Wikia

Community Central

Comments94

VisualEditor - the past, present and future

VisualEditor

The VisualEditor today

Good morning Wikia,

Today we're bringing you an update on the VisualEditor (VE) - what's happened in the last few months, where we're at now, and where we're going next.

Over the past few months, our team has been hard at work adding features, fixing bugs, and improving the general feel of the editing experience. A combination of the work at the Wikimedia Foundation and our own work means the VE is now faster, has better media and template tools, a reorganized toolbar, better theming, and much more. We've also updated the editing preferences, allowing users more control over their experience.

More recently, we have started rolling VE out as the default editor for anonymous users - starting at the smallest wikias, and working our way up. At this point, almost all anonymous visitors on Wikia see the VisualEditor as the primary editing experience.

Of course, we've been tracking the success of the editor throughout all of this: VE consistently outperforms the old rich text editor at converting visitors into editors, and that is still improving as we continue to make changes. Unlike the old rich text editor, most elements of the page display as they do on the published article, and instances of so-called 'dirty diffs' are few and far between.

The graph below show the Save/Edit ratio of anonymous visitors (that is, how many visits to the edit page result in published changes), and the number of daily published edits from those using VE. It's worth noting that logged in users have a higher Save/Edit ratio than this, as many anonymous users are simply exploring their options.

VE data

So where next?

We know that the VisualEditor is not yet perfect, and there are several areas we're going to concentrate on: fixing situations where the editor isn't quite WYSIWYG or making unintentional changes to wikitext, continuing to improve performance and the existing tools, and to introduce new features.

We do know that some wikias just don't work well with a visual editing environment, particularly those where the entire page is made from one template. If you have concerns about this on your wikia, please do let us know. Note that the classic wikitext editor isn't going away, and we are still considering how to phase out the old rich text editor with the minimum of disruption.

So far, we feel the introduction of the VisualEditor has been quite a success, and we certainly plan to try and keep that going. If you are still using the classic rich text editor, we heartily recommend giving the VisualEditor a try.

Whether you are a visual editor or are a hardcore wikitext enthusiast, thank you for editing on Wikia.

Want to receive updates on the latest Staff blog posts? Then click here to follow this blog.

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki