Wikimedia Discovery/Meetings/Search retrospective 2016-06-01

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Covering whatever has happened related to the team since the last retro (2016-04-18)

  • Team offsite
  • Tomasz leaving; Katie joining
  • Prep for Dan's vacation
  • TextCat A/B test
  • ElasticSearch upgrade
  • Discernatron
  • Search off-site
  • Data mapping (did this happen between the last retro and this one?) -> it seems to be in the "What went well", so I guess yes... but I was the one that put it in there too :-p

Review action items from before[edit]

  • Erik: Post action plans with rough timelines for finishing Q4 goals
    • Team has shared understanding; nothing was posted. We won't carry this action item forward.
  • Erik: Advance the conversation about improving browser tests
    • Had various conversations, so Yes Done. It had been running well until yesterday (machine config issue unrelated to earlier problems).
  • Chris: See if there are any past tests that weren't announced that should have been
    • Didn't find any. Calling this one Yes Done.
  • Chris: Update Discovery page on Mw.org to reflect q4 goals - Yes Done
  • Chris: Request feedback on search team draft page - Yes Done

What went well?[edit]

  • Tomasz has been gone two days and nothing exploded (yet) (well, it was a holiday weekend ;) )
  • The search offsite was productive and fun, and it was great to see everyone who could come +1
  • Elasticsearch upgrade is so far relatively painless
  • Guillaume is getting better at doing full elasticsearch cluster restarts
  • Implementing feature requests for Reading is going well *
  • Data mapping went well and was straightforward for us to do+1*

What could we improve?[edit]

  • Monitor github activity on our plugins: e.g. https://github.com/wikimedia/search-highlighter/issues/18 **
  • We can't properly test major production changes to search infrastructure because we can't duplicate LVS ***
  • Didn't notice breakage of elasticsearch logging in beta, noticed after initial production rollout
  • Not sure that I (Guillaume) give enough visibility on what I'm doing, since I'm split between different teams. Not always easy to jump from one project to the other.
  • Didn't notice that live updating for completion suggester was removed from Elasticsearch 2
  • Haven't done much analysis beyond a brief high level on the swap2and3 test *
  • Some issues with the data collected for the textcat test. We were able to work through it, but could use better processes to validate before shipping+1

What else should be noted?[edit]

  • Many issues with WDQS, we did a postmortem (Stas & Guillaume - Thanks for taking the time!). We have a few actions items on that
  • Discernatron functionality is good; "usability" is less good (soooo many results)—overall holds much promise ***
  • As we look toward Q1 how and where can the community liaison help? - selfish prod to think of me. :) ****

Discussion:[edit]

  • As we look toward Q1 how and where can the community liaison help? - selfish prod to think of me. :) ****
  • Discernatron functionality is good; "usability" is less good (soooo many results)—overall holds much promise ***
    • DG: Combination of being busy and lack of design support?
    • EB: I have been busy.
    • DG: Maybe host a lunch in SF where people can eat if they help with Discernatron?
  • We can't properly test major production changes to search infrastructure because we can't duplicate LVS ***
    • EB: We have discussed outside this meeting; things are moving; just an annoyance
    • GL: Not a major problem. It's not too bad testing in production.

Action Items[edit]

  • Chris: post the link to his "what technical collaboration team does" presentation
  • Chris: Chris and Erik should talk about implications of interwiki search indices
  • Trey & Deb: Chris needs to be aware of the ? at the end of queries
  • Erik: Figure out a plan to reliably monitor github (David and Guillaume have started to watch it)

Retro of retro:[edit]

  • needs to be longer than 1/2 an hour *****