From Wikimedia India Chapter
- Sanskrit Wikipedia was a dormant one till the end of 2010, but grew with the help of Samskrita Bharati, a non-profit organization indulged in propagating Sanskrit to nook and corner of the world and helping people learn and speak the language fluently. The organization took up Sanskrit WIkipedia like a project and has made people who know Sanskrit, involve in Sanskrit Wikipedia. Thus, a small group with 2 to 3 members at the beginning has now turned out to around 12 active Wiki users in the community.
- Unlike other languages, Sanskrit has smaller section of speakers and there is a need for more and more outreach programs to make people recognize the presence of Sanskrit Wikipedia. Hence, the basic outreach programs included making Sanskrit speakers aware of Sanskrit Wikipedia.Different kinds of outreach programs were conducted at Sanskrit colleges and universities present at various places and states depending on the type of audiences. The main base for all Sanskrit activities are from Samskrita Bharati which also consists of the main task force for any Wiki help needed.
- Bangalore Programs -
- The main Wiki academy happened at Aksharam, Girinagar. There were 2 important sessions which took place, one on 17th Sept 2011 which was attended by Shiju, Swaroop Rao and Arun Ram and the other was in early October 2011 conducted by Shiju. The fisrt session stressed on building the community and a little bit of editing experience. There were just 6 people attending the session but it had personal attention for every individual. The second session focussed on categorizing the Sanskrit Wikipedia which was progressing waywardly. Shiju explained the importance of categories and helped with some live edits and hands on experience. The session contained 10 people. Apart from these 2 sessions, there were some minor sessions happening every month. Swaroop Rao conducted a small session on the administrative part of Wikipedia and its working. Abhiram conducted some sessions for the newbies on editing and a workshop related to usage of templates( 26th & 27th March 2012).
- An outreach program was also conducted at Veda Vijnaana Gurukulam, Channenahalli, Bangalore on 5th Feb 2012. The session was conducted by SumanaKoundinya while fellow Wikiusers Chidroopa and Abhiram helped them. The session was mainly focussed on tapping the talents of students and teachers who knew Sanskrit well. 20 students and 10 teachers attended it. The audience was introduced to Sanskrit Wikipedia who till then never knew its existence. The teachers were asked to write new articles, due to their significant Sanskrit knowledge.
- Other Programs - The other outreach programs were conducted at various places inside Karnataka (viz., Mangalore, Ummachagi, Udupi and Honnavara), Kerala(viz., Kalady and Tiruvananthapuram), Maharashtra(Mumbai and Pune) and New Delhi. Due to the non-awareness about the Sanskrit Wikipedia, the first round of outreach only included the introduction to Sanskrit Wikipedia and minor editing techniques.
- Sanskrit Wikipedia has completed over 7000 articles and presently has 7500 articles(as of May 5th 2012).
- Sanskrit Wikipedia is one of the Indic Languages that has achieved a rapid growth in the last one year.
- A small project named "Bhagavadgita", had the aim of having all 700 Shlokas of Bhagavadgita with its summary alongwith the views of 3 famous Acharyas(Shankara,Ramanuja and Madhwa) and was completed successfully.
- Categorization of articles which were haphazard was performed with the help of Shiju.
- Sanskrit community initially concentrated on the number aspect of the articles in the first half of the last year while during the other half looked into the quality of the articles.
- New articles were started on the topics that are very relevant to Hindu Shaastras, originally present in Sanskrit itself.
- The clean-up of Sanskrit Wikipedia, which was the toughest part of all, was done with a lot of Non-Sanskrit stuff being deleted.
- The quality aspect of articles was stressed upon recently in the community meet and hence, a lot of content was translated into Sanskrit from other language Wikipedia which saw a huge rise in the good articles.
- The Workshop on templates helped the editors attract more users into the community.
- A lot of online and offline help is being given to the newbies in the community to make them stay here for a longer period.
- Sanskrit Wikisource was part of the early initiatives taken by Shiju for Sanskrit language and its been growing hugely and popularly since last year.
- The community of Sanskrit Wikisource was heralded at the Wiki Conference India,2011 for its contributions.
- Sanskrit Wikisource crossed the 7500 mark in early April 2012 and is leading the Indic language Wikisources as per the article count.
- The formatting of Sanskrit Wikisource started with the aim of cleaning up the various articles imported from the old wikisource which contained non-Sanskrit content.
- An admin was elected amongst the community for localizing the clean up process which finally ended with the community having a permanent sysop to look after Sanskrit Wikisource, and also got the autopatroller rights enabled for the community recently(Greatly helped by John Vandenberg).
- The new logo for Wikisource was also designed with the help of User:VIGNERON and was published.
- The indexing and proofreading of sources (books) was initiated and one of the book is half complete.
- The famous and historical Sanskrit literatures like Ramayana and Mahabharata are added successfully. The Mahabharata which alone is the biggest Sanskrit literature consisting 1 lakh shlokas(stanzas) is present.
- The Vedas, the oldest and the most precious Sanskrit work is being added, with Saamaveda being completed.
- The Upanishads, Smritis and Puranas are also available.
- Alongwith all these, literatures of famous writers in Sanskrit namely Kalidasa(5 of his 7 major works), Dandi are also uploaded.
- Sanskrit Wiktionary hasn't been popular in the Sanskrit community compared to the other projects. But the statistics show us that more people go in search of Wiktionary rather than Wikisource or Wikipedia.
- Due to this, some of the maintenance work has been started and people are eager to contribute to it.
- A temporary admin has been initiated and assigned the task of the cleanup & technical formatting.
- Sanskrit Wiktionary can only boast of around 200 articles as of now, but the community is very keen on keeping it afloat and updating it.