User guide - read this first!

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Logging in / user access / content

If you've made it this far that's a good start, but here's some more important information you should read:

  • Registration is open to anyone (so don't put anything private on here).
  • Read below here for some information on how to create/edit pages, get stuck in as there's a big alternative community out there and we want everyone involved.
  • On that subjest, this is the encyclopedia for the Alternative Community, so please go with that plan; yes we know it's a fine line, yes we know plenty of alternative bands get played on the radio a lot, so that doesn't mean they're not alternative, but pages about anything to do with what society thinks of as normal will probably be deleted. We're aiming for information about anything that's more creative, anything that tries to go against what society says is normal, anything that's trying to make a difference.

Editing a page

On most pages there will be an 'edit' link near the top of the screen. Click it and you'll be taken to an editable version of the page. On the edit page there is a kind of 'wiki syntax' for making edits, some of the most used are shown below but the full list can be found at Help:Formatting. If you can't see an Edit link, it means that your account doesn't have permission to edit the page you're on - most of Altopedia is open for anyone to edit, but there are a few special pages that can't be editted.

Linking to other pages

A link is made by enclosing a statement in double square brackets, for example [[Alternative Things]]. This works for internal links by just putting the internal page name where the 'Alternative Things' is; for external links put the whole URL. If the link is internal and the page doesn't exist yet, the link that's created will be in red (see below, Creating a page).

Bullet points and lists

For a set of bullet points, start each line with an asterisk (*). For a numbered list, use hashes (#) instead. See the link to Help:Formatting for much more information.

Headings

To add Headings to a page, enclose a line in multiple equals (=) signs (for example: ===Headings===). If a page has at least four Headings then a Contents section will be automatically added to the top of the page to make it easier to navigate. See Help:Formatting.

Creating a page

Here are the three easiest ways to create a page, but see Help:Starting a new page for more information.

From a link

If you edit an existing page and include a link to an internal page that doesn't exist, when the page is created the link will be red. If you click on this link, it'll take you to a new page where you can add content (just in the same way as if you were editing it).

From the Search function

Type in the name of a page you want to create in the Search box, then click 'Go'. If the page already exists you'll be taken straight to it, if it doesn't you'll be presented with the option of creating the page.

From the URL

If you type into the navigation bar on your web browser the URL of the site, and after the 'title=' section you type the name of the page you want to create it'll take you to a new page that you can edit in exactly the same way as 'from a link'.

Searching

Searching is pretty simple, type what you're looking for into the Search box and press 'Go' or 'Search'. The difference is 'Go' will try to take you straight to the page with the same name as what you've searched for, whereas 'Search' will look through the text of the online pages. If you leave the Search box blank and click 'Search' you'll be taken to Special:Search which will provide more advanced options. Check out Help:Searching for more information.

Some Useful Code

Web link a picture to a url

[[Image:filename.jpg|790px|center|link=http://www.url.com]]

NB make sure you use .com, or .net, or .organisation, whichever is correct, as well as, either .jpg, .gif, etc, whichever is relevant.

Categories

Sometimes we need a little help to find exactly what information we're after, to help keep information together with similar information Categories are used. To add a page to a category, just add [[Category:CategoryName]] to the bottom of a page when you're editing it (where CategoryName is the name of the category you want to add it to). This will add that category to a list of links that will appear at the bottom of the page.

When you click on a category link, you'll be taken to a page that has a list of all of the pages in that category, hopefully making it easier to find what you want. See Help:Categories for more information.

FAQ

Q) How do I create a page? A) Its so important, I've added the section Creating a page (I'll link it properly at some point when there's more content).

Q) The site is asking me to login, even though I've already registered. A) Several of the links on the site go to the external site 'mediawiki' as they built the core wiki software for this site and most of the user-guides are hosted there; don't worry, just return to www.altopedia.com when you're done on their site (they look almost identical) and you'll either have to log back in or if you've preserved the session you can just carry on. Worth noting though: don't make changes to the mediawiki site that are supposed to be on our site - if something goes wrong I'll start removing links to their site.