Since the last newsletter, the VisualEditor Team has spent most of their time supporting the 2017 wikitext editor mode which is available inside the visual editor as a Beta Feature, and adding the new visual diff tool. Their workboard is available in Phabricator. You can find links to the work finished each week at mw:VisualEditor/Weekly triage meetings. Their current priorities are fixing bugs, supporting the 2017 wikitext editor as a beta feature, and improving the visual diff tool.
Recent changes Edit
- A new wikitext editing mode is available as a Beta Feature on desktop devices. The 2017 wikitext editor has the same toolbar as the visual editor and can use the citoid service and other modern tools. Go to Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-betafeatures to enable the New wikitext mode.
- A new visual diff tool is available in VisualEditor's visual mode. You can toggle between wikitext and visual diffs. More features will be added to this later. In the future, this tool may be integrated into other MediaWiki components. 
- The team have added multi-column support for lists of footnotes. The
<references />block can automatically display long lists of references in columns on wide screens. This makes footnotes easier to read. You can request multi-column support for your wiki. 
- The way to switch between the visual editing mode and the wikitext editing mode is now consistent. There is a drop-down menu that shows the two options. This is now the same in desktop and mobile web editing, and inside things that embed editing, such as Flow. 
- The Categories item has been moved to the top of the Page options menu (from clicking on the "hamburger" icon) for quicker access.  There is also now a "Templates used on this page" feature there. 
- You can now create
<chem>tags (sometimes used as
<ce>) for chemical formulas inside the visual editor. 
- Tables can be set as collapsed or un-collapsed. 
- The Special character menu now includes characters for Canadian Aboriginal Syllabics and angle quotation marks (‹› and ⟨⟩) . The team thanks the volunteer developer, Tpt. 
- A bug caused some section edit conflicts to blank the rest of the page. This has been fixed. The team are sorry for the disruption. 
- There is a new keyboard shortcut for citations:
Kon a PC, or
Kon a Mac. It is based on the keyboard shortcut for making links, which is
Future changes Edit
- The team is working on a syntax highlighting tool. It will highlight matching pairs of
<ref>tags and other types of wikitext syntax. You will be able to turn it on and off. It will first become available in VisualEditor's built-in wikitext mode, maybe late in 2017. 
- The kind of button used to Show preview, Show changes, and finish an edit will change in all WMF-supported wikitext editors. The new buttons will use OOjs UI. The buttons will be larger, brighter, and easier to read. The labels will remain the same. You can test the new button by editing a page and adding
&ooui=1to the end of the URL, like this: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Project:Sandbox?action=edit&ooui=1 The old appearance will no longer be possible, even with local CSS changes. 
- The outdated 2006 wikitext editor will be removed later this year. It is used by approximately 0.03% of active editors. See a list of editing tools on mediawiki.org if you are uncertain which one you use. 
- If you aren't reading this in your preferred language, then please help us with translations! Subscribe to the Translators mailing list or contact us directly, so that we can notify you when the next issue is ready. Thank you!