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Feedback request: Version 1.0 Prototype

9
PPelberg (WMF) (talkcontribs)

The prototype of the New Discussion Tool is ready. We would value you trying it out and sharing what you think could be improved about how it functions.

When you are ready to share what you have to say, please do so by adding a new topic on this mediawiki.org talk page by doing the following:

  1. "Start a new topic" on this talk page
  2. Name this new topic: "V1.0 Prototype feedback: YOUR USERNAME"
  3. Write the answers to you have to the questions listed under the "Sharing feedback" heading below.

You can try the prototype by clicking the link below on a desktop computer: https://patchdemo.wmflabs.org/wikis/3e14959a196db0f7b0c32a35c99dc0fc/w/index.php/Project:Teahouse

The link above will take you to a clone of en.wiki's Teahouse page on a test wiki. This test wiki is NOT connected to any other wiki and its contents will eventually be deleted. So please, experiment freely!

Sharing feedback

These are the questions we would value you answering:

  1. Compare the prototype to the current Add topic experience: are there particular workflows you use the existing Add topic / New section workflow for and that the prototype does not support?
  2. What do you wish was different about the prototype?
  3. What do you appreciate about the prototype?
PPelberg (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Note: we are using en.wiki's Teahouse page as the test page because it contains a variety of components we want to ensure the New Discussion Tool works well with: custom calls to action for opening the section=new page, content that is preloaded into that section=new page, a page that contains lots of content, etc.

PPelberg (WMF) (talkcontribs)
Evolution and evolvability (talkcontribs)

I like it. It's already an improvement over the standard "add section" option. A few limitations:

  • The title section seemed to have to load before the description box
  • The title section loading was about 5 seconds
  • Text entered into the title section before loading has finished was cleared when loading completes
  • For IP editors, the description section defaults to the 'source' tab of the interface rather than 'visual'
  • The final section heading only includes an "[edit source]" link rather than "[edit source] [add topic]"
  • Would be lovely to have a whole button down at the bottom below the bottom comment for adding new topic
  • Will it work with preload text links?
PPelberg (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thank you for trying out the tool and writing up this feedback, @Evolution and evolvability. It looks like Ed (@Esanders (WMF)) commented on many of the points you raised in the comment he posted here.

Below are responses to, what I understood to be, the remaining pieces of feedback. Please let me know if I've missed anything.

Text entered into the title section before loading has finished was cleared when loading completes

This is helpful to know and I suspect this will not be a problem when people are using the tool on production wikis where the tool's two input fields should load faster and at the same time.

For IP editors, the description section defaults to the 'source' tab of the interface rather than 'visual'

I suspect this has to do with the test wikis' settings. For context, the text input mode people see when opening the New Discussion Tool for the first time should follow the same logic that determines this behavior for the Reply Tool. See T250523.

With the above said, I'm glad you brought this up. It's led me to file this ticket (T270685) to ensure the New Discussion Tool has been configured to work as described above. and also account for scenarios in which someone has used the Reply Tool before and not the New Discussion Tool.

Would be lovely to have a whole button down at the bottom below the bottom comment for adding new topic

Making it easier to locate and access the button/link/etc. for starting a new conversation is something we think is a priority as well. We plan to work on this as part of a future iteration of the tool. In the meantime, we are collecting examples of different ways wikis and people have solved this problem in T267444. If you can think of others, we'd value you linking to them here or in the Phabricator task.

Tacsipacsi (talkcontribs)

Text entered into the title section before loading has finished was cleared when loading completes

This is helpful to know and I suspect this will not be a problem when people are using the tool on production wikis where the tool's two input fields should load faster and at the same time.

It will usually not be a problem. The possibility for an edge case is always there: slow device, slow/lagging internet connection, unusually high load on servers etc. I was just about to file a new task for this; losing data because of race conditions should always be avoided, just hoping that the race condition will not occur is too risky. With manual throttling I managed to reach about 10-12 seconds of delay between the appearance of the title and of the body, and I don’t think it would be much better on a production wiki (as most of this delay comes from the throttling, i.e. the slow network, not from the server).

Matma Rex (talkcontribs)

Text entered into the title section before loading has finished was cleared when loading completes

Thanks for pointing this out, this will be fixed (Gerrit patch 623117 patchset 34).

ESanders (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thanks for the feedback, here’s some more info on some of the points you raised:

  • Being slow: the demo servers are quite slow, we don’t expect this to be a problem on production servers.
  • Source mode: we have to use source mode when a preload is provided as many preloads expect source mode, e.g. they provide instructions in HTML comments, or prompt the user to fill in a substituted template. Preload links on the page should work.
  • The [add topic] section link is not a standard MediaWiki feature, but a gadget provided on some wikis.
Ad Huikeshoven (talkcontribs)

Both options "Ask question" and "kopje toevoegen" (add section tab) jump to bottom of the page. They do first open a box with "Topic" in gray preloaded, and after a while open a second input box, defaulted to source editing. Switching to visual mode took a while. I understand the legacy distinction between the two boxes. Will any junior contributor ever understand this distinction? Finally, there was no inputbox open at the bottom of the page without pushing a button. I did expect one.

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