Wednesday, February 28, 2007

NIH Wiki Fair

The National Institutes of Health organised a Wiki fair today. There have been great presentations; the line-up of speakers and subjects was impressive, many of the presentations are on line and the whole presentation can be seen as a video as well ... all 5:41 hours off it...

For Wiki aficionados particularly interesting are a presentation of Dr Larry Sanger, and Dr Barend Mons. Larry is part of the Wikipedia history and Barend is part of the OmegaWiki presence.

Larry's presentation is self serving; he gives a selly presentation about Citizendium and he urges the people from the NIH to join in his project. That is in and off itself OK as he just what he has to do. As the raison d'ĂȘtre of Citizendium is in doing a better job than Wikipedia there are loads of comparisons with Wikipedia.. It is not surprising that you find no nicks when that is your policy, it can not be considered something that is "good" in comparison. Given that Larry finds it relevant to be known as Dr Sanger, I would expect a more scientific approach to his presentation. Given the small size of the project, it is not so strange to find that there is a lot of harmony around. This is very much the experience of all Wiki projects. It has been well documented in many scientific papers and, I am sure is Dr Sanger aware of this.

Being part of the history of Wikipedia and having created Citizendium as a reaction to what is considered "wrong" in Wikipedia means that Citizendium will always be compared to Wikipedia. I think that having started from scratch is daring.. It is the right thing to do. There are certainly more scientists working on Wikipedia, and given that Wikipedia has more than 1000 times more articles, it will be interesting to see what kind of attention this project will get.

Thanks,
GerardM
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