2007/12/7, Rémi Kaupp <kaupp.remi(a)gmail.com>om>:
Here is some feedback regarding the Greenspun project, as seen by graphists
from fr.wikipedia (which I will call fr.graphists in this email). I C/C this
email to the Greenspun mailing-list, I guess other people could be
Regarding the way illustrations would be done :
* The images should have a very high quality: they should be reviewed both
by good graphists and by people who know the topic. Images should be
assessed both regarding their accuracy, their use of colours, their possible
internationalisation, etc. : fr.graphists said that payment should be done
after quality has been acknowledged.
High quality means using good sources: these sources should be sought
beforehand and approved by people involved (zoologists for animal diagrams,
for instance). This is a key point for making good diagrams. The source(s)
should be quoted/acknowledged on the image description page.
Sure - we should force giving source in such images ;)
* For each illustration, there should be a version
with numbered labels and
a blank version, on top of versions with English or other localised labels.
The numbered version allows easy reuse on small Wikipedias (without
graphists), the blank version allows interactive diagrams using ImageMap for
Disagree. It's trivial to remove labels from labeled image. Going
further labeled (with texts) images are much less usable than
numbered. It's cause very low resolution of computer displays - text
labels eat a lot of screen resolution but don't provide any
information to image itself. It's why some people vote oppose on FPC -
usable width of image on Wikipedia is up to maybe 600px, and average
is about 300, so if image has 50% of width used for empty margins/text
labels we loose 50% of effective resolution. Of caurse it doesn't
affect printing where we have at least 10 larger resolution for images
:) but it worth remembering that text labels are just sexi, but not
good at all.
* Each illustration should be translated in as many
languages as possible.
This part can be done by volunteers, but the image has to be advertised to
Hope you mean description of image (numbered labels in description page).
* Free software should be used if possible. By free
software, they mean of
course Inkscape. There are several reasons: first, it is free :-) so in the
same spirit as Wikimedia projects; this software can be used by anyone
without the need to buy a license; it produces better SVG code than OOo or
Illustrator if you don't have the good plugin. Fr.graphists said that this
may be a problem with professional graphists, who tend to use more
Yes you are 100% right, but I know some professionals that use
Inkscape (eg/ Piom and Joystick from pl.wiki who both are professional
graphics, but doesn't draw much for WM projects)
* Maybe it goes without saying, but all illustrations
should be in SVG
format. PNG is much harder to translate / adapt. ANother good reason to use
Yes it's essential - if someone creates vector graphic and then
uploads only PNG version it's against Wikithinking!
* The selection process may be private (ie not open to
competition for money should be avoided. When images are produced, they
should be made available to everybody for review, criticism, and inspiration
Yes. Confidential making decision after public debate would avoin stresses :)
* Some fr.graphists were anxious about a possible
meaning that some illustrations would be useful to the en.wikipedia project
but maybe not to others. This can work the other way around too (Wikipedia
vs. Wikibooks, etc.). This also means that they should be easy to translate
(maybe problematic when jargon or technical language is used). Maybe
illustrations for "core topics" should have higher priority as well...
There is always some kind of systemic bias.
Finally, they also said that it would have much more
impact to teach
graphists to use their tools (Inkscape / GIMP / etc.), to create tutorials,
etc. than to pay for a few hundred pictures. This would be much more in the
spirit of Wikimedia projects. People could be paid to teach new graphists,
to write well-illustrated tutorials, etc., which should also potentially
generate less frustration between paid and volunteer graphists.
Another way of avoiding this "frustration" is to make sure the diagrams
produced in the Greenspun project have a really high quality.
We think same on pl.wiki
The graphists had some general suggestions for the
project (which may or may
not fit into the objectives) :
* create commonly accepted standards or recommandations for maps and
diagrams. The French Graphic Lab already uses cartographic standards
extensively (see )
* help User:Sting to finish his cartographic tutorials, and translate them
* Make work together a macro-photographer and a graphist, to produce good
quality diagrams of insects and this sort of stuff (see  for instance)
* Get programmers to create a cartographic software for Wikipedia, including
* Help the development of Inkscape, and the SVG rendering software in
MediaWiki (patterns, masks, some issues with arrows, support for animated
Would be great if WMF would donate Inkscape team with eg. symbolic 50k$