[WikiEN-l] Historical text highlighting wiki gadget

Gwern Branwen gwern0 at gmail.com
Fri Oct 2 11:33:36 UTC 2009

On Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 2:57 PM, Aaron Halfaker <half0032 at umn.edu> wrote:
> I'm sure many of you caught the news
> article(http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/08/wikitrust/) about
> Adler and Alfaro's research(http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1242572.1242608)
> in wiki trustability being applied to live Wikipedia. It just so happens
> that I have been working on a similar problem from a completely
> different direction during my research and am ready to share this work
> with the community.  I have designed and implemented a user script
> modification that I call HAPPI and am currently running a
> non-profit/academic analysis of its usefulness.  The script adds a
> couple of new controls that will appear over the edit pane.  These
> controls will allow you to toggle the highlighting of wiki text while
> you edit it.  If you'd like to give it a try, please see the
> documentation page and consent form for more information.
> Screenshot: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/37/HAPPI_example.png
> Documentation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EpochFail/HAPPI
> Consent form: http://wikipedia.grouplens.org/HAPPI/consent
> -Aaron Halfaker

That's very interesting; I'm trying it right now and it looks like it might be useful. I have a few questions:

1. I take it the darker the red, the newer the text? It's unclear what the difference between 'unvetted' and 'trustworthy' is.
2. How sophisticated is the tool? I'm guessing the algorithm is just 'look back in the history until the text is no longer there'; does it catch when a string is being deleted & reverted often?
3. At least here, the script overrides my monobook.css customizations (green foreground, black background); any chance of a fix for that?

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