Last modified: 2011-03-13 18:04:25 UTC

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Bug 4184 - BBCodes
BBCodes
Status: RESOLVED WONTFIX
Product: MediaWiki
Classification: Unclassified
Page editing (Other open bugs)
unspecified
All All
: Lowest enhancement (vote)
: ---
Assigned To: Nobody - You can work on this!
:
Depends on:
Blocks:
  Show dependency treegraph
 
Reported: 2005-12-05 18:08 UTC by HenryS
Modified: 2011-03-13 18:04 UTC (History)
0 users

See Also:
Web browser: ---
Mobile Platform: ---
Assignee Huggle Beta Tester: ---


Attachments

Description HenryS 2005-12-05 18:08:55 UTC
Please, make Wiki to honor BBCodes as well.
Comment 1 Rowan Collins [IMSoP] 2005-12-05 19:06:44 UTC
First, as far as I know, there is no standard syntax for "BBCodes" (unless this
name is used in particular by one particular piece of software) any more than
there is a standard wiki syntax. As such, how would we know which variant to
implement? (My understanding is that "BBCode" just means "HTML-like but using []
instead of <> to show that it's not, in fact, HTML)

Second, altering the parser to "honor" a completely different class of syntax,
some of which probably overlaps with existing syntax, would be a lot of work.
Making it some kind of either/or system would currently be more-or-less
impossible, since the "parser" in the MediaWiki code is very tightly tied up
with everything else, and complicated enough as it is. And what of features that
don't exist on any bulletin board; should we invent "BBCode style" alternatives
to our existing, perfectly good, syntax?

The only advantage to having BBCode available to use is that it might be easier
to learn for people already familiar with it; but any syntax has to be learned
once, so why not just learn the one that MediaWiki already has (it'll let you
edit all the thousands of pages of existing content written in it, after all!)?

I really don't think the effort involved in making this work with the current
code is in any way proportional to the gain from doing so. Now, if I was to
write a piece of software from scratch, the idea of having multiple alternative,
interchangeable, syntaxes (wiki-style of one or more varieties, HTML-style,
BB-style, etc) would be an interesting one to explore, but that's not the
position we're in.
Comment 2 HenryS 2005-12-05 23:54:22 UTC
Sure it is you right just refuse proposed enhancement. But you provide reasons 
are irrelevant.

The reason for proposition is to have ability copy-paste content from forum to
Wiki and vice versa. It will allow to automate it in future. That will open new
opportunities for Wiki in future. 
Second. If you dictate The User what should (s)he do and what shouldn't, you
definitely loose competition. I don't want to say my user, that (s)he should
learn extra "language".

About syntax. I don't think that Wiki syntax is something more than Type I
language according Chomsky. If so, the parser is nothing else but simple
State-Action table. If it is not Type I, that means the parser is a little bit
more complicated. In any case adding new syntax is nothing more than changing
couple tables. If your parser is not organized the regular way... Bad for you.
Take Computer Science course.

About HTML and BBCode. If they are so similar, why do you say it is so difficult
to   implement changes. I don't see any logic. Wiki honors HTML subset, so go
ahead and adjust the HTML module. Unfortunately it is not true. Such standard
BBCode tag as Quote does not have an HTML pal.

Again. It is your right just to say: "I don't want to do it". Just don't try to
derogate opponent.
Comment 3 Brion Vibber 2005-12-06 00:05:25 UTC
We would not find this useful or desirable.
Comment 4 Rowan Collins [IMSoP] 2005-12-06 00:33:47 UTC
(In reply to comment #2)
> The reason for proposition is to have ability copy-paste content from forum to
> Wiki and vice versa. It will allow to automate it in future. That will open new
> opportunities for Wiki in future. 

An interesting idea. Perhaps a better approach to this problem would be to have
a tool which could *convert* from "BBCode" to MediaWiki markup; this could be
completely external to MediaWiki, and would probably be more sane than my "if I
was starting from scratch, I'd make things flexible" musing.

Your mention of "[quote]" not having an HTML equivalent reminds me that it also
doesn't have an equivalent in MediaWiki markup, but some creative use of
{{templates}} could probably allow you to "emulate" such gaps fairly easily.

> Second. If you dictate The User what should (s)he do and what shouldn't, you
> definitely loose competition. I don't want to say my user, that (s)he should
> learn extra "language".

But if, rather than making a conversion tool, we make a *mixture* of syntaxes
available *in the same wiki*, then the users of that wiki will essentially have
to learn *multiple* "languages" in order to edit each other's contributions.
That seems like rather a bad move to me, so the only way forward would seem to
be conversion, perhaps via some neutral "interchange" format, even if this
happened transparently such that users could appear to be editting in their
favourite markup language (although the thought of providing users with support
in that case makes me shudder). 

> If your parser is not organized the regular way... Bad for you.
> Take Computer Science course.

Sadly for us, the "parser" is in fact a hideous tangle of regexes, loops, and
special cases. There have been attempts to create alternative, saner, parsers
for the same markup, but so far we haven't got as far as plugging them into the
main code. Consequently, changing it *isn't* easy. That's not because we (or,
rather, they - I wouldn't call myself anything like a core developer) haven't
taken Computer Science courses but more, I suspect, because the code (and the
syntax) has evolved complexity over time, and a formal parser didn't seem
essential when the code was first written.

> About HTML and BBCode. If they are so similar, why do you say it is so difficult
> to   implement changes. I don't see any logic. Wiki honors HTML subset, so go
> ahead and adjust the HTML module. Unfortunately it is not true. Such standard
> BBCode tag as Quote does not have an HTML pal.

Well, the HTML subset is allowed simply by whitelisting it and letting it
through unprocessed, but to be clear I wasn't suggesting that BBCode and HTML
were directly equivalent. I was merely stating my - possibly erroneous -
understanding that there is no standard for BBCode, only a general "style" of
markup, which consists of [tag]...[/tag] pairs, conceptually similar to
SGML/HTML/XML's <tag>...</tag> pairs.

> Again. It is your right just to say: "I don't want to do it". Just don't try to
> derogate opponent.

I'm sorry if my response came across as overly confrontational; it wasn't really
intended that way. Like I say, I actually rather *like* the idea of interchange
between various markup formats, but knowing the MediaWiki code as well as I do,
I know that it's just not realistic to talk of incorporating such interchange
into that code in its current state.
Comment 5 HenryS 2005-12-06 02:02:08 UTC
OK, no problem

Respectfully,
Henry

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