Sorry for crossposting this. It felt wikisource-l was the most appropriate
list, but since the topic has been discussed a lot in wikitech-l it seemed
reasonable to post it there, too.
I agree the poem-tag makes life easier on wikisource, it saves loads of time
when putting poems there. I wonder if it would be a good idea to add another
semantic tag - that for the "intro" text, before the actual poem. Sometimes
there is none but usually there is the name of the poem and/or the name of
the author, and sometimes a little extra info.
Att small wikisources, this little intro - like most texts on the wikis -
are often in plain text. When the poem tag is applied, it does not look so
good. The result is like this
With no difference in indentation or font, it is kind of difficult to see
where the intro text ends and the poem starts especially if we imagine a
very short intro. It is not appealing to the eye. One could add extra blank
lines, that would work, but on most wikis that method seems to be frowned
upon. English wikisource has a set of templates for fomatting the "intro"
part - here is an example.
So now, at least at Swedish Wikisource experiments with similar templates
have been started. That is an option, but adding a semantic tag resulting in
the need of templates seems a bit awkward to me.
What is the solution here, for the wikis that do not already have these
elaborate templates? One could do some wiki-specific adaptation to the poem
tag, so that it adds blank spaces above the poem - that is however not so
nifty when there actually is no "intro". Should we ask to get another
semantic tag for the intro? Or is templates, like at English Wikisource, the
As some of you may know, Brad and I were in DC for most of this week, where
we werre joined by Mindspillage and NullC for some fascinating meetings with
people from the Smithsonian, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Library of
Congress, and the National Geographic Society. One of the primary purposes
of these meetings was to identify content that we can use for our projects,
including Wikisource. The meetings were very informative and productive.
Given that there are certain legal issues involved, I will wait for Brad to
describe in greater depth the outcome of these meetings. I will, however,
describe two meetings that may have more immediate results for the Wikisource
and Commons communities.
Mindspillage and I had a great meeting with Lawrence (Larry) Swiader, the
Deputy CIO of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum. He has given us permission to
use any and all of the material created and licensed by that Museum according
to the terms of our license. This includes images, video, video transcripts,
audio, and text, including the new Holocaust encyclopedia that they are
building on line (in seven languages), and which they plan to be the most
comprehensive encyclopedia of its kind in the world. All they are asking for in
return in attribution. Essentially, although this was not said in so many words,
they are releasing all of their in-hourse material according to the terms of
the GNU-FDL. Larry was especially excited by the prospect of our people
participating in the translation effort. I would like to point out that this is an
outstanding repository of material, not just about World War II and the
Holocaust, but about other modern instances of genocide, including Armenia,
Cambodia, Rwanda, and Darfur. They have no problem whatsover with our translating
their proprietary formats into free software formats such as .ogg files.
At the end of our meeting, we discussed the need for a contract to formalize
this agreement. Brad will be drafting one to send to their counsel, and
things should be underway quickly. In the meantime, I encourage you to look
through their materials and see what is there.
The Library of Congress meeting was also quite spectacular. They also have
enormous archives which they are willing to share, but I am noting here that
some of their materials still fall under copyright so greater caution must be
exercised. Over the next few weeks, we will better identify what is there for
During our talks, they made mention of the fact that many important
historical documents may have been scanned, but they have not yet been transcribed.
One of the repositories mentioned was the Thomas Jefferson archives at
Monticello. Speaking of this particular archive, they told us that the work was so
daunting that the Jefferson people (and other groups as well) have taken to
outsourcing the transcription work to India. I would like to suggest to the
current Wikisource team and additional volunteers that we jump at this
opportunity to help in the realtime preservation of these documents, which are of
enormous historical importance. My other suggestion is that we contact these
organizations in an organized manner, rather than as individuals, so that we
appear organized and do not duplicate efforts.
Finally, we have now contacted some of the most important repositories of
content in the United States and we were welcomed by them. I encourage
Wikimedians in other countries, representing other languages, to make the same
coordinated effort with their local repositories in their respective languages.
More to come,
On 7/13/06, wikisource-l-request(a)mail.wikimedia.org <
> Today's Topics:
> 3. Re: No news from Wikisource? (Walter Vermeir)
> Message: 3
> Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2006 17:35:26 +0200
> From: "Walter Vermeir" <walter(a)wikipedia.be>
> Subject: Re: [Wikisource-l] No news from Wikisource?
> To: "discussion list for Wikisource, the free library"
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
> 2006/7/13, Jesse Martin <pathoschild(a)gmail.com>:
> > Dear Walter Vermeir,
> > New developments have been rather frequent on the English Wikisource
> > lately. Wikisource News hasn't been updated in a while due to the very
> > small number of users involved and their preoccupation with other
> > tasks, such as the drive to conform works to the style guide. I've
> > been planning to write a few omnibus articles covering all the
> > developments since the last edit; I suppose I'll get around to it in a
> > day or two. ;)
> > Sincerely,
> > Jesse Martin
> > English admin [[User:Pathoschild]]
> Thanks for your responds. I will be happy to publish the news from
> Wikisource when you have written it.
> I understand very well that it not easy to keep [[Wikisource:News]]
> updated, especially when you know you are working for a very small
> I suggest to not try to be like the Signpost. But something between
> the Signpost and Wikizine. Sometimes an article Signpost style and for
> the most part some short remarks in one or to sentences like Wikizine.
> A "Wikisource telegram" section?
About some 8 months ago I started with an attempt to bring news with a
newsletter "Wikizine". I try to bring different types of news like
"Foundation", "Community", "Media" , "Technical news" and so.
So I try to bring the news for the Wikimedia family to the projects.
And that includes Wikisource. Of there allready people from Wikisource
reading Wikizine I do not know. I hope so. If not I hope to welcome
now some soon.
But I am writing this fist of all to ask for your cooperation with
this newsletter. To be able to report news first the news must be
known. The "Wikisource:News" is one of the pages I look for to find
news about Wikisource.
I can not say I have discoverd there anything worth reporting yet. It
seems dead. Maby there is nothing to say about Wikisource?
But if there would be anything to say, especially for the non-English
editions, then I would it if you would report the news to me, to
Wikizine. Let the readers of Wikizine know there is more then
A way to make it more likely that someone will think about Wikizine is
to put a banner on your userpage or even better on a public page, also
for the non-English Wikisource versions.;
On the other side I try to get the news downhill to as most of the
projects and especially languages as possible. Because of piratical
reasons Wikizine can only be in English. But it would be fantastic if
people would be willing to translate the news and share it with there
A total translation of Wikizine is great but also a lot of work. Maybe
only translating the most relevant news can be enough for starting.
You could work together across the different projects in the same
languages. By cross-project cooperation the work of translation can be
Just only subscribing to Wikizine only is also useful of course. Then
you at least are informed.
Reading Wikizine can by email. Just click here below and follow the
Or you can also read Wikizine from the website;
Thank you for reading this and I hope to receive some news from Wikisource!
The guy from Wikizine
mailto:request at wikizine.org?subject=subscribe
Contact: walter AT wikipedia.be
Ook een artikeltje schrijven? WikipediaNL, de vrije GNU/FDL encyclopedie
I stumbled across the most interesting reasource for
digital libaries. It is very interesting, although
quite a long read (I have not read it through myself).
Here is the link:
Most interesting of all were the appendices which
various checklists or list of questions for digital
libraries. Some were simple as in "1. Is the text
really available and free to the user?" Others
technically above my head like " 24.1 Are rendering or
transformation instructions (e.g., stylesheets)
encoded in an ISO standard grammar such as XSL? "
Appendices 2, 4, & 6 all contain various ways to
evaluate a digital library. I would really like us to
do this for Wikisource and see where we are strong and
weak based on these reccomendations. Because this
document is copyrighted we cannot just copy the
questions wholesale, but maybe we could just list our
answers as "DLF A4 Q1: Yes the texts are really
available and free to the user although some texts are
incomplete." Is anyone else interested in working on
this with me? Where should this be done do you think?
Should we do general evalution on Meta and then
breakdown the answers which could be specific to each
subdomain? Or just evaluate each subdomain in it's
own project space?
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