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only show "Enable responsive mode" setting on relevant skins
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There is a setting within preferences called Enable responsive mode. As the description within the setting says this setting "May have no effect on some skins". In order to keep preferences as clutter-free as possible, and also to avoid confusion (in the case where someone doesn't read the description), I wonder if we should:

  1. only show this setting on relevant skins
  2. remove the description text that says "May have no effect on some skins".

Event Timeline

Vecotr is the only skin that doesn't support this currently and Vector /could/ support it if we wanted.

The skins that support this are currently MonoBook, Minerva and Timeless.
The skins that don't are CologneBlue and Modern and are hidden.

I think the real problem here is the wording is not right.

Perhaps the preference could be made less confusing. All skins have a desktop version, so perhaps that could be repurposed as "Always give me desktop-mode when using my skin" and made an opt out.

That still wouldn't have any effect on Vector but it would still be true so wouldn't need that confusing text.

Maybe "Adapt layout to screen size"

Maybe "Adapt layout to screen size"

I like this description. It would be the most accurate for MediaWiki-skins-Mirage.

ovasileva triaged this task as Medium priority.Tue, Sep 28, 4:56 PM

Change 726001 had a related patch set uploaded (by Ammarpad; author: Ammarpad):

[mediawiki/core@master] Reword responsive skin option help message

Test wiki created on Patch Demo by Jdlrobson using patch(es) linked to this task:

Backing up and trying to clarify what this setting does: if you turn the setting on, then access Wikipedia on your mobile phone, then request the Desktop version of the site, the setting will have turned viewport optimizing so you will see a different version of the site than you otherwise would have. If that understanding is correct I'm not sure "adapt layout to screen size makes sense" — that makes me think "give me the responsive version of this skin" (which should/does(?) happen by default...there's no non-responsive version of a skin?), but it's actually more specific/nuanced than that. It seems more like "When requesting the desktop site from a mobile device, don't optimize the viewport".

To further clarify, this setting will have no affect on your desktop experience, it is only relevant for mobile devices? If that's the case then the setting should probably mention mobile devices.

Higher level, unless we do a better job of establishing that some settings only apply to some skins I don't think we can rely on the setting description to clarify that. I think we're just setting people up for confusion.

Change 726001 merged by jenkins-bot:

[mediawiki/core@master] Reword responsive skin option help message

Jdlrobson added a subscriber: ovasileva.

@ovasileva I chatted with Alex about this and there was some confusion. I think we decided this was not a high priority and a possible distraction from desktop improvements. If that's changed maybe the three of us should sync to come up with a plan here ?

The only skins that this preference doesn't apply to are Vector, Modern and CologneBlue (and the latter two are hidden by default). It would be trivial to make this preference apply to modern Vector (not legacy) but it would also make the Vector skin responsive on mobile (which the user can opt-out of). On all the skins abide to this preference. Personally I think this is how this should work.

To hide the preference for Vector would incur technical debt, and I don't think that would be acceptable without a plan to address this problem. There is no way to easily determine which skins this setting applies to.

We might want to think a bit more about preferences that apply to some skins as I can imagine this list growing. For example, a dark mode preference presumably would only apply to skins where a dark mode is available. I would imagine this being presented as "Use dark mode if available [] "