is a style of wiki page that consists primarily of a list of items or a list of links to other pages. Examples: StartingPoints
discussion of the list or individual elements often appears beneath the list. It is best to keep all comments outside the body of the list itself, to make it easier to read.
It is a good idea to use the numbered or bulleted list styles (see TextFormattingRules
). Otherwise, it is difficult to tell that the page is a list and not simply a sequence of short paragraphs. Use numbered lists if there is an ordering to the items, or bulleted lists if the elements are unordered. (Indent numbered lists with tabs; monospaced lists are ugly. Don't indent unordered lists, see TabRefactoring
When lists are long, use hierarchical nesting or insert blank lines or headings to group the items. (Or even better, make the lists shorter by removing unneeded elements or by refactoring.)
While lists of resources (e.g. downloads, technical specifications and reports) are different to lists of assertions, the definition of the set of things that belongs on the page needs to be kept in mind, having been asserted at the top of the page.
There is disagreement as to whether this mode is a good idea. The basic criticisms of this mode are
- People tend to keep adding things to a list until it becomes huge, disorganized, and unfocused.
- Refactorers are reluctant to remove items from a list.
- Some people are compelled to apply WikiVoting to every list they see.
- The WikiGreatFoobarLists are useless and silly.
- It is easy to put a bunch of concepts or statements into list form, but it would often be preferable to weave them into coherent paragraphs.
Many of the criticisms of PowerPoint
made at this site can also apply to ListMode
The prescription for all these problems is the same as that for every other wiki problem: refactor! Don't be afraid to delete useless lists, remove items, reorganize elements, or rewrite the information in non-list format.
Some advantages of lists:
- They're direct
- They're easy to refactor
- They tend to be factual