Awesome !

On 27 March 2012 10:17, Yuvi Panda <yuvipa...@gmail.com> wrote:

> The Chennai Unofficial Wikimedia Hackathon Report
> Apologies for the delayed email. Work ate me.
> TL;DR: 13 completed hacks, including 2 core mediawiki patches, 3
> tawiki userscript updates and 2 new deployed tools. It was super
> awesome and super productive!
> The 'Unofficial' Chennai Wikimedia
> Hackathon(http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Chennai_Hackathon_March_2012)
> happened on Saturday, March 17 2012 at the Thoughtworks office in
> Chennai. It was a one day, 8 hour event focusing on getting people
> together to hack on stuff related to all Wikimedia projects - not just
> Mediawiki patches.
> The event started with us sailing past security reasonably easily, and
> getting setup with internet without a glitch. People trickled in and
> soon enough we had 21 people in there. Since this was a pure
> hackathon, there were no explicit tutorials or presentations. As
> people came in, we asked them what technologies/fields they are
> familiar with, and picked out an idea for them to work on from the
> Ideas List (
> http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Chennai_Hackathon_March_2012/Ideas).
> This took care of the biggest problem with hackathons with new people
> - half the day spent on figuring out what to work on, and when found,
> it is completely outside the domain of expertise of the people hacking
> on the idea. Talking together with them fast to pick an idea within 5
> minutes that they can complete in the day fixed this problem and made
> sure people can concentrate on coding for the rest of the day.
> People started hacking, and just before lunch we made people come up
> and tell us what they were working on. We then broke for lunch and
> usual socialization happened over McDonalds burgers and Saravana
> Bhavan dosas. Hacking started soon after, and people were
> concentrating on getting their hacks done before the demo time. And we
> did have quite a few demos!
> Demos
> =====
> Here's a short description of each of the demos, written purely in the
> order in which they were presented:
> 1. Wikiquotes via SMS
> By: @MadhuVishy and @YesKarthik
> What it does:
> Send a person name to a particular number, and you'll keep getting
> back quotes from that person. Works in similar semi-automated fashion
> as the DYKBot. Built on AppEngine + Python.
> Status:
> Deployed live! Send SMS '@wikiquote Gandhi' to 9243342000 to test it
> out! Has limited data right now, however.
> ---
> 2. API to Rotate Images (Mediawiki Core Patch)
> By: Vivek
> What it does:
> Adds an API method that can arbitrarily rotate images. Think of this
> as first step towards being able to rotate any image in commons with a
> single button instantly, without having to wait for a bot. Patch was
> attached to https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/33186.
> Status:
> It was reviewed on that day itself (Thanks Reedy!). Vivek is now
> figuring out how to modify his patch so that it would be accepted into
> Mediawiki core. Vivek is also applying to work with Mediawiki for
> GSoC, so we will hopefully get a long term contributor :)
> ---
> 3. Find list of unique Tamil words in tawiki
> By: Shrinivasan T
> What it does:
> It took the entire tamil wikipedia dump and extracted all unique words
> out of it. About 1.3 million unique tamil words were extracted. Has
> multiple applications, including a tamil spell checker.
> Status:
> Code and the dataset live on github:
> https://github.com/tshrinivasan/tamil-wikipedia-word-list
> ---
> 4. Program to help record pronunciations for words in tawikt
> What it does:
> Simple python program that gives you a word, asks you to pronounce it
> and then uploads it to commons for being used in Wiktionary. Makes the
> process much more streamlined and faster.
> Status:
> Code available at:
> https://github.com/tshrinivasan/voice-recorder-for-tawictionary.
> Preliminary testing with his friends shows that easy to record 500
> words in half an hour. Is currently blocked on figuring out a way to
> properly upload to commons
> ---
> 5. Translation of Gadgets/UserScripts to tawiki
> By: SuryaPrakash [[:ta:பயனர்:Surya_Prakash.S.A.]]
> What he did:
> Surya spent the day translating two gadgets into Tamil, so they can be
> used on tawiki. First is the 'Prove It' Reference addition tool
> (http://ta.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediawiki:Gadget-ProveIt.js). The second
> one was the 'Speed Reader' extension that formats content into
> multiple columns for faster scanning
> (http://ta.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediawiki:Gadget-TwoColumn.js). Last I
> checked, these are available for anyone with only tamil knowledge to
> use, so yay!
> (He also tried to localize Twinkle for Tamil, couldn't because of
> issues with the laptop he was using.
> ---
> 6. Structured database search over Wikipedia
> By: Ashwanth
> What it does:
> Built a tool that combined DBPedia and Wikipedia to allow you to
> search in a semantic way. We almost descended into madness with people
> searching for movies with Kamal and movies with Rajni (both provided
> accurate results, btw). Amazing search tool that made it super easy to
> query information in a natural way.
> Status:
> The code is available at
> https://github.com/ashwanthkumar/structured-wiki-search. Definitely
> would be awesome to see this deployed somewhere, so would be great if
> the community could come up with specific ideas on how to make this a
> specific cool tool.
> ---
> 7. Photo upload to commons by Email
> By: Ganesh
> What it does:
> Started with building a tool that will let you email a particular
> address with pictures + metadata in the body of the page, and it will
> be uploaded to commons. This was for the benefit of people with older
> outdated phones *cough*Logic*cough* who would like to use their
> phone's camera to contribute to commons, but can not due to technical
> limitations.
> Status:
> He wasn't able to get that to work during the hackathon - too many
> technical issues cropped up. However, he's *very* definitely
> interested in   setting it up, and has made progress towards it. I
> hope someone from the community (perhaps people doing WLM?) should be
> able to get in touch with him to see if this tool could be developed
> further with a specific goal in mind.
> ---
> 8. Lightweight offline Wiki reader
> By: Feroze
> What it does:
> There is a project called qvido
> (http://projects.qi-hardware.com/index.php/p/qvido/) which was a
> 'lightweight' offline Wiki reader (compared to Kiwix, which is
> heavier). It has been abandoned for a while, however. Feroze took the
> time to revive the project, figure out how to build it (and wrote
> build instructions!) and also fixed a bug so that it can be used to
> demo showing offline Wiki navigation. He was able to demo it showing
> the Odiya Wikipedia dump offline, with working link navigation.
> Status:
> There exists a git repo (https://github.com/feroze/qvido) with the
> code + the build instructions. I hope that people interested in
> offline projects check this out and see if it can be made useful, and
> take this forward.
> ---
> 9. Patches to AssessmentBar
> By: gsathya
> What it does:
> AssessmentBar is a small widget/tool I'm building to make WP India
> assessments easier (at the request of User:AshLin. Stay tuned for an
> announcement in the next few days). Sathya spent time making the
> backend for it more scalable, so the same server can support multiple
> projects and concurrent users in a better way. Before that he was
> contemplating setting up a hidden Tor node for Wikipedia (he's a Tor
> core contributor) and then playing with data visualizations with WP
> data.
> Status:
> There is a pull request (https://github.com/yuvipanda/MadamHut/pull/2)
> that I need to merge :)
> ---
> 10. Parsing Movie data into a database
> By: Arunmozhi (Tecoholic) and Lavanya
> What it does:
> It scrapes the infoboxes of all movies from whatever category you give
> it and stores this into a database. This is harder than it sounds
> because parsing wikitext is similar to beating yourself up repeatedly
> in the head with a large trout. They managed to figure out a nice way
> to extract information from all Indian movie pages, and put it in a
> database for programmatic easy access later.
> Status:
> I've asked them to put the code up publicly somewhere, and since I
> believe Tecoholic is in this mailing list, he'll reply with the link
> :) These kinds of data scraping can be used to build very nice tools
> that show off how much information Wikipedia has, and perhaps also
> help people contribute back by editing information for their favorite
> movies. I hope the community comes up with a nice idea to utilize
> this, and takes this project forward to its ultimate destiny: A super
> sexy IMDB type site for Indian Movies with data sourced from Wikipedia
> (I can dream :D)
> ---
> 11. Random Good WP India article tool
> By: Shakti and Sharath
> What it does:
> It is a simple tool that shows you one B, A, GA or FA article every
> time you go there. The idea is to provide a usable service for people
> who want to accumulate lots of knowledge by randomly reading stuff,
> but only want good stuff (so stubs, etc are filtered out (unlike
> Special:Random)). I'll also note that neither of them had worked with
> any web service before the hackathon, nor with JSON, nor with the
> mediawiki API, yet were able to build and deploy this tool within the
> day. /me gives a virtual imaginary barnstar to either of them
> Status:
> It is currently deployed at http://srik.me/WPIndia. Everytime you hit
> that link, you'll get an article about India that the community has
> deemed 'good'. The source code is available
> (https://github.com/saki92/category-based-search). They are eager to
> do more hacks such as these, and I'm hoping that the community will
> find enough technical cool things for these enthusiastic volunteers to
> work on
> ---
> 12. Fix bugs on tawiki ShortURL gadget
> By: Bharath
> What it does:
> The short url service used in tawiki (tawp.in) is shown in the wiki
> via a gadget. It is not the most user friendly gadget - you need to
> right click and select copy. Bharath looked for a solution by which
> you could click it and it would copy to the clipboard, but did not
> find any that would work without flash. Hence he abandoned that and
> started figuring out easier ways of making that happen. He also fixed
> several bugs in the implementation of the gadget, and I expect it to
> get deployed soonish. Thanks to SrikanthLogic for helping him through
> the process.
> Status:
> Code is available at
> http://ta.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E0%AE%AA%E0%AE%AF%E0%AE%A9%E0%AE%B0%E0%AF%8D:Bharathkaush/shorturl.js
> .
> He's still fixing things on the script. If the community needs people
> to come fix up their user scripts/gadgets, Bharath would be a willing
> (and awesome!) candidate!
> ---
> 13. Add 'My Uploads' to top bar along with My Contributions, etc
> (Mediawiki Core Patch)
> By: SrikanthLogic
> What it does:
> Not satisfied with being the organizer of the hackathon, Srikanth
> wanted to flex his programming muscles and spent time fixing a bug in
> core mediawiki (https://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/show_bug.cgi?id=30915).
> He spent a while digging around the proper way to do this, and managed
> to make a proper patch!
> Status:
> It has been committed in gerrit (currently unable to find a link).
> Should be merged in soon. Yay!
> Honorable Mentions
> ===================
> 1. WikiPronouncer
> By: Russel Nickson
> What it was supposed to do:
> Exactly like Shrini's tool to record word pronunciations and upload to
> commons, but written for Android so people could add prononciations on
> the go.
> Status:
> Code is available at https://github.com/russelnickson/pronouncer. He
> ran into technical issues with Android setup (it stops working
> completely if you look at it the wrong way), and was unable to
> complete this. I think this would still be a very useful tool, and
> hope someone from the community steps up to work with Russel and get
> this finished.
> ---
> 2. Wiktionary cross lingual statistics
> By: PranavRC
> What it was supposed to do:
> It was a statistical tool that generated statistics about how many
> words overlap between all indic languages in Wiktionary (as measured
> by interwiki links).
> Status:
> The code has been written (I've requested the author to put it up
> publicly, will update list when it is). It, however, requires a lot of
> time to be run. So validation by the community that such stats would
> be useful would, IMO, definitely give Pranav the impetus to finish it
> up and show us the pretty graphs :)
> So, in all, 13 demos were produced (+ 2 near misses). I think we can
> call this one a success, no? :)
> Next Steps
> ==========
> Where do we go from here? Random thoughts:
> 1. Geek retention - this is reasonably easy. If we keep feeding
> hackers interesting problems that affect a lot of people, they'll keep
> helping us out. Is it possible to have some sort of a 'tools required'
> or 'hacks required' or 'gadgets required' page/queue someplace where
> we can always direct hackers looking for interesting problems to? IMO
> Wikipedia is full of interesting technical problems, so this *should*
> be feasible.
> 2. Follow ups - this time, I am able to do this personally (small
> enough group). Clearly this will not scale. Do we have ideas/methods
> for following up with these people so that they stay with us?
> 3. More of these? This was pretty much a 'zero cost' event - stickers
> were the only 'cost'. A lot of places around the country would love to
> have their space used for a hackathon of sorts. Should we do more of
> these kind of 'Unofficial' hackathons?
> Thanks due (in random order)
> ============================
> 1. Thoughtworks/BalajiDamodaran: He graciously hosted us at
> Thoughtworks. The biggest challenge for any hackathon is to find a
> nice place which understands what hackathons are, and provides what is
> considered the lifeblood of a hackathon - working WiFi. Balaji
> (@openbala) was incredibly awesome, and this entire thing would've not
> been possible at all without him and ThoughtWorks.
> 2. Dorai Thodla: He helped popularize the hackathon among the Chennai
> Geeks crowd, and acted as a sounding board at various important times.
> He also connected us with @openbala and enabled us to get the venue.
> Thanks!
> 3. Srikanth Lakshmanan: The hackathon was his idea, and he made sure
> it was executed in a nice way. He was the official 'organizer', and
> made sure that all logistics were taken care of. Once the event
> started, he was very helpful in helping people technically and in
> picking up ideas, while also hacking on his own patch. This event was,
> in essence, organized and run by him. He took an overnight trip from
> Hyderabad straight out of office just for this. Thanks for making this
> possible!
> 4. Shrini (aka the relentless forwarder): This event wouldn't have
> been as much a success without him either. Evangelism across multiple
> lists, adding a lot of ideas that could be done, helping the people
> there out technically at all times and writing two really good hacks -
> Thank you! I'm glad we get to keep you :)
> 5. Subhashish Panighrahi: For sending us stickers :D (And who all is
> involved in that logistical process too!)
> Most of all, this event was a success because of the quality and
> dedication of the people who turned up, giving up their Saturdays.
> Hope everyone who turned up had a nice time :) I am personally in
> touch with most of them, and I also have their email address, phone
> number *and* permission to contact them again. If anyone here thinks
> that they liked one of the hacks and want to take it further, please
> contact me (User:Yuvipanda on Mediawiki.org or yuvipa...@gmail.com)
> and I'll get you people in touch. If there is a more accepted,
> standard way of handling this type of private information, please let
> me know as well!
> Thanks!
> -
> Yuvi Panda T
> http://yuvi.in
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