Photo: Flickr user lifeontheedge

Saturday, June 14, 2008

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is an area of marine debris in the central North Pacific Ocean. Size estimates vary from an area equivalent to the state of Texas to double that of the continental United States.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Good god, people.

Okay, here's what happened: Someone tried to start a discussion about "all the good things Wikipedia has done for you. Think of all the good times you have had on Wikipedia. Share with us the best memory you have from Wikipedia. Don't be shy!"

It lasted a couple hours before it was deleted for violating the what wikipedia is not ruleset.

Honest to god, fun is what makes the encyclopedia tick. If you're trying to turn contributors into automations, you're cutting wikipedia's feet from under it.

via danny

Writing your first wikipedia article. (How-to guide.)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Powerset is another wikipedia-specific search engine an alternate interface for viewing and searching wikipedia (and for filtering it in rudimentary ways). Mea culpa.

Great article about Jimmy Wales in the Economist. (Wales co-founded Wikipedia.)

“I think that reality exists and that it’s knowable,” he says, adding that Wikipedia aims not for truth with a capital T but for consensus. “You go meta,” he says, meaning “beyond” the disputes and to the underlying facts. For instance, when deciding how to describe abortion, “I may not agree that it’s a sin, but I can certainly agree that the pope thinks it’s a sin.” Despite their disagreements, people on both sides of a debate can in many cases reach a consensus on the nature of their dispute, at least. Through this process, says Mr Wales, Wikipedia articles eventually reach a fairly steady state called the “neutral point of view”, or NPOV.

“Wikipedia resolves the postmodern dilemma of truth by ultimately relying on process,” says Gene Koo of Harvard Law School’s Berkman Centre for Internet and Society. “Its process is both open and transparent. The levers of power are not destroyed—Foucault taught us that this is impossible—but simply visible.” To which Mr Wales responds, more simply, that NPOV is a way of saying: “Thanks, but, um, please let’s get back to work.”

NYT: Obama's Wiki Style