[Mediawiki-i18n] [Wikitech-l] Making inter-language links shorter

Brion Vibber brion at pobox.com
Thu Apr 18 19:57:14 UTC 2013

I was traditionally in favor of keeping the full language list visible,
but.... it's just too damn big in many cases and is hard to search through
on any device. On touch devices it's difficult to pick a correct item from
the list as all the links are adjacent (though if you zoom it's ok).

Definitely we need something improved, and if we're going to improve it we
need to do it for the default or we're failing to serve 99% of our

I'm not sure about the current demo; one thing that bugs me is that there's
a very small tap/click target for getting the full language list call-out.
Clicking on "Language" just hides/shows the short list, it doesn't do
anything. Clicking the "settings" gear icon next to "Languages" brings up a
call-out with language-related settings.... none of which help you get to
another language version of the wiki.

On the mobile site we've collapsed the whole thing to an "Other languages"
section or button (depending on if you're in beta mode) at the bottom of
the article, and this seems to have gotten good usability responses from
mobile users.

On Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 12:47 PM, David Gerard <dgerard at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 18 April 2013 20:43, David Gerard <dgerard at gmail.com> wrote:
> > On 18 April 2013 17:50, Pau Giner <pginer at wikimedia.org> wrote:
> >> Please let me know if you see any possible concern with this approach.
> > My first thought is of how upset people were when the first version of
> > Vector hid the language links by default. I would suggest being sure
> > there will be little or no similar objection.
> (hit send too soon, sorry)
> A simple solution that would avoid a similar reaction is: do not do
> this by default - make it only for logged-in users who want it that
> way.
> Possibly for default users, you could put the heuristically-calculated
> likely preferred languages at the top. But keeping the rest of the
> list below, right there on display, will (I predict) be favoured, as
> advertising the many languages of Wikipedia is a strongly-held value
> of many Wikimedians.
> - d.
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