User talk:Robert Ullmann/2010–2011

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archive pages, page history with archives


I do not want to come across as contumelious but please consider casting your vote for the tile logo as—besides using English—the book logo has a clear directionality of horizontal left-to-right, starkly contrasting with Arabic and Chinese, two of the six official UN languages. As such, the tile logo is the only translingual choice left and it was also elected in m:Wiktionary/logo/archive-vote-4. Warmest Regards, :)--thecurran Speak your mind my past 03:15, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

{{t-simple}} and water

water is now using {{t-simple}} for around a thousand of its translations (written in Latn, so no need for other parameters) the existing templates were overstretching the server leading to internal errors on save (presumably out of memory/time) and horrificly slow loading (blamed on {{Xyzy}} by Prince Kassad). Using a template was preferred to using raw links for consistency within the page. At the moment we have no other pages that will benefit from this template, and I can't imagine any arising in the near future. Conrad.Irwin 16:26, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Cite references prefix

I was wondering if we could remove the "* Notes:" from MediaWiki:Cite references prefix. Sometimes we do use it to show footnotes in a random section (eg 和尚打伞,无法无天) and in those cases the text is okay. But often times we use it show references where that snippet of text looks awkward right after the ===References=== or we show footnotes in a ===Usage notes=== section making the text look even more awkward. I know you talked about this with Ruakh before, but I don't understand the reason. Wikipedia doesn't have an intro text (see w:MediaWiki:Cite references prefix) which makes me think any technical problem must be small. Obviously if we change this we'll have to do some cleanup, but this is probably better than awkward wording on the majority of the pages. --Bequw¢τ 23:54, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Any more thoughts? --Bequwτ 17:20, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Old Tbot categories

Hi, I notice that at least half of the Tbot entry categories per language are empty. I would have deleted them, but if Tbot plans to restart adding words from these languages, it would make no sense to! Mglovesfun (talk) 11:42, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Tbot will add more entries for languages as people add more translations and entries in the FL wikts. So the cats should stay. (Harmless anyway ;-) The only cats to be deleted are the monthly ones once emptied, as they won't recur. (sorry for delay, i've been sick and some time in hospital) Robert Ullmann 08:55, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

User:Rising Sun/French verbs needing conjugation

Hello Robert, any chance of updating User:Rising Sun/French verbs needing conjugation? p.s. I hope you're feeling a lot better now --Rising Sun talk? 15:52, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

okay, that's just a matter of re-running the program. Done. Robert Ullmann 17:27, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

Your template

Hi Robert could you please remove Template:xhan from the Category:Chinese_words_needing_attention? Thank you. Tooironic 10:38, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Hmm, it's unused and unusable in its current form, as you can't substitute it. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:49, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Hi, my (repeated) apologies for illness with some long time to get back to effectiveness ...
It was used by me to subst to create/fix various entries. Was always supposed to be temporary. Fixed. Robert Ullmann 22:30, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Portuguese verbs needing conjugation

Hi Robert again. Can I request a page User:Rising Sun/Portuguese verbs needing conjugation, in the same vein as User:Rising Sun/French verbs needing conjugation. My bot's working on Portuguese now, you see--Rising Sun talk? contributions 18:28, 27 March 2010 (UTC)

Yes, should not be difficult. About the same rules? I am still catching up on a number of things left undone from before I was in the hospital. (BD2412 has probably given up on me ;-) I did note AF sorting out some pt entries in common with Spanish. Robert Ullmann 17:03, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
The rules for this are: find all Portuguese verbs entries without any pt-verb in them - we use pt-verb for conjugation templates, whereas in French we use fr-conj. And you needn't worry about finding any Tbot entries - they don't concern me. I hope this helps. --Rising Sun talk? contributions 17:16, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
pt has pt-verb (inflection line) and pt-conj (table) just like the French (arranged a bit differently); that isn't a difference. Robert Ullmann 18:44, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
Done. Robert Ullmann 19:07, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, I love you Robert --Rising Sun talk? contributions 19:12, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
  • I must bug you again for this. Thanks --Soleil levant 00:54, 29 April 2010 (UTC)

Pronunciation exceptions and mismatched wikisyntax

At your convenience, please could you regenerate these reports as I might finally be getting some time to do a bit more on them, but given the length of time it's been they're now very out of date.

See also the talk page of the pronunciation exceptions report. Thryduulf 00:39, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

I've run the pron except report, and mismatch running now. This is just the existing code; I spent several hours tracking down a completely gratuitous breaking change in the server code and working around it. I'll think about the talk page suggestion. Cheers, Robert Ullmann 13:53, 14 April 2010 (UTC)
Cheers. Thryduulf 22:20, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

CaBot and Interwikis

Hi Robert,

I'm on the french wiktionary, and I'd like to keep on interwikis too. I suppose your bot is based on english recent changes, isn't it ? So if mine will follow french ones it will work without disturbing yours, isn't it ?

Cordially, -- Quentinv57 16:38, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

Interwicket follows RC on all the wikts. It also knows the current rules for link order and policy on redirects on all wikts in namespace zero, which the pywikibot does not have up to date.
If you want to work outside NS:0, cool, but do see if you can get the proper ordering. In NS:0, is handled by Interwicket. If you want to help, is okay, but there are lots of issues. Robert Ullmann 20:26, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
Luckas-bot is working on NS:0 too, isn't it ? -- Quentinv57 20:28, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

User talk:AutoFormat

Hi Robert,

When you have time, there's a bit of a backlog of comments and requests at User talk:AutoFormat. You're in high demand. :-)

Thanks in advance!
RuakhTALK 20:35, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

Oh dear. I'll hunt these down. Odd though: when Interwicket talk gets changes I get mail (and that shows on my cell phone even in the middle of the night, at o-dark-whatever. But not AF? maybe has to do with when SUL was started?) Anyway, I'll chase these in the morning! Thank you. If anything needs to be brought to my attention, you or anyone feel free to SMS +254 722 929 463 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              +254 722 929 463      end_of_the_skype_highlighting. (and: don't worry about time, it is set silent when I am sleeping ...) Robert Ullmann 21:06, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
There is an "email me if someone writes on my talk page" setting in preferences (not WT:PREF, but the standard Wikimedia one, next to one's watchlist). Perhaps that was set for Interwicket, but not for AF. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 22:25, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
It was set, but the email address was an old one no longer used. Fixed. Robert Ullmann 11:19, 20 April 2010 (UTC)
and it does work now Robert Ullmann 11:59, 21 April 2010 (UTC)

Welcome back?

Sorry about your health issues. I hope they have been resolved acceptably.

I hope you will have enough time to participate again. If you have been working on tech matters and have been on IRC, I wouldn't see that. Anyhoo, welcome back. If you aren't staying, come back soon. DCDuring TALK 11:35, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

I remember learning while studying public health how long it takes people to recover from being in hospital, but hadn't experienced it. Two days in ICU, plus another 5 in a private room, and one leaves feeling like everything is pretty much fine. Then I discovered that getting anywhere near fully functional takes months. Wow. (No wonder modern medicine tries to do almost everything they can on out-patient or short-stay (24-36 hours), recovery time is much better.) Will be able to do more now. Robert Ullmann 12:07, 28 April 2010 (UTC)
Don't get me started. That is yet another reason I try to avoid or postpone encounters with doctors and hospitals and resent being compelled to pay the expenses of those who overuse medical services. In my case, total knee replacement is likely to become necessary, but as much delay as one can stand seems to be the best course, both for the expense (if one pays one's own way) and the recovery. Overuse is sometimes even against the patient's wishes (excessive end-of-life treatment), to the patient's detriment (medications without demonstrated benefit for average recipient), or to the detriment of public health (overuse of antibiotics).
But when medical care is needed, it is really needed.
I hope wiktionary remains high on your list of priorities. DCDuring TALK 14:24, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

Google mining

Robert, I'm so sorry to hear that you're recovering from a hospital stay. Hope things pick up for you. I have a request, maybe for too much, but we'll see. Would you be able to generate a list of all words (including hyphenated forms and contractions) between, say, five and fifteen letters, which return fifteen or more Google Books hits? I've done a little scratch testing on this, and I think that those parameters will yield a usable list primarily composed of actual words-in-use that meet our CFI. That would, in turn, ease the process of verifying words, and would also provide an enormous bank of what is missing from our dictionary. Be well, and cheers! bd2412 T 14:41, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

Are you serious? If you were to generate such a list for every language and every word between 5-15 letters in every language that get >15 google hits, you would be looking at lists of millions, if not tens of millions of words...Razorflame 16:24, 28 April 2010 (UTC)
That is the point. All words in all languages. bd2412 T 16:53, 28 April 2010 (UTC)
Just to ease up on the request a little bit, we could limit it to words written in the Latin alphabet (with Asian languages, it's hard to tell where words begin and end anyway). Let's suppose we generate a list of 2.5 million words that way - that would be 100 pages with 25,000 words each. In terms of storage space it would be fragmentary, and we can very quickly weed out the ones we have, and easy-to-make missing derivations. We could also start with a test run, for example, only five-letter words. bd2412 T 19:31, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

Wow. (Yes, I've used that word twice in 24 hours. Sorry.) This is a really good idea. It will require formal cooperation with Google (one can't just run automation on their search, let alone "Books") but that may be an advantage: they could easily gen the all-words list, and I could screen it. And it is the sort of thing they'd like. (We can add lots of Google citations too.) Must think on this. (is 2 AM here, watched the UEFA match) I did do some things with hunting words in current newspapers, but never fully integrated it. hmmm .... :-) Robert Ullmann 22:56, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

I asked the Google Books help desk if they could provide such a list, and their reply was "we're sorry we can't help you". Perhaps they were leery of running the search themselves, and would welcome someone else designing the search and just slipping it into their database. Do we really need their cooperation anyway? Given their volume, how would they even know they're being auto-searched (and why would they care)? bd2412 T 02:27, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
And how would we feel if someone else took that attitude? Eh? (;-) They (meaning the s/w) notice very quickly. On several occasions I have (manually) done a bunch of searches fairly rapidly, and their servers started giving me CAPTCHAs. Any kind of automation beyond long random intervals for parts of a day will probably result in my IP address getting blocked. And: we need a few million results, right? Using individual queries would be very inefficient.
Like any other organization with a "Help Desk", that is the last place you should go for help. We need to talk to someone fairly senior, or some interested engineer in Google Labs or similar. Maybe the "Google Summer of Code" people might help? thinking on it Robert Ullmann 14:01, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
I see your point. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help! bd2412 T 18:40, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
Get well soon, RU. [1] help any (with the Google issue, not with getting well)?​—msh210 18:59, 29 April 2010 (UTC)


Given that there are now no pages at Special:PrefixIndex/Template:lang: it seems that much of this template's complexity is now un-needed. I thought I would double check with you before changing it to {{{{{1}}}|l=}} (alternatively or additionally, we could begin to deprecate its use completely as it doesn't represent a saving in effort). Conrad.Irwin 22:29, 30 April 2010 (UTC)

Yes, we can take out the "lang:" code. I want to keep the template because part of its purpose is to hide the method used. If we ever get a extension or function like #language that would return the names (but in English ;-) we can change the mechanism. If the "l=" hack is all over everywhere this will be a lot harder! (Just identifying the code isn't so easy, is it a language reference or some other template using "l" as a parameter?)
Do note that now calling {language} with blank returns blank, that is the function of {lang:}. If you over-simplify, this breaks. We want something like: {{#if:{{{1|}}}|{{{{{1}}}|l=}}}}
The overhead of having the template is low, it is often used dozens of times in an entry, but only loaded once (one db SELECT) and is straight line code, the only branch being nil. Robert Ullmann 14:54, 1 May 2010 (UTC)
I've kept it (as now) with an absent first parameter causing an obvious error, but a blank first parameter returning blank. Conrad.Irwin 15:26, 1 May 2010 (UTC)


Umm... I think this tbot Swahili entry speaks for itself. Please help. --EncycloPetey 23:39, 30 April 2010 (UTC)

Wow, that's freakin' hilarious. I wouldn't want to run into that chizi in a dark alley. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 23:41, 30 April 2010 (UTC)
you clearly have not met me in person. CHEESE!!
a very good entry
I am perfectly serious. Really!
(and yes, the pix is for the other definition of the word, which is why review is needed; but I really am mad about CHEESE which Kenyan dairies are just learning to make; I am about to raid my refrigerator right now ...) Robert Ullmann 00:03, 1 May 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, Wallace. --EncycloPetey 02:47, 1 May 2010 (UTC)


Hi, Rob. Do you have your Tbot code available somewhere? I'm interested in arranging something similar for pt.wikt and your code would be a good place to start. Thanks, Malafaya 11:30, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

User:Tbot/code not completely up to date, but good enough for stealing. (And it isn't really good code, mostly kludged together.) Robert Ullmann 11:35, 3 May 2010 (UTC)
Great! Thanks a bunch, Malafaya 11:38, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Hello, Rob. I'm afraid I don't understand what you meant by "We don't use a -5 level. Either -4 or native ;-) " on my talk page. Anthonybaldwin 12:53, 6 May 2010 (UTC)

Automated templating in Rhymes namespace

Would it be possible to go through the Rhymes namespace and automatically template any of the following patterns:

-foo /-foo/ /-foo/ → {{enPR|-foo}}, {{IPA|/-foo/}}, {{SAMPA|/-foo/}}
-foo -foo -foo → {{enPR|-foo}}, {{IPA|/-foo/}}, {{SAMPA|/-foo/}}
-foo /-foo/ <tt>/-foo/</tt> → {{enPR|-foo}}, {{IPA|/-foo/}}, {{SAMPA|/-foo/}}

/-foo/ /-foo/ → {{IPA|/-foo/}}, {{SAMPA|/-foo/}}
-foo /-foo/ → {{enPR|foo}}, {{IPA|/-foo/}}

/-foo/ → {{IPA|/-foo/}}
-foo → {{IPA|/-foo/}}

Adding the lang= parameter based on the page title (e.g. Rhymes:French:foo should get lang=fr)

If you could then produce a report showing the pronunciation lines of all the rhymes namespace pages with no pronunciation template, or a pronunciation line with templatesd and untamplated text, in a similar fashion to the Pronuncation Exceptions report so they can be fixed manually or other automatable patterns discovered. Thryduulf 22:03, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

On second thoughts maybe you could do the second part by simply extending the existing pronunciations sections report to work on Rhymes namespaces as well. Thryduulf 22:04, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

Wiktionary:About Serbo-Croatian

Jesus, could you try to be a little more inflammatory? I agree that a nod to the vote is worthwhile, but let's work out some different wording, shall we? Something a little more along the lines of "the community has not reached a consensus on this topic."? -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 01:05, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

Ok, I've taken a stab at it. Let me know what you think. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 01:11, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough on removing the official looking banner, but you can't make a definitive statement that editors must or must not conform to the proposal. We have no official policy stating that Bosnian, etc. must be kept either. Since there is a lack of policy either way, interested editors are free to do as they see fit. I'm sorry that nearly all of the interested editors disagree with you, but such is the reality. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 01:18, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
It does need to say that the other sections shouldn't be deleted; people are doing a lot of damage that was in no way agreed on. No, a few trolls disagree with me (and Stambuk is not one of them; he has added other sections and stated repeatedly that others may!). (The proposal is nonsense, which is why every single authority has rejected "SC". Eh?) Robert Ullmann 01:23, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
I've told you this so many times, that I really tire of doing it again. I (and many others) don't see the sections as being deleted, but as being merged. If someone created an entry with "Classical Greek", "Koine Greek", and "Byzantine Greek" sections, I'd merge them all into "Ancient Greek" and you'd pat me on the back for doing it. Ivan has cited many authorities who embrace SC. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 01:27, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
Are you aware of how many "authorities" he has cited have recanted, now that they aren't under threat of being imprisoned or shot for not supporting SC? And your comparison is completely invalid, as Croatian and Serbian etc are different languages, with large active populations that do not consider them the same language, and find proposals to merge them in large part extremely offensive. If I forcibly merged Bokmal and Nynorsk would you "pat me on the back?" Eh? (;-) best, Robert Ullmann 01:35, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
No, I guess I am not. It's funny that you mention the whole Norwegian thing. I find it a bit humorous that you spent that entire debate with such obvious disdain for Nynorsk, trying to relegate it to some second class language, and then make accusations of genocide against a Serb and a Croat who are trying to treat their "languages" as a unified whole. I've seen a number of linguists say that all the Scandinavian languages could easily be considered a single language, owing to their extreme similarity. So, if you spent the time to create a robust proposal for merging the two Norwegians, and got feedback from people, then yes, I might just pat you on the back. Concerning the whole Chinese thing, you've stated many times that SIL is more than happy to bow to political pressure in their coding, and that we shouldn't follow the whims of some political entity with a dogma to promote. But, the specific SC debate aside, on Wiktionary, when there is no policy, editors are free to do as they wish. I wish we could've resolved the whole Norwegian thing back when it happened, but we didn't. So we had to leave the Norwegian editors alone to let a policy evolve through edits. Same applies here, though it would happen a bit more peacefully if we didn't have all these fanatics showing up with a bone to pick. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 01:47, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
Are you aware of how many "authorities" he has cited have recanted, now that they aren't under threat of being imprisoned or shot for not supporting SC? - And who would that be? Even during the Communist regime no one was shot or imprisoned for "supporting Serbo-Croatian". Croatian extreme nationalists (mostly NDH-fascist wet-dreamers) even openly published papers about Croatian being a separate "literary language" than Serbian, and books titled e.g. Gramatika hrvatskoga književnog jezika "Grammar of Croatian literary language". Slavists in the rest of the world (Russia, Germany, US...) have (had) no doubts on whether Serbo-Croatian is a single language or not. The most bizarre thing in comparison wit Scandinavian languages, in particular two forms of Norwegian, is that they are mutually much more different (different inflection, phonology...), and you're advocating them to be "unified" despite the fact that it wouldn't be easy to do so (at least that's what the dudes from Norwegian pedia told us the last time when we've had a discussion abut it). I'd personally support their unified treatment if it can be done relatively painlessly, if it's the preferred method of treatment in FL dictionaries, and the preferred method of learning (as in the case of BCS; you cannot simply learn one of them and be ignorant of others).
with large active populations that do not consider them the same language, and find proposals to merge them in large part extremely offensive - no that's just a bunch of nationalists from Croatopedia. They went went through many pains over the years to filter any contributor who does't share their extremist views, blocking them under trivial excuses, and attracting more supporters of their agenda. For them Croatian Wikipedia = Croatian National Wikipedia (the same is true unfortunately for many other Balkanic pedias). Hopefully somebody recently stood up to them and some of them were desysoped and blocked. What is important to note is that their opinions are not reflective of the general populace, and that they represent a minority of extremists. Ordinary people on the street (ordinary Croat/Serb is not particularly smart, educated and ambitious) couldn't care less about such things. --Ivan Štambuk 07:21, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

Herr Ullmann, trolling as usual. If I see you blocking "trolls" such as Kilibarda, you are so dead. --Ivan Štambuk 07:02, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

Great. A death threat is just what this convo needed. Thanks Ivan. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 07:32, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
That's a common phrase used as a form of a grave warning, and should not be taken literally. --Ivan Štambuk 07:54, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
LOL.  — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 08:22, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
Agreed with Atelaes. This discussion is extremely interesting, but it would be easier to follow if everyone relaxed a bit. +sj + 18:22, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
This is the entire discussion: Serbo-Croatian is one language, as English is. However, certain people from Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Montenegro don't want to acknowledge that. It would be like if Americans, Irish, Australians and the English all suddenly decided that they speak different languages. Except that the English dialects are far more different from each other than the standard Serbo-Croatian dialects. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 18:31, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Please make sure you're seated, and then see [[discussion]] to find out what that word actually means. —RuakhTALK 19:11, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
You don't have to patronize. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 21:13, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Meh. I'm not really being patronizing. If I genuinely thought you didn't know what discussion meant, I'd be more polite about informing you. As it is, you know exactly what you're doing: you're pretending to represent an entire discussion, but in fact just stating your own opinion. I'm simply calling you out on it. —RuakhTALK 21:27, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
"Scientifically", Serbo-Croatian is closer to being one language than English is. "Politically", it could just as easily be 7 "languages". It's really just silly to me to suggest that we should have 5 sections of the same information repeated to please political dorks, where we have languages with two distinct dialects with different inflections and everything that we still treat under one l2 section. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 22:30, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
I really don't understand what it is that you don't understand here. I actually agree with your opinion that SC is one language — or at least, I'd argue that if it is multiple languages, then it's not composed of "Serbian", "Croatian", etc., but rather of "Chakavian", "Shtokavian", etc. (which are normally considered "dialects", but from a scientific standpoint, "dialect" and "language" are basically synonyms) — but it is very dishonest to pretend that a short summary of your personal opinion is a fair and accurate representation of a discussion among many people who had many different points of view and many different reasons for those points of view. For example, I think many editors would contest your implicit assumption that the central question is that of whether Serbo-Croatian is a single language: even if it is, various arguments were put forth in favor of treating it under separate L2 headers for each ISO-coded entity, and even if it isn't, various arguments were put forth in favor of treating all of its sub-languages under a single L2 header. —RuakhTALK 22:48, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Of the arguments for 5 l2 headers that I saw, none of them were anything I could take seriously. I think you're taking my "This is the entire discussion" a touch too literally. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 23:06, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
You and Ivan both need to stop making offensive comments and then, when you're called on them, claiming that you were joking, or accusing your interlocutors of taking your statements too literally. There are many uses of humor, and many uses of non-literal language. Maybe y'all should learn about those, and stop using them wrong. —RuakhTALK 23:59, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
If you're going to take everything I say word-for-word literally, then just don't bother paying attention. Even when we don't agree in basic business, you tend to take issue with my delivery. When I make offensive comments, I don't tend to sidestep around them... but I don't feel I've said anything particularly offensive here. Except the political dorks thing, that was what I thought was worst. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 00:08, 18 May 2010 (UTC)
I don't take it word-for-word literally, no, but since when does "This is the entire discussion" mean "This is my opinion, which you presumably already know, and certainly haven't asked for"? A word-for-word literal interpretation would be that you thought you were literally repeating the entire discussion; instead, I assumed the natural idiomatic interpretation, which is that you thought you were summarizing the entire discussion, or boiling it down to its essence. If I started a comment that way, the rest of the comment would be my attempt to fairly and succinctly present the major points of view, not an attempt to re-iterate my own opinion while insulting and attacking the motivations of some of those who disagreed with me, while disregarding the existence of everyone else who did.
And yes, I tend to take issue with your delivery, because your delivery tends to suck. ;-)   It's possible to express an opinion in a way that helps other people understand where you're coming from, and that invites other people to help you understand where they're coming from in turn; and then it's possible to express an opinion in a way that makes people who agree with you regret that they do. I don't need to tell you which one I think you do.
RuakhTALK 00:43, 18 May 2010 (UTC)
"It's possible to express an opinion in a way that helps other people understand where you're coming from, and that invites other people to help you understand where they're coming from in turn" Do you realize that you're not currently doing that? You're reading to me as "I wish you weren't such a dick, why don't you just shut your mouth". — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 13:36, 18 May 2010 (UTC)
I'm sorry. That's not what I'm trying to say. I mean, the "I wish you weren't such a dick" part is basically right, though I wouldn't put it like that; but I'm really not asking you to shut your mouth. I just want you to be more civil. I don't think you realize how many good editors have left this project because of the abuse that you and Stambuk dish out. (You're not as bad as Stambuk — he's abusive toward anyone who disagrees with him, whereas you seem to try to restrict yourself to targets that you think deserve it — but both of you drive people away. Just because the target of your abuse may deserve it, that doesn't mean that everyone else deserves it!) —RuakhTALK 13:48, 18 May 2010 (UTC)

(this indent is ridiculous) You know I'm perfectly capable of being civil. Even with a reason to be angry, unless it's serious I'm generally pretty relaxed. Even when you point out that there are worse than me, you make it sound like our userbase is half of what it would be if it weren't for my nearly complete lack of self control or ability to be civil. There are a lot of people here who drive me completely crazy, for a variety of reasons. But I'm still here taking the shit. — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 14:12, 18 May 2010 (UTC)


Thank you for your corrective not in Tamil Wiktionary! Yes, it is saba and not siba. It is my mistake. Now, it is corrected. Please feel free to correct me. I learnt just a little when I was in Tanzania while climbing Kilimanjaro and I've quite a number of reliable books and I've a sense of the language (not that I'm proficient in it, far from it). I'm trying to add basic words. Thanks for your help.--C.R.Selvakumar 00:52, 31 May 2010 (UTC) (Tamil Wiki userid செல்வா).

Tbot - hamster

  1. I note that Tbot edited the Greek translation for hamster - removing the "sc=Grek" argument. However I tried out the assisted translation system (for freesia) which adds an "sc" argument. Is there a bug in one or the other? Is "sc" a valid argument?
  2. Is the (automatic transliteration) system mentioned to me by Conrad last August likely to be used anywhere?
    cheers —Saltmarshαπάντηση 05:22, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
  1. The sc parameter is valid; Tbot is eliding it because it isn't needed in this case; {{Xyzy}} does the right thing. The assist just adds it in all cases, lets Tbot do the details, mostly the +/- stuff which requires its entire database. (My bots have an index to all the wikts; that's how Interwicket can do its thing without constantly hunting around like the pywikipedia bot does ;-)
  2. Don't know. You'd have to ask him what's up. Robert Ullmann 05:40, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
:: thanks —Saltmarshαπάντηση 10:39, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Code-breaking bullets

Hi Robert. Do you remember when the initial bullets were taken out of {{}} &c. because their inclusion meant that the templates couldn't be used in <ref> tags? Now a similar problem exists with {{seemoreCites}}, whose initial bullet means that the template can't be used at the end of a list of quotations directly following a definition (which is a necessary structure to take advantage of Atelaes's new quotations-hiding code), as in amnicolist#Noun (wherein the same text is given, sans template). I don't want to just take it out, because there may be transclusions that rely on that bullet. Could you tell AF to insert a bullet before every transclusion of that template, as was done with the various R:-prefixed templates? Once it's done that, the bullet in the template code can be taken out without ill-effect. BTW, {{seeCites}} has already had its initial bullet removed.  — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 02:28, 6 June 2010 (UTC)

Done, but I'm not going to restart AF until at least tomorrow because of network problems. (It is stable right now, don't need it to be doing startup while I'm fixing other things.) There are 41 of them (as of 31.5.10). You might as well take it out now, it isn't going to break anything serious, and will get fixed presently. Robert Ullmann 07:50, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
AF restarted; see edit Robert Ullmann 09:57, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
Cool, thanks. Is it now safe to take the bullet out of the template?  — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 22:19, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
Yes. Might be a few left, will be fixed in a day or so at most. Robert Ullmann 02:04, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
Done. Thanks. Do you intend to remove that task from AF's list after it's done adding the bullets? Otherwise, I can foresee unwanted bullets being added in future.  — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 02:10, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
No, it will continue. It only adds the bullet (*) when the template is at the start of a line. There are (as you noted) a number of templates like this. Robert Ullmann 02:35, 8 June 2010 (UTC)
That should be fine. I can't imagine a situation where the template should exist at the start of a line without a bullet before it.  — Raifʻhār Doremítzwr ~ (U · T · C) ~ 02:38, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

Hot Cat

Firstly, are you aware of the discussion about adapting HotCat for Wiktionary? If not, see WT:GP#Hot Cat. I ask because I'm proposing a way forward that would add (maybe significantly, I have no idea) to AF's workload and so your comments would be appreciated.

Also, does AF detect when categories are added for languages that aren't on the page? e.g. if Category:de:Cities was added to a page with no German section? If so, how does it deal with them? Thryduulf (talk) 18:15, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Please now see also WT:BP#HotCat. Thryduulf (talk) 21:40, 22 June 2010 (UTC)

Update problem lists

Could you update User:Robert Ullmann/Trans languages/uncoded and User:Robert Ullmann/L2/invalid? Thanks. --Bequw τ 20:54, 4 July 2010 (UTC)

Thanks. --Bequw τ 14:49, 6 July 2010 (UTC)
Do you know why they both list lots of valid languages (eg "Japanese")? --Bequw τ 20:52, 6 July 2010 (UTC)
Because you "helpfully" deleted (e.g.) [[Category:Language templates|ja]] from the template text, so the code can't identify the language templates from the wikitext. Put the category back in the template itself properly:
Japanese<noinclude>[[Category:Language templates|ja]]{{documentation}}</noinclude>
(the whole "documentation" thing is crap from WP anyway, we don't want interwiki bots in template namespace, and the doc shouldn't be in content dumps, it should be in talkspace; etc. the /names thing is also pollution in NS:10, should be in 11 ;-) Robert Ullmann 08:44, 7 July 2010 (UTC)
Wouldn't it be simpler/cleaner/easier to amend your program with the 2-3 lines required to check for the cat in the /doc subpage (it's not like NS0 where categories can get inserted from any random template). It would be a nightmare to have it inconsistent as to whether a cat should be in the template or /doc subpage. The doc subpage is useful for other reasons, but what's the problem with template interwikis? I find them interesting and helpful. The exact namespace used is tangential to using subpages. They could use "Template talk:.../names" and "Template talk:.../doc". Bring it up in the GP if you care. BTW, I don't know if you saw the conversations, but alpha-3 codes that are dups of alpha-2 codes where made into redirects. Don't want further things to break ;-) --Bequw τ 16:09, 7 July 2010 (UTC)
Wouldn't it be simpler/easier/cleaner not to introduce a layer of crap that accomplishes nothing other than breaking things?
Keep in mind that when the program is looking at the template page, the /doc subpage is nowhere nearby, it is somewhere else in a 1.4 GB dump file with no random access. It isn't 2-3 lines of code by any stretch. I can figure it out, but could we have some consideration for the poor people who are trying to re-use our data whose tools and s/w are broken over and over again by useless changes? There just was no reason whatsoever to do this. None.
I'll consider fixing it sometime. For now: you broke it, don't complain you don't have the report(s). Eh? Do I have a bad attitude today? (;-) Robert Ullmann 09:01, 8 July 2010 (UTC)
Send me the code and I'll fix it for you.--Bequw τ 17:31, 9 July 2010 (UTC)
I improvised, taking anything in the "right" format that shows up at level 2. Is not close to perfect, but it is just a work list, so it doesn't have to be. see User:Robert Ullmann/code/level2. Robert Ullmann 17:47, 9 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks a bunch. --Bequw τ 16:02, 14 July 2010 (UTC)

Parenthetical translations

Is there a way for edits like this [2] (with parentheses included in the translation) to be idnetified and listed for cleanup? I'm finding quite a few of them. --EncycloPetey 00:23, 14 July 2010 (UTC)

Let me take a look at what sort they are and how many (XML scan) a bit later today. Robert Ullmann 06:24, 14 July 2010 (UTC)

Pronunciation exceptions and mismatched wikisyntax

Cheers for regenerating these - I was going to ask in a couple of days!

Having had a quick scan through both reports there are two things I'd like if possible:

  1. Exclude the contents of {{audio}} templates from the pronunciation exceptions report, and then regenerate
  2. check to see if you can fix the tail end of multiline templates being caught in the mismatched syntax report, see User talk:Robert Ullmann/Mismatched wikisyntax#multiline template problem. An example from the current report is Moldavija where the end of {{sh-decl-noun}} is being matched as a problem, depsite it being on the multiline templates list.

Even if you can't do either of these, could you regenerate the syntax report again, as a large number of the problems are the mutliline {{reference-book}} which I've just added to the multiline templates list.

Cheers, Thryduulf (talk) 12:29, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

made a couple of changes, removed audio from pron report, changed multiline tail line, but now it accepts too much. Will have to re-work at some point. You'll still see {reference-book} when it starts within a line. Running both now. Robert Ullmann 12:54, 19 July 2010 (UTC)
done. Robert Ullmann 14:43, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

IPA chars and {rfp}

(report being discussed is User:Robert Ullmann/IPAchars)

Cheers for that report - I'll have a look in detail when I have time and see if there is anything automatable or easily fixable.

By the way have you spotted the requests relating to {{rfp}} at the bottom of AF's talk page? I suspect one (adding lang= to the requests) is pretty simple to do. The other I guess will be more complicated, and might not be worth it, I don't know, but worth a thought. Thryduulf (talk) 09:34, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

the code to add lang= to IPA is very specific, could generalize. Moving {rfp} is complicated, not something there is existing structure for, and it is a cleanup/request template that should go away anyway; I don't think (at present) it is worth it.
the report is quite interesting, there are some things that just need to be fixed in individual entries, and others that could take some serious attention. one thing I noted is that some non-trivial amount is junk imported by Tbot, hopefully to be fixed when an entry is fixed, but may not be.
do we have anything resembling a list of valid IPA chars? there are some very creative things in that report. Robert Ullmann 09:55, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
not yet, but it shouldn't be terribly hard to do one. Certainly, capital letters should never occur in pronunciation sections because the IPA is caseless, yet I see quite a few occurences in that list. -- Prince Kassad 14:24, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
There isn't a single brilliant page that I've found on the internet for this [3] is probably the best presentation but omits the range a-z; w:Phonetic symbols in Unicode#IPA contains all the characters but the presentation is not brilliant and may be quite difficult for automation to parse. Would an appendix giving simple presentation of all the characters, names and codepoints for the IPA (and separate ones for other scripts) be useful and within Wiktionary's remit? Thryduulf (talk) 21:05, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
The list could be put in AutoFormat's user namespace. That way, there would be no problems. -- Prince Kassad 21:57, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
Indeed. I was just thinking that if it is within our remit, then it would be a good resource for others. Thryduulf (talk) 23:25, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
should be a perfectly good appendix Robert Ullmann 11:01, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

I've fixed a few things, dealing with cases where someone has put things like "IPAchar" inside the IPA templates (!). I'll see if perhaps the pronex report can list those. Lots fewer stray capital letters now.

Are we supposed to use the IPA stress mark and not apostrophe? (and some similar cases). Robert Ullmann 11:01, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Yes. U+0027, U+02BC and U+02B9 should all be converted to U+02C8. Thryduulf (talk) 11:37, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
I've gone through all of the ones using " and a good number were SAMPA mislabelled as IPA. Of these, all were the second IPA template on the line, so the following rules should enable them to be automatically converted:
  • Any IPA template that is the second IPA template on a line that contains no SAMPA template(s) (ignore other templates and other lines)
  • AND which contains at any two or more of the following: Capital letters, \, ", @, %, =, ~, `
Any that match one of those rules, or which contain only one of those should be part of the pronunciation exceptiosn report. Thryduulf (talk) 11:57, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Wait a moment! The apostrophe is also used for denoting ejectives in IPA. It's perfectly valid, but most of the time, it's used incorrectly as a stress mark. -- Prince Kassad 13:18, 1 August 2010 (UTC) addendum: I started an appendix on Appendix:IPA characters. I'm working on finishing it in the next time. -- Prince Kassad 13:34, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Ejectives use modifier apostrophe (02B9), not apostrophe (0027). which is not to say that they do here. AFAICT, 0027 is never valid; it should always be 02C8 or 02B9. so how to sort them? They are specific to small sets of languages. Hmmm... Robert Ullmann 15:23, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
An apostrophe that appears at the very beginning of an IPA transcription, before any consonants or vowels, can only be a stress sign. Also, feel free to review the Appendix because I finished it. Note especially stuff I may have missed. -- Prince Kassad 15:27, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Indeed more generally, any 0027 apostrophe that does not follow one of the small set of consonants (t, q, k, etc) used for ejectives must be a stress sign (or, of course, an error, there are just a few of those ;-). and any apostrophe in most languages. I wonder how careful contributors to the few languages that do have them have been?
(Firefox does not think "ejectives" is spelled correctly, but "ejective" is ... doesn't know the noun form ;-) Robert Ullmann 15:38, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Both entries that had an exclamation mark in the pronunciation section, the ! was actually part of the html comment opening tag <!-->. I've removed the need for one of them, and moved the other comment outside the IPA template. That should be all there is of these for the moment. For future instances, AF should flag a html comment inside a pronunciation transcription template on the exceptions report, and completely ignore comments for the purposes of invalid characters. Thryduulf (talk) 01:17, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Additional note on the issue of AF and comments: I've seen situations where AF altered the spacing within html comments, so a general fix that allows AF to recognize and ignore formatting within such comment would probably solve several issues in one swell foop. --EncycloPetey 01:58, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
yes, better handling of HTML comments is a long-outstanding issue. probably should get to it. (They really shouldn't exist, part of the point of wikitext is to target any rendering language, not just (X)HTML, but we do have quite a bit mixed in; we have tried to keep all the explicit HTML in templates and not in entry text. That's just as an aside ;-)
AF and the IPA issues are getting a bit conflated here; the only connection to AF is if and when we can give it simple rules. Robert Ullmann 10:12, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Please continue re 0027 apostrophe and AF at User talk:AutoFormat#apostrophe. I've added a couple of sections to the report. Robert Ullmann 12:06, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Wiktionary:Grease pit#Template:rfconj (2)

Mglovesfun (talk) 14:08, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

Usability Initiative Rollout (Vector): Sep 1

Hi Robert. I wanted to get in touch with you and a few other members of the Wiktionary community about the upcoming rollout of the Usability Initiative features (Vector and enhanced editing features). I was referred to you by DCDuring who thought you might be a good person to reach out to. We’ve already rolled out the changes to approximately 100 projects and are currently planning on rolling out the new features the remaining Wikimedia projects (including Wiktionary) on September 1 and hope to have any blocking issues resolved by August 25.

As I’m sure you know, some gadgets and customizations may not be compatible with Vector. Would it be possible for you to help us identify the major incompatibilities? We’re using Bugzilla to track issues (please file under "Usability Initiative"). Also, our FAQ page has info on how to test Vector.

I look forward to your feedback! Howief 22:06, 11 August 2010 (UTC)

Tbot not adding {{t}} for hy

Tbot is not adding {{t}} for {{hy}} anymore. Has something happened? --Vahag 12:20, 5 September 2010 (UTC)

Telugu wiktionary improvements

Thanks for your feedback. Telugu Wiktionary is dormant for some time, we will be in touch once the activity picks up.-- Arjunaraoc 12:37, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

123abc is back

Can you remind me how to do a range block? 123abc is back and creating toneless pinyin entries. Thanks. ---> Tooironic 07:56, 5 October 2010 (UTC)

Wiki has no rule to ban toneless Pinyin entries. 08:05, 5 October 2010 (UTC)


Hi Robert,

I noticed that this is the last interwicket edit at nl.wikt? Is there something wrong?

nl:wikt:Gebruiker:Jcwf Jcwf 20:37, 10 October 2010 (UTC)

Amgine was rebuilding the support server, and I haven't been feeling well for a day or so. Will get fixed presently :-) Robert Ullmann 04:57, 13 October 2010 (UTC)
Ah, thought there had to be a reason! Get well! Your efforts are widely appreciated.

Jcwf 17:08, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

range block has been blocked. However, he shouldn't block me in a range block. A range block can also affect other users.

Simple solution #1 - make an account — [ R·I·C ] opiaterein — 18:07, 11 October 2010 (UTC)

Thank you

for reactivating Interwicket :) --Ooswesthoesbes 04:58, 15 October 2010 (UTC)



you said on your bot page that the Linotype is familiar to you.

Can you help the french Wikipedia? We are looking for the wright glyph order on the french Linotype keyboard. I've found a picture (given at the bottom of the article) but it's not easy to guess the letters.

Thanks a lot for your help,

fr:Discussion_utilisateur:Yuga (prefer wiki/Utilisateur:Yuga)

---Le même en français---


vous avez indiqué sur la page utilisateur de votre robot (Interwicket, le 28 avril 2009 à 17:04 (UTC)) que vous connaissez bien le clavier anglais de la machine à écrire Linotype.

Pouvez-vous venir en aide aux contributeurs de la Wikipédia francophone ? Nous cherchons à connaître l'ordre des symboles, et sur l'image que j'ai trouvée sur internet (indiquée en lien dans les sources, au bas de l'article), cela n'est pas très clair (par exemple je ne parviens pas à déchiffrer le "k" ou le "w").

Merci d'avance pour votre aide,

Yuga (répondre sur cette même page, ou si vous le souhaitez sur ma page utilisateur de Wikipedia).

~le 07/11/2010 à 14:30~

Just to let you know that Robert is currently inactive, but will probably come back when he can. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:44, 7 November 2010 (UTC)


Hi Robert, Did interwicket's server run into trouble again? nl:Gebruiker:Jcwf

Hello, please see User_talk:Interwicket#Interwicket_down_again. It seems to be an emergency. -- Quentinv57 17:18, 26 November 2010 (UTC)

Hi Robert. I can see that you are a generalist. You were misled....

I think you might have tweaked an entry on a Sanskrit word which is used in Buddhism in which you may have copied off a polemical opponent of the kind of Buddhism you were defining. You have such a vast scope of activities it is easy to understand how you might have been focusing on other things an missed that. I at first thought the material, considered insulting to Southeast Asians, was the work of someone intentionally insulting Theravada Buddhism but I can see that is not the case. No hard feelings, thanks. Geof Bard 06:48, 18 February 2011 (UTC)

Removal of Interwicket's bot status

Hi. As your bot has been inactive for months and nobody is there to check its contributions, we are going to remove his bot status... If you wish to use it again in the future months, please just answer that it's the case. Thanks by advance. -- Quentinv57 13:41, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

This is only a hunch, but I think Robert's passed away. Last I heard on his facebook, he was very ill, and the fact he's been inactive since makes me think he hasn't made it. --Mglovesfun (talk) 13:48, 9 May 2011 (UTC)
Robert, come back! :( Maro 23:25, 11 May 2011 (UTC)
R.I.P. 21:51, 28 August 2011 (UTC)