[Pmwiki-users] intuitive learning

Lloyd Budd lloyd
Tue Mar 2 10:15:54 CST 2004

On 26-Feb-04, at 11:48, Patrick R. Michaud wrote:

> On Thu, Feb 26, 2004 at 08:37:14AM -0500, Lloyd Budd wrote:
>> Why does
>> 	[[{{philosophy}}values]]
>> displays as "[1]" , but
>> 	[[{{philosophy}} values]]
>> displays as "values"?  What is the feature here?
> Links of the form [[http://www.cnn.com]] or [[WikiWord]] are called
> "citation links" and display as "[1]", "[2]", etc.  This markup 
> actually
> comes from the original Wiki (http://c2.com/cgi/wiki).
> PmWiki extended this markup to allow arbitrary text to be used for the
> link text, thus [[http://www.cnn.com alternate text]] becomes a link 
> to CNN
> and is displayed as "alternate text".  The key difference is the space
> after the link.
> FreeLinks are an easier way of specifying references to pages without
> having to use WikiWords or do double-bracket sequences.  Thus, the
> markups {{wiki word}} and {{philosophy}} are links to pages called
> "WikiWord" and "Philosophy" but display as "wiki word" and 
> "philosophy".
> We also often need to add alternate endings to a word, so PmWiki 
> includes
> any text immediately following a free link as part of the link text, so
> that {{wiki word}}s  is still a link to "WikiWord" but the 's' is 
> included
> in the link text; i.e., the link displays as "wiki words".

I appreciate how well thought out this is.

> So, in your first example above, ?, PmWiki is
> treating the "values" part as part of the free link, and since there's
> no space after the link name, it's displayed as a citation link  
> ("[1]").

Thank you for giving a very complete picture.

> There's probably a reasonable argument to be made that this isn't very
> intutitive, but it is consistent.  And I haven't really seen another
> system that is more intuitive and offers the same sort of flexibility.

Interesting dilemma.  Assuming that people would only ever do [[{{free 
link}}text]] because they do not understand all of  pmwiki's power, I 
think the question becomes, what is the likely reason for someone to 
make this mistake, and is the current implementation intuitive for 
identifying the problem and allowing for unassisted correction?

I think the answer to these questions suggest that it would be better 
to render 'philosophyvalues'.  Then the question becomes does the 
current design support such a rendering -- my limited experience with 
parser development suggests that this will be unlikely, and so the cost 
may be too great to "fix" this.

> It might also be worthwhile to introduce the convention that the
> [[reference alttext]] syntax allows page titles instead of WikiWords
> for the reference part, eliminating the need for the free link markup
> for single-word page names.  Thus one could write [[Philosophy values]]
> instead [[{{philosophy}} values]].  Any votes in favor/against?
If this is generalized, I have a STRONG ;-) vote for this.

I will demonstrate by requesting that you put the following in an 
'edit' (from a page within group WikiSandbox):





[[WikiSandbox.Philosophy values]]

[[WikiSandbox/Philosophy values]]

Or is it {{PhiloSophy}}




[[WikiSandbox.PhiloSophy values]]

[[WikiSandbox/PhiloSophy values]]

This relates to my previous message on this thread where I  (subtlety) 
suggest that it would be amazing if PMWiki ignored case in resolving 
page titles (and groups when with page title).

> BTW, don't forget that {{free links}} have a powerful alternate ending
> structure using the "cut syntax".  Thus {{philosophy}} and
> {{philosoph|y}}ies both link to the same page but display as 
> "philosophy"
> and "philosophies".  I often find this to be much easier to work with
> than having to write [[{{philosophy}} philosophies]].

Yes, this is a fantastic feature!

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