Every time I think I’ve finalised the data structures of the semantic wiki, I realise that something could be done better or that querying for a certain thing is too difficult. This week I’ve given the wiki a big overhaul, including:
- upgraded software to Semantic MediaWiki 3.1.6, Maps 7.18.0 and Page Forms 4.9. As far as I know, this hasn’t broken anything yet.
- imported about 750 regicides and MPs who were never peers. See Category:Agents for the latest list of historical people. Regicides are also listed in Category:Regicides of Charles I and MPs have personnel relationships with the House of Commons in the Short and/or Long Parliament. These imports are based on Wikidata items that I found via Wikipedia categories. There may be errors that I haven’t found yet.
- pages for historical people, places, organizations, and events now show up to 10 linked sources or a message that there are no linked sources, so you don’t have to click a link to find out.
- changed the properties that subobjects use to link agents to organizations, and participants to events, so that they’re not the same ‘has parent’ and ‘has subordinate’ properties used for command structure relationships. I think this should make queries simpler and more efficient, and avoid possible confusion, because there’s less need to check what the subobject is an instance of.
- added a new property, ‘has allegiance‘, to the subobject for event participants to show which side they were on.
- agents and units now use different types of subobject (but with all the same properties apart from ‘is instance of’) to link to events. This makes it easier to query for participants and simplifies the roles that need to be assigned to participants.
- roles in events have been redefined. See Category:Event participant roles for the latest list.
- royalist allegiance factions have been merged into one: royalist forces. This is simpler and allows for cases where we know that someone served as a royalist soldier but not when or which king they served.
- where an agent is a member of an organization that can be assigned allegiance, the allegiance faction should also be entered as a second value in the personnel relationship. This makes queries for soldiers by which side they were on simpler and more precise. It also allows for cases where we know that a soldier was on a certain side but not which unit they were in.
- updated Help:Data structures to reflect changes to properties and templates.
- added Geonames IDs to some more Scottish settlements, so coverage is now about 1/3, but linking Geonames and Ordnance Survey data has turned out to be quite difficult.
- fixed some broken redirects and missing categories.
I thought the software upgrades hadn’t broken anything but yesterday I found that Page Forms 4.9 was causing problems so I reverted to 4.3.