Dec
10
2007

Year: 2007 Week: 50 Number: 86

Technical news

  • [Inspector Gadget] – Our wikis support the function that you can put in a subpage of your useraccount your own javascript. That is usually /monobook.js This way you can change the behavior of the wiki or include specific functionality. In the years several users have written there own javascript modification. But to use them you need to tinker a bit, create that subpage, copy the code and so. Not exactly userfriendly for the no so technical Wikimadians. Now there is the "Gadget" function. When this function is active on your wiki you have a nice menu in the "Preferences" section to enable or disable the extra javascript functionality. And that is all you need to do.
This function is active on the English and French Wikipedia and commons. Go there and see how it works.  To get this function also active on you wiki; 1) discus it on your wiki and get censuses 2) make a bugzilla ticket about it and wait 3) after a couple of weeks start annoying people about it in #wikimedia-tech

  • [Move page] – The function to move a page (to change the title)  is one that all logged in users have. On some wikis the restriction is active that user who have a newly created account are not permitted to move a page similar to semi-protection restrictions. There is now a proposal, that seems to have clear support, to restrict page movement by default on all wikis to non-new user accounts. Wikis can opt-out.

Foundation

  • [World Economic Forum] — The Wikimedia Foundation is invited to the World Economic Forum 2008 as Technology Pioneer out of a record number of applications and nominees. The World Economic Forum (WEF) is a Geneva-based foundation whose annual meeting is attended by top business leaders, national political leaders and selected intellectuals and journalists. As such is this a valuable opportunity for the WMF to make contacts.
  • [Stewards] – the nomination election for stewards is nearing the end. Your opinion can be given up to 16th December. At present there are 18 candidates for steward.
  • [Fundraiser update] – the end of the current fundraiser, 22 December, is coming near. At present about $ 1.1 million is donated. That is more compared with the previous fundraiser of end 2006. But far below the budget of 2008. In an interview with the Wikipedia Signpost the Executive Director of the WMF Sue Gardner says; "Yes, the online fundraiser will not cover our operating costs – nor did we expect it to. And that's okay. We have a couple of major donations coming in within the next few weeks: they’ve been committed to, and will arrive in the bank before the new year."  The bot posting the live donations feed in #wikimedia-donations is down does not seem to come back anymore.

Community

  • [I did not do it] – The main page of the English Wikipedia was briefly deleted, 2 minutes or less, by an admin account. The user involved was blocked after one minute and desysoped 5 minutes after the deletion of the main page. After explanation by the user that it was his sister who used his account the block was lifted. Moral of the story; logout when you leave your computer alone, especially when you are a sysop or higher.
  • [How Wikipedia works] – Phoebe Ayers, Charles Matthews, Ben Yates and Samuel Klein are writing a book on how Wikipedia works, and hope to publish it (GFDL) early 2008. 
  • [Arbcom DE] — The German Wikipedia voted to keep the arbitration committee (Schiedsgericht) and elected three new members.

Awards

  • [Puerto Rico] — The Puerto Rica Senate has honoured Wikipedian Marine 69-71 (Antonio Santiago) in an official resolution for "his dedication to the cause of helping spread information about distinguished Puerto Ricans through new media, and in particular, those who have served with distinction in the military". Santiago is not only active on Wikipedia, but also in other media.

Media

Stats

  • [7th] – The online research institute Muliscope announced its yearly list of the top 20 most popular websites in the Netherlands. The Dutch language Wikipedia is up from the 10th place in 2006 to the 7th in 2007.
  • [Growth] — In 1.5 years Wikimedia went from 10,000 to 50,000 HTTP requests per second (peak)! Also Wikimedia handles a 30Tb of data volume per day. 

Other news

  • [Cape Town Declaration] – Advisory Board member Melissa Hagemann reported that a preview of the Cape Town Declaration is now available. The Cape Town Declaration is about Open Education.
  • [Wiki too free?] — Katina Schubert, vice chair of Germany's radical left-wing party "Die Linke", claims "to have reported Wikipedia to the police for the use of Nazi insignia". Display of such is generally forbidden by law, but perfectly legal for documentation or educational purposes. The party website declares the charge aims to "introduce political and ethical standards" in order to get rid of what they consider extreme right-wing viewpoints. The issue has caused a lot of press, almost exclusively in support of Wikipedia, and even Schubert's own party criticises her for the action. She has now openly admitted that this was not a stroke of genius
  • [Paper, now in full-colour] – electronic paper is the technology that currently gives the best hope to give truly everybody cheap access to the content of the projects. The currently still expensive devices that support black and withe displaying are in production. Fuji Xerox presented a prototype of full-colour electronic paper.
  • [Theora Support] – Our projects use for video the format Ogg Theora. But besides the WMF-projects use of Ogg Theora is not used by main stream websites. And so are most computers not able to play it. The Mozilla foundation and Opera are planning to  include playback support of Ogg Theora build in their browsers. This can result in increased use of Ogg Theora and make the use of video content of our projects easier for the readers.

Did you know …

… that Wikinews does not show up on Google News? Wikinews does not fit one of Google's criteria, that it can't that easily be edited? 🙂

EN Wikinews has because of that a blog where the news is posted and that is included by Google News. Unfortunately that blog is updated infrequently.
http://wikinewsreports.blogspot.com/


Quote

"When you start accusing everyone of being in on a conspiracy, you shouldn't be surprised if they decide to confirm your paranoia by banding together against you." — w:en:user:khaosworks

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WP:CABAL



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NOTE: due to an editorial overside Wikizine 86 contains two independent items about the German politician and the complaint about the Nazi symbols in Wikipedia. Because this was noticed after publication of the email edition of Wikizine the blog version is kept the same.

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