Once again, thanks for the cool conference.
Right now I'd like to show some friends and colleagues what we've been up
I'm curious if the videos are online yet? I can't find them on the
WikimediaIL channel so far.
Am I looking in the wrong place?
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Having Wikimania during [[Tisha B'Av]] , the last day of [[The Three Weeks]] is a no go for all religious jews - not only Orthodox Jews. It is a long fast (26 hours long) which starts the day before, very much like Yom Kipur.
Even I will not be able to attend Wikimania on that day (and the day before).
Who told the security staff at Ben Gurion that CDs have been distributed as
part of the welcoming pack of Wikimania? Jeromy and I were requested to show
the "CD you received from Wikimania" and we haven't got any.
PS. For those of you who have yet to fly out of Israel: it's a good idea to
have a password / Android lock etc. on each of your electronic devices, so
that they can't check their content except in front of you.
Here's a write-up, photos, and the map (before/after) for the mapping party
held during Wikimania:
In sum, we gave a workshop, followed by taking ~25 participants out on the
streets of Haifa to collect map data, broke into 4 smaller groups. Big
thanks to Eugene (seav), MADe, Zvika, Yarl, and Polimerek, all experienced
mappers, who helped lead the groups, as well as the Hebrew speakers who
The map (http://osm.org/go/xtTsF0inF-) is drastically improved, with
excellent follow-up by the mappers to get the information entered into the
We've also uncovered a bunch of RTL bugs in OSM, and could use help to
President, Wiki Society of Washington, DC Inc.
@wikidc / @wikimania2012
On the Wikimania
have some discussions on the best way to organize the "partial
scholarships". We want to prevent that people from countries far away from
the venue (Australia, Canada, thirld world countries, ...) stay home because
the partial scholarship does not help them enough. We don't want them all to
request a full scholarship, either.
Please help us for the next conference, and fill in the questionnaire on
Everybody can fill in this form (even if you didn't attend, or didn't find
funding), so send this to everybody that wanted to come!
WereSpielChequers, 21/08/2011 23:10:
> but clearly holding our annual conference in Israel
> during Ramadan was not the best way to encourage people from Islamic
> countries to attend. I hope that in future we can make sure that
> Wikimania is more inclusive than that.
It was also during Shabbat, by the way (which is a traditional problem
even for Wikimedia Italia general assembly...). I don't know how big an
impact Ramadan has had.
I think that Meir Sheetrit has done more to explain us why the
participation of arab israelis and palestinians in Wikimedia is so low,
than the associations protesting against Israel; I mean, when he said
how expensive Internet connections are in Israel, and why this must change.
 That might be because I'd normally agree with them so I knew the
things they said.
Here are two useful links from Jordan Tourism Board:
http://www.visitjordan.com/visitjordan_cms/GeneralInformation/GettingAround… - List of border crossing. My advice: Either go eastwards across the Lower Galilee from Haifa to Beit Shean, cross the border at Sheikh Hossein Bridge and continue southward in Jordan, or go southward along the Israeli coast, then go to Beersheba, then on the road to Eilat cross the border at the Wadi Araba Crossing (Petra is quite near). Don't use the Allenby/King Hossein Bridge because it is the main gate from and into the West Bank, which means three kinds of authorities (Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian), more people waiting in line, more forms to fill in and more potential headaches. According to this site, Jordanian visas are issued on the spot at the crossing. Note - unlike the Israeli authorities, the Jordanian authorities insist on stamping the passport itself.
http://www.visitjordan.com/default.aspx?tabid=63 - Views of Petra on that site. It is considered one of the most remarkable sites in the region, and the most prominent tourist attraction in Jordan. Jordan is tourist-friendly and quite cheap. Most people can communicate in English. Please note that August falls on Ramadan, so most people you are going to meet in Jordan will be fasting during daylight hours. Be considerate. One more warning - this is August and Petra is in the middle of the desert. Temperature might rise as high as 40 centigrade. Cars, buses and most rooms are air-conditioned, but when you walk outside, cover yourself well with light clothes and drink a lot (but not in front of those who fast).
I'll add my thanks to the chorus. It was an amazing Wikimania.
Having participated in the organisation of quite a few Wikimanias, and
since Itzik asked somewhere for "critics" so that they can do better
next time, here are a few things that come to mind. I'd urge everyone
to answer this thread to keep things in one place so that the team
from next year can benefit from those.
* Badges: badges should be recognizable at a glance. Especially for
press. But also for organizers, speakers etc.. By the time I arrived,
everyone had a different lanyard, some had written badges, other
printed... complicated. Make more badges than you will ever need (a
safe assumption is to print about at least twice the number of badges
you think you'll need). Choose colors that people can recognize at a
glance. Especially for the press (I'll never stress that enough).
* Food: the food was so excellent it's not even funny (wow the
hummus). But I've seen _lots_ of people looking for the vegetarian
food without ever knowing which it was. So: Label food. Name of the
food, principal ingredients (some are allergic to say... bell pepper,
can't have milk etc.), vegetarian, kosher, whatever is of importance,
make it clear.
* Moderation in the sessions: Have a _seasoned_ moderator in each
room. Someone whose only job it is to cut short presentations that are
too long, who can moderate discussions/questions if there is a need.
Someone nasty ;).
That's about it for the main things I've seen, the rest was just great. :)
NB. This gmail address is used for mailing lists. Personal emails will get lost.
Intercultural musings: Ceci n'est pas une endive - http://blog.notanendive.org
Photos with simple eyes: notaphoto - http://photo.notafish.org
Huge, huge thanks to WM Israel for Wikimania 2011--a beautiful gift to
the community. You've been wonderful hosts, patient organizers, great
The conference has been a true pleasure, and having gone to all of
them, you've really set an incredibly high bar for the teams to come.
Thank you, thank you, thank you: you've given us all so much energy,
so much fun, so much enlightenment. And a really kick-ass party. :-)