User interface feedback

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PLEASE UPDATE ON WMF UX Improvement Effort

Downloading ZIM files

It should be more obvious how to obtain Wikipedia dumps from within Kiwix itself. Perhaps a "Download Wikipedia" link/button could be put at the top of the intro page.

Indexing ZIM files

Change "Do you want to index your ZIM file now?" dialog to "This file does not include a search index. Creating one may take several minutes. Do you want to index your ZIM file now?"

done Fix in the master locales repository Kelson 20:24, 29 January 2011 (UTC)


Search misses some articles

Some articles included in the Wikipedia Version 0.5 ZIM file I tested were not matched by searching and could only be viewed by clicking a link to them. These articles included:

  • Spider
  • Rabies
  • Krill

For the first two, the articles were not even listed in the sidebar search results. For Krill, the article 'krill' does actually show up in the sidebar results but as the 2nd closest match at 99%. This behavior is consistent across the Mac and Windows versions.

done I was able to reproduce the wrong behaviour for "Spider" and "Rabies". "Krill" is by me indexed... but there is no auto-loading. So for "Spider" and "rabies" this was a bug in the article list visitor responsible for forgetting 100 articles per ZIM file. Fixed now in SVN trunk. Kelson 20:23, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

Provide alternate search results format

As previously discussed, Google-style search results would be a nice alternative to the current Sidebar implementation, especially if it could include a brief snippet from each article. Perhaps you could configure what type of search you prefer from a preferences menu.

Pop-up search suggestions

If a match is chosen from the pop-up search suggestions, it should probably go ahead and execute that search rather than waiting for the user to hit enter.

Search in page

If the search term is not found, it returns an error saying "[JavaScript Application] The text you entered was not found." The "[JavaScript Application]" part should probably be removed or replaced.

Search icon in toolbar

Seems to be non-functional.


Two Quit items

Quit is listed under both the File Menu and the Application menu in the Mac version. It should only be listed under the Application Menu.

Bug open ... Will be fixed @Renaud. Kelson 20:27, 29 January 2011 (UTC)


The Mac Version has a menu item called Transliteration, but it doesn't seem to be functional currently, and the help does not mention it.

This should be hidden, and is hidden on other OSes. Bug open Kelson 20:34, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

Keyboard shortcuts

In the Mac version, the Keyboard shortcuts are not typical for a Mac application (normally the Command key is used rather than Control). Regardless, they do not actually work using either keys.

Full screen mode

Should revert to normal interface if the user hits escape key.

done Fixed in SVN trunk Kelson 20:25, 29 January 2011 (UTC)


You can purge your history, but you can't view it. It would be nice to be able to browse through your history either from a menu or the Sidebar.

Back button

While it was indexing, I decided to try clicking some article links. This worked fine, although I was not able to return to the home page by using the back button. (Strangely this only happened the first time I left the home page. On subsequent attempts I was able to go back to the home page by clicking the back button.)

Need to be reproduced. Kelson 14:56, 30 January 2011 (UTC)


It might be nice to have a preferences pane where you could set things like "Always show the tab bar", "Remember browsing history", etc.

Kiosk mode

It would also be cool to have a kiosk mode available in which the interface would be fullscreen unless a special keyboard command was issued.


DNS prefetching

although this isn't a user interface issue, it seems that Kiwix makes DNS requests on all the external links included in each Wikipedia article it loads (without clicking on them). So if I pull up World War II, for example, Kiwix might make a couple hundred DNS requests. This isn't bad for someone living in the US, but if you are in a remote area and don't have unlimited data for free, it could be an unexpected surprise, since Kiwix is supposed to be an "offline" reader. Just thought I would pass it along.

I have commited a fix. Need confirmation, the fix works. Kelson 14:58, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

See also