Glossary of Terms Interface
Editing details
Editing language:Wikitext
Scripting details
Script author:Starfleet Academy
Script location:Common.js
Script language:JavaScript
First version: 8 - Aug - 13

This is an instruction manual, or manual of style, for editing the Glossary of Terms. In time, the glossary's inventor may make this page more helpful. For now, just send him a message if you need help.


The fact that a glossary has to follow a rigid structure makes it easy to edit even if the actual page is locked to source mode, thus it uses wikitext. The vast majority of the wikitext is already there, and most editing will be just text-based. However, if you would like to find out more about aspects of the glossary's design, see these following links:

If you understand the above, you'll be able create your own definitions easily. No need to copy/paste, therefore you're less likely to have something there that's not meant to be.

Here below is a interactive legend for source-mode for glossary editing:


This is an explanation of the source for editing. On the image below, click anything you wish explained.
This is a cutaway version of what's on Glossary of Terms.

Section headingMini table of contents templateContainer open templateContainer close templateDefinition headingDefinition headingMain templateAlternate use headingAlternate use headingAlternate use headingSmallcaps linkDefinition textDefinition textDefinition textSee instead templateGlossary legend mockup for editor


This glossary makes use of five templates. Here's an explanation of those templates:

  • {{Glossary subs toc}} — Creates the tables of contents that appear below primary section headings.
  • {{Glossary container}} and {{Glossary container/close}} — incloses the level three headings, that are the definitions, so that a list can be compiled for the tables of contents.
  • {{See instead}} — produces a soft redirect, if you like, to another definition.
  • {{Main}} — creates a clear link to another article devoted to that term on Locomotive Wiki. This is the only template used here that isn't unique to the glossary.


This section addresses how to create, or add to, definitions in the glossary.


The writing style for the glossary should be that of simple but concise language. These are definitions so no history of the thing being defined is necessary. There is no need to introduce etymology since this isn't a dictionary. Avoid superfluous words since this will make the definition confusing.


Definitions are entered with level 3 headings: ===definition===. This means three equals signs are placed on either side of the text. If you do not do this the script will not display your definition in the TOCs.

If there's an article for the term please add the {{Main}} template as this is where the history of the subject will be.

Some terms are used by more than one motive power. If this is the case, please create a description list like so:

;Steam Locomotive
:The term in relation to steam locomotives.


Steam Locomotive
The term in relation to steam locomotives.


All definitions should be in lower case, unless they are {{#NewWindowLink: wikipedia:proper noun|proper nouns.}} For instance, any part named after the original inventor should have the inventor's name capitalized. However, if any common nouns follow the proper noun(s) these should be in lower case. This is done to ensure that persons using this glossary as a reference don't use the wrong capitalization in their writing.


  • wheel not Wheel.
  • Whyte not whyte.
  • Whyte notation not Whyte Notation.


For identical terms, please don't repeatedly recreate the definition. For one reason, this makes editing the glossary more difficult next time. Instead add the definition to the most popular term, or US term. Then under all synonyms add the {{See instead}} template. This tells viewers that the glossary does contain what they're looking for, but it's just got a different name here.


Links look like this: [[#term|term]].

Most importantly, don't link to another article on the wiki from definition text. Please append a sentence at the end of the definition like "See also, [[Linked article]]". Another important practice is to only link once per definition to another definition. In other words, don't link all instances of the word "locomotive"; just link the first instance. An exception would be when there's a description list listing separate motive power specific information. In these cases please link recurring terms once under each motive power. This means somebody looking up diesel information doesn't have to click a link under steam locomotives or vice versa.


This is a list of conflicts that you may wish to avoid while editing.

The DL issueEdit

If a definition contains a description list it can conflict with {{Main}} since that template contains the same wikitext used in description lists. Namely the colon ":" (used here as an indent). If you place the {{Main}} tempate just above a description list it will become a definition of an imaginary (nonexistent) motive power preceding the real motive powers. To avoid this, simply add an blank line above the first motive power definition term:

{{Main|Locomotive Wiki}}
;Steam locomotive
:The term as it relates to steam locomotives.


Main article: Locomotive Wiki
Steam locomotive
The term as it relates to steam locomotives.

A simple solution:

{{Main|Locomotive Wiki}}

;Steam locomotive
:The term as it relates to steam locomotives.

This simple solution produces:

Main article: Locomotive Wiki
Steam locomotive
The term as it relates to steam locomotives.

Section Z and catsEdit

If you edit the primary (letter) section for "Z" you may find the glossary's categories leaking into the editor. Please ignore these for now. If I* can, I will create another section at the end of the glossary. Once hidden, this will stop any categories from appearing when editing the "Z" section.

Bugs: reporting, and those squashedEdit

If you find that something doesn't work correctly (a bug), please report it in the comments below, or send a message to Starfleet Academy. Here's a list of all bugs to occur in the script:

  • Bug #1: Creates JavaScript error on pages other than the glossary. (Incl. the glossary's support pages, i.e. the history tab.) Status: resolved.

Release historyEdit

Flashforward: For users, i.e. account holders, I may add to the script so this
will include functionality similar to that of Special:WhatLinksHere.

While similar, it will hopefully be in the glossary, it may work by a link being
added next to definition headings (H3). Once clicked, this link would
display/open/highlight (somehow) all links that point to that heading from within
the glossary. I won't be adding this for non-account holders. This is mainly
because it would clutter the already busy glossary for them. For readability,
these links would be on mouse-over.

They would look something like this: ← links

Starfleet Academy (Messages) 10:01, August 22, 2013 (UTC)
Version 1.3 (current)
Added a function to count the number of definitions in the glossary. This is done by finding all the H3 elements in the content space.
When: 20 - Aug - 13
Changes over previous version: Feature addition.
Bugs: No known bugs at this stage.
Version 1.2
Added functionality to include a note in the mini-TOCs if there are no definitions for that section. Semantically, this is a bug fix. If a mini-TOC didn't contain anything, there was an empty UL element. This was a no-no.
When: 16 - Aug - 13
Changes over previous version: Feature addition.
Bugs: No known bugs at this stage.
Version 1.1β
First stable release.
When: 9 - Aug - 13
Changes over previous version: Bug fix (#1).
Missing feature: Doesn't display anything if there are no definitions in section.
Version 1.0β
The first release.
When: 8 - Aug - 13
Missing feature: Doesn't display anything if there are no definitions in section.
Bug: (#1) Creates a JavaScript error on pages other than the glossary.

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