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Opened 5 years ago

Closed 3 years ago

#457 closed enhancement (maybelater)

Separate Plugin Description (Webpages) From Readme.txt File to Allow Editing Web Interface

Reported by: Kelderic Owned by:
Milestone: Priority: normal
Component: Plugin Directory Keywords:
Cc:

Description

Currently a plugin's description pages (Description, Installation, Screenshots, etc) are pulled from the plugin's readme.txt file. This means that editing those pages requires editing the file and re-uploading via SVN.

I propose we create a web interface for creating and editing those pages. StackOverflow currently has an effective live editor which uses Markdown, similarly to the Markdown we allow for our pages, which is what I'd model our editing interface off of. Or we could use the model that we already have running for ticket submission.

Benefits:

  • Allows users to fix typos and make changes to plugin descriptions without needing to either release a maintenance update or edit files in a tagged folder.

Issues:

  • Would need a way to build the readme.txt file from the created pages, instead of the current opposite.

Attachments (6)

admin-general-tab-mockup.png (280.7 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.
admin-readme-editor-tab-mockup.png (341.1 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.
mockup-v2-desc-view.png (166.5 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.
mockup-v2-desc-edit.png (156.1 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.
mockup-v2-inst-view.png (156.3 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.
mockup-v2-inst-edit.png (148.0 KB) - added by Kelderic 5 years ago.

Download all attachments as: .zip

Change History (15)

#1 @Kelderic
5 years ago

Attached very rough mockups based on our current ticket live previewer. Will need to remove a lot of the heading text that isn't relevant for plugins.

#2 @Otto42
5 years ago

This would be extremely difficult with our current process, although it's an interesting idea in the long term.

However, note that SVN, unlike Git, doesn't care if you edit files in a tagged folder. Tags are merely a convention, not actually built into the source control system in any way. You can edit a readme.txt file in a tagged folder without creating a new release, always.

It has also been suggested to move the readme.txt into the assets folder and not including it in the plugin itself, but I think this is not wise as the readme is a rather important piece that should be included with the plugin, wherever it goes.

#3 @Kelderic
5 years ago

Added new screenshots. On further consideration I think that it would be easier if we had an edit tab for each of the sections, instead of just one edit readme tab. Attached new mockups.

To Otto: Thanks for the feedback! How could we go about changing it in the long term? Is there a process we can start, people to talk to, etc?

#4 @Otto42
5 years ago

Long term, it's something I'll keep in mind during the redesign of the plugins system as a whole. I don't anticipate any immediate changes here though.

#5 @coffee2code
5 years ago

It's an interesting idea that would certainly be handy for plugin developers.

However, I'm not sure it's worth the effort. If for no other reason than the fact that we lose the ability for readme changes to be tracked via version control. There are unscrupulous plugin authors out there (and more who would emerge) who would look to abuse a system in which they have more direct, untracked access to the content on the plugin pages. Were we to do this, there would have to be related effort to log and police this feature. As @Otto42 says, definitely longer term.

(Not to mention how difficult this would be to implement currently, and then having to deal with the plugin pages being rendered from two possible sources: the version controlled readme.txt and the in-page edited readme.)

I think what's really being requested is the ability to preview a readme and not so much the need to forego having to commit it. The request could boil down to a paste-and-preview of the readme content for a plugin author on their own plugin pages.

A second iteration enhancement of this simpler notion would be to add an in-session tool for plugin authors. The readme editor could be used as proposed, rendering the edited readme for the plugin author as if it were the plugin's readme. Once it looks the way they want it to, it could be exported and committed by the author to become available to all.

#6 @Kelderic
5 years ago

I like the idea of a in-session tool, as a less ambitious but more realistic goal. Maybe similar to my initial mockup, but instead of "Edit Readme" it would say something like "Readme Previewer"?

This ticket was mentioned in Slack in #meta by ocean90. View the logs.


3 years ago

#8 @samuelsidler
3 years ago

We discussed some ideas around this. Creating an editor for plugin developers removes the version control tracking. Conceivably, we could sync between the online interface and SVN. That seems like a lot of work though...

#9 @Ipstenu
3 years ago

  • Resolution set to maybelater
  • Status changed from new to closed

Given the work we put in to making SOME of the display content editable from wp-admin in the revamped plugin directory, and the problems faced, I think it's wise to shelve this for now. It's a great idea, but it would require a full refactor.

For now, if you need to edit your readme, it's okay to just edit the readme in trunk and the latest tag :) It's annoying, yes, but the benefits outweigh the annoyance from the purview of the maintainers (i.e. review team).

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