Topic on User talk:Qgil-WMF

Support Low-Budget Wikis

Johnywhy (talkcontribs)


Hope you're the right person to contact. Found your info through these pages, suggested by somebody on phabricator.

I'm building a wiki on a shared webhost, who doesn't support node.js.

Of course i love the new VisualEditor, but without node.js, we cannot use it.

Meantime, WikiEditor is really showing it's age. Other wysiwyg editors, like TinyMCE, CKEditor, etc are buggy or no longer supported (mostly the latter).

I strongly believe MediaWiki's social mission compels you to support low-budget wikis. But if WikiEditor continues to be lame and neglected, while VisualEditor gets all the attention, then you're being elitist, and neglecting MediaWiki's social mission.

Looking forward to your reply.


Johny Why

Qgil-WMF (talkcontribs)

Hi, I have been thinking about your question and what comes is my personal answer. I am not "the right person to contact" but maybe I can help you.

When it comes to low-budget projects, I think the question to be asked is not why depending on JavaScript or node.js to offer a good user experience, but why self-hosting. Running your own server is going to be resource intensive always (where resource includes not only money, also time). Meanwhile, MediaWiki's strength is to be run in a wiki farm (because Wikimedia is at the end a huge wiki farm).

There are wiki farms out there offering free wikis, also with VisualEditor and/or decent editors. Would this be an option for you?

Johnywhy (talkcontribs)

If it's configurable as I need, and going to exist for years, then yes.

I tried the following for a while, and it wasn't bad.

But self-hosting offers more of the options I need, and I know it's not going anywhere.

Note, running a private server is resource intensive, as you mentioned. But shared hosting is less so.


Qgil-WMF (talkcontribs)

With JavaScript spreading all over and with virtual hosting prices falling, I wonder whether using JavaScript is equivalent to "being elitist", and whether low-cost really is really equivalent to no JavaScript.

When it comes to the Wikimedia Foundation, the priority is to improve the user experience of editors, including those without the luxury of a desktop or high bandwidth. Plans go in the direction of offering a better mobile editing experience, because for millions of people low-cost really means regular access to mobile but less so to a desktop.

I guess this explains why the Foundation is investing in VisualEditor and mobile editing via web and native apps, and why there are no plans to develop the legacy editors further.

But anyway, as said all these are just my personal opinions. My talk page and myself are in fact not the best to provide the best informed answer. If you want to discuss this further, I recommend you to do it directly with the developers at the wikitech-l mailing list.

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