Quick guide

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Welcome to the new Amtwiki. A lot of you have done a ton of work in setting up info in the PhpWiki, and I thank you all, the process of moving to MediaWiki is labor intensive but there are some definite benefits, including:


  • Categories - automatic grouping
  • Templates - intelligent templates
  • Discussion - eaach page can have its own discussion page
  • Tracking - (many wanted to know about who vandalized a page)
  • Watch - gain the ability to know when someone updates your page or any other page
  • My Contributions - be able to see all you've edited

and much more.

Conversion Tool

Anyway, the Conversion Tool is something I whipped up to help, it does some of the basic conversions for you, but it isn't perfect.

Key differences

between PHPWiki and MediaWiki:
  • Internal Links: PHPWiki used single brackets, MediaWiki uses double brackets. The conversion tool does these for you. Titles can be split off by a pipe | character, but are opposite of phpwiki. It goes [[link|title]].
  • External Links: Both use single brackets. However if you use the conversion tool, it will convert these too, so you will have to change them back, as it doesn't knowt he difference (and generally there are a lot more internal links than eternal, so I went with this way). Unlike internal links, the name will not be included unless a title is used. Titles are seperated from the link by a space.
  • Lists - phpwiki allowed lists by using "*" or "-". Mediawiki its just "*". Some pages will have to be converted manually. I oculdn't automate this because the _ character also means "Bold".
  • Italics is different. Italics used to be _Italics_ now its ''italics'' (e.g., italics). IMPORTANT - because of this when using the conversion tool some links to URLs that have an underscore may be inadvertantly changed from _ to '' which is incorrect, you'll have to change them back.
  • External Images - external images are listed directly with NO brackets.
    • Example: blicon.gif was simply http://agh2o.org/pix/blicon.gif
  • Internal Images - If you use the image button above you can link to an internal image, even if it doesn't exist yet. Clicking on the link of the image will prompt you to upload it. There are many advantages of doing this, including the ability to specify the image size. by putting a pipe | after an image link I can specify the size in pixels I want it to display as. A user can always then click on the image to see it full size.
    • Example: Wecoronation.jpg was done with [[Image:wecoronation.jpg|100px]]
    • If you click on the image you will see the full size.

this page looks like of ugly, apologies for that but wanted to get examples in. If you go to the edit, you'll notice I use a tag called "nowiki" (e.g., <nowiki>code</nowiki>) to show code without it being processed.


In the old phpwiki, we had a lot of pages of lists. A page called AmtgardPlaces for example was a big list of places, or list of pages with more lists. The problem was is every time we added a new one, we had to go update the menu pages that listed it. Or if one was gone, then you had to go clean those up. This didn't happen.

Mediawiki has a far better way to do this, and I would like to get everyone using these methods. We'll leave the old lists up for now, but as time goes on they will become irrelevent.

The way this works is via something called "Categories". Take a look at the page for Silverwater. At the bottom, you'll see a couple categories. Click the first one ("Neverwinter Parks") and you'll see a list of items with the same category. The category itself can have a page, but will automatically list the items in it. That category itself is a subcategory of a category of Amtgard Places, and if you go there you'll get other subcategories matching it.

To add an item to a category you do not edit the category page (indeed if you do you'll only get the brief text at the top). It is instead done from the invidual pages. By putting a [[category: Neverwinter Parks]] at the bottom of the page, it automatically gets added to the category page. So if a new Neverwinter Park were to be added, we just put that at the bottom and viola, its there. I want to get everyone to put the [[category: kingdomname Parks]] on their park pages (used "Freehold Parks" for parks w/out a kingdom). Similarly all other lists, e.g. Emerald Hills People, Flame Knights, etc can all be done in a similar fashion. If you want to link to a category without making that page itself show up in the category, put a colon in front of the category. e.g. <nowiki>[[:category: Sword Knights]] will result in the category being listed without this page being on the category page, like thus: category: Sword Knights.


Templates are a powerful tool to standardize entry. We had sort of soft templates in phpwiki, we had a page we wanted everyone to use. And even so people kept inadvertantly changing it and messing it up. Plus, if we wanted to change that template, all the myriad of pages that had used it before would remain unchanged.

Templates can be a simple one item substitution, a full page template or a small section.

For example, I can use Amtwiki icon.gif to insert an icon for the Amtwiki. Should the icon ever change, all I do is change the template Template: amtwiki_icon not the pages that use it. this is a simple substitution.

I created a considerably more complex template for use for Amtgard chapters, not 100% finalized with it yet, but just to show what can be done:

Amtgard Chapter
Kingdom Neverwinter
Status Shire
City Lake Worth, FL
Park John Prince Park
Meets on Sundays 1-2 pm
Founded 1992
Active '

is what I used for Silverwater's page. If you look, it supplies variables which are inserted into the Template:Infobox Amtgard Chapter. It was supplied as follows:

{{Infobox Amtgard Chapter|name=Silverwater|image=[[Image:silverwater.gif|135px]]|kingdom=[[Neverwinter]]|status=[[Shire]]|city=Lake Worth, FL|park=John Prince Park|founded=[[1992]]|meets=Sundays 1-2 pm|}}

In the future, I can change the layout, colors, location, or even add variables. This one is still simple, there are ways to add conditional sections (e.g., right now if I omit founded I get blank row, but I could add a condition that the variable exists, and omit it if not.

Anyway, for now I'd like to get people to include this template (with their own info of course) on their chapter pages.

Now... it is possible to combine categories and templates to allow for anyone using a template to automatically add their page to a category, but at the moment we want them in subcategories which will take a bit of conditional code, so we're not quite there yet.


One big advantage is Disucssion pages. Any page that has items indispute, or in question, you can click on discussion at the top and go to (or create) the discussion page for it and talk about it there without altering the original page. Please make use of this for any disputes, or just suggestions.


You can sign and timestamp any page or change you make with ~~~~, e.g.


That's all for now.... hope to add more here as I come up with useful things. Thanks for reading.

Roger 10:33, 8 July 2007 (EDT)

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