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Talk:United States of America/Catalogs/States and Territories

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Merger

This list and the catalog at Subdivision of the U.S.A. should probably be merged into the one article. Derek Harkness 09:08, 10 May 2007 (CDT)

Merger now done. Derek Harkness 23:31, 5 June 2007 (CDT)

Columns

Should there be another column showing the number of Congressmen each state gets? Or, more fundamentally, the population? (Either at the 2000 census, or a 2005/6 estimate?) Anthony Argyriou 12:42, 6 June 2007 (CDT)

There is maybe space for 1 more column, beyond that the table gets too big for many screens. There are many demographics that could be included, population, land area, population density and most populous city (since capital and biggest are often different). The question is which column would you consider dropping? Derek Harkness 14:27, 7 June 2007 (CDT)
I'd drop Governor, Senators, and History. If a history article exists, it should be easy to find in the article on the state; people looking specifically for history can click twice, if they haven't already gone directly to the state article. Governor and Senators change fairly often, and can be mentioned in the state article and an article on the United States Senate. Anthony Argyriou 17:12, 7 June 2007 (CDT)
There's a very nice table at Wikipedia. I wouldn't include the IPA pronunciation, or the postal code, and probably not the most populous city nor the flag. I'd be tempted to consolidate the formal name with the common name, formatted like Commonwealth of Massachusetts to emphasize the common name. Anthony Argyriou 18:12, 7 June 2007 (CDT)
My inclination would be to retain the history link. If nothing else it's a convenience for the reader. But a different format might be called for: adding too many "statistics" type columns (like number of representatives) can easily get out of hand. Maybe this kind of information ought to be moved to individual pages for the states and territories. Greg Woodhouse 17:51, 7 June 2007 (CDT)
I also prefer to keep to things that can be linked. Thus making this catalog a useful navigation. Rather than containing the data it's self (of which there is too much) the catalog points to the articles that contain more information. I can see that number of congress representatives could be linked to an article listing those representatives, so that's OK with me but what would population link to? How useful is that number on it's own? For example, I can tell you that the population of China is 1.3 billion. It's a big number but then China is a big country so you expect it. The number on it's own isn't very significant. But when I add in 1950 the population was 563 million - now you're thinking.
I also agree that we should put in the full name somehow. Perhaps [[Commonwealth of Massachusetts|Massachusetts, Commonwealth of]] so that the alphabetized name is first (similar to on countries list we have 'Korea, Republic of' and 'China, People's Republic of'). Going beyond topic, I'd name the article on Massachusetts as Commonwealth of Massachusetts with a redirect at Massachusetts. This way there is more info in the title while still making the article easy to find under it's short name.
As for history, I'd rather make it more compact than drop it. Derek Harkness 23:48, 7 June 2007 (CDT)
I disagree about keeping primarily to things which can be linked. One of the main points of having a table with information about each state is to allow comparisons and statistics. If one has to click through to all 50 articles to find the rank order of population, or land area, or date of admission, we're placing an undue burden on our readers. The list of governors and congresscritters can be put into catalogs on articles about those offices.
Comparison is particularly easy to do now that mediawiki supports sortable tables, but even copying and pasting the table into Excel then sorting is not nearly the burden faced by people looking for those statistics right now. Anthony Argyriou 12:55, 16 March 2008 (CDT)
The above was written before the existence of subpages, when this article was standing on it's own. Now that we have subpages, we can consider data in a different light. Derek Harkness 19:26, 16 March 2008 (CDT)

Abbreviations

The 2-letter abbreviations for each State need to be fitted in somewhere. Ro Thorpe 15:31, 8 February 2008 (CST)

Perhaps next to the name. Or does no one agree? Ro Thorpe 19:39, 16 March 2008 (CDT)

Look above - I think we can re-think the entire structure of this table. I'd propose eliminating "governor", "senators", and "history" columns, and adding postal abbrev., census population (or estimate), land area, and maybe number of congressmembers. Anthony Argyriou 19:28, 18 March 2008 (CDT)