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Visual watchlist

 

 

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arun.planemad at gmail

May 9, 2012, 1:17 AM

Post #1 of 8 (293 views)
Permalink
Visual watchlist

I thought of studying my watchlist for a moment to understand why it was
the way it was, and I noticed the following:


1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.
2. The first link in each item is that of the current article. I have
never clicked this because I might as well go through the changes by using
(diff)
3. I have never clicked (hist) on the watchlist, I would first see the
(diff) and only then browse the history
4. 0 is colored grey making it disappear from the list. But that does
not mean the article never changed, it could be +400 -400 words but the net
is 0. The edit calculation can be highly misleading. I would rather want to
know how many characters were added and how many deletions. Articles which
have only additions are low on my priority list to patrol.
5. Before contacting any user or checking his (contribs), I would
always see what his edit was. I open the (diff) and (contribs) in new tabs.
This could have become integrated because its part of the same task. Same
goes for talk and the user page links littered all over my watchlist
6. Knowing whether a user/ip has a talk page or not is important for me
to identify a newbie or vandal
7. Reading each edit summary is really slow. Identifying where it begins
on a line is tough of all the information that precedes it.
8. I can jump to the specific section directly by clicking the tiny →
but not the section name itself. I have never used this link either as i
would rather see the (diff)
9. The (diff) gives me the diff with the entire article and image loaded
below. In most cases, all the info I need while patrolling is just in the
diff. I only need the article if i want to check if tables/images are
broken.


With that in mind I made this, which would solve most of my issues:
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mw-ux-visual_watchlist.png
Let me know if it would work for you as well? I hope to put some more
thought on it and improving the idea.
--
Arun Ganesh
User:planemad
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amir.aharoni at mail

May 9, 2012, 1:47 AM

Post #2 of 8 (293 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

2012/5/9 Arun Ganesh <arun.planemad [at] gmail>:
> I thought of studying my watchlist for a moment to understand why it was
> the way it was, and I noticed the following:

Thanks a lot for the review. The watchlist is like an inbox for me and
for a lot of other people, although better statistic is needed to know
how many. See comments below.

>   1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
>   options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.

I visit that page so frequently that I just got used to that. But
every time I teach people to use Wikipedia, it strikes me again.

Also notice that various projects often customize the area above the
list. Many frequent editors visit this page all the time, so it's a
good place for community notifications and various utility links. Of
course, different projects do it completely differently and complain
when MediaWiki updates break their customizations :)

It may be worth to research what projects put there, and add the most
common customizations to the core software.

>   2. The first link in each item is that of the current article. I have
>   never clicked this because I might as well go through the changes by using
>   (diff)

I frequently click it... but actually I mostly do it to remove the
page from the watchlist if I lost interest in it. There are gadgets
that do it directly from the watchlist, but I got used to the old way,
and I guess that I also want to take that one last goodbye look :)

Click statistics can be useful here, too.

>   3. I have never clicked (hist) on the watchlist, I would first see the
>   (diff) and only then browse the history

I click the history link all the time. It's much more useful than the
diff link. The diff link shows only the last edit, and there may have
been others.

>   4. 0 is colored grey making it disappear from the list. But that does
>   not mean the article never changed, it could be +400 -400 words but the net
>   is 0. The edit calculation can be highly misleading. I would rather want to
>   know how many characters were added and how many deletions. Articles which
>   have only additions are low on my priority list to patrol.

A half-related comment: The MindTouch wiki software shows the number
of words added and removed. It's used in the Mozilla Developer
Network, for example:
https://developer.mozilla.org/index.php?title=en/Localization_Quick_Start_Guide/Initial_setup&action=history

>   5.  Before contacting any user or checking his (contribs), I would
>   always see what his edit was. I open the (diff) and (contribs) in new tabs.
>   This could have become integrated because its part of the same task. Same
>   goes for talk and the user page links littered all over my watchlist

+1, in general, but this also has a dark side: there are trigger-happy
patrollers who revert most edits by user with red links. The people
who research participation and editor retention statistics (Brandon
and others) may have a lot of data about this.

>   8. I can jump to the specific section directly by clicking the tiny →
>   but not the section name itself. I have never used this link either as i
>   would rather see the (diff)

I use that link frequently. Linking the section name is a very good idea.

>  With that in mind I made this, which would solve most of my issues:
> http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mw-ux-visual_watchlist.png
> Let me know if it would work for you as well? I hope to put some more
> thought on it and improving the idea.

Very, very nice.

Watchlist needs revamping and this is a good direction.

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aaron at sociotopia

May 9, 2012, 5:02 PM

Post #3 of 8 (321 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

Arun Ganesh <arun.planemad <at> gmail.com> writes:

>
> I thought of studying my watchlist for a moment to understand why it was
> the way it was, and I noticed the following:
>
> 1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
> options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.
> 2. The first link in each item is that of the current article. I have
> never clicked this because I might as well go through the changes by using
> (diff)
> 3. I have never clicked (hist) on the watchlist, I would first see the
> (diff) and only then browse the history
> 4. 0 is colored grey making it disappear from the list. But that does
> not mean the article never changed, it could be +400 -400 words but the net
> is 0. The edit calculation can be highly misleading. I would rather want to
> know how many characters were added and how many deletions. Articles which
> have only additions are low on my priority list to patrol.
> 5. Before contacting any user or checking his (contribs), I would
> always see what his edit was. I open the (diff) and (contribs) in new tabs.
> This could have become integrated because its part of the same task. Same
> goes for talk and the user page links littered all over my watchlist
> 6. Knowing whether a user/ip has a talk page or not is important for me
> to identify a newbie or vandal
> 7. Reading each edit summary is really slow. Identifying where it begins
> on a line is tough of all the information that precedes it.
> 8. I can jump to the specific section directly by clicking the tiny →
> but not the section name itself. I have never used this link either as i
> would rather see the (diff)
> 9. The (diff) gives me the diff with the entire article and image loaded
> below. In most cases, all the info I need while patrolling is just in the
> diff. I only need the article if i want to check if tables/images are
> broken.
>
> With that in mind I made this, which would solve most of my issues:
> http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mw-ux-visual_watchlist.png
> Let me know if it would work for you as well? I hope to put some more
> thought on it and improving the idea.

For GSoC, I will be working on making several improvements to the watchlist
feature in MediaWiki. You have provided valuable feedback which I've responded
to point-by-point below.

> 1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
> options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.

I'd like to make this box collapsable with hide/show link - that should save
screen real estate, but would it sacrifice usage?

> 2. The first link in each item is that of the current article. I have
> never clicked this because I might as well go through the changes by using
> (diff)

For me, (diff|hist) are the first links, followed by the article title... unless
I've misunderstood what you meant.

> 3. I have never clicked (hist) on the watchlist, I would first see the
> (diff) and only then browse the history

As Amir noted, statistics for usage of these buttons would be nice.

> 4. 0 is colored grey making it disappear from the list. But that does
> not mean the article never changed, it could be +400 -400 words but the net
> is 0. The edit calculation can be highly misleading. I would rather want to
> know how many characters were added and how many deletions. Articles which
> have only additions are low on my priority list to patrol.

I really like your idea of changing the way changes are displayed on the
watchlist. It reminds me of the like/dislike bar on YouTube. Such a bar would be
far more useful than a net change number (which many first time users probably
don't understand what it's for.)

> 7. Reading each edit summary is really slow. Identifying where it begins
> on a line is tough of all the information that precedes it.

After implementing watchlist grouping and a
number of other improvements, I was interested in creating a narrow column
version of the watchlist recent changes, inserting a line break at a set point
in the line (probably before the user name).

> 8. I can jump to the specific section directly by clicking the tiny →
> but not the section name itself. I have never used this link either as i
> would rather see the (diff)

A diff for the section would be useful.

> 9. The (diff) gives me the diff with the entire article and image loaded
> below. In most cases, all the info I need while patrolling is just in the
> diff. I only need the article if i want to check if tables/images are
> broken.

Maybe we could add a "diff-lite" option that could be turned on by power users?

>
> With that in mind I made this, which would solve most of my issues:
> http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mw-ux-visual_watchlist.png
> Let me know if it would work for you as well? I hope to put some more
> thought on it and improving the idea.

Thanks again for your feedback - my GSoC project page is available here and I'd
appreciate any feedback you have:
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:Blackjack48/GSOC_proposal_for_watchlist_impro
vements

I will incorporate your suggestions into my project within the next few days.



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arun.planemad at gmail

May 13, 2012, 8:38 AM

Post #4 of 8 (274 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

>
>
> From: Aaron Pramana <aaron [at] sociotopia>
>
To: wikitech-l [at] lists
>
Subject: Re: [Wikitech-l] Visual watchlist
>
Message-ID: <loom.20120510T020226-593 [at] post>
>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
>
Thanks again for your feedback - my GSoC project page is available here and
> I'd
>
appreciate any feedback you have:
>
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:Blackjack48/GSOC_proposal_for_watchlist_impro
>
vements
>

> I will incorporate your suggestions into my project within the next few
> days.
>

Thanks Amir. Aaron, that is awesome, I'd be happy to help you out with the
visual design and css.
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risker.wp at gmail

May 13, 2012, 10:59 AM

Post #5 of 8 (268 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

On 13 May 2012 11:38, Arun Ganesh <arun.planemad [at] gmail> wrote:

> >
> >
> > From: Aaron Pramana <aaron [at] sociotopia>
> >
> To: wikitech-l [at] lists
> >
> Subject: Re: [Wikitech-l] Visual watchlist
> >
> Message-ID: <loom.20120510T020226-593 [at] post>
> >
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
> >
> Thanks again for your feedback - my GSoC project page is available here and
> > I'd
> >
> appreciate any feedback you have:
> >
>
> http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:Blackjack48/GSOC_proposal_for_watchlist_impro
> >
> vements
> >
>
> > I will incorporate your suggestions into my project within the next few
> > days.
> >
>
> Thanks Amir. Aaron, that is awesome, I'd be happy to help you out with the
> visual design and css.
>


Just to give our GSoC participant a bit of a heads up, a fairly routine
change that was made to watchlists on Enwp a few days ago (and has been
implemented fairly widely on other projects) created a disproportionate
amount of confusion and reaction.[1]

It might be a good idea to mine the thread linked below and co-opt multiple
users in that thread to act as beta testers for the proposed improvements.
Oh, and it reminds us that changes to the common.css should be tested on
multiple skins.

Looking forward to seeing the end result!

Risker/Anne




[1] non-permanent link: <
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28technical%29#Watchlist_-_bold_letter_article_titles.21
>
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aaron at sociotopia

May 13, 2012, 3:36 PM

Post #6 of 8 (274 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

Risker <risker.wp <at> gmail.com> writes:
>
> Just to give our GSoC participant a bit of a heads up, a fairly routine
> change that was made to watchlists on Enwp a few days ago (and has been
> implemented fairly widely on other projects) created a disproportionate
> amount of confusion and reaction.[1]
>
> It might be a good idea to mine the thread linked below and co-opt multiple
> users in that thread to act as beta testers for the proposed improvements.
> Oh, and it reminds us that changes to the common.css should be tested on
> multiple skins.
>
> Looking forward to seeing the end result!
>
> Risker/Anne
>
> [1] non-permanent link: <
>
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28technical%29#Watchlist_-
_bold_letter_article_titles.21
> >
>

Thanks for the advice! I'm going to post a prioritized feature/fix list and put
out a call for testers shortly.




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helder.wiki at gmail

May 17, 2012, 5:58 PM

Post #7 of 8 (259 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

On Wed, May 9, 2012 at 5:47 AM, Amir E. Aharoni
<amir.aharoni [at] mail> wrote:
> 2012/5/9 Arun Ganesh <arun.planemad [at] gmail>:
>> I thought of studying my watchlist for a moment to understand why it was
>> the way it was, and I noticed the following:
>
> Thanks a lot for the review. The watchlist is like an inbox for me and
> for a lot of other people, although better statistic is needed to know
> how many. See comments below.
>
>> 1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
>> options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.
>
> I visit that page so frequently that I just got used to that.

I use this JavaScript snippet to hide those options by default:
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Snippets/Collapsible_ChangesList_options
There is also this other script
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Snippets/Unwatch_from_watchlist
but it is not very convenient because most of the time you don't go to
Special:Watchlist just because you want to unwatch things. Those links
take a lot of space.

Best regards,
Helder

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hippytrail at gmail

May 17, 2012, 11:04 PM

Post #8 of 8 (259 views)
Permalink
Re: Visual watchlist [In reply to]

On 9 May 2012 12:17, Arun Ganesh <arun.planemad [at] gmail> wrote:
> I thought of studying my watchlist for a moment to understand why it was
> the way it was, and I noticed the following:
>
>
>   1. My watchlist begins half the page down, because of the watchlist
>   options box, which btw I have never used or peered into.
>   2. The first link in each item is that of the current article. I have
>   never clicked this because I might as well go through the changes by using
>   (diff)
>   3. I have never clicked (hist) on the watchlist, I would first see the
>   (diff) and only then browse the history

These days I most often click (hist), less often (diff), and
practically never anything else.

(hist) is more useful for me on the English Wiktionary because I
mostly add translation requests and several bots watch the recent
changes feed which result in minor changes to most pages alter, which
are of no interest to me. Also it seems that people monitoring the
activity also often add other translations. By clicking (hist) I can
see

1) If only bots have changed the page since me, in which case I don't
need to see a diff.

2) When there were several human edits, which ones were in languages I
am interested in.

3) The history page give me a way to get a diff of all changes since
my last edit, rather than just the most recent chage.

Andrew Dunbar (hippietrail)

>   4. 0 is colored grey making it disappear from the list. But that does
>   not mean the article never changed, it could be +400 -400 words but the net
>   is 0. The edit calculation can be highly misleading. I would rather want to
>   know how many characters were added and how many deletions. Articles which
>   have only additions are low on my priority list to patrol.
>   5.  Before contacting any user or checking his (contribs), I would
>   always see what his edit was. I open the (diff) and (contribs) in new tabs.
>   This could have become integrated because its part of the same task. Same
>   goes for talk and the user page links littered all over my watchlist
>   6. Knowing whether a user/ip has a talk page or not is important for me
>   to identify a newbie or vandal
>   7. Reading each edit summary is really slow. Identifying where it begins
>   on a line is tough of all the information that precedes it.
>   8. I can jump to the specific section directly by clicking the tiny →
>   but not the section name itself. I have never used this link either as i
>   would rather see the (diff)
>   9. The (diff) gives me the diff with the entire article and image loaded
>   below. In most cases, all the info I need while patrolling is just in the
>   diff. I only need the article if i want to check if tables/images are
>   broken.
>
>
>  With that in mind I made this, which would solve most of my issues:
> http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mw-ux-visual_watchlist.png
> Let me know if it would work for you as well? I hope to put some more
> thought on it and improving the idea.
> --
> Arun Ganesh
> User:planemad
> _______________________________________________
> Wikitech-l mailing list
> Wikitech-l [at] lists
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l

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