User talk:Howard C. Berkowitz/Archive 4

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U.S. Congress members' pages

By all means, let me know what standard sections should be included on the pages for members of the U.S. Congress. Probably a section on committee assignments. Maybe a section for voting record. If you can develop a standard template or outline for structuring such articles (such as exists for the state articles - see the article on South Dakota, for example), then I would be happy to follow that outline on any U.S. Congress members' pages on which I work. James F. Perry 23:44, 28 November 2009 (UTC)

In my recent additions to the states' Related Article pages, I have been entering the names of Senate and House members as they appear on the Senate and House web sites ( and This means that some of them include middle initials. If the CZ page does not include the middle initial, it will have to be taken out in order for the link to be removed. In the long run, I believe that the page name should match the name whcih the Congressperson uses on his or her official Senate or House web site. James F. Perry 02:27, 1 December 2009 (UTC)
Unfortunately, they aren't always consistent even in their own websites, or the website might be "James X. Jones" but all campaign literature refers to "Jim Jones". Howard C. Berkowitz 02:29, 1 December 2009 (UTC)
Good point. Another suggestion I have is to work from the states' Related Article pages when making definitions or lemma articles. I have found 4 mis-assigned states so far. If the states' RA pages are used, that would provide an automatic check on at least that datum. The entries into the states' RA pages are made directly from the state-by-state listing on the official House web site. I expect to complete those listings in the next day or so. James F. Perry 03:33, 1 December 2009 (UTC)
That's certainly logical. In general, however, I have been starting the entry from lists of committee or caucus members, which again aren't always consistent about names. The cross-check, however, certainly is reasonable. Howard C. Berkowitz 03:36, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Voting ratings for Congressional personnel

I just constructed a wikitable for the Voter ratings (see the Tim Johnson page). The third column is for a Source. The Christian Coalition is referenced in the table. Their scorecard gives Johnson a 30%. Where did you get the 16% rating which you had listed?

Also, it appears that the NRA ratings are in a members-only section of their web site.

The idea is to get that table all ready to go before copying it into 435 separate pages.

James F. Perry 17:58, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Christian Coalition was from On he Issues.
You might be interested in some more methodology. When I saw James Oberstar as a redlink, I did a text search. That gave me several "related articles" pages where he was part of an imparted list; I created the entry under Congressional Native American Caucus. He also came up on U.S. Congressional Caucuses, which is an odd topic -- many of the caucuses have no webpage or limited documentation, and the membership builds up only from the listed leaders, and people mentioning it in their biography. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:03, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Hey Howard

Can you check this out. D. Matt Innis 23:53, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Congresspersons: "bare bones" article

I have been developing the Stephanie Herseth Sandlin article as an example of a "bare bones" article for U.S. Congress members. Of course, the voter ratings need to be filled in and I think there may be some more Congressional Caucuses also. James F. Perry 02:46, 2 December 2009 (UTC)


Would you have anything to add at Talk:Kerberos? Sandy Harris 13:59, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

Howard, your link to sympathetic_magic fails on the above website. --Paul Wormer 15:44, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

Where next on crypto articles?

What needs doing next among the crypto articles? I'm about to start a holiday, about six weeks, and likely won't do much on CZ in that time, but it would be nice to have a plan

I gave you a list of articles I thought were getting near approval some time back, User_talk:Howard_C._Berkowitz/Archive_2#Approvals.3F. Most of my questions there are still open, though block cipher has since been approved. See Talk:Cryptology and Talk:AES competition for recent comments.

History of cryptography is currently fairly meager. Is that, or perhaps History of Cryptology or History of Cryptanalysis, where the historical stuff in your old outline belongs? Are those three articles or one?

The bigger or more important articles first? I think Cryptography is near approval; what do you suggest there?. Cryptanalysis still needs work, perhaps even re-organisation. Hash (cryptography) and stream cipher need quite a bit of work, likely from someone who knows more about those than I do.

Or smaller articles first? Perhaps start with Active attack, Passive attack and their children? Sandy Harris 09:57, 7 January 2010 (UTC)

Hey, Howard?

Since you're stuck in the cold without a car today, maybe you can riddle this for me:

Has there been any discussion recently about situations like Viennese Waltz where we have a definition only? Is that one of those lemming articles you were talking about? I started pondering this because at some point we were discussing having the definition show up in the article namespace if there was a definition only. Do you know what I mean? Do *I* know what I mean? Aleta Curry 00:03, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Ah, the poor lemmings. Yes, it would be nice if they showed up in the article namespace. I'm not sure if they should count as live articles. Howard C. Berkowitz 02:27, 12 January 2010 (UTC)
Oh, right--good point. No, they shouldn't count as live articles. I was just wondering if we could point to a definition if there were no article. Maybe it's not such a great idea? Aleta Curry 10:33, 12 January 2010 (UTC)
Maybe we need to think of terms in reclassifying articles. Let me throw out a preliminary proposal for articles:
  • All non-external articles
    • Current legitimate articles
    • Current lemma articles not ever expected to be much more than a definition, although they might have Related Articles and perhaps other subpages. The key point is that some of these articles are definitions that apply to more than three workgroups. Maybe the use of a General Workgroup would allow many of them to become "full" articles, or maybe not.
    • Current lemma articles that are quite plausible to become, eventually, full articles, but are being imported as large numbers of brief definitions. For example, think of memberships in political bodies, interest groups, etc. I'm bringing in tens or hundreds of members of each when I bring them in. There may not be much more to say in the first batch. As soon as I start bringing in membership from other groups, so that a person belongs to multiple groups,
  • External articles (maybe also unmodified articles from WP, etc.)


I know the dictionary provides both "fuse" and "fuze" ... but I've always used "fuse" so your title looks strange to me. It might be interesting to hear what others think. Regards, Milton Beychok 06:01, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

What is it that seems strange? Certainly, in military engineering -- and indeed in explosives for civil engineering and the like -- the two are related. Fuse is an improper subset of fuze in a broad historical context, although there are very few demolitions fuses that are not also fuses. There are many fuzes, however, that do not use any fuses. User: Howard C. Berkowitz 4 February 2010
My dictionary has them as one and the same ... neither is a "subset" of the other. But maybe I'm being fussy (or fuzzy?). Milton Beychok 06:21, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
My (British) Collins (1979) has to meanings of "fuse" -
  • (1) a lead (a safety or a detonating fuse) or any device to ignite a charge, and
  • (2) a fuse used as protective device in electric circuits, and similar devices.
For the first sense (1) "fuze" is given as U.S. variant spelling.
--Peter Schmitt 13:11, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Might I suggest that dictionary definitions here are less relevant than specialized technical usage, technical manuals and specific experience? You will note that I disambiguated the electrical and pyrotechnic fuses. Nevertheless, it's hard to say that a slowmatch at the Battle of Trafalgar shares any similarity with a programmable hard target fuze. Regardless of what a general dictionary is saying, I handled fuses that were not fuzes, fuzes containing no fuse, and fuze-fuse systems.
For that matter, we haven't even touched fusee, which I suspect is more British English. More common American English for "fusee" would be "highway flare". Both a fusee and a fuse are pyrotechnic devices that use burning; the fusee isn't a delay timer but a source of bright colored light.
Most hand grenades have an overall fuze, of which a fuse is a subsystem.
Might I suggest there are very real and specific engineering distinctions here that are more substantive than general dictionaries? Trust me -- when one is handling explosives, one gets really, really compulsive about precise definitions. --Howard C. Berkowitz 13:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Howard, I did not doubt your expert knowledge. I just wanted to add a bit of evidence that in common language "fuze" and "fuse" are spelling variants (for one of the two meanings) only. As this discussion proves this is confusing for non-expert readers (even for native American speakers). Therefore I suggest that both variants point to a single disambiguation page (fuse and fuze, or fuse and fuze (disambiguation), fuse (disambiguation), fuze (disambiguation), where this is explained (and where links to probably both fuze (military) and fuse (military) are provided. --Peter Schmitt 14:50, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
If you are going to look at dictionaries, you have to use British ones for British English and American ones for Amerian English. For example, over here meter and metre are two different words, but Merriam-Webster just gives metre as British for meter without mentioning the distinction. Peter Jackson 17:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

What should the disambiguation page(s) be titled?

There is existing fuse (disambiguation). Is it being suggested that fuze be added to that page, and an additional fuze (disambiguation) page, including "s" and "z", be created? I'd suggest, if so, that both pages have a bit more text than the usual disambig page, pointing out that what many regard as a mere spelling variant, and freely interchange, actually do cover different concepts.

Is there anyone here who writes British English and has explosives & demolitions experience? Perhaps British, and European usage as a derivative, is different. On the other hand, pre-20th century fuzes either were simply fuses, or, in clockwork-driven time fuzes, still eventually ignited a pyrotechnic fuse. Modern hand grenades still use a variant of the latter, although more complex weapons fuzes, certainly those that must work at high speed, are purely electrical without a pyrotechnic component. They send initiating power to a detonator, which, at the simplest, heats a wire embedded in a primary explosive. Far more exotic technologies, such as exploding metal foil, are used in ultrahigh speed detonators, as is used in fission weapons, and, without quite as stringent a requirement, things such as explosively formed projectiles. Pyrotechnic fuse propagation just isn't fast or reliable enough for microsecond-range sequencing. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:00, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

OK, rereading, "Fuse and fuze (disambiguation)". I can go with that. Any other opinions? I will keep fuse (disambiguation). --Howard C. Berkowitz 15:22, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

Article on U.S. Military Standard

Howard, I just finished ASTM International and International Organization for Standardization. It would be helpful to also have an article on U.S. Military Standard (MIL-STD or MIL-SPEC). Is that something you could or would do?

MIL-STDs are more a publication process than something like ISO. They are actually getting less common as more COTS equipment meets adequate standards. Essentially, some military organization signs off on a specification in its field (e.g., MIL-STD-188 are for digital communications) and has the printing center in Philadelphia start listing it.

Also, do you know anything about the "International Electrotechnical Commission"? Do they write standards on computer hardware or software? Does any organization do that? Milton Beychok 03:57, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

I'm sleepy enough to blank, but they are, as I remember, mostly an international organization that endorses national standards for hardware. I'll get a definition in the morning, but I must confess I can't remember ever calling for an IEC specification in a design -- the specification was jointly issued with someone else, such as IEEE or ANSI or even ISO. `Howard C. Berkowitz 04:05, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Possible article Terrorism prevention strategies

Howard, I'm a former Wikipedian and CZ nooB (few days). I wrote a generally good article on "Terrorism prevention strategies" with 160 references perhaps, but a WP administrator didn't like it saying it was a "very long long long stub". And he/she deleted it. But I'm wondering if you might be interested in this subject. I'll try to post it to my sandbox page soon (right now Spinoza's in there). User talk:Thomas Wright Sulcer/sandbox. Plus, the CZ article on "terrorism" is superior to Wikipedia's in my opinion. --Thomas Wright Sulcer 15:03, 17 February 2010 (UTC)

A long, long, long stub? What next, Jumbo Shrimp, Military Intelligence? Hayford Peirce 15:13, 17 February 2010 (UTC)
Wise Constable? :-) Hmmm...we may not have Military Intelligence per se, but I can do something on some of the national branches and organizations. Intelligence people in the military will work at all levels of intelligence under grand strategy, as well as in the various intelligence collection disciplines, and specific units such as the Military Intelligence Company (Brigade Combat Team) and Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition Squadron (Brigade Combat Team).
Yes, I would be interested in working with it. There is an article on terrorism, which, while Approved, was somewhat before my time here, and needs an update -- there's too much ideology and emotion in it. Other articles of interest might be insurgency and the shorter counterinsurgency as well as the U.S. doctrine, foreign internal defense. There is also a developing counterterrorism — does your material fit into it?
The first step, I think, is to agree what we mean by terrorism. I regard it as a tactic, practiced differently by different groups but having some common elements. It would be nice to get a Version 2 Approved Terrorism article.
Incidentally, you can have /sandbox1, /sandbox2, etc. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:30, 17 February 2010 (UTC)
The material for the "Terrorism prevention strategies" article is in a sandbox: User talk:Thomas Wright Sulcer/sandbox. It is somewhat long. There are lots of references. Somehow, I'm just not that happy with the overall article but I can't put my finger on what bothers me about it. But maybe parts of it could be included in an article about counterterrorism? I don't know.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 17:50, 17 February 2010 (UTC)
About the definition of terrorism. As you know there are so many senses and it's highly pejorative. But I'm willing to go along with your sense of what it means. I spent time on WP trying to get a better definition of it, and the best that I and another editor could come up with was something like this: nobody agrees about the definition, but it USUALLY means violence or the threat of violence, usually intended to cause fear, usually for political purposes, usually directed at innocents (or with disregard to the safety/well-being of innocents), often directed at governments, often staged as a way to get media attention, etc. And the more of these things which happen to be there (IF deliberate, IF done for media attention, IF directed at innocents etc) then the more LIKELY it was to be terrorism. Sheesh. And sometimes governments act like terrorists. I think something along these lines is the mainstream view of terrorism. My own personal (POV) sense of terrorism is "violence against individual rights" with three types of terrorists (criminal, tyrant, foreign terrorist) but this is not the mainstream view.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 17:50, 17 February 2010 (UTC)
Howard, let me know how I can help with the "terrorism prevention strategies" article, like, if you want to chop it up and use it in existing articles, that's fine, or whatever you decide. Give me some sense of how I can assist you. I'm fairly adept at researching topics. Wondering if there is any preferred method of referencing. In the meantime I'll try to import other of my WP creations to CZ, and put in sandbox pages, or else work on Philosophy of Spinoza to try to improve it from before.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 22:50, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
Howard I'm waiting for you to decide what you want to do about "terrorism prevention strategies" -- if you want to chop it up for other articles, abandon it, or split it -- it's up to you. Right now it's in the sandbox and I'm interested in other stuff.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 16:15, 24 February 2010 (UTC)
There's definitely material there that's complementary to anything here, and which should be used. The most useful pieces are the introductions for the nonspecialist, in what might be called the domain of "anti-terrorism", or the actions to mitigate acts once they happen. Very similar actions also apply to preparedness for natural disasters and industrial accidents -- if the only practical response to a dirty bomb, imminent industrial explosion, or hurricane is to evacuate, the preparedness is going to be the same. My first challenge is a reasonably terse name for an article. "Individual emergency preparedness" is the first that comes to mind, perhaps with a higher level article dealing with the concept of widespread emergencies from the citizen perspective, as opposed to Incident Command System. Reality check here: would such a title also encompass preparedness at the family/household level, and, perhaps where it gets into volunteer organizations with guidance, neighborhood level? Indeed, would that be the place for things such as county-level Medical Reserve Corps?
I have to give more thought to strategic terrorism prevention. Unfortunately, I have a number of articles that give responses, in terms of individual action, which are more demagoguery. For example, while there are innumerable economic and social issues about the physical borders of the U.S. and border security, the existing system caught terrorists coming across the Canadian border. It wouldn't have addressed domestic terrorism such as Oklahoma City or Fort Hood, both primarily self-radicalization. Some would-be 9/11 terrorists were unable to enter the country. More stringent measures against Muslims, such as those proposed by Brigitte Gabriel, (e.g., would not have stopped non-Muslim homegrown terrorism, and indeed might have people looking in the wrong direction for jihadist threats. --Howard C. Berkowitz 17:31, 24 February 2010 (UTC)
I'll wait for you to come up with a plan. If you'd like me to lead here, let me know; otherwise I'll work on other stuff.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 18:54, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

(undent) Reality check: what do you think of Individual emergency preparedness as an article title to deal with the personal protection and preparedness? Howard C. Berkowitz 19:17, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

Like it. If you need stuff from the sandbox, use it. If you need my assistance, let me know.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 22:12, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

Any chance of an article on COBRA?

Until I heard it discussed on a radio programme about police anti-terror strategy that I listened to today, I had never heard of COBRA - Cabinet Office Briefing Room A - the emergency briefing room underneath Whitehall where members of the Cabinet, the police, security services and the armed forces meet when faced with a terrorist attack or other significant crisis. I figure you may know more about it than I do. I'm not even sure where it would be put in the Workgroup structure: it is sort of Military, and sort of Politics. It really is that sticky knot of policing, governance, emergency response, the security services and the military. Former anti-terrorism copper Andy Hayman says Cobra has problems, for instance, citing political faffing-around after the July 7th 2007 bombings. Interested? –Tom Morris 02:39, 19 February 2010 (UTC)

Ah. I was worried you wanted on the object broker, about which I know less than I do about either the command system or the reptile. Not always under the same name, it goes back to WWII.
Yes, you point out a problem of the workgroups; many Military articles are more Grand Strategy or international relations, to say nothing of domestic terrorism and disaster response. I know much more of the U.S. response systems, but have some knowledge of the British. While it's Cold War, there is an excellent if fictional description in Gen. Sir John Hackett's History of the Third World War. I believe its role was also detailed after the (1970?) Iranian embassy takeover. I'm not sure I'm current enough on UK politics to discuss the governmental level. For example, I have no idea of the UK counterpart of the Stafford Act for disaster authority. You do have a simpler governmental structure, without as strict a separation between police and military, to say nothing of multiple police jurisdictions. (At one time when I lived in the District of Columbia, there were at least 23 police organizations of different authority; eventually, an undercover operations clearinghouse had to be established after a shooting between elements of the Metropolitan Police and the FBI). --Howard C. Berkowitz 02:50, 19 February 2010 (UTC)

Other questions

Is cryptography ready for approval?

Can you comment at Talk:AES competition or Talk:Cryptology#What_next.3F?

Cryptography is probably ready -- it's more been a question of when to close Version 1. I'll review it.
I have set up Category:Security Subgroup; you may want to start adding to it -- I'll try Cryptography.
I'll be happy to endorse you on LinkedIn -- do you want it under your present job or do you want to create a CZ entry? --Howard C. Berkowitz 16:07, 27 February 2010 (UTC)
I'll add a CZ category. Sandy Harris 16:09, 27 February 2010 (UTC)
The security subgroup is a good idea. Currently it shows this page as included, and the tag shows up at the bottom here. Was that intentional?
How far down the hierarchy do we add that tag? Cryptology, cryptography, and cryptanalysis are tagged now, but so far the next level, things like block cipher and passive attack, aren't; I'd say they should be. The lowest level, articles on specific ciphers or attacks, could be tagged as well. Also the protocols, PGP, IPsec, ...
What about the historical articles? ULTRA, VENONA and FreeSWAN leap to mind but there are probably others. Biographies? Do we tag Alan Turing? Legal/political articles? DRM, Cypherpunk, Cryptography controversy, ...? Sandy Harris 15:18, 28 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes to all, I think. I just got tired of editing metadata and then jogging. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:36, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

I've been tagging a lot. We're up to 96 articles, some of which I wasn't aware of until I started following "what links here" on other articles. Care to push it over 100?

I have not been tagging biographies; most of them have done things other than security too, and they'll be linked from the security topics where relevant. Sandy Harris 02:58, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

105 now. I think I am done, at least for a while. Sandy Harris 15:02, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

Ship Style

Howard, thanks for your research and copy edits on Chester W. Nimitz. But I'm perplexed now how to handle a stylistic issue. Ship names are rendered HMS King George V or USS Saratoga or IJN Kaga or RMS Titanic. The name itself is always italicized but the preceding abbreviation is not (see CMOS 7.99). You fixed this with a piped link, e.g. [[USS Yorktown (CV-5)|USS ''Yorktown'' (CV-5)]] (USS Yorktown (CV-5)). That's a rather lengthy fix, don't you think? But it's necessary because the Mediawiki software won't take ''italic'' coding inside an internal link (it ''won't'' work). Other alternatives such as ''[[USS Yorktown]]'' are stylistically incorrect even though they are easier to code. I'm wondering if there isn't an easier way than piping every ship's name. Russell D. Jones 14:58, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

I have no better solution. As you may have noticed, I also have variants such as HMS Dreadnought (1905) and HMS Dreadnought (1960). The suffix, whether a date or a hull number, is needed for disambiguation; the USN has had eight Enterprises. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:06, 28 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that I know. Russell D. Jones 15:14, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

Supporting Israel

When I was reading through the subheadings this one jumped out as being a little more interesting. Depending on ones perspective, this could go in the good or the bad section. I don't have a solution, just thought I'd share that first impression. Chris Day 15:17, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

As I told Tom, I don't think good-vs-bad is eventually going to work. My hope is that it's going to be possible to put a roughly chronological high-level view into U.S. foreign policy, talk about policy and policy influencers at various times, and then go to subarticles.
To be frank, thinking about Tom's comments about "hot" topics, I've been surprised that we haven't had partisans on any of the Middle East issues show up and start arguing. sniffle nobody cares, while it was impossible to write about Iran-Iraq without reverts at WP; I wasn't there for things like Hamas and Gaza.
Stating the source of the "good" as the Israeli ambassador, who was a dual U.S.-Israel citizen until he took the post, wasn't the most neutral reference without identifying him.
There's a book about Guantanamo titled The Least Bad Choice, often the case in foreign policy. US-Israeli relations are immensely complex, and I actually have quite a bit about the interest groups on all sides. So far, the only controversy I've gotten is from User: Michel van der Hoek on J Street. I consciously did the The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy as a book review rather than judgments. In general, I try to use spokesmens' own silly words rather than editorializing about them. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:29, 28 February 2010 (UTC)
Using quotes is often a good way to avoid arguments. And so true about the The Least Bad Choice. Reality bites. Chris Day 15:37, 28 February 2010 (UTC) WP, I'd get arguments, in computer science/Internet engineering, when quoting my own peer-reviewed work. I was told I didn't understand the author's intent. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:43, 28 February 2010 (UTC)
Maybe they were well aware that you had forgotten more than they had written. :) Chris Day 15:45, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

BAe, BaE or BAE?

See Talk:BaE_Systems_ALARM Chris Day 21:31, 1 March 2010 (UTC)

Chris, I wish I knew for sure -- I can find corporate websites with both BAE and BaE. The U.S. division is BAE. Redirect and guess. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:42, 2 March 2010 (UTC)
My guess is that ALARM was BAe (originally built by British Aerospace) and then got rebranded when marconi and british aerospace merged. I don't know enough about this area but the acronym BaE is something I have never seen before. My dad used to work for MOD at Farnborough, so he might have an idea. Chris Day 02:46, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

I just did a quick search on the web and this is what I came up with so far. All pages I looked at on the BAE Systems web site seem to use all caps for the 'BAE' acronym,such as this page. Older web pages that reference ALARM do use the old british aerospace nomenclature of 'BAe', for example here and here. Current MOD and company websites use a new nomenclature of BAE Systems. No examples of 'BaE', BUT I didn't look that hard or come across the US spin-offs. Chris Day 03:13, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Homeopathy revisited

A recent report from the British government. Chris Day 07:52, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Will this contain the homeopathic remedy for dehydration? --Howard C. Berkowitz 08:16, 2 March 2010 (UTC)
A well-known substance that causes dehydration is ethanol. Presumably their cure would be to dilute this until there's none left. Folklore accuses some brewers of doing this anyway. Peter Jackson 10:00, 2 March 2010 (UTC)
The Milwaukee based brewers are homeopaths? I had never looked at that way before. :) Chris Day 15:57, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Your opinion needed

Howard, see Talk:Cat adoption‎ --Paul Wormer 09:05, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

Time zones are a wonderful thing when insomniac, or, in this case, awakened with a backache, understandably from a large cat sleeping in a not-good spot on my hip. Since he's back from the hospital, he's permitted (well, he's normally permitted). Howard C. Berkowitz 09:10, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
Howard, I used to have a kitten who slept in the zone between my arm and my body. I was careful not to roll over on him, and the kitten was a great companion. Sometimes he'd climb up my jeans, up my sweatshirt while I was standing, and perch on my shoulder; such a great climber! But when he became a cat, and dander developed, I kept sneezing; the doc said I was allergic, and had to take the guy back to the humane society; I was heartbroken. Hope your cat is ok. --Thomas Wright Sulcer 13:16, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
He's doing well, but it's a supportive thing -- he has inoperable squamous cell carcinoma in his mouth, but it appears to be in remission after radiation. We started palliative chemotherapy yesterday; he's putting on weight and seems happy. Howard C. Berkowitz 04:02, 10 March 2010 (UTC)


You might take a look at the new article about Ogden Nash. Hayford Peirce 18:53, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

Herding cats

Did you write this as bait for RationalWiki? [1] Ro Thorpe 22:47, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps a demonstration that RationalWiki is humor-challenged. Howard C. Berkowitz 23:47, 18 April 2010 (UTC)
Is it worth wasting any time trying to answer some of the semi-outlandish opinions expressed there in that particular section? Or better just to ignore them? Hayford Peirce 00:09, 19 April 2010 (UTC)
WP flag waver David Gerard putting down Citizendium and Larry Sanger. Doesn't that guy have anything better to do? Meg Ireland 10:51, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
You may have noticed I put a textbox disclaimer on articles that could relate to techniques relevant to terrorism, such as boobytrap, explosives and improvised explosive device. For the record, while I am not putting in any deliberate errors, I have withheld some fine details of, for example, making things reliably go boom. Nevertheless, I am considering another disclaimer box that affects articles that have, for example, popular culture and humor content. Should I extend Nikki Freud to an article, and write a disambiguated Freudian slip, such a disclaimer might be needed. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:17, 26 April 2010 (UTC)

call me "Crazy", or maybe even "Insane"....

But it was a pleasure to delete those two items. Thanks, Howard, and keep up the good work! Hayford Peirce 00:40, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Coal article approved!

Congratulations, Howard, the article at [2] has been approved. Hayford Peirce 18:43, 24 April 2010 (UTC)

Next step, slaw. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:49, 24 April 2010 (UTC)
Hi Howard, congratulations on the approval of your article. And I enjoyed your articles on charcoal and especially pastel too. Lin Barneveld 08:58, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Congratulations to the creators!!!--Thomas Wright Sulcer 12:23, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Congrats Howard, you've turned a lump of coal into a diamond :) Meg Ireland 12:27, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
The article is Milt Beychok's work, with just a few suggestions from me. Lin, I'd definitely appreciate suggestions on pastel and charcoal, if only to get me back to the easel -- I have some cat sketches to turn into more serious work (and a try at watercolor).
Charcoal to diamond, with enough pressure, is easy. Coal to cole, and especially to cole slaw, is hard. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:32, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Howard are you artistically inclined? I've always wanted to be a better sketcher but it never turns out quite right. Do you have any cat sketches? Watercolors? By the way, coal to cole --> that would be cool.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 13:38, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Artistic inclination is an interesting issue. I've always been a good photographer, in news, technical, and fine arts area. As an adult, I do have some awards from juried photo contests, and also did technical illustration. My high school had a strong arts and dramatics program, but it seems to have taken a few decades for the lessons to sink in; it's one of those situations where I wish I could repeat high school with current knowledge.
About five years ago, I had to go through some rehabilitation, which included art therapy. It was amusing -- the therapist, in the group setting, asked what materials I wanted, and seemed surprised to hear I wanted charcoal. I started on what, to me, was a get-back-the-skills exercise, doing a perspective drawing of a basket of brushes and pencils. Suddenly, I heard her gasp behind me, "You've had some training" (Pause for movie note from a non-movie-goer; it sounded like the exchange from "An Officer and a Gentleman" when Lou Gossett, the crusty drill instructor, and Richard Gere, the rebellious cadet, fight without insignia, Gere uses some adept throws and kicks, and Gossett calmly observes "you've had some training).
I have some things on my easel, as well as other things nearby. In reasonable shape are a pencil sketch of a sleeping cat, and a pastel and pencil one of a dog. The dog was, in fact, in precise profile, and the picture is quite realistic, but I'm annoyed with perspective. I have a rough sketch of Mr. Clark and Rhonda cuddling, which I plan to try as my first serious watercolor. I may do pastel first.
Perhaps it wouldn't be encyclopedic, but would it be possible, I wonder, to have CZ art and even writing blogs, for mutual support? Howard C. Berkowitz 14:08, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
The current CZ blog is under-utilized. Only Larry making rare announcements there. How is Mr. Clark btw? Meg Ireland 14:18, 25 April 2010 (UTC)

(undent) It's strange -- I now have the same role in doing quality control on different veterinary practitioners as on medical practitioners. We went to the veterinary school yesterday, and the cancer has not grown and he's having no physical or laboratory effects from the chemotherapy; he hss just passed, the median survival. The major problem, which I've had to be very assertive to get fully worked up, is that he has a tissue infection in his cheek, which is probably causing more discomfort than the tumor. Finally, there was a biopsy for culture and sensitivity, and sometime this week, we should stop guessing about antibiotics and be specific.

He was more stressed than usual on his return, and, for a few hours, I couldn't find him. It turned out he had gotten into the cat carrier -- not unprecedented -- but had managed to lock himself in -- unprecendented. It was a little hard to medicate him, but, once I turned off the light in the bedroom, he got out of the carrier, climbed on me for a while and licked my face, and then went to sleep on the pillow. This morning, he's obviously tired but affectionate; I don't think he's in more than mild pain but will reinforce his pain drugs in an hour or two.

I still think he should be writing on proper patient care, Mr. Clark being an excellent nurse and psychotherapist. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:24, 25 April 2010 (UTC)

Best wishes for Mr. Clark! If you can photograph your sketches and upload them, we could put them in the "cat" article perhaps, or other places; I like the idea of having a place where we can have our CZ artwork to show each other. I tried to do a sketch of a kitty but it didn't turn out so great; my mother is an artist but she rarely sketches any more. I liked the movie An Officer and a Gentleman which I thought was a perfect title for a movie, because it leads one to suspect that there are two people, but it's really about one person learning to become both roles. When I think about charcoal, I rarely think about using it as a drawing tool, or conversion into diamonds, but rather as fuel.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 18:05, 25 April 2010 (UTC)


Apropos charcoal -- classic need for disambiguation. I wrote charcoal (art). In the explosives articles, I have redlinks now to charcoal (material) for purified grades used in explosives, which might need to be separate from activated charcoal used in medicine and chemistry. Charcoal (fuel) relates both to Engineering and Food Sciences. 18:37, 25 April 2010 (UTC)

Excellent question. I'm running into this issue all the time. I'm creating an article stub. And it's on a topic that sooner or later (as CZ expands) may call for disambiguation. But right now it doesn't need it. So I'm not exactly sure how to proceed. It's easier for me now to do something without disambiguation, but it may cause more fuss for people down the road. Is there a clear policy here?--Thomas Wright Sulcer 18:59, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
It's hard for me to keep track of what to call articles -- whether for wikilinking as well as naming. I was writing articles on Greek mythology figures and, say, I was writing on on the goddess Diana; should I start it with Diana (mythology), or let other people change it around later, if for example, Princess Diana becomes a major topic in the future? I have a suggestion but I bet people here won't want to hear it, but it would simplify things greatly. Namely, we pick names to match Wikipedia's. They have a much more extensive system, and have (for every topic) figured out whether disambiguation is needed, and what to call what. It brings the further benefit of helping us check our offerings against theirs. I thought I'd mention this idea.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 18:59, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Before I start an article, I do a CZ search for the term. While the internal search engine has many deficiencies, if I see the term show up in text, I start disambiguating -- I may create lemmas, and sometimes stubs, for the articles I found. Diagnosis is a good example.
WP isn't a complete answer, first because, hopefully, we sometimes cover things they don't. Personally, I try to do what we call "Chinese walls" in software development and not look at WP's article, but research and write independently. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:04, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. I saw the article Diagnosis (disambiguation) and saw how it was constructed. Format seems easy enough.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 20:37, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Howard and Tom, are you interested in how to install a box for Google searches of CZ (much better than the CZ search box) directly into the left-hand navigation box just below the CZ search box? If you are, let me know and I will show you how it is done (originally found by Daniel Mietchen). Milton Beychok 23:59, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Caveat: It only works for content that has been indexed by Google, so no User pages and no fresh content. --Daniel Mietchen 00:09, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
And for disambiguation, yes, not clear at the moment but I would recommend to start disambiguated if it is listed at CZ:List of words with multiple uses. --Daniel Mietchen 00:12, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
Daniel, I have found that the Google search box is very much better than the CZ search box for finding "Related Articles" as well as for checking to see if a disambiguation page is or will be needed. I use it every time I create a new article. Milton Beychok 00:28, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
Milton, I'm interested. My computer uses Ubuntu Linux operating system not Windows; will it still work on it?--Thomas Wright Sulcer 10:54, 26 April 2010 (UTC)

(undent) I'd be interested as well. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:02, 26 April 2010 (UTC)

Short version is here. --Daniel Mietchen 19:19, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
Couldn't a better search be provided for all par default (in addition to or replacing the current one)?


I've been on IRC a dozen times this week and so far no-one has been on the #Citizendium channel. I don't think it's going to work as an adequate communications tool when no-one else uses it. Meg Ireland 06:24, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

I haven't tried, but if people will use it, I'll make an effort. Howard C. Berkowitz 06:28, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
What's IRC?--Thomas Wright Sulcer 13:17, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
Internet Relay Chat. Think Internet-enabled texting, maybe with longer messages, more powerful conversation, and 1970 technology. I'm generally not a fan of real-time text other than for prearranged times, where it can be quite helpful. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:41, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
Thanx for explanation. I'm with you in preferring delayed chat (email), since I can reply when convenient. Similarly, replies on a talk page are perfect for me as well, since I can deal with them (or not) when ready.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 13:49, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
The only reason I've not been on IRC is that every time IRC has been mentioned on the forums, the idea hasn't met much approval. If I'd known other people were going to try using it, I'd be on there. --Chris Key 18:20, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Google search box for CZ

Below are the instructions for installing the Google search box. Be sure to replace my user name with yours and my skin name (monobook) with your skin name:

  • First, access your user's Java Script (.js) file by typing this (replacing my user name with yours) into the CZ Search box: User:Milton Beychok/monobook.js
  • Go to the edit page of your Java Script (.js) file:
  • Then copy and enter the coding just below (again replacing my user name with yours):
importScript("User:Milton Beychok/searchbox.js")

// from [[User:Henrik/sandbox/google-search]] at Wikipedia (please include this line)
function install_search( )

'<FORM method=get action="">'+
'<input type=hidden name="ie" value="UTF-8" /><input type=hidden name="oe" value="UTF-8" />'+
'<INPUT id="searchInput" name="q" type="text" accesskey="f" value="" />'+
'<input type="hidden" name="domains" value="" />'+
'<input type=radio name=sitesearch value="">Web'+
'<input type=radio name=sitesearch value="" checked />CZ'+
'<INPUT type="submit" name="btnG" VALUE="Google Search"  /></FORM></div>';
  • Be sure to copy the above coding from this page (do not copy it from the edit page of this Talk page).
  • Click to Save the edited Java Script file. Then follow the instruction in your Java Script (.js) file page about clearing your cache after you add the above coding.

Howard, did this work for you? Please let me know, one way or the other. Regards, Milton Beychok 20:49, 3 May 2010 (UTC)
Ah, I think I just saw what I needed: the .js file is in User space, not local to the computer, correct. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:37, 3 May 2010 (UTC)
I made some minor revisions to the above instructions so as to make them clearer (I hope). Milton Beychok 22:43, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Military pyrotechnics

Hi Howard, I came across this book and thought of you: [3] --Paul Wormer 15:37, 2 May 2010 (UTC)

Thanks; I'm reading with interest. I hope it didn't remind you too much of comments on the Forums. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:58, 2 May 2010 (UTC)

Google Juice

Hi, Howard -- would you please, in your capacity of Computer Editor, take a look at Google Juice and make a formal decision as to whether or not it is, as Tom calls it, "blather"? If not, and you decide it should be left here, then please decide, as I requested a while ago on the Talk page of the article in question, as to whether it should remain as "Google Juice" or be Moved to "Google juice". Thanks! Hayford Peirce 17:25, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Re-approval of Gasoline

Howard, since Gasoline was approved, there have been significant edits made to the History section as well as a number of wiki link and other minor edits (including the adding of a photo) to the article. It needs to be re-approved so that the Approved version gets updated.

The two original nominators, David Volk and Anthony Argyriou, are no longer very active. Would you please nominate Gasoline for re-approval? Thanks and regards, Milton Beychok 19:46, 8 May 2010 (UTC)

Howard, I know you are very busy ... but I would really appreciate it if you took the time to nominate Gasoline for re-approval. Please let me know if you will do so. Thanks, Milton Beychok 17:54, 25 May 2010 (UTC)
I believe that I've answered your questions about Gasoline. See Talk:Gasoline. Milton Beychok 07:47, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

Cat's tail

Howard, if any of your cats ever loses his or her tail give him/her Ormus. See video starting at 30:23 --Paul Wormer 16:15, 9 May 2010 (UTC)

Please join with me in urging Hayford not to resign

Howard, see my plea to Hayford not to resign as Constable (on his Talk page). Please join me! Milton Beychok 19:56, 12 May 2010 (UTC)

Definitions based on MeSH

Hi Howard, please take a look at this forum thread, along with {{DefMeSH}}, and comment. Thanks! --Daniel Mietchen 23:49, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

a cap or not?

I'm finally writing the lede to An Infinity of Mirrors. Do we say, "it's about the rise of the Nazi Party" or "the rise of the Nazi party"? Since there was a *long* discussion elsewhere about the exact use of Nazi, I suppose that it can be argued either way. What's *your* opinion? Thanks. Hayford Peirce 21:44, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Cap. It's a specific Party: U.S. Republican Party, U.S. Democratic Party. The German acronym was NDSAP. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:37, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
Danke, Herr Doktor Professor von und zu Berkowitz! Hayford Peirce 23:14, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
But "Nazi party" was not the official name. (I don't think they used it for themselves.) Thus I am not so sure ... --Peter Schmitt 23:27, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
That, mon cher Pierre, is exactly why I asked! Wasn't there an *enormous* argument about this over at the Nazi page a year or so ago? Maybe you weren't yet a Member? Hayford Peirce 23:45, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
I do not know if I was a member. I only know that I was not aware of it. --Peter Schmitt 23:49, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
Musta been before your time, or I'm sure you would have weighed in on one side or another. Although I *think* that there were more than two sides to the question. Hayford Peirce 00:07, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
Problem solved: changed the wording to "the rise of the Nazis and the Third Reich". Hayford Peirce 04:18, 21 May 2010 (UTC)


Is that one ready for approval? It has Computers, Law & Sociology as work groups. Do we have editors there? Sandy Harris 04:13, 23 May 2010 (UTC)

Computers and Sociology, yes. Let me reread the article. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:57, 23 May 2010 (UTC)

Cryp. article at [4] approved

Congratulations, Howard, we've finally got the article approved! Sorry for the various delays.... Hayford Peirce 21:09, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

Please review Renewable energy

Howard, since you are a Politics Editor, I would much appreciate your reviewing the Renewable energy article and editing/revising/commenting on it. Thanks, Milton Beychok 00:22, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

As you correctly pointed out, the current section, "Rationale for renewable energy", focuses only on the environmental rationale. How about writing just a couple of paragraphs about the "energy dependency" or "energy security" rationale for renewable energy? Would you do that, please? Thanks, Milton Beychok 01:18, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
I will do so, and we'll just plan on having three editors for eventual Approval. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:22, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for for writing that section of the renewable energy rationale about "Political contributions". I like it. Milton Beychok 21:35, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

Gasoline article reApproved

Congratulations, Howard, I finally managed to get Version 2.0 reApproved, although it took most of the morning. You had better check it over carefully, however, to make sure that I really did get the correct version approved! Hayford Peirce 19:16, 30 May 2010 (UTC)

Will check, although it's giving us all gas. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:02, 30 May 2010 (UTC)

Kerckhoffs' Principle

Howard, the version approved in the article url points to a talk page version. Could you take a look and update it to the version you want to approve? D. Matt Innis 01:10, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Approved! (now that Sandy got your attention... and yes, you were confused - Peter's name is nowhere on that article, lol :) D. Matt Innis 14:45, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Please see...

This D. Matt Innis 16:30, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Looks Good


Those last bits you're adding look good. I'd leave James Q. Wilson out unless you have a specific idea for how to tie him in (I don't). And make the Hall connection as best you can.

Let me know when you're done and I'll update the permanent link. I'd like to have about a day of 'idle time' tomorrow to make sure everyone is content with the result or has a chance to raise any last minute corrections/objections.

Everything looks good from my end.


Process Safety Management (United States)

Just to let you know that I have created a new article, Process Safety Management (United States), and the "Emergency management subgroup" is listed in its Metadata template. Milton Beychok 21:29, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Great Siege of Scarborough Castle

Another one under your belt! Thanks! D. Matt Innis 13:15, 2 June 2010 (UTC)

Naming of subgroups

Howard, when I created the first two subgroups (Chemical Engineering and Environmental Engineering), I took note of the fact that all of our Workgroups having more than one-word names capitalized all of the words in their names. For example:

Earth Sciences, Visual Arts, Food Science, Healing Arts, Health Sciences, Library and Information Science

Based on those examples, I capitalized both words in Chemical Engineering and in Environmental Engineering. Now, I see that you capitalized only the first words when naming the "Emergency management" and the "Energy policy" subgroups. I know this is a trivial subject, but do you think that CZ needs to establish how subgroups should be named? Or do we have bigger fish to fry at the moment? Regards, Milt

While I'd think of other fish at the moment, I was trying to address what was a broader context: the capitalization of the lead article. We don't capitalize non-proper-nouns (unless they are related to an acronym) in article titles, so "Energy policy" is the correct capitalization. Unfortunately, that causes some conflict if the subgroup code wants "Energy Policy". So, in setting a standarde, which does not exist, we need to address both the subgroup naming and the lead article naming. You'll see I started with subgroups with all caps, but later found conflicts. Ideally, the code should be case insensitive, but it's not.
If anything, I think it's the workgroup names that are out of sync with conventions. The examples you give would be incorrect as article titles -- perhaps the workgroups are working via redirects. Nevertheless, since I expect the EC to revise workgroups as an early action, it's not worth fixing now. --Howard C. Berkowitz 23:23, 4 June 2010 (UTC)
Yet, again, I must fight this losing battle. Titles, regardless of CZ, are capitalized whether they be article titles, heading titles, magazine titles, book titles, movie titles, group titles, sub-group titles, etc., etc. For a bunch of experts this amateurish titlization policy makes us look like a bunch of high schoolers. Russell D. Jones 00:24, 5 June 2010 (UTC)


Howard, may I remind you the only a link has to be fixed (or removed) and some sentence clarifying initial TLDs and introduction of more TLDs is missing in Domain Name System? --Peter Schmitt 23:22, 5 June 2010 (UTC)

Couple of questions

Hi Howard. You have really accomplished lots this past year; thanks for your great efforts in CZ. First, you might consider archiving part of your talk page so that it's not so overwhelmingly long. Second, I'm teaching a course again this summer--another 6-week wonder--and want the students to author in here (they are computer science students). I see you have done a bang-up job starting cloud computing, and I have my eye on that article as well as several topics related to parallelism. Just wanted to see if you're feeling particularly possessive, or if it will be alright with you to unleash a hoard of young folks onto articles which you have cherished. Any particular ones you want us to keep mitts off of? Thanks in advance.Pat Palmer 16:48, 6 June 2010 (UTC)

Did some trimming and archigving; there are things that need attention so I kept them on the active page.
With a number of Computers articles, I see a win-win approach as spinning off subarticles. DNS needs just a couple of fixes for Peter to nominate it. While I have a number of things to add to cloud computing, I will be doing at least some of that in subarticles; the main article is too long in its present form. I would like to get it to approval as the top of the tree. Clearly, I don't own it, but I am using some of the cloud computing material in discussions with people outside CZ -- I managed to get one old colleague to sign up at least to make a few edits. I'm also using it as a reference in several discussions, so I'd like to keep it at an expert-written level.
That said, I would be delighted to see some subarticles, with the Eduzendium tag, created, and I'd be happy to work with students. As a general EZ comment, Gareth and Celine seemed to get some very good results by having teams of students, rather than individuals, work on the articles. I, and I'm sure others, would be happy to work with students during the writing, guiding them but certainly not writing anything for them. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:59, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for your quick response. I just skimmed the entire article; it's really a tour de force on a tricky subject. Good job! I won't unleash them directly on this article; in fact, I might ask them to read it.Pat Palmer 20:42, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
There are some areas in security where I want to extend it, possibly as subarticles. In addition, I'm gaining some practical experience looking at SaaS vs. hosted server vs. local server for physician offices, and finding lots of questions -- obviously this falls into original research.
Are you thinking of giving any assignments in virtualization, which gets more complex every time I look? Somewhere, I have an interesting paper discussing how an experimenter went onto a public PaaS cloud and was able to sniff passwords and such if he could get onto the same physical server. One vulnerability often missed is that a paused virtual machine is just a file, and if the file security isn't tight, there are the keys to the kingdom if you're on the same machine.
Another interesting area, which might make two or more assignments, are variously the idea of a federated data base, and the security approach Google has proposed to meet HIPAA and other physical security requirements: no file exists, in its entirety, in any one server at any one physical location. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:03, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
Howard (and anyone), I am indeed looking for good article topics for several groups of 2-4 students, related to an "emerging technology" (something that is a "hot topic" these days). Other requirements for a good topic are that it is not yet satisfactorily written up in either Wikipedia or Citizendium. There must also be something they can find out about it using the Penn library resources that are not available just by Googling (i.e., a refereed journal article, or a market report that costs money, etc.). The course is described at CIS 700 Emerging Technologies 2010. Please leave any topic suggestions on my talk page--those would be very welcome! Ideally for a brand new article to be produced in Citizendium (or something that is little more than a stub).Pat Palmer 21:24, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Doom (video game)

Hi Howard, please see this. --Chris Key 13:40, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Doom approved

Hi, Howard, this Version 1.0 was just Approved. Congratulations! Hayford Peirce 18:30, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Yay!Pat Palmer 21:27, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

When this article is ready for the approval process

Howard, when you're ready to ask for this article to be approved, I will support it. Not up to date on how to start that myself, so please yourself (or another editor) make the nomination and then tell me how to vote for it (after looking at that version, of course).Pat Palmer 21:27, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

please email me (off of CZ)

Howard, would you please email me at pgpalmer AT I want to discuss something offline from here. Thanks!Pat Palmer 23:01, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

emerging topics

Thanks for the creative list of ideas you deposited on my talk page. "Micropayments" was already on my list! I will take these under advisement and very much appreciate it. And, I did get the email. May not send anything right now, just wanted a private channel to you in case I need it once Eduzendium begins. Incidentally, I'm not going to lock their articles (at least not at first), as I want them to experience group interactions. Though people will be able to meddle with them, I hope everyone will be gentle, remembering that they are on a very steep learning curve.Pat Palmer 01:31, 10 June 2010 (UTC)

by the by

Sorry to hear that you have a sick cat. I know how awful it is when one of the fuzzy friends is ill. Aleta Curry 23:02, 10 June 2010 (UTC)

The Father of Us All

Howard, if you haven't already read, The Father of Us All: War and History, Ancient and Modern, you might want to give it a look-see. Thoughtful writer, Victor [sic] David Hanson. Bloomsbury Press. 2010. ISBN 978-1-60819-165-9. Anthony.Sebastian 02:32, 12 June 2010 (UTC)

Crypto approvals

I think cypherpunk is ready. Cryptology is being discussed. There are also a lot of small articles — active attack, passive attack and all their children — that I think are pretty close. Could you comment on or nominate some of those? Should rewrite attack become a separate article?

Various others — FreeSWAN, DRM, stream cipher, cryptanalysis — are fairly developed but probably not approvable yet. I'd like to move them along, but am not clear how. Any comments there? Sandy Harris 02:01, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

OK, I was just waiting for you to be comfortable with cypherpunk, and will nominate it now. Let me look at the others. It may be stretching things a bit much, but some things in electronic warfare, principally aimed at non-communications things, I think do relate -- such things as active probing. If you have a chance, do read and especially comment on the flow in electronic warfare. As I remember, stream cipher is also good.

Howard C. Berkowitz 02:37, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

Also AES competition. I'd forgotten that one...Sandy Harris 14:10, 14 June 2010 (UTC)

Added some articles to Category:Energy policy Subgroup

Howard: I added these articles: Energy (science), Natural gas, and Carbon capture and storage. Regards, Milton Beychok 01:16, 14 June 2010 (UTC)

Image:Domain Tree.png

(CC) Image: Howard C. Berkowitz

I may be missing something, but this image appears inaccurate when following down from .uk:

  • doesn't exist and is instead replaced with for higher education colleges and universities, and for primary and secondary schools.
  • doesn't exist and is instead replaced with for general use, for limited companies, and for public limited companies.

--Chris Key 17:27, 14 June 2010 (UTC)

Thanks. Is this better:
Suggestions on the domain vs. zone metaphor are welcome! Howard C. Berkowitz 06:44, 15 June 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that is no longer inaccurate. For a full list of SLD's from the .uk TLD see [5] and [6]. The most common ones seen are,, and
I'll have a think about the metaphor. --Chris Key 15:05, 15 June 2010 (UTC)

Do you know any of the faculty or administrators at MIT?

I'm writing an article about Professor Edwin Richard Gilliland (1909-1973), an eminent engineering professor at MIT ... and I need a photo of him. I found one in the website of the MIT Museum at here and wrote them for permission to use it ... but no response. Do you know anyone at MIT who could help? In particular, I'm interested in the photo entitled ERG_001.jog on that museum website page. Milton Beychok 22:51, 14 June 2010 (UTC)

Unfortunately, my Cambridge contacts these days are at Harvard. There's probably a public relations office for the university. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:42, 15 June 2010 (UTC)

Muller or Mueller?

Hi, Howard, I was about to add to the H. Muller article when I searched for "Mueller" and went to a "Lemma" article about him instead. Can you straighten out the confusion here? I *know* there are different spellings, etc., but all we need is one article, I would say. By the way, I *thought* Muller was the 6'7" guy but the article says he was short. Was it Kaltenburg (sic) who was the big guy? Hayford Peirce 22:09, 18 June 2010 (UTC)

Ernst Kaltenbrunner was the tall one.
I'm not sure how to handle articles where the umlaut, or indeed diacritics in general, are appropriate. My approach is pragmatic: do I know how to find the character, with diacritic, to enter for a search? Most U.S. name databases with which I worked used the dipthong rather than the diacritic just for that reason. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:15, 18 June 2010 (UTC)
Well, I know there's a problem here, but don't you think we should simply delete the Mueller lemma -- and have lotsa redirects to Muller (with the dots, I guess). Hayford Peirce 22:36, 18 June 2010 (UTC)
The only consistent method (for an expert-guided project) is using the correct name (with umlauts and diacritics), and provide redirects from "usual spellings". (The situation is different for emigrants who used a simplified name.) --Peter Schmitt 22:45, 18 June 2010 (UTC)
I agree 100%. Will one of you gentlemen remove the egregious (hehe) Heinrich Mueller or will I have to do it myself? Hayford Peirce 23:16, 18 June 2010 (UTC)

Whitman article

Hello Howard, while adding information to the Charles Whitman article, when I went to save, there was an edit conflict. I'm not sure if you reversed the info box, or it did not take because of the conflict. I will add another info box and if there was a reason for you to reverse, please explain why and we'll resolve any issues. BTW, has it been discussed before about using Adobe PDF files as uploads? They are great for multiple page documents and only have to be uploaded once. Plus, they have a non-copy and paste feature as well as a do not print and copy feature. This would help with WP problems where info is absconded by those techniques. Regards! John Calvin Moore 20:13, 19 June 2010 (UTC)
Ahhhh! Having come from Wikipedia, info boxes were the norm. I like the synthesis issue as well. The problem with Whitman though, is that I have all the records that are in contrast with all the information on the net and in the media. So I am using the documents to verify the information. If there is a way to hyperlink the documents to a blue link in a word, would that be better? I can only use the web for medical and psychological evidence for referencing. The other way got be banned from WP. John Calvin Moore 20:54, 19 June 2010 (UTC)

a naval question

Hi Howard, if you had a 1941 squad (I guess, a small landing party, squadron?) of U.S. Marines coming ashore on Christmas Island to rescue Santa Claus from a group of Japanese sailors off a submarine, what kind of small, high-speed boat would they have taken from their mother ship, a nearby aircraft carrier? This is the situation that James Norman Hall is writing about in a previously unknown short story of his called "Le Père Noël on Christmas Island". Thanks! Hayford Peirce 00:03, 23 June 2010 (UTC)

Hmm...depends on the number of Marines, but a Higgins boat (early version of the LCVP), or, for a smaller group, a Boston Whaler. This assumes something that the vessel might have (and a carrier would not have a Higgins but any amphib would). Personnel only? Would it have to beach? I think Marine squads were 13 men in 1941. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:22, 23 June 2010 (UTC)
Higgins sounds right. It wasn't until Guadalcanal that the Marines realized that they needed something to get from ship to shore without having to go over the gunwales. Thus the landing craft. And I agree that I'd doubt that an aircraft carrier would have something like this. They may have had a small motor boat of some sort though for inter-ship transportation while at anchor. Jones 00:38, 23 June 2010 (UTC)
Yup, but what would I *call* the "small motor boat" in just a general description by a non-technical person? "The Marines jumped ashore from their small xxxxx that had brought them at high speed from the aircraft carrier." Thanks!
What's wrong with "motor launch" or "motor boat?" Jones.
How about "small motor boat"? Lighters are usually unpowered. A corvette is a small warship. If Coast Guardsmen were crewing it, it would be a cutter. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:58, 23 June 2010 (UTC)
I'll probably use "motor launch" -- that sounds a little more official/technical -- I'll put Joe E. Brown and Jack Lemmon in the stern, however, or is that the prow? Hayford Peirce 04:02, 23 June 2010 (UTC)
The prow is the pointy end, unless both ends are pointy. Just remember to launch the launch so you can let it motor to the point where it will land and be launched again. Howard C. Berkowitz 05:42, 24 June 2010 (UTC)

Response to your comments at Talk:Process Safety Management (United States)

Howard, I have posted a response to your comments at Talk:Process Safety Management (United States). You might want to look at my response. Milton Beychok 20:28, 30 June 2010 (UTC)

World of Warcraft

Approved! Thanks for your thoughtful participation once again! D. Matt Innis 12:03, 5 July 2010 (UTC)

New article: Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP)

I just created a new article, namely Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP), and it is now included in the Category:Emergency management Subgroup. Milton Beychok 00:47, 12 July 2010 (UTC)


Thanks for your addition to the redlinks section of my userpage. Some useful suggestions - I'll work on them as and when I can.

I think it would be an interesting project, if we could find a place for it, to have a page were we could list redlinks we have created in the process of writing articles. We could try to organise them into some sort of priority and discuss how we might best approach things like disambiguation pages and offshoots from main articles. You gave three examples of this latter with regard to improvised explosive device, assault rifle and Civil Rights Movement.

--Mal McKee 10:11, 14 July 2010 (UTC)

Picatinny rail

Hi there, how come you renamed the picatinny to pickatinny? The Pickatinny Arsenal you mention is here [7] and doesn't use the k in their name. The picatinny rail was named after Picatinny Arsenal, which is shown in the source you provided[8] where it says The term “Picatinny” comes from the place of origin for this system, the Picatinny Arsenal located in New Jersey. I think that all sources, including the US Army, use picatinny in place of pickatinny. David Finn 19:01, 15 July 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for the reply, and the quick fix (I was hesitant to start my Citizendium career with a bunch of page moves, it's not something I have done before). Further to the Yamato debate I have added a reply over at that page - there are a lot of battleship classes already created, but there are many yet to be started, and maybe to aid any future contributors it would be best to have something over at CZ:Military Workgroup that explains why one system is preferred over the other. Cheers. David Finn 06:56, 16 July 2010 (UTC)

the hypen

Hi, Howard, why are you continuing to use the hyphen -- it is clearly wrong. Hayford Peirce 00:44, 16 July 2010 (UTC)

Huh? What hyphen? Howard C. Berkowitz 00:52, 16 July 2010 (UTC)
Oh. You didn't see this? Hayford Peirce 01:10, 16 July 2010 (UTC)

You might want to get acquainted with Donald C. Church

Howard, I just approved Donald C. Church as an author and editor in the Politics workgroup. You might want to get acquainted with him. Milton Beychok 05:38, 17 July 2010 (UTC)

Hazard and Operability Study/Gallery

Can you use any of the photos in the Hazard and Operability Study/Gallery in any of your emergency management articles? If so, feel free to do so. Milton Beychok 01:10, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

John Dittmer, another new editor you might want to get acquainted with

Howard, I believe that you will want to get acquainted with John Dittmer, a new editor in Military and Computers. Milton Beychok 16:17, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

Navy SEALs

Mr. Berkowitz, I probably won't be able to glean much on the Ramage, I spent only a few weeks on the ship and didn't (unfortunately) gain any historical knowledge about the ship. However, I was wondering if you would mind if I made significant changes to the Navy SEALs article. I notice that much of the information may be outdated, as well as, incorrect. The Navy SEAL mission has changed drastically in Afghanistan and Iraq and SEALs are becoming more proficient in Foreign Internal Defense (Direct Training of Foreign Militaries) and then working with them. Additionally, the SEALs have become very proficient in working with conventional military units to achieve significant victories in Iraq (Ramadi)...Dick Couch wrote a spectacular book about it: "Sheriff of Ramadi: Navy Seals and the Winning of Al Anbar." Captain Couch also wrote several other spectacular books about SEAL Training as well as Army Special Forces Training. John Fischer 19:53, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

The SEAL article proper hasn't been touched in a while, although the new roles you correctly mention are mentioned in Afghanistan War (2001-) and Battle of Tora Bora. Interesting -- while there is a good deal about Anbar Province in Iraq War, Surge, I hadn't been aware of other than Army activities.
You might want to look at the Foreign Internal Defense article to see that it reflects SEAL doctrine, and there are articles on the various classic specops missions such as direct action (military) and special reconnaissance. Have you had any exposure to the Marine SpecOps units?
There's a battle, here on Cape Cod, between the seals and the great white sharks, but I don't think we want to go there.
--Howard C. Berkowitz 19:59, 19 July 2010 (UTC)
Until recently, I believe, the Navy SEAL involvement in Al Anbar was not well publicized. However, the Navy Seals were a part of a new type of warfare (Similar to the "Ink Blot" style that took place in Vietnam). They worked side by side with Conventional Army Infantry Platoons as a supplement. The mission in Ramadi was to capture little pieces, build a barrier, capture a little more, make the barrier larger, etc... The SEALs were responsible for several things, including Sniper Overwatch (A SEAL specialty) SEALs split well into smaller groups of 4 and 2 where the 4 consist of 2 sniper teams of 2 and the Snipers would find a perch and provide "overwatch" for the platoon/unit. In this case, that unit was a mix of a conventional infantry platoon and a seal platoon.
Also, BUD/s has been replaced as the significant/most difficult part of the training pipeline. SEALs do not receive their Trident until after a second training school informally known as "The Finishing School." They have also removed Army Airborne School as their jump school and established their own Navy Jump School where they can be trained in HALO, HAHO, and other forms of combat insertion.
Additionally, Unconventional Warfare is not the bread and butter of U.S. Army Special Forces...Foreign Internal Defense is. The Unconventional Warfare Mission in the Army is more of a Delta Specialty. However, they do perform UW missions as well.
I do have some connections in the Marine Corps Special Operations Command. I am planning on putting in an application to MARSOC after my first tour as a pilot. Unfortunately for new Marines, MARSOC only takes applications from Marines who have done at least one deployment. The pipeline has not been well defined for me, I know it consists of several stages (similar to SEALs), beginning with an application, a "tryout" which may get you an invite back for a second stage of tryouts and a school (most likely similar to BUD/s).
John Fischer 20:15, 19 July 2010 (UTC)
Actually, I'd call the Delta core more direct action (military), counterterrorism, and counterproliferation. There's been a continuing argument in Army specops that Special Forces, who often have language and cultural skills not necessarily honed in Delta, were being used too often for "kick in the door" missions. UW is the mirror image of FID, organizing rather than defending against guerillas. It was originally the key mission for Army Special Forces, but wasn't actually that common.
Sorry, but I can't get the juxtaposed images of "bread and butter" and "jump school" out of my mind--I'm picturing someone exiting by stepping on butter.
There's a bit scattered around about the Marine Radio Recon teams, although I don't know where they are in the current organization. A SF Group has comparable SOT-A teams to deploy. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:24, 19 July 2010 (UTC)
I completely agree. Delta was originally thought of by Colonel Charlie Beckwith after he spent time with British SAS and decided that the United States needed a capability to deal with operations similar to the kidnapping of Olympic Athletes in Munich (Beckwith was incredibly impressed with GSG 9). He based the training pipeline on the SAS training and they became mirror images of each other. Delta is involved in mostly direct-action and counter-terrorism missions but are well trained in the art of unconventional warfare.
I can tell you, however, that FID was very much the key mission for Army Special Forces in Iraq. Additionally, FID was so important the United States Mission in Iraq that SEALs were also called in to do FID. Since SEALs are "out of their element" in Iraq (Land Based Urban Operations), this became a significant part of their mission in Iraq as well.
Now you have me picturing a group of SEALs doing a night insertion but all of them slipping and sliding out of the plane on a stick of butter that has somehow infiltrated the cargo bay of their C-130.
John Fischer 20:53, 19 July 2010 (UTC)
See herding cats. Seriously, I do have Beckwith's book on Delta's development. In the Iraq War, there were essentially two Special Operations chains of command: overt FID under SOCCENT, featuring the Special Forces Groups, and DA/SR under JSOC. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:13, 19 July 2010 (UTC)

Why not combine State of Israel and Israel ??

Howard, I see no point in having both the State of Israel and the Israel articles. Why not combine them? Just simply speedy delete the very small Israel article after extracting any useful content from it and working any such content into the much larger State of Israel article. It should only take you a few minutes to do that. I am not an editor in the Politics, Military of Economics workgroups, so I cannot request speedy delete of Israel.

Also, I really think that the cat=Economics should be replaced by the cat=Geography in the Metadata template of State of Israel. That would be more appropriate. Milton Beychok 04:02, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

I had seen the Israel article as the focus for geography, history before the modern era, anthropology, etc. It hasn't been expanded but certainly could be -- there are other countries where the modern state and the historical context are separate.
Since the geographic information belongs in Israel, State of Israel can deal with both the economic aspects of Israeli high-tech industry, as well as its role as largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid. Howard C. Berkowitz 04:07, 20 July 2010 (UTC)
I disagree, Howard. I think the article Israel should be deleted after extracting any useful content and working any such content into the State of Israel article. As I read the article Israel, it contains very little content that is not in the much larger State of Israel article. In fact, the first sentence of this article starts off as: The State of Israel ... . Milton Beychok 04:23, 20 July 2010 (UTC)
Rather off-topic but I cannot resist: in fact "Israel" should be first of all a name of a people (nation), not state; but the common use is different, I know. Boris Tsirelson 19:41, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
I really don't think of Israel as a name of a people, although I recognize that it is sometimes used as that in what I consider religious contexts. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:44, 24 July 2010 (UTC)

Re your edit of Unidentified flying object

Howard, your edit of the subject article has left some extraneous "blockquote" tags showing in the main article. I think you should have a look. I would have corrected them myself but I am not quite sure of what you wanted to do. Milton Beychok 17:27, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

I'm not sure of the procedure here but I just lost a bunch of statistics...

I'm not sure of the procedure here as the inuse tag is not used. I lost a bunch of statistics as I went to save the UFO page and found your work. Please advise on how to go about it. Thanks!

Mary Ash 19:44, 22 July 2010 (UTC)Mary Ash

I understand collaboration and I respect articles undergoing active writing

I understand collaboration but a part of collaboration is respecting someone who is actively editing an article. I lost a bunch of statistics and will have to rewrite it. Also, I moved the history section, as stated earlier, as chopped up the article. Where the history section sits now allows the article to flow and makes it easier to read. It also makes sense. I left similar comments on the article's discussion page.

I have written one article at Wikipedia so I may not know all the Wikipedia etiquette. I do know and understand wikiHow etiquette where I contributed 300+ articles.

Please advise what the local custom is when an article is under active writing or editing.

Thanks! Mary Ash 20:04, 22 July 2010 (UTC)Mary Ash

The local custom (and common sense) is to make FREQUENT SAVES! That way, if someone else comes along makes a so-called "conflicting edit", you won't have lost too much, since the previous version can be found in the History tab. Also material lost by "edit conflicts" can generally be recovered by other means. But, in a broader sense, CZ custom allows *anyone* to make edits to ongoing articles. In other words, if I see you writing a new article about Jules Verne and I happen to be a Verne enthusiast, I can jump in at any point and add material, edit some of yours (copy-editing, rewording, grammar, etc, minor stuff). This has greatly annoyed some of our *best* contributors when they first joined -- they felt that they should have the right to create an entire article before other people jumped into it. Most of these people quickly adapted to our ways, one or two may have left. One way to write an article so that it is NOT touched is for you to write in a Mary Ash\Sandbox, a privileged area that you create yourself. Write your article there, then move it to Mainspace. Why don't you ask Milt to help you with Sandboxes -- he's an expert on them, and does all of his initial writing in them. User:Milton Beychok. Hayford Peirce 20:15, 22 July 2010 (UTC)
Also remember that if you make an edit, hit save and are informed that there is an edit conflict, you can just hit the 'Back' button on your browser to take you to the work you have just done. That way you haven't lost any of your contributions, you can just copy/paste them into a new editing window, integrating your edits with those made by others. David Finn 08:06, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
Wow, after all these years, I didn't know that! Haha.. D. Matt Innis 12:02, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
You do not need the back button. In case of an edit conflict the page shows two edit windows. The upper window is the current content of the page, the lower window contains the text that you wanted to save. So it is only necessary to copy from the lower window to the upper one. (You know that, don't you? But not every "newbie" realiözes it. --Peter Schmitt 12:08, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
Peter, that is NOT true for me -- my browser, my skin, who knows? And god knows I've have enough Edit Conflicts over the years.
David, that is SORT of true for me -- BUT I have to first hit the "Back" button, where I get a message saying the page is lost or some gobbly-gook like that, and THEN have to hit the "Refresh" (the round arrow in the box), and THEN I'm back to the edit page that I wanted to make. But THEN you have to go and do a Copy and Paste from the material that you yourself have just written, then go the NEW article that has the other material in it from the guy who had the Conflict with you, and *then* Paste in your own material. If you don't you it that way, and simply SAVE what you have found for yourself, you will then DELETE the material that the other person put in.
The SAFEST thing to do when editing a page in which you think other people may be working is to write your new material, then highlight that material, then COPY that highlighted section, THEN click the Save button. That way, if there IS a Conflict, you will have your own material saved on the clipboard, ready to be pasted back into the new article. Hayford Peirce 15:49, 24 July 2010 (UTC)

In case of an edit conflict I see on top of the page (below the box with "Talk Page Etiquette"):

Please remember to place the subpages template at the top of the page. See Subpage help for guidance.
Someone else has changed this page since you started editing it. The upper text area contains the page text as it
currently exists. Your changes are shown in the lower text area. You will have to merge your changes into
the existing text. Only the text in the upper text area will be saved when you press "Save page".

Is this indeed browser or skin dependent? (I use Firefox and Modern). This seems unlikely, but it must be if you don't see it. --Peter Schmitt 19:45, 24 July 2010 (UTC)

I don't understand, Peter. Is there a question about it? Howard C. Berkowitz 19:50, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
How very strange, Peter! I've been here a little over three years now and have, at various times, used IE, Firefox, and Chrome as my sole browser. I never saw what you're saying I should be seeing with any of them. And I've always used Monobook as my skin. There's probably an explanation somewhere. (By the way, I just upgraded a few days ago to the latest Chrome and that *finally* fixed some problems that I'd always had with Cut and Paste. but I *know* that two days ago, and even yesterday, I had an Edit Conflict, and, even with the new Chrome, I didn't see anything different.) Hayford Peirce 19:56, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
IMPORTANT UPDATE -- I just now had an Edit Conflict with Howard -- and now the Your text box is at the bottom of the screen! It must be the new Chrome fixing things! And yesterday I hadn't scrolled down far enough to see it.... Wow! Hayford Peirce 19:56, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
I always had, in Firefox, "Your text" at the bottom.
What interests me is that I've never installed Chrome, but, every few days, I get an error message that Firefox is stalled due to a stuck script -- do I want to cancel it? Almost invariably, the script is chrome:, not http:. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:59, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
This is all ye know on Earth, and all ye need to know: Computers are gonna drive ya freakin' CRAZY! Hayford Peirce 04:41, 25 July 2010 (UTC)\\

An edit conflict is normal when writing at a busy wiki or when an article is in great demand. This must have been a slow wiki if you have never experienced this before.

It is not browser dependent. It is caused by another editor editing the article the same time you are. This is the whole point of my frustration and why I was encouraging the use of the "inuse" tag. As at busy wikis, this helps prevent page conflicts.

Mary Ash 18:12, 25 July 2010 (UTC)Mary Ash

I don't think Hayford was trying to say he hadn't encountered an edit conflict. He was trying to say that he hadn't encountered the second edit box that occurs at the bottom of the edit conflict page that contains the text that you wrote so nothing is lost. Also Mary, when doing the indents on talk pages you need to put the :::: at the start of every line. --Chris Key 18:16, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
The problem here, Chris, is that Mary was editing with an outside editor and pasting back in. In the meantime, others had posted. When she then pasted her entire article back in, it deleted all of Milts formatting and Howard's changes. They thought she did it on purpose and the rest is history. Is that a reason to be blocked? D. Matt Innis 18:38, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Since this is on my user page, let me clarify that only Milt actually called for blocking. It is not clear to me that she was reading the talk page at first. When a sandbox was suggested, something that would have met her desire to control the draft, I don't remember any specific response -- only arguments about how we should collaborate by her standards. Matt, you may not have been following the article at that point. Hayford had recused himself from Constable action. Perhaps Hayford could have used disclaimers rather than outright recusal.
Given two Editors were having major problems with the content being added and what we saw as ignoring guidance, I don't think our job was to diagnose why she was having problems with her tools, when she was told about a tool that would meet her requirements: the sandbox. I felt very significantly undercut as an Editor, in an area where I happen to have substantial specific knowledge (e.g., air defense and sensors), when the version that I was trying to improve was moved to an inappropriate "/Draft" subpage and a very rough draft was moved to a seemingly coequal status in mainspace. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:50, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Hayford told her not to use the sandbox. You didn't know that. I did.
That was more nuanced than you suggest. The mainspace article at that point couldn't have gone there as it wasn't all her content. She could have used a sandbox to have free development. There was absolutely no reason that UFO/Mary Ash could not have been in Mary Ash/UFO, and it wouldn't have gotten her draft indexed by Google. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:27, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
You were intricately involved in the article, which makes you an author. I had to give both articles equal space until I could see what was happening. I learned that Draft space is not a good idea. I'll remember that next time, but you'll have to trust me to make decisions that are in the interest of Citizendium. I can't expect anybody that is authoring to give me true information, and I placed more weight on what I saw, rather than what was being demanded that I do. D. Matt Innis 19:19, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
"Equal space"? Nonsense. I am unaware of a restriction on Editors being recused, for participation, in anything but Approval -- and even then we have the three editor rule. In this case, you were siding with one author over two Editors. One of those Editors, who was not intricately involved, asked you to ban the Author, something I had not requested.
Sorry, in this case, I have to say it in public: I don't trust you to be neutral when I'm involved. Not to go into things that were in email, but even here, you are focused on my role and not considering that Milt was calling for harsher action than I was. You, I, and at least one other party to this discussion are aware of non-public correspondence where you've accused me.
I had begun with Talk Page guidance. After that was ignored, I began adding, as an expert, to the article, in hopes of guiding it with a knowledge-based framework. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:27, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
An author in the sense that you are authoring the article, which made you a party to the dispute. I don't enjoy this job. D. Matt Innis 19:37, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Again, Editors are restricted in the Approval process. An Editor who is authoring, in an article of their workgroup, is not an equal party. Jensen and I were equal parties when having our Military argument; the only Constable intervention was for revert wars or personal insults. Deal with it or get a formal rule. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:51, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Well, hopefully our audience understands more about each of our rationale. I think it is obvious that we both want CZ to succeed and we both have different ideas of how to make that happen. Let's get that charter finished so our Citizens can actually have a say in their own system. This is your talk page, so I won't bother you anymore. D. Matt Innis 20:01, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Matt, how can you say that I told her not to use the sandbox? Didn't you read my comments? I clearly said that the text could be COPIED to her sandbox for her use. I said that I didn't think it should be MOVED to the sandbox, two entirely different things! When I said "hold off", I was CLEARLY saying, "Hold off on MOVING it until we decide what to do as per the Talk page", to which I referred people. Hayford Peirce 20:13, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Hayford, I understood what you said, but put yourself in her shoes. When I read your comment on the now archived talk page, it seemed to confirm that she shouldn't consider working in her sandbox and then pasting it back, which I happen to agree with. But, what do you think that told her? D. Matt Innis 20:19, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

(undent)I agree with Howard here. Being an author does not mean that there is any restriction on the Editor role. In fact the CZ:Editor Policy even makes this clear when it says "When an editor has made a certain edit, and has specifically requested that some limited portion of text should not be changed (or that it must not be changed in certain limited ways), then authors should respect the request."

Where the dispute is content based, the Editor has the final say unless and until their decision is appealed. This is the case even when said Editor is also an author for that article. Decisions on what content should be in mainspace is obviously a content decision, and therefore one to be made by an Editor. If Mary wished to work on the article in private she was free to *copy* the article into her sandbox or a word processor. Although Hayford had made a comment that could have been mistakenly interpreted as "do not use sandboxes", this could easily have been cleared up.

I agree that the call for a CZ ban was undeserved. Milt had far less extreme options available to him, including banning her from editing the article. Also, despite what I said above, I believe that Matt acted in what he believed to be the best interests of CZ and I believe that he thought his actions were justified under the rules that currently stand. --Chris Key 20:24, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

Chris, I agree that Matt thought he was justified. The matter, however, was not so urgent that he could not have proposed the action on the talk page, or at least emailed the involved Editors. I can't guess when he determined that she was having a problem using a word processor and replacing en bloc — that literally hadn't occurred to me — but I do think a reasonable interim Constable editor would be to have asked the Author, perhaps by email, if she was aware of the Editor requests and deliberately ignoring them. Consider that there eventually were a number of posts on how we should collaborate, rather than learning how we do collaborate.
In other words, both Milt and Matt had less extreme options available. Milt did not have enforcement power. The lesson here, I think, is when there is a borderline behavior/content issue, don't guess. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:34, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

Dictionary attack

Is that one ready for approval? Sandy Harris 03:03, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

You've Been a Busy Beaver

Noticed all the edits you've made concerning medicine. I wish I had your energy. My little additions to the Neutropenia article took about 12 hours research and two hours writing. My kids friends said I looked tired. I guess I am. In the old days, I used to write on average five news articles a day. This last article took me a day and a half. LOL!

Mary Ash 03:52, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Don't forget the military -- we cover life and death here, as well as computer life. :-)
Some of the medical articles are meant to fill in redlinks in neutropenia. You'll see that I tend to start with multiple short articles, linked through the Related Articles subpages. Howard C. Berkowitz 03:59, 30 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for filling in the blanks. I know a bit about the subject as I've had bouts of leukopenia and neutropenia. Never had a official DX except I have Idiopathic Leukopenia (my family doc says that stands for I don't know} which dips into neutropenia once in awhile. I knew most this stuff as being a good reporter started researching. I had to dig out the "facts" to back it up. When I was in college my biology teacher wanted me to go to medical school as I was very good at biology. I never did as I loved writing more. Fortunately I married an engineer who supports me :-) Nice chatting! BTW am I doing better on the talk page indents? I'm trying to learn. Also, I did some online searching and discovered Citizendium is probably not going to succeed do you think that's possible?

Mary Ash 04:17, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Most important that you greet new military editor

Howard, I think you will have a great deal in common with new author and editor Paul Shankland ! -- Milton Beychok 05:53, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

A reminder about Petroleum naphtha

I have responded to your queries/comments about Petroleum naphtha on its Talk page,. Thanks, Milton Beychok 14:46, 30 July 2010 (UTC)


Thanks for your clear explanation on my talk page. The feline citizens here are all in fine form today. The Senior feline citizen decided he didn't want to eat my home cooked cat food so I just returned from Wally World with a couple jars of baby food. The things you do for love! :-) Have a lovely day!! Mary Ash 17:10, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Nomination of Catalytic reforming

I moved the TOC to the upper right as you suggested. You may need to change the version nominated on the Metadata template. Thanks, Milton Beychok 20:00, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

New engineering editor Sam Nazari

Howard, take a look at our new engineering editor Sam Nazari. You may wish to welcome him. Milton Beychok 21:53, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Why did you revert my edits concerning the episotomy section?

No facts to support your opinion that an episiotomy is controversial. Facts please? Mary Ash 00:58, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

I didn't revert your edits. You reverted my edit without discussion.
This belongs on the article talk page, not on my personal page. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:11, 4 August 2010 (UTC)


I referenced your article showing how to spell fuze as in proximity fuze. Some nitwit at Wikipedia thought the word should be spelled as fuse. This was in reference to the Charles C. Lauritsen award. Thought you'd like to know your good work is being put to good use. Mary Ash 03:45, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Thank you!

I am proud of you greeting me -- thank you. I was about to start an article! Andrew Steinborn 20:20, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Approval of Petroleum naphtha tomorrow

Howard, since you made your nomination there have been some minor copy edits and 2 dead references replaced by live ones (which were picked up by Peter Schmitt). I think you should change the version to be approved (in the metadata template) to update it and that should really be done today. That does not necessitate extending the Approval date. Milton Beychok 22:00, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

Mack Feeney Linky Dink Is Right Here

(moved to article talk page; this is not appropriate for user talk pages)

What in the world is a "Feeney Linky Dink" ? In English, please. Milton Beychok 19:02, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
Attempt to show a bit of friendly humor which you don't seem to comprehend. Sorry! Mary Ash 19:04, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
So baby talk is now funny?? Gee whiz, how could i miss that? Milton Beychok

19:35, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

And the response I left on your talk page concerning this matter.

Secure confident people encourage not discourage

Secure, confident people, people who believe in their personal self worth, encourage and build me people up. They also try to make all people look good rather than trying to tear them down. Your somewhat disparaging and continuous personal remarks about my contributions often make me wonder about your self confidence in your personal capabilities. I have tried to be friendly and I have tried to be helpful. I don't know why as I have little invested in Citizendium. I guess I've always rooted for the under dog which Citizendium most certainly is at the moment. I have enclosed some links that may help you learn how to empower and encourage Citzendium contributors including me. Perhaps they'll help boost your self confidence and encourage some interpersonal development.

I have included a Christian link, which I hope won't offend you, as I have spent close to 50 years walking with our Lord. Mary Ash 19:38, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

Please stop lecturing me on my user page. Bluntly, I do not see Citizendium as a place to build self-worth by other than the honorable tradition of hard intellectual exchange. The sort of criticism you are getting is nothing that would not happen in a graduate or advanced undergraduate seminar, in an engineering design review, in a medical quality review conference, etc. You appear to want to tell everyone here what to do, but are defensive, or even mocking, on as simple a matter as how to cite to encyclopedic standards.
Well, I have walked equally with the Lady and the Lord. I am not a Christian and have no interest in being one--I have my own spirituality, which is really not appropriate for discussion here. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:45, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
Nor do I ask you to be a Christian. This was in response to Milt's immature remarks about inability to write. What Citizendium would benefit from is a bit of kindness and encouragement. Call it Karma if you like. If Citizendium wants to grow, develop and keep contributors then it MUST treat people with respect and kindenss. There's no way around it. Or Karma is Karma. Mary Ash 20:08, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
You clearly pointed out what I've been trying to state. CZ is not an ivory tower of academia nor is it a engineering, medical conference or anything of the like. It's an alternative encyclopedia that's in the process of imploding thanks to its perceived elitist notion of what it thinks it should be. I don't know why but I would like to see CZ succeed as I do believe competition is good. In order for CZ to succeed it MUST encourage new users and help them learn the CZ way. I have been watching you edit the Mack article I've started and am learning from you do. Milt has asked that I read and learn and I am watching you do this. Thanks!Mary Ash 20:15, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
You have been treated with respect. At CZ, respect does not extend to kid-glove treatment. When I make an error, I consider it highly respectful to be told about it. I regard editing, suggestions, and content additions to be highly encouraging.
If, however, you decide to regard the same treatment from which others benefit as immature, that's your personal choice for which I have no responsibility. It's respect that causes me to answer this, rather than simply deleting it from my talk page. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:16, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

Final approval of Catalytic reforming day after tomorrow.

First, let me thank you for nominating the article if I haven't already done so. Since the article was written quite a long while ago, I reviewed all of the references to see if they were all still okay. I found two dead ones and replaced them by live ones. Also replaced another one with a better, more reliable reference. So, in summary, I revised 3 references. I would suggest that you update the nominated version in the article's Metadata template by tomorrow at the latest. Thanks, Milton Beychok 20:00, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

Catalytic reforming reference resurrection coming up. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:02, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

About Explosives

Howard, please read my review comments on the article's Talk page. I have finished my review and am ready to nominate the article for Approval or support someone elses's nomination ... assuming that the 3 minor suggestions that I made on the Talk page are implemented. Milton Beychok 19:59, 18 August 2010 (UTC)


Howard, would you feel comfortable nominating the Tariff of 1828 for approval? If you don't edit it, we could probably do a one-editor approval. Thank you for your consideration. Russell D. Jones 21:27, 19 August 2010 (UTC)

Royal Navy

Thanks a lot for the formatting and internal linking you did to my contribution. I am very much an author rather than an editor - I am not an expert, and your linking, especially to the article on amphibious warships (which I would have guessed, incorrectly, were warships that can walk on land as well as swim!) proved very useful.

I have remarked before that most of the subjects I am interested in are not covered by Citizendium. This is liberating in that I can write about what I want, but also a little daunting as, being an author rather than an editor, I don't consider myself expert enough to write an article without using many references. I have spent most of the last few weeks researching various things, and they keep taking me further into the research and further away from article creation! I am now taking a break from research and instead will try over the next few weeks to write as many introductory articles as I can covering the subjects I am interested in - hopefully that will encourage other participants interested in sailing to contribute to the articles. I know that I find it much easier to expand an already existing article than create a new one, and it may be the same for other authors (authors as opposed to editors) so having many stubs to expand may give them a starting point. Thanks again for your help. David Finn 11:34, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

Actually, there are some ...ummm....things....that go on both land and water, but, perhaps with some Russian exceptions, of fairly small size when compared to ships. There are hovercraft, for example, that can carry two (from memory) M1 Abrams tanks. I should do some work on the amphibious warfare article, as there have been some changes now that the V-22 Osprey aircraft is becoming operational. At one point, the US Marines called it "triphibious" -- the first elements would fly from the amphibious ships (using helicopters), the second would come by hovercraft, and the third either by landing craft that can unload on a beach, or tactical vehicles that can literally drive out of the water and into combat.
Do make use of Related Pages, which I suspect would be a way to capture what you are already thinking -- how things relate. Not infrequently, when I'm trying to get started, I do some definitions and Related Pages, and then the articles. For some topics, by trying to go into narrative article too fast, I have to break up articles anyway -- you can see some of this at PINNACLE OPREP 3, where I started too low in the conceptual hierarchy.
I hesitate to say there is a "too high" or "too low". By nature and training (software engineering and military doctrine, among other things), I do often start at the top level, but I also will simply note some things I happen to be studying: for example, you'll see some quite low-level articles of mine on cancer, especially in cats, and then the biochemistry and pharmacology that links them. In the process of researching, I'm especially alert to establishing connections.
To the extent that you have time, I know I and others would appreciate non-specialist eyes on some articles, merely checking readability and flow. There are some, relating to US politics, national strategy, etc., where I very much want to get opinions from people that have different national perspectives -- do I seem to be presenting neutrally and objectively? Unfortunately, we've had a few problems, but much less than WP, with people who have more emotional agendas.
Seriously, you've made an unusually strong start here, and have a much more intuitive sense of the style than many beginners. I'm always interested in your contributions, although you must understand that I have to go from your racing yachts to the small commercial fishing boat being built in the back yard. I'm no shipwright, but I will be doing the computing and electronics. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:50, 20 August 2010 (UTC)
Thanks very much! And that is good advice, I should fill out one of the related articles pages, I think it would help structure my approach. I mentioned I have a copy of Janes Fighting Ships for 2005-2006 - how accurate do you consider it? I would be happy to start a lot of articles on specific ship classes and navies if I thought it was a fair overview. And I will certainly take a look at a few of the articles you mentioned to see if I can form an opinion. Cheers. Oh and I forgot to use the hyphen for ship-class, which is amusing considering the discussion there was over it. I won't make that mistake again! David Finn 19:37, 20 August 2010 (UTC)
Janes is very highly regarded. For public domain images, see the U.S. Naval Historical Center, which has ships from many navies, although not necessarily recent classes.
Hostilities at sea are always challenging. Here in Chatham, Massachusetts, we are having occasional beach closures due to sightings of great white sharks. Having lived previously in the Washington DC area, I recognize things could get worse: lawyers in the water. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:43, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

Improving Image:Thermobaric vs HE.png

Howard, if you will remember, Johan A. Förberg volunteered some time ago in the forums to help produce images where needed. I suggest you contact him and ask him to re-do the curved lines in this image ... and make everything black. Color really isn't needed since the thermobaric curve and the HE curve are clearly identified by text labels. Milton Beychok 17:44, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

Crypto approvals?

I'd like to see at least one crypto or security article a week nominated for approval. I've listed a few on CZ:Ready for approval. Perhaps also passive attack, active attack and some of their children. I think one-time pad is OK as far as it goes, but it likely needs additions on operational considerations. Can you add those?

There's a list or more-or-less everything I've worked on at User:Sandy Harris. I'd solicit comment on any of them. Sandy Harris 03:24, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't see any immediate problem, especially if we stagger them. Now, here's a question for you: while I know cypherpunks is no more, are there mailing lists that we can tell about what's happening here and try to get more contributors? Too many other areas are stalled due to the shortage of Editor time. The other issue, of course, is progress towards the Charter -- almost all the background mechanics are done and we are waiting for one or two things. Howard C. Berkowitz 04:22, 28 August 2010 (UTC)
I've mentioned CZ at least once on each of several mailing lists or online forums (fora?) that I'm on, without much effect. Sandy Harris 13:03, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

About the Commercial Providence article just created by new author Patrick Mendis

Howard, new user Patrick Mendis posted two articles within about the first 10 minutes of his joining us. One article is entitled Patrick Mendis and it is clearly an autobiography. I have notified him on his Talk page that we are not permitted to write articles about ourselves and that I intended to to ask that his autobiography be speedily deleted. Would you please do so?

As for the Commercial Providence article, here is what I posted on his Talk page:

"Your email also asked for my help with the Commercial Providence article. I note that it is obviously an article copied from Wikipedia and that it was deleted from Wikipedia on August 29th for some reason. Would you be please explain why it was deleted from Wikipedia?

Is the article meant to be a book review? Or was it meant to be about your theory as explained in that book? Since I am not an editor in either our Politics or our History workgroups, I am going to ask one of our Politics workgroup editors to contact you here on your talk page about this article. His name is Howard C. Berkowitz.

Patrick, the best way to contact people at Citizendium is to post a message on their user discussion page (usually referred to as their Talk page) rather than by emails. In that way, all discussions are open to the entire community and are recorded on the History pages as well. Regards, Milton Beychok 05:30, 31 August 2010 (UTC)"

Would you please contact him and do whatever it takes to help him with that article? I also think it would be good to know why it was deleted from Wikipedia. Milton Beychok 05:49, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

I hope we can work this out, Patrick. I've written, and am writing articles about significant books here, such as two by Francis Fukuyama. I haven't written about my own books, and Fukuyama, under our self-promotion rules, couldn't write about our books qua books. Content from them, in articles, yes. It would seem, from your bio,. that there's a wide range of articles to which you contribute, or original articles you might write. Perhaps I can help; I lived in the DC area for around 40 years. Howard C. Berkowitz 06:03, 31 August 2010 (UTC)
Howard, I don't understand. Did you mean to post the above comment on Patrick's Talk page? It reads that way. Milton Beychok 06:42, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Damn. I just added the metadata template and talk page to it, but it set my nonsense detector off. All I saw was Freemasons, Thomas Jefferson and Dan Brown novels and I thought "{siren noise} oh god, here we go. {siren noise}". I didn't know that you and Milton Beychok were aware of it. Glad you are. Hope you can work out what to do with it. I'll pop it off my Watchlist. Thanks. –Tom Morris 12:56, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

I've just noticed that the author of the article is the same as the author of the subject of the article. I've popped a speedy delete on it as it seems a clear case of self-promotion. The Constables can sort it out! –Tom Morris 13:02, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Howard C. Berkowitz

Hi Howard,

Well this is an unusual and complicated situation... I cannot delete Howard C. Berkowitz as I do not have the authority to do so.

Here is a list of reasons that a Constable can delete an article without Editor instruction. I'm afraid that the article in question does not fall under any of those categories. Therefore, in order to delete the article I would need Editor instruction - specifically a Computers Editor as that is currently the only workgroup the article is currently under. That Editor would have to find that the article violates one of the reasons listed here in order for their instructions to be valid. Furthermore, under the self-promotion policy you cannot act as an Editor on that article.

Now, as a Topic Informant, you do have the right to ask for the article to be deleted. Unfortunately that request must be sent to and considered by the Topic Informants Workgroup, and it is at their sole discretion whether or not to accept the request. There is an email address on that page to send requests to... I have no idea if anyone monitors it though. Your only other option is to ask Larry in his role as Editor-in-Chief.

I have removed the speedy delete template. Sorry! --Chris Key 17:35, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

ROFL...this would seem an example of the self-demotion policy. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:40, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Wotta crock

About this lemming business: I started crocodile and added the {subpages} code, but what do I do to have the 'this is a lemming appear? Aleta Curry 21:01, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

It should appear once there is a definition, and you save the main page containing only subpages. Failing that, you might need to jump into the ocean in lemming tradition.
Seriously, I fixed it. You cannot have any other text (other than comments) under the main page, and the definition subpage must exist. If you create the latter with <noinclude>{{subpages}}</noinclude>, and the main page hasn't been created, saving the Definition subpage will prompt you to create the main page, and fill in some detail. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:07, 2 September 2010 (UTC)
Oh, right, I see what I did wrong. So how do I create only the Definition subpage? Aleta Curry 06:48, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
One of two ways, each having applications.
  1. Type Koala/Definition into the search window. Hit ENTER
  2. Click the prompt "do you want to create this page?"
  3. Fill in the definition, save, and create the main page.
  • Alternative
  1. In a Related Articles page, put {{r|Koala}}.
  2. Click on the grayed field. It will bring up the definition definition window. Define and save.
  3. You will now get a red main page prompt (once saved). Click it, wait for the window to open, and save without doing anything else. Howard C. Berkowitz 07:54, 3 September 2010 (UTC)

Response to your question about odorants in natural gas

Howard, I responded yesterday on my Talk page. Regards, Milton Beychok 18:06, 15 September 2010 (UTC)

Away for the weekend

Howard, I'm off for most of the weekend. Can you deal with the Equal Justice Under the Law but Not for Student Loan Debtors and Bankruptcy thing? Sorry I swooped in like a maniac, but it set my "ooh, this looks like spam KILLKILLKILLKILL trigger" off and I acted in haste. –Tom Morris 01:33, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

Request for help

For no reason I am aware of, one of my edits to Talk/Homeopathy:draft roughly doubled the size of the page, apparently making two copies of most of it. If I try to revert, it shows a blank page in the "your text" column, so I'm reluctant to do that.

Do you know how to fix this? would you, please? Sandy Harris 06:02, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Laughting ruefully, I saw that as I was about to make an edit, and decided to wait until you had looked at it. I've seen this sort of thing happen before, don't know the cause, and have found that the only practical fix is to edit the article manually -- assuming that the article has essetially become two copies.
Let me suggest that you check it to see if there are two identical copies, or if one contains your last edit and the other is the version before it. Delete either the duplicate, or the part that doesn't have the most recent change, and save. As you've seen, rollback/revert seems broken. Howard C. Berkowitz 09:29, 20 September 2010 (UTC)
I almost had an edit conflict with Sandy when trying to repair this. Could the problem (if it was not just an unintentional copy made) be caused by the size of the talk page? Anyway, this talk page has become much too big to be practical. I suggest to archive it. (I would move -- not copy -- it to an archive and start a new one.) As for undo: opening the previous version for edit and then save it has the same effect (and was about work for me.) --Peter Schmitt 09:55, 20 September 2010 (UTC)
Archiving is a good idea, althought picking the material to be archived will not be easy. I do have comments on the emerging definition, but I will wait until the archiving is done, assuming I continue to work on this article. Howard C. Berkowitz 10:02, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Any comments to offer on Volatility (chemistry) as now written?

What do you think of the article? Milton Beychok 01:43, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

Cost of hosting our CZ servers

Howard, on the forums, I posted a thread saying that I am willing to pledge a monthly donation of $10 and if joined by 49 others, we could raise $500 per month. Then, also on the forums, I asked Dan Nessett if $500 a month is more than we would need or less than we would need ... but he seems to think that giving me a "ball park figure" would be giving away the crown jewels.

With all of your internet experience, can you tell me if my $500 a month is way too low or way too high? Milton Beychok 02:54, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

Let me do a little looking. I need to know how much disk space the database and associated files need, and how much bandwidth is needed for the transfers. There's usually a setup cost, but those are the two main factors.
I wonder if we have other domains beside I pay $19 a year for my domain continued registration. Howard C. Berkowitz 03:42, 25 September 2010 (UTC)
As a minimum I know we also have
I have no idea how much disk space, etc. we are using. Dan, Larry and Greg are (I think) the only ones who know. --Chris Key 04:24, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

Just a courtesy post from someone with fairly intimate experience with hosting of website with similar load demands. The issue you are running into with mediawiki software is not going to be disk space or bandwidth, but rather CPU cycles and RAM. Mediwiki software is very rough on CPU and RAM, which makes any kind of standard shared hosting for even the most moderately sized wiki an impossibility. For commercial hosting, your likely looking in the $200-$300 a month cost plus or minus a few tens of dollars. Trent Toulouse 05:15, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

Trent, thanks very much. So raising the funds, that we may need in the near future, by pledges of $10 month from about say 30 to 40 of us would probably be all we might need. I say 30 to 40 (rather than 20 to 30) because I am an engineer and we always include a "safety factor". Milton Beychok 05:45, 25 September 2010 (UTC)
It should be pointed out that there are two servers (locke and reid). I don't know if this doubles that price. It also may be possible to switch to a single server. --Chris Key 18:46, 25 September 2010 (UTC)
To price it with a computationally intensive cloud model, there's another parameter: number of concurrent instances, both user and background. Amazon EC2, for example, prices primarily on number of instances. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:23, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

Mr. Clark

Howard I read your post about your cat Mr. Clark. I am so sorry. I'll be keeping you both in my thoughts tonight. My heart goes out to you. (((hugs)))Mary Ash 03:58, 27 September 2010 (UTC)

My condolences to your and your family at the time of your loss of your beloved cat Mr. Clark. I am sure Mr. Clark felt your love and support as he slipped away in your arms. I am truly sorry. Here's a link to an article I helped edit at wikiHow [9] and you'll see a photo of my old cat Andy. You'll also find a link to the Rainbow Bridge which I found to be a great comfort when I lost my dog Nikki. I'll be offering prayers for you and your family today. (((hugs))) Mary Ash 19:32, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Dreadfully sorry about Mr. Clark. I have firsthand experience with this and I know how awful it is. Deepest sympathy from me, Aleta Curry 23:00, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Me too, Howard. So sorry about Mr. Clark. He stuck with us through the whole charter. A valiant fighter; obviously took after his father =/ D. Matt Innis 00:20, 28 September 2010 (UTC)
Condolences. Give Rhonda a kiss from me. Ro Thorpe 01:08, 29 September 2010 (UTC)
We've followed the trials and tribulations of Mr. Clark for a long while now. My sympathy, Howard. Russell D. Jones 18:56, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

A possible memorial

I'm in several discussions variously with human hospice and palliative care both about the human aspects of pet illness and loss, and possibly including animal support in their programs. Veterinary hospice is starting to be a recognized practice, and I'm also exploring implementing this in the region -- the three or so threads intertwine. I've added some veterinary material to hospice and palliative care.

Many people talk now about things Mr. Clark taught them. One example is a veterinarian that frequently, and prematurely in my opinion, wanted to euthanize him based on appearance rather than quality of life. He was also the one who prepared him for cremation, and gave us something of an unexpected apology: "I realize now that he was getting hospice-quality care. Very few cats get that."

Again dealing wih lessons, I quote D.H. Lawrence, with caution, as Mr. Clark was a civilized gentleman rather than a wild thing:

"Self-Pity" by D.H. Lawrence
I never saw a wild thing
sorry for itself.
A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough
without ever having felt sorry for itself.

--Howard C. Berkowitz 19:29, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

For your files

Here's the list: User:Russell D. Jones/Movement Pages‎

Thank you!

Thank you for clearly editing the Tea Party movement article. You did a superb job of including some of the stuff I wrote. Thank you! I noticed you asked for some details, which were included in earlier versions but were some how lost, I will try to find that information later. Unfortunately I need to get some housework done today. Yesterday was spent without my laptop most the day as it decided to act up. The kids managed to get things running again. I'd offer you some friendly advice but I don't think it would be taken well. Realize we may come from differing backgrounds, and perhaps you thought I would not be willing to reach out, but I do believe in the art of writing. Part of the writing process, especially in wikis, is the ability to collaborate and to work together. I do believe that goal was accomplished thanks to your good edits. BTW I do like full caps in headlines or titles. I wish the article could have been titled Tea Party Movement. In the article it should be a lowercase M. Wishing you a lovely day. Mary Ash 17:08, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

You are very welcome, Mary. I do think we worked together well on the article, and hope to continue doing so. One of the reasons I am so frustrated with the moves and renaming actions taken by others is that they disrupted our work. As far as I can reconstruct, I did not see your gracious agreement to merge, which was based on earlier conversations, because it was on one moved page and, when I found the talk page again, it didn't stand out on the moved page.
In several years here, I find that people that insist on changing titles but do not otherwise work on the content of articles very rarely improve the end product. Uncoordinated moves can be extremely disruptive simply to discussion and a feeling of respect, and, when they involve nonstandard use of subpages and archives, can interfere with technical conventions. In particular, I have found and as you see here, moving articles, or creating version, tends to be very unpredictable in what happens when "discussion" is clicked.
As far as advice, that's an area to take care. It's one thing to talk about styles of referencing or why a given sentence needs expansion, but it's quite another to get into personal styles and how Citizendium should run. Hopefully, within a few weeks, there will be governance bodies to which you can submit your opinions about how things should be different. Otherwise, it may well be that I couldn't do anything even if I agreed with you. Other matters, to use the terms broadly, are matters of faith and vision. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:25, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

the S. in Harry S. Truman

from Jon Carroll's column in today's S.F. Chronicle, where he's writing about Snopes.Com:

"The middle name of President Harry Truman was just the letter 'S.' " That's true.

"Truman's parents were unable to decide on a middle name for their tyke, so they just made it the letter S, which honored two members of their families. Although it is not an abbreviation and technically does not take a period, Truman soon began putting in the period, presumably to avoid tedious explanations like this one."

Read more: Hayford Peirce 17:30, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

I guess the next question is "Should we capitalize it?" Jones 17:35, 4 October 2010 (UTC)
Only if you write "The Harry S. Truman Movement for president got underway in 1948...." Hayford Peirce 17:39, 4 October 2010 (UTC)
If there was a "Harry S. Truman Movement" I guess it solves the mystery about what the "S" means. Jones 17:43, 4 October 2010 (UTC)
Now that is funny! :D)) D. Matt Innis 17:50, 4 October 2010 (UTC)


Howard, I reverted your edits. See my comments on my talk page. Compare also: Glass-Steagall Act of 1932 with Banking Act of 1933 and both with Glass-Steagall Act. Thanks. Russell D. Jones 13:16, 6 October 2010 (UTC)

Possible approvals

Nothing has been nominated in some time. Are we avoiding that, waiting for editorial council?

There are several at CZ:Ready_for_approval#Computers that I think are ready. Could you please comment or nominate? Sandy Harris 05:12, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

No, not consciously waiting for the EC; more a lot on my plate, and focusing on writing and editing. I'll try to get to them. :-) wish you'd apply for Specialized Editor (information security?) so someone could work on my military crypto/security, as long as there are no Military editors. Howard C. Berkowitz 14:01, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Good call on 'term of art'

Nicely explained now. Aleta Curry 00:19, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Ammonia production

Howard, Milt asked me to replace this picture in the approved article and I did. If you have a problem, let me know and I'll switch it back. D. Matt Innis 11:17, 11 October 2010 (UTC)

Fine with me. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:21, 11 October 2010 (UTC)


Just started an article on fingerprinting; this is obviously a big topic, and the article is in need of an editor's input. Thanks! John Stephenson 08:30, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Editorial Council Authors

Howard, I need you and Milt to revote for Editorial Council Authors. Thanks, and sorry for the mishap! D. Matt Innis 12:20, 14 October 2010 (UTC)

Howard, I received Milt's but nothing from you. I assume that you haven't sent it, but if you have, let me know. Otherwise I'll assume things are copesthetic (that's a lot of assuming) ;-) D. Matt Innis 19:47, 14 October 2010 (UTC)

Commenting and Kibitzing

So, are your recent jottings a serious contribution to knowledge or is this effluvium a commentary on the current state of affairs?  :)) Russell D. Jones 01:41, 17 October 2010 (UTC)

While its creation did involve whimsy, I'm serious enough to go put it into CZ: Gastroenterology Subgroup. It may be that some of the detailed malfunctions should go into subarticles/subpages. Maybe we need a standard "ooh, gross" subpage. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:46, 17 October 2010 (UTC)

Wikifying Richard Jensen's imports from Wikipedia

I just finished all the rehabilitation I am going to do about Reconstruction and it has now been put into good CZ format. Still needs a thorough review by some good historian. This is the third Jensen import that I have rehabilitated in the last few days (the others were Slavery, U.S. and Black history) and there is a virtual mountain of others ... enough to keep me busy for a few months, at least. I just can't get over how many Wikipedia imports we have that need similar rehabilitation. I am beginning to believe that we should put all such un-rehabilitated imports in some new namespace (i.e., importspace) until they are rehabilitated. I shudder to think what visitors must think when they read some of our un-rehabilitated imports.Milton Beychok 07:42, 18 October 2010 (UTC)

I agree with this proposal; if not a new namespace, then a category. The un-rehabilitated imports need to be easily found. I'll look at the articles you've worked through, Milt. FWIW, I've reviewed CIO/Draft for WP importation, too. Russell D. Jones 10:00, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, Milt. I agree. This is also a good opportunity to start moving away from the Jensen, Richard naming style.
Russell, importspace or the like is a good idea. We could immediately set up CZ: History imports subgroup. Ideally, that might be CZ: Import subgroup, although I'm not sure if subgroups works without at least one workgroup -- thus history imports. There are certainly many such politics imports and some military. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:37, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
It was Milt's suggestion and that's not how the EC approved the use of sub-groups. Russell D. Jones 13:41, 18 October 2010 (UTC)


Heads up! The new British Strategic review is axeing the entire Harrier fleet, along with the Ark Royal, meaning that until 2019 they will be unable to launch jets at sea! If ever you wanted to attack them, now's the time :) David Finn 07:30, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

Going cold turkey

Hi, Howard, could you take a look at: and offer your considered opinion when you have a moment? Many thanks! Hayford Peirce 22:05, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

Open Access to the scientific literature - what problems?

Hi Howard,

I am collecting thoughts on what unwelcome effects open access may have, primarily on science but also on society at large (i.e. beyond the publishing industry). I am aware that there were a number of discussions on whether scientific articles about military-sensitive topics should be published at all, and whether Open Access would represent an increased risk in that regard, but right now, I cannot find any suitable reference that I can access and link to. Do you know of any?

Thanks! --Daniel Mietchen 01:05, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Let me start by asking if you've looked at the fairly basic open source intelligence article, which gives some of the methods. There are important distinctions between using OSINT to get operational and technological information. For example, when consulting on OSINT, I've come up with "shopping lists" of where to look more closely for terrorist infrastructure. OSINT & open access would be a good source; I'll do some digging.
There are also issues about the level of detail in publishing. For example, in the explosives and improvised explosive device articles, everything I wrote is accurate, but I left out some key details needed, for example, to get a complex detonation system to work.
Even guidance to withhold isn't an answer, because one technique is to look for disappearance of a subject in the open literature. This is rather like the U.S. Navy's discovery that missile submarines could be found because they were so quiet that an acoustic black hole was a clue. They now inject noice. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:39, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. I am aware of the OSINT article and of your practice of not revealing all the details in articles on explosives. Yet that was not my question. Open access is about making published scholarly literature available online at no cost to the reader, and I am looking for references that deal with the implications of that deviation from traditional publishing. --Daniel Mietchen 01:57, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps I'm not realizing your question, but I don't think, unless it opens up a lot more publishing opportunity, I don't think that open access makes much difference either to national intelligence or to non-national actors. National intelligence groups, well before the web, had massive translation and indexing organizations. Stealth technology, as you probably know, developed from an unclassified Soviet journal dealing with the theory of microwave diffraction.
I'm not convinced that small countries or non-national actors are going to be able to do the necessary surveillance. Indeed, the Soviets underutilized OSINT because they trusted HUMINT more. Howard C. Berkowitz 02:01, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

I've seen it argued (don't recall where, sorry) that proprietary closed source software is to computer science as military security requirements are to physics. Open dialog is essential to scientific progress, so of course any responsible scientist opposes such secrecy on principle.

I'd consider myself a fairly radical open source advocate, am typing this on a Linux machine, and routinely suggest to others that they get rid of Windows, eg. here. Even so, I do not buy the above argument without serious reservations. Sandy Harris 03:40, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

My comment may not be completely on point. But I distinctly recall that 10-15 years ago (and perhaps earlier) that I could access, without any cost, most articles in the professional engineering journals as well as many of the engineering trade journals. Nowadays, all articles in those same journals are available only at a cost per article or to paid subscribers. In fact, it is now very, very difficult to find good science and engineering articles available without cost.
It would be bearable if the costs were say $1 to $2 per article ...but that is not the case. They are usually in the range of about $25 or more per article and that can become quite expensive.
I can often find more useful information in Google Books or on Amazon's Look Inside Books than I can in the professional journals ... but of course books don't provide current, cutting-edge information. Milton Beychok 00:17, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Open Access is strongly supported by the mathematical community, but of course commercial journals do not support it. Some have agreed to open back issues (after some years) and usually making available papers on the authors home page is tolerated. Moreover, preprint versions are often available on the arXiv. --Peter Schmitt 00:57, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for all the feedback, but I saw it just now, and the blog post is done already. --Daniel Mietchen 01:10, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Article name change

Hi, Howard: We have a developing article that was partially imported from WP in 2007 and is titled Atoms and Molecules. I think the title should be changed to "Atoms and molecules". What do you think? Thanks, Milton Beychok 09:37, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

I'd agree. The situation, in contrast, for Tea Party m|Movement raised the question if the three words formed a proper name. I can't see how that would apply to Atoms and Molecules. Howard C. Berkowitz 09:46, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

Bibliographical essays

I have been doing some clean-up work on some of Prof. Jensen's history articles, mainly those connected with early American history. Among other things, I have moved some of the lengthy bibliographical listings to the proper subpage. However, I was under the impression that, in those cases where there was a lengthy, detailed bibliography listing (on the subpage), it was appropriate to include a "bibliographical essay" on the main page. An example is: Amish#Bibliographical essay. Am I right in that there should be such bibliographical essays attached to certain articles? Is the Amish version a decent model? James F. Perry 17:13, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

I'm glad you are doing so; early American history, by and large, is not an area where I have deep expertise.
My assumptions about bibliography and external links subpages agree with yours. The EC, however, should probably revisit this, if only that the distinction between the two subpages is growing weaker and weaker. For example, I sometimes use Google to search the contents of a book I own, simply to have a better search mechanism. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:06, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

High Street

'High Street' is British for 'Main Street'!

Basically, the High Street in a town is where the shops and other consumer-facing businesses are. Before shopping malls and big box retail made all our towns significantly more monocultured and dull, the High Street was the main shopping street in a town.

High Street shops are those shops you find on most High Streets - chain stores across the whole country are often referred to as being 'High Street chains'.

In the context of medicine (or pseudomedicine), 'High Street pharmacists' refer to the chain pharmacies - Boots (who, incidentally, sell homeopathy) and Superdrug (sort of our CVS and Walgreens), as well as the pharmacies inside the supermarket chains. 'High Street homeopaths' are homeopaths who operate a retail business rather than a consultative business. They have a high street shopfront, and you can go in and pick out products and purchase them.

Basically, when the Singh/Newsnight stuff refers to a high-street homeopath, they are basically saying a walk-in retail shop that sells homeopathic preparations rather than a clinic-type place where you book an appointment with a homeopath. This is quite important because people who are getting travel medicine often get it retail in Britain: rather than having to book an appointment with a GP (family doctor), which is a bit of a pain, some people are happy to go into pharmacies and retail-based private doctors who do travel shots. There's one near the university here, and you go in and pay however much it is and they give you all the various jabs and pills and mosquito nets and medical checkups (etc.) that one might need for the purpose of travel. Since people are going to the high-street for advice on travel medicine, that they might be getting (in the view of critics of homeopathy) useless and possibly harmful advice, that's a problem. –Tom Morris 16:15, 28 October 2010 (UTC)

Good information -- the first two paragraphs, at least, are worth a small article. Should the latter material, perhaps phrased more formally, be in the homeopathy article? Yes, I have been in the UK, but I was so terrified while driving that I didn't pay much attention to streets. When I've been at conferences, either someone else was driving, or at least shepherding the sheep, I didn't observe well. Indeed, I once gave a class for which I was picked up at Heathrow, driven to a conference center with housing and lots of cows (but nowhere to go), then taken back to Heathrow. I still don't know where I was. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:32, 28 October 2010 (UTC)
Will give it a go later. --Tom Morris 17:07, 28 October 2010 (UTC)


A question about formatting - if you look at this version of the Optic tectum article, and you look at the notes at the bottom, you will see that each of the references is wikilinked to a separate note within the references section. So if you go to the reflist, you can click on the number like normal which takes you to where the reference appears in the text, but you can also click on the name of the reference in the reflist, which takes you to a separate explanation of the reference. Sort of like a reference about the reference. Confusing as I explain it, but I am sure you will see what I mean.

Well, it looked ugly and before realising that these things were linked, I delinked them in this version. It does make these extra notes look pretty, but ruins the linking.

So, what should I do - revert what I have done, leaving the references improperly formatted? Leave it how I have done it, but de-link the references from the notes about the references? Or go all the way and try to integrate the notes about the references into the references themselves? Advice would be appreciated! David Finn 16:38, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Revert and bring up the issue on the talk page. This is general advice about cleaning up. For example, I drew the images you deleted in intelligence dissemination management while on WP, and just never re-imported the graphic. With a talk page note, I might have been reminded and restored them.
In general, when I find what seems to be a missing image, I find it useful to Google the filename, in case it exists somewhere else from which it could be imported. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:17, 6 November 2010 (UTC)
I should add that I encourage cleaning up Jensen's nonstandard formatting, as in not using bibliography or external links. No one person can do it all. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:19, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

A number of points there, lets see if I can address them.

First off, the intelligence dissemination. You created that article in the middle of 2008. The last edit was made during the middle part of 2009. During that initial year eight edits were made. But take a look at the last edited version, the one from July 2009. Eight edits and a year later there are still no images, and if you look at the passage titled "How not to do net assessment" you will see that the formatting is broken, and was broken from the minute the article went live.

So, the content of that article may have been professional, but it didn't look so - it looked like an article ported from Wikipedia where someone hadn't removed the images or fixed the formatting, so those were the two things I did. It looks better now.

During that first year when eight edits were made, the article still looked like a badly ported Wikipedia article, since the offending edits were made when the page was created. The page has been accessed 413 times in the last 2 and a half years - no-one has complained that the missing images were necessary to understanding the article.

Now the more general question, yesterday I edited six articles. If I had stopped to first ask on the talkpages if I could edit the articles I would have edited 6 talkpages and zero articles. You know that I am happy to ask questions on talkpages, but there is also an encyclopedia to create, and sometimes stepping on the toes of others is unavoidable.

As it is, making an edit to a page alerts anyone who has that page on their watchlist, and also alerts anyone who monitors Recent Changes. Personally I keep a note of any article I need to revisit on my userpage, that way it is never the case that someone else has to remind me to do stuff. And ultimately we all have to prioritise - despite missing images and bad formatting that article has sat there unnoticed for years, the only difference is that now it looks a bit more "professional" whereas before you would have to read the content to see that it was professionally written. Looking good is important - if readers can't read half a paragraph because of bad formatting they will go elsewhere.

Ultimately the reader is who these articles are for. Missing pictures are not like redlinked wikilinks, they show up as a big ugly red bunch of text that forces the regular text off to one side. Having no image is better than ruining the formatting with a space where an image might go. For that reason I do not intend to try and source redlinked images - removing them instantly makes an article look better and the original author has the same chance to work on the article afterwards as before.

As to the optic tectum, I am reluctant to revert back to a non-CZ approved method. See the problem, own the problem and all that. Plus, the article was taken from Wikipedia so the formatting will never be appropriate for CZ, and the author whose opinion I might need is no longer very active. See that's the other problem about asking permission - not everyone monitors recent changes, not everyone adds every article they edit to their watchlist, not everyone is still active on CZ, and not everyone cares! Ultimately that article will have to be CZified, whether I or the original author likes it or not, so I guess I should bite the bullet and make a start! David Finn 08:56, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

By the by, I have come up against the Jensen School of Formatting a few times, and it is obvious that ultimately all such articles will have to be CZified. That is indeed a lot of work, too much for one Citizen. In fact it is a Big Job Where All Citizens Could Help. Do we have a page for that? If there was a central page which listed all areas that required Citizen action from as many Citizens as possible I am sure we would get some help. David Finn 09:10, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

David, I recently completely CZified 3 or 4 Jensen articles and they each took many hours of very tedious work. Take a look at Black History, Reconstruction, U.S. slavery era and Freedmen's Bureau. If you tackle any of Jensen's many other articles, be prepared for that tedious work, Milton Beychok 19:32, 7 November 2010 (UTC)
It's almost not worth the effort. It may be easier just starting from scratch. Russell D. Jones 21:54, 7 November 2010 (UTC)
Before starting major work, if you aren't familiar with the subject, have someone read it to see if there is any ideological bias. For example, Vietnam War had been presented principally as an American war and the only conflict in the history of the Wars of Vietnam. I rewrote everything there, and quite a bit of the WWII material, which remains a work in progress. World War Two in the Pacific is now in better shape than Europe, after major rewrites and article creation. While I really should go back and do more on radar, I wrote that when I realized it wasn't mentioned with respect to the Battle of Britain--another article (approval-ready I hope) that I did from scratch. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:08, 7 November 2010 (UTC)
Okay, yes, I agree. There have been lots of articles that you, Milt, I, and others have de-wipified; I'd hate to see that work jetisoned. Authors & editors should check the page history to see how extensively an article's been re-worked. But there are a lot of articles still around that are nothing more than WP imports from two or three years ago. Russell D. Jones 23:09, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

Oops, and Clandestine human-source intelligence operational techniques has had a redlinked image for a year and a half. I found this, and the other two articles, by hitting the "Random Article" button - each of the articles I edited yesterday was arrived at through Random Article also. It's a good way to get an overview of what the reader sees when they find CZ. David Finn 10:47, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

Fixed -- I thought I had a PD image but can't find it, and it wasn't very critical. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:08, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

We have started our drive for donations

Howard, I just wanted to let you know that we started our drive for donations a few hours ago and we have already had 5 donations for a total of $372. Regards, Milton Beychok 05:35, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

Howard you may want to check my forum post

Howard you may want to check my forum post concerning you. Happy Thanksgiving!Mary Ash 23:48, 24 November 2010 (UTC)

Martin Luther King and flavors of Baptists

Thanks for expanding the Civil Rights links. About the MLK definition: I'm not sure it's correct to refer to him as a "Southern Baptist," except in the very technical sense that he was a Southerner and a Baptist. I'm almost certain that no church he ever led was a member of the Southern Baptist Convention, which is a predominantly white association of congregations. King was ordained by his father's church (Ebenezer Baptist, in Atlanta), whose website, at least, does not mention affiliation with any Baptist organization; like many Baptist churches, it may be unaffiliated. Many African-American Baptist churches do belong to the large and mostly black National Baptist Convention, and some belong to the American Baptist Convention, which is mostly but not entirely white and is often referred to informally as the "Northern Baptist Convention". There are also smaller organizations of Baptist congregations. I think the most specific one can get is that he was a "Baptist minister," i.e., that he was ordained in, and led, unaffiliated congregations that described themselves as Baptist.

King is commemorated on the (U.S.) Episcopal Church's calendar, which is more or less that church's equivalent of "canonization" as a saint, although they don't use that term, but unusually he's commemorated on his birthday rather than the day of death (to match the Federal holiday, I suppose). He's categorized there as a "Civil Rights Leader", not as "Priest and Martyr" as one might expect, although because he was never ordained in the Episcopal church I suppose he's ineligible for "Priest", though I don't know why not for "Martyr." Bruce M. Tindall 18:53, 27 November 2010 (UTC)

The Episcopal Church in the US *does* use the term saint, though not everyone on the church calendar is one (large 'S') and everyone on the church calendar *is* one (small 's'). I think Bruce is likely correct in saying that MLK is probably not 'priest' because he was not an ordained Episcopal priest, indeed, I don't believe Baptists use the term. My guess he's not 'martyr' because he was not specifically martyred for the faith. Aleta Curry 06:25, 28 November 2010 (UTC)

Random question

Care to comment here: Talk:Random_number_generator#Push_toward_approval.3F? Sandy Harris 10:30, 28 November 2010 (UTC)

Confused by naming

In Waffen SS, you have a red link to Paul Hauseer. I changed it to Paul Hausser, an article name you created, but your next edit changed it back. Some of the quoted material uses "Hauser". What is happening here? Sandy Harris 23:54, 29 November 2010 (UTC)

ummm, fumblefingers? The literature is inconsistent if he actually used single S, double S, or the German double S character. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:13, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

World of Warcraft reapproval

A new World of Warcraft expansion is being released on the 7th December and on that day our currently approved article will become out of date. I have updated the draft and nominated it for approval, however I need the support of two more Editors. As one of the Editors involved in the original approval, I was hoping you would support this update. As you can see, the changes to the article are minimal. Thanks --Chris Key 16:37, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

Biling away the hours

Feel free to bile away the hours Howard. I am about to bail to practice some guitar for playing tonight at a party. :) David E. Volk 16:47, 11 December 2010 (UTC)


Surely just "Nazism"? Nazism gives me 1.92m results on Google, while "Naziism" gives me 49k. Any reason not to just redirect? —Tom Morris 23:52, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

I won't argue. Two "i" seems more common in some of the histories at hand, but I am burned out on titling arguments. Want to move things and change the subgroup before I assign anything else to it? Howard C. Berkowitz 23:59, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

video link

I'm not entirely sure how I even came across this, but I thought you'd like to see at least the beginning: --Joe Quick 02:33, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Could you check with the MC if being dead is a bar to any CZ functions, as long as one's spirit can type? Howard C. Berkowitz 03:27, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Hjalmar Horace Greeley Schacht

I don't believe he has a "von" in his name. Neither the Britannica nor Telford Taylor's Anatomy nor Kershaw's Hitler gives him one. Nor does, er, well, you know. Bruce M. Tindall 23:36, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Let me double-check and correct if need be. I have about 25 Hitler books on the shelf at the moment, and though I got it from something reasonabley authoritative. He certainly is entitled to the Horace Greeley. Thanks for reading it. Howard C. Berkowitz 23:42, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Sci Fi & religion

Sorry to pester you again so soon about a totally different matter, but I am utterly flummoxed by this passage in the intro to the SF&Religion article:

This genre is not precisely defined, but one guide is to require "stories that include religion for purposes of stereotype rather than exploration and extrapolation.: It excluded novellas that are better-known for their adaptation into full novel. [etc.]"

But, but, but... the guy you're quoting here excludes "stories that include religion for purposes of stereotype" from his analysis, so why quote him if you are arguing that the genre of "sci fi and religion" should "require" such stereotype? Or did you not mean "require"? (I assume the latter.)

Also, what do the distinctions among novellas, novels, and short stories have to do with the definition of the "sci fi and religion" genre? It seems that that discussion was relevant only to the very specific purpose of the quoted author/critic's article about short stories, and not relevant at all to a general discussion of "sci fi and religion." Why would a sci-fi novella about religion suddenly become not about religion when it is later expanded into a novel? Bruce M. Tindall 00:18, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

By all means, Bruce, pester me this way: specific and useful comments. The best I can say is I was looking too closely at one source. Your comments are the constructive sort I want to have, rather than what often seems politicized.
This is especially useful, as I'm going to be doing -- unless cancelled by snow -- a workshop on the subject tomorrow evening, and it might even be a recruiting opportunity. It's part of a continuing Science & Religion series at the local Unitarian-Universalist meeting house, and I plan to use the article as a handout. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:10, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

New author in Computers

You might be interested in knowing that we have a new author in Computers: . (Or do you already get automatic notifications of things like this?) Bruce M. Tindall 18:45, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, we had the exact same computer problem (kitteh fault) a couple of years ago. It doesn't help that her favorite daytime napping spot is atop the cover of the printer, which is right next to the tower's fan intake. We go through a lot of canned compressed air around here. Bruce M. Tindall 20:03, 25 January 2011 (UTC)
Said new author has just imported a chunk of Wikipedia, which according to EC:PR-2010-013 isn't normally allowed any more. Ro Thorpe 02:53, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
We'll have to find out if it's his text on WP, but it does look multi-authored. If not, I can work with him on rewrite; it's not a huge amount of text. Howard C. Berkowitz 03:21, 26 January 2011 (UTC)

Please see my NDE comments

See: Mary Ash 18:45, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

It is not necessary to notify me, on my user page, about changes in articles that I will see in Recent Changes or in Watchlist. I really don't want to argue with you on my userpage. Howard C. Berkowitz 18:59, 5 February 2011 (UTC)


Hi Howard, to avoid the possibility that the related pages gets deleted, use the "noinclude" speedydelete template instead. See the instructions on the top of the Spedydelte page. D. Matt Innis 12:33, 8 March 2011 (UTC)


Just wanted to thank you for cleaning up some of the categorization, internal links, and other parts of my new articles I didn't get to. I am still getting accustomed to the differences in style between this and Wikipedia, and appreciate the assistance. --Joshua Zambrano 22:00, 9 March 2011 (UTC)

Financial Report as of March 15, 2011. Please read it!

Please read our Financial Report as of March 15, 2001 for complete details on our financial history and our current financial situation. If you have any questions, please ask them on CZ Talk:Donate.Milton Beychok 21:51, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Harry S. Truman

This RJ created (ie. imported from WP) article has an infobox at the bottom. Wouldn't we normally express that in the "Related Articles" subpage? David Finn 04:40, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Hi, David. Yes, I agree with you that the info box can be deleted or its content moved to one of the subpages. As an author, I also moved the "See Also" and "Further Reading" sections to the "Related Articles" and "Bibliography" subpages, respectively. Milton Beychok 15:47, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
I concur. Some infoboxes may be useful; some don't render properly at CZ. If we are going to use them, the templates and the style need to be documented. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:10, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Article "frame of reference"

Hi Howard: I think your comments could be useful regarding the new article Frame of reference (physics). This topic is kind of complicated and confusing, so I felt that a longer separate article was needed beyond your recent general version at Frame of reference. This new article is a transfer of stuff I contributed to Wikipedia, and that material was the outgrowth of a very laborious negotiation between conflicting editors on other WP articles. That is the reason for the extended quotations in this article that try to provide some solid support for the distinctions drawn. You may find that the article is too much like WP style and I'd like your commentary about that. John R. Brews 20:08, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Howard: Do you think it advisable to change Frame of reference to a disambiguation page? John R. Brews 16:51, 23 March 2011 (UTC)
I think so. A challenge is to consider other contextual taxonomies, such as the various medical/neurological diagnoses, or multispectral/imaging vs. nonimaging sensor interpretation. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:08, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

Interesting article

Hello. This might come in as a handy reference. (Chunbum Park 21:33, 25 March 2011 (UTC))

Editorial Council Motions and content

Response and pending request for assistance

Earlier, I sent a request for assistance to the Constabulary. In a volunteer organization, Matt certainly is not here 24/7 and may simply have not seen this. There is precedent, as with Mary Ash's request to Dave Finn, for a Citizen to ask that certain other Citizens not post to their personal talk pages.

Paraphrased slightly for readability, I sent the following to the Managing Editor, in the absence of the Constabulary. I have not yet deleted any other comments, as I want readers to see, in context, the hostility and OUTRIGHT ALL CAP UNPROFESSIONALISM of some opponents, who seem adamant in crushing any questioning of their position. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:45, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

On my user page, Dave Finn, with whom I agree on a number of issues, posted concerns about a pending EC motion. He posted it because while his Citizen status has been reinstated, he is still blocked from the Forums, particularly the Editorial Council Community Input page. I did not solicit his post, but I agree with it.
To be blunt in terminology, several of my political opponents, MBE, Hayford Pearce, and Peter Schmitt, have been counterattacking. Now, Hayford and Peter have every right to do so in the EC. MBE has been writing in ALL CAPS and threatening me with banning, for "abuse of power" and "censorship" on my own user talk page.

I have not left the Project. I do not intend to leave the project, or to resign any position. For the last few days, I have, however, been holding myself to requested editorial assistance, some by email, as I would like to be able to contribute content without battling. I am eager to return to contributing and have material waiting on my computer.

The main reason I defend my Editorships is that they were granted in good faith, and I feel completely qualified to hold them. Nevertheless, in some areas, especially and ironically Politics and History, I believe they are now necessary as a safeguard against inappropriate behavior at least one Editor. That individual, as evidenced in comments here, will not engage professionally, but speaks -- and acts, to the point of blanking articles -- based on expected deference. Here, the individual refuses to cite requested Charter authority, and instead threatens.

I agree with him on one thing. If this conflict continues, CZ is doomed.

Hey Howard, hope you are well. First let me say that the "Recent Changes" page has been rather sparse the last few days. At a time like this it is easy to appreciate the volume of editing you do on CZ and it is much appreciated.

I have been reading the latest EC motion with interest. I have a few questions about that as I am not sure I am reading it correctly.

It appears from the conversation between you and the Secretary that a Citizen asked anonymously for a review of a previously awarded Editor status and that this request was rejected by the Secretary following informal discussions with selected members of the EC.

Do you have a link to a Charter provision or EC Motion that makes clear the role of the EC Secretary? It seems to me that we have an EC consisting of a certain number of Citizens that are that are to collectively consider Motions, but this conversation gives the impression of a Secretary that is holding informal Motion hearings among a selected group of EC members to first decide if the wider EC may even see the Motion in question.

The Motion titled "Review of Editor status" says "In case of reasonably well-founded doubts raised by any Citizen, the Editorial Council may choose to review the previously awarded status of any Editor, either in principle or with regard to specific competences granted.". The Charter provisions covering this situation are quoted :"The Charter charges the Editorial Council (Articles 32 and 14) with establishing the qualifications for Editors and supervising their activities. It also has the authority to remove an Editor (Article 16)". The Charter then requires the EC to supervise the activities of Editors and does not confine this notion to content or behaviour. The Motion empowers the EC to review Editor status either in principle or regard to specific competences granted, although I would argue this was perhaps already provided for in the Charter. For this reason it seems that the idea of the EC being powerless to affect Editor status in matters of behaviour is ill-founded. The Charter requires the EC to supervise Editor activities. The EC Motion verifies that the EC may review Editor status.

Does this current Motion do anything other than dilute the already established scope of the EC?

The Secretary asks "Do you know some other Citizen who wishes to bring into the question the credentials of an Editor?", but the Motion he refers to states that "the Editorial Council may choose to review the previously awarded status of any Editor, either in principle or with regard to specific competences granted.". The Motion says status, not qualifications, so the question should have been "Do you know some other Citizen who wishes to bring into the question the status of an Editor?" and from the conversation the answer is an obvious yes, but that this Motion was rejected during the Secretarys personal Motion hearing.

The Secretary states "If YOU, for instance, got angry enough with how you think the EC is being mismanaged and subsequently made several loud, public declarations that you were leaving CZ and would no longer be an Editor, this motion would also preserve YOUR Editorships in that situation.". My question is, why is that desired? Firstly, if an Editor announces on the Forum that they are leaving forever and we have all failed, replaces their bio with a message saying they are no longer an Editor, do they then have to jump through hoops to actually get rid of their Editor status? And secondly, if an Editor announces on the Forums that they are leaving forever and we have all failed, replaces their bio with a message saying they are no longer an Editor, then why would we want to preserve their right to make drive-by Editorial Decisions when the mood takes them?

Being an Editor seems to be more than simply having an academic qualification. The Charter says so, EC Motions have confirmed this. Does this Motion disempower the EC from considering behavioural as well as content issues? The concept of Editors has always been of expert guidance - does a Motion that disallows the EC from determining Editor status based on the ability to act as an Editor really further the mission of CZ as a whole?

If I may jump in here, I'd just like to say that we have so few editors who are currently active that we don't want to make it harder for inactive ones to resume activity. Peter Jackson 11:06, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
Peter, the very existence of a formal investigation on my qualifications, the crux of which is about "bullying" and related complaints -- which I deny -- suggest that some believe that in certain cases, having no Editor is better than having an editor with questioned expertise or behavioral flaws. In the long term, those issues need to be addressed with a thoughtful review, and perhaps redefinition, of the role of expertise (i.e., not just the title "Editor") at CZ. I do question the current approach of developing broad policy by addressing individual matters, down to the article level, and expecting broad guidelines automagically to emerge.
You are right to point out that we need activity, which, at the present size, means that the original goal of, perhaps, having Editors who guide but do not contribute significant content is unrealistic. It may even be unrealistic in the future. While the professional publishing model of different disciplines won't be alike, certainly in my own experience with peer-reviewed articles and with books from academic publishers, the reviewers are judged qualified, in large part, by their own publication history. It's hard to judge the issues of writing for an audience if you haven't done it.
I think of one prolific contributor and Editor, pre-Charter, who was actually suspended by Larry, but chose not to continue activity and to move efforts to another Wiki. Subsequently, several Citizens have found various of his articles to be biased or deficient, and significantly rewrote them. His academic qualifications were unquestionable, although there were questions of both bias when he wrote in his areas of expertise, as well as not understanding the limits of his expertise. The suspension, however, came for behavioral reasons, which included perceived abusive language both in and out of Editor roles.
Rather than immediately grant Editor status, as we once did, there is now a desire to see performance befor doing so. In many cases, people named Editors never made a single contribution. In other cases, people claimed that they were to be given deference as an Editor, but based on claims of expertise elsewhere and having a contentious pattern of discourse here, with very few content contributions. Some founding members have received more tolerance of abuse than others.
Let's be consistent -- we have had quick banning of Editors as Citizens, typically new ones, for abuse or spam. We have at least one other case of an Editor with questionable commitment to other than "guiding" and participation in governance, who has, in my opinion, demonstrated, at the very least, questionable commitment through multiple informal resignations and statements of restrictions on what he would do. Bluntly, I have been a prolific contributor and have worked well with some, but not all, authors in the Editor role. Yet, there have been multiple EC actions started against me and dropped, but freezing work in progress, work that eventually was not substantively challenged other than by general pronouncements that it was wrong. If the EC is not to judge behavioral matters, why was one of the first motions made to strip me of all editorships on the grounds (dropped) that I impeded the function of the EC, a matter not addressed in any statement of the Editor role? Claims that these actions are not political and behavioral, but content only, are, in my personal opinion, indefensible.
Let's be consistent. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:10, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
This is not the place to discuss the EC motion. Thus only briefly:
  • It is for the Secretary to decide how to react on (anonymous) messages sent to the Suggestion Box. This is confirmed by the Ombudsman. (There are other -- open -- methods to approach the EC.)
  • Editorship (or Editor status) is based on expertise (Art. 14). Therefore, EC:R-2010-012 is only concerned with reviewing the academic/professional competence.
  • The EC has to supervise the activities of Editors (Art. 32) as Editors, but not as Citizens. Thus the EC has to react if Editors do not use their Editorial "power" responsibly. Behaviour as Citizens has nothing to do with expertise or content and is therefore not EC matter.
--Peter Schmitt 17:46, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
CZ isn't such a big place and really wherever Citizens gather to discuss something is a fine place to join in the discussion I would have thought. I would also note that the Secretary refers to private discussions held between him and other EC members about Motions, so the clear implication there is that the EC Motion page is not the only venue where discussion can take place. I see no barrier to having a discussion here. It isn't like it will get lost among all the Recent Changes.
I asked where the guidelines covering how the Secretary should be found, and I thank you for your personal view of what the guidelines are. The Ombudsman, in an email to the Secretary, gave his informal interpretation of those guidelines but that isn't what I was looking for. Really I was looking for the guidelines covering how the Secretary should execute their function and, if they do not exist, maybe an indication of when they will be fomalised. I don't think that the informal opinions of Ombudsman, EC member or Secretary are enough to establish policy, so really I was just looking for directions to where the current policy is written down.
The Charter says that the EC should supervise the activities of Editors, but the part about that being confined to "Editor" activities rather than "Citizen" activities was added by you. There is currently no Charter provision that really prevents the EC from reviewing Editor status for matters other than qualification issues. That is what this Motion is for, it seems, to disable the EC from reviewing Editor status in any other matter than for qualification issues.
What about the Editor who is unwilling to follow the principle of expert guidance and refuses to discuss changes?
What about the Editor who is unwilling to adapt to the stylistic conventions of CZ?
What about the Editor who has no interest in expert guidance and just wants Editor status to settle arguments without having to provide sources?
These things could happen. If CZ has at its core the concept of expert guidance, how can the EC abandon its responsibility for ensuring that Editors are not only proficient in their chosen subject but capable of imparting that in a way that is compatible with CZ?
One other question. Maybe you can appreciate the confusion your comments bring by looking at EC:2010-013. It starts out "It has become increasing clear that the Editorial Council is unable to function as long as xxxxx is a member of it." and goes on to say "I hereby state that in my opinion, xxxxx, by his ongoing behavior, does not meet the qualifications of Editorship in Citizendium". This was a Motion, authored by the Secretary, that as clear as you like says that behavioural evidence should be considered when reviewing the status of Editors, says that being an Editor on CZ means more than holding a qualification. The comments of the Secretary and your comments above do not seem to match with EC:2010-013. When did things change? David Finn 18:34, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
@Peter Schmitt, Dave Finn posted it here because his Forum access, where he might have posted to the Editorial Forum community input, remains blocked. This is certainly not an official forum, and it is simply your personal opinion that it is not a place to discuss anything. I welcome comments pertinent to the subject, but don't tell me what is to be on my own user page.
@I disagree with your interpretation of both articles of the Charter, and I personally believe, but obviously cannot prove, that a number of Motions have been put through in support of particular political agendas in the EC. I do not remember, for example, you making such an objection, on Charter grounds, to Hayford's early motion to strip me of all of my Editorships, on reasons that have nothing to do with expertise.
@While I understand that there is a belief that the Ombudsman can "confirm" or "rule", I absolutely deny that is authorized by the Charter. In point of fact, the Charter designates the Managing Editor as the only person that, as an individual, can make even interim rulings. The Charter indicates the primary function of the Ombudsman is to be a mediator, a role generally incompatible with making rulings. While some Citizens seem to want to extend the Ombudsman role, amend the Charter first.
@Further, I disagree that the Secretary has the unilateral authority to deny or accept messages sent to the Suggestion Box. The Secretary reasonably may ask for clarification and improvement of suggestions, but he or she was never given the authority to be gatekeeper. I am not going to debate this until someone shows
I should have written that this talk page is not the best place to discuss this issue -- some "official" page (e.g., CZ talk:Editorial Council would have been better. But why do you immediately react defensive, Howard? It was not an accusation, not even to David, but only a remark.
As for the repeatedly mentioned motion EC:2010-013: It was not even voted on, was it? And as far as I am concerned: I was away from CZ when this issue was discussed.
The Ombudsman did not "rule", but his interpretation of existing regulations has considerable weight -- that is what I meant with "confirmed".
That the EC supervises the activities of Editors -- added: -- as Editors (only) is a consequence of the EC's field of competence (content) and that all Citizens are to be treated equally (Art. 38). If Editors do not refer to their status they are merely acting as Authors (under EC content supervision), and if they do not edit a mainspace article, they are acting as Citizens (under Constable and MC supervision). Thus only some of the questions above concern Editorship, some only general content issues, and some only the behaviour.
--Peter Schmitt 21:41, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
Defensive, Peter Schmitt? I don't think unreasonably so -- after all, it's my user page and I may well give first impressions. You might be entirely justified to say that on a public space, such as the Forum (where Dave can't go) or an article talk page. If you think about it, though, if I thought it was inappropriate, I would have deleted it.
Words have consequences. I'm a bit tired of being told that motions were not voted on, when they were accepted, seconded, and then not acted upon promptly, but stayed as accusations. I'm especially annoyed at suggestions that, for example, having the war crimes and Mengele articles frozen for several weeks, when I had materials for them on interlibrary loan, was fair.
I will say it once again: the Ombudsman is not given authority, in the Charter, to interpret anything except the procedures of a final appeals board. "Interpretations" are as an individual and receive no more or less "weight" than those of any other Citizen.
There have been instances of Citizens identifying themselves as Editors, sometimes not even in a workgroup associated with the article, and sometimes refusing to engage with the comments of another Editor. When someone even suggesting that the do so as an Editor blanks an article and is not immediately sanctioned for vandalism, you'll forgive me when I say there is selective enforcement. The EC has had motions addressed to my conduct as well as content, with the anonymous complaint sitting on the page. Seems only fair that if accusations are anonymous, they stay confidential, or the accuser is named and his or her motives can be judged. I don't accept the purity of explanations why it was done this way. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:23, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
This is, after all, my user page. The posts of certain people will be deleted, unread, as I deleted one. Let's stop pretending there are no antagonists on CZ. There are people that would like to delete one another. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:34, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
Howard, do you recall that back on December 3rd you proposed a motion ( that YOU YOURSELF said you would vote against. You wrote, in fact, "I submit this motion not because I consider it a good idea, but to formalize actions that have been taken." If anyone wants to look at the Comments about this, they will see that Aleta excoriated you and your motives for doing so. It was also as a DIRECT consequence of your action that the Ombudsman stated that, in his opinion, the Secretary was under no compulsion to waste his time, and that of the Council, with frivolous, nuisance motions that have no possibility of passing. And that it was within the sole discretion of the Secretary to make these judgments. If you (and possibly other Citizens) now complain that proposed motions are not always being introduced by the Secretary, then you have only yourself and your actions to blame. Up until that point, I was scrupulously introducing any and all motions that were proposed. Now I have learned to be more discriminating. Hayford Peirce 23:24, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

(undent) Excoriated, indeed, is a good word, for the commentary of you, Aleta, and the departed Martin. I find the rest of us tend to discuss less emotionally.

I absolutely reject the idea that the Ombudsman has a Charter-authorized unique role in interpretation. Please cite the article that gives him such. If there is no such explicit authorization, your claim of basing EC rules on Ombudsman determinations is incorrect.

Further, I note that when the Managing Editor filed a request to have the EC set clear priorities, you and Aleta claimed that no external official had the right to suggest how the EC should govern itself. I find these positions inconsistent; I will restrain my language more than you have done here. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:12, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

I note that you do not attempt to claim that you did not propose a frivolous, nuisance-type motion, whose only purpose was to obstruct the workings of the Council. It was for such an action that Aleta quite properly "excoriated" you -- why *shouldn't* your behavior have been excoriated? You seem to feel that you are free to act as you like, without consequences. And then when there *are* consequences, you complain. As for the ME, he had no business trying to dictate to the EC HOW we run our business -- he was both rude and peremptory in tone; moreover he was apparently vexed that we, the Council, had purposefully NOT implemented some ideas of his that he had tirelessly promoted in the Forums and that he had already been told had been considered and found without merit. The EC, you may note, does not try to tell the ME how to conduct HIS business -- it is not his place to tell us how to conduct OURS. Hayford Peirce 01:51, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Has Howard deleted a remark by you that the motion's "only purpose was to obstruct the workings of the Council"? If not, why are you noting the fact that he doesn't deny it? The motion seems to have been intended to clarify the workings of the Council, as Howard seems to have gained the impression that you were applying the procedures inconsistently. Peter Jackson 10:16, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

@Peter Schmitt - this Motion didn't come about by accident. A Citizen announced they were leaving the project and removed their bio, leaving in place a message that they were not an Editor. That Citizen then made an Editorial "ruling" and their status as Editor was questioned. This Motion, as Hayford has explained, is to protect Editorships even when the Citizen in question has renounced their role in CZ, and that is what you will be voting on.

Back in February when you introduced the Forum topic "Leaving the project" you said:

"It is reasonalble to block Citizens who explicitly leave (in anger)"

but now you appear to be saying that if a Citizen leaves in anger then they shouldn't be blocked and in fact should be allowed to act as Editor when and how they please if they already held that status. What changed your mind on the subject? David Finn 10:34, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Abusing my power over my own user page?

There's no "abuse of power" on my own user page. Martin Baldwin-Edwards is not welcome to post here; I do not have power to prevent him posting elsewhere, but I am exercising Citizen rights. Howard C. Berkowitz 23:01, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

This last post is in breach of CZ policy and is clearly unacceptable on your user page. Unless you delete it in the next hour, I shall formally request for you to be banned from CZ. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 23:26, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
State the policy. You misinterpret, and I propose you be banned for vandalism. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:07, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

This is a clear case of flagrant disrespect for both the Charter and other Citizens. You should know by now that I am not impressed either by your lack of expertise in legal matters or your bluster. I shall make my request for your ban from CZ directly to the MC. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 00:59, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

I remain singularly unimpressed by ex cathedra pronouncements.
For that matter, I knew P.T. Bluster, I hissed at P.T. Bluster, and, sir, you are no P.T. Bluster. Howard C. Berkowitz 01:03, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
I don't think it would be beneficial for anyone from getting banned from Citizendium at this point. Communicating is a good way to bring conflicting issues under control. Maybe Martin would post here knowing he is not welcome? (Chunbum Park 05:39, 2 April 2011 (UTC))

There can be no abuse of power on a userpage. Article 8, CZ convention and much discussion by the MC has confirmed this repeatedly. So long as the content is not inflammatory Citizens are considered Editors of their userpages, provided they put their bio in the right place, and Citizens may request that other Citizens do not post on their talkpage. It has been done before and with the blessing of the Constabulary. Citizens can delete whatever comments they like from their userpage. The other obvious thing to point out is that even if Citizens violate the wishes of other Citizens to not to post on their userpages, the rest of us can read the history if we so desire. David Finn 07:12, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Text here was removed by the Constabulary on grounds of civility. (The author may replace this template with an edited version of the original remarks.)

A comment here was deleted by The Constabulary on grounds of making complaints about fellow Citizens. If you have a complaint about the behavior of another Citizen, e-mail It is contrary to Citizendium policy to air your complaints on the wiki. See also CZ:Professionalism.

A comment here was deleted by The Constabulary on grounds of making complaints about fellow Citizens. If you have a complaint about the behavior of another Citizen, e-mail It is contrary to Citizendium policy to air your complaints on the wiki. See also CZ:Professionalism.

The Charter refers to user pages. It doesn't make clear whether this includes user talk pages. Peter Jackson 10:19, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
I'd think you would have a tough job arguing that one. The general principle that appears to have been applied so far is that if a page starts with User: then it is a userpage. That is how it has been applied, as far as I know, in all cases, with the only exception being that when talking about Userpage as opposed to userpages, as in we all must provide a bio on our Userpage, it has been made clear that Userpage means the page that is linked to by clicking on your name in the history of a CZ page. If you have an example of any other interpretation being applied I would be interested to hear about it. It seems like all these principle have been illustrated on the Forum already. David Finn 10:42, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
I wasn't trying to argue anything. On the contrary, I was saying it's not easy to argue anything from the Charter, because of its unsatisfactory drafing. Peter Jackson 10:46, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
I don't mean to suggest you are advancing a position you are not, my apologies if it seemed that way. I meant more in general terms that arguing such a position would be difficult. The rules for userpages have been relatively recently updated and are endorsed by the MC. They do not specify a difference between talk and non talk space and only say that "Citizens may not edit each others' user pages, or subpages thereof, unless such a page is clearly labeled as inviting contributions from others, as per Category:Editable user pages". Until the rules are more clear then we only have history to establish how such situations are dealt with, which is what I was basing my observations on.
Obviously I see the grey area in the Charter. There is a page showing editable userpages but the talkpages of Citizens are not by default there. Either they should be or we need to clarify further, by way of MC Motion, just how much authority Citizens have to exert on their userpages.
By the way, Howard is one of the few with a page in that Category, and his reads "Feel free to add to, or create, a User Talk page for any page in my userspace. I reserve the right not to respond, or delete material." David Finn 11:19, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

A comment here was deleted by The Constabulary on grounds of making complaints about fellow Citizens. If you have a complaint about the behavior of another Citizen, e-mail It is contrary to Citizendium policy to air your complaints on the wiki. See also CZ:Professionalism.

Do I NOW clearly see who is the instigator here? (Chunbum Park 15:41, 2 April 2011 (UTC)) I thought Martin Baldwin-Edwards was banned. Was it someone else? (Chunbum Park 15:52, 2 April 2011 (UTC))

I believe that both Martin and Howard were once banned for 48 hours from the Forums, but never from the CZ wiki. The banned person is David Finn who was permanently banned from the CZ wiki and Forums last November (I believe), but then appealed his ban to the Management Council. Since the MC has not been, shall we say, expeditious in deciding upon his appeal, his ban was recently lifted to enable him to participate in the CZ wiki, but not the Forums, while his appeal is pending. Hayford Peirce 16:06, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Chunbum: I resigned from the Editorial Council in anger at CZ's failure to deal with systematic abuses from Howard, and said also that I would not act as an editor but remained as a Citizen. Now, in a trivial piece of mischief-making by David Finn, I asserted rights as an editor (to leave an old map picture at a readable size on an article where Finn had written nothing. This is all one terrible mess, largely created by Howard's political games (of which he is proud). It is time for CZ to stop these abuses and ban people who engage in them. This is what I expect the MC to do, as is required by the Charter. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 16:45, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

I write here as a member of the MC, but my comments are my own and not official MC pronouncements. Firstly, it is necessary to clear up some misunderstandings. User pages and User_talk pages exist in separate namespaces. Pages in the latter are not subpages of the former. So, that a user is the editor of his/her user page does not imply he/she is the editor of his/her user talk pages. Right now there is no policy on who controls user talk pages. Secondly, user talk pages are official CZ pages and their use is covered by general CZ policy on professionalism and courtesy. So, communications on user talk pages that violate such policies are subject to disciplinary action. Thirdly, since there is no special policy on user talk pages, anyone is free to ask the ME to establish temporary policy that will be in force until the MC is able to formulate permanent policy. Specifically, anyone can ask for a ruling whether a user can delete content on his/her user talk page.

Those are facts. Here are some of my own thoughts. Again, I speak only for myself and not for the MC as a whole. Over the past few months I have considered asking the MC to establish a policy on Public Disturbance. Those who continually bicker and fight on CZ pages and in the fora in a way that generally demoralizes the community would be subject to disciplinary action. What sort of disciplinary action? My view is it should be a total ban for a long period of time, say a minimum of six months. Subsequent offenses should result in longer bans and eventually permanent banning. What would I use as an example of Public Disturbance as input to the discussion about forming such a policy? This subsection of Howard's talk page. Dan Nessett 18:09, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Very interesting, very well-thought-out comments, Dan! I believe that your suggestion about Public Disturbance, or Disruptive Behavior, or Inveterate Nuisances, would enjoy wide support. In a nice twist of irony, I think, all of the people that I can think of offhand who might actually be banned by this measure, would *wholeheartedly* support it -- on the grounds that they, being true egomaniacs, would never believe that they themselves are being Public Disturbances, only those that they consider to be their irrational antagonists. Go for it! Hayford Peirce 18:18, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Dan, in the physical world, one who hosts a quiet discussion is not considered at fault when others invite themselves and begin insulting and attacking. I would say that this section, with Dave Finn's original post and two responses two it, were polite discussion. I believe the MC and its enforcement arm, the Constabulary, need to be more aggressive -- yet also absolutely consistent -- in enforcing the initial unprofessional conduct. Not everyone in this discussion have attacked persons rather than ideas, threatened, claimed they authoritatively interpret the Charter, excoriated, or YELLED IN ALL CAPS.
Some of us would far rather contribute content than engage in fruitless argument. That certainly is my desire.
Let's cut to the chase. Dan, Hayford, Peter Schmitt and Martin: yes or no? (Well, Martin has stated his position). Do you want me to be banned? Howard C. Berkowitz 18:25, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
YES. Why? Two reasons: (1) Because at no point was this merely a quiet debate: it was a conspiracy between you and David Finn to debate EC proceedings in public, and manipulate the information. Not content with that, you even had the temerity to delete my response to one particular inaccuracy -- claiming that you have the power to control the content of this page. (2) Because when challenged on the constitutionality and "legality" of your actions, and asked to remove this clearly obnoxious heading, you claimed a superior understanding of the meaning of the Charter. It is time for CZ to tell those who manipulate and defy the basic principles of the Charter that they are not welcome, regardless of how much verbiage they may produce on the wiki or Forums. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 18:54, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for the honesty, if the inaccuracy. Silly me...while I have never claimed to be definitive in interpreting the Charter, I had assumed that someone that had participated in the full Charter process, rather than resigning because the Inquisition would not bring the heretic to heel, might have a bit more insight. As I say, silly me. It's nice to know your priorities, and your infallibility with respect to the Charter.
At least in the United States, "conspiracy" is a formal term, requiring evidence of complicity prior to this act. I was completely unaware that Dave was going to make this post, and I did, only after the fact, inquire about his reasoning for doing so.
There have been requests, by several people, for the Constabulary and/or Managing Editor's intervention. I am quite willing to wait for that, if others stop posting as well. Howard C. Berkowitz 19:09, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
I see that Daniel has correctly ruled that you have no rights over this page. Feel free to apologize to me for your incorrect interpretation of the Charter and your offensive attempt to exclude me from writing on this page. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 19:59, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Martin, I do not think it is up to you to judge whether I ruled "correctly", and in terms of "incorrect interpretation of the Charter", I think the matter is certainly a bit less clear-cut than your comment above would imply (e.g. this comment: "the Talk page [..] should be seen as a normal Talk page but with the owner acting as editor of it.").
Besides, I encourage the Management Council to work out a policy on Public Disturbance, preferably in conjunction with a precision of criteria for Citizenship. --Daniel Mietchen 20:23, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Well, I certainly agree that the matter is more complex than I stated above. When we originally discussed last year how User Talk pages should be managed, my assumption was that only bilateral discussions would normally take place on them. In that typical scenario, it is reasonable for the user to feel entitled to delete others' comments if they seem inappropriate or no longer useful.
In this specific case, the page was deliberately established as a public discussion group -- not at all the normal usage of such pages -- and Howard's actions I characterised initially as abuse of power in censoring my sole comment. However, when this deteriorated into a public statement that I am not welcome here, it became a clear breach of Charter Articles 5 and 8. User rights are inferior to the over-riding provisions of the Charter, and Howard should have understood that (but apparently did not).
My opinion, for what it is worth, is that this sort of problem of trying to gain advantage through manipulation of the formal rules has occurred far too often. The fundamental code of conduct is clear in the charter and everything else is subservient to it. Indeed, the MC should establish an explicit policy on Public Disturbance -- but such a policy is already implicit and very clear in the Charter. They can act now, if they choose. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 20:49, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

I disagree completely that this was created as a public discussion space. Dave Finn asked me some bilateral questions, admittedly that he wanted seen in public. They would have been more appropriate on Editorial Council community input, but he can't write there.

"Deliberately established as a public discussion group" was not and is not intended. Prove, Martin, that it was, rather than claim something for which you have no evidence other than it suits your continuing campaign to portray me as the Antichrist.

I do not accept your superior ability to interpret the Charter, and I find that your language and expression frequently come to a standard for banning for abuse and defamation.

Text here was removed by the Constabulary on grounds that it is needlessly inflammatory. (The author may replace this template with an edited version of the original remarks.)

Howard C. Berkowitz 20:54, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Text here was removed by the Constabulary on grounds that it is needlessly inflammatory. (The author may replace this template with an edited version of the original remarks.)

Clarification concerning editorship for User talk pages

I just clarified that user talk pages should be regarded as being normal talk pages, at least from now on. I have also updated Category:Editable user pages‎ and User:Howard C. Berkowitz/Editing in my user space accordingly and rephrased the title of the section above this one. --Daniel Mietchen 20:23, 2 April 2011 (UTC) as CZ:Managing Editor

Constable message

I have subsequently reviewed and cleaned this page according to my best effort. Warnings will be emailed as necessary.

I am asking that both of these conversations (pending EC discussion & user talk page rights) be moved to the forum and no further conversation continue here, as this is not the appropriate place. David Finn's forum rights have returned to him as they should have been initially. D. Matt Innis 22:28, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

I will let Dave bring it to the Forum, as he initially brought it here. The remainder will be in Archive 4.
Constable question: rather than happen again, may I delete my user talk pages and decline to have them? Howard C. Berkowitz 22:49, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
Howard, I don't have any guidance for you on this question, but I would encourage you to ask the appropriate body before acting so that we may all benefit from the results of your query. D. Matt Innis 23:13, 2 April 2011 (UTC)
If you would not take action against it, and recognizing that the appropriate body is debatable and that neither body would act quickly, and there is inflammatory content here, I ask that you delete my main user talk pages and lock them. I will tentatively agree to have talk pages on sandbox articles, but I would rather not have them than a repetition of this incident. Howard C. Berkowitz 23:26, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

A comment here was deleted by The Constabulary on grounds of making complaints about fellow Citizens. If you have a complaint about the behavior of another Citizen, e-mail It is contrary to Citizendium policy to air your complaints on the wiki. See also CZ:Professionalism.

Just let me know if your user page gets out of hand. D. Matt Innis 00:05, 3 April 2011 (UTC)

Again, Matt, I do not wish to go through another situation like this. I am archiving all other content, and placing a notice that people can email me if they want to communicate. Please lock this page.

There is a discussion currently underway in the MC to determine whether user's have the right to delete their talk pages. Until it comes to a decision on this matter, user's should not delete them and the Constabulary should restore them if they are deleted. Dan Nessett 17:21, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Nothing has been deleted; this is an archive. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:43, 4 April 2011 (UTC)