Editing

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The Editing department of the Wikimedia Foundation's Product group works on extending and improving the editing tools used at Wikimedia – VisualEditor and other content tools, Collaboration tools, Multimedia support, Language tools for translation, content and communication, and Parsing and other infrastructure. We exist to support new and existing editors alike across desktop, tablet and phone platforms.

Progress on annual plan, quarterly goals and other work[edit]

Below we provide brief narratives of our status on each of Editing's quarterly goals, and alongside them the department's teams do a lot of other work to support the annual plan, from support work for other departments to preparations for future quarterly goals.

Analysis[edit]

2017-04-25:

  • Our main piece of work is to support the new Editing Audience Research project between Communications and Editing, "New Editor Experiences".
  • We're working to consolidate our various data sources into one place. Our next item is to move Notifications and VisualEditor-specific numbers from the historic "ee" dashboards so that they can be deleted entirely.
  • Our team continues to spend a lot of time working to support other teams in Editing and more widely.

Collaboration[edit]

2017-04-25:

  • We're working on our quarterly goal, to support users of the new filters on Recent Changes. This is now available as a desktop Beta Feature on all wikis except four Wikipedias that need additional configuration, which we will complete in the coming weeks.

Design[edit]

2017-04-25:

  • We're continuing to provide and apply a style guide which all teams in Editing and more widely follow, as part of the "Improve editing experience by reducing technical and product debt" program in the annual plan. We have implemented all of the principal changes into OOjs UI, focussing especially on accessibility- and mobile-related improvements, and are now gathering feedback and considering documentation whilst we continue to make further improvements, especially to more consistent mobile support.
  • Our team members continue to spend most of their time embedded with other teams.

Language[edit]

2017-03-28:

  • Our quarterly goal, under "Invest in new types of content creation", is to replace the contenteditable editing component of Content Translation to VisualEditor and preserve the current functionalities of Content Translation. We continue with the preparatory work for this eventual change with refactoring the existing code. At present the CX classes are being reorganized to be used with OOJS. (T152586)
  • Our work on deploying Compact Language Links out of beta (T66793) has restarted. Deployments have been completed for French (T157108), Dutch (T157112) and Swedish Wikipedia (T157114). Deployment is done for all Wikivoyages except Russian, and all Wikibookses, Wikiversities, Wikinewses, Wikiquotes, and Wiktionaries, and for all Wikipedias except English, and German. (T136677)

Parsing[edit]

2017-04-26:

  • As part of addressing technical debt in MediaWiki, we're planning to replace Tidy with RemexHTML. But, this requires assessing the impact of the replacement on rendering of pages and ensuring editors have the necessary tools to fix up pages that might be impacted. As of April 3, 2017, we have enabled the ParserMigration extension on all wikis. This lets editors compare the Tidy version of the page with the RemexHTML version of the pages. With help from CLs, we will be reaching out to editors to start fixing templates and wikitext to render correctly with RemexHTML. Editors have already been fixing up some wikitext usage patterns that are deprecated. We have implemented a dashboard for editors to monitor the status of these patterns. To support editors doing these fixups, we are investigating solutions to a long-standing complaint about maintenance categories not getting populated in a timely manner. We are also exploring other solutions for some other potential changes when Tidy is replaced.
  • We're working with Reading and others on support for multi-script wikis (like Chinese), initially just for reading but later for editing too. This work is now awaiting review and related additional fixes before we can declare it completed. We made a bunch of fixes to the core parser to fix some edge cases. Based on visual diff testing of a patch that fixes some edge cases in the preprocessor, we are investigating the best solution to address them. One of the solutions we are considering is to fix up the markup on a small subset of pages that are affected by it. We have identified pages and wikitext patterns that need to be fixed up to render properly when preprocessor edge cases are fixed. A volunteer enwiki editor has been fixing up these patterns and (b)logging and documenting this on mediawiki.
  • We're working on several improvements for better support of media in Parsoid. Our initial work on image galleries is now complete and was deployed in Dec 2016. We updated our HTML spec for review by the Services team. The extension is also being reviewed by the VisualEditor team and might require additional fixes before being enabled for use inside VE. On April 26, we deployed code that now supports audio/video content in Parsoid. The markup that Parsoid emits is documented in Parsoid's output spec.
  • We have started working to finish up and provide to editors the output of the GSoC "linter" project to spot wikitext mistakes and issues for editors to fix. This should help improve the quality of the wikitext corpus and reduce errors for users. We are rolling this out to production in a phased manner. The linter extension is currently deployed on small and medium wikis. We had to temporarily roll back its deployment on large wikis after running into some performance impacts. We have addressed that and will roll it out next week. On the Parsoid side, we have been adding new linter categories to (a) more accurately identify wikitext to fix (b) identify wikitext patterns that will break when Tidy is replaced so that they can start fixing them. We have also been getting bug reports and feedback from editors who have been already fixing up pages based on linter output. So far, it looks like this is going to be an useful tool for editors. Based on feedback, we have improved documentation and guidance to editors about fixing markup issues exposed by the Linter extension.
  • We have also started work on doing mass visual diff testing comparing rendering of PHP parser and Parsoid output. Based on initial testing, we have identified a bunch of issues that could be fixed in Parsoid. This page will be continually updated (and phabricator tickets filed) as we examine test results and investigate the sources of rendering differences. The testing infrastructure will also let us track our progress in closing the rendering gaps between Parsoid and PHP parser.
  • We've paused our work on providing a system to balance templates, due to competing concerns.
  • We've paused work from earlier this year on reducing the bandwidth demands of read-mode pages by considering how to move data-mw out of inline HTML. After discussions between us, Services, VisualEditor, we collectively decided that there is no urgency to deploy this since Reading has its own version to strip this in production, and VE prefers the inlined data-mw in HTML. This will be revisited when we are closer to adopting Parsoid HTML for read views.

VisualEditor[edit]

2017-04-25:

  • Platform Our main work right now is supporting the Language team in using the visual editor platform as the technology underneath the Content Translation tool, consolidating and simplifying experiences for users and also reducing software complexity to reduce bugs and maintenance cost.
  • Visual diffs – We are looking for feedback on our tool giving users visual diffs inside the visual editor. This lets editors see the changes they and others have made without needing to know the intricacies of wikitext, augmenting the current two-column wikitext diff interface. We're making improvements we've identified, and eventually, we will provide it outside the editor too as an option when looking at diffs in any context.
  • Wikitext editing – We're also working to provide a unified, consistent editing interface between mobile and desktop Web, and between visual and wikitext editors. The initial version of the new wikitext editing mode was released as a desktop Beta Feature for opt-in testing in December. Work on expanding this for mobile Web, and adding further features for this, is underway. We expect to have completed sufficient additional work here to ask more users to try the tool out in June.
  • Other work
    • Our work to release the visual editor to all Wikipedias is now almost complete. There are now outstanding only the eight multi-script Wikipedias (including Chinese) which are technologically blocked, on which we're working with Parsing. There are also three other Wikipedias in incomplete deployment states (English, Spanish and Dutch), for which work is paused pending the new wikitext editor release, and won't resume until some point, probably in mid-2017.
    • Our work to release the visual editor to sister projects is now paused. Work on the blocker bugs to Wikisource working had stalled as we'd put resources elsewhere, but has recently resumed following the Developer Summit 2017. We hope to get this ready in mid-2017.
    • We paused work on the single edit tab integration on other wikis in June 2016, pending the new wikitext editor release, and so won't resume until some point later in 2017.

Contact[edit]

Discussion about major things happens on the ​wikitech-l mailing list. For specific IRC channels, see the team subpages linked above.

See also[edit]

Quarterly check-in notes and slides
Fiscal year Jul–Sep

"Q1"

Oct–Dec

"Q2"

Jan–Mar

"Q3"

Apr–Jun

"Q4"

FY2016–17 Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides To come
FY2015–16 Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides
FY2014–15 Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides
FY2013–14 Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides
FY2012–13 Minutes; Slides Minutes; Slides

Other documents[edit]