Tag Archives: wikipedia

Mirror, mirror – which social network is the greatest of them all? — Customer satisfaction ratings

For the third year, the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ASCI) asked 70,000 people how they feel about the top social media sites. And Google+ and Wikipedia are the winners – from Marketing Land:

  • Google+, Wikipedia – 78 points
  • YouTube – 73
  • Pinterest – 69
  • Twitter – 64
  • Linkedin – 63
  • Facebook – 61

 

source: Marketing Land

 

Apparently, Timeline is still angering folks after all these months. Not to mention Facebook’s privacy issues and ads that are “intrusive, irrelevant, and repetitive.” It may take Facebook a while to climb out of that hole.

Meanwhile, Google+ has yet to anger anybody and has a few bright spots. High ratings were given to the site’s privacy policy, lack of ads, and a “superior mobile experience.”

One thing to keep in mind – these ratings are so poor that only cable, newspapers, and the airlines received worse scores. Ouch. I guess we’re not too satisfied with our social networks.

Have you heard of Social Advertising? — It’s the next big thing in online ads

A possible shift in the advertising landscape?

From an email Jonah Peretti, the CEO of Buzzfeed, sent out to employees and investors:

 

This same lucky shift made our business model work for the first time.  A couple years ago, we were trying unsuccessfully to sell social advertising to a market that only wanted to buy banners but things have changed dramatically since then.  Now many agencies and brands are refusing to buy banners, companies that rely on traditional display units are suffering, and budgets are shifting rapidly to social advertising. One of our board members, who was initially skeptical of our decision to not run banners, recently said that “social advertising will be the biggest media business since cable television.” Times have changed.

 

Which begs the question, what is social advertising?

 

“In social advertising, ads are targeted based on underlying social networks and their content is tailored with information that pertains to the social relationship.” – Catherine Tucker, Cornell

 

“Whereas in traditional, non-social, advertising the ad is targeted based on what it knows about the individual person (cookies) or the individual page (keywords).” – Wikipedia

 

 

Examples of Social Advertising from Facebook, Buzzfeed:

 

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Tug of War, once a part of Ancient Olympics, was also once a part of the modern Olympics

Tug of war was contested as a team event in the Summer Olympics at every Olympiad from 1900 to 1920. Originally the competition was entered by clubs, which meant that one country could win several medals. This happened in 1904, when the United States won all three medals, and in 1908 when the podium was occupied by three British teams. Sweden was also among the top countries with two medals, one as a member of the mixed team.

During its time as an Olympic sport, it was considered to be part of the Olympic athletics programme, although the sports of tug of war and athletics are now considered distinct. – Wikipedia

 

Tug of war was also a part of the ancient Olympic games…

 

Just how serious do people take Tug of War? Here are a few things we learned from checking out the website for the Tug Of War International Federation:

• There’s a manual to build your own tug of war boots.

• The rule book for the 2009-2010 seasonis 84 pages long.

• They follow WADA’s drug guidelines, making this sport far stricter than any of the major sports played in the United States.

• Finally, you can get caught up on all of this by watching a nice video:

 

 

Source: ESPN – Bring back the tug of war

 

 

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Meet the ‘bots’ of Wikipedia

ClueBot NG, as the bot is known, resides on a computer from which it sallies forth into the vast encyclopaedia to detect and clean up vandalism almost as soon as it occurs.

It is one of several hundred bots patrolling Wikipedia at any given time. Its role in repairing the Supreme Court article illustrates how bots have quietly become an indispensable – if virtually invisible – part of the Wikipedia project.

“Wikipedia would be a shambles without bots,” a Wikipedia administrator known on the site as Hersfold writes in an email.

English Wikipedia alone surpassed four million articles this month. It contains an estimated 2.5 billion words, equivalent to millions of pages, and it is 50 times larger than the Encyclopaedia Britannica.

But the project is so vast, and its maintenance so labour-intensive that it defies the capability of its human administrators and editors to keep it in order.

That is where the bots come in.

 

Keep reading: BBC News Magazine - Meet the ‘bots’ that edit Wikipedia

 

 

 

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Wikimedia Foundation votes to start a travel guide – as Wikitravel implodes

The Wikimedia Foundation has decided to create a travel guide in the mold of its non-profit, user-written and search engine results-hogging Wikipedia.

The foundation’s board of trustees on July 11 approved a proposal to launch an advertisement-free travel guide and noted that 31 of the 48 administrators of the Internet Brands-owned Wikitravel have pledged to join forces with the Wikimedia Foundation’s travel guide website.

The foundation indicated that Wikitravel is the current leader in travel wikis, but its advertisements and monetization efforts may turn off travelers and would-be contributors.

In addition, the foundation argues that Internet Brands has failed to keep pace with the times and that Wikitravel suffers from a “lack of technical support/feature development.”

Jani Patokallio, a Wikitravel admin based in Melbourne, Australia, wrote about the editors’ mass exodus from Wikitravel, and told Skift that the situation there had reached “the boiling point.”

 

Source: Skift – Wikipedia Parent to Launch Travel Guide with Wikitravel Rebels

 

 

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Progress in the Middle East – if you measure by the number of Facebook users

There are growing signs of progress in the Middle East, if you measure by the total number of Facebook users. That number has skyrocketed since 2010, going from 15 million to near 40 million.

Of those users, a growing number are starting to prefer using the site in their own native language, Arabic.

Of the 39+ million Arabic users on Facebook, 39% prefer to view the site in their native language, while 36% like it in English.

As more users in the region are coming online, with an obvious desire to access sites in Arabic, there is a rising demand for content that appeals to them, and quite a few social media sites are trying to meet that demand.

Twitter recently added support for right-to-left languages, including in Arabic, while Storify is working with a team of volunteers in the Middle East to translate their interface into Arabic.

Arabic is one of the fastest growing languages on sites like Twitter and Wikipedia, and with Yahoo having just licensed the technology behind smart transliteration tool Yamli, it is becoming increasingly easy for Arabic speakers to interact in their mother tongue online.

via The Next Web

 

The numbers are not overwhelming, by any means, considering that there are 152 million users in the U.S. and 232 million in Europe, but it is a positive sign.

 

// Photo – Sean MacEntee

Google takes a big step towards becoming a (smart) encyclopedia – look out Wikipedia!

“We’re in the early phases of moving from being an information engine to a knowledge engine” – Google

That’s a quote from the video below where Google explains a new panel they are adding to search. Called the ‘knowledge graph’ it is basically a mini-encyclopedia. See the panels in the images below.

 

 

This is a big competitive move for Google. Not only are they taking on Facebook with Google+, Microsoft with Google Docs, and Apple with Android, now they have Wikipedia in their sights.

Of course, Wikipedia will still serve a huge purpose for in-depth information, but you can expect Wikipedia to experience a precipitous drop in page views once people are getting their basic information from these panels.

It also puts Google in an interesting position. While this is a natural improvement in search it also creates a conflict of interest for them. One of the many they are currently facing, some of which are in the courts facing anti-trust issues.

Will Google devalue Wikipedia in favor of their ‘knowledge graph’?

Or, lower its ranking if people begin using it less?

Hard to predict, but notice that in the images above Google clearly (intentionally?) shows Wikipedia as the top result. That may not keep.

 

Learn more:

The benefits of raised bed gardening

It’s springtime and I’ll be out doing some planting today. Yesterday, at the farmers market, I picked up four seedlings: Pepper, Heirloom Tomato, Thai Basil, and Mexican Squash.

Before getting started I looked up what a ‘raised bed’ was. I had been hearing a lot about them and was wondering why they’re so popular. Turns out they have several endearing features:

  • Conserve water
  • Extend the planting season
  • Reduce weeds
  • Reduce the need to use poor native soil
  • Higher yields
  • Serve as a barrier to pests such as slugs and snails
  • Can be planted earlier in the season because the soil is warmer when it is above ground level.

Raised bed gardening is a form of gardening in which the soil is formed in 3 – 4 foot wide beds, which can be of any length or shape. The soil is raised above the surrounding soil (approximately 6 inches to waist-high), is sometimes enclosed by a frame generally made of wood, rock, or concrete blocks, and may be enriched with compost.

The vegetable plants are spaced in geometric patterns, much closer together than conventional row gardening. The spacing is such that when the vegetables are fully grown, their leaves just barely touch each other, creating a microclimate in which weed growth is suppressed and moisture is conserved.

Additionally, waist-high raised beds enable the elderly and handicapped to grow vegetables without having to bend-over to tend them.

via Wikipedia

 

// Photo via mccun934

Wikimania 2012 is in Washington, D.C.

The Wikimania 2012 conference will be held July 12-15, 2012, at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

  • Meet the wiki community in Washington.
  • Join a gathering of experts, enthusiasts, and those who are just curious, in a center of academia, culture, and technology.
  • Engage at the official annual conference of Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects.

Wikimania is the annual international conference of the Wikimedia community (which includes Wikipedia). It allows the community and the general public to learn about and share their experiences with free knowledge initiatives all over the world.

  • Submit a talk/panel/workshop for Wikimania! – Deadline is March 18.
  • Registration is now open! – Early registration discount until April 23.

This conference provides a unique opportunity for the Wikimedia community and its projects – Wikipedia, Wikibooks, Wikinews, Wiktionary, Wikispecies, Wikimedia Commons, and Wikimedia – to come together, share their common goals, and develop better ways to work together on an international level.

 

Schedule

  • July 6–9: Wikimania Takes Manhattan (special pre-conference event in NYC)
  • July 10–11: Hackathon
  • July 12–14: Main Conference
  • July 15: Unconference

Pre-Conference hacking days and Unconference are open to all attendees. The program for these days will be primarily informal.

 

Program Structure

The Wikimania 2012 program structure is designed to create multiple opportunities for conference participants to actively engage with the subject matter, the environment, and, most importantly, each other. Washington, D.C, can play an important role in Wikimania 2012 as a locale that gathers interest in government, culture, media, and academia around the general goals of the Wikimania conference series.

Tracks:

  • Wikis and the Public Sector
  • GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums) & cultural outreach
  • WikiCulture and Community
  • Research, Analysis, and Education
  • Technology and Infrastructure

 

Wikimania 2012 in Washington, D.C.

Bees are in peril – and so are most of our major foods

Bees are nearing a “crises,” prompting the government to spend millions on a massive data base and asking beekeepers on March 27 for advice on how to save them and prevent the nation’s agriculture from collapsing.

Honeybees are critical in agriculture. The value of crops in U.S. agriculture that depend on their pollination is $19 billion, according to USDA estimates. Worldwide that crop value is $217 billion.

Facing this, Congress and the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) took action last year, granting $5.6 million to establish a national, massive data base under the Bee Informed Partnership (BIP) program.

The goal is simple: “Get information collected from beekeepers back to beekeepers quickly so they can make more informed decisions.”

via The Washington Times

 

Wikipedia lists over 125 mainstream foods that depend on bee pollination, among them:

Coffee, chocolate (cocoa), apple, pear, watermelon, avocado, grape, tomato, onion, broccoli, pepper, lemon, lime, strawberry, soybean, and blueberry.

Other major foods:

Okra, celery, kiwi, cashew, almond, beet, mustard, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprout, papaya, chestnut, tangerine, coconut, coriander, hazelnut, cantaloupe, melon, cucumber, squash, carrot, persimmon, fig, strawberry, cotton, sunflower, walnut, lychee, macadamia, mango, passion fruit, bean (lima, kidney, string), apricot, cherry, plum, guava, pomegranate, boysenberry, raspberry, blackberry, cranberry, eggplant, vanilla, jujube.