Wikinews:Water cooler/technical/archives/2010/January

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Rating: What do you think of this page?

Hello. Is is a nice idea to allow users to rate Wikinews article. However, some of the chosen criterias are quite irrelevant. For example, I was reading Interview: Drupal founder Dries Buytaert balances community and company interests. Since it is a interwiev, there is not point in rating the "neutrality".

Regardless of this case, it is odd to rate the "completeness" of the article. News should be short, not complete. "Presentation" and "realiability" are OK. I would suggest the following criterias:

  • Usefulness (did I find what I was looking for?)
  • Attractiveness / interesting (did I enjoyed reading?)
  • Presentation
  • Realiability
  • Neutrality (but not in "Interview" namespace!)

Yours, Dodoïste (talk) 01:20, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Interviews can be non-neutral (having only easy questions, etc). I agree, the review thingy definitely needs work. I definitly agree that your categories are better. (we were also looking at how http://newstrust.net has rating criteria too). I think the entire box should be perhaps be re-done. Bawolff

Rating seem to be rare, in my opinion. Is there a way to attach the ratings to the comments page? Benny the mascot (talk) 01:56, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Do you mean the rate this page box, or the ratings for this page page. A large part of the problem is that the rating system was more designed with wikipedia in mind, and thus is more suited to an encyclopedia (category-wise), as well as for articles that change over time. The Main Page is the only page that seems to generate substantial ratings [1] . And when an article is rated, we don't know about it unless we manually check (We do have things like special:ratedPages, but they don't show recent pages, only overall highly rated pages. Bawolff 07:42, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
I was thinking about other websites in which you can submit a comment and a rating at the same time. If we could somehow combine the two, then we would probably get more ratings. I think we should attach the ratings box to all three namespaces (article, talk, and comments) and display the ratings summaries on the comments page. Benny the mascot (talk) 14:12, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Article rating was not generally requested; it came with flagged revisions. I'd happily see it turned off rather than someone waste time on a tool that's not going to be comfortably shoehorned into meeting Wikinews requirements. --Brian McNeil / talk 14:33, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

I'd have to agree with Brian on this. We don't have the viewer figures for this to be worthwhile and it seems to be aimed at tracking how public perception changes with article changes. We lock things down to prevent long-term editing, so that's never going to work. Also, completeness is important for news. It needs to give the details for you to have an informed opinion on topical issues and it needs to explain why you should care. Blood Red Sandman (Talk) (Contribs) 14:39, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

The NewsTrust model is far more suited to the work Wikinews does. They've picked out criteria they feel are appropriate to news writing and have a supporting reputation system for reviewers. This isn't something readily added on to MediaWiki. NewsTrust should be working on an API that would allow Wikinews to develop an interface accessing their database, but not sharing Wikinews' reader details. At the moment you may enter any Wikinews article into NewsTrust's database via the "NT" icon in the {{social bookmarks}} template. This would require a separate registration with NewsTrust and there is currently no way to pull back review data from NewsTrust for display on a Wikinews article. --Brian McNeil / talk 15:22, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
Well i think that newstrust is certainly very cool, i think the reader feedback extension (which is now a separate extension from flagged revs) is still (or still has the potential to be) useful. Reader feedback is in essence a quick survey of our users, it has the benefits of first of all being on site (less clicks), and second not requiring log in. Newstrust does review things, but it wouldn't, even in the best case, get quick feedback by random, mostly uninterested, viewers who really don't care enough to register an account. There are some configuration changes to reader feedback we can request that i think will make it more useful (or at least be a step in the right direction):
$wgFeedBackAge = 40 * 365 * 24 * 3600; #makes the average rating (not graph/table) be calculated based on reviews from last 40 years instead of last 7 days (current value).
$wgFeedbackSizeThreshhold = 3; #min number of reviews before considered adequate sample and graphs popup (default/currently 15)
//and then we should try to tweak $wgFeedbackTags Currently it is:
$wgFeedbackTags = array(
        'reliability'  => 3,
        'completeness' => 2,
        'npov'         => 2,
        'presentation' => 1
);
//which means that their are 4 categories. The number is how they are weighted when calculating the average rating. (These are internal names, we 
can also change whats displayed to user by modifying stuff in mediawiki namespace. I imagine if we want to totally change the meaning of a tag,
 we should request the internal name of the tag be changed to.

Bawolff 07:50, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

We can also style it up a little bit. Try the reader feedback style gadget (under browsing gadgets in special:preferences). Bawolff 11:20, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
I also love the review on Newstrust. The major thing we could learn from Newstrust is "be user-friendly". When I arrived on the website, I immediately saw that I could review the articles. And the presentation felt attractive, so I went ahead right away. On Wikinews, the reader have to read until the bottom of the article to notice that... "Hey! Does that mean I can review the article?"
The whole review system should be redesigned. It's a shame the Wikimedia Foundation doesn't employ a designer. Anyway, there should be a big enough button on the top right of the page, called "review". When you click on it you get to review the article. Keep it simple stupid! :-) Dodoïste (talk) 12:45, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
Hey Bawolff, I've just tried your feedback style gadget. It's pretty awesome, really. Way better than before. :-) To make it more user-friendly I recommend you replace the diamonds (♦) by stars. Yellow or red stars, just like on YouTube. Using designs the user is already familiar with plays a big role in usability. Again, well done Bawolff! Yours, Dodoïste (talk) 13:17, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Feeds Not Working

What has happened to Wikinew's RSS Feed? I've been subscribed to you guys for a long while but, recently, the feeds have stopped showing up. Is it under repairs or is there some sort of glitch? --96.229.42.228 (talk) 05:35, 8 January 2010 (UTC)

  • Yes, we know there's a problem. It is being looked at and a more permanent solution than using feedburner is in the works. --Brian McNeil / talk 12:12, 8 January 2010 (UTC)
CSpurrier said he was working on the problem. In the mean time you can use [2] which is similiar to the main feed. Bawolff 01:52, 9 January 2010 (UTC)
It is working again. The devs adjusted what urls are valid sometime around new years. The screen scraper worked by adding &action=render. When the extra arguments went away, this now returns the missing page thing. I have adjusted my script to do it as index.php?article=article_name&action=render. What has been happening is that since the change, the script has been timing out because the missing page thing includes all of the extra page stuff which makes it large enough that the script takes too long to process and was timing out before it could write the feed (it should have been able to write article title even if it could not load the pages). I have upped the timeout limit, so hopeful this wont happen again. --Cspurrier (talk) 21:09, 10 January 2010 (UTC)
By the way, for the curious, this appears to be my fault, as I told Zach to make his bot stop using showcurid, since it was preventing spiders (a Bad Thing), which resulted in the issue in question. Sorry about that. Bawolff 21:14, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

Technical updates - DynamicPageList

I wanted to take a moment to congratulate Bawolff on his accomplishment with Bug patch 6910, which addressed a bunch of DynamicPageList bug reports. Xyr patch was reviewed by two WMF devs and committed, and is now waiting to be reviewed again and moved to the live branch. As far as I am aware, this is the first time WMF developers have ever reviewed Wikinews code submissions - yes, that's since 2004.

One of the particularly cool things added is a gallery mode, to find media files related to specific topics. (One thing I particularly like is Bawolff fixed up some really klugey code and made it much more maintainable.)

Big Kudos, Bawolff!! - Amgine | t 05:43, 9 January 2010 (UTC)

Thanks Amgine. Yep, I have to agree - I was following this and it is a helpful patch. Congrad Bawolff! :) Brian | (Talk) | New Zealand Portal 05:53, 9 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. Smile.png. Bawolff 09:58, 9 January 2010 (UTC)
  • Squeeee! Wikinews code! I do hope duct tape was involved somewhere. --Brian McNeil / talk 11:14, 9 January 2010 (UTC)

Need a hand for Tamil WikiNews

Hi there, I’m Mayu from Tamil Wikinews. We found that you guys have RSS field enabled for your news feed. We would like to have one such feature in our Tamil Wikinews.

It’d be very helpful if any of you can give us the inside technical support, at least some information on where we can start.

Peace --Mayu (talk) 11:32, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

I'm not sure if i understand you right. Do you mean how the rss feed is in the url bar on firefox/other browsers? This can be done through a config change, all you need to do is file a bug on bugzilla (See the en wikinews one for example - bugzilla:15080). (note, thats just associating the rss feed with the website. if your looking to get an rss feed, try http://toolserver.org/~cspurrier/rss/rss.php maybe) Cheers. Hope that helped. Bawolff 13:00, 11 January 2010 (UTC)
Thank you very much for your prompt reply. You actually got my question and answered it. Both the links are good.
Sorry but another question. According to your first link I should get my RSS field when I go to http://ta.wikinews.org/w/index.php?lang=ta&family=wikinews but no luck?? Any idea where I’m making the mistake??? or should I configure something in the server?
Of course we’ll raise a bugzilla bug for the replacement of the RSS of recent change with the RSS of recent news. Thanks for the support. I'll ask a tech savvy Tamil Wikipedian also to help us in this cause.
Thanks in advance.
Peace -- --Mayu (talk)
You can get the rss link with http://toolserver.org/~cspurrier/rss/rss.php?lang=ta&project=wikinews&categories=<some_category> replacing some_category with a category [preferably url-encoded]. (on enwikinews we use category:Published [well actually we use a different rss feed, but we still use cat published]). Hope that helps. Bawolff 12:15, 12 January 2010 (UTC)


Thanks a lot Bawolff :) This is exactly wot we are looking for. I'll ask the sysob to raise an bug to replace firefox RSS feed now. Peace --ஜெ.மயூரேசன் (talk) 13:13, 12 January 2010 (UTC)
Also, you can add an &desc=<desc text>&title=<feed title> to that url in order to translate the title and feed description in to tamil. Bawolff 13:54, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Google news issue

Illinois high school boys basketball: Benet beats Carmel after losing previous close games isn't showing up on Google News. Does this problem happen frequently? Benny the mascot (talk) 13:09, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Occasionally. I can think of a couple other articles this happens to. We don't really know why. This is one of the reasons why we want GNSM, as then we would be able to determine why articles do not show up, if they do not show up. Bawolff 13:17, 11 January 2010 (UTC)
Actually, I just figured out that the article shows up when I search not "Benet Academy", but rather "Benet". Strange... Benny the mascot (talk) 00:23, 12 January 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps because the word Academy is not in the article title? Bawolff 12:10, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

adding articles to watch list

I haven't been super-active recently, so I just now noticed the disappearance of the "add to watch list" button that seems to have come along with the new skin. Maybe it didn't disappear, maybe I just can't find it. So I'll ask ... if I am looking at an article, how can I add it to my watch list .. and please don't tell me to edit my raw list. Cheers, --SVTCobra 03:07, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

Edit your raw watchlist. Or, ya know, you could click the star icon next to view history. Either or. Personally I like the first option. --ShakataGaNai ^_^ 03:10, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Ah, yes, the star. I feel dumb. Don't worry, it is a normal condition. --SVTCobra 03:13, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
The better answer is don't use Vector. –Juliancolton | Talk 04:12, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for being an Ass. Real helpful like. --ShakataGaNai ^_^ 04:17, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

Problem!!

The article that was published today, my interview with Paul Campbell has not appeared in the RSS feed, and therefore not on Twitter. It also hasn't been picked up by Google News and hasn't appeared on the popular articles list(although this could be because noone is interested!). Can anyone help?!!   Tris   16:45, 14 January 2010 (UTC)

Strange. The only reason it wasn't on popular articles was because of not many hits (unsurprisingly, when it doesn't show up anywhere!), but I don't know about the other problems. the wub "?!" 17:18, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
I think this problem has happened a few times already. Looks like you'll have to accept the low number of hits... :( Benny the mascot (talk) 18:24, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
Benny, I'm not particularly bothered about the hits in the big scheme of things, but we still need to get it fixed. It's not just a problem with Google News which we've had before, but also the RSS.   Tris   18:26, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
Google news and popular list is some other problem. (most likely google news being stupid, and it just not getting enough exposure to be on the popular list). The RSS/facebook/twitter/identica issue is that there was no {{date}} template on the article. (twitter gets articles from RSS which gets articles from another RSS, which gets the articles from the list on T:LN, which gets them based on date categories. (as date categories are more reliable then the category_timestamp on the published cat [which the main page uses]). Long story short, it should be listed now. Cheers. Bawolff 22:11, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
Aha, thank you for your genius! What would I do without you?!   Tris   22:44, 14 January 2010 (UTC)

Sports scoreboard

I would like the scoreboard on Illinois high school boys basketball: Benet Academy beats Oswego while playing in historic gym to still say "Oswego Panthers" but link to w:Oswego High School (Illinois). How can I make that happen? In previous articles I just created Wikipedia redirects. (see w:Benet Academy Redwings) Benny the mascot (talk) 00:36, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Looks like it's been done. [[w:Oswego High School (Illinois)|Oswego Panthers]] would be how you'd do it for future reference. -RockerballAustralia (talk) 01:41, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I'm actually talking about the template on the top of the page. Benny the mascot (talk) 01:53, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Done. Use parameter wikiOverrideRight to override the wiki link. Bawolff 02:03, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks a lot! Benny the mascot (talk) 04:30, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Easy Peer Review semi-borked?

Does the reviewing and puts the review template on the talk page. However, it doesn't change the article from {{review}} to {{publish}} and the articles aren't appearing in Latest news. --Patrick M (TUFKAAP) (talk) 07:23, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

my fault, moment. Bawolff 11:19, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
Hmm, didn't happen in my test. Does it still happen after doing a hard refresh? do you get any errors? Bawolff 11:27, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
I think i know what it was, should be fixed now. (forgot an include statement, thats in my js elsewhere, thus didn't appear when testing) Do a hard refresh if it doesn't work. Sorry about that. Bawolff 11:41, 25 January 2010 (UTC)