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How to edit an article

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This page guides you through the process of editing or writing an article. For information about basic editing and saving, setting up of an account or creating an article, see Basic setup, rules and guidelines. This page also provides information on the rules and guidelines of the Coastal Wiki and how an excellent article looks like. For some general information about the Coastal Wiki, see Coastal Wiki:Why, What and for Whom?.

Basic Wiki-formatting

The table below explains how to do some basic editing at the Coastal Wiki, using the Wiki markup. For more information you can also take a look at the help-pages of the Wikipedia, see Editing tips and tricks, How to edit a page and Cheetsheat with quick references to common formatting. Note that some templates used at the Wikipedia are not available at the Coastal Wiki.

what you type what you see
'''''bold and italic'''''
bold and italic


[[Main Page]] 
[[Main Page|Link to main page]]
Main Page (Internal link to the main page)

Link to main page

[http://www.vliz.be/projects/encora Encora website]
Encora website

(External link to the Encora website)

<span class="plainlinks"> 
[http://www.vliz.be/projects/encora Encora website]</span> 
Encora website

(External link posing as an internal one)

===level 2=== 
(Creates hedings and generates a table of contents)
alinea<br/>new alinea
new alinea

(Starts a new alinea)

:left indent
::larger indent
left indent
larger indent
*bullet one
*bullet two
**bullet three
  • bullet one
  • bullet two
    • bullet three
# list one
# list two
## list three
  1. list one
  2. list two
    1. list three
#REDIRECT[[Other article]]
(redirect to another article)
<span style="color:#FFFFFF">text </span> 
Puts the text in white, for other colors
Page has no auto generated title

Images and tables

An article should contain illustrations, boxes and tables, if they are appropriate to the subject, with succinct captions and acceptable copyright status. Try to insert 1 image for every 500 words. When you click edit you can insert in image, using an image command. Save page and click on the link to the image in display mode. Upload your image from the list of images or browse and upload a file from you computer. You should see your image now (if not, check the spelling of the image command and if the command contains .jpg). Return to your article through the link at the bottom of the page. Always try to insert your image as a jpg-file.

Inserting an image (image command):

 [[Image:filename.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Figure 1: CaptionText]]

This means that a thumbnail of the image is inserted at righthand side, with a size of 250px, with a caption. Instead of placing images at righthand side of the text it is also possible to place them at the lefthand side (“left”) in the centre (“centre”). It is also possible to align no text to the pictures by using “none”.

 [[Image:filename.jpg|thumb|left|250px|Figure 1]]
 [[Image:filename.jpg|thumb|none|250px|Figure 2]]

When you want to align two images horizontally, align the first image “left” and the other image “none”. To prevent subsequent text from being places alongside the images, include the line

 <br style="clear:both;"/> 

If you want to align more than two images, it may be useful to place them in a table. To create a table with more than two pictures, use:

 | [[Image:File.jpg|thumb|250px|Figure 1]]
 | [[Image:File.jpg|thumb|250px|Figure 2]]
 | [[Image:File.jpg|thumb|250px|Figure 3]]

To create a basic table in the Coastal Wiki, type:

 {| border="1" cellspacing="0" width="600px"
 |+ Add the text of your caption here
 ! Header 1
 ! Header 2
 | row 1, cell 1
 | row 1, cell 2
 | row 2, cell 1
 | row 2, cell 2

This creates:

Add the text of your caption here
Header 1 Header 2
row 1, cell 1 row 1, cell 2
row 2, cell 1 row 2, cell 2

You can adjust the width and the style of your table, see e.g. Help Wikipedia tables. Note, not all styles (e.g. prettytable) used at the Wikipedia are available at the Coastal Wiki.

If you want to emphasize a formula, a sentence or something else, you may create a box. Do this by using an interspace at the beginning of a new line.

A box looks like this :-)

To create a single frame around a text use following statement:

<div> insert text here </div>

This frame is undefined. To define your frame:


style ="width=XXpt;border=XXpx solid #00C4C7;background-color:#00C4C7;padding:0.5em 0.5em 0.5em 0.5em;font-size:100%;Float: left"

  • The width can be defined as a fixed with . Or as percentage: Just replace XXpt by XX%. (Make sure to replace XX the chosen frame width)
  • Border thickens can be defined in number of pixels. (usually 1px is sufficient). The border color can be chanced by replacing #00C4C7 by a color code of choice.
  • Padding defines the distance of the frame to other objects: The first em number defines the distance (of everything outside the frame) to the top of the frame, the second from the left, the third from the bottom and the forth from the right side of the frame.
  • Font-size: can be defined as a percentage from the "normal" fond size.
  • Float: you can make your frame float left or right, or you can choose to center the frame. Choose the appropriate option.
what you type what you see
 <div style="border:1px solid #00C4C7;float: right;
padding:0.5em 0.5em 0.5em 0.5em; font-size:150%">
Insert text </div>
Insert text

By creating a frame within a frame, by adding another <div> </div> statement you can manipulate the exact position of the text (including color and sizes) within the frame.


You can either use html format or Wiki Math format to insert symbols, formulas or special characters. A good example of an article in which formulas are used is Currents and turbulence by acoustic methods. More information can be found on the following pages

Links and references

Important claims or statements need to be substantiated; adding an authoritative reference (or a link to authoritative Internet source) is often better than providing proof in the paper. It is recommended to upload important background documents serving as reference material in the CoastWeb Archive (CoastWeb link on the portal). Include references in your text using:

 Statement (Authorname, year<ref>insert entire reference here</ref>).

To refer to the same reference multiple times, use: Statement (Authorname, year<ref name="name"> ... </ref>). And to refer to the same references next times: Statement (Authorname, year<ref name="name"/>)

To create a list of cited references, type <references/> in the "References" section. The same procedure can also be used to insert notes at the end of a page.

Besides references, Coastal Wiki articles should also contain links to other articles. To refer to another Wiki-article, type: [[ArticleName]] . To refer to a section of a certain article, type: [[ArticleName#SectionName]]. To view another text, than the naming of an article, type: [[Articlename|Text you want to appear]].

Refer to another website by typing: [http://weblink Name of the Website] .

It is also possible to upload documents at the CoastWeb Library. Each uploaded document has a specific web address, which can be inserted as an external link in your article.

To hide a link behind a picture, you may choose to add the #REDIRECT statement (see above) in the picture page. Alternatively one may use the sitemap statement:

Image:image name.jpg|XXpx
[insert internal or external link here]


To explain the meaning of scientific jargon, a linkage should be created to a separate, individual definition page. The creation of individual definition pages enables users to view a glossary with an overview of all articles. To maintain this glossary-function, it is important not to name definitions as "definition of...", not to add add categories and not to combine a definition and an article in one page (this approach differs from Wikipedia)!

Create a definition to a term like this. Type the [[name of definition page]] between brackets in an article. This will create a new page. Save the article click on the link in the text to enter the newly created definition page. Add a definition to this page, using:

{{ Definition|title= name of definition page
 | definition = content of definition}} 

If you want to complement the definition with information, create a short "notes" section. Make sure that you refer to related Coastal Wiki articles, in a "see also" section. Also add a reference to external citations to improve the credibility of the definition. Create a "references" section and add <references/>.

Credit the author

Another important difference between the [http;//wikipedia.org Wikipedia] and the Coastal Wiki is that anonymous will be precluded from the Coastal Wiki. To credit yourself as the main author of an article, type:

 |AuthorID=UserID (e.g. 1234)
 |AuthorFullName= Surname, First name

You can find your AuthorName at "my preferences" (at the right-hand side at the top of every page). Your authorname is the same name as your User name. You find you AuthorID in the Contact Database. Search yourself and click on the details of you institute. Select your own name from the list. You will see your authorID at the end of the URL-code (the end is something like persid=1234, use this persid number). If you edit an article, the main author of the article remains the same. Therefore, it is important to inform the main author if you want to make major adjustments.


Every article should be categorized by topic. The Coastal Wiki contains 6 main topic-categories, which are each divided into several sub-categories. You find the six main categories at the Main Page. Click on one of the six categories to view the sub-categories. Try to categorize an article at the lowest possible level. E.g. within the category "Coastal and marine environment" you will find Coastal habitats and ecosystems in transitional waters in which you will find Sediment shorelines. Categorize an article about erosion of sediment shorelines in the lowest level "sediment shorelines". You can also categorize this article as e.g. "coastal erosion" and "coastal erosion management". Try to add a minimum of three categories in order to make it easier to be found by different types of users.

To add a category, type:

[[Category:Name of the category]]

Check if the spelling is correct! Categories are sensitive to capital-letters.

New categories can be made simply by adding a non-existing category to a page. You can link a newly created category to a preexisting one simply by adding
[[Category:Name of the preexisting category]]
to the newly created one.

By doing so all categories will be linked in a tree like fashion. You can summon a tree starting at any category to by typing:

{{#categorytree:Name of the category|mode=pages|
style=border:1px solid #23297A; padding:0.7ex; background-color:#f5faff;}}

The first line provides the tree, the second line provides a frame and background in a given color. To change the color of the frame simply change the number.

Alternatively you can try:

 <categorytree mode=pages onlyroot=on>Name of the category</categorietree> 

See also

Add the section "See also" at the end of your article and include the subsections "Internal links", "External links" and "Further reading" if necessary.

Internal links

You may insert internal links in this section.

Go back to the Main Page.

For more information about writing and editing, see Basic setup, rules and guidelines.

External links

You may insert external links in this section.

Some links to the help-pages of the Wikipedia:

Not all help-information from the Wikipedia also applies to the Coastal Wiki!


Add the section "references" at the end of your article and create a list of cited references here, by typing <references/> . This creates an overview of all references (and notes) for which this citation is used: <ref>...</ref>

Close the article, by crediting the author and add categories.