- This month: check what's happening from Wikimedians in Assamese, Bengali, English, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Odia , Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu and Commons!
- As usual, a flood of articles; check in to see where Wikimedia is covered and how
- Find out what's happening in free culture and Wikipedia related news
- News on developments in the Media Wiki sphere
- Find out all about the activities of Wikimedia-India
- Here's a list of the monthly plans and community reports from India Program
- My GLAM experience: a feature by Dr. Ruchira Ghose, director of the National Crafts Museum
WikiPatrika Community News
The Wikimedia community in India is active and diverse; owing the size of the country, and the multiplicity of languages, cultures and people within, Wikimedians in India often work in language communities. This is somewhat different to countries which have more uniformity; for us, it is a distinguishing feature worth celebrating. There are over 20 Indian language Wikipedias with another 20 in incubation; not all of them are always active, but most are - as you will see in this section.
Assamese wikipedia was one of the first Indic language wikipedias to come into existence on 2nd June 2002. However, actual editing works started only in 2006. For the first few years the growth was very slow owing to lack of editors. In 2011, the activities got accelerated and it completed the '1000 article milestone' on 7th January 2012. To create awareness and help the newcomers, a specific Assamese Wikipedia Community was created in the social networking site Facebook. Mailing list service was also started last year.
- Statistics (as on 01.05.2012)
- Article count- 1,187
- Total pages- 21,792
- Total edit- 68,010
- Files uploaded- 776
- Registered users- 4,319 (including bots and global users)
- Administrators- 7 (4 active)
- Outreach programmes
The first ever Assamese wikipedia workshop was held at Guwahati University on 29-th January 2012. About 25 interested people along with Wikimedia Indic languages coordinator Shiju Alex were present on that occasion. 2 days later, the second Assamese wikipedia workshop was held at Tezpur University with the presence of about 50 interested people. The Assamese wikipedia medicine workshop was held on 24th April 2012 at Jorhat Medical College & Hospital.
- Typing tool integration
The Narayam keyboard developed by Junaid P. V. was integrated to Assamese wikipedia on 1st November 2011. It has now four typing layouts namely Transliteration, Avro, Barnana and Inscript. "Lohit Assamese" was set as default web font of Assamese wikipedia on 12th December 2011.
- FAQ booklet
Taking a cue from their Malayalam counterparts, the Assamese wikipedia community prepared a FAQ booklet (সততে উদিত হোৱা প্ৰশ্নসমূহ আৰু ৱিকিপিডিয়াত অসমীয়া লিখাৰ প্ৰণালী) on January 2012. It was distributed among the participants of the workshops. It is available at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Assamese_Wikipedia_FAQ_Booklet.pdf .
The first subject specific project of Assamese wikipedia "Wikiproject Physics" was started on 6th February 2012 by User:shijualex and user:Dipankar Chetia. Projects like "wikiproject Medicine", "wikiproject Information Technology", "Wikiproject Assam" etc. were started subsequently.
- Media campaigning
A good number of articles about wikipedia have been published in various online and offline magazines in the last few months. Anjal Bora and Jyotipraksh Nath published articles in Prantik (March and April issue), Jyotipraksh Nath in Spondon e-magazine and Adinor Sombad newspaper, Bishnu Saikia in Nila Charai e-magazine, Himjyoti Talukdar in Satsori (April issue) and so on.
- Mailing list
The Assamese wikipedia mailing list service was started on 20th December, 2011. Currently it has 62 registered users.
Assamese wikisource activities were started in January 2012. It is yet to get its own sub-domain. Its current status: 
Assames wiktionary was launched in 2005 but was incubated years later due to inactivity. The community is trying to revive it again. Its current status: 
Assamese wikiquote was started in August 2008 but was incubated due to longtime inactivity. Its current status: 
Plans for 10 year anniversary
- To build a stronger community and increasing number of quality articles
- To arrange more outreach programs
- To enhance media campaign
- To revive Assamese wikisource and Assamese wiktionary
- An all Assam photography and article competition.
- A central wiki meet will be organized in June.
- 9th Kolkata Meetup: From their first workshop in December, 2011, the Bengali Wikipedia community of West Bengal graduated to their ninth Wikipedia workshop at the Atmabikash Samiti in Kolkata on 24th March 2012. This was by huge step from over a year ago and was initiated/conducted/led by Jayanta Nath, Kalyan Sarkar and Sujay Chatterjee. Though the participant number was not that huge, the fact that meetups are becoming regular is seen as a huge achievement from the silent community almost two years ago.
- Wikipedia 11: From being a small community to posting a record. Bengali Wikimedians in West Bengal celebrated the "11th Anniversary of Wikipedia" in Kolkata at Atmabikash Samiti. The event had the second highest number of participants, 28, only apart from Pune. Among those who attended were Bishakha Datta, a member of the Board of Trustrees of the Wikimedia Foundation, Nitika Tandon, consultant Wikimedia Foundation, India Programs as well as various students especially from Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Jadavpur University and Netaji Subhash Engineering College along with the rest of the bengali community. The event also saw the presence of a journalist from the Times of India.
- 8th Anniversary: The first ever edit on Bengali Wikipedia took place on the 27th of January, 2004. 23,237 articles later, Bengali Wikipedia become 8 years old and growing steadfast.
- Photowalk: One of the most successful events of the year was when Wikipedians in Kolkata organized the first ever photowalk/scavenger hunt, named Wikipedia Takes Kolkata on the 18th of December, 2011 which saw 435 photos being uploaded to Wikimedia commons.
On 30th January, 2011, the previous default font of Lohit Bengali was changed to incorporate a much clearer Siyam Rupali font type. This brought into the question whether further versions of free Bengali font could be used as well as which fonts were the best among the lot that could be used for both Bengali Wikipedia and its sister projects. As such, users can now choose between both Lohit Bengali and Siyam Rupali as their preferred font type while editing.
Indians working on English Wikipedia comprise of perhaps one of the most active wiki communities from India. The efforts of Indian Wikipedians on English Wikipedia is coordinated through.
Ais a group of editors that want to work together as a team on a specific topic or family of topics within the Wikipedia. WikiProject India or is one of the largest Wikiprojects on the English Wikipedia. It is a group dedicated to improving Wikipedia's coverage of topics related to the and the history and culture of the Indian subcontinent.
The project was originally started by veteran Wikipedianin 2006 July. The WikiProject India has 1,07,502 known articles. The list includes 53 featured articles, 22 featured lists, 3 A-class articles and around 180 good articles. The figures are much developed compared to previous year, where the project had only 35 featured articles and 2 GAs related to India at the commencement of the WikiProject.
The goals of this group are three-fold:
- provide guidelines and recommendations for articles that describe aspects of India.
- improve Wikipedia's coverage of India by creating, expanding, and maintaining factual articles.
- serve as a place for discussion.
To achieve the goals, this project group has developed features to help in managing its work. This includes Departments, which coordinate work on certain tasks, such as peer review or project-wide collaboration, and Work Groups that focus on content and articles related to India - such as cities, politics and culture. The popular one beingand .
Departments include – Assessment, Automation, Cartography, Collaboration, Outreach, Peer review, Photography, Translation, and Anti Vandalism. Tasks entrusted to departments include authoring, maintaining the project pages, administering portals, adding articles, reviews, managing the project, and so on. Workgroups include Geography (we have wikigroups for each state and UTs), Religion, Media & communications (One each for Cinema and Television). We have dedicated workgroups for Maps of India and Transport systems in India. We also have Indian wikipedians who contribute to various other global communities like for UN workgroups, Cricket workgroups and different scientific / technology / cultural workgroups/wikiprojects. We now have around 48 workgroups on India-related sub-topics and ~427 active members under WP:INDIA
At the time of the previous newsletter in 2011, the project around 83,000+ India related articles under the project scope, with 15 Featured Articles (FA), 19 featured lists, and 154 Good articles (GA).
- The Indian Barnstar of National Merit is given to Wikipedians in recognition to exemplary contribution to the project and has been awarded to more than 100 Wikipedians.
- AlexNewArtBot identifies newly created articles that are potentially being within the scope of the project, based on the India ruleset.
EPOV: On coordinating the INCOTM project
is a Wikiproject on English Wikipedia whereby editors from all over India collaborate to improve an underdeveloped article over the course of the month.
- How we do it
The article is selected by
- Why I do it
COTM is indeed one of the best possible ways to interact with experienced editors from the Indian community and to get the feel of team work, which is one of the many advantages of editing Wikipedia! I volunteered for this WikiProject as it would give me a chance to interact with editors from all over India! I love what I’m doing and we are surely coming up with some great articles in the future. There are so many articles which need to be worked upon. And we all can do it - collaboratively. I urge all the community members to join this project, vote and improve India-related content on this beautiful encyclopaedia. Happy Collaborating! :)
(EPOV - Editor's Point of View is a regular column where you can voice your Wiki story)
Wikipedia and other wiki projects in Gujarati have seen some great activities in recent time. Wikimedia has several projects in Gujarati; Wikipedia, wikisource, wikiquotes and wiktionary. Obviously wikipedia is the most active and prominent among all. Recently created Gujarati Wikisrot is also advancing very well.
Year 2011 has seen some of the very first out reach sessions of Gujarati wikipedia and its sister projects.
- Gujarati wiki's first ever outreach programme was held with the help of Gujarati Sahitya Parishad at the organisation's premises. Many prominent authors and literary enthusiasts attened the meet on 28th August 2011. User:Dsvyas briefed about wikipedia and how people can contribute to wiki. and were also present. This event was covered in Local media as well.
- User:Dsvyas has received emails from academic staff at Botany department thanking for the presentation and informing that students have been using wikispecies since then.
- Informal wiki meetup was organised by on 25-11-2011 at Junagadh. Where wikipedians Dsvyas & Jitendrasing along with Ashok Modhvadia talked about wikipedia, shared their experiences and answered questions of the present wiki enthusiasts. One of the attendee of this meet up has now joined the wikisource and has been contributing very well. This event was also covered by local television channel news the following day.
- Recently on 24th April, there was a wikipedia workshop organised by Konarak & Harsh at LD College of Engineering, Ahmedabad. This event was well attended by students of engineering college and other Wikipedians. Anirudh Bhati and Karthik Mistry from the Wikimedia Ahmedabad community were also present at the event. Hisham from IP flew to Ahmedabad for the event. The agenda of this workshop was to acquaint the participants basics of Wikipedia editing - five pillars, notability guidelines, followed by a short editing session. Like other events, this had a media coverage as well.
- Since the begining of 2012, Gujarati wikipedians have started monthly online meet using skype. Every first Sunday of the month, these online meetups are held. This is slowly becoming popular among Gujarati Wikimedians.
Request for subdomain for Gujarati wikisource (Wikisrot-વિકિસ્રોત) was raised nearly 3 years back. From the begning, the request had tremendous support of Gujarati community. This movement caught momentum early this year and finally seperate Gujarati Wikisource has been created on 27th March. At the time of creation of wikisrot, it already contained 1000+ pieces of literature. Today apart from hundreds of poetic works and short stories, Wikisrot has 2 complete books Authored by Mahatma Gandhi.
Gujarati librarians took a novel approach of working together on books, and the project is named as Sahakarya, literally meaning, cooperative work. Wherein, number of users gather to work on a single book and one of them accepts a role of coordinator. This coordinator then scans the book and allocates chapters to the participants, who does the upload work. The autobiography of Mahatma Gandhi, which is 500+ paged book, has recently been completed within a remakrable 4 weeks' time. Total 13 users worked with no more than 11 working at the time. Work is on for the third book, a classic Gujarati humorous novel-Bhadrambhadra. Within first week, it is more than 25 per cent completed.
Wikipedia has reached the mark of 22,000 articles. Number of resolutions have been made by the community jointly.
- Narayam extension is enabled.
- A new Administrator has been elected.
- File upload to commons only has been voted by community.
Wiktionary & Wikiquote
These 2 projects are also reviving with slight activity these days.
- Namespace shortcuts, WikiLove extension and NewUserMessage extension are enabled in July 2011 for editing ease.
- ArticleFeedback extension is enabled in August 2011.
- Number of articles on the Hindi Wikipedia crosses 1 lakh on 30 August 2011. As of now, hindi wikipedia contains 1,02,300+ articles. Edits per article increased from 9.4 in June 2011 to 12.5 in February 2012 (an increase of almost 33%!)
- An official deletion policy is adopted in November 2011.
- On 28 November 2011, WikiProject Films was started. It is now one of the largest active projects with more than 1000 articles under it.
- A new upload form is added in December 2011.
- WebFonts extension is enabled in December 2011, allowing readers without unicode devanagari fonts to read the hindi wikipedia.
- The GLAM project for Crafts Museum, New Delhi is started in April 2012; leading so far to the creation of three articles and numerous images on wikimedia commons.
- Narayam extension, an input method editor for Mediawiki which allows phonetic and inscript input in hindi without any installation of any software on the user's computer, is enabled in April 2012.
Community Out Reach through Meetups & Social Media
Kannada wikipedia community members now have regular meetups happening. Physical meetups are now common here in Bangalore and the Wikipedians staying outside bangalore are not kept away. We now use IRC channel to keep in touch. #wikipedia-kn is now an official Kannada Wikipedia IRC Channel on http://irc.freenode.net.
Kannada Wiki community meets every month from the beginning of this year. These meetups are called "Sammilana kn:ಸಮ್ಮಿಲನ" in Kannada. Here is the list of meetups conducted
- Sammilana 1: Bangalore - Jan 12, 2012
- Sammilana 2: Bangalore - Feb 16, 2012 (IRC)
- Sammilana 3: Bangalore - Mar 07, 2012 (IRC)
- Sammilana 4: Bangalore - Mar 24, 2012
- Kannada wiki members have also made use of Bangalore Wiki meetups to meet with other community members and share experience and concerns. In 44th Bangalore wiki meetup, we met with Srikanth from Kannada wiktionary community to hear the story of days when there were only 50+ words. Today we have more than 2 lac words on Kannada wiktionary - and it wouldn't have been possible without the commitment the wiktionary community has shown.
- In Bangalore Wiki Meetup 45, we again met to share our stories, challenges, ideas around Kannada Wikipedia in presence of Barry from Wikimedia Foundation.
We are on Facebook and we could see people answering to queries of newbies even from the basics and there is more work happening in background to make it easy to edit Wikipedia.
Find us on Social Media
Kannada Wikipedia Group is now on Facebook. Reasons to choose Facebook are many. Mainly,
- Reach out to computer, internet and social savvy Kannadiga's
- To spread the word 'You too can edit Wikipedia'
- To spread the word 'Your language is also there on wikipedia'
- To teach 'Its not quite hard to share knowledge'
and the list never ends... Facebook Kannada wikipedia group is now have 1900+ members and its generating interest in many more Kannadiga's to learn about "The Free Encyclopedia".
http://www.facebook.com/groups/kannadawikipedia | email@example.com
IRC : Official Kannada wikipedia IRC Channel #wikipedia-kn on http://irc.freenode.net
Wikipatrika Is available in Kannada
Why not tell the story about Kannada Wikipedia & Its community in its own language. Here we make it easy for every one to record the activities happening around Kn:wiki live. | ಕನ್ನಡ ವಿಕಿಪತ್ರಿಕೆ
Special Interest Projects Around Kannada Wikipedia
It is always a pleasure to work as a community on a specific task or a project. It is always fun. Here is one such initiative which helped us identified the wikipedian's who are around Kannada wikipedia on regular basis with wide spread skill sets. Editing to Scripting, community building to Project Management.
Google Translated Articles Enhancement Project
A Call to Kannada Wikipedians
Dear Kannada Wikipedians,
This mail is about starting an important wiki project to enhance the quality of articles in Kannada wikipedia.
During 2010 - 2011, a project was run in few Indic wikipedias (at least in Kannada, Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu) by Google to build translation memory for their Google translate tool kit by translating number of articles from English Wikipedia to the respective languages. Few users had raised concerns about this project. One of the the biggest concern was that it generated content without building the community. Also, while there was quite a bit of content added to Kannada Wikipedia, there were also problems regarding the translation and formatting. However, there is also a big opportunity here because there is a lot of good content is generated through this project.
Initially, it was thought that there were 1200 articles - but it now appears that there are closer to 2,000 articles. That means that nearly 20% of Kannada wikipedia has been impacted by this project.
A few of us Kannada Wikipedians have been working on how we can help to improve the quality of Kannada Wikipedia by exploiting the potential of these articles - and we are pleased to announce the launch of WikiProject:Translated Articles Enhancement Project.
We have been having a series of discussions on the project page and we just had an IRC discussion regarding this project last week. Here are the points we have broadly agreed based on discussion in project page and IRC.
- We have broken up the project into 14 sub-tasks so that there is a proper structure to our work.
- We have agreed to not remove the red-links in the articles for now (unlike other clean-up projects) - because we want to encourage editors to start these articles. If required we will review this at a later stage.
- We have concluded that our priority is to improve the introduction sections of these articles and not to bother about expanding sections for now. There is too much work to do just on the clean-up and we would like to keep article expansion for a later day.
- We went through the list of all articles affected by translation and selected around 150 article for the start of the project.
- Some of the tasks that are time consuming for users can be automated (like removing extra blank spaces / lines.)
- We need to publicize this project on social networks and within the Kannada online and offline community to attract new users. The real value of this project will not just be the improvement of articles but also to build the community.
- The project page always list the articles that community members currently concentrating on. In case any one want to work on any other article, all the articles that are part of this project are listed here.
Please refer to the project page and add your name to the Members section.
Please do join us and please invite anyone else who is interested.
Kannada Wiktionary crosses 200000 words mark
Kannada Wikipedia to celebrate its 9th Anniversary on June 9th 2012.
- The struggles of keeping Kannada Wikipedia afloat - The Hindu Report
News from Malayalam Community
The reporting term ( May 2011 till April 2012) was one of great strides and accomplishments for the Malayalam community of Wikimedia ventures. Hitherto unforeseen milestones were reached both within and outside the contributing and participating communities. The biggest of them should be the most futuristic and altruistic as well. That the concept, state of existence, need and purpose of Wikipedia have been slowly and systematically brought to the people of all reaches at the base domicile of Malayalam, i.e. Kerala, India, will be a factor of great significance in the years to come. The impregnation of Wikipedia concept into the minds of common rural and urban minds within a state of 35 million literate citizens and its huge diaspora outside will be the single most investment that any language community could dream of. We are almost done in that arena.
News about Wikipedia
- Around 6000 new articles were added to Malayalam Wikipedia during April 2011 to May 2012.
- More than 3 lakhs edits were done on Malayalam Wikipedia during this period.
- 2 New Administrators and one new bueraucrats were elected during this period.
News about WikiSource
The reporting term was of the most brisk activity period Malayalam Wikisource project ever experienced in its short span until now. It can be said confidently that the project has suddenly turned into a teenage phase from the infantile looks it appeared to be until yesteryear. At times, it even attracted more active users than the Wikipedia portals, focused on a single book at a time. The collaboration was further fueled by active co-ordination and campaign through social networks such as Facebook and Google Buzz / plus.
Some very unique events took place. 25 students from a remote rural school participated in recovering, digitizing, typing and uploading the entire volume of an ancient book, Kundalatha, a 1887 work by Appu Nedungadi, the first novel ever to be written in Malayalam! The school was Kabanigiri Nirmala High School, Wayanad district, a terrain that is typical of India's remoteness to the digital reach in normal cases.
But that was not alone. Just as the earliest Malayalam novel was brought to a digital rebirth, there was Ramachandravilasam, an epic poem, (the first among such in Malayalam too), to be brought out to the open by another cluster of resourceful students from the other end of Kerala. This time, it was the coastal area of Chavara, an educational subdistrict within Kerala. Students from 15 aided schools under the nurturing supervision of IT @School and a few Wikipedians collectively participated in this effort. 'Vidyaramgam Kala sahitya vedi', the literary club functioning under dierector of public instruction, Kerala augmented the project ensuring exact reproduction of the original work.
The icing on the cake was done by an even younger set of some fifty primary students from four schools near Kollam. Children, most of them not even in their teen age, gathered together to type in 'Kesaveeyam' another prominent poem among the early Malayalam works. They were assisted by the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan BRC at Chathanoor and the organisation committee of Wiki Sangamolsavam Conference-2012 at Kollam.
These three projects were not quite by accident. A bigger plan is on the anvil. In the forthcoming days, Malayalam community is looking forward for planning and executing some massive collaboration projects carpeting the entire school students community of the state with a scope of entire collection of early Malayalam literature that has come out of copy right restrictions. We are in active discussions with the education department and in particular, the IT@School division of state Government. All going smooth, we may very well accomplish a feat that could be a world's first!
News about Wiktionary
Like other sister projects, Malayalam Wiktionary can also stand high and proud in retrospection of the year. In march 2012 alone, the number of definitions grew from 70,000 to more than 1,00,000. This was achieved by injecting a digital version of a dictionary. The collection was systematically built upon by a few people offline (including some wikipedia volunteers) over the last 15 years. It was originally initiated and mostly done by a senior person Datuk KJ Joseph, an 82 year old, distinguished citizen of Malaysia, who had migrated from Kerala during 1960s! The whole dictionary was scrutinized and reviewed for spelling and semantic errors and finally uploaded to the Wiktionary using bots.
Today, among the 171 Wiktionary projects the world over, Malayalam portfolio stands a high 26th. Besides Malayalam, it also incorporates at least 14 languages, as varies as Korean and Japanese as Latin and Greek.
However, we consider that the Wiktionary project is still in its nascent stage. Being a language rich with combinations and permutations of complex words, (thanks to its early marriage with Tamil and Sanskrit and then the constant interactions with a wide spectrum of all global communities), malayalam Wiktionary has the potential to grow many folds. Even more, the wiktionary is yet to incorporate more interactive features such as phonetic renderings, illustrations, interwiki links, inter project links, categorisations etc. The accomplishments until now have been carried out primarily by bots. We are now looking forward for more active contributors, well versed with the distinct linguistic characteristics of Malayalam, to appear and join our Himalayan tasks.
News about Wikiquotes
Malayalam Wikiquotes, the youngest among its fraternity of projects, has also shown the eminence and effect this year. It has been lighted up with a newer look, interface and home page, promising better user experience and participation in the years to come.
Prominent among this years achievement is the significant addition of more articles. Some individual contributors, particularly a few new Wikipedians have been instrumental in this enhancement.
There exists only 88 Wikiquote projects the world over. In terms of volume, Malayalam ranks 40 among them. This is a topper position among Indian Wikiquote projects. Besides Malayalam, only Tamil and Telugu has Wikiquote projects as of now.
The Malayalam Wikiquotes portal have the following subsets:
- Ancient idioms,proverbs and adages.
- Quotes from the great people
- The NyayanighanTu, (comprising of 'nyaya's similar to Sanskrit.
- Phrases (stylised similes)
- Discrete folk songs and rhymes
- Quotes from ovies and other art forms
- Similar collections from other languages (with translation)
Special mention is due to the dedicated new user:revikumarvasu who single-handedly contributed to the collection by gathering and translating the entire quotes from as many as 20 great personalities from both east and west.
Malayalam is a language lush and green with idioms, proverbs and riddles. We understand that the Wikiquotes collection is still only a minute portion of what really ought to be there. Coming are the days, we hope and aspire, for imbibing the entire wealth of such enthralling treasures into the chests of Malayalam Wiktiquotes.
Perhaps the greatest strength of Malayalam Wikipedia projects stems from its foothold of users whose continuous and consistent mutual interaction has been unprecedented. Unlike many ventures and associations heralded by Malayalees, the Wikipedia team have been devoid of sectoral or partial motives. We work as a team, some slumber at times but when a critical moment arrives, everyone is at the beck and call.
The Malayalam Wikipedia has a common mail list that is very active and topic-centric. The discussions are always productive. It gives an opportunity to think loud and together and refines one's own views and visions without much noise and flutter.
Besides this common mail list, the admins, beurocrats and sysops frequently discuss matters, mostly on technical and administrative affairs through mail threads. Most of the change management is performed by initiating a small discussion first and then taken to the common mail list or to the village pump. This has been a very successful mode to reach effective, efficient and long standing consensus.
This year too, the community interaction has been very active. Besides the online mail lists, IRC chat sessions and other interfaces such as Facebook and Google Plus pages, we have met more often in the lower realms of off-line real world. The eye-to-eye direct meetings are frequent when we conduct out reach events and workshops. Often, such encounters help dissolve any psychological barriers, however slight they may be, between a pair of users both in their sincere pursuit to refine the Wikipedia as ideal and perfect as it could be, may have developed.
The grand finale of our meetings and encounters this year turned out to be a historic first. In the last week of April 2012, almost to the tune of an International Wikimedia conference, we set and conducted the Wikisangamolsavam, a festival of Wikipedians at Kollam, Kerala. At its scale, this could be the first of its kind in any specific language communities in the east, if not in the world itself.
To an active Malayalam Wikipedian, user interaction is not just a matter of talk pages. Instead, it spills over to quiz programs, online chats, off-street tea shops and even train journeys.
Kerala is a land of newspapers and electronic media. In the early morning, as the fresh newspapers reach every corner of a village, you could see all sorts of people, from old ladies to young children and from the masters to servants, eager to dip their heads into the spread of a favorite newspaper.
No mission of any value or might could emerge victorious in Kerala, unless it proves and propagates its worthiness to the common mass through newspapers.
Malayalam Wikipedia has been consistently in the news in the recent past. Almost every week, there is an article about the Wikipedia in one or the other editions of a newspaper. It could be about a Workshop that is due to be conducted at a district capital. Or it could be about an article that appeared prominently in Wikipedia.
The reporters and editors of Malayalam press and news channels are well educated and exposed to the existence and growth of Malayalam Wikipedia. Often they voluntarily reach Wikipedia sessions and venues to gather new and exciting stories.
Wikisangamolsavam, held during April 28 and 29, 2012 was covered in much details in almost all news papers and channels. They have brought Wikipedia to the attention of even more people, that could nourish the growth of Wikipedia movement by greater rates from now on.
Malayalam Wikimedia community conducted 9 Wikipedia workshops during May 2011 to April 2012. These includes Pathanamthitta 1, Alappuzha 2, Kollam 4, Thrissur 2, Bangalore 4, Kannur 3, Kollam 5, and Kannur 4
Participation in Wikimedia Conference 2011 at Mumbai
The Malayalam Wikimedia volunteers showed great enthusiasm in attending and performing at the first Wikimedia National Conference held at Mumbai during the third week of November, 2011. The unparalleled synergy and spirit were admired and appreciated by most other participants and delegates attending the conference. Several presentations and demonstrations were provided by the community members with a view to impart the lessons and skills they have already acquired to other fellow communities. Some of the notable among them were
- demonstration by Sathyaseelan, a teacher at a school for the blinds and himself a blind person too, on using Wikipedia by visually impaired users. His presentation demonstrated the potential of localised Wikipedia knowledge repositories for use of less fortunate people by taking advantage of modern computer features such as voice recognition, voice synthesis and Unicode string search technology.
- demonstrations and presentations by very young children and women from Kerala.
- paper on how Malayalam Wikipedians collaborated with school children for digitizing and uploading ancient books.
The community experimented with even more adventourous opportunities before, during and after this conference. During the long train journey from and to the conference venue (Kerala to Mumbai and back), they even conducted worthy and serious learning and hackathon sessions within the limitations of moving train ! New ideas were sprout and shared by the passengers of Malayalam Wikipedia Express! Be assured that they were connected online to the wikimedia servers all the while during these sessions!
The WikiSamgamotsavam 2012 is a two day annual conference of Malayalam Wikimedians. It is meant to provide a common platform for all Malayalam Wikimedians to meet and share their views, discuss challenges, and exchange useful tips, best practices and other information. The first ever such conference held and hosted by Kollam Wikimedians and the WikiSamgamotsavam organizing committee on the 28th and 29th of April 2012 at Kollam's District Panchayat Hall.
Projects and Portals
New Kerala Quiz portal
Malayalam Wikipedia started a new portal for a casual quiz competition within the realms of Wikipedia itself. The program is planned with a focused on topics connected with Malayalam language and Kerala state. The quiz is meant to go at a very slow pace but with enlightening questions and discussions. We expect the quiz program to attract more users to Wikipedia and to turn them into active contributors. Many questions and discussions have prompted creation of new articles within Wikipedia. As of now, the second round of the program is in progress.
More location-centric media - A boost to the Wikimedia commons repository
- Malayalam Loves Wikimedia 2: This was the second edition of the project Malayalam Loves Wikimedia. The aim of this project was to get more encyclopedic medias to commons. The event was conducted as part of the 65 days celebration of the annual Malayalam Wikimedia Meetup called WikiSangamotsavam - 2012. The duration of this project was from 15-February to 20-April-2012. As a part of this event 11,419 images were added to Wikimedia Commons. Most of them were related to the wide variety of flora and fauna taking advantage of the grand bio-diversity Kerala offers as a tropical magic. There were also images depicting important geographical and historic landmarks as well as Kerala's vibrant and colorful folklore culture.
9th Anniversary of Marathi Wikipedia
The Marathi Wikipedia was launched on 1st May 2003, and recently on 1st May 2011 it completed 9 Years!
- Number of Articles : 35,721
- Number of Pages : 1,14,759
- Number of total edits : 10,23,354
- Number of Active (Monthly) Users : 169
- Number of Bots : 64
- Number of Administrators : 12
- Marathi Wikipedia will be having 10th Anniversary Celebration Next Year.
Recently Marathi Wikipedia crossed 1,00,00 edits. Also, the current article count is already above 35,000+
Marathi Wikisource (Wikistrot)
- The Marathi Wikisource was launched in 2012. It was inaugurated by Marathi film and theater personality Amol Palekar. Many reputed Marathi literature books are available on Wikistrot for Marathi Readers.
- Wikipedia Club Pune was launched on 11th Anniversary of Wikipedia.
- On the occasion of "Tech Fest 2012" at the IIT Bombay, a team of more than 10 enthusiastic volunteers had a stall to promote the Marathi Wikipedia. The festival was from 6 January to 8 January and drew more than 1 lakh students from 2500 colleges and 10,000 corporate and faculty members.
- On 15 January 2012, to celebrate the 11th Anniversary of Wikipedia, a "Techathon" was organized for creating the android apps for mobile and tablet devices to access Marathi Wikipedia again at the IIT Bombay.
- There was another section on the 11th Anniversary of Wikipedia, where Marathi Wiki academy was conducted at the Jnana Prabodhini School, Pune.
Workshop & Meetup
Odia community has conducted Meetup & workshops in different locations.
- Bengaluru Odia Wiki Academy (27 November 2011):
- This was the forth Odia Academy conducted in Bangaluru leaded by Subhashish Panigrahi and attended by 6 Wikipedians.
- Cuttack Odia Wiki Academy (09 October 2011):
- This was the 2nd Odia Academy conducted in Cuttack leaded by Subhashish Panigrahi and attended by 16 Wikipedians.
- Cuttack Monthly Meetup (13 November 2011):
- This was the 1st Cuttack Monthly Meetup conducted leaded by Srikant Kedia and attended by 8 Wikipedians.
- Cuttack Monthly Meetup (24 December 2011):
- This was the 2nd Cuttack Monthly Meetup conducted leaded by Srikant Kedia and attended by 4 active Wikipedians.
- 3rd Cuttack Monthly Meetup & celebration of Wikipedia 11 (15 January 2012):
- This was the 3rd Cuttack Monthly Meetup conducted leaded by Srikant Kedia and attended by 9 active Wikipedians.
- 4th Cuttack Monthly Meetup & Cuttack Board High School Workshop (21 January 2012):
- This was the 4th Cuttack Monthly Meetup conducted leaded by Asutosh Kar and attended by 4 active & 36 new Wikipedians.
- 4th Bengaluru Odia Wiki Academy & celebration of Odia Wikipedia 8 (29 January 2012):
- This was the forth Odia Academy conducted in Bangaluru leaded by Ansuman Giri
- 5th Cuttack Monthly Meetup & celebration of Odia Wikipedia 8 (29 January 2012):
- This was the 5th Cuttack Monthly Meetup for febuary conducted leaded by Srikant Kedia and attended by 6 active Wikipedians.
- 1st Delhi Odia Wiki Acadamy & celebration of Odia Wikipedia 8 (29 January 2012):
- This was the 1st Delhi, Odia Wiki Acadamy conducted leaded by Subhashish Panigrahi.
- 1st Angul Odia wiki Acadamy (30 March 2012):
- This was the 1st Angul, Odia Wiki Acadamy conducted leaded by Subhashish Panigrahi & Mrutyunjaya Kar .
- 6th Cuttack Monthly Meetup & Medicine prject Workshop (31 March 2012):
- This was the 1st in medical collace to promot Medicine project, it was leaded by Subhashish Panigrahi & Gyan Sahu
- 2nd Bhubaneswar Meetup (01 April 2012):
- This was the 2nd Bhubaneswar Meetup conducted leaded by Manoranjan Behera, Subhashish Panigrahi & Mrutyunjaya Kar
- 7th Cuttack Monthly Meetup (22 April 2012):
- This was the 7th Cuttack Monthly Meetup conducted leaded by Srikant Kedia
Odia Community has celebrated Wikipedia 11 & Odia Wikipedia 8 in 3 states of India
- 15 January 2011 : Cuttack Celebration Wikipedia 11
- 29 January 2011 : Banglore Celebration Odia Wikipedia 8
- 29 January 2012 : Cuttack Celebration Odia Wikipedia 8
- 29 January 2012: Delhi Celebration Odia Wikipedia 8
Odia wikitionary was re-opened on 2nd October 2011 and was the 1st project to be re-opened.
11 September, 2011: A request for Wikiquote was called by Srikant Kedia to the language committee and it has been verified as eligible. The final release decision is yet to be made.
- 11th Birthday of Wikipedia Celebration at Cuttack incredibleorissa.com, 18 January 2012
- Odisha: Odia Wikipedia celebrating its 8th birthday Orissadiary.com, 25 January 2012
- Odia Wikipedia celebrating its 8th birthday eindiadiary.com, 25 Janyary 2012
- Odia Wikipedia celebrating its 8th birthday fullorissa.com, 26 January 2012
- Wikipedia’s Odia Section Celebrated Its Eighth Year odisha360.com, 26 January 2012
- Odia Wikipedia celebrating its 8th birthday at Cuttack on Thursday odisha360.com, 26 January 2012
- Odia Wikipedia celebrating its 8th birthday!orissabarta.com , 26 January 2012
- Knowledge Portal Sunday Post , 29 January 2012
- They bring Wikipedia closer home The Telegraph, 9 April 9 2012
- Youths come forward to fill up Odia Wikipedia IBN Live South, 9 April 2012
- Youths come forward to fill up Odia WikipediaExpress Buzz, 9 April 2012
- 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.
- During June 2011 - April 2012, Tamil Wikipedians conducted 12 Wikipedia outreach events across the world. These workshops were conducted in Canada, India (Tamil Nadu) and Sri Lanka. Details of all outreach events
- In October 2011, User:Sodabottle presented about Google translation project in Tamil Wikipedia at the Arabic Wikipedia convening held at Doha.
- Tamil Wikipedian User:Theni.M.Subramani's book on Tamil Wikipedia (titled Tamil Wikipedia) released during Wikipedia 10 celebrations at Chennai got best Tamil book award for the year 2010, in computer science category from Tamilnadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa.
- Tamil Wiki Media Contest was successfully organized by Tamil wiki community members. Around 15000 files were uploaded as part of the contest. This number includes 6500 audio files, 100 video files and more than 8000 images. 251 new contributors and 56 existing wikipedians (a total of 307) took part in the contest. Grant Report Blogpost
- A list of media reports on Tamil Wikiprojects -- Tamil Wikipedia mentions in media
Statistics and Wiki Projects
- On 25 December 2011 Tamil Wikipedia crossed 10,00,000 edits. On May 3, 2012 Tamil wikipedia crossed 46000 articles with 11,45,152 edits and 38,100 registered users in Tamil Wikipedia. There are 88 active editors in Tamil Wikipedia, among which 28 are most active editors.
- 4 users became administrators in 2011, making the total to 23. Project has 4 bureaucrats.
- Wiki project Medicine was started in Tamil wikipedia and nearly 30 articles has been created or expanded.
- Collaboration of the week which ran between 2005-2006 has now been restarted since Feb 2012. 30 articles has been expanded in this project in all.
- Last few months also saw an increased number of debates on policies including naming conventions,mass stub creation, English redirects. While some were conclusive and others were not, the overall participation from community members in these debates is on increase.
- Efforts are on to create a Featured Content offline edition and copy-editing of articles for offline is being carried out at community's own pace since January 2012.
- Sitenotice campaign to edit, featuring user profiles were run between July 2011 and Jan 2012. Even though the average number of anon edits and there were few new users who had become active editors is significant, getting hard numbers is relatively difficult with current tools.
- Following the good run of site-notice campaign, a main page redesign effort is currently in progress to get more contributors.
- Moodbar, a new editor engagement extension which is live on English Wikipedia was tried briefly in Tamil Wikipedia before there were technical issues related to its usability on langauge projects. We would be willing to try this as soon as bugs are resolved to make the place more friendly for new editors.
- Space in Recent Changes is being used to encourage people to contribute to translation of Vital articles. Over 160 such articles have been created in 2 months.
- Many gadgets including Wiktionary lookup,Prove IT!, Social share, Navigation popups were localized and installed in Tamil Wikipedia.
- Wikinews has 2,129 news articles, 12th largest Wikinews project.
- 1-2 articles every day, follow @tamil_wikinews on twitter.
- Efforts were made to make Tamil Wikinews as a Google news publisher, but did not materialize.
Wikisource, Wikibooks, Wikiquotes
- Wikisource has 1884 articles.
- Wikibooks 885 articles of which over 400 were created in last one year.
- Wikiquotes was recently crossed 100 articles.
User:Shanmugamp7 who took part in the Translatewiki Christmas 2011 rally made more than 1700 translations and was one among the winners who split a collective prize of 1000 Euro sponsored by Wikimedia Netherland. He is now active contributor in Tamil Wikipedia.
Wiki 11 Celebration
Telugu Wikipedians celebrated 11 years completion of Wikipedia project in Hyderabad on 29-01-2012 with support from Wikimedia Chapter. Rajasekhar hosted the function in his office.
Users Rahimanuddin and Veeven demonstrated various ways of using and contributing to Wikipedia, including the support on smart phones. The top contributors in 2011 in both article and non article categories were recognized with small gifts thanks to the sponsorship of Kinige. A detailed Telugu Wikipedia 2011 Overview is available. Mr Rajasekhar announced the operation of Telugu Wikipedia Help Centre, where he offered to take calls on his cell phone.
RaviShankar from Tamil Wikipedia shared the best practices behind the growth of Tamil Wikipedia with the participants. Telugu Wikipedians Arjuna Rao Chavala and Sujatha attended the function over Skype from Bangalore and Hyderabad respectively.
Wikipedian IRC meets
Weekly IRC meets were organised for three months from mid December 2011 to catalyze the Telugu community in contributing to Wikipedia. As part of this site notices were used, plans for 2012 were discussed, Home page layout was improved and one Wikiproject was launched.
Other Noteworthy news
- Telugu Wikipedia reached 50,000 article count on March 14, 2012.
The Wikimedia Commons, one of the world's largest repositories of free media has been buzzing with activity over the last one year.
In 2011-2012, a lot of media drives and photo hunts were organised all across India. Following the success of Wikipedia takes Chennai, held back in 2009, Wikipedia took several cities this year and it took them by storm.
The first one was Wikipedia takes Kolkata, organised by Jayanta Nath and Biswaroop Ganguly. The event took place on 18th of December, 2011 and had a total of 8 participants. The net result of this event was 435 files were uploaded to the Commons, which can be viewed [wikipedia:commons:Category:Wikipedia_Takes_Kolkata|here]].
This was followed up by Wikipedia takes Ahmedabad, organised by the trio of Noopur Raval, Anirudh Bhati, and Srikeit. It took place on the 3rd of January 2012. A total of 33 people took part in it, resulting in 811 files being uploaded to the Commons. This event also resulted in Noopur and Anirudh discovering new Wikipedians. Shortly afterward, Wikipedia Takes Mumbai II took place. This event, organised by Nikita Belavate, Anshuman, and Karthik Nadar, took place on the 28th of January 2012. 7 people took part in this, and 632 files were uploaded to the Commons.
Apart from these events, two GLAM based photo events took place.
The first one, of Lakhota Museum Jamnagar was done single-handedly by Arnava Sonara aka Rangilo Gujarati. Arnav, or Rangilo Gujarati, as he is known on Wikipedia, paid a visit to the Museum, and took photographs of all the exhibits there.
The second one was of the Crafts Museum, New Delhi. Spearheaded by Noopur, this event was a collaboration between the Museum and the Community. This paves way for more such collaborations between Museums and the Community for free media in the Public Domain.
Though not calling it as a GLAM activity, User:Thamizhpparithi Maari uploaded over 350 exhibits from Pudukottai, Krishnagiri,Salem Museums in Tamil Nadu and also created the articles சேலம் அருங்காட்சியகம், கிருட்டிணகிரி அருங்காட்சியகம், புதுக்கோட்டை அருங்காட்சியகம் about the museums in Tamil Wikipedia.
In the News: Press Coverage
Free culture news
- Would Gandhi have been a Wikipedian? - Achal Prabhala
- Here's an interesting article by Achal Prabhala, an active Wikimedian and a member of the advisory board of the Wikimedia Foundation. Click on the link to read the entire article.
- Future of Content - Gautam John
- Free art is profitable - Kalyan Verma
- Wikiconference in India - Hisham Mundol
- Outreach in Itanagar - Ashwin Baindur
- GLAMorous Tales from Hindustan - A Tumblr blog by Ashwin Baindur
- The making of live.wikimedia.in -Shrey Gokani
Wikimedia Tech news
Mediawiki Git Migration
As scheduled, on March 21 ("Git day"), MediaWiki was officially switched over from the older version control system Subversion to the newer competing system Git. As a result, developers ceased to be able to use Subversion to contribute to core MediaWiki code or over 100 of its WMF-deployed extensions. The switchover went remarkably close to plan, although the preceding code review backlog meant that some 100 revisions had to be initially reverted and then reintroduced afterwards as new-style patchsets. Developers are also now rapidly getting acquainted with the new code review system Gerrit, the Git-friendly replacement to the MediaWiki-based Subversion code review system that had been in use for years.
- Chennai : A 1 day unoffical hackathon focussed on building tools using Mediawiki wikipedia:mw:API was held at Thoughtworks, Chennai on March 17, 2012. 20 people wrote code all day to produce some wonderful hacks. Detailed Report
- Banglore : Following the Chennai Wikimedia Hackathon, another unoffical hackathon with the same theme is planned to be held at CIS, Banglore on May 19th, 2012. Bangalore Hackathon May 2012 is the event page with details about the hackathon. Do register!
- Berlin : Berlin Hackathon (1–3 June 2012, Berlin, Germany) — Registration opened in March for this three-day “inreach” hackathon for the Wikimedia technical community, including MediaWiki developers, Toolserver users, bot writers and maintainers, Gadget creators, and other Wikimedia technologists. The event, hosted by Wikimedia Deutschland, will mostly involve focused sprints, bugbashing, and other coding, with a few focused tutorials and trainings on Git, Lua, Gadgets changes, or other topics of interest. Wikimedia Deutschland will also use this event to consult on and discuss the Wikidata - newly created structured data project.
- Universal Language Selector : A feature that will present the user a more easy way of selecting language, using language tools across Wikimedia wikis. Preliminary analysis was done on common scenarios and early designs are out. Expect this to come out in few months as the development picks pace. Feedback welcome here
- Language support teams : The number of languages the Internationalization team needs to support is large, its team members don't speak most of them and really need support from native speakers. Please join the Langauge support team and help them provide better support for your language.
- Meetings : The localization team holds office hours on third Wednesday of every month to discuss Internationalization related updates, followed by Q & A session. The team also conducts a demonstration session about the functionality they built in their biweekly sprint. Subscribe to mediawiki-i18n mailing list for more details. You are invited to learn about new developments and share feedback.
- Wikipedia App : Official Wikipedia apps for Android, iOS, Blackberry playbook are now available in the respective app stores.
- Mobile UI : Mobile web version of Wikipedia got new looks and improved navigation is being worked on.
- Mobile homepage : Many Indic wikiprojects recently got their Mobile menu. With the growth of Wikimedia mobile apps, a mobile homepage will increase navigability. If your wiki does not have a mobile homepage, contact administrator on your wiki and make changes listed here
- Feedback : The mobile team loves your feedback. Mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply tweet to them @WikimediaMobile.
- Wikimedia Foundation selected 9 students for the Google Summer of Code program, including 5 Indian students.Details on WMF Blog
- Wikimedia Engineering publishes detailed monthly reports on all the projects. Find them here
WMIN Chapter News
- Wikimedia India Chapter receives FCRA Prior Permission, published Feb 20,2012
- Formation of Communications, PR & Media Relations Team, published Feb 11,2012
- New Wikimedia India Portals, published Feb 03,2012
- Chapter-Foundation: Co-Ordination Call-December 2011 Update, published Jan 05,2012
- Call for participation of Members in Chapter Task Forces, published Dec 18,2011
- Naveen Francis is elected as the Secretary. published Oct 18,2011
- September report from Chapter, published Oct 4,2011
- Naveen Francis, Sudhanwa Jogalekar, Tinu Cherian elected in the EC Elections.- 24 Sep 2011
- Blog for Wikimedia India is now up, 21 Sep 2011, Check out and provide feedback.
- Wikimedia Chapter AGM and Results of EC Elections 24 September 2011
- Report on first Wiki Academy organised by Chapter at Department of Public Libraries, Bangalore 12 September 2011
- July 2011 Chapter Update 19 Aug 2011
- Grants/WikiSangamotsavam 2012 Malayalam Wiki Conference 2012
- Grants/Photo and Article Competition and Wiki Workshop on 10-th Anniversary of Assamese Wikipedia
India Program News
- Here are the monthly reports by India Program on Meta:
- Here's the Pune Education pilot report on Meta:
- Here's a list of the current pilot programs India Program is involved with:
- Basic Community Building
- Storytelling for Community Building
- Supporting Community Communications Initiatives (Wikipatrika) for Community Building
- Social Media for Community Building
- Digital Outreach for Community Building
GLAM: A journey where two passions meet
- Dr. Ruchira Ghose (Director General, National Crafts Museum, New Delhi.)
It was one day in December last year that I found in my mailbox a mail from Noopur Raval about Wikipedia and the GLAM project. I was very excited. From the description of the project and its results in other Museums it seemed to be just what the Crafts Museum needed – increased visibility, digitizing of the museum collection, building human resources through staff training and participation. And all being offered free by Wikipedia volunteers – seemed too good to be true. I wrote back immediately to suggest a meeting. After several discussions with Noopur and her young colleagues, who were really impressive in their commitment to the initiative and their bright intelligence, I was convinced this would be a most valuable project for the Crafts Museum. So a proposal was prepared and, with fingers crossed, the file submitted to the Ministry. After a couple of weeks we had the happy news that the proposal had been accepted and even a small budget allocated for incidental expenses.
- GLAM - the process:
- Generating content
The project has now begun. In the few sessions we have had it is already evident that it is going to be a huge success. There are of course the tangible outputs, like the many entries about craft objects, techniques and traditions that will now find their way through Wikipedia to the whole world and give the Crafts Museum an international presence it always deserved but never had. With this exposure, the enormous skills and knowledge embedded in crafts, the narratives that surround them - all these too will be communicated to the whole world. The compilation of information about specific craft objects and traditions will be very useful in our digitization project, that has become such an essential part in the efficient functioning of a museum.
- Bringing the staff together
For now what has been of immediate benefit to the Crafts Museum is the effect the initiative is having on staff motivation and morale. Wikipedia’s focus in India on all the Indic languages has to be saluted. Hindi is the first language of almost all the museum staff and it is the option of working in Hindi that has made their participation possible. Several staff were invited to the GLAM project and they have all come to it with great energy and enthusiasm each time. It is a whole new world. Suddenly their knowledge – whether related to the history of the museum or of craft traditions or rituals with which they are familiar – is being noted and recorded. And of course the engagement with technology is compelling; they are excited to open a Wikipedia account and learn how to write an entry or amend one. Not only are staff skills being upgraded and outputs increased but the improvement in the general work environment in the Museum is palpable.
- Take aways for Museums:
The Wikipedia Project has two features which I feel touch all who are involved in it – it is democratic and it is free. Wikipedia has been very successful in attracting some of the brightest and best amongst the young generation. What is remarkable is that they are so passionate about the initiative they are happy to give generously of their time and expertise, without financial reward. Perhaps this is related to the spread of the idea of The Commons - that information should be free and accessible to all - an idea that is fast gaining ground. I feel these features have, if not overtly then subliminally, a powerful impact on people and attitudes, through respect, expanding beyond all expectations the scope of what is possible. </div>