplete" and requesting help explaining Roko's Basilisk. Pesthouse's version violates the "Be nice" rule and repeats a false Internet meme about LessWrong.com being a hotbed of Roko's Basilisk believers.

I suggest reverting the large edit by user Pesthouse, back to http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php?title=1450:_AI-Box_Experiment&oldid=79653.

There's a large amount of Internet drama about Roko's Basilisk, and it's nearly certain that if not protected this page will be further vandalized or subject to edit wars. I suggest protecting the page after the reversion if it seems that the content is then satisfactory, or as good as it can be given background Internet drama.

I am the one who last edited the pre-Pesthouse version and contributed most of the content deleted. I tried to make it as accurate as I could given constraints of relevance and space. I also fleshed out the discussion of the main comic 1450 with relevant references such as to the "Thinking Inside the Box" paper. I tried to be a good Wiki citizen while contributing to the previous version of this page, as I hope a view of http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php?title=1450%3A_AI-Box_Experiment&diff=79653&oldid=79634 shows, and I apologize in advance if I violated any local norms in doing so. I can be reached at [email protected] for questions. -- Eliezer Yudkowsky

I couldn't be less enthusiastic about the turf war that appears to be happening in the page, but it looks like someone's already taken it upon themselves to revert Pesthouse's changes. I've protected the page to stop any more of this from happening, because I really don't care for the squabbles of another site coming over into here. Davidy²²[talk] 17:32, 23 November 2014 (UTC)

Today's comic

The edit tab of todays comic isn't appearing for me and I have a (somewhat) major contribution I'd like to add I just opened my account so I was wondering if there's a time limit? -- Icarus (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Hum. There shouldn't be. Can you provide a screenshot? Davidy²²[talk] 23:49, 13 February 2015 (UTC)

"Randall Monroe"

In the explain xkcd page, someone misspelled Randall's last name as Monroe. Can someone fix that? Thanks. 04:35, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

Done Davidy²²[talk] 09:37, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

Everyday's incomplete explanation of the day is 1127: Congress. Help us fix it!

Is it me, or is the 'incomplete page of the day' banner stuck on 1127: Congress? Nk22 (talk) 13:27, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

Of the remaining incomplete comics, I was cycling through them in the past and they weren't getting better because they're all a piece of work. I'm getting busy now, and it's not really worth it to keep cycling through the remaining ones. I honestly expected this to happen when I started this thing, although my original plans involved setting up a new initiative, something along the lines of wikipedia's large projects. So currently, I'm just leaving it on one at a time until the current one gets done. Davidy²²[talk] 23:22, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

Page deletion request

Please delete the page User:17jiangz1/signatureworkaround as I don't use it anymore. Forrest ― 17jiangz1(talk)10:04, 01 May 2015

Sorry, actually don't delete the page.--Forrest (talk)10:22, 01 May 2015 (UTC)

Hi! I blocked your ads and thought I would donate $5 to compensate and clicked on PayPal at the bottom. No luck.

"Sorry — your last action could not be completed

If you were making a purchase or sending money, we recommend that you check both your PayPal account and your email for a transaction confirmation after 30 minutes.

If you came to this page from another website, please return to that site (don't use your browser's Back button) and restart your activity.

If you came from PayPal's website, click the PayPal logo in the upper-left corner to return to our home page and restart your activity. You might have to log in again." ‎ (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Thanks for the tip. It looks like you timed out or something, but I'll tell the guy the paypal account belongs to in case it's something on our end. Davidy²²[talk] 11:04, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
This was broken. Thanks for the heads up. We are working to fix it now. --Jeff (talk) 19:05, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
The donate link should be fixed now. Thanks for the heads up! Davidy²²[talk] 03:16, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

Please block User:Weatherlawyer

User:Weatherlawyer writes inflammatory comments such as [4]. Fortunately s/he hasn't posted since 1 Feb 2015. Xhfz (talk) 21:35, 14 July 2015 (UTC)

Really? There is a reason I will not turn off adblock.

I use adblock most of the time to remove obtrusive ads and improve page load time. Naturally, whenever I visit the site, I see something in the sidebar that says:

It seems you are using noscript, which is stopping our project wonderful ads from working. Explain xkcd uses ads to pay for bandwidth, and we manually approve all our advertisers, and our ads are restricted to unobtrusive images and slow animated GIFs. If you found this site helpful, please consider whitelisting us.

I do find the site to be useful... So I turned off my blocker.

And the first ad I saw was for a NSFW webcomic. Mildly offensive, and definitely not welcome in my browser.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but that's "obtrusive"? Maybe you need to check the adverts more thoroughly next time... ‎ (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I think I know which one you're talking about, but can you provide a link to it? We approve advertisers based on initial ads, then let them run free with ad submissions and they seem to be taking that as license to submit ads that break with our guidelines later on after they've been approved. I'll get in touch with the guy, see if we can get this straightened out. Davidy²²[talk] 21:19, 30 July 2015 (UTC)

Why am I seeing the NoScript message?

I'm using Firefox 46.0a1; I don't have NoScript or AdBlockPro in my addons. Also I restarted in safe mode which disables all addons and I still get that message.

On the other hand, I don't see any ads on your site so if there are any (I see others have mentioned some) they're getting blocked somehow but I have no idea how.

Any thoughts/theories?

Stu -- ‎TrueFalcon (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

The noscript message appears when your browser fails to run the javascript that loads the ad images. I made the somewhat dangerous assumption that because the javascript was fairly simple, any browser it failed on must be blocking it. I'll have to read through it again. Davidy²²[talk] 04:18, 24 January 2016 (UTC)


How are the current CAPTCHAs supposed to work? They are really easy to bypass if you target the wiki directly, and a simple bot can input the right answer every time if it is preprogrammed with the current phrases. It would be better to just use existing APIs. Google's reCAPTCHA is really good: https://www.google.com/recaptcha/intro/index.html -- ‎Jonsku99 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

The captchas were put in place to ward off a certain kind of bot that crawls wikis and creates spam ad pages. It uses a simple bundled mediawiki plugin with a few predefined questions that we hoped would be easy enough for anyone visiting this site. We could probably switch to recaptcha fairly painlessly, though we've never needed something harder than the simple questions we have in place currently before. Davidy²²[talk] 20:41, 1 February 2016 (UTC)
Well, we had easy captchas in place before, but apparently people can't be trusted to not spam, so I'm switching it to reCAPTCHA now. Davidy²²[talk] 02:26, 11 February 2016 (UTC)
Alright, changed a few things, tightened the captcha requirements up a little. Davidy²²[talk] 02:56, 11 February 2016 (UTC)
It says "To help protect against automated edit spam, please type the two words you see in the box below:", but there aren't two words all the time. I just got a single number to type. --SlashMe (talk) 20:46, 11 February 2016 (UTC)
Wait, aren't you an admin? How did you get a CAPTCHA? Also, yeah, the spam kept happening when I turned it on and google's analytics for reCAPTCHA show a lot of brute forcing. It might not be as solid as I'd hoped. I'm open to and looking for alternate CAPTCHA options. Davidy²²[talk] 00:13, 12 February 2016 (UTC)
Private browsing window ;-)
I'm not against recaptcha, I just wanted to point out that the explaining sentence doesn't always match the captcha. Recaptcha comes with a label, so you might want to remove the one from MW. --SlashMe (talk) 01:37, 12 February 2016 (UTC)

New comic posted today

Hi admins,

There was a new comic posted today, so the Latest Comic needs to be updated to this one: 1642: Gravitational Waves. I'm in the process of creating the article. Thanks, Natg 19 (talk) 19:06, 11 February 2016 (UTC)

Huh, that's early. The bot will usually start trying to update at the time that Randall usually uploads comics, but he decided to be early today so the bot's not gonna check for the new comic for another 11 hours or so. Davidy²²[talk] 19:13, 11 February 2016 (UTC)
It appears like this is a special comic to commemorate the discovery of gravitational wave signals. Natg 19 (talk) 19:18, 11 February 2016 (UTC)

Creating user page and first post to comic discussion

I've had an account for a while, but have done very little editing. However, I'm unable to create pages which means that I can't create a user page, and I'm unable to contribute the first comment to a new comic as I get the error Permission error: You do not have permission to create discussion pages.

The second problem could be solved by having the bot create the comic discussion page even if it's just with some placeholder content, but I don't really have a good way to fix the first. Do I need an admin to do so, or is it automatically unlocked after some amount of time and/or editing? Veleek (talk) 07:25, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

Whoops, forgot to make the page. We turned that off due to a recent spate of spam, I'll contact dgbrt to ask him to make the bot make blank talk pages. Davidy²²[talk] 07:53, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

A garbage page for removal

Because I'm not familiar with all the maintenance protocols on this wiki like I am on Wikipedia, I have to ask here for someone to delete the page 2000. Thanks! 16:06, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

Deleted. Thanks for the report! Davidy²²[talk] 22:53, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

Please delete a file and a redirect.

Please delete File:Please delete-Tic-Tac-Toe-O-6-4.png and File:Tic-Tac-Toe-O-6-4.png. The correct contents is in File:Tic_Tac_Toe-O-6-4.png. Demro (talk) 18:40, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

Done Davidy²²[talk] 19:27, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

History and Organization.

This is an unusual request - please bear with me as I explain!

I've been interested in the "Plan 28" group - who are trying to build an actual, for real implementation of Babbages Analytical Engine. Every red-blooded computer geek should now be thinking "Wow! What I wouldn't give to be able to work on THAT project!".

The trouble is that Babbage left us with around 7,000 pages of drawings with cryptic annotations in his own made-up language. Plan 28 managed to get high-resolution scans made from them and employ a small team of paid engineers to try to figure them all out. Sadly, after several years - they aren't getting far with decoding them. Plan 28's reaction to that is to try to raise funds to employ a few more people...but (IMHO), it's not enough and it's not going to work...so their project will, without doubt, fail.

My suggestion to them was to set up a Wiki and dump the 7000 pages there - and simply crowd-source the effort. Readers (and especially, explainers) of XKCD will now be jumping up and down yelling "WELL, DUH!".

The London Science Museum are a predictably stuffy organization - and they "own" these documents from the 1850's and the digital scans of them - and they haven't made them available online - even though they are out of copyright. They (and the Plan 28 guys) are talking about the difficulty of setting up such a thing and the problems of paying someone to administer it...and the time taken to decide how best to do this...and...zzzzzZZZZZZ. (Did I mention "stuffy organization"?)

(OK - I'm getting to the point now, I promise!)

But I know a group of wildly enthusiatic people] - who took a large corpus of treasured documents that have been released with "open" copyrighting - who are doing EXACTLY the kinds of things (annotating, explaining, cross-referencing, discussing) that need to be done with Babbage's documents.

I should mention that I have no ties to any of the organizations involved here - I'm just a casual observer in all of this who is in the top 2000 contributors to Wikipeda and who has no less than four instances of MediaWiki on his personal server!. I want to try to persuade the London Science Museum to dump their treasured documents into a Wiki and let us start "explainBabbage.com" in a manner closely analogous to explainXKCD.com.

So (finally!) here is my question:

Can you give me a description of how explainXKCD got started - how it's administered - what mechanisms are necessary to keep it on the rails - and how much effort and money the "owner" of the site has to put in to keep it like that.

Basically - I need to convince the museum folks that this can be made to work at minimal cost in their time and zero cost in money.

(If you'd prefer to email me - I'm at <[email protected]>)

Thanks in advance for ANY help/advice/for-christ-sakes-don't-do-THAT stuff you have to offer!

SteveBaker (talk) 01:01, 15 May 2016 (UTC)

Sorry about the late reply, you might not be checking for a reply here so I emailed you. Davidy²²[talk] 06:23, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Many thanks for your help! To avoid further cluttering your admin page with my ramblings, I replied in email. Thanks! SteveBaker (talk) 13:17, 17 May 2016 (UTC)

Delete my talk page

Can someone please delete my talk page so it'll be a red link? Thank you. Mikemk (talk) 20:01, 2 July 2016 (UTC)

Done Davidy²²[talk] 21:18, 2 July 2016 (UTC)

Permission to create my user page

I would like to create a user page for myself: [[5]], but I don't have the permission to do so. How can I create and edit my user page? Luc (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Because spammers decided we can't have nice things, all new users must have had their account for at least a week and made a minimum of 10 edits to pages before they can create any new page. Write a few transcripts, or comment on a few more comics to get your account cleared through the anti bot trench.Davidy²²[talk] 01:46, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
Ok, will do. Thanks! Luc (talk) 02:59, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
...I'll comment on this thread as well because I'm getting close to 10 edits... Spammers must be a big thing here to even disable user page creation! Chloroplaster (talk) 16:06, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
Making spam user pages was one of the actual primary channels that spammers used, every spam account did it first thing and it was the first thing that got restricted. Davidy²²[talk] 15:28, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Talk page on comic 649: Static

I wish to post a comment to the discussion for comic 649: Static, but the page has not been created yet and I do not have permission to do so. I wish to post a reference to comic 730: Circuit Diagram. Thank you for your assistance in this endeavour. -- PikminCreator (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I'll make the page now. Davidy²²[talk] 18:52, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

Talk page for 283

There's no talk page for comic 283: Projection, and new users don't have permissions to create talk pages. I'd like to add something to the talk page for that comic, so could someone create the talk page for me? Misson20000 (talk) 01:50, 6 August 2016 (UTC) misson20000

Done Davidy²²[talk] 02:20, 6 August 2016 (UTC)

Help with personal page

Hi.. umm... I'm a newly registered member of the Explain XKCD wiki. I don't want to mess anything up, but i couldn't find any other way of contact. I've run into a little problem. I can edit pages and other places of the wiki (including this), but for some reason I can't edit my own page. I need to let people know who I am on this wiki, but I can't do that since I don't have permission to edit my own user page. Can one of you guys please provide me with an answer on how to fix that? Thank you. - JayRulesXKCD

Because of spam issues in the past, new users have to exist for at least 10 days and have made 10 contributions before they are allowed to create new pages on the wiki, including user pages. Also, avoid posting to the top of talk pages in the future and use ~~~~ in the future to sign your comments. Davidy²²[talk] 03:51, 2 September 2016 (UTC)

please fix my error

I added a trivial comment to a page (357: Flies). Unfortunately I didn't understand that I was editing the existing text, rather than just adding new text, so I inadvertently deleted the existing text.

Please reinstate. Apologies for the newbie error. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Done. Note that everyone can view the pages history and restore it. -- 23:23, 3 October 2016 (UTC)
Damn, beat me to it. Thanks anon. Davidy²²[talk] 01:57, 4 October 2016 (UTC)


Special:Contributions/ is just trolling around and even impersonating other people on disc pages (like this). Please ban. Thanks. -- 17:57, 4 October 2016 (UTC)

Done 16:59, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

Possible Sock Puppet Army

Someone with admin rights and spam-fighting skill should check the user creation log. It looks like someone is creating multiple accounts. - Frankie (talk) 10:16, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

They're automated spam accounts, I know the pattern pretty well. They're trying to create spam pages and failing because of settings I've turned on. One day someone'll write a captcha these guys can't solve and I can lock them out of making accounts too. Davidy²²[talk] 16:59, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

Permission request

May I please have permission to upload images and create my user and talk pages? Also can you please turn off CAPTCHA for me? JSalsman (talk) 06:17, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

Due to spam reasons, users have to have an account for at least a week and have made 10 edits without getting banned before they can edit without captchas and create pages. Looking at your edit history, you've actually just made your 10th on comic 1732, so you should be able to edit freely from now on. Davidy²²[talk] 17:14, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
David, I am concerned about user JSalsman aka Special:Contributions/ In particular, the edit to #1132 appears to be vandalism, and he has repeatedly added implausible statements to #1732 despite Talk requests for explanation. - Frankie (talk) 17:38, 2 November 2016 (UTC)
Becoming autoconfirmed gives him regular user priviledges. The process exists to weed out bots, not people. Edit warring is a different issue, and you should bring it up to an admin if you have concerns about it in the future. From the looks of it though, the graphs linked do seem a bit terse, and wiki image links with an actual explanation are probably preferred to a link to an imgur album. Davidy²²[talk] 20:47, 2 November 2016 (UTC)

Thank you both! I am happy to resolve the question through discussion before replacing the edits in question, but I intend to do so unless they are proven wrong or merely unlikely. And I will upload the images once I get off mobile at my desk.... JSalsman (talk) 02:07, 3 November 2016 (UTC)

Your captchas to edit pages don't work

have been trying to edit one of the pages on this wiki. It wants me to "type the word below" into a box, but neither the word nor the box is visible to me. I'm a noscript use but I've unblocked all the scripts on the page in question, I still have no success. Wherever the word and box are supposed to be for me they get covered up by the editing options toolbox above the pane containing the text of the page one is editing. I edited a page on herea few weeks or months back without issue, this must be a recent change causing this. And as a note the captcha WORKS on this page, but not on comic 711's edit page. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

That's very unusual. Every edit page should use the same CAPTCHA service and edit layout, and it seems to still work for me. Can you provide a screenshot and more information/test it in another browser? Davidy²²[talk] 20:39, 4 December 2016 (UTC)

incomplete Explanation updated

It looks like the incomplete explanation project page and explanation of the day need to be updated. There are no longer any parody comics listed in the incomplete explanations category. I double checked the most recent edit to 141 and it looks like the issue was addressed. -- CrazyBob (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Thanks for the notice, changed. Davidy²²[talk] 20:39, 4 December 2016 (UTC)

Possible bot accounts

Please check this: Special:Log/newusers. One new user today like AldaSchiller01 is ok, but then KlaudiaZ96 AlizaLycett PrinceHooks TommyKohl741 ArnetteFrewer4 and more in this manner at the same day. And the days before look very similar. All with no contributions here anyway. I'm sure there is a BOT testing to resolve the captcha! I think disabling an IP after a few failed attempts should solve this problem. Maybe there is somewhere a log about that failures, that should look much worse. And in general that's useless traffic on this wiki. --Dgbrt (talk) 23:47, 23 February 2017 (UTC)

There's no hacking happeing here, those are spam accounts made by a botnet. We've had issues with them before, which are mostly resolved now. It's very difficult to prevent them from creating accounts, because they have so many source IP addresses and I'm not going to do an IP range ban. We've already seen that there are bots are pretty good at smashing the CAPTCHA, it just cuts the torrential flood of unsophisticated bots. The captcha should shut out after enough failures already. Davidy²²[talk] 01:52, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
Ohh, I would call it hacking because that accounts can do bad things. Maybe disabling the account creation feature in the API.php helps ($wgAPIModules['createaccount'] = 'ApiDisabled';). See more here: Mediawiki. If it doesn't help we should look for a better captcha protection.--Dgbrt (talk) 13:21, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
That's just not what hacking is though, account creation by API is already blocked and alternative CAPTCHAs have been cracked because the spammers are motivated. Permissions have resolved the issue already. Davidy²²[talk] 03:50, 26 February 2017 (UTC)

Fixed title. If you're using 3 exclamation marks for a simple bot report, then maybe you need to take a second and take a deep breath. I work for a webhosting company and we log 6+ million of these a day across our clients' account. ReCaptcha was known to be hacked eons ago anyway. Been reported anyway. Look up a few paragraphs. -- 12:13, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Google for that new accounts (haven't done so far) but I'm sure you will find a profile for this site. I also work on webhostings AND mail servers... The first simple trick is still just tell them: Wait a minute... BOTS mostly still don't understand.
Nevertheless I will never understand why you Americans do include a second space after a sentence in your writings no one can see... Unless you see the source... (BTW: Back on my watch list)--Dgbrt (talk) 01:01, 5 March 2017 (UTC)

These spammers are starting to get annoying by filling up the entire recent changes section with accounts that have NO CONTRIBUTIONS, as can be seen here: spam accounts.PNG

Is there no solution to this? Is it possible to make it so that any account without any contributions after 24 hours will be deleted?


In the "WeChat" line, the "it's" should be "its" (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

When you can post here you can fix this on your own. You are welcome. A non admin --Dgbrt (talk) 23:58, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

Why the insecure favicons?

When I load one of our wiki pages over HTTPS (e.g. this one), all the resources come down the HTTPS pipes, except for the favicons:

Why? Could these be fixed?

Minard's map for 657

Could someone import [[File:Minard.png]] from Wikimedia Commons (or otherwise set it up so it can be inlined)? It'd be very helpful to inline it in 657 as it provides the historical/graphical context for the comic. Thanks. JohnHawkinson (talk) 03:31, 9 April 2017 (UTC)

Huh. So, I gained the ability to upload it (presumably my account became old enough) and I did so, but it does not seem to have worked properly. The full-resolution version exists, but the lower resolution (and more usable) versions do not. E.g. [[File:Minard.png|740px]] just gives text, no image. Is this somehow...expected? Should I just upload a smaller version? Or is it because it's a PNG rather than a JPEG [?] and should I discretize its cosines? Thanks. JohnHawkinson (talk) 15:13, 14 April 2017 (UTC)

No comment page has been created for 1834

Please create one.

Please remove this picture

This picture isn't CC-BY...: File:Crude Infectious Disease Mortality Rate in the United States from 1900 Through 1996.gif. I've removed it from this page: 1520: Degree-Off. --Dgbrt (talk) 10:48, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

Done --SlashMe (talk) 13:18, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

Please block

Reason: Massive vandalism.--Dgbrt (talk) 14:07, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

Special:Contributions/ ---- maowtm talk con  14:54, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

Done. Sorry, I haven't seen this until now. --SlashMe (talk) 23:00, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
I fear one day isn't enough.--Dgbrt (talk) 23:12, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
The problem is that with most ISPs, you'll get a new IP every day. --SlashMe (talk) 23:26, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

Please protect all templates

No IP should be able to change any template here. Vandalism on single pages is still bad enough.--Dgbrt (talk) 14:11, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

I did protect Template:!, but I don't know if it's possible to protect entire namespaces at once. If so, it probably has to be done in the configuration, so I wouldn't be able to. Any other important templates? --SlashMe (talk) 23:00, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
Please check all edits here: Special:Contributions/ And according to Special:ProtectedPages the Template:incomplete was "semi protected" but that wasn't enough. Some other pages are "fully protected", but I don't know the difference.--Dgbrt (talk) 23:12, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
I just checked his edits. The semi-protection was set up by me a few minutes ago, as you can see in the page's history. Semi-protection prevents anonymous (i.e. IPs) and newly registered users from editing, full protection prevents everyone but administrators from editing. See also 285: Wikipedian Protester. --SlashMe (talk) 23:26, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
Uhh, there is Template:incomplete and Template:Incomplete which explains my confusion. Do we need both? If yes, then there are probably more lower and upper versions for other templates.--Dgbrt (talk) 23:38, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
The latter is just a redirect to the first. Should be cleaned up, but it's only used a few times. --SlashMe (talk) 23:49, 25 June 2017 (UTC)
Protecting all pages in the namespace requires server access, setting flags such as $wgNamespaceProtection and so on. See https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:Combating_vandalism -- 02:42, 26 June 2017 (UTC)

The childish IP has found a new target: Template:LATESTCOMIC. Please protect this too.--Dgbrt (talk) 15:58, 21 July 2017 (UTC)

It seems like automatic semiprotection of the Template namespace would fit well with this wiki. How hard is it to find someone with file-level write access to the MediaWiki config on the server? Is it worth my figuring out the correct incantation for that result? JohnHawkinson (talk) 16:30, 21 July 2017 (UTC)
That would be Jeff. --SlashMe (talk) 13:27, 22 July 2017 (UTC)

More templates need protection: Template:Infobox/row and Template:infobox --Dgbrt (talk) 15:17, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

Done--SlashMe (talk) 22:14, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for watching this. --Dgbrt (talk) 22:30, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

And one more: Template:comic discussion --Dgbrt (talk) 15:12, 29 August 2017 (UTC)

Please allow user creation of pages (or talk pages).

Right now, even if I'm to create my own talk page User talk:Maowtm, it says "There is currently no text in this page..., but you do not have permission to create this page.". ---- maowtm talk con  14:15, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

This is disabled intentionally, as there are a lot of spambots trying to do exactly this. I will create your user and talkr page, so you can edit them. --SlashMe (talk)
Dgbrt was faster for the talk page :) --SlashMe (talk) 23:26, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

Please remove this redirect

I've moved the picture File:Russells Teapot.png to File:russells teapot.png (all lowercase as always). The first one (uppercase) now contains a redirect but is not needed anymore.--Dgbrt (talk) 16:16, 21 July 2017 (UTC)

Done. --SlashMe (talk) 13:27, 22 July 2017 (UTC)

Please remove these pages

Please remove 1866: Russel's Teapot and Russel's Teapot. The correct spellings are here: 1866: Russell's Teapot and Russell's Teapot and the content was already moved. --Dgbrt (talk) 15:11, 22 July 2017 (UTC)

Done. --SlashMe (talk) 21:09, 22 July 2017 (UTC)


Please set "$wgUseInstantCommons = true;" in LocalSettings.php. We have still pictures with red links here. --Dgbrt (talk) 15:39, 22 July 2017 (UTC)

Solved. We now can embed pictures from Commons like local files. The link [[File:DBCooper.jpg|thumb|Cooper]] shows the picture from Commons because it doesn't exist here. --Dgbrt (talk) 23:57, 25 May 2018 (UTC)

Page creation permission

I want to upload a picture for a comic discussion (and later another one for the article). The discussion picture I could just replace with a link to an external uploading page, but not the article picture. Could I please get page creation permission? Fabian42 (talk) 07:31, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

I'm not an admin so I can't give you permissions. But when you can provide an external link I can help. And in a discussion an external link is always enough. --Dgbrt (talk) 14:30, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
I'm planning to make more edits to this wiki in the future, so page creation permission for me would in general be helpful. Is this here even the right place to ask for it? Or can I contact someone directly? Fabian42 (talk) 14:35, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
This section is OK, I'm watching it and our rare admins probably too. But you can also talk to people at their talk pages. Your low permissions are deliberate, after a specific number of edits you will be able to do more. This is because spammers are always a big problem on an open page like this.--Dgbrt (talk) 15:14, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
As Dgbrt said, these permissions are granted automatically, but I think after a certain time. Try again in a day or two. --SlashMe (talk) 22:16, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

2 things that would be cool

First, a feature to see all time score if you are not in the top 50.

Also, https://explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/explain_xkcd:Explanation_Completion_Project lists the wrong (pun entirely intended) incomplete explanation. -- DPS2004 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

You are new but admins are rare here since many months. So read my (non admin) reply:
  • Please do not forget to sign your comments. It's much easier when others can see to whom they are talking.
  • This wiki does not need a "all time score". This wiki needs good explanations, who is doing this is not much relevant.
  • At explain xkcd:Explanation Completion Project the "current incomplete explanation" is indeed wrong (funny because it mentions 1731: Wrong) but the number of incomplete comics is correct. Just check the Category:Incomplete explanations for all of them. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:35, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

Please help end this argument is adding trivia sections just because a comic references another comic. I think the extra sections are unnecessary, he / she thinks that they should be there. It's getting quite annoying, and if you check his talk page you can see what I mean... We might not be able to agree on something, so can one of the admins take a look at it if we can't resolve this issue on our own? I feel like it would be better if an admin took a look at it, as you guys are obviously more experienced than us. Thanks! Herobrine (talk) 12:23, 15 March 2018 (UTC)

Since no admin is here I will give an answer: In general it's easy, in the Explanation-section the comic has to be explained while the optional Trivia-section may contain things of interest but doesn't belong to an explanation. And by this meaning I've created several trivia sections in the past, but I didn't when there was only a small reference at the bottom. Nevertheless as an example the "Table of Names" in 1970: Name Dominoes should be trivia because it doesn't explain anything belonging to the meaning of the comic. But I don't touch that because the table was more important to the editors than understanding the rules of Randall's domino game. And I don't touch that because others would disagree in this special case. --Dgbrt (talk) 14:01, 11 April 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for the info Dgbrt! Herobrine (talk) 05:08, 13 April 2018 (UTC)

Oh, also, editing others' posts?

There are many talk pages with extremely long URLs, which make the explanation zoom way out (sometimes the comic is only like half of its original size), and the words in the explanation are too small to read. I've shortened them, and the links still go to the right websites, but I had to edit posts left by other users to do that. So, can I like do that or not? There are also talk pages were people posted things without leaving their IP or account with the ~ thing, how are we supposed to correct that? Herobrine (talk) 03:16, 16 March 2018 (UTC)

Please give an example to the "extremely long URLs". I will check. --Dgbrt (talk) 14:11, 11 April 2018 (UTC)
Every user should sign comments in talk pages. I add the templates {{unsigned|USERNAME}} or {{unsigned ip|x.x.x.x}} when it's not signed. You are welcome to help. It then looks like -- dgbrt (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~) or (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~) instead of this: --Dgbrt (talk) 14:11, 11 April 2018 (UTC)
For example, 503: Terminology has a big picture in the comments section (don't know how to deal with that), and I have already collapsed a long URL in 1943: Universal Dreams. And as for the unsigned posts, thanks for letting me know about the template. Herobrine (talk) 05:13, 13 April 2018 (UTC)
In general I think your screen resolution is just too small. Or is it your browser? My technical answer is this:
  • For pictures in talk pages a simple link should be sufficient. Instead of [[File:GoogleMapsOverlay503.png]] you can write (a preceding colon does the magic, the text may be omitted) [[:File:GoogleMapsOverlay503.png|Optional text]]. But click this internal link File:GoogleMapsOverlay503.png you than have to click again to see the picture. This is because of some broken image features in this wiki. I'll put this on a new Admins ToDo list. But as I said, a link to an image is enough in a talk page.
  • The mega URL to the 6 candidate earthquakes was bad and your edit correct. A text starting with http:// or https:// and others are rendered by this wiki as a clickable link and lazy people don't care about the layout. A proper link is instead [http://example.com/aloooongtext/numbers/nobodycanunderstand TEXT EVERYBODY UNDERSTANDS]. The first blank separates the link from the text (here capitals) which is shown to the reader. Editing a link in this manner doesn't change the intent of the writer and is very helpful for readers.
I'm hoping this helps. --Dgbrt (talk) 12:41, 13 April 2018 (UTC)

Requesting File Uploader Privilage

Hi! I am a new user here but I've noticed that comic 1969 needs to have a copy of the "green plugin" and "broken picture" (note that both Chrome and Firefox are open-source so they can be safely taken). I have edited other pages in the meantime. I hope that you consider this but I understand if you wouldn't give that privilage bue to my recentness. - Oe (talk) 12:26, 21 March 2018 (UTC)

After a small amount of edits you will be autoconfirmed and get the privilege. --Dgbrt (talk) 14:14, 11 April 2018 (UTC)

reCAPTCHA needs updated to v2

As of April 4, 2018, reCAPTCHA v1, which is what the site currently uses, has been shutdown. Thus, any reCAPTCHA requests now come back as valid. The site needs updated to reCAPTCHA v2. See here for more. Creepy Jeff (talk) 14:52, 5 April 2018 (UTC)

Thanks for your info. This is a known issue but we have to wait for an admin with server access. --Dgbrt (talk) 14:24, 11 April 2018 (UTC)

It's done. Dgbrt (talk) 13:53, 19 May 2018 (UTC)


I'm not sure if it's supposed to happen, but apparently whenever I edit a page it is automatically added to my watchlist, and I have to remove it, which is quite annoying. Can you guys fix it? -- Herobrine (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Since the latest update some default user preference are changed. Just go to "Preferences" -> "Watchlist" and deselect "Add pages and files I edit to my watchlist". --Dgbrt (talk) 12:18, 23 May 2018 (UTC)
Besides the preference mentioned ny dgbrt, there's also a checkbox below the editing window asking whether you want to watch this page. --SlashMe (talk) 14:34, 23 May 2018 (UTC)

Category for deletion

Please delete Category:Social interactions. (which is not Category:Social interactions). It appears to have been created in error. For now, I've redirected it to the correct category. Sensorfire (talk) 23:44, 14 August 2018 (UTC)

Damn typos... Thanks for help, it's done. --Dgbrt (talk) 09:31, 15 August 2018 (UTC)

CSS class for Template:notice

Hi, can someone from the admins please add a class attribute to the 'notice' template? I use custom stylesheets in my browser, but I can't nicely change the looks of the templates without such an attribute. 14:09, 18 August 2018 (UTC)

I don't like to change extensions because when it gets an update all changes are gone. But for customizing styles you also can use the ID "siteNotice" for that DIV tag. --Dgbrt (talk) 13:00, 20 August 2018 (UTC)
Hmm, unsure what you are talking about. The 'notice' templates are just a table with inlined CSS rules, no DIVs with IDs anywhere I can see.