- This content is prepared for inclusion in the November 2013 Wikimedia Foundation report. It is a shorter and simpler version of the full Wikimedia engineering report for November 2013 that does not assume specialized technical knowledge.
Major news in November include:
In November, the VisualEditor team continued to improve the stability and performance of this new editing interface, and add new features. The code was updated three times. Most of the team's focus was on fixing bugs, and on some major infrastructure changes, splitting out reusable code from VisualEditor to make it available to other teams. Much of the team travelled to the Open Source Language Summit in Pune, India to learn more about how to improve VisualEditor for a variety of languages, scripts, users and systems.
Thanks to two new members of the QA team, the automated browser tests have expanded in breadth and depth of coverage. Work continued on major new features like full rich copy-and-paste from external sources, a dialog for quickly adding citation templated references, and a tool to insert characters not available on users' keyboards. The editor was made available by default on just over 100 additional Wikipedias as part of the continuing roll-out. VisualEditor was also enabled for opt-in testing on Swedish Wiktionary and Wikimedia Sweden's wiki, the first time it has been available on a non-Wikipedia production wiki.
Work also continued on Parsoid, the parsing program that converts wikitext to annotated HTML to make VisualEditor work. Major changes were made to the specification and representation of elements. Due to bugs in external code used by the team, tests were added to catch similar issue automatically in the future. Editing support for categories was improved and several wikitext corruption issues were fixed. Work continued to test the performance of a system to store HTML and related information to improve performance of Parsoid.
Pre-registration user lifecycle (presentation slide from the Growth team's quarterly review meeting)
In November, the Notifications feature was added to the German and Italian Wikipedias, completing the worldwide release of this tool. Community response to Notifications has been generally favorable on all wikis. While feature development has now ended for this project, we expect new notifications and features to be developed by other teams in coming months.
The Flow team finished the basic features of this new wiki discussion system. We made Flow work with the watchlist and added history view for boards, topics and posts. We asked for community feedback and testing, and prepared for release to production wikis in December by working on Operations and Security needs.
The Growth team primarily worked on reorganizing the GuidedTour and GettingStarted extensions, including development of an computer program interface (API) that will be used to show editing tasks to users across a variety of devices.
The team also worked on the anonymous editor acquisition and Wikipedia article creation projects, by taking part in a community discussion about a possible Draft namespace for articles, identifying user needs and preparing the code changes.
A few members of the Growth team attended the Wikimedia Diversity Conference and presented on how diversity related to their work.
During the last month, the Wikipedia Zero team monitored the launch of Wikipedia Zero via text (USSD/SMS) in partnership with Airtel Kenya and Praekelt for the first pilot of the program. The team also continued to improve and simplify the process and files to configure Zero partners, enhanced performance and added safeguards to avoid previous issues.
The A/B test done by the Mobile web projects team resulted in an Edit Guider, now available on the mobile site. Other features like an interface overhaul and better user profiles are currently being tested in beta.