Talk:Coal mining

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 Definition A term that encompasses the various methods used to extract the carbon-containing rock called coal from the ground. [d] [e]

(Talk page transferred from Coal Mining History which is marked for deletion) Roger Lohmann 02:18, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

"Local rooms?"

The first sentence of this doesn't make much sense to me. What does "local rooms" mean? Households? Jessica Pierce 18:25, 24 April 2007 (CDT)

it was Wiki vandalism and I fixed it. Richard Jensen 18:42, 24 April 2007 (CDT)

This appears to be more of a history of coal then coal mining. David Martin 10:49, 14 May 2007 (CDT)

I concur in part with David. I also question the geographical segmentation. I would have expected the article to be based on events and innovations. For example: The effects of new types of explosives such as dynamite, TNT, and plastic explosives; The changes in water management through the introduction of steam powered pumps; Changes in roof support types such as the introduction of wooden pit props or more modern roof pinning methods; And what about canaries and safty lamps? Also some personal perspective. How did mining affect the people doing the work and the community around the mines; Health problems; Pit closures and life after coal.
A geographical structure is used because that's how the experts have written on the topic. There should be more--probably a separate article--on the workers. (They are well covered in the bibliography). Richard Jensen 16:48, 14 May 2007 (CDT)

Title Change?

This title should probably be changed to "Coal Mining, History" for consistency. (See comments at Talk:Agriculture,_history.

Roger Lohmann 14:43, 29 June 2008 (CDT)
agreed....but should be lower case: Coal mining, history ??
As the English teacher here, may I observe that, "Coal mining history." requires no comma. Only when the "of" is included do we require a comma and also capital "H" as the comma represents the reversal of, "History of Coal Mining." to become, "Coal Mining, History of..." So we can just have plain and simple "Coal Mining History".
This is complicated with agriculture, as the grammar should be, "Agricultural history" or "History of Agriculture" which can be reversed to "Agriculture, History of..." including the comma, including the capital "H" and including the "of". The terms "History agriculture" and "Agriculture history" are grammatically wrong and "Agriculture, History" is unusual and would be a Citizendium eccentricity. I don't think CZ should be eccentric. Derek Harkness 06:01, 30 June 2008 (CDT)
OK on Coal mining history. Note the CZ rules call for lower case (unless the term is an official title). I strongly prefer putting the key word first, (even if it seems quirky to non-librarians), so the editors and authors can keep track of the articles. (All the articles on France should start with "France".) We've already had the problem of near-duplicate articles by different authors on the same topic. It's amazing how useful libraries are when the books on the same topic are next to each other. :)
Librarians don't do this. They don't store all the books about France next to each other. They store all the History books next to each other and they store all the travel guides next to each other and they store all the Politics books next to each other. They only use this reversed title system in the card file index a secondary method of locating books that differentiates with the storage system. We have the ABC setting in the meta date which replicates the card file system in the library without the need to name articles in a eccentric manner. Derek Harkness 20:06, 30 June 2008 (CDT)

Proposed title change and formatting of introduction

I know that a title change has been discussed before (see just above). However, it doesn't seem right that the current title is Coal Mining History and yet the first sentence starts with a link to the title of another article: "Coal has been used for centuries ....".

In fact, it is only after 5 paragraphs in the introduction, that this sentence appears at the end of the introduction: "This article discusses the history of coal mining." Even here, the link to coal mining is a link to a section in the Coal article. Nowhere in the entire introduction do we see the title words "coal mining history".

I suggest that the article be re-named History of coal mining and the first sentence could then read:

The history of coal mining is the history of how the carbon-containing rock called coal is extracted from the ground.

As an engineering editor, I could make that change. But I would rather first hear what some others think. Milton Beychok 02:31, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Milton,
As I see it, I'm not certain that History ought to be in the title at all. We don't currently have an article on Coal mining and it could be argued that this is the larger category where we ought to begin. (In fact, I want to argue that.) I think it was probably just called that because the author who started the article was an historian.
If we moved in that direction, we could sort out the content and there would be room for a section within the larger article entitled "History of Coal Mining", "Coal chemistry", "Sociology (or Anthropology) of Coal Mining", "Engineering in Coal Mining," "Geology and Coal Mining," etc. If some of these articles grow large (and complete) enough that they need to be pealed off to separate articles, that should still be easy to do, but at least we would have a "core topic" in the meantime. History of coal mining, however titled, doesn't appear to me to give that coverage currently.
So, I would be completely agreeable if you moved the whole thing to an article called Coal mining, moved the historical material into its own section and made the change in the first sentence you suggest.
Roger Lohmann 23:06, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Roger, we have a pretty good Coal article that includes a section on "coal mining" per se (which is fairly detailed but still could more work in my mind). For that reason, I am not sure we want to call this article "coal mining". Maybe we should just extract the history parts of this article, add them to the coal article and delete the rest of this article?? Would you look at that Coal article and then comment further here? Thanks, Milton Beychok 23:27, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Ooh! This gets more and more interesting! And a total of six or seven workgroups are involved (and politics and economics aren't even involved yet, which in the context of my state of West Virginia represents serious omissions!)! Something tells me we are charting new ground here, no matter what we do. Can we think of it in terms of the Related Pages format? What's the Parent article here? That seems to me to be the Coal entry (which I wasn't aware of.) If we take that approach, then a completely new Coal mining strikes me as an appropriate daughter article, listing Coal as its parent. Coal mining would include some of the general economic, social and political materials from both the present Coal and Coal mining history. At that point, we would be in a position to decide whether to branch into further articles or include everything in these two. If we plan to provide anything like complete introduction to the topic, separate granddaughter articles on Coal mining history, etc. seem likely. If you think this an unwise approach, let me know; I do think we will have to rip apart the two present articles in some fashion to shape a coherent presentation.
Roger Lohmann 00:55, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
I see Coal mining already exists, but it is currently functioning only as a redirect page. Substituting in the subpages function and beginning to sort content would be easy as a start.
Roger Lohmann 00:58, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

(unindent) It appears to me that the most logical thing would be to have 2 separate articles: Coal and Coal mining ... and the Coal mining article would include a section entitled "History". That would mean:

  1. Moving the coal mining discussion, the strip mining photo and the mining methods diagram from the current Coal article to the Coal mining article ... leaving Coal with just a "Coal Mining" section header with a {{main}} template with a link pointing to Coal mining and sentence or two.
  2. The current Coal article would be left pretty much untouched other than reducing the "Coal mining" section to just a few sentences and a pointer to the new Coal mining article.
  3. Convert Coal mining (which is now a redirect) into a full fledged article, using the content removed from Coal ... and adding a section entitled "History" or "Coal mining history" using content extracted from the current Coal mining history.
  4. Deleting the current Coal mining history article after extracting the its history content for use in the new Coal mining article.

I could quite easily do 1 and 2 above. Would you care to tackle 2 and 4? Milton Beychok 01:35, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Sounds like a plan! I'll take a shot at 2 and 4. Roger Lohmann 01:40, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
I've moved things (including this talk page) from Coal and Coal mining history and requested deletion of the latter. Now, we can do some serious revising and editing! Roger Lohmann 02:43, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Well done, Roger and Milton!

I have done some editing of this new article that you created as we had discussed:

  • Added a lead-in sentence with the title words in it.
  • Created a section header entitled "Coal mining methods" and moved the pertinent content into that section.
  • Relocated a photo and a drawing. May have to change again when the "Coal mining methods" section is eventually enlarged.
  • Deleted two sections entitled "1900" and "2008" which were merely statistics on coal reserves and production. The "parent" article Coal includes the latest available worldwide statistics on reserves and production and I saw no need for this article to also include such info.
  • Deleted the WP-ism "See also" section by including those few articles in the Related Articles subpage that I created.
  • Created a Definition subpage.
  • Went through the External Links subpage and deleted inactive/unavalable links and one unneeded link.
  • Added the Earth Sciences workgroup to the categories in the Metadata template.

I've gone about as far as my coal-mining knowledge will take me. Now, we need someone who is an experienced mining engineer to edit/revise/expand the "Mining methods" section.

I also think the History section should be reviewed throughly with a view toward making it somewhat briefer and more concise. Would you like to do that? Pretty please? Milton Beychok 04:22, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Nice touches! This worked very well! I'll take a look at the History section when I have a chance. I thought we ought to get everything positioned first. I asked Ron Lewis on our History faculty who is a specialist in this area to take a look. I've got his notes and will incorporate some comments and suggestions as soon as I can get to it. Roger Lohmann 22:16, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

breadth and specificity

Roger asked me to weigh in on the questions of "what should be in which articles named what, and how broad the top articles should be." I have little time at the moment and need to be thinking about packing for an early morning flight as soon as I get home tonight, but these are my thoughts in the order that they occur to me. It seems to me that [[Coal mining]] should be very broad and primarily concerned with the actual mining of the material. A section on the history of required technology and level of production should be included with regard to the contributing factors that have produced changes, but the details of coal consumption and whatnot should be left for other articles. So too, strikes and labor issues should be included if they affected how coal is mined or significantly interrupted the process, but the sociological details of coal mining towns should be left for other articles. The politics of coal extraction (strip mining or whatever) should be included but not the politics of green energy except where they have affected the actual extraction of coal. At some point, I expect we will have every [[...ology of coal]] and more details belong in those articles. I guess that makes my position that breadth is preferable to specificity in this article. As far as workgroups, I think I would limit them to engineering and earth sciences for this article and then add others to other ...ology articles. --Joe Quick 20:48, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Joe. I think this is generally the direction we are moving in also. These are some good suggestions. Appreciate your time and efforts. Have a safe trip! Roger Lohmann 22:18, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

My work here is done...?

I was asked yesterday to go to Talk:Coal mining history to weigh in on some issues, but I find that the page has been removed and the coal mining history content put on coal mining (I guess!). Is there anything left here for me to do, or has everything been wonderfully settled without me? --Larry Sanger 21:01, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Larry. Sorry I bugged you and didn't leave a clear enough trail of bread crumbs. Milton and I worked very well together on this and got things done much more quickly that we originally thought. This whole effort is coming together very nicely.
Roger Lohmann 22:21, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Don't forget Loretta Lynn!

Where would we be without coal miner's daughters? Hayford Peirce 22:53, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Too much obscure jargon??

Roger, this sentence in the Technology section strikes me as highly obscure jargon:

Scott examines the importance of path dependence effects in impeding the diffusion of high throughput mechanized mining systems in the British coal industry.

How about changing it into plain English as for example:

Scott examines the reasons for why the British coal industry was so slow to adopt high throughput mechanized mining systems.

I think that would be much more understandable. Milton Beychok 20:00, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

Even better would be:
Scott examines the reasons that the British coal industry was so slow to adopt high throughput mechanized mining systems. Hayford Peirce 21:26, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
This is indeed quite obscure jargon, and either of the suggested revisions would work better. Hayford's additional suggestion (replacing "the reasons for why" with "that") is probably a useful addition. Could an additional sentence be added for us techno-dummies: It would explain: what in heck is a "high throughput mechanized mining system"? ;-)

Roger Lohmann 00:15, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Basically, it just means "high-production mechanized mining", so I used those words. Milton Beychok 01:54, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
"Eschew obfuscation", also stated as "eschew obfuscation, espouse elucidation", is a common humorous saying of English teachers and professors when lecturing about proper writing techniques. Or so WP says, so it must be true.... Hayford Peirce 02:32, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Construction equipment

Note that I've created a reasonably top-level article, construction equipment, and started filling in under it; bulldozer in this article is now a link. I haven't done anything on large drills or other specific mining equipment; feel free to expand. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:47, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

If anyone has time, could you put a description of a rock drill in drill (tool)? Howard C. Berkowitz 17:14, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
If I could, I would. You might try Anthony Argyriou or find a petroleum geologist or petroleum engineer. Milton Beychok 17:57, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

Just finished editing the 29 references. What a job!

Richard Jensen really believed in a lot of references, but he did not take the time to make them really usable. Many were just a title and an author, no publisher, sometimes no co-authors, no ISBN. Some of the references had 2-3 names and titles for 3 different books.

Each one of them took a lot of detective work to get them into the proper {{cite book}} or {{cite journal}} format. All in all, it took many hours to edit them. Never again will I tackle such a job! Am I complaining? Yes, I am! Milton Beychok 01:18, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Didn't Tennessee Ernie Ford sing something about loading 29 tons of references? Howard C. Berkowitz 01:27, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Inappropriate Footnote?

I pulled the notation "Needs more discussion" from the first footnote, at the end of third paragraph (about methods of mining). It's an inapproprite notation there, but the point is still a good one: More discussion of methods of mining may be in order. [User:Roger Lohmann|Roger Lohmann]] 23:08, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

I agree with removing that footnote and I believe that we definitely need more discussion of mining methods by some expert on that subject. Milton Beychok 03:01, 14 June 2009 (UTC)