--- Comment #9 from MZMcBride <> 2010-09-28 21:10:29 UTC ---
(In reply to comment #8)
> So it's not reasonable to expect banner writers to know basic Javascript, but
> it is reasonable that they understand using Wikitext parser functions?
> Regardless, any way that this is implemented will be a hack since the banners
> don't live on the local wikis, they live on meta. So they can't just be parsed
> and pulled into the page like a template. And {{SITENAME}} is especially
> problematic for this reason. Obviously if I had known that this was needed, I
> would have built a better way to do it in CentralNotice. In the meantime, I'm
> offering a workaround. But next time, I'll just keep my "disgusting" ideas to
> myself :P

Sometimes, people look back at what was previously implemented and say "this
was a horrible hack, why did we do it this way?"  I realize that some of these
problems aren't easy to solve and I realize the importance of this project. I
imagine that's why the Wikimedia Foundation has hired someone to work on this
rather than relying on volunteers. :-)

The problem with workarounds is that they have a tendency to become
long-lasting. This is true of a lot of areas of MediaWiki/Wikimedia

In my view, there should be as little coding required by the users of this
extension as possible. While JavaScript is obviously more common on the Web,
for most wiki users, ParserFunctions/wikitext are more common and easier to
understand. This brings the benefit of people being available to help if the
ParserFunctions/wikitext get complicated. The same really isn't as true for
JavaScript, surprising as that may seem.

That said, I don't think supporting wikitext/ParserFunctions is necessarily a
must-have for this extension, but it does provide some somewhat sane features
(like {{PLURAL:}}) that could be handy in banners.

When non-coders (or even coders sometimes) are forced to do coding, especially
in an environment that doesn't have input sanity checks like Tidy, we end up
with all sorts of nastiness from things like unclosed tags, for example. Your
suggested code seems frail and hackish. I imagine you knew this when proposing
it. I didn't mean to judge you, just your suggestion, as being "disgusting."
I'm also a bit tired today; that's probably not helping matters either.
Apologies if I came across as snarky.

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