Wikinews:Water cooler/technical

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The Hot Cat widget......even when I'm signed in, every time I try to add a throws me into an editing screen. What gives?? --Bddpaux (talk) 22:26, 10 June 2014 (UTC)

Also, the "review progress" gadget — the thing that turns parts of the Wikinews logo red when there are articles waiting for review — is turning the logo all red (which should only happen if there's a long review queue; ten or more, iirc). --Pi zero (talk) 23:01, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Fixed the review progress gadget (Caused by a combination of and not being robust in how apilib2.js reads XML). The hot cat thing is weird, not sure what that's about. Especially because its using same code as commons, commons has same version of mediawiki as we do, and the thing works on commons. Bawolff 23:49, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Done The hot cat issue was caused by changes in how MediaWiki makes its edit form. It was fixed by [1], but that change didn't propogate to wikinews very quickly due to caching. It should work now though. Bawolff 23:56, 10 June 2014 (UTC)

The entire site is, at this moment, almost entirely non-functional.

The search box is screwed up; afaics I can't access any page that isn't in mainspace (I tried SpecialːPrefixIndex and TemplateːLead article 4, and was told neither exists and offered the opportunity to create them.

The edit box I'm typing in is also royally screwed; I can't type colons in order to indent this comment, and I can't type the square brakets to specify links. I also can't sign this post because tilde doesn't work.

Okay, I've got things working again. Looks like the UI was deliberately trying to prevent me from being able to type anything, by going into some sort of international alphabet mode, but I've managed, for the moment at least, to convince it to use "native keyboard mode". That could be something bizarre I did by accident; but if it's the result of somebody introducing something they thought would be a desirable "feature"... then how can we shut it off for all users (including IPs) on this project? --Pi zero (talk) 02:02, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

  • Here's another couple of things that are broken, that I've noticed this morning.
  • {{hidden}} (with the result that lots and lots of stuff all over the side is inaccessible).
  • Gadget "Open links to external sites in a new window". Fixed.

--Pi zero (talk) 11:07, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

  • EzPR is not available; no review tab provided. --Pi zero (talk) 19:47, 11 June 2014 (UTC)
  • Make lead doesn't work. --Pi zero (talk) 01:14, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
  • When viewing Category:review, the review-queue-sorted-by-date that should appear (after a moment) doesn't. --Pi zero (talk) 19:08, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
  • Onscreen edit not available. --Pi zero (talk) 20:18, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
The {{hidden}} on this page seems to be working now? or is there something I'm missing... - Amgine | t 20:11, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
If it's working for you, that's significant, since it's still not working for me (though your hidden2 does work for me). --Pi zero (talk) 20:15, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
Well, the hidden2 is surprisingly fast. We need to add some css to make it otherwise the same. I think I'd suggest migrating due to the speed benefit. - Amgine | t 21:04, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, I made a typo in my last fix which broke some things. I really thought I tested it... Bawolff 22:33, 14 June 2014 (UTC)
That's got it. Thanks! (Also, blimey. An apostrophe. What an appalling programming language.) --Pi zero (talk) 22:45, 14 June 2014 (UTC)


Facebook refuses to allow me to log in anymore unless I give them either a phone number (which is obviously none of their business) or a copy of a government-issued photo ID (which is an invitation to identity theft and one suspects may simply be a way for them to determine which users are really stupid). The article just published has not been pushed to Facebook, nor apparently will I ever be able to push an article to Facebook again. --Pi zero (talk) 22:41, 12 June 2014 (UTC)

today's xkcd --Pi zero (talk) 09:29, 4 July 2014 (UTC)

Media Viewer is now live on this wiki[edit]

Media Viewer lets you see images in larger size


The Wikimedia Foundation's Multimedia team is happy to announce that Media Viewer was just released on this site today.

Media Viewer displays images in larger size when you click on their thumbnails, to provide a better viewing experience. Users can now view images faster and more clearly, without having to jump to separate pages — and its user interface is more intuitive, offering easy access to full-resolution images and information, with links to the file repository for editing. The tool has been tested extensively across all Wikimedia wikis over the past six months as a Beta Feature and has been released to the largest Wikipedias, all language Wikisources, and the English Wikivoyage already.

If you do not like this feature, you can easily turn it off by clicking on "Disable Media Viewer" at the bottom of the screen, pulling up the information panel (or in your your preferences) whether you have an account or not. Learn more in this Media Viewer Help page.

Please let us know if you have any questions or comments about Media Viewer. You are invited to share your feedback in this discussion on in any language, to help improve this feature. You are also welcome to take this quick survey in English, en français, o español.

We hope you enjoy Media Viewer. Many thanks to all the community members who helped make it possible. - Fabrice Florin (WMF) (talk) 21:54, 19 June 2014 (UTC)

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I want this terrible extension removed from Wikinews. Anyone disagree? — Gopher65talk 00:01, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
  • If it were opt-in instead of opt-out, I'd find it harder to object to even though I think it badly thought out. But as it is, I would Support its removal. --Pi zero (talk) 01:53, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
I would oppose removal: remember that power users aren't the target audience for Media Viewer, the readers are. If you don't like it, you can turn it off: but it is an improvement for the casual reader, and so should stay. Microchip08 (talk) 01:56, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
  • I think everyone has now seen what happens if you dick with Media Viewer on a wiki-wide basis... Wheel Wars. :P
It is an improvement for the likes of my most-recent contribution, a photoessay; I also note, testing on this old thing, that embedded video works more-sanely. So, for now, I think this isn't a fight to get into. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:51, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

What the heck is up with the Newsroom page???[edit]

Look near the bottom........wonky no matter which browser/computer I use.....I know I'm overdue for new glasses, but sheesh!!! --Bddpaux (talk) 05:41, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

That is odd, I'm also seeing it and I can't what is causing the problem. But if you squint just right, it's almost sort of legible. :p Though, it certainly needs fixing. —Mikemoral♪♫ 11:40, 29 June 2014 (UTC)
What is it you both are seeing? --Pi zero (talk) 11:49, 29 June 2014 (UTC)
Here's a screenshot. For reference, I'm using Google Chrome on Windows 8. —Mikemoral♪♫ 11:55, 29 June 2014 (UTC)
Firefox doesn't do that for me. It looks like a skin problem, but I've tried switching to vector and it still doesn't happen for me. --Pi zero (talk) 12:10, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

It's happening in all four skins for me in Chrome. Though it looks fine in Firefox. I'm guessing it might be an issue with Chrome perhaps. —Mikemoral♪♫ 12:15, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

Migrating site-wide JS to default-on gadgets[edit]

There's a heck of a lot of JavaScript on English Wikinews, and a lot of it is convoluted, esoteric, and crammed into a few massive files (e.g. Mediawiki:Common.js); and Gadgets has had the functionality to have default-on, hidden, and right-restricted gadgets for a while now. I think we should consider migrating what we can into Special:Gadgets, to ensure that things are modular (and easier to find!), allow people to turn things off, and so forth. It works well for Commons, and we all know that English Wikinews' JavaScript needs some sort of improvement (ignoring ResourceLoader entirely)…. Thoughts? Microchip08 (talk) 20:39, 13 August 2014 (UTC)

I've been thinking lately we need to do something about common.js. I made one small addition to it to enable my interactive tools for all users, and I hope eventually that small hook there would obviate the need for the button code, making at least one slightly-less-small reduction in the code, and eventually I'd hope the interactive tools would replace ezpr and make-lead too; but looking at English Wikibooks' common.js has made me envious]]. The biggest challenge, I've been thinking, is that to clean up the existing code one has to figure it out. --Pi zero (talk) 22:12, 13 August 2014 (UTC)
Many of the things in our common.js are helpfully commented (as far as "this is where it begins" goes), so we should be able to move the sections across fairly simply. If we separate it all into gadgets, we'd could have (as an example) code, user documentation and technical documentation split into a well established structure that's easy to find. I expect that whatever Gadgets does behind the scenes will be more efficient than what we are doing today, anyhow. Microchip08 (talk) 22:44, 13 August 2014 (UTC)

Global CSS / JS coming soon[edit]


I am excited to announce that on Tuesday, August 26, we will be deploying the GlobalCssJs extension, which enables per-user JavaScript and CSS across public Wikimedia wikis. Users will be able to create global.js and global.css subpages on Meta-Wiki and these pages will automatically be loaded across all public Wikimedia wikis.

There is documentation available if you want to load JavaScript on a subset of all wikis (e.g., all Wikisources, all French language projects, etc.).

Some users currently have manually set up global JavaScript/CSS by creating local user subpages (e.g., monobook.js/css subpages) to load their global scripts. For these users, the deployment of the extension will mean that modules will be loaded twice, and they will no longer be included in global scope. A script has been prepared to delete these page if they were created in the standard format. Users can signup at a Meta-Wiki page to have this done on their behalf once the extension is deployed.



—Legoktm, wikitech-ambassadors mailing list

Microchip08 (talk) 16:34, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

Letter petitioning WMF to reverse recent decisions[edit]

The Wikimedia Foundation recently created a new feature, "superprotect" status. The purpose is to prevent pages from being edited by elected administrators -- but permitting WMF staff to edit them. It has been put to use in only one case: to protect the deployment of the Media Viewer software on German Wikipedia, in defiance of a clear decision of that community to disable the feature by default, unless users decide to enable it.

If you oppose these actions, please add your name to this letter. If you know non-Wikimedians who support our vision for the free sharing of knowledge, and would like to add their names to the list, please ask them to sign an identical version of the letter on

-- JurgenNL (talk) 17:35, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

Process ideas for software development[edit]


I am notifying you that a brainstorming session has been started on Meta to help the Wikimedia Foundation increase and better affect community participation in software development across all wiki projects. Basically, how can you be more involved in helping to create features on Wikimedia projects? We are inviting all interested users to voice their ideas on how communities can be more involved and informed in the product development process at the Wikimedia Foundation.

I and the rest of my team welcome you to participate. We hope to see you on Meta.

Kind regards, -- Rdicerb (WMF) talk 22:15, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

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Interproject and interlanguage links via Wikidata[edit]

As Wikidata's sisterlinks feature is now available at Wikinews, please read the two discussions. With the interproject one, 2 questions-

  1. What should a visitor of w:Biology see when he clicks a "Wikinews" link in sidebar — our main namespace article (which redirects), or our category article?
  2. How do implement this with Wikidata?

Their level of Wikidatiness is beyond my understanding.

Besides, what strikes me is that I feel we're creating pages like Biology (redirects) only for local links to work. Surely an extension could change how wikilinks behave, and make them try main namespace and then fall back to a category if a page does not exist, for a [[Biology]] link? --Gryllida 14:40, 22 August 2014 (UTC)

I think it's desirable to have {{w}} not go directly to categories. When a category is first created, we aren't ready yet to link articles to it, as it's not populated and sending people there would be unhelpful. Also, what if we wanted it to go somewhere local other than a category? The mainspace redirect allows us to do that, without building the assumption of categories into the template.
Another issue is the number of expensive operations involved. Each call to {{w}} checks to see whether the local target (in mainspace) exists, and that's an expensive check. The max number of expensive operations per page is 500. I checked with bawolff before deploying {{w}}, and he seemed to think the resource usage wouldn't be a problem; but checking for two different pages would double the number of expensive operations, and while it's fine to say no article is going to have 500 {{w}} calls, I squirm a bit when suddenly that number drops to 250. --Pi zero (talk) 14:51, 22 August 2014 (UTC)

The future of skins[edit]

If not already, please participate in this RfC and share it at any sister projects you can think of (in any language). Thanks! --Gryllida 13:17, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Grants to improve your project[edit]

Greetings! The Individual Engagement Grants program is accepting proposals for funding new experiments from September 1st to 30th. Your idea could improve Wikimedia projects with a new tool or gadget, a better process to support community-building on your wiki, research on an important issue, or something else we haven't thought of yet. Whether you need $200 or $30,000 USD, Individual Engagement Grants can cover your own project development time in addition to hiring others to help you.

Discussion versus Collaboration[edit]

I just had to fully-protect Discussion page. I was thinking it was really weird someone would create that, until I looked at the &action=edit URL in a 'Private Browsing' session. Instead of seeing the Talk page tab labelled Discussion, it's coming up as Collaboration.

I'm sure this will just be an extra message or three in the MediaWiki: namespace, which I'm going to try and track down. I think those should be changed to Discussion since, for main namespace at least, "Collaboration" is only appropriate whilst an article is within the active news cycle. --Brian McNeil / talk 11:08, 5 September 2014 (UTC)

Found messages:
  1. Mediawiki:talk, has localisation to Discussion.
  2. Nope, that's it. 30 minutes looking where this should be, and I can't find it.
Although, having MediaWiki:wikiLove.js as a system message breaks the listing when I try browsing Special:AllMessages; thus, I can't trust that I'm seeing all the messages. --Brian McNeil / talk 12:10, 5 September 2014 (UTC)

Change in renaming process[edit]

Part or all of this message may be in English. Please help translate if possible.

-- User:Keegan (WMF) (talk) 9 September 2014 16.22 (UTC)

Tech update[edit]

Some news from the Foundation:

  • On Monday, bureaucrats on English Wikinews will lose the ability to rename users, as the next step on the long, long road (since 2006!) to migrate to SUL accounts only. Renames will now only be done by "global renamers" on meta: you can request the ght at the usual location on meta: m:SRGP. There's more information in the section above.
  • On Tuesday, Wikinews will get bumped to a new MediaWiki version (1.24wmf21)
  • On Thursday there will be a new beta feature, HHVM, that you can opt in through your preferences: it is a higher performance version of the software MediaWiki runs on. There shouldn't be any problems with HHVM, but if there are it will automatically fall back to "normal" PHP. As such, opting in will at best "increase performance… by a lot", and worst-case should just be the same as your normal editing experience.

Microchip08 (talk) 09:31, 14 September 2014 (UTC)

Busy week! I'll opt in for HHVM as soon as I remember. How long are they estimating until HHVM is on by default? — Gopher65talk 20:17, 14 September 2014 (UTC)
I'll expect everything to break on Tuesday, then.
And I'll opt in for HHVM at earliest, so I can see which essential tooks it breaks and how to work around those problems. --Pi zero (talk) 20:49, 14 September 2014 (UTC)