Tag Archives: wikimania

Mentioned in BBC News Magazine

BBC NEWS | Magazine | Rewriting the rule books

David posted a link to this article on the Y! irishblogs mailing list, and before I’d finished reading it I was about to say “hey, I was there!”: then I saw that I’d gotten a mention for my blog post about my first Wikipedia article on “Tonto’s Expanding Head Band”…

Blogs also give a sense of why people commit time to the encyclopaedia, recent examples including Pete Ashton’s Goodbye Myspace, Hello Wikipedia! and John Breslin’s My First Wikipedia Article: the latter’s an entry on some prog rock synth maestros who helped Stevie Wonder with his funkiness: a sample entry from an encyclopaedia that doesn’t have to worry about how many pages it has.

"Free Content" WikiMania Session

I’ve put our WikiOnt presentation from yesterday online.


I chaired an interesting session this morning on “free content”. The first speaker was Thomas Thaler; I took some live notes and added them to the wiki page for his tutorial entitled Strategies for Free Content: Freeing the Fruits of Creativity. The second speaker was Douwe Osinga from World 66, who talked about Getting Paid to Write Free Content (they have started giving some users grants of $1000 to write about their travels). I looked up Galway on their site, and read that “Galway is like the San Francisco of Ireland” (something I’ve said many times!). Photos are available here.

Wikimania05/Paper-IM1 – Wikibooks

Wikimania05/Paper-IM1 – Wikibooks

Gave my talk this morning, as I said it was “scary and exciting” being the first talk at the first Wikimania conference. We had an interesting Semantic Web session, with questions ranging from abuse of metadata to open versus closed sets of typed links. The Wikimania audio page is available.


Jimmy “Jimbo” Wales is just after giving his keynote presentations, listing his “problems”, or the things he would like to see freely available:

  1. Free the encyclopedia
  2. Free the dictionary
  3. Free the curriculum
  4. Free the music
  5. Free the arts
  6. Free the file formats
  7. Free the maps
  8. Free the product identifiers
  9. Free the TV listings
  10. Free the communities

Two more were proposed by the audience: free the search engines and free the sciences.

Edit: Ross Mayfield’s blog entry about Jimmy Wales’ talk is very comprehensive and worth reading.

Wikimania Day 1

So far, having a good time at Wikimania. Lots of interesting people here, and the real crowds are only just arriving… Met Ward Cunningham (creator of the first wiki site) at lunch; a group of us went to Haus Wertheym in the Roemerberg area as Eugene wanted to try somewhere more authentic and local. I’ll put up some photos on Flickr in a bit, and tag them with “wikimania”…

The weather is nice in Frankfurt; I’m staying in a unique place called Hotel Am Berg. They seem to have given me the biggest room in the hotel, which looks like it was designed for a 70’s movie star: a huge black-and-white tiled bathroom with little small off-rooms for shower / bidet / toilet, a big bath, two sinks and an exercise bike! A nice big room too with a few beds; you could probably fit a one bedroom apartment into the space.

Oh (remembering my last blog post), my cases came from Toronto Pearson the next day, the same day that they had that miraculous escape where the 300+ people got off the burning plane. It was a strange feeling watching it live on CNN knowing that we had just been there the day before…