Wikitravel talk:Script policy
So, this page is kind of preemptive. It's not like we have tons of people interested in writing scripts to run against Wikitravel. The point here was to avoid having a lot of hassle when someone does want to do that.
There are a lot of hoops to jump through to make a script work on Wikitravel on this page. Probably most of them are unnecessary. It seems a little ungrateful to put all these barriers up to keep people from contributing to Wikitravel. But the possible downside of having a well-intentioned but bad script run against Wikitravel -- say, blanking all pages -- seems to outweigh the unfairness.
Comments very welcome. As with (almost all) policies on Wikitravel, this one is open to editing, discussion, revisions, whatever. Making policy is a community decision; I'm just trying to get the ball rolling. --Evan 18:20, 9 Jan 2004 (EST)
- I'd like to suggest that the source code of scripts should be made public or at the very least given to the admins/Evan. This would avoid annoying situations where a useful script is created, but the creator goes away and now nobody else can run it (cf. User:InterLangBot). It should also help in reverting/fixing if the script goes astray. Jpatokal 05:42, 21 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Y'know, one thing missing from the script policy is the definition of a "script". The wording is obviously intended towards scripts that go around editing existing pages, but should scripts that upload completely new data (eg. ja:user:Kunibotto) also be included? For these, the main safeguard should be that existing content is not overwritten... Jpatokal 12:08, 15 Jul 2005 (EDT)
- There's a definition in the first sentence: programs that read and write Wikitravel pages. Although this includes browser-based editing by humans, and Wik, there's an implication that scripts work without human intervention.
- And, no, there was never any intention that the words only applied to existing pages. --Evan 13:26, 15 Jul 2005 (EDT)
- At the risk of sounding a little facetious, the browser I'm typing this in is "a program that reads and writes Wikitravel pages". I also feel it's a bit of a stretch to label a read-only tool like wget as a "script" and to attempt to insist on the full script policy for these (good luck getting anybody to comply). Howzabout programs that modify or create Wikitravel pages automatically? FWIW, Wikipedia uses the definition automatic processes interacting with Wikipedia over the WWW'. Jpatokal 21:58, 15 Jul 2005 (EDT)
- I think you're right that the main type of scripts we're concerned with are those that modify the site. Unruly read-only programs (like wget) are a serious problem and I block an IP at the Apache level about once or twice a month. But I don't think they need to undergo the same level of scrutiny as scripts that modify the site.
- I'll try to change the text of this page to make that point. --Evan 16:28, 17 Jul 2005 (EDT)
Lowering the edit throttle rate
So, I've just changed the reasoning on the edit throttle rate (once per minute), which I think was inaccurate before. Our infrastructure is pretty robust right now, so the real reason to throttle edits is to limit the damage a script can do before someone blocks it or sets its run page to "no". Since the community is much bigger, and there are much more active experience users and admins than in the Olden Days when this policy was written, I think we could handle an edit once every 10 seconds... does this sound reasonable? --Evan 11:17, 13 November 2006 (EST)