Wikipedia:WikiProject Electronics

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The aim of this project is to better organise information in articles related to electronics. This page contains only suggestions, with the hope to help other Wikipedians writing high-quality articles with the minimum effort.


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Project Scope

This WikiProject aims to provide a standard style for writing articles about electronics. The field of electronics is the study and use of electronic devices that operate by controlling the flow of electrons or other electrically charged particles in devices such as thermionic valves and semiconductors. Many subjects are closely related to electronics: telecommunications, biomedical, design and construction of electric and electronic circuits, hardware design, etc.

All these subjects are considered to be related to this project. In the future we may restrict the scope if the project grows too large, and sister projects about these other subjects may be split off.


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Project Subpages

  • Assessment — Information on assessing the quality of articles within the project.
  • Categories — List of project categories.
  • Members — The list of project participants.
  • Programs — Information on programs used to draw electronics-related figures.
  • Standard symbols — Symbols that should be used in project figures.
  • Task list of all the tasks the members are currently working on. Here is the place to suggest the modification/creation of a new article, to propose merging two articles, etc.
  • Article alerts — automated alerts about articles in the project's scope.

Complete list of WikiProject Electronics subpages

Guidelines for articles in Project Electronics

Nuvola apps package settings.png Project Guidelines

When writing about electronic devices and related topics, some questions to consider are the usual questions:

  • Who?
  • What?
  • When?
  • Where?
  • Why?
  • How?

Of course, they do not necessarily have to be in the above order, nor do they have to be used once. For example:

  • Who made the first one/invented it?
  • Who were the rivals in the development phase?
  • Who wants/uses it?
  • What is it?
  • What did we use before it was invented?
  • What is/was the social effect of it?
  • What seems likely to succeed it?
  • When was it developed/thought of?
  • When was the first one made?
  • Where did it come from?
  • Where was the work done?
  • Why was it necessary?
  • Why did it take so long?
  • Why was it not discovered/made/invented earlier?
  • How does it work?
  • How was it developed?
  • How big/small/powerful/costly is it?
  • How does/did it affect the environment?

Once these questions are sufficiently answered, you will find that you have a baby article!

Drawing circuits

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Drawing circuits

One of the main parts when writing an article about electronics might be drawing of a circuit. At the moment, there are several pictures showing electronic components around Wikipedia, most of them from Commons. Anyway, paying attention to them, it will be clear that everybody has used a different program to draw them, getting different quality. Moreover, a lot of the authors did not use a specialised program, so they had to draw all the components from scratch, starting from simple lines and circles. Normally in these cases the output quality is very high, but the time to make them must have been very long.

For these reasons, this project has to propose a standard to be used to draw circuits, suggesting tips or whatever, in order to get the best possible quality with the minimum effort. First of all, let us start from a sort of "wish list", with the list of all the feature this program should have:

  1. It must be free and open source: this is the way Wikipedia is, and so must be any program Wikipedia suggests.
  2. It must be multi-platform: in order to be proposed as a standard, anybody must be able to use it. The program has to run on Windows, Linux and macOS.
  3. It has to be able to export in SVG: the SVG is the format that was proposed by Wikipedia for diagrams. It provides the best quality at the minimum space.
  4. It has to have a big standard collection of electric/electronic components, with optionally an extensible library: this way it will not be necessary to draw components from scratch, and, just in case, it will be necessary to do it just once.
  5. It has to help the schematic drawing by a grid or something like this: if it does not give the possibility to "hang" the components to a grid, it will be hard to make a precise drawing
  6. Connections should be better than just lines. They should attach to components, default to right angles, move when the components are moved, autoroute around objects, and so on.
  7. It should be part of a complete, easy to use, drawing package, not just for circuit diagrams (though a 'circuit mode' might be good). Vector drawing has long been a weak area on PCs (British Acorn computers had 'Draw' in ROM which was excellent, leading Acorn users to draw a lot more because it so was easy and they did not have to decide which program would be best to use).
  8. It should have Bezier curves to allow the creation of good audio curves, since most weighting curves are specified by points, not by an equation or circuit model.

At the moment, as far as we know, there is no program satisfying all these points. Anyway the members of the project made a list with several programs that have been used for drawing circuits on Wikipedia. Each program has a short comment and an example of its output; this list is at programs for drawing circuits. The only way to get a circuit in SVG format without drawing everything from scratch is using Xcircuit; for more info see How to draw SVG circuits using Xcircuit.

Using a vector editor and prepared components

An example of a schematic drawn using this library

There is an image on commons specially intended to help drawing SVG circuits simple, fast and flexible. Just open this image in any common vector editor (e.g. Inkscape), copy, place and join the components as you wish. This technique produces nice and small SVG images. Except for 6th it achieves all the wishes mentioned above.

When drawing, it is recommended to

  • use grid snapping (the components are designed to be snapped to a 1 mm grid or 2 mm grid)
  • make all connection lines 1.0 mm thick
  • properly mark the joints with the dot (to distinguish them from cross-overs)
  • to be unambiguous join only 3 wires together at any point, as a 4-way can look like an accidentally dotted cross-over
  • use the font "12 pt sans-serif" (or similar). An alternative is to use "24 pt Times New Roman Italic" for big letters and "18 pt Times New Roman Normal" for sub letters, as done in this image.

Feel free to extend the component list and to upload a new version.

Tables of standard symbols

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Standard symbols

In order to keep a consistent layout between different articles related to this project, we have created some tables with a list of standard symbols. Here is the first (and most important) of those tables. You can find the others on their own page. Please use them.

Symbol Meaning SI Units of Measure
frequency hertz (cycles/second)
angular frequency radians per second
wave number radians per meter
wavelength meters per cycle
period seconds per cycle
refractive index dimensionless
speed of light in vacuum meters per second
speed of propagation meters per second


Featured article nominations

See /Task list#Suggested Featured article nominations


In order to join us, just add your signature to the bottom of the Members subpage. Joining will not affect your status on Wikipedia. It is just a way for us to know each other, to know other people who are interested in, and are working in the same topics as you. If you have questions to ask, guidelines to propose, or whatever else that might be related to the topic of this project you are welcome to discuss it on the project page; if you join us we will know you are concerned about it.

After you have joined the project, if you edit any article please follow the guidelines we have already chosen and add the right template on the talk page. You do not have to: nobody will ever check whether you are actually doing it, but, since we have been working on it, it makes sense to use it now!

Please do not forget to make new members welcome by leaving a message on their talk page.


What to type What it makes What it is for
{{Infobox electronic component}}
Adds an infobox to the top of the article. See Template:Infobox electronic component for details.
The official electronics stub for circuit-related articles.
{{WikiProject Electronics}}
WikiProject Electronics (Rated Project-class)
WikiProject icon This page is part of WikiProject Electronics, an attempt to provide a standard approach to writing articles about electronics on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, you can choose to edit the article attached to this page, or visit the project page, where you can join the project and see a list of open tasks. Leave messages at the project talk page
 Project  This page does not require a rating on the project's quality scale.
The project notice, designed to be placed in the talk page of any article that has been edited as part of this WikiProject. Usage:

{{WikiProject Electronics
WikiProject on Electronics This user is a member of WikiProject Electronics, an attempt to provide a standard approach to writing articles about electronics on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, visit the project page, where you can join the project and see a list of open tasks.
To be used in your user page, to show you joined the project.
{{User WikiProject Electronics}}
Nuvola apps ksim.png This user is a member of WikiProject Electronics.
Smaller version of the previous one, to be used in your user page to show you joined the project.

Sister projects

Article assessment

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