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MediaWiki API

Saturday, January 03, 2009 by Dave Winer.

A picture named houseOfCards.gifWell, thanks to Andrew Burton I got access to a MediaWiki installation with the API turned on, and I was able to make a couple of trivial calls successfully, but I hit a wall when it came to doing the thing I set out to do. I have no doubt from reading the docs that it's possible, I just can't figure out what the dance is. Permalink to this paragraph

My problem may stem from not being a MediaWiki user. I'm doing this job for Doc Searls, who wrote a passionate plea to be able to edit his wiki with the OPML Editor. From a quick glance at the MediaWiki API docs I was pretty sure I'd be able to put something together. I like writing glue for XML-based APIs, it's fairly rewarding work, cause when I'm done there's another cool thing I can do with my outliner, even though it's not likely that I'll use it, personally. ;-> Permalink to this paragraph

I had hoped today to be writing a piece about how I got it to work but no luck. It's actually a plea for help. Here goes.  Permalink to this paragraph

1. What I need is the equivalent of the Metaweblog API. Calls to create a new document (in wiki terms probably a "page"), to get and set the text to an existing document. That's basically it. For bells and whistles there are categories and media objects, but Doc probably doesn't need those so much as he needs to be able create and edit pages on his wiki. Permalink to this paragraph

2. I understand that I need to login and get a token. I have the call to login working, so I don't need help there. I probably can figure out how to get a token, but what to do with it? Oy. The docs really assume you know what you're doing before you read them.  Permalink to this paragraph

3. I think the docs they have get pretty close to getting me going, but I won't be sure until I'm actually going. Permalink to this paragraph

If you can shed any light on what's happening here, it would be much appreciated. Assume in advance that I know I'm a pathetic dork with no life, if you skip that part of your advice it would be much appreciated too. ;-> Permalink to this paragraph


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A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 53, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

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