David brought up the idea of publishing some Wikipedia documents as
part of the Linux Documentation Project. That reminded me of an old
idea: publish a snapshot of the Wikipedia as a downloadable set of
static HTML pages that people can use without a net connection, and
that could also be burned on CD. No wiki.cgi script needed. If someone
clicks on an edit link or RecentChanges, they are directed to the
corresponding life Wikipedia page.
By the way, it would be nice if the wikipedia tarballs could be
updated, to encourage experimentation like this.
These are the times when I wish I'd be in the States again, and have some
While most of you are celebrating, I uploaded the November 16 tarball from
wikipedia to the http://wikipedia.sourceforge.net/fpw/wiki.phtml test site.
This will give all of us a realistic impression of how the script behaves
under current conditions. If we really switch over in late December/early
January, this is how it will be!
Please keep in mind:
- The sourceforge server is a little slow. The speed will be better on the
- The sourceforge server limits the memory for the script. If a command dies
with "allowed memory size exceeded", don't worry, this won't happen on the
bomis server. It even works on my local machine.
- Remember, subpages are deactivated. That also means the "freestyle"
subpage links ("/Subpage") are broken.
Some features might already be helpful for today's work under the
UseModWiki! Just try the "Stub articles" function (on the QuickBar or the
"Special Pages"). Most of these stubs are probably stubs on the current
wikipedia as well!
This was the last major update for about a month. I'll try to fix serious
bugs when you write them on the bugs page, but I probably won't be adjusting
screen colors or the like ;)
I'm not sure what the status is on personal Wikipedian pages. I know that
we're moving personal essays to meta.wikipedia.com, but what about the
pages themselves? Are we keeping them? If so, where will they be located?
Personally, I would like to see them stay on Wikipedia itself, in the user:
namespace. However, I think the pages should only be used to provide an
introduction, to exchange messages, and for encyclopedia writing purposes
(to do lists, contribution lists, etc). Personal essays and the like should
go on MetaWikipedia. Anything not related to Wikipedia would go elsewhere,
like a personal Geocities page.
-- Stephen Gilbert
On Tue, 06 November 2001, lsanger(a)nupedia.com wrote in response to tbc:
> > The idea of a back-link feature has been tossed around. That
> > was a feature of Ward's original WikiWiki. It's helpful.
> Can you tell us more about that? I am imagining that this means you'd
> link, say, at the bottom of a page, all the pages that link to the given
> page? That could be cool.
I'm not Tim, but I've come across the backlinks concept on a
number of other wikis. The ones I'm most familiar with are ZWiki
<http://zwiki.org/>, which runs on Zope; and UseMod, which we all
know and love so well. I'm not sure about the the technical
implementations, but from the user's point of view, clicking on
the page title presents a list of all wiki pages that link to
I suspect that in UseMod and the original wiki, selecting the page
title simply runs a search for all pages containing the text of
the page title. This works in most wikis because page titles
are created using bumpy case. This is *not* the situation in
http://zwiki.org/BackLinks describes how this is done in ZWiki,
but my python/zope isn't up to scratch so I can't follow the
If I'd discovered ZWiki a lot earlier I might have suggested it
for wikipedia, because it has some very useful optional features
such as hierarchical representations of the wiki structure
which is calculated by checking backlinks. This can create
the impression of subpages without actually implementing
subpages per se.
Now we have Magnus's software, though, so it might be more
constructive to concentrate on developments on that front.
>>How do you feel about animated GIFs?
>I'm too polite to say.
I'm not. I hate them. :-) The only thing I hate on the web more
than animated gifs is popup windows. MIDIs aren't even close in
annoyance, since you can turn the speakers off. Odd that nearly every
site I've seen with a MIDI also has an animated GIF. :-D
I and a few other people have been thinking lately that, while it
certainly has its quirky charm, the present Wikipedia logo isn't quite
right. For one thing, it would be a good idea to include the word
"Wikipedia" and possibly also the words "The Free Encyclopedia" as part of
Would anyone like to have a go at generating some new logo ideas? The
challenge is making something that fits the spirit of the project,
includes one or more of the words above, and (!) fits in the upper
right hand corner of the web page!
Of course, this isn't high priority. We could easily go on living with
the present logo. A new logo might just be a nice little improvement.
Logo ideas could be posted on http://meta.wikipedia.com and announced from
>How do you feel about animated GIFs?
I'm too polite to say. Animations attract the eyes and distract from
reading. Reading stuff is arguably one of the more important reasons
people go to Wikipedia, so an animated Wikilogo on every page is a BAD
IDEA. I filter all banner ads out of my web surfing because of