How to write these wiki pages

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Revision as of 22:31, 16 January 2013 by Michaelf (talk | contribs) (Inserting URLs (web links))
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Starting out...

You'll need to create a mediawiki account, if you don't already have one, and log in. Use the button in the upper right to do this.

Basic text editing

  • Click on a link to go to the page you wish to edit.
  • Click on the "edit" tab (above a page) to edit any unlocked page (if the page hasn't yet been created, it will come up it edit mode.)
  • Click on a section head "edit" link (on the right hand side of a page) to edit a particular section of a page (these links won't appear unless sections have been defined)
  • Type text freely in the editing box...
  • ...indicating bold and italics with double ('') and triple (''') single quote marks, respectively.
  • Or highlight some text and click the bold or italics buttons in the row of editing buttons just above the edit box
  • Create a new paragraph by leaving a blank line
  • Create a new line at any point by inserting the code <br>
  • When you've finished editing, use the bottom portion of the page to enter an editing summary (optional). Then click on "show changes" to see what you've done exactly. Click on "show preview" to preview the way the edited page will look. Click on "save page" when you're sure you've done the right thing.
  • Don't forget to hit "save page" or your changes will not be saved!

Inserting media

  • Enter edit mode
  • Insert a thumbnail link to a media file using this syntax: [[Image:Example.jpg]]
  • Insert a thumbnail link to a media file with alternative mouse-over text using this syntax: [[Image:Example.jpg | text]].
  • Insert the media file directly into the page using this syntax: [[Media:Example.jpg]]
  • (By the way, for images it's probably best to use thumbnail links unless the media file is quite small.)
  • Another way: just type the filename, highlight the text, and click the media file link button or embedded image button, as appropriate (in the row of buttons above; their icons don't clearly indicate what they do, but if you let your mouse pointer hover over them for a sec some pop-up text will tell you).
  • Save your changes with "Save page" at the bottom, as above
  • Now, click on media links and you'll be prompted to upload the files with the right names
  • Test the page again. Double-click thumbnail links to see the full image.
  • Warning: don't insert huge embedded images or the page will take forever to load...
  • Follow the same procedures for audio and video files.

Inserting URLs (web links)

  • Enter edit mode
  • You can insert a link to any www page using this syntax (just insert the full URL followed by link text, and enclose the whole thing in square brackets): [ Here's the Wikipedia article for Kokrobite]
  • An easy way to do this is to copy and paste the URL from your browser; then highlight the whole thing and click on the button with a picture of the world on it.
  • If you insert a raw URL (no square brackets), mediawiki will also add a link but using the URL itself as link text
  • If you omit the link text (but include square brackets), links will automatically be numbered in sequence.
  • Remember to save your changes with "Save page" at the bottom, as above

Inserting links to wiki pages, and creating new ones

  • Enter edit mode
  • You can insert a link to any wiki page by enclosing its title (the bold text that appears at the top of every page, just below the tabs) in double square brackets.
  • By default the link text is the name of the page. Thus [[How to write these wiki pages]] points back to the present page.
  • If you want to change the link text, use the following syntax: [[How to write these wiki pages | Help page]]. This creates a link to the present page, but with link text "Help page". Note that you must follow the page name with a space, then a vertical bar, then another space, before adding the link text and finally closing with two square brackets.
  • The nice thing about mediawiki is that you can create a link to a non-existent wiki page by enclosing any text in double square brackets. The first time someone clicks on the link they'll be given the opportunity to edit (i.e. create) that page.
  • A shortcut button is available to surround selected text with double brackets; it's the third button from the left, with the letters "Ab" underlined.
  • Save your changes with the "Save page" button at the bottom.

Rolling back...

  • Wikis never forget anything. You can always "roll back" to an earlier version of a page.
  • If you make changes and want to undo them...or if someone else makes changes you want to undo...just click on the "history" tab above the page. Scan down the version list until you find the latest correct version. Click on its link to bring it into view (you can also use the "compare" feature to check what has been changed). Then click on "edit", and finally "save page".
  • Please report vandalism and spam to the system administrators (David or Michael).


(note: edit this page to see how these examples have been done. Don't make and save changes though!)

Example of embedded image: View from Fort Usher, Jamestown, Accra.jpg

Example of thumbnail link: Media:View from Fort Usher, Jamestown, Accra.jpg

Example of thumbnail link with alternative mouse-over text: Example of thumbnail link with alternative mouse-over text

Example of audio file: Media:Mudoc.mp3

Example of external link: Here's the Wikipedia article for Kokrobite

Practice makes perfect

And it's kind of fun. But try playing around in the Sandbox before you try something that matters.

More help

Consult the mediawiki project site, especially this page on editing, and this one on formatting