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Unconference: What user analytics would help you as a developer?
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I'm making the assumption that developers want to know more about the people who use their software :) - so what data would help you out? What would you like to know about your wiki users and how they use the wiki? What metrics would inform you of how well your software works and what doesn't work? How could you use this data about users to determine your success?

I have dabbled in building user analytics tools, but have struggled to choose which metrics are useful and which might be distracting. I'd like to hear your thoughts and end up with a prioritized list of metrics that would help developers make better tools.

Leader: @Darenwelsh
Co-leader: @MusikAnimal

Notes from session:

Daren started with a very brief overview of 5 Year NASA Wikiversary (on, an exploration of user analytics from NASA's first 5 years of using MediaWIki) and Extension:UserJourney (an extension with queries into user activity within a wiki, geared toward motivating the user to contribute more). Leon then gave a brief overview of XTools.

They then posed the question, "What data about user activity would help developers?"

In Reader's Web, they ask what users want. Do they organize the sidebar to remove unnecessary items so it is not so cluttered? How do they know what to remove? Do you track clicks on each link? Don't need to track every click for every user. Instead, track specific items for the purpose of the question. But if you remove something, what if someone needs it?

Should you track all this data all the time? It's a lot of disk space, but then when you come up with questions you can answer them immediately.

Privacy is a concern. Data can ba anonymized.

The activity graph in github - could we use that to see how active people are in certain areas like templates. This info could be presented to certain users so they see their own activity.

It's not all about competition. Some people are there to explore or be challenged or because of altruism.

Extension:GrowthExperiments adds a home page for each user to guide them through learning how to use the wiki.

How many revision deletions are going on? How many people do new page patrolling actions?

What are people doing for the self-defined processes like deletions, merging articles (things that rely on policy? These can be driven by templates or bots and are hard to analyze.

Reminder to developers that there are people like Leon, Daren, and others who are interested in answer questions about user activity to help developers with their design.

Event Timeline

Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptNov 13 2019, 10:39 PM
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MusikAnimal updated the task description. (Show Details)Nov 14 2019, 4:19 PM
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TheDJ added a subscriber: TheDJ.Nov 15 2019, 9:41 PM
Darenwelsh updated the task description. (Show Details)Nov 15 2019, 9:47 PM

@Darenwelsh: Thank you for proposing and/or hosting this session. This open task only has the archived project tag Wikimedia-Technical-Conference-2019.
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If there is more to do, then please either add appropriate non-archived project tags to this task (via the Add Action...Change Project Tags dropdown), or make sure that appropriate follow up tasks have been created and resolve this very task. Thank you for helping clean up!

Darenwelsh closed this task as Resolved.Mar 23 2020, 10:54 PM
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