VisualEditor/status

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The following is an archive of updates on the status of the new VisualEditor extension. Last update on: 2014-07-17 (MW 1.24wmf14)

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Contents

2011-05-16[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal and Neil Kandalgaonkar have done exploratory work on the visual editor project. Neil worked with developers of HackPad (a custom version of Etherpad, a real-time collaborative editing software) on a proof of concept of integration between Etherpad and MediaWiki (read more). They're now working on turning it into a MediaWiki extension. Work on the visual editor is also intersecting with the groundwork done on the new parser.

2011-06-02[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal and Neil Kandalgaonkar have done exploratory work on the visual editor project. Neil worked with developers of HackPad (a custom version of real-time collaborative editing software Etherpad) on a proof of concept to integrate Etherpad and MediaWiki (read more). They're now working on turning it into a MediaWiki extension. Trevor continues to work on WikiDom, a storage structure and functionality acting as an intermediate layer between the parser and a visual editor. This work also intersects with the groundwork done on the new parser.

2011-06-30[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal continued to work on the front-end of the visual editor, and specifications for accessing the editing surface via the API. A hybrid rendering approach appears to be the best strategy for the visual editor. Neil Kandalgaonkar continued to work on the middleware, DOM and transactions. Neil also continued to work on a demo to integrate MediaWiki and Etherpad. With Alolita Sharma, they planned their upcoming sprints. Neil and Trevor are posting about their work to the wikitext-l list.

2011-07-25[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal continued to work on the front-end of the visual editor and rich text rendering; he was joined by Inez Korczynski, a developer from Wikia, who are also interested in the visual editor. Neil Kandalgaonkar worked on real-time collaboration, concurrent editing and dived into the inner workings of Etherpad. (Read summary on wikitext-l.)

2011-08-31[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal and Inez Korczynski worked on a transaction-based model for the visual editor, where the document is built as a series of events (instead of saving it entirely at every change), which makes it easier to undo actions. Neil Kandalgaonkar continued to work on real-time collaboration and is close to presenting a demo of Etherpad working inside a MediaWiki edit window. Ian Baker investigated and started to work on a chat system to be integrated to the concurrent editing interface, for collaboration and live help. More details on the wikitext-l mailing list.

2011-09-30[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal expanded the software design documentation. He also refactored some of the data structures to follow a model/view controller pattern and support document-level transactions. He wrote tests for the new structure, and got it to render paragraphs and lists; he's now working on rendering tables.

2011-10-31[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal worked on a new model tree (and the conversion from the linear model) and updated the software design documentation. Inez Korczynski worked on front-end functionality: dialogs, selecting text, mouse actions, scrolling, keyboard shortcuts, etc. Roan Kattouw focused on algorithms that insert ranges of data into a document, and Neil Kandalgaonkar on the removal of data. On the parser side, a basic parser using PEG is in place, which produces an intermediate JSON object tree; Brion Vibber is still working on markup support (mixed HTML and Wikitext). Gabriel Wicke joined the team and started to work on the PEG parser (read more).

2011-11-30[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal fixed issues blocking the synchronization of structural edits to the user interface, refactored and cleaned up the code, and mapped out tasks and features to be supported. He also finished the document transaction functionality and made progress on an undo/redo system. Roan Kattouw added tests, rewrote some code to make the tests pass, and fixed a number of bugs and issues, notably in Internet Explorer. Inez Korczynski continued to work on content insertion, deletion and selection and fixed numerous bugs. Gabriel Wicke extended the PEG parser for robust larger-scale parsing. He converted the PEG parser into a combined wiki and HTML tokenizer that feeds to a HTML5 DOM tree builder. He implemented several wikitext features (lists, italics, bold) as token stream transformations. 139 of about 660 parser tests are now passing.

2011-12-13[edit | edit source]

The first public developer prototype of the visual editor sandbox was deployed to MediaWiki.org for public feedback and testing. It can be accessed via the visual editor sandbox special page. Full announcement in the Wikimedia blog.

2011-12-31[edit | edit source]

The team deployed a developer prototype of the visual editor sandbox to mediawiki.org for public feedback and testing. Trevor Parscal fixed bugs and refactored code. Inez Korczynski worked on the toolbar (text styles), the undo/redo stack, and lists (creating, deleting, and changing indentation). Gabriel Wicke worked on the parser test runner and the parser pipeline, including the tokenizer and its grammar and template expansions. Neil Kandalgaonkar worked on the undo/redo feature and did a lot of refactoring.

2012-01-31[edit | edit source]

January was a bit slower on the visual editor front, as parts of the team took some well-deserved vacation after the successful prototype launch in December. During the SF Hackathon, a lot of issues were fleshed out. Plans for the second phase of the editor project were formulated. Inez Korczynski investigated a possible use of contenteditable to help with input methods and text selections on mobile devices. Gabriel Wicke extended the parser with the ability to fetch and expand templates in a parallel and asynchronous fashion. The parser now supports most parts of the English Wikipedia Main Page.

2012-02-29[edit | edit source]

Trevor Parscal did research on cursor interaction and selection rendering for RTL (right-to-left) and support for line breaks in PRE elements. Gabriel Wicke improved template expansion and parser function support, investigated Microdata and RDFa for WikiText-in-HTML-DOM embedding and added rough support for images and other files. Rob Moen committed a working Editable Surface IME prototype (bidirectional text not fully supported). Audrey Tang joined the team and worked on the sanitizer and the testing process.

2012-03-05[edit | edit source]

Exploration of using ContentEditiable (CE) in place of EditSurface (ES) for the display layer was successful, and the team is integrating the new display layer system into the rest of the codebase. Inez and Christian are continuing their work on CE while Rob is focusing on getting the UserInterface (UI) module working with CE. Rob will be refactoring UI and adding an API layer for toolbar and inspector extensions. Trevor and Roan are focusing on DataModel (DM) changes that need to be done to improve tree sync and integration with the parser (Parsoid). Gabriel and Audrey are continuing their work on Parsoid.

2012-03-06[edit | edit source]

Last week made big decisions. The big one was to move forward with contentEditable (CE) that Inez and Christian are doing in place of Editable Surface (ES). Looks like editing on mobile will be awesome! Trevor and Roan will be focusing on the data model (DM. DOM -> Linear Parser) as the basic objectives have been hashed out, the (parser -> DM is unaffected). Certain structure changes (i.e. turning paragraphs to lists) aren't currently possible so the DM will change to support that. Linking with the parser (DOM-> LM converter) will be deferred for a week.

In terms of the UI, Rob worked on some RTL in ES, but switched given the CE advances. This week will focus on getting the UI working in CE (assess what UI we have from ES and where it needs to be). Plan on getting to the point we can user test the JS API for the toolbar.

In terms of the parser, Gabriel has to decide on RDFa vs. microdata eventually (difference are minimal, most of the DOM stuff won't change and can be tested with vanilla HTML anyway). Created a dump grepper with syntax highlighting and used that to analyze existing wikilink/image syntax use. Refactored tokenization and expansion of wikilink/images so now image options can come from templates (257 tests passing now). Plan on tackling interacting with action=parse and wiki in general. Also some more parser function tweaking, etc. and the RDFa/microdata decision.

2012-03-20[edit | edit source]

Team updated (sans key people who are out of commission): FY2012-2013 goals section. Further updates/corrections by Trevor and Gabriel expected when they return.

2012-03-31[edit | edit source]

A big decision in March was to move forward with contentEditable (CE), implemented by Wikia developers Inez Korczynski and Christian Williams, instead of Editable Surface (ES). Trevor Parscal and Roan Kattouw focused on the data model. Rob Moen worked on the user interface, first on right-to-left support in ES, then on getting the UI working in CE. Gabriel Wicke and Audrey Tang continued their work on Parsoid and need to decide on RDFa vs. microdata. They created a dump grepper with syntax highlighting, and used it to analyze existing wikilink/image syntax use.

2012-04-monthly[edit | edit source]

Roan Kattouw and Trevor Parscal are rewriting the underlying data model (ve.dm) to achieve feature compatibility with the parser and correct a variety of problems that have been previously deferred. Inez Korczynski and Christian Williams have been continuing their work to stabilize and integrate the content editable layer (ve.ce) and have been working with Rob Moen, who has focused on getting the user interface elements working with the content editable layer (ve.ui). Gabriel Wicke has been working on improving the parser's ability to parse pages more quickly as well as increasing compatibility with existing features such as thumbnails. A big template-heavy page like Barack Obama can now be expanded in similar time as the production parser (80 seconds on a puny laptop) and 340MB of memory. It previously ran out of memory after consuming 1.6G and running for ~30 minutes.

2012-05-07[edit | edit source]

Release Planning[edit | edit source]

BY JUNE! 5 weeks.

What we want:

  • parse page
  • load editor
  • save it back

Parser:

  • not hard to load simple pages
  • but not roundtripping it (because not all tags are supported)
  • Serializaiton: some normalization. focusing efforts on reconcilliation instead?
  • For Roundtripping: Need more support. Handle templates (started by one and ended by another), also template parameters. (linear model supports both: but data model only allows edit templates parameters on opening).
  • Just finished Refactoring so it can expand big articles. A few more days left of followup.

Serializer:

  • "Alien Nodes" (HTML we don't understand)
  • acknowledge that dirty diffs will happen.
  • Have a sandbox deploy, create a namespace for it.

June:

  • Roundtrip something!
  • Probably a namespace limit, sandbox
  • allow dirty diffs or disallow manual editing and start from scratch.
  • If source editing, then it will run it through the parser as a presave transformation. Warning banner with X? so may not have source mode editing only if developer mode.
  • Maybe Gabriel can refocus on serialization (worried abotu stuff that will be shifting).
  • get it ready incremental improvements on front-end, but on the serialization and back-end that will change.

James Forrester:

  • sooner is better. :-)
  • He will need to be on board for the release in (late) June

Things to be done for release:

  1. Gabriel needs to refocus on serialization (for roundtripping) after he gets the refactor settled (next couple days)
  2. Finish DM rewrite stuff. As soon as it is in master then we start doing integration.
    • This week: Get feature completeness with transactions]
    • On FE, rework observation stuff, toolbar into the DM stuff as it comes along.
    • Annotation should be working today.
  3. Integration work?
    • MW integration [Roan]
    • FE integration- do a "ooh and ahh" it.
    • Node.js integration [Gabriel will get working, and Roan will puppetize and give to Ops]. Roan has Node.js installed on a VM project.

Release Notes: Dec to June (reason)

  1. Switch from ES to CE (due to CE, This warrants a blog post)
  2. Mobile editing support (due to CE, Patrick can hack up something)
  3. February stuff: Supports spellcheck, autocorrect, IME (due to CE)
  4. turn headline into paragraph
  5. feature parity w/ previous demo (internal check)
  6. Load and save (parser/serializer, backend integration)
  7. In-place editing (frontend integration)
  8. Graceful failure/fallback (AlienNode)
  9. [TBD] partial iage support (DM rewrite)

Trevor will make a task list in-wiki. If it doesn't work out, will consider to switching to Asana.

2012-05-20[edit | edit source]

Tracking ongoing work:


2012-05-23[edit | edit source]

Gabriel has set up a very basic parsoid service.

  • browse english wikipedia as parsoid sees it
  • POST wikitext -> HTML DOM
  • POST HTML DOM -> wikitext.

Note: round-tripping is limited. Does not support preservation of variable whitespace, templates and other complex constructs yet.

Currently 154 parser tests are passing in the new --roundtrip mode that Subbu added last week.

Also the team had a meeting with James.

2012-05-monthly[edit | edit source]

The team completed release planning for June and welcomed James Forrester as the Technical Product Analyst for the project. Ongoing work on the Visual Editor and Parsoid is tracked on-wiki. Gabriel Wicke set up a very basic parsoid service that lets users browse the English Wikipedia as Parsoid sees it, and convert Wikitext to HTML DOM and vice versa.

2012-06-monthly[edit | edit source]

The team did the first deployment of VisualEditor and Parsoid, with an early version now live in a test namespace on mediawiki.org. This editor is broadly feature-compatible with the old, EditableSurface-style code which this replaces, while being the first release that can create and edit pages. The team is now planning to deploy new code as it develops every two weeks or so. The initial push will be to work on bug-fixes, and to finalise the code for a few features that were close to being ready before the first deployment.

2012-07-monthly[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor (VE) team presented their work at Wikimania and received a good deal of feedback from the community. The team created a rough plan for the next three months' work. The early version of VE on mediawiki.org was updated twice, fixing a number of bugs and noticeably including the addition of support for nested lists. Gabriel Wicke relocated to San Francisco, and Timo Tijhof visited the SF office for three weeks after Wikimania.

2012-08-20 (MW 1.20wmf10)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.20wmf10 branch deployment on Monday 20 August.

The most visible new item in the two weeks since 1.20wmf9 is the much-improved link inspector. This now guides users to create a link to a suggested existing article, a redlink or an external link, and replaces the previous basic functionality that did not suggest links or inform you if the target of your link existed. We have also improved the save dialogue, streamlining the interaction based on feedback from the design team.

There have also been a number of bug fixes, such as preserving spaces before and after the content in headings and other forms (so that "== Foo ==" doesn't have spacing either side of it in the editor display, but doesn't strip them either — 37935), using browsers' native deletion mechanisms which helps with support for short-cuts and internationalisation (38461), and handling of "alien nodes" (pieces of content that the editor does not know how to edit yet) so that they do not break the rest of the editor when included. However, most of the changes have been improvements to the code architecture to allow it to be re-used and extended to support new 'node types' like categories or tables when we work on these later.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.20/wmf10 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-08-monthly[edit | edit source]

In August, the team focused on overhauling the code design of VisualEditor so that it is more modular and easier to extend. This involves creating and documenting a number of formal APIs at each point in the architecture, that means a developer does not have to understand the entire code base to be able to add new features. The early version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org was updated twice (wmf9 and wmf10), fixing a number of bugs, as well as adding a much-improved link inspector to help users build links, and a save dialog that better guides users on what to do.

2012-09-03 (MW 1.20wmf11)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.20wmf11 branch deployment on Monday 3 September.

The team have spent most of the two weeks since 1.20wmf10 working on how the code integrates together, providing clean interfaces between them so new developers can re-use and extend VisualEditor to support new 'node types' like categories or tables when we work on these later.

That said, there have been a number of bug fixes, including better support for RTL languages as part of our work with our Internationalisation colleagues, supporting the use of VisualEditor with the Monobook skin (38154) and making sure we don't appear to support browsers that won't work with VisualEditor (38857). We now support the editing of old revisions through the tool rather than just the latest one (37821), and have updated the code to work with a changed way in which the Parsoid service now operates as it is developed.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.20/wmf11 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-09-17 (MW 1.20wmf12)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.20wmf12 branch deployment on Monday 17 September.

The last two weeks included the annual Wikimedia Engineering all-tech meeting and the Wikimedia Foundation all-staff meeting, so this iteration was in effect shorter than others. The team have continued to spend most of the coding time over the two weeks since 1.20wmf11 working on how the code integrates together. This work will provide cleaner interfaces between components of the VisualEditor, so new developers can re-use and extend VisualEditor to support new 'node types' like categories or tables when we work on these later.

Beyond the API work, there have been a few minor changes to the user interface made this iteration. Firstly, the link inspector now checks for invalid titles like "Foo{}bar" (33094), and long titles in the suggestions box are replaced with ellipses in the middle rather than the end so they can be distinguished (39591). The save dialog's length down-counter has been labelled to indicate it counts the number of bytes rather than characters, as that is what the database holds (40035); longer-term, we may wish to find a better way to show this to users. Finally, we fixed a bug where the table of contents was restored wrongly if a user edited and then cancelled without saving (39753).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.20/wmf12 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-09-monthly[edit | edit source]

In September, the team continued its focus on re-engineering the code design of VisualEditor so that it is more modular and easier to extend. This involves creating and documenting a number of formal APIs at each point in the architecture, that means a developer does not have to understand the entire code base to be able to add new features. The early version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org was updated twice (wmf11 and wmf12), fixing a number of bugs and building out better support for internationalisation and key concepts like categories, language links and other "magic words".

2012-10-01 (MW 1.21wmf1)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf1 branch deployment on Monday 1 October.

The team have spent most of the two weeks since 1.20wmf12 working on re-designing how the code integrates together, providing clean interfaces between them so new developers can re-use and extend VisualEditor to support new 'node types' like categories or tables when we work on these later.

Beyond this API work, we added a few updates. Firstly, you can now set the 'annotation' where the caret is, without a selection — i.e., you can click somewhere, type Ctrl+B (or press the 'Bold' icon) and start typing with the text appearing bold (33140). We also now switch around the order of the undo and redo buttons for right-to-left languages (38548). Finally, we fixed a bug where applying a link to some text would remove any other 'annotations' (such as bold or italics) already set on it (40337).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf1 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-10-15 (MW 1.21wmf2)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf2 branch deployment on Monday 15 October.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf1, the team have again spent most of their time working on re-designing how the code integrates together, providing clean interfaces between them so new developers can re-use and extend VisualEditor to support new 'node types' like categories or tables when we work on these later.

Beyond the API work, we have entirely re-written the selection system (33058, 34095, 37814, 37833, 37834, 38000, 39465, and 39965), part of which included us adding IME support back in to the VisualEditor (33076). We also fixed some bugs including selections not being restored correctly on undo/redo (40538), backspace not always deleting the right character (40416), pre-annotations (40677), and fixing a JavaScript error when using Internet Explorer 10 (37851).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf2 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-10-monthly[edit | edit source]

In October, the team worked to finish most of the re-engineering the code design of VisualEditor so that it is more modular and easier to extend. This has involved creating and documenting a number of formal APIs at each point in the architecture, so a developer does not have to understand the entire code base to be able to add new features. The early version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org was updated three times (wmf1, wmf2 and wmf3), fixing a number of bugs and replacing the entire browser selection and typing models, and much of how the user interface connects with the rest of the code.

2012-10-29 (MW 1.21wmf3)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf3 branch deployment on Monday 29 October.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf2, the team have continued to devote most of their time working on re-designing how the code integrates together and providing clean interfaces between them so new developers can re-use and extend VisualEditor in the future.

Beyond the API work, we have worked to fix a number of serious bugs in the new code from the last release such as not being able to enter text in blank paragraphs in Firefox 41120, as well as copy-and-paste (41055) and cutting (41092) both breaking, a JavaScript error being caused when editing a blank page (37843), and not being able to change the formatting on two lists at once (41434).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf3 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-11-12 (MW 1.21wmf4)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf4 branch deployment on Monday 12 November.

In two weeks since 1.21wmf3, the team have spent their time mostly working on finalising the code in preparation for its deployment in December as a test for users. One of the major changes to the integration code is how the VisualEditor can be used; it now can work on other pages than just those in the VisualEditor: namespace. (This is configurable on a per-wiki basis, rather than defined in the code itself.) Amongst other things, this now means that editing the wikitext of VisualEditor: namespace pages can be done by anyone, and is no longer restricted to just sysops (as will be needed for the December deployment). The related bugs surrounding permission checks, filter checks, conflicts, etc. remain, and will be fixed in the next release.

Part of the preparations involved entirely re-writing the user interface code including the way in which commands operate (40896). Another aspect was the addition of "Change Markers" to the data sent to the Parsoid system to reduce any accidental changes that should not happen when users save. Finally, a bug with how the "save page" button worked on old revisions was fixed (41865).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf4 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-11-26 (MW 1.21wmf5)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf5 branch deployment on Monday 26 November.

In two weeks since 1.21wmf4, the team have spent their time mostly working on finalising the code and preparing for its deployment in December as a test for users.

A lot of work went into the 'Data Model' component that converts between the information that Parsoid gives us and a structure that the code can edit. This now supports HTML entities (so "ô", "ô", and "ô" do not get switched when users don't expect it - 42118), HTML comments (so they don't get accidentally removed - 42124; viewing and editing them is not yet supported), better handling for content that we don't yet recognise (42119), fixing a bug with our integration with Parsoid (42121), and supporting in production the "Change Markers" code that was worked on last iteration (41947).

In the integration work, we removed the "Feedback" link as this would not work well with the code being deployed to multiple wikis (41722) and unfortunately had to add Internet Explorer temporarily to the "blacklist" of browsers that the VisualEditor will not support for December, due to a number of critical issues that the team does not have time to fix (42335) - post-December, the team will work to find a way around the various bugs and inconsistencies in Internet Explorer.

We fixed bugs on handling "alien nodes" (items of content that we don't have a specific handler for yet, like templates), such as the floated alien-covering "phantoms" for selection purposes appearing wrongly in Firefox (42177) and them not appearing at all for items that floated due to a class in Chrome 42134). There was also some nasty bugs that we fixed, including when editing around inline (mid-paragraph) alien nodes (42212) and the data model and the display getting out of sync sometimes when cutting-and-pasting (42219).

Finally, a great deal of work was done to overhaul the link inspector's code and quash a large number of minor bugs with it, such as wrongly replacing links's spaces with underscores (42140).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf5 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-11-monthly[edit | edit source]

In November, the team worked primarily on finalizing the code re-engineering of VisualEditor so that it is more modular and easier to extend, and on the integration ahead of deploying it for wider testing in December. The early version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org was updated twice (1.21-wmf4 and -wmf5), fixing a number of bugs and missing wikitext compatibility, and wide-spread improvements to much of the user interface code so that it will be easier to change in future.

2012-12-10 (MW 1.21wmf6)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf6 branch deployment on Monday 10 December.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf5, the team have spent their time finalising the code and preparing for its test deployment tomorrow for editors to use and give us feedback.

A lot of changes were made to how the VisualEditor integrates with MediaWiki. These included having a separate VisualEditor tab rather than replacing the existing edit tab (42221 and 41159), integrating into the existing edit controls so that protection, global blocks, AbuseFilter etc. work (37844, 38268 and 42142) and the user is sent somewhere when there's an edit conflict (37828), adding a 'cancel' button from editing mode back into read mode (37845), fixing watch and minor edit functions in the save dialog so they work as expected (38034, 40774, 42136, 42137, and 42764), custom save buttons for old revisions and new pages (41865 and 42750), adding page notices into the workflow so it's clear when you're editing a page with some form of protection, or which has special issues (42220), and tagging all edits made with the VisualEditor so that they can be identified (42172).

The user interface inside the editor, and in particular the link inspector, had a number of changes, including preventing undetectable links over whitespace (42839), avoiding two highlights for the same suggestion (42665), highlighting suggestions on mouse hover (39977), instant response from the link suggestions box (42341), allowing link "pre-annotations" when nothing is selected (33141), buttons not responding to clicks when disabled (40976), and a bug when switching between links (42552).

We fixed a number of bugs and minor annoyances with the core editing surface module, including deleting failing on blank lines (42657 and 42655), on documents that had been blanked (41071), around 'alienated' content (42350), in Firefox with empty paragraphs (41223) and select-all replacements (42404), selection getting removed every few moments (42801) and breaking going backwards (42401), with errors being wrongly-thrown (39255, 41501, and 41504).

Finally, a series of changes were made to the 'Data Model' component that converts between the information that Parsoid gives us and a structure that the code can edit. These include allowing paragraphs inside spans (and other invalid HTML sequences - 42487), fixing the way that unlisting buttons work (41929), correcting the data model when "unbalanced" content is copied (42806) or when you delete alienated content (42707), the leading newline of <pre> elements (42469), and annotating inline aliens (like HTML entities - 42340).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf6 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2012-12-monthly[edit | edit source]

In December, the team deployed to the English Wikipedia an alpha version of the VisualEditor for editors to use and give feedback on issues and priorities. The team's work focussed on ensuring that the integration was reliable, and providing a dedicated tool for editors to report problems with editing, and, after deployment, addressing the reports and ideas from editors. The early version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org was also updated to use the new developments (as part of 1.21-wmf6).

2013-01-02 (MW 1.21wmf7)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf7 branch deployment on Wednesday 2 January.

In the three-and-a-half weeks since 1.21wmf7, the team have mostly been on leave, and otherwise making some progress on cleaning up the codebase and fixing a number of bugs and issues highlighted by the community since the code was deployed more widely in December.

These bugs included no longer marking all edits as minor and adding the page to the user's watchlist regardless of setting (43040); ensuring that "phantoms" appearing correctly over the top of complicated template contents (43098); not showing that there is an edit notice when it is present but displays nothing to the user, as used on the English Wikipedia (43013); making sure that media items are loaded in a protocol-insensitive manner (43015); fixing the wikitext-corruption system to work for pages with '/'s in them (42988); and avoiding the undo/redo functions causing an error if used first before anything else is done (43033).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf7 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-01-16 (MW 1.21wmf8)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf8 branch deployment on Wednesday 16 January.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf7, the team have started the planning for the next segment of work in line with the strategic goals for the VisualEditor set out in the 2012/13 plan. A small number of changes have made it into the codebase for this release, mostly focussed on fixing bugs reported by the community and preparing for future developments.

Firstly, there was a large refactoring of the link inspector code so that it is now easier to extend, which amongst other things means that it will now not over-write other formatting on text like bold or italics (43841) and links now have a target exposed, so editors can where the link goes in their browser without needing to edit the link (37904). The way that the code is integrated now does not take over edit section links, which had been mistakenly left switched on (43036). There were some changes to how "alien" nodes were assigned, fixing a few irregularities in how they worked (42398, 43056, and 43076).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf8 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-01-monthly[edit | edit source]

In January, the team worked primarily on reviewing and cleaning-up the code deployed in December. They spent time with their colleagues in the Parsoid team planning the next phase of development, which is aimed at making the VisualEditor the default editor for all Wikipedias from July 2013. The alpha version of the VisualEditor on mediawiki.org and the English Wikipedia was updated twice (1.21-wmf7 and -wmf8), fixing a number of bugs reported by the community and making some adjustments to the link inspector's functionality based on feedback.

2013-02-04 (MW 1.21wmf9)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf9 branch deployment on Monday 4 February.

In the two-and-a-half weeks since 1.21wmf8, the team have continued planning for the next tranche of work, and working on the core changes that will be needed in preparation for this. For the end of 2012/13, in line with the strategic goals for the VisualEditor set out in the 2012/13 plan, we are looking to provide VE as the 'default' editor for all users, capable of letting them edit the majority of content without needing to use the wikitext editor. This means adding support for at least basic templates, references, categories and images, each of which is a very large piece of work.

The initial focus has included a major expansion in the capabilities of the 'document model' module that converts between the HTML+RDFa rendered by Parsoid and an editable document. Other areas of work have covered editability of images in the "ContentEditable" editing surface, refactoring the keyboard short-cut command triggering system, and improving the documentation system used so that the code is easier to extend.

A small number of changes have made it into the codebase for this release, most notably adding support for Microsoft Internet Explorer v. 9 and above (42847), adding hints of what keyboard short-cuts are available to each button (42919), which can now vary more easily by platform (44012), and internationalisation support for toolbar icons (38551).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf9 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-02-18 (MW 1.21wmf10)[edit | edit source]

The VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf10 branch deployment on Monday 18 February. During this time, the team has expanded with the recruitment of Ed Sanders who will focus on the data infrastructure of the VisualEditor platform.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf9, the team have worked on the infrastructure needed to support the new features being added for wider launch of the VisualEditor as the default way users will edit wikis. This infrastructure work has included further expansion in the capabilities of the 'document model' module that converts between the HTML+RDFa rendered by Parsoid and an editable document, such as adding the ability in the system to edit "meta-data" like categories (45029); note that the user-facing editing component for this is yet to come. Other work has included supporting Microsoft Internet Explorer, adding new user interface widgets for a consistent UI, and reviewing and expanding the design of the user experience for inspectors and editors to cover template and reference editing.

Alongside this work, the team have fixed a number of bugs. These include integration improvements so that the toolbar doesn't appear multiple times if a user clicks back and forth (44838), errors thrown when users click at the end of a document (41199) or when using the link inspector in the stand-alone VE environment (44686), and making sure that inserted links get the link applied correctly (44086).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf10 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-02-monthly[edit | edit source]

In February, the team worked on improving the design, user interface components and API infrastructure of VisualEditor, preparing for the new features that will be added in the coming months. The objective is for VisualEditor to be the default editor for all users, capable of letting them edit the majority of content without needing to use the wikitext editor, in July 2013. This will mean adding support for references, (at least) basic templates, categories and images, each of which is a very large piece of work. During this time, the team has expanded with the recruitment of Ed Sanders, who will focus on the data infrastructure of VisualEditor's platform. The alpha version of VisualEditor on mediawiki.org and the English Wikipedia was updated twice (1.21-wmf9 and -wmf10), adding support for Microsoft Internet Explorer (version 9 and above), fixing a number of bugs reported by the community, improving internationalisation, and restructuring the data model layer so that the code interfaces are ready for the new features.

2013-03-04 (MW 1.21wmf11)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf11 branch deployment on Monday 4 March.

In the two weeks since 1.21wmf10, the team have worked on the new features being added for wider launch of VisualEditor as the default way users will edit wikis. Part of this work has been some of the last infrastructure changes expanding the capabilities of the 'document model' module, including landing the last of the major re-write there (45062). This has also covered letting the converter work with full HTML documents rather than just fragments and be more robust, significant fixes to bugs around list items being merged and un-merged wrongly, better support for 'meta' nodes, fixed handling of text that in normal MediaWiki would be auto-linked (37940), and better documentation (45264 amongst others). The user interface through a major refactor and refresh now has access to a much more consistent set of 'widgets' for the main interface and for items like the link inspector as well as the to-come category, template and references dialogs which are being designed.

The 'content editable' module has improved keyboard support, fixed the ability to add new items in a list (due to an unfortunate typo) and add new lines in pre-formatted blocks using Shift-Enter (45344), added some changes to improve issues with selection of content in the browser (especially "backwards" selection), will now hide the 'phantom' overlays for non-editable content blocks if the mouse leaves the page (43461). Additionally, the dependency on a key library called 'rangy' was refactored, and the broken copy-and-paste support between VisualEditor instances was removed, in anticipation of better copy-and-paste to work with non-VisualEditor surfaces as well.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf11 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-03-18 (MW 1.21wmf12)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.21wmf12 branch deployment on Monday 18 March. In the two weeks since 1.21wmf11, the team have worked on building infrastructure for the new features that we are adding for VisualEditor's wider launch as the default way users will edit wikis.

In the way that the code integrates with MediaWiki, the save button now will be disabled if a user makes changes and then undoes all of them (42939). When an error happens with the Parsoid server, those errors are split out so that the user can report what broke in a way that we can trouble-shoot their issue (44354). When the Parsoid server is not responding, the code supplies a better error message for users (45916).

When selections are auto-expanded to the current context (when a user double-clicks on a word), we now better cover the concept of a 'word boundary', working towards Unicode's definition (44085). Lists now don't get corrupted for Parsoid when "unlist"ing their contents, removing their 'generated' property (45590).

Leaving the link inspector no longer clears a link accidentally (46025). The document model layer now presents categories (and other kinds of meta-content, like language links) for editing to other parts of the code base ahead of supporting user editing of categories in VisualEditor (39597), which is one of the four major features planned before wider launch.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.21/wmf12 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-03-monthly[edit | edit source]

In March, the team worked on the major new features that will be added in the coming months. The objective is for VisualEditor to be the default editor for all users, capable of letting them edit the majority of content without needing to use the wikitext editor, in July 2013. This will mean adding support for references, (at least) basic templates, categories and images, each of which is a very large piece of work. This month the primary focus was editing of categories and templates, with draft designs created and initial code developed. The team undertook its first ever "Quarterly Review", whose slides detail these designs, the work done to date and expectations for the near future. The alpha version of VisualEditor on mediawiki.org and the English Wikipedia was updated twice (1.21-wmf11 and -wmf12), adding better input and selection support, fixing a number of bugs, and restructuring the back-end so that the new features will be simpler to create.

2013-04-01 (MW 1.22wmf1)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf1 branch deployment on Monday 1 April. In the two weeks since 1.21wmf12, the team have worked on building infrastructure for the new features that we are adding for VisualEditor's wider launch as the default way users will edit wikis. This has been primarily in three areas - the data model, the user interface widgets, and the user interaction content-editable "surface". Work on the dialogs to edit categories, templates and media items continues.

The team also undertook its first ever "Quarterly Review", whose slides and minutes detail these designs, the work done to date and expectations for the near future.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf1 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-04-15 (MW 1.22wmf2)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf2 branch deployment on Monday 15 April. In the two weeks since 1.22wmf1, the team have worked on the new features for VisualEditor's wider launch as the default way users will edit our wikis - more details in the slides of last month's quarterly review.

The most significant chunks of work in this period were: "the great annotation refactor of 2013" to more reliably let us extend our data model (46464 and others), back-end work for letting users alter a template's parameters and see the page update before it is saved, and adding initial support for the media item (37870) and category editing dialogs. We made a number of fixes for Internet Explorer to do with selection of and around media items ahead of wider work in this area, better support for complex Unicode when moving or selecting through the document with the keyboard (46794), and changing the integration to avoid over-riding the edit tab's label for wikis that have changed it (42117).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf2 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-04-29 (MW 1.22wmf3)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf3 branch deployment on Monday 29 April. In the two weeks since 1.22wmf2, the team have worked on deploying the VisualEditor opt-in alpha to more wikis, and on the new features for VisualEditor's wider launch as the default way users will edit our wikis: Categories, Templates, References and Images.

Fixed a number of bugs and regressions, including the 'bold' button not allowing you to un-bold some text (47680), fixing the link inspector throwing out "undefined" in some cases and other issues (47413), cleaning up the deployment including making the feedback link language-variable and having VE allow users preferences on non-deployed wikis (42936), avoiding a Firefox bug where shift-right caused characters to be deleted (47711), fixing a failure to let users convert between paragraphs and headings when next to an inline node (41203), and changing the integration so that the VisualEditor is now the editor behind the "Edit" tab (47396).

Additionally, we adjusted our code that faces Parsoid to adapt to changes there and not fail when editing non-current pages (47434), fixed a problem of blank paragraphs getting inserted in some cases (46800), worked around a bug in jQuery that meant that references and other tags were getting corrupted (47417 and later 47737), avoided leaving trailing paragraphs when inserting content at the start or end of a paragraph (46799), made some speed improvements in the editing surface and the back-end (47343), and informed the user when a failure happens on serialisation (47581).

In experimental code that is not live on the Wikimedia servers yet, on images (37870) we added initial support for displaying and editing inline and thumbnail images, resizing of images, selection of images and other generated content with cursor keys (38129), and drag-and-drop relocation of images and other nodes. For references (39599) we added some infrastructure support for references. For templates (39598) we ensured that templates re-serialise to their original HTML if unchanged (47394).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf3 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-04-monthly[edit | edit source]

In April, the team continued their work on the major new features that will be added in the coming months. Our objective is for VisualEditor to be the default editor for all Wikipedia users, capable of letting them edit the majority of content without needing to use the wikitext editor, in July 2013. This means we have been focussed on four substantial areas of work: adding support for references, templates, categories and media items. During this time the main area of our work was editing around images, which is now designed and partially implemented in our experimental code, and around categories, which is almost complete and nearly ready for deployment. The deployed alpha version of VisualEditor was updated thrice (1.22-wmf1, 1.22-wmf2 and 1.22-wmf3), adding speed improvements, user interface improvements and work on the back-end to better support the new features, and fixing a number of bugs. We also were able to deploy the VisualEditor to fourteen more Wikipedias as an opt-in alpha (and, later, Vietnamese Wikipedia too), which has let the community give us feedback on what works and is broken, and identifying language- and locale-specific issues we are now fixing.

2013-05-13 (MW 1.22wmf4)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf4 branch deployment on Monday 13 May. In the two weeks since 1.22wmf3, the team have worked on the new features for VisualEditor's beta launch as the default way users will edit our wikis: Categories, Templates, References and Images.

The VisualEditor now lets users edit the contents of <div> blocks (47907) as if they were normal mark-up - though not the blocks themselves, such as setting arbitrary CSS, which will come later. Work on enabling the editing of categories is almost finished with the addition of a way of setting {{DEFAULTSORT}} in the interface (46465), and support for moving, altering and inserting new images and references is also improving rapidly. Progress on template editing is at an earlier stage, with core back-end support mostly finished at this point.

We made quite a few changes to the MediaWiki integration layer. Most obviously, we now use SVGs rather than PNGs for the graphical elements of the interface, so it scales nicely for users who zoom in (48148). The "Edit source" tab now appropriate becomes active when it is being used (47452), appears on all pages, not just view (47776), and the "Edit" (VE) tab now points to the newly-updated page once you've made an edit (47420). The Vector drop-down menu's change behaviour no longer hides it behind the VisualEditor toolbar (48078)

We improved some issues with the Opera browser (47772) and now warn logged-out users appropriately about the consequences of their editing (47842). Pre-save diffs now give a more reasonable message when there are no changes to be made (43754), and now work when the diff is aborted and restarted (44446). Pages that are not wikitext content (such as user CSS or JS items) will now not trigger VisualEditor (47456). We added a new access key for accessing VisualEditor -  Ctrl+ Alt+v/ Ctrl+ Option+v - restoring the regular edit access key to the wikitext editor (48107).

We also made a number of fixes for RTL environments. First, the link inspector now works for RTL environments, but allows LTR content for Web links (47717). For multi-script variant wikis, content displayed with one variant whilst the user's interface is in a second now works correctly (33175). Un-editable blocks ("aliens") now appear in RTL environments correctly (47746). Finally, the "Edit" (VE) tab now appears down-tab rather than up-tab of the "Edit Source" tab (48017).

On the integration with Parsoid, we cleaned up a number of items of code including removing change markers (45061), and fixed some problems with trailing whitespace on paragraphs and table cells being dropped (47712). Content with different names for the same annotation now serialises to the same wikitext (48110), and serialisation of data with DOM elements is now fixed (47948).

Finally, we fixed a number of other bugs, including ugly issues with pawn characters being created in list and paragraph editing (48287, 48286, 47817, and 48346), with indenting and outdenting of multiple list items (48390), and with splitting list items (48386). Categories that appear in sub-sub-pages don't get corrupted when the page is being edited (48408), and in Firefox, we fixed editing a page causing the entire editor to go blank (47834) and non-character keys being interpreted as real ones (48022). Trying to set a link covering the first character of the document no longer causes VisualEditor to crash (47623), and links now don't wrongly appear to extend when you type after them (48171 and 48114).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf4 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-05-27 (MW 1.22wmf5)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf5 branch deployment on Monday 27 May. In the two weeks since 1.22wmf4, the team attended the Wikimania Hackathon in Amsterdam, working with the community to improve VisualEditor and help them, and, ahead of VisualEditor's launch as the default way users will edit our wikis in beta, worked on the new features: Categories, Templates, References and Images.

In terms of improvements to the integration with MediaWiki, we have a number of changes. When the diff result is null because we think you've made no changes, we say so rather than give a confusing blank diff table (43754); wikitext edit conflict handling is now integrated into the save dialog rather than punting you out of VisualEditor (42522); minor edit checkboxes get pre-set (48347), and you get a warning about not having set an edit summary (47752), based on your preferences; when editing old revisions, you are now warned about this (47683); we now show "Editing …" in the browser title when in VisualEditor, like for the wikitext editor, so that it's clear which of your tabs is editing (48272).

We give a better error message if Parsoid is unavailable during diffs (47581). If the edit token we're using is detected as invalid, we ask for a new one (42984). The edit summary field correctly counts the number of characters entered when using non-ASCII characters (47718). The <visualeditor-feedback-link> message is now shown in the content language, rather than the user language (47730). We now won't load for pages which are redirects as they can't yet be edited (47329). We show "create source" rather than "edit source" for the wikitext editor tab for non-existent pages (47421). We don't disable the save dialog when editing a prior revision (48584). Pre-formatted text blocks now word-wrap rather than character-wrap (38043).

Auto-selection expansion now behaves at the ends of paragraphs as elsewhere (48487), and the link inspector now understands that the first characters of links being auto-capitalised based on wiki context doesn't make them different links (48476). The toolbar clears floated items to avoid mis-alignment (48734). VisualEditor should now work with non-BMP Unicode characters (48630). Finally, we fixed a couple of breaks in the link inspector button (48509 and 48549), in pasting text (48602 and 48603), and some problems when moving back to read mode whilst VisualEditor was loading (48520 and 47813).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf5 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-05-monthly[edit | edit source]

In May, the VisualEditor team worked to complete the major new features we have prioritised over the past few months. Our objective is for VisualEditor to be the default editor for all Wikipedia users, capable of letting them edit the majority of content without needing to use the wikitext editor, in July 2013. We have focussed on four areas of new functionality: adding and editing inclusions of references, templates, categories and media items. Our main area of work over the past month has been on references and templates, and we now have implemented editing them in our experimental code; category editing is nearly complete and should be made available very soon. The deployed alpha version of VisualEditor was updated twice (1.22-wmf4 and 1.22-wmf5), adding a number of user interface improvements, including further work on the back-end to better support the new features, and fixing a number of bugs.

2013-06-06 (MW 1.22wmf6)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf6 branch deployment on Thursday 6 June. In the ten days weeks since 1.22wmf5, the team worked on new features ahead of VisualEditor's launch as the default way users will edit our wikis in beta.

The most noticeable change for users is that it is now possible to set, edit and remove the categories that a page belongs to and its "default sort" key, as part of the new "page settings" dialog that can be opened from the button on the toolbar. For now, this dialog covers categories and a simple listing of language links, but will be expanded to cover other "meta-data" like a page having the table of contents disabled, and integration with Wikidata's language links system. Work also continued on the other three critical areas ahead of the release - Templates, References and Images - and we hope to release these in the next week or two.

The way that known browsers are supported changed slightly; browsers are now only blacklisted if we know that they cause significant problems, like Internet Explorer version 8 and below. If your browser is not known, you will get a notice alerting you to this issue (38128). We have added further support in our back-end for multi-character "grapheme clusters", which means that wikis that use extended ("non-BMP") Unicode characters can now work (48975). The left and right arrow keys now move in the correct direction in RTL environments (38546).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf6 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-06-13 (MW 1.22wmf7)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf7 branch deployment on Thursday 13 June. In the week since 1.22wmf6, the team worked on finishing the new features ahead of VisualEditor's launch as the default way users will edit our wikis in beta.

The most noticeable change for users is that you can now insert images and other media items from the local wiki and Commons - they default to right-floated thumbnailed images with no caption set. Images will also now appear "correctly", positioned in the normal places when editing. We will make it possible to set the caption, as well as convert images from thumbnails to inline or floating on the other side, in the coming week. We also changed the "Save page" workflow to no longer require users to view a wikitext diff before saving (bug 49258), and removed the 'alpha' notice, replacing it with a more subtle beta label (bug 48428). Work continued on ​inserting and editing Templates and References​, ​the other two critical areas ahead of the release ​, which we hope to​ ​​make available in the next week or so.

We fixed some bugs relating to support for multi-byte Unicode characters used by some languages (bug 49246 and 48630) and some tweaks to the category setting interface released last week (bug 48555, bug 48555 and bug 48565). HTML comments and elements that have no contents like some <span>s will now not be silently dropped when editing (bug 48605). You can now use the forwards and back buttons on your browser with VisualEditor as you would expect (bug 43844).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf7 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-06-20 (MW 1.22wmf8)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf8 branch deployment on Thursday 20 June (though some code was available ahead of this). In the week since 1.22wmf7, the team worked on the last of the new features ahead of VisualEditor's launch as the default way users will edit our wikis in beta.

The most noticeable change for editors is that you can now add, edit and remove templates. Parameters are edited only as wikitext for now, but we hope to improve upon this in the next few weeks. The editor interface depends on the new TemplateData extension to give editors hints as to what fields are available. Lots more of the interface is coming, including adding parameters more easily, but it's now possible to add templates (and other kinds of transclusions, like parser functions) to an article, so we made it available. The team spent a good deal of time working on performance of the system, both on the local client and in its interactions with the server. It's now possible to edit block images' captions (thumbs and framed). We also added the ability to run an A/B test for new users, which should be coming soon for a random sampling of new accounts on the English Wikipedia. Section edit links now go to VisualEditor by default, with a user preference to always go to wikitext editor instead.

In terms of bugs and minor fixes, the team focussed on some issues that were highlighted to use by editors; we are very grateful to the reports we have recieved from users which have helped us pin-point the issues and their causes.

We removed attribute order preservation that is now unneeded and slows things down (bug 48980). We now use a more generic approach to filter out non-character key presses, which should be more stable (bug 48335). We fixed a race condition when pressing enter several times quickly (bug 43082). We cleaned up the category editing dialog and made the down-arrows render better (bug 49420). Newly-created images get a resource attribute added, so don't appear as "undefined" in the wikitext on saving (49596. Pasting doesn't disrupt the selection now (bug 49551). Closing a dialog with no changes now doesn't undo the last thing you did before opening it (bug 49630). We now ignore shortcut keys when inserting text, so they don't appear as pawns why typing (bugs 49732, 49760 and 49816). The toolbar now floats down to the end of the page, beyond the start of the last content block (bug 48662).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf8 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-06-27 (MW 1.22wmf9)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf8 branch deployment on Thursday 27 June (though some code was available ahead of this). In the week since 1.22wmf8, the team worked on finishing the last touches to new features ahead of VisualEditor's launch as the default way users will edit our wikis in beta.

The most noticeable change for editors is that you can now add, edit and remove references and reference lists. This includes editing templates inside references, as commonly used (such as in the English Wikipedia's citation templates system). Some additional features to make this smoother and easier are forthcoming. Section edit links are now provided for both VisualEditor and wikitext section editing for all users. Unfortunately we discovered some major flaws in our support for Internet Explorer, and so have had to re-blacklist them as not working with VisualEditor. Heading levels are now re-labelled to discourage their misuse. We hope to fix these issues and let users of Internet Explorer 9 and 10 use VisualEditor in the coming weeks. We also made some changes to how images would display to make them look closer to their appearance in read mode, and you can now drag-and-drop them to move them around the page.

The team spent a lot of time fixing bugs that caused corruption or confusion when users edited with VisualEditor; thank you again to all those who used VisualEditor and gave us the reports we needed to locate and fix issues.

In the data model, the language support for extended Unicode was fixed to not let partial accents corrupt characters later in the document (bug 49233). If two bold tags appear next to each other, we will combine them rather than leave them hanging (bug 48194). Editing after reference lists is no longer locked for the first line (bug 50132). Captions for images that shouldn't display them now do not (bug 50113). Using the link inspector on its own, rather than on a selection, no longer inserts the link twice (bug 50140). Links can't now appear "inside" each other (bug 50208). References will not get marked as having been updated when they haven't, so they shouldn't get "fixed up" (bugs 50066 and 50059). Similarly, neither should templates (bug 50079). Comments inside other generated items (like references) no longer get mysteriously swallowed up (bug 48605), or when they're inside links or spans (bugs 50060 and 50071).

In the editor and its dialogs, if you've blanked the DEFAULTSORT, we now won't set one to be blank, but delete the request (bug 49724). We no longer block the function of "triple-clicking" to select a paragraph (bug 38011). The link editor (and other items) now work again in references when using Firefox (bug 50115). Template dialogs won't appear blank just because their invocation uses the wrong capitalisation (bug 49493), and if there are multiple names for a parameter we'll show you the main one, rather than its position (bug 49838). You can now select a floated thumbnail image or a template which is the first item on the page (bug 49421). When users add a transclusion block with no templates in it, or remove all the templates in one, we no longer leave a remant behind (bug 49831). Inspector menu buttons won't sometimes display as blank when inside a dialog when using Firefox (50073).

In the user interface and MediaWiki integration, the edit, edit source and section edit links no longer don't work with middle-click, ctrl-click or other modifiers (bug 49993). There were some minor tweaks to how the VisualEditor section editing works (bugs 49563 and 49620). The save dialog no longer has an inexplicable "back" button when you've loaded it once but then have gone back to the document before returning (bug 49481). Disabled toolbar buttons are back to being disabled for animations too (bug 33113). A lot of the floating items of the interface no longer interfere with the toolbar (bug 50096), and they slide down the page when it's loaded rather than stay in place (bug 49853). Once you've made changes in a dialog, leaving it no longer scrolls you to the top of the document (bug 49977). It is no longer possible to obscure the save dialog with the "phantom" selection when you hover over an image (bugs 49275 and 49361).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf9 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-06-monthly[edit | edit source]

In June, the VisualEditor team completed the major new features that we prioritised over the past few months, in preparation for making VisualEditor available to most Wikipedia users in July. We have built an editor that is capable of letting users edit the majority of content without needing to use wikitext — text support, as well as adding and editing inclusions of references, templates, categories and media items. The deployed alpha of VisualEditor was updated four times as part of the transition to weekly deployments (1.22-wmf6, 1.22-wmf7, 1.22-wmf8 and 1.22-wmf9), with several mid-deployment releases as the code was developed to patch urgent issues. Part of this involved running an A/B test for new user accounts on the English Wikipedia, with half of the users getting opt-in to VisualEditor ahead of the wider release. Generally, there were a number of user interface improvements, and fixing a number of bugs uncovered by the community.

2013-07-11 (MW 1.22wmf10)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf10 branch deployment on Thursday 11 July (though most of the code was made available ahead of this). In the two weeks since 1.22wmf9, the team deployed VisualEditor to the English Wikipedia, and prepared for wider deployments for other Wikipedias, primarily by fixing bugs brought to our attention, as well as performance improvements.

We made a number of changes related to how VisualEditor integrates with MediaWiki. Most notably, we reduced by 97% the amount of code that is loaded when a user visits a page before they entered VisualEditor (bug 50612, later moving the browser compatibility check there too in bugs 50608 and 50677). We had to blacklist Firefox versions under 15 due to a number of issues with those browsers (bugs 50534, 50720, and 50780). We now run an internal "sanity-check" to see if it's likely that editing a page with VisualEditor will break things, and if, so warns the user on saving and adds a tag for follow-up (bugs 47521 and 50067). We fixed a regression where the edit tab pointed to the old, not current version of the page after saving (bug 50441), and changed behaviour so it always gets the current page, not the version you loaded, to copy MediaWiki (49943). We now display both a VisualEditor and (on hover) a wikitext section edit link for each heading (bug 49666, which was briefly broken, fixed in bug 50731, fixed for RTL wikis in bug 50543, and pointed to the right version in diff views 50925).

A number of things which used to wrongly overlap each other now don't (bugs 49059, 50159, 50241, 50247, 50324, 50545, and 50652). We improved a little the message shown when an edit is blocked by an API hook like AbuseFilter or spam blacklist (bug 50350 - more on this to come), and if your edit needs a CAPTCHA to complete, like when adding an external link as an anonymous or new user, this is now displayed and can be used (bug 50356). We worked with sysops on the English Wikipedia to supress the edit notice warning when that wiki's local templated edit notice system showed up as a red link (bug 50077), and protected and semi-protected pages's protection notices now are added as edit notices to the page for users to spot (bug 50415). We corrected a regression that caused the accesskey to disappear from the edit source tab (bug 50725). We added a link to the user guide in the toolbar, alongside the feedback button (bug 50476). Dialogs no longer zoom off the page when you type into them (bug 50538). Tags now show in diffs as well as page histories, including the VisualEditor ones (bug 49602).

In the editing tools, most of the work focussed on the transclusion dialog. This now fetches TemplateData for newly-added templates (bug 49778), and doesn't show parameters as being available to add if they are already set, even if they have a space in their name (bug 50715) or are an alias for the extant parameter (50717). Template parameters with long descriptions don't cause the screen to extend, but are cropped (bug 50800). Changing a template makes it re-render even if it turns into a block (bug 49854), and if it has pipes in its wikilinks it no longer re-renders the template with broken links due to over-keen escaping (bug 50801). A number of tools were corrected to work better in RTL, including the link inspector (bug 49416) and tabbed dialogs link the transclusions dialog (bug 49613).

The link inspector now doesn't leave zombie windows around when you close it (bug 49941). Pressing return just before the link inspector opens now doesn't replace the content you selected with the return (bug 51075). Categories with a '.' in their name now can be added again (bug 50702), and ones with a ' ' after their name aren't thought to magically be a new one (bug 50697). Using the formatting drop-down no longer scrolls you to the top of the page (bug 50792), and doesn't hide your cursor either (bug 50338). Toolbar buttons are now enabled at the open of the page only if that makes sense (bug 50141). It is now possible to add new invocations of existing references (bug 49733). Pressing escape now closes the currently-open dialog (bug 49809). If you use the up-arrow to move the cursor under the toolbar, the window now scrolls so you can see it (bug 48787).

Using a list in a 'slug' – a blank line that isn't really there, but provided for your cursor to have somewhere to click between blocks – now works (bug 47947); making a heading in one no longer applies it to the wrong line in Firefox (bug 48464). Pressing return in the place before a heading doesn't move your cursor one character into the heading any more (bugs 48735 and 48847). Blue rectangles that used to sometimes appear oddly at the top-left of the screen now shouldn't (bug 49818). Floated templates now don't render oddly inside the editor (bug 49925). Undoing image resizing now does indeed undo the action (bug 50682). Keyboard-based selection is now more reliable in Firefox (bug 48289). Merging paragraphs now works even if there's something unrecognised at the end of the line (bug 48366).

We fixed a number of bugs that could occasionally corrupt pages, including one that moved categories around when the PERSONDATA template was re-parsed wrongly (bug 50120), fixing an issue that made transclusions get re-parsed each time (bugs 50129 and 50253), an issue where categories in templates would sometimes move outside of them when changed (bug 50332) stopping occasional <span> tags being added when the page contained malformed wikitext (49892). If a page has two or more references with the same name, VisualEditor will no longer clean this up by removing the unused content (50444). Adjacent HTML elements from VisualEditor now merge with ones from Parsoid (bug 49985), and HTML code like <big><big> now doesn't get silently reduced to a single application of the element (bug 49755).

Finally, we split out the MediaWiki-specific items in our code so that we can manage the code more easily in the future, and third parties can more readily write plug-ins for VisualEditor (bug 45295). The Google Summer of Code work progressed well; the Math extension editor is now nearly available for initial deployment, and the ones for the SyntaxHighlight extension and for setting text language details both made strong progress.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf10 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period on Bugzilla's list.

2013-07-18 (MW 1.22wmf11)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf11 branch deployment on Thursday 17 July. In the week since 1.22wmf10, the team worked on improvements to VisualEditor as well as fixing bugs and stability improvements.

The "re-use an existing reference" part of the references dialog is now its own pane, and the inserter defaults to a blank new one (bug 51152). The transclusion dialog was over-hauled to have a click-to-add list of available parameters rather than needing a button or double-clicking (bugs 50774 and 51143). When a user types some wikitext, a notice pops up reminding them that this does not work, to avoid users creating accidental <nowiki>s (bug 49820). Finally, some internationalised toolbar icons were added for bold and italic for a number of languages (bug 51330).

In terms of bugs fixed, firstly the blue highlight on templates, images and references is no longer mis-placed (bug 50913). The message for a triggered AbuseFilter filter is now shown in the edit dialog, rather than just its name (bug 50472). Notificatons from the SpamBlacklist are also now shown when triggered (bug 50826). The "Clear formatting" tool now clears links again (bug 50461). If a user takes a while to make their edit, VisualEditor now fetches a new edit token for them rather than leave them stranded, unable to save (bug 50424)

VisualEditor no longer eats away at the end of templates that have a reference defined inside them (bug 50271). Some fixes were made to how dialogs and inspectors appear in RTL environments like Hebrew and Arabic (bug 49546). Backspacing from a blank line after a definition list no longer breaks VisualEditor (bug 50076). Fake references created using {{#tag:ref|…}} are now displayed in superscript like real references (bug 50978). VisualEditor now will load on pages which have only a magic word on them (bug 50289).

The link inspector doesn't now stay open in a broken way when you move the cursor from one link to another (bug 50895). Re-sizing an image with default size now works again (bug 50645). Typing after a link with multi-byte text before it no longer breaks VisualEditor (bug 51140). We no longer accidentally merge two <span>s that sit next to each other when they have different style attributes (bug 49873), nor do we break when unclosed annotations have HTML comments or categories in their wikitext (bug 51235). Finally, the image insertion dialog no longer shows each image twice (once as File:Foo, the second time as Datei:Foo) when used in non-English interfaces (bug 50158).

Finally, the Google Summer of Code students made good progress; an early version of the Math extension editor will soon be available on MediaWiki.org for testing, and that for the SyntaxHighlight extension and a tool for setting text language details will be soon.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf11 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-07-25 (MW 1.22wmf12)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf12 branch deployment on Thursday 25 July. In the week since 1.22wmf11, the team worked on improvements to VisualEditor as well as fixing bugs and stability improvements.

VisualEditor now will extend a link when users type at the end of a link, but won't do so over a wordbreak character (bugs 49931 and 51463). The configuration items related to Flagged Revisions now appear in the edit notices and the save dialog as appropriate ([[bugzilla:49699|bug 49699]). You can now edit transparently through <nowiki> blocks, which will get re-added only if necessary (bug 47678). If you trigger VisualEditor from a section edit link, the section's title will be pre-filled in in the edit summary box when you go to save it (bug 50872). When new articles are created, users are now shown the <newarticletext> message (bug 51459). We considerably improved the performance of inserting text into pages (bug 52012). Finally, we added localised bold and italic icons for Basque, Dutch, French, Galician, Georgian, Hungarian, Italian, Kyrgyz, Ossetian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. If your language could benefit from customised bold and italic icons, please file a bug so we can make and set them for you!

We fixed a round-tripping bug that caused templates' whitespace to get corrupted (bug 51150). We quickly fixed a bug that meant that the toolbar buttons didn't work for some articles in Firefox (bug 51986), and another which meant that dialog panels didn't scroll any more (bug 51739). VisualEditor now handles templates that set "meta" items (like a category) and nothing else better (bug 51322). The size of the save dialog is now not ludicrously tiny when using the Monobook skin (bug 50058), and the Flagged Revisions drop-down tool was hidden so it doesn't impact Monobook skin users' toolbars when in VisualEditor (bug 51926). If the database is locked when a user tries to save with VisualEditor, they now get a message telling them as such and an opportunity to try again, rather than a silent failure (bug 51636).

We corrected thumbnail images' display so that they look don't wrong in some contexts (bug 51995). There was an issue that led to the reference list sometimes not being fully populated with references (bug 50094). There was a problem with adding or displaying categories which had a colon in their name, which is now fixed (bug 51902). We fixed a bug when using Opera that caused corruption of categories when a reference was added (bug 50385). Unsetting "minor edit" for users with the "mark all my edits as minor by default" now works (bug 51515). Further, dialogs' buttons can now be activated using the  Tab and  Shift+ Tab key commands (bug 50047).

We also fixed a number of bugs that affected RTL environments. Firstly auto-completion for template names now works in RTL (bug 51828), and categories' removal now works in RTL too (bug 51490). Inserted images no longer set their alignment, but instead inherit the default position depending on whether the wiki they are on is RTL or LTR (bug 51851). The location of the inspector menu for floated content now appears on the correct side of the screen (bug 51819).

Finally, the Google Summer of Code work progressed very well; an early version of the Math extension editor is now available for testing on MediaWiki.org, and that for the SyntaxHighlight extension and a tool for setting text language details will be soon.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf12 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-07-monthly[edit | edit source]

In July, the VisualEditor team began switching the deployment from opt-in alpha to opt-out beta, so becoming the default editor for users of the various Wikipedias. The deployed version of the code was updated three times (1.22-wmf10, 1.22-wmf11 and 1.22-wmf12), with several mid-deployment releases as the code was developed to patch urgent issues. There were a number of user interface improvements, most notably to the references insertion dialog, alongside fixes to a number of bugs uncovered by the community.

2013-08-15 (MW 1.22wmf13)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf13 branch deployment on Thursday 15 August. In the three weeks since 1.22wmf12, as well as presenting their work at Wikimania, discussing and planning improvements and new featurees, the team worked on some changes to how VisualEditor integrates with MediaWiki, a few minor feature improvements and improving the performance of the system, and fixing bugs and stability improvements.

Firstly, on the integration, the "edit" and "edit source" tabs and section edit links can now be configured more flexibly (which has been taken advantage of on the English Wikipedia). The labels for these "edit" and "edit source" tabs and section edit links (however they have been configured for a given wiki) will be consistent on all pages, even those that cannot yet be edited with VisualEditor like templates (bug 50402). These labels are applied before the page is sent to the user, so they no longer "flash in" for some users (bugs 50542 and 50692). Further, the section edit links both appear at once, rather than only one appearing until a user hovers over the heading (bug 50540). We also made a more prominent welcome notice that appears the first time a user opens VisualEditor (or every 30 days for logged-out users), warning them about VisualEditor being in beta (bug 52366).

In terms of new features, you can now edit references that are defined inside a <references> block (bug 51741), references defined in templates and image captions will also display (bug 51289 and bug 52427), and nested references now display correctly (bug 50749). We also made some changes to the link inspector to make it faster and simpler to use - you no longer need to press enter twice to set a link (bug 51065) or click as many times (bug 51523), and you are warned more clearly that the title you've entered is invalid (e.g. "Foo{}bar") and so won't let you set it (bug 33094). We made some major performance improvements to deleting text (bug 52013) and scrolling pages (bug 52014), which should be visible on long pages.

You can now add and edit <code> (code) and <s> (strikethrough) annotations in experimental mode on MediaWiki.org - coming to production wikis soon (bugs 51590 and bug 51610), as well as <tt> annotations with the same code (bug 52352), and a more general solution for use with similar pairs of annotations built out too (bug 52477). We added a keyboard shortcut for the "Clear formatting" tool:  Ctrl+\ or  Cmd+\ (bug 51507). VisualEditor now uses the same kind of post-edit feedback message that the wikitext editor uses, for increased consistency between the different editors (bug 39632). Finally, we fixed the last known issues with Opera and so un-blacklisted it (bugs 37861, 47793 and 50813; tracked by bug 36000).

On the bug front, we fixed a number of issues. Firstly, we correct a problem where an ugly error was shown to the user on changing a template if there was an API issue (bug 52483). We now strip leading whitespace from paragraphs, so as to avoid users creating accidental <nowiki>s (bug 51462). A bug that made it impossible to save multiple consecutive references is now corrected (bug 52228), as is one that sometimes didn't get you a new edit token if your current one had expired (bug 51915). We also quickly fixed an issue where VisualEditor would crash on loading a page with a <nowiki> in it (bug 51948), and a corruption issue which led to categories getting duplicated (bug 52238).

Adding a link on an empty selection no longer crashes (bug 51404); if you press enter too quickly it still works (bug 51415); and the link inspector no longer aggressively picks a link for you in cases where there's only one suggestion (bug 52420). The save dialog briefly attached to whichever dialog you had most recently opened, rather than the main toolbar; this is now fixed (bug 52317), as has the toolbar floated to the top of the screen over the user's personal tools if a dialog had been opened (bug 52441). The link describing wikitext in the warning notice about not inserting it now opens in its own window (bug 52093), as does the link to the user guide (bug 52475). Embedded buttons' inspectors now display correctly, used in the forthcoming equation editor on large equations (bug 52845). Further, once you save the page, we re-enable the wikipage content handlers, so gadgets like those that make tables sortable will work again (bug 51565).

Finally, the Google Summer of Code work progressed well; early versions of the Math extension editor and tool for setting text language details are now available for testing on MediaWiki.org, and that for the SyntaxHighlight extension will be soon.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf13 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-08-22 (MW 1.22wmf14)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf14 branch deployment on Thursday 22 August, though many of the changes were made available ahead of this release. In the week since 1.22wmf13, the team worked on fixing bugs and stability and performance improvements to VisualEditor, with some minor work on features.

You can now add and edit <u> (underline), <sub> (subscript), and <sup> (superscript) annotations in experimental mode on MediaWiki.org (bugs 51609, 51612 and 51611 respectively). These, along with the annotations for <s> (strikethrough) and <u> (underline) which were released last week will be made available on all wikis once the re-design of the toolbar is complete, to avoid them dominating the buttons that are more normally used.

In terms of bugs, firstly, file inclusions which have empty |link= parameters are no longer corrupted on save (bug 51963). A number of issues related to the undo and redo buttons and keyboard shortcuts not applying to the document were fixed (bug 52113). Inserting an existing reference into the first paragraph in Firefox no longer inserts it at the start of the document, but where your cursor was (bug 52159). Finally, after a significant re-write of some of the core of VisualEditor, a number of bugs related to text input and selection in various scripts and using various Input Method Editors (IMEs) were fixed (bugs 50105 for Arabic; 50346 for Kannada; 50631 for Korean; 51477 for Devanagari; and 52716 for Japanese).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf14 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-08-29 (MW 1.22wmf15)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf15 branch deployment on Thursday 29 August, though many of the changes were made available ahead of this release. In the week since 1.22wmf14, the team worked on fixing bugs and stability and performance improvements to VisualEditor.

A major bug that caused rapid typing to get out of sync with the document model, meaning that users of Input Method Editors or who typed quickly would get nonsense in their page, was fixed before it affected users (bugs 53079 and 53360). A change to the link inspector briefly made it impossible to insert links to pages' sections - this is now fixed (bug 53219).

A bug that meant that inserting a reference with blank content created bad wikitext - <ref/> - has now been fixed by not letting you insert it when it is blank (bug 53345). Applying a link across a selection that contains an image and some text no longer deletes the image and the text (bug 50127). We fixed a bug where cursoring next to an inline image would throw an exception (bug 53507).

A number of bugs with copy-and-paste functionality were fixed, ahead of a larger re-write that should support full rich copy-and-paste from external sources soon. Firstly, selecting a single node to copy no longer throws an exception (48604). A bug in Chrome that caused the browser to crash when cutting certain selections has been worked around (bug 50043). The document no longer loses focus in Firefox after a node is cut (bug 53362). Reverse selections now work for copy-and-paste as well as forwards selections (bug 51538). For RTL environments, the inspector menu icon now appears on the correct side of the page when selecting a transclusion (bug 50905), and the page loading animated image now has an RTL variant (bug 51401).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf15 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-08-monthly[edit | edit source]

In August, the VisualEditor team continued work, and presented and ran workshops at Wikimania in Hong Kong to discuss how to best improve the system. The deployed version of the code was updated three times (1.22-wmf13, 1.22-wmf14 and 1.22-wmf15), with several mid-deployment releases as the code was developed to patch urgent issues. The focus in this work was in improving the stability and performance of the system, fixing a number of bugs uncovered by the community, and making some usability improvements.

2013-09-05 (MW 1.22wmf16)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf16 branch deployment on Thursday 5 September. In the week since 1.22wmf15, the team worked on some interface changes, fixing bugs, and stability & performance improvements to VisualEditor.

In new features, we have changed the toolbar to be simpler, shorter, and to have the ability to have drop-down groups with descriptions. At least initially, we have moved all but the most basic tools into a single drop-down, including inserting media, templates and other transclusions, and references & reference lists. As part of this, the controls to add <u> (underline), <sub> (subscript), and <sup> (superscript), <s> (strikethrough) and <u> (underline) annotations to text will now be available to all users in the drop-down.

We also added a set of keyboard shortcuts for setting the block formatting:  Ctrl+0 sets a block as a paragraph;  Ctrl+1 up to  Ctrl+6 sets it as a Heading 1 ("Page title") to Heading 6 ("Sub-heading 4");  Ctrl+7 sets it as pre-formatted (bug 33512). The help/'beta' menu now exposes the build number next to the "Leave feedback" link, so users can give better reports about issues they encounter (bug 53050).

When inserting a new link into a blank location, we now additionally suggest lower-case link anchors as well as the upper-case equivalent if you've typed that in, so typing in "iPhone" will prompt "iPhone" as well as "IPhone" (bug 50452). Inserting media files when some content is selected no longer replaces the content, but puts the media item at the end of the selection instead (bug 52460). Inserting a link, reference or media file will now put the cursor after the new content again (bug 53560).

In the reference dialog, the 'Use existing reference' button is now disabled on pages which don't yet have a reference (bug 51848). Newly-added references or reference groups no longer need the page to be saved before they can be re-used (bugs 51689 and 52000). The template parameter filter in the transclusion dialog now searches both parameter name and label (bug 51670).

We fixed a few errors with copy and paste; copying over nodes (like references or templates) no longer inserts additional newlines on paste (bug 53364), and if you copied an item and then changed it, or pasted it and changed the copy, you would get the changed item (and not what you copied) on the next paste (bug 52271). The names of languages listed in the "languages" (langlinks) panel in the Page settings dialog now display as RTL when appropriate (bug 53503).

Finally, our Google Summer of Code students neared completion of their work. The Math and SyntaxHighlight extension editors have both made excellent process, and the team hosted in San Francisco Moriel Schottlender, lead on the tool for setting text language details, for in-depth discussions of how we might improve the back-end to support the tool better.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf16 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-09-12 (MW 1.22wmf17)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf17 branch deployment on Thursday 12 September. In the week since 1.22wmf16, the team worked on better language support, fixing bugs, and stability improvements to VisualEditor.

A number of fixes to copy-and-paste were made, including stopping the copying between editors with wikitext-irrelevant CRs pasting the ↵ as a literal character, rather than a placeholder for a wikitext newline (bug 52096), selecting a single node (like a reference or template) without any other content now can be copied to the clipboard (bug 49396), and a bug-fix specific to Firefox due to a flaw in that browser not considering generated content nodes to be valid copyable material when selected alone (bug 53375).

We now more generically support blocking certain kinds of structures in certain kinds of sub-editors, like lists, which do not work in images, or references, which cannot contain themselves (bug 49657).

Several language-related fixes were also made, including no longer corrupting and inserting pawns ("♙") when inserting non-Latin text, accents, or diacritics (bugs 53680, 53747 and bug 53572). Multi-byte characters on insertion do not repeat themselves forever any more (bug 53012), and using Google Input Tools in Firefox similarly no longer recursively adds words to the page (bug 51847).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf17 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-09-19 (MW 1.22wmf18)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf18 branch deployment on Thursday 19 September. In the week since 1.22wmf17, the team fixed some bugs, but was mostly ill or away.

Support was added for scrollable dialogs and drop-downs, which means (amongst other improvements) that when selecting with the cursor in the transclusion dialog's list of parameters for a template, the list scrolls into view (bug 53610). The contents of <pre> HTML entities, including those generated by wikitext (" Foo") now don't have the leading whitespace removed, to avoid corrupting them on save. (bug 54083). Finally, the version of VisualEditor running is now not displayed as simply "false" on the product cluster due to the configuration there, but hidden if not available (bug 53050).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf18 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-09-26 (MW 1.22wmf19)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf19 branch deployment on Thursday 26 September. In the week since 1.22wmf18, the team worked on fixing bugs and stability improvements to VisualEditor.

You can now drag-and-drop elements other than just images - references, reference lists, templates and other "nodes" should all be moveable with the mouse. Blanking the contents of a heading, pre-formatted block or other formatting block now deletes the block rather than leaving it empty, which is consistent with how OpenOffice and Google Docs behave (bug 50254).

The page settings dialog was briefly broken in Firefox but now is restored (bug 54322). A bug that meant that unnamed references got their names corrupted on using VisualEditor has also been fixed (bug 54341). A regression in copy-and-paste which meant that copy-and-paste stopped working outside VE even once it was closed was corrected (bug 54375), and the functionality was fixed to allow pasting images in Firefox (bug 54377).

Links are no longer possible to be applied to images, as this isn't possible to represent in wikitext (bug 53151). A bug which means that VisualEditor selected both the "slug" (blank line) and the infobox at the start of an article on initialisation was fixed (bug 54446).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf19 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-09-monthly[edit | edit source]

In September, the VisualEditor team continued their work to improve the editor and roll it out to additional wikis. The deployed version of the code was updated four times (1.22-wmf16, 1.22-wmf17, 1.22-wmf18 and 1.22-wmf19). The focus in the team's work this month was to continue to improve the stability and performance of the system, fix a number of bugs uncovered by the community, and make some usability improvements.

2013-10-03 (MW 1.22wmf20)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf20 branch deployment on Thursday 3 October. In the week since 1.22wmf19, the team worked on fixing bugs and stability improvements to VisualEditor.

References are now editable when they appear inside a media item's caption (bug 50459), thanks to a major re-write of the back-end (bug 52102) that will help us finally provide proper copy-and-paste support in the near future. We tweaked the wording for the warning message that appears for a blank reference list of the default group, and no longer talk about 'the group ""' (bug 51873).

Editing in the "slug" at the start of a page no longer shows up a pawn character ("♙") in some circumstances (bug 54791). In Firefox, blanking the page using select-all and then delete used to break editing; this is now fixed (bug 50947). Generated content blocks which get re-rendered as they are updated, like the experimental (and available on MediaWiki.org) formula editor now doesn't cause the inspector to judder to the beginning and back when updating the image (bug 54584).

There were a number of urgent fixes made to the code behind VisualEditor during the week, to fix issues that developed. Firstly, there was a bug that meant that it was impossible to move the cursor using the keyboard away from a selected node (like a reference or template) once it had been selected (bug 54443). Another bug meant that links with a final punctuation character in them broke extending them in some circumstances (bug 54332). The "page settings" dialog was broken twice, first in a way that made removing categories impossible, though adding them worked (bug 54727), and later entirely, though only in a development branch (bug 54928). A broken deployment script meant that briefly VisualEditor was broken for all Wikipedias (bug 54935). Finally, 'snowmen' characters ("☃") no longer appear near newly-added references, templates and other nodes (bug 54712).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf20 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-10-10 (MW 1.22wmf21)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf21 branch deployment on Thursday 10 October. In the week since 1.22wmf20, the team worked on fixing bugs and stability improvements to VisualEditor.

When you delete or backspace over a node (like a template, reference or image), the node will first will become selected before a second press of the key will delete it, making it more obvious what you are doing and avoiding accidental removals of infoboxes and similar (bug 55336).

If you hold down the  Shift key whilst resizing an image, it will now snap to a 10 pixel grid instead of the normal free-hand sizing. A number of improvements were made to the transactions system which make the undo/redo system able to cope better with real-time collaboration, where multiple users will be able to edit a page at the same time in one session.

The save dialog was re-written to use the same code as all other dialogs (bug 48566), and in the process fixed a number of issues. The save dialog is re-accessible if it loses focus (bug 50722), or if you review a null edit (bug 53313); its checkboxes for minor edit, watch the page, and flagged revisions options now layout much more cleanly (bug 52175), and the tab order of the buttons is now closer to what users will expect (bug 51918).

The code for the action buttons on the right (RTL environments: left) of the toolbar was re-written slightly to improve its flexibility. The display of the help and edit notice menus is now improved, including the addition of a close button (bug 52386). The width of the format drop-down was made adjustable so that long labels don't cause it to break (bug 54870), and a bug that caused the toolbar's menus to get shorter or even blank when scrolled down the page in Firefox is now fixed (bug 55343).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf21 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-10-17 (MW 1.22wmf22)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.22wmf22 branch deployment on Thursday 17 October. In the week since 1.22wmf21, the team worked on some feature changes, infrastructure improvements, and fixing bugs.

We improved media item resizing in a few ways. Firstly, inline media items can now be resized in the same way that has been possible with block ones (like thumbnails) before. When resizing a media item, you can see a live preview of how it will look as you drag it (bug 54298). Whilst you are dragging an image to resize it, we now show a label with the current dimensions (bug 54297). Once you have resized it, we fetch a new higher-resolution image for the media item if necessary (bug 55697). Manual setting of media item sizes in their dialog is nearly complete and should be available next week.

Beyond this work, there was a lot of preparatory work done to make it possible to re-use elements of VisualEditor outside of the full VE surface (such as in other extensions or gadgets), which should be completed soon, and adding support for switching extra parts of VisualEditor on in the forthcoming Beta Features extension.

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.22/wmf22 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-10-24 (MW 1.23wmf1)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf1 branch deployment on Thursday 24 October, the first deployment of alphas of MediaWiki 1.23. In the week since 1.22wmf22, the team worked on three major infrastructure changes, some monitoring code, and fixing bugs.

The first infrastructure change has cleaned up the core framework that VisualEditor has created for itself, oojs, making this more efficient, more complete, and more re-usable for other projects; this is complete for now. The second change was to spin out the UX framework from VisualEditor into oojs-ui, which will let other teams at Wikimedia (like Flow) and gadget authors re-use VisualEditor UX components without needing to pull in the entirety of VisualEditor; this is mostly complete, with some minor changes needed before it will be deployed. The third change is to change how inserting characters works to use the browser's native operations more frequently when applicable, and should reduce the difficulties that VisualEditor has with some input methods and languages, and which can cause pawn characters ("♙") to be wrongly inserted; this is currently in testing, and also nearly ready for deployment.

Outside of these areas of work, some minor fixes were included. The category suggestions drop-down was appearing in the wrong place rather than below its input box, which is now fixed. VisualEditor now supports Parsoid's changed representation of numbered external links (bug 53505). There was a bug in the save dialog that caused it to crash if there was an error in loading the page from Parsoid, which is now fixed. The media item resize label now is centred whilst resizing regardless of which tool you use to resize it. A typo that stopped the toolbar from floating on MediaWiki.org was fixed before it went out to other wikis. A bug that meant that the display and the data model could get out of sync in some cases when using the Language annotation was fixed (bugs 54335 and 54675).

The browser tests were expanded to cover some basic cursor operations, which uncovered an issue in our testing framework that doesn't work with cursoring in Firefox; the Chrome tests continue to fail due to a bug with the welcome beta message for that part of the testing framework.

Finally, VisualEditor was enabled on the File:, Help: and Category: namespaces on all wikis (bug 55968), the Portal: and Viquiprojecte: namespaces on Catalan Wikipedia (bug 56000), and the Portal: and Book: namespaces on English Wikipedia (bug 56001).

A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf1 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-10-31 (MW 1.23wmf2)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf2 branch deployment on Thursday 31 October. In the week since 1.23wmf1, the team worked on some major infrastructure changes, some minor toolbar improvements, and fixing bugs.

A new feature lets you do a one-way switch from VisualEditor to the wikitext editor which will preserve your changes without you needing to save (bug 50687). It is available in a new menu in the action buttons at the right (left in RTL contexts) of the document toolbar, which has been simplified. The "Page Settings" button has been replaced with said menu, where it appears with it's the two available sections of that dialog (Categories and Languages) now directly available in that menu. You cannot yet switch back from the wikitext editor into VisualEditor, though we hope to be able to build that in time. VisualEditor's integration with the forthcoming Beta Features programme was finalised: the ability for users on all wikis with VisualEditor to opt-in to having the new formula editor available, for testing ahead of making it available for all users.

In terms of bugs, VisualEditor now keeps track of the context in which you loaded the page, which lets us fix up links in document to point to the correct place regardless of what entry point you launched the editor from - so the content of pages loaded through /wiki/Foobar?veaction=edit and /w/index.php?title=Foobar&veaction=edit both now have text links that work if triggered (bug 48915). We also fixed an issue that meant that completely-empty templates became impossible to interact with inside VisualEditor, as they didn't show up (bug 55810).

In infrastructure, a set of changes on how the document model and the editing surface keep synchronised to ensure that events always propagate one way have now been completed, making VisualEditor much more extensible and allowing the possibility of collaborative editing; along with other things, this led to a change in how the undo and redo actions are done (bug 53224). The spinning out of the UX framework from VisualEditor into oojs-ui, which lets other teams at Wikimedia (like Flow) and gadget authors re-use VisualEditor UX components without needing to pull in the entirety of VisualEditor, is now complete, and will soon be moved to a shared code repository. Work on improving how inserting characters works, switching to use the browser's native operations more frequently when applicable, continues. This should improve VisualEditor's support for some input methods and languages, avoiding the wrongful insertion of pawn characters ("♙") when tested further.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf2 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-10-monthly[edit | edit source]

In October, the VisualEditor team continued to improve the stability and performance of the system, and add new features. The deployed version of the code was updated five times (1.22-wmf20, 1.22-wmf21, 1.22-wmf22, 1.23-wmf1 and 1.23-wmf2). Beyond fixing bugs, the focus of the team's work this month was to make a number of large structural changes to make the system more dependable and extensible, and continue to make some usability improvements. For example, you now need to press the "delete" key twice to delete a template, reference or image; the first time, they only become selected, to avoid accidental deletion of infoboxes and similar content. A new feature, empowering users to switch from editing in VisualEditor to editing wikitext directly without having to save the page, was also implemented.

2013-11-07 (MW 1.23wmf3)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf3 branch deployment on Thursday 7 November. In the week since 1.23wmf2, the team worked on a major infrastructure change and fixing bugs.

The supporting code needed for the forthcoming rich pasting was extended further to ensure that no corruptions occur, with greater testing added. Work continued to support the forthcoming reference dialog to quickly add citations based on local templates. Any links in the save dialog now open in a new window, rather than inside the iframe of the dialog. An incompatibility between VisualEditor and the deployed Parsoid service that prevented editing categories and language links was fixed. VisualEditor now supports editing of private wikis, by forwarding the Cookie: HTTP header to Parsoid (bug 44483). VisualEditor now uses content language when fetching TemplateData information, so reducing bandwidth use, and users on multi-language or multi-script wikis now get TemplateData hinting for templates as they would expect (bug 50888).

In infrastructure, the splitting out of the UX framework from VisualEditor into oojs-ui, which lets other teams at Wikimedia (like Flow) and gadget authors re-use VisualEditor UX components without needing to pull in the entirety of VisualEditor, was tweaked and extended. It is now being moved to a shared code repository.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf3 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-11-14 (MW 1.23wmf4)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf4 branch deployment on Thursday 14 November. In the week since 1.23wmf3, the team worked on some minor feature changes, more of the code's infrastructure, and fixing bugs.

The wikitext warning, which appears if you attempt some forms of wikitext like '', ''' or {{foo}} now also warns you on writing <ref> (bug 56755). The switch-to-wikitext feature, introduced last week, now works in Firefox as well as Chrome, Safari and Opera (bug 56767). Some bugs in the editing surface were fixed, including one that added an extra new-line at the start of the page (bug 56274), and editing of blank dialogs' sections having the first character end up mis-placed and be impossible to delete (bugs 56642 and 57211). A bug that meant that very rapidly undoing the insertion of a media item before it had fully saved would throw an error was fixed (bug 56649). Shortcut commands have been added for underline ( Ctrl+U or  Cmd+U), subscript ( Ctrl+, or  Cmd+,) and superscipt ( Ctrl+. or  Cmd+.).

For RTL environments like Hebrew or Arabic, the the direction of the <textarea> in extension tags' inspectors will now correspond to the surrounding content direction (bug 56779), except in the <syntaxhighlight> extension, where it must always be LTR (bug 56780). The icons for VisualEditor elements in Beta Features were modified for use in RTL environments. A bug that meant VisualEditor didn't restore the selection after the window was blurred and then re-focussed, which broke section editing on wikis with ULS (which does this) was fixed (bug 56651). VisualEditor now pays attention to the page language, rather than the wiki's global language, for future support. After the mw.util.wikiGetlink function was deprecated last week, we have switched to use mw.util.getUrl instead (bug 57237).

Final touches were made to the oojs-ui library, refactoring how windows work to make the code simpler and more reusable; allowing it to stand alone with a generic localisation utility, adding a widget for a toggle switch, and proper disabling of items in the toolbar; a regression that meant that inspector tools (like the link or language inspectors) no longer showed as active in the toolbar if the cursor was in a link was also fixed.

The automated browser tests were expanded to cover an initial set of UTF-8, to remove hard-coding of editing strings for future flexibility, and some hooks were updated to keep track of changes in VisualEditor. Some additional events were added to the EventLogging integration to allow for in-depth analysis of the areas which need to be optimised to improve the performance of saving and loading pages in VisualEditor.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf4 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on [mediazilla:buglist.cgi?bug_status=RESOLVED&bug_status=VERIFIED&bug_status=CLOSED&product=VisualEditor&query_format=advanced&target_milestone=VE-deploy-2013-11-14&order=component&list_id=252243 Bugzilla's list].

2013-11-21 (MW 1.23wmf5)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf5 branch deployment on Thursday 21 November. In the week since 1.23wmf4, the team worked on some minor bug fixes and code infrastructure, and travelled to Pune, India for the Open Source Language Summit.

VisualEditor will no longer let you set a link over a reference invocation, as that isn't allowed in MediaWiki (bug 56250). It's now possible to remove a blank line at the start of an article (bug 54964).

An issue with pasting references, where the new reference was auto-numbered the same as an existing (but different) reference, was fixed. Changes to meta-elements (like the categories or the page's default sort key) that are null operations (such as adding and then removing a category) no longer create a transaction (and so do not enable the "Save page" button). The beta welcome dialog text now correctly points to the re-named "Help" button, instead of still calling it "Beta".

VisualEditor switched to use builds of the oojs-ui library instead of a local copy of the tree; the library had an inputFilter function added to the existing InputWidget, and improvements to the sanitisation of changes. The code documentation was updated in preparation for the switch to JSDuck 5. The automated browser tests now test additional types of text markup: computer code (<code>), strikethrough (<s>), subscript (<sub>), superscript (<sup>) and underline (<u>).

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf5 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on [mediazilla:buglist.cgi?bug_status=RESOLVED&bug_status=VERIFIED&bug_status=CLOSED&product=VisualEditor&query_format=advanced&target_milestone=VE-deploy-2013-11-21&order=component&list_id=252243 Bugzilla's list].

2013-11-monthly[edit | edit source]

Presentation slides from the VisualEditor team's quarterly review meeting on 7 November.

In November, the VisualEditor team continued to improve the stability and performance of the system, and add new features. The deployed version of the code was updated three times (1.23-wmf3, 1.23-wmf4 and 1.23-wmf5). Most of the team's focus was on fixing bugs, and on some major infrastructure changes, splitting out the OOJS and OOJS-UI libraries from VisualEditor to make them available to other teams. Much of the team travelled to the Open Source Language Summit in Pune, India to learn more about how to improve VisualEditor for a variety of languages, scripts, users and systems. Two new members of the QA team joined in to help improve VisualEditor – Jeff Hall and Rummana Yasmeen, and thanks to them, the automated browser tests have expanded in breadth and depth of coverage. Work continued on major new features like full rich copy-and-paste from external sources, a dialog for quickly adding citation templated references, and a tool to insert characters not available on users' keyboards. The editor was made available by default on just over 100 additional Wikipedias as part of the continuing roll-out. VisualEditor was also enabled for opt-in testing on Swedish Wiktionary and Wikimedia Sweden's wiki, the first time it has been available on a non-Wikipedia production wiki.

2013-12-05 (MW 1.23wmf6)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf6 branch deployment on Thursday 5 December. In the two weeks since 1.23wmf5, the team worked on some new features, performance and usability improvements, minor bug fixes and code infrastructure.

You can now paste rich content copied from external sources (not just as plain text), including other VisualEditor surfaces (bugs 41193, 48170, 50128, and 53828). You can paste the clipboard as plain (unformatted) text by using a new keyboard shortcut,  Ctrl+ Shift+V or  Cmd+ Shift+V (bug 53781). It is now possible to edit auto-numbered external links (i.e. one that appears like "[3]"); you can change the target using the link inspector as with other links. If you change it to an internal link, it will replace the auto-numbered anchor with the name of the target (bug 53505). You can now launch into VisualEditor by appending ?veaction=edit to the view page URL irrespective of user preferences – this will let users test VisualEditor with a variety of browsers without needing to log in each time (bug 55900).

We now optimistically submit the page Parsoid for serialisation into wikitext as soon as the user launches the save dialog, before they've clicked "save page", which should make saving the page appear faster for many use cases (bug 56011). If you have loaded the wikitext diff of a page ("Review your changes") and then try to save it without making changes, VisualEditor will keep a copy of the wikitext from the first time, so saving will be much faster (bug 55979).

We significantly changed how VisualEditor stores the contents of the page internally (from UTF-8 back to UTF-16), which fixes a large number of issues related to inserting, deleting, cursoring around and selecting over non-Latin scripts like Devanagari, Arabic or Thai (bugs 51472, 51596, 51846, 53757). We now annotate the body tag of the HTML document with a class ("ve-activated") so gadget authors can ensure they don't fire in VisualEditor mode (bug 57555).

A bug which meant that switching to wikitext when logged out always gave an edit conflict warning has been fixed (bug 56835). Auto-numbered external links now also auto-number when they appear in generated content like reference lists (bug 57420). Cursoring over a generated content node (a media file, template, reference or similar) now does not get you stuck in an infinite cursoring loop in Firefox (bug 57600). Clicking in the blank space above the link inspector now closes the inspector, so you won't get a pawn ("♙") appearing if you try to insert content there (bug 56976). A bug that effected the rendering of <source> blocks in the MWExtensionNode, causing it to appear empty after the user edits it is now fixed (bug 54577). A regression that meant that the "watch this" checkbox in the save dialog was checked regardless of the user preference was reversed (bug 56206).

The browser tests now test the media insertion dialog, and were updated a number of times to keep up with changes to VisualEditor. OOjs is now available in MediaWiki core for other users, and OOjs UI was extended, with additional widgets including checkboxes and generic labels. The automated testing system has been greatly expanded to cover script and input-method-editor issues, with an IME simulator able to check every change in the code for breaking any of dozens of known IME tools; further information about new IMEs can be added as it is gathered, and a tool to help collect this information is now available.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf6 changelog, and all Bugzilla bugs closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-12-12 (MW 1.23wmf7)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf7 branch deployment on Thursday 12 December. In the week since 1.23wmf6, the team worked on some new features, performance and usability improvements, minor bug fixes and code infrastructure.

The most obvious change is that the toolbar has been simplified, moving all text styles (bold, italics, underline, subscript, etc.) into a single menu represented by a bold, italic and underlined "A"). This means that the not-very-helpful "More" menu has now become a menu to insert items (be they references, templates, media items or otherwise), so it has been re-labelled "Insert". This is an initial change seeking feedback as we improve the usefulness of the toolbar to wiki editors, rather than just providing a generic toolbar. Text styling is used relatively infrequently in wiki pages compared to the more important functions like links and references, so we want to make it take up less room so that there can be greater focus on the more common tasks.

A very basic new character insertion tool is now available, at the bottom of the "Insert" menu, represented with a capital Omega ("Ω") as seems to be common in other uses (bug 50296). It is an early version offered to get feedback on how the design could be improved and whether it is going in the right direction. Right now, the list closes immediately after you have inserted a character, and only a limited number of characters are shown (these can be altered by translators to provide more useful characters for each language).

As part of the work to create a simple insertion dialog for citation references, the transclusion dialog has been simplified. Now, the different transclusions and their parameters each show as part of a single, scrollable and tab-able pane (rather than on different panels that need to be clicked into), which takes up less time to edit and is more obviously of one piece. The "remove parameter" (or "remove template") link has been moved to be alongside the name of the parameter (or transclusion), and shows as the delete (rubbish bin) icon instead of as text. The tools at the bottom of the list of transclusions and their parameters that lets you add another transclusion or wikitext block now shows all the time, rather than when you hover over the "+".

The next steps with transclusions will be to simplify this further for the majority of use cases where only one transclusion is being inserted or edited, moving the ability to re-order the transclusions and insert new ones into an "advanced" dialog, to put the remove buttons in the navigation bar on the left rather than in-line (so you don't tab to them when filling out the form), and to move the "add parameter" function out of the flow of the editing and into its own panel. For the citation dialog specifically, a preview of the template will be available before it is inserted, and a button in the toolbar will let you insert a template-formatted reference directly (with one of a number of citation templates, defined by local admins).

Some other, more minor changes include adding the language name as well as language code to the (currently) read-only view of language links (bug 54086). The editor to add and alter equations and other mathematical formulae is now labelled "formula" rather than the cryptic "LaTeX" (bug 53251). When inserting some new "generated" content (like a reference, template, media item, etc.) the cursor will now be placed after the item, rather than the item being selected (bug 54957).

A number of bugs with the new functionality to allow pasting rich content copied from external sources were fixed, and deployed early to reduce the disruption they might cause. A bug in Firefox meant that pasting rich content over a certain length would result in spurious new lines being inserted (bug 58283). Trying to copy with no selection made caused a debugging cloud icon ("☁") to get inserted (bug 58138), and thereafter copying and pasting didn't work at all (bug 58346). Copying a link from within a VisualEditor instance into another caused it to be rendered as a broken link with [[ and ]] shown and an external URL in the middle (bug 58136). Pasting a table with a caption caused an error as the code to insert new content wasn't expecting text directly inside the table, only table rows and cells (bug 58318). Copying a template with a table inside it could sometimes move the table outside of the template call, duplicating it (bug 58241). Copying a reference list into a document with no references for it to list no longer throws an error (bug 58242).

We fixed a bug that meant that backspacing from a paragraph before a media item with a caption would move the text into the caption, rather than delete the image (bug 57927). A bad regression from a month ago that mean that inserting an item caused the editor to scroll to the top of the page was fixed and released early (bug 58090). Another regression, which mean that Firefox scrolled the page to the bottom on loading VisualEditor but left the cursor at the top was also fixed and released early (bug 58089).

The internationalisation system for VisualEditor has been switched over to the new JSON-based on (see the RfC for more details). The browser tests were updated to address the new changes (such as the moved transclusion removal buttons, and changes in Parsoid's defaults), and some speed and efficiency improvements were added.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf7 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-12-19 (MW 1.23wmf8)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf8 branch deployment on Thursday 19 December. In the week since 1.23wmf7, the team worked on some minor bug fixes and improvements to code infrastructure.

Images are represented by Parsoid as <figure>s rather than MediaWiki's assortment of <div>s. Previously, these were converted by VisualEditor as a hack to make them look alike, but now we have implemented some CSS styling instead that should leave them looking the same, with less slow-down (bug 53436). This is a step towards the long-term goal of replacing the use of the HTML output from the MediaWiki PHP parser with the HTML+RDFa created by Parsoid. This would improve the usefulness of the site for mobile and API users, as well as making VisualEditor faster to load.

The Mobile team have enabled a limited version of VisualEditor as part of the "alpha" mobile channel (see for example a English Wikipedia article in alpha mobile mode); this was briefly broken due to a mis-configured dependency on ULS (bug 58551).The new rich pasting functionality had two bugs addressed – one where extra line-breaks were added in Chrome when pasting into an empty line (bug 58347), and another where an error was thrown for certain complex templates (bug 58421).

The generic MWExtensionInspector framework that new tools will extend now set the directionality of new items it create from the context, not the user's language, which means future extension editors will work in RTL and LTR environments (bug 57421).

A great deal of clean-up was done on the code repositories, ahead of splitting VisualEditor's core code away from the MediaWiki extension that uses it to edit a wiki. The intent is to make it easier for third parties who want to use VisualEditor for non-MediaWiki platforms (like WordPress or Etherpad) and encourage a focus on speed, efficiency and compatibility.

The automated browser tests were expanded to add a test for switching between edit modes and another for making multiple edits in the same session, adaptations to use the altered transclusion dialog workflow, text styling and insert menus, with timeouts added and tracking versions for Firefox and Selenium updated.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf8 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2013-12-monthly[edit | edit source]

In December, the VisualEditor team worked to continue the improvements to the stability and performance of the system, and to add new features. The deployed version of the code was updated three times (1.23-wmf6, 1.23-wmf7 and 1.23-wmf8). Most of the team's focus was on major new features and fixing bugs. There is now basic support for rich copy-and-paste from external sources into VisualEditor, and a basic tool to insert characters not available on users' keyboards. Work also continued on a dialog for quickly adding citation templated references, and on some major infrastructure changes, splitting out the core of VisualEditor from the MediaWiki-specific items like the transclusion editor.

2014-01-02 (MW 1.23wmf9)[edit | edit source]

There were no significant changes to the VisualEditor codebase that were merged for the MediaWiki 1.23wmf9 branch deployment on Thursday 3 January.

2014-01-09 (MW 1.23wmf10)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf10 branch deployment on Thursday 10 January. In the week since 1.23wmf9, the team worked on some minor feature improvements and bug fixes.

You can now edit some of the page settings in the "options" dialog – __NOTOC__ and __FORCETOC__ as selection (forced on, forced off, or default setting; bugs 56866 and 56867) and __NOEDITSECTION__ as a checkbox (bug 57166). Additional settings (like redirects and page displayed title editing) will be coming shortly.

VisualEditor now does not hard-code the presence of Commons as a potential source of images, but checks the relatively-new fileRepo API call, so third party wikis not using InstantCommons won't get erroneous results (bug 50673). We worked around a bug in CSSJanus that was wrongly flipping images used in some templates in RTL environments, affecting a highly-used hewiki template in particular (bug 50910). VisualEditor switched fully to the new format for using JSON for internationalised messages. VisualEditor now uses the new license-name value for $wgExtensionCredits for wikis with MediaWiki 1.23wmf9 and above (which falls back without error for older versions of MediaWiki).

We fixed a major issue due to an unannounced change in MediaWiki core, which caused VisualEditor to crash on trying to save (bug 59867). We adjusted the call to the API to fetch the language links in the settings dialog to be less server-intensive, and to recover from errors correctly, and corrected API calls in general to not send the edit token unnecessarily. We fixed an issue that meant that transclusions which inserted a text node followed by something else would render wrongly when inserted (but save correctly).

The automated browser tests were adjusted to speed them up and bind more correctly to list items in lists, and updated to a newer version of their ruby dependencies.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf10 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-01-16 (MW 1.23wmf11)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf11 branch deployment on Thursday 16 January. In the week since 1.23wmf10, the team worked on some minor features, and fixing several bugs.

The toolbar's text styling drop-down now has a down-indicator like the Insert menu and the formatting menu. We tweaked the order of the toolbar to put the reference and media insert options at the very top of the menu, and move the character inserter down out of the way. Changing the categories of a page now triggers a refresh of the categories box at the bottom of the page once you've saved (bug 48560). There is now a (very basic) editor for <gallery>s, though no scope for inserting a new one or changing its display type yet. VisualEditor now has a keyboard shortcuts help page in the help menu, and available by its own keyboard shortcut  Ctrl+/ or  Cmd+/ (bug 52844). When the page is loaded for editing, we no longer select the first node in the document if there's any text in it, but instead put the cursor just up-page of the first character (bug 58248).

We now only provide image resize handles on the "non-anchored" sides (so the bottom-right for left-aligned images and inline ones on LTR wikis, the bottom-left for right-aligned images and inline ones on RTL wikis, and both bottom corners for centred images), to avoid confusing behaviour where the resize handle let you drag the image into the wrong direction. In the transclusion dialog, parameters that are set using TemplateData to be 'required' now have a '*' symbol next to them to indicate this, but the requirement is not yet enforced (bug 53611). Template parameters are shown in the transclusion dialog using the recommended order specified in TemplateData; if no order is set, we use the order in which the parameters are declared in the template's <templatedata> block, or fall back to alphabetical order if that is missing (bug 51930). We have changed the encoding of the POST of the page HTML when saving which should reduce the amount of data sent over the network by ~40%, which will improve performance and reducing load when saving (bug 59660).

We fixed a major bug that meant inserting any template or other transclusion failed, and back-ported it to production so it should not occur anywhere (bug 59002). VisualEditor now removes, rather than just hides, the #contentSub links below the page title on old versions of pages or on sub-pages, so you can't accidentally click on the hidden-but-still-there text (bugs 52243 and 54325). We fixed a bug that meant that copying a link from one VisualEditor editor to another would result in some broken wikitext where you had an external URL given but in an internal link wikitext format (bug 58136). VisualEditor no longer throws an exception when the cursor is attempted to be put into a document with no content blocks, e.g. a document with 5 block images and no text (bug 59972).

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf11 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-01-30 (MW 1.23wmf12)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf12 branch deployment on Thursday 30 January. In the two weeks since 1.23wmf11, the team worked on some minor features and fixed several bugs.

You can now manually set the size of a media item shown as a thumbnail, rather than just with dragged out to that size, and set it to full size with a button. We are readying a tool that lets users set in-line language spans (of the form <span lang='xx' dir='yyy'>), and will offer it soon as a Beta Feature for users to give feedback (bug 47759).

We fixed a number of copy-and-paste bugs, including complete failure to copy references inside a single VE editor or between them (bug 60117), copying as just useless HTML in Firefox (bugs 59154 and 59171) or as a redirect (bug 59173), links between VE editors being broken (bug 58136), and copying image and templates not working from a Chrome VE instance into a Firefox one (bugs 59145 and 59170).

Two major issues with the new (very basic) editor for media galleries were fixed, which means you can now save the page after editing one (bug 60502) and insert one (bug 60307). Additionally, some "placeholder" text is provided to demonstrate how the existing gallery syntax works.

We found and correct an issue where creating a link at the end of a page would break the link inspector's appearance, making it unusable (bug 59776). Abandoning a page when you're mid-loading of VisualEditor no longer throws a Javascript error (bug 51546). We stopped the page title being mis-placed over the toolbar in the non-HD Vector use (bug 51000).

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf12 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-01-monthly[edit | edit source]

In January, the VisualEditor team continued their work on improving the stability and performance of the system, and added some new features. Most of the team's focus was on major new features and fixing bugs. You can now edit some page settings like whether to display a table of contents or whether to show section edit labels, set the size of a media file manually, see a keyboard shortcuts help screen, and create and edit media galleries using a very basic stand-in editor whilst the final form is being designed. Work also continued on a dialog for quickly adding "citation" references based on templates, more media and page settings, setting content language and right-to-left flags, and equation editing. The deployed version of the code was updated four times (1.23-wmf9, 1.23-wmf10, 1.23-wmf11 and 1.23-wmf12).

2014-02-06 (MW 1.23wmf13)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf13 branch deployment on Thursday 6 February. In the week since 1.23wmf12, the team worked on some minor features and fixed several bugs.

You can now manually set the position and alt text of a media item shown as a thumbnail, and soon of all media items including inline ones too (bug 51293). We have also cleaned up the toolbars for references to prevent adding lists inside references, and galleries from both references and media item captions.

The displayed value of references in the list for re-using them now displayed again (bug 57209), and won't display the name of re-used references if it's just automatically named (bug 57875). A bug that meant that sometimes templates followed by lists would insert broken HTML instead of wikitext has been fixed (bug 60897). Pasting content into a part of the page that has restricted formatting, like headings in references or lists in image captions, now cleans them up (bug 59603). Stopping editing an empty formula, gallery or hieroglyphics block now will just not insert the block, rather than inserting a blank one (bug 60779).

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf13 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-02-13 (MW 1.23wmf14)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf14 branch deployment on Thursday 13 February. In the week since 1.23wmf13, the team worked on some minor features and fixed several bugs.

The link inspector now separates out redirects and disambiguation pages from "real" matching results, to help editors select the right link (bug 50240). The alert warning the user that wikitext has been detected on the page now automatically hides when it doesn't detect wikitext in the current paragraph, instead of staying present even once the wikitext has been removed (bug 51701). You can now convert block images between some different types (like thumbnail, framed and frameless), though inline images are not yet editable in this way (bug 38129). The cryptic counter for the number of bytes remaining next to the edit summary in the save dialog now has a tool-tip to make it slightly less mysterious (bug 50902). The drop-down menus in the toolbar for formatting a paragraph (heading, pre-formatted, normal) and styling a selection (bold, italics, underline) now have tool-tips to explain their purpose (bug 59719). In the transclusion dialog, when adding a new template which has at least one required parameter, it will be automatically-selected to making adding in details slightly easier.

A bug that meant that the "pipe trick" and a couple of other minor wikitext features appeared to not work in templates or gallery captions but which worked as expected on save, has been fixed (bug 60998). If you are adding a new block of content via an inspector, such as in a formula or gallery, and press the save button, VisualEditor no longer tries to save the version of the page before your addition was made (bug 60837). Making formatting changes like turning something into a list now doesn't have any action when applied to content blocks like images which can have sub-contents like a caption, which was confusing (bug 60969). VisualEditor now shouldn't throw up a Javascript error when navigating away from the page during load (such as clicking "edit", then "read" before it has loaded).

We fixed a bug in Flagged Revisions which meant that it inserted its tabs in between VisualEditor's edit tab and the wikitext editor tab (bug 52848). We fixed a bug in the position of the VisualEditor toolbar in Vector skins caused by a change in that skin, and made it available to affected wikis (bug 61224). MediaWiki can now recognise Amazon Silk's built-in browser, which means that it can be added to the VisualEditor blacklist as requested some time ago due to Silk being incompatible (bug 50777).

A bug that meant that the media dialog's size controls would show the previous value rather than the new value until the page was saved has been fixed and made immediately available to affected wikis (bug 61052). The "make full size" button in the media dialog wasn't working when the size was default; this has been corrected (bug 61270). We fixed a regression that meant that adding a section specifier to an existing link (so changing a link target from "Foo" to "Foo#Details") didn't update the link (bug 61221). A number of bugs and complications blocking the integration of VisualEditor with Mobile were fixed (including bug 60912).

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf14 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-02-20 (MW 1.23wmf15)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf15 branch deployment on Thursday 20 February. In the week since 1.23wmf14, the team worked on a number of minor features and fixed several bugs.

You can now set a page to be a redirect in the "page settings" dialog, accessible via the page menu next to the "Cancel" button in the toolbar, and options for page indexing and new section edit links in a new "advanced settings" pane (bugs 47328, 57167, 57168 and 57173). This also means that VisualEditor is no longer disabled on redirect pages, as you can now do something useful there (bug 50878). There is now a preview of the (currently wikitext) edit summary in the "Review your changes" pane (bug 42139).

You can now launch the save dialog with a keyboard shortcut – Ctrl-Alt-s or ⌘-Opt-s, or something similar depending on your system (bug 50897), which should be visible in the keyboard shortcuts menu, now scrollable (bug 60180) and able to take MediaWiki- rather than VisualEditor-specific shortcuts. The width of the "alt text" box in the media dialog was expanded per request (bug 61329). The reference and reference list dialogs now show "General references" as placeholder text in the group box when it's empty, to make its purpose slightly less confusing (bugs 55725 and 59180). The generic extension inspector system now lets users edit existing attributes, though not yet add new ones.

We restored the broken drop-down indicator on categories in the page settings dialog which broke some time ago (bug 61571). A bug in rich pasting that could cause a crash if you copied some unusual forms of HTML has been fixed (bug 61332). We fixed a bug that meant some rare instances of styled text couldn't have the style changed because of the structure of the wikitext (bug 52517). A bug that meant centred images were difficult to un-select was fixed (bug 61001). We also fixed a bug that meant failed searches would cause the media search box to keep spinning (bug 61392).

We also made some back-end changes to make things easier for the Mobile team to style and integrate VisualEditor, including splitting out skin-specific styles from VisualEditor (bug 60542), and letting OOjs UI be theme-able so that teams with specific design requirements can implement them.

You can monitor the automated browser tests' results (triggered every twelve hours) live on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf15 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-02-27 (MW 1.23wmf16)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf16 branch deployment on Thursday 27 February. In the week since 1.23wmf15, the team worked on a number of minor feature improvements and fixed several bugs.

New media items now insert at default size, and not with a custom size (bug 50379). Default-sized media items now show at the wiki's set default size, and not just an arbitrary default size (bug 47804). The media item dialog now has a "make default size" button alongside the custom-size functionality in the "advanced" pane of the dialog (bug 61323). The media editing dialog's tool to set position (floated left/centre/right, or not floated) has been improved to use an explanatory checkbox for the unusual "not floated" case (bug 61155). In the transclusion dialog, parameter's entry boxes now expand to fit their contents, so that lengthy contents of parameters aren't obscured from view (bug 61289), and the size of parameter titles in their sections is now the same as for the name of templates and other transclusions.

Text which is subscripted will have that styling removed when you make it superscripted, and vice versa, to avoid encouraging users to make a confusing mess of styling (bug 53330) – existing content styled as both super- and sub-scripted will be left alone unless an editor changes it. The tool to set redirects in the options dialog was tweaked to stop people editing the input field unless they have enabled the checkbox (bug 61864), and not let the user set a "static redirect" flag if there's no redirect on the page (bug 61865).

If the edit summary is empty, we no longer uselessly preview it in the Review Changes panel (bug 61716). The selection (or cursor if there is no active selection) will now remain in place if you change the format of the paragraph you are editing to a heading or pre-formatted (bug 57552). If you start editing a page with VisualEditor, and then switch to source mode, your edit will be tagged with "visualeditor-switched" (bug 56465). Categories which have __HIDDENCAT__ set on them, and so won't display in the page's category footer on save, now explain what that means in their drop-downs in the page options dialog (bug 50763).

The resize widget, which used to appear on all four corners of media items, has been changed from an inexplicable black dot which previously made more sense into a diagonal double-headed arrow. The size of thumbnails is now limited in some circumstances where appropriate, with other rules about sizing to come soon. Language-custom text styling icons were added for Arabic (bold: ع and italic: م), Finnish (bold: L, italic: K and strikethrough: Y ), and Kölsch (bold: F and italic: S). If your language would benefit from these, please request them on Bugzilla (or the feedback page).

There was a brief bug in the deployment of the latest version of code, including VisualEditor, to most wikis last week which meant that for VisualEditor would not load for some users (bug 61759). We fixed a bug that meant un-listing a bulleted list item containing only a floated item (like an image) crashed the editor (bug 58060). A bug in the mobile code that created huge shields that covered the editing surface in mobile mode, making changes impossible, was fixed (bug 60841).

The browser tests were cleaned up, and can now be run in "headless" Firefox mode by anyone, as well as on the testing service the Foundation uses. The old, currently-unused SyntaxHighlight code editor plug-in has been moved to that extension's code repository. The MediaWiki extension for VisualEditor was split up into modules so that the bits that Mobile doesn't need to load yet can be avoided (bug 61075).

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf16 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-02-monthly[edit | edit source]

In February, the VisualEditor team continued their work on improving the stability and performance of the system, and added some new features and simplifications. Media item editing is now much richer, allowing the setting of position, alt text, size (or setting as default size) and type for most kinds of media item. When adding links, redirects and disambiguation pages are now highlighted to help editors select the right link, and changing the format or style of some text was tweaked to make editing clearer and more obvious. Adding and editing template usages is now a little smoother, auto-focussing on parameters and making them clearer to use. Page settings have expanded to set redirects, page indexing and new section edit link options. The extensive work to make insertion of "citation" references based on templates quick, obvious and simple neared completion. The deployed version of the code was updated four times in the regular releases (1.23-wmf13, 1.23-wmf14, 1.23-wmf15 and 1.23-wmf16).

2014-03-06 (MW 1.23wmf17)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf17 branch deployment on Thursday 6 March. In the week since 1.23wmf16, the team made a big simplification to template editing, as well as a number of minor feature improvements and fixes for several bugs.

Editing transclusions and (particularly) editing templates has been made much simpler, with a simple, small version of the transclusion dialog, now called the template dialog, that removes most of the controls that are only rarely used. The layout has been simplified to reduce whitespace, make the form much more compact for normal uses, and make it easier and simpler to see what each parameter does. You can switch back and forth between the simple and advanced mode by pressing a button labelled "Show options" (or "Hide options") if you need one of the tools, such as for multi-part templates (bugs 51135, 51672, 52576, 52753, 55434, 61402, 61529, and 62142). The template dialog's parameters now expand on display, rather than needing to be clicked on the first time, and are limited to 10 rows (bug 62084).

Following on from last week's work on default media item sizes, the media editing dialog had a number of improvements made to it to simplify the options and make them slightly closer to what MediaWiki encourages users to do. Most obviously, the position (left/right/centre) buttons now have little icons to demonstrate how the content will flow around them; the item type setting added "basic" (for images with none of "thumb", "frame" or "frameless" specified) and moved "border" to be an option that can only be used for frameless and basic items. The "set to full size" option has been moved to be one of the three sizing options, alongside default and custom size; default is now only available for thumb and frame images, as frameless and basic images don't use thumbnail size (bugs 61059, 61155, 61973, and 62024).

"Slugs", the fake blank lines inserted by VisualEditor next to items like images or templates to give you somewhere to put the cursor, now show as slightly smaller than a real blank line, and animate on hover and cursor entry, to highlight to users that they are different from actual blank lines (bug 47790). The initial styling was selected quickly to get this feature available to users for feedback, and is likely to change; suggestions are welcome, especially on how to communicate their intent.

We added support to VisualEditor for having multiple shortcuts for each command (bug 53356), which means that we have now been able to add  Ctrl+Y /  Cmd+Y as a second control for undo (bug 52140),  Ctrl+M /  Cmd+M for clear formatting, as used in OpenOffice (bug 56453), and  Ctrl+ Shift+/ /  Cmd+ Shift+/ for the shortcut dialog itself. The page menu button (VisualEditor - Icon - Menu.svg) now has a tooltip explaining what it is (bug 61892), and the "Insert" menu now has the same order in the toolbars on the media dialog's caption editor and reference dialog's content editor (bug 62286). Categories which are hidden show in their own section in the dialog when searching for them to add. An initial set of improvements to the special character inserter were done based on feedback; the insertion buttons now have much larger characters, are less "heavy" controls, and are the same width so they line up with each other. The keyboard shortcuts dialog now supports platform-specific messages, so Mac users will see the appropriate control codes.

A regression that meant that the save dialog stopped expanding when you switched to the "review your changes" panel has been fixed (bug 60494). We fixed a breakage from last week's image changes that meant that thumbnails with no position would display as only a couple of pixels wide, and released it immediately to existing wikis (bug 62013).

A very major change to how the "enter" key is handled in the core of VisualEditor was merged which fixed a few minor issues throwing errors (bug 59911), but shouldn't have any other effect. We fixed a bug that threw an error when you opened a page which had a floated item (like an infobox or a media item) in a bulleted list item (bug 62022). There was a bug that meant that on opening the page settings dialog the focus was still on the main document, so typing still affected that one (bug 62027). We fixed an issue that meant that objects with "phantom" blue boxes showing that they were selected, once made invisible, didn't have their phantoms disappear (bug 61390). A bug that meant undoing creating an empty heading caused an error was fixed (bug 62088). The formatting menu to set heading, pre-formatted or paragraph no longer responds to right clicks in some browsers (bug 61856). Text inputs now show up as grey when disabled, to make them look less similar to enabled ones.

The back-end of VisualEditor and its UI framework, OOjs UI, were both modified significantly to support re-use by other teams, notably including the Mobile and Multimedia teams at WMF.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf17 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-03-13 (MW 1.23wmf18)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf18 branch deployment on Thursday 13 March. In the week since 1.23wmf17, the team made some minor feature improvements and fixes for several bugs.

The reference dialog has been shrunk to feel less overwhelming, down to the "medium" dialog size. The reference list dialog has also been shrunk, down to a new "small" dialog size, as there is only one option to display to users. The template, transclusion and reference list dialogs now say "Insert template" or similar rather than "Apply changes" when inserting a new one (bug 50998). Searching when adding parameters in the template and transclusion dialogs is now case insensitive, like wikitext (bug 51673). Required parameters now have an indicator next to them in the template and transclusion dialogs when being edited, and not just in the screen when adding them. If a template has not yet had any TemplateData specified, or does but is lacking a description, the template and transclusion dialogs now provide a link to the template's page to avoid leaving users stranded.

We made some minor fixes to the media editing process, including showing and hiding the zoom icon when changing item types to or from thumbnail (bug 62139), showing the right numbers in the size boxes for thumbnailed media items smaller than the default size (bug 62293), and avoiding size figures being shown unrounded (bug 62279). We tweaked the visual treatment for "slugs", the fake blank lines inserted by VisualEditor next to items like images or templates to give you somewhere to put the cursor, and ensured that they shrink back when you click onto a template, image or other block item (bug 62285). There is now a slightly nicer error message given when VisualEditor finds that it is unable to load due to an error on the back end (bug 50475).

A bug related to editing after deleting an image and then typing without changing the cursor position was fixed (bug 62235). When you exit from VisualEditor after visiting it directly (i.e. going to a VisualEditor link directly rather than clicking "Edit"), we now remove the ?veaction=edit from the address bar (bug 57901). We fixed a minor bug that threw a Javascript error just as you switched from VisualEditor into wikitext editing mode (bug 62544).

VisualEditor now defaults "out of the box" to being active in the User: namespace as well as content namespaces, which is how it is configured on Wikimedia wikis already (bug 57104). We generalised the performance tracking framework for VisualEditor so that it can be used on mobile and desktop alike. The OOjs framework that VisualEditor relies on for class operations had a new feature added for referencing a class's parent, presaging the release of a new minor version, 1.0.8; this is now available in MediaWiki and VisualEditor. The OOjs UI framework that VisualEditor relies on for user interface widgets was improved to add indicator and icon widget classes, had its file naming simplified, and dialogs' pre-set sizes were made a little taller. By community request, VisualEditor is now available to all logged-in and logged-out users on the French Wikiversity (bug 62045), bringing the number of public Wikimedia wikis with VisualEditor "on by default" to 165.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf18 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-03-20 (MW 1.23wmf19)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf19 branch deployment on Thursday 20 March. In the week since 1.23wmf18, the team made some feature improvements and fixed several bugs.

You can double click to open the dialog of a node like an image or template, or press enter when it is selected, to make changes much more quickly (bugs 50996 and 54827). Pages that don't exist now show as red links in the editing surface as you edit (bug 37901). Dialogs are now all a little taller in their maximum height.

VisualEditor now won't be offered on translated pages (like Help:VisualEditor/User guide/de), and on translatable pages (like Help:VisualEditor/User guide) users will be warned that the page is delicate and may break (bug 50284). If you are editing a protected page, you will now get the full warning edit notice, including the most recent log entry (bug 51215). The input box for setting DEFAULTSORT and the target of a redirect in the page settings dialog is now a little wider (bug 51012).

A bug that meant that sometimes text would get "double-bolded", and empty links might get created with odd wikitext has been fixed (bugs 52189 and 62819). An issue that meant that pawn characters might be inserted in an empty table row has been corrected (bug 53214), switching from one "slug" empty line to another now animates correctly (bug 62783), and tabbing inside an unused empty line no longer breaks (bug 62657).

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf19 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-03-27 (MW 1.23wmf20)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf20 branch deployment on Thursday 27 March. In the week since 1.23wmf19, the team made some feature improvements and fixed several bugs.

The work to build the citation dialog is now in testing; we expect to make it available soon, with a few more improvements (bugs 50110, 50768 and 63037). An advance in browsers' support has meant that we can switch to using DOMParser which in testing doubles the speed of certain operations; browsers that don't support the technology will fall back to the existing, slower method (bug 57586). Blocked users now get a notification that they are blocked from editing on load, rather than save (bug 52004). This message now shows the latest entry from the user's or IP's block log (bug 51454).

The search term for using an existing reference and inserting a new image is now cleared after each use (bug 61959). A bug that meant that new links on sub-pages (e.g. on a user sandbox) pointed to the wrong location until the page was saved has been fixed (bug 58314). A bug that meant some types of images would cause the media dialog to break the editor when opened was fixed and released early to all wikis (bug 62024). The edit notices pop-up now automatically scrolls when it's longer than the window. The internal VisualEditor API system now informs users that it only works in JSON, rather than breaking when they try to use it in a different format (bug 61017).

The browser tests were adjusted to improve the reliability of testing multiple edits, and take advantage of a new parameter to suppress the beta dialog on load. The OOjs UI's library styling was split into core styling with individual themes for Apex and a new one for Agora, as part of the work to make VisualEditor's UX integrate with existing mobile tools.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf20 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

 2014-03-monthly[edit | edit source]

Presentation slides from the VisualEditor team's quarterly review meeting on 26 March.

In March, the VisualEditor team continued their work on improving the stability and performance of the system, and added some new features and simplifications, helping users edit and create pages more swiftly and easily. Editing templates is now much simpler, moving most of the advanced controls that users don't often need into a special version of that dialog. The media dialog was improved and stream-lined a little, adding some hinting to the controls to explain how they work a bit more. The cursor entry points inserted by VisualEditor next to items like images or templates to give users somewhere to put the cursor now animate on hover and cursor entry to show that they're special. The overall design of dialogs and controls was improved a little to make it flow better, like double-clicking a block to open its dialog. A new system for quickly and simply inserting and editing "citations" (references based on templates) neared completion and will be deployed in the coming month. The deployed version of the code was updated four times in the regular releases (1.23-wmf17, 1.23-wmf18, 1.23-wmf19 and 1.23-wmf20).

2014-04-03 (MW 1.23wmf21)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf21 branch deployment on Thursday 3 April. In the week since 1.23wmf20, the team planned out how to tackle some future changes and fixed several bugs.

The team fixed two bugs created in the previous week's work, and ensured that the fixes were released to production before they affected content wikis. First, a bug with extending links that meant adding a space after a link would throw an error was fixed (bug 63333). Secondly, the position of the parameter icons in the transclusion dialog were mis-placed and over-lapped the text (bug 63157).

Trying to create a link over an image with a caption no longer sets the caption's text to have that link (bug 60804). Deleting everything on a page which contains a reference with a link in it no longer leaves the link around to trigger a mistaken link inspector (bug 63208). A bug that meant that using the forthcoming citation system when something else was selected would fail has been fixed (bug 63452).

The "Return to save form" button in the "Review your changes" (diff) pane of the save dialog is no longer green and on the left, which is reserved for "constructive" actions like actually saving the page. The media search interface now fetches 20 rather than 15 images each time. VisualEditor's debugging bar is now available inside the MediaWiki instance to help fix issues found in production.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf20 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-04-10 (MW 1.23wmf22)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.23wmf22 branch deployment on Thursday 10 April. In the week since 1.23wmf21, the team planned out how to tackle some future changes and fixed several bugs.

In the template dialog, adding a parameter now only shows three options at first, rather than all available ones. The second edit tab – either the wikitext editor's "Edit source", or VisualEditor's "Edit" or "Edit beta" – will now fold into the drop-down menu if there's not enough space on the user's screen (bug 50225). The size changing controls in the media editing dialog have been simplified to have "make full size" be a secondary button and the size values be shown as "width x height px" on a single line.

A number of urgent changes were made to the OOjs UI framework, with related changes in VisualEditor, that caused and later fixed some breakages to the testing site; these were released early (bugs 63484, 63544, 63547, 63554). A change from last week that meant that tools needed to be updated wasn't applied to the switching to source editing and formula editing tools; these were fixed and released early to avoid disruption (bugs 63505, 63541).

Changing the format of a list item which has a listed nest inside it no longer breaks (bug 63209). Double-clicking on a hieroglyphics node now opens that inspector (bug 63651). A bug that meant that applying a link to a selection of text which already had a link in it failed was fixed (bug 63386). We also fixed a bug that meant that switching to wikitext always triggered an edit conflict warning for logged-out editors (bug 56835).

Content should now not 'flash' when the window is resized in some cases. Some potential issues related to the focus changing when closing and opening dialogs and inspectors were cleaned up. Text directionality is now stored in the data model rather than the editing surface, which should fix some future issues with dialogs opening in RTL wikis with LTR content blocks. The preference to disable VisualEditor for the wikis which are in opt-out state has been moved from the "beta" section of MediaWiki's editing preferences to the "editing" one, as part of the fallout from that section being removed (bug 28555). OOjs UI was tweaked to display labels next to fields now grey out in sync with the field they describe.

The browser tests were updated to point to a simpler, less fragile locator for the list buttons, and fixing the edit mode switching test to actually fail when it breaks. The continuous integration system has a new tool, "banana-checker", to ensure that every new message has documentation before it is merged.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.23/wmf21 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-04-17 (MW 1.24wmf1)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf1 branch deployment on Thursday 17 April, the first alpha build of MediaWiki 1.24. In the week since 1.23wmf22, the team made some major infrastructure changes and fixed several bugs.

Adding a category which redirects to another category now prompts you if you want to pick the redirect target instead (bug 52414). The new "View on Commons" tabs for pages of files hosted on Commons rather than locally now adjust for VisualEditor correctly too (bug 63666). VisualEditor now integrates better with the Education Program's pages, working around a bug in their display (bug 53477). The media editing dialog now lets you set border status on frameless and basic media items, not framed and basic ones. The forthcoming citation dialog was simplified further, removing the "more options" button, preventing the citation menu from becoming too long, and correcting an off-by-one error in the parameter search widget that said there were four more parameters to show when there were only three.

A change last month that caused a bug where the back button stopped taking you out of VisualEditor was fixed (bug 63739). A typo that meant that clicking the "Advanced settings" option from the Page Options menu didn't take you to the right pane was corrected (bug 63984). Adding a references list when selecting another item like an image now works as expected (bug 61885).

An issue with tabbing between template parameters in Firefox needing to be done twice to select the right item was fixed (bug 62841). Another issue with Firefox that led to icons in dialogs like references, media and templates being shown in the wrong places was also corrected (bug 63127). The keyboard shortcuts help page now uses <kbd> rather than <div> elements to style the keyboard shortcuts (bug 63767).

A pair of major changes to how the internals of VisualEditor work, allowing null selections of the document (bug 59868) and cleaning up how focussed elements work (bug 62410), briefly led to a number of bugs emerging during development, all of which were fixed before deployment (bugs 63909, 63943, 63945, 63954, 64012, 64013, 64032, 64034 and 64042). Some of these changes were made as part of fixing the formula editor and reference editing which were broken last week by some related improvements; the fixes to those, as well as a bug on opening VisualEditor on redirect pages, were released early (to wmf22) so that users were not disrupted (bugs 56645, 63785 and 63828).

The browser tests were updated to pass in both Chrome and Firefox, and cope with the save page taking longer than anticipated.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf1 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-04-24 (MW 1.24wmf2)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf2 branch deployment on Thursday 24 April. In the week since 1.24wmf1, the team made some minor feature improvements, some infrastructure changes, and fixed a number of bugs.

Dialogs now use a "pending" animation of moving diagonal lines such as in the template and the save dialogs, instead of the previous animated GIF images. The animation of opening a template dialog should now be smoother and not open and then close a tray. The content language editor, soon to be released as a Beta Feature, now uses a simplified ULS interface rather than the whole one. A careful audit of all Wikimedia wikis led to fixing broken local MediaWiki:Common.js (and similar) pages; these were each fixed to ensure that VisualEditor runs on all of them (bug 60842).

Edit notices for globally-blocked users and cascade-protected pages now show correctly (bugs 53009 and 53893). The "Print/Export" MediaWiki tools are now hidden whilst VisualEditor is active (bug 57940). The preference to not warn a user when they leave the editor mid-edit is now functional in VisualEditor too (bug 51057). When editing categories, you can now set or change the __HIDDENCAT__ and __NOGALLERY__ attributes if you so wish (bugs 57169 and 57170). In preparation for VisualEditor working better on multi-script wikis like Chinese, on those wikis you can now set or change the __NOCONTENTCONVERT__ and __NOTITLECONVERT__ attributes (bugs 57171 and 57172). The dummy "wikihiero" hieroglyphics editor, available on testing wikis as a demonstration editor, now updates live, like the formula editor did before. 

VisualEditor now uses Parsoid, not MediaWiki, to preview fragments of the page (like new or updated templates); there should be no obvious changes, except a slight speed improvement (bug 48524). The calls to parse edit notices and templates were corrected to know the context of the page, and not just mysteriously claim to be run on the API (bugs 50172 and 63600). Similarly, pre-save transforms (like converting template substitution calls or the "pipe trick") are now performed when the edit's preview of the wikitext diff is shown in the save dialog (bug 52345). The language links page is now populated for non-articles like categories and user pages as well as articles (bug 49226).

A bug with an improvement to inspectors' support for forced language directionality was fixed and released early to avoid breakage (bug 64072). A bug with the forthcoming mobile integration of VisualEditor that meant re-opening the editor would break nastily was also fixed and released early (bug 64034). Another bug with mobile which meant that the code to fetch a new edit token if your edit timed out was missing, breaking the editor; this was fixed (bug 64267). VisualEditor now works around a browser bug in Chrome that wrongly doesn't show a bullet for blank bullet list items other than an image inside it (bug 64117).

A bug that meant that existing <strong> tags on the page would make adding boldness to a selection irreversible was fixed (bug 64244). Some fixes were made to the soon-to-be-arriving citation dialog (bug 64199).

In preparation for the formula editor being made available to all users, some minor issues were corrected, including inserting a new formula into a "block slug" (bug 58286), trying to insert a formula when a template or reference was selected would crash (bug 56644), and inserting one when selecting an image would cause the formula to try to be inserted into the image's caption (bug 58045).

An issue that meant that clicking out of an inspector wrongly caused the selection to get restored was corrected (bug 63906), as was an unrelated issue that meant that inserting a new reference would move the cursor to the top of the document (bug 64041); this last one was released early to prevent disruption for a key community workflow. A bug that meant that one of the FlaggedRevisions-related checkboxes didn't show up inside VisualEditor's save dialog was fixed (bug 59608). VisualEditor now updates local Javascript variables to help other gadgets that use the page revision IDs (bug 56532).

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf2 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-04-monthly[edit | edit source]

In April, the VisualEditor team worked to improve the stability of the editor, adding some new features and improving usability so that users can create and edit pages more swiftly and intuitively with VisualEditor than before. Template editing was over-hauled to make adding parameters less busy, showing only a few parameters at first rather than all possible ones, which can number in the dozens or more, especially in the case of some often-used templates like those for citations or infoboxes. Setting the size of images was tweaked to give a more natural set of controls based on feedback from users. The page settings dialog had a number of minor tweaks, leading to the set of options that can be modified inside VisualEditor being completed. VisualEditor's edit tab is now more consistent with the rest of the MediaWiki interface in a number of noticeable if minor ways, such as on pages to do with the Education Program, on file pages which are hosted on Commons rather than on the local wiki, or on very narrow screens. User testing was carried out on the forthcoming citation dialog and some final simplifications were made, such as adding suggested as well as required parameters, ahead of its pending introduction. Finally, a careful audit of all Wikimedia wikis led to fixing broken local community-written code, to ensure that VisualEditor runs on all of them. The deployed version of the code was updated four times in the regular release cycle (1.23-wmf21, 1.23-wmf22, 1.24-wmf1 and 1.24-wmf2).

2014-05-01 (MW 1.24wmf3)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf3 branch deployment on Thursday 1 May. In the week since 1.24wmf2, the team made some feature improvements and fixed a number of bugs.

External links are now styled like in MediaWiki, in a lighter shade of blue, in the editor and link suggestions box (bug 38726). The layout of template dialogs has been tweaked to put the label above rather than next to the parameter input fields. As part of this, the TemplateData documentation for a template can now mark a parameter as "suggested", one step down from "required"; these are automatically added to a new template use by VisualEditor. The template dialog now indicates parameters that have been marked as "deprecated" (bug 53612). The formula editor Beta Feature will now be available to all users, without having to opt in. A new language editor Beta Feature will be available for testing. The media editing dialog now has little icons as well as words to represent the type states (frame, frameless, thumb and basic) on the buttons. The forthcoming citation system now only shows its icon, and not that for generic references too, when selected.

A bug in the recent changes to the fonts in the default ("Vector") skin meant that the text was all cramped; we fixed the bug in Vector (bug 63985) and made related changes to restore the editing surface inside VisualEditor to be the same (bug 64599), and release both of these early to avoid disruption. A bad bug meant that the initial cursor position inside references was in an invalid place for users of Firefox, which caused the editor to crash if you tried to insert a template without having first clicked into the reference; this was also released early (bug 64434). An issue that meant quick typing into a reference dialog could corrupt the order of the characters in Firefox was also fixed (bug 64399).

The save dialog no longer prompts you for a second CAPTCHA if you've correctly filled out the first one but then reviewed your changes before trying to save (bug 62766). We fixed a bug that meant that pressing tab inside the formula editor threw an error (bug 64451). The citation editor was fixed to focus on the new field when adding parameters (bug 64098). A bug that meant that the search results list in the template dialog and similar places could end up stuck in Firefox if you didn't click into it was fixed (bug 64334). An issue with the forthcoming Table of Contents code meant that it failed to display the "hide" text correct; this was fixed. VisualEditor no longer puts second edit links next to the sections of remote files (like those on Commons), as we cannot tell whether the remote wiki has VisualEditor installed (bug 54259).

VisualEditor now uses Parsoid's styling module to share content styling with the Flow, Mobile, and other teams consuming Parsoid's output (bug 63983). A new class is now added to protected pages being edited with VisualEditor, which allows wikis to style the page in the same way they do for wikitext pages (bug 50783). The code to handle Monobook-specific issues in the MediaWiki integration was cleaned up as part of fixing a bug where the "edit source" tab was not selected correctly (bugs 49407, 64646 and 64672). On (non-Wikimedia) wikis where VisualEditor is opt-in directly rather than through Beta Features, the list of namespaces is now generated automatically rather than manually in the description (bug 51411). VisualEditor now supports QuestyCaptcha and MathCaptcha for wikis that use them. We made a further set of simplifications for dialogs, creating "ActionDialog" and a more specific "NodeDialog" framework, to make the code simpler and easier to extend. The browser tests were sped up, avoiding login where possible.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf3 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-05-08 (MW 1.24wmf4)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf4 branch deployment on Thursday 8 May. In the week since 1.24wmf3, the team made some minor feature improvements and fixed a number of bugs.

The new citation system was enabled on the English Wikipedia for feedback ahead of rolling it out for more wikis. In templates, transclusions and citations, parameters are now labelled "fields" to avoid a technical term that was confusing for users. The language search widget was improved to show search results clearly when finding results in languages other than the one you typed in. The mobile alpha build of VisualEditor added support for citation editing using that interface, too. Some improvements were made, particularly in animating the toolbar, which should make the transition between read mode and edit mode should have fewer visual shifts (bug 64751).

An issue that meant editing a citation would duplicate it rather than update it was fixed and released early to avoid disruption (bug 64717), as was a fix for the location of the new language Beta Feature's pages.

Some template layouts which were previously getting broken due to using CSS hacks, such as the English Wikipedia's football kit template, should now appear correctly; this change should also slightly improve performance (bug 52499). The notices shown to the user on saving have now been merged into those in the wikitext editor, for consistency (bug 52871). The styling of the formatting drop-down has been synchronised with the "Typography refresh" changes to Vector (bug 63540). A bug that meant that VisualEditor would not navigate to the section if you entered a section-edit VE link manually rather than from the read page was fixed (bug 52566).

The citation tool was adding an unnecessary stray line break at the end of the wikitext, which has been fixed (bug 63128). A UI issue that meant that a drop-down menu could remain open inside a dialog when you switched to other panes in Firefox has been fixed (bug 64334). The keyboard shortcut dialog was wrongly listing the shortcuts for changing formats on Macs; these have been corrected (bug 64771).

The browser tests were significantly improved to more simply locate the editing surface, to avoid logging in where possible, and to re-use the browser test templates for many of the existing tests. The documentation system moved further towards automatically publishing documentation for all VisualEditor-related tools, starting with OOjs whose documentation is now published.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf4 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-05-15 (MW 1.24wmf5)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf5 branch deployment on Thursday 15 May. In the week since 1.24wmf4, the team made some performance improvements, added some minor features, and fixed a few bugs.

VisualEditor's buttons and icons are now keyboard-accessible (bug 62337), which will make things quicker for experienced users as well as more available for users of assistive devices like screen readers. VisualEditor now shows a clearer message when you cancel out of an edit, in a custom alert window rather than using the browser default alert (bug 50955).

The initial first-use welcome dialog is now hidden for logged-in users using a user preference rather than a cookie (bug 55551). This means it will not show several times when people use multiple browsers or computers, though will cause the dialog to show up one last time for all logged in users on their next VisualEditor use, and then go away entirely.

The media dialog now shows a message if no media items are found, rather than mysteriously leaving you with a blank results page (bug 52469). The "keyboard shortcuts" link has been moved from the page options menu to the help menu, where it is more reasonable for people to look for it.

The new citation dialog tool now matches citation references with templates specified in a different case or with underscores rather than spaces compared to the "main" name of the citation templates (bug 63129), and the dialog's title now displays the name in the correct form; these two fixes were pushed out early to all users.

We worked around a problematic bug in Firefox that meant that selecting the entire page with Ctrl+A (Cmd+A on Mac) would select more than the whole document, causing a fatal Javascript error if e.g. you tried to delete it (bug 64917). A bug in using Ctrl+cursor keys (Opt+cursor keys on Mac) in Hebrew due to us missing out a part of a recent Unicode upgrade was fixed (bug 64872). PageTriage's hovering triage bar now is hidden when you enter VisualEditor (bug 56731).

The pop-up note shown to users of 'greylisted' browsers that might not work well but are not fully supported, like Opera, now also appears the second time you open VisualEditor on the same page (bug 65236). The notice about an edit being saved was corrected to not claim a page was restored for VisualEditor edits which switch mid-edit to using the wikitext editor (bug 65269). A minor flash that happened on the second (VisualEditor) section edit link when pages were loaded has been fixed.

VisualEditor now provides a hook for extensions, plugins, gadgets and scripts when it activates and deactivates, allowing them to know when to hide or show items at the right time (bug 65320). Some performance improvements were made to the code that is used when you press delete or backspace, special-handling code for triple-click mouse events, and removing a special-case for Internet Explorer being unable to understand zero-width spaces that isn't needed for IE9+ support. The system that prevents users from modifying the contents of templates (rather than their parameters) was made more efficient and stream-lined to improve speed and reduce impact on users' systems.

The stand-alone VisualEditor demo was adjusted to fix some directionality issues. The OOjs UI demo was significantly improved to make it easier to spot regressions and theme requirements, especially in the differences between desktop and mobile needs. The browser tests were re-factored to make a number of fixes and efficiencies.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf5 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-05-22 (MW 1.24wmf6)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf6 branch deployment on Thursday 22 May. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some minor features improvements, implemented a big infrastructure change for images, and fixed a few bugs.

The Cite system's label for a news source was changed from "Newspaper" to the simpler "News" (bug 65207). The wording of the welcome dialog (bug 57699) and the wikitext warning (bug 57700) now now both refer to the ability to switch to source mode whilst keeping your edits without saving. The dialog shown when you switch to source editing now uses a VisualEditor-style rather than browser native window, to give a clearer and more consistent interface; this also led to finding and fixing a bug in the VisualEditor-style warning windows being used twice on the same page (bug 65557).

Following some more extensive testing to ensure compatibility and no major issues, users of versions 15 and above of the Opera browser will no longer get a warning about their browser possibly not working. Opera below version 12 remains blacklisted, and users of Opera 12 will still get the warning. Also, the warning about a user's browser possibly not working now appears each time you click edit on the page, rather than just the first time.

A critical bug that meant that the new version of jQuery in MediaWiki broke all dialogs – like citations, templates, images and saving the page – in Firefox was worked around, and rushed out to avoid disrupting any users' edits (bug 65373). The "no results found" error message now disappears if you subsequently find some results for you image search.

If you edit a File: page, VisualEditor was previously hiding the image but not showing it again on save; it now does (bug 65349). When you open the save dialog, your cursor will now appear in the edit summary automatically again, even in Firefox (bug 65222); additionally, some styling fixes were implemented for the save dialog following recent changes in the system. The VisualEditor edit tab was sometimes able to appear in the Vector skin even on pages in namespaces where it is disabled, like Template:, due to a bug in Vector (bug 65294); we have worked around this (bugs 64142 and 65292).

The display for "phantoms", blocks inserted by VisualEditor to prevent editing parts of generated content like templates, was re-written, which should significantly improve the performance of this part of the system, particularly for pages with a lot of templates or images on them. A bug that meant that links could sometimes get their spaces converted to underscores was fixed (bug 62229).

In a major change to the infrastructure of VisualEditor, the basis for how images and other media files are manipulated through transactions was changed to use a model-centred approach. This opens up new possibilities, including editing inline images for the first time, and should not have any negative effects for editors, instead helping fix a number of minor bugs (bug 62293).

A hack that attempted to improve the way that up-/down-cursoring worked in Firefox was removed for performance reasons based on it not appearing to be needed any more. Some visual elements of the template editing system that aren't supported yet on Mobile are now hidden. The stand-alone VisualEditor demos system was improved to provide a mobile as well as desktop one.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf6 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-05-29 (MW 1.24wmf7)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf7 branch deployment on Thursday 29 May. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some minor features improvements and fixed a few bugs.

New icons for citations and references are now clearer more recognisable. The toolbar buttons for making lists and indenting items are now in a drop-down to avoid taking up so much space for less-used items. The gallery editor is now a bit wider to make it more useful, and the icon no longer appears in the toolbar as it's not hugely helpful. The category editor now suggests categories which exist (and used on at least one page) but don't have a page yet, and so show up as red when reading (bug 49044). We also now detect that a category is hidden if it was reached through a redirect.

If you use a template that is a redirect to another, we now fetch the TemplateData hinting for the target (bug 50964). VisualEditor can now be triggered through "system redirects" like Special:MyPage, so for example a link to Special:MyPage?veaction=edit can be provided to newbies to encourage them to create a user page (bug 50877). Users of version 5 of the Safari browser now get a warning that things may appear slightly broken, following some feedback about a browser bug there.

There were a number of issues related to images following on from last week's big infrastructure change for how they were handled; these were identified and fixed, and released early to avoid disrupting things for users (bugs 65564, 65596, 65611, 65615, 65617, 65836). An outcome of another big change is to avoid a Javascript error when hovering over some images (bug 65616), which was also released early.

A bug that meant the PageTriage palette would show up for some users after saving a page was fixed (bug 65702). Changing an image to be basic one now reflects the non-default changes you make to it in its wikitext again, which broke in March as part of a larger fix (bug 62852).

An issue that meant mobile targets could only create desktop- rather than mobile-style sub-surfaces (such as inside a reference dialog) was fixed to allow progress there (bug 65642). Mobile dialogs now use a "check" symbol rather than a button labelled "Apply changes" or similar, to be consistent with the rest of the mobile interface. The system switched to use new API calls provided in MediaWiki 1.23 to make things quicker for users and more efficient on the servers (bug 63555). Extensions can now add extra checkboxes for "meta data" in the page settings panel.

Raster browser support, which had been accidentally left in VisualEditor in a partial state, was removed; this means that browsers which do not support SVG now will not be able to load VisualEditor. Some documentation of how VisualEditor expects to work with skins was created to help third parties (bug 61500). VisualEditor no longer depends on a styling module provided by the Parsoid PHP extension, but instead on MediaWiki core's new (temporary) mediawiki.skinning.content.parsoid styling module instead. This has raised the compatibility requirement for the master branch of VisualEditor to 1.24.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf7 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-05-monthly[edit | edit source]

In May, the VisualEditor team worked on the performance stability of the editor, rolled out a major new feature to help users better edit articles, and made some improvements to other features to increase their ease of use and understandability, fixing 75 bugs and tickets. The new citation editor is now available to all VisualEditor users on the English, Polish, and Czech Wikipedias, with instructions on how to enable it on other wikis. The citation and template dialogs were simplified to avoid technical language and some outcomes that were unexpected for users. As part of this, the citation icons were replaced with a new, clearer set, and the template hinting system now lets wikis mark template parameters as "suggested", as a step below the existing "required" state. The formula editor is now available to all VisualEditor users, and a new Beta Feature giving a tool that lets you set the language of content was made available for testing and feedback. Following a new set of user testing, the toolbar was tweaked, moving the list and indent buttons to a drop-down to make them less prominent, and removing the gallery button which is rarely used and confused users. The mobile version of VisualEditor, currently available for alpha testers, was expanded to also have the new citation editor available, and had some significant performance improvements made, especially for long or complex pages. Work continued on making VisualEditor more performant and reliable, and key tasks like keyboard accessibility have progressed. The deployed version of the code was updated five times in the regular release cycle (1.24-wmf3, 1.24-wmf4, 1.24-wmf5, 1.24-wmf6 and 1.24-wmf7).

2014-06-05 (MW 1.24wmf8)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf8 branch deployment on Thursday 5 June. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some minor features improvements and fixed a few bugs.

The citation tool now won't let you add empty citations (bug 64715). In the reference tool, "use an existing reference" is now shown in a disabled state when the reference has content, rather than hidden (bug 65689). A modified version of the link tool is now available for "simple links" (those that look like [1] rather than have a label). The appearance of the media search dialog was improved for users with a vertical scrollbar present all the time (bug 64911), and on sub-pages it only searches for the sub-page's name, not the whole path (bug 51290). When using VisualEditor on a Category page you now can see the category contents again after editing (bug 64239). The template and citation dialogs were modified to add some accessibility features (bug 65474). The mobile version of VisualEditor now has the "use existing reference" tool in its toolbar. The TemplateData GUI is now enabled on the Catalan Wikipedia, per community request (bug 65785).

An issue that meant that the welcome dialog would show on every edit for some users was fixed and pushed out to all wikis immediately, to reduce the inconvenience (bug 65821); our apologies! One big error with two major effects that broke VisualEditor for Firefox users was fixed and released early (bugs 65934 and 65935). A slip-up that meant that the "Cite" label in the toolbars in the media and reference dialogs was fixed and released early (bug 66039). When the toolbar is disabled, clicking an image on the page now selects it correctly (bug 65866).

Some further bugs related to edge cases with images were fixed (bugs 62893, 65564, 65886). A bug that meant using two confirm dialogs in one session would break was fixed (bug 65571). We fixed a minor bug with adding a category which has members but doesn't have a page yet (bug 66105). If you've written a TemplateData description for a parameter to just be a space character, we now won't show the information button as active (bug 65862).

VisualEditor removed the last vestiges of code that relied on jQuery 1.8.x (bug 65404), as part of the Wikimedia-wide upgrade work to jQuery 1.11.x (bug 65399). VisualEditor now asserts that it's running on MediaWiki 1.24alpha, given some changes made recently that require the content styling module only available there. Some minor improvements for better Microsoft Internet Explorer support were implemented.

The browser tests were adjusted to take account of the new toolbar layout for structure tools. You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf8 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-06-12 (MW 1.24wmf9)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf9 branch deployment on Thursday 12 June. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some features improvements, major internal code updates, and fixed a few bugs.

You can now, without need to editing them, see the target of a link, the template used by a transclusion and other information. To do this, the context menu of buttons is now vertical rather than horizontal, and uses the space to its side to display contextual information about where the cursor currently is, such as the target of a link, the language of an annotation, the image or template used in an invocation, or other information (bug 49928). Future planned improvements to this include showing how a reference will appear in the references list and using an extended set of controls to make quick adjustments on images (like moving them to the left or right), and provide a quick tool to open links' targets in a new window to check them out.

In the reference tool, you can now "use an existing reference" on an reference that you have blanked to convert it to re-use another (bug 65689). You can now set or edit a page's {{DISPLAYTITLE}} and __DISAMBIG__ status in the page settings dialog (bugs 56868 and 61073). This completes for now the set of "behavioural flags" intended to appear in page settings (bug 56865). The special character inserting tool is now wider and slightly lighter in design, and the order of the mathematical symbols has been corrected (bug 60626). The paragraph formatting menu now takes up a little less room, and looks more like a menu.

We fixed a bug that caused the cursor to not be focussed in the save dialog, and so which in Firefox led to it being possible to keep typing into the page when meaning to write the edit summary, along with a related bug that stopped users switching to "edit source" mode, and released the fixes early to all wikis so that they didn't affect editing for anyone (bugs 66168, 66222 and 66231).

The infrastructure for "generated" content like images, templates and references was re-written to be much faster and simpler, which also fixed a number of issues (notably bugs 55789 and 64563). When you drag-and-drop an image or a reference, we have corrected a bug so that the window no longer scrolls to the top (bug 65882). We corrected the save dialog to make sure that it requests the checkboxes' labels in your user-interface language correctly when you're over-riding it with the uselang= parameter (bug 65455). VisualEditor now performs much more like the wikitext editor when it comes to creating and editing pages with redirects in them, rather than sometimes following the redirects when you press edit (bugs 65621 and 65926).

We have re-worked the system for windows opening and closing, which has fixed a large number of issues. One of the problems this fixed is avoiding being able to accidentally double-click on a button and so try to edit an image twice, which would break badly (bug 66389). It also means that animations such as on the save dialog (bug 62859) and reference list dialog (bug 65705) are now corrected to not change their mind part-way through opening to instead open at a different size. In a related set of changes, a major piece of work on the link editing tool has implemented a large number of bug fixes, suggestions and improvements (bugs 52634, 54984, 55465, 55839, 57205, 60501, 60843, 62492, 62818, 62857, 65343, 66016, 66135 and 66139). As part of this, the link editor now does not show you a suggestion list until after you start to change the target, so that you can add a link without suggestions very quickly (bug 56434).

The category suggested and related tools were very broken for RTL wikis, which has been fixed (bug 65483). The language editing tool had a huge performance fix, correcting for the recent jQuery upgrade, reducing the load time from ~15 seconds down to about 0.6s (bug 65512). The work to iron out each of the image edge cases continued (bugs 65916, 66149, 66288 and 66291), with the need winding down to the point that we will soon be able to work on an improved interface instead.

The code module related to images was split into viewing and editing, so that mobile could pull in the former whilst not the latter. In line with VisualEditor-specific styling hacks being replaced with proper styling inherited from MediaWiki, the CSS code to auto-number simple external links was moved there. As part of making the stand-alone VisualEditor more than just a demo, the debug bar will now only be shown when requested rather than all the time, and some fixes were made so that you can run multiple VisualEditor surfaces in parallel on one page.

The browser tests were updated to check that the page options dialog is available and can be opened, modified to use the new browser test API for the login tests, and upgraded to work with the new move to the WMF-hosted Jenkins instance. You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf9 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-06-19 (MW 1.24wmf10)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf10 branch deployment on Thursday 19 June. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some feature improvements, major internal code updates, and fixed a few bugs.

Drag-and-drop now highlights prominently when the item you are dragging will go (bug 51666), lets you drag-and-drop selections of content, not just images and templates (bug 49981), and only lets you put block items like images at the start of a paragraph so you don't accidentally split them (bug 65883). VisualEditor will now warn you about inserting wikitext into media captions and references like it does for the main document (bug 56213). The layout and usability of the language input tool was improved to make is easier and more obvious to use. The save dialog is now more like other dialogs, and the display of error cases is now clearer and more visible.

Inline templates (like "citation needed") now wrap correctly, and don't break the layout of floated items (bug 51708). The highlight outline shown when you make a selection that covers certain kinds of content that VisualEditor doesn't recognise ("inline aliens") now displays correctly when that content wraps over a line (bug 52339). As part of this, we also fixed a pair of issues related to the highlight shown around images and similar content when they were moved, altered or inserted (bugs 65706 and 65716). We changed the styling of paragraphs in tables so that they look much more like MediaWiki's view mode, without the padding that paragraphs get in the main document (bug 65416).

We fixed a bug that meant that the link editor would suggest any entry into with "http" or similar in it, even if not at the start, as a valid external link (bug 65547). When using VisualEditor on a section edit link, the view now scrolls to that section correctly (bug 65928). We fixed a bug that meant you couldn't type over a node (like an image) you had clicked on (bug 66638), and another which would throw a fatal error when inserting a new line after adding a Hieroglyphics block in Firefox (bug 66691). We also fixed a bug that meant that inline images being converted to floating and then back would display oddly (bug 65924).

We replaced the existing "shields" system of inserting image overlays above objects with a system of using browsers' native getClientRects function, which should make things faster for users, especially on mobile platforms, as well as more reliable and simpler code. Some accessibility improvements were made to the windowing system so that users of screenreaders should have a more reliable experience. The standalone VisualEditor demo now lets you edit the HTML live for better testing, and the debug bar appears in MediaWiki-VisualEditor when ?debug=true is set.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf10 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-06-26 (MW 1.24wmf11)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf11 branch deployment on Thursday 26 June. In the week since the last deployment, the team made some progress on major code updates and fixed a few minor bugs.

Otherwise un-styled tables now get a less strong visual styling by default, with dotted lines and smaller borders. This is the first step towards making tables' structure editable. We removed the hieroglyphics tool from the "experimental" system live on MediaWiki.org in preparation for making it available everywhere. As part of our work to support Internet Explorer, we worked around a bug that caused crashes when inserting content. We removed some systems that were meant to help IME (Input Method Editor) users, but instead got in their way and broke users of some other IMEs.

We corrected a bug that caused the context menu to briefly flash in and then disappear when you inserted a new cite, image, formula, etc. (bug 66855). We fixed a caching bug that meant that relocating an item would sometimes not work because the user's browser thought it was using a different item (bug 67040). The "make full size" button on default-sized images had an issue where it would initially switch which size button was enabled, but not update the size (bug 66863). We also adjusted a confusion in our code for templates where templates called "Foo.bar" would display – and try to insert – as just "Foo", and so break (bug 66893).

A bug made section editing the 'zeroth' (lede) section of a page with VisualEditor would instead scroll you all the way to the bottom; we adjusted the scrolling to fix this (bug 66674). A similar issue which we also fixed meant that inserting a formula on a page for the first time that edit would scroll the page all the way to the top (bug 66813). An old bug meant that trying to make a page link to a file or category would create a link not to the correct ":Category:Foo", or even to the naïve "Category:Foo", but instead to "::Category:Foo" (bug 50279).

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf11 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-06-monthly[edit | edit source]

In June, the VisualEditor team provided a new way to see the context of links and other items when you edit to make this easier, worked on the performance and stability of the editor so that users could more swiftly and reliably make changes to articles, and made some improvements to features focussed on increasing their simplicity and understandability, fixing 94 bugs and tickets. The editor now shows with a highlight where dragging-and-dropping content will put it, and works for any content, not just for images. The citation and reference tools had some minor adjustments to guide the user on how they operate, based on feedback and user testing. A lot of fixes to issues with windows opening and closing, and especially the link editing tool, were made, alongside the save dialog, categories, the language editing tool, table styling, template display and highlights on selected items. The mobile version of VisualEditor, currently available for alpha testers, moved towards release, fixing a number of bugs and improving performance. Work to support languages made some significant gains, and work to support Internet Explorer continued. The new visual interface for writing TemplateData was enabled on the Catalan and Hebrew Wikipedias. The deployed version of the code was updated five times in the regular release cycle (1.24-wmf8, 1.24-wmf9, 1.24-wmf10 and 1.24-wmf11).

2014-07-03 (MW 1.24wmf12)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf12 branch deployment on Thursday 3 July. In the week since the last deployment, the team improved a few features and fixed a number of bugs.

Saving a page should now be noticeably faster in most cases, as we have implemented a system to compress the data the browser sends to the server (bug 66914). We will later experiment to see whether this should only apply in some cases, like where the page is longer than a length, the users' browser is well-written, or their computer is fast enough. Once we have solid numbers we'll report on them in the metrics section of the roadmap. The "reference" tool, which creates a blank <ref></ref> without a template, has been moved from the "insert" menu to the bottom "Cite" menu, below the community-selected templates like "Cite web" which create proper citations on those wikis that have configured it.

When you add a new media item, you are now able to set the caption before it is inserted (bug 67170), and you can switch out the image used in an existing one without losing the caption and other settings (bug 51033). When you use the media search, it resets to the name of the page each time you use it (bug 65038). You are now offered a prompt to retain changes when switching to the "Edit Source" tab, rather than having to find the option in the menus (bug 57462), and closing from that offer won't switch you to the edit source tab throwing away your changes.

A number of additional icons in VisualEditor now show a flipped variant when users are in a right-to-left environment like Arabic or Hebrew. The help window listing keyboard shortcuts now uses a more normal format, showing commands at "Ctrl + K" rather than "CTRL+K". The "language" Beta Feature now shows up in the styling menu, rather than the "insert" menu where it didn't make much sense.

We fixed a problem where selecting a node like an image or a template with the mouse (but not the keyboard) would make it not let you use backspace or delete to remove it (bug 67178). If you click on something you can't currently edit, like a reference defined inside a template, you now won't be prompted to try anyway by the context menu (bug 67176). We also changed the context menu so it doesn't appears over the top of items like formulæ that you edit in-place (bugs 66542 and 67306).

We made a big change to how templates covering partial items, like templates that generate a row of a table, behave; this should significantly improve how they behave, as well as their initial appearance, though there remain some issues if you edit the templates themselves (bugs 50607, 50951, 58387, 64780 and 67169). We changed the behaviour of selections so that deleting a block item like an image no longer highlights the previous line (bug 67213).

On mobile, we fixed a number of issues. In iOS Safari, a clutch of browser bugs meant that highlights were being misplaced around (bug 67063), links would be followed rather than editable (bug 65326), items like references or images would need to be tapped on twice (bug 66999), clicking on a reference would navigate back to the reading page (bug 67002), and closing the link editor would show the link suggestions would show in the editor (bug 67399). We fixed an issue that meant the link editor could crash in mobile if the page was blanked (bug 65418), and that link suggestions would not appear (bug 66753).

The context menu on images in the captions of other images, or inside references, now is correctly aligned with the image rather than being off to the side (bug 66494). We fixed the ability to tab to various dialogs and controls for users of Firefox, working around a browser bug there (bugs 65554 and 66824). The display of the title for templates which have a full stop ('.') now shows fully, not truncated at that point (bug 66939). VisualEditor now finds the TemplateData for non-templates used in transclusions (bug 52609).

If you update the page's display title in the page settings dialog, the page title will be updated when you save the page (bug 50341). We corrected a bug which meant that if your preferences are set to remind you to fill in an edit summary and you didn't, you weren't able to save the page after you had corrected this (bug 67345). A bug for users of Opera 12 that meant that pressing Escape or Tab on an empty line inserted a pawn symbol was also fixed (bug 63630).

The standalone core of VisualEditor now has a single-file distribution for third parties (bug 66117), which also has RTL stylesheets rather than expecting third parties to use CSSJanus like MediaWiki does (bug 65057). Work to support Internet Explorer continues, as well as performance.

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf12 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-07-10 (MW 1.24wmf13)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf13 branch deployment on Thursday 10 July. In the week since the last deployment, the team worked mostly on back-end code improvements, as well as fixing a few bugs.

The dialog for templates, as well as for citations and transclusions, would get confused when a page used a template with an HTML comment before the first parameter, and then crash badly; we have now worked around this (bug 66724). The label for the button to show additional fields in a template, citation or transclusion now says "more" rather than "other", in line with similar labels and for simpler and clearer translation.

We fixed a couple of annoying bugs with making images full size – the first meant that the first time you pressed the button it didn't do anything, but thereafter it worked OK (bug 66863), and the second that caused pressing the button to fail to activate the "Apply Changes" button (bug 67624). A minor issue that meant "vection=foo" parts of the URL weren't removed when the user saved or left the page was also corrected (bug 66237).

We also fixed a nasty, albeit rare, issue that caused VisualEditor to crash when changing the type of an image between two other images, each of which had images in their captions (bug 66604). In the media dialog, we tweaked the tab order to work better in some browsers, including Safari, so you can tab from the Caption to the Alt text field (bug 67162). For VisualEditor on mobile, we fixed an issue for iOS devices – when you opened the editor, there is no initial text cursor activation, which meant that if you immediately tried to select a reference or other node, the first time would only highlight, not select, it (bug 67389).

A minor bug meant that references would show up as bigger than normal due to a mistaken CSS class attribute, and a similar bug for references lists. A few fixes for particularly egregious issues with Internet Explorer 11 were made, disabling triple-click handling (which is broken for Windows 8 but intriguingly not Windows 7) and adding an IE-specific stylesheet that stops highlights on references being drawn in the wrong place, prevents resize handles appearing on headings, and makes highlights transparent rather than opaque.

The OOjs UI system was updated to not transplant disabled stylesheets into child iframes for windows (such as for the stand-alone VisualEditor's RTL environmental sheets). The VisualEditor debug bar now shows the from/to of the range rather than start/end, which is more useful for debugging. We began the transition to using browsers' native .bind() functionality rather than the previous system, as thanks to the ES5 shim we can now depend on that being available or poly-filled even for old browsers; we expect to finish this work next week (bug 62762).

You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf13 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.

2014-07-17 (MW 1.24wmf14)[edit | edit source]

VisualEditor was updated as part of the wider MediaWiki 1.24wmf14 branch deployment on Thursday 17 July. In the week since the last deployment, the team worked mostly on landing a major design change including a re-write of the windowing system for mobile and desktop users alike, along with some minor feature changes and fixing a number of bugs.

The main change this week in a new design for all windows, with the main action buttons consistently in the top bar of each window, based on a new, more flexible technology back-end (OOUI). As part of this, we replaced almost the navigation icons with simple words, which we found in testing was much easier for users to understand. Now, the "safe" cancel/undo control will always be in the top left, and any progressive insert/apply control will be in the top right. Rarer controls will be at the bottom of the dialog or inspector.

These changes also mean that the desktop and mobile version of VisualEditor can now use the exact same code, with windows deciding based on your platform and browser size how to display themselves. As well as addressing some long-term issues and design problems, this fixed a number of outstanding issues (bugs 60501, 66552, and 65322) and the team whilst it was bedding in the change found a few more (bugs 68048, 68061, 68066, 68068, 68121, and 68180).

You can now open links easily inside the link editor, to check whether the external or internal link was the one you meant to choose (bug 54759). This is especially useful for users on touch devices or other systems where opening links in a new window is not as simple as other places. Finally, we have adjusted the behaviour of VisualEditor to more closely mimic OpenOffice and most other editors, so typing when selecting a node now doesn't do anything, except for delete or backspace to remove it (bug 67177).

Thanks to alert community members, we discovered and fixed a major backspacing problem caused by templates with multiple child elements – most visibly, the "lang-fr" and similar templates used widely on articles on the English Wikipedia (and others). This meant that pressing backspace would delete two or more characters, seemingly at random, and was sufficiently serious that we rushed out a fix to all wikis as soon as we were aware of the issue (bug 67985). Our apologies for the inconvenience, and our gratitude to the editors who highlighted the issue as soon as they noticed it. We also fixed an issue that completely broke the citation and template dialogs in wmf13's release last week, and immediately released it.

We fixed a number of bugs related to cursoring around nodes and slugs (blank lines where you can drop the cursor). Firstly, an issue with slugs at the end or beginning of a document would make your cursor get stuck in a loop, unable to escape (bug 67551). A browser bug in Firefox caused another issue meant that you would get pawn characters inserted and typing would happen backwards if your cursored off a node like a reference (bug 67432). We had a problem where selecting a node by cursoring would mean you couldn't move up or down with the cursor, and instead VisualEditor would throw an error (bug 67755).

We fixed an issue following-on from work last week, which was causing pages pulled from the User namespace as transclusions to be prefixed with an extra colon (bug 67386). We also corrected an issue with the language editor that would throw a (harmless) error when you were using it (bug 67609).

There were a couple of issues with changing media settings which either wouldn't apply some of the changes you made (bug 67687) or would not enable the "Apply changes" button (bug 67684). Editing blocks of content from extensions like SyntaxHighlight, Poem or Score now makes sure to display any HTML correctly, and prevent you from inserting faulty closing tags inside themselves (bug 57249).

We fixed a number of issues with the mobile interface for VisualEditor, ahead of its wider release, including restoring the Cite menu which had gone missing (bug 67701), showing link suggestions correctly in a few circumstances where it wasn't before (bug 66753) and stopping the cursor showing up from the document "through" the link editor's suggestions (bug 67388). The major re-write of how windows work has had big improvements for all windows on mobile, which was one of its primary objectives, and included improvements to the mobile context.

The performance of the toolbar floating over the top of content when the page is scrolled down was significantly improved. The code to resize items was converted to be static and use clone methods rather than create a handle for the image each time. The window manager now doesn't throw an error if you ask it to open a window it doesn't know about.

The stand-alone VisualEditor was improved with the demo being expanded to tests, and the stand-alone toolbar altered to have labels for each group, move the language tool into the styling group, adding a keyboard shortcuts help dialog tool to the previously-unused 'actions' part of the toolbar, and use a large '+' instead of a label for the insert menu.

Some of the related changes to OOjs UI included changing how delay works for OO.ui.Process, splitting out part of OO.ui.OptionWidget into OO.ui.DecoratedOptionWidget, and separating overall setup from setOutlineItem in OO.ui.PageLayout. Further, there were fixes for Internet Explorer support in hiding (rather than just setting to zero-width) unused GridLayout panels, mobile-friendly styling, some better accessibility improvements for forms, allowing arguments to be used for deferMsg, letting buttons open URLs with an href, stopping disabled tools from stealing the browser's focus, cleanups to and expansions of the demos and documentation, and several other changes.

In terms of breaking changes for VisualEditor, a very old hook in the MediaWiki extension, ext.visualEditor.editPageInit, was removed (it had been provided for backwards-compatibility for over two years). In the core VisualEditor, the afterRender method used by nodes to re-render themselves had the optional generatedContents argument removed; the only known user of this, in the Math extension's formula editor, was already adjusted to compensate.

The unit tests were expanded to better cover the image model, showing selections and making transactions around aliens, and the test/ directory was renamed to tests/ to be consistent with other Wikimedia repositories. You can monitor the live results of the automated browser tests (triggered every twelve hours) on the server. A complete list of individual code commits is available in the 1.24/wmf14 changelog, and all Bugzilla tickets closed in this period are on Bugzilla's list.