Today the Wikimedia Foundation launched an alpha, opt-in version of the VisualEditor to fourteen Wikipedias, which follows our release to the English Wikipedia in December. The VisualEditor lets editors create and modify real articles visually, using a new system where the articles they edit will look the same as when one reads them — like writing a document in a word processor.
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The VisualEditor is now on 15 language Wikipedias

Editors on fifteen Wikipedias – Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish and Swedish – can now get an idea of what the VisualEditor looks like in the “real world”, so they can give us feedback about how well it integrates with their current editing processes. We also want to get their thoughts on what aspects of development we should be prioritizing in the coming months.

The editor is still at an early stage and is missing significant functions, which we will address in the coming months. Because of this, we are mostly looking for feedback from experienced editors; the alpha VisualEditor is insufficient to really give new volunteers a proper experience of editing. We don’t want to promise an easier editing experience to new editors before it is ready.

As we develop improvements, we will push them live every two weeks to the wikis, allowing you to give us feedback as we go, and tell us what you want us to work on next.

How can I try it out?
The VisualEditor is now available to all logged-in accounts as a new preference, switched off by default, on the fifteen Wikipedias listed above. If you go to your “Preferences” screen and click into the “Editing” section, it will have an option labelled “Enable VisualEditor.”

Once enabled, for each article you can edit, you will get a second editor tab labelled “VisualEditor” next to the “Edit” tab. If you click this, after a little pause you will enter the VisualEditor. From here, you can play around, edit and save real articles and get an idea of what it will be like when complete.

At this early stage in our development, we recommend that after saving any edits, you check whether they broke anything. All edits made with the VisualEditor will show up in articles’ history tabs with a “VisualEditor” tag next to them, so you can track what is happening.

How can I help?
It’s vital that our software is available in the native language of as many of our volunteers as possible. If you speak one of these languages – or any of the other 280 languages that we support, like WelshPunjabiUrdu or Scots Gaelic – please consider looking at the translations and helping us improve them!

We would love your feedback on what we have done so far — whether it’s a problem you discovered, an aspect that you find confusing, the areas you think we should work on next, or anything else, please do let us know.

James ForresterProduct Manager, VisualEditor and Parsoid