The top-middle panel of a page, the work area, is the core of the wiki. This is where the actual content of an entry (article) is displayed.
The article is the text that you are reading right now. The name of this very article is Help:Work area as you can read above. Any registered and logged in visitor can add to or edit the article area.
When you click on the edit-tab you can edit the page (if you are logged in). A tool-panel for easy formatting of the text will appear. You do not need to use this panel to formt the page. The tool-box is a help for formatting and is usually enough for the needs of a visitor. But if you need to do special formating there are other commands available. You can try formating a page in the BioMineWiki sandbox.
This section makes it possible for you to view and revert to earlier versions of the text. When you click on the history tab, you can view the development process of a text from the most recent modification to the first time the modification was saved. Deleted pages, which are no longer visible and may only be accessed by administrators, are exception to this rule.
Each line represents a former version, and includes various additional information such as the point in time in which the text was saved. The versions can be compared in a variety of combinations.
- If you click on the beginning of a line, that is, on "(cur)", you will get a comparison of the respective version and the current article.
- If you click on "(last)", you will see a comparison of the version in that line with the preceding version (in the line below it). Thus you will only see the changes made by the participant that generated that edit.
Using the radio buttons, you can mark any two versions and view the difference by clicking on the Compare selected versions button at the bottom of the list. The result is displayed on its own page. On the left, the older version is displayed, and on the right, the newer one. Only those lines are displayed in which modifications were made. The changes are color coded. Under the changes between the two versions, you will find the newest of the two texts again in full.
- The radio buttons are followed by the time and the date when the edit was saved. They lead directly to the previous version.
- If an author has provided a summary of his edit, it appears at the end of the line in italics and brackets.
Sometimes it is necessary to rename a page, e.g. if the name has been misspelled or does not comply with the stipulated conventions for names, or if the scope of the article has changed. In this regard, the terms "move" and "rename" mean one and the same, because when you change the name of the page, links to that page, which are generated using the name of the page, become invalid. Thus the page has been moved.
The "move" function ensures that the entire history of the page before and after the rem´naming remains traceable. The alternative, namely cutting out a text and placing it into a new page, has the crucial disadvantage that the previous development of the page can no longer be traced. If this procedure is nevertheless necessary, e.g. if the content of a title is divided, it is advisable to note in the comments where you have obtained the text.
When you, for some reason, want to see when an article of special interest for you is changed - click the watch-tab on the article of special interest. Then you can follow the changes done on the article by checking out my watchlist in the top-right side of a page.
The watchlist functions the same way as the "recent changes" list, except that only the pages you have selected to watch are included.
If you have the status of a system administrator you have access to the protect tab and can use it to protect a page from being edited by others. You can release the protected status with the unprotect tab. At least two participants should have administrator status, in order to avoid centralist tendencies ("dual control principle").
Administrators can remove pages and their complete history with the delete command. Such pages are placed into an archive and are no longer accessible over the WWW. However, they are only removed from the database when specifically deleted by a sysop.
If you don't have administrator rights you can suggest and discuss potential delete candidates here.