Technical communications/What you can do


Below are self-contained tasks that anyone is welcome to take on. If you'd like more information about anything on this page, Guillaume will be happy to help.

Help write the weekly technical newsletter[edit]

Tech news is a technical newsletter published weekly, aimed to inform Wikimedians about technical changes that are likely to affect them.

The newsletter is put together collaboratively by people who add relevant and newsworthy items to the upcoming issue of the newsletter. You can participate by adding items to the next issue.

Write a discovery report[edit]

Every community member tends to forget how and why they came to join that community, and what hurdles they had to overcome.

Experienced users tend to forget the obstacles they first faced, the frustrations they encountered while going through the documentation, the confusion when faced with new tools and processes.

It's incredibly valuable for a community to be reminded of that newcomer experience. Not only does it help identify pain points of newcomers that the community can reduce, but it can also be an eye-opening experience that challenges long-established anti-patterns.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to:

  • explore MediaWiki's and Wikimedia's technical world;
  • write down your feelings / impressions / frustrations / pleasant and unpleasant surprises with the code / community / tools as you explore;
  • organize your notes into a short candid essay;
  • create an account on this wiki, post your essay on your user page and let Guillaume know.

Your exploration can focus on a specific area (e.g.: setting up a development environment, finding documentation about a specific part of the software, translating the software, etc.) or be more general.

The best essays will be featured on the official Wikimedia Tech blog and advertised on our official social media profiles (Wikipedia and Wikimedia accounts on twitter, facebook and Google+).

Translate technical documentation[edit]

The pages listed below would benefit from translations into more languages. If you can write in a language that isn't yet available, consider translating them:


Write technical articles on the Wikimedia blog[edit]

You can write blog posts about Wikimedia technology that will be published on the official Wikimedia blog. Our community will benefit from more knowledge, information sharing and discussion of tech subjects.

Possible topics include:

  • historical perspective / backstory / evolution of a specific feature
  • technical overview of how a specific feature works
  • sociological posts about our technical community (possibly using Community metrics)
  • explain part of our technology (software, hardware, etc.) in Plain English so people without deep technical knowledge can understand it.

Multilingual posts are welcome but we'll generally ask that there be an English version as well. Both "popular science" and complex technical posts are welcome.

You can already start a draft, and let Guillaume know when you'd like it reviewed and published. Posts will be advertised through our official social media channels once published.


One-off tasks[edit]

While the previously listed tasks happen are recurring, those below only need to happen once.

  • Add support for <nowiki> tags in the Lua module for Tech news. (Bonus: do the same for m:Module:Assemble multilingual message) This would probably involve replacing the opening and closing tags with some other text before the whole text is parsed, then replace them back after the parse.
  • Transwiki-import and localize w:Template:Thank you. This would involve transwiki-importing the template onto a wiki where it doesn't yet exist, then move it to a localized name (leaving a redirect from the English name) and translating/localizing it or finding someone to do it.