Help:Editing

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This Editing Overview is meant as a quick reference, with some "getting started" help. It has a lot of wikitext examples. Each of the topics covered here is covered somewhere else in more detail. Please look in the box on the right for the topic you are interested in. You may want to keep this page open in a separate browser window for reference while you edit.

Editing Basics

Start editing
To start editing a page, click on the "Edit this page" (or just "edit") link at one of its edges. This will bring you to the edit page: a page with a text box containing the wikitext: the editable source code from which the server produces the webpage. If you just want to experiment, please do so in the FAIRwiki:Sandbox, not here.
Summarize your changes
You should write a short Edit Summary in the small field below the edit-box. You may use shorthand to describe your changes, as described in the legend.
Preview before saving
When you have finished, press preview to see how your changes will look -- before you make them permanent. Repeat the edit/preview process until you are satisfied, then click "Save" and your changes will be immediately applied to the article.

Wikitext markup -- making your page look the way you want it

If you want to try out things without danger of doing any harm, you can do so in the Sandbox.

Organizing your writing: Sections, paragraphs, lists and lines

What it looks like What you type
Sections and subsections

Start sections with header lines

Note: Single equal signs give the highest level heading, like the page title; usually projects have the convention not to use them.


New section

Subsection

Sub-subsection


== New section ==

=== Subsection ===

==== Sub-subsection ====

A single newline has no effect on the layout.

But an empty line starts a new paragraph, or ends a list or indented part. (<p> disables this paragraphing until </p> or the end of the section)

(in Cologne Blue two newlines and a div tag give just one newline; in the order newline, div tag, newline, the result is two newlines)

You can make the wikitext more readable by putting in newlines. You might find this causes future problems -- see w:Wikipedia:Don't use line breaks for details.


A single
newline
has no
effect on the
layout.

But an empty line
starts a new paragraph.
You can break lines
without starting a new paragraph.

(The HTML tag <br> is sufficient. The system produces the XHTML code <br />.)

You can break lines<br>
without starting a new paragraph.
  • Unordered Lists are easy to do:
    • start every line with a star
      • more stars means deeper levels
  • A newline
  • in a list

marks the end of the list.

  • Of course
  • you can
  • start again.
* Unordered Lists are easy to do:
** start every line with a star
*** more stars means deeper levels
*A newline
*in a list  
marks the end of the list.
*Of course
*you can
*start again.

  1. Numbered lists are also good
    1. very organized
    2. easy to follow
  2. A newline
  3. in a list

marks the end of the list.

  1. New numbering starts
  2. with 1.
# Numbered lists are also good
## very organized
## easy to follow
#A newline
#in a list  
marks the end of the list.
#New numbering starts
#with 1.
  • You can even do mixed lists
    1. and nest them
      • or break lines
        in lists
* You can even do mixed lists
*# and nest them
*#* or break lines<br>in lists

Definition list

word 
definition of the word
longer phrase
phrase defined
; word : definition of the word
; longer phrase 
: phrase defined
indenting
A colon indents a line or paragraph.

A manual newline starts a new paragraph.

  • This is often used for discussion on Talk pages.
: A colon indents a line or paragraph.
A manual newline starts a new paragraph.
preformatted text
IF a line of plain text starts with a space
 it will be formatted exactly
   as typed
 in a fixed-width font
 lines won't wrap
ENDIF
this is useful for:
 * pasting preformatted text;
 * algorithm descriptions;
 * program source code
 * ASCII art;
 * chemical structures;

WARNING If you make it wide, you and hence less readable. Never start ordinary lines with spaces.

(see also below)
 IF a line of plain text starts with a space
  it will be formatted exactly
    as typed
  in a fixed-width font
  lines won't wrap
 ENDIF
 this is useful for:
  * pasting preformatted text;
  * algorithm descriptions;
  * program source code
  * ASCII art;
  * chemical structures;
Centered text.
<center>Centered text.</center>
A: above

and below.

If you don't use a section header, you don't get a TOC entry.

A horizontal dividing line: above
----
and below. 

Links, URLs

More information at Help:Link

Internal Links

General notes:

  • Enclose the target name in double square brackets -- "[[" and "]]"
  • First letter of target name is automatically capitalized
  • Spaces are represented as underscores (but don't do underscores yourself)
  • Links to nonexistant pages are shown in red -- [[MediaWiki User's Guide: Starting a new page|]] tells about creating the page.
  • When the mouse cursor "hovers" over the link, you see a "hover box" containing...
What it looks like What you type
Basic

Sue is reading the official position (or Official positions).

Sue is reading the 
[[official position]]s 
(or [[Official position]]).
Interwiki linking

A link to the page on another wiki (e.g. the same subject in another language)

*For more info see [[m:Help:Interwiki linking]].
*[[:fr:Wikipédia:Aide]].
Section of page

If the section doesn't exist, the link goes to the top of the page

*[[List of cities by country#Morocco]].
*[[List of cities by country#Sealand]].

piped link

Use a pipe "|" to create a link label:

*[[Help:Links|About Links]]
*[[List of cities by country#Morocco|
Cities in Morocco]]

"blank" pipes hide stuff:

After you save, the server automatically fills in the link label.

*In parentheses: [[kingdom (biology)|]]. 
*Namespace: [[Wikipedia:Village pump|]].
Links to nonexistant pages

The weather in London is a page that doesn't exist yet.

  • You can create it by clicking on the link.
  • Have a look at how to start a page guide and the naming conventions page for your project.
[[The weather in London]] is a page
that doesn't exist yet.
Link to yourself

You should "sign" your comments on talk pages:

Your user name: Karl Wick
Or your user name plus date/time: Karl Wick 08:10 Oct 5, 2002 (UTC)

The server will fill in the link after you save.

You should "sign" your comments on talk pages:
: Your user name: ~~~
: Or your user name plus date/time: ~~~~
Redirect

one article title to another with this special link.

#REDIRECT [[United States]]
"Magic" links
ISBN 0123456789X
RFC 123
Media Links

To include links to non-image uploads such as sounds, use a "media" link.
Sound


[[media:Sg_mrob.ogg|Sound]]
Dates

Use links for dates, so everyone can set their own display order. Use Special:Preferences to change your own date display setting.

[[July 20]], [[1969]] , [[20 July]] [[1969]]
and [[1969]]-[[07-20]]
will all appear as 20 July-1969 if you set your date display preference to 1 January 2001.
Special pages

"What links here" and "Related changes" can be linked as:
Special:Whatlinkshere/Wikipedia:How to edit a page and Special:Recentchangeslinked/Wikipedia:How to edit a page

[[Special:Whatlinkshere/
Wikipedia:How to edit a page]] and
[[Special:Recentchangeslinked/
Wikipedia:How to edit a page]]

External Links

Nupedia, [1]
[http://www.nupedia.com Nupedia],
[http://www.nupedia.com]
Or just give the URL: http://www.nupedia.com.
  • In the all symbols must be among: A-Z a-z 0-9 ._\/~%- &#?!=()@ \x80-\xFF. If a URL contains a different character it should be converted; for example, ^ has to be written ^ (to be looked up in). A blank space can also be converted into an underscore.
Or just give the URL:
http://www.nupedia.com.

Images, Video, and Sounds

What it looks like What you type
In-line picture
Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia
  • For many projects, only images that have been uploaded to the same project or the Commons can be used. To upload images, use the upload page. You can find the uploaded image on the image list
A picture: [[Image:Wiki.png]]

or, with alternative text (strongly encouraged)

[[Image:Wiki.png|
Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia]] 
s render alternative text when not displaying an image -- for example, when the image isn't loaded, or in a text-only browser, or when spoken aloud. See for help on choosing alternative text. See for more options.

There is more information on resizing and other formatting tricks.

Other ways of linking to pictures
[[:Image:Wiki.png]]
[[media:Wiki.png|Wikipedia]]
Other Media Links -- Video and Sounds

Use a "media" link: Sound
There is More information on other media types.

[[media:Sg_mrob.ogg|Sound]]

Character formatting

<tr> <td> Use leading space on each line to keep newlines and multiple spaces, and get typewriter font: arrow → italicslink </pre> </td> <td valign="bottom">
 arrow      &rarr;

 ''italics''
 [[link]]

</td> </tr> <tr> <td> Use typewriter font:

arrow →

italics link

</td> <td valign="bottom">

<tt>arrow      &rarr;</tt>

<tt>''italics''</tt>
<tt>[[link]]</tt>

</td> </tr> <tr> <td> Show character references:

&rarr; </td> <td valign="bottom">

&amp;rarr;

</td> </tr> <tr> <td> Commenting page source:
not shown in page

  • Used to leave comments in a page for future editors.

</td> <td>

<!-- comment here -->

</td> </tr> </table>

Tables, formulas, html

Help:Table Help:Formula Help:HTML_in_wikitext Help:Images_and_other_uploaded_files Pages for images Template:H:f

Spacing things out

To space things out, use non-breaking spaces -- "&nbsp;" (they also prevent line breaks in the middle of text -- useful in formulas).

To align rows and columns, use table syntax. You can control the width of a cell (as in template Template:Tim), or insert space using empty cells (as in templates Template:Tim and Template:Tim).

Tips and Tricks

Transclusion

You can include the complete contents of another page into the current page. This is called transclusion. To transclude the page "another page" use
{{:another page}}

Templates

Some part of a page may correspond in the edit box to just a reference to another page, in the form {{name}}, referring to the page "Template:name" (or if the name starts with a namespace prefix, it refers to the page with that name; if it starts with a colon it refers to the page in the main namespace with that name without the colon). This is called a template. For changing that part of the page, edit that other page. Sometimes a separate edit link is provided for this purpose. A convenient way to put such a link in a template is with a template like m:Template:ed. Note that the change also affects other pages which use the same template.

Hover box

A hover box without a link is possible: <span title="2.54 cm" style="border-bottom:1px dotted">inch</span> gives inch. With Template:Tcw one can use {{title|2.54 cm|inch}}.

Combined with a link, with an independent hover box text: inch *

Since it depends on the browser whether the hover box appears, it should only be used for non-essential information, for example information one can also find by following the link.

Some browsers show the hover box only a number of seconds. Even though it reappears when the cursor is moved away and back, this makes the hover box unsuitable for long or complicated text. Template:Title

Details of what the browser shows may vary, e.g. "Title:" in front, indentation, code like "</p><p>" being shown, with or without newline, etc.

Page protection

In a few cases the link labeled "Edit this page" is replaced by the text "View source" (or equivalents in the language of the project). In that case the page cannot be edited. Protection of an image page is automatically also protection of the image itself.

Separating edits

When moving or copying a piece of text within a page or from another page, and also making other edits, it is useful to separate these edits. This way the diff function can be usefully applied for checking these other edits.

Error message

If, due to server problems, a save command results in an error message, either the saving has failed, or just the confirmation. Check e.g. My Contributions to find out.

Edit in your favorite Editor

You may find it more convenient to copy and paste the text first into your favorite, edit and spell check it there, and then paste it back into your to preview. This way, you can also keep a local backup copy of the pages you have edited. It also allows you to make changes offline, but before you submit your changes, please make sure nobody else has edited the page since you saved your local copy (by checking the page history), otherwise you may accidently revert someone else's edits. If someone has edited it since you copied the page, you'll have to merge their edits into your new version (you can find their specific edits by using the "diff" feature of the page history). These issues are handled automatically by the MediaWiki software if you edit the page in your web browser.

Differences

For a redirect page the preview and the rendered page may show the contents differently: the latter shows the canonical form of the target, while the preview renders the link in the usual way, compare [2] with the preview of [3].

See also MediaWiki architecture.

The edit link of a page showing an old version leads to an edit page with the old wikitext. This allows restoring the old version. However, the edit link of a diff page gives the current wikitext, even if the diff page shows an old version below the table of differences.

Composition of the edit page

  • edit toolbar (optional)
  • edit box
  • edit summary box
  • save/preview/cancel links
  • list of templates used
  • preview (optionally either on every edit page or just after pressing "Show preview"; optionally the first item)

Position-independent wikitext

Wikitext for which the result does not depend on the position in the wikitext page:

  • interlanguage links (see also above) - the mutual order is preserved, but otherwise the positions within the page are immaterial
  • category specification - ditto
  • __NOTOC__, __FORCETOC__, see Help:Section


See also

External links

Template:H:f

What it looks like What you type

Emphasize, strongly, very strongly.

  • These are double and triple apostrophes, not double quotes.
''Emphasize'', '''strongly''',
'''''very strongly'''''.

You can also write italic and bold if the desired effect is a specific font style rather than emphasis, as in mathematical formulas:

F = ma
  • However, the difference between these two methods is not very important for graphical browsers, and many people choose to ignore it.
You can also write <i>italic</i>
and <b>bold</b> if the desired effect is a 
specific font style rather than emphasis, as 
in mathematical formulas:
:<b>F</b> = <i>m</i><b>a</b>
A typewriter font for technical terms.
A typewriter font for 
<tt>technical terms</tt>.
You can use small text for captions.
You can use <small>small text</small> 
for captions.
You can strike out deleted material

and underline new material.

You can <strike>strike out deleted material</strike>
and <u>underline new material</u>.

Umlauts and accents: (See MediaWiki User's Guide: Creating special characters)
è é ê ë ì í

À Á Â Ã Ä Å
Æ Ç È É Ê Ë
Ì Í Î Ï Ñ Ò
Ó Ô Õ Ö Ø Ù
Ú Û Ü ß à á
â ã ä å æ ç
è é ê ë ì í
î ï ñ ò ó ô
œ õ ö ø ù ú
û ü ÿ


è é ê ë ì í

&Agrave; &Aacute; &Acirc; &Atilde; &Auml; &Aring;
&AElig; &Ccedil; &Egrave; &Eacute; &Ecirc; &Euml;
&Igrave; &Iacute; &Icirc; &Iuml; &Ntilde; &Ograve;
&Oacute; &Ocirc; &Otilde; &Ouml; &Oslash; &Ugrave;
&Uacute; &Ucirc; &Uuml; &szlig; &agrave; &aacute;
&acirc; &atilde; &auml; &aring; &aelig; &ccedil;
&egrave; &eacute; &ecirc; &euml; &igrave; &iacute;
&icirc; &iuml; &ntilde; &ograve; &oacute; &ocirc;
&oelig; &otilde; &ouml; &oslash; &ugrave; &uacute;
&ucirc; &uuml; &yuml;

Punctuation:
¿ ¡ « » § ¶
† ‡ • - – —

&iquest; &iexcl; &laquo; &raquo; &sect; &para;
&dagger; &Dagger; &bull; - &ndash; &mdash;

Commercial symbols:
™ © ® ¢ € ¥

£ ¤
&trade; &copy; &reg; &cent; &euro; &yen;
&pound; &curren;
Subscript: x2

Superscript: x2 or x²

  • The latter method of superscript can't be used in the most general context, but is preferred when possible (as with units of measurement) because most browsers have an easier time formatting lines with it.

ε0 = 8.85 × 10−12 C² / J m.

1 hectare = 1 E4 m²

Subscript: x<sub>2</sub>
Superscript: x<sup>2</sup> or x&sup2;

or in projects with the templates sub and sup:

Subscript: x{{sub|2}}
Superscript: x{{sup|2}}

&epsilon;<sub>0</sub> =
8.85 &times; 10<sup>&minus;12</sup>
C&sup2; / J m.

1 [[hectare]] = [[1 E4 m²]]
Greek characters:

α β γ δ ε ζ
η θ ι κ λ μ ν
ξ ο π ρ σ ς
τ υ φ χ ψ ω
Γ Δ Θ Λ Ξ Π
Σ Φ Ψ Ω

&alpha; &beta; &gamma; &delta; &epsilon; &zeta;
&eta; &theta; &iota; &kappa; &lambda; &mu; &nu;
&xi; &omicron; &pi; &rho;  &sigma; &sigmaf;
&tau; &upsilon; &phi; &chi; &psi; &omega;
&Gamma; &Delta; &Theta; &Lambda; &Xi; &Pi;
&Sigma; &Phi; &Psi; &Omega;

Math characters:
∫ ∑ ∏ √ − ± ∞
≈ ∝ ≡ ≠ ≤ ≥
× · ÷ ∂ ′ ″
∇ ‰ ° ∴ ℵ ø
∈ ∉ ∩ ∪ ⊂ ⊃ ⊆ ⊇
¬ ∧ ∨ ∃ ∀ ⇒ ⇔
→ ↔ ↑

&int; &sum; &prod; &radic; &minus; &plusmn; &infin;
&asymp; &prop; &equiv; &ne; &le; &ge; 
&times; &middot; &divide; &part; &prime; &Prime;
&nabla; &permil; &deg; &there4; &alefsym; &oslash;
&isin; &notin; &cap; &cup; &sub; &sup; &sube; &supe;
&not; &and; &or; &exist; &forall; &rArr; &hArr;
&rarr; &harr; &uarr;
x2   ≥   0 true.
<i>x</i><sup>2</sup>&nbsp;&nbsp;&ge;&nbsp;&nbsp;0 true.

Complicated formulae:
  <math>\sum_{n=0}^\infty \frac{x^n}{n!}</math>

<math>\sum_{n=0}^\infty \frac{x^n}{n!}</math>

For comparison for the following examples:

arrow →

italics link

arrow      &rarr;

''italics''
[[link]]

Use <nowiki> to suppress interpretation of wiki markup, but interpret character references and remove newlines and multiple spaces:

arrow → ''italics'' [[link]]

<nowiki>arrow      &rarr;

''italics''
[[link]]</nowiki>

Use <pre> to suppress interpretation of wiki markup and keep newlines and multiple spaces, and get typewriter font, but interpret character references:

arrow      →

''italics''
[[link]]
<nowiki><pre>arrow      &rarr;

''italics''
[[link]]
</nowiki></pre>