Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

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Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Neil Kandalgaonkar
Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
Wikipedia articles, yet):

   http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox

Post bugs here:

 
https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=MediaWiki%20extensions&component=VisualEditor

And here's the blog post, which puts it more in context.

 
http://blog.wikimedia.org/2011/12/13/help-test-the-first-visual-editor-developer-prototype/

This new editor was mostly written by Trevor Parscal and Inez
Korczyński, although lots of others have contributed. I've sat a desk
away from them for a few months and I have to say I'm extremely
impressed with what they've put together. If you're expecting Google
Docs, we're not there yet. But the basics are starting to solidify, and
it's getting easier and easier to add cool features.

Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
have *all* the fun?


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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Alolita Sharma-2
Awesome work - Trevor, Inez, Neil! Thanks to Brion, Gabriel and Roan for
all your work behind the scenes!

Look forward to everyone's feedback and bug reports to help us improve the
functionality.

-Alolita

On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 1:27 PM, Neil Kandalgaonkar <[hidden email]>wrote:

> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>   http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>
> Post bugs here:
>
>
>
> https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=MediaWiki%20extensions&component=VisualEditor
>
> And here's the blog post, which puts it more in context.
>
>
>
> http://blog.wikimedia.org/2011/12/13/help-test-the-first-visual-editor-developer-prototype/
>
> This new editor was mostly written by Trevor Parscal and Inez
> Korczyński, although lots of others have contributed. I've sat a desk
> away from them for a few months and I have to say I'm extremely
> impressed with what they've put together. If you're expecting Google
> Docs, we're not there yet. But the basics are starting to solidify, and
> it's getting easier and easier to add cool features.
>
> Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
> have *all* the fun?
>
>
> --
> Neil Kandalgaonkar (|  <[hidden email]>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikitech-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l




--
Alolita Sharma
Features Engineering
Wikimedia Foundation
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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Bergi
In reply to this post by Neil Kandalgaonkar
Neil Kandalgaonkar schrieb:
> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>     http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>
> Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
> have *all* the fun?

Very impressive. But I've seen no handling of template/preprocessor
syntax? I thought I had seen beginnings in that field around those
Future/Parser pages in the wiki, but does it work?

For over a year I have ideas how to build a Javascript live
preprocessor, but since I've studied the preprocessor code and written a
static js preprocessor I had no time to start it off. So now I'd really
love to help with that.

  Bergi

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

MZMcBride-2
Bergi wrote:

> Neil Kandalgaonkar schrieb:
>> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
>> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>>
>>     http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>>
>> Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
>> have *all* the fun?
>
> Very impressive. But I've seen no handling of template/preprocessor
> syntax? I thought I had seen beginnings in that field around those
> Future/Parser pages in the wiki, but does it work?

Agreed. Very nice work! :-)

It may make sense to have a list of "known limitations" somewhere to avoid
duplicate bugs/issue reports. There are already several feedback comments
describing issues that I'm almost positive were already known about by the
developers involved.

I'm very excited to see what comes next.

MZMcBride



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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Magnus Manske-2
On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 10:28 PM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Bergi wrote:
>> Neil Kandalgaonkar schrieb:
>>> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
>>> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>>>
>>>     http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>>>
>>> Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
>>> have *all* the fun?
>>
>> Very impressive. But I've seen no handling of template/preprocessor
>> syntax? I thought I had seen beginnings in that field around those
>> Future/Parser pages in the wiki, but does it work?
>
> Agreed. Very nice work! :-)
>
> It may make sense to have a list of "known limitations" somewhere to avoid
> duplicate bugs/issue reports. There are already several feedback comments
> describing issues that I'm almost positive were already known about by the
> developers involved.
>
> I'm very excited to see what comes next.
>
> MZMcBride

Yes, congrats! Works quite well and quick, considering the early stage.

/me is off to create bug report flood

Magnus

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Helder .
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 20:28, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:
> It may make sense to have a list of "known limitations" somewhere to avoid
> duplicate bugs/issue reports.

The following list may help with that:
https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/buglist.cgi?component=VisualEditor

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Lars Aronsson
In reply to this post by Neil Kandalgaonkar
On 12/13/2011 10:27 PM, Neil Kandalgaonkar wrote:
> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>     http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox

Something that looks like a working prototype is exactly where
LiquidThreads were two years ago, and we got all excited and
wanted so hard to try this for the Swedish community, and asked
to have it installed first in the Swedish Wikisource. We had to
wait for months until it was finally made available. But this
enthusiasm turned out to be a really big mistake. It never
worked, and the WMF never invested any effort in fixing the
problems. At last, in October this year, we gave up and are now
using old-style talk pages for all discussions again. This most
painful experience will make me advocate against any attempt
to use the Swedish projects as a pilot to try out the new visual
editor. I do mistakes, but I learn from them.

Your timeline (http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Visual_editor) does
mention the WMF annual plan for 2011-2012,
http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/2011-2012_Annual_Plan_Questions_and_Answers#What_are_the_2011-12_plan_targets.3F
which states "first small wiki default deployment by June 2012."
But the important part is the plan for the year 2012-2013, and
what effort and budget the WMF will spend on rescuing the roll-out,
even in the casethe main developers suddenly leave the project.

My mistake, from which I learned, was that I didn't ask for that
kind of plan, when I first heard about LiquidThreads. I couldn't
imagine that such a major usability improvement as getting rid
of indented talk pages could be a zero priority for the WMF, one
that was allowed to depend on the personal schedule of a single
main developer. Even today, as we lament the decline in
contributors, how can it not be important to fix LiquidThreads?


--
   Lars Aronsson ([hidden email])
   Aronsson Datateknik - http://aronsson.se



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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Olivier Beaton
Cool editor! Do you support collaboration via something like
http://code.google.com/p/google-mobwrite/ ? In any event, great work, hope
it sees the light of day.
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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Rusty Burchfield
In reply to this post by Neil Kandalgaonkar
On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 1:27 PM, Neil Kandalgaonkar <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>   http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox

This looks really cool. :-)

What browsers/versions are you targeting?

Out of curiosity, what is making the (un)toggle operations on the
right take so long?  Actually, it looks like you are marking up
individual lines of text.  I suppose that is time consuming.  Why is
that necessary?

Will there be a toggle for editing wiki text directly (I see wikitext
display is already there)?

~Rusty

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Erik Moeller-4
On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 4:34 PM, Rusty Burchfield
<[hidden email]> wrote:
> Out of curiosity, what is making the (un)toggle operations on the
> right take so long?

From http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Visual_editor/Feedback#Fantastic.21_A_few_points.
:

"Oddly, I don't see this with Firefox, and it comes down to Webkit
taking a ridiculous (like 10x) amount of time to give a result for
domElement.clientWidth (which measures the size of an element on
screen). But yes, we are looking into it for sure. --Trevor Parscal
22:08, 13 December 2011 (UTC)"

--
Erik Möller
VP of Engineering and Product Development, Wikimedia Foundation

Support Free Knowledge: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Roan Kattouw-2
In reply to this post by Rusty Burchfield
On Wed, Dec 14, 2011 at 1:34 AM, Rusty Burchfield
<[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Tue, Dec 13, 2011 at 1:27 PM, Neil Kandalgaonkar <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
>> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>>
>>   http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>
> This looks really cool. :-)
>
> What browsers/versions are you targeting?
>
> Out of curiosity, what is making the (un)toggle operations on the
> right take so long?
AFAIK this is a known bug specific to WebKit-based browsers. It
doesn't happen in Firefox.

> Actually, it looks like you are marking up
> individual lines of text.  I suppose that is time consuming.  Why is
> that necessary?
>
The edit surface is *entirely* implemented in JS, almost nothing is
done by the browser. Breaking lines is one of the many things that's
done in JS.

> Will there be a toggle for editing wiki text directly (I see wikitext
> display is already there)?
>
We can't implement that right now because the wikitext -> WikiDOM (the
model used by the editor) isn't ready yet.

Roan

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Neil Kandalgaonkar
In reply to this post by Olivier Beaton
On 12/13/11 4:33 PM, Olivier Beaton wrote:
> Cool editor! Do you support collaboration via something like
> http://code.google.com/p/google-mobwrite/ ? In any event, great work, hope
> it sees the light of day.

We've done experiments with collaboration. We have no official mandate
to do a collaborative editor, the only thing we're officially working on
is a GUI editor.

But, we've spent a lot of time studying Wave and Etherpad, and we're
trying to ensure that our transaction model would allow for live
collaboration. It is difficult to see what this would mean for Wikipedia
exactly, but I think it could help pass on Wiki values and practices if
people could collaborate in real time.

We will probably never support live updates of the page you are looking
at though. This would be collaboration by users who join some kind of
editing session. The security of that session is another unsolved problem.

--
Neil Kandalgaonkar (|  <[hidden email]>

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Neil Harris
In reply to this post by Neil Kandalgaonkar
On 13/12/11 21:27, Neil Kandalgaonkar wrote:

> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>     http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>
> Post bugs here:
>
>
> https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=MediaWiki%20extensions&component=VisualEditor
>
> And here's the blog post, which puts it more in context.
>
>
> http://blog.wikimedia.org/2011/12/13/help-test-the-first-visual-editor-developer-prototype/
>

That is really cool; at long last, the WYSIWYG editor is not just on its
way, but looking really good!

Once the wikitext parser (which is, of course, the hard part) is ready
to be bolted in, that should give a big improvement in Wikipedia's
accessibility for new editors -- almost everyone knows how to use a word
processor.

-- N.


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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Jay Ashworth-2
----- Original Message -----
> From: "Neil Harris" <[hidden email]>

> On 13/12/11 21:27, Neil Kandalgaonkar wrote:

> That is really cool; at long last, the WYSIWYG editor is not just on
> its way, but looking really good!
>
> Once the wikitext parser (which is, of course, the hard part) is ready
> to be bolted in, that should give a big improvement in Wikipedia's
> accessibility for new editors -- almost everyone knows how to use a
> word processor.

Yup.  And they use them to write email.

<pessimist>
Which is just as bad an idea as using them to write wikitext.
</pessimist>

Cheers,
-- jra
--
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Designer                     The Things I Think                       RFC 2100
Ashworth & Associates     http://baylink.pitas.com         2000 Land Rover DII
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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by Neil Harris
On 14 December 2011 02:57, Neil Harris <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Once the wikitext parser (which is, of course, the hard part) is ready
> to be bolted in, that should give a big improvement in Wikipedia's
> accessibility for new editors -- almost everyone knows how to use a word
> processor.

As you say, it's the wikitext bit that's hard. Without that, a wysiwyg
editor is reasonably simple (we could have just used the one Wikia
created, perhaps with a few modifications). The challenge is having
pages that can be edited both by wysiwyg and in wikitext without the
two tripping over each other. That's why I'm going to keep the cork
firmly in the champagne bottle until we're asked to test that bit
(I'll keep the bottle on ice, though, because this looks like a great
start!).

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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Gerard Meijssen-3
In reply to this post by Neil Kandalgaonkar
Hoi,
While testing the visual editor I changed my language in my preferences to
Tamil and it insist on the Latin script for entering text.

When it does allow for other scripts I will be very happy to open the
floodgates of Indic language users for you :) . I am sure that they will be
more eager to test the visual editor in a timely manner. This would be a
win-win situation because the visual editor seems to me to be a great
usability improvement

Also, consider the use of Narayam and WebFonts on the MediaWiki wiki. This
is necessary for an Indic environment and consequently testing in the Indic
scripts and languages.
Thanks,
      Gerard

On 13 December 2011 22:27, Neil Kandalgaonkar <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Here's the demo, where you can edit some canned texts (but not actual
> Wikipedia articles, yet):
>
>   http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:VisualEditorSandbox
>
> Post bugs here:
>
>
>
> https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=MediaWiki%20extensions&component=VisualEditor
>
> And here's the blog post, which puts it more in context.
>
>
>
> http://blog.wikimedia.org/2011/12/13/help-test-the-first-visual-editor-developer-prototype/
>
> This new editor was mostly written by Trevor Parscal and Inez
> Korczyński, although lots of others have contributed. I've sat a desk
> away from them for a few months and I have to say I'm extremely
> impressed with what they've put together. If you're expecting Google
> Docs, we're not there yet. But the basics are starting to solidify, and
> it's getting easier and easier to add cool features.
>
> Hey MediaWiki developers, surely you're not going to let Trevor and Inez
> have *all* the fun?
>
>
> --
> Neil Kandalgaonkar (|  <[hidden email]>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikitech-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l
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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Gabriel Wicke-2
In reply to this post by Bergi
> Very impressive. But I've seen no handling of template/preprocessor
> syntax? I thought I had seen beginnings in that field around those
> Future/Parser pages in the wiki, but does it work?

The current tokenizer handles template syntax well, but template
expansion is work in progress. Doing the expansion on the token stream
should allow us to render unbalanced templates like the table start /
row / table end combinations.

Representing these unbalanced templates in an expanded state in the
editor is difficult though, so I guess the most likely solution is to
wrap these templates into an opaque object editable with a specialized
widget.

> For over a year I have ideas how to build a Javascript live
> preprocessor, but since I've studied the preprocessor code and written a
> static js preprocessor I had no time to start it off. So now I'd really
> love to help with that.

We try to do without a textual preprocessor, and instead move most
preprocessor tasks to transformations on a token stream produced by a
grammar-based tokenizer [1]. Template expansion is already implemented
for a tree structure, but needs to be ported to handle tokens. Many
other parser tasks are listed in the todo section of [1].

I am currently working on a conversion of HTML DOM to WikiDom, with
template expansion planned next. Feel free to dive into the code and
tackle any of the tasks on the list ;)

Gabriel

[1]: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Future/Parser_development


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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Daniel Barrett-3
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
Thomas Dalton writes:
>The challenge is having pages that can be edited both by wysiwyg and in wikitext without the
>two tripping over each other.

To address this, I think any visual editor project needs to decide which audience it's serving:

- The average user
- The average user AND power users

If you're serving power users, the visual editor must perform powerful edits more quickly & easily than typing wikitext directly.  If you're serving only the average user, you don't have to worry about this, but complex wikitext (templates & parser functions/tags) needs to be protected against breakage by the average user.

DanB


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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Thomas Dalton
On Dec 14, 2011 3:16 PM, "Daniel Barrett" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Thomas Dalton writes:
> >The challenge is having pages that can be edited both by wysiwyg and in
wikitext without the
> >two tripping over each other.
>
> To address this, I think any visual editor project needs to decide which
audience it's serving:
>
> - The average user
> - The average user AND power users
>
> If you're serving power users, the visual editor must perform powerful
edits more quickly & easily than typing wikitext directly.  If you're
serving only the average user, you don't have to worry about this, but
complex wikitext (templates & parser functions/tags) needs to be protected
against breakage by the average user.

The issue is that, even if power users don't use the new interface they
still need to be able to use the old one to edit the same articles. If the
wikitext created by the visual editor is unnecessarily complicated and
unreadable (like the html produced by ms frontpage, for instance) then
there is problem. Similarly, the visual editor needs to be able to parse
even quite strangely written wikitext.
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Re: Help us test the VisualEditor prototype

Thomas Morton
>
> The issue is that, even if power users don't use the new interface they
> still need to be able to use the old one to edit the same articles. If the
> wikitext created by the visual editor is unnecessarily complicated and
> unreadable (like the html produced by ms frontpage, for instance) then
> there is problem. Similarly, the visual editor needs to be able to parse
> even quite strangely written wikitext.


^^ This, 100 times over :)

Writing a visual editor is painfully hard. I've just finished one for a
current project after we evaluated what felt like a billion pre-existing
alternatives. Without fail they all suffered in that their output left a *
lot* to be desired.

The key thing to remember is that the output should be indistinguishable
from what a power editor would have written.

And cover all the edge cases (because with millions of articles we have
lots of those).

However; this looks an interesting start. I like the simplicity.

Tom
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