IRC office hours/Office hours 2013-12-11

Time: 17:00-18:00 UTC
Channel: #wikimedia-office
Timestamps are in UTC.

[17:20:10] <arrbee> === Wikimedia Language Engineering Office Hour - Start ===
[17:20:56] <arrbee> Hello, Welcome to this (much delayed) office hour of the Wikimedia Language Engineering team.
[17:21:09] <arrbee> My name is Runa and I am the Outreach and QA coordinator for our team.
[17:21:17] <arrbee> And I apologise once again :(
[17:21:55] <arrbee> The other members of our team present today are: aharoni Nikerabbit pginer and santhosh_
[17:22:39] <arrbee> Our last office hour was held on November 13, 2013. The logs are at:
[17:22:47] <arrbee>
[17:23:07] <arrbee> Today we will briefly talk about our recent work.
[17:23:17] <arrbee> After that we are open for questions.
[17:23:32] <arrbee> If you'd like to send in your questions before the Q&A, please send them to me as a private message.
[17:23:46] <arrbee> Please note, as the topic of the channel suggests the chat today will be logged and publicly posted.
[17:24:19] <arrbee> Our team i.e the Wikimedia Language Engineering team works on enabling language tools to make MediaWiki and Wikimedia projects support all the languages of the world.
[17:24:41] <arrbee> At present there are ~300 languages within the Wikimedia projects, including 287 Wikipedias.
[17:25:00] <arrbee> Since our last office hour, we have been working on several things.
[17:25:25] <arrbee> This includes the Universal Language Selector and the translation stash feature on that we had mentioned last time.
[17:26:05] <arrbee> The team also met in India for the 3rd Open Source Language Summit. We will talk a bit more about the takeaways from this summit later.
[17:26:41] <arrbee> === Project Updates ===
[17:27:10] <arrbee> The Universal Language Selector (ULS) is an extension maintained by our team that provides a unified interface for setting user-side language configuration like fonts, and input methods.
[17:27:27] <arrbee> Last month, we worked on improving the performance of the Universal Language Selector.
[17:28:11] <arrbee> We also increased the quality of the Autonym font significantly, especially for users of the Windows operating system.
[17:28:28] <arrbee> The announcement on the Wikitech mailing list has some more details about the performance improvements:
[17:28:35] <arrbee>
[17:28:53] <arrbee> We identified a few bugs related to saving user preferences which we resolved.
[17:29:11] <arrbee> We have also added more features to the the main page.
[17:29:54] <arrbee> Work has particularly focused on a way for users to make translations, to eventually sign up as a user with full translation rights.
[17:30:24] <arrbee> In the near future, we plan to complete work on the sign up and user approval feature in the extension TwnMainPage.
[17:31:02] <arrbee> We will also work on implementing the features described in the RFC "Localisation format" before the end of the year together with the VisualEditor team.
[17:31:12] <arrbee> More details are at
[17:31:52] <alolita> arrbee: can you share some details about the RFC on localization format
[17:32:40] <arrbee> alolita: We have already begun work on this and working closely with Roan.
[17:32:53] <arrbee> santhosh_: Nikerabbit : Would you like to add more comments about this?
[17:33:41] <arrbee> or maybe even James_F
[17:33:55] <Nikerabbit> some of you might be interested to read carefully the section about backwards compatibility
[17:34:26] <Nikerabbit> the current php format will be supported for 1.23 long term stable release
[17:34:37] <alolita> Nikerabbit: can you highlight some of the updates that will be part of this development project
[17:35:31] <alolita> Krinkle: hi
[17:36:11] <Nikerabbit> the i18n file format fill change from php to json
[17:37:00] <Nikerabbit> nothing else, only the necessart changes to support that
[17:38:09] <Niharika> Hello.
[17:38:10] <arrbee> alolita: We don't have Siebrand around today, but perhaps we could encourage more questions about this over email (mediawiki-i18n mailing list).
[17:38:27] <Nikerabbit> the rfc has a talk page
[17:38:33] <arrbee> yeah that too
[17:38:42] <alolita> arrbee: that works but please point to links that folks can refer to
[17:38:55] <Nikerabbit> hi Niharika
[17:39:01] <arrbee> This is the ling (once again) :
[17:39:06] <arrbee> link*
[17:39:13] <arrbee> moving on
[17:39:21] <alolita> arrbee: thanks
[17:39:44] <arrbee> The start of work on the Content Translation feature, has unfortunately been delayed by several months, because work to improve ULS performance and complete TwnMainPage has taken much more time than anticipated
[17:39:59] <arrbee> It is now expected to start in January 2014 and details are at:
[17:40:06] <arrbee>
[17:40:31] <arrbee> We are also participating in Google Code-In and the current round of the Outreach Program for Women (OPW).
[17:40:50] <arrbee> Our OPW candidate this time is Niharika (who just dropped in) from New Delhi, India. Pau and Sucheta are her mentors.
[17:40:57] <arrbee> Niharika: welcome :)
[17:41:10] <Niharika> Thank you for inviting me over. :)
[17:41:29] <arrbee> She is working on a project that will display a compact list of interlanguage list on a wiki page based on the relevance of the languages for the user.
[17:41:45] <arrbee> Project URL:
[17:41:46] <alolita> Niharika: Hi!
[17:41:58] <arrbee> Niharika: would you like to give a quick introduction about your work?
[17:42:36] <Niharika> Sure. Like arrbee said, my project will shorten the displayed language list based on relevance to the user.
[17:43:03] <Niharika> I´ve started a bit and got a feel of things work. Got my environment to setup.
[17:43:42] <Niharika> Um, that´s it, I guess.
[17:43:53] <arrbee> Thanks Niharika . :)
[17:44:03] <arrbee> Next topic
[17:44:08] <arrbee> === Language Summit in India ===
[17:44:32] <arrbee> On the 18th and 19th of November we co-hosted a Language Summit in Pune, India with Red Hat.
[17:44:43] <arrbee> Besides the Wikimedia Language Engineering team, members from the VisualEditor, Mobile and Design teams also participated.
[17:45:02] <arrbee> We addressed several issues where Internationalization intersects with all these other areas.
[17:45:17] <arrbee> Particularly important was a session on improving the support for input methods on the VisualEditor.
[17:45:33] <arrbee> We also discussed about mobile input methods, and onscreen keyboards.
[17:45:45] <arrbee> The other areas of focus were fonts/web-fonts, content translation and collaboration over language support resources in the web and desktop.
[17:46:03] <arrbee> Also in attendance were Wikipedians from a few Indian languages and other developers with active interest in language engineering.
[17:46:36] <arrbee> A short version of the summit round up is in out latest blog post:
[17:46:41] <arrbee>
[17:46:57] <arrbee> For the details please see the Event Report:
[17:47:03] <arrbee>
[17:47:14] <arrbee> That ends the Project and Event Round Up
[17:47:19] <arrbee> We are now open for Q & A
[17:47:52] <arrbee> === Q & A ===
[17:48:25] * arrbee looks around for questions�
[17:48:33] <alolita> Can you share some details on the ULS improvements done by the team this month
[17:49:09] <aharoni> I'll start.
[17:49:16] <alolita> aharoni: thanks
[17:49:37] <aharoni> The biggest thing is probably that we reduced the bandwidth usage.
[17:49:55] <aharoni> A lot of JavaScript were loaded, even if the reader wasn't about to use them.
[17:50:19] <aharoni> So we made some optimizations, and now we only load that are really needed.
[17:50:33] <aharoni> Nikerabbit: do you happen to remember how many kilobytes have we saved?
[17:50:53] <Nikerabbit> aharoni: many small streams make a big one
[17:51:49] <alolita> aharoni: any examples of languages for which the autonym font helps
[17:52:33] <aharoni> Oriya, 33 million speakers,
[17:52:44] <aharoni> Khmer, 16 million speakers,
[17:53:11] <aharoni> Burmese, 40 million speakers,
[17:53:19] <kart_> Hello.
[17:53:44] <alolita> aharoni: thanks - in these scripts - how does the autonym font help optimize
[17:53:46] <aharoni> And many more.
[17:53:54] <alolita> are glyphs loaded as needed?
[17:54:02] <aharoni> It optimizes in two ways:
[17:54:33] <aharoni> It uses *less* bandwidth for people who read the Wikipedia in *another* language,
[17:55:23] <aharoni> but still allows the people who speak this language to know that there's a version of the article that they are reading in English (or Russian, or French) in their own language.
[17:55:42] <YairRand> Q: would it be theoretically possible for the autonym font to replace any character or series of characters with an arbitrary image?
[17:55:43] <aharoni> and when they go to the Wikipedia in their own language, they get a full font.
[17:56:03] <aharoni> YairRand: Autonym is not for that.
[17:56:17] <arrbee> Time Check: We have 5 more minutes in this room. We can probably sneak in a few more minutes because it looks like there are no bookings right after us.
[17:56:35] <arrbee> room/channel*
[17:56:43] <aharoni> There are many libraries that are able to such things.
[17:57:26] <alolita> aharoni: thanks
[17:59:08] <alolita> kart: any special MLEB highlights for this month?
[18:01:53] <kart_> alolita: Mostly refactoring, performance fixes.
[18:01:57] <kart_>
[18:02:21] <kart_> From this release, we started testing using internal RC release.
[18:02:51] <kart_> If anyone want to help with it, feel free to contact me (kart_) or Runa (arrbee)
[18:02:54] <kart_>  :)
[18:03:00] <arrbee> Also one more thing. We are in the process of setting up a public instance on wmflabs for testing MLEB.
[18:03:30] <arrbee> We are hoping that we will have a wider participation once that is set up.
[18:03:56] <kart_> arrbee: yes. With that, it will get better testing. Thanks to arrbee and aharoni for that!
[18:04:38] <arrbee> Any other questions?
[18:04:52] <alolita> arrbee: wider participation = more volunteer testers? for MLEB wmflabs instance
[18:05:10] <kart_> alolita: yes.
[18:05:21] <alolita> kart_: thanks
[18:05:21] <arrbee> alolita: yes
[18:06:21] <arrbee> okay.. we are already 10 minutes over the scheduled time.
[18:06:40] <arrbee> If nothing changes, our next office hour will be on 8th January 2014
[18:06:50] <arrbee> Our office hours are held every 2nd Wednesday of the month.
[18:07:08] <arrbee> Again, I sincerely apologise for the confusion earlier about the time.
[18:07:34] <arrbee> Thanks everyone for joining in today. We will see you all in the New Year.
[18:07:35] <alolita> If there are any questions on Language Engineering projects and priorities - please don't hesitate to ping us on irc
[18:07:49] <alolita> or email
[18:08:06] <alolita> Thanks arrbee!
[18:08:13] <arrbee> We are on #mediawiki-i18n and also available on the mediawiki-i18n mailing list.
[18:08:24] <arrbee> Thanks again
[18:08:26] <arrbee> === Wikimedia Language Engineering Office Hour - End ===