The big picture
Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. Most of the following rules are specific applications of that principle.
What GWiki is
Googology Wiki is an encyclopedia and discussion forum about large numbers and fast-growing functions.
Ignore all rules
If a rule prevents you from maintaining or improving Googology Wiki, ignore it.
Original work (READ THIS !)
Probably the single most common mistake made by newcomers to the wiki is to show up and dump their latest invention into the encyclopedia. The point of the encyclopedia is to document published googologisms and ultimately unite the scattered literature of large numbers. It's a mirror, not a publishing platform.
The recommended way to get your work on the wiki is to create a blog post. Blogs offer a free and easy way to broadcast your creations to the community, and you can get feedback from other googologists in the form of comments.
Original work on the wiki is allowed as long as it is cited from an external source (in compliance with Rule X), but if it is low-quality enough a poll will be posted in the talk section of the created page, and after three days the majority vote will decide whether the page stays or goes.
Don't be a dick
Be nice. Don't attack other users personally.
Be a decent human being. Don't make actions or statements discriminating against anyone based on race, class, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, disability, religion, etc.
Don't bite the newbies
New GWikians may stumble a bit while learning the ropes. Don't bite them! Clean up after them and, if necessary, courteously let them know what was wrong. There's a lesson in every mistake.
Assume good faith
A sufficiently bad mistake is hard to distinguish from malice. Whenever possible, assume good faith.
On wikis, we have to be constantly deciding whether an article should be created or not for each number and concept. The following are some general rules of thumb:
- Numbers and functions should be mathematically well-defined, or at least an attempt at being mathematically well-defined. A number defined as "infinity plus 42" is not acceptable unless it is significant enough in pop culture.
- Even when they're only tangentially relevant to googology, ordinals and related functions are fine. At the moment, we're holding back many of the large cardinals to avoid duplicating Cantor's Attic.
- They should grow fast enough to be related to googology. As a general rule of thumb, things that grow slower than factorial are not acceptable. Addition and multiplication are fine because they form the basis of the hyperoperators.
- Googologists are mostly concerned with functions mapping counting numbers to counting numbers. Functions like \(e^x\) map naturals to irrationals and thus are not easily analyzable with standard googological tools. As usual, exceptions are common; use your own discretion and discuss in case of controversy.
- Other stuff:
- Someone who has made a useful enough contribution to Googology and whose presence has been acknowledged by other members of the community may have an article written about them. However, a user must not write an article about themselves, and new users shouldn't have articles written about them.
Googology Wiki is intended as a reflection of large number literature, online and offline. It is not the place to introduce new googology. The point of this rule is to make Googology Wiki a well-documented piece of work, not a place where people can dump their trivial salad numbers.
Good sources include:
- Academic papers
- Textbooks and other reliable print sources
- Articles from reputable websites
- Self-published books, papers, and websites. Googology Wiki doesn't have a conflict of interest policy, and it's acceptable to write articles about your own work.
Bad sources include:
- Forums and other wikis. There are some exceptions such as c2wiki's famous ReallyBigNumbers page, where many well-known googologisms come from.
- Private communications
- Other pages within Googology Wiki
All this said, there is some leeway with original content. While Wikipedia considers itself a tertiary source, Googology Wiki is a secondary source. Our articles frequently offer commentary, analysis, and explanations of the source material (although it should be neutral and objective if possible). While entirely new inventions shouldn't be introduced in the mainspace, it's acceptable and common to discuss and analyze existing googology. Readers should note that such commentaries are not subject to academic review, in contrast to some of our sources.
In line with this forum post, all counting blogs are banned. This does not include well-thought out competitions designed to spark serious thought, but rather posts which are quickly filled with comments which it doesn't take much thought to type.
Think before you comment. Comments which are entirely unrelated to the message of the blog post or are trivial salad extensions of the concepts discussed in the post are frowned upon.
Vandalism is a deliberate attempt to harm the integrity of the encyclopedia. If you encounter vandalism, revert it and leave the owner a firm but respectful message to stop. If the vandalism persists, contact an administrator and they'll deal with it the way they see fit.
An edit war happens when two or more editors have a dispute, and instead of discussing things out, they revert back and forth between the revisions they want. Edit wars are not productive in any way, and generally just make people more angry. Instead of edit warring, talk it over and come to a decision.
In an effort to fight counterproductive edit warring, we will mirror the 3RR rule as found on Wikipedia:
- Any editor who makes more than three reverts on the same page within a 24-hour period will be blocked for 24 hours. Self-reversion and reversion of obvious vandalism do not count towards this.
The purpose of 3RR blocks — and any other blocks, for that matter — are to prevent further disruption, not to punish misbehavior.
Googology Wiki is itself licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Original writing is preferred to copied writing, even when we are allowed to reproduce the copied text (e.g. when copying from Wikipedia). Of course, plagiarism is unacceptable.
Sometimes, we are required to use copyrighted images and other media in articles. These are subject to fair use under U.S. copyright law — the most common rationale on this wiki is using the media for the purposes of scholarly commentary.