Grants:TPS/Bodhisattwa/Wikimania/2015/Report

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Welcome back from Wikimania 2015!

Participant[edit]

Bodhisattwa

Bengali Wikipedia

Outcome[edit]

Shared Experience[edit]

Learning Pattern[edit]

Wikidata
Before Wikimania 2015, I only created inter-wiki links for articles in Wikidata. During the conference, I attended as many sessions of Wikidata as possible and learnt a lot about its projects and how to contribute there. I would like to mention the presentation on Sum of all paintings and State of Wikidata - giving more people more access to more knowledge one edit at a time, which helped me clear many technical doubts about Wikidata. After Wikimania, I am becoming more and more active in Wikidata, helping to add or increase properties in different labels. I also learned about Reasonator, which seemed very cool to me.
OCR
I was active in Bengali Wikisource few months back, but lost my interest as it was too much tiring and time-consuming for me to proof-read even a single page there because of lack of a good quality OCR software. I interacted with Indic community members and developers about this necessity, but before Wikimania, it was all in vain. During Wikimania, I approached Indian developer Vikas Yaligar who instantly got interested into the matter and started his project to develop an open source Bengali OCR software. Though I am not a technical guy, I am learning how to work in Tesseract OCR lab and train the software. Things are getting organised when Ravishankar is trying to get together all Indic language community members who are trying to work in this field.

Connections[edit]

  • Addis Wang from Chinese User Group- This was my first encounter with Addis. We had a short discussion about Tibetan Wikipedia in China and India. We also talked about possible collaborations in Asia Wikipedians meetup.
  • Biplab Anand from Nepali and Maithili Wikipedia - I had my first encounter with Biplab during the Bengali Wikipedia 10th Anniversary International Conference in Kolkata and this was the second time we met face to face. He talked about creating articles and enlisting all heritage sites of Nepal, after the massive earthquake. He also talked about datathon in Wikidata for Nepali Wikipedia. From these discussions, I got specific interest to conduct a datathon also for Bengali Wikipedia. We also met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans and possible collaboration to bring SAARC countries wikimedians under one umbrella.


  • Dineshkumar Ponnusamy from Tamil Wikipedia community - Though we are from the same country, this is my first encounter with Dinesh face-to-face. We had long talks about his idea on Wiki-bus and possibilities of organizing Wikimania in India by 2019. He was also instrumental in printing leaflets and posters for Bengali Wikipedia and other Indic languages Wikipedia to be displayed in India booth, for which I am thankful to him.
  • James Heilman - I was honored to meet and learn from James Heilman in a meetup session, about some recent updates and future plans regarding the medical article translation project. Though I am a doctor myself, but I have not dared to translate medical articles in Bengali, because of not only the vastness of the subject, but also lack of proper medical terminologies in my language; but from his vast experience in this field of translation of medical related articles, he cleared my doubts. I suggested him to start translations of articles related to basic pre-clinical and para-clinical subjects and then go for clinical medical related articles, (just like a standard medical curriculum) while starting a translation project in a small wiki; he showed me the advantages and disadvantages of this suggestion. I also learned a lot about Ebola translation project from him.
  • Krish Dulal from Nepali Wikipedia- We met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans and possible collaboration to bring SAARC countries wikimedians under one umbrella.
  • Manoj Karingamadathil from Malayalam WikiSource - Though we are from the same country, Wikimania 2015 gave us rthe opportunity to meet with each other. He talked with me about his interest in Wikipedia Treks Mountains project. Apart from that, we met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans.
  • Minh Nguyễn from Vietnamese Wikipedia - We met at Asian meetup for possible collaboration.
  • Muzammil from Hindi and Urdu Wiki Community - We met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans.
  • Nahid Sultan from Bengali Wikipedia and Wikimedia Bangladesh - It is the third time, I met Nahid this year, thanks to Wikimania 2015. We discussed about the possibilities of taking out Bengali Wikivoyage out of Incubator. We worked together in some translations in media wiki during the hackathon. Apart from that we discussed about different ways of working collaboratively in Bengali Wikipedia. Just after the conference, we announced a week long online edit-a-thon on open access in Bengali Wikipedia, which will be organised from 19th to 25th October, 2015.
  • Nabin Sapkota from Nepali Wikipedia- We met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans and possible collaboration to bring SAARC countries wikimedians under one umbrella.
  • Patrick Peter Earley from WMF - During a casual talk, accidentally we found out that mountains are the common passion for bot of us. We had an informal meeting about possible collaboration in Wikipedia Treks Mountains project. Patrick made some necessary changes in the meta event page. He extended his helping hand to make possible the event an international one in near future. I am really looking forward now.
  • Rashiq Ahmad from Germany and Kiwix developer- I learnt few details about Kiwix.
  • Ravishankar from Wikimedia India Chapter - The programme-director of Wikimedia India Chapter Ravishankar has been helping to organise Bengal GLAM digitization projects prior to Wikimania and this conference provided me opportunity to discuss about the funding of the projects. I also learnt from him how Tamil Virtual Academy, a government-run institute in Tamil Nadu is acting closely with Tamil Wikimedia community in the field of content release. We discussed about the possibilities of involving other state governments of India by showing them the example of Tamil Nadu government and open up their closed doors to the public at large.We also talked about possibilities and strategies of organizing Wikimania in India by 2019 in Indic language meetup. Possible collaborations among SAARC and Asian Wikipedians were also discussed.
  • Satdeep from Punjabi Wikipedia- This is the second time we met. He was also my room mate and travel partner during the trip! We talked about possible online collaborations between our two different language communities.
  • Takashi Ota from Japanese Wikipedia - We met at Asian meetup for possible collaboration. We also talked about common topics related to both India and Japan.
  • Taweetham from Thai Wikipedia - We met at Asian meetup for possible collaboration.
  • Thamizhpparithi Maari from Tamil Wikipedia community- I learnt that Thamizhpparithi Maari is the Assistant Director in Tamil Virtual Academy, which is a Government-run institute in Tamil Nadu, India. This Institute has been closely working with Tamil Wikimedia community in releasing thousands of books in public domain and uploading them in Commons in near future. It was really a new experience to meet an government employee from India working on content release, who is simultaneously an active Wikipedian, as in my state of West Bengal, government staffs and officers of different libraries and museums are very difficult to approach in this area. Along with Ravishankar, we discussed about the possibilities to approach to other state governments of India, if the Tamil Nadu government shows the path and sets a new example in the country.
  • Vikas Yaligar from Mediawiki - It was my first encounter with Indian developer Vikas Yaligar. I learnt from him that he is working on Automatic cross-language screenshots for Mediawiki extensions as a part of GSOC-2014. I told him about the difficulties we are facing in Bengali Wikisource due to lack of an open source Bengali OCR software. I was able to persuade him to develop the said software in the coming months.
  • Viswa Prabha from Malayalam Wiki Community- We met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans.
  • Ahmed Nisar from Telugu and Urdu Wiki Community - We met at Indic language meetup to sort out our future plans.

Anything else[edit]

Wikimedia Asia Meetup
Participated in Wikimedia Asia Meetup. In this meetup, we felt a need to organize the collaboration among Asian Wikipedians more effectively. I am now involved with organizing Wikipedia Asian Month which is an online effort to help bring together Asian Wikipedians under one event, know each other and work collaboratively.
Indic Meetup group photo
Indic Meetup
Participated in Indic Meetup. In this meetup we strongly advocated about the collaborative efforts among Wikimedians from SAARC countries. We also shared our collective dreams to go for a bid for Wikimania 2019 from Indian Wikipedia community. For that reason, I am actively volunteering and organizing the pilot project of WikiConference India 2016, to bring all Indic languages communities to come together, work as one national team and prepare for the bidding for Wikimania 2019 in India.
Wikimedia India Booth
Participated as a Volunteer in Wikimedia India Community Village in all the 3 days. This gave me the opportunity to meet and interact with many Wikimedians from different part of world. It was a great experience to represent all the Indian Wikipedia communities in the booth and explain about the multilingual diverse culture of our country to the attendees. As Indian community members, we also utilized the opportunity to interact with each other to know each others projects in details, discussed about possible collaborations with each other, learn and adapt different useful strategies from other Indic language community members and outline future strategies like organizing WikiConference India 2016, more GLAM projects etc.
Photographs
I have a very bad internet connection in my home, so I need some time to upload few hundreds of photographs, which I clicked during Wikimania 2015. My photographs taken during the conference can be found here.