Talk:United Wikipedias Forum

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I put the translation of the beginning of your page on the fr embassy. will add a word tomorrow on the ml.

Thanks. I appreciate it. Kpjas 2002-11-07
I just create a seperate page with the beginning of the translation in french : United_Wikipedias_Forum-fr. I really think that this discussion is really important and should involve, right now, wikipedians from everywhere, speaking differents langages. By example, and for obvious reason, the opinion of non-English speakers does not appear on this page.Xillimiandus 19:09, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I approve the principle of your project. Right now, some french developers plan to make a bot on the fr.wiki. Despite the fact they would like very much to discuss about that with the rest of the community, to exchange views, to benefit from others experiences... they apparently do not succeed to contact the right people, for they get no answer. Something's missing :-) user:anthere

This seems to be a good illustration to the communication problems between Wikipedias. Kpjas 2002-11-07

The idea of improving coordination is the right one, but the formulation of "United Wikipedias Forum" is the wrong one. We shouldn't model ourselves on the United Nations. Or any other nationalist model.

This is just an idea. The name is not that important it can be changed at once. First I thought about "Wikipedia News" or "News of the Wikipedias" as titles for this meta article but I wanted to stress the unificatication goal and put less emphasis on the news aspect. Kpjas 2002-11-07
I think maybe (maybe not!) it makes sense to assert (pretend) that we are by default unified, and what we need is systems to maintain that unification. Such as we think of the way our individual bodies work: we think of the nervous, circulatory, endocrine etc. systems as coordinating and maintaining the body, not unifying it (though in a sense, that is what they do). So I really like the implication of something like the Cross-Language Coordination Forum, or the Wikipedia Lingua Franca Project. But I do certainly see the analogy with the United Nations translator pool. The difference is that France, Indonesia, and the United States start off not just with different languages, but widely different goals. Whereas at Wikipedia, we have (essentially) the same purpose but different languages.

We should approach the problem with the basic knowledge that

  1. We are one Wikipedia.
  2. Our goal is to build a complete encyclopedia.
  3. We have infinite resources and plenty of time.
  4. If we don't help each other, we will fail.
We ought to get the message through - "You are working hard on your Wikipedia - fine but there are also other Wikipedias that are equally important for the whole project" Kpjas 2002-11-07
I really rather would have that message be "You are working hard on your Wikipedia entries - fine, but there are thousands of other entries, including those in other languages, that are equally important for the whole project."

As much as possible, we should encourage self-organization, rather than hierarchical, static bodies.

Is creating such multilingual channel for communication at all possible without an organized group of people ? Kpjas 2002-11-07
Yes, because we have complete control over the backend technology, which is like the laws of physics for wikipedia-space. You can predict how unthinking water will create channels through the land if you know the composition of the geography--water follows the path of least resistance, and will cut through limestone before granite. Similarly, groups of people will tend to follow certain channels if those are the easiest paths. Such are the goals of the proposals below.

Direct proposals: 1. Integrate backend user, recent changes databases.

RC - Wouldn't be a nightmare ? Software-wise and usability-wise Kpjas
Certainly not software-wise. Usability-wise, you'd be able to configure what you wanted listed on the RC page.

2. Replace mailing lists with online bulletin-board system.

...and translate them in all major languages ? Kpjas
The mailing lists obstruct cross-language flow; a bbs that permits crosslinking between forums would be of great help. Actually, that does raise an important point. Let me add another proposal.

3. Define what documents/decisions need/should ideally be translated into all languages. E.g. the Wikipedia: section pages? The FAQs?

As long as we all accept that we are one Wikipedia, it's not a terrible problem if the different language projects take different approaches to the issues that arise; rather, that diversity can be beneficial. At the same time, point #4 above must be remembered--complacency in the face of suffering is not good. --The Cunctator

And what in the long run ? Articles conveying different notions in different Wikipedias ? Kpjas 2002-11-07
Again, I'll assert that as long as we think of there being one Wikipedia, then having articles conveying different notions is not at all terrible. There are articles in the English-language pages that convey different notions. Over the long run, such differences get washed out; between languages, it takes longer, but as long as there's extensive cross-linking, those differences too will get washed out.

Could somebody explain in a couple of words what a slashcode like web site is and what an online bulletin-board system. Examples ? One should be sure the words used are having common definitions first of all.

I suppose "slashcode-like" refers to a class of Content Management Systems please see for instance http://slashcode.com/about.shtml but some people argue that there are superior slashcode equivalents like Postnuke or Geekcode. Kpjas 2002-11-08
I am not sure but perhaps online bulletin-board system might be something like phpBB. Kpjas 2002-11-08

I've looked at all these (or equivalent for bb had no demo). From the front end and from an non-geek view, hard to really say what the differences are.
I noticed the slashcode types were more stressing out the time variable : that is, the top recent messages. I guess it's because geeks are mostly interested in top news ? I couldnot easily navigate between the different "chapters", and definitly it seems finding back an old conversation must be tough. We need very much to be able to find back some old messages with a nice search function.
The bb type seem to be more presenting a space direction : sujects being on front. That looks more to what we need. A place where the first level subjects are 1) everyday life on one language wiki issues (for each wiki) 2) common software technical issues 3) common copyright issues 4) common advertisment issues 5) common faq issues...
That doesnot solve the translation problem for sure, but will help each "shop" for the info he needs and conversation he wants to participate in. -- ant