Wikimapia

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This page started on September 21th 2006 to discuss about the possible connection between Wikipedia and WikiMapia, following the discussion on the talk page of this article.

Tech discussion about WikiMapia for Wikipedians[edit]

You'll find there http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Alexandre_Koriakine (there, to meet Wikipedia rules).

Proposal to integrate WikiMapia with Wikipedia[edit]

Basically, I would like to propose integrating Wikimapia, a project to annotate Google Maps with user-contributed notes in a wiki system, with Wikipedia. How it would work: When contributors draw their rectangles around places, landmarks, etc., the info. box that comes up inviting them to write a note about the landmark should feature a Wikipedia article about it, if there is one. If there isn't one, writing a note for a place on Wikimapia would automatically create such an article on Wikipedia. We could talk to Fred Bauder, who runs the Wikinfo project, which uses special software to incorporate Wikipedia articles into its own structure. David Cannon 22:09, 21 September 2006 (UTC)

I think Wikimapia is a great concept. Integration with Wikipedia would maximize its usefulness by connecting landmarks with well-written and verified information. It would also allow Wikimapia to "ride" on Wikipedia's popularity. David Cannon 22:09, 21 September 2006 (UTC)

It sounds like a good idea although I think WikiPedia might have issues with it because the user base at WikiMapia is unregistered so there really isn't any way for the content to be controlled or moderated. This would also allow for WikiPedia entries such as "my house" or "cool hangout spot" which would not be good. Something in the software would have to prevent that from happening. Also there is already some integration with WikiMapia in that many WikiPedia articles in their "External links and sources" section link to the location at WikiMapia. Obviously what you are suggesting is something a little more complex than that though. I think the idea has potential, but there would have to be a lot of things worked out. --Matt510 19:37, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

David Cannon, it's a great idea to connect Wikimapia places with their Wikipedia articles, but as Matt mentioned, not all places need to be copied to Wikipedia (houses, little shops, etc). Almost all famous places already have articles in both Wikipedia and Wikimapia, so we need to find a way how to cross-link them (it seems that people must do it, there's no automatic way).
I think we have good solution:
*for non-existent articles - user clicks special button "Create in Wikipedia" and we automatically create blank new article in Wikipedia with information from Wikimapia and forward user to edit Wikipedia page.
*for existent articles: In Wikimapia place page we create a new field "Wikipedia Link". When user enter Wikipedia link, our robot visit this Wikipedia page and add information about this place on Wikimapia.
P.S. Matt, your point about registration isn't really correct, we have control over spam and we are letting users to control the informaion. However, the registration will be finished very soon.
Alexandre Koriakine
Good information to know Alexandre, thanks for the correction! Good suggestions as well. My concern with adding "create in Wikipedia" link in Wikimapia is that there are many people that have no idea, myself including, how to create a Wikipedia page. This would result in a lot of poorly made Wikipedia articles that I am sure the Wikipedia staff would not appreciate. Anything thoughts on that issue? Am I just being too skeptical? I really like the idea of having the "Wikipedia Link" option, I think it would be pretty helpful. (As an aside, maybe also have an "official website" link as well... although might just be fine for people to add that info if they want, without an actual spot for it.) --Matt510 01:14, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Matt: Actually, I don't think that's a problem. At Wikipedia, we've got a whole army on guard, watching the new articles as they come in and deleting rubbish on the spot. The benefits far outweigh the extremely small increase in "poorly placed articles" that could potentially occur. Both projects would benefit immensely: Wikimapia would gain access to a detailed database, and Wikipedia would gain the benefit of a map resource that would prove extremely valuable. David Cannon 22:42, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Very good to know. I really have no idea how WikiPedia works, so glad to know that there is that security involved. My question still regarding that is the quality of the articles that would be published. Not in that the content would be bad, but that the structure of the articles in Wikipedia is fairly standard but people making new WikiPedia articles from within WikiMapia may not know that structure. If that isn't really going to be an issue, then no worries.--Matt510 23:36, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Alexander Koriakine: Thank you for those ideas, Alexander. I think your suggestion is excellent. I don't know what software Fred Bauder uses, but his Wikinfo project automatically includes Wikipedia articles in its framework, as well as its own articles. I'm sure that software could be modified for use in Wikimapia. David Cannon 22:42, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
David, the point is that we don't want to make a copy of Wikipedia. There's one Wikipedia, if someone need encyclopedical information, he go to Wikipedia by link (for example: in place card). It's a web, and the web uses links. The information that store Wikimapia is quite different from Wikipedia, it's for every-day use, less encyclopedical, it has different structure and visualisation. We don't need that a place has exact copy both in Wikipedia and Wikimapia - also theres no use for it. So we don't want include Wikipedia articles (also we think it's unfair).

I do absolutely agree with your comments about making a more practically useful and less academic and dry project and avoiding duplication of effort, Alexander!

Is Wikipedia protected from Google pulling the (Data) rug from under your feet though? (Sorry I'm not a techie to understand the details of how you use info from Google...)

One wee point: I had to Register as WFrank on Wikimapia ('cos no dot or space was allowed as a user name...)

Love to everyone in Moldova! W. Frank 18:55, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

At this moment we are finishing of development special Wikipedia field, we will introduce it anyway, it'll contain the Wikipedia link to the article. Later, we may discuss "Publish in Wikipedia link", in the way which will be good to Wikipedia. What will be good for us, we think, is not a taking information from Wikipedia, but, probably, some kind of "templates/commons" for Wikimapia. Because if we automatically introduce a link to a place, Wikipedians will delete Wikimapia links saying it must be somewhere else, not in card body. (For example - Chernobyl area excelently described with unique information which you may never find on the web, and the link to it was deleted from the body.) So there are many aspects to discuss.
--AK, 26 sept.

Parallel administration systems?[edit]

Alexander Koriakine: I wonder whether you've thought about introducing a system of administration similar to what we have on Wikipedia. Basically, users who have proved themselves trustworthy are granted "administrative" powers to move and delete pages, and ban troublemakers. As the number of landmarks on Wikimapia grows, a greater number of users will need to be given the power to move wrongly placed landmarks, and rename offensively-labeled landmarks. But it would be dangerous to give this power to everybody; it should only be given to users who are known to be trustworthy. The administrative system doesn't have to be identical to Wikipedia's, but I think it would be helpful to have some sort of system in place. David Cannon 22:42, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

Yes, David. You're right. It will be introduces very soon. Also I think there will be a function of protection like in Wikipedia (for example popular places will be semi-protected, etc). --AK 26 sep

The "whole army on guard" of Wikipedia (as David says) will probably help also guarding Wikimapia if people find the same spirit as in Wikipedia and understand the immense service Wikimapia could provide to the community. They may also help to raise money to make the whole thing work, including for the main developpers. To achieve it, the terms of use and licence of Wikimapia and Wikipedia should be compatible, and the questions of cost and governance should be discussed in a transparent manner. Maybe one day a Wikimapia Foundation? (see bellow).OlivierAuber 09:27, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

This is witten in profile window: " You will receive points for adding, voting and correcting places, this will raise your rank. Higher rank you have, more control you will receive over Wikimapia." Comment: People are not children in a classroom! --OlivierAuber 22:05, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

Terms of use and licences compatiblity?[edit]

For now, Wikimapia has no official terms of use and licence.

We are working on this subject. --AK

Why not oppening your thoughts here? OlivierAuber 09:34, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

It should be a licence for free non-commercial use. --AK

You may know that there is already many Wikimapia clones or wikimapia-like under development everywhere in the world, for commercial or non commercial purposes (Mediawiki is not alone, there is many wiki engines...). How do you imagine that a licence for free non-commercial use would have any efficiency to protect both the concept and your investment? If you were asking me any advice (but you don't:-), I would suggest the FreeArtLicence because I think that Wikimapia could be much more than a software: a work of art! Imagine what would have happen if the first wiki conceived by Ward Cunningham was edited with a licence for free non-commercial use: everybody would have forgotten the pour Ward-OlivierAuber 12:18, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

I think we have to examine this subject more closely, we need to find more licence examples. You don't have to be worry that we take all info and hide it somewhere asking money for it. It's popular because it's free for people, they use it and update. Wikimapia lived 4 month without licence, so licence could wait a little bit more (people don't need a licence to describe the World). --AK 26 sept.

I trust you Alexandre but I don't think so. If the people invest time in Wikimapia (not just for fun), they need to know where it goes and to sure that it will not close one day, for lack of money, because Google have done something better, or any other reason.OlivierAuber 15:57, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

If you choose a non-commercial licence, that means it's not free. Worst, the original author (in the US world where author doesn't really exist but editor does -the copyright holder-) still have the rigth to use it for commercial purpose. Look toward real free licence like the FreeArtLicence as Olivier wrote. It's a real good free licence recommanded by the FSF for any artistic work. --ArnaudFontaine

As an update on this, as of writing, the terms of use state non-commercial use only,

meaning that data from the site cannot sadly be used in Wikipedia. I would urge people considering undertaking geodata work to look at other sources like the USGS which have better license compatibility. 62.56.81.110 01:35, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

We have a commercial project in planning and can not use Wikimapia because the license is no good. The software we planned on developing is so similar to Wikimapia's that we are now exploring redesigning our business plan to work with Wikimapia. We would be manually adding relatively large quantities of very accurate data and maintaining it systematically. Because we would be looking to map entire cities and towns in high definition, the data we would provide would be broadly relevant to other users. We are eager to see our contributions made available to others freely, but can not do this here as the license is too ambiguous to claim much by and is highly restrictive. To be frank, the legalities here are that of a very badly licensed product or else that of a scam. I don't know which it is, but it is ridiculous to have a system where at any moment you might lose all access to every bit of your hard work and you'll have nothing that you can say or do about it.

Please resolve the issue one way or another. CJS

Download[edit]

Is there any way to download the data? Where did the majority of the data come from? It looks like a lot has been taken from the Tiger/Line databases. -anon

All info is contributed. No info taken from any databases (can you find databases with regions?). API will be available very soon. (Alexandre Koriakine)Alexandre Koriakine 22:39, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

How I can donwload the Wikimapia dump data ?

Governance?[edit]

What kind of organization do you imagine Alexandre?OlivierAuber 09:34, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

I think that known users control every aspect of Wikimapia. But we should not copy Wikipedia in every point (for some things Wikipedia is too big), there must be a variety in Internet. --AK
I would feel better, if I was sure, that I am allowed to reuse my own contribution under the terms of GFDL or some CC. On the other hand, I prefer a governance by Wikimedia. Could somebody reprogram this service and provide it as wikimaps? As soon as Wikimapia has GFDL, wikimaps and wikimapia can exchange data and nothing is lost. --Passtor 00:45, 4 November 2006 (UTC)

Please check this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:WikiMapia#Terms_ou_Use_and_Licence.3F -OlivierAuber 10:57, 8 November 2006 (UTC)