Adding a "useful tip" to ask questions?[edit source]

(archived by --CurtB 13:55, 2 November 2006 (PST)))

I added the "request" link, which may be counter to what folks want. (Perhaps I've guaranteed "Main Page III" :-) Let me know. We can start gathering ideas on this discussion page for what the next rev will look like. Right now, I'm thinking I'll add a "useful tip" that says, "If you have a general question about Appropedia, please click on 'Ask Questions'" or similar. (stamp of this comment: 06:26, 10 October 2006 (PDT))

Also, I'm going to take this moment (probably early tomorrow morning) to blog yet again about Appropedia, and will also re-announce it on, etc. One question: I just realized I'm assuming others will be adding the "create new page" template to the various high level category pages, and that may not be a good assumption. Hmm. So now I have to decide just how much I want to promote. Joy. Well, I'll sleep on it... --Curtbeckmann 21:49, 9 October 2006 (PDT)

Hi Curt, Could you further clarify this question about the "create new page" template? --Lonny 23:39, 14 October 2006 (PDT)
Actually, I was just curious if anyone regarded the "create new page" template as being on their to-do list. If not on someone else's list, then I'd have to decide if I was willing to go there, or content to start promotion. As it happens, I decided that I was willing to start promotion. I've been away (from the home AND the internet!) for a long weekend, but before leaving sent out 7 emails to different EWB groups. So, the answer is, I'm promoting. I've also noticed a lot of work on the newpageresource template, so I'm figuring that's today's answer to "createnewpage"...but haven't investigated yet... --Curtbeckmann 15:16, 16 October 2006 (PDT)
My own feeling is that promoting is really important - partly because the larger the community, the more effectively we can tackle the various technical and maintenance challenges. So except when there's major problems with how Appropedia is working and looking, I'd say keep up the good work with promotion! Personally I'm trying to spend an occasional bit of time on the "meta" Appropedia issues (e.g. thinking about the newpageresource template) but more time on content and promotion. Though I've been delaying my promo a little - thinking about creating some good submissions first and then going hard. See my comment at Appropedia talk:Promotion of Appropedia#Create submissions for sites and newsletters. --Singkong2005 (now known as Chriswaterguy) · talk 19:02, 16 October 2006 (PDT)

Nav bar discussion[edit source]

(archived by --CurtB 13:55, 2 November 2006 (PST)))

I poked through the MediaWiki Manual stuff and am now aware of the (serious) contraints on what can be done with the navbar link appearance. Bummer. I think just plain "Projects" might be preferable. Another option (which you may already have tried?) would be "P R O J E C T S" or "P r o j e c t s" or "P_R_O_J_E_C_T_S", but I imagine none will look any better. <b>HTML</b> doesn't work, right? --Curtbeckmann 17:30, 2 October 2006 (PDT)

I still am uncomfortable with the current "Projects" link on the "areas" section of the nav bar. I think we should use other schemes, like main page text or formatting, to focus attention on Projects, or get really serious and add some kind of icons or other complexity to the nav bar. For now, can we just go back to "Projects"? I'd do it myself, but I don't have the permissions... (Or tell me you like it too much and I'll keep quiet.) --Curtbeckmann 21:36, 9 October 2006 (PDT)

Hi Curt, How do you feel about the Project link in the navbar now? I was thinking about trying just ALLCAPS. --Lonny 23:43, 14 October 2006 (PDT)
Hi. I think I would prefer all caps or even simply "Project". I think we can use other mechanisms (like "highlighted project") to accentuate the importance of that area. --Curtbeckmann 15:18, 16 October 2006 (PDT)

Question about 'Creating Orgs' hints[edit source]

(archived by --CurtB 13:55, 2 November 2006 (PST)))

Lonny recently added some guiding words on the Category:Organizations page to guide people to copy/paste the tag on their page. But the Main Page hints for Organization (and Project) creators doesn't mention this. My inclination (which I'll act on as soon as I have more time, if no one objects) is to move all the hints for creation to the category page, and on the Main Page simply direct creators to the appropriate Category page for "easy to follow directions on adding a page". --Curtbeckmann 17:26, 29 September 2006 (PDT)

Great idea Curt. Maybe one section on how easy it is too start. Then links to the different category pages. I am currently working on the template {{Createnewpage}} to generalize the instructions for starting a page. Although this template made me realize (becuase it would read better) another reason for making the areas as singular categories, e.g. Organization vs Organizations. So we will create one Create a page box on the Main page with links to the different main categories. Thank you --Lonny 03:20, 1 October 2006 (PDT)

The New Font Page[edit source]

The new front page in my opinion does not look as good as the old one. Just a statement I though I would share.

Thank you for your feedback. I think we agree and we are working on it. Please check back next week and let us know. Thanks again. --Lonny 19:39, 19 February 2007 (PST)
Do you like it better now? --Lonny 10:20, 18 September 2007 (PDT)

Yes it looks much better now,better content and more crisp and with better color combinations. Ed

Let's not forget to revisit the logo question[edit source]

Are we happy with the bricks? Why do the bricks have a "P" on them? Can we get bricks with an A? An "AT"?

I know this should be on the logo page, but it seems like a mainpage topic at the mo'. --Curtbeckmann 22:32, 9 October 2006 (PDT)

The designer of the most recent submission to the logo page has promised a new revision this week. Can it wait until then, or is this stalling your promotion push? Thank you, --Lonny 23:43, 14 October 2006 (PDT)

Small problem...[edit source]

Sorry for your time.... Why i can't see images on this resource? My Browser is: Opera. Thank you.

I can't imagine why, but will look into it. --Curtbeckmann 07:48, 10 October 2006 (PDT)

That's odd. I use Opera (Windows & Linux) and can see images no prob. Can you view images on other sites with no problems?
The only thing I can think of is:
  • Go to Tools > Preferences,
  • Click "Web pages" at the top
  • What is your setting for "Images"? "Cached images" should be okay, but "Show images" should be safest. Try setting it to "Show images" if it isn't already.
Hope that helps - please let us know if it doesn't. --08:02, 10 October 2006 (PDT)
Question: what version of Opera were you using? I found the following link that suggests that earlier versions of Opera might not support .png files, but apparently 7.22 supports .png files. Here is the link (you'll need to follow the previous/next links to see the whole conversation):

By the way, I've checked it on IE and Firefox and it works at least with my versions. --Curtbeckmann 08:14, 10 October 2006 (PDT)

Can go to Welcome page?[edit source]

Is the redirect necessary? I assume that the mapping from to "Main Page" is done somehow programmatically. If so, can we go directly to the "Welcome to Appropedia" page with getting the little "redirected from" subtitle? (Note, even if we do that, we should keep the Main Page redirect for some time, since many references to Appropedia may point to the Main Page. That's how it's linked at my blog, for instance.) --CurtB 13:59, 2 November 2006 (PST)

Yes, it can! I found "mediawiki:mainpage" and changed the contents, which worked a treat. --CurtB 06:59, 3 November 2006 (PST)
Great work. You might want to tell Helge about this so that his main page is not a redirect... although it seems like he would probably already know.--Lonny 11:25, 3 November 2006 (PST)
I did. The reason why I use a redirect rather than Mediawiki:Mainpage (where I changed "Main Page" to "Home") is that I want to maintain a short URL that is recognized as the frontpage. People look at URLs a lot as a clue to where they are on a site. The little "redirected from" seems to be the lesser evil. --Helge 07:00, 19 November 2006 (PST)

Avoiding spam...[edit source]

I've noticed a couple of spam attempts recently... not a huge problem, but is it possible to set the wiki up so that if a new or unregistered user adds a url, they have to pass through one of those anti-robot tests (type the squiggly letters, or perform simple arithmetic)? --Singkong2005 (now known as Chriswaterguy) · talk 21:31, 23 November 2006 (PST)

Appropriate technology link - yikes[edit source]

I just realized that Appropriate technology is linked from the top of the main page - and it's not a great article at all. We need to make an Ap Tech portal, ASAP, IMO. It doesn't work well as a category as such a large proportion of our stuff would go in it, but it could be a great portal, which would be a landing page for tech-minded people. --Chriswaterguy · talk 16:44, 29 March 2007 (PDT)

Policy for changing the highlighted project?[edit source]

I think we have several great projects that could be candidates for "highlighted project". AEF Greywater has been highlighted for couple of months now. Change it quarterly? More often when traffic grows? What's the process? For process, I suggest: Lonny picks what he likes, or delegates the problem to someone else (i.e. some very simple process). We could also have a monthly highlight, and have a policy of showing the last 2 or 3 months on the mainpage... This might imply smaller photos, but would show some of the richness of the site. I guess we could also feature non-project articles, since there's some pretty good content (Weld wood, Beyond dams, Demotech, etc) that may not be categorized as projects... --CurtB 12:13, 13 November 2006 (PST)

Highlighted project: I think that this should change at least monthly with our current content, and increase in frequency to weekly then daily. I am sorry that I have been slow about this. I will take charge of the highlighted project, and all are welcome to submit suggestions at Template_talk:Highlighted_project. For now I will change it monthly. Thank you for the reminder.
Other highlights: I think that we should not just have one highlight box and rotate through pages from different areas, but I would be very interested in an array of highlights - Highlighted project, how to, Topic, Organization, etc... maybe even user. --Lonny 13:23, 13 November 2006 (PST)
Okay, so would "highlighted user" be forced to have their photo on the main page? Scary! Wrong incentives! :-) Just saw lots of activity from User:Ethanzuckerman... Cool! --CurtB 14:25, 13 November 2006 (PST)
Suggestion for process:
  • Nominate a project on the talk page of Appropedia:Highlighted project (or whatever the page will be called). Much like nominations for upcoming tips at Wikipedia talk:Tip of the day#New entriesW.
  • One or more admin can choose a project, provided it has been nominated for some time (a week or more?) This time after nomination allows time and attention for the article to get any extra work it needs.
  • Re how often to change it - the frequency will no doubt increase as things get more active. I agree, we should be changing at least monthly for now.
--Singkong2005 (now known as Chriswaterguy) · talk 22:49, 14 November 2006 (PST)

about box suggestions[edit source]

I suggest changing "Increasing Sustainability" to simply "Environmental Sustainability", as in certain business circles "sustainability" can mean "profit sustainability".

I also suggest beginning bullet points with the highlighted terms, e.g.

  • International Development to foster change, knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life (UNDP definition)
  • Environmental Sustainability to encourage responsible stewardship of Earth's natural resources
Good suggestions. --Chriswaterguy · talk 04:33, 28 March 2007 (PDT)

("Appropriate Technology" I believe is a silly and ambiguous term) Dhart 00:20, 28 March 2007 (PDT)

It's certainly ambiguous, but it is widely used by people in the international development arena (including Engineers Without Borders) with the kind of meaning described at Wikipedia:Appropriate technology... it's a very important concept and I'm not aware of alternative terms that serve the purpose. --Chriswaterguy · talk 04:33, 28 March 2007 (PDT)
Perhaps AT should have it's own bullet point with a short description? E.g.
ES overlaps with AT, but it's important enough to single out IMO. Dhart 15:25, 28 March 2007 (PDT)

Category suggestions[edit source]

I suggest a separation of the "ICT / Education" category. A few arguments: acronyms are perhaps not great at the category level (who outside of ICT knows the definition of ICT?); the combination with education is not obvious; WikiMedia categories are what everyone else calls "tags" ; WikiMedia categories are hierarchical, so splitting and multi-tagging is better than lumping. Proposed split:

  • Information Technology
  • Education Infrastructure


I agree with your points, especially about acronyms. We were trying to set up the top categories so that they would mirror human needs/wants. Education and Information Communication Technology seemed to fit together. I am starting to strongly favor removing ICT from the top level categories and instead subcategorizing/multitagging it. Maybe Education could be renamed to be more inclusive... or maybe Education is just right. Thank you for your feedback. --Lonny 02:13, 28 March 2007 (PDT)
Using common-use tags is probably better than second-guessing users wants/needs for tag names; in this case "Education" would be best (even though I like "Education Infrastructure"!), and would make a nice top-level tag. In my experience, choosing top-level-anything is tough, especially avoiding too many top-level things. Choice will probably come down to a decision about the topics which the site wants to stress (probably around 10 max), with the compromise of a link to a page of "Other Categories" which may contain a hand-culled list of 50-100 categories, and the WikiMedia "all categories" link (which can probably be safely removed from the front page). Dhart 04:19, 28 March 2007 (PDT)

Rocket Stove Opportunity[edit source]

I just wanted to comment on the benefits of Appropedia. A requirement of my appropriate technology class at Cal Poly Humboldt was to create a Appropedia web page describing students individual appropriate technology projects. My project was the construction and design of a rocket stove or improved fuel stove. The article can be found under "CCAT Rocket Stove". In the discussion area of the rocket stove page I indicated my contact information and stated my desire to continue research with rocket stoves. Several months passed with no response. And then to my surprise a associate director with the department of mechanical engineering at Colorado State University contacted me. He stated that he has some opportunities and asked that I send my resume. This opportunity would not have presented itself had it not been for Appropedia. I want to thank everyone who has had a part in creating this truly helpful site. Thank You Lonny! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Dlm58 (talkcontribs) 5 December 2007

Transition Handbook[edit source]

Another reason why AT is important is global economic collapse if AT is not used. New reports have confirmed the economic demise to be linked to climate change and a depletion of resources, see

Also, a question: is the Appropedia based around appropriate technology or appropriate and sustainable technology ? See the wikipedia on AT for the distinction.

Also, you may want to add the permaculture pamphlets and some other learning resources to the Appropedia

Appropedia has a broad scope - definitely covering appropriate and sustainable technologies. The best technologies manage to be both. Agreed that sustainability - drastically reducing our need for resources through better technology - is crucial.
The pamphlets are great, thanks. They talk about sharing - but unfortunately they don't specify an open license - so it's not clear whether they accept modifications being made of the materials, in the way allowed by the CC-BY-SA for example. We want to have someone contact the copyright owners of content we'd like to use, and this would be a great set of resources to include in that. See Appropedia:Permissions taskforce. --Chriswaterguy 05:45, 21 December 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I can't seem to log in[edit source]

any idea why I'm having this problem?

signed baron.

Hi Baron,
No idea what the source of the problem is. What error are you getting? Have you tried doing a hard reload of your cache?
-Lonny 09:36, 14 January 2008 (PST)

Wiki hacked by vandals?[edit source]

I noticed some vandal names showing up in the site interface. Look at the bottom of this page for example. This is more than just making bad edits. What gives? Is there a Trojan on the server? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by, 21 December 2008

Anyone who has edited the page shows up on that list of contributors, including vandals, even if they were promptly reverted. That can be removed by deleting the page and then restoring the non-vandal edits. Mostly we haven't had time to do that yet, except on the most high-profile pages. I'll do it to this page now.--Chriswaterguy 05:16, 21 December 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Done. --Chriswaterguy 05:22, 21 December 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note we now have an extension working that lets us rename vandals. --Chriswaterguy 09:41, 19 June 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Use of Templates[edit source]

I tried to open a page and intended to use a " Comments" template as follows == text== nothing seems to happen any suggestions? are templates from wikiversity also supported on Appropedia? thanks.

Answered at Appropedia talk:Village pump#Templates. --Chriswaterguy 09:16, 19 June 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Work on new front page - input please[edit source]

Please see discussion at Talk:Main Page tests #What's good on the front page? --Chriswaterguy 01:47, 28 February 2011 (PST)

Er - straighten the new dawn composting toilet[edit source]

It's lopsided. Is that anything intrinsic in its design? :-) Pashute 05:55, 30 March 2011 (PDT)

:) - Someone did a straightened version of the photo, and I fixed up the highlighted project template. Thanks for pointing it out. --Chriswaterguy 09:41, 6 June 2011 (PDT)

Displaying an anouncement feed[edit source]

I've figured out how to display a feed of Appropedia blog posts as a simple list of links. (Based on info at Help:Feeds.)

I'll look for a spot to place this on the main page. --Chriswaterguy 11:42, 24 August 2011 (PDT)

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