Publication, Edit, and Media Flow

Publishing a post with a captioned gallery is a litmus flow. This flow exercises the heart of what we’re making. Always be watching and improving publication flow. Continuously and recursively dogfood these flows.

Links: make/flow/#editor, components/editor, make/flow/#media, components/media, make/flow/#post-flow

Kibbling and Visual Oxygen

If communication is oxygen, then communicating with screenshots and visual records is Visual Oxygen. Accompanying tickets and chats with screenshots makes development more accessible and transparent.

Kibbling is the process of dogfooding a flow and publishing visual records and narratives of that flow. The make/flow blog is an example of a kibbling blog. Since we are publishing these “kibbles” with the software we are dogfooding, the act of kibbling further dogfoods the software. Kibbling encourages more dogfooding which encourages more kibbling and so on. Continuous recursive dogfooding and continuous visual recording is the flow patrol prescription for improving development culture, particularly on mobile.

Whenever UI changes, posting before and after screenshots should be a reflex. Every patch should be accompanied by screenshots. Any ticket lacking screenshots should be tagged needs-screenshots.

For feature plugins and significant patches, before and afters on multiple devices should be published to make/flow prior to commit. This is a commit requirement. While you’re testing, take some screenshots.

The ideal: Teams take screenshots as they dev and test (on their multiple devices). They post those screenshots as comparison visual records using the tool we’re all making, WordPress. Chock full of virtue are those two simple acts. Change awareness. Flow awareness. Flow comparison. Recursive dogfooding. Visual archiving. An engine for Empathy, Awareness and Visual Oxygen.

Tilts:

Links: glossary/kibbling, glossary/visual-oxygen, make/flow, make/flow/handbook

Checklists

Moar checklists. Check out The Checklist Manifesto. Cognitive nets help flow.

  • https://make.wordpress.org/core/handbook/about/release-cycle/release-day/
  • https://make.wordpress.org/handbook/driving-meetings/
  • https://make.wordpress.org/meta/handbook/documentation/feature-plugin-treatment/

Beta Testing Flow

We want beta testing to be easy. The beta testing handbook page describes how to get started with nightly builds. The 4.4 tracking page describes the teams working on 4.4 and how to help them. It also lists the feature plugins scheduled for 4.4. The component pages provide details on component teams and how to help them. All of these resources need to be expanded and kept up-to-date.

Feature plugins should be listed here and updated regularly, preferably nightly.

Finding maintainership for the beta tester plugin is important. It has bugs and lacks features. Watch the forum.

Tag tickets and posts related to beta testing flow with beta-testing-flow.

We have okay documentation for testing against nightly builds but pretty much no documentation for testing patches. The core handbook has little to say about patches.

Teams should publish calls-for-testing to make/core.

Tilts:

  • Public app beta testing flow. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/mobile/p1455728774000008
  • Joining the Android beta testing program. https://make.wordpress.org/test/2016/02/10/joining-the-android-beta-program/
  • Patch testing with VVV on Mac OS. https://make.wordpress.org/test/2016/02/08/testing-patches-with-vvv-on-mac-os/
  • Smooth switching from trunk nightlies to point release nightlies. https://make.wordpress.org/core/2016/02/01/4-4-2-release-candidate/#comment-29185
  • “We have an audience of auto-updating nightly build testers who are also running feature plugins. Don’t fatal their sites, whatever it takes.”
    https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core-restapi/p1445528753000394
  • Add needs-screenshots to workflow keywords. https://meta.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/1227
  • Android beta audience. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/mobile/p1441297947000043
  • Handbook pages and beta testing flow. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core-flow/p1441632959000004
  • Call for component page updates and component roadmaps. https://make.wordpress.org/core/2015/09/02/component-page-updates-for-4-4/
  • s/nightly/continuous/ Nightly builds should be continuous. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core/p1436474787003853
  • https://meta.trac.wordpress.org/query?status=!closed&keywords=~beta-testing-flow
  • Call to document grunt and patch testing flow. https://make.wordpress.org/core/2015/07/08/dev-dependency-updates-for-4-3-have-been-completed/#comment-26302
  • #32613 is fixed. Switching a site between production and nightly is now a push button affair.
  • Maintaining core component pages
  • Added more detailed steps for installing the beta tester plugin to the beta testing page on 2015/06/26.
  • Opened #32551 – Superseded feature plugins should suggest deleting the plugin in the auto deactivation notice
  • Opened #32613 – Allow easy fallback to the latest stable release when beta testing with the beta tester plugin
  • https://make.wordpress.org/core/2015/03/16/mobile-patch-testing-with-vvv-and-xip-io/

Links: core/trac/#beta-testing-flow, meta/trac/#beta-testing-flow, make/flow/#beta-testing-flowmake/core/#beta-testing-flowtest.wp.com/#beta-testing-flow, make/core/handbook/beta/testing

Feature Plugins (todo: rework for feature projects)

Feature plugins greatly improve beta testing flow. Promote developing features as feature plugins and help feature plugins get through the process.

Tilts:

  • Keep feature plugins up to date and issue calls for testing. https://make.wordpress.org/core/2016/01/27/feature-plugin-chat-notes-for-jan-26/#comment-29157
  • Break the feature plugin checklist into separate merge criteria and merge checklist sections.
  • Create a template/starter feature plugin. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/design/p1441906358000095
  • Feature plugins should turn themselves off gracefully once their feature is merged to core. They should not fatal error.
  • We need a method for disabling featured plugins once they’re merged.
  • We need to create a commit checklist for feature plugin merging. Here might be a good place to add it.

Links: plugins/beta, meta/handbook/feature-plugin-treatment, make/core/#feature-plugins+kickoff, make/core/#feature-plugins+merge+proposalmake/core/#feature-plugins+updatesmake/core/#feature-plugins+chatsmake/core/#feature-plugins

Mobile and Touch Usability

We are an open source project dedicated to the open web, regardless of device. That is part of our philosophy and soul. We will not force our users into walled gardens. Championing the open web on all devices is our duty.

Tilts:

iOS and the Open Mobile Web

iOS compromises the open mobile web. iOS Safari has many bugs that corrode the usability of WordPress. How can we make that better?

Tilts:

Carousels and touch media

Presenting a bare image page with no navigation in response to tapping an image is not good flow, particularly on touch devices. Modal/carousel treatment for images should be provided out of the box. When using Twitter, we run into this windmill often. So many WP sites have no modal/carousel treatment for images. Even ones with Jetpack have treatment only on galleries, not individual images. When visiting WP sites from Twitter and other apps, better image handling is expected. Image treatment is out of touch with touch flow.

  • #31467 is fixed in 4.4.
  • Images should default to not linking https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/31467
  • Lack of modal image handling on make/core posts. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core/p1436997541001029
  • Carousel feature plugin suggestion. https://make.wordpress.org/core/2015/07/10/feature-plugin-chat-on-july-14/#comment-26336
  • https://make.wordpress.org/test/2015/02/26/core-support-for-wordpress-images-to-open-in-a-modal-window/

Update Flow

  • Opened #33766 – Update notice links to an uncompelling codex page. Tagged it #update-flow.
  • Improve flow from the update notice; make pre-update screens, docs more compelling. https://make.wordpress.org/test/2015/08/18/upgradeinstall-update-from-an-update-notice-macnchrome/

Related links: make/flow/#updates, make/flow/#upgrade-install, core/trac/#update-flow

Institutional Memory

If you’ve been around awhile, share what you remember. If a chat, ticket, or post needs some history, give it.

Tilts:

  • Image title attributes and displaying tooltips. https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/18984 and https://twitter.com/rboren/status/274633336209682432
  • The origin of pinking shears. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/design/p1436555223001635
  • Why the updates icon is top-level in the toolbar. https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/32678#comment:24
  • The history of visit site in the admin header and WordPress > Network > Site hierarchy in the toolbar: https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/32678#comment:32 and https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/31650#comment:21
  • Why visit site in the Home toolbar menu acts the way it does on touch devices. #desktop-bias https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/32678#comment:35

Roadmaps, Visions

We must communicate these better.

  • Express each new feature in a release in the context of a roadmap and a vision.
  •  https://make.wordpress.org/core/tag/roadmaps/
  • https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core-flow/p1441647800000033 “Getting teams to update their component pages with what they’re up to for 4.4 would assist beta testing flow and encourage communicating roadmaps and visions.”
  • Releases needs a focus and tagline. https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core-flow/p1441647178000032

Links: make/core/#roadmaps, components

PHP Version Requirements

Tilts:

  • #meta802 Requirements page should recommend supported and secure PHP and MySQL versions
  • These two comments should become core handbook pages.
  • https://wpaxl.com/wordpress-should-adopt-apples-strategy-for-bumping-minimum-requirements/#comment-256
  • https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/core/p1419477558003606

Note common usability problems such as #boxed-input-scrolling, #rogue-cursor, #keyboard-flyup, and #scroll-bleed and add them to the glossary. Use these tags on tickets and make/flow posts during triage. Help develop the language of flow.

Tilts:

  • Consider adding go-back-flow, sideways, image-rotation, tap-bleed, elastic-bounceback, new-tab-window (instead of open-in-in-new-window), flow-home, no-title, switch-site, menu-dismiss, publish-context, post-flow, needs-responsive, needs-*, parity, feature-plugins
  • Added Visual Oxygen. Need to work this more into the kibbling documentation. Kibbling is an engine for visual oxygen.