Help:Style Guide

From Lesswrongwiki
Jump to: navigation, search

See also Help:User Guide

Ciphergoth originally created a Less Wrong wiki on Wikia with the intention of making Less Wrong less impenetrable to newcomers - a highly important goal.

A wiki can do this in two major ways - by providing fast summaries of unfamiliar concepts, and by indexing the original content and long arguments put forth on the blog.

Ciphergoth also suggested that the Less Wrong wiki should not duplicate work that is being done better elsewhere - if Wikipedia has a better, longer article on something, then we should either (a) link to Wikipedia, or (b), if there is a little bit of special LW content on the subject, have a Less Wrong wiki page with a major reference to Wikipedia, a quick summary of the concept, and some minor references to the special content at LW.

Eliezer Yudkowsky suggested that the wiki should be used to summarize concepts and link to blog posts, and should not contain original content (except in special cases where an original work is more easily produced by collaborative multi-user editing, than by threaded discussion in the blog). The intended user experience is to bounce back and forth between the blog and the wiki - the blog links mainly to the wiki when referencing concepts, and the wiki summarizes the concepts and lists the relevant blog posts (with brief descriptions).


Redirect policy

Since there is no way to disable MediaWiki's case-sensitivity, if you accidentally get the capitalization wrong when trying to link to another wiki page, the link will not lead to the page you wanted to link to, but will instead link to a page with different capitalization. This same issue also applies to spacing and hyphenation in the article's title. For example, Paper clip maximizer versus Paperclip maximizer. Whenever a link is created with incorrect capitalization, just make a redirect page that links to the correctly capitalized page.


To standardize the references section, I've created a References template. To use it in a page, type {{subst:References}} after the main body of the article. After the page is saved, code will be inserted that can be filled in with references as necessary.

The template currently uses the following format.

  • See Also (for other relevant LWiki articles)
  • Footnotes (for references cited in the text)
  • Overcoming Bias Articles (links to OB articles in the format of Title by Author)
  • Less Wrong Articles (links to LW articles in the format of Title by Author)
  • Other References (everything else)

The footnotes section should use the <references/> tag. Everything else should be formatted as a list.