Guidelines for choosing a name for a new page in this WikiWikiWeb (see AddingNewPages). This page is not about selecting a name for a whole new wiki; we leave that up to you (see StartingaWiki).
Be mindful when ChoosingWikiNames; the name of a new (or old!) page sets the tone for the page. The name will also be the name of links to the new page, so it should be easy to remember, and plainly say what the page is about.
- These are suggestions and guidelines, not rules.
- Strive for phrases which are easy to use in sentences (the name of a page will also be the name of all links to that page)
- As few words as possible without losing the salient points (example for this rule: UniquenessWithoutRedundancy).
- Prefer neutral names to those that take a position (e.g., PortableDocumentFormat vs. PdfSucks).
- Avoid the LongTitlesSmell, such as WhenAndWhyIsItValuableToImplementaDomainModelInAnObjectOrientedProgrammingLanguage?.
- Spell everything out (questions answered below) - expand acronyms and abbreviations.
- Think in terms of families of page names as well as single names.
- NobodyReadsEveryPage (Any given reader may take a while to get up to speed)
- You might want to pick one of the many WikiCategories to add to your page.
- or if the wiki you are using permits the use of single bracketed words as classifiers serving as a WikiName, whether you mean categories, topics or group names, such as:
- [[Programmer]] [[Location]] [[Source]].
- Try the WantedPages script. You might find an appropriate name for your page listed there.
- Names beginning with 'The' should be avoided (except possibly if a page about TheThe?). Having content-carrying words first and last in a WikiName makes LikePages more useful.
- Agree, but not for that reason. LikePages is smart about ignoring "The" at the beginning of a name. Like pages for "TheCity" includes all titles starting and ending with "City", which is pretty useful. However, dropping "The" at the beginning of a WikiWord makes it easier to include in sentences.
- Use AmericanSpelling: color, optimize, etc. See RealizeVersusRealise.
- Be aware of the WikiNamePluralProblem and the WikiSingleWordProblem
- In languages like Danish and German, with intensive use of compound words, the titles are bad language, because the compound word will be split up.
Page name types:
Really spell everything out?
Q: How do you handle acronyms/organizations? Especially if they have a particle in them, such as "Foo Bar of America". Is it FbA of FBoA or should it be FooBarOfAmerica?
A: It's also possible to spell it out as EffBeeOhAye or FbOa, but those are kludgy and UgLy (and not MeaningfulNames). Note that FBoA isn't a valid WikiWord. Use the WikiAlphabet when you really must include a letter in a WikiName (e.g. JayLanguage).
Q: Should I use 'Versus' as in RealizeVersusRealise or 'Vs'as in DiscussionVsConsensus in a WikiName?
A1: See VersusVsVs?. No, that's VersusVersusVs? Well, actually, it's VsVersusVersus? - or is that VsVsVersus??
A2: Proving that there are no rules here, one sees Vs more often than Versus here. It's shorter and fairly well known. Also see WikiNameSynonym?.
A3: On the third hand, "Versus" is longer than "Vs" and so makes a better search term. Searching for "Vs" will find pages about CVS, for instance.
Q: What about names containing punctuation?
A: ItDepends: The period, comma, and hyphen are easily omitted and CamelCase picks up for the lost punctuation. The ApostropheCatastrophe is another problem and there are various kludges.
Q: For a thready page why not end the name of the page with 'Discussion'?
A: See WikiNameModifiers.
Q: Should I consider using 'Category' in my new page's name?
A1: Yes, but the time when you should actually do it is NotYet.
A2: Use Category, and be prepared for the page to be pruned radically by visitors.
WikiHistory: Back when the reverse link was very slow and locked the main Wiki database, people would sometimes save the results of the reverse name lookup back to the Category* page, so that others could see the result without doing the expensive lookup themselves. This technique is no longer needed; VolunteerHousekeepers now delete the lookup lists, if no value has been added by later editing.
Compare WikiNameAdvantages with WikiNameDisadvantages.
See ChoosingWikiNamesDiscussion, DontNamePagesThoughtsIssuesIdeasOrOpinions, RenamingWikiPages, RefactorByMerging, TooShortTooPithy, and MeaningfulName.
CategoryWiki CategoryWikiEditing CategoryFaq CategoryNaming