I'm hoping this forum is a proper place for this message. My apologies
if it is not.
XOWA is a new open-source offline Wikipedia app which I wrote in my
spare time over the past 20 months. You can view screenshots here (
http://sourceforge.net/projects/xowa ) or here (
http://imgur.com/a/OydBK/layout/blog ). Its notable features are:
* It is a full-fledged offline HTML reader for English Wikipedia (or
any other Wikimedia Foundation wiki)
* It works directly against the data-dump files (such as those at
* It downloads images from Wikimedia on demand (or locally from a
Wikimedia image tarball at
* It can edit offline articles (to update content, correct vandalism
or just to experiment)
* It navigates between offline wikis (Click on "Look up this word in
Wiktionary" and it will open your offline version of Wiktionary)
I'm posting here because I'm looking for feedback. So far, I have a
few good users, and one exceptional user from German Wikipedia
(Schnark: who added MathJax and sortable/collapsible tables). I'm
currently looking for others who will try offline images, test English
Wikipedia, or review wikis in other languages.
The most recent version of XOWA is contained in one zip file. It takes
one click and about 3 minutes to download Simple Wikipedia for offline
use. XOWA also has a page that lists 596 other wikis that can be set
up with one click. English Wikipedia is the largest and it will take
between 4 and 5 hours, but most of that time is to download and unzip
the 9 GB .bz2 file.
If you're interested and have some time, please give XOWA a try. I
post Windows-specific instructions below. XOWA also works on Linux
(and possibly Mac OS X), so if you want to run on that OS, the
instructions are similar except you will need to run "java -jar
xowa_linux.jar" or "java -d32 -DstartOnFirstThread -jar
If you have questions or comments or problems, please post and I will reply.
Thanks for your attention.
* 1 GB free space: XOWA (5 MB) + XUL Runner (32 MB) + Simple Wikipedia
(500 MB) + ImageMagick/Inkscape (400 MB)
* Windows XP or higher
* Java 1.6 or Java 1.7. If Java is not installed on your machine, you
can get it from http://www.java.com/en/download
* Download xowa_app_windows_v0.2.2.0.zip from
* Unzip the file to C:\xowa. When you are done, you should have a file
called C:\xowa\xowa.exe as well as many other files and directories
* Double-click C:\xowa\xowa.exe. The app should launch and the XOWA
Main Page should load.
* Click the link for "Set up Simple Wikipedia". Wait about 3 minutes
for the wiki to download and install. When it is finished, it will
open Simple Wikipedia
* Browse Simple Wikipedia. When you are done, click on the Main Page
link under XOWA in the left hand navigation bar.
* Click the link for "Set up images (Windows)". Wait about 3 minutes
for the image programs to install.
* Click on Page history on the left hand nav
* Select Main_Page for simple.wikipedia.org. Images will now download
automatically for any page you visit. Here are some example pages to
visit (you can copy and paste these into the address bar):
architecture", "simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saturn (planet)"
* If you want to try other wikis, click on "list of data dumps" on the
XOWA Main Page
Hello all -
RACHEL, a project of World Possible focused on getting open courseware
and educational materials into remote areas via an offline repository, is
updating their materials and is hoping to get an updated version of offline
English Wikipedia. Has there been any advancement in this by the Wikipedia
1.0 team? I haven't heard for awhile, so am not sure how to respond to the
below request from Noberto!
FYI, here is a cool video of a class using Wikipedia via the RACHEL
Thanks and hope all are well -
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Norberto Mujica <World Possible> <norberto(a)worldpossible.org>
Date: Mon, Feb 25, 2013 at 9:35 PM
Subject: Re: Repository distribution
To: Jessie Wild <jwild(a)wikimedia.org>
Hope you are doing great. I was releasing 2 new versions of RACHEL this
past weekend, and I was wondering if there is a new version of Wikipedia
offline, like 3 years old we have in our RACHEL repository.
How is your project doing?
Learning & Evaluation *
Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in
the sum of all knowledge. Help us make it a reality!
Donate to Wikimedia <https://donate.wikimedia.org/>
I have heard about this funding opportunity at the OpenITP (Thx Sumana).
See Email below.
At Kiwix, we think the spreading of content should be as much as
possible decentralized... for technical and political reasons.
Our current setup is based on Metalink and HTTP protocols, but the
solutions we use (Mirrorbrain/aria2) are ready to deal with P2P using
Bittorrent (also decentralized). This just need a little bit work to get
This work is more than ever before essential for Kiwix: we start to have
pretty serious amount of data transfers and bandwidth constraints/costs
are increasing dangerously.
In addition, the way we spread the content catalog (the list of ZIM
files available to download) is still really centralized and we also
search a way to allow people to exchange this list in an ad-hoc P2P manner.
We think that all together this could made a really interesting topic
for an OpenITP grant proposal. If a C++ developer is motivated by that
topic I'm ready to help him getting that grant request done.
-------- Message original --------
Sujet: [Wikitech-l] Grants available for
anti-surveillance/anti-censorship design & other tech work
Date : Tue, 19 Feb 2013 15:39:35 -0500
De : Sumana Harihareswara <sumanah(a)wikimedia.org>
Répondre à : Wikimedia developers <wikitech-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org>
Organisation : Wikimedia Foundation
Pour : Wikimedia developers <wikitech-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org>, "A list
for the design team." <design(a)lists.wikimedia.org>
OpenITP's first round of 2013 project funding is now open for proposals!
Deadline: 31 March 2013
"OpenITP project grants are meant to support specific technical efforts
to improve users' ability to circumvent censorship and surveillance on
the Internet. "Technical" doesn't have to mean software or hardware --
for example, we also consider efforts to improve user experience through
translation, testing, projects to improve documentation, meetings that
get developers together in person to solve specific problems, etc. The
main thing we're looking for is that your proposed project is finite
(e.g. has a deadline, is scoped) and contributes to OpenITP's core
mission of enabling freedom of communication on the Internet.
We're interested in all good proposals, but note we're especially
receptive to proposals that improve user experience (UX) and in
translation (of both software and documentation). Don't take that as a
filter, though: if you have a good proposal that's not about UX or
translation, we still want to receive it.
While our grants don't have a hard limit, they tend to be in the
$5k-$30k USD range: enough to fund a specific piece of work, or to
provide seed funding for a new idea, but not enough to be a primary
long-term funding source. Therefore we try not to burden applicants with
a lot of bureaucratic overhead and paperwork to apply for a grant. It's
enough to send us a brief description of what you have in mind, and
point to public URLs for further details. Since we only fund open source
work, we expect that most proposals we receive will already have been
discussed in publicly-archived forums anyway, and perhaps written up on
a public web page -- though there may be exceptions, such as projects
that are becoming open source but aren't all the way there yet. In any
case, we're comfortable clicking on links and reading stuff on the Web.
You're not required to package everything up in one PDF to make a
proposal. Just tell us what you want to do, make it easy for us to find
what we need to find, and we'll take it from there. We'll ask you
questions as we have them."
The page also includes examples of things OpenITP funded in their last
round. Please take a look! It would be *amazing* if someone could use
this opportunity to help people read and contribute to Wikimedia safely.
Engineering Community Manager
Wikitech-l mailing list
The February month starts with two good news for Kiwix and Wikipedia
offline in general:
* For the first time we have had 100.000 downloads a month of Kiwix.
* Kiwix was elected "Project of the Month" at Sourceforge, and published
an interview of myself http://sourceforge.net/blog/potm-201302/