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Working with Mediawiki

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This is the basis for a short course I gave on using Mediawiki.

This is the basis for a short course I gave on using Mediawiki.

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  • 1. Working with Mediawiki James P. Howard, II March 2008
  • 2. Some Conventions
    • WIKI_URL
      • The base URL for your wiki installation
    • Wiki and Mediawiki are used interchangeably
  • 3. Mediawiki & Wikipedia
    • Wikipedia is a collection of information repositories
      • Encyclopedias, dictionaries, reference texts, and images
      • Scales well: eighteen languages with more than 100,000 encyclopedia articles
    • Mediawiki powers Wikipedia
      • Open access, with limited access restrictions
      • Full revision history for text, with comparison generator
  • 4. Environment
    • Mediawiki was developed in PHP
    • Default start page is WIKI_URL/Main_Page
    • Each user has wikispace with URLs beginning with WIKI_URL/User:USERNAME/
    • Each page has an associated “talk page” (also called “discussion page” for discussing that page)
    • Clicking “edit this page” will take user directly into page editor
    • “ history” will show user the history of that page
  • 5. Basic Text Formatting
    • ''Italic text''
    • '''Bold text'''
    • '''''Bold italic text'''''
    • ==Header Level 1==
      • ===Header Level 2===
        • ====Header Level 3====
          • ...and so forth, table of contents autogenerated from headers
    • Provide a blank line between paragraphs
  • 6. Links
    • [[Internal Link]] – creates a link to the wiki page “Internal Link” even if that page is non-existent
      • [[Internal Link|This is an internal link]] – creates a link to “Internal Link” but with the alternative text
      • If page is non-existent, a red link will take user to editor for that page
    • [http://www.jameshoward.us James Howard] – creates a link to the non-wiki page given
    • #REDIRECT [[Other Page]] will create a redirect page, transparent to end user
  • 7. Unnumbered Lists
    • * Create unnumbered lists
    • * With asterisks
    • * Presents as bulleted lists
    • ** Sublists are created by nesting asterisks
    • *** There is no limit to nested asterisks
    • **** This is four levels down
  • 8. Numbered Lists
    • # Create numbered lists
    • # With hash marks
    • # Presents as numbered lists
    • ## Sublists are created by nesting hash marks
    • ### There is no limit to nested hash marks
    • #### This is four levels down
  • 9. Categories
    • [[Category:Some category]] – will add a page to the given category
    • Categories are infinitely nestable and may contain an unlimited number of pages
    • Pages can be in an unlimited number of categories
    • Category pages are lead text that is editable just like a wiki page
  • 10. Working with Images
    • Images can be uploaded at special URL WIKI_URL/Special:Upload
    • Can be included in a page with [[Image:Some image.png]]
    • Can be captioned with [[Image:Some image.png|caption text]]
    • Can be resized with [[Image:Some image.png|200px100px|caption]]
    • Full revision history of images included
  • 11. Other Special Files
    • Other can file types (PDF, OpenOffice.org, &c.) uploaded at WIKI_URL/Special:Upload
    • Download links [[Media:Some Doc.pdf]]
    • Follows standard internal linking form, otherwise
    • Some restrictions on file types: no HTML, PHP
    • Full revision history of files included
    • Maximum file size is 16M
  • 12. Templates
    • Templates create preformatted text
    • Used with {{Some Template}}
      • May include variables and run-time settings
      • May be static
      • Uses include creating preformatted boxes for displaying page-specific data
      • See examples on Wikipedia, e.g., http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page
  • 13. Treats & Tips
    • Mediawiki understands TeX formula formatting
      • <math>sqrt{2}</math> ->
    • Interwiki links for linking to pages in other wikis
      • [[Wikipedia:James Howard]] -> prefacing a page name with “Wikipedia:” will create link to the English Wikipedia page
    • Mediawiki supports footnotes
      • <ref>Some note</ref>
      • Place notes anywhere with <references />
  • 14. Extensibility
    • Mediawiki is highly extensible beyond templates
    • Plugins create new features and commands
      • Shortcuts for integrated outside video into pages
      • Authentication frameworks
      • RSS and Atom feeds for blog integration
    • Extensions are written in PHP
    • Cannot be installed by the end user
  • 15. Suggested Reading
    • Mark S. Choate, Professional Wikis (Indianapolis, IN: Wrox, 2007).
    • Anja Ebersbach et al., Wiki: Web Collaboration , 2nd completely rev. and enl. ed. (Berlin: Springer, 2008).
    • Mizanur Rahman, MediaWiki Administrators' Tutorial Guide: Install, manage, and customize your MediaWiki installation (Birmingham, UK: Packt Publishing, 2007).
    • Dan Woods and Peter Thoeny, Wikis For Dummies (Indianapolis, IN: Wiley Publishing, 2007).
  • 16.