Help:Water Cooler (all)

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This is the Water Cooler (all) page which lists all topics for easy viewing. Go to the water cooler to view a list of the Water Cooler divisions, or click the edit link above the section you'd like to comment in. To view a list of all recent revisions to this page, click the history link above and follow the on-screen directions.

Water cooler gossip

Welcome to the water cooler. This set of pages is used to discuss the technical issues, policies, and operations of MyWikiBiz, and is divided into six water cooler sections. Please use the table below to find the most appropriate section to post in, or post in the miscellaneous section. You can view all water cooler sections at once here. The water cooler is not a place to make lasting comments as inactive discussions are archived. Please sign and date your post (by typing ~~~~ or clicking the signature icon in the edit toolbar). Template:-

Water cooler sections
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To announce things that don't fit the Community bulletin board or Announcements

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To discuss existing and proposed policies

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To discuss technical issues, including semantic tagging.

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To discuss new proposals that are not policy related.

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To post requests for assistance not covered by the Help desk.

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To post messages that do not fit into any other category


ERB Notification

An Editorial Review Board policy that explains how copyright protections are provided to contributing authors, along with Centiare's semantic promotional capabilities, has been posted here. Snerfling 17:39, 18 January 2007 (PST)

Entity Relational Tags

The entity (government) relational (rollup) tags are ready for use. (Since there'll always be additions & modifications, I won't say finished.) If you start at the United States, you can drill down into the respective states, counties, cities, districts (school, sanitation, etc), organizations (little league, etc), departments (state fish & game), etc.

Note also the attribute names for each entity, along with the different categories. The use of modular names for relations, attributes & categories provides, in essence, a 3x3 matrix. This means one can ask very powerful, and highly granular, queries to get detailed & linked results.

I will be writing up a technical overview explaining how these tags work, but I figured people might be interested in using them immediately. Snerfling 12:31, 19 January 2007 (PST)

Greg's Interview

In case anyone missed it, Greg was interviewed by the Associated Press regarding his views about Microsoft and paid editing at Wikipedia. Follow the link here to read the full story. Snerfling 13:58, 24 January 2007 (PST)

Greg's appearance on G4 television

Centiare's co-developer will be making his first national TV appearance -- LIVE -- Thursday night, January 25th. He will be on Attack of the Show at approximately 7:10 PM Eastern. This is broadcast on the G4 network -- proudly ranking # 57 out of the 64 major basic cable networks.

Satellite DirecTV Channel 354 Dish Network Channel 191 or 515

Cable Verizon FiOS Channel 320 Comcast Channel 136 Click! Channel 163 Time Warner Cable Channel 105 Cablevision Channel 175

I hope you'll join me by watching! We'll be discussing the various problems associated with commercial participation within Wikipedia. (I hope to plug about 5 or 6 times, too.)

For more about G4, there's always... Wikipedia's article about G4.

--MyWikiBiz 05:30, 25 January 2007 (PST)

To watch a YouTube clip of the appearance right now, go here. --MyWikiBiz 11:02, 29 January 2007 (PST)
A more permanent link to the video is housed at the G4 website. Enjoy. -- MyWikiBiz 10:18, 25 April 2009 (PDT)

Front page news?

Personally, I think this should go on Centiare's front page for at least a couple of weeks. We need to show our visitors that they are on a site that's already getting page views that are competitive with other major business, news, and academic sites. Our users need to tell their friends about Centiare, to keep our traffic figure moving up, which will only help their own content get more attention. --MyWikiBiz 20:08, 28 January 2007 (PST)

Recent Centiare traffic stats, versus the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Small Business Administration, the Baltimore Sun, and Dun & Bradstreet


In case anyone is interested, there's a new parser function called <embed> that has been enabled that allows for a greater range of external applications to be run within Centiare. You can read more about it here. Snerfling 03:09, 13 February 2007 (PST)


I don't know if this is really news per say but I've done some investigation into squidoo and it looks to be ~20-30% similar to centiare in functionality but doesn't really target small business's or individuals. It seems a little like digg actually with user created internet tidbits.

Having a decently similar nature I plugged the site into alexa and found this. The 804th most popular site on the web! What I want to know is how they jumped from 50,000 to 1,500 in one day back in late 2005 and how we can do the same. Garrett 20:24, 14 March 2007 (PDT)

I'm the last guy to ask about web traffic stats - I just stick to the tech stuff. Greg, on the other hand, has become quite the expert. I'd be interested to hear his perspective. Snerfling 20:38, 14 March 2007 (PDT)
And I'm apparently the last guy at the Water Cooler to see that questions are being directed to me. Sorry. Squidoo's meteoric climb is likely explained by the fact that it's owned/operated by Seth Godin, who was already an Internet guru ("permission marketing") with a huge following. On December 8th, 2005, he blogged to his audience only the words "It's ready" and the link to Squidoo. The rest is history. Helps to be famous and THEN launch a website. Though, it certainly hasn't worked for Jimbo Wales and, has it? --MyWikiBiz 15:17, 18 April 2007 (PDT)

Dynamic Content

Everyone should take the chance to review some of the new directory listings that have been added for gadget/widget developers. These listings include not only the firms, but also profile some of the gadgets/widgets they've made available at Google, Widgetbox, etc. I believe these types of scripts & extensions are the easiest & most effective way to add dynamic, useful & compelling content to Centiare.

While it is true that Web sites do not benefit from the number of links associated with any particular widget/gadget (ie if 5,000 copies are downloaded, Google does not count 5,000 links), the directory listing itself is still picked up in reference to its semantic tag and any external links bookmarked as a result of users wanting to re-visit the Centiare listing to read and/or use the information. Snerfling 13:07, 15 May 2007 (PDT)

System Upgrade

Centiare is now live with Mediawiki 1.10 and SemanticMediawiki 0.7! This is a major upgrade with a significant structural changes to both program files and database tables. It will be interesting to see how many other wikis are able to make the transition. Two points of interest:

  1. If you're using FireFox, you may need to clear your cache to have the newest javascript factboxes and ASK query reports render properly. To clear, just click on the Tools tab, then 'Clear Private Data';
  2. ASK can now "page" through additional results past any initial limit. (System default is 50, but it can be set lower - see documentation). However, in order to see additional results, the page variable has to be explicitly set.
    That is, while we can still use attribute:={{PAGENAME}}, where pagename=address, for single page results, any secondary listings need actual hard-coded references eg attribute:=address, etc.

Let me know what you think of the system, including any performance improvements (or degradations), semantic features, ASK, etc. Snerfling 17:51, 28 May 2007 (PDT)

Wikipedia's loss, MyWikiBiz's gain

Once again, we see something unceremoniously deleted from Wikipedia, finding a new home here on MyWikiBiz. I hope they have more success here than there! -- MyWikiBiz 09:25, 23 October 2008 (PDT)


Legal notes

Note that persons within Directory listings using infobox_person should provide contact & reference information. That because even if they're dead, by definition, if they're within the Directory namespace, that means they have commercial value; ergo there should be contact info + reference information.

For example, Carl Sagan has a link to his estate that generates licensing revenue from his name/works/image. OTOH, Newton is public domain, so he shouldn't be listed under Directory - rather, he should be included within Main page articles.

I guess we (interested?) could create another infobox_person for Main page entries - ie no longer any commercial rights. There's a lot of stuff in infobox_person that could be cleaned up/removed to create a new version for non-commercial public figures. Centiare 12:30, 3 December 2006 (PST)

Spiders don't like stubs

I have been reading a number of Google policy pages and various SEO blog posts, and they all seem to agree on something: Spider/bot readers that index web sites will deprecate the entire site if they find a lot of "empty" pages, pages with very little information, pages with substantially similar content, and pages with no outbound links. It's been a common habit here on Centiare to plug in short stubs that might only mirror the title of the article, as in the cases of March 9 and February 11. Apparently, for search engine optimization, we're not doing ourselves any favors by doing this sort of thing with red-linked pages. It is so much better (I gather) if we take the time to make pages more like March 10. So, may I call for two things from readers of this posting?

  1. Stop it. Refrain from making pithy little stubs when you find yourself making a wiki-linked page.
  2. Fix it. Hit "Random article" in the left sidebar 10 times, and when an "empty" page comes up (usually, they are Main Space pages), add some meaningful content to it. Wikipedia is fair game to copy, because our Main Space is also released under GFDL.

Thanks for considering this! --MyWikiBiz 15:13, 12 March 2007 (PDT)

I concur, MediaWiki made this page special for a reason. A red link or no link is better than a dead-end link.--OmniMediaGroup 16:59, 12 March 2007 (PDT)
I'm wondering if we should add date tags within articles that reference dates and then run ASK queries from the date entry side. Most of the pages displayed in the dead-end report have links to them; it's the outbound links that are missing. Rather than manually create links back out, ASK is great for automating this task if the respective inbound pages have been appropriately tagged. Snerfling 17:24, 12 March 2007 (PDT)
Date listings like December 20 are hard-coded, so it's a real problem trying to add tags at the report level. That is, each of the events, and person births & deaths should have respective date tags at the source level.
Then, one could merely run an ASK by year to get detailed days, or run an ASK by day to get the respective years. This would solve a lot of dead end page problems, and begin to address some of the WP hard-coding problems. I'm wondering if a bot could be written to automate this task, or outsource it to India. (Or just leave it alone for now.) Snerfling 17:42, 12 March 2007 (PDT)



Hi, the starting year of an activity is marked as required - but I don't have that information for many businesses where I have the basic data to be put online. Also many companies here in town would probably like to be in the directory, but for now don't have e-mail and website. How to deal with these? Thanks! --SabineCretella 03:54, 13 January 2007 (PST)

In cases where you have allowed for a semantic attribute for which you have no data, you have two simple choices:
  1. You can leave the data field blank, and the attribute will not render in the page. (Probably your best choice, if you anticipate that one day you will have the data, and you'll come back and complete it.)
  2. You can remove the attribute altogether. It won't hurt any infobox to remove an attribute element. (Probably a good choice, if you believe that the attribute is irrelevant and/or that you'll never obtain that data point.)
I hope that this helps answer your question! --MyWikiBiz 06:26, 13 January 2007 (PST)
Sabine is referring to the template itself where 'founded' is a required element. As you say, one can still choose whether or not to use a semantic attribute within any of the templates/infoboxes. In this case, founded is required because potential customers typically want to be able to determine the number of years an entity has been in business. I would suggest that Sabine use a general date if a specific date is not available at this time. Centiare 07:14, 13 January 2007 (PST)
Whoops, I forgot that in some Infoboxes, certain elements are required, or rather, even in their absence of data the field label will still show up. Yes, it seems that either "living with" the empty appearance of the label, or filling in an estimated date, are the only solutions (other than Centiare modifying the template to not require this field). --MyWikiBiz 07:44, 13 January 2007 (PST)
I reviewed the infobox trying to recall why founded was a required field. I initially considered changing it to variable, but then remembered that we definitely want a consistent record of the number of years in business for all listed entities. Centiare 08:07, 13 January 2007 (PST)

Semantic Categories

How would I go about adding "by Category" to the ASK query on Directory:KJ Kitchens? Thanks---OmniMediaGroup 08:23, 19 January 2007 (PST)

Just add a category filter at the start of the query. In this case, it would look something like this:
<ASK Mainlabel="Article" Header="show" Link="all">
[[Category:Soup Recipes]]
[[Page Of::*|Section]]
[[Page Of::<q>[[{{FULLPAGENAME}}]]</q>]]
Since your present recipes are all soups, the query won't change the current ASK results. However, once you add a non-soup recipe, you'll see that the query will only show recipes tagged with the soup recipe category. Snerfling 09:17, 19 January 2007 (PST)


If I gave an article a stupid title is there a "move page" possibility like on wikipedia?

Just for sysops. We've got the system locked down pretty tight to avoid the type of mayhem being enjoyed at WP. I've got some experience in these types of open boards, so that's why we established the non-disposable email account requirement as well. An ounce of preventation ... Snerfling 17:55, 3 February 2007 (PST)

Movie Tags

OK, here's our movie MyWikiBiz:ACR workspace - who wants to start? Let's use just a regular bulleted list until we reach some type of consensus. At that point, I'll create the actual tags, provide definitions/usage policy, and run some demo ASK queries. Once we have a basic standard, then anyone else ever creating movie info can follow the same methods. Check out Attribute:Movie Title - this will serve as a useful reference point. Snerfling 16:54, 13 February 2007 (PST)

Some good tags would be

  • Director - already have
  • Starring
  • Producer
  • Awards

I don't think movies qualify as "main space" as they are owned unless under pd.

I don't want my minks theater to get buried if a main space "nosferatu" is created. Should I just create a Directory:Xfilm, transfer the info, and call it a day or can I redirect to my pages? Garrett 17:45, 13 February 2007 (PST)

You are correct - only public domain IP belongs in the Main space. Otherwise, it should be treated as a property page of the rightful legal owner. That isn't to say that one can't create an IMDB type of application - it just means that it can only use PD images/information.
Now, if something is rightly classified as PD Main space (PD/MS), there's nothing you or I can do about it - that's what NPOV is all about. (And, we can't redirect PD/MS to Directory/User pages either - that's cheating and will be reversed.) However, to offer an olive branch towards various warring factions competing over certain subjects, we've got MyWikiBiz:Aficionados.
In your case, just like boxing, you can tag both a Relation:Subject Interest & Relation:Contributor To. In the case of Nosferatu, you could post up a stub in the MS, list your interests as movies, tag your full-on Nosferatu contribution, and you'd have a nice link back to your protected Directory listing(s). Snerfling 11:58, 14 February 2007 (PST)

The 50 Pound Sack of Potatoes

So, I just got home from the warehouse club where I got a great deal on a 50 pound bag of potatoes. I boot up my computer and go do a Google search for (recipe potatoes ingredient). Coming in number three: KJ Kitchens Famous Cheezy Potato Casserole. OK I take the bait and click the link. "Centiare, what is this new internet site!" So I scroll down the page, looking over the recipe, and I get to the bottom and see "Recipe Ingredient potatoes" with that cute little magnifying glass. Well I have 50 pounds of potatoes to use up so maybe there are more recipes using potatoes. WOW, one click on that magnifying glass and I get a list. A wonderful list. Recipes contributed by:

  • Garrett's Grillin' Greats
  • Snerfling Does Snacks
  • KJ Kitchens
  • MyWikiBiz CheezWizBiz

One simple Attribute!!!

OK, I was trying to make a point...

I'm a big fan of CelebrityXYZ. This celebrity wears many hats in the entertainment business.

  • Actor
  • Director
  • Producer
  • Screenwriter
  • Musician
  • Singer

All these would be great Attributes. Now I'm the fan who wants to see all the articles about CelebrityXYZ and I can't remember ALL the Attributes that might apply.

Specific attributes that apply to a single area of Centiare are fine, but I think we also have to have some more general attributes like "Celebrity Name" so that if CelebrityXYZ has an article about directing a movie in one article and in another article they are acting in a movie, a fan (Centiare user) can just query Celebrity Name and get all articles.--OmniMediaGroup 10:56, 14 February 2007 (PST)

Can You Handle the Truth?

OMG, as usual, you're completely correct. More correct than you might think, so I guess it's time to spring a little secret: Relations can work both ways ie the Inverse of each other. For example, Relation:Capital Of is the inverse of Relation:Has Capital, and vice versa.

So far, we haven't really pursued two-way relations because they can be somewhat redundant. Besides, MyWikiBiz:ASK queries can be run at the target pages to produce, in effect, a mirror entry. One-way relations work great when we have a pyramid structure roll-ups, like Relation:Page Of for books @ KJ Kitchens or political subdivisions like Relation:State Located In at California.

For movies however, we have equal weight between people & movies (more of a 'box-like' structure), so we do need two-way relations like Actor In at an actor's page and Has Actor at the movie page. If we don't use inverse relations, then one would need to run an ASK query at either location to get all other relations to that page, BUT they would be dependent on all the information being there. Make sense?

So, IMHO, here's what needs to happen: I went through IMDB and listed all the respective info sections they have for both people & movies. Before I go and create a bunch of semantic tags, I need both of you to understand the technical issues (described above) & get on board with their utilization. I've listed them at MyWikiBiz:Entertainment Annotation in the same order as they appear at IMDB for us to discuss. Snerfling 14:18, 14 February 2007 (PST)

Simple semantic search

Fact - Cher is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and entertainer. Among her many accomplishments in music, television, and film, she has won an Oscar, a Grammy, an Emmy and three Golden Globe Awards.

  • Question 1 - If I were doing research on Cher, what values would I enter in the Simple semantic search to retrieve ALL the Centiare articles that mention her name? Is this a semantic possibility?
  • Question 2 - What would a properly formatted info box contain for Cher?

Ow, my head hurts - why do you have to ask such hard questions? Why don't we set up a page for Cher and see how it works? We have a basic Template:infobox_Person and Template:infobox_Personal (vital stats) for all individuals. You can see an example of the former at Directory:Marilyn Monroe.
As to entertainment credits, we had thought about creating a stand-alone infobox for celebrities (to be used in conjunction with the two above), but held off until we had determined the proper hooks. This would be a good time to go through the Entertainment Annotation tags and see if they are working in a way that will answer your query.
If we get that settled, then perhaps we can design/meld some sort of infobox to make the presentation look pretty. Would you like to look around WP a little bit to see what they're using? Snerfling 07:54, 17 February 2007 (PST)
I want to make a suggestion. We really ought to create an Attribute that we call "Common Name". This will have boundless functionality, for dealing with people with legal names like Reginald Dwight, or Reginald Kenneth Dwight, or Sir Elton Hercules John -- we can all agree his "common name" is certainly "Elton John". Same goes for Sandra ("Sandy" to her friends) Annette Bullock -- her "common name" is "Sandra Bullock". Same for the guy born William Jefferson Blythe III -- who has a "common name" of "Bill Clinton". This would solve, in an easy way, the "Cher" dilemma.
The neat thing, too, is that this goes beyond celebrities. "Ethanoic acid", while an accurate scientific name, is more recognized by the "common name" of "acetic acid". "Sodium chloride" has a "common name" of "salt" or "table salt". A compound of any of 16 different "iron oxides" and "iron hydroxides" has a "common name" of "rust".
If we got our editors and users accustomed to clarifying anything the least bit ambiguous about their content or their searches of content with this "Common Name" Attribute, we could save everyone a lot of grief searching only for First Names, Last Names, or Scientific Names -- all of which are valid attributes, of course -- if they would just have an easier time searching for "Common Name" Attributes like "Bill Clinton", "Cher", and "rust".
If there seems to be consensus around this, I'll be happy to get the Attribute started, and fill in at least 10 articles in need of a "Common Name". --MyWikiBiz 09:43, 22 February 2007 (PST)
Excellent points. I just created Attribute:Common_Name & Attribute:Scientific_Name. You can follow the links to the some of the placeholder data. OMG should be able to search for all information related to Directory:Cher using this attribute.
As far as personal information, we already have Infobox Person & Infobox Personal that can handle standard information. We also have Entertainment Annotation to record & report on any specific nominations, awards, categories, etc. Snerfling 10:16, 22 February 2007 (PST)

Book ACR Tags

Category Suggestions

  • Books
  • Book Reviews

Attribute and Annotation Suggestions

  • Book Title:=The Wisdom of Crowds
  • Author Of::James Surowiecki
  • Date:=2005
  • ISBN:=0385721706
  • Publisher Of::First Anchor Books
  • Reviewed By:=
Great list - see book ACRs categorized here; note use of relations for authors/publishers. This is similar to movie actors/producers in that ASK queries will x-reference publications-authors-publishers. Snerfling 12:12, 22 February 2007 (PST)

Medical Tags

OK, here's our medical MyWikiBiz:ACR workspace. Let's use just a regular bulleted list until we reach some type of consensus. At that point, I'll create the actual tags, provide definitions/usage policy, and run some demo ASK queries. Once we have a basic standard, then anyone else ever creating medical info can follow the same methods. Snerfling 17:31, 13 February 2007 (PST)

How do our Attributes and Relations stack up?

Reviewing some of the other largest wikis that have deployed Semantic Mediawiki, I have noticed a somewhat consistent pattern -- several of the largest of these so-called "semantic" wikis are barely utilizing Attributes and Relations.

BibleWiki (Bible) 178,876 2 7
Archiplanet (Architecture) 121,256 22 8
HumanCell (Biology) 51,233 0 1
WikiCompany (Business Directory) 23,378 8 22
Wikible (Bible) 7,496 11 30
OntoWorld (Semantic Web) 6,450 302 402
CaseWiki (Case Western Reserve) 5,361 10 25
Centiare (Free Directory) 4,049 154 23
SourceryForge (Occult Knowledge) 4,024 1 24

As Centiare grows, we should probably keep an eye on not just our number of pages, but on the number of our Attributes and Relations -- not to mention how frequently they're being coded into article pages. --MyWikiBiz 14:52, 21 February 2007 (PST)

One reason the other SMW sites don't have as many ACR tags is that they are primarily focused on single topics. Another issue to consider is tag proliferation, even at a limited level, which is characterized by under-utilized ACRs. That is, similar tag names are created in an attempt to provide differentiation in lieu of categories, so the actual usage per tag is low. And yet one more thing is many of the ACRs are red-linked ie there aren't any actual page value assigned to the tags.
The true test of effective use of tags is topic specificity, commonality (within groupings), category differentiation, and actual page values. It's a sure sign things are out of whack if any of these characteristics appear to be out of balance. Snerfling 17:42, 21 February 2007 (PST)

Friends Relations

Could we add the profile pick of each friend in with the friends semantic box? It would look cool and classy if we did it right. Garrett 18:57, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Not sure what you mean. Could you mock up a simple wikitable that illustrates what you'd like the end result to look like? Snerfling 07:32, 6 March 2007 (PST)
Garrett, do you mean "picture" when you say "pick"? That's what I'm guessing. Seems to me, to make that work, the profile picture would have to be tagged in some uniform fashion AND the MediaWiki software would have to be able to render images in ASK tables. Sounds challenging. Might be something for an "eventual To Do" list. --MyWikiBiz 07:49, 6 March 2007 (PST)
Exactly what I was going for; but a million other things need to happen first.
I say create a Directory:Centiare/Goals and write short, medium, and long term goals for we what to accomplish with centiare. Writing goals down helps to materialize them better. Stupid Oprah - I should really find something to do after Jeopardy. Garrett 08:33, 6 March 2007 (PST)
Regardless of the time frame, the goal is the same: increase members & contributions (main space + directory listings). So the question then becomes "what is the best way to accomplish this?" It appears the conclusion boils down to brute force marketing (BFM).
While BFM comes in many flavors, its essential objective is to increase market awareness. The techniques listed so far include YouTube stunts, sincere letter writing campaigns, and Google search references. Are there any others that we haven't considered? Snerfling 08:46, 6 March 2007 (PST)
There are lots of other ways to market Centiare. Create a blog. Write current "hot" news stories to draw in searchers. Post sincere comments on other blogs and message boards. Create a MySpace page (already done -- it's not generating any heat). Convince popular bloggers to write a story about us (you know, that damn Pandia article is one of our top inbound feeds). Convince popular journalists to write a story about us. Set up LiteBrite sets in metro areas -- er, scratch that. --MyWikiBiz 19:50, 6 March 2007 (PST)


Centiare supports a full range of audio, video, widget, social bookmarking, etc extensions that can be included within Directory listings. Here's a brief list and one in action:

<ASK format="ul"> [[Page Of::MyWikiBiz:Extensions]] </ASK>

<sharethis />

Spam filter blocks my amazon associates

This is a bit irksome, could you please unspam amazon. I'm having trouble displaying the problem as the filter keeps blocking me. Garrett 22:06, 5 April 2007 (PDT)

Okay, this is getting a bit weird. I reported the same problem to the Grand Poobah a couple of days ago, and he said, "Errr, it seems to work for me." So I tried again, and I did NOT get the threatening "spam link blocked" message. It worked (Liz Cohen page). I would just "try again", Garrett, and if it still doesn't work, hopefully Karl will look into this a bit more. Maybe we could/should contact Amazon -- surely they had enough Mediawiki wikis linking to them before, to have seen a problem ticket at some point. --MyWikiBiz 05:56, 6 April 2007 (PDT)

Centiare doesn't support kanoodle advertising

They give me this piece of adcode here

<SCRIPT language="JavaScript1.1" type="text/javascript" src=""></SCRIPT>

I've surrounded it with both <embed> and <adsense> but to no avail. Could you create a new <kanoodle></kanoodle> extension like you did for adsense?

Infobox width

Could we decide on a universal vertical infobox width. My sharethis box can only look right on either the personal or business but not both <embed> <script src="" type="text/javascript"> </script> <script type="text/javascript"> _uacct = "UA-38898916-1"; urchinTracker(); </script> </embed> Garrett 17:29, 23 April 2007 (PDT)

I don't have any particular opinion; does it need to be standardized? Snerfling 20:42, 23 April 2007 (PDT)
I'd like to have my sharethis box and any other supplemental box the same width so it looks nice throughout the site if I put it above or below the box - maybe a 20em?

Garrett 06:56, 24 April 2007 (PDT)

Heads Up

This is just a heads up but if you want infoboxes to render properly for internet explorer within html colors create one infobox for all the boxes you want to include and

{| align=right |- | |}

the whole thing

Garrett 14:03, 28 April 2007 (PDT)

Is this per what you did with Stetson Hats? That looks flashy and nice, for a consumer product! --MyWikiBiz 20:00, 28 April 2007 (PDT)
I just wanted 7% off my prom fedora so I created the article in like 20 minutes :)! Garrett 22:26, 28 April 2007 (PDT)


JA: The LaTeX module does not appear to be loaded. Jon Awbrey 05:14, 17 May 2007 (PDT)

You are correct. I briefly looked into months ago, but since we didn't have anybody using the <math> function, I sort of put it on the back-burner. Do you know whether or not specific PHP modules have to be loaded (that aren't part of the std release), or is it something specific to the parser function that can easily be configured? Snerfling 06:58, 17 May 2007 (PDT)
JA: No, that's all I know about it. I've pretty much exceeded my teΧnical abilities just trying to spell "LaTeΧ". Jon Awbrey 07:10, 17 May 2007 (PDT)
Math has been installed and is working properly. Snerfling 19:52, 3 June 2007 (PDT)
Additional math rendering capabilities have been enabled. See Help:Displaying a formula for more information. Example:
<math>\sqrt{a^2+b^2}</math> produces


Along with the new math functions, hieroglyphics have also been enabled. You can refer to the meta to get a complete list of images. Example:
<hiero>A1</hiero> produces

Snerfling 06:56, 6 June 2007 (PDT)

SubPage Titles

The {{DISPLAYTITLE:xxx}} magic word has been enabled along with a minor hack of the MediaWiki display module. Used in conjunction with MW's built-in sub-page navigational "breadcrumb" feature, this magic word helps render a cleaner page look and eliminates directory path creep.

For an example of this capability, take a look here. Please note that with this function, wikilinks need to be referenced from URLs as page titles can now be rendering separately from actual page names. Snerfling 19:52, 3 June 2007 (PDT)

Link Search

The WP special page that displayed external links was recently released as a MediaWiki extension and has now been installed. Snerfling 15:49, 5 June 2007 (PDT)

Source code tagging

Hello, I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this but I was wondering if there are any tags available on Centiare which convert text to the style encountered in a computer compiler such as found here at this link. The tags that are used to do this on Wikipedia are: <source lang = "cpp"></source> and converts from standard writing text to the text found in a C++ or Java compiler such as Visual Studio which highlights different aspects in different colors. Any help in this matter is appreciated thanks, Derek Elder 20:05, 9 October 2007 (PDT).


Extensions Wanted


It sure would be nice to know if Centiare could accomodate the following extensions, which would be amazingly useful for the right kinds of Centiare users:

  • The Google Analytics embedder, so users could keep track of traffic statistics to their favorite articles. I'm curious if multiple users can code the same article, and also how button_bold.png

Bold textit "appears" on the page (if at all).

  • The YouTube video embedder. Video would really make Centiare pop. (Don't know if this kills the server space, or not, though.)

These are two that my sister and I thought would be really interesting to offer, but I'm sure there are a half-dozen more that would be just as neat. --MyWikiBiz 15:20, 10 December 2006 (PST)

These types of simple extensions are very easy to add. Go ahead and put together a list of others that you would like to see. As for the two above, youTube is ok, but analytics doesn't appear to be working - you can check the author's own site as well. Do you have an example where it's working? Centiare 07:38, 11 December 2006 (PST)
No, I don't have any example of the Google Analytics for MediaWiki working anywhere. Just saw it on their list, and went ga-ga, thinking of the opportunity of its use. It looks like this post suggests that you'd have to add it to one of the MediaWiki "skins" to get it to work, but presumably, only within that skin. --MyWikiBiz 08:13, 11 December 2006 (PST)
That's a modification to the core extension that requires a hack to the underlying MediaWiki code. You never, ever want to do that. Well, maybe in extreme circumstances where one knows exactly what's happening and controls the output. I've done a few to suit very specific purposes, but they're tested extensively and well documented. You definitely don't want to do something like that for some generic hook extension.
I'm going to go ahead and remove the extension+call. If you see it working anywhere, we can go ahead an add it at a later date. In the future, we should probably verify an extension is working before adding to a wish list or installing it (my fault - I assumed you had been using it.) Centiare 08:33, 11 December 2006 (PST)


Here is the Wiki editor (newer version) that I had installed in Wikipedia.

Just installed in Centiare and it seems to work as is. Great for wiki lists and tables. Also strips html code.

Wondering if this could be customized to add the script (function)

To create: [[Directory:Subject|Subject]]

when Subject is highlighted. --OmniMediaGroup 06:16, 22 December 2006 (PST)

I just added both User:Centiare/monobook.js and User:Centiare/wikEd.js and it seems to work nicely - I'm seeing all sorts of interesting edit features as I type this comment. Why don't you go ahead and include wikEd.js to your User page and let me know if it works for you as well
PS I followed the same procedures trying to get navpop to work, but a quick Google search revealed that no one outside of MWF controlled servers (projects) appeared to be able to get it to work. (It works fine for me at WP when signed in under my account.) Centiare 07:17, 22 December 2006 (PST).
I went ahead and loaded wikEd.js for both of you - hope you don't mind. Let me know if it looks like it's working ok. Centiare 08:41, 22 December 2006 (PST)
DOH! Now I get what you want. Let me look into it - if it can't be configured via monobook.js, then it would require a hack to the underlying wikEd.js. (Which, incidentally, I went back and removed since it's being externally served for now.) Centiare 10:18, 22 December 2006 (PST)


Speaking of extensions, which Google maps did you want to include to pinpoint your address from lat/long? The Yahoo map link from MWB looks like it's correctly identifying your address. (The Yahoo map ID is '4', whereas Google is just reading the coords - can you find their option code?) Btw, your pop-up ad appears to interfering with the page rendering. Centiare 08:08, 11 December 2006 (PST)
Google Zoom Level is discussed as a "trial and error" right here. Was your question meant to say, which (of Map, Satellite, or Hybrid) form of Google Maps did I want to include? Actually, what do you mean "include" -- as in, an actual map rendering in the Infobox? I don't know if we need to go there yet. --MyWikiBiz 08:26, 11 December 2006 (PST)
Any of them. The link to the Yahoo map shows your location. Of course, we can get the same thing from Google from your address, but that sort of defeats the purpose of the coordinates. As to placement, we can provide links or we can embed (like the youTube extension). Centiare 08:37, 11 December 2006 (PST)

Citation templates

I would like to see Karl enable the 10 citation templates that are found at Wikipedia. I believe that these 10 should cover any attempt any user should have to factually cite and article or Directory page. I currently updated Directory:Gregory J. Kohs with a {{cite news}}, but it isn't rendering. --MyWikiBiz 10:08, 2 January 2007 (PST)

Done. Please see MyWikiBiz:Citation_templates - let me know if there's anything else you need. Centiare 11:32, 2 January 2007 (PST)

Gadgets and Widget

Is anyone aware of any MediaWiki extensions to display Google Gadgets or Widgets?

Here is a Gadget example at

Here is a Widget example at --OmniMediaGroup 09:28, 6 February 2007 (PST)

You mean like these? Snerfling 13:30, 6 February 2007 (PST)

Fundamental Questions/Anecdotes/Critiques

I like this whole centaire thing. The general idea is solid. The businesses, personal pages, and places (BPP) to some extent are all tailor made for "the free directory" I personally believe in the hive mentality to an extent but realize serious restrictions need to be placed so the hive doesn't implode.

Businesses, Personal pages & Places

  • Everything besides BPP is found on wikipedia with a 5 year headstart and tens of millions of edits. I think a good policy for non-BPP is a brief two/three paragraph summary lifted from the opening section of a wikipedia article and cleaned up/sourced. (i.e. I am a boxer, In the future there will hopefully be thousands of other boxers, there should be a central page).
Nothing at Wikipedia can be used as a citation reference (at any level), nor can contributions be monetized (other than embedded Amazon links within referenced article citations) by the copyright holder(s). That means there are significant incentives for contributors to re-purpose content in order to enjoy the benefits of their work. Our objective is to allow users to Protect & Promote their intellectual property.
You are absolutely correct about personal interests. As I indicated regarding surfing, anyone tagging an activity/subject as a personal interest can be queried from the subject article; boxing would be no different. However, since Main space articles must adhere to NPOV (which means no link spam, etc), there is little incentive for authors to contribute. The real play is to develop content within protected directory/user space - this is where virtual communities can be created. Snerfling 12:33, 1 February 2007 (PST)
Then why not scrap all but the essentials? Have an article on Poker because people will have that as a common interest but Chip Tricks - c'mon that is completely superfluous and ripped from a completely superfluous wiki page. No one can own "chip tricks" or "delaware" or "what have you" creating a fundamental conflict with centiare's purpose. However, Paramount Vantage or Craig Brewster the director could easily own "black snake moan" the new sam jackson flick even though it's obscure and trivial. Garrett 17:33, 2 February 2007 (PST)
While we don't want to control what people include in the Main space, we do want to limit the edit wars, link spam, etc. that results from attempting to shoehorn NPOV. (Like your recent experience at WP regarding the story on Greg & Centiare. LOL) Ultimately, we want the market to decide. That is, if someone wants to market intellectual property, would they create a main space article on Chip Tricks or Magic? I think people will learn - the market is a wonderful disciplinarian. Snerfling 17:59, 2 February 2007 (PST)


  • Can you legally display copyrighted images without a fair use tag?
Copyrighted content needs to be controlled by the copyright holder.

Web 3.0

  • this site promotes the POV so here I go. You're business model is flawed. The Ads on centiare weaken the overall feel immensely putting the site dangerously close to a geocite/xanga. Instead, go on attack of the show a few more times, get interviewed my a magazine. Once a base of 50,000 (just throwing out a number) members join charge 4.99 for a personal page and 19.99 for a business. You're selling this site, make it cool to have a page. Ipods are no better than roxio players but which one is cool? Exactly. Down the road I see MyWikiBiz:The free Directory
Monthly billings are so Web1.0 - think Web3.0. That means transactions.
Transactions, intriging. I found a guy much smarter than me expounding this on a blog.
“I have a dream for the Web [in which computers] become capable of analyzing all the data on the Web – the content, links, and transactions between people and computers. A ‘Semantic Web’, which should make this possible, has yet to emerge, but when it does, the day-to-day mechanisms of trade, bureaucracy and our daily lives will be handled by machines talking to machines. The ‘intelligent agents’ people have touted for ages will finally materialize.” - Tim Berners-Lee (Sounds good)
TBL is spoken of in hushed tones of reverence around here. We're betting the ranch on the semantic web.

Ads are included at the discretion of users; they aren't placed there by Centiare. Snerfling 17:59, 2 February 2007 (PST)

I still think the ads look cheap. Maybe look into embedding them into the wiki deeper so they feel natural; like they've always been there.
Maybe so - ultimately, it's the users' choice. If it looks cheap, then perhaps their commercial efforts will be impacted.


  • (Again no offense) The internet is littered with the bodies of dead or mentally retarded wikis. The winner (only wikipedia so far) and losers are seperated by a very fine line. Centaire is at a point were it will either exponentially increase or falter and become a blip on I don't want to see blipage.
Neither do we.

Operating Margins

  • On to the fun stuff - Hard hitting financial questions (not to pry, just help) - Is this for-profit or non-profit? With the ads I'm assuming for profit. Servers are expensive. Hell, one image server can be 20K. Do you have venture capital supporting you? Angel investor or firm? When cash flow dries up everything dries up. At this stage centiare is still so small the servers are probably not too much of a problem but expand a few terabytes and its a different story.
Actually, bandwidth & servers are incredibly inexpensive. There's a reason the Foundation is running 50% margins.
Really, I underestimated Sun micro, oracle, the dell/hp/etcs, and Al Gore's ability to make the internet so affordable.
When non-profits make money, it's called change in net assets. (See for yourself.) So, young grasshopper, let this lesson not be lost on you as you embark upon your business career.


To conclude. I envision a facebook, wikipedia, business profile hybrid becoming a dominant force of the internet. Dominant = putting the kids through college, and of course a porsche 911 turbo with chrono package. I am an experienced wiki editor with 4 investment experience ranging from unit investment trusts to exchange traded funds (and an IQ of 139). Getting in on the ground floor of something big would be beneficial for my dream of a house in the hills and a trophy wife. I'm here to help. Garrett 15:44, 1 February 2007 (PST)

Let's talk. Snerfling 18:25, 1 February 2007 (PST)
Let's Garrett 17:33, 2 February 2007 (PST)
Either Greg or I will drop you a line Snerfling 17:59, 2 February 2007 (PST)

Fostering faster growth

Wikis are a very hot topic in the relatively small world of technologists. The vast majority of small orgnaizations and businesses simply don't have the technical expertise to create a wiki entry, much less take advantage of semantic tagging.

Want to grow faster? Make a dead-simple, fill-in-the-blanks FORM that can be used to generate a page here.

The form could even support for basic semantic relationships.

For example, if I use the form to build a page for a local organization, by simply checking a box I should be able to say "include a link on my page that my MEMBERS can click to build their own pages, and then automatically tag those pages as members of my organization."

In other words, make it EASY to grow virally. Right now your viral growth is limited; too many people and groups are "immune" because they don't have the right techy-gene.

Wygk 11:59, 5 March 2007 (PST)

I like your ideas. What type of improvements would you include/modify on these existing forms? Snerfling 12:21, 5 March 2007 (PST)
I will bet 10 to 1 that what Wygk was envisioning is something like what they have over at Our "forms" aren't really forms, they are templates. --MyWikiBiz 13:59, 5 March 2007 (PST)
What an ugly site, Centiare has next to no competition because - drum roll - Aesthetics are everything. Look at presidential elections. The taller, better looking candidate wins almost everytime. Garrett 14:19, 5 March 2007 (PST)
I clicked around on wikicompany for five minutes and it seems 99% of all companies were made by this "walden" guy not the actual firms. I think we need to extend the olive branch and nicely tell him his unprofessional looking site is futile and centiare is the way to go. Garrett 14:28, 5 March 2007 (PST)
Garrett, you know what they say about great minds thinking alike :-/ WikiCompany is poorly organized - the choice of data elements is quite removed from basic hard-copy directories. If you want to approach him, be my guest.
Now, while we're quite accomplished at criticizing other sites, what about Centiare? What is lacking that is preventing rapid growth? Is it technical? We have every feature/function as Wikipedia + enhancements. Is it marketing ie just brute force market awareness? Or is it something else more intangible? What are your suggestions? Snerfling 16:37, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Current Events

I just had an idea that might bring us a good share of traffic, if we had any assurance that Google is spidering the site on a frequent enough basis (or we ping Google manually). What if we tried to pick out some "hot" news stories that are brewing in the Wikipedia, Slashdot, and Digg communities, then write an informative article about the subject, while people are in heavy "search mode" for more information? For example, this whole "Ryan Jordan / Essjay" fiasco at Wikipedia unraveled over the course of about 7 days. How many people during that time were searching for "Ryan Jordan Wikipedia" or "Essjay Wikipedia" during that time? Think if we had an article about it on Centiare, as the story was brewing, we would have gotten a lot of hits? I think so. Next story that I see unfolding on an "obscure" topic that has the potential to "explode", I'll give it a shot. Can't hurt. --MyWikiBiz 21:23, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Greg, that's a great idea. I had considered something very similar related to tracking Yahoo's listing of most popular search terms. It would also work well in conjunction with Google's most expensive search terms. The end result would be to link these to directory listings + adsense ads, so they might be perfect for Garrett.
It sounds like your's would be linked to main space articles. If the news/current events were related to entities/persons, we could also create directory listings (stubs) in which to run aficionados tags. Snerfling 07:46, 6 March 2007 (PST)
Could there be a new type of listing like a "News:Walter Reed Fiasco" or "News:Essjay" with semtags for all the key players? For news stories would only one person be able to edit and monetize or would it be a main space thing with aficionados? Garrett 15:00, 6 March 2007 (PST)
News items should be placed within the Main space with aficionados links back to Directory listings where Adense ads, etc. can be placed. Recall that we allow non-owners to create/control directory listings until the proper owners show up.
IOW, you could create a directory listing for WR Hospital and/or Essjay, and link that back from a main space entry (ie the news would have to be an "interest" of the listee). Even better, you could research Google for the most expensive ads, note who was paying for them, create Main space entries covering those topics, and then create directory listing for the payees along with your own Adsense ads, etc. Ditto for Yahoo current events search terms ("Buzz"). Snerfling 15:26, 6 March 2007 (PST)
I just think we're going to have to be really smart and really quick to catch something BEFORE it hits the Yahoo Buzz charts. Because no matter how great a page on Anna Nicole Smith we make, it's not likely to get in the Top 10 on Google in the same week. But, if we could nab a meme like Essjay or Antonella Barba at the point where they are just ramping up? That would be the ticket. --MyWikiBiz 19:54, 6 March 2007 (PST)
Buzz is probably a little too ambitious right now. It works for WP since they're ranked almost #1 on every search, regardless of topic. Your observation about plotting what will hit big is better suited to where we're at right now. Snerfling 21:10, 6 March 2007 (PST)

Build it and they will come.

I agree with the proceeding contributions that viral marketing will drive Centiare growth and build an internet powerhouse. Part of what I would like to see Centiare become is something that WP cannot: an online community of clients/members for commercial and advocacy organisations... the author ownership of the Centiare directory page linked to MySpace-type comments/YouTube videos/Blogs could create powerful online communities. I am planning to work in new media (online delivery of news commentary via blogs and video) and believe that Centiare could be the Unified Field Theory of wiki directories, blogs, and video. Nonetheless, what I intend to do in the mean time, is get every line of business in my family company to get a directory and write an article on every issue I have expertise in. We need to build content so that when people discover Centiare, they aren't disappointed with a lack of content. I like the idea of news items to drive traffic; could Centiare expand into the same area as Topix or Newsvine? Bnagroup 16:25, 8 March 2007 (PST)

Centiare supports all sorts of embedded scripts, including Iframe, which means we can run almost any program from within Centiare. The person who's the real expert in this area is OmniMediaGroup - take a look here to see just one example out of hundreds(?) she's created.
I have discussed with her the possibility of linking up blogs, auctions (eBay), classified (Craigslist), videos (YouTube), etc. to create a true Web3.0 e-commerce environment at Centiare. Perhaps you would like to touch base with her - the three of us (+ whoever else was interested) could probably pull this project together pretty quickly.
Btw, it needs to be said, so I guess here's as good as anyplace: collectivist systems like Wikipedia have always failed wherever & whenever they've been tried because they subsume self-interest to the "common good". In comparison, free markets have always succeeded wherever & whenever they've been tried because they elevate self-interest over the "common good".
The grand irony is that, even though capitalism is inherently selfish, due to productive efficiencies stimulated by self-interest, private property systems always generate more wealth, taxes & public funding. In a Web 3.0 environment, the seemingly novel construct of allowing users to control their own contributions will produce more and better quality information. That is, Centiare will deliver more utility and value to end users. Snerfling 17:16, 8 March 2007 (PST)
I think that is the huge potential of MyWikiBiz: the power to unify these extensions; if the owner of a directory page can protect that page from vandalism, it can be used to tie together these web extensions and create a dynamic web-based community. If someone doesn't like the APOV let them set up an counterpoint directory listing--instead of the Wikipedia suppression of dissent. On a side note, as an alumnus of Adam Smith's alma mater, I wouldn't say that Capitalism is inherently "selfish" but is inherently "self-motivated'. I know I am parsing words but selfishness is a sin, Capitalism is not. Capitalism is morally superior to collectivism. But you are right: the paradox is that the common good is better served by the freedom of individuals to achieve their goals. Bnagroup 18:39, 8 March 2007 (PST)
The Directory space, by default, cannot be accessed by any other users except page owners/originators & sysops. Since it is in effect, virtual "private property", owners can utilize their Directory listings/space to engage in all manner of legal activities, including advocacy, e-commerce, etc.
The only alternative a competitor or someone with an opposing viewpoint has is to establish a countervailing listing. Main space is reserved for NPOV, which means articles can only state the most fundamental information. Aficionados is the mechanism whereby users can provide links to their listings/contributions for further reading.
Allowing readers to decide within a marketplace of ideas is fundamentally sound and greatly preferable to the mayhem that ensues at WP. It's amazing watching everything Hayek, Orwell & Rand predict come true. Snerfling 06:22, 9 March 2007 (PST)

Revamp the tutorial

I downloaded an extension called "faststone" which makes taking pictures of your computer screen really easy. I think the tutorial page would be alot more helpful to new users (the 1%) if every step had a captured image to explain exactly what we mean. Garrett 12:40, 24 April 2007 (PDT)

An example

Template example.jpg
I'll see your screen capture, and raise you one live video capture. After seeing some stock analyst post technical chart analysis in "video narrated" form on his blog, I knew that's what I have to do, to make Centiare come alive for the inexperienced. I'll be working on this. --MyWikiBiz 22:32, 24 April 2007 (PDT)

Facebook & Social Utilities

Once we have met a threshold of content, how about a Centiare Users group at Facebook. It's amazing how viral it is. Bnagroup 12:36, 28 April 2007 (PDT)

I agree, but first we should decide on a title and what to include in the bulk of the group. Garrett 14:00, 28 April 2007 (PDT)
I have a Facebook account, but I'm not familiar with "Groups" yet. I will look into it and be happy to take charge with the marketing message therein. --MyWikiBiz 19:58, 28 April 2007 (PDT)
UPDATE: I have created a "Centiare Users" group within Facebook, and Garrett has already joined. By the way, there is a Centiare profile on MySpace, as well. --MyWikiBiz 22:26, 28 April 2007 (PDT)

Map embedding extension

The mapquest gifs i've uploaded are okay but a dynamic embedded map from google or mapquest would be awesome in small business's showing off their location. Any suggestions on how to render a map - I vaguely remember a tourismpedia with a working one a few month ago. Garrett 18:54, 29 April 2007 (PDT)

I thought there was a widget for this, wasn't there? Check with OMG. --MyWikiBiz 21:38, 29 April 2007 (PDT)

Centiare RSS feed

How would I go about creating a centiare rss feed with maybe 10 articles refreshed daily? Garrett 18:52, 6 May 2007 (PDT)

I'll add an extension later today that handles this capability. Snerfling 06:49, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
I looked into some extensions but I'm not sure which one works best - why don't you do a little research and get back to me? Snerfling 10:00, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
Turns out we can just use the embed command to wrap any existing RSS XML scripts. Check out the RSS page. You may want to explore a little more about specific extensions that will assist in formatting. For now the feed works great - especially on refresh. Snerfling 14:10, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
I can't get the centiare rss page to render in my java creator [1] Garrett 14:46, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
Looks perfect here. Could you add this to the MyWikiBiz:Extensions list along with a brief write-up & example? Snerfling 14:54, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
O - no I was talking about having our own RSS feed, not embedding anothers. I envisioned a articles type situation with the feed refreshing every day with each new article. Garrett 19:30, 7 May 2007 (PDT)
Done - just take a look at the code & documentation for further explanation. Would you like to post both of these to the extensions list? Even though you are interested in the outbound RSS, the inbound RSS is perfect for building dynamic content. Snerfling 09:58, 8 May 2007 (PDT)
I'm probably getting in over my head, but does this link help you in any way, Garrett? Maybe merging that with the RSS "external" widget that Karl described?
Actually, this feed of Centiare's newest pages would probably be more interesting. --MyWikiBiz 11:30, 8 May 2007 (PDT)

I think we have somewhat of an idea of what we're doing but it still renders really weird. Garrett 12:46, 8 May 2007 (PDT)

Centiare 2.0

People aren't creating content because they don't know what to do. Squidoo is on to something but they don't allow nearly enough personal freedom plus c'mon how hard is HTML if regular joe's can't tackle metawiki.

Let's say we have a page where you check a box for business, personal, non-profit, or professional creation. Page two check a box for what color you want your page (we can create a {{red}} template really easy) if you want a photo gallery, rss feed, put in your google adsense number, youtube video number then generate a preview with sanford milson's info. Page three is a video how-to that shows them what to do with the pre generated code right underneath

.... or if they click the "professional creation" have page two as my autofill template that e-mails me directly with a price list and ask query of clients. Garrett 13:21, 10 May 2007 (PDT)

I think scripts, widgets, gadgets, etc represent the easiest methods for users to create content. I've mentioned to Greg that we could add tips & pointers to the 'quick add' form to guide users in building-out meaningful content relevant to their respective directory listings.
I highly underestimate users inputing scripts and videos unless it is a fill-in-the-form one step process.
It may be true that forms will have to incorporate templates.
The question I posed to you in the context of Lawyer Direct, was what types of scripts exist in the legal biz besides RSS? There is a coming flood of specialized scripts as syndicators realize this is a very effective means of reaching a mass audience. These should be adapted to every type of listing at Centiare.
I don't quite understand - could you explain further?
Script driven widgets, gadgets, etc are quickly moving away from tricks and into the sphere of useful. The Alexa graph (that we couldn't get working) is a good example; I imagine similar scripts exist for different professions & business sectors. In the legal segment, there's RSS from court feeds, etc, but there are probably scripts covering specific professional requirements (eg MCLE).
What we're faced with then, are constant updates & changes to incorporate the newest tricks. As page counts mount into the thousands, it will become impossible to maintain & move with the market on a manual basis, which is why I'm going to develop a bot library for select use.
Like that autowikibrowser nazi on wikipedia?
There's a whole family of bots - I think I'll design a simple one that select users will be allowed to utilize that will go through each of the pages they choose to modify.
We've been frozen too long in tight, hand crafted pages. The time has come to not only ramp up content by leveraging external sources, but to be able to quickly adapt to new & interesting technologies & mechanisms. Snerfling 14:05, 10 May 2007 (PDT)
I think we can accomplish this most easily through new templates after we build a better community space that can be like hey... Template:This gives you a cool script or even better if while editing pages your template box can give you the embed video/ads/etc. code along with žĽĚΏú⅛⅛⅓ type stuff. Garrett 19:05, 10 May 2007 (PDT)
Forms & templates may be one method; yet they requirement mediawiki editing skills. I'd like to forge a mechanism by which casual users can quickly create meaningful content without learning how to edit wikipedia style codes. Snerfling 03:31, 11 May 2007 (PDT)

==Semantic Forms I ran accross this new Semantic_Forms extension yesterday. It seems rather complicated to set up, but once it is, it might be the solution for casual users. Semantic_Forms --OmniMediaGroup 09:04, 11 May 2007 (PDT)

Excellent - I see Yoran has finally released his forms package. I originally contacted him months ago in reference to some forms he was using at his wiki site. After reviewing his source code, we had numerous email exchanges that ultimately culminated in me convincing him to create a standard forms package and release it as a MW extension. I'll look into see how he's implemented these features. Snerfling 10:23, 11 May 2007 (PDT)

Aesthetic wiki

I've asked several people for input on what they think of centiare. They all really liked the idea or at least what they understood of it after I explained everything. However every single person immediately said, "O so its wikipedia", or even worse "wikipedia knock off" or "clone" when I pulled up the page. It's time to seriously start thinking about a new skin and overall a new theme. Is there a way we could each create a new main page and one listing in a sandbox and brainstorm a way to differentiate ourselves? (though I'll have to learn more about meta-wiking code)

This could coincide with a hugely revamped and improved new user integration effort with video tutorials. Currently If I was a 45 year old still using the msn search engine small business owner my page would look incredibly basic and would not take advantage of the embed, colors, or even an infobox. Of course the overall change of separating wiki code from the lay user through simple form boxes will hopefully give us a more squidoo like atmosphere yet not forcing ads down people's throats or trashy myspace like html.

I envision creating a centiare page somewhat like customizing your new car on the internet. Pick the color, options, accessories, then see a final preview before buying, if you don't like it just click different boxes.

Garrett 09:04, 12 May 2007 (PDT)

This is the most unique wiki I've seen to date. [2] I'm not advocating nearly this big of change but it's cool to see what's out there. Garrett 13:50, 13 May 2007 (PDT)

Garrett, feel free to experiment all you want with the either the main page or the entire skin. You can simply create a main page under any one of your listings. Alternatively, you can perform wholesale changes with your skin. If you like the site you referenced above, just take copy/paste their skin to yours - it's that simple. Or, check out this gallery of user styles for other ideas.
If you don't want to muck up your existing skin, you could create a new account for the express purposes of experimenting with various skins. Again, there's nothing Greg or I necessarily have to do to "allow" you to come up with any skin you design. All we have to do if we reach a general agreement is to change the primary default skin. Snerfling 06:54, 14 May 2007 (PDT)
Consultant Joel Kurtzman, who evaluated 350 startups for his book Startups That Work, found that successful outlets usually have a team of two or three founders who share a common vision; the success rate for this model was a remarkable 50%. The odds for solo founders were more like the oft-quoted one in 10 - That's pretty good odds. Garrett 17:09, 14 May 2007 (PDT)
How do I make my own skin for the whole site? The main page and really the whole site have everything placed really well. However all other wiki's (except the super unique wikihow) have the same boring gray background with 1px of darker gray border and green bullet boxes. I'll capture a few net pictures and see if we can code them into centiare. Garrett 17:27, 14 May 2007 (PDT)
these buttons/tabs have an embossed and shadowed look
probably the easiest aesthetic change to look into as an actual wiki managed to do it.
more fancy embossed buttons. Could we make the * symbol into that awesome blue orb?

Modifying Skins

We can do anything we like as long as the overall look & feel presents a consistent interface and works with all extensions. Before we change anything, we need to experiment with a single user skin - here are some guidelines to help you out. Snerfling 06:28, 15 May 2007 (PDT)



Still not understanding how to create semantic tags outside of an info box. --OmniMediaGroup 10:29, 9 January 2007 (PST)

Quick answer

Just type
[[city:=San Francisco]]
to create the attribute San Francisco or
[[Subject Interest::Skiing]]
to get the relation Skiing.

As an added plus, you can add more information to attributes so that they record not only the actual value, but wikilink back to a main or directory page. Example:

[[city:=San Francisco|[[Directory:San Francisco|The City]]]]

produces [[city:=San Francisco|The City]].

Notice how traditional wikilink pipes work as usual? For more information, you can check this page as well. Centiare 10:49, 9 January 2007 (PST)

Another Answer

You can just "do" them, within the text, inline. For example, if I were to mention Van Doren Oil, I could also just as easily mention [[Legal_Name:=Van Doren Oil Company|Van Doren Oil Legal Semantics]] and sneakily squeeze in a Legal_Name attribute, or mention [[|Van Doren Oil Website Semantics]] and sneak in a Web attribute.
Or, you can just create a sematic "field" in an out-of-the-way place at the end of the article, like this:


  • Year started -- [[Year_Started:=1939|1939]]
  • Primary NAICS code -- 45431

Either way, it should automatically create the RDF "lookup table" at the bottom of this page. As an added bonus, this is what starts the Google SEO algorithm a-buzzing. --MyWikiBiz 10:57, 9 January 2007 (PST)

Humble Request for help with Reference Tags

I am new to the Wiki/Centiare language and am slowly practicing with my own directory Directory:Garreth_Westwood so that I can cut my teeth on that before I start adding articles, etc.

I am having problems with two References that I have in my intro paragraph. The References are showing up as (1) Template:Cite Web. What am I doing wrong? :( Thanks, Garreth Bnagroup 16:40, 8 March 2007 (PST)

Garreth, I took a quick look and it's just a small edit - nothing major. However, I'm running out the door right now, but Garrett is a super wikipedian so I'm sure he can help. I'll give him a ping to see if he's around. If he can't help you right off, I'll go in and clean it up after I return. Snerfling 17:48, 8 March 2007 (PST)
Thanks, guys. I really appreciate the "collegiality" of Centiare!! Bnagroup 18:55, 8 March 2007 (PST)



If there is room for my 2 cents in this discussion, here goes: I disagree with encouraging an Internal links sections in main space articles. It is just duplicating what Wikipedia does and is, non semantic. The ASK query function promotes users to tag there own articles appropriately to automatically get displayed on main space (a thing of beauty). This should also motivate users to create main space articles and add an ASK query. See Cigarette with the Attribute:Keyword query. The search engines are working in some way that is not completly understandable to us. The engines will catch up or they already have. The more comfortable users become with semantic tagging and start imagining all the endless possibilities:

  • more page creation
  • longer visitor lengths
  • more traffic
  • higher page rank
  • higher site rank
  • a successful semantic mediawiki

If all of this happens then one backlink at Centiare is golden.--OmniMediaGroup 07:39, 16 January 2007 (PST)

Nobody asked you your opinion, Omni. If you continue to butt in on our Talk page discussions, we will ban your account. We are trying to build a directory, here. ...Oh. Wait. Sorry. This isn't Wikipedia, is it? ;-) --MyWikiBiz 09:59, 16 January 2007 (PST)

Marketing & Promotion


With continuing reports of dissatisfaction amongst wikipedians, it's becoming more evident that Wikipedia's business model is fundamentally flawed. Without the ability to protect one's contributions, and/or debate in a fair and rational manner without undo favoritism given towards certain (cabals of) editors, the incentives to create original content becomes somewhat muted.

We feel Centiare addresses these main points by providing both protected Directory space for advocacy and traditional main space NPOV. Even better, via the Aficionados mechanism, we provide a legitimate means of allowing users to cross-reference interests/contributions from main space articles to directory listings. In this way, Aficionados eliminate the temptation for main space link spam and/or other commercial activities, and helps keeps main space articles clean and on-point.

Given Centiare's technical (semantic tags, protected space) & policy advantages, we feel it's the proper time to discuss what marketing & promotional efforts might be undertaken to increase overall awareness. The remainder of this section is an open forum to discuss ideas, initiatives and other activities. Snerfling 13:25, 3 March 2007 (PST)

Spring 2007 - Organization/Association marketing

It is my goal to contact at least 500 different organizations and associations that aggregate the types of entities who would be welcome at Centiare (e.g., Little League Baseball, the American Dental Association, League of Women Voters, etc.) I want my message to be clear and three-fold:

  1. The organization should have its own article within the Centiare Directory Space (e.g., Directory:American Dental Association)
  2. The organization should contribute to relevant articles within the Centiare Main Space (e.g., Dentistry, Bruxism, Gingivitis)
  3. The organization, once it sees the benefits of Centiare and its inherent advantages over Wikipedia, should encourage its members to create their own Directory articles (e.g., Directory:Delores M. Dains, DDS, Directory:Monarch Dental Associates)

For each of the recipients, it is my intent to customize the letter so that:

  • The recipient is already identified as the Communication, Marketing, Electronic Media, or Public Relations contact at the organization.
  • Each letter will be customized very deliberately, as in the American Dental Association example immediately above.

I will post the text of my planned letter very shortly, and then the Centiare community can help improve it for the next day or two. At the same time, I'm going to create a link where Centiare "worker bees" might recommend future organizations and (especially) the contact info of the appropriate person at the association. That's going to be the most tedious part of this campaign. As we get underway with the mailings, I will also plan to follow up with each recipient with a telephone call, approximately 2-3 days after they should have received the letter. --MyWikiBiz 21:20, 4 March 2007 (PST)

Since you're the expert on military history, you well understand the importance of momentum. Wikipedia seems to be garnering more criticism each day; check out this article from the New York Times. Now is the time to make people aware of the numerous advantages Centiare provides. Snerfling 07:46, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Form letter 1

Please take the liberty of wiki-editing this proposed form letter that would go to organizations and associations who would benefit from involvement in Centiare space.



According to comScore, nearly 165 million unique visitors made use of the online encyclopedia Wikipedia in the final month of 2006. As the +ORGANIZATION+’s +TITLE+, I’m sure you’re well aware of your group’s own article on Wikipedia, but did you know that:

(a) You are not allowed to edit the article itself?
(b) You can’t respond in the article space to other editors who might push an opposing agenda or a critical point of view about your organization?

These seemingly necessary abilities are strictly forbidden by the Wikipedia management and community. My partners and I feel that Wikipedia is, therefore, flawed in that it has an inherent (if not pernicious) bias against businesses and organizations. That’s why we’re constructing -- with our own out-of-pocket resources -- an alternative wiki directory called Centiare welcomes and encourages organizations like your own to come and tell your story the way you want it told. Without sounding too much like a sales pitch, I want to make 3 things perfectly clear:

  1. The +ORGANIZATION+ should have its own article within the Centiare Directory Space (e.g., Directory:+ORGANIZATION+). You can start that article today.
  2. Your organization is welcome to contribute to relevant articles within the Centiare Main Space (e.g., +EXAMPLE1+, +EXAMPLE2+, +EXAMPLE3+).
  3. Once +ORGANIZATION+ sees the benefits of Centiare and its inherent advantages over Wikipedia, you should encourage your members to create their own Directory articles (e.g., Directory:+EXAMPLE4+, Directory:+EXAMPLE5+) to support their own agendas.

While Centiare is not as mammoth as Wikipedia, we are growing by leaps and bounds because we offer many more technological advantages than Wikipedia, including Semantic Web architecture (which makes Google search results prioritize Centiare listings), user-protected space commingled with community-edited space, and the ability to embed videos, document downloads, and even advertising on our pages.

I hope you’ll join this new wiki revolution by registering an account for your organization -- for FREE -- at I will be giving you a brief call in the next few days, to answer any questions you may have about our new directory.


Gregory Kohs
Co-Developer of
Cell: 302.463.1354

Form letter 2

This is a second attempt. Trying to stay on point, and deliver the clear message of our business proposition. Thoughts & revisions are welcome.



According to comScore, nearly 165 million unique visitors made use of the online encyclopedia Wikipedia in the final month of 2006. Doubtless, many of these people are searching for information about your organization. As the +ORGANIZATION+’s +TITLE+, I’m sure you’re aware of your group’s own article on Wikipedia, but isn't it frustrating that you don't have control over the content presented in that community-edited space?

My partners and I feel that Wikipedia is flawed in that it has an inherent (if not pernicious) bias against businesses and organizations, and that its so-called "facts" can't really be trusted. Fortunately, there is now a better way for organizations to capitalize on the wiki information revolution. We've built an alternative wiki directory called At Centiare, we welcome and encourage organizations like your own to come and tell your story the way you want it to be told.

Centiare offers a quick, easy way for you to create a high-ranking Directory listing that you control. And, it's absolutely free to use.

Without sounding too much like a sales pitch, I want to make 3 things perfectly clear:

  1. The +ORGANIZATION+ ought to have its own article within the Centiare Directory Space (e.g., Directory:+ORGANIZATION+). You can start writing that article today.
  2. Your organization is welcome to contribute to relevant articles within the Centiare Main Space (e.g., you can give our visitors your perspective on topics like +EXAMPLE1+, +EXAMPLE2+, +EXAMPLE3+).
  3. Once +ORGANIZATION+ sees the benefits of Centiare and its inherent advantages over Wikipedia, you might even encourage your own members to create Directory articles for themselves (e.g., Directory:+EXAMPLE4+, Directory:+EXAMPLE5+), to support their own business missions.

I hope you’ll join this new wiki revolution by registering your organization -- for FREE -- at I will be giving you a brief call in the next few days, to answer any questions you may have about our new directory.


Gregory Kohs
Co-Developer of
Cell: 302.463.1354

I doubt this letter will get results

Who is the target audience? Specifically, who is the contact within each organization?

What will motivate THAT PERSON to participate in, and even promote an online directory?

Your criticisms of Wikipedia resonate with people who have had run-ins there, but they are meaningless to the vast majority of people.

Your discussion of the advantages of your semantic tagging approach will again be meaningless to most people, other than hard-core techies.

I realize that you feel strongly about these things, and they are important in the long run... but they do not make an effective marketing pitch.

Wygk 11:51, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Thank you for this feedback, Wygk. Not having much experience at all in direct marketing, I have similar doubts as you. The target audience is any trade association or structured interest group that has a wide swath of members, and which has a "message" that it wishes to communicate to the world about its membership. I did give a few examples above.
The contact within each organization will be very important. I feel that each letter must go to someone who is named as the Director or Manager of Communications, Marketing, Electronic Media, or Public Relations for the entity.
You were a bit short on alternative solutions, Wygk. Do you think it would be better if I called people FIRST, then used a letter as a follow-up? Better to get a more famous "spokesperson" than myself? Better to give a "case study" example?
More help is welcome! And, of course, there's always the "trial balloon". We can mail this letter + phone call option on about 20 recipients, and see what kind of response we get. --MyWikiBiz 11:54, 5 March 2007 (PST)
I think a marketing patch should usually focus on the value proposition (what's in it for the customer?)
As I see it, your value proposition is to provide a quality listing in a new, high-ranking directory, where the company, organization, or person has control over there own entry.
You could ADD another value statement by making it really quick and easy to create a listing. The Wikicompany forms are very similar to what I had in mind.
The semantic tagging feature is another value statement, but very few people are going to understand it... so don't muddle the message
In short, the pitch to organizations and their members should be: Centiare offers a quick, easy way for you to create a high-quality directory listing that you control. Wygk 12:07, 6 March 2007 (PST)
So you like the Wikicompany forms as well? We could do something like that to create an initial entry which could then be edited/refined. However, a big drawback with forms is that it distorts a key advantage of Wikipedia or Centiare, namely that it's completely free-form. Once you begin directing user content, then by definition, you will typically get what you directed.
It's why the Wikimedia Foundation seemingly backed off on their Wikidata project (correct me if I'm wrong). It's just counter-intuitive to a wiki environment. In our case, directory listings include any entity (person, place or thing) that has a legal standing. So what should be included in a form, or do we now need multiple forms? You see where this leads - people then need to be informed that there are different forms, etc.
I'm not sure sure that we want to take a direction away from the traditional infoboxes - it's why we use them. The professional look & feel one can achieve in a very short time is unsurpassed. Certainly, no one can create a look like that in a LAMP environment in such a short time.
My background is with structured data, which is why I embraced the MediaWiki platform. The poor overall look & feel of Wikicompany is a good example of what happens when efforts are extended in data collection/validation as opposed to presentation.
My feeling at this point is that we're dealing with a market awareness issue, not a usability problem. I should mention that we have a custom user class level called vusers that gives them the ability to make edits of directory listings without impacting their overall protection scheme. In this way, we have a couple of wikipedians helping out by providing editing services to others that don't have the skills necessary to pull together a really professional looking listing.
You would be an excellent candidate for this class level if you're interested. Snerfling 15:15, 6 March 2007 (PST)
I happen to think that we have as much a usability issue as an awareness issue. We have had about 150 users register an account (that is our base of "interested awareness"), but 80 of them have not made a single edit, another 35 have made less than 5 total edits, and only about 12 or 13 unique people have made more than 20 edits. If less than 10% of our registered accounts are really availing themselves of content creation, we are facing:
  1. An initial market of 90% "non-savvy" wiki coders
  2. A failure to communicate the benefits of listing content
  3. Not doing enough to "win back" dormant accounts
Take, for example, the fact that I have pitched Centiare to my 30+ MySpace friends, and probably 30+ additional e-mail friends. I think two people have registered from that communication, and neither of them have built out content. When I describe the site in person, for instance, at a party -- people seem to think it's a good idea. But ask them, "Have you ever edited Wikipedia?" and you get either "No, I've looked, but not edited" or "What's Wikipedia?".
I think we just have to keep plugging away until we hit that critical mass (hopefully close to simultaneously) when enough new businesses, organizations, people, and zealots want to be a part of Centiare every day; but those who are intimidated by "doing it yourself" will have a choice of paid assistants to serve them (a la MyWikiBiz or Page Creations). If wikis do start to take hold in the American office space, we will surely get more capable "do it yourself" users (and evangelists) from that realm. --MyWikiBiz 20:22, 6 March 2007 (PST)

Make it Viral

Time and time again people with NO talent have 1,000,000 video views on youtube because they dance with muffins or flap their man titties to celine dion. That's hella exposure with no time or skill investment.

I'm going to buy my own damn centiare t-shirt one of these fine days (Spring break is next week) and talk some big titted dumb blonde into trying to touch her elbows together behind her back while sporting the logo. Maybe have her writhe around on my sex-on-wheels new car to whitesnake's her I go again (like Tawny Kitaen) 50,000 page views garunteed. It will only target generation apathetic youth but hey look what young people got started in the 60s. Word of mouth is everything. Garrett 14:09, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Who's the market? Do we want Wikipedians adding Main space content? Or do we want businesses adding directory content? Or a little of both? Is there a technical hurdle that we're not addressing (like input forms), or is something as simple as brute force marketing (BFM)?
I want to believe that it's BFM because it takes me off the hook. That is, it implies we've done our job by providing an excellent array of technical features presented in a very professional environment. If it BFM, then do we do crazy ass sh!t like you're suggesting, or continue our sincere efforts at alerting business users to the opportunities? Snerfling 16:47, 5 March 2007 (PST)

Grand Idea

Brute force marketing first off to attract the page views, then a super easy to find and understand slogan type sound byte to say "centiare listing = high google search". Finally accessibility is limited to wiki geeks which account for .000000000001 percent of the population and even less of the business culture.

When creating an article the template is a great start but something more familiar to the average lay person is needed. On most good sites, amazon for example, to set up an account there are fields to type in (like wikicompany is trying and failing to do).

Instead of an add a free listing have a "get started today" or "Register with centiare"

Page one - enter a valid email address, and a click box (I would like to recieve centiare newsletters and press releases)

Then a continue to step two button with a page X of Y at the bottom, similar to when I "build my car" on

Page Two - A basic form like on that allows users to just fill in the fields. Once they finish

Then page three where three options appear.

1. contact a professional. List wiki developers than can boost the rankings and qualities of their listings (i.e. me)

2. Start the centiare tutorial. Create a super simple attribute

3. No thanks, just show me my listing.

Then a final away message "Thanks for creating a centiare listing"

Input Forms

OK, I'll take a look at putting together an input form similar to Wikicompany. I don't want to start creating multiple forms since that will just put us right back in the training->learning curve arena. What I'll do is utilize the generic Attribute:Common Name to capture any name used, whether it's a business, NPO, personal, etc. I'll round out the form to capture some address information and that should be that. The user and/or editor can always come back and clean up and/or flesh out the entry by adding infoboxes, etc. Snerfling 21:18, 6 March 2007 (PST)

Let's 86 the form idea. I don't like it anymore. To much of a possibility for crappy looking pages. Garrett
While I agree the pages won't look too swell, I disagree with nixing the idea. I think the forms will appeal to (hopefully) half of the 70% of our users who seem to be registering and not doing ANYTHING. I know, it's like asking to do a "paint by numbers" portrait of a sailboat when you have an hour's private lesson with Pablo Picasso. But, if we can appeal to more users, that's what we should do.
I think it will help us to get quantity, and eventually, as the users mature, there will be more careful development of their pages -- either by themselves, or as a result of accepting "offers" to do so by MyWikiBiz or Page Creations types of stylists. --MyWikiBiz 15:07, 8 March 2007 (PST)
Admittedly, any form driven input will fall far short of the type of professional looking pages one can render at Centiare simply due to its fixed/static nature. I still thank our lucky stars that we decided, as one of our top priorities, to meet/exceed the capabilities of Wikipedia. This, in essence, means a free-form editing environment.
That being said, I've come full circle and now agree with Greg that we should have a simple/fast input capability as well. Even better, it doesn't necessarily have to appeal to business owners. It could work just as well, given the right incentives, where there could be tens/hundreds of young entrepreneurs under Garrett's direction quickly inputting business listings.
What's the payoff? How about the inclusion of an optional field where one could enter their Google Adsense account? That way, a quick 7-10 data element (name, address, phone, NAICS, zip, etc) entry could be made along with the originators' Adsense ads. To take it one step further, I could add other additional fields for interests, which then would be linked via aficionados from any Main page articles.
IOW, it would incentivize, in the same exact method as the Belgium Bomb, the rapid build out of content. Except in this case someone could probably add 15+ entries per hour instead of one. Snerfling 17:31, 8 March 2007 (PST)


Suppose we had a bunch of farmers on here who create pages about their business and what they do. If they wanted to use MyWikiBiz to conduct B2B business, like selling, or organizing labor, would that be within its scope? What if they wanted to advertise positions? What is the scope of MyWikiBiz? Remi 13:49, 29 August 2008 (PDT)

Farmers, textile mill workers, astrophysicists... I don't care. Anyone is welcome to use this wiki directory as a forum for marketing, trade, or labor. My only caution: we are somewhat limited by the twin nature of our Directory Space (closed to one registered author per page) and Main Space (open to any author) pages. There's no convenient way to "limit" a set of pages on MyWikiBiz to a finite "group" or "community" of selected members. It's either one or all may edit, in Directory or Main space, respectively. For finite groups of members who which to collaborate, without interference from the "outside world", I do recommend] as an excellent resource. -- MyWikiBiz 19:01, 29 August 2008 (PDT)