This web site and others like it are intended to be very easy for readers to use. In particular, if your primary focus is currently on reading, browsing, or searching, the best way to proceed initially is by exploring, especially if you take advantage of the hovertext (also known as balloon help or tip) associated with many hyperlinks. To see the hovertext associated with a hyperlink, position the mouse cursor over the hyperlink and leave it there for a moment.
If you would like some guidance, there is plenty available, both on this website and elsewhere. The help pages on this site are organized as shown in the interactive Help menu on the right. Hyperlinks are shown in blue. To view this Help menu from any page on this website, click on the Help button in the navigation box on the left.
What follows is a brief tour of some of the core features of this website, beginning with short explanations of the main elements on this page, starting with the left-most column.
The QED Logo
Every page has a logo at the top left-hand side. It serves as a hyperlink to its "home page". If you position the mouse over the logo, then depending on the browser you are using, some text may appear indicating more specifically where the link will take you. Such text is often called hovertext. If the hovertext does not appear, you may still see the link if the browser's "Status Bar" is visible. (To make the "Status Bar" visible, go to the browser's "View" menu.)
The navigation box contains several links, notably:
- a link back to the QED main page
- a link to the QED help documentation
- a link to the Recent changes page, which logs recent updates and uploads.
This box contains links to Princeton University websites.
The search box has two buttons that together allow one to proceed directly to a particular QED page if it exists, to create a new page, and to search for pages and uploaded files that contain specified keywords in their titles and/or contents. The Advanced search hyperlink points to a page with a variety of search possibilities, including a Google search.
If your main intention is to view a page with a specific title, or to create a page with a specific title, use the Go button. The Search button uses an up-to-date index of page titles and page contents but does not scan the contents of uploaded files.
Google searches are restricted to this website but rely on the Google cache, which may be incomplete and/or outdated.
To take full advantage of the indexing and searching features, it is helpful to understand the concept of namespaces. See Help:Namespaces for further information.
For further details, see Help:Search.
The links in the toolbox vary from screen to screen. They typically include:
- What links here — clicking on this link answers the question: what pages on QED have links to the page currently being viewed?
- Related changes — pressing on this button will show you a list of articles that have recently changed and which are linked to from the current page.
- Upload file — if you want to upload a file (e.g. a PDF or JPG file), first login.
- Special pages — a window into the wonderful world of wikis.
The Personal Menu Bar
At the top of each QED page is a menu bar that is also context dependent.
If you have not logged in, there is a log in link which you can follow to reach the login page.
If you have logged in, then a number of hyperlinks appear:
Your Home Page
Every registered user has a home page in the "User:" namespace (see Help:Namespaces). This page is initially empty. On QED, the current policy is that only you, the registered user, can edit your home page.
This links to a page that is intended for you and other QED users who wish to communicate with you.
If you wish to visit, create or modify another person's "talk page", the simplest way is often to use the Go button. For example, if the userid of the person in question is tiger, you would type in: User talk:tiger
To create or change the contents of this or any other QED page, you must be logged in.
To create a link to the talk page of someone with a userid of tiger, you would use the following model:
Following this link allows you to make numerous choices that are remembered from session to session.
As a registered user, you can add any page to your watchlist. You can then view a chronologically ordered listing of changes to the pages on your watchlist.
Following this link will show you the pages which you have created or modified.
The tabs at the top of each page allow one to view different pages associated with the primary page. The set of tabs is context-dependent and primarily depends on the type of page being viewed and whether or not one has logged in.
The tabs at the top of this page have the following significance:
- The left-most tab (marked Help on this page because it is in the Help: namespace) allows one to view the rendered version of the primary page;
- The discussion tab allows one to see the discussion page associated with the primary page;
- The edit tab allows one to edit the page (as described below) if one has the required permissions, or to view the source code of the page otherwise;
- The history tab allows one to view the edit history of the primary page, and to compare different versions of the primary page — see Help:Page_history;
- The watch tab allows one to add the current page to one's watchlist as described above; if the page is already being watched, this tab is replaced by an unwatch tab.
Help Navigation Bar
At the top right-hand side of this page, there is a column called a navigation bar. It appears on all Help pages and provides a clickable table of contents for the Help documentation.
Editing a Page
For details about how to edit a page, see Help:Editing. Here we simply provide an overview of the user interface.
When one presses the edit tab, an editing window opens up.
B is for "bold", etc. Each of the icons has associated hovertext. If in doubt, just press the button.
Below the editing window, a one line "Summary:" form appears together with some other buttons and links:
- It is good practice to write a short one-line Summary and to indicate whether or not the edit is a minor edit — these pieces of information will appear on the history page.
- The Watch this page check box is equivalent to the watch tab already described.
- The Save page and Show preview buttons are self-explanatory.
- Pressing the Show changes button causes a comparison of the saved version with the proposed version to be displayed.
- Pressing the Cancel button has the effect of canceling the editing session without any changes.
- Pressing Editing help causes the Help:Editing page to appear in a separate window.