Forums: Index > Watercooler > Alumni etc

Andrei has raised good points about categories of people who attended educational institutions. It seems that British ones (at least universities) have categories starting with "Alumni of ..." whereas American ones tend to be "xxxx alumni". Andrei and I prefer the "Alumni of" form. It parallels "Counties of ..." and "Born in ...", for example. Neither of us has gone into the WP history of discussions about those name forms. I doubt if we need to, but that might give some guidance, e.g. whether WP is likely to change one or other soon. -- Robin Patterson (Talk) 07:21, October 19, 2013 (UTC)

Do we need to have them uniform?[]

I don't think we do. WP could change them in a couple of days leaving a lot of our work wasted. We have better genealogical things to do. As long as we have only a few dozen active contributors, ontological consistency is not high on my list of priorities. We can add quite good content by copying Wikipedia categories just as they come (and linking to the originals with suitable quick templates so that we can easily find when they change), with only rare situations where we feel that a wholesale change in FP is desirable. (See the names we do change on Help:Copying from Wikipedia). -- Robin Patterson (Talk) 07:21, October 19, 2013 (UTC)

We do not need to have them uniform, but it would be preferable if we did. As far as I am concerned, the lack of uniformity is a sign of lack of rigour. I find the present wikipedia system sloppy, but that is hardly relevant as I am not a fan of Wikipedia. But in the present case, this is not the issue. I have unified all the Familypedia categories (except the Australian high schools) to Alumni of... for the reasons Robin has presented before. I might have unintentionally missed some, but for all practical purposes they are at present uniform. In many cases the alternatives have categoryredirect notices. So if at present we do have such an uniformity, why not keep it this way and revert to the old forms? Afil (talk) 18:27, October 19, 2013 (UTC)

Completely different terminology[]

Andrei also mentioned that some Australian high schools have categories that use phrases like "educated at". See my talk page for the precise wording. I think some British high schools have the same. Again, we could try for consistency but I'd rather not spend time on that when there are hundreds of thousands of genealogical relationships we can work on. -- Robin Patterson (Talk) 07:21, October 19, 2013 (UTC)

I think the short answer is that Australian high schools have traditionally not used the university terminology. So you do not graduate from a high school, nor do you become an alumnus of one. This is one of those points where we Aussies are amused at the presumption of the American terminology. Thurstan (talk) 07:33, October 19, 2013 (UTC)
This is not the only case of differences. While in the US the attendees of all schools are called "students", in most European countries (I am talking about the "continent", not the UK) in elementary or high schools they are "pupils" (French: éleves, German: Schüler etc) implying that they are "learning", while in universities they are "students" (French: étudiants, German: Studenten, implying that they are "studying". A differentiation exists also regarding the high-school diploma (French: Baccalauréat, German: Matura) which are required for admission to universities. Such final diplomas are not required in the US. These differences refer not only to terminology, but to the education system of various countries. While I consider that we should tend to unify terminology (as in the case of Alumni of... vs xxxx alumni), I am also an advocate of having Familypedia reflect such cultural differences and not squeeze them into a single box and attempt to identify non-existent equivalences. Afil (talk) 21:10, October 19, 2013 (UTC)

Semantic MediaWiki[]

When we get more orgnised with SMW, I expect we will have a {{Showfacts education}} (after we have fleshed out {{showfacts awards}}{{showfacts journeys}}{{showfacts residences}}{{showfacts workhistory}}{{showfacts military}}{{showfacts religious}}{{showfacts community}}, which may render most of those categories relatively useless anyway. -- Robin Patterson (Talk) 07:21, October 19, 2013 (UTC)