Purpose of lists
Lists on Memory Alpha have three main purposes:
- Information: The list can be a valuable source of information, especially for overviews or structured lists. For example, list can be grouped chronologically, alphabetically, or by theme.
- Navigation: For articles that serve as a general introduction to a category, navigational lists are also very useful. This can serve the reader in cases where he is just randomly browsing, or if he is searching for a specific article.
- Examples: All television series episode guides
- Development: Lists can also be very useful in stub articles, where lists can be used to outline missing information that needs to be added. Lists of related topics are also very useful at the end of an article, to help those readers who are interested in learning more about a given subject.
There are three basic ways of presenting lists on Memory Alpha:
Title and bullet style or vertical style
The format is:
- ==Title of list==
- * Example 1
- * Example 2
- * Example 3
This style is useful for long lists (such as episode guides) and for lists of entries which include both a link and explanatory text. In the latter case, you might want to put the link in bold before the explanatory text. Subtitles and subsections in lists are also very useful.
The title style is most useful because it is automatically included in the table of contents that are generated by the wiki software.
Streamlined style or horizontal style
The format is:
- Title of list: Example 1, Example 2, Example 3
The style requires less space on the page, and is preferred if there are only a few entries in the list, it can be read easily, and a direct edit point is not required.
The use of tables for listing content is generally discouraged because of the complexity of the wiki code. However, by the same token tables are also useful because they allow content to be more carefully organized in presentation. In these latter cases, the table format is considered ideal. Examples of this include Federation starships and Rules of Acquisition.
For more information, see Table markup.