Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-21 Thread Lane Rasberry
Hello,

Here is another perspective on this same issue and an actionable remedy for
a lot of the problems we are discussing here.
http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/gendergap/2014-May/004287.html

That email describes a game in which people use a game on Wikidata to tag
biographies with a gender.

MzMcbride identified the major problem in the old system -
The general rule is always place an image in the most specific categories, and
not in the levels above those. Because of this, we had infrastructure
which precluded the development of finding all kinds of intersections. It
did not have to be that way, but that is how we used categories.

Read the above email in the link to see an example of how this new system
will prevent problems, make things simpler, and be more fair to people by
not defining them so discreetly.

Also, play the Wikidata game.

yours,



On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 8:56 AM, Nikolas Everett never...@wikimedia.orgwrote:

 On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 3:06 AM, Jan Ainali jan.ain...@wikimedia.se
 wrote:

  2014-05-20 8:41 GMT+02:00 Chad Horohoe choro...@wikimedia.org:
 
   The search engine (new, as well as old) supports category intersection.
  So
   actually, searching intersections of categories is very easy.
  
  
  Our definitiions of very easy are not intersecting :)
 
  It is possible yes, but to qualify for very easy I would suggest a GUI
 for
  modifying a search and a hotcat like functionality for selecting
  interescting categories. Such addition to Special:Search would be
 awesome.
 

 I think of most the syntax that Special:Search supports as for
 experts/power users.  Pretty much everything beyond quoting phrases is
 non-intuitive.  I'd describe it as useful but not discoverable.

 I remember seeing on a draft backlog a mention of writing some kind of more
 discoverable interface for complex category queries.  I don't remember
 which backlog (so no link, sorry) but I recall it being scheduled
 reasonably high on the list.  I don't know what that means for when work
 starts, much less when a first copy is released.  I don't even know how
 well it'd work with categories being leaves rather than tags or
 declarations of facts like I imagine you'd get with an ontology based
 solution.  And I don't know how you'd get from the categories we have now
 to something more like tags or facts.  I don't know lots of things

 It might be worth it to jump over category queries and implement it
 directly against wikidata.  I'll be sure to talk about this with the
 wikidata team when I see them later this week

 One advantage that categories do have is that they are built in so whatever
 more intuitive intersection mechanism we make would be useful to all
 mediawiki installs willing to install the search backend.  If it is hitched
 directly to wikidata the installation burden goes up considerably.  Not to
 mention it'd be easier for me to test locally with categories then with
 wikidata.  On the other hand having some mechanism where facts in wikidata
 are reflected into the local wiki sounds a bit jangly and breakable.  On
 the other other hand reflecting the facts into the local wiki would
 translate them into that wiki's language which would delay the need for
 some kind of translation integration (probably with wikidata as well).  On
 the other other other hand that doesn't help commons be multilingual.  Or
 do anything about toothbrush.

 I'm going to stop rambling now and go work on something else and let my
 subconscious filter through this.

 Nik
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread Chad Horohoe
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 7:07 PM, Lane Rasberry l...@bluerasberry.comwrote:

 The major problem is that labor is wasted because there is no easy way to
 search intersections of categories. Instead of having a category for 18th
 century French painters, it would be ideal to just have tags for people in
 the 18th century French people and painters and let the users remix
 those tags instead of being forced to look in only that branch.


The search engine (new, as well as old) supports category intersection. So
actually, searching intersections of categories is very easy.

Don't believe me? Here's a totally random category intersection from
Commons:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special%3ASearchprofile=advancedsearch=incategory%3A%22People+in+1992%22+incategory%3A%22Black+and+white+photographs%22fulltext=Searchns0=1ns6=1ns9=1ns100=1ns106=1profile=advanced

Finding new ways to expose this data *outside* of the search results
page and api.php would be cool/interesting/nice.

-Chad
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread Jan Ainali
2014-05-20 8:41 GMT+02:00 Chad Horohoe choro...@wikimedia.org:

 The search engine (new, as well as old) supports category intersection. So
 actually, searching intersections of categories is very easy.


Our definitiions of very easy are not intersecting :)

It is possible yes, but to qualify for very easy I would suggest a GUI for
modifying a search and a hotcat like functionality for selecting
interescting categories. Such addition to Special:Search would be awesome.

/Jan Ainali
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread David Gerard
On 20 May 2014 02:16, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:
 David Gerard wrote:

I'll be leaving Commons categorisation until it's tags rather than
ridiculously specific subcategories.

 Commons has tags right now: they're called categories. Or is there a
 distinction you're making? :-)


We've been talking about this for years ... picking the precise
subsubsubcategory is a pain in the backside. Most or all would also
fall out as Boolean queries on tags.

I've been here since 2004 and I still go to Commons and have trouble
finding the subsubsubcategory I'm actually looking for in the search.

Expecting users to know our category tree is user-obnoxious. Tags are common.

As Gerard notes, they would also solve the problem that everything is
categorised in English.

I vaguely recall a proof-of-concept was coded and working in Postgres
several years ago, but the same thing had unusable performance in
MySQL so the idea was shelved.


- d.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread David Gerard
On 20 May 2014 02:44, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

 Regarding hierarchy, there's absolutely no technical reason, as far as I'm
 aware, that categories must be hierarchal. It's certainly an intended
 feature that categories have subcategories and the capability to be
 hierarchal (i.e., you can have subcategories), but you can concurrently
 use categories with a flat structure. Right?


Yeah, the software-culture divide around Wikimedia has always been fluid.

I may be complaining about culture rather than software. But either
way, the current way Commons categorisation works is a source of
endless frustration for me as a user. If it turns out what I'm asking
for literally already exists, then it's the interface that's failed
me. And, perhaps I'm just weird or perhaps the present system is
failing others. USER TEST TIME!!


- d.


- d.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread Gerard Meijssen
Hoi,
OmegaWiki did a proof of concept for tagging images with multilingual tags
years ago..

Categories are broken by design. It is not only that they are unilingual,
it is also that they are always in the plural. Why look for horses when you
look for a picture of a horse?
Thanks,
 GerardM


On 20 May 2014 09:34, David Gerard dger...@gmail.com wrote:

 On 20 May 2014 02:16, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:
  David Gerard wrote:

 I'll be leaving Commons categorisation until it's tags rather than
 ridiculously specific subcategories.

  Commons has tags right now: they're called categories. Or is there a
  distinction you're making? :-)


 We've been talking about this for years ... picking the precise
 subsubsubcategory is a pain in the backside. Most or all would also
 fall out as Boolean queries on tags.

 I've been here since 2004 and I still go to Commons and have trouble
 finding the subsubsubcategory I'm actually looking for in the search.

 Expecting users to know our category tree is user-obnoxious. Tags are
 common.

 As Gerard notes, they would also solve the problem that everything is
 categorised in English.

 I vaguely recall a proof-of-concept was coded and working in Postgres
 several years ago, but the same thing had unusable performance in
 MySQL so the idea was shelved.


 - d.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-20 Thread Nikolas Everett
On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 3:06 AM, Jan Ainali jan.ain...@wikimedia.se wrote:

 2014-05-20 8:41 GMT+02:00 Chad Horohoe choro...@wikimedia.org:

  The search engine (new, as well as old) supports category intersection.
 So
  actually, searching intersections of categories is very easy.
 
 
 Our definitiions of very easy are not intersecting :)

 It is possible yes, but to qualify for very easy I would suggest a GUI for
 modifying a search and a hotcat like functionality for selecting
 interescting categories. Such addition to Special:Search would be awesome.


I think of most the syntax that Special:Search supports as for
experts/power users.  Pretty much everything beyond quoting phrases is
non-intuitive.  I'd describe it as useful but not discoverable.

I remember seeing on a draft backlog a mention of writing some kind of more
discoverable interface for complex category queries.  I don't remember
which backlog (so no link, sorry) but I recall it being scheduled
reasonably high on the list.  I don't know what that means for when work
starts, much less when a first copy is released.  I don't even know how
well it'd work with categories being leaves rather than tags or
declarations of facts like I imagine you'd get with an ontology based
solution.  And I don't know how you'd get from the categories we have now
to something more like tags or facts.  I don't know lots of things

It might be worth it to jump over category queries and implement it
directly against wikidata.  I'll be sure to talk about this with the
wikidata team when I see them later this week

One advantage that categories do have is that they are built in so whatever
more intuitive intersection mechanism we make would be useful to all
mediawiki installs willing to install the search backend.  If it is hitched
directly to wikidata the installation burden goes up considerably.  Not to
mention it'd be easier for me to test locally with categories then with
wikidata.  On the other hand having some mechanism where facts in wikidata
are reflected into the local wiki sounds a bit jangly and breakable.  On
the other other hand reflecting the facts into the local wiki would
translate them into that wiki's language which would delay the need for
some kind of translation integration (probably with wikidata as well).  On
the other other other hand that doesn't help commons be multilingual.  Or
do anything about toothbrush.

I'm going to stop rambling now and go work on something else and let my
subconscious filter through this.

Nik
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread Nathan
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 9:16 PM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

 David Gerard wrote:
 I'll be leaving Commons categorisation until it's tags rather than
 ridiculously specific subcategories.

 Commons has tags right now: they're called categories. Or is there a
 distinction you're making? :-)

 Tim and I discussed this a few weeks ago and I was mostly on your side,
 but when he asked what would be different, I had difficulty articulating a
 great response. It seems to really come down to a social problem on
 Commons. Some Commoners seem to have very specific views of what
 categories should be for and how they should be constructed and named. But
 this isn't a technical problem, per se. Poor labeling or other interface
 design problems (or outright limitations) in MediaWiki may contribute to
 this problem, but is there a larger technical issue here? It seems to
 primarily be a social issue, from what I've seen, not a technical issue.
 I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.

 There are specific features we'd like to have (such as built-in
 intersections), but is there a fundamental difference between categories
 and tags? Or perhaps put another way: what are we waiting for, exactly?

 MZMcBride


Sure - ease of use for tagging and the sometimes complex hierarchical
nature of categories. Tagging is also common web technology that a large
proportion of users should be familiar with. At the moment, I suspect
almost all new users to Wikimedia projects find categories difficult to
navigate and to apply. There are many other differences off the top of my
head, which I'm sure you grasp better than I do, so is there a deeper
meaning to your question that I'm missing?
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread MZMcBride
Nathan wrote:
Sure - ease of use for tagging and the sometimes complex hierarchical
nature of categories.

For ease of use (adding and removing), I think most wikis have HotCat
(https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/HotCat). Is that insufficient?

Regarding hierarchy, there's absolutely no technical reason, as far as I'm
aware, that categories must be hierarchal. It's certainly an intended
feature that categories have subcategories and the capability to be
hierarchal (i.e., you can have subcategories), but you can concurrently
use categories with a flat structure. Right?

Tagging is also common web technology that a large proportion of users
should be familiar with.

It's a common term, sure. It's been suggested that this may simply be a
user interface labeling problem, though. If we renamed Categories at the
bottom of the page to Tags, what else needs doing?

MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread Gerard Meijssen
Hoi,
Easy and obvious when you look at it with eyes that do not expect English.
A tag will be linked to Wikidata. Consequently it will show differently
depending on the language you have selected for yourself.

It is just these other people who will be serviced. Another reason is that
there are artificial constraints with categories that are no longer valid..
Who cares that we have more than one million items in a category for
instance? Having tags with over one million items is for instance human.
Thanks,
 GerardM


On 20 May 2014 03:16, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

 David Gerard wrote:
 I'll be leaving Commons categorisation until it's tags rather than
 ridiculously specific subcategories.

 Commons has tags right now: they're called categories. Or is there a
 distinction you're making? :-)

 Tim and I discussed this a few weeks ago and I was mostly on your side,
 but when he asked what would be different, I had difficulty articulating a
 great response. It seems to really come down to a social problem on
 Commons. Some Commoners seem to have very specific views of what
 categories should be for and how they should be constructed and named. But
 this isn't a technical problem, per se. Poor labeling or other interface
 design problems (or outright limitations) in MediaWiki may contribute to
 this problem, but is there a larger technical issue here? It seems to
 primarily be a social issue, from what I've seen, not a technical issue.
 I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.

 There are specific features we'd like to have (such as built-in
 intersections), but is there a fundamental difference between categories
 and tags? Or perhaps put another way: what are we waiting for, exactly?

 MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread Nathan
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 9:44 PM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

 Nathan wrote:
 Sure - ease of use for tagging and the sometimes complex hierarchical
 nature of categories.

 For ease of use (adding and removing), I think most wikis have HotCat
 (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/HotCat). Is that insufficient?

 Regarding hierarchy, there's absolutely no technical reason, as far as I'm
 aware, that categories must be hierarchal. It's certainly an intended
 feature that categories have subcategories and the capability to be
 hierarchal (i.e., you can have subcategories), but you can concurrently
 use categories with a flat structure. Right?

 Tagging is also common web technology that a large proportion of users
 should be familiar with.

 It's a common term, sure. It's been suggested that this may simply be a
 user interface labeling problem, though. If we renamed Categories at the
 bottom of the page to Tags, what else needs doing?

 MZMcBride



I know I'm accustomed to the type of interaction that modern keyword
tagging provides. Simple Add a tag or just tag, predictable and easy to
understand results when you click on the tag, etc. Right now Hotcat isn't
(I don't think?) enabled by default, and even the Hotcat interface is sort
of clunky and weird. Then when you click on a category you get lists of
subcategories, thumbnails of media, and then a mess of links to pages with
no organization whatsoever beyond alphabetization.

So perhaps the technical difference between cats and tags are not that
great, but the larger point that tagging is better rests on the substantial
implementation and interface differences between typical tagging and
MediaWiki cats.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread Lane Rasberry
MZMcBride - Categories are hierarchical and people worry about them
overlapping. Tags have no hierarchy.

The major problem is that labor is wasted because there is no easy way to
search intersections of categories. Instead of having a category for 18th
century French painters, it would be ideal to just have tags for people in
the 18th century French people and painters and let the users remix
those tags instead of being forced to look in only that branch.

A proposal is at
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Beyond_categories

The problem has two parts - WMF cannot coordinate this kind of search with
existing categories, and there is no need to reform categories unless there
is a commitment to make this search capacity.

I see this as a serious problem.


On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 9:57 PM, Gerard Meijssen
gerard.meijs...@gmail.comwrote:

 Hoi,
 Easy and obvious when you look at it with eyes that do not expect English.
 A tag will be linked to Wikidata. Consequently it will show differently
 depending on the language you have selected for yourself.

 It is just these other people who will be serviced. Another reason is that
 there are artificial constraints with categories that are no longer valid..
 Who cares that we have more than one million items in a category for
 instance? Having tags with over one million items is for instance human.
 Thanks,
  GerardM


 On 20 May 2014 03:16, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

  David Gerard wrote:
  I'll be leaving Commons categorisation until it's tags rather than
  ridiculously specific subcategories.
 
  Commons has tags right now: they're called categories. Or is there a
  distinction you're making? :-)
 
  Tim and I discussed this a few weeks ago and I was mostly on your side,
  but when he asked what would be different, I had difficulty articulating
 a
  great response. It seems to really come down to a social problem on
  Commons. Some Commoners seem to have very specific views of what
  categories should be for and how they should be constructed and named.
 But
  this isn't a technical problem, per se. Poor labeling or other interface
  design problems (or outright limitations) in MediaWiki may contribute to
  this problem, but is there a larger technical issue here? It seems to
  primarily be a social issue, from what I've seen, not a technical issue.
  I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.
 
  There are specific features we'd like to have (such as built-in
  intersections), but is there a fundamental difference between categories
  and tags? Or perhaps put another way: what are we waiting for, exactly?
 
  MZMcBride
 
 
 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread MZMcBride
Lane Rasberry wrote:
MZMcBride - Categories are hierarchical and people worry about them
overlapping. Tags have no hierarchy.

Categories _can be_ hierarchical, but categories can simultaneously be
flat. People worry about a lot of things, but that doesn't mean there are
substantive issues to be addressed. Sometimes there are just worries. :-)

The major problem is that labor is wasted because there is no easy way to
search intersections of categories. Instead of having a category for 18th
century French painters, it would be ideal to just have tags for people
in the 18th century French people and painters and let the users
remix those tags instead of being forced to look in only that branch.

So why not put the image in Category:Painters and Category:French
people and Category:People in the 18th century? I don't think there's
any technical reason not to. It would certainly be nice to have built-in
category intersections (previously mentioned in this mailing list thread),
but for now Commons has external tools, I believe? Why not use categories
as tags today?

A proposal is at
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Beyond_categories

The problem has two parts - WMF cannot coordinate this kind of search with
existing categories, and there is no need to reform categories unless
there
is a commitment to make this search capacity.

I see this as a serious problem.

Thanks for the link!

It lists Over- and under-categorization and links to
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Categories which states (in
part):

---
The general rule is always place an image in the most specific categories,
and not in the levels above those.
---

The rest of Commons:Categories is somewhat illuminating... this really
does seem to be a social issue with Commons, not a problem in MediaWiki.
It's possible there's ongoing miscommunication here: people on Commons are
waiting around for tags to magically appear one day, while MediaWiki
developers are looking at the current categories system and wondering why
Commoners have developed such an oddly rigid categorization scheme.

I'm not sure what you see as a serious problem. Is it just the lack of
built-in intersections? We already have the ability to add categories/tags
to media. Are intersections the missing piece before it's acceptable to
have Category:Red to tag every image that contains the color red? Or put
Category:Man on every picture that contains a picture of a man? Why
can't we do this right now?

MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
I think intersection is the most significant cause of the current
categorisation system.

My understanding of the current reasoning behind categorisation as seen on
Commons and elsewhere is that:

1) the lack of category intersection causes the very specific categories,
which are essentially saved category intersections.

and

2) the category list at the bottom of the page being very literally the
category names as listed in the page wikitext is why pages are only
included in non-overlapping leaf node categories.

On en.wp there are many useful specific categories which are deleted
because they would only 'clutter' the category section of the page content
footer. E.g. Spanish Paralympic competitors at the 2012 Summer Games. Most
other multisport cohorts/intersections can have a category, but 'by
country; by games' cohort is currently not permitted.

Fair enough. I've seen stubs on en.wp where the category section of the
page is larger than the page prose.

IMO the 'future' of categories in wikimedia projects would be to replace
the very specific 'intersection categories' with  saved queries in
wikidata, with the category list at the bottom of the page dynamically
including the list of saved wikidata search query results that the page is
a member of, if the local project has more than d pages that are members
of the query.

--
John
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons tagging and/versus categorization

2014-05-19 Thread Rand McRanderson
The difference between categories and tags is semantic but those semantics
determine how the feature is used.

I suppose from an abstract technical perspective what is needed is
different classes of category-like objects based on the purpose it should
serve and displayed separately and possibly differently
On May 19, 2014 9:28 PM, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com wrote:

 I think intersection is the most significant cause of the current
 categorisation system.

 My understanding of the current reasoning behind categorisation as seen on
 Commons and elsewhere is that:

 1) the lack of category intersection causes the very specific categories,
 which are essentially saved category intersections.

 and

 2) the category list at the bottom of the page being very literally the
 category names as listed in the page wikitext is why pages are only
 included in non-overlapping leaf node categories.

 On en.wp there are many useful specific categories which are deleted
 because they would only 'clutter' the category section of the page content
 footer. E.g. Spanish Paralympic competitors at the 2012 Summer Games. Most
 other multisport cohorts/intersections can have a category, but 'by
 country; by games' cohort is currently not permitted.

 Fair enough. I've seen stubs on en.wp where the category section of the
 page is larger than the page prose.

 IMO the 'future' of categories in wikimedia projects would be to replace
 the very specific 'intersection categories' with  saved queries in
 wikidata, with the category list at the bottom of the page dynamically
 including the list of saved wikidata search query results that the page is
 a member of, if the local project has more than d pages that are members
 of the query.

 --
 John
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