[Wikipedia-l] mt wikipedia and encodings

Steven R.Loomis srl at monkey.sbay.org
Tue Apr 26 17:33:41 UTC 2005

Thanks for the responses about the unicode issues with 
en.wikipedia.org. Firefox has worked well so far, and I'm glad to hear 
the other wiki(s) will move to utf-8.

As regards the Maltese Wikipedia  mt:  , I'd like to offer some 
backstory.  The Maltese wikipedia was 'founded' if you will around 
September 2004, (i.e. the first entries in the language were made).   I 
had more or less forgotten about it  - and a few other entries were 
made later that year.  Then sometime early in 2005, the 
Maltese-language blogosphere started to pick up steam.  I began looking 
at the Wikipedia again, and started following the steps to set it up 
properly.   Fueled by blog links, the number of authors on the Maltese 
wikipedia grew to staggering proportions - about five or six active 

In Malta, I've noticed that some things are easier done in person.  
Plus, being such friendly people and a small island, meeting together 
is a natural way to continue something.  As I was going to be visiting, 
I started putting notes up actually about a week before the meeting 
date.  We took votes (in WIki style) and were able to hash out a 
meeting time eventually.    Venue was to be an famous outdoor cafe in 
the main square that has wifi access.. 	 however, it was raining and so 
it started indoors.  The cafe staff complained, however - not about AC 
power usage, but about computers interfering with the cash register 
(!).. so it moved outdoors when the rain stopped.  This was better, as 
WiFi didn't work inside and I had not managed to grab copies of the 
pages we wanted to discuss.

Five people came in total, two of which aren't yet active contributors 
but should be soon.    We talked about orthography issues (always a 
popular and recurring topic in any language I think), tasks to do, 
organizational issues,  POV, categories.  Several of the action items 
have been completed already.

Yes, it will be interesting to see how things develop.   Sometimes 
being on a small island has its advantages,  logistically. I think 
there is some interest in meeting once in a while - at the very least I 
will try to organize something myself when I next visit, probably in a 

I think some policies etc are still being hashed out, after which mt: 
will be ready for a new phase in promotion.

One must also realize that a standard keyboard for this language was 
only finalized in 2002, and has only seen adoption recently.    Maltese 
orthography as such has been around since 1921, but until very recently 
a lot of data has been encoded using special fonts and not Unicode.

Saħħa lilkom (health to all)

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