This page is a combination of feedback from a survey sent to participants and ideas from the organizers.
This page will focus heavily on improvements for next time and things that went poorly. However remember that 97.5% of the people that responded to the feedback survey stated that their overall experience with the hackathon was either "Positive" or "Very Positive."
Suggested changes for the next Wikimedia Hackathon
(Main suggestions for next time, more coming soon)
We will continue to use the buddy system during hackathons, they will be optional not mandatory. We will add buddy system participation questions to registration.
There will be an opt-in during registration for name, interests and contact information to be put on a wiki so participants can talk in advance of hackathon and self organize.
The opening session of the hackathon will have time for project pitches and allow people to find others working on the same thing
We will do our best to have better wifi at the next hackathon
We will have better food options for vegetarians at the next hackathon
Meeting new people, spending time working with people they know, and discussing new ideas
The location, the city, the venue/venue atmosphere, the outdoor area
This section is based on the fill-in-the-blank/comment sections of the feedback form. Some of these comments will be contradictory. We are mostly trying to include common themes and issues that were felt by groups of people. This section is a bit more subjective than the #Data section below and suggestions may be paraphrased and combined with each other.
(improvements to this section coming soon)
Information from Newcomers, how could we have supported them better?
More sessions with information on how to actually get started instead of just an overview of what is possible would be appreciated
Intro sessions for each of the main areas of work would have been appreciated, or some easy way for a newcomer to understand all of their options.
Request for documentation about what to expect if attending a hackathon for the first time. (This has already been mostly completed since the hackathon here)
The buddy system was helpful, WMF staff could have been more productive in reaching out to new volunteers instead of the reverse
People were available and receptive to helping newcomers, but sometimes it was hard to figure out who to ask for help
Messy, should have set clearer expectations for presenters
Please enforce time limit
The demo session was too long, make it shorter or separate by subject area.
Cool to see what others are working on
Liked the focus on demoable projects
Do this in the main room so that people can keep working during if they want and if it takes a long time people wont mind.
If it is going to be difficult to connect laptops to the projector, people should be encouraged to pre-record their demo and play it during the closing or there should be a rule of publicly hosted demos only. Don’t make exceptions.
Would be nice if experienced participants would reach out more proactively
Share a room with your buddy (optional)
Pair people up with projects instead of people, that way you can meet multiple new people in a structured way
Create an easy and positive way to hand off buddies if the fit does not work out, also provide documentation on best practices for mentorship and what to do in situations where things are not going right.
Add buddy system to registration form, and publicize information to help people pair themselves by publicly providing more information about intended work at hackathon
Buddies might distract mentors for getting their work done or collaborating with other people
Newbie focused social events so they can meet each other too
Birds of a Feather (BoF) board instead of buddy system
Some people liked that the venue was far away from downtown. It forced people to stick together and stay around the same location which lead to more interaction. Liked that the venue was in nature and not in a busy place.
Other people wished the venue had been closer to the city, it hard to get downtown.
People's opinions of their own biggest accomplishments during the hackathon:
Unfortunately nothing very newsworthy, mainly lots of smaller things. Was happy to meet many new people and hear about their experience on translation issues.
fixed one of my oldest gadgets that is used more than 8'000 times on several wikis, including enwiki and dewiki
Running 2 MediaWiki-Vagrant install parties and helping an additional large number of people via irc and face to face troubleshooting.
Introducing many people.
Meeting with the other 3rd party users and getting some organisation around our efforts.
Accessibility settings gadget.
* Natural language parsing to generate SPARQL queries
Meeting people and discussing everyone's projects!
We deployed revscoring for frwiki in time to demo it at the showcase.
We put together an actionable plan to better represent the MediaWiki community and further a strong relationship with the WMF and related projects. We're going to present our findings at Wikimania.
Releasing next pywikibot version Creating a usable documentation system for pywikibot
Talks with various people and learnt things about MediaWiki internals
Having https://github.com/Commonists/SurfaceImageContentGap already working and production reports :)
Adding coordinates to ~2000 listed buildings on the Dutch Wikipedia
More than 10 Visual Editor bug reports filled.
Turning some co-workers into friends, probably.
Wikipedia web application (no phabricator task) http://chimeces.com/webkipedia/
Presenting the final product at the demo.
meeting new people :)
MediaWiki 1.25 general release
Working mockups, as a complete newcomer to Java and Android, that was a big accomplishment.
The Wikipedia for Apple Watch app!
Mentoring my buddy (which is what most of my effort went into). In hindsight that was probably not an optimal use of time though.
Joining the web of trust
Disentangling a nasty part of code that needed to be fixed for a long time.
I'm not a frontend developer, so I was pretty proud of the extensiondistributor UI updates.
meeting researchers getting oversight about actual problems and projects
Minimum Viable Product for Newsletter extension agreed with GSoC mentor, student, and stakeholders present at the event.
I helped a newby get started w media wiki. Also connected him w Android folks for getting his Wikipedia app Android dev environment set up.
Finally having documentation online
I could finalize on how the Newsletter extension I am mentoring should take form. I could interact with various stake holders of the extension, got to know various test cases - and understood how misleading our initial idea on the same was. Apart from that - meeting other devs, exploring part of the Lyon city - and many more ;)
Simply getting a new app written in Swift that actually sort of worked!
write sql to fetch names in all available languages from OSM
MediaWiki Stakeholders now have an action plan and a lot of motivation. See results in Mexico
Projects that people saw that impressed them the most:
The services team stuff was really impressive!
1.25 release :)
Wikidata: natural language to SPARQL translator
SPARQL queries for Wikidata
The mobile UI that used Elastic Search's "morelike" to enable rabbit hole digging.
The Mutt-style C CLI interface to Flow was awesome. And from a total group of newcomers too!
Actually useful - Various things including minimal web interface for Wikipedia. Cool factor - C Flow UI
pywikibot - COI of course ;) Wikidata Mobile
Many many nice projects at the closing session. I probably liked the natural text to SPARQL, videojs and the Apple watch thing most
Loved the hover-over revision history.
Implement gl-vector in-browser rendering
Possibly that pywikibot converted to json i18n.
Apple Watch project Maps for Wikipedia
Forrestbot is very very helpful
The blame tooltip project The presentation by librarians without borders was very moving imo.
Ok, that Apple Watch thing was neat, but these three were the best. https://github.com/geekuillaume/wiki-hoaxbuster https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/p/Forrestbot/feed/ https://doc.wikimedia.org/pywikibot/
Everything done by the French students.
the Graph extension and MW at NASA
There were too many to say.
Sorting out our train deployment workflow and having a rough consensus about what we want to achieve.
Wikipedia on a smart watch
The userscript for revision "blame" functionality was probably the coolest thing I saw.
Of the projects that was showcased - I liked the Video JS player and the Mediawiki on Apple watch. Everything in https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T96378 looks equally great though!
The natural language SPARQL query system
* Wikidata SPARQL endpoint
sparql support in askplathypus
There were a lot of cool projects, I think the apps ones were all great, and Joaquin's mobile app is a really cool demonstration of where Wikipedia's web UI/UX could go.
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T100106 (The coolest demo was by far the natural language based wikidata query interface, but I'll hold back judgement until I see that actually performing well in real-world usage :)
Created at hackathon: https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T100315 Created earlier: The extensions created/presented by the NASA guys, especially https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:WatchAnalytics
(planning to reformat this section, but if you are reading it now the data is formatted as: Answer, # of people responding with that answer, % of responses that answer got out of everyone who answered that question)