Wiki Editing Tips & Tricks

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Revision as of 14:23, 31 July 2011 by Aoky (talk | contribs) (Add notes about MediaWiki.)
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This site uses the same software with Wikipedia called MediaWiki. You can edit pages of the site with your browser using a simple markup language.

Getting started

  • A great way to learn about the nuts and bolts of wiki editing is by checking the "Edit" pages of beautiful existing wiki pages. You can do this on any Wikipedia page: just click on "Edit" in the upper right corner and study the funny characters.
  • Wikipedia has a great tutorial. Check it out, it will help you a lot.
  • MediaWiki's help pages are also useful, especially the page about formatting.
  • You may find the book MediaWiki by Daniel J. Barrett (O'Reilly, 2009) helpful as a general reference with respect to wiki editing.


First steps

Avoid creating a new page from scratch if you have no experience at all. On Wikipedia, new pages are closely monitored by the community. It remains to be seen what will happen on this wiki. A better way of starting is by making a small edit to an existing wiki page. You can do this on this wiki or on Wikipedia. The look and feel is the same. Just a random example: go to the page of a TED Speaker and try to insert a reference to his TED Talk. You will learn a lot, and you will help spread his or her ideas!

Major changes

  • Before you make major changes to a page, it may be wise to discuss your proposal first. That is what the Discussion tab (upper left) is for.
  • Normally, you should be able to find out who made major contributions to the page you wish to edit. You may want to leave a message on their user talk page to engage them in the discussion. To do so, click on Talk next to the user name in the Active user list.

Indicating your language skills through Babel

Some translators use the Babel template on their user page to indicate their language skills. There's an example on the user page of Els. You can find more info on how to use the Babel template on this Wikipedia page.