Friday, November 16, 2012
This year the Wikimedia Foundation selected nine students to work on new features and specific improvements to the software for Google Summer of Code. The students were mentored by experienced developers who helped them become part of the development community and helped guide their code development.
Congratulations to the eight students who made it through the summer of 2012, our seventh year participating in Google Summer of Code. The students all accomplished a great deal, and many of them are working to improve their projects to benefit the Wikimedia community beyond the initial goals of their summer project.
- Ankur Anand worked on integrating Flickr upload and geolocation into UploadWizard. Ankur made it easier for Wikimedia contributors to contribute media files and metadata. You can read his wrap-up as we anticipate the merge of his code into the main UploadWizard codebase.
- Harry Burt worked on TranslateSvg (“Bringing the translation revolution to Wikimedia Commons”). When his work is complete and deployed, we will more easily be able to use a single picture or animation in different language wikis. See this image of the anatomy of a human kidney, for example; it has a description in eight languages, so it benefits multiple language Wikipedias (e.g., Spanish and Russian). Harry aims to allow contributors to localize the text embedded within vector files (SVGs); you can watch a demo video, try out the test site, or just read Harry’s wrap-up post.
- Akshay Chugh worked on a convention/conference extension for MediaWiki. Wikimedia conferences like Wikimania often use MediaWiki to help organize their conferences, but it takes a lot of custom programming. Akshay created the beta of an extension that a webmaster could install to provide conference-related features automatically. See his wrap-up post.
- Ashish Dubey worked on real time collaboration in the upcoming Visual Editor (you may have seen “real-time collaborative editing” in tools like Etherpad and Google Docs). Ashish has implemented a collaboration server and other features (see his wrap-up post) and has achieved real-time “spectation,” in which readers can see an editor’s changes in real time.
Ashish is working on the architecture that will support real-time collaboration.
- Nischay Nahata optimized the performance of the Semantic MediaWiki extension. In wikis with unusually large amounts of content, Semantic MediaWiki experiences performance degradation and this summer Nischay found and fixed many of these issues. This also reduces SMW’s energy consumption, making it greener. Nischay’s work will be in Semantic MediaWiki 1.8.0, which is currently in beta and due to be released soon. Wikimedia Labs uses Semantic MediaWiki and will benefit from the performance improvements.
- Aaron Pramana worked on watchlist grouping and workflow improvements. Aaron wants to make it easier for wiki editors and readers to use watchlists, and to create and use groups of watched items to focus on or share. The back end of the system is done.
- Robin Pepermans worked on Incubator improvements and language support. If you’ve ever thought of using Wikimedia’s Incubator for new projects, it’s now easier to get started. Read Robin’s wrap-up post for more.
- Platonides worked on a desktop application for mass-uploading files to Wikimedia Commons. The application will eventually make it much easier for participants in upload campaigns like Wiki Loves Monuments to upload their photos (and it’ll work on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS).
By Sumana Harihareswara, Engineering Community Manager and Organization Administrator for Wikimedia Foundation