Community Wishlist Survey 2019/Archive/Centralised language independent wikiproject for modules and templates

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 ◄ Back to Archive  The survey has concluded. Here are the results!


  • Problem: Modules and templates are spread across all language editions of Wikipedia. This leads to lots of issues in their maintenance.
  • Who would benefit: Tech community and other Wikipedians
  • Proposed solution:
    • There should be a central repository over which language wikis can build upon. Just like there is for pictures (Commons).
    • That central repository should be transcludable, like we use modules to build templates.
    • That central repository should be language independent so that language wikis can customise them with their languages and preferences.
    • This could be an additional layer over Phabricator, which is an amazing project in itself.
    • Modules can be migrated to and centralised in commons mediawiki rather than a namespace in various wikipedias.
  • More comments: Previous wish at Community Tech/Central repository for gadgets, templates and Lua modules. I am 100% sure that such a proposal was there on meta before and has several phab tickets, but I'm unable to locate them now.
  • Phabricator tickets: T121470, T66475, T206060, T208437

Discussion[edit]

@Capankajsmilyo: This duplicates Centralized templates and modules, which was archived for being out of scope. Jc86035 (talk) 12:50, 31 October 2018 (UTC)

In the last comment, I found "Anyway, if we're just talking about setting up an extension to contain global modules (probably not also templates), and not implementing these modules, then this might be feasible for us", so I created this one. Additionally, I propose it to be a basic structure rather than the full template, as different language wikis behave differently. I think these two are distinctive enough characteristics to make a proposal. Capankajsmilyo (talk) 12:58, 31 October 2018 (UTC)
As written, this proposal still suggests a catch-all place to add global templates and modules. That's okay though, we can reword it. From what I was told talking to other smart people, templates in particular probably is too much work. Modules, which drive the functionality of many templates, is a maybe. Perhaps ערן would be interested in helping reword this proposal? I think "Convert top 5 used Lua modules (across all wikis) to an extension" is a good start. I don't know how the modules would be editable without developer intervention (doesn't have to be WMF devs), but Lua people are in a sense "developers" too, so maybe this is okay? Or we could somehow get them to show up on Commons? The latter sounds a lot like the "shadow namespaces" concept that failed to gain traction. I'm interested to hear Eran's (User:ערן) and Anomie's thoughts. Historically anything "global" has not gone well for us :( MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 22:30, 4 November 2018 (UTC)
I'm ambivalent about "Convert top 5 used Lua modules (across all wikis) to an extension". If people want to do that, it's certainly doable, but as noted having to go through Gerrit and the MediaWiki deployment train might be considered "too much" by the people who currently develop modules on-wiki.

Shadow namespaces would likely be the technology behind a real solution to this proposal. I leave it to Community Tech to decide whether taking that on would be in their scope and resources. Personally I'd recommend against making Commons the repository, though, as the community on Commons is geared towards media files and adding a huge new scope seems likely to be rough. Anomie (talk) 15:20, 5 November 2018 (UTC)

It could be very useful for Wiktionaries, for verbs conjugation for example. A similar need was expressed last year, focused on Wiktionary: Share conjugation (among other things) templates on www.wiktionary.org Face-smile.svg Noé (talk) 17:16, 1 November 2018 (UTC)

Reposting my comment from the other proposal: I think that this proposal has an important social issue: Who is going to exercise editorial control on the modules and templates? The community that hosts the repository or the communities that use it? An edit to the repository might break pages on another project and that will lead to conflict if there is no regulatory process. If people apply a lot of local opt outs to avoid this problem many benefits of the central repository will be negated and a lot of work will be spent at making the opt outs. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 09:30, 2 November 2018 (UTC)
Proposals for new projects doesn't seems to be within scope of community tech survey.C933103 (talk) 08:28, 9 November 2018 (UTC)

@Capankajsmilyo: We are going to close this proposal in favor of the very similar Shared Multilingual Templates and Modules available to all wikis. They are both discussing the same problem, but that proposal doesn't mention creating a new Wikiproject, which as C933103 mentions, would be outside the scope of Community Tech. It doesn't necessarily mean that we would follow their proposed solution, but we thought it would be better to choose the proposal that doesn't suggest a specific solution in the title (especially a solution that we wouldn't be likely to accomplish). Ryan Kaldari (WMF) (talk) 01:35, 14 November 2018 (UTC)