[Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Lua scripting enabled today on all wikis

Emily Blanchard eblanchard at wikimedia.org
Wed Mar 13 22:04:49 UTC 2013

Perfect timing since we are having a Lua focused meetup Thursday evening!

Emily Blanchard
Talent Acquisition Team
Wikimedia Foundation
eblanchard at wikimedia. <eblanchard at gmail.com>org
Become a Contributor:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Teahouse
Join Us: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Work_with_us

On Wed, Mar 13, 2013 at 11:38 AM, Guillaume Paumier
<gpaumier at wikimedia.org>wrote:

> Greetings,
> As you might have seen on the Wikimedia tech
> blog<
> https://blog.wikimedia.org/2013/03/11/lua-templates-faster-more-flexible-pages/
> >(article
> included below) or the tech
> ambassadors list<
> http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikitech-ambassadors/2013-March/000171.html
> >,
> a new functionality called "Lua" is being enabled on all Wikimedia sites
> today. Lua <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Lua> is a scripting language
> that enables Wikimedia editors to write faster and more powerful MediaWiki
> templates.
> If you have questions about how to convert existing templates to Lua (or
> how to create new ones), we'll be holding two support sessions on IRC next
> week: one on Wednesday<
> http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/fixedtime.html?hour=02&min=00&sec=0&day=20&month=03&year=2013
> >(for
> Oceania, Asia & America) and one
> on Friday<
> http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/fixedtime.html?hour=18&min=00&sec=0&day=22&month=03&year=2013
> >(for
> Europe, Africa & America); see m:IRC
> office hours <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/IRC_office_hours> for
> details. If you can't make it, you can also get help at mw:Talk:Lua
> scripting <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Talk:Lua_scripting>.
> If you'd like to learn about this kind of events earlier in advance,
> consider becoming a Tech
> ambassador<https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Tech/Ambassadors>by
> subscribing to the mailing
> list <https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-ambassadors>.
> =================================
> New Lua templates bring faster, more flexible pages to your
> wiki<
> https://blog.wikimedia.org/2013/03/11/lua-templates-faster-more-flexible-pages/
> >
> Posted by Sumana Harihareswara
> <https://blog.wikimedia.org/author/sumanah/>on March 11th, 2013
> Starting Wednesday, March 13th, you’ll be able to make wiki pages even more
> useful, no matter what language you speak: we’re adding
> Lua<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lua_%28programming_language%29>as a
> templating language. This will make it easier for you to create and
> change infoboxes, tables, and other useful MediaWiki templates. We’ve
> already started to deploy
> Scribunto<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:Scribunto>(the
> MediaWiki extension that enables this); it’s on several of the sites,
> including
> English Wikipedia <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Lua>, right
> now.
> You’ll find this useful for performing more complex tasks for which
> templates are too complex or slow *—* common examples include numeric
> computations, string manipulation and parsing, and decision trees. Even if
> you don’t write templates, you’ll enjoy seeing pages load faster and with
> more interesting ways to present information.
> Background
> MediaWiki developers introduced templates and parser
> functions<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:ParserFunctions>years
> ago to allow end-users of MediaWiki to replicate content easily and
> build tools using basic logic. Along the way, we found that we were turning
> wikitext into a limited programming language. Complex templates have caused
> performance issues and bottlenecks, and it’s difficult for users to write
> and understand templates. Therefore, the Lua scripting
> project<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Lua_scripting>aims to make it
> possible for MediaWiki end-users to use a proper scripting
> language that will be more powerful and efficient than ad-hoc, parser
> functions-based logic. The example of Lua’s use in World of
> Warcraft<http://www.wowwiki.com/Lua>is promising; even novices with no
> programming experience have been able to
> make large changes to their graphical experiences by quickly learning some
> Lua.
> Lua on your wiki
> As of March 13th, you’ll be able to use Lua on your home wiki (if it’s not
> already enabled). Lua code can be embedded into wiki templates by employing
> the {{#invoke:}} parser function provided by the Scribunto MediaWiki
> extension. The Lua source code is stored in pages called modules (e.g.,
> Module:Bananas <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Module:Bananas>). These
> individual modules are then invoked on template pages. The example:
> Template:Lua
> hello world <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Template:Lua_hello_world> uses
> the code {{#invoke:Bananas|hello}} to print the text “Hello, world!”. So,
> if you start seeing edits in the Module namespace, that’s what’s going on.
> Getting started
> Check out the basic “hello, world!”
> instructions<
> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:Scribunto/Lua_reference_manual#Getting_started
> >,
> then look at Brad Jorsch’s short
> presentation<
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:WMF_Tech_Talk_2013-02-28_slides_-_Scribunto_presentation.pdf
> >for
> a basic example of how to convert a wikitext template into a Lua
> module. After that, try Tim Starling’s
> tutorial<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Lua_scripting/Tutorial>
> .
> To help you preview and test a converted template, try
> Special:TemplateSandbox<
> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Special:TemplateSandbox>on
> your wiki. With it, you can preview a page using sandboxed versions of
> templates and modules, allowing for easy testing before you make the
> sandbox code live.
> Where to start? If you use pywikipedia, try parsercountfunction.py by
> Bináris<
> https://svn.wikimedia.org/svnroot/pywikipedia/trunk/pywikipedia/parserfunctioncount.py
> >,
> which helps you find wikitext templates that currently parse slowly and
> thus would be worth converting to Lua. Try fulfilling open requests for
> conversion on English
> Wikipedia<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Lua_requests>,
> possibly using Anomie’s Greasemonkey
> script<
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Anomie/PP-report-Greasemonkey-script>to
> help you see the performance gains. On English Wikipedia, some
> of the templates have already been
> converted<
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:WhatLinksHere/Template:Lua_talk>
>  *—* feel free to reuse them on your wiki.
> The Lua hub on mediawiki.org <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Lua> has more
> information; please add to it. And enjoy your faster, more flexible
> templates!
> *Sumana Harihareswara, Engineering Community Manager*
> =================================
> --
> Guillaume Paumier
> Technical Communications Manager — Wikimedia Foundation
> https://donate.wikimedia.org
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