Grants:Project/Rapid/Juandev/Accessibility and improvement of VicuñaUploader

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Juandev/Accessibility and improvement of VicuñaUploader
The goal is to fix major bugs and add improvements to VicuñaUploader and release at least one stable version.
targetWikimedia Commons, Wikipedia
start dateApril 1st
start year2021
end dateOctober 31st
end year2021
budget (local currency)40,000 CZK
budget (USD)1,858.30 USD
grant typeindividual
contact(s)• janlochman(_AT_)

Project Goal[edit]

Briefly explain what are you trying to accomplish with this project, or what do you expect will change as a result of this grant. Example goals include, "recruit new editors", "add high quality content", or "train existing editors on a specific skill". The results of the accomplishment of this grant will be:

  • provide a stable version for all major operating systems
  • fix blocking errors such as hidden submit buttons etc.
  • add enhancements requested by the community (such as 2FA login, coordinates with direction, a field for caption, etc.)
  • provide documentation of new enhancements and clear communication with the community
  • fix the number of contributors or even increase them

Project Plan[edit]


Tell us how you'll carry out your project. What will you and other organizers spend your time doing?

VicuñaUploader (VU) is the second most used way to upload files to Wikimedia Commons after UploadWizzard. Rough statistics show that there has been uploaded more than two million files via VU, which is way more than with other user upload tools. Unfortunately, it has been unmaintained since 2016 and that's why it stops working under some operating systems or has bugs, which makes usage difficult for certain members of the community. We also know about certain contributors, who stopped using it due to these issues and even decreased the contribution of useful content to Wikimedia Commons. Even in the long term statistics show, there is a slight decrease of users uploading via VU. Thus we agreed with the original developer, that we will overtake the project to continue with its maintenance. For this, we made a list of bugs and enhancements and list them via their priority. From this and from the community feedback we can get to a plan on how to continue and divide our work into two stages.
Stage 1
In the first stage we would like to release a new version, which would run on all major operating systems like Windows, Apple, and Linux including their derivatives. From where we will harvest output from the community and see, whether our pre-evaluation of bugs and enhancements was correct, or we need to move the priorities.
Stage 2
In the second stage, we will be working on bugs and enhancements of priorities one and two.

How will you let others in your community know about your project (please provide links to where relevant communities have been notified of your proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions)? Why are you targeting a specific audience?

VicuñaUploader has a page on Wikimedia Commons, which we will use as the main space to communicate the project with the community. User Juandev will be in charge of the communication between the community and developer. We will also target the Wikimedia community via social media, especially places, where users of Wikimedia Commons are concentrated (e.g. Facebook's groups Wikimedia Commons or Wikimedia Commons (cs)). The community has been notified via Wikimedia Commons and Facebook already.
We are focusing on especially Wikimedia Commons users because VicuñaUploader is a software designed especially for skilled WMC's contributors.

What will you have done at the end of your project? How will you follow-up with people that are involved with your project?

At the end of the project, we will have a new stable version of VicuñaUploader with major bugs fixed and improvements proposed by the community added in. We will also see how much further maintenance the software needs in the future and how to continue with the project. As for users, we expect that fixing VicuñaUploader and providing a stable version will bring the user of this software back and it even increases the upload of useful content to Wikimedia Commons.

Are you running any in-person events or activities? If so, you will need to complete the steps outlined on the Risk Assessment protocol related to COVID-19. When you have completed these steps, please provide a link to your completed copy of the risk assessment tool below:

We are not running in-person activities. Everything will be organized online.


How will you know if the project is successful and you've met your goals? Please include the following targets and feel free to add more specific to your project:

  1. Number of stable releases: 1
  2. Bugs to be fixed and enhancements incorporated:
    1. VU work under different platforms (Windows, Linux, Ubuntu, Mac OS)
    2. no hidden buttons
    3. files are named in order of their creation
    4. tool for geographical coordinates work properly
    5. the category name dropdown menu can also be turned on/off using keyboard shortcuts
    6. geo tool can fill also Location template and add direction in which the photograph is made
    7. VU provide feedback to the user on the state of the upload in the window description
  3. Avaradge number of users each month in the year after the completion of the project: 40 (50)*
  4. Avaradge number of files uploaded using the toll per month in the year after the completion of the project: 15.000 (30.000)*
  • These numbers are heavily influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the frequent lockdowns and other problems that contributors may have due to COVID the amount of images is expected to decrease anyway. If the situation regarding COVID-19 gets better we would make targets higher as indicated in the brackets.


What resources do you have? Include information on who is organizing the project, what they will do, and if you will receive support from anywhere else (in-kind donations or additional funding).

  • We have input from the community on bugs.
  • We have input from the Wikimedia community on which improvements they would like to be integrated.
  • We have a query to generate usage stats.
  • Juandev will organize the project and will serve as a messenger between the community and developer(s). He will also update documentation and animate the community to use VicuñaUploader. Juandev is a long-time contributor to various Wikimedia Foundation projects, such as Wikimedia Commons, Wikipedia, Wikidata, and others. He served as a project grant in the Wikimedia Czech Republic's Mediagrant and organized various Wikiexpeditions in the Czech Republic and Poland. He has been around VicuñaUploader from the beginning promoting its use among Wikimedia contributors, translating its page, messages and providing the feedback from Czech community to its developers. Juandev is at his postgraduate in the area of Sustainable Rural Development at the moment.
  • Ondřej OldFrog Němeček will be in charge of fixing bugs and program enhancements. Ondřej has more than 15 years of experience, programming for different universities and also private companies. He is aware of the needs of Wikimedia Contributors and could communicate on a non-tech level. He worked with Juandev and the community on designing Describator, a toll which should ease the work of contributors, who are uploading hundreds of images per day (e.g. taken during Wikiexpeditions).

What resources do you need? For your funding request, list bullet points for each expense: Funding is needed just to cover the costs of programming.

  • Programming: 1,858.30 USD
    • We have listed all bug reports, and improvement proposals from the community, cleaned the duplicates, set priorities, and evaluated the number of hours spend on each task. The programmer will receive finances per task or a bunch of tasks done on the software.
  • Total: 1,858.30 USD

As requested on the talk page, this is the detailed breakdown of tasks and hours assigned to them. For all tasks is responsible Ondřej OldFrog Němeček. Tasks assigned to Juandev are not included due to the fact, they are not covered by the grant. As funds will be spent per task, not by the hour and some tasks may go faster than expected or not actual anymore, we may be able to fix even more bugs and add improvements from priority 3. On the other hand, if the task exceeds the hours assigned it's on Juandev to decide whether more hours could be spent on the task or whether the task could be skipped. The tasks were set to priorities regarding the following schema. The task may grow in priority if there is an increased community will. The priorities are set from 1 (highest priority) to 4 (lowest priority). Some tasks will not be covered by this granted project, because they are complicated and they need further work on design and cooperation with the Wikimedia community (such as structured data integration).

  1. Blocking, can't use
  2. Major bug, can use but with big difficulties
  3. Minor bugs, enhancements, which will help users to work with the tool and make their work faster
  4. Least important bugs, enhancements which are not in hurry, other ideas
Major tasks with priority 1 and 2, which have to be done
No. Task Description/Notes Priority Hours assigned
1 Create a working version for major operating systems and Java It was reported multiple times, that VU doesn't work under different OS versions. This task is related to task no. 2. 1 2
2 Stuck at Loading file The problem seems to be related to OpenJDK as some users on Linux-like OS are instead of Java using OpenJDK. 1 8
3 Session does not save "select/deselect file to upload" information Detected even in Win 7, which is still used by many users. 1 2
4 UI problems when entering some longer category names Related to other reported bugs no. 1 1
5 Support 2FA login 1 6
6 Insert translations and updates into the new versions This task may be repeated with every new version release. Translations are taken from, where is VU being translated. The time includes also getting in touch with the environment. 1 4
7 Files are not named in order with their default naming Related to no. 52. 1 2
8 The save button is not visible It is caused by a long string in another dialog window of the same pop-up window. Due to this error, some users decreased their activity in Wikimedia Commons. Related to tasks no. 1 2
9 New version release and minor fixes After the release of the new version, we will harvest feedback from the community. Minor bugs/enhancements might be fixed within this task and hours assigned to it. It covers two version releases and twice the work of the programmer. 1 9
10 Keyboard shortcut for cat dropdown help 2 2
11 Angle in GPS Related to 12. 2 12
12 The map generates a template for both the photographer's position and the object's position Related to 11. 2 4
13 Pictures listed in seemingly random order 2 3
14 Default directory setting not usable (because of HDPI?) 2 2
15 Button 'Edit' is grayed out after loading a saved session 2 1
16 Gurmukhi script not being rendered 2 4
17 Not loading GPS coordinates 2 4
18 Design an array system for Caption and implement 2 8
19 Geotagging from metadata error 2 3
20 not mentioning OS at all Includes stability check for various OS and their versions including the maintenance of different OS-related versions if necessary. 2 4
21 Create a click from the duplicate file name constructor directly on each duplicate 2 6
22 Category Help works even if it's turned off in settings If a user sets this in User settings and restarts VU, the setting is lost. 2 2
23 After restarting, the gallery name option does not work in the settings 2 3
Additional tasks from priority 3
No. Task Description/Notes Priority Hours assigned
24 Display categories from settings and allow to edit them or clear them These categories are set to all files in a pile 3 3
25 Add the Clean Session icon and allow the settings to turn off confirmation of the session cleanup operation 3 2
26 Cannot scroll with the arrows on the keyboard 3 1
27 Place for other templates 3 1
28 Upload summary 3 2
29 Automatic language switch If the language of VU is switched nothing happens. Automatically switch the language or inform about the need for a manual restart. 3 2
30 "The BROWSE action is not supported on the current platform!" 3 6
31 Wishlist: Read EXIF meta-data 3 6
32 User gallery is not created When checked, the option to create a gallery does not happen. 3 2
33 Settings for User Gallery page 3 3
34 Better system for creating user galleries For example, create the option to automatically name the gallery by dataset, or save photos to a subpage named dataset. 3 8
35 OpenStreetMap integration 3 4
36 Impossible to paste the password 3 6
37 Problem with fonts in high resolution display 3 5
38 Minor improvement 3 2
39 Uninstall Write into the manual, how VU could be uninstalled. 3 1
40 String "null" in the gallery VU add "null" under images in the created gallery 3 2
41 The category menu is not accessible - color issues Blue text on a gray background, change on a white background 3 4
42 Help cannot find a matching category 3 2
43 There is an incorrect date in the template preview Red from EXIF correctly, after saving as well, but in the template preview there is the year 2016 3 1
44 The preview does not show the author 3 1
45 Add 3 4
46 Add turist map 3 1
47 If I cancel when selecting the section name and do not specify any, it will start uploading It shouldn't happen if the field is empty. 3 1
48 When loading files, the directories are not in alphabetical order 3 1
49 Cannot create a subpage from the Gallery Name window when listing options 3 3
50 Create a keyboard shortcut for the function to upload files to commons 3 1
51 Allow creating a gallery of files without a header Useful if creating a subpage for each set. 3 2
52 The order of the loaded files is shuffled Related to no. 7. 3 1


  • Support Support When it first came out, VicuñaUploader rapidly became my favourite upload tool, as it had almost everything I ever wanted. But it stopped working properly on my system, and there is no adequate replacement. Not having VicuñaUploader available is not the main reason my upload volume has shrunk considerably during the last couple of years, but it certainly contributed (messing around with UploadWizard got tiresome fast so I ended up going back to the basic upload form). Hope there can be another round of funding later to integrate StructuredData functionality. --El Grafo (talk) 10:29, 7 February 2021 (UTC)
  • Support Support As an original author I'm more than happy that there is a will to work on vicuña. Yarl (talk) 21:23, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
  • Support Support As a frequent user (about 1,000 photos uploaded by Vicuña per year) I am supporting this grant. I will be glad if Vicuña will be modernized, it will help many people, not just me. --Packa (talk) 14:28, 15 February 2021 (UTC)
  • Support Support UploadWizard is not suitable for upload of larger quantities of photos. Vicuña is a good alternative but plagued by its bugs at the moment. Jklamo (talk) 10:32, 28 February 2021 (UTC)