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Statistics 2015

Red links

  • As of January 12, 2015, there are currently 42,728 wanted articles with 81,247 links to them (red links). (The majority only have one link to them.) The front page says we have about 10,666 articles, meaning we're 19.98% complete. The last time I did this (January 29, 2014), we were at 9,797 articles with 38,961 wanted ones (20.09% done). This is the first time our "percent done" has gone down since 2011. We added 6,378 red links. (Note that wanted pages represent any topic which "could" have an article, not just those that "should" or "probably will" have articles.) --Lkseitz (talk) 22:03, 12 January 2015 (PST)
    • I probably added half those red links this week on 20th Street North. --Dystopos (talk) 06:46, 13 January 2015 (PST)
      • I take comfort in the notion that at least we know more about what we don't know. --Dystopos (talk) 07:07, 13 January 2015 (PST)
        • Now we have 11,058 articles and 46,454 wanted articles. Since January 12 we've added 992 articles and 3,726 red links. So by that measure we're now 19.23% "done" (articles / articles + red links) and we're averaging 3.76 new red links for every new article. At this negative rate, we should be able to "complete" Bhamwiki sometime in the 1980s. --Dystopos (talk) 09:02, 23 June 2015 (PDT)
          • As of July 26, we're looking at 11,166 articles and 46,931 red links (19.22%) think it was the Birmingham Ironmen roster that held back my progress. --Dystopos (talk) 14:00, 26 July 2015 (PDT)


"WikiFactor" is a measure of a site's popularity, derived by finding which is the last page (on Special:Popularpages) to have 1000x the number of page views as the number of its ranking.

Our wikiFactor is now 36, up from 34 on January 29, 2014. --Lkseitz (talk) 22:03, 12 January 2015 (PST)

    • 37 on June 23, 2015 --Dystopos (talk) 09:02, 23 June 2015 (PDT)

UAB template feedback

Looking for feedback on a potential UAB template, found here. In particular, I need guidance on what articles deserve inclusion within the template. --Lkseitz (talk) 23:31, 5 February 2015 (PST)

  • The content looks good. Useful template. Aesthetically, I'd use a thinner border and nix the gold. Green on white in the header and everything else default colors. That's me. --Dystopos (talk) 11:15, 6 February 2015 (PST)
    • Oh, wait, I see what I did wrong with the borders. I disagree about the gold, but am certainly open to discussion. What do you think of the version there now? All colors but the link texts are from that UAB colors page you found. Unfortunately, link colors are almost impossible to customize for a single template. --Lkseitz (talk) 08:43, 7 February 2015 (PST)

Streets in detail

As my acquisition of a couple of city directories drags our street articles into overbearing detail, It may be time to start thinking about how to organize the data better. I have a few ideas, but they're sort of redundant and sometimes contradictory. One thing I'd LIKE to do is push tenant information off into the articles about specific buildings. Sometimes we don't know when the buildings were replaced and we usually don't know when the tenants moved in and out. We also have a few articles about specific addresses. As a stop-gap we could start by splitting the articles by neighborhood, or by block (though you lose some continuity). Since the downtown district is where the detail gets crowded, we could also separate just the downtown parts of the street articles. Unless we come up with a systematic approach, I'll probably just start trying something. Probably with 2nd Avenue North. --Dystopos (talk) 21:36, 16 February 2015 (PST)

  • Well, we knew the tenant information would get unwieldy eventually. I presume you're only talking about splitting the locations part of the article and leaving the main article intact? I really think each street should have a comprehensive article to outline its history and route, even if it doesn't detail all locations along the street (like the highway articles). And I agree whatever we do for downtown may not carry over everywhere, particularly suburban streets. Articles on addresses seem suitable when the building doesn't have a name. Hmm, but does that mean redirects from each address to a building for consistency? --Lkseitz (talk) 23:06, 16 February 2015 (PST)
    • Yes, we'd still have a main article about the whole run of a street, but split the locations down where they're too unwieldy. Downtown, if it's not the only place this makes sense, is at least the priority, so "2nd Avenue North in the City Center" may become an article name if I'm not missing something better. As for buildings and addresses, there are a lot of times that can get messy, as a building may span several "natural" addresses. In the old days you'd just send mail to "Room 234, Watts Building" or whatever, but then the address would represent just the entrance. And sometimes the entrance would move, or the owner would decide that 2200 sounds nicer than 2206. There's just lots of ways that addresses and buildings slip past each other. And somehow there used to be an 1846 2nd Avenue when the "natural" scheme would have stopped at 1830. Reality is inconsistent. --Dystopos (talk) 09:23, 17 February 2015 (PST)
      • Yes, addresses are messy. I'm still unclear how Lyric Hot Dogs and Superior Furniture both used 1808 3rd Avenue North. But then, the Alabama Theatre and Goldstein's Furs both were using 1811 for a while due to a typo or misreading of an address. And then there's all those lovely ½ addresses for the 2nd floors once upon a time. But if someone wants to work their way down the block, having 1811 3rd Avenue North redirect to Alabama Theatre might be helpful. By the way, I'm jealous; how does one acquire old city directories? Ebay? --Lkseitz (talk) 20:55, 17 February 2015 (PST)
        • In this case, one trades in a gift certificate for a pile of money to Jim Reed, and then waits for Mr. Reed to dig one out of his storage facility. If you thought Reed Books WAS his storage facility, you are, like I was, mistaken. --Dystopos (talk) 12:41, 22 February 2015 (PST)
  • [UPDATE]: See 1st Avenue North (Downtown) for a trial solution. --Dystopos (talk) 08:41, 23 June 2015 (PDT)

March 15

For a while I was trying to get to New Orleans for "Super Sunday", but the hotels are a bit too pricy. Upshot is I should be in town the weekend of the 13-14-15 of March. Any thoughts about where to meet? Do we have more babies than editors now? Chuck E. Cheese's? --21:37, 16 February 2015 (PST) [edited Dystopos (talk) 09:17, 17 February 2015 (PST)]

  • I don't currently see anything special on the calendar March 14–15, but I should verify against the work calendar. --Lkseitz (talk) 22:55, 16 February 2015 (PST)
    • I forgot to mark this on my calendar and now have other commitments this weekend. But given it's this weekend and nothing's been planned, I'm guessing it's not happening this weekend? --Lkseitz (talk) 05:55, 11 March 2015 (PDT)
      • I expect not. Maybe we can meet up at a Barons game this season? --Dystopos (talk) 11:43, 11 March 2015 (PDT)


Between March 15, 2006 and March 8, 2015 fulfilled 113,959,397 successful requests for information in its database, an average of 34,747 per day. There were 83,253,710 successful requests to render pages; an average of 25,383 per day. In all, our server has transferred 2.39 terabytes of data, an average of 763.82 megabytes per day. --Dystopos (talk) 05:57, 15 March 2015 (PDT)

Commas with Jr. & Sr.

Earlier this year, Grammar Girl covered the use of commas with name suffixes like "Jr" and "Sr." The bottom line is that most style guides say not to include one. I don't know if we want to adopt that officially or not, but it would make the lists of births and deaths for the context portion of the year pages a little easier to parse. --Lkseitz (talk) 05:14, 23 June 2015 (PDT)

  • Seems reasonable. I'll see if I can get used to it. cites conflicting style guides and summarizes, "[s]o, if you are a traditionalist, use the commas; if you are progressive, don't. As with many matters of grammar and punctuation, the most important thing is to be consistent." That's one thing we'll probably never be so long as I'm contributing. (Garner’s Modern American Usage, sounds like an interesting read.) --Dystopos (talk) 08:36, 23 June 2015 (PDT)
    • It does require redirects and the repair thereof. Work, work, work. --Dystopos (talk) 14:35, 23 June 2015 (PDT)
      • I don't know that I'm going to make a special effort to change all the existing entries. I was thinking more of a "going forward" policy. I'm all for consistency, as you know, but I agree we'll never have it 100%. I'm hoping we'll find most of the Jr/Sr articles have a full set of redirects for the various combinations of commas/no commas and periods/no periods. --Lkseitz (talk) 05:28, 24 June 2015 (PDT)
        • If not, they should. So it's about the same amount of work, work, work. --Dystopos (talk) 06:59, 24 June 2015 (PDT)
          • And unfortunately I'm 100% wrong about those redirects already existing. Sorry. --Lkseitz (talk) 07:24, 12 September 2015 (PDT)


  • We currently show 5,122 files illustrating our 11,166 articles. That's 0.46 illustrations per article, or 1 image for every 2.18 articles. --Dystopos (talk) 14:03, 26 July 2015 (PDT)


Did you realize that users can set their default thumbnail size? It's in Preferences under the Appearance tab. So I'm wondering if we should be setting thumbnail sizes in most cases or just let the site take the users default. They know the size of their display better than us. Not sure what the default is for people who aren't logged in. --Lkseitz (talk) 21:24, 1 January 2016 (PST)

  • Almost nobody is logged in, so it almost won't matter. I have been thinking that the default default is way small and that we're helping out by making things bigger. --Dystopos (talk) 20:06, 3 January 2016 (PST)
    • Surely you can change the default default, can't you? --Lkseitz (talk) 04:55, 4 January 2016 (PST)
      • Hm. I suppose so. I'd have to modify localsettings.php again. I always hold my breath whenever I go down there. --Dystopos (talk) 07:00, 4 January 2016 (PST)
        • "If you change this array, you also want to change the default user option for thumb sizes on pages. Each thumb size set is automatically associated with an integer value that may be used for the "thumbsize" user option. This value always starts with "0" for the lowest thumb size set in the array and increases by 1 per additional thumb size defined, e.g. if five different thumb sizes were set the lowest value for the user option is "0" while "4" is the highest. If an invalid value is set the wiki will break!" (link) --Dystopos (talk) 07:02, 4 January 2016 (PST)

10th Anniversary : March 15, 2016

I've been a user of this website for years so I knew it has been around for a long time but I didn't realize it has been almost 10 years until I became a contributer today. With that said, I think this is something that should be celebrated by both the site and other outlets. I think some sites like and others would want to mention the milestone in an article. This could be good press for the site in general as well as a good way to let current users know how much history the site has. What do y'all think? --MichaelTunnell (talk) 19:55, 20 January 2016 (PST)

  • Besides you, me and Lee, there's very little activity on the site these days. I'd considered issuing a release, but I'm not sure I actually want the attention. I welcome further discussion. --Dystopos (talk) 06:24, 21 January 2016 (PST)
    • From the outside it did seem like the site team was pretty small and I think that is another reason it should be given some press. I think it would help get contributers as well as get more users using the site if the 10th anniversary was celebrated. It doesn't have to be anything big, just getting the word out. top voted comment on reddit for history of Birmingham request - I'm curious though, why would you not want the attention for the site? --MichaelTunnell (talk) 17:45, 21 January 2016 (PST)
      • Good question. I can extemporize at more length some time with you. Basically I'm happy with Bhamwiki as it is and I'm nervous about positioning it as something else. People find it when they need it (usually through Google searches), and they don't have a lot of extra expectations. It's growing steadily, if slowly, and at this rate its easy for me to keep a handle on the content. If there were an explosion of contributions, I'd lose that handle. It might be for the best, but it's not necessarily my desire. Worth discussing, though. --Dystopos (talk) 09:07, 26 January 2016 (PST)
  • Par-ty! Par-ty! Par-ty! --Lkseitz (talk) 19:29, 21 January 2016 (PST)
  • I'm hoping to start contributing more (again) and would of course join in a celebration of our 10th anniversary. --Wheresdib (talk) 08:21, 26 January 2016 (PST)
    • Alrighty then. Let's plan a party. March 15 is a Tuesday. What date works best for everybody? --Dystopos (talk) 09:03, 26 January 2016 (PST)
      • That week is spring break for us, so either the weekend before or after seems to be open at the moment. The sooner we get it on the calendar, the better, though. --Lkseitz (talk) 12:20, 6 February 2016 (PST)
        • Sunday March 13 or the next weekend are good for us. --Wheresdib (talk) 12:52, 6 February 2016 (PST)
          • The date is set as Sunday, March 13. Nominations are now open for venues. We have done well at Silvertron and Jim 'N Nicks. Newly-opened places perhaps worth considering include the Filling Station in Crestwood, Sky Castle Gastro-Lounge in Lakeview, and Buck Mulligan's at Five Points. Let me know and I'll solicit RSVPs on Facebook and see about securing a table or room. --Dystopos (talk) 14:13, 8 February 2016 (PST)

Statistics 2016

Red links

  • As of February 8, 2015, there are 49,229 wanted articles with who knows how many links to them (red links). We have about 10,666 articles, so we're now 18.94% complete. Two years ago (January 29, 2014), we were at 9,797 articles with 38,961 wanted ones (20.09% done). Our "percent done" continues to track backwards since as we've added more red links than articles. (Note that wanted pages represent any topic which "could" have an article, not just those that "should" or "probably will" have articles. And this phenomenon is probably best explained by my use of City Directories to populate street articles with abundant red links) --Dystopos (talk) 14:25, 8 February 2016 (PST)


"WikiFactor" is a measure of a site's popularity, derived by finding which is the last page (on Special:Popularpages) to have 1000x the number of page views as the number of its ranking.

Our wikiFactor is now 39, up from 34 on January 29, 2014. --Dystopos (talk) 14:25, 8 February 2016 (PST)

Today in history

Let's think about a way to automatically put a "Today in history" feature on the front page. It may require creating stripped-down summaries for each date that would be called up based on the actual date someone is looking at it. --Dystopos (talk) 15:01, 8 February 2016 (PST)

  • So I looked at Wikipedia's front page and it appears that's exactly what they did. Each date has a template that's manually edited. The front page has code to automatically fill in the date on the template name, so it changes each day. Mind you, their date templates aren't in the Template namespace, but in the Wikipedia namespace (equivalent to our Bhamwiki namespace). I'm not sure how that works, but it's probably not necessary for us, either. --Lkseitz (talk) 06:56, 11 February 2016 (PST)

Birthday photos

In case it's not clear, sometimes the photo selected for a particular day's "Births" section is chosen because it's the only person for whom we have a photo. Feel free to change the photo if we get one for someone who had a bigger impact on the Birmingham area than the current person shown. --Lkseitz (talk) 06:49, 11 February 2016 (PST)

  • I always feel free to change things. Thanks! --Dystopos (talk) 10:46, 11 February 2016 (PST)