[Foundation-l] Has Wikipedia changed since 2005?

Michael Peel email at mikepeel.net
Tue Oct 5 22:25:08 UTC 2010

On 5 Oct 2010, at 18:48, wiki-list at phizz.demon.co.uk wrote:

> What is the main point of wikipedia to edit it, or to read it? Because 
> the readability of something like the Bulger article is very low. Making 
> it easier to edit with peppered refs will probably mean that more refs 
> get added making it less readable.
> NOTE: when reading an article or a book one rarely looks at the 
> references. They are, in the main, a distraction.

I disagree completely; if I'm reading a non-fiction book, I find the references very useful, and wish that they were easier to track down. I find the ease of access of Wikipedia's references absolutely vital in its role as a starting point for research, as well as a double-check of where the information comes from. This is possibly due to my more academic background (I'm used to reading papers with lots of references, although I much prefer Harvard-style to the numbered style that Wikipedia uses), so I'm not saying that this is a widely held viewpoint, but bear in mind that there is a wide spectrum here. The references are there in articles or books for a reason. ;-)

BTW, if anyone's not tried using navigation popups to read references while reading an article, then you're really missing out - it's fantastic:

Mike Peel

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