BE.109:Guidelines for editing OpenWetWare

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BE.109 Laboratory Fundamentals of Biological Engineering

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Since OpenWetWare is a wiki, anyone with an account can edit any page they want. And since the MediaWiki software keeps track of all the previous versions of a page, it is easy to roll back unwanted page edits.

However, to keep things organized and to go easy on the TAs and instructors, there are a few guidelines for editing OpenWetWare (in the context of BE.109).

Post everything

When in doubt about whether your comments/feedback/suggestions/clarifications/etc. is useful, add it. This is an introductory lab techniques class, so the more obvious and clear the course material is, the better.

Use the "BE.109:" prefix for new pages

If you create a new page, start off the page name with "BE.109:". For instance, "BE.109:Helpful hints on doing Qiagen purifications" is a better name than "Helpful hints on doing Qiagen purifications."

There are several reasons for this.

  1. It helps others involved in the class know to which pages to pay particular attention.
  2. It will tell people outside of the class to be respectful of that page, because it is for the BE.109 class.
  3. In MediaWiki software, every page must have a unique name, so by adding the prefix "BE.109:", we avoid inadvertently using common page names that might be in high demand.

Use the "Talk" page not the "Article" page

To keep the protocol pages short and easy to read, please add your comments to the "Talk" page for that protocol instead of to the protocol itself. At the top of every wiki page, you'll see a tab saying "discussion". It is a page automatically created for the purpose of discussing the contents of the associated article. By adding your comments there, the main protocol should remain easy for others to read and use. The exception to this is if you find an error or typo in the protocol (and you are sure it is an error!), then by all means correct it. Use your judgement on this or if in doubt, ask an instructor or TA.

Sign your work

Sign your name to non-minor edits to the wiki. It makes it easier for others in the class to know who is saying what. If you are logged in as yourself, you can automatically sign with your name and a timestamp just by typing ~~~~. Try it in the Sandbox to see what happens.

Editing your userpage

To get started on OpenWetWare, try editing your userpage. Type User:Yourusername in the search box on the left hand side of this wiki page to go to your user page to begin editing. Write a sentence or two about yourself so that other OpenWetWare users can see who is making which edits. You can also add a link to your user page to the BE.109:People page enabling others in the class to find you more easily.


Follow the general etiquette guidelines for OpenWetWare.