Community Central


Technical Updates: November 1, 2011

Dopp November 1, 2011 User blog:Dopp

Here are the latest technical updates at Wikia. Keep in mind that our system updates happen every Wednesday, so we’re posting this on a Tuesday to give you advance notice. Also note that we change hundreds of tiny details every week, so these are just the highlights.

We mentioned last week that something called Small Stuff Week was going on -- a week dedicated to small, high-priority fixes in our system. This week, we're excited to release a few of the things we worked on.

New FeaturesEdit

  • We've added a new feature to our Visual Editor which temporarily auto-saves your work as you are editing, just in case your browser crashes or you accidentally close the window before you hit save. If this happens to you, simply go back to the same page, click "edit," and you will see a prompt asking you if you want to restore the draft of your edit. The editor stores the draft for six hours.
  • We've added an Upload Favicon tool to the Theme Designer. (Favicons are those small icons that appear in tabs, address bars, and bookmarks in your browser. You can learn how to prepare them at our help page.)

Major Bugs FixedEdit

  • We have done some maintenance to ensure that when a JS or CSS file is changed, the changes affect the whole wiki. Previously, it took a number of hours for the JS or CSS change to take effect.
  • Emoticons were breaking Chat's automatic scrolling feature (i.e. moving with the current conversation instead of having to scroll down the page to catch up with the most recent post). Because this issue is resolved, we've brought back emoticons to Community Central Chat.
  • We've done some work on the Welcome bot to make sure that the right messages are being left and that the bot runs when it is supposed to (we had some instances of the bot either not running or pulling from the wrong MediaWiki message).
  • Some users had been awarded the same achievement badges twice. We have found the code that was allowing for this once in a blue moon issue and also ran a script to remove the duplicates.

Other Notable ChangesEdit

  • We're starting a daily maintenance procedure to keep Chat running more smoothly. This means there might be some downtime for a few seconds each day at our lowest traffic time (early morning, Pacific time). Hopefully, this will keep Chat running smoothly during the rest of the day while we investigate long-term stability solutions.
  • The "Pages I'm Following" box in the right rail of the Profile was displaying deleted pages, which created visible remnants of vandalism. Users will continue to follow deleted pages, but they no longer display in this area of the profile.

Select Known IssuesEdit

  • Some of our largest wikis have noticed an issue with their Job Queues automatically running. If you go to Special:Statistics and see an unusually high number in your job queue (let's say anything over 200,000), please let us know.
  • The Import Free Images tool, which pulls in properly-licensed images from Flickr, seems to be mis-attributing links in the automatically generated licensing template inserted on the File page due to a recent change in Flickr's API.

Questions? Comments? Feel free to leave them below. And if you have additional bugs to report, please send them to us via Special:Contact.

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