Page MenuHomePhabricator

A draft policy for gadgets and user scripts has been proposed and your feedback is needed
Open, Needs TriagePublic

Description

Hey all!

Given the hackathon this weekend, now seemed like a good idea to talk about us having a policy for code we write for gadget and user scripts developers and as gadget and user script developers. TDLR: I am proposing a policy to guide developers and authors of these kinds of scripts. I would like people to read through my first draft [1] and give me feedback on the talk page. Please feel free to share on wiki.

**What is being proposed

A policy page that would be editable on wiki and linked to from the editing interfaces on gadgets, to guide both parties on how to write code that's sustainable and less prone to breakage.

Why is this needed?

Despite gadgets and user scripts (which will be referred from now on as wiki-based code) being a key component of MediaWiki projects, up until now frontend APIs (e.g. how wiki-based code should interact with source control provided code) have been ill-defined leading to misunderstandings between engineers and wiki-based code developers when wiki-based code break. This also leads to code rot, where developers do not feel empowered to make changes as it's unclear how their changes will impact wiki-based code developers. On top of this, when wiki-based code breaks it's not clear who can and will fix them.

To solve this a policy I have been pushing for some time to make the contract between MediaWiki developers and wiki-based code developers explicit and less confusing.

I hope on the long run a policy would restore trust and good faith between the two parties.

How can you help?

To contribute to the policy please use the discussion page to raise concerns, suggestions, removals or additions.

What's the deadline?

I'd like to have all feedback gathered by 30th May 2022

[1] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:Jdlrobson/Extension:Gadget/Policy#Policy_(draft)

Event Timeline

For Tech News, how would you suggest describing this? I imagine something like this, but am unsure about which core details need to be highlighted:

Gadget and user scripts developers are invited to give feedback on a proposed technical policy about code stability and naming standards. [1]

I'd suggest keeping it simple:

Gadget and user scripts developers are invited to give feedback on a proposed technical policy aiming to improve support from MediaWiki developers. [1]

(saying it is about code stability and naming standards it trivializing it a little and I'd rather they read it for themselves in full rather than relying on a summary)

Sorry, I intended those 2 examples to be examples, showing how it might be written (hence the "something like this, [...]")
Summaries are helpful, especially for people receiving this communication as a translation who don't speak English (natively or at all).
The more specific details a summary includes, the more likely it becomes that relevant people will spot a keyword that is important to them, and thus decide to spend their time reading (or reading a machine-translation) of the full page.
However, I will use your proposed wording for now. It can still be amended before it is frozen tomorrow, if needed.