FamilySearch Wiki talk:Navboxes

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Comments about the use of Navboxes in the Wiki[edit source]

Examples with virtually identical text:

Contestant #1: Not necessarily nested, group title in left column, smaller font, initially uncollapsed

Contestant #2: Nested templates, group titles at the top, larger font, initially collapsed

Nested vs. not[edit source]

  • Kept all in one simple navbox
  • Split into separate navboxes and nested together


Please allow contributors to decide if nested is an advantage or not in nav boxes. I have no problems with nesting if it is useful. By the way, it is possible to nest the groups in Contestant #1 and keep its appearance if that is desired. Please let the MoS give navbox contributors the option of using a nest navbox if desired, but not require it. DiltsGD 16:48, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I agree that the question of using a nested navbox or not should be left to the contributor and that both options should be available within the style guidelines. --Steve 16:19, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Group title position[edit source]

  • Group title in the left column
  • Group title in a bar at the top of the group


Only if a navbox has several groups with long lists (at least five or six lines of text) will it take less space to put group titles on top, rather than on the left side. Putting the group title in the left column saves vertical inches for the majority of navboxes with few groups with long lists exceeding five lines.

On my computer, in the example above, using smaller font and left-side group titles results in 11 lines of navbox text versus the 19 lines of navbox text when larger font and top-bar group names are used. What is the difference on your computer?

It is my hope the MoS will prefer shorter, rather than longer navboxes. I would like a MoS that allows a variety of navbox styles including both shown above, but suggesting that normally a shorter navbox is the better choice. DiltsGD 17:24, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

Again I think the guideline should allow for both options. I agree that the guidelines should favour shorter navboxes than longer. I would hope that group titles list to the left of the link are kept short, using abbreviations if necessary to keep the left hand column as narrow as possible. --Steve 16:23, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Font size[edit source]

  • Smaller font. Using smaller font size means a nav box takes up fewer inches of space on the screen, but is harder to read. Shorter pages may be more appealling to readers.
There's a problem with this, the blue color bleed into background. Even with adding this line: |liststyle = background: #FFFFFF; did not solve it one bit. FFFFFF is white background.dsammy 06:56, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
  • Larger font. Using larger font size means a nav box is easier to read, but takes up more space on the screen. Easier to read font may be more appealing to readers.


The smaller font size is often used in Wikipedia, for example see the navbox at the bottom of the American Civil War page. For that matter, see most Wikipedia navboxes. Any reasonable measure that can be made to make pages as brief and short as possible is important.

This one is a double-nested template, a nested template within another nested template. dsammy 07:06, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
As long as the background color is solved first. It has to do with the new skin involving the smaller sized fonts, causing the blue small-sized font color to bleed into background. dsammy 07:02, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

I would like a MoS that encourages (but does not require) the use of slightly smaller font in templates over 12 lines of text. DiltsGD 18:04, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I would also like to see the guidelines favour a smaller font. The navbox is a way of presenting links and are not for lengthy study. I know that some users may find a small font hard to read, but believe there are other ways to overcome this issue for specific user (user preferences in browsers). I would support firm encouragement to use smaller fonts in a navbox whatever layout is used (nested or not). --Steve 16:27, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Text justification[edit source]

  • Left justified text
  • Centered text


Centered text would make "nowrap" more logical. Therefore, centering the text combined with "nowrap" may result in a few slightly longer navboxes. I would like an MoS that gives contributors options on justification, but suggests under normal circumstances left-justified is usually the best choice. DiltsGD 18:16, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I find centered text significantly harder to read, especially bulletized copy.  A list, in my book, just begs a nice clean line to shape up against.  I strongly favor left-justified text. Lise 01:43, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

I would favour left-align text if a left hand group title is used, but can see the merits of centred text when the list only has a title. For example {{England counties}}. --Steve 16:34, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Wrap vs. Nowrap[edit source]

  • Wrap - when at the end of a line a phrase may wrap in the middle
  • Nowrap - when at the end of a line a phrase is not allowed to wrap in the middle


Allowing long phrases to wrap at the end of a line may shorten overall length of some navboxes. In no case would choosing "nowrap" result in a shorter navbox.

Also, on my computer the "nowrap" in Contestant #2 is causing the "Major Repositories" to have either an extra blank line of text before the Natonal Archives Mid Atlantic Region (Philadelphia) entry, or expand the width of the template off the right-side of the screen.

Can the National Archives be shrunk to NARA? dsammy 06:53, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

I would like a MoS that suggests "nowrap" be avoided under most circumstances in order to shorten the length of pages. DiltsGD 17:36, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I would happily support a guideline to avoid the use of {{nowrap}}. I don't think it is a problem if the name of an article link is split across two lines. --Steve 16:37, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Background color of text[edit source]

  • Background color pale pinkish-purple
  • Background color of some other hue
  • No background color


It has been alleged that the background color of navboxes (a pale pinkish-purple) makes reading blue (linked) text more difficult to read. The advantage of a very pale background color is that it helps set the navbox apart from other text on the page. Similiar colors are used in the right-side navbar. Likewise, similar colors are used in the left-side navbar on most state pages. It makes sense to differentiate nav material from standard text.

A possible alternative background color is the grey of the headers used in navboxes. Does anyone else have an alternative background color they want to propose? If so, please explain its advantages.

No background color is certainly an option. However, it fails to differentiate navbox material from standart text material.

So far nobody has reported going blind reading text on the right or left navbars with this shade of pale pinkish-purple, so I doubt the same use of color in a bottom navbox in a genuine problem.

I would like the MoS to encourage the use of background color in navboxes. DiltsGD 17:59, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I would favour using a background colour inside the navboxes, with a darker colour used for the group and title bars. The example given above are OK with me. They use #EEEEEE and #FDFDFD. I would also like to hear from the site designers about the colour palette that is used for the wiki. It might also be worth checking that colour chosen are web safe. --Steve 16:50, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Initially uncollapsed or collapsed[edit source]

  • When alone on the page
  • Initially showing
  • Initially collapsed
  • When appearing with other nav boxes on the page
  • Initially collapsed
  • Initially showing


I would like the MoS to suggest the use of the autocollapse state so that a nav box alone on a page initially shows the navbox, and two or more navboxes on the same page are initially collapsed. DiltsGD 19:07, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

I would also support a guideline that specified the use of the autocollapse state for the same reasons/outcomes. --Steve 16:53, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Results of discussions put into draft style guide[edit source]

I have transferred the items discussed on this page and points made during the community meetings into the main text of this article. If you wish to make amendments where I have interpreted something different to your understanding please go ahead. Alternatively add further comments to this talk page or the forum thread. --Steve 13:44, 23 October 2010 (UTC)