Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge
What is Wikimania?
Wikimania is a 2000+ person conference, festival, meetup, workshop, hackathon, and celebration, spread over five days in August 2014, preceded and followed by fringe events. It's the official annual event of the Wikimedia movement, where you'll discover all kinds of projects that people are making with wikis and open content, as well as meet the community that produced the most famous wiki of all, Wikipedia!
State of the Wiki
An annual update on the Wikimedia projects
Wikipedia is a household name — in fact, it’s now one of the five most popular websites in the world, clocking over 21 billion hits every month. With over 110m pages across 287 languages, and a dozen sister projects including dictionaries, newspapers, multimedia repositories and travelguides, it's come a long way since its founding in 2001; the community has grown, the technology has developed, and the organisation has matured. However, there are still sweeping changes to come. more…
How can online communities unlock humanity's potential?
Once upon a time 'machines' were programmed by programmers and used by users. The success of the Web has changed this relationship: we now see configurations of people interacting with content and with each other, blurring the line between computations performed by machine logic and algorithms, and those that result from input by humans, arising from their own psychological processes and life experience. Rather than drawing a line through such Web-based systems to separate the human and digital parts (as computer science has traditionally done), we can now draw a line around them and treat each such compound as a 'social machine', a machine in which the two aspects are seamlessly interwoven. Of course Wikipedia is one of these, but what others? How can such systems be designed from scratch, and to what ends? more…
The Future of Education
Now that Wikipedia's done everyone's homework, what's left to teach?
To the exasperation of many teachers, Wikipedia is the first port of call for millions of students from primary school to university. Its sheer convenience is challenging standard pedagogical approaches that implicitly assume information is scarce and difficult to duplicate. What if teachers asked students to contribute to Wikipedia instead? more…
Must all media be commercially driven?
Media performs an essential political, social, economic, and cultural function in modern democracies. In such societies, media are the principal source of political information and access to public debate, and the key to an informed, participating, self-governing citizenry. Democracy requires a media system that provides people with a wide range of opinion and analysis and debate on important issues, reflects the diversity of citizens, and promotes public accountability of the powers-that-be and the powers-that-want-to-be. There is a growing sense that the growth of the Internet has not paid the democratic dividends that it could. more…
What happens when the cutting edge of human knowledge is available to all?
In 2013 alone over 500,000 pieces of scholarly research were made open access, across all disciplines — an unprecedented number. These are all citable in Wikipedia, meaning they can be integrated into the encyclopaedia, contextualised and made discoverable by anyone in the world with an internet connection. This level of accessibility of cutting edge research has never existed before in history, and the possible outcome of empowering citizen scientists and opening up academia in this way is beyond reckoning. more…
What can we build when the sum of all human knowledge is machine readable?
Wikidata is a new project of the Wikimedia Foundation: a free, collaborative, multilingual, secondary database, collecting structured data to provide support for Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, the other Wikimedia projects, and well beyond that. This may become one of the best open data repositories on Earth — what can we do with it? more…
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- Towards a classification framework for social machines Nigel Shadbolt, Daniel Alexander Smith, Elena Simperl, Max Van Kleek, Yang Yang, Wendy Hall, Web and Internet Science Group, University of Southampton, UK