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Pern Wiki For Beginners

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How does this Work?

Everyone is a part of the Pern Wiki!

When you first see a wiki, it doesn't seem like it could possibly work. If anybody can come along and change things, then how can the information be trusted? Doesn't it just get vandalized, or fall into chaos?

Once you start participating, you see that that "weakness" is actually a wiki's greatest strength. Sure, anybody can add anything - and then everybody else gets to proof-read it, and fix mistakes. Information that looks suspicious can be verified. Vandalism is almost always fixed within minutes. It's possible for someone to post errors, or nonsense - but over time, the best wins out. If you don't believe me, take a look at the Wikipedia.

As you explore the Wiki, you will find most information is linked together. If you don't understand some terminology on one page, it is often the case that that term will be defined elsewhere in the Wiki. If you change that word to a link, then future readers of that page will be less confused. Wiki's EVOLVE. Many random contributions are made, some good and some bad, but eventually the good ones are kept and the bad ones are removed.

If you're reading these words, then you're a Pern Wiki editor. If you see a problem on one of the pages, don't roll your eyes and complain about it. Just click the 'edit' page button and fix it!

Create a user name

Log in and create a user name -- it helps you (and everybody) keep track of your contributions, and it makes it possible to communicate with other contributors.

To give this project the highest possible credibility, please consider contributing to this project using your real name.

There are several reasons for this, firstly it means we are taking the project seriously, and debates and discussions are taking place much as they would in real life. Secondly, using your real name allows us to ensure that people with relevant training, experience and credentials recieve the respect they deserve for the knowledge they have acquired and specialised in during their education and career. Finally, its much friendlier to know one another on first name terms, rather than using nicknames.

Don't worry if you already have a nickname type user name, you can always add your real name to your signature. See below for details.

You're also invited to post your name on your user page -- either your full name, or just a first name and an initial. It's not required, but it helps everyone get to know you and trust you. If you have personal or work related web pages, please post these on your user page as well.

Once you've done that, post your name on the Community Portal Talk Page, by editing the page and typing 3 or 4 of these tildes (~~~). That way, people will know that you are active and contributing, and you can join the discussion of what we are trying to achieve.

If you are completely new to editing Wikis, see our Tutorial.

Neutral Point of View

Articles on the Pern Wiki should be written from a neutral point of view (NPOV), representing all views fairly and without bias. Post facts, not opinions. Opposing viewpoints and perspectives on a subject are encouraged, but should be written as such. Don't try to make out that a point of view you agree with is the be-all and end-all of the subject, as you will quickly find that another Pern Wiki editor will change what you have written.

Talk pages

Sign talk posts with four tildes (~~~~) which automatically adds your user name and a date stamp. When you reply on a talk page, put a colon (:) at the front of your post to indent it.

If you want to find a list of recently active talk pages, please look here: Template:Active talk

See How to use Talk pages for more details.

Link sanity

Only link a name or word the first time it's used on a page. Please don't link every single capitalized word - it makes the page confusing and messy.

The exception is on lists - if some of the items in a list are linked, then go ahead and link all of them, even if they're repeated elsewhere in the article.

How to upload pictures

Click on "Upload file" on the left navigation bar to upload pictures. You can add your image to any page using this code:

[[Image:yourpicture.jpg|thumb|300px|Caption for your picture.]]

Images should not exceed 300 pixels wide for article tidyness and copyright adherence.

If you upload an image in error, or do not intend to use it, tag the article with {{delete}} so that an administrator can remove the file from the wiki. Images are subject for deletion if they are not used.

How to add category tags

You can put an article into a category by adding this code: [[Category:YourCategory]] . You can change the way the article is alphabetized within the category like this: [[Category:Depression Treatment|Crazy Method, The]].

Before you create a category, check the Category list to see if there's a similar category that already exists. If the category doesn't exist yet, then adding that code will create the category. You'll need to add some text to the new category page to make it work properly.

External links

You can add links to other websites by putting one bracket around the site's address, like this: [http://www.apa.org]. That'll look like this: [1].

History tab

Nothing is ever lost on a wiki! You can see all of the changes that have been made to a page - and who made them - by clicking on the "History" tab at the top of any page.

Setting your preferences

There's a lot of useful stuff on your Preferences page.

You can change your display so that links show up without the underlining. You can also change your time zone, and the number of items you see on the Recent Changes page or the Category list.

Keyboard shortcuts

There's some helpful shortcuts to navigate around within a page.

Alt-T : Talk
Alt-E : Edit
Alt-H : History
Alt-R : Recent Changes

Dealing with vandalism

Vandalism isn't much of a problem on a wiki, because everybody has the power to fix it when they see it. See the Vandalism help page for instructions on how to fix vandalized pages, and how to discourage the vandals.

Time to Start

OK, now that you know all that, have a look at the Community Portal to see what is currently happening. The Community Portal Talk Page is also a good place to look.

See Also:

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