Last modified: 2011-03-13 18:04:40 UTC
The way wikilinks are handled in MediaWiki makes it easy to drop a part of the
link, such as a suffix, or the trailing part of a compound word, e.g.,
[[mongoose]]s, [[Shakespeare]]an, [[Versicherung]]svertrag. This allows for nice
and compact wikilinks in the source as long as the page to which a link is
desired has a title that forms the first part of the link text. When this is not
so, however, silly redundant links like [[kansantalous|kansantaloudellinen]]
(national economy / relating to the national economy), or even monstrosities
like (quoting from the Icelandic Wikipedia) "Vigdís er dóttir [[Finnbogi Rútur
Þorvaldsson|Finnboga Rúts Þorvaldssonar]]" are required. This is the case in all
languages that are fusional to any degree.
What I suggest, therefore, is that a syntax be implemented that would allow for
substitutions to be specified within a link without needlessly having to repeat
the entire, possibly very long link. This syntax might take the form of e.g. the
otherwise seldom used double parentheses with a pipe to separate link content
from link text: to use the Icelandic example above, it would be reduced to
"Vigdís er dóttir [[Finnbog((i|a)) Rút((ur|s)) Þorvaldsson]]ar."
This change should be easy to implement, and would make the creation of
wikilinks much less painful in inflecting languages, where cumbersome redundant
links are now the rule rather than the exception.
Similar proposals have been rejected in the past; would dupe this bug but
I'm not sure it made it to bugzilla (may have predated).
While it sounds neat at first, this doesn't make actually things much
simpler; rather it makes the text much harder to read. The behavior is
harder to guess at, and it becomes impossible to do search or search-and-
replace on source text.
Of course it could be made to work the same way as [[Namespace:Pagetitle|]] or
[[Pagetitle (dambigstuff)|]] works now. Meaning that it wouldn't need to remain
in the source text, if search-and-replaceability etc. is such a large concern.