User talk:Dsammy/Sandbox3

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Cleaning Categories

Brother Samuelson, In our ongoing work to clean up all the categories, we are removing categories from sandboxes. I am hoping the page you created in this sandbox has been posted as a real page by now. If you had strong reasons for keeping this sandbox visible in a category, once again determine the category most helpful to you, as the categories have changed. So you may need to select a different category. I apologize if these changes have created a problem for you. Hanna5974 02:08, 20 December 2015 (UTC) Sandbox 3 represents an idea by a few contributors, total removal of Historical Facts section including entire Parent County and Boundary Changes along with the image and put in the History section. Dsammy 02:27, 23 September 2011 (UTC)


Somebody is going to get lost without timeline/guideline separate from the History. Dsammy 02:30, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

Please see my comments on Sandbox4. Thanks! Lise 13:39, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

I think this model is an interesting idea. Total removal of the historical background type of info and taking visitors straight to the resources, which is probably what they're looking for. The information that used to be in historical background section is already available in the county infobox and other sections of the page. I kind of like that the heading Resources is no longer needed in this scenario. Murphynw 15:09, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
-Are you saying information about a county that was created from SEVEN counties at once should be in infobox? What about additions and takeaway portions (borders change between counties often)? Don't forget the images of "named after" you like will be dumped in History section, robbing the space. Dsammy 16:22, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
-Not all users are looking for resources. As a user, I would love to be able to find history (see my comment below) and the information in the info boxes is definitely not enough for my needs. TaylorBE 22:45, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

This structure makes sense to me. This is the one I would choose. It looks cleaner and more logical to me. I like it a lot better than the completely flat structure in Sandbox4. Three tweaks:

1. I thought we had agreed Social Groups Online was not going to be in Repostitories, but moved into its own section AFTER Repositories.
2. If we have the date founded, and parent county in the info box there is no need to repeat it in History. Actually I would prefer to see it in History and take it out of the info box. But it need not appear both places.
3. I also thought we agreed to take out all the sub-headings under Repositories. Delete Archives and Libraries, Courthouse, FHCs, and Societies AS HEADINGS but continue to list their information under Repositories.DiltsGD 19:03, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
It was already agreed to remove Social Groups Online from Repositories section after I pointed out they have no repositories. This is not the issue of Sandbox 3 since it deals with removal of Historical Facts and absorption into History Section. Dsammy 21:33, 24 September 2011 (UTC)

I prefer this Sandbox 3 model to the one in Sandbox 4. I think it is confusing to have all the headings the same size (Sandbox 4). I really like that the table of contents is about the same size as the info box. Adding the items to the info box balanced out the two boxes. When the info box is smaller there is sometimes alot of wasted space. The page feels cleaner with the history items moved. I think users can find the information moved to History. I also had a question about the Repositories section. What was the decision about its structure and content?McBrideLW 22:08, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

That's a separate issue, this Sandbox 3 deals with removal of Historical Facts and absorption into History Section. Dsammy 21:33, 24 September 2011 (UTC)

I am of the opinion that we have to leave the Historical Facts section on every county page in its present location and we need to work harder to make sure it is filled out with good information. Here are some of my reasons why:

  • When I start researching in a locality I know nothing about, oftentimes my first step is to get to know the county. This includes finding out when it was formed, when the records start, if there has been record loss, etc. This information is then useful as I create a research plan for searching in that county. Currently, I use a variety of resources (Animap, Ancestry’s Red Book, Wikipedia, etc.) and it would be great if all of that information were in one place. (I know a some of this shows up in the county info box but not enough of what I’m really looking for.)
  • I do not want to undervalue the importance of locating and linking to resources but I sometimes feel that’s mostly what’s currently on the FamilySearch Wiki (either that or I’m looking in the wrong place). I feel like the pages need to have more content and more information. That’s where the history section on each page comes in. It’s where those interesting little facts, important dates, boundary changes, record loss, common migration, etc can be researched and the information made available to other researchers.
  • Many beginning genealogists have not yet figured out that they need to know the history of an area in order to do effective research in that area (the number of people who I have seen listed on family trees who were ‘born’ in Virginia pre-1607 blows my mind). If we continue to add to and highlight the importance of history on every single county page, maybe more genealogists will start to clue in that knowing the history makes it easier to find the records.
  • Historical Facts does not belong with the ‘History’ heading in the middle of the resources. I believe that like items should be grouped together. Currently, each county page can easily be broken into County Information and County Resources (a third group should be County Repositories but I think I missed that discussion). Adding Historical Facts (County Information) to the History section (County Resources) crosses that group line. I feel like this is a common problem also exhibited by Dsammy’s Sandbox 4 which relies soley on the alphabet instead of making use of an outline. By using the alphabet, we’re ignoring more obvious topical groupings which could make things easier to find. Imagine a grocery store that stocked its items in alphabetical order: you would find the pampers next to the potato chips, the Tylenol next to the tomatoes, and the beef, bread, baby food, bottled water, and bananas all in one aisle. This might make for an interesting social experiment but going to really confuse your customers.)]
- There was that one episode in "Life with Lucy" (1986), the most recent one with Lucille Ball and Gordon Gale, where she was a half-owner of hardware store, she had everything in alphabetical order, giving co-owner the slow burn as the result and confused the customers. Dsammy 21:33, 24 September 2011 (UTC)

I have to admit that I am not quite sure why people want to remove the Historical Facts section. Would it be helpful, instead, if it were renamed? Should some of the subheadings be combined? Perhaps we could convert the entire thing into a Timeline listing date of creation (and who named for), boundary changes, dates of record loss, and other important historical dates for the county. Since I really want to keep Historical Facts (or some variation thereof), I’ll try and mock up a page showing some of my ideas and let you know when it’s done. TaylorBE 22:54, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

I have a problem making an either/or choice between Sandbox 3 and 4 because both have good points and drawbacks. 1. I prefer to see the history as a category separate from the resources (whatever they're called), and I like having the repositories as another separate category not interfiled with the resources. That means I see resources as their own category. I agree resources isn't the ideal term, but my brain hasn't thought of a better term yet. 2.That also goes without saying that I am less than impressed with the flat design. It denotes no heiarchy or relationship between categories which there is. 3. I think there should be some subtle teaching in the TOC. For example, with history (and its related headings) first it encourages learners to slow down a bit and learn about the place they are researching if they'll do it. It will also give a more seasoned researcher a place to return to quickly. The various heading levels is also a teacher. Putting repositories at the end is a natural place for them. And using graded heading levels for organizations, as is done in sandbox 3, helps wiki users organize things in their minds naturally.HendricksonP 22:15, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

I have tried to understand the reasonings for moving Historical Facts. Shouldn't we be training the beginners to look for that important information up front? I disagree that everyone is only looking for a link to leave our pages. If other people know the facts, they can easily skip to the data they need.

My vote is to leave the pages with Historical Facts up front.pnh 23:42, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

As well as putting historical facts at the top and in connection with them, I think the subheading "neighboring counties" should be there. It appears in some but not in others. I put it in a county where it was missing because I needed it there. Please leave it. HendricksonP 14:54, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

I am for having 2 main sections, one about the county organization & history, and the other about the records. At first, I thought, it's not a huge deal either way, but then I thought about which way would be easier for which users. I think having all of the topics be "main" topics would be better for beginners, and having the two sections would be better for intermediate users. And since we recently determined that the wiki would be built for intermediate users, I think that could help us make a decision there.-- janellv (talk| contribs) 17:00, 30 September 2011 (UTC)

Do not post comments below here, thank you: Tally so far including those in Forums: For: 0 Against: 3 Uncertain: 2