[tz] Java & Rearguard
guy at alum.mit.edu
Tue Jun 4 07:50:45 UTC 2019
On Jun 4, 2019, at 12:24 AM, Paul Eggert <eggert at cs.ucla.edu> wrote:
> Clive D.W. Feather wrote:
>> What's wrong with citing the primary source?
> Wikipedia policy prefers secondary sources. See:
And sometimes that policy is just silly.
Primary sources are original materials that are close to an event, and are often accounts written by people who are directly involved. They offer an insider's view of an event, a period of history, a work of art, a political decision, and so on. Primary sources may or may not be independent sources. An account of a traffic incident written by a witness is a primary source of information about the event; similarly, a scientific paper documenting a new experiment conducted by the author is a primary source on the outcome of that experiment. Historical documents such as diaries are primary sources.
makes sense in cases where the notion of "an insider's view of an event" as a possibly-biased view makes sense, e.g. just because Apple claims that iOS 13 will launch applications twice as fast, that doesn't mean the claim should be taken as fact without independent non-Apple verification.
On the other hand, a link to a news story reporting that law XXX does YYY isn't necessarily any better than a link to the section of law XXX where it explicitly says it does YYY. If "law XXX does YYY" is an interpretation, maybe that would make sense, but a link to Joe Bob reporting that the Standard Time (Amendment) Act, 1971, says that Subject to subsection (2) of this section, the period beginning at two o'clock Greenwich mean time in the morning of the Sunday following the fourth Saturday in October in any year after 1971 and ending either at two o'clock Greenwich mean time in the morning of the Sunday following the third Saturday in the month of March in the following year or, if the last-mentioned Sunday is Easter Day, at two o'clock Greenwich mean time in the morning of the Sunday following the second Saturday in the month of March in that year shall for the purposes of this Act be a period of winter time is not an improvement over a link to section 1 of the Standard Time (Amendment) Act, 1971.
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