Currently, MediaWiki discussion pages are unstructured free-form wikitext pages. There are many disadvantages to this system, including but not limited to:
- Lack of obvious threading
- Lack of consistent user identification
- Lack of intelligent archiving
- Lack of sorting
- High difficulty for new/inexperienced users to engage in discussions
- Inability to "watch" specific discussions; user must watch entire page (which may be sub-optimal).
With LiquidThreads, we attempt to solve these problems while bringing new features to the table:
- A more "standard" approach to threaded discussions, greatly enhancing the ability for new users to engage. This feature includes:
- Replies are nested within discussions.
- Automatic signing of posts.
- A single "reply to" button and other mechanisms to aid inexperienced users instead of simply throwing them into wikitext.
- User avatars.
- Ability to sort discussions by differing criteria.
- Individual discussions (and posts within the discussion) are treated as single pages (which potentially allows for categorization, individual watching/unwatching, etc.).
- Automatic archiving: older discussions naturally "fall off" the visible page, retaining permanent links.
The ultimate goal of LiquidThreads is to encourage community health, editor participation, and editor retention.
- "Further deployments of LiquidThreads are indefinitely on hold because we don't have the resources to support it." – Andrew Garrett (2012-03-19)
- User requirements:
- Specifications: (request at LiquidThreads 3.0/Design issues
- Software design document:
- Test plan:
- Documentation plan:
- User interface design document: LiquidThreads 3.0/Design
- Task management: Open issues on "LiquidThreads" component
- Release management plan:
- Communications plan:
- Status updates