Template talk:Data sources

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The resultant appearance of the navbox generated using this template does not match the other wiki navigation templates. For example see US equity REIT index returns and make sure both navboxes are in the 'Show' state. Could, or should, the template be re-written to allow passing of groupn, listn pairs so that resultant navbox matches the look of the other navigation templates? --Peculiar Investor 07:04, 20 January 2015 (CST)

The template is not a navigation template in the strict sense--a nav box is designed to provide links to wiki pages. Rather it is a template that organizes a large (and growing) list of substantiating external reference links providing documentation for the accuracy of data. Getting this data is not easy; in many instances it is found in factsheets and other links that are not stable (high defunct link rate) that will have to be constantly updated. Now if these external links were to made into standard reference links, changing them would require extra work, since one would have to dig through the body of text to find and replace links. Secondly, wikipedia's solution for long lists of references or external links is to group them into three columns, a functionality that is not currently available here (as far as I know). This collapsed box allows this material to be accessibly grouped, compressed (with a collapsed box), and available for easy editing. --Blbarnitz 03:46, 21 January 2015 (CST)
That I understand. I'm looking at things from the reader's perspective where typically two navboxes get stacked on top of each other like the bottom of US equity REIT index returns. I've experimented in data source experiment. The top section shows the existing implementation, the bottom is what I think it should look like. I'm thinking that the calling argument to this template would look like
{{data sources
| group1 = Dow Jones 
| list1    = [http://us.ishares.com/product_info/fund/performance/IYR.htm iShares] 2001 forward
| group2   = FTSE
| list2    = [http://www.reit.com/tabid/211/Default.aspx REIT.com by NAREIT], Annual Index Values & Returns, 1972-2009 
• [http://us.ishares.com/product_info/fund/performance/FTY.htm iShares] 2008 forward
| group3   = MSCI
| list3    = [https://institutional.vanguard.com/VGApp/iip/site/institutional/investments/equitybenchmark Benchmark Performance] 2000-2010 
• [http://www.principalglobal.com/reit/pdfs/REITQuarterly4Q07.pdf MSCI US REIT Index Total Returns] 2005-1996
| group4   = NAREIT
| list4    = [http://www.reit.com/tabid/211/Default.aspx REIT.com by NAREIT], Annual Index Values & Returns 1972-2009
| group5   = S&P
| list5    = [http://www2.standardandpoors.com/spf/pdf/index/GIR_Sep08_%28Alternative%29.pdf S&P Alternative indices] 2006-1997 
• [http://www.ftportfolios.com/retail/ETF/ETFsummary.aspx?Ticker=FRI First Trust] Annual Report, Prospectus 2009-2008
| group6   = Wilshire
| list6    = [http://www.wilshire.com/Indexes/calculator/ Wilshire Returns Calculator] 1991 forward 
}}

Wikipedia has Template:Reflist for multicolumn references. It could probably be made available here without much effort. --Peculiar Investor 07:51, 21 January 2015‎ (CST)

If we use the same format for the data source nav box I would suggest retitling the nav bos by adding the text "external links" to the title, as in Data sources (external links) to differentiate the functionality of the box. Unlike our typical nav box, which directs a reader to internal wiki pages; these links take the reader to external sites.--Blbarnitz 11:23, 21 January 2015 (CST)


An additional page that uses the "external links" format: Template:Vanguard links, used in the page The Vanguard Group--Blbarnitz 11:23, 21 January 2015 (CST)
I've cloned {{Reflist}} from Wikipedia so it is now possible to do 2-column and 3-column references.--Peculiar Investor 07:03, 22 January 2015 (CST)