Wikipedia redesigns its web portal
Wikipedia has played an essential role for Internet users for nearly 20 years, helping many discover new information through his multi-source encyclopedia submissions. Now, it’s taking care of itself: Wikipedia redesigns its website after a decade.
According to a publication in MediaWiki , the desktop version of the site will be modernized with fast navigations and fewer items in full view.
Some of the new Changes include improving its search capabilities, moving the Table of Contents section to the top right for easier access, and making the left sidebar collapsible. The website aims to be more comfortable for users to navigate and read its content with a lot of text.
The company announced in a blog post that changes will be made “incrementally over a long period of time” so that users can test the features before they are officially rolled out.
The complete redesign it is scheduled to be headed by Wikipedia. However, this is only for the desktop version, and Wikipedia has yet to mention any updates to the mobile version.
A redesign is coming to the desktop version of Wikipedia, which will be the first in ten years.
The change will be rolled out gradually with new features and interface tweaks, according to the nonprofit that oversees the website, the Wikimedia Foundation.
“If all goes according to plan, these enhancements will be the default across all wikis by the end of 2021, in sync with Wikipedia’s 20th birthday celebrations,” wrote the group in a blog post.
Ironically, the encyclopedia site hasn’t undergone any major interface changes over the past decade, despite constantly being updated by volunteers with new entries and content. But now is the time to polish the site, so that it can attract new users, who may have recently started connecting.
“To welcome our projects and entice them to return, we need to provide them with not only great content and an experience that is engaging and easy to use, but also an experience that is on par with their perceptions of a welcoming, trustworthy site. Wikimedia contributor Olga Vasileva wrote in the blog post.
So what exactly will this redesign look like? Well, it’s a little difficult to tell. For now, the base only samples how each new feature will look and fit by separated, instead of giving us a view of all the changes taken together.
Before clumsy and overwhelming
According to Vasileva, the overall goal of the foundation is to make the site more user-friendly without shedding the Wikipedia “core” identity found in the current layout. Another priority is addressing the “clumsy and overwhelming” feeling of site navigation, which can make it difficult to understand.
As a result, the redesign will introduce a folding sidebar, which means that you will be able to hide the navigation menu on the left of the site.
A second upcoming change will limit the width of how Wikipedia entries are displayed in a browser. As a result, the content of the main article will be restricted to a width of 960 pixels on the screen, which should make the entries easier to read. (You can see a demonstration here).
A GIF that compares the current layout to the updated layout that limits the width of the content. (Credit: Wikimedia Foundation)
On the other hand, the change can create a lot of white space, particularly on large PC monitors. If you don’t like it, you are not alone. Even some Wikipedia editors oppose, but the foundation stands firm in this case.
The dock is also simplifying access to other languages for each Wikipedia entry rather than forcing you to scroll down the navigation menu. With the redesign, you will find a new “language switch” bar, which will appear near the right corner in a Wikipedia article.
Table of contents always in view
You also don’t need to go back each time you access an article’s table of contents. The foundation proposes a new “always-on-view table of contents” that will also appear in the right corner and will stay there as you scroll down the page.
Other small tweaks include moving the search bar from the top right corner to the top of the page and a new header that reduces the size of the Wikipedia logo.
“These changes will occur incrementally over a long period of time, to allow for broad evaluation and comments from the users, ”Vasileva added. The foundation has created a section of frequent questions about the redesign, which he says he plans to keep the legacy look of the site. Users who are logged in will be able to access the above appearance through the preference settings.