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CategorizationEdit

This came to me just a few moments ago, perhaps we should organize articles such as this in a more simplistic way - A through Z. This would limit the size of the TOC to just 26 (or 27 if there somehow happen to be any we list that are "unknown"). Most lists on the main Wikipedia are handled in this manner. I can take care of this if people think it's a good idea. Radagast83 15:13, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

If you think you can mate, go for it. The Sectors list has the same problem though since all the subheadings begin with the same letter I don't know is it will help. Perhaps there a way around it? Blind Wolf 17:15, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
I had thought about the Sectors page, and there's really no good way around that one - at least at the moment. I'll take a look at this one a little later in the weekend and see if alphabetical is better. Radagast83 00:35, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Ideally it'd need some kind of indexing function, I just don't know if that's possible on the TOC. While we're on the subject of lists and consolidation; I was looking through the Stubs list and noticed that there are tons of stub character articles, allot of which are either background/peripheral characters like this one who had no real role in the story or they're characters who were mentioned but never seen. Now, there's no way we can make one article to consolidate ALL of them, it'd be way too long or (if we tried to categorise them) chaotic. So I'm thinking that we should use a series of lists connected by the same kind of multi-template navigational system we've been using on the episodes and Earthforce ships. Some would have to be cross referenced (Marcus Cole, for example would be listed in Earthforce, non-EA humans and Anla'shok) Organising them sort of like this: -
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       |                                                      Characters                                                               |
       |Lists of Human Characters: Babylon 5 | Earthforce | Earthgov | List of Earth Alliance Civilians | Non-Earth Alliance Humans    |
       |Lists of Alien Characters: Minbari | Centauri | Narn | League or Alliance Members | Non-League or Alliance Members             |
       |Other Character Lists: Anla'shok | Technomages | IPX | ISN | Excalibur                                                         |
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       |                                                 Babylon 5 Characters                                                          |
       |Command Staff: Jeffrey Sinclair | John Sheridan | Elizabeth Lochley | Susan Ivanova | Laurel Takashima | David Corwin          |
       |Security: Michael Garibaldi | Zack Allan | Lou Welch                                                                           | 
       |Medical: Benjamin Kyle | Stephen Franklin | Lillian Hobbs | Maya Hernandez                                                     |
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Of course all main, supporting or featured characters would have "Main Article" links in the relevant lists and we should probably think up a criteria for a character not qualifying for their own article. Thoughts?Blind Wolf 16:20, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
How much more useful would "lists of ____" be if there are equivalent categories? They'd be useful in the short term - listing articles yet to be created, but at some point they'd be entirely redundant with the equivalent category. We also need to be real careful here that we aren't presenting information in a way that a regular user won't be able to easily read - both trying to avoid stubby articles and also trying to avoid omnibus articles that present too much information at once. These articles with TOCs that are so long that they require the user to actually scroll down the page because it is so long could serve the wiki far worse than 60+ individual pages that are no longer than two or three sentences each. This worries me further since I know that there is plenty more that hasn't been added to this wiki. Memory Alpha has separate pages for each moon and planet, and many are barely any longer than the listings here. If that means that I need to flesh out some of these entries a sentence or two longer (easily done once you put your mind to it) - I'll do so. For a short term method of content management it isn't a bad idea - it focuses on what we need to expand on, but I'm worried that if we keep it this way, we'll end up with articles that no one will read, even if they are just lists.
If this also means that at some point in the future we'll need to do regular maintenance to work on smaller articles (try to get more people involved that can help with "clean up" across the wiki) then we can do that. The characters template is an interesting idea - perhaps that could be tabled for now and we'll think about it further. We'd have to make some ground rules as to who qualifies to appear on that template. Radagast83 07:36, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I have to admit, I'm of two minds on how to deal with it. The only reason I suggest lists is because the categories can be a little clumsy to navigate and as you say, they've proven to be useful in the short term for expanding. Perhaps the better solution is to have more cross-referencing sub-categories that'll make characters easier to find. Say, a "Characters by Episode" Category for one offs & recurring non-regulars. As for the template, perhaps just one each for B5 & Crusade that has all of the major (ie, appeared in the title credits) characters. Of course that means the Lochley article would have both template, but that would make a convenient navigational crossover point and save us from contriving a third all encompassing template as above. As for new recruits, I think you'd have to tempt back a few of the admins if you want to have a bunch of new editors beavering away! I think that at times we benefit from being on the quiet side, compared to the likes of Memory Alpha. Admin'ing on there looks like a full time job! ;) Blind Wolf 14:43, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I think I know a way to solve the TOC problem, at least on some of these articles. What if we adapted the episode list table template used on wikipedia, and used that for the Planets & Sectors rather than subheadings? In addition to cutting down the TOC it'd give us a nice structured way to lay out the information. Images might be a problem though. Thoughts? Blind Wolf 15:22, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
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