[Foundation-l] More on Wikimedia strategic planning

Nikola Smolenski smolensk at eunet.yu
Mon May 4 21:55:18 UTC 2009

Дана Sunday 03 May 2009 14:28:00 Thomas Dalton написа:
> 2009/5/3 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <cimonavaro at gmail.com>:
> > Besides the off-planet complete database-backup I envisioned,
> > another intriguing conceit would be to start on the process
> > of transcribing wikipedia onto vellum with non-corrosive and
> > persistent ink (I don't think there are enough stone tablets, or
> > even clay for tablets to ever suffice, but vellum is clearly unlimited,
> > if a little slow to come by).
> >
> > Naturally it would be reasonable to start the work on either the
> > 1000 articles each wikipedia should have, or perhaps the featured
> > articles or the like in each language. Or on the other hand, on the
> > general theory of wikipedian ethos, simply as the spirit moved
> > each actual artisan skilled in the art of old-fashioned calligraphy.
> I like the idea, but surely there is a better way than hand written
> calligraphy? At the very least, you could get an electronic printer to
> print onto vellum. Etching or engraving on some mostly un-reactive
> metal might work (although un-reactive metals are generally very
> expensive, and not coincidentally). There may be some new fangled
> option (probably made of carbon - most new fangled things are made of
> carbon) that could be used. Going back to techniques that are 1000s of
> years old has its merits (we have direct empirical evidence that they
> work) but I expect there are better options.

It seems to me that you are joking, but I was seriously thinking about 
cooperating with the Long Now project on long term preservation of Wikipedia.

Printing Wikipedia on acid-free paper every year or at least decade in several 
copies dispersed on several continents should ensure that the contents last 
for several centuries at least. It wouldn't be prohibitively expensive either 
and it could gather some media attention (= sponsors).

For a really long term, a cooperation with some brickworks, where a brick 
printer would be introductd in the brick producing process, so that Wikipedia 
(and other important works) would be printed on every brick produced. We know 
that Sumerian tablets have lasted for thousands of years, so these bricks 
would surely last that long too.

And for even longer, do the same with bottle manufacturers.

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