The Longest Now


Brittanica buys Yahoo!glepaedia, to compete with Wikicarta
Friday April 08th 2005, 9:35 pm
Filed under: popular demand

The week in wiki, retold via the Wiki Muse… I mean, Wikinews.

While Wikipedia was still recovering from an attempted April 1 buyout by Britannica:

Unfortunately, while Encarta is opening itself to wiki-style editing from the masses, and wants to make its mark as a reliable source of content, it doesn’t even list the names of its editors, not to mention email addresses or ways to get in touch with them. Having a blog hidden away on an MSN Space where a few users can contact one or two of the online editors just isn’t the same. Now if they were to really grasp what openness means, I could get excited about it…



Google takes years to implement simple ad filters
Friday April 08th 2005, 9:12 pm
Filed under: indescribable

I hope I didn’t startle you, or make you think that they were remedying this situation in the near future. I mention this only brecause Dan Kohn explained recently another of the reasons why this is a problem. The more frequent problem is that you don’t want ads highlighting competition for your own content, even if every one of your readers is loyal.

And ads shouldn’t be boring; I’ve diligently recorded Every. Single. Ad. that I have seen appear on my site that was vaguely interesting (and not “award winning RSS reader and more!”), and it amounts to 4 different ads, 2 from the same source. Ads for RSS readers might be interesting to people who have just heard of RSS last week… they’re not interesting to my readers because my site skeleton mentions RSS a lot.

I could vastly improve the G-automatcher in providing ads my audience cares about, with just a few hints. And the real point is that: not to think of ads as a “necessary evil” that gets slapped on by some clumsy, soulless third party, but as a “potential enhancement” that provides useful information to readers, through the limited frame of what advertisers make available. artwork out of garbage… productive artwork, even.



Yahoo! is suavely first to the punch.
Thursday April 07th 2005, 8:10 pm
Filed under: %a la mod

Most of you know this by now; I’ve been too busy to update my blog much recently or you might have heard it here first. 😉 Yahoo! Search is providing support for Wikipedia.

Wikimedia content will be feature more prominently in Yahoo searches, beginning in French, and be mirrored via Yahoo’s massive Korean datacenter. Once redundant clusters of this sort are set up around the world, there is some question of how to use the resulting off-peak spare cycles… ideas?



Wikipedia deathwatch, NYT one-upsmanship
Wednesday April 06th 2005, 4:35 pm
Filed under: indescribable

Wikipedia is a fantastic site for deathwatchers; updating almost instantly upon news of the recent deaths of Johnnie Cochran, Terri Schiavo, and the dearly lamented Karol Wojtyla. Johnnie Cochran’s death was chronicled within 30 minutes, over 15 minutes before wire services had the news. This surprised a CBS reporter enough to call to discover Wikipedia’s source. The answer? “Some IP in California.”

Wikipedia deathwatch, NYT one-upsmanship …



Local Boston Wikinews
Tuesday April 05th 2005, 11:22 pm
Filed under: metrics

In the past few days: a Big Dig source pretends new report is positive; and a Harvard divestment from PetroChina.



Wikipedia DVD hits top-2 on Amazon best-sellers list
Friday April 01st 2005, 12:40 pm
Filed under: popular demand

Germany’s Directmedia today released the Wikipedia Frühjahr 2005 DVD from Wikimedia Deutschland, which immediately jumped to the day’s Amazon bestseller list, and proceeded to rise to the top spot on the list for a few days, and then settled in at 2d place for the following fortnight. This came on top of a sizeable batch of over 7,000 preorders.

Schoenhof’s was no help in getting copies here (6-8 weeks and over $20 each), but I’ll see how long it takes Directmedia to send me a box. Let me know if you want one.

Wikipedia DVD hits top-2 on Amazon best-sellers list …




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