Grants:TPS/Himeshi/SMWCon Fall 2013/Report

Event name: SMWCon Fall 2013

Description of your participation:

During the tutorial day I attended the developer track and was able to attend hands on programming sessions on MediaWiki extension, Semantic MediaWiki and Wikidata. I learnt a lot and I hope it will be useful for my future work. On the first day of the conference I co-presented the talks "Semantic Forms: What's new, what's still missing?" with the author of Semantic Forms extension and my former Google Summer of Code mentor Yaron Koren. During both days of the conference I was able to meet with and talk to developers and users of SMW.

I was also able to talk to Jeroen De Dauw who maintains the Semantic MediaWiki extension about writing unit testing scripts for MediaWiki extensions. Furthermore currently the test scripts developed by me for Semantic Forms are not working properly due to a bug and I was able to talk to him about it as well.

What lessons were learned that could help others in similar events?

It was very interesting and gratifying as a developer to see the many diverse applications the Semantic MediaWiki and Semantic Forms extensions - the latter on which I worked on - being used. I got a very good introduction to MediaWiki extension, Semantic MediaWiki and Wikidata programming by participating in the developer track of the tutorial day. I realized that it was very helpful to have the environment and other needed resources setup as most of the sessions were hands on and it made it easier to follow.

During the two days of the conference there were a lot of talks on applications of SMW. I learnt that by talking to actual users who use the extensions developers can get a very good ideas about new features that should be introduced and in this context I hope that the new section handling feature will be useful to many users of Semantic Forms. It was also very interesting to talk to core developers and get to know the future plans for SMW as well users from different domains who use the technology in various appliations.

What impact did your participation have on the Wikimedia Mission goals of Increased Reach, Increased Quality, Increased Credibility, Increased and Diversified Participation?

I co-presented the talk “Semantic Forms: What’s new, what’s still missing?” with my former Google Summer of Code mentor Yaron Koren. During this presentation I talked about the usage of the new {{{section}}} tag in the Semantic Forms and Page Schemas extensions. I then performed a live demo of a canonical book template example for both extensions.

I believe that the talk helped introduce the {{{section}}} tag and gave people an idea of its usage as several people talked about the section handling implementation in both Semantic Forms and Page Schemas with me after the talk was delivered. According to Yaron, who has a lot of experience with Semantic MediaWiki related extensions, the first usages of the {{{section}}} tag will be seen within a few months at most.

I was also able to talk to experienced SMW developer and get input on adding testing functionality to MediaWiki which I hope will help me in fixing a bug that I've been trying to fix as well as future testing code I hope to write for Semantic Forms.

Detail of expenditures:

  • Return air ticket - 98,000 LKR = 747.55 USD
  • Accommodation - 228.53 EUR = 311.40 USD
  • Other expenses = 200.31 USD
  • Amount received from Google's Open Source Office = 500 USD
  • Receipts have been mailed to the participation support committee.

Amount underspent/left-over (please specify currency):

  • Amount underspent = 500.74 USD