I have a proposal in the nature of "having our cake and eating it too". Last summer, as part of upgrading our person categories, SVTCobra added DEFAULTSORT: to all of them, to produce default listing order. On one hand I appreciate the value of the additional information. On the other hand, I would really like for us to avoid using DEFAULTSORT: for anything, anywhere on the project. I see a way to keep the information and at the same time eliminate the DEFAULTSORT:.
Amongst the disadvantages of DEFAULTSORT:, it creates an additional burden for users maintaining our categories, adding one more thing about it keep track of (which should not be underestimated: making things simple on a wiki is staggeringly important, and a major focus of all our infrastructure efforts on en.wn, both past and present); and it's actually hard to find things when reading a list that's alphabetically by surname but the list entries are in a different order. So the default list of pages in a category should, I think, always follow the actual alphabetical order of the names of the pages.
Solution: Set up a category called, say,
Person mainspace redirects, in which to put all the mainspace redirects for people's names. Put in this category all mainspace redirects for people's names. Add redirects for the surname-first variants (for example, Joe Biden would be listed under both "Joe Biden" and "Biden, Joe"). Thus, by looking at the new category, one would see an alphabetical listing of all the variants, and each entry would appear in order consistent with the form of the entry (thus, "Joe Biden" would be with the "J"s, "Biden, Joe" with the "B"s).
If we really wanted a list that would include only the surname-first variants, we could have a subcategory like that, though my inclination would be to keep things simpler.
- Without having put a great amount of thought into it, I'd say we'd be better off integrating Wikidata more effectively. I guess the difference is thinking like a librarian versus thinking like a computer scientist. But isn't there already an easy way of listing page names alphabetically via a query? Cheers, --SVTCobra 00:58, 7 July 2020 (UTC)
Maybe, a new main page...Edit
Hi! I'm an administrator on Spanish Wikinews, where we are working on a new final design to our main page, that is under construction yet. I contact you here for propose, if you want, to use this new design on your main page too. I think it would be an interesting step to unificate different language version of Wikinews and connecting between by following a same pattern. Our new main page will be ready for new modern and responsive design patterns and browsers requeriments, with tablet and mobile specific designs and modular designs for different screen sizes. You can see this proyect on my personal folder here and, if you want, discuss about it here or in the talk page of the proyect. Greetings! --Jorge Abellán (talk) 19:27, 7 June 2020 (UTC)