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ID: 4397

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Updated:
May 19, 2011, 12:35 am

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Scrasamax
EchoMirage

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The Art of Linking

By:

The many ways of the Citadel to bind ideas together.

Our dear Citadel is a fine place to work on ideas, no doubt about it. We have several ways of linking the submissions together, and that can be a little confusing sometimes. This resource will attempt to investigate the means of connecting, what they are good for, and how to use them. You are cordially invited to help.

Below, I use the words ‘submission’ and ‘sub’ for the very same thing.

(Note: Parts of this resource may change with the next generation of the Citadel.)

How to:



Additional Ideas (8)

Linking to submissions

The easiest, and most obvious. If you refer to something in your submission, you might as well link to it!

How to:
To simply link to another submission inside of the Citadel, use square brackets:

left square bracket + Link + right square bracket

OR use a pipe '|' and add a title you like:

left square bracket + Link + pipe + Title + right square bracket


So what is that 'Link' about?

The Link can be either the numerical ID of the submission, or it's _complete_ name. You have to be sure the one you use is correct; broken links suck.

Note: both the numerical ID and the submission's name are perfectly valid. Personally, I prefer to use the ID (to use the title is preferable then, see below), but this link works, even if the submission's name ever changes (which rarely happens). Especially with submissions that are likely to change their name (like those still worked on), use the ID.

On the other hand, using the submission's name is more intuitive, and creates nicer html links.


Example with a numerical ID: 1234.
Example with a title: Worlds and Planets.

(Point at the examples with a mouse to see where they point to in your browser's status line; this will be in the address line once you visit it.)


And what about that 'Title'?

If you don't use a title, you will get the Link itself - so the full submission name or only the ID (a number). That may not be what you desire, or look a little awkward.

With a title, you can form meaningful sentences like: "and his mighty sword came crashing upon the horrible beast, blahblahblah". :)
0xp

2007-09-28 07:41 PM » Link: [4397#30778|text]
Linking to comments

- this is pretty much the same as linking to a submission, but the Link is submission ID, plus the comment's ID, separated by a hash-mark:

Again: left square bracket + Link + right square bracket

OR use a pipe '|' and add a title you like:

left square bracket + Link + pipe + Title + right square bracket


Where Link is:

submissionID#commentID


Example - a village: 2014#9558
Example with a title: an island

(It is possible to use a submission's name in the title, but the result can look a bit strange: example.)


Linking to replies to comments

Comments can have replies to them, and can be linked to in the same way. Just be sure you have the correct ID. (Note that the displayed ID belongs actually to the parent. You have to get the correct ID by other means.)
0xp

2007-09-28 07:43 PM » Link: [4397#30779|text]
"Suggested submissions" and "Link Back"

At the end of your submission, you can list other subs that were particularly important for it. Use the form at the very bottom of the page to add some. It's likely you have used links to these submissions directly in the text, but this is a nice little summary of what is your sub connected to. (Note that in a Codex this part looks dramatically different than in a normal submission!)

If you look at the upper right part of the page, you might see one or more links under the title "Link Back". Let's say you have created a devious, innocent-looking item, and suggest it into the Garage Sale from Hell Codex. Your item will be featured in this codex, and in turn, in your submission will be a link to this Codex, under "Link Back".

This way users can see what points at your submission, or what is it part of - "look, this plot is in the Starting Adventures codex". Or "hey, that monster or strange plant is featured in several plots!" Or "that item is mentioned in a historical piece", for example.
0xp

2007-09-28 07:45 PM » Link: [4397#30780|text]
Scrolls

Scrolls are collections of minor posts. If you have seen a few, there is little to explain. The most typical uses of them are:

- Collections of whatever similar pieces you want. Say you want to create Magical Cigars, Islands or, heck, Torture Devices and Techniques if that is what you are into. You may post a few, and call for others to post their own ideas. If successful, these scrolls can become very popular and gather over a hundred posts to them! You were warned. :D

- A single submission broken into several parts, sometimes of a very different nature. This is usually done with submissions that are too long or too complicated, to prevent the reader's head from blowing up. Here you can fit your world's history, or that large system post that is still worked on in some parts. There are several BIG plots with tons of notes and details, where each important part of the plot gets one scroll post. There can be also encounter tables, write-ups of the events and NPCs, and much more.

Note: You can create an index in the body of a submission to point to the important scroll comments.


Linking in Scrolls

Linking to scroll comments is pretty much the same as linking to ordinary comments.

Especially in complicated plots, you can have fun with linking between the scrolls. (So, the noble NPC is active in Act I. and Act III., so both will link to it. He is interested in the dingus, so he will be linked to it as well. Another NPC hates the noble, and will act against him... and so on, and so on.)

Warning: setting up all the links takes time, splitting the post into meaningful batches and writing up all the references even more. If you succeed, you will get a beautiful document you can merrily click around on, with all the information at your fingertips; hypertext at its finest. If you fail, you will get a jumbled mess of confusing links and shreds of information which will take a while to read and understand. I have accomplished both, so I know what I am speaking about. ;)
0xp

2007-09-28 07:47 PM » Link: [4397#30781|text]
Codices

A Codex is a collection of submissions, that were Suggested as noted above. Again, look at a few to see what it is about. In a Codex, you not only want to see that other submissions are linked to it (with their titles and summaries), you want to see them in all beauty. Handily, the Codex indexes all subs that are linked to it.


It appears there are two basic uses for Codices:

- "Public" collections, where submissions are put together based on something they have in common - the Bizzare Life-Forms Challenge has strange lifeforms, The 30 has groups of similar NPCs, Remaking the Undead groups undead creatures of remarkable scariness.

- "Private" collections, where the author gathers a few submissions that need to be displayed in entirety. These are often related to one setting, but can be plots and the like as well (the 5in1 challenge was notorious).

Note: Codices are pretty when there are a few submissions linked to them, but the truly big ones can become too heavy. There is some discussion of how to make them easier to handle, Citadel v3.0 should bring a new Codex interface.


Linking inside of a Codex:

To link to a submission, that is in its entirety on the Codex page, just a little peek at that index is needed: a 't' has to be added at the end of the Link. So it looks like:

left square bracket + Link + right square bracket

OR use a pipe '|' and add a title you like:

left square bracket + Link + pipe + Title + right square bracket


Where Link is:

CodexSubmissionID + hash + LinkedSubmissionID + t

(It is suggested that both IDs be numerical; the second has to be.)
0xp

2007-09-28 07:51 PM » Link: [4397#30782|text]
The Freetext

The freetext is a strange but lovely animal. Take a look at the word cloud ( http://www.strolen.com/view.php?node=freetext&free=Freetext ). A freetext groups submissions, though in a looser way. It is used to mark all subs of a certain setting (Arth, Hewdamia, Neyathis), note that the submission has a particular format ('30', '101', 'Tales of Adventure'), or that it has a particular content ('Schools of Magic'). It is useless, if it has only one sub. But tag several submissions with it, and order starts to emerge!

A freetext should be short, and as clear as possible (see an entire discussion on how it should be employed http://www.strolen.com/guild/index.php/topic,3824.0.html ).

A submission can have several freetexts (let's say "Fungus", "Setting Name", and "Poison"), and all link it to other submissions with the same characteristic. These tags are displayed on the upper right of a submission.


How to add freetexts? Simply: write the freetext(s) into their field when submitting or updating the sub. If there are more, separate them with a comma.
0xp

2007-09-28 07:52 PM » Link: [4397#30783|text]
Images

Okay, this is not exactly a way to connect submissions together, but it makes them prettier! The gallery is a moody piece of softare, and the syntax is a little bit complicated, but let's take a look:

left square bracket + left square bracket + Image Size + pipe + Image Name + pipe + Alignement + pipe + Alternative Text + right square bracket + right square bracket

Yes, there are two sets of brackets, and several parameters separated by pipes ('|').


So what do all those parameters do?

Image Size - can be 'normal', or 'thumb', for displaying the whole picture or just a thumbnail.

Image Name - the exact name of the image file you have uploaded into your gallery (something.jpg for example).

Alignment - may be 'left', 'middle', or 'right'. 'left' and 'right' will wrap text around the image, 'middle' will leave it alone.

Alternative Text - the text, that will be displayed if no image is loaded (or if you hold your mouse over it for a while).

h1-10000.jpg|left|Elder Citadel Dragon] An example, taken from one of the older incarnations of the Citadel. It is a thumbnail aligned to the left, and the text can flow nicely around it.
0xp

2007-10-05 07:09 PM » Link: [4397#31053|text]
External Links (IN PROGRESS)

Links to external resources (well, to anything other than what was already mentioned), are your basic HTML links.

Example - link to all freetexts: http://strolen.com/freetext


A simple html link would look like this: (or just refer to any official documentation to HTML)

opening bracket + 'a href=' + quote + Full Link + quote + closing bracket + Title + opening bracket + /a + closing bracket
(All brackets here are angular brackets.)
0xp

2007-10-27 04:30 PM » Link: [4397#31751|text]
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Comments ( 17 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Murometz
October 27, 2007, 16:20
0xp
Very good. A primer, a refresher, and a much-needed tutorial.
Voted Cheka Man
October 27, 2007, 22:16
Only voted
Scrasamax
October 27, 2007, 22:42
0xp
An excellent resource, one that can be used by our new members, and some of our more established members who have linking problems. I would like to add a trick I've used in one of my codices that became cumbersomely large. After writing a large amendment to the codex, I would end it with a link that returned the viewer back to the top of the page.

The way I did this was as follows:

left square bracket + Back to Top + pipe + Codex ID + right square bracket

Essentially I linked the end of each codex section back to the codex itself, so clicking on the link reloaded the page and started the viewer back at the top of the page.
manfred
October 28, 2007, 12:12
0xp
(Say, isn't that the other way around - "Codex ID + pipe + Back to Top"?)

It is a good idea, though. If you want to, you can post it as a reply to the part about Codices.
Voted valadaar
October 29, 2007, 11:04
0xp
As said, an excellent utility sub.
Voted Dozus
October 29, 2007, 11:19
0xp
Informative!
Voted Ouroboros
October 29, 2007, 11:41
0xp
Excellent! A pretty, professional layout is what gives a good submission the final buff! Just wish I´d read through this on before I posted...Oh well
manfred
October 29, 2007, 12:22
0xp
Well, you can always update it if you want to - improving the submissions is not frowned upon, but actually quite welcome!

(Thanks for the compliments as well!)
Voted MoonHunter
October 30, 2007, 14:19
0xp
One should always give intense love to site specific reference submissions.
Voted Michael Jotne Slayer
November 30, 2007, 13:59
0xp
Nicely wrapped up tutorial. It can serve as a reminder when we need it as well as giving great advice for beginners. Good work Manfred!
manfred
March 11, 2009, 16:48
0xp
Since there are some considerations about documenting the intricate workings of the Citadel, it's time to Bump this lady!
Voted Moonlake
March 11, 2009, 19:20
0xp
Extremely useful!
Murometz
December 18, 2009, 10:13
0xp
An invaluable Citadel resourse for all to read! :)
tinypoisonousfish
December 19, 2009, 8:04
0xp
Useful, thanks.
Voted Ramhir
January 25, 2011, 10:14
0xp

An extremely useful sub for us newbies. Goes into my Favorites! Thanks!!! (5/5)

Voted Strolen
May 19, 2011, 0:35
0xp

Updated: Updated to the Citadel Help category. Thanks manfred!

manfred
May 19, 2011, 2:49
0xp
It could really use an update though. :)

Link Backs

Freetext



Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

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