User talk:Oleg Alexandrov/Archive2

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jScott Trapp vs jScott.trapp

Hi Oleg.

I happened to see your welcome message to User_talk:JScott_Trapp. However there is no user by that name it should have been User_talk:jScott.trapp. This was do to a mistake I made on the Wikipedia:WikiProject Mathematics/Participants. So you inadvertently created User_talk:JScott_Trapp. Perhaps you should request that the page be speedy deleted, this should work since you are the sole editior of the page. In case you don't know how, you just add the template {{delete}} to that page, you could also list the article here Wikipedia:Speedy deletion to provide an explanation. Sorry for the trouble. Paul August 18:02, Mar 22, 2005 (UTC)

Hi Paul. I put the speedy deletion template and explained on that page why it should be deleted. Thanks for pointing this out! Oleg Alexandrov 18:12, 22 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Help! Somebody highjacked Paul's account while he is on vacation, and doing all kinds of things in here! Or is it a clerverly devised bot Paul wrote? :) Or does Paul mean this is what vacation means, away from work, able to concentrate on Wikipedia full time? Oleg Alexandrov 17:48, 22 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I'm just nervously doing a little editing while waiting till it's time to go to the airport, and then it's off to Sicily ;-) Paul August's Bot

Welcome back! Hope you had a good time, and are now ready to plounge back in the virtual world. :) Oleg Alexandrov 19:06, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Thanks. I'm back, but I'm a bit addled, so "plounge" sounds about right ;-) Paul August 22:00, Apr 12, 2005 (UTC)

Bot bug

Hi Oleg,

Your categories/language links bot has a minor bug. See its change to Template:0-9.

Cheers, dbenbenn | talk 03:25, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Thanks. I inspect a good chuck of the changes by the bot, and I did see this particular one. However, I thought that it does not matter so much if the space is there or not. Do you think that can be an issue? Oleg Alexandrov 04:06, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I can answer my own question. I think that extra space in the template introduces extra space in the article. So, sorry!
And the reason for the bug is very simple. The bot did not expect to find a page where there is absolutely nothing but a category. I will fix it. Thanks again! Oleg Alexandrov 04:27, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Matrix chain multiplication

Thanks for your annoyed comments about this article — you persuaded me to actually finish it. I hope you like how it turned out. Deco 06:53, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Well, if my comment looked annoyed, but that made you finish the article, then that is good!
The article looks indeed more complete now. Forgive me for not saying more, but I don't know much about that math area. Thanks and enjoy! Oleg Alexandrov 16:00, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The two IMAs may be quite different

I don't know much about the Institute OF Mathematic and Its Applications, but the article says it's a professional society. Usually professional society means an organization that anyone in, or in many cases anyone interested in, the profession can join. I don't think the Institute FOR Mathematics and Its Applications is that kind of thing. It employs professors, mostly but not all with temporary appointments, and zillions of postdocs, and I suspect nearly no one else is affiliated with that organization. So I have doubts about the appropriateness of the category link you added. Michael Hardy 23:43, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

You are very right. When I added that category I did think something was odd, but did not pay much attention to it.
And I certainly should have known better. I was a grad student at the Unversity of Minnesota until last August, and being in applied math I certainly intersected with the institute on quite a bit of occasions.
PS The above also implies that we were at the same time and at the same place for at least one year, but somehow we never intersected. (Though I remember seeing you in the computer labs quite often, but that was before I started contributing here, so I had no obvious reason to get to talk to you :) Oleg Alexandrov 23:52, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Thank You

I appreciate the help and advice you have given me, and have adapted my editing accordingly. Guardian of Light 04:40, 28 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Geometry of Complex Numbers

I am moving this to of Complex Numbers while I am still investigating it.

If you are interested, ulimately I hope to build a java screen saver that does quasifuchan limit sets. (User:Pmurray forgot to sign)

Great you moved it. I might visit it from time to time.
About the java screen saver, I am not sure I understand what that has to do with Wikipedia. Enjoy! Oleg Alexandrov 05:09, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Well, the screensaver isn't strictly to do with wikipedia, but seeing as I am going to the trouble of getting on top of all this math, it seems a shame not to write it down somewhere. Most of the stuff in Mobius Transformation is mine.

I already have a couple of other screensavers. One is an implementation of "quasitiler" (for which I had to find out about zonotopes), and the other projects world costline data onto the screen using various map projections and rolls the globe around in arbitrary directions - the idewa being that it allows you to see how the various projections distort the map. (User:Pmurray forgot to sign)

Got it. Just one remark. It is good to sign your posts. That is accomplished by putting four tildas one after another — ~~~~, which Wikipedia will replace by your username and date, like this: Oleg Alexandrov 05:36, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Would you assist me with a problem?

It's an integral I'm working on and it's deceptively difficult.

Guardian of Light 03:06, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I can try. I cannot do it today, as I have to go home now, but you can post it on my talk page and I will look at it tomorrow. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 03:10, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)

It's on my talk page in the problems section; last one.

Guardian of Light 03:13, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Any leeway? Guardian of Light 04:36, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

your bots scare me

do you have a page explaining how your spell checking pseudo-bot works? - Omegatron 04:08, Mar 30, 2005 (UTC)

Got it, madman with a mad robot gone astray! :)
I actually do all the changes by hand. All the bot does, is (a) identify the pages with likely misspellings from a local copy of math articles of Wikipedia, (b) fetch fresh copies of those (c) use ispell to suggest changes, (d) apply the changes I decide, and (e) upload stuff back to wikipedia. So, I do only the crucial step, deciding if a word is trully misspelled, and what the spelling should be. So, if there is any mistake, it is all my fault, not the bot.
Other questions? :) Oleg Alexandrov 04:23, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Yes, I am glad that you are in the loop.  :-) Have you read through this stuff: User:Omegatron#Spell_checker? - Omegatron 04:31, Mar 30, 2005 (UTC)
I think what the page you pointed to says is that one should be careful with converting British to American English and vice-versa. No, I don't do that, I don't even bother to examine which variant shows up more often in an article. If you have other suggestions, please let me know. Thanks. Oleg Alexandrov 05:11, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Yes, that's all I was pointing out. People get mad if you change one to the other. I'm not sure what ispell is. - Omegatron 05:46, Mar 30, 2005 (UTC)
I use American ispell, but I don't touch British spellings (I do remember from when I learned English, those -ise, -our, and what not). Oleg Alexandrov 05:54, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Yeah that's fine then. - Omegatron 06:17, Mar 30, 2005 (UTC)
Just FYI, memoize was spelled correctly in dynamic programming (this is an eternal source of confusion, believe me). Does this bot do something to detect changes it made that were reverted like some of the others? Deco 05:43, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I have all the pages on my watchlist, so I will see if some reversions happen. So far, you are the only one. And again, ultimately it is me who decides the changes, so the bot is innocent. :) Oleg Alexandrov 05:54, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I changed your edits to discrete Fourier transform as well. :-) - Omegatron 06:17, Mar 30, 2005 (UTC)
Another (partial) revert at Christoffel symbols. However, that's the only mistake I found in the seven pages on my watchlist, so please continue. -- Jitse Niesen 12:44, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Thank you guys. When I spellcheck with the bot, I don't have just the word in front of me, but also a large chunck of contents, so again, it is just as if I spell by hand in an editor, but faster.
About Omegatron's change at discrete Fourier transform, I think my replacement "higher dimensions" looked better than the original "multidimensions" — all in one word. But I agree that the current "more than one dimension" is even better. I will pay more attention at the context. Oleg Alexandrov 16:10, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)
If its not the bots fault, it is the operator who needs more education in the improper change of "the same 80 kelvin interval" to "the same 80 Kelvin interval" at Equation of state. See SI, kelvin, and many other sources. Gene Nygaard 01:51, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Sorry! I promise to stick to pure grammatical errors. (I thought that since it was Farenheight, and Celcius, then it must be Kelvin. Now I see I am wrong.) Oleg Alexandrov 01:54, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Wow, that's quite subtle. I might have made that mistake also. Learn something new everyday. Deco 04:02, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Found another — practise is actually a legitimate British spelling. I advise you add a bunch of British spellings to your dictionary to avoid trouble — changing British to U.S. will earn you silly accusations of ethnocentrism. Deco 04:20, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
fulfil vs fulfill is another UK/US difference. I forgot which is which, but you changed UK spelling in US spelling in equation solving. I couldn't be bothered to revert, even though UK is of course much better ;) Jitse Niesen 11:49, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Noting that fulfil is on the list I gave — really, add them all, I mean it. :-) Deco 17:35, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Yes, yes! I made that change before you told me about the list! I am taking off to today to learn British spellings. :( Oleg Alexandrov 17:38, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Oops, sorry about that. Don't worry, it's not your fault, I'm sure you'll pick them up quickly. :-) I didn't even know about fulfil. Deco 21:26, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)
That's fine. In case my reply was upset, sorry for that. I will resume my spelling when I manage to improve the results to error ratio. Oleg Alexandrov 23:00, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for your welcome

And thanks for the tip on capitalization. As you can tell, I'm still getting settled in here. Nice to see that someone noticed me =)

Reedbeta 05:11, 1 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Edit summary

Hello, Oleg! Thanks for your welcome!

I usually do write an edit summary, maybe 85% of the time. I just leave it blank when my contribution is very simple. But I will do my best to always write an edit summary :) Porcher 09:59, 1 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Analytic functions

See Talk:Analytic_function.

Proof Techniques

Hi there, thanks for the reminder. This was my first Wikipedia article, and I unfortunately, neglected to fix it (style issues/PNG issues). I'll take care of this soon.

Tygar 00:19, Apr 11, 2005 (UTC)

Spelling standardization

I use a custom-written computer program that counts British and American spellings. It only considers unambiguous instances. For example, grey and gray are both correct in U.S. English, but in UK English, it's always grey. '-ize' endings are acceptable in UK English and the norm in U.S. English. '-ise' is only used in UK English and so on... SpNeo 16:09, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I've created a British/American Spelling Guide. If you're interested, check it out: User:SpNeo/Spelling Guide SpNeo 16:11, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)
See my talk page for the answer to your question. SpNeo 07:58, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)


I must be a really lousy seems like every ten minutes you pick up another one of my spelling mistakes.--CSTAR 21:10, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

That's the whole point of my spelling project, to make certain people feel bad about themselves. :)
I was delighted to see your message. So far (see above), all I've been getting was complaints about how I misjudged something when doing spelling. (But those are getting rare lately :) Oleg Alexandrov 21:35, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Actually I've also noticed you fix dozens of legitimate spelling mistakes, including some of mine. I guess it's a human tendency to make more noise over mistakes than things done right. Sorry about that. Deco 22:33, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)
That's right Deco, it is you to whom I was thinly alluding above. :) (I should have put more smilies there, as it seems I make too many people feel bad about themselves, for one reason or another. :) Oleg Alexandrov 23:12, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Your name crops up quite often on my watchlist too. But hey, at least I am not the only lousy speller on wikipedia :) MathMartin 21:49, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)


Hi Oleg, thanks for the style pointer. I've always been an agressive capitalizer--maybe that's why I did so well in high school German. Sympleko 10:07, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)

will oblige on categorizing

i see your point now on how better to categorize articles, in particular with the calculus article. regards Mayumashu 01:20, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Sounds good. I should have posted on your talk page rather than reverting your work though. Hope that did not make you too mad. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 01:21, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

no, you were fine, Oleg (if i may use what is your first name, i presume). i deserved it for the calculus re-edit, which was half rashness and half not having had a morning coffee. i m at work trying to compile an all-inclusive Category:Academic disciplines page and am learning about the categorizing of academia as i go (being rather non-academic myself). my name s Matthew, by the way. took a glance at your page and saw you re in academic math - wicked! all the best with that and in enjoying wiki. Mayumashu 01:38, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Nice to meet you Matthew. Thank you for your warm message. Oleg Alexandrov 01:40, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Headline, (wery funny! a headline about a headline =)

I doubt the wisdom of inserting the ==Sister projects about the Julia set== heading. I did the same to the Julia page as I did to the Mandelbrot page and that I did because it did not look good having both "wikisource" and "commons" together in the "extarnal links" section. First I just moved the two links above the headline but that did not look good either so I inserted the new headline, (the best idéa I came up with). But if you do not like this? then please try to find a better solution. // Solkoll 18:40, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I don't have any solutions. I am just good at criticizing. :) Oleg Alexandrov 20:02, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I can take that =) // S

Hell ...

Is Oleg Alexandrov pointing out spelling mistakes --- for all eternity.--CSTAR 02:00, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

He - he :) Wait till I correlate the spelling mistakes with their contributors, and make the list of top misspellers of all time. The first three will go ... Oleg Alexandrov 03:23, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Q-analog article

First, thanks for the link fix on Gaussian binomials. I'm new here and still trying to figure out these little details.

I agree that we need a q-analog article. We could start with the information I added the the q-series article, but there is certainly much more that could and should be said. (Vince Vatter forgot to sign)

Unfortunately I know nothing about q-analogs. You're all welcome to start a new article, and I can help if you have any questions.
BTW, you should have kept that default welcome I put on your page, it has good links, especially the manual of style. Oleg Alexandrov 20:18, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Changing merge templates

Please see Template talk:mergewith#Merge template changes before changing more merge templates. - Omegatron 12:42, Apr 16, 2005 (UTC)

I changed only those wich are math related (6 or so), and I fixed by hand some style issues. I do not plan to change more. Changing to the new template will be a tricky process, I am not sure a bot can do the job without user supervision and occasional tweaks. I wish the people who changed the templates thought better. Oleg Alexandrov 15:01, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Certain user-agents excluded

Thanks a lot for the offer of help--it looks like mvs is exactly what I need. FYI, mvs doesn't use "libwww-perl/..." for its User-agent: header; from line 140 of WWW::Mediawiki::Client:

140:    my $agent = 'WWW::Mediawiki::Client/' . $VERSION;

Cheers! Demi T/C 04:54, 2005 Apr 17 (UTC)

I think you are referring to the lines:
   $self->{ua} = LWP::UserAgent->new();
   my $agent = 'WWW::Mediawiki::Client/' . $VERSION;
so you are right, the User-agent is something else. I meant to say that it uses the libwww-perl library one way or another, which follows from the LWP::UserAgent->new(); thing above. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 05:58, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for your welcome

Hi Oleg, I am relatively new here, but will try to contribute as much as I can.

Relax, do no more than what is fun. :) Oleg Alexandrov 04:34, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I see you are from Moldova... I am actually from Russia, currently at MSU.

Right. Actually I am ethnically Romanian, with poor Russian. Oleg Alexandrov 04:34, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

My twin's name is Oleg. So strange... Igny 03:34, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Coincidences do happen. :) Oleg Alexandrov 04:34, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Regarding my RfA

Hello Oleg. I was promoted to admin today, and I wanted to thank you for the time yo took to consider my RfA. As a result of your comments, and those of others about my low edit count (and possible inexperience in certain areas of WP), I will proceed with caution when using my privileges. I hope not to disappoint you. Thanks. Phils 20:11, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Congratulations! You have the traits of a good admin. Oleg Alexandrov 20:40, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

External Links

Oleg, thanks for correcting me. I will use proper capitalization from now on and will review a couple other articles to which I made changes.

I am also thinking of opening a wiki on, with the purpose of writing lessons or, rather, pages that clarify issues that are typically causing difficulties for students. One day I will merge those into wikipedia, after consulting the elders here.

I have a nice formula and graph display system on my site, which is easier than latex (and less powerful), but it is more appealing to high school math teacher types. It works wherever I need to display dynamically generated formulas. Example: 2x^2-3x-5 will display as it should. I am saying this because I will try to use this system for handling formulae on these lesson pages, rather than the standard wikipedia math stuff. Later, these images can be imported by other means.

check out

I am still learning. Thanks. Igor.

Thanks for your welcome

Hi Oleg, thanks for the welcome! I'll check out those links :) Conskeptical 07:25, 24 Apr 2005 (UTC)

RE Formatting

I replyed again on my talk. – ABCD 00:56, 26 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Continuous linear operator created

I created a stubby Continuous linear operator and changed all necessary redirects. MathMartin 22:51, 26 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Thanks a lot for letting me know! Oleg Alexandrov 23:01, 26 Apr 2005 (UTC)


Thanks for removing the bad words you put in a wikipedia article. Oleg Alexandrov 05:48, 2 May 2005 (UTC)

Sorry, was just demonstrating to a friend that truly, you can edit anything. 05:53, 2 May 2005 (UTC)
And now you saw how fast sometimes bad things get noticed! :) Oleg Alexandrov 05:55, 2 May 2005 (UTC)


Mulţumesc foarte mult for the excellent work on List of mathematical topics. Are you planning to regularly run a bot that adds the new articles from Category:Mathematics and its subcategories to LoMT? In that case, I won't have to add any new articles myself; I just make sure that they are in a maths category and they will eventually appear automatically in LoMT. On a related issue: would it be possible to make a huge page containing all the LoMT subpages, from List of mathematical topics (A) to List of mathematical topics (Z)? Then we can track all the changes at once with the "Related changes" link, and finally rule our section of Wikipedia :) But perhaps the people administrating the servers will not be happy with it; I'm not sure how hard such a page would be on the servers. All the best, Jitse Niesen 22:56, 2 May 2005 (UTC).

I was very pleased with you thanking me in Romanian. :)
I am not yet done with the List of mathematical topics; I went only through around 10-20 categories or so, of the around 200-300 available. So, I will keep on adding more articles in the next several days/weeks.
Yes, I do plan to run this bot regularly, after I make a definite List of mathematics categories.
As far as a page containing all the pages from List of mathematical topics (A) to List of mathematical topics (Z), that's very easy to make, see the wiki source of List of mathematical topics (A-C). What do you think of such a virtual master page? Maybe we should discuss this in a larger setting.
By the way, one issue which we will need to discuss in a while is, what is a math category? For example, is Category:Equations math, since it has equations from physics and chemistry? Oleg Alexandrov 23:11, 2 May 2005 (UTC)

"Such a virtual master page" would be what I was thinking of; I think it would be a useful resource.

I'm starting to realize that automatically adding new articles to LoMT is not as simple as I thought, as your example of Category:Equations shows. I think that Laplace's equation is maths, and Larmor equation is not; both of them are in the category. However, if articles from such "dubious" categories are not automatically added, then it will be hard to keep LoMT up-to-date. Since the boundary between maths and non-maths is arbitrary, and currently a lot of boundary cases are listed on LoMT, I think there is a good case to make things easy to automate and add all of Category:Equations. As far as I see, the only use of LoMT is to use the "Related changes" link, and in that case it doesn't matter if the list has a few more entries. -- Jitse Niesen 14:31, 3 May 2005 (UTC)

So far, I operate from the assumption that if an article is really math, then it will also show up in more specific categories besides the generic Category:Equations. And you are right, there are issues sometimes with what a math article is. But as you said, if we err, we could err towards adding an article rather than not. Oleg Alexandrov 15:27, 3 May 2005 (UTC)

You're right: Laplace's equation also appears in Category:Partial differential equations. A quick look at that category shows all its articles are maths, except possibly Chaplygin's equation and Particle in a spherically symmetric potential. So I think it's safe to consider cat:PDEs as maths. Hence, I'd agree with your assumption. Perhaps, when you're done, you can make a list of articles appearing on the old LoMT that are not in one of the maths categories, and we can see whether they are in the wrong category or we need to redesignate some categories as mathematical. -- Jitse Niesen 15:48, 3 May 2005 (UTC)

I was also thinking of making a list of articles appearing on the old LoMT that are not in one of the maths categories! Actually I tried it once. There were several hunderd articles, if not one thousand. Many of them are redirects, red links, or disambig. Some were things I was not sure about. I will try this again in a while.
I think you noticed, I also asked Charles to comment on the virtual master list thing. On the bus to school, I was now thinking about it. We could name it List of mathematical topics (A-Z). My concern would be that when we query this page for recent changes, it might take a long time to load, especially like today, when the server is kind of slow. But looks like the only issue to me. Oleg Alexandrov 17:53, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
On additions: it is probably better to add inclusively, and let people delete anything actually annoying by hand. I'm a bit busy right now with other copyediting, and also bad hair days with my ISP. Anyway, thanks also from me for all your work on this, Oleg; you could have it in various languages. Charles Matthews 17:37, 4 May 2005 (UTC)

Calculus sidebar

Hey, thanks for bringing that to my attention, I wasn't aware there was discussion about it. I've added what I think should be done to the talk page, so you can go check it out and see if that sounds good. Sholtar 21:28, May 3, 2005 (UTC)

I wrote more on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Mathematics. Oleg Alexandrov 22:23, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
By the way, I changed your user page a bit, to make it conform to the manual of style. Oleg Alexandrov 22:24, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for that, I'm so used to capitalizing everything that I just did that by reflex. Sholtar 23:03, May 3, 2005 (UTC)

Thanks, regarding variable names

Thanks for your welcom message. Also, thanks for pointing out that variable names should be italicized! I read with a speech synthesizer, so the distinction between x and x is lost. Chris 00:11, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Thank you for your advice

I'll add edit summary next time :) --Mosesofmason 16:52, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

recent minor edits

Hi; just in case: don't panic when you notice I become "active" again, I'm not really "back at work"... ;-)

I don't quite understand what you want to say in here. But OK, I will not panic :) Oleg Alexandrov 20:15, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Just was thinking about, however, adding a comment after all the volume/area formulae on the Pi page, kind of "all these formulae are in fact a consequence of the second one, as all of them give the volume of rotational body (to be explained) by the formula V=\pi\int\rho(z)dz". I hesitate, because I know that the "pi" page is really a most public place (and thus should be considered almost "locked" for edits, in some sense).

Maybe the above phrase up to "body", with adequate link, but w/o more details?

(PS: and one could even discuss if the length and area formulae are not also a special case of this.) MFH: Talk 18:39, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

I do not think the Pi page is any different than any other page. I think your edits make sense. You could write on the talk page of Pi about your plans, and if nobody objects, you can go ahead. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 20:15, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Modifications to my userpage

You 'downcased' my User Page. I disagree however that the manual of style applies to user pages so I reverted this. --R.Koot 00:17, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

If I think about it, you are right. Sorry. However, probably it is a good idea to follow the manual of style even on your user page. But that's for you to decide. Oleg Alexandrov 00:22, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

I'll update it this week and try to follow the manual of style. I noticed you modified some other user pages too, I think pointing it out on the user talk page would have been a better idea, but no hard feelings ;) --R.Koot 11:47, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Hi Rudy. I sort of thought that editing a new user's page to make it conform to the manual of style should be fine, as that's a good way of showing the user how the pages should look like (especially with the issue of capitalization, which a huge number of people get wrong). But I see your point, a user's page is a user's page, and ultimately the user decides what to be there. So, I will not do that again.
Welcome from me too. Thank you for your categorizing work. Oleg Alexandrov 20:25, 11 May 2005 (UTC)


Hi Stevertigo. If I think of it, my request was indeed not well-placed, and your reaction was to be expected. So, please accept my appologies. About the edit summaries themselves, I think their point is at least partially to give an idea about what an editor changed when somebody else is examining a list of changes (like watchlist, or the recent changes). Sometimes it saves the time of looking at a diff, and putting edit summary seems to be good (and required) practice.

But, it seems you have been here for much longer than me, so I won't bug you more about that. :) Oleg Alexandrov 01:05, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

I too get annoyed with people whom I perceive to habitually neglect making any comment whatsoever. I usually (always have) make at least a short comment though, and if I dont its probably because I'm assuming that my edit doesnt need it, though this isnt always the case. Im more than happy to respond to questions about a particular edit, and I appreciate your retraction (specificity is a virtue) as well as your general desire for clarity and clarification that compelled your original note. -SV|t 01:13, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

from Talk:Lie derivative

Moved to Talk:Lie derivative.


On Abstract structure: While the concept is fundamental to mathematics the article is not really important, maybe it should go into terminology or foundations?

Agree. It does not look to mathematical. I would be fine with any of the two above categories. By the way, if you don't know how to categorize an article, maybe it is better left in Category:Mathematics, as there it is more visible, and could be categorized by somebody else (I know some people go from time to time through Category:Mathematics doing just that). Oleg Alexandrov 22:35, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

On Theory: Do you think this article should be in Mathematics at all? I think the categorization under Science would be enough, else it should probably go under terminology.

Well, that article has a paragraph about mathematics. I would leave it where it is. Oleg Alexandrov 22:35, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Some questions on editing: Is it possible to have an article/category named 'Mathematical foo' listed under 'Foo'? --R.Koot 22:31, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Try this [[Category:Mathematical foo|Foo]]. Is that what you wanted? Oleg Alexandrov 22:35, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Thank you

Thank you for the thank you. :)

Hopefully I'm helping to make a dent in these seemingly infinite unclassified stubs. --TheParanoidOne 22:45, 16 May 2005 (UTC)


How does Mathbot determine if an article is mathematics related? Is it the <math> tags? The reason I ask is because I'm in the middle of disambiguating Fraction, and pulled it out of List of Mathematical topics, and the bot re-inserted it. Josh Parris 01:58, 18 May 2005 (UTC)

First, thank you for your great disambiguation work for fraction!
Now, my bot looks at all articles contained in a math category listed in list of mathematics categories. fraction was contained in Category:Fractions, so that's why it got put back. I did notice your removal and the fact that it came back. So, if you think that article is indeed not worth having in the list of mathematical topics (which I am not sure), then you can remove it from the list, and from the math categories, and then it will not show up again. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 02:21, 18 May 2005 (UTC)

Thanks, I've 'corrected' Fraction. Josh Parris 02:34, 18 May 2005 (UTC)

linus confusion

Thank you very much, I appreciate your trying to clear this up. I can't understand why linus thinks I threatened to VfD his user page, if he really does believe that. If it wouldn't be too much trouble, perhaps you could post on his user page as well, I'd like this dispute about nothing to go away. Thanks again. Jayjg (talk) 02:16, 19 May 2005 (UTC)

I tried. :) Oleg Alexandrov 15:39, 19 May 2005 (UTC)


Not that I haven't contributed hundred of equations with the correct <math></math> syntax, but thanks for noticing and correcting my slip at linear regression. — Miguel 06:23, 2005 May 20 (UTC)

Scalar field

Hi Oleg, our paths cross again at Scalar field. I want to add the more general definition of a scalar field, but I also want to preserve the specific case of Euclidean space. What is needed is an introductional paragraph that doesn't discriminate towards simplistic definitions. This is probably best accomplished by being very informal. Perhaps you could give such an intro a try? Meanwhile I will leave the old stuff mostly alone while I add some more general stuff.

I'm also planning on working on vector field in the same way. BTW, in you edit summary you said

Also, MarSch, you should pay more attention to the grammar.

I don't know what my mistake was, but I would like to know.--MarSch 14:33, 20 May 2005 (UTC)

About the grammar. You used only lower case letters at the end of scalar field (you can take a diff and see). I think you did the same thing for manifold — the "old intro" thing.
About scalar field. MarSch, that article is also used by physicists. There is no need to put the words Ck right in the first sentence.
MarSch, it is up to you what you write on math articles. I am just afraid that your attempts to make articles more precise makes them much harder to read for other people. For example, again at manifold, I liked the "old intro" much more than what you inserted. Nobody will understand all that chart thing, while the old introduction was using plain words. I think it is good to keep things simpler, at least in the introductory part, as this is a general encyclopedia not a scientific paper. Oleg Alexandrov 15:46, 20 May 2005 (UTC)
Yes, this is the same as for Laplace operator, but now I'm trying to also preserve the simpler special cases whilst adding the general case. The problem is obtaining logical article structure. I also like to keep things simple, but I also like to get things complete.
As to manifold. The "new" intro is not mine nor new. I didn't really know what to do with it, but I also dislike the "old intro". The old intro uses coordinate system, which is just as technical, in fact the same thing, as a chart, which is short for coordinate chart if you will. The "new intro" used to be under the heading "Technical description" but the real technical description was below that. I think much in the "new intro" is/could be introductory. I preserved the "old intro" because I was not yet done with merging it with the new.
My point about manifold was that you did not capitalize things properly in
        == old intro==
Besides, both this, and
        == something ==
are rather poor section titles. There is also a bug in the first sentence in manifold. I think you should pay more attention to details. Oleg Alexandrov 17:41, 20 May 2005 (UTC)
How do you like my changes to the technical def, starting with explaining what a chart is?--MarSch 16:04, 20 May 2005 (UTC)

Edit Summary

Sorry. I usually do, but sometimes I forget, or I have made lots of different minor changes (so if I tried to list them all it would take longer than making the changes and it wouldn't fit in the edit-summary box)--one can always look at the diff. Maybe I should put something for the reason you gave.

--Joe Llywelyn Griffith Blakesley talk contrib 19:12, 2005 May 20 (UTC)

Mathbot bug / feature

Your bot added "Hobbler-Bosch synthesis" on 19 May, which was subsequently moved to "Half of humanity is alive now". Today, your bot added "Half of humanity is alive now" but it did not delete "Hobbler-Bosch synthesis". Just wanted to let you know (of course it's easy for me to fix by hand), because this may not be intentional. -- Jitse Niesen 20:38, 20 May 2005 (UTC)

I had noticed the above. I put that "Hobbler-Bosch synthesis" article on my list of articles to be removed, because I am too lazy to remove it by hand. The bot is now running again (to fix some other things) and will take care of removing this article too. Thanks for letting me know.
Also, in general, my bot does not remove articles by itself, and this is intentional. A human needs to decide in each case if a certain article added should be removed or not. Oleg Alexandrov 20:50, 20 May 2005 (UTC)


Oleg, Thanks for the welcome to Wikipedia. If you get a chance to take a look at my work on Character theory or Burnside's theorem, I'd appreciate any suggestions that you have. --Michael Stone 01:51, 21 May 2005 (UTC)

Squaring the circle

I completely agree with you that this is one very important problem and i certainly do not not consider the problem a "pathological science". I did not choose that name. That was a misunderstanding. I chose the title of the talk: finding [a] suitable category to express the idea of pointless scientific efforts. This is all i wanted, and i am very unhappy that i am put in a corner in which i do not belong. Please (re-)read what i wrote and reconsider your statement. — Sebastian (talk) 16:50, 2005 May 21 (UTC)

It all started with you putting this article in Category:Pathological science. That's what my remark was about. Oleg Alexandrov 17:32, 21 May 2005 (UTC)
This discussion continued on Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Mathematics#Talk:Squaring_the_circle

Characteristic polynomial

Sorry for having done ugly things so that the real experts feel uncomfortable.

The reason that makes me write the following statements is just let you know WHY I bold all As. They are nothing about arguing with you. Originally, I want to bold I only, because it looks really like a slash, /. After I bold I s, suddently I feel that the protagonists, As, are not as strong as I s are! Therefore, I forget that "math literature uses bold only for vectors" (I know that) and bold all As smart-aleckly.

Beside for sorry about that, could you help me three other things?

1. I find that there is inconsistency about using λ and t in that article. I try to make all t to be λ so that they are consistent but I fail. I can not change the ts in the Example field.

I modified those. Oleg Alexandrov 21:01, 21 May 2005 (UTC)

2. I am a candidacy for master in computer science, CSU San Bernardino. My advisor suggests me to use TeX as soon as possible. Do you know any good tutorial about TeX?

I think any tutorial you find online might do the job. When I learned it myself I found it easiest to get a paper written in LaTeX, and then modify it piece by piece. All you need to learn how to type the formulas, and how to split an article in sections. Should be doable for a computer science guy. :) Oleg Alexandrov 21:01, 21 May 2005 (UTC)

3. I want to have a doctorial study after I graduate. UC system is my favorite. Any suggestions to me?

Well, I can't help you here. Ask your current adviser, he/she might have good suggestions. Oleg Alexandrov 21:01, 21 May 2005 (UTC)

By the way, thank you for telling me the WikiProject Mathematics and its talk page. I will read it. Though my major is computer science, not only computer science itself, but also my master thesis is highly related to mathematics. Thank you very much. --Jacob grace

Thank you very much, I learn a lot. ^^ Jacob grace 00:30, 22 May 2005 (UTC)

Dead links

Would it be possible to use your for checking if dead links (external) are still alive? I've come across some dead ones already while I visit very few of them. --R.Koot 23:32, 22 May 2005 (UTC)

You mean using by bot, right? My bot can certainly visit any single external link. It can scan for the words "not found" when downloading an external link. However, a user would still need to go through each of those suspicious links and make sure they are indeed dead pages. Then my bot could go and remove the links.
So, if my bot spits out a very long list of potential dead links, are you willing to go through each of those and certify which is dead and which is only apparently dead? Then my bot could take care of the rest. Oleg Alexandrov 02:37, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
I would be willing to do that, but if it could sort on "Host not found" and 404s I could clean up the most serious mess first. BTW, what would you think of redirecting dead links to [] where possible? --R.Koot 13:14, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
OK, let us assume that any page containing "Host not found" and 404s means that page is dead. I think that's indeed a safe assumption, so we don't need to actually investigate them by hand.
About redirecting things to I am not sure if it is worth the trouble. From my experinence with external links, Wikipedia needs less of them, and not more. But either way, finding a link to would need to be done by hand, so if you are willing, I will not mind...
So again. A bot is good at making a list of bad links, and once it is instructed which to remove, or what to replace with what, it can do that. Anything more intelligent needs to be done by hand.
So, just tell me if you would like to proceed with the idea. Fine with me as long as you do the part the bot can't. :) Oleg Alexandrov 18:40, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
I fully agree that Wikipedia could do with less external links. I'm just afraid that some people might start complaining if links to pages that were once very good but have since gone down or were moved to another address are removed. --R.Koot 19:19, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
Sounds good. Then I will print out a list of possibly bad links, and let us see what you would like to do about it. :) I will get to this later today. Oleg Alexandrov 20:14, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
It seems I will not get to this today. But I will certainly do that this week. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 23:40, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
Hi Rudy. Here you are, User:mathbot/Bad links. Please note that those are all math articles, since all I searched is my own copy of the math articles on Wikipedia. Let me know if there is anything I can help with. Oleg Alexandrov 02:19, 29 May 2005 (UTC)
Oh, and note that my bot has a bug. It forgot to strip the dot or the comma at the end of some links. I will fix that sometime. Oleg Alexandrov 02:21, 29 May 2005 (UTC)

I strongly recommend checking all links by hand before deleting, as I've already had to replace a couple that were erroneously removed. As it stands, it looks like a local DNS problem would cause a link to be incorrectly flagged as dead. Not sure what other failure modes are, but they seem to be happening (does your script flag _anything_ with "404" in it as bad, or does it check in a more robust manner?). --Christopher Thomas 04:11, 31 May 2005 (UTC)

You are right, my script only looks for 404 messages. I hoped Rudy (R.Koot) would check each individual link. I checked a bunch myself, and found just one false positive from what I remember. Oleg Alexandrov 05:19, 31 May 2005 (UTC)
Checking for "not found" (case-insensitive) soon after after "404" might reduce the number of false positives, but that would still flag pages that talked about HTML errors. Definitely a useful tool, though. --Christopher Thomas 05:54, 31 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanks. Oleg Alexandrov 15:20, 31 May 2005 (UTC)

Please check what I edit so that I don't mislead some others.

Dear Oleg Alexandrov:

My thesis is to speedup a kind of solving matrix. That's part of the reason why you see my bad work on Characteristic polynomial. Now, I may have done a bad thing about categorizing/listing again: the fixed point. Especially, there are so many 'fixed points' in mathemetics. Do all of them really belong to mathemetics? Please check them if you have time & are interested. Thank you very much.

Jacob grace 17:55, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
I will take a look at it later today. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 18:40, 23 May 2005 (UTC)
It becomes clear and neat, thank you. Jacob grace 03:25, 24 May 2005 (UTC)

suggested move

Hi, your edit to Hardy notation was once again so quick... maybe even too quick for WP (your edit is sometimes somehow lost in the history...); you didn't catch one typo of mine, though (if => it).

Now I wanted to suggest you a move : "del" to "nabla operator" (and leaving "del" as redirect); the fact that the TeX symbol is \nabla while \del is unknown seems some justification to me (in addition to my own, sometimes 'nonstandard' background...), while "del" is extremly likely to become ambigious (Spanish article, Computer key,...) (There might be a "procedure" fur such a suggestion, but I don't know it well...) MFH: Talk 22:20, 24 May 2005 (UTC)

Right, the TeX symbol is \nabla, and I aways wished it were \grad or something; or, as you say, \del. However, that's how that operator is pronounced, "del". So, I myself would be happier if the article stays where it is.
But that's my opinion. You can of course post this on Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Mathematics and see what others will have to say. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov 22:24, 24 May 2005 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Requests for adminship/Paul August

I submitted it. Thank you for your offer to help. One thing i don't know: Am i supposed to vote, myself? — Sebastian (talk) 22:29, 2005 May 24 (UTC)

You are of course supposed to vote! (And your vote better be a "support" :) You can put your vote before mine, as you are the nominator. Oleg Alexandrov 22:32, 24 May 2005 (UTC)

still more WP technicalities

Hi, no problem concerning the edit conflicts, I get well along with it; don't think twice before doing what you feel needed...

Concerning \nabla, so why do you think its \nabla and not \del? I can't see any justification to call it "del" - except that maybe today's students prefer simple 3 letter words instead of so long and "strange" (un-American?) 5 letter words... (I'm kidding... hum... so to say...)!

Ask Donald Knuth, as he invented TeX. Oleg Alexandrov 21:06, 25 May 2005 (UTC)
For me, no question, because it has to be \nabla ! MFH: Talk 13:11, 26 May 2005 (UTC)

Other question: is there some "official guideline" about having a "topic" page about just one meaning of "topic", and a "topic (disambig)" page linking to all others? When is this justified? number of links? "age" of the "topic" page? length(= level of developedness) of the "topic" page? Why not

  • moving "topic" to "topic (former_category)",
  • maybe making temporarily "topic" a redirect to that page,
  • having a robot change links to "topic" on pages of Category:former_category to "topic (former_category)|"
  • but aiming at having "topic" being ultimately (thus, asap) the "disambig" page.

? MFH: Talk 13:58, 25 May 2005 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Disambiguation#Types of disambiguation (thanks to Paul August for this information). Oleg Alexandrov 21:06, 25 May 2005 (UTC)
You did not yet get me on the 2nd level of thought...
So you think "Del" is more frequently used instead of nabla than on Computer keyboards ? ;-) MFH: Talk 13:15, 26 May 2005 (UTC)
What's your point? Are you trying to say del should be an article about the delete key? Come on, man! :)
Yes, I don't always get what you want. Part of it is me being dumb. But can you be more explicit? :) Oleg Alexandrov 15:06, 26 May 2005 (UTC)

Bother you again

Sorry to bother you again. I split the article Unary into Numeral system and operator. I list some computer unary operator there but being not math major, I can list only the factorial (!) there. Would you mind to add some more examples there? Thank you. - Jacob grace 18:30, 26 May 2005 (UTC)

I did do some changes, I moved most of the content to the more specific article unary operation, as unary was talking about both unary operation and unary numeral system. Now, about examples, I sort of feel one could shorten the number of C++ examples, just several to give an idea of what is going on could be enough. But that's only an opinion. Oleg Alexandrov 18:51, 26 May 2005 (UTC)
The changes are marvelous. Thank you.
I think the list is a little bit too long, also. But the list is just ALL the unary operators that C has. I BELIEVE that there are only very few programming unary operators that is not in that list. Therefore, it's a kind of difficult to cut some off because there are just almost all of them.
Hope some real computer science expert (I am not) can solve it. - Jacob grace 06:51, 27 May 2005 (UTC)

removed not well-explained and unhelpful paragraph

(moved to Talk:distance)