|This is a Wikipedia user page.|
This is not an encyclopedia article or the talk page for an encyclopedia article. If you find this page on any site other than Wikipedia, you are viewing a mirror site. Be aware that the page may be outdated and that the user whom this page is about may have no personal affiliation with any site other than Wikipedia. The original page is located at
The file is deceased.
It is no longer. It has passed on. You can not have that file in this life! The file is dead, lifeless, departed, demised, late, extinct, no more.
It has broken on through to the other side.— proposed message for deleted files
They were the ones picked last for teams and were the smartest kids in the class. Those are our people.
An editor thinks something might be wrong with this page. That editor won't actually make any effort to fix it,
but can rest assured that they've done their encyclopedic duty by sticking on a tag.
Please allow this tag to languish indefinitely at the top of the page, since nobody knows exactly what the tagging editor was worked up about.
|This user is allowed on Wikipedia because It is considered humorous.|
Neither It nor Its comments should be taken even remotely seriously.
|This page contains material that is kept because it is considered boring. Please take it seriously.|
"I only came here to fix punctuation on the global warming article!"
What we do here
https://www.gocomics.com/nancy/2018/10/13 (copyright prevents this from being here other than as a link)
My photo is not here
My uncle took this picture of me on Thanksgiving 2012 but the process of uploading and getting his permission on file is just too complicated. Plus my photo can be used for any purpose if I put it on Commons. So I just asked someone I knew from message boards to put it on his site.
Why the name?
In the first email I ever sent (before I had an email address of my own), "vchimpanzee" ended up being what I typed on the subject line. I didn't know how to correct the typo, but that was okay. It gave me an idea for an email address.
The email was in reference to a format change on WNMX in 1997. I congratulated the station on the talented music director they had hired and recommended he go on the late-night talk shows. I like adult standards, easy listening and classic country and some music in other format categories as well.
I have considered telling people the name came from my interest in the V-chip rating. At one time, I sent snail mail to the appropriate people suggesting another rating to make it clear when programming is family friendly, since TV-PG does not necessarily make that clear and some networks are too quick to use TV-PG instead of TV-G. I could have said I decided to call myself "Vchipman" and made a mistake. But that would be changing history.
What activities lead me to edit?
For several years I regarded Wikipedia as a reliable source and it was my primary resource for looking information up online. One day I found an error, and that was the beginning of my contributions. Even today I mostly look up information on Wikipedia (and often make minor corrections), and it used to be true that at home I avoided going to nearly all other sites to prevent potential problems (the COVID-19 pandemic means I've all but given up on avoiding sites at home), but if I can't find what I want on Wikipedia and end up searching elsewhere, I often summarize what I have found and where I have found it in the appropriate article when I believe Wikipedia needs the information--provided I am following the rules (and sometimes I ought to know I'm not and get reverted, but enforcement is inconsistent). Other changes I might make such as adding redirects help to make topics easier to search for using search engines, since search engines aren't human and don't understand what we are looking for. At first I mainly created or added to articles on radio, because I felt a source was needed for finding information about all radio stations, and apparently those involved with WikiProject:Radio agree. These days I occasionally create articles but it usually takes time to make sure the article is ready, and sometimes I don't want to spend the time.
I would read three magazines at libraries--Billboard, Advertising Age and Broadcasting & Cable. The third one I mostly looked at online because of a PDF database of articles which was just like reading the real magazine. That changed when I was no longer allowed access to the PDF version but had to settle for the "full text" version, but I continue to look at it just online. And as of 2015, I mostly looked at the other two online as well. And while I look at these articles, I find topics that should be addressed or covered in more detail on Wikipedia. Billboard I can never remember to look at any more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed my routine (see below), but I used to read six online newspapers each day (but now all charge for more than a certain number of articles a month; getting around this means visiting various libraries). Maybe "read" isn't the right term, because this took maybe 30 minutes. The only paper I really read is The Charlotte Observer, which I pay to get home delivered the old-fashioned way. I rarely go to that paper's web site but if I see something I believe ought to go on Wikipedia, I might go to the web site to make sure I contribute a link to the article, which won't work after a certain period of time but it'll help people verify the article exists. The other papers I look at have local news, comic strips and syndicated columns not in the Observer. Five of the papers (all which now charge for their web sites, though one is free at several libraries) I would see at libraries, four of those every two weeks. One I would see every two months for Sundays and once a year on microfilm, just to make sure, at the beach. Looking at specific stories online helps me get through the papers faster when I look at them for real. The original purpose of looking at the papers online was to make sure I saved articles for printout while they were still free, rather than spending money to copy them from the real paper or taking notes from them that would be hard to figure out later. Instead of paying to print out each article when I see it (I don't have a printer at home), I save articles to an email to myself which is later combined with other emails to myself and printed out as one long email. There is also the risk the library won't have one of the actual papers. And for one of the six papers, there was no other library to go to if it was missing (when I go to the mountains the library where I go doesn't have the microfilm and I'm not likely going to the one that does), so I have to have seen the articles in each paper online while they were free. And since this paper now charges for looking at more than a certain number of its articles per month, and I did not have free access to their archives (Wikipedia now gives me free access to newspapers.com) as I do for the archives of other papers (see below) I was afraid it was unlikely Wikipedia would benefit from any local information there unless someone else contributed it. I have figured out a way around limits, however. This was a slight risk for the other papers but I could usually see papers I missed at another library. Sometimes while looking at these papers online, I saw articles (including national news) that contain information that should go on Wikipedia. To save time, I might copy the information into an email and edit Wikipedia later, so this explains why the accessdate isn't the date of the edit in some cases.
As of 2014, I made other discoveries. I could read and copy articles in two of the papers even when the box saying to pay covers up most of the content. Copy and paste still worked with what was covered up. This saved a lot of time that I once spent on NewsBank (see below). However, as of June 2017, I had a harder time contributing to articles using these as a source. They finally figured out how to block me from all the methods I used to cheat. No one should be subjected to this because it is impossible to pay for subscriptions to that many papers, and I will not. I subscribe to one. I did not have the time to look at articles in these papers on those occasions when I used NewsBank. Also, until 2017, one of the papers was not on NewsBank but its archives were free for 30 days and most of the articles were there. Looking at these newspapers became a whole lot easier in 2020 (see below).
Also in 2014, I could no longer see one of the papers except online and at the beach, since the library that subscribed closed for renovations. When those were complete, the subscription did not restart. But see below.
As of February 21, 2018, I found myself blocked from any content on one newspaper's web site. I didn't know if this would change. I have made lots of contributions using this paper as a source, and another co-owned newspaper which I later tested and found had done it too. These newspapers would have deprived Wikipedia of lots of content, but a month later things seemed to have changed.
What editing do I do?
I don't formally participate in the recent changes patrol, but I watch articles I've recently contributed to, though only in my contributions history. Sometimes I don't see a change for a while. Once my last contribution is no longer recent, I tend to forget the articles, and that includes articles I created which I should probably monitor more closely. I also create lots of Redirects because they are helpful in locating information that might be hard to find in a normal Google search where Google doesn't know what you're looking for, or even in a Wikipedia search where the result you want might not come up. The truth is that most of those redirects are articles that will come up first or second in a Wikipedia search, so all I'm really doing is saving the person one mouse click--or maybe I'm keeping Wikipedia's servers from searching. If a search engine doesn't turn up the results I want because what I want has nothing to do with what shows up in the search, I can occasionally improve the search engine results through my contribution and make it easier for the next person.
I also fix a lot of typos (too many of those end up being ones I made, usually recently) or punctuation or grammar problems. Occasionally I find these when I make a mistake in a search.
How do I have all this time?
The reason I have so much time to work on Wikipedia: I inherited enough money to live on if I'm cautious, though I didn't have my own computer and I'm lucky several area libraries, mostly at colleges, have more computers than they need, provided I arrive at the right time. The colleges also have great online resources not available to everyone which give me some advantages in doing research. One of the colleges is close enough that some parts of the campus are farther from the library than my house is, but they limit my online time while two other college libraries within driving distance did not. Another does not but isn't as close.
What is my philosophy?
I believe in adding more information than necessary because it can always be deleted if not right for Wikipedia. If new information is not added when it is easy to find, it might be hard to find later. Also, I support the idea of trivia sections in articles because I enjoy reading these, and it might be hard to find the same information elsewhere online. If I am at home, then I don't dare go to other sites to find such information, so I really hope the supporters of trivia in Wikipedia prevail. I support adding as many businesses as possible even if all an article has is general information, because not every notable business has the type of information Wikipedia wants in a way that is easy to find.
Wait, he has a degree in WHAT?
I have a couple of bachelor's degrees, but despite having an accounting degree I'm lucky to be able to do my taxes. Anyone who answers questions on the Computing Reference Desk knows my computer science degree didn't help me much either, though computers were very different when I got the degree. I mention the degrees because they may be helpful to me in editing certain articles. My general college education has been most helpful, though.
Where do I edit and why?
As of July 15, 2008, I have my own computer. I had the Internet installed on the afternoon of August 5, 2008. For that reason I can be here to edit even on holidays when libraries are closed. However, to keep my computer running smoothly I avoid going to more than a few select sites at home. Also, to keep the price low I got the slowest Internet speed that wasn't dial-up. I look at certain online newspapers at home if the college library nearby is closed. If I find something Wikipedia needs on one of those days I can add it.
As of January 1, 2009, NewsBank, one of the most useful online resources that allowed me to contribute to Wikipedia, was dropped by most of the libraries I go to. The explanation given was that the resource cost 15 percent of the budget but generated only 3 percent of the usage. I could pay for the same information, but I choose not to.
Six months later I found that another online resource may have much of the same information, since the search function seems to be working better.
In November 2010 I discovered that a library I go to frequently once again had NewsBank. But it was not in the budget so in 2014 they seemed to be getting it for free. How long they'd have it I didn't know but my contributions would go way down when they didn't.
And as of February 1, 2015, I had to go somewhere else for NewsBank. It is farther away and I go less often. So many of the potential contributions I could have made were out of the question. I don't remember the date, but another library I go to but not that often has it.
As of January 14, 2016 I have a HP 251-A126 with Windows 10 Home and McAfee antivirus, but I could still use the old one and I preferred it, as long as nothing terrible happens. But let's face it. Who wants to do a System Restore every single day? Also, I have thrown it out after a hazardous waste event.
As of March 3, 2017, after my phone company had significant trouble with its Internet service over a period of two weeks, I threatened to cancel. They gave me a good deal on faster Internet. A year later, I found out that this deal was not just for a year.
In 2019 one of the libraries with NewsBank asked me why I didn't have a library card. I thought they would charge since I didn't live in the county. They did not. I got one and now I can sign in with my library card number when I go there, instead of getting someone at the desk to sign me in.
The other library with NewsBank, at some point, added an archive for The Charlotte Observer that had the actual newspaper for years before 1985.
During the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic I didn't even have to go to that library (libraries closed to the public in my area, although some may still have been letting people make appointments to use the computer). They told me how to get to NewsBank at home using my library card number, and later, when I had trouble getting in after turning off the computer, with a special sign-in which let me stay signed in even after I turned off the computer each day. And there's more! On April 23, 2020, this library upgraded so I could see what the actual newspaper looked like for most of the newspapers I look at when I go to libraries, as far back as 2018. Except for the one on newspapers.com and two others available only in text version on NewsBank (and that's not all the articles), I can look at the newspapers I used to have to go to libraries for this way.
The other library with NewsBank is not open to the public at this time and not being a student, I can't get permission to go there at home. Later, I found out another library in the area with the Charlotte Observer archive would allow me to come look at it there, but they charged for me to have a card I could use at home.
Help Desk and Teahouse
As of 2012, I looked at Help Desk questions that were asked at least one or two days earlier. While looking at archived questions I noticed a few never got answers or the questions were misinterpreted but I could have answered correctly in some of these cases. I don't visit Wikipedia often enough to really help out on that page, and the others who do answer questions do a better job than I would. I have so far made an attempt to answer numerous questions that had not been answered, but sometimes I can't figure out answers.
Late in 2012, because the New contributors' help page was merged with the Teahouse, I ended up visiting the Teahouse regularly. I answered more questions there than on the Help Desk due to the different order of the questions, but I don't get there nearly often enough to do much.
As of January 20, 2016, my new computer was so slow that I was no longer able to help out on the Teahouse. The only way I would be able to continue looking at it was through archives.
And as of February 5, 2016, my new computer has had so much experience with Wikipedia that even the Teahouse will not be a problem.
And on February 29 and March 2, I spent most of my time on my computer talking to tech support. I am way behind. Plus on March 2 I had to restore my computer to factory settings, which made Wikipedia (temporarily) slow again.
While I have been caught up for some time, looking at the Help Desk and Teahouse rather than its archives just caused me too many problems. The cost of upgrading my Internet speed just wasn't worth it, since what I had usually works once the computer has been on for a while. As of March 3, 2017 this wasn't a problem but with all my Internet troubles over those two weeks years ago, I was way behind on The Teahouse.
The Teahouse has changed the way it archives and rather than stop in the middle of the archive and try to figure out where to start again, early in 2020 I just read the whole archive each time, even though it took an hour or more. Now I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and I just turn off the computer when I get to a good place to stop, and the archive will scroll down to the right point (hopefully) when I start again. But I'm way behind on the Help Desk now and even less likely to get back to the Teahouse archives.
There's not much point, but if a question was unanswered or there is no evidence an inexperienced user saw an answer, I can at least let them know. There doesn't seem to be a place to request a bot to do this. Apparently I would have to create my own.
Where did I get my signature?
Actually, I changed it again 22:46, 15 November 2017 (UTC) because "talk" is kind of hard to read. And my name is not bold above because I linked to an alternate name I considered using but which is now only for thanking people (I find the links to send thanks annoying and have a script to keep from seeing them) or seeing what happens if someone is not autoconfirmed.
And again at 16:05 July 10, 2020. The word "talk" was still kind of hard to read.
|/American_Plastic_ Bricks||/Michael_Lucarelli||All my subpages||/Template:Vendetta||/Club Crackers||/Volt (soft drink)||/Michael Gerst|