User talk:Cottrells

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Revision as of 11:29, 20 July 2014 by Luccagenes (talk | contribs) (added information)
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Bot?[edit source]

Hi Steve, A website address has changed on us. Would it be possible to have a bot replace with ? Thanks for your consideration, Murphynw 19:20, 21 August 2013 (UTC)

Hi Nathan, I have actioned Special:ReplaceText to replace the URL as given above. I notice that these were all in the File namespace. I used the Special:LinkSearch and the results suggest that I have changed them all. --Steve (talk| contribs) 15:12, 23 August 2013 (UTC)
Excellent. Yes, they should have all been in the File namespace. Thanks Steve! Murphynw 21:59, 23 August 2013 (UTC)

Making the width of the Digital Collections templates equal to the width of the infobox templates[edit source]

Hi, Steve. On nearly every US county page, the Digital Collection banner is above the infobox template, yet they do not exactly line up with each other. See Crane County, Texas for example. Any way to fix the width of those banners? In the ones we were playing with, the instuction | info-w = 500px had NO effect, even changing it to 600 px. AdkinsWH 21:09, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Thank you[edit source]

Steve, I completely missed that you added the silver star to my page last month. Thank you so much! I have really enjoyed working on the wiki and will miss it a lot. And many thanks to you for everything you have given to the program over the last few years. You are one of our stalwarts and deserve a silver star yourself. In fact, I'm going to go give you one now. :) I'm glad to know that although we as staff members might come and go, there are people like you who are always willing to give. Thank you. -- janellv (talk| contribs) 18:35, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

Old/Unused Page and Category[edit source]

We on the Wiki Support Team have been reviewing categories and their pages in an effort to streamline the categories. In regards to the template page {{Okina}} , we were wondering if this page and it's category, Category:MSIE font fix templates continue to be needed. Parrisl 03:15, 1 December 2013 (UTC)

Hi LaVera, it looks like that template is not currently being used in any content pages of the wiki, however I think the need for it could reoccur, so I have added a documentation subpage that explains why the template has been created. Hope that helps. --Steve (talk| contribs) 21:26, 1 December 2013 (UTC)

Digital Collections Button[edit source]

Steve, I was working on Davidson County, Tennessee on the DC button - have changed from the "keyboard" to a treble clef and clock - and it has changed all other states - of which I had NO intention of doing. Not sure what to do to get the keyboard back into other states. joy 21:14, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

Hi Joy, it appears that you edited the {{DC button}}, which is the underlying template used on many of the individual state versions. The template that you should have edited for Tennessee is {{TNDC}}. I have copied the code you worked on for Tennessee to this template. --Steve (talk| contribs) 21:59, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

FHL template[edit source]

Hi, Steve, The catalog has changed for U.S. place name searches. It now requires United States, then the state. Do we need to go in an physically change each one where we have used the FHL template? I don't want to do any changes until I know what magic you can do with this. I don't want a situation where we have {{FHL|United States, United States, [state].... for example. AdkinsWH 16:50, 19 December 2013 (UTC)

New External Link template?[edit source]

Hi, Steve. We need an external link template for, since we will increasingly point to specific items for a state or county. (Not census and the big stuff.) The problem arises when we may now need 3 links: 1 for the FHL (; another for whatever the LDS Account link will be, and the third for just What they will all have in common is the database ID. For example:

If we don't have all three links, do you suggest we just tell people how to access it each time we make the link? Would love your take on how to handle this. Thank you, thank you. AdkinsWH 16:41, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

Nathan has previously created three templates {{Ancestry}}, {{AncestryInstitution}} and {{AncestryLibrary}} that creates 3 different URLs. At the moment you can't change the link text - it will always say link. I think that could be changed to allow the contributor to provide different link text. Also is what you really asking for is to have one template that produces all three links in one go? --Steve (talk| contribs) 17:08, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

Creating a list of family organizations[edit source]

Steve, I have some questions about the design changes on an article that lists family organizations that have a Facebook page. See Surname Pages and Groups on Facebook. We are expanding that list to include family organizations with a website and/or Facebook page. We have questions about the layout design of the page and welcome your suggestions:

  • There are a lot of family organizations so we want to create alphabetical links to a separate page for each letter of the alphabet. I'm pretty sure there is a template we can use for this. Do you know if there is an article in the wiki that is already using the TOC template with links to sub-pages? I'm thinking it would be easier to copy what has already been done, rather than figure out how to do it from scratch.
  • Should there be a separate column just for the surname of the organization? I believe the content would be easier to visually scan if the surname was the only text in the first column, but there could be 100 "Smith" family organizations, so maybe the idea is not so great. Suggestions?
  • Does a separate column for the Facebook page and another column for the website link work okay? Any other suggestions?
  • The list currently has a short description of the family organization. Should we continue adding this content? Is the description helpful to those who are looking for family organizations?
  • What about family organizations without a website or a Facebook page? There are a lot of organizations who can only be accessed through snail-mail. Should this content be added as well?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions. I have added the same list of questions to the discussion page of the article. Fran (talk| contribs) 20:26, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

Hi Fran, good to hear from you. There was already in the wiki a template that did this for categories {{CatAZ}} but I could not find a TOC Template that would link to pages in series. I found a suitable template in Wikipedia and have ported it over to the wiki. It is called {{A-Z multipage list}}. It's note quite looking as good as it could, so I will be tweaking it. I have set up the "H" page in this series Surname Pages and Groups on Facebook: H, other pages would need to follow that format. I know you have asked for more feedback and I will try to come back on those as well. --Steve (talk| contribs) 16:58, 25 April 2014 (UTC)
Thanks Steve! We are going to be making the changes today to the page and add all the subpages. We are trying to decide on the name of the page we should change it to because the purpose of the page has expanded to more than Facebook. We will include all family organizations that we can find, so we need to link to those who have websites, Facebook pages, a Wiki page, or include their mailing address if that's the only way to contact them. So now the page name needs to be more inclusive of all organizations, associations, groups, etc. Hope to have all the pages set up today and ready to populate! Fran (talk| contribs) 18:09, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Testing a new template
[edit source]

Hi Steve,
The following template (Template:Auto-outdated) is operational but I would appreciate it if you could look it over to see if I did anything significantly wrong or if you would have any suggestions of ways to improve it. With all the discussions about the wiki becoming outdated (and all the outdated pages I have come across) I thought something like this might help. I know there is a maintenance template to mark outdated articles but this is a slightly different approach to keep them from becoming outdated in the first place. Is anything like this currently available?

Concerning the coding itself, there is a limitation with the parser calculations in that an error output is generated if the time span is two years or more. The one year limitation could be overcome by using the “AgeParse” function but that is not available with the current MediaWiki version and I am not sure if it will be added to the new version. This limitation (which can be overcome by expanding the code a little more) may be a mute point anyway because periods greater than 1 year would be of minimal usefulness.

I was also thinking about whether it would be useful to have the option of specifying specific subcategories as a parameter so that a user could monitor “their own” area for articles they are interested in or are responsible for (just a thought at this time).

Other questions:

  • I am also not sure where (or if) to include {{StripWhiteSpace}} to remove spaces inadvertently included in unnamed parameters (based on the red color it appears not to be available in this version).
  • If the use of {{!}} is necessary in the coding in place of the bar.
  • How to limit unacceptable parameters (zero and negative numbers) from being entered. I did not get the expected “switch” change over when the parameter was set to 0 (zero) or a negative number.

Thanks for your patience as I am still learning. Luccagenes 06:33, 20 July 2014 (UTC)

I have just added to the coding to expand the one year limit to two years (1 to 730 days) although for all practical purposes the recommended range would still be 1 to 365 days. Luccagenes 17:29, 20 July 2014 (UTC)