Browse Category by MediaWiki

A culture of knowledge sharing – Impressions from the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017

Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 Fixing LDAP
Wikimedia Hackathon – the event for the MediaWiki tech community, image by Mglaser (CC BY-SA 4.0), via Wikimedia Commons

Vienna! A city of music, culture and avant-garde. And, notably, the host of this year’s Wikimedia Hackathon, an annual tech event where roundabout 200 developers, maintainers and users of MediaWiki gathered to experiment, discuss, plan and, of course, enjoy the company of like-minded people. Naturally, BlueSpice, being the largest professional flavor of MediaWiki, was also represented in various ways, getting glimpses at the most recent turns in development, making connections among colleagues, and exchanging experiences and ideas. Continue Reading

BlueSpice MediaWiki vs. Confluence – the wiki alternatives (1)

Soccer image Germany Argentina
Sharing knowledge: One goal – different strategies. Image: Germany and Argentina face off in the final of the World Cup 2014 von Danilo Borges/copa2014.gov.br Licença Creative

In this two-part article, we give a detailed comparison of the wiki top dog MediaWiki and Confluence.

We already wrote a few words about MediaWiki and Confluence some years ago. At that time, we wrote about the main objections to MediaWiki.

That article is still worth reading and remains largely valid. Ultimately the key argument then was that the choice of tool did not depend only on features, but also on the concept behind the software. This is a timeless truth.

However, MediaWiki does not need to fear a direct feature comparison. Importantly, the enterprise distribution BlueSpice has already decided the feature question in my view. This can be seen on our newest internal feature-comparison table, published here and offered for free download:

This publication is a good chance to detail the differences and similarities of the two projects comprehensively and systematically. Continue Reading

BlueSpice 2.27.1 released

Header-BSP-CustomerInformat

A patch release that’s worth seeing.

It is that time again: we are very pleased to announce the new BlueSpice release 2.27.1, and it is difficult to believe that this is only a patch release.

When we consider the new features, Version 2.27.1 is right at the forefront. The first release of this year focuses on the optimisation of usability and applications in quality management, alongside bug-fixes.

You can find all the detailed information and documentation on our BlueSpice Helpdesk: Continue Reading

BlueSpice 2.27.0 released

New BlueSpice release 2.27.0.

Our focus: quality assurance, usability and farming.

We proudly announce today’s stable release of the new BlueSpice for MediaWiki 2.27.0. It is our second release this year and brings new features and numerous optimizations. Above all, it is fully compatible with the long-time support version MediaWiki 1.27.

All detailed information can be found in our BlueSpice Helpdesk:
Notable changes,
Release notes with changelog,
• Installation instructions with installer and without installer,
Update instructions.

We have installed some pretty helpful features. The focus is on characteristics such as quality assurance, usability and farming.

These are the most important new features of BlueSpice pro 2.27.0:

Continue Reading

Agile prototyping: “MediaWiki is like a white sheet of paper for data”

The Wikipedia software MediaWiki is a well known solution for collaborative knowledge platforms. It is less popular, but not less ideal, for the development of prototypes and new platforms.

At this year’s Semantic-MediaWiki-Konferenz (SMWCon) in Frankfurt, our Hallo Welt! Technical Manager Markus Glaser talked about this connection between MediaWiki and prototyping. Here are the slides of his presentation.

Markus Glaser started his presentation explaining different forms of prototyping. His introduction was followed by showing MediaWikis richness of functionalities. By combining and expanding these functionalities, you can develop new and very specific applications. MediaWiki already provides a large toolkit, which allows quick adjustments without having to program completely new functions.

The semantic MediaWiki extension packages, which can be used to capture and query metadata, are certainly worth mentioning. Those are very useful, if for example data models are being modeled or user interfaces and operating elements still have to be positioned. Of course BlueSpice for MediaWiki supplies a wide range of options. Responsive skins like Chameleon are the basis for stylish surfaces. And with Lua you have a script language, with which the construction of a page can be designed very dynamically.

That means MediaWiki is an ideal base to build agile new knowledge platforms. The flexibility of MediaWiki means a great advantage in time. You don‘t have to be a programmer to build these prototypes, because a lot of these things can already be done with the  integrated tools of MediaWiki. Like this you get a working system at an early stage, with which you can gather important experiences.

Nevertheless users should be aware that, despite the variety of integrated tools, developing a new knowledge platform is always complex and cost-intensive: planning, meetings and adjustments take time. After the development of an alpha or beta version, individual functionalities have to be professionalized and programmed independently.

You might say that the development of a stable productive system takes as much time as the development of the beta version for the first test users. However, the time and the risks of development are significantly reduced with the prototyping based on MediaWiki.

BlueSpice Release 2.27.0 – beta version released

Say hello to the new BlueSpice free for MediaWiki 2.27.0 beta version!

Have you already tested it? Well then go! Since last week, there is the BlueSpice 2.27.0-beta, a minor and maintenance version of BlueSpice free, which can be downloaded to tested at SourceForge. Now we need your help!

Download the beta version and test it. Please report bugs, patches and other feedback. Any kind of feedback (the more constructive, the better) is welcome at our SourceForge forum or per email to support@hallowelt.com. We look forward to your opinions and appreciate your help!

Try some of our interesting new features like:

  • Page Assignments: Assign poeple and groups of people to pages, e.g. as responsible editors. Supersedes ResponsibleEditors.
Page Assignments
Page Assignments
  • Disable users: Instead of user deletion, you can now disable the users while keeping their full record.
  • Support your admin: certain user groups can now assign users to groups without having to be sysops. It is also possible to allow users access to a selection of administrative tools without having to be sysops.
  • Namespace-specific notifications: notifications are now much more configurable. Get notified about changes in the wiki on a namespace basis.
Namespace-specific notifications
Namespace-specific notifications
  • Track usage statistics: know how often a certain feature is used in your wiki.
  • Improvements of the user experience: confirmation dialogues are more unobtrusive now.
  • FlexiSkin: manage uploaded images.
  • HitCounter: Restores the hit count functionality missing in MediaWiki core since MediaWiki 1.25.
  • Testsystem mode: visually indicate when a wiki is a testing system.

For detailed release notes see our BlueSpice Helpdesk.

Have fun testing!