On Wed, 17 Apr 2002, lcrocker(a)nupedia.com XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX wrote:
Why would we be doing this project at all if we
that Wikipedia will be around longer than other sites, and that
we will be able to present texts in a superior way? Project
Gutenberg, for example, suffers from the problem that its texts
are ancient ASCII. We can already do a bit better, because we
can include images from the original, original italics, etc.
Ours are also searchable, and we can include links to commentary.
While I agree that Gutenberg could use some updating, I disagree on
Wikipedia involvment. This is really for another project, and one that
probably doesn't use wiki but some other system such as Zend which
is more easily regulated.
I do, however, strongly feel that we shouldn't
unless they are in fact annotated. So I think the right thing
to do in this case is for "Yes, Virginia,..." to be an article
about the essay, at the end of which is a large subhead
"Full Text" or something, then an introductory paragraph (offset
somehow--perhaps intented and italic) that explains that the
original text appears below, possibly with links or notes added.
I do agree with all this. For instance, having the United States
Constitution is very apporiate because we can annote various articles and
amendments, and other articles can easily refer to them.
But I think we should remember that Wikipedia is being constantly edited,
so I don't think we should worry too much about just linking to various
documents, since dead links can be easily fixed. There should be some
reason to actually bring the text in - such as already existing
commentary with large quotes.
I'd really love to see, for example, "Origin
of Species" with
links to notes about modern research confirming or rejecting
specific passages, or providing background for readers.
The fact this really hasn't happened make me dubious of the ability of
this idea to work, at least with entire books.