Community Wishlist Survey 2019/Bots and gadgets/Microbot for mundane tasks

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Random proposal◄ Bots and gadgets  The survey has concluded. Here are the results!

Microbot for mundane tasks

  • Problem: The problem is the time it takes to update the properties of a series of established articles that are linked by a specific property, e.g. an infobox property on the James Spence Medal article series and need to update to add additional that content.
  • Who would benefit: Anybody who would like to update a series of articles quickly with additional properties, without doing it manually, which is a real joy killer and completely unproductive, or having to go outwith Wikipedia to use it.
  • Proposed solution: A Microbot for Mundane Tasks, which can be quickly configured to select a series of articles, perhaps via a category, if available, or by manual selection, select the property that is needed updated and apply the property.
  • More comments:
  • Phabricator tickets:
  • Proposer: Scope creep (talk) 16:19, 5 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]


Manual update to article properties, e.g. adding an infoboxes property and value, or a category for articles in a series is extremly unproductive, slow and prone to mistakes. There is other methods to achieve the same result within WP, of course, the Bot process/and manufacture and AWB. Both have their limitations and specialisms. The Bot process/manufacture/release/test cycle is slow and bureaucratic, and is designed for large changes, across hundreds of articles. AWB can accomplish the same process, but is outside wikipedia, is also complex, and designed for very large scale updates in the thousands. Whereas the AWB work on the large scale, and bot framework works works on the mid to small, there is truly no small scale utility that update <50 articles at time, and that is an upper bound.

The whole point of the system is would be limited functionality. Ideally it would be quick to configure, to use and to check the work has been completed.

The ideal utility would have a collection of predefined scripts that would have to be approved upfront.

  • For example, adding the honorific tag to the James Spence Medal articles and interrogating each article in turn to determine if each one was Professor Sir, or Professor, or Sir, and adding to the infobox. Fundamentally a regexp search, then a write to the infobox to place the attribute with result. Tiny script.

Initial proposal. I intend to update several times over the next few days before closing. Scope creep (talk) 16:19, 5 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]

How is this different from AWB? MaxSem (WMF) (talk) 18:10, 5 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Stuff like awards is probably more waiting for Wikidata support of queries on the clients as well as perhaps better integration of bots between Wikidata and the other wikis. --Izno (talk) 02:31, 6 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Update again tomorrow.


  • Support Support Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 03:41, 17 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support ديفيد عادل وهبة خليل 2 (talk) 09:19, 17 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support Libcub (talk) 11:58, 17 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose Oppose I don't understand what exactly is sought over here.This can be easily done via AWB which can be made to run on any number of articles without an upper/lower bound. I'm willing to look at the case and make an AWB run, if the OP approaches me over Blades of Godric (talk) 15:33, 17 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support Novak Watchmen (talk) 23:58, 20 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support I'd support a web-based AWB. But, that might be too big for a single Wishlist task, and also comes with a need for long-term maintenance that would need to be accommodated somewhere, in WMF, or with multiple active volunteer software engineers. Krinkle (talk) 01:29, 22 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support top most priority, this would boost morale, while cutting time for nitty-gritty's that are best avoided. Smjalageri (talk) 11:38, 23 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support Ciao • Bestoernesto 00:50, 28 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Support Alvarosinde (talk) 16:37, 29 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]