Wikipedia has been an integral part of web culture for nearly twenty years, allowing users to search the millions of text-heavy encyclopedia entries from crowd-sourced sources from their computer, tablet, or phone. Now, for the first time in a decade, the general look and feel of Wikipedia on the desktop is being redesigned to make the site more accessible to new users.
You can browse any suggested new features in this MediaWiki post. There are some animated GIFs out there that show you what they might look like. Personally, I really like the way the new table of contents looks. I tend to curiously read wiki pages of public figures, and this could make it a lot easier to skip certain sections of a page without having to scroll down on my computer.
This makes it much easier to navigate on longer pages!
A collapsible sidebar is the first change to be introduced. This allows users to collapse the menu on the left side of each page, minimize distractions, and narrow down irrelevant content and links on the left side of the screen to make it easier to focus. The website also adds a simple one-click button to change the language for a page you're reading.
Wikipedia will also add improvements to the in-site search tool to make it easier to find other pages, and reconfigure the logo to make it smaller on each Wikipedia page.
The website's parent company, Wikimedia Foundation, announced in a blog post that the changes will be "incremental over a long period of time" so that users can test the new features before they are officially launched. However, the entire look and feel of the desktop version of Wikipedia is to be redesigned by the end of 2021. It was not stated whether the mobile version would receive the same redesign.