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Thoughts about categorizing maps: I know this wiki has a policy of categorizing everything like crazy, applying broad categories (like Category:Inhabitants of Faerûn) to somebody that lives in Luskan. While that works for things like inhabitants, etc., I can see that policy causing some consternation when it comes to maps. When you want to look at Maps of Faerûn, you don't want to be sorting through every map of every city in Faerûn as well. So I propose that we limit maps to the narrowest geographical category that is reasonable. The city map File:Everlund map.jpg, for example, would only have the Category:Maps of Everlund, nothing higher than that. Thoughts?
Coswig (talk) 00:44, December 5, 2015 (UTC)

Did you meant Maps of Everlund?

Well, over on your talk page we discussed making Maps similar to Locations, which is what I've been doing, but I don't mind if we shift the hierarchy from the image files themselves to the category tree. I think every map file should still be in Category:Maps just because we need a way to access them all at once, but from there we could use subcategories to drill down from Maps→Toril→Faerûn→Northwest Faerûn→Luruar→Everlund. There should be no orphan categories.

Moviesign (talk) 01:18, December 5, 2015 (UTC)

Bump. Anyone else want to weigh in? If not, I'm going to see what I can do about implementing this.
Moviesign (talk) 00:36, December 8, 2015 (UTC)

Ye know me... Maps of Cormyr... child of Maps of Interior Faerûn... child of Maps of Faerûn... if not Maps of Toril... the Maps by continent is cool as the parent category :)

- Darkwynters (talk) 00:51, December 8, 2015 (UTC)

What, no Maps by World ? :)
Moviesign (talk) 00:54, December 8, 2015 (UTC)

I have begun the process of reorganizing the maps based on the discussion above, Coswig's Talk page, and Category talk:Maps. It's a learning experience and I have been modifying my process a bit as I begin to grok the category structure that is building up slowly. I want to try and put my guidelines in writing and open them for review to see if the group likes what is being created and finds it useful. Once this is codified, it will probably become a Help page for categorizing maps. Also, it's a big effort and others may want to join in but not know how. Since I started at the top of the alphabet, Amn is probably the most complete so far, so I'll use it as an example, specifically File:Amn map.jpg. I would like to add a "Maps of" link to the {{Location}} infobox that works just like Inhabitants, Locations, Organizations, etc.
  • Starting with a map image, add a "Maps of" category for every political feature within reason. Country names, regions, counties, etc., and then settlement names, starting with the largest and working your way down to the smallest. If there are "too many", then stop when you reach a certain size. This is a judgement call on how many categories you want to make, but the point is having a "Maps of" category for a Location article at the very least. If someone makes a page for a village that wasn't included, then they can add the category to the list later. For large scale maps, I would stop at the major and minor country names, and maybe the capitals. Maps of entire continents should start with the features in the biggest font and stop there. Generally, if the name does not appear on the image, then don't add a category, and even if it does, compare it to the scale of the map before deciding to add a category. There will be exceptions, no doubt.
  • Next add significant locations that are marked on the map, like ruins, towers, groves, etc. that have a unique name on the map.
    • The Twin Towers of the Eternal Eclipse is the only site noted on this map. Here we have to decide if were are going to use the map designation, or the full name of the site. I went with brevity and added Category:Maps of the Twin Towers, but this is open for debate. I suppose if this is going to be a link in the Location infobox, then the name has to match the article name or else we need to make a redirect for it. Oh well, I'll fix it after discussion, if any. (EDIT: I renamed this category to Category:Maps of the Twin Towers of the Eternal EclipseMoviesign (talk) 03:20, January 7, 2016 (UTC))
  • Next comes roads. Only add a category for a road if the name of the road appears on the map, or it is obvious which line on the map is the road being categorized (e.g., it is the only road on the map or it's highlighted in red). If you add one or more of these, also add "Maps of roads".
    • The Trade Way is the only named road on this map.
  • Next add categories for the geographical features such as rivers, mountains, lakes, plains, and forests. If the name appears on the map, then add a category. Cropping often cuts off parts of these names, so if you can figure out what the name is from the image, then you may add a category. Use your best judgement. For each new feature that you categorize, add a "Maps of" that feature type.
  • Now comes the fun part—categorizing the categories. For each of the categories added, I create the page and add a {{DEFAULTSORT:}} and a one-sentence description. All the settlements and significant locations should be put in the political entity to which they belong.
    • For the example, all settlements and the Twin Towers were put in Category:Maps of Amn. When you look at that category you now see an alphabetical list of pretty much every location in Amn. (Mosstone went in Tethyr, Riatavin went in both, all others went in Amn.)
  • All the geographical features should be put in the major division of the continent (if applicable) to which they belong. They should also be placed in "Maps of feature". You may add other subdivisions of the continent as defined by the setting.
  • All the terrain feature categories like Category:Maps of mountains are all under the Category:Maps by feature.
  • Large scale categories go in the next larger scale category, pretty much exclusively.
    • "Maps of the Lands of Intrigue" goes in "Maps of West Faerûn" which goes in "Maps of Faerûn" and so on up to the top.

That's all I have time to write at the moment. There are a few special cases that I might add later. Take a look at Category:Maps of Amn and Category:Maps of mountains and see how you like it. Please remember that I'm not even through the A's yet, so some images that are in those categories may disappear when I get to them and others may be added. Hopefully Category:Maps by edition and Category:Maps by source are self-explanatory.

Moviesign (talk) 23:32, December 14, 2015 (UTC)

I don't have much to add, but this all seems fine to me. I agree with Coswig's initial proposal; our excess categories wouldn't be applicable to images. It is also helpful to be able to find maps showing specific locations, whether as a game resource or for illustrating articles on those locations.

I have one minor quibble: the map categories say "Maps containing the city of Esmeltaran." for example. I feel "Maps showing the city of Esmeltaran." would be more natural.

— BadCatMan (talk) 13:08, December 19, 2015 (UTC)

This is the first time I've really had time to look at Moviesign's post when coherent, and I just wanted to say that everything looks wonderful. Keep up the good work!
Coswig (talk) 04:31, January 7, 2016 (UTC)

An aside: I've noticed a few unofficial/user-made maps being used here and there. Is this kosher, or should these be replaced where possible?
--Ir'revrykal (talk) 19:38, March 11, 2016 (UTC)

We have traditionally (since before I joined) allowed a few high-quality maps from fans, mostly because they consolidate many locations from many sources onto one map, or show locations that do not appear on any other map we have been able to find. For example, the only map I could find that showed the location of the Citadel of Black Ash was File:CitadelOfBlackAshMarkustay.jpg. The infobox for that image states that some things may be non-canonical and users should be aware of that. If a good quality official map could replace a fan-generated map, then that should probably happen, but usually the fan-generated map is more complete. I don't have a problem with allowing the Gallery section of an article to contain a few high-quality fan maps. Others might have different opinions.
Moviesign (talk) 22:39, March 11, 2016 (UTC)

As an addendum to the guidelines outlined above, I'd like to add the following:
Moviesign (talk) 02:10, November 2, 2016 (UTC)