Hisham Mundol was recently hired  as an consultant to the
Wikimedia Foundation to support the program initiatives in India.
Hisham Mundol will be primarily based in India and will be working closely
with the Wikimedian community in India.
Hisham Mundol is coming to Bangalore to connect with the Wikimedian
community in Bangalore.
Date : *Friday, 25-Feb-2011 6:30 PM IST *
The Centre for Internet and Society
No. 194, 2nd 'C' Cross,
Domlur 2nd Stage
Opposite to Domlur Club
Bangalore 560 071
Do plan to attend and kindly sign up.
About Hisham Mundol :
*Hisham Mundol's role will be to design and implement specific pilot
programs that encourage many more Indians to become contributors to our
projects in Indic languages as well as English. The National Programs
initiative will focus on the following areas in the first year:*
*Design and implement an India-wide program to increase Wikimedia’s
footprint on university and college campuses with students and faculty with
the aim of encouraging contributions to Wikimedia projects*
*Support the launch and implementation of community-initiated programs that
seek to increase the editor base for Wikimedia projects*
*Engage with the community and chapter to build a strong relationship among
these stakeholder groups and create communications forums that allow for
*As a newcomer to the Wikimedia movement, Hisham’s first task will be to
deepen his understanding of us: our history, goals, values, culture and
*Hisham was most recently a consultant with the Public Health Foundation of
India (in a partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation). He
designed and implemented large-scale national programs on HIV/AIDS
prevention. He worked to understand the dynamics of hard-to-reach
communities by conducting in-depth, on-the-ground analysis (ask him to tell
you about his experience talking to drivers while sitting under their
trucks). The programs he designed and implemented sought to convince people
in large numbers - 400 million young people across the nation - to change
very personal behaviours. While we are not tackling issues of such an
intimate nature, we do aim to convince large numbers of people across the
country to contribute their personal time to Wikimedia projects. During
this assignment, Hisham worked closely with public, private and community
groups (local and international) to work through the details of the programs
and build partnerships for implementing them at scale. He did so in a manner
that used persuasion rather than power to build support to move things
forward. We think his experience navigating these varied groups position
him well to work in the Wikimedia community. His earlier career was in
marketing and business development with a number of well-known businesses:
Infosys, Accenture, Cadbury and Unilever. This experience positions him well
to engage with a movement and organization that is global in nature, in
particular to work with a team that is based halfway around the world. *
( Introduction by Barry Newstead , GCDO , Wikimedia Foundation) 
I am really happy to announce that the Narayam extension is installed and
running at translatewiki.net. Currently it provides input methods for the
Malayalam and Bangla languages. It has been enabled so that Narayam can be
tested both for its functionality and for these input methods. We expect
that many more languages need support for the input methods for their
language. As Narayam is intended as a framework solution, it will allow for
a solution that can easily extended.
The status of the software is "functional" but it needs more tender loving
care from Junaid PV and other developers to before it is ready for the
Wikimedia Foundation. When you want support for an input method for your
language, please contact Shiju Alex who manages this project.
As always, we welcome it when you localise this and other software at
Thanks Asutosh. Thats fine .
On Thu, Feb 24, 2011 at 8:11 PM, asutosh kar <kar.asutosh(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> logo created, uploaded in commons and wikipedia 2.0 page and also bug
> raised on bugzilla
> hope will be done in a days or two
> thanks all for help and pointers.
> On Thu, Feb 24, 2011 at 10:37 AM, Subhashish Panigrahi <
> psubhashish(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> Thanks for your quick response, here is what I have made, I think I need
>> to change it a little bit and which format and what size Wikipedia supports.
>> Subhashish Panigrahi* ସୁଭ ପା*
>> Wikimediaindia-l mailing list
With Warm Regards,
আসুন পাইরেসি মুক্ত ভারত গড়ি,সবাই মুক্ত সফ্টওয়ার ব্যবহার করি [image:
O:-)],অন্যকে ব্যবহারে উৎসাহিত করি।
Wikimediaindia-l mailing list
This one isn't directly connected with Wikimedia projects but is,
IMHO, one element of any Wikimedia project in India - Unicode.
I'm trying to bring together some ideas as to why Unicode is
important, what the upsides and downsides are. My initial thoughts:
1. While there are many ways to achieve a legal framework for
inter-operable content (CC, GFDL, PD or the Copyright Act Amendment
for the PI) etc. there needs to be a technical framework for such
interoperability as well.
2. Given that we publish in Indian languages, using Unicode fonts are
the only way to achieve cross-platform interoperability and is a
3. Given India's push towards copyright reform for the print impaired,
it is imperative that Unicode fonts be used in the creation of Indic
content because it is otherwise a huge barrier to conversion to
4. Unicode, being an open global standard guarantees content
accessibility in the future and ensures no proprietary font and vendor
5. The limitation is on the lack of high quality and varied typefaces
that are both screen and print optimised open type Indic Unicode
6. Given the importance of linguistic diversity to India's cultural
heritage, it is imperative that greater attention is paid to the
development of such fonts under licenses that allow for free re-use
and to fix issues in the fonts that might arise.
7. The Govt. should fund the open development of at least 5 such fonts
for each the 21 Constitutionally recognised languages and make these
available not just for free, but under free license to re-use and
improve as well.
8. The GoI has recognised this and notified Unicode 5.1.0 as the
de-facto standard for all eGovernance projects. This standard needs to
be more widely adopted for all Government digital projects and any
software or content procurement as well.
Would love to hear your thoughts.
We had a Wikipedia Mumbai Meetup today where the Mumbai Wikimedia community
was introduced to Hisham Mundol who has taken charge "WMF Consultant for
National Programs, India.".
We had a wide ranging conversation today on several things. Listed below are
the meeting notes (in no particular order, to the best of my ability):
1. We had 13 attendees today at the historic Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf,
Bandra. (Historic because the first Wikipedia Mumbai meetup took place here)
2. Barry Newstead introduced Hisham Mundol with a brief about Hisham's
3. Hisham had brief conversation with all the attendees explaining that his
work was primarily to network with the community and the chapter in India,
find out best practices (what worked/what did not work) and try to see if it
is duplicable on a larger scale across other Wikimedia projects. He also
talked about watching these practices over timelines to understand impact
4. User:AroundtheGlobe made another brief comment about his idea of getting
pictures off Flickr of some of the unique situations that might not be
covered in a photowalk. He showed how he had approached users on flickr,
showed them how to upload images on Wikimedia Commons and also explained
5. There was Nikhil Sheth and Rekha Sankhala who spoke about working in a
village in Raigad, taking instances of the English and Marathi wikipedias
along with Wikipedia for Schools instance. They shared the excitement that
students in Raigad had in learning about the existence of the Marathi
Wikipedia and also learning about the content present there. Nagarjuna also
talked about how they saw the lack of content on a certain article and
expressed their desire to edit Wikipedia and improve the article!
6. We discussed about how Wikipedia was present in school text books in
Maharashtra and Kerala.
7. We discussed the Workshop for Women in Wikipedia. I asked for help in
making it happen in Mumbai. Bishaka suggested contacting a faculty member in
SNDT University and Nagarjuna offered help. Nagarjuna said that many
people's fear of editing Wikipedia was that they would make mistakes.
8. Hisham asked about various ways in which people could be encouraged to
edit Wikipedia. We talked about small edits in places like English Wikipedia
if subjects of the person's interest was saturated or if the person was
afraid. These included simple stuff like categorising, making copy edits,
adding templates etc. There was also suggestions of contributing pictures to
9. Hisham then asked if there could be one thing that we could say to a new
editor what it would be. The community thought that the concept of being
bold on Wikipedia should be communicated better. The question of speedy
deletions arose and how these discouraged new editors. User:AroundtheGlobe
suggested the use of the "under construction" template.
10. We had brief discussion on the work of the Salman Khan's Khan
Foundation. Some of us (me included :) ) thought it was Salman Khan, the
actor :). We stood corrected.
11. Vickram said that discussion had centred around how to get students and
people in schools and universities involved. However, effort should also be
made to involve adults since they had access to certain knowledge that was
12. Conversation turned to making the meetups more interesting. Barry
suggested mixing up the content and having topic-specific meetups like done
by the folks in Bangalore. I suggested having alternate meetups with
WikiAcademy. This meant that people coming for the meetup could be told
something concrete about there being an academy where they could learn how
Dynamic content so copy-pasting relevant text
Foundation appoints "consultant for National Programs" in India,
following search for National Program Director
The Wikimedia Foundation has appointed a "consultant for National
Programs, India", whose role will be "to design and implement specific
pilot programs that encourage many more Indians to become contributors
to our projects in Indic languages as well as English." The new
position is being filled by Hisham Mundol, who worked on "large-scale
national programs on HIV/AIDS prevention" when he was a consultant for
the Public Health Foundation of India. As Hisham Mundol said in his
first IRC office hours, he speaks Hindi, Malayalam and English, and is
currently based in Delhi.
The announcement by the Wikimedia Foundation's Chief Global
Development Officer, Barry Newstead, explained that Mundol is "a
newcomer to the Wikimedia movement [who] will be spending the coming
weeks (not months!) in learning mode". In an FAQ on the new position,
it was explained that among the 179 applications, there were only
seven from active Wikimedians, who do not have the required
The Foundation had not been advertising a job opening for a consultant
for National Programs. Instead, the job opening in last August was for
a "National Program Director, India", who would have been "the
Wikimedia Foundation's chief representative in India". Newstead did
not mention the previous job title or explain the modifications,
except to note in the FAQ that the new position was as consultant
rather than a staffer, partly because "we want to keep our options
open in regards to the potential structure of future Wikimedia
Foundation operations in India". It is likely that concerns about such
a director's exposure to legal liability for Wikimedia content may
have played a role. Asked in the IRC office hour about "the strategy
we have for dealing with legal issues in India", Newstead emphasized
that the Indian chapter and "Hisham, who is an independent contractor,
have NO control over Wikimedia content as organizations." Discussing
such concerns further, he advised the Indian chapter to get a good
legal counsel, and align with organizations like the Centre for
Internet and Society (CIS), which might be inclined to support
"[It is not] possible to distinguish between 'numerical' and
'nonnumerical' algorithms, as if numbers were somehow different from
other kinds of precise information." - Donald Knuth
The Narayam extension was developed to support keyboard methods. It was
first developed for the Malayalam language as a script that was running
locally and then as Junaid PV became a MediaWiki developer, it and the
support for other languages was included in this extension.
I blogged today about the relevance of this functionality and I asked Raon,
one of the MediaWiki developers, if he is happy to bring it into production
and finally I asked the good people at translatewiki.net to support its
So this is the situation:
- this project can support many languages
- for some languages more testing is needed
- for some languages there is a request to be included
- some languages are included
- Shiju Alex is coordinating this effort
- Junaid PV is developing the code
- You are needed to localise this software at translatewiki.net
As I know it, this is the first software contribution coming from the Indian
communities and, I could not be more pleased with it. Please help by helping
yourself and yes, we would like to see more Indian MediaWiki developers :)
Was very surprised to see a lesson on Wikipedia in my brother's 7th std text
Picture - http://twitpic.com/40b7oj
The content is concerning Wikipedia - compares it with an encyclopedia,
details about volunteers contributing to Wikipedia, talks about the presence
of Indic language Wikipedia, talks about vandalism.
It has the following sub-topics:
2. What is an encyclopedia?
3. What is Wikipedia?
4. How is Wikipedia created?
5. sidebar: general info on Wikipedia wef September 2009
6. sidebar: How is Wikipedia different from an encyclopedia printed on
8. Wikipedia policy
9. Request an article
Here is a brief report on talk on Wikipedia and GLAM's talk by Liam
Wyatt - organized by Karntaka Stae Library Association (KALA)/
NCSI-NET  on 19 Feb 2011 at 10:30AM at NCSI Conference hall, IISc,
The session attracted 26 LIS professionals from
academic/industry/students. I, Gautam John and Arun Ram were some of
Bangalore Wikipedians who attended the event. Liam explained
Wikipedia and how it be can used easily with presentations and live
demonstrations, which thrilled the audience. There were several
questions around Wikipedia policies and how it deals with
controversial topics around politics, culture. Audience also showed
lot of interest in the copyright policies of Wikipedia. Liam
explained it nicely by illustrating the different licensing options
from all rights reserved to public domain and highlighting the
licenses applicable to Wikipedia. Liam shared how Oxford English
Dictionary led the crowd sourcing towards creating knowledge, when
it decided to publish the complete dictionary and sought inputs from
public to share all the known words.
He shared his popular quote
If people were passing out Knowledge on the street for free everyday,
I am sure that there would be a lot more learning, based on Gregg
Gillis's quote about free paints and painting.
There were questions on software for building an archive of
publications and Liam suggested e-hive as a potential option.
There was an interesting questions on the number of contributors for
Sanskrit Wikipedia and Arun answered the same, based on his knowledge
of working with Sanskrit Community.
We also met with senior public library professionals and a member of
Karnataka knowledge commission, who offered their help towards
initiatives to provide free access to Wikipedia in public libraries.
Most of the audience were excited to know that Wikipedia is available
in several Indian languages. I extended an invitation to the audience
to take the community/chapter's help in spreading Wikipedia in their
respective professional communities/users.
Here is a link to some of the photos of the event.