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Template:/demo As frequent chatters on the Discord server are probably already aware, A few of us (namely Nikel23, K6ka, and myself) have been working on a new visual design for infobox templates[note 1] on The Sims Wiki. Our current infobox design is several years old, and was designed in order to more closely match what was at the time the wiki's overall design theme. However, that theme has been changed, so currently our infoboxes don't really match anything else.

Additionally, there has been talk about migrating our infoboxes over to the Portable Infobox markup, which would involve considerable work to ensure that the P.I.-based templates continue to have the same appearance as before. It makes more sense to update the templates to our preferred visual style before undergoing the migration to P.I., rather than migrating first and then trying to redesign them, after the design of the templates has already been put down in .css pages.

And so, a couple weeks ago, we set out with the intent to redesign the infoboxes used on the wiki. What you see demonstrated to the right is the outcome of that work: Infobox Sim. I have included the current version of the Sim template as well for side-by-side comparison.

The function of the template itself is unchanged. Users adding the templates to a page would follow the same procedure. The new template has the same available parameters as the old template and the new template behaves in pretty much the same exact way. Aside from theme differences, there's very little that any user would notice different between the two.

The Sim infobox is just the first phase of what I'm proposing. I would like to migrate the rest of the infoboxes on the wiki, such as {{Object}} or {{Game}}, to use the same design as {{Infobox Sim}}. However, before undertaking this task, we need to determine whether this is the direction we want to take the template.

So, what do you all think of the new design? Are there any things you'd change about it? Do you like or dislike the new appearance? —Preceding unsigned comment added by LostInRiverview (talkcontribs) 19:28, 11 January 2018‎ (UTC) - Please sign your comments with ~~~~

Notes[edit source]

  1. For those who are unaware or unfamiliar with the term, an "infobox" is a template that displays on the right-hand side of a page, and usually includes the name of the page or the subject, a picture, and major details about the subject. You can find infoboxes on pages about Sims, families, objects, video games, and more

Discussion[edit source]

I really like the new designs! You did amazing work and I'm already excited to see these on the wiki! But the only thing that irks me a bit is that the logo of The Sims and The Sims 4 are way smaller than the logos of The Sims 2 and The Sims 3. - KailynnKat(talk/fanon) 20:02, January 11, 2018 (UTC)

The new designs are great; though I feel like there's a lack of contrast compared to the old infobox which makes information slightly harder to read. Even so, I'm all for updating the infobox design given how old the old infobox is. -- EpicJoyBoy (My talk page!) 21:38, January 11, 2018 (UTC)
When redesigning, I originally had no background color, but some complained that the infobox looked too "boring" without that color included. Perhaps a compromise would be to dilute the background color a bit? -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 00:49, January 12, 2018 (UTC)
That could work. For Sims 3 and 4 we could use the color used for the header on the main page. As for Sims 1 for the most part they are fine, although Sims 2 could use some diluting. – EpicJoyBoy (talk with me|my contributions) 11:44, January 14, 2018 (UTC)
Just so I understand what you're talking about, you want to change the header color, not the background color? The infobox has two colors - the "header" color and the "background" color, as do the boxes on the main page. The backgrounds on the main page are intentionally diluted so that there's a contrast between the background color and the text. -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 18:03, January 14, 2018 (UTC)
Oops, I may have phrased that wrong; what I meant was to use the background color used on the main page, not the header color. – EpicJoyBoy (talk with me|my contributions) 14:10, January 15, 2018 (UTC)
I've lightened the backgrounds somewhat, you might need to clear your cache in order to see it. -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 04:13, January 18, 2018 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I'd say it's somewhat more readable overall, but for Sims 4 I'd personally give it a slightly more bluish tone, since IMO light aqua isn't very readable. – EpicJoyBoy (talk with me|my contributions) 03:45, January 20, 2018 (UTC)

These new infoboxes look pretty nice; though I would like to ask that will {{Sim1}}, {{Sim2}}, {{Sim3}} and {{Sim4}} templates be combined into this Infobox Sim template, or will they stay separate? - SimDestroyer (talk) 15:18, January 12, 2018 (UTC)

As it is now, {{Sim1}} (and the like) all use {{Sim}} as their base, "meta" template, so changing {{Sim}} will affect all Sim templates that use it as their base. {{Infobox Sim}} will most likely be used as a base template for other Sim-templates to use. So no, they'll stay separate, but they kinda already use the same code anyways. —k6ka 🍁 (Talk · Contributions) 17:10, January 12, 2018 (UTC)
K6 is correct... the plan is to keep {{Sim}}, {{Sim1}}, etc as well as {{Simbio-start}}, {{Simbio1}}, etc. The main reasoning behind this decision is fanon pages. Editing the {{Sim}} "meta infobox" would affect all other Sim and Simbio infobox templates, since all those templates are built on top of {{Sim}}. Fanon editors might not want the design of the infoboxes they use on their fanon pages to change, so by creating new infobox templates, we can avoid forcing those authors into a template change. The downside of this decision is that every page on the canon side of the wiki that uses a "Sim"-based infobox will have to be edited to use an "Infobox Sim"-based infobox instead. But, I also see this is as a positive, since it gives us the ability to roll the new infobox out slowly, testing it on various pages and demonstrating it to a wider audience before we fully implement it, if we choose to go that route. -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 18:26, January 12, 2018 (UTC)
So does it mean that {{Sim1}}, {{Sim2}}, {{Sim3}} and {{Sim4}} will be combined into this Infobox Sim one for canon pages? - SimDestroyer (talk) 21:29, January 12, 2018 (UTC)
No. {{Sim1}}, {{Sim2}}, and the others will not be modified. {{Infobox Sim1}}, {{Infobox Sim2}}, etc will be created instead. -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 21:36, January 12, 2018 (UTC)

I wanted to add that these proposed changes would (eventually) affect all infoboxes, not just the Sim/Simbio infoboxes. The idea is to create a standardized design that we can apply to any infobox on the wiki, so that they all have a uniform design. To that end, I've "migrated" a few different infoboxes over to the proposed new design. The infoboxes that have been migrated so far are:

It's important to note that these new templates are still being tested and there may yet be bugs to be found. However, I am confident that there will be very few issues in migrating over the rest of the infoboxes. This is because, aside from design and appearance, very little else is being changed. The templates should, by design, work just as they do now. Additionally, thanks to Nikel23, the design coding for the "meta-infobox" is now in the Wiki's .css pages, meaning migrating existing infoboxes to the new design will be even easier and faster, and any design changes we want to make to the infoboxes should be able to be done all at one time, rather than template-by-template.

What I would like to do in this forum is resolve first whether the community at large wishes to adopt a new template design and if so, whether the community wishes to adopt the particular design I've shared here. I would like to get the template design finalized soon, so that we can begin to migrate over the infobox templates en masse, and then after that, migrate over all the main namespace pages that use the infobox templates so that all infoboxes in the mainspace are based on the meta-infobox design. -- LiR talk · blog · contribs 00:11, January 20, 2018 (UTC)

I'm all in for the new design. Nikel Talk Vote! 04:40, January 20, 2018 (UTC)
I'm fine with the new design. The last time I looked at the code it was a lot cleaner and more streamlined as well, which is always a plus. I think it's truly seriously time we updated these infoboxes to match our current wiki theme. —k6ka 🍁 (Talk · Contributions) 21:40, January 22, 2018 (UTC)
The new design looks good to me as well. - SimDestroyer (talk) 11:11, January 28, 2018 (UTC)
Also, is there anything going to be done regarding the {{Infobox}} template? It has been proposed in the talk page to possibly update it to the current infobox designs and that it can be used as a metatemplate to build other infobox templates. So should this template be updated to the new design, or should it just be left alone? - SimDestroyer (talk) 17:01, February 2, 2018 (UTC)

I'm liking the designs. There is a great blend of colour used, and it is sticking with the main colour themes of the game. Also, our currently used infoboxes are old and are in a serious need of being redesigned. I have no issues with this. ~ Beds (talk - blog) 23:36, February 6, 2018 (UTC)

Okay, Beds mentioned on the Discord general chat channel about a bit of difficulty reading the subheader text with the text shadow in place. I've tried fiddling around in the css settings to adjust the appearance, but I'm having a hard time seeing a definite improvement. So, I'm going to put in a few headers here and see what they look like with varying text shadows...
Current setting for "main" infobox header, 2px "blur" on shadow (TS3 background as example)
With 1px "blur" on shadow
No blur on shadow
With a 3px "blur"
The difference between the first and second examples is much more subtle than the difference between second and third... Third example seems to me to be way too "sharp," second example might be a good compromise. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 23:59, February 6, 2018 (UTC)
I also want to experiment with an increased shadow radius, which would have the effect of making the shadow more "washed out" than the first example above... so I've added that as a fourth example. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 00:03, February 7, 2018 (UTC)

This is a wonderful idea. Plus, the design of the new infobox seems to be way better looking. I fully support the change! Isaiahhsnobg.pngIsaiahScribblenauts Plumbob.pngDisscuss - My Fanon 13:01, May 17, 2018 (UTC)

Also, shouldn't the Life State parameter from the old infobox return to the new one? Isaiahhsnobg.pngIsaiahScribblenauts Plumbob.pngDisscuss - My Fanon 01:25, May 18, 2018 (UTC)
The life state parameter exists in the new infobox; it just doesn't show anything if it is left blank. —k6ka 🍁 (Talk · Contributions) 02:58, May 18, 2018 (UTC)

Standards for infoboxes[edit source]

At the risk of going off on a tangent, I think we also ought to develop/refine standards about how infoboxes should be designed and implemented, in terms of their functional design and use on a page-by-page basis. This, in my opinion, would be a good addition to the MOS, or perhaps to another page more suited to it. In my brief adventure into the world of infobox design, I've noticed a lot of issues which cause at the least, minor inconvenience but, at the most, cause page-breaking issues. For a starting point to further discussion, I'd like to lay down some preliminary standards:

  1. Infoboxes on The Sims Wiki should start with "Template:Infobox..." to differentiate infobox templates from other templates which might have similar names (for example, the name for {{Sim}} is very similar to the name for {{Sims}} despite the two templates being vastly different from each other). This would also help editors in the page source identify infoboxes at-a-glance.
  2. Infoboxes should use the same parameter names as much as possible, and standardize how those parameters are used. For instance, all infoboxes should have a {{{game}}} parameter, and that parameter should be automatically set to italicize and link to the name input into it; the infobox's top image should always be set by the {{{image}}} parameter, and file link and file size should not be automatic (in other words, the user of the template would have to include the brackets and image size), etc etc
  3. Images in infoboxes should be set to a maximum 250px width, and should be set to exactly 250px wide unless circumstances (like low-quality or low-resolution images) prevent this
  4. Infoboxes should use the same base .css style (as helpfully written into our .css pages by resident guru Nikel23
  5. No more than 10 infoboxes should be used on a single page, and no more than 6 infoboxes should be used in a single section on a page, in order to cut down on page length, size, and loading time. In all instances, editors should review whether infoboxes are necessary, or if the information could be condensed down into a table instead (see Mysterious Mr. Gnome#Varieties for what I'd classify as an example of what not to do... notice how the object's size and type never vary from instance to instance; this could be much better arranged in a table)
  6. Infobox code should be as clear, straightforward and easy to understand as possible. It should be made simple enough for later editors to make additions to the template as needed without having to consult the original author for an explanation as to how it works.
  7. Parameter names should not be capitalized.
  8. Infoboxes that automatically display text, images, or add categories to pages should avoid including complex "getting" code in the infobox itself; instead, this functionality should be provided by Category:Categorizing templates, Category:Image retrieval templates, and Category:Namespace checking templates (what I'd refer to collectively as "retrieval" templates or "fetch" templates)

These aren't necessarily uncontroversial points, and they aren't meant to be "laws" or hard-and-fast by any means, just basic standards to follow when designing new infoboxes. What do you all think? -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 07:39, February 2, 2018 (UTC)

Migrating the new infobox design to FANDOM's Portable Infobox markup[edit source]

Recently there has been a bit of disagreement in Discord chat as to whether we should endeavor to migrate the new infobox markup to FANDOM's (aka Wikia's) "Portable Infobox" markup language. The main benefit of migration is that migrated infoboxes will display information when viewing the wiki through a mobile web browser or a FANDOM mobile app, though the visual style of the infobox won't be displayed, merely the data. An argument against migration is that the visual appearance of the infobox itself - such as infobox colors and icons - convey information that is lost when using the PI markup. Additionally, converting the current design to PI markup will require someone with experience writing for that markup, in order to convert the current design into something that both functions for PI markup and doesn't alter the display of the infoboxes for desktop users.

All that being said, is migrating the infobox to Portable Infobox markup something we should work on doing, or should we decide not to do that? -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 03:22, May 17, 2018 (UTC)

Support - Whatever the majority wants is fine with me, but I think migrating them is something that we should consider. Especially given that eventually Wikia will drop support for non-portable info-boxes, the last time I checked. But that isn't something that is likely to happen any time soon. I do feel that we should migrate them but probably wait until we've given them a new design first. ― C.Syde (talk | contribs) 02:08, May 18, 2018 (UTC)
I have a sneaking suspicion that Wikia will force the change on us sooner or later. It wouldn't hurt to explore the option now. Ѧüя◎ґ (talk) 11:41, May 18, 2018 (UTC)
Bump. I just saw Santa Claus has the new template. It's aesthetically appealing. Ѧüя◎ґ (talk) 16:32, June 8, 2018 (UTC)
Support - I didn't say explicitly in the explanation above, but I'd support migrating the infobox to the new markup as long as doing so doesn't compromise its appearance for desktop users. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 16:50, June 8, 2018 (UTC)

New design is live - "post-launch" discussion[edit source]

As of today (well, technically probably a couple of days ago), the infobox templates are live and free to be used on the wiki. I'm keeping this thread open for the time being to allow for any community feedback, comments, questions, complaints, concerns, queries, etc.

I've posted a wall-of-text blog post detailing what is happening now, but I'll reiterate briefly what's happening.

  • New infoboxes are ready to be used on the wiki
  • {{Simbio-start}} and the Simbio templates are being depreciated; canon pages will be manually converted from Simbio to Infobox Sim
  •  ????
  • Profit

As said before, any questions, comments, concerns, etc. are welcome here. Also note that there are a few active discussion sections above this one, namely the open question regarding converting our infoboxes to Portable Infobox markup. Be sure to read and/or weigh in on those as well. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 23:51, June 12, 2018 (UTC)

A bit of an update... I've dusted off LiRBot and I've run through a few infobox conversions. Most pages previously transcluding {{Object}} now use {{Infobox object}} instead, most pages that used {{Pet}} now use {{Infobox pet}}, and most pages that used {{Game}} now use {{Infobox game}}. I should note, for the record (not that it isn't visible in Recentchanges anyways) that I did slightly misconfigure AWB and ended up with quite a few false positives saved before I realized the mistake and stopped the bot process. I reverted all the errors I found, but it's possible that there are some I've missed. I know what I screwed up and I re-ran the bot process without any issues, but just be aware that there might be some minor issues that need to be resolved. I'm heading to bed now, but when I get time I will launch AWB again and see what else needs converting. I don't think that AWB is going to be able to handle the Simbio conversions though... that's going to require actual editors. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 06:05, June 13, 2018 (UTC)
I have also run K6kaBOT on articles that use {{Sim}}; in fact, both K6kaBOT and LiRBot ran together at the same time to speed things up. Quite a remarkable ambition! We still need to migrate {{Urb}} to {{Infobox urb}} and {{Medsim}} to {{Infobox medsim}}, but at least the bulk of the Sim-infobox templates have been completed. Converting Simbio is unfortunately too complex for AWB (and maybe even other bot programs like pywikipediabot) so it will need to be done manually. —k6ka 🍁 (Talk · Contributions) 16:17, June 14, 2018 (UTC)

Conclusion[edit source]

It's been over a month since the last post here, and the infoboxes have been fully implemented across the canon side of the wiki. Any additional discussions about the infoboxes should take place in a new forum post. Thank you to everyone who participated in the infobox development, discussion, and conversion! -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 22:42, July 22, 2018 (UTC)

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