[Foundation-l] Proposed overhaul of Meta

James Hare messedrocker at gmail.com
Tue Apr 3 01:02:55 UTC 2007

Hello Wiki folk,

After approximately two and a half months of inactivity, I have decided to
return to Foundation-l. And today, I would like to address something: an
overhaul of Meta.

The Wikimedia Meta-Wiki is, in my opinion, the portal of things relevant to
every single involved member of Wikimedia projects. All of them. Yet, Meta
is not quite to my standard. I remember some time ago there was an effort
for cleaning up, but that seems to have turned to dust. This won't be some
fancy project, this is just what I am thinking about and I want to see if
you all get where I am heading at.

1) The current primary navigation system, [[Meta:Index]], is looking unhappy
with needless branching out. I could probably do this on my own, but I was
thinking that Meta:Index should be condensed as much as possible and -be
restricted to functions on Meta only-. Things for other projects can have a
similar navigation page. Likewise, the Meta:Index page should link to each
of the language categories. Additionally, I would like to see the Index page
more prominently featured on Meta.

2) The three messageboard pages -- Meta:Babel, Metapub, and Meta:Babylon --
have very terrible names, considering their purposes. You'd think Meta:Babel
would be about languages, but it's about Meta. You'd think Metapub would be
able Meta, but it's about the WMF in general. Meta:Babylon may hint towards
the idea of languages, but Meta:Babel sounds like a better candidate. I
discuss this more here:

3) The Main Page is a bit big. It's not really a problem, but some things
could be transitioned over to Meta:Index or similar pages.

4) The feature where you get to select a language and then the interface is
in that language is really cool -- but I think its implementation should be
more conspicuous. For registered users, if they haven't selected their
language(s) of preference yet, they should be able to set the options in
Preferences. When this feature becomes available, there should be a message
in the Sitenotice advertising such a thing. For anonymous users, it could be
cookie-based; if there is no evidence that there is cache of Meta since the
implementation of such a feature, then before they could view any other
pages, they must set their language of preference first. This way, it is out
in the open, and there is little possibility for confusion.

5) I've heard about discussion of this, but I think the translation
functions of Meta should be moved to their own wiki. It would operate a lot
more efficiently (more main page space could be dedicated to translation),
and through special features made for translation wikis, it would be much
more convenient as well. A translation community, so-to-speak, could
establish a presence on such a wiki.

These are ideas to consider. Additionally, I have thought of an idea
involving streamlining communication throughout the Foundation, but I'll
have more information on that later.

(you can call me James)

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