Improving categories

The following is a draft of a proposal by en:user:zocky for some new features. Please feel free to improve and/or comment.

Simple improvementsEdit

Customizable links in category listsEdit


  • Introduce a new kind of links to categories in articles: [[series:category_name|sort_key|display_text]]. The only difference between category and series links is that when an article includes a series link to a category, a box with links to all members of the category is displayed, replacing the current series boxes and templates like en:template:europe.

Major featuresEdit

Allow pages to display category information in various waysEdit

It would be useful if articles could display information harvested from categories.

  • Introduce a new kind of insertion tag {{category:category_name|format}}. Format could be one of the following:
    • box: display a compact box with links to category members using the display_text parameters.
    • list: display a bulleted list of links to category members using the display_text parameters.
    • defs: display a definition list using the display_text parameters and first sentences of category members.
    • leads: display a section header (display_text) and first paragraph for each member. Either link section headers to member articles or provide explicit links.
    • all: display a section header and whole contents for each member.
  • box format would be used instead of the many manually updated box templates we have now.
  • list and defs formats would be great for articles like en:President of the United States or en:Pokemon, which need long lists, which are hard to maintain.
  • leads format would be of great help on many overview pages, like en:History of Europe
  • Use of defs and leads formats would encourage standardization and improvemnt of article intros. It would also blur the editorial difference between "articles" and "sections", which would make some of the fiercest deletionist/inclusionist disputes moot.
  • all format would make the management of pages like the Village Pump, VFD, etc. much easier.