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Newcomer tasks: investigate task types
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Description

Two of the largest engineering challenges with the newcomer tasks project are:

  • Which kinds of tasks to recommend and how to find them?
  • How to align the articles with the newcomer's interests?

This task is about some initial technical investigations around the first challenge of finding the tasks. We should keep in mind that our goal with the initial version of the feature is to have task recommendations, but they may not be the most refined or accessible tasks -- that will come in later versions. What we want to figure out is:

  • What kind of work would we expect to do pursuing a "maintenance template" strategy with a "newest articles" backup?
  • Looking at the other task types, are there some that look like better approaches for the initial version?
  • What potential technical issues or risks should we look out for?
  • Any other thoughts, engineering or otherwise.

The full details are in this section of our planning document. Here is the summary:

  • So far, we gathered all our ideas on where to source tasks from and commented on them in Airtable.
  • Then @MMiller_WMF narrowed them to a shortlist.
  • Then @Catrope commented on each approach in the shortlist to give an initial technical opinion.
  • Then we decided that our we want to pursue the “maintenance templates” approach for the first version. We will also want a “backup” source of tasks, if a wiki does not have enough articles with maintenance templates. This backup could be the “work on newest articles” approach, since there are always newest articles.
  • Now we want to look at that approach and think about what it will be like to build it.

An important source of information is this Google Sheet, in which the ambassadors listed the maintenance templates that are present in each wiki (per the child tasks of T229430). We will want to know the counts of how many articles have each template, to get a sense of which maintenance templates to use.

The results of this investigation should go into the Google Doc.

Event Timeline

This investigation is ready for development.

MMiller_WMF updated the task description. (Show Details)Aug 9 2019, 11:26 PM

Specifically, I think it would be good to sketch out how we would implement some of these things (at least "maintenance template" and "newest articles", as you say), and especially what kinds of new storage we would need (database tables, caches, etc.).

Moving into in progress as we have been adding comments and content to the doc.

Specifically, I think it would be good to sketch out how we would implement some of these things (at least "maintenance template" and "newest articles", as you say), and especially what kinds of new storage we would need (database tables, caches, etc.).

I added some general infrastructure question to the bottom of the document which I think would be necessary to answer those types of question in more detail.

MMiller_WMF closed this task as Resolved.Wed, Aug 28, 11:29 PM

@kostajh and @Catrope have put thorough notes in the planning document and the team has discussed. The investigation is complete, and now we'll move on to prototyping, which will be ticketed separately.