AutoWikiBrowser

+7 votes
445 views

Greetings folks,

I recently asked a question about making AutoWikiBrowser available for use on WikiTree.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:AutoWikiBrowser

I am starting this discussion on tech because iI would like to keep updated on the progress of this proposal.

I am currently wondering if there is some technical reason that is holding it up, or if there is some hesitation to make it available because there is concern about how it will be used (i.e. political, pragmatic reasons).

I think a lot of concerns that currently hold some of our members back from their full potential from will be greatly relieved if they knew they had a tool like this to help them.

For myself, I am wondering if I should wait to embark on certain projects because I know that I can accomplish them in minutes rather than hours using AWB.

 

Greg I'm adding the link to other discussion. [[Gerard-337]]

http://www.wikitree.com/g2g/192394/how-can-i-use-awb 

WikiTree profile: G B
asked in WikiTree Tech by G B G2G Crew (600 points)
edited by Michelle Hartley

9 Answers

+15 votes
 
Best answer

Hi Greg, 

Here's the status update: I've added your suggestion here http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/To-Do for consideration. 

This is just a small segment of potential tech tasks and as other members have mentioned, we are a very small team working very hard to improve WikiTree.  As such, we have to constantly prioritize and re-prioritize to make sure we are meeting the appropriate demands of the site and making the changes that are most efficient and beneficial to all our members. 

Some changes might be made right away, others take time to consider the varying implications of what a certain change might make to WikiTree.  We appreciate your patience while we consider your suggestion. 

answered by Eowyn Langholf G2G Astronaut (1.3m points)
selected by Regis Giampersa
Thank you so much!

I hope it works out for everyone.
+7 votes

Hi Greg

I'd be interested to know what you would use it for, particularly given the idea of not sacrificing quality for speed and the rules of

  1. Do not make controversial edits with it. and
  2. Do not make insignificant or inconsequential edits

Also taking into consideration the guidelines about Communication before Editing http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Communication_Before_Editing

 

 

answered by John Atkinson G2G6 Pilot (329k points)
There is no way to know what I or anyone else is going to be using it for a year from now.

I have a few immediate ideas, and I would be more than happy to share those with everyone right now, but that really isn't why I initiated this discussion.

I asked some specific questions, and I am now wondering if it is the pragmatic/political issues that are holding this back.

Has anyone who is well established and trusted, and with technical knowledge of WikiTree tried to use it yet?
Greg, I looked at the browser in the past and knowing wikitree's software uses a different wikimedia version and it's modified I didn't pursue it any further.
+10 votes
Efforts have been made in the past to use bots on WikiTree to make editing easier. These efforts were largely unsuccessful. I have looked at the page you referred to for information on AWB and I am not at all sure how you would apply it to creating and managing profiles on WikiTree.

In order for someone to discuss the advisability of using it here, you will have to be more specific as to the tasks you would use it for,

Shirley
answered by Shirley Dalton G2G6 Pilot (409k points)
I am asking at tech, so the infinite number of things that I could use it for are completely irrelevant to that question here. But it is being asked repeatedly, and my particular questions I have asked repeatedly aren't being answered.

As we are all aware, genealogy involves exponentially large numbers of ancestors, and if you add in aunts and uncles the numbers get even larger. Obviously, any help in editing beyond doing it individually would be extremely welcomed. In my case, you can look at my grandparents (Bard-70, and Satta-2), great-grandparents, and second great grandparents and reasonably expect that I will use AWB to make all the rest of my tree look consistent with those.

As I have already gone through and done the basic format for those few generations back from myself, I am a little reluctant to continue on the very large number of the rest without some assistance. Given this assistance, you can expect some high quality entries with sources etcetera.

I would like to make lists based on what I have in my sources, and add those sources to the entries one after the other, and do it in minutes rather than hours.

I would like to add categories to many profiles based on the dates and places in those profiles.

I would like to add, correct and format content in biographies based on existing available information.

I would like to be able to edit content based on places and dates so that the information is consistent (e.g. place names before a certain date read "British North America" and after that date read "Canada")

ETCETERA ETCETERA ETCETERA

In short, you can expect that I will use it for wonderful, decent, reasonable and high-quality purposes that add value to WikiTree.

So can I get a serious report on the technical status of this question now please?

I disagree, " the bots were not largely unsuccessful". I helped out with this project of Jon's and helped test them. Jon put a lot of hard work into designing Bots. There were a few bugs which were corrected. The bots Jon designed for my project were very successful and very helpful in my opinion. 

Jon's Bots aren't active only because he had to shut down his server due to work issues not because they were unsuccessful.

Asking in tech is correct. If someone wants specifics it's perfectly fine to ask and answer here.

Greg,

As a technically knowledgeable person, I must take exception to your statement that there exist "an infinite number of things" you could use anything for, let alone a browser with rudimentary editing capability.

I have just seen several recent posts by you, in which many members have been responding to your very lengthy questions with a great deal of patience and courtesy, which we always endeavor to extend to new members.  The patience, however, is more typically needed when we respond to questions about how to do things on WikiTree that are very simple for us, but we understand represent a big impediment for new members.  In your case, our patience is being tried by your continued demands that your specific question be addressed, after having received several explanations of why it is obviated by circumstances.  Your specific questions are not relevant because the underlying structure/framework, WikiTree technical support capability, and/or lack of fitting within established WikiTree policy and style criteria would be undermined by implementation of your suggestions.

I looked at one of the family profiles for which you gave the ID and, frankly, your statement that we can "reasonably expect that I will use AWB to make all the rest of my tree look consistent with those" makes me shudder.  I will be happy to provide a list of the ways in which it deviates from the Style Guide and ignores established policy guidelines if you wish, but this is not my point here.

I would like to respectfully recommend that you take the time to become familiar with the ways in which this community functions before attempting to make heavy handed demands that established procedures be changed to accede to your wishes.  This is a community of several thousand members who contribute work to profiles.  I am sure that each of them has some pet peeve about something about the way in which WikiTree functions and an idea of how it could be made better for them.  In order to function as a cohesive unit, it is often necessary to subjugate our individual preferences in favor of group accepted practices.

You might also consider adding the tag:  [[Category: Profile style review requested]] to the first several profiles you complete working on, in order to get feedback from the Profile Improvement Project, which might include suggestions for improvement as well.

Welcome to WikiTree and I hope you come to realize what we've all be trying to explain to you about how this community operates.

Very well said Gaile, I wish there were a way to give you a thumbs-up vote.  I hope you weren't biting your tongue so hard that it bled when you wrote that !!
THANX, Dennis ... you are a very wise man, indeed - you nailed the tongue problem I'm left trying to staunch before I exsanguinate!!!

One thing I'm learning - VERY slowly - on WikiTree is tact and diplomacy.  I have always been known for my directness - I say what I mean and mean what I say and nobody is ever in any doubt about what I think of anything.  As an engineer, I was always excused for lack of social sophistication, political correctness, or whatever else not being able to say things graciously might be called.  Now that I'm retired, I don't get a pass anymore and am being dragged, kicking and screaming, into learning to be tactful ... I still have a whole lot to learn, though!!!
I am an old retired engineer myself (a semi-literate one), so I can relate.  I did have to look up exsanguinate -- sounds like one of those things you shouldn't do when writing to The Factor!
Gaille, please do provide a list of ways my profiles deviate from the style guide.

I've read the same style guide you have, and they are quite undeveloped and vague. My work is substantially consistent with what is there. Perhaps you could put forward some extremely minor ways they deviate, but I would think that given the circumstances, you should be embarrassed to do so.

I think your sentiment that it "makes you shudder" says a lot more about you than those profiles. They are excellent by any reasonable standard, and should be put forward as a model quite frankly.

I would propose that changes be made to the style guide so as to bring up the quality to that level, but my impression is that quality isn't the priority here, but rather a desperate fear of change.

Enable AWB and fear of change won't be a problem anymore. I would think that the tech crew would already be on top of this, and would jump on this opportunity.
Greg, I am a member of the Profile Improvement Project and I agree with Gaile's comment. You are mixing both <ref> tags and <span> tags and the direction we are moving to is removing the <span> tags. For an example of a profile that is more in line with the Style Guide see Woodruff-12, it is not perfect but like most of the profiles it is a work in progress.
I agree completely Gaile and Dale;  I think Greg needs to become more familiar with WikiTree before trying to make large changes.

I wonder, with so many contributions in such a short time, whether he has checked all or most or some of them for accuracy.

Greg,

I can assure you that I don't embarrass very easily so there is no need for you to concern yourself with that.  You might have simply stopped after your first sentence, asking me to provide the list I offered, rather than instructing me (and the rest of WikiTree) that your profiles are "excellent by any reasonable standard" and suggesting that the Style Guide be changed to match your profiles.  I can also assure you that your  emotionally expressed psychological analysis of the motivations of WikiTree - the website and the members - is diametrically opposed to the reality in my experience here.

Like Dale, I am also a member of the Profile Improvement Project and although I have been encouraged to review profiles that have been submitted by members, I have never done so because I am concerned that I might not be capable of sufficient sensitivity to offer constructive criticism (if appropriate) without hurting someone's feelings.  Now, however, I have no such fear because you remind me of a young engineer for whom I had to write a performance review, in which, after a great deal of struggle, I managed to say "He is very bright - in fact, he is almost as bright as he thinks he is".  I will not see any reaction you may have to what I say here because, at this point I need to invoke the DWWA rule we have here, so I will not return to this thread again.  Here are the problems I see with Bard-70:

  1. At the top of the narrative there is a very long list of category tags.  Many of these categories have names that are not properly constructed.  These categories are also part of a massive structure that should not exist - at least not until the Categorization project makes the decisions about the need for them, as well as the way in which they should be structured.  A very small number of the categories there are appropriate to be used.
  2. In the Biography, 
    1. There is no footnoted source citation provided for the marriage date or for the statement about where they lived following their marriage.  
    2. The third paragraph states several facts with no indication of any sources that support them.
    3. There is no footnoted source for the burial information, yet there is a listing under a subsection of the Sources section to a Find a Grave site that could have been used to support this fact.
  3. There is a section named "External Links" that should not be there.  The items in this section belong at the bottom of the Sources section, under the phrase "See also:".  These items should also include the information required for a proper citation.  In addition, there is a starting statement in this section that says "requires a free account to access", which is only true for one of the three statements.  One does not require any account and the other requires an account for which there is a charge.   
  4. In the Sources section, there are three subsections that are neither necessary nor appropriate.  The items listed under the one labeled "Citations" are not citations - they are the targets of the footnote numbers in the Biography, however they lack most of the information required for a citation.  In addition, they have links which send you to the second subsection, labeled "Bibliography", there are targets of the links from the "Citations" subsection that provide a little more of the information that belongs in a citation, and the reader is still not through clicking on things - these are all links to the third subsection, labeled "Repositories", which has links to online display of the records, along with a description of the record types.

    This effective scavenger hunt that requires people to click on 3 different links before the citation is nearly complete (the information about the access date is never provided) is not only extremely undesirable, but also in violation of the Style Guide prescribed method of including footnoted source citations.  This profile uses a cascading set of levels implemented with span tags, which are discouraged here.
If you wish, you are welcome to refer to the Profile Template used by the Holocaust project for an example of how WikiTree profiles should be composed.
So now a technical question has become a pretense to call my credibility into question.

My contributions are open for anyone to confirm for themselves.

You should be ashamed.
Greg;

you asked Gaile what was wrong with that profile and she provided an accurate answer so she, or for that matter anyone else who answered your questions should not be ashamed.

Like Gaile I will no longer respond to your questions on this topic.
Dale my response was a response to Kristina Adams uncalled for questioning of my credibility, not a response to Gaile.

Kristina should be ashamed to use this discussion as a pretense for questioning my credibility which is completely unrelated to anything being discussed. It's an out-of-the-blue attack without any justification of any kind.

Gaile's response has so many issues with it that it will be a project to respond to them all. In general, it's a lot of opinion stated as fact. As near as I can tell for the whole wall of text, the only valid criticism is about the use of "<span>." She doesn't seem to have a clue how a double-dagger (used in place of an asterisk) is used to make a note. I think it is particularly petty to attack me (and that is how I am taking it at this point - I don't see this as respectful communication) on the fact that not every single sentence has a reference. All because I asked a technical question which people didn't want to answer.

I've heard repeated calls that I "just need to learn how things work at WikiTree." That sentiment has come up several times. That's exactly what every cult says too. It is a convenient way to avoid listening to reason. It seems you've got a little club going on. I have to tell you, I've really lost respect for at least a few members of the community as a result of this exchange. Before you respond to that, believe me, I definitely got the message that sustaining my respect was never a priority. Be well.
+10 votes
Greg, You need to be patient. In order to keep WikiTree free for all users there is a very small staff and making a change of the magnitude that you are requesting will involve a lot of research because the wiki code that is used is not the same as that used on Wikipedia. For that reason it may be months before anyone even has a chance to see if it can be done.  One of the problems I see is not technical but rather practical, we need to form our conclusions based on facts that are supported by sources.  Sometimes the facts are not all that clear so by it's nature genealogy should not be done quickly but with careful and extensive research. I have changed my focus on here and no longer want to always get the Club 1000 badge because Quality is far more important than Quantity.
answered by Dale Byers G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
+11 votes
Greg, you will need to be patient. Things take time. WIkiTree is free and there's no large tech team.

Until the community has time to ponder the idea and agrees this is a good idea it won't get on the to do list.

 I would love the ability to use the browser.

Reasons why things aren't going as quickly as you like:

1. Chris wants input from the community. It's key!

2. Cost of modifying the software and reversing thousands of incorrect edits

3. Weighing the pros and cons of someone doing 10,000 edits.

4. Brian's To do list

5. Community understanding how the autowiki browser works.
answered by Michelle Hartley G2G6 Pilot (149k points)
In addition, having to manually do many of the edits makes profiles more correct.  So much of the GEDCOM data and geneological is wrong because it has been copied without scrutiny.  Making mass edits misses the opportunity to view each profile individually, thus catching some of these mistakes.

I would like to see some automation to finding these types of errors (example: parents born within 13 years of their children, or birth dates not congruent with proper place names), but I would hate to see mass editing without a human making a decision about the changes.
I concur with Amanda, let's not reinvent the mess over on ancestry's family trees
+15 votes

"I looked at one of the family profiles for which you gave the ID and, frankly, your statement that we can "reasonably expect that I will use AWB to make all the rest of my tree look consistent with those" makes me shudder."

I am in total agreement with Gaile here. Mass changes to profiles without discussion is not collaboration, and eliminates the ability of the Rangers, Arborists, Mentors and Leaders and whomever else is impacted to be able to have at least basic ability to stop undesirable editing by rogue agents, or unintentionally bad edits by well-meaning WikiTree members.

It is one thing to have well-programmed bots that have been vetted and approved by members that can go in and edit certain things like incorrect category names, but allowing mass edits like the kind you describe Greg makes me very uncomfortable.

WikiTree is genealogy, and genealogy does not necessarily fit in the standard wiki mode, and maybe the AWB does not fit here. Give the people who must vet that tool time to analyze it and see if it is (A) useful for the WikiTree, (B) safe for the WikiTree, and (C) any other concerns about it being brought into the WikiTree that are not covered by (A) & (B) have been dealt with.

 

answered by John Beardsley G2G6 Mach 3 (31.9k points)
edited by John Beardsley
+2 votes

Please explain what I can use the tool to!!!

I am right now trying to add categories for many Swedish Parishes and on the category page add information about the parish and where you can find genealogy resources etc. regarding ths parish ===>

What I would like to make faster
A1) Find all profiles who has born/death or other event in the parish Ottarp
A2) Add [[Category: Ottarp (M)]] to it
==> from the user profile you get a link to the category page for Ottarp
http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Category:Ottarp_%28M%29

B1) Add all parishes in Sweden as categories
B2) Add links to wikitree for the Parish
B3) e.g. add links to a resource Bygdeband that contains map/pictures atec. for towns, parishes etc of Sweden
B4) e.g. add links to the National Archive for that parish so the user can see what archives are available
B5) e.g. Add link to Family search describing the parish
https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Ottarp_parish,_Sweden_Genealogy
B6)  e.g. .....

Please if you understand what the tool does is this a way forward? Or is there another solution

Example of parish Categories pages created

they all belongs to Malmöhus county. Malmohus is one out of 24 Counties in Sweden and in Malmöhus county you have about 250 parishes...so doing this in an automatic way would save time....

And the next step to add  the profiles to an category.....

In Sweden we have started to have a citation template that as one attribute has the Paris which would be another way to filter profiles that should have the parish category....
---------
All creative ideas are welcome!!
 

Counties in Sweden:

answered by C S G2G6 Pilot (269k points)
edited by C S

I've used AWB elsewhere, and it seems to me that it would be possible to use it to do all of the things you list. It makes lists based on content, so you can do a search for every instance of "Ottarp" and it will make a list of every profile with that expression. Then you use the list to make your edits. It can be programmed to add, append or change text.

It can do a lot more than that. What you ask is pretty basic.

It seems to me that there is some kind of hesitancy to enable it, but I haven't really gotten a straight answer as to whether it is a technical obstacle, or if people are just scared of change.

I've asked several times, and they see me as "demanding" because I keep asking what the outlook is for implementing it. The best I've heard is months at least.

Greg It is neither a tech issue or a case or "scared of change" but rather an issue of a small staff that can investigate and other items on the "to do list" that were both on the list first and of a higher priority. It might be possible from a tech standpoint but it is also possible that the cost to implement would make adding it hurt the site more than it is worth. The majority of the profiles on here are for those long dead and most of us have been working on genealogy since before the internet was available to the general public so we have learned that this is the best site to date and for that reason we do take our time in making drastic changes like you are proposing, after all the dead are not going anywhere.
Greg, I highly recommend you learn how the WikiTree community works. You've been a member for less than a month. Chris asked a question about about your lists idea so he's obviously he is considering it. You are asking for an answer that isn't possible right now. Give the man a break he needs time to investigate all the implications. Wikitree is free and he doesn't have a big tech team at his disposal.

I think my list of reasons are pretty good reasons why you don't have your answer yet.

Patience is key on WikiTree!!!!
Michelle, I've been a member since 2013. I've been doing genealogy for almost 30 years, and open wikis for almost 20 years (that's right, before there was a Wikipedia). I'm way past "if only you knew how our online community worked..."

I asked my question several times and didn't get a straight answer. Just to recap:

----

'Hey, I'd like the answer to a technical question.'

'What's your motivation?'

'I'd really rather just get the answer to the technical question without regard to my motivation.'

'Well, we'd really have a better idea how to answer your question if we knew why you wanted the answer.'

'Here's why I want to know...'

'OH THAT'S A TERRIBLE THING. IT MAKE ME "SHUDDER TO THINK" THAT'S WHY YOU WANT THE ANSWER.'

'BTW, since you asked the question repeatedly without getting an answer and didn't just go away you are 'demanding' and 'impatient. '

'BTW, we didn't answer your question.'

----

 

I would be more than patient if I actually had some kind of outlook. For instance knowing if anyone even tried it yet (which was my original question.)
calm down and read, I mean really read the answers and comments and you have your answers

Yes others have tried it but WikiTree does not work exactly the same as wikipedia and uses a modified wikimedia software and does not store things in the same way so we have to look into it

With a skeleton crew it is going to take a while and repeatedly asking is not going to speed up the process

Chris said he would look into it but it is not a priority at this time

and your page lists October 31 2015 as the date when your account was confirmed

FYI I have been doing genealogy for about 50 years and working with computers, including programming since the early 1980's and have tried almost every genealogy software that has been made to date and have not found anything even as good as this site

 

Yes I did look into the AWB software but I see no real advantage for it's use, in fact anything that speeds up the changes should be used with caution because we are striving for accuracy.
I'm perfectly calm, and thank you for actually answering the original question.

I don't know why the date of confirmation is so recent. I have been a member and contributor of WikiTree since 2013.

You may not see a real advantage to something like AWB, but quite frankly I am a bit incredulous at that claim. WikiTree is not easy to edit at all. With hundreds and potentially thousands of individual profiles, it defies imagination that you wouldn't see an advantage in it. If you are afraid on account of accuracy, I would suggest that you can learn to use it carefully. I can't help but point out that again, fear seems to be the operating principle here.
I was only taking pieces of others answers, I did not answer your question and by not recognizing that you already had the answer that makes it obvious that you did not really read the answers and comments.

Greg, When I looked at your profile it shows your acct being confirmed Oct 31, 2015. I'm guessing your profile was merged which changed your confirmation date. Sorry, I went by the date on your profile and didn't look at your contributions. I apologize for the mistake. It seems you are having difficulty understanding how Wikitree and our community works. If you are expecting answers immediately without giving the opportunity for others to find those answers then Wikitree might not be for you. It's not for everyone. 

Fear is not the operating principle here on Wikitree. We put ideas out there and discuss them. 

This discussion has lost it's focus.

I did acknowledge in an earlier post that they gave me an outlook of at least a month. However, your post is the first that had heard that anyone had even tried it. If I missed that said elsewhere, I apologize. That was my question, and it was like pulling teeth to get the answer.

You have to admit, all I did was ask a question, and firmly stand until I got an answer. In the intervening discussion, my motives and credibility were questioned.

For myself, I remained calm and civil the entire discussion. I think tone of the answers really crossed the line at the point where my credibility came into question. So do we have an Honor Code or not? Calling someone's credibility into question out of the blue is completely disrespectful.

I don't think this discussion was "tech"'s finest hour.
That explains it a.bout the my profile. At some point I merged one into mine.
 
I have to completely disagree about the fear issue. It's pretty clear from almost every single response that fear plays a primary role in the judgement on this issue. Re-read them.
 
Yes, the discussion has lost its focus. All I wanted to know was the status of the proposal, and basically came under attack for it. I think it's inappropriate to blame the victim by saying Wikitree is not for me. Maybe it's not for them if they can't be civil.

Not their finest hour.

Please be constructive ;-)

I can understand the fear but my fear is that wikitree easily getting to many gedcom uploads without sources.....

One uploaded gedcom with "Ancestry" sources takes 
10 minutes to upload 1000 profiles


To clean and add sources it takes 10 min * 1000 = 170 man hours ==> its a Sisyphus work to get rid of unsourced and it can not be done....

The consequences will be too many unsourced profile ==> we dont attract people understanding and interested in genealogy

A tool that can make wikitree a better place for genealogy is away to survive the Unsourced mafia that lives on Ancestry and other commercial sites who primary focus is not genealogy but earn cash ==> more users = success

For me fewer profiles but with good sourcing and conclusions is the focus

+10 votes
Because I've been a Wikipedia contributor, I'm very aware of AWB. It's been a useful tool at Wikipedia (when used with great care), but it's also been a massive headache there. The problem I've seen at Wikipedia is that when a contributor makes a mistake (something all of us do sometimes) while using an automated tool, their mistake can be propagated to a great many places before it is caught. Wikipedia depends on many tech-savvy volunteers to repair the damage that is done when that sort of thing happens.

WikiTree isn't Wikipedia. As others have pointed out, one difference is that WikiTree uses a modified version of Mediawiki. This site's interface is designed to be a lot friendlier to non-tech-savvy contributors. That's important because there are many valued contributors here who are not comfortable with computer coding and find it challenging to deal with even the relatively simple wikicoding that is employed here. As I see it, not confronting contributors with undue technical complexity is part of "making WikiTree the most polite website in the world." Also, it is significant to recognize that the genealogical data elements of WikiTree are very different from the Wikipedia structure -- and some of the kinds of errors that are easily reversible at Wikipedia cannot be reverted at Wikitree. All this means that, even if AWB would work here (I don't know if it would), errors propagated by mistaken uses of this and other automated tools would be much harder to correct at WikiTree than at Wikipedia. Modern genealogy already has been seriously damaged by ill-conceived automation (such as the autocomplete functions in some genealogy software packages that turned the user-input placename "Holland" into "Holland, Reusel-de Mierden, Noord- Brabant, Netherlands" and that changed the NL abbreviation for Netherlands into "Newfoundland and Labrador"), which makes it doubly important to be extra cautious about the introduction of new automated tools.
answered by Ellen Smith G2G6 Pilot (912k points)
Don't forget that it would also make it a lot easier to correct mistakes. On those issues that makes it a wash. On the presumption that the vast majority of contributions would be positive (and that is the reasonable presumption) all of the fear-based responses are far outweighed by the positives. Not by a little bit either, by orders of magnitude.

I see a lot of fear, and not a lot of the faith in humanity that is the foundational principle of an open wiki.

I would call your characterization of AWB at Wikipedia as a "massive headache" to be 100% misrepresentation. Certainly there is no one -- NO ONE--  there who advocates that its use be discontinued. It is far too valuable a tool.

Eowyn has added your requests -  Here's the status update: I've added your suggestion here http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/To-Do for consideration. 

Can we all have a break from this circuitous argument that is leading us all to nothing but animosity and bad tempers?

(P.S. Question: How do you eat an elephant?  Answer: One bite at a time!)

 

+13 votes
As someone interested in all kinds of tech. AWB is very interesting to me as I have not heard of it and it sounds very intriguing. I would like to learn more.

However, as a long time user of Wikitree.  I have come to appreciated that we are not so easily changed. At first blush, the idea of making instant and rapid changes is very appealing but having had years to consider this on Wikitree I have come to appreciated the fact that not just anyone can join. One needs to invest time in how we function. Not being able to dump a lot of garbage and run is a key feature of the strength of Wikitree.  

What makes Wikitree different, and hard for many experienced genealogists to understand, is that it does not function like so many other sites on the internet.  This turns out to be a blessing in disguise. One needs to make an effort and take the time to see and appreciate the depths of Wikitree. This turns a lot of people away because it is not the common experience elsewhere.

The very obstacles that prevent one from "Instantly" learning Wikitree and making massive "Automatic" changes is what keeps Wikitree working.  Please consider the more massive Family Search Tree, it is full of garbage and can not be discussed and changed.  It fails to function after the 1700's.

Requiring new members to take the time to learn how Wikitree truly works is not as problematic as some make it out to be.  Those that take that time, are patient, invest in the community are those that stick around to make quality and significant changes. This is good for Wikitree as we retain a lot of patient thoughtful people who have great genealogy skills.

This is not the experience elsewhere and it frustrates many who chose not to invest that time.  So be it, I have found no better online community than Wikitree.  It may mean we move slowly and have meaningful and passionate discussions before we make changes.  

In the long run, it is well worth the sacrifice and speed of change.

Greg, I too would be very interested in seeing answers to your questions.  If only to learn more about the inner workings of Wikitree.  However, it does take time because we have been through this before.  And changes on Wikitree come through community support.  

Please be patient and engage in the discussions not directly related to answering your questions.  If you are truly interested in make this significant contribution to the Wikitree community, then taking the time to engage and answer others questions will only bolster your cause and bring you support.  

Once the community is comfortable with what you are proposing, then your requests for specifics are likely to be answered because you will have the weight of community support behind you.

Call it politics, playing the game, or gathering community support, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
answered by Michael Stills G2G6 Pilot (366k points)

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