EvaWiki:Boot Camp for Newbies

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19 C029 eva03-mess.jpg

"When Aoba called B Wing's construction sloppy he hadn't seen anything like THIS!"
This article or section may require a cleanup to meet a standard of quality that isn't plain embarrassing.
Please discuss this issue on the talk page and/or begin editing the page.


Introduction

Welcome! It's great to have another scribe eager to contribute to the ambitious and major project that is the EvaWiki. This page is intended to teach you all the basics necessary to contribute to the EvaWiki as a productive scribe, from editing to etiquette. While it is by no means a full or comprehensive guide to all the tools or elements that the wikicode has to offer, it has all that is necessary to bring you from someone with no experience in wikicode to a functional contributor. We hope you enjoy your short time through this boot camp.

Be bold!

You shouldn't be scared when it comes to updating pages or adding content to the site. At its inception, the wiki was primarily concerned with creating and uploading new content than actually smoothing out the information, in no small part due to the low site traffic. These motives are for today. Do not feel anxious or apprehensive when adding new content or editing what already exists! Every bit of effort and all your contributions make the wiki a greater, better place- even if some mistakes may be made along the way.

Above all, remember that wiki sites like these rely on the contributions of many different people to attain their content and their quality. The next time you stroll around the wiki and see a few typos or blemishes, you can to fix those errors (or even add new content) and bring the wiki a little bit closer to its ideal. We don't wish to just "allow" you to contribute to the wiki; indeed, we eagerly invite you to.

You don't need prior knowledge

While of course it is preferred that you have some knowledge or skill in MediaWiki- albeit that it would be easier for you- it is ultimately a secondary quality. The qualities we look for here are passion for and knowledge about Evangelion. The vast majority of the wiki-code you will use is quite basic, like the code shown in this tutorial. If you wish to either clarify your doubts about wiki-code, utilize more advanced code, or simply improve your skills, you can either ask a member with knowledge of such matters or bring it up in the forum's "Editorium" section.

It should also be noted that this wiki is meant to be accessible both on the reader and the scribe's end. You will not be penalized, shunned, or discriminated for your contributions, even if you haven't seen much Evangelion material, have just started getting into Evangelion, have never analyzed the series before, or anything of that sort. Once again, be bold in contributing to the wiki.

Keeping up-to-date with the wiki

There's the Editorium section on the forum, as well as a Recent Changes page where the most recent activity on any part of the wiki is listed.

Finally, there are also certain page categories intended to include the articles deemed in most need of current attention:

Write in third person

Avoid the use of first person or anything that makes you as an individual scribe stand out in the actual article. Not only is this unsightly and disruptive to the article's flow, but it's also contrary to the spirit we strive towards in this wiki. The wiki is intended to be a collaborative project of the EGF community, not the interpretations of a particular few.

So please use wording like "It is well known that" or "It can be noticed that" rather than wording like "I know that" or "I noticed that". However, try to avoid using too many of these "weasel words"- phrases that sound nice, but that don't really have much mechanical purpose. Remember that the "Show preview" button is always just a click away.

Basic formatting and editing

How to make edits to an article

This is the base upon which all existing wiki content is based. While occasionally new pages will be created from time to time, the vast majority of a scribe's contribution to the wiki is in the form of editing an article (please note that this doesn't mean you will be unable to add new content to an article), so it's fitting for it to be the first thing you need to learn.

First, you need to locate the "Edit" tab. Among the page tabs (Discussion, History, etc.) you should see a tab titled "Edit", in this wikia only seen when you log in. Click the tab, and you will be taken to a screen with a major text-box occupying the vast majority of the page, with the title of whichever page or section you're editing above, and below a short legal declaration, a Summary line, two tick boxes, three clickable boxes and finally two links. For now we'll just focus on the most basic elements, the rest will be detailed later.

As you might have likely guessed, the text box is where the magic happens. Here is where you write or make all the text, code, and other content that go into creating a wikia. The three clickable boxes are respectively named "Save page", "Show preview" and "Show changes". First thing you should know is that the "Save page" button is what you have to click once you're already happy with your edits and are ready to upload them to the article. Remember: You need to click the "Save page" button for the changes you made to take effect.

After that, there are the "Show preview" and "Show changes" buttons. "Show preview" lets you quickly check your edits for any spelling errors or fluidity of text by displaying the content on your textbox right above-said textbox when you click it. There also appears a small template reminding you that this is only a preview and the changes still haven't been saved. "Show changes" is basically a significantly more advanced and exact manner of checking your edits and feeling the difference between the current texts and your edit.

The summary is a text line in which you can include any comment regarding your edit (plus, if you selected a specific section to edit, the summary will include that in the article's edit history), like "fixed typos" or "arranged paragraph structure". These could be as long as you feel the need for them to be, but remember that there is also always a discussion page for any article (or you can always create it) so there's no need to voice your concerns with the article there. The summary description is simply for a concise explanation of what your edit was about.

You can also tick the box "This is a minor edit" for your edit to be filed as a minor one in the edit history. Please use this for edits like fixing typos or grammar. Inserting or removing key information or entire paragraphs from the article is very much not a minor edit. You tick the "Watch this page" button if you desire to be notified of any activity with that specific article.

How to create an article

To create an article, write the title of the article you wish to create into the search bar and click "Search". You should see a message that says "There is no page titled [name of your article], you can create this page" (or something of that kind). Click the link to either the text of "create this page" or the title you entered in the search bar that has a red link (typical code of non-existent pages) and you will be taken to the same textbox you use when editing.

Please remember that article titles are case sensitive. This means that it makes a difference if certain letters are capitalized or in lower case, so an article titled "anno" would be filed as a separate article from one titled "Anno".

If you have any further doubts or questions, you can always ask the Editorium section or an admin.

What's an Edit Conflict?

If you're ever editing a page and after clicking "Save changes" you get, instead of the usual result, a message saying "Edit conflict" it means another scribe was editing that article (or that section of the article) at the same time you were and saved their changes on the articles before you did. Don't worry, your edit isn't lost in this case. The "Edit conflict" page should list "What you wrote". Just copy that content, enter the edit mode again, and paste it onto the page. Of course, that's if the other scribe was working on some other part of the article from the one you were. They could have been working on that same part of the article, and might even disagree with your changes. This situation will be further described below, but as a general rule, please try to integrate both contributions if possible.

Headings and sub-headings

Making sub-headings in a page is very simple. All you have to do is add sets of equal signs on both sides of the text you want to make into a heading:

==Example1==

==Example2==

The number of equal signs (remember they have to be the same in each side) will determine the size and type of heading.

It is a good idea to start with a heading of two signs ("==") for a section. Headings of a single sign ("=") are rarely used.

It is worth noting that headings of two signs will have a line extending across the screen (making it easy to tell where one section ends and other begins) whereas headings of 3 or more signs will not have such a line.

You can use a great number of "=" signs, for example:

==ExampleA==

===ExampleB===

====ExampleC====

=====ExampleD=====

======ExampleE======

But for most basic purposes, headings of two and/or three signs will do just fine.

It is, of course, possible to make headings with a single plus sign, but it makes the heading considerably huge and is a big garrish. Hence why two equal signs are the default for headings. A hypothetical exception where single signs could be used is for an article that would need a considerable quantity of headings, and in which the other option to single-sign headings (using a lot of 6+ sign headings, which aren't that different from normal text) is even more impractical.

Bolding and italicizing text

Basically, you use a set of two apostrophes in both sides of the text to italicize it, and three apostrophes to bold it. Just like headings!

Example: ''Shinji Ikari'' = Shinji Ikari '''Shinji Ikari''' = Shinji Ikari

It really is that simple. How it basically works is that the auto wiki code recognizes a specific use of apostrophe marks as a call for code, which is extremely practical. However, it's also important to note that (because of this) it is very much not the same to use apostrophes or quotation marks to quote something, so please make sure you're using the right key when quoting a piece of text. That said, if you ever find yourself in the need to bold or italicize a piece of text within a quote, all you have to do is put the apostrophes around the text you want to be italicized/bolded just like you would in normal text. For example:

"Did Hideaki Anno prefer working in Nadia's production, or in Eva's?" If you wanted to italicize "Nadia's", you would need to write ''Nadia's'' which would give you: "Did Hideaki Anno prefer working in Nadia's production, or in Eva's?"

However, it is important to note that this also leads one to a small risk of entire paragraphs getting italicized due to rare failures of wiki-code.

Don't worry, in the very unlikely case that happens you're not going to cause fifth impact or anything like that. Someone will likely fix it soon enough.

Using supertext (N2 Mine, S2 Engine, etc.)

You can just write "N2 Mine" or "N^2" Mine and it's not a big deal, someone more skilled in wiki-code will probably fix it. However, if you want to do it right here are two ways how:

One of them is simply using the superscript " ² " character but your computer might not be able to do that. If that's not an option for you, you can also use wiki-code: Type "N<sup>2</sup>" to make "N2".

Making lists

There are two types of lists you can make: Bulleted or numbered. Since the format for both of them is essentially the same, we'll just focus on a bulleted list. Keep in mind that making a numbered list is the same as making a bulleted list, only replacing "*" with "#".

For making a bulleted list, you use asterisks. One asterisk at the beginning of a line creates a bullet point. Thus with "*Bullet point 1 we get:

  • Bullet point 1

And you write two asterisk marks one after the other to create a subsection that visually stems from the original bullet point:

  • Bullet point 1
    • Bullet point 1-1
      • Bullet point 1-1-1
    • Bullet point 1-2

Which was obtained with:

*Bullet point 1 **Bullet point 1-1 ***Bullet point 1-1-1 **Bullet point 1-2

The sub-divisions are theoretically unlimited, but on practical terms, you'll probably rarely go beyond three asterisks for a line.

It is very important, however, that you note that the lines you want to make a subsection must come immediatly after the parent line. That is to say, if you want to include subsection to a list, you must not leave spaces between the lines. If instead of including subsections like in the example above, you leave spaces like this:

*Bullet point 1 **Bullet point 1-1 ***Bullet point 1-1-1 **Bullet point 1-2

You'll get this:

  • Bullet point 1
    • Bullet point 1-1
      • Bullet point 1-1-1
    • Bullet point 1-2

Which looks quite unsightly and most likely isn't what you were going for. So make sure you do not leave a space between subsection lines.

Finally, while numbered lists are pretty much the same, you can make numbered sub-headings with them.

Indenting text

To indent text, you simply need to add a colon to the beginning of a line. :This =

This

You can also add multiple colons to make it indent more:

This text has four colons, thus been indented four times
This text has five colons, thus been indented five times

It is important to note that different computers have different monitor displays, meaning that they will indent to different amounts. So if you try centering something just by indenting it, while it might look centered on your computer, it can't be guaranteed to be the case for every user checking the page (and it most likely won't be the case). So for a text you want centered, you can use code like this:

Text you want centered

Which was obtained with:

<div align="center" style="text-decoration:italic;">Text you want centered</div>

Finally, please never indent by using the spacebar. Attempting to indent by just pressing the spacebar can result in broken wiki-code. For example: Imagine that you've written a particularly long paragraph with, say, 500 words in it. And you indented it by hitting "spacebar". Now, because indenting with spacebar can sometimes cause the entire paragraph to go on a single line, you will have a line of over 500 words that will just extend to the right-hand side of the screen, many times over. Doesn't sound very good, does it?

Other nice tricks

There are of course many other things you can do with text: Change font and size of text, underline it, etc. If you happen to be acquainted with BBcode tags (the code you use in forums to alter text or add images) This will be very easy.

With the tags for <big>big text</big> you can make Big Text

Or use the tags for <small>small text</small> to create small text

The tags of <u>underlined text</u> can make underlined text

And the tags of <s>striken-throught text</s> can make striken-throught text

What do those buttons on the top of the page mean?

You can see several tabs on top of each article. The one on the far left, the one actually selected, is the actual "article" page, for the article you actually want to read. Clicking "Discussion" leads you to a "Talk" page for the article: basically its like a piece of note-paper taped to the article, which editors write notes to each other about things in that particular page (more on Talk pages will be explained below). "Edit" is the tab you click to actually make changes to an article.

The "History" tab leads you to the History page for an article: it lists all changes that have been made the article, in chronological order, who made those changes, and dates them. You can click on "diff" to see what changes an edit made to the page. There is also a "Move" page, which is basically used for renaming an entire page: it moves the article to a new page, and actually automatically creates a redirect which links every page which was originally linked to the old name, to the new one. Depending on your user privileges, you might not be able to "Move" pages. You're really only supposed to Move pages occasionally, and unless an article name is misspelled or something obvious, you should tend to discuss moving a page with other editors before moving it (go to the "Talk" page and say "I think this should be moved to (new name) because...". If you do not have user privileges to Move a page, it would be a good idea to directly ask an Administrator to move it. There is also a "Watch" button, which adds pages to your "Watchlist", basically your Favorites list.

The links in the extreme upper right are for your own account on EvaPedia, not related to the page you are looking at. Clicking on your screenname takes you to your user page. Please fill this out (copy the format you see on other user's pages). "My preferences" takes you to your preferences page (you don't really need that). "My Watchlist" shows you what looks like a "History" page, but which actually shows you only the recent changes that have occurred on pages you have clicked "watch" on (that you have favorited). This helps you keep track of articles you are concerned with, or just plain interested in. "My Contributions" lists only edits made by you, in chronological order.

By the way, a red-colored link means that the link is broken, usually because it links to a page that doesn't actually exist yet. Help EvaPedia expand by "filling in the red links".

How to make links to other articles on the site

You make links to other articles on EvaPedia by writing double brackets around a word or set of words, for example: [[Evangelions]] will create a link to the Evangelions page.

Some articles have more than one word in the title; just put the brackets around all words in the title, like [[Shinji Ikari]]

As said above, article names are case-sensitive, so it actually matters if the links are capitalized or not. Please just write the name of the article you want to link to exactly as it appears on top of the page, and you'll be fine.

A neat little trick is that you can actually write one thing as the name in the link; this is like when on a message board it asks for the address of a website you're linking to, then asks "what would you like this link to say"? For example, instead of simply linking to "Shinji Ikari", you can write "useless whiny geek", and clicking on that will take you to the "Shinji Ikari" page.

To do this, instead of adding double right-brackets like normal, add in a vertical line "|" (the key above Enter, hit "shift"), then write what you want the link to say, then end in double brackets as normal, like this: [[Shinji Ikari|useless whiny geek]]

How to make links to webpages not on the site

You might want to link to another website outside of EvaPedia. You could just copy-paste the link directly, and hypertext will automatically be created: http://www.google.com/

However, you might want to write a message for the link instead of adding in the address like that: indeed, some addresses for news articles and such get really long, and it would save space to summarize it in a few words.

Linking to pages not on EvaPedia is a bit different from linking to pages on it, but it's pretty simple. Put the link in single brackets, and leave a space between the end of the address and the message you want to add. For example: writing [http://www.google.com/ A Big Search Engine] would result in the link A Big Search Engine

How to sign your name

DO NOT. SIGN. YOUR NAME.

NEVER sign your name on the ACTUAL article pages themselves. EvaPedia is a group project.

Actually, every wiki page has two pages: the *actual* article, and a "Discussion" page: for example: "Shinji Ikari" and "Talk:Shinji Ikari"

While you are never supposed to sign your name when you make changes to an actual article, you ARE supposed to always sign your name when you leave comments on Talk pages.

To sign your name after something you have written on a Talk page, type two dashes and four tildes, grouped together with no spaces in between: "--~~~~"

What a "Discussion" ("Talk") page is and how to use it

The "Talk" (or "Discussion") pages are essentially where things specific to that page should be talked about; basically you're supposed to talk about problems being encountered on the page on the "Talk" page instead of asking someone in the forums about it; something in the forums can be lost or might not be noticed, while the "Talk" page is basically like a sheet of paper taped onto the real page, on which we pass notes on it back and forth to each other. As it's always located "right next to" the real article (thanks to those little tabs on top) it's just more convenient for day to day issues.

While you must NEVER sign your name on actual article pages, you ALWAYS have to sign your name on Talk pages.

How to create Categories to group multiple pages into

At the bottom of some pages, you can see a "Category" link: this is an easy way to organize articles using MediaWiki. To create a new "Category" to label articles with, type "[[Category:Name of Category]], and add this link to the bottom of an existing page. This should result in a red link (it doesn't exist yet). Click on the link, and just add something like "These are all articles that belong to the (Name of Category)". This will actually create the category. Proceed to add the Category tag to other pages that it applies to. Always add Category links at the extreme bottom of a page.

How to Redirect pages

If someone enters "Asuka" into the "search" bar, or if you create an in-age link to "Asuka", they won't immediately go to "Asuka Langley Soryu". A "redirect" has been created, so that is someone searches for "Asuka" they will instantly be taken to "Asuka Langley Soryu".

If you are a total newbie, you normally don't have to worry about this. Administrators will clear up most of these. The Admins have usually decided what the "official" title for an article should be, and it would be nice if you asked if you want something redirected; redirecting a page causes wide-scale changes throughout the site.

To create a redirect, go to a new blank page, and type "#REDIRECT[[NameofArticle]]"; the number symbol "REDIRECT" in all-captials, and a link (which is done using double brackets) to the article you want it to link to; all with no spaces between characters. This will instantly redirect someone who searches for "Asuka" so that clicking "go" on a search for "Asuka" will immediately link them to the "Asuka Langley Soryu" page. The "What links here" page at the top of the toolbox will let you see everything that linked to the old redirect, like "Asuka".

Again, if you are a total newbie, don't be afraid of this; normally you really wouldn't have to do this and the Admins should be handling it on their own, so bring something to their attention if you have a problem.

How to use Templates

"Templates" are an advanced feature that lets you quickly reproduce the same information on multiple pages. Often this is used for creating "infoboxes", those information boxes you see on Character and Episode Guide pages. If you are a complete and utter newbie to using MediaWiki, you don't actually have to worry about how to create new Templates just yet. Most of the major templates needed for the website (Episode Guide infoboxes, etc.) are already created directly by Admins. You've just got to worry about how to use them.

One of the most basic Templates is the "stub" template: typing "{{stub}}" will auto-generate the template message "This article is a stub. You can help the EvaPedia by expanding it".

The big difference is that while normal links use double brackets like [[]], notice that when you are using a template you use double braces: {{}}

The name of actual Template pages (the page that generates them) is "Template:Name of the Template". Just take "Name of the Template" and put it between double braces on a new page, and this will insert the Template. Thus for "Template:Stub" writing "{{stub}}" adds that Template.

Templates are really an advanced feature that can be used for all sorts of things, most importantly the Infoboxes. If you're a newbie and don't understand this at all, you can eventually figure it out by observing how Templates are used on existing pages and "reverse-engineering" them, but basically you don't have to worry about Templates that much for now. Admins will walk you through it if you are confused.

How to use images

There is more to using images on here than just physically loading them on, that is, lots of legal stuff. If you are a newbie, you don't need to worry about this.

Rule of thumb, please don't load an image onto here which is obviously a high-definition non-promotional pic owned by Gainax or someone else. This has to deal with Copyright laws and such (more on that below). For now, as you are a newb, really just use common sense while loading what you want, and Admins will worry about the legal stuff. What you need to know is:

How to load images to the site

Go to the box on the bottom of the page, which is titled "Toolbox". Click "Upload file". Then click "Browse", select a file from your computer. 'Remember to add a category tag to the file, then click "Upload File" to load it to the site.

Files you load onto the site really shouldn't be bigger than 153 KB: You can load images bigger than that, but they are difficult to load and display in all web browsers. Use the jpeg/jpg image format to keep filesizes down.

Rule of thumb: If you want an image to be a "hero shot" for an article (i.e. the main infobox's image for Shinji on the "Shinji Ikari" page) they should be at least 30 KB.

Loading many high-quality images onto one-article can run into legal stuff, so if you want to load, say, screenshots of literally every single scene from an episode onto the same page, they should be of lower quality, around 15 KB or less. We will tinker with this on an image by image basis.

How to use images once they've been loaded onto the site

Once the image is loaded to the site, it will have a distinct image file name, along the lines of "Image:NameofImage.jpg". To use the image in an article, link to it by writing this full article name in a double brackets wiki-link, like this: [[Image:NameofImage.jpg]]

That, of course, might make the image be displayed too big, and not where you want it. MediaWiki code is capable of auto-formatting image files of any size into a standard display size, a "thumbnail". To make one, just add "|thumb" before the last double brackets: [[Image:NameofImage.jpg|thumb]] You can still click on the thumbnail to go straight to the full-sized image file.

Thumbnails are also good because they let you write a caption underneath the image. You do this by just writing another vertical line after "thumb", then your caption, like this: [[Image:NameofImage.jpg|thumb|"your caption"]]

You can also change what side of the article the image is located on. If you just type "thumb" for five or six images in a row within an article, they're all automatically on the right-hand side and this can look a bit repetitive. So vary it up if there are many images by moving the images from side to side a bit. You do this by simply writing "[[Image:NameofImage.jpg|thumb|left]]" or just [[Image:NameofImage.jpg|left]]. Besides "left" you could also write "right" if you want it lined up on the right, or even "center" if you want the image centered (usually you won't center it though).

You can also change the display size of images including thumbnailed images. Just write something like "|250px" after "thumb"; the number (which is the size you want) and "px", with no spaces (you might want to play around a bit to find a good size, i.e. 100 px, or 250 px, etc. etc.)

Thus, you could have an image which is: [[Image:NameofImage.jpg|thumb|left|250px|"your caption"]], meaning that it is a thumbnail of your image with "your caption" underneath, set on the right side of the page, at size 250px.

You can't thumbnail an image that is used in an infobox.

Montage Boxes

When displaying more than two images side-by-side in an article, using a montage box will keep them nice and orderly. Here is the relevant code:

{{MontageBox
|float   = 
|columns = 
|title   = 
|colour  = 
|image1  = 
|image2  = 
|image3  = 
|image4  = 
|image5  = 
|image6  = 
|image7  = 
|image8  = 
|image9  = 
|image10 =
|caption =
}}
{{-}}

For "float", just put "left". Depending on your needs, 3 or 4 should suffice for columns. The title can just be the name of the article; nothing fancy. You don't have to worry about color and caption. After "image#", just code for image insertion like you normally would. More image slots can be added as needed, but 10 is really more than enough for most conceivable purposes.

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to reorder images using this method. That is if you decided that "image 5" would be better suited as the first image in the lineup, you would have to manually move it to "image1" and then shift all subsequent images down. (What a pain! If you're familiar with a better method we can implement, please share.)

Here's an example of the Montage Box in action. Note how, with columns set to "4", it automatically drops to a second row starting with image5.

Evangelion Unit-03
Suspended in transit.
The transport aircraft carrying Eva-03 flying into cumulonimbus clouds.
Infected Eva-03 struggles to break from its restraints.
Approaching in silhouette. Note the unusually long arms.
The super-elasticity of the parasitized Eva-03's arms.
Eva-03's head flying apart. (Note the eye and jaw.)
Eva-01 removing Eva-03's chest plate.
Arm with exposed flesh and bone.


The 32 KB page size limit

MediaWiki pages can only be 32 KB long before they run into length-limitation issues: you can actually make an article longer than 32 KB, but it will strain the ability of the page to display on some computers. The way to find out about this is simple: when a page is over 32 KB long, when you try to add something new to it, instead of instantly making the change, a warning will pop up saying "caution this page is over 32 KB, are you sure you want to add more?", etc. You can add more to it if you really want to. If the article is "finished" and say 33 KB long, we might just leave it like that.

However, for a particularly long article filled with a great deal of information, we have to split up the article into several smaller sub-articles branching off from the main page.

Administrators have to worry about this, you newbies do not. If you see the warning that an article is over 32 KB, please inform an administrator, and they'll figure out what to do with it.

Where to go from here

You can start editing at any time. However, as soon as you've finished this please head over to Rules and Regulations and read through everything there.