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Wikisource News
Overview of September 2007
by Pathoschild, 01 October 2007


JavaScript changes, new transclusion script[edit]

"Usejs" was added to the site Javascript. It executes JavaScript on any page in the MediaWiki namespace given by the custom &usejs URL parameter (see example, information). This is intended for testing or demonstrating JavaScript. [1]

Several other significant changes were made to the site JavaScript this month:

  • indentation and grouping syntax was standardized;
  • BilingualLink, which adds ⇔ arrows to compare between two pages (example), was completely rewritten to use the Document Object Model;
  • DisplayFooter, which generates a navigation footer on pages using a {{header}}, was restricted to the main namespace.

New Wikisource, milestones[edit]

The Bengali Wikisource was created September 25th. The wiki was first requested in late December 2006, but rejected by the language subcommittee in April 2007 due to inactivity. A second request was opened in August 08th and approved by the subcommittee and the Board of Trustees August 12th.[2][3]

The Portuguese Wikisource has reached 15,000 text-units.

Admin confirmations, no featured text[edit]

No featured text was promoted for the month of October 2007; the first text promoted, The Gettysburg Address, was re-featured instead.

Politicaljunkie's administrator access was confirmed until October 2008. Jusjih, Yann, and Zhaladshar are undergoing their second confirmation over October 2007. According to the Administrator policy, every administrator must be confirmed at least once per year.


Audio/video player in MediaWiki[edit]

A web-based player for audio and video content was integrated into Wikimedia wikis as an extension created by Tim Starling. This was previously possible using a player on the separate toolserver, but it is now displayed on the wiki itself. It plays "Ogg Vorbis" and "Ogg Theora" files, which cannot be played on most Windows computers. Usage is very simple; clicking a 'play' symbol under the thumbnail will start the player.[4]

Features & bug fixes[edit]

New features

  • Interface
    • The edit summary when creating a new discussion using the '+' tab can now be customized by editing MediaWiki:Newsectionsummary.
    • MediaWiki:Protectedpagetext now has the parameter $1, which returns the current protection level.
    • MediaWiki:Cantcreateaccounttext now has the parameters $1 and $2, which return the block reason and blocking administrator's username.
    • MediaWiki:History-title now customizes the HTML title for page history pages, which was changed to distinguish them from articles in browser histories.
  • Entries in the generated table of contents now reflect superscript or subscript formatting in page headers.
  • Local image description pages for images from the Wikimedia Commons now show the Commons file history.

Bug fixes

  • Previewing on first edit (using the preference) now also previews any preloaded text.
  • When overwriting an image with a new upload, the page now correctly previews the image being overwritten.


Wikimedia Foundation[edit]

Foundation to move headquarters[edit]

The Wikimedia Foundation will move its headquarters from St. Petersburg in Florida to San Francisco in California this winter, according to an announcement by Sue Gardner, the Foundation's hired Consultant and Special Advisor. The servers are hosted in Tampa, Florida, and there are no plans to move them.

She notes that the current location was primarily chosen because Jimmy Wales lived there when he started the Foundation in 2003, and that it is not well suited for such a large operation. She points out advantages of San Francisco such as close location to "like-minded organizations and possible partners, top-tier universities like Stanford and UC Berkeley, world-class support services, and major media". As a large city, it is cheaper and more convenient for international travel.

However, she predicts the move will be expensive and might be disruptive to the community, and the headquarters will have higher periodic costs like taxes. Six cities were assessed before San Francisco was chosen, all in the United States: Boston, London, New York, Washington DC, San Francisco, and the current St. Petersburg location. [9]


New York Times opens archives[edit]

The New York Times, a US newspaper founded in 1851 and still active today, has opened most its archives to free access. The free archives contain most articles written from 1851 to present, though some written 1923 to 1986 will still require payment. Articles written between 1851 to 1922 are in the public domain.[10]

British Library to scan rare 19th century works[edit]

The British Library has announced that more than 100,000 old public domain books will be scanned and available online over the next two years. The British Library already has an online library of texts from previous projects, "Turning the Pages™".[11]


  1. "JavaScript transclusion script" (Scriptorium, September 2007)
  2. "Bengali Wikisource created" (Wikisource-l, 25 September 2007)
  3. m:Requests for new languages/Wikisource Bengali 2
  4. Wikizine #81 (26 September 2007)
  5. "Bugs, Repairs, and Internal Operational News" (Wikipedia Signpost, 03 September 2007)
  6. "Bugs, Repairs, and Internal Operational News" (Wikipedia Signpost, 10 September 2007)
  7. "Bugs, Repairs, and Internal Operational News" (Wikipedia Signpost, 24 September 2007)
  8. Feature requests & bug reports:
    • bug 7190: "broken 'file history' link for commons hosted images"
    • bug 8393: "Allow some HTML tags through to table of contents"
    • bug 961: "Accessing blocking reason/admin at MediaWiki:Cantcreateaccounttext"
    • bug 10836: "Change the summary on creating of new section"
    • bug 11067: "Existing image not showing in upload page"
    • bug 11095: "Page preview is not shown on first edit even if preload= is passed"
    • bug 11151: "Page history should have descriptive <title>"
    • bug 11211: "Distinguish between full protection and semi-protection"
  9. "Relocation announcement" (Foundation-l, 22 September 2007)
  10. "Times to Stop Charging for Parts of Its Web Site" (New York Times, 18 September 2007)
  11. "British Library books go digital (BBC News, 28 September 2007)