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Wikimedia Treats Their Operations Like Their Projects

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the innovative-shenanigans dept.

Wikipedia 33

An anonymous reader writes "Wikimedia Foundation is now treating their infrastructure like one of their projects, in that volunteers can edit it. Thanks to Wikimedia Labs, the volunteers can make changes to the infrastructure via puppet and git. After code review, changes can be deployed to production. After years of having no new root or shell-level volunteers, it's now possible for anyone to contribute to how Wikimedia projects are run from an infrastructure perspective."

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33 comments

Indeed. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39719815)

When you see a panicking crowd of people running away in fear, trying desperately to save themselves even at the cost of others, what do you feel? I know that I feel disgusted. They remind me of mere parasites. I feel the urge to gun them all down mercilessly and make sure none survive!

Get your bootysnap turned into an elevator, easy!

How open, how transparent, and how utterly stupid. (-1, Offtopic)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 2 years ago | (#39719817)

The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.

How do other very large web presences do it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39719825)

Anyone care to shed some light on how other monolithic web presences handle similar operations tasks? The facebook's release operations approach was detailed by Ars http://arstechnica.com/business/news/2012/04/exclusive-a-behind-the-scenes-look-at-facebook-release-engineering.ars/1 , but it doesn't include some other aspects of web operations such as monitoring and generally sharing the load of having tons of machines and lots of developers.

Re:How do other very large web presences do it? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39720051)

You might be interested in this site: http://highscalability.com/ [highscalability.com]

policies (4, Funny)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 2 years ago | (#39719889)

Well, if their infrastructure policies are anything like their editing policies, this should be a real treat to watch. Especially when they get to that bit about how their infrastructure should work according to popular opinion... It's all going to go to hell the first time some csci major tries to make the network fully compliant with the OSI model... they'll have no choice but to rollback any attempt to reverse it because everybody says the OSI model is an accurate representation of a real network. *giggle*

Re:policies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39719961)

The OSI model is an analog. It isn't a network stack any more than some rubber balls with wooden sticks connecting them are an actual molecule.

Re:policies (1)

Billhead (842510) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720407)

I'm lost here... what's "an analog"? Do you mean a diagram?

Re:policies (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39720535)

He means an analogue, but is an illiterate American.

Re:policies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39721001)

Point to where that "ue" ending comes from in the original Latin roots 'ana' and 'logos'. I don't get why the various European languages are so attached to the extra, silent letters they threw in arbitrarily. The only argument I've heard for it that makes any sense at all is "It's fancier".

Re:policies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39721349)

Considering that the roots are Greek, not Latin, I think I'll ignore the rest of your comment.

Re:policies (1)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 2 years ago | (#39721757)

I don't get why the various European languages are so attached to the extra, silent letters they threw in arbitrarily.

Hey! I pronounce all my letters!

Re:policies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39723943)

Maybe you can help explaining it to Billhead with an analoguy.

Re:policies (1)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720739)

As in "Analogous", it's like it, but not quite. For example, Cleopatra used Milk as a Water Analogue in her baths.

Re:policies (1)

Tohuw (1641271) | more than 2 years ago | (#39726275)

Makes me wish I had mod points, because you hit the nail on the head so hard here it split. I am so tired of the anti-OSI model attitude (very largely stemming from a complete lack of understanding about what the word "model" means). You don't make a scalable operation "compliant to the OSI model" by slapping labels on things and breaking up operations flows. The OSI model can model any network stack. If you're falsely making stupid changes to your infrastructure because you don't understand what a model does or what the OSI model represents, that's your fault. TLDR: Hate the players, not the game.

Not a free-for-all (3, Informative)

robla (4860) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720395)

Any changes to the infrastructure need to get reviewed by someone in the Wikimedia Operations staff prior to actually going live, and they tend to be pretty careful about letting things through. Here's the list of changes awaiting review [wikimedia.org] , along with discussion of each proposed change in many cases.

Re:Not a free-for-all (2)

Xtifr (1323) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720489)

Yeah, it's like saying that Linux is open to anyone. Anyone can download the complete git repo, and make all the changes they want and even share them, via git, but nothing goes into the main branches without the say-so of Linus or one of his lieutenants.

It sounds like they're basically saying that now, not only is Mediawiki itself open, but so is all the site-specific configuration. But it's open in the same way--you can make your own forks for your own site, but they're not required to accept your changes into their branches for their sites.

Seems like a pretty sensible way to do things, actually.

Re:Not a free-for-all (2)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#39721173)

I'd love to see a list of the troll posts...

"Submission 32-12042012153856: replace all hard drives with sticks of butter."

Re:Not a free-for-all (1)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 2 years ago | (#39721771)

They've crowdsourced their typing and script writing.

Re:policies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39721851)

Yeah, I like OSI, things like standardized low-level communication protocols make networking easier.
But feel free to use Morse code, smoke signals, and carrier pigeons in your network.

Re:policies (1)

akerasi (1076913) | more than 2 years ago | (#39722221)

I wonder how long it will take for someone to make the infrastructure shaped like the words "Citation Needed".

Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 2 years ago | (#39719945)

Great, now they're handling infrastructure by committee. I can see this getting expensive (and broke to fuck) quite quickly. And dibs on how long it'll be before we see a parallel structure to the "editor cabal" problem they already have.

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720179)

Great, now they're handling infrastructure by committee.
I can see this getting expensive (and broke to fuck) quite quickly.

And dibs on how long it'll be before we see a parallel structure to the "editor cabal" problem they already have.

Well, this is slashdot. A quick check of the article shows that it is 1.5 days old. Newish for the 'dot, but still old. Given all that, I'd say that there is already a cabal well and truly entrenched.

I'm wondering if they'll make "GOTO considered harmful" an explicit policy. WP:GCH?

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39720265)

Wait, I thought GOTOs => => velociraptors! was already canon? [obligatory xkcd link [xkcd.com] ]

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

pne (93383) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720221)

And dibs on how long it'll be before we see a parallel structure to the "editor cabal" problem they already have.

Iâ(TM)ll say.

âoeWe canâ(TM)t do it like that because of policy X?â â" âoeWhere does it say that? Who decided that?â â" âoeIt doesnâ(TM)t say that anywhere, and we the cabal decided that policy. Itâ(TM)s not open to discussion; this is not a majority-vote thing.â

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39723233)

Whereas on /. the cabal's policy is NO UTF-8 FOR YOU, which apparently you forgot about...

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

pne (93383) | more than 2 years ago | (#39723971)

Whereas on /. the cabal's policy is NO UTF-8 FOR YOU, which apparently you forgot about...

Or didn't know about in the first place.

What century are we in again?

Re:Oh yeah. THIS will end well... (1)

pne (93383) | more than 2 years ago | (#39720231)

And dibs on how long it'll be before we see a parallel structure to the "editor cabal" problem they already have.

I'll say.

"We can’t do it like that because of policy X?" -- "Where does it say that? Who decided that?" -- "It doesn’t say that anywhere, and we the cabal decided that policy. It’s not open to discussion; this is not a majority-vote thing."

Wond3rful! (3, Funny)

Tommy Bologna (2431404) | more than 2 years ago | (#39721193)

I have just edited the payroll schedule. Nobody at Wikimedia will be paid until 2062, and Jimmy Wales will now be charged $2 for every page view.

Re:Wond3rful! (1)

cellurl (906920) | more than 2 years ago | (#39721709)

They should stop trying to "create" all content locally. Instead, let people vote on the best article "out" on the internet. They incorporate that external page and give credit. Trying to "be" the borg of information doesn't seem distributive enough. I for one don't want to contribute to their success...

Not sure about tools. They will end up with 20chiefs (voting and wacking) watching the one Indian work...

Help eliminate stupid speeding tickets. [wikispeedia.org]

Advertise that they need help? (1)

suso (153703) | more than 2 years ago | (#39722511)

Maybe they should have tried to make it more widely known that they needed help in that area before opening it up like that. I'm sure there are people out there would have jumped at the oppurtunity to help out with Wikipedia at that level for the coolness factor.

Re:Advertise that they need help? (1)

Lucractius (649116) | more than 2 years ago | (#39742375)

I know i would have.
Even if it doesn't pay the bills, "Responsible for required to server one of the top 10 pages on the internet" is a great resume line item.

Difficult intern life... (1)

plaukas pyragely (1630517) | more than 2 years ago | (#39722749)

From /manifests/admins.pp:

    class admins::analinterns {
        ....

And the most important question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39723781)

What could possibly go wrong?

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