Grants talk:IEG/Wikidata Toolkit

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IEG key blue.png

Congratulations! Your proposal has been selected for an Individual Engagement Grant.

The committee has recommended this proposal and WMF has approved funding for the full amount of your request, $30,000

Comments regarding this decision:
We look forward to seeing the demonstrator service in action, and to seeing this project engage with researchers, tool-builders, and beyond! Note that this grant does not include a commitment from WMF Labs, and we appreciate the grantee’s hosting update to clarify a plan to operate this demonstrator on the Dresden group’s own servers for the foreseeable future.

Next steps:

  1. You will be contacted to sign a grant agreement and setup a monthly check-in schedule.
  2. Review the information for grantees.
  3. Use the new buttons on your original proposal to create your project pages.
  4. Start work on your project!

Questions? Contact us.


Status and budget clarifications[edit]

Hi Markus,

Thanks very much for drafting this proposal with so much info thus far! I'm assuming you're finished drafting today, and if so, please let us know this by updating your infobox to status=PROPOSED, so that we can include you in the round 2 review process, which will start with an eligibility check.

A preliminary note about the way you've setup your budget and your legal note: Individual Engagement Grants are very much aimed at individuals, so WMF would not be executing a grant agreement with TU Dresden for a project like this. The way this type of grant works is that WMF funds a set of individuals directly to complete an agreed-upon project. The grantees are then solely responsible for paying any taxes due on the grant amount. Anyone who would be responsible for accepting the funds, signing grant paperwork, and filing the grant reports should be listed as a grantee, others (including probably any folks whose names you don't have yet) can be paid by the grantee as contractors to complete the project. Rather than including a % buffer on payments to each participant, expenses like travel or any necessary equipment are generally listed as independent line-items, and receipts are then maintained to document these expenses. If costs aren't specified in their own line-item, we'll just assume that grantees are absorbing those costs themselves, which is perhaps what you had in mind. Feel free to make some adjustments in the coming days if any of this info changes your current plan.

Best wishes, Siko (WMF) (talk) 21:10, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

Hi Siko (WMF),
Thanks for the information -- I only noticed this message now. I have updated the budget section to take this into account. I still think that the team members can be the people intended originally (a student and a research assistant), so the calculation of their usual salary costs should be a good estimate of the costs of labour in the project. However, running the project as a short-term freelancing activity next to the team members's day jobs will make it more expensive. I think the 31% institutional overhead (which a freelancer does not charge) are a good estimate for this increased cost (no developer, student or not, can afford to work for 8.79 EUR/hour). Decoupling the project from TU Dresden also increases my own administrative effort, and it means that I have to be very concious about separating research work in my group from project work on this grant, which might be performed by the same people (a modular code structure should help with this). Overall, I think that the project is still worth this additional effort. The individual-based funding scheme also has some advantages, since it adds some flexibility for involving subcontractors.
Cheers, Markus Krötzsch (talk) 16:54, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

Eligibility confirmed, round 2 2013[edit]

IEG review.png

This Individual Engagement Grant proposal is under review!

We've confirmed your proposal is eligible for round 2 review. Please feel free to ask questions here on the talk page and make changes to your proposal as discussions continue during this community comments period.

The committee's formal review for round 2 begins on 23 October 2013, and grants will be announced in December. See the schedule for more details.

Questions? Contact us.

Siko (WMF) (talk) 05:57, 4 October 2013 (UTC)

Toolkit design[edit]

Some part of existing difficulties may be caused by database structure overheads. Is it a large part?

Roughly how would you like to design the toolkit? The how does it work, what does it do bits look important for understanding of realistic picture and possible impact on the project. Gryllida 10:16, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

This whole thing sounds great and would be a bargain at twice the price you're asking, but I am a bit sceptical at your ability to deliver something that the community can step in and use. What gives you the impression that you can deliver this? Have you got a little mockup somewhere with some data queries that you think you can use as a start-off place? WikiData gets pretty hairy pretty quickly when you try to get your head around the properties and labels. I find it extremely annoying that there are so few labels in the database. I don't think you can use WikiData now for meaningful queries because it is so sparsely filled. Jane023 (talk) 22:25, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
For the first part ("twice the price") I think this impression is easy to get from the sheer amount of interesting things one would like to support. Of course, the project will have to start somewhere and cannot address every possible use case. The goal is to build an extensible base for further features. It will be important to gather requirements from the community initially to decide what should be the main focus for this initial project, and which aspects should be deferred to future (or concurrent) projects. For the second part ("mockup?"): no, I do not have any mockup. The Wikidata Query service shows some relevant queries one wants to answer, and the Wikidata Toolkit shows some further functionality that should be included (loading, parsing, iterating data). These will be the main starting points. --Markus Krötzsch (talk) 17:08, 10 December 2013 (UTC)

Aggregated feedback from the committee for Wikidata Toolkit[edit]

Scoring criteria (see the rubric for background) Score
1=weakest 5=strongest
Potential for impact
(A) The project fits with the Wikimedia movement's strategic priorities 4.5
(B) The project has the potential to lead to significant online impact. 4
(C) The impact of the project can be sustained after the grant ends. 4
(D) The project has potential to be scaled or adapted for other languages or projects. 3.5
Ability to execute
(E) The project has demonstrated interest from a community it aims to serve. 4
(F) The project can be completed as scoped within 6 months with the requested funds. 4.5
(G) The budget is reasonable and an efficient use of funds. 3.5
(H) The individual(s) proposing the project have the required skills and experience needed to complete it. 4
Fostering innovation and learning
(I) The project has innovative potential to add new strategies and knowledge for solving important issues in the movement. 3.5
(J) The risk involved in the project's size and approach is appropriately balanced with its potential gain in terms of impact. 3.5
(K) The proposed measures of success are useful for evaluating whether or not the project was successful. 4
(L) The project supports or grows the diversity of the Wikimedia movement. 3.5
Comments from the committee:
  • Useful integration with WikiData that received strong community endorsement. Clear focus on improving the increasingly important WikiData project.
  • Has potential to have a large impact on the quality and sharing of data in Wikimedia projects, though we have concerns that Wikimedia-wide impact may not be that significant compared to the size of the budget.
  • High costs, particularly in the context of the German Chapter’s significant funding for Wikidata already. Perhaps WMDE would be better positioned to fund this project?
  • Success metrics are good and specific but don’t address usage rates of the proposed tool(s).
  • Would want proposer to develop a detailed plan for community outreach, to create clear use cases and ensure uptake from the community. Would like to see more community feedback up to the point of realizing what is to be created.
  • Proposer is a phenomenally capable person - clearly the right person for this task.

Thank you for submitting this proposal. The committee is now deliberating based on these scoring results.

Funding decisions will be announced by December 16. — ΛΧΣ21 00:21, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

"High costs, particularly in the context of the German Chapter’s significant funding for Wikidata already": weird argument. By this reasoning, you should say the same of all Wikipedia-related grant requests ("in the context of the WMF's predominating funding for Wikipedia already") and I'm not sure that's the intent. --Nemo 09:55, 15 November 2013 (UTC)
I understand that, rather than the development of Wikidata at large, what was intended in that comment (or anyway, what I am concerned about) was more about the development of their query services which has been funded or planned to be funded from the Wikidata team's fund. Although Wikibase query services is laid out to be "mostly different" from Wikidata Toolkit (in Grants:IEG/Wikidata Toolkit#Tools, technologies, and_techniques), further clarifications would be helpful to sweep away the thought of "isn't the problem to be solved with this proposal already getting solved elsewhere?". --whym (talk) 03:04, 16 November 2013 (UTC)
Yes query functionality is still being worked on in Wikidata itself. This proposal is not working on that and is not duplicating work. The Wikidata development team continues to support this proposal. --Lydia Pintscher (WMDE) (talk) 20:44, 7 December 2013 (UTC)
As for use cases, I am interested in the integration of information in Wikidata with that in scholarly databases (especially in relation to biodiversity research), for which the toolkit would be very helpful. For an example currently being discussed, see Collaboration with PubChem, where the lack of an already requested bot is currently a bottleneck but probably wouldn't be so if such a toolkit were available. -- Daniel Mietchen (talk) 01:32, 10 December 2013 (UTC)
The formal period of the review is already over, but I thought I'd share my thoughts anyway - I hope my interpretation below highlights the difference between the query functionality of Wikidata itself and Wikidata Toolkit correctly. Based on Lydia Pintscher (WMDE)'s comment above and my second look on the proposal, I refreshed my understanding on this project. My best interpretation is that, regarding query functionality, the Wikidata team would focus on making MediaWiki to dynamically generate something like programmable infoboxen by extracting and combining data available on Wikidata, while the Wikidata Toolkit would serve for tools running on non-MediaWiki platforms (editor-supporting tools, wiki bots, and possibly other non-Wikimedia uses) that might use other knowlegebases together (which require some kind of interoperability). In relation to Wikimedia participation, I see potential impact of the Toolkit on 1) allowing easier development of custom interfaces for specific subject areas to edit Wikidata, 2) allowing people to develop more intelligent bots more easiliy (per Daniel Mietchen's comment in his endorsement and here). So assuming that the Toolkit will come with all the documentations that tool creators and bot creators would like to rely on, it look like a great project for IEG :) --whym (talk) 03:47, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

Meeting local Wikipedians[edit]

We have in Dresden a very active Wikipedia community. In this group are also some tool developers (like me) but also users of tools. So I want to invite members of this project to our monthly meetings in January or later: Wikipedia:Dresden --Kolossos (talk) 20:20, 18 December 2013 (UTC)

current project status[edit]

Is there a project page with current status and a code repository? - JakobVoss (talk) 16:12, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

See here for more info and links to sources and first users, etc. Wikidata Toolkit on MediaWiki.org - the first release is available. Jane023 (talk) 09:34, 1 April 2014 (UTC)