Community Wishlist Survey 2022/Multimedia and Commons/Improve graphs and interactive content

Improve graphs and interactive content

  • Problem: Wikipedia would benefit from more animations, interactive content, and self-updating infographics.

    When we discuss historical changes, we should be able to view those changes interactively, e.g. side by side. Statistical data should be represented as easy to understand charts, and when the new data becomes available, those charts should update. We already have some of the tools for this (the <graph> tag, the shared data on commons, maps), but the current tools are hard to use, not maintained, and need improvements. The comprehensive vision was presented several years ago in a short I Dream of Content paper.

    The Graph extension has many advantages for Wikimedia projects. In brief, it allows data to by displayed by generating graphs on-the-fly (we do not need a picture file anymore, and so we do not need to create a new picture each time the data are updated). However, the Graph extension is currently not widely used, probably partly because the code is not really user-friendly.

    In addition, the current extension has not been able to display Wikidata data for more than a year, and since there is no official maintainer for this extension, the problem may show up again in the future.

  • Proposed solution: Upgrade the Vega library, add Vega-Lite support, and add multilingual support to Graphs.

    Develop a GUI Visual-Editor-like tool to help contributors to create nice graphs. This tool could look a bit like those in spreadsheet software (the user selects the data to plot and the type of graph, then fine-tunes it). This tool could be integrated with the Data namespace on Wikimedia Commons (example) and with the Wikidata Query Service. The latter already offers different visualisation methods, with the ability to export results to several formats (html, json, svg). See this example. Adding customizable Vega code as an output would be nice.

    Community Wishlist Survey 2016/Categories/Multimedia#Support SVG interactivity and animation in Media Viewer discussed making animation and interactivity easier for SVGs.

  • Who would benefit: Readers and content creators
  • More comments: this proposal received the 6th highest number of support in 2021 and should be handle by the development team. Yet, it is not sure they find time to work so it may be valuable to propose once more this proposal because the problems are still present.
  • Phabricator tickets: tag/mediawiki-extensions-graph, among which phab:T165118, phab:T100444, phab:T109630, phab:T151127 ...
  • Proposer: Pamputt (talk) 11:20, 13 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]


  • Hello Pamputt! It would appear this proposal is mostly a copy/paste of the 2021 wish. Things have changed since then, however. phab:T195627 and phab:T195628 have been declined because Graphoid has been removed from production entirely. I'm guessing phab:T165118 is the appropriate task now. Then where you say …the current extension has not been able to display Wikidata data for more than a year – this has been fixed, right?

    Could you please review this proposal and make sure it is up-to-date? I'm also concerned it is asking for too many things. I think "Develop a GUI Visual-Editor-like tool" is a good wish by itself. Adding localization I imagine might be a big chunk of work, too, so phab:T100444 might also be a separate wish. (I know we didn't have you break these out into separate wishes in the past, but we're now trying to be more careful about over-promising). Thanks, MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 15:54, 13 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

    @MusikAnimal (WMF): actually, one of the problem is the "graph" tag is enabled on Wikimedia project but there is no identified developer/maintainer for this tool so it is not really supported and bugs appear with time and are hardly fixed (that's why I've spoken about the major bug (hundreds of graphs embedded in Wikipedia articles and elsewhere did not display anything during that time) that waited for more than one year and half to be fixed). "graph" is a wonderful tool but it is complicated to use so this is the place to debate of that but the WMF should have a clear strategy about the MediaWiki extension that it deploys on WM projects; for example, one tool that is deployed should have at least one identified maintainer who is part of the WMF staff: no technical staff, no more extension.
    In addition, the proposal has been massively supported last year and nothing has been done on it contrary to what was announced. So finally it is a lot of time spent by contributors to write and read this proposal and also by the WMF staff to manage all of this and in the end you get almost nothing but disappointment.
    So I modified slighty the proposal and I will spent more time on it. If other people want to take care of it, do not hesitate. Pamputt (talk) 18:48, 16 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • There is an Vega 3.0 project at which is made for MediaWiki. The project was security tested in phab:T172938, but the issues raised do not seem to have been fixed.--Snævar (talk) 17:56, 13 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    @Snævar: This might be a good separate proposal. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 15:51, 16 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]