IRC office hours/Office hours 2013-12-02

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Chat on VisualEditor
Monday 3 December 2013
1900 - 2000 UTC

[2013-12-02 14:00:47] <Maggie_Dennis> And it is time. :) Hello, everyone!
[2013-12-02 14:00:54] <marktraceur> Maggie_Dennis: Nope, you're on your own, the training wheels are off
[2013-12-02 14:01:02] <Maggie_Dennis> Welcome to the VE Office Hour, featuring James Forrester, aka James_F.
[2013-12-02 14:01:08] <Maggie_Dennis> (marktraceur: :P)
[2013-12-02 14:01:22] <James_F> Hey everyone.
[2013-12-02 14:01:29] <Finnegan> Hi James :)
[2013-12-02 14:01:40] =-= Maggie_Dennis has changed the topic to ``Please note: Channel is logged and publicly posted (DO NOT REMOVE THIS NOTE). | https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/IRC_office_hours VisualEditor, 1900 to 2000 UTC''
[2013-12-02 14:01:40] <James_F> It's been about a month since my last round of office hours.
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[2013-12-02 14:02:00] <marktraceur> Hm, /topicappend?
[2013-12-02 14:02:10] <James_F> As before, I don't really have a specific update, and am mostly here to answer questions.
[2013-12-02 14:02:49] <James_F> Most of the changes in the past month have been "behind the scenes", so sadly you won't have seen many changes or improvements.
[2013-12-02 14:03:22] <James_F> Right now we're mainly working on the new citation dialog (to make adding templated references quicker and easier).
[2013-12-02 14:03:39] <marktraceur> Maggie_Dennis: Generally you want to copy the existing topic and put your thing before it, and separate with a vertical bar character. :)
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[2013-12-02 14:04:05] <Maggie_Dennis> Ah. Between the Please note and the link?
[2013-12-02 14:04:09] <James_F> We're also working on media editing (setting the alt text of images), language tools (like a character inserter), and core support for more languages, copy-and-paste and Mobile editing.
[2013-12-02 14:04:29] =-= James_F has changed the topic to ``Please note: Channel is logged and publicly posted (DO NOT REMOVE THIS NOTE). | https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/IRC_office_hours | VisualEditor: 19:00–20:00 UTC''
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[2013-12-02 14:05:44] <Maggie_Dennis> Worth noting, of course, that there is a large deployment today, so some projects may notice an upswing in VE activity.
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[2013-12-02 14:06:15] <James_F> And yes, sorry, forgot to mention that. :-)
[2013-12-02 14:06:21] <Maggie_Dennis> Does anyone have any questions for James_F?
[2013-12-02 14:06:24] <geniice> James_F media editing. Is the thing on the top right of this page in the test cases https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_giant
[2013-12-02 14:06:24] <Dragonfly6-7> I completely missed whatever was just said before now
[2013-12-02 14:06:36] <Dragonfly6-7> will VE resume being the default. Yes no.
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[2013-12-02 14:07:29] <James_F> geniice: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_giant has a template at the top-right – is that what you mean?
[2013-12-02 14:07:47] <geniice> template/image yes
[2013-12-02 14:07:55] <James_F> geniice: If so, no, enhancements to media editing won't affect templates, and vice versa.
[2013-12-02 14:08:15] <marktraceur> Maggie_Dennis: Usually you put your thing at the very front
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[2013-12-02 14:08:46] <James_F> geniice: That's a navigation template which takes no parameters. What would "editing" it mean?
[2013-12-02 14:08:48] <marktraceur> e.g. /topic Office hour for People Who Weigh the Same as Ducks | Please note: ... | https://meta. ...
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[2013-12-02 14:09:06] <Maggie_Dennis> I would like to attend that meeting, marktraceur. :)
[2013-12-02 14:09:18] <marktraceur> She's a witch! Buuuuuurn 'er
[2013-12-02 14:09:25] <Finnegan> marktraceur beat me to that joke
[2013-12-02 14:09:26] <geniice> James_F File:HR-diag-no-text-2.svg is media no.?
[2013-12-02 14:09:46] * marktraceur will let Finnegan get the next one
[2013-12-02 14:09:48] <James_F> geniice: However, if you click on the first images on that page, labelled "The red giant Mira", you can see the current image dialog; it's currently very simple (just lets you set the caption), and that's what we're talking about.
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[2013-12-02 14:10:17] <James_F> geniice: There's an image used inside the template, yes, but you can't change that at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_giant?action=edit and similarly you can't change that at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_giant?veaction=edit
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[2013-12-02 14:10:45] <geniice> right so VE won't break it. good
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[2013-12-02 14:10:59] <James_F> geniice: Yeah, no breakage from VE is certainly the intention. :-)
[2013-12-02 14:11:12] <Maggie_Dennis> Question from Dragonfly6-7, James_F: "will VE resume being the default. Yes no."
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[2013-12-02 14:12:11] <James_F> So, "will VisualEditor become the default editor on enwiki?" Yes. "When?" Not planned.
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[2013-12-02 14:12:35] <Dragonfly6-7> Thank you. Will this be implemented before VE is made to not suck, or after?
[2013-12-02 14:12:36] <James_F> Certainly, not today. :-)
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[2013-12-02 14:13:20] <James_F> Dragonfly6-7: I can't answer subjective questions, obviously.
[2013-12-02 14:13:25] <KTC> Sorry if it's already been covered, I were slightly late to the party. What's the schedule for editing tables (i.e. creating / adding or removing rows etc.)
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[2013-12-02 14:13:26] <Finnegan> James_F: what kind of usage are you seeing for VE on enwp these days? I feel like I'm starting to see slightly more "visual editor" tags in my watchlist
[2013-12-02 14:13:51] <James_F> Finnegan: I don't know. One moment.
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[2013-12-02 14:14:20] <Finnegan> (also, +1 to KTC's question. I live for the day when I can use VE to make a table)
[2013-12-02 14:14:37] <James_F> Finnegan: Looks like enwiki is bumping along at 10-15 VE edits an hour.
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[2013-12-02 14:15:11] <ReaperEternal> ._.
[2013-12-02 14:15:11] <James_F> Finnegan: That compares to ~ 200 VE edits an hour on the Spanish Wikipedia, where it's enabled by default.
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[2013-12-02 14:15:45] <Elitre> finnegan, it is possible that some people started to test VE again since when Beta Features launched last week, as it carried a new VE feature to test - Formulae editing.
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[2013-12-02 14:15:58] <James_F> Yeah, Elitre beat me to the answer. :_)
[2013-12-02 14:16:03] <James_F> KTC: There's no specific "schedule"; it's very high on our worklist (after copy-and-paste and citation templates), but not huge.
[2013-12-02 14:16:13] <James_F> Err.
[2013-12-02 14:16:19] <James_F> s/huge/known exactly when that will be.
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[2013-12-02 14:16:22] <James_F> Sorry, thought-o.
[2013-12-02 14:16:28] <KTC> :D
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[2013-12-02 14:16:44] <KTC> how many VE edits were being made when VE were default on enwiki?
[2013-12-02 14:16:54] <KTC> default/available for IP etc.
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[2013-12-02 14:17:17] <James_F> KTC: About a thousand an hour, roughly.
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[2013-12-02 14:17:36] <NotASpy> are the figures for VE use in the Beta Features accurate ? It says 19,500 editors have VE enabled.
[2013-12-02 14:18:10] * marktraceur is 98.4% confident in those numbers
[2013-12-02 14:18:11] <James_F> KTC: Obviously, right now we're not really getting any data about VisualEditor that we can use to judge effectiveness.
[2013-12-02 14:18:14] <KTC> NotASpy, I wouldn't be surpised if many has it enabled but don't actually use it
[2013-12-02 14:18:16] <KTC> <-- for instance
[2013-12-02 14:18:27] <James_F> NotASpy: The numbers are right, but just having it not-disabled doesn't mean you're using it.
[2013-12-02 14:18:37] <Shirik> having it enabled doesn't tell you much
[2013-12-02 14:18:41] <Shirik> I have it enabled, but I'll be honest, I don't use it
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[2013-12-02 14:18:58] <Finnegan> KTC, NotASpy: I have it enabled, but I use it for maybe 1% of my edits, because I only find it more useful for limited things (mostly typo-fixing)
[2013-12-02 14:18:58] <James_F> NotASpy: For example, you can't use VE to edit talk or Wikipedia namespace pages, so my work account never gets to use VE through to saving.
[2013-12-02 14:19:13] <James_F> Yeah, what Finnegan, Shirik and KTC said.
[2013-12-02 14:19:27] <NotASpy> yeah, of course, was going to ask if it's possible to drill down and find out how many editors who are active, say, within the past 7 days, have it enabled.
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[2013-12-02 14:19:49] <James_F> NotASpy: Possible? Yes. Am I going to do it? No. :-)
[2013-12-02 14:20:16] <James_F> NotASpy: I don't have the time to spare to waste digging into that kind of information when we already know we're not about to switch it back on by default, sorry.
[2013-12-02 14:20:42] <James_F> NotASpy: When we're closer to a state where we want to have a discussion about that, then's the time to look at actual usage.
[2013-12-02 14:21:09] <NotASpy> I understand, just curious really if it's being switched on by people who don't edit and if it's raising issues about people who register, play with features but never save an edit.
[2013-12-02 14:21:35] * James_F nods.
[2013-12-02 14:21:41] <James_F> Well, I'm one of those people. :-)
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[2013-12-02 14:21:58] <James_F> I make lots of test edits using VisualEditor on enwiki, but never need to save (the diff is sufficient).
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[2013-12-02 14:22:09] <James_F> So there's lots of behaviour that the data won't tell you.
[2013-12-02 14:22:23] <Dragonfly6-7> It will always be possible to keep VE disabled. Yes?
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[2013-12-02 14:23:08] <Finnegan> Dragonfly6-7: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:VE/FAQ covers some of the stuff you're wondering about
[2013-12-02 14:23:32] <James_F> Also, if you bail from VisualEditor to wikitext that won't get tagged as a VisualEditor edit, so that will slightly under-report.
[2013-12-02 14:23:48] <James_F> But at this point it's not a major issue.
[2013-12-02 14:24:14] <Finnegan> James_F: i haven't poked around lately - is there a button now where I can start an edit in VE and live-switch to wikitext to finish it?
[2013-12-02 14:25:00] <Maggie_Dennis> Finnegan, there is indeed.
[2013-12-02 14:25:10] <James_F> Finnegan: Yes. Click on the menu icon in the top-right of the toolbar (between help and cancel), and select "Switch to source editing".
[2013-12-02 14:25:16] <Finnegan> ooh cool
[2013-12-02 14:25:34] <Maggie_Dennis> Handy if you're working on an edit that VE can't finish; let's you switch without backing out or dong half of what you intended. :)
[2013-12-02 14:26:39] <Dragonfly6-7> will VE accommodate screen readers
[2013-12-02 14:27:20] <Finnegan> James_F: ah, there it is. Might be worth considering making it a bit more seperate/distinctive - I would not have thought that a "list"-appearing icon would contain "switch editing environments"
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[2013-12-02 14:27:49] <James_F> Finnegan: Yeah, everything in the toolbar is up for grabs right now. Design suggestions welcome.
[2013-12-02 14:28:14] <James_F> Dragonfly6-7: What do you mean, "accommodate"? We've already checked basic working with some accessibility tools and it works fine, or if it doesn't work, is part of a larger problem we're working on (support for "IMEs").
[2013-12-02 14:30:14] <James_F> (Any other questions?)
[2013-12-02 14:30:48] <Dragonfly6-7> probably
[2013-12-02 14:30:48] <Dragonfly6-7> oh yes
[2013-12-02 14:31:02] <Dragonfly6-7> VE used to randomly splatter in large amounts of useless text
[2013-12-02 14:31:08] <Dragonfly6-7> can we be assured this won't recur?
[2013-12-02 14:31:35] <geniice> has the media thing been run through the full list of file extensions (.oga .djvu .mid .flac etc)
[2013-12-02 14:31:40] <Finnegan> James_F: I noticed that the VE menu bar does a pretty good job keeping up with my browser zoom level, even when I make it sort of ridiculously large. That's sure to be appreicated by visually-impaired users :)
[2013-12-02 14:32:55] <James_F> Dragonfly6-7: There was a nasty bug in the interaction between VisualEditor and Parsoid that sometimes led to duplicated text, yes; we've fixed that bug, and it certainly should ever have happened, let alone recur; I can't make absolute promises, in much the same way that I can't make the promise that the wikitext editor won't do the same. Nowadays we'd catch that issue before it hit production.
[2013-12-02 14:33:12] <Maggie_Dennis> Dragonfly6-7, I doubt anyone can ever assure you that software will always operate smoothly, particularly software as complex as ours, Visual or otherwise. :)
[2013-12-02 14:33:36] <James_F> geniice: The media insertion tool doesn't care what kind of file you're inserting, be it image, vector, video, audio or other.
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[2013-12-02 14:33:43] <HenriqueCrang> James_F, is it possible that the link "Edit source" behaves the same way as "Switch to source editing" if you have already started editing with VE?
[2013-12-02 14:33:51] <Dragonfly6-7> Thank you.
[2013-12-02 14:34:01] <geniice> James_F so what if you try and insert something with a .mp3 extension
[2013-12-02 14:34:09] <Dragonfly6-7> can you restore the 'classic' skin.
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[2013-12-02 14:34:43] <James_F> geniice: But we haven't done everything to make it as nice as possible - it doesn't offer to let you play it, for instance. We need to work with the Multimedia team (hi, marktraceur) to allow that kind of niceness.
[2013-12-02 14:35:08] <James_F> geniice: It "works", but looks a bit ugly (you get a big icon of a sound, rather than a player which you now get in read-mode).
[2013-12-02 14:35:14] * marktraceur peeks out from behind his chest-high wall
[2013-12-02 14:35:41] <geniice> marktraceur some of us play demoman. Try again
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[2013-12-02 14:36:03] <James_F> Finnegan: Yeah, we've put in a bunch of work to make the interface very much scale-agnostic. Everything is in SVG or relatively-sized text, and it should zoom beautifully. Except, as always, in IE, which is a broken browser of doom. :-(
[2013-12-02 14:36:22] <James_F> Dragonfly6-7: The classic skin isn't anything to do with VisualEditor, sorry.
[2013-12-02 14:37:10] <marktraceur> James_F: Are you guys doing your own upload pipeline stuff, or have you copied/imported code from UW?
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[2013-12-02 14:37:20] <marktraceur> Or am I missing context and it's not that cool actually
[2013-12-02 14:37:30] <marktraceur> I think that's it
[2013-12-02 14:37:41] <James_F> marktraceur: We haven't, and we haven't. That's just what the Commons API gives us.
[2013-12-02 14:37:46] <marktraceur> 'kay
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[2013-12-02 14:38:12] <marktraceur> James_F: I think I misunderstood "media inssertion" to be "uploading things to Commons and linking to them in the wikitext" but I was wrong.
[2013-12-02 14:38:27] <James_F> marktraceur: Yeah, sorry to get your hopes up. Next quarter, maybe.
[2013-12-02 14:38:42] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: It's possible, yes, but I'm not sure it's a great experience.
[2013-12-02 14:39:08] <marktraceur> James_F: Notably we're talking about refactoring UploadWizard to be less painful and more helpful. :)
[2013-12-02 14:39:13] <James_F> marktraceur: Yeah. ;-)
[2013-12-02 14:39:14] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: Right now, if you want to switch from VE to source mode, there are two options - via the tab (which throws away your changes) or the switch link (which keeps them).
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[2013-12-02 14:39:36] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: So each of those has a "Do you want to do this? [ Yes ] [ No ]" dialog, which works well.
[2013-12-02 14:40:04] <HenriqueCrang> James_F, i asked that because i had already tried to swich between editors clicking on the tab and lost the content i had made ;-/ I believe other editors may face the same issue
[2013-12-02 14:40:06] <Shirik> going to disagree on that
[2013-12-02 14:40:19] <HenriqueCrang> i dont remember the dialog, let me try
[2013-12-02 14:40:22] <Shirik> "do you want to do this" is a human factors nightmare
[2013-12-02 14:40:27] <Shirik> people will get used to clicking "yes" and then click "yes" when they don't mean to
[2013-12-02 14:40:32] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: If we were to add the functionality to the edit source tab, we'd need to have a much more complicated question for people - "Do you want to switch to source mode? [ Yes and keep changes ] [ Yes but without changes ] [ No ]".
[2013-12-02 14:40:41] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: And that would be a real mess.
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[2013-12-02 14:40:56] <Shirik> switching to source mode seems like something that is generally non-destructive, so it should just happen.
[2013-12-02 14:40:58] <James_F> Shirik: It's just what MediaWiki does right now - we didn't change anything for VisualEditor.
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[2013-12-02 14:41:30] <James_F> Shirik: It's a one-way change, so it's actually partially destructive. When we have full two-way switching, we'll remove the modal, certainly.
[2013-12-02 14:42:01] <HenriqueCrang> great, i just tested and saw the dialog box. Maybe the text on the dialog could say something like "you you wanna change and keep changes use the bottom"?
[2013-12-02 14:42:43] <HenriqueCrang> if you*
[2013-12-02 14:44:20] <James_F> HenriqueCrang: Yes, we should expand that message as a quick fix, I agree.
[2013-12-02 14:44:31] <HenriqueCrang> :)
[2013-12-02 14:45:30] <Maggie_Dennis> Any questions about VE? Anyone?
[2013-12-02 14:46:06] <James_F> I guess we could end it now.
[2013-12-02 14:46:06] <Elitre> I might have a couple, but will let other speak before if they want to :)
[2013-12-02 14:46:14] <James_F> Or Elitre can ask. :-)
[2013-12-02 14:46:27] <Elitre> just a few things, then.
[2013-12-02 14:46:51] <Elitre> The first, is a confirmation that VE won't support other skins but Vector and MonoBook.
[2013-12-02 14:47:52] <geniice> so no mobile editing
[2013-12-02 14:48:10] <Elitre> The second, if you could, in just a few words, explain our French friends why snowmen appear in VE articles :)
[2013-12-02 14:48:40] <Elitre> (I think I understood why but you're better than me at explaining that!)
[2013-12-02 14:48:41] <James_F> VisualEditor currently doesn't work in desktop skins on the Wikimedia servers other than Vector and Monobook; it's possible for a volunteer to add support for other skins, but we won't be doing it from the Foundation, and won't support it if they get it working when things change later.
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[2013-12-02 14:50:08] <James_F> Vector gets supported because it's the default skin; Monobook gets supported because it's currently being supported generally for use. The other two skins in production are only there because volunteers said they would do the work. If the list of skins that WMF supports changes, then so will the list of skins that the VisualEditor team will, of course.
[2013-12-02 14:50:31] <James_F> E.g. if we drop support for Vector and Monobook and just go with a new skin for Agora…
[2013-12-02 14:50:45] <James_F> But again, not the place of the VisualEditor team to make that determination.
[2013-12-02 14:51:39] =-= Krinkle|detached is now known as Krinkle
[2013-12-02 14:51:45] <James_F> On the snowmen issue, that's a typing insertion problem related to "special" characters and nodes, and obviously shouldn't be happening.
[2013-12-02 14:51:55] <Dragonfly6-7> snowmen?
[2013-12-02 14:52:27] <James_F> Dragonfly6-7: A corruption bug that inserts snowmen characters ("☃").
[2013-12-02 14:52:44] <Elitre> Dragonfly6-7: it's a rare issue only happening on fr.wp, AFAIK.
[2013-12-02 14:53:02] =-= bd808|LUNCH is now known as bd808
[2013-12-02 14:53:22] <Finnegan> all vandalism should be accompanied by a snowman character, to make it easier to recognize :D
[2013-12-02 14:53:27] <James_F> geniice: Mobile editing should be coming soon-ish as an alpha for tablets.
[2013-12-02 14:53:36] <James_F> Finnegan: It would be useful, yes.
[2013-12-02 14:53:59] <geniice> James_F given the record so fay don't you think it would be safer to call it pre-alpha?
[2013-12-02 14:54:22] <James_F> geniice: … no? You do know about Mobile's alpha and beta channels, right? :-)
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[2013-12-02 14:54:46] <James_F> geniice: This is a judgement for the Mobile product team to make, however - we're here to support them, not tell them how to do it.
[2013-12-02 14:55:08] <James_F> geniice: For phones will take more time, as we need to jiggle a few of the dialogs to work in smaller screens.
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[2013-12-02 14:55:36] <Maggie_Dennis> We've got five minutes guys, for final questions.
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[2013-12-02 14:55:55] <Maggie_Dennis> Please remember that there is another Office Hour being held at 0100 on 3 December.
[2013-12-02 14:56:22] <James_F> Or, in other words, in five hours' time.
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[2013-12-02 14:57:10] <Maggie_Dennis> Any more questions for this hour?
[2013-12-02 14:57:10] <Elitre> thanks everybody, and see you soon :)
[2013-12-02 14:57:17] <James_F> Sounds like no. :-)
[2013-12-02 14:57:45] <Dragonfly6-7> Have you ever shot a man in Reno, just to watch him die.
[2013-12-02 14:57:55] <Maggie_Dennis> LOL, Dragonfly6-7. :)
[2013-12-02 14:58:21] <Dragonfly6-7> "I shot a man in Renal, just to watch him dialysis"
[2013-12-02 14:58:29] <Maggie_Dennis> Oh, ouch!
[2013-12-02 14:58:31] =-= InezK is now known as InezK_away
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[2013-12-02 14:58:43] <Maggie_Dennis> If we've hit the pun stage, it's probably good to call this a wrap.
[2013-12-02 14:58:47] <Maggie_Dennis> Thank you, James_F.
[2013-12-02 14:58:57] <Maggie_Dennis> And thank you everyone for coming. :)
[2013-12-02 14:59:06] <Maggie_Dennis> I'll post the logs in a few minutes.
[2013-12-02 14:59:13] * Emufarmers books Dragonfly6-7 for his next party.
[2013-12-02 14:59:17] <Maggie_Dennis> :D
[2013-12-02 14:59:17] <James_F> Thanks everyone.