Help:TemplateData

From MediaWiki.org
Jump to: navigation, search

Other languages:
asturianu • ‎azərbaycanca • ‎български • ‎বাংলা • ‎dansk • ‎Deutsch • ‎Zazaki • ‎emiliàn e rumagnòl • ‎English • ‎español • ‎suomi • ‎føroyskt • ‎français • ‎Frysk • ‎galego • ‎hrvatski • ‎magyar • ‎Հայերեն • ‎Bahasa Indonesia • ‎Ilokano • ‎italiano • ‎日本語 • ‎ქართული • ‎한국어 • ‎Lëtzebuergesch • ‎मराठी • ‎Nederlands • ‎Oromoo • ‎polski • ‎پښتو • ‎português • ‎português do Brasil • ‎русский • ‎Scots • ‎slovenščina • ‎svenska • ‎中文
PD Note: When you edit this page, you agree to release your contribution under the CC0. See Public Domain Help Pages for more info.
PD


What is TemplateData?[edit | edit source]

TemplateData is a way of storing information about a template and its parameters, so that VisualEditor can retrieve and display it in the template editor, thus making it easier to edit templates.

TemplateData allows users to write small bits of structured data to a template page, or to be transcluded into that template page (such as on a template documentation page). Once a template has this structured data, it can be displayed properly in the VisualEditor. While this may sound complex, it's actually very easy.

TemplateData editor[edit | edit source]

There is a built-in tool for editing TemplateData. It may not be installed on your wiki yet.

To use the TemplateData editor, go to the template's page (or its documentation subpage) and press the "Edit" button. That will give you a button that says "Manage template documentation", just above the open editing window:
Manage template documentation button for TemplateData 2014.png
Click this button to enter the GUI tool for editing TemplateData.
A screenshot of the TemplateData editing tool
The editor allows you to add one row per template parameter and to set the most common attributes. If the page you edited already contains a block of TemplateData, then the information already documented will automatically be shown when you open the correct page in the TemplateData editor. In the first box, you can add or update a short description of the template in plain text. After that, you can use the "Import parameters" and "Add parameters" buttons to document the names and attributes of the parameters that the template uses. You can list the name of the parameter, any aliases for it, the label and the description that will display to users. The only required field is Name (the first field in each row), which is where you record the exact, case-sensitive name of the parameter. In the pop-up menu, you can choose the type of content that the parameter should receive, such as a string (for plain-text answers), page (for links to other pages), or dates. If the template will produce an error if this parameter is left blank, please mark it as "Required". If the parameter is commonly used or recommended, then mark it as "Suggested". The "Remove" button will delete the parameter's entry from TemplateData.
Screenshot of the TemplateData editor, showing a second parameter being added

When you are finished documenting each of the parameters, click "Apply" to insert the pre-formatted TemplateData into the open editing box. You must still save the page, using the normal "Save" button underneath the editing window.

Caution: The TemplateData editor will place TemplateData on either the template page or on a documentation subpage. You determine where the TemplateData will be added by opening (editing) the page that you want the TemplateData to be placed on. However, if multiple TemplateData blocks are placed on the same template, then only one of those TemplateData blocks will be used. If there is already TemplateData on a page, then you need to edit the page where the TemplateData was previously placed to avoid accidentally creating multiple blocks of TemplateData.

Structure of TemplateData[edit | edit source]

TemplateData's structure is based around the JSON standard, and is fairly simple. Note that all descriptions in TemplateData must be in plain text (no wikitext, no links, etc.).

The first thing to do is to type out a pair of <templatedata> tags, anywhere on the template's documentation subpage, like so:

<templatedata>
{
        ...                            <-- TemplateData content goes here
}
</templatedata>

This tells the software that everything between the two tags is TemplateData, and should be referenced when the template is used.

Example[edit | edit source]

The descriptions inside TemplateData follow a standard layout; let's say that you have a template called "Commons" for linking to a Commons category about a topic. It takes one mandatory parameter: the name of the category on Commons. The TemplateData would look something like this:

<templatedata>
{
        "description": "A template for linking to a commons category about an article",
        "params": {
                "1": {
                        "label": "Commons category",
                        "description": "The commons category you want to link to.",
                        "default": "Category:CommonsRoot",
                        "type": "string",
                        "required": true
                }
        }
}
</templatedata>

This would display, in the template, like so:

A template for linking to a commons category about an article

Template parameters
Parameter Description Type Default Auto value Status
Commons category 1 The commons category you want to link to. string Category:CommonsRoot empty required

Description and parameters[edit | edit source]


The first tag is a "description", which describes what the template does.
"description": "A template for linking to a commons category about an article",

There is then a "params" tag, which indicates that subsequent sections cover each parameter in the template.

All the parameters that follow are included in the "params" section.

"params": {
        ...            <-- parameters go here
}

Within each parameter's subsection, the first tag is the name of the template parameter within the template.

If the parameter has a name, like {{{category-link}}}, this tag would be "category-link".

If the parameter is "unnamed", meaning it's just a number like {{{1}}}, this tag would be "1".

All the bits of information about this parameter are included in the section that starts with the parameter's name.

        "1": {                 <-- name of the parameter
                ...            <-- information about the parameter goes here
        }

Next we have "label", in which you put a human-readable title for the parameter that will be displayed within the template editor.
                "label": "Commons category",

We then have "description": this time, it's a description of the parameter, not of the template as a whole.
                "description": "The commons category you want to link to.",

Next is "default". Some templates have a default value that is used unless you change it. This item tells the user what the default value for this parameter is.

You can ignore this parameter if there's no default.

                "default": "Category:CommonsRoot",

After that we have "type", which controls how the template editor will interpret that parameter. This can be:
  • "string": a set of characters, like this sentence;
  • "number": a set of digits;
  • "wiki-user-name": a set of characters that represents a user's name;
  • "wiki-page-name": a set of characters that represents a page's title.
  • "wiki-file-name": a file name.
                "type": "string",

We then have "required", which can be set to either true or false.

This simply controls whether filling out the parameter is mandatory for that template. If you don't specify, it will be assumed to be false.

                "required": true

Finally, there is "suggested", which can be set to either true or false.

This is a status for parameters which are not 'required' but are recommended to be high value (but not mandatory) for template users. If you don't specify, it will be assumed to be false.

                "suggested": true

Once you're done, hit "save". If you've made errors, it will not let you save (which is disruptive, but means you can't break anything). Should you run into errors, explain on the feedback page what you were trying to do, and we will be happy to help.

Note that each bit of information is enclosed in quotation marks (except for true and false), and separated from the next bit by a comma (unless it's the last one).

Parameter aliases[edit | edit source]

Some templates allow a same parameter to have different names.

For example, {{Commons|category=Apples}} could also be written as {{Commons|Apples}} or {{Commons|link=Apples}}.

To add this information to TemplateData, you simply need to add the aliases to the parameter's information:

        "params": {
                "category": {
                        ...
                        "aliases": ["1", "link"]
                }

Auto value[edit | edit source]

You can specify an "autovalue" for a parameter. When users add the template to a page, this value will be added automatically. For example, many clean-up templates need to have the date added. If you specify an autovalue for the template's date parameter, then the date will be filled in automatically.

To add this information to TemplateData, simply add the autovalue to the parameter's information:

        "params": {
                "date": {
                        ...
                        "autovalue": "{{CURRENTMONTHNAME}} {{CURRENTYEAR}}"
                }

Multiple parameters[edit | edit source]

If you have multiple parameters, just repeat each section (starting from the "1" tag) and fill it out as you see fit. Note that if a template has multiple parameters, you need to separate them with a comma in the templatedata, like so:

        "params": {
                "1": {
                        ...
                },                     <-- notice the comma here
                "2": {
                        ...
                },                     <-- and here
                "3": {
                        ...
                }
        }

Similar parameters[edit | edit source]

When a template has multiple parameters, sometimes some of them can be of the same kind. In this case, you only need to provide full properties for the first one, and the others can "inherit" their properties from it.

        "params": {
                "topic1": {
                        "label": "Topic",
                        "description": "A topic mentioned on this disambiguation page",
                        "type": "string"
                },
                "topic2": {
                        "inherits": "topic1"
                },
                "topic3": {
                        "inherits": "topic1"
                },
        }

Blank boilerplate[edit | edit source]

You can copy the blank boilerplate below to add new TemplateData to a template. Only the most common tags are included.

<templatedata>
{
        "description": "",
        "params": {
                "1": {
                        "label": "",
                        "description": "",
                        "type": ""
                },
                "2": {
                        "label": "",
                        "description": "",
                        "type": ""
                }
        }
}
</templatedata>

Limitations and questions[edit | edit source]

  • Missing features — TemplateData is very much an example of tool that was made available with few features, in hope that users would help to guide development of features that they desired. If you'd like to request new features for TemplateData, please let us know.
  • Delays in showing in templates — After adding TemplateData to a template, the metadata should be visible immediately when the template is opened in VisualEditor. However, it is possible that it takes hours before the metadata show. You can force an update by making a null edit to the template page itself (not the documentation subpage). To perform a null edit, open the template page for editing, and save the page without making any change.
  • Current issues — A list of current bugs and feature requests is available in bugzilla.

Other tools[edit | edit source]

  • TemplateDataEditor — A user script that makes the process of adding TemplateData easier. It currently exists in French (contains English, Italian, Japanese and Korean translations), and can easily be translated into other languages.
  • TemplateData Wizard — A tool that generates TemplateData through an interactive interface.
  • Skeleton TemplateData generator — A tool that reads the source wikicode of a template, tries to find all the parameters used and outputs a skeleton document with the parameters listed.
  • JSONLint — A tool that allows you to validate manually-written JSON to help find errors in the syntax.