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My approach[edit]

Please note that I do not attempt to classify images to all possible categories or by adding them to pages. I however ensure that they belong to at least one suitable category and include the description which has the keywords needed for a searcher to find the image. In all likelihood the image will also be in use on a relevant page on the English wikipedia.

It is particularly unfortunate that Commons / Mediawiki lacks the semantic plugin or other such alternatives - which can lead to a potential explosion of categories. For instance there is "Category:Bird family Y" and "category:Birds of Location X" and then there are passing users who create "category:Birds of Location X belong to family Y" - this is clearly non-scaleable. I think temporal, geographic, conceptual classes need to be kept apart and no combinations should be made (eg:prefer India, 1887 as two categories rather than India in 1887). Categories should be "atomic" - similar to Codd's rule.

I believe that spatial categories, especially as used for organisms, should not be done with named entities - we ought to have either bounding rects or coordinate polygons and all search should be based on a table of named entities and shapes. Definitely something for Wikidata to aim for.

Mediawiki feature wishlist[edit]

SVGs with within commons image linking ability - SVG has a feature to link raster images in it - Mediawiki would do well to allow images from commons to be linked. This would allow annotation, clipping and some nice features. The rsvg rasterizer however may need to support this further. Even better would be a Commons- online SVG editor to produce some of these annotated images. It might however raise some legal eyebrows in some contexts:- we allow some copyrighted content as part of freedom of panorama and using a clip region to isolate the copyrightable part could lead to some hitherto unheard of legal issues.


Done till

  • Ibis 1922
  • PZSL 1903 2

Tools to use[edit]