I just had a look.
The category Space exploration’s complete closure is around 8000 articles. I ran a quick speed check with AutoWikiBrowser. It can skip an article that doesn’t contain “manned” in about 1 second (no human action required) and it takes however long you take to make the decision to make the change on articles that do contain “manned” (one click on either SKIP or SAVE). On that basis, it can skip all the articles in about 2 hours 15 minutes (if no human action required). Human action requires a chance at the displayed diff and then click SKIP/SAVE. I generally have that sort of task running in a background window and just flick over and see how it’s going from time to time. Takes longer in total elapsed time but less boring that way, and overall the job gets done in far less time than trying to get other people to write and run a bot, noting the care that has to be taken to foresee things like “unmanned vehicle” that should not be changed if operating a totally automated bot.
Kerry Raymond [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Wednesday, 25 February 2015 2:46 PM
To: 'Addressing gender equity and exploring ways to increase theparticipation of women within Wikimedia projects.'
Subject: RE: [Gendergap] Random musings about a bot
The mechanics of doing this aren’t such a big deal. AutoWikiBrowser is probably the best way to do it as you can eyeball each change before it happens just to make you that you haven’t done something inappropriate (like the unmanned vehicle example). It’s a little tedious (to eyeball each one) but not labour-intensive really (click SAVE or SKIP).
But I think first it needs to be agreed within that community that they want this change. Otherwise you might be regarded as being Bold With A Bulldozer if you use any automated or semi-automated tool.
[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Maia Weinstock
Sent: Wednesday, 25 February 2015 1:04 PM
Subject: [Gendergap] Random musings about a bot
There have been numerous discussions among folks in the space exploration community that use of the word "manned" and "unmanned" in Wikipedia is outdated and gender-biased. Unfortunately, going in and fixing all of these by hand would be rather labor-intensive...
Someone recently created
a browser plugin that replaces "manned" with "crewed." (See
It would be such an awesome thing if a bot existed that updated these instances
for real on English Wikipedia. Anyone have ideas for making this happen,
perhaps just limiting it to space exploration? I do see some issues with it
being done wholesale for the whole site, as certain terms might contain
terminology that would create confusion if changed automatically. (For
instance, "unmanned aerial vehicles," for better or for worse, is a
known term that I wouldn't advocate changing at this time.)
Anyway, just thinking out loud...