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User talk:Nereo Preto

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Nereo Preto
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Archive 1

Offline Mediawiki

Hi Nereo, that offline wiki editor I saw requires scripts to transfer the html to a browser, so it is technically quite challenging. I've been working through some of the other offline wiki installations, and there is one combination that one can install in about 15-30 mins, fully working (I've tried it). You'd need some space on a hard drive, 30+ megs, but if you wish I can walk through the setup with you and we can write it up as an article for a Citizendium help page. I am sure there will be many persons who would find it valuable, for different reasons, e.g. dial-up connection, expensive lines, mobile computer. If you are not comfortable with servers and php and all, then the working through step by step is the only way to go, and we are in similar time zones, so it should not be too disturbing (using a chat client). Let me know how you feel. --Christo Muller (Talk) 17:00, 18 February 2007 (CST)

Thanks a lot. I can't do it right now (trying to getting out of a flu, and I have very little time to stay connected), but I'll appear on your talk page as soon as I'll be back. Ciao. --Nereo Preto 07:48, 21 February 2007 (CST)
Here I am. I have now a internet connection at home, before I was mostly connecting from workplace, so I can spend much more time here (time which is needed: the connection is quite slow...). Let's do it: how can we do it technically? I'm not an expert of computers, but I suppose if you start with a written explanation I can at least try to install myself? Leave some hints here please... and thanks in advance! --Nereo Preto 12:32, 6 March 2007 (CST)

7 March 2007. OK. I've been out of town for a while for disability cases, but should be here home for a few weeks now. I'm assuming you work on a Windows machine. What you are going to do is install a Mediawiki which runs on an Apache webserver installation on your own machine. This is identical to what happens with Citizendium, except that the server and the browser talk directly through your machine, not via the internet. You have a choice of installing the server and the wiki on your hard drive, or you can put it on a USB drive and plug it in at any Windows machine where you happen to be (so you could carry all your work to and from work on the usb drive, and leave nothing on the machines themselves). The Swiss program is called Wiki-On-a-Stick (WOS). The website gives you the opportunity of selecting a collection of self-installing components which it compiles for you to download, and you unzip the download to install the software, make one change to a configuration file if you want to enable "uploads" of pictures, and it works just like that. What you need is

  1. the WOS program,
  2. the Apache server program,
  3. the ImageMagick program to be able to manipulate image sizes
  4. the database program (MySql server, different from Citizendium's PostgreSQL, but the same as Wikipedia's - you will not notice the difference),
  5. the PHP program, and
  6. the Mediawiki program.

Your main problem will be the download size - if you choose the full programs, the download is approx 27MB, if you choose the "SE" (special edition, I presume) versions, it comes to about 11MB. So go to ; select the choice "I do not have a WOS Portable II Package and want to obtain a new package", and you will be taken to page 2, which gives you the options of what you wish to include in your download. You must have: Apache2 - ImageMagick - MySQL5 - PHP5 - MediaWiki. You can choose the full or SE versions. I have not had problems with the SEs, but have done only some basic tests. The full programs would work for anything you may wish to add later, but download times increase a lot.

What about the other choices? Well, some programs don't work well with PHP5, so then you may need PHP4 later on, but it is easy to add (download and click on php4.wos, the WOS program finds it and installs it). Drupal, Joomla, Mambo, Moodle, and OS_Commerce are website writing (Content management software) systems. PHPMyAdmin is used to organise or administrate your database, if you need to. TYPO3 and Wordpress are website blogging programs.

So select the components you want - I'd suggest the SE versions to begin with - and then click on "Download now" at the bottom. Once you have the download, unzip it to the directory which you want to run the program from (hard drive or USB drive), then click on wos.exe in that directory and it will install itself. After install, if you want to be able to "upload" pictures for articles, you will have to change one line in the file wos/www/mediawiki/LocalSettings.php ("$wgEnableUploads=" from "false" to "true"). Then click on wos.exe to start the server, using your own browser. The rest is like any internet browsing.

Let me know if something is too vague, or you get stuck somewhere. There are a lot of settings which one can change, but one leaves well alone to start with :-) --Christo Muller (Talk) 13:47, 7 March 2007 (CST)

I just downloaded and installed the WOS package. It seems to work fine at a first glance! I'll do some writing in the next days and let you know how well it goes on the long run. Then, if you want, we can lay down an article on it. I believe it might be useful to many users out there. But for now, MANY MANY THANKS!!! Ciao, --Nereo Preto 13:51, 8 March 2007 (CST)
Hi Nereo. Citizendium has the following extensions intalled: CategoryTree, CharInsert, Cite, EasyTimeline, Inputbox, ParserFunctions, and WikiHiero. Of these you can install CategoryTree, CharInsert, Cite, Inputbox, ParserFunctions, and WikiHeiro without much trouble. The extension you are looking for is “Cite”. To install, do the following, while WOS is not running:
  1. Go to the directory: <DriveOrDirectoryWhereYouInstalledWOS>\www\mediawiki\extensions
  2. Make a new directory called “cite”, so you have: <DriveOrDirectoryWhereYouInstalledWOS>\www\mediawiki\extensions\cite\
  3. Now RIGHT-click on the following link (you must be online) and select “save link as” (or “save file as”), and browse to the <DriveOrDirectoryWhereYouInstalledWOS>\www\mediawiki\extensions\cite\ directory you created in (2). Save the file “cite.php” there.
  4. Do exactly the same RIGHT-click save with the file called “cite.i18n.php”, found at saving it in the same \www\extensions\cite\ directory as “cite.i18n.php”
  5. Now go to the directory <DriveOrDirectoryWhereYouInstalledWOS>\www\mediawiki\ and open the file “LocalSettings.php” in a text editor (it should be a Unicode UTF-8 capable editor, but for this specific file it does not matter, you can use Notepad – I use Context text editor).
  6. At the bottom of the file, BUT BEFORE THE “?>” LAST LINE, insert the following text in a new blank line:
require_once( "$IP/extensions/Cite/Cite.php" );
Save the LocalSettins.php file where you found it, and restart the server.
These instructions can be found at If you find you need others, let me know. Good luck! --Christo Muller (Talk) 16:21, 13 March 2007 (CDT)
Thanks Christo, I did it and now citations work fine. I'll work on some articles in this days as a test - I'll be back after posting. Ciao, --Nereo Preto 06:52, 16 March 2007 (CDT)


If you wish to use images from IPCC reports, you can point me to the links for the images and I will see if they can be used of if they of such quality that we should seek permission, which I'd do.  —Stephen Ewen (Talk) 01:05, 3 August 2007 (CDT)

This link may be of use. Looking at their Front Matter page of the WGI report, however, they state, "This publication is in copyright. Subject to statutory exception and to the provisions of relevant collective licensing agreements, no reproduction of any part may take place without the written permission of Cambridge University Press."[1] Regardless of that, as I suggested in the global warming talk page, this Web site offers free images that pertain to the matter. Benjamin Seghers 09:13, 3 August 2007 (CDT)


Thank you for correcting me on earth crust and lithosphere. I'm indeed not very familiar with these things. Could you not write a small article on lithosphere? --Paul Wormer 03:48, 15 September 2007 (CDT)

Welcome - I got there by chance and just noticed... Well, there are hundreeds of articles to write in Earth Sciences, lithospere is just one of them. Don't think I ever find the time to start all those articles! Maybe during the next write-a-thon? Ciao for now. --Nereo Preto 04:09, 15 September 2007 (CDT)

Re your Italo Calvino

Nereo: In Italo Calvino, see the 'External Links' subpage, where I added some very rich links that may already know about. --Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 22:11, 3 October 2007 (CDT)

Fossilization approval

Hi Nereo, thanks for all your constructive comments on my Fossilization article. I did create the short article Fossil as well. The comments seem to have dried up now, so do you have any suggestions on how I can put my article forward for approval? Thanks. Natasha Barbolini 10:24, 31 October 2007 (CDT)

Thanks so much for all your help Nereo. I'm doing my masters in palynology next year and I have quite a lot of info on the palynological record in South Africa. Would you be interested, or do you think it is too specific a focus? I also have various essays of my own on dinosaurs, early mammals, and Devonian tetrapods..all available if you are keen.

Ok, I have made the new changes you suggested. I agree that the article needs more info on marine fossilization, but the assignment was primarily focused on the vertebrate side of things, since that is the degree I am doing. I would be happy to find out information on marine fossilization but it is going to have to wait because I am writing exams till the end of the month.

Approval process

Nereo, for an article to become approved, there are two mechanisms.

  1. An editor from within the workgroup that the article resides, who has not contributed much in the way of content, may nominate the article for approval. The key here is that the editor is not approving his own work.
  2. Three editors from within the workgroup that the article resides may nominate the article. Note that any or all of them could have added some or all of the content the article.

We did discuss having five editors, but it never passed and currently the only prerequisite for specialty is that they are editors within the workgroup, so for Fossilization, that would be Earth Sciences editors as well as Anthropology editors. --Matt Innis (Talk) 13:20, 5 November 2007 (CST)

Write-a-thon is on!!

Hi Nereo--don't forget the party! Aleta Curry 16:14, 6 November 2007 (CST)


dear Nereo,

Many thanks for all of your assistance in bringing Natasha's project to its present state. I have seen your discussion and can now inform you that her article has been graded so please feel free to weigh in. i will be happy to forward this article for approval once you have added your contributions. Regards and thanks again,

Lee R. Berger 11:59, 18 November 2007 (CST)

You're missing the party!

Where are you, Nereo? Your friendly neighbourhood Mistress of Ceremonies here, reminding you about the December write-a-thon! Please drop by and add yourself to the list of partiers--or non party-goers--as the case may be. You can leave a comment, question or excuse there, too--or talk to me Aleta Curry 03:25, 5 December 2007 (CST)

Animal Behaviour Stats

I have no idea how many people would be interested in this bit of data. I have been compelled to find out ever since the [[CZ:Monthly Write-a-Thon|Write-A-Thon] on if there is a preference for the way animals turn, and seeing as you are the one gunning for the [IgNobel] prize, I am letting you know ...

It currently stands at Northern Hemisphere: 3 clockwise, 2 counter-clockwise, Southern Hemisphere: 2 counter-clockwise, 1 clockwise. (not counting the info people gave during the write-a-thon). The people who have been willing to observe their pets for me have mostly noted that preference actually seems to depend on the position of the animal to the nearest leaning space (i.e. wall, armrest, etc.) I can actually split my data into species (cat/dog) and country as well, but clearly I don't have enough info yet. Seeing as the stats are running fairly evenly at the moment, it's too early to make any comments. Louise Valmoria 16:24, 13 January 2008 (CST)


Thanks Nereo; I have a lot of points to add up, many of which do not yet have values! --Robert W King 11:36, 27 January 2008 (CST)

Global warming

I returned the article to the version just prior to User:Greg Harris's first edit. [2]. There were some edits that were missed so double check, but I think that is it. Happy editing! --D. Matt Innis 12:58, 31 January 2008 (CST)

Thanks a lot. --Nereo Preto 13:08, 31 January 2008 (CST)

New editor

I thought you might like to know that I just approved a new editor in earth sciences, Pier Paul Overduin. Hopefully he'll make you feel a bit less lonely :) -- Jitse Niesen 04:58, 1 February 2008 (CST)

Yes, thanks! Great news! --Nereo Preto 05:31, 1 February 2008 (CST)

Party! You're invited!

Hi Nereo: Yes, it’s a new month, and here’s your friendly reminder that the FEBRUARY PARTY is on, and we’d love to see you there! It’s a very long day, so you have many hours yet to join in the madness. Aleta Curry 21:31, 5 February 2008 (CST)

Calling Nereo ("bad boy") Preto!

Come in, Nereo.

You have dispensation to write on Tuesday. Or Thursday.

Be there!

Aleta Curry 15:35, 4 March 2008 (CST)

Yo! It is I, Aleta, again! Another month, another write-a thon.
I know Wednesdays are a bad day for you, sooo....Write on Tuesday. Write on Thursday. Write whenever.
Aleta Curry 18:09, 31 March 2008 (CDT)

Let's be better than Wikipedia

Nereo - I saw, elsenet, that Wikipedia's "Geochemistry" article is still largely taken from the 1911 Britannica "Petrology" article. I think that gives us an opportunity to write a good, up-to-date article on geochemistry, as something we can show to people comparing us to Wikipedia. I could get it started, but I don't have much free time lately, and I'd only be able to give it a start; someone like you would need to provide more detail. Anthony Argyriou 14:45, 18 April 2008 (CDT)

Please join us for Biology Week!

Hello Nereo,

Long time no see!

I am giving you this personal invitation to join us this week for Biology Week!

You're a Citizendium Biology Author and we need authors as much as editors here to get involved. Did you know that there are over 200 biology authors here? Yep!

Please join us on the wiki and add or revise biology articles. Also, please let your friends and colleagues who are biologists, biology students, or naturalists, know about Biology Week and ask them to join us, too. Any way you can help make it an event would be most welcome. Think of it as a Biology Workgroup open house. Let's see if we can kick up activity a notch!

Thanks in advance! --Larry Sanger 14:22, 22 September 2008 (CDT)

Checking Italian title

Hi Nereo, I wrote Clausius-Mossotti relation and after a long search I found a reference to the work of your fellow country man O. F. Mossotti. Could you do me a favor and check whether I copied the long title of his article in correct Italian? I don't know how long back your University library goes, but when it goes back to 1850 could you ask one of your students to check the reference to Mossotti when (s)he has to visit the library anyway? Thank you in advance, --Paul Wormer 14:17, 10 December 2008 (UTC) PS Could you please add an English translation to the article title of Mossotti?--Paul Wormer 14:22, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

Returning to Citizendium: an update on the project and how to get involved

Hello - some time ago you became part of the Citizendium project, but we haven't seen you around for a while. Perhaps you'd like to update your public biography or check on the progress of any pages you've edited so far.

Citizendium now has 16,912 articles, with 0 approved by specialist Editors such as yourself, but our contributor numbers require a boost. We have an initiative called 'Eduzendium' that brings in students enrolled on university courses to write articles for credit, but we still need more Editors across the community to write, discuss and approve material. There are some developed Earth Sciences articles that could be improved and approved, and some high-priority Natural Sciences articles that we don't have yet. You can also create new articles via this guide, and contribute to some Earth Sciences pages that have been recently edited - or to any others on Citizendium, since you're a general Author as well as a specialist Editor. You may like to contribute to discussions in the forums, and might consider running for an elected position on the Management and Editorial Councils that oversee the project.

If you have any questions, let me know via my Talk page or by leaving a message below this one. Thank you for signing up and reading this update; I hope that you will look in on our community soon. John Stephenson 15:34, 30 October 2011 (UTC)