FWIW, ironically the tangled discussions about MediaViewer across multiple
pages have made me think that having a more organized way to read
discussions would be a good idea. My understanding is that this is one of
Flow's objectives. If Flow can achieve this in a way that is helpful and
non-disruptive then I think Flow may save power users time because we may
be able to follow multi-page discussions easily. I would appreciate it if
Flow helped with that. Of course, the design, implementation and testing
need to be done carefully, and I hope there is heavy community involvement
in reviewing Flow long before it gets sent to the largest and most
sophisticated wikis.


On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 4:07 PM, Steven Walling <steven.wall...@gmail.com>

> On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 1:48 PM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > IMO the WMF should stop focusing on English Wikipedia as a target
> > deploy site, and stop allowing its product management team and WMF
> > staff in general to be salesman for it - it is scaring the community
> > that all WMF staff seem to be so heavily vested in this 'product' as
> > the salvation of the wikis.
> >
> This is rank hyperbole.
> The MediaWiki deployment train delivers new software to all projects every
> week. One stage is to non-Wikipedia projects, which actually get new
> software *first.* Then in a second stage is for all Wikipedias
> simultaneously. So the default behavior for rollouts, if all you do is
> merge your code and wait, is that English Wikipedia gets basically no
> special treatment..[1]
> Now, for larger feature rollouts like VisualEditor or MediaViewer, the
> testing stage and eventual launch set their own special schedule. We have
> used English Wikipedia as a testing ground a lot in the past, which is
> natural when you consider a variety of factors.[2] That doesn't mean we
> haven't worked hard to test things out with non-English projects. Some
> examples:
> -- MediaViewer spent a long time being tested outside English Wikipedia
> before it ever touched that project. It started with pilots in non-English
> Wikipedias and English Wikivoyage.[3]
> -- Flow is currently soliciting editors on non-English projects to test it
> out voluntarily on a sub-set of pages. Any projects that want to help shape
> the future of this software should pick a discussion space they want to use
> for testing and speak up.
> -- My team (Growth) has begun waiting for translations of experimental
> interfaces, so we can A/B test in many languages simultaneously. We're
> about to do this again in this month, by testing task recommendations in 12
> languages right from the start.[4] We've done with other projects as well,
> like A/B testing changes aimed at anonymous editors in four languages.
> -- The Content Translation project is starting with Spanish and Catalan
> Wikipedias.[5]
> After we get past the testing stage, none of this erases the fact that
> English Wikipedia is still the largest project by far, and is a major
> problem spot to be dealt with regarding issues related to new editor
> acquisition and retention. The data clearly suggests that it's a project we
> should be focusing on if we want to fix these problems, but we're certainly
> not ignoring others.
> 1). wikitech.wikimedia.org/view/Deployments
> 2). All technical staff and community contributors share English as their
> working language. Software gets built in English first obviously, so we
> don't have to wait on translations as a blocker for deployment. English
> Wikipedia is also our largest project, so we can get larger randomized
> samples during A/B tests. Making A/B tests shorter while also retaining
> accuracy is good.
> 3). https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Multimedia/Media_Viewer/Release_Plan
> 4).
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Research:Task_recommendations/Experiment_one
> 5). https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Content_translation/Roadmap
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