[Foundation-l] Proposed overhaul of Meta

Samuel Klein meta.sj at gmail.com
Fri Apr 6 20:59:24 UTC 2007

Hello James,

This email made my day.  I think your ideas -- reworking Meta:Index and 
the Main Page, fixing Babel and Metapub to be about language and general 
discussion, popularizing the interface-language selection option, and 
giving translations their own wiki -- to clear up Meta/Meta-RC and also to 
help focus translation functions -- are all excellent.  I have suggested a 
separate translation wiki in the past, and would be glad to help set such 
a thing up.

Perhaps a good way to start would be with discussiong a babel/metapub/babylon 
reorganization on those pages and talk pages, and then having this discussion 
move to the resulting "about meta" talk page... since mailing lists are rarely 
the best place to launch a wiki cleanup campaign.

There have been other efforts to date; as pointed out elsewhere you 
should coordinate this with the older efforts at WM:OM (it had lots of 
enthusiasm, and lots of en:wp participants, but not enough input from 
active meta contributors at the time, or from people from other language 
wikis or non-wikipedia projects... some of the work done through that 
effort, including the categorization and image cleanup, were really 


On Mon, 2 Apr 2007, James Hare wrote:

> 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:
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Meta:Babel#Renaming_some_pages
> 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.
> Sincerely,
> MessedRocker
> (you can call me James)
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> foundation-l at lists.wikimedia.org
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