The tag-wiki for currently states:

Questions tagged with [tikz] are about the higher-level drawing language TikZ built over the PGF graphics framework. Questions specifically about the PGF layer should be tagged with [pgf] instead.

This is nice in theory, but in reality the tags are somewhat randomly applied to questions. Should we make an synonym of (or vice-versa)?

  • 3
    Seems sensible to me. Experts in one are likely to be experts in the other. Nov 23, 2010 at 5:56
  • I was the one who wrote the above description, and it was really because I was playing around with my tag wiki editor privileges. I'm happy with the result of the discussion here. Nov 29, 2010 at 1:51

5 Answers 5


Maybe this is one of those ones like the latex tag. It's misused so much that pgf isn't a suitable tag. Whilst I can imagine a question being pure pgf (for example, something using the maths parser or a package like pgfpages), these are probably drowned in the morass of tikz questions.

The solution for latex is probably applicable. There should be a pgf-core tag for questions that are really about pgf and not about tikz, whilst pgf itself should be merged with tikz.

To address Will's point: I would look at a tikz question expecting to be able to make a contribution (meaning that I would reckon on being able to say something sensible more than 50% of the time), but with a pgf-core tag then I would look expecting to learn something from those more advanced in the Dark Arts than me.

Combining this with Stefan's idea, this looks like a good idea:

  1. Rename tikz to tikz-pgf
  2. Merge pgf into tikz-pgf
  3. Make tikz and pgf synonyms of tikz-pgf
  4. Create pgf-core
  • 2
    Good suggestions: I agree! Nov 23, 2010 at 10:35
  • +1, [pgf-core] is a good idea. For the sake of nailing the suggestion down, the idea is to make [pgf] a synonym of [tikz]? Nov 23, 2010 at 18:03
  • Since this seems to be the consensus, maybe some mod can go ahead and implement it (as mere users can't rename tags).
    – Caramdir
    Nov 24, 2010 at 18:25

I would create a general tag {tikz-pgf} suggesting to make both {tikz} and {pgf} synomyms to it, then merge (the popular frontend as first name part).

  • pgf core questions should not get the tikz (frontend) tag
  • though tikz questions would fit into a pgf category the tag [pgf] doesn't seem natural to frontend user

The documentation (manual) is a merge as well.

  • Of course with the intention of keeping the tikz taxonomist badge for the user who created {tikz}, I guess doing it by firstly renaming {tikz} to {tikz-pgf} keeps that.
    – Stefan Kottwitz Mod
    Nov 23, 2010 at 18:43
  • I like this. For one, if someone ends up with tikz-pgf as the tag, then they're not going to go hunting round for a pgf-specific tag unless they really mean it. Nov 23, 2010 at 19:07

The case I see for not doing it is that PGF isn't just the plumbing of Tikz, it's also the plumbing for Beamer, so some PGF questions aren't Tikz questions.

Pretty marginal objection in practice, Will is right, we should merge.


Right, I think I've done it, but it was the first time that I've used the tag moderator tools so I may have messed up. In particular, there didn't seem to be a "rename" tool so the person who got the TikZ-taxonomist badge may just have lost it (except that I don't think badges can be lost).

The one bit I haven't done is create the tag pgf-core. Of course, anyone can do this: it just involves finding (or asking) a question that is pure pgf and tagging it appropriately.

  • It seems that Łukasz Lew created the former "tikz" tag, because he now owns a taxonomist badge for "No longer available". And you earned this badge for "tikz-pgf". ;-)
    – lockstep
    Nov 24, 2010 at 20:19
  • Thank you. 25% of our taxonomist badges are now "no longer available" :) (we did have that stat at 100% for quite some time (the latex tag), so it's am improvement)
    – Caramdir
    Nov 24, 2010 at 20:24
  • @lockstep: you spotted my cunning plan! This whole thing was a setup to get me another badge. Nov 24, 2010 at 21:13
  • Badges are not supposed to be lost. From the badges FAQ, "The site admin has stated multiple times that, by design, badges cannot be lost or revoked, unless they were obtained by cheating." Nov 25, 2010 at 9:05
  • 1
    So Andrew can lose his taxonomist badge? ;)
    – Caramdir
    Nov 25, 2010 at 19:31
  • No, no, they can't take that away from me. Nov 25, 2010 at 19:56
  • 2
    @Caramdir: it's not cheating when moderators do it.... Nov 26, 2010 at 10:27

I'm sure that there has been a TikZ tag wiki entry - now it's gone. Perhaps anybody does remember the text and could recreate it including an update regarding {pgf} and {pgf-core}.

  • Botheration and double botheration. I knew it seemed too easy. Nov 25, 2010 at 8:23
  • According to google, there was nothing in the tikz tag wiki as of 14th November. Nor for pgf on the 16th. Nov 25, 2010 at 8:25
  • @Andrew: I've checked the google cache as well in order to find the original text, but it wasn't there. Fortunately, I found the text in my activity history in a wiki revision. The original text has been written by Matthew Leingang. tex.stackexchange.com/tags/tikz-pgf/info
    – Stefan Kottwitz Mod
    Nov 25, 2010 at 16:01
  • I wonder why it is not in Google cache (though google seems to treat the SE sites special). Btw, there is a nice new [tag:some-tag] syntax (see meta.so).
    – Caramdir
    Nov 25, 2010 at 17:53
  • @Caramdir: that's nice! I'm happy to have a syntax for tags.
    – Stefan Kottwitz Mod
    Nov 26, 2010 at 2:00

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