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This is a proposal for a new Wikimedia sister project.
Status of the proposal
Statusunder discussion
Details of the proposal
Project descriptionWikianswers would be a large-scale, user-editable cache of multimodal answers from artificial intelligence systems, e.g., one or more large language models, which tightly integrates with Wikipedia, Wikidata, and Commons.
Is it a multilingual wiki?Many language versions
Potential number of languagesMany languages
Technical requirements
New features to requireSee below


Wikianswers would be a large-scale, user-editable cache of multimodal answers from artificial intelligence systems, e.g., one or more large language models, which tightly integrates with Wikipedia, Wikidata, and Commons.



Artificial intelligence (AI) systems, e.g., large language models (LLMs), can answer natural-language questions including when specific content is provided for these systems to consult. Users, then, could select one or more encyclopedia articles to thusly accompany their natural-language questions.

Question-answering features could be integrated into Wikipedia search. Natural-language questions entered into incremental search boxes could be processed by or enqueued into Wikianswers.


AI systems, e.g., LLMs, can transform users’ natural-language questions into Wikidata queries, e.g., using SPARQL.

Data could also be read from and written to Wikidata via LLM plugins.


Recent and foreseeable advances in AI include uses of conversational search and multi-step dialogue to find, create, and style multimedia resources (e.g., 3D models, animations, audio, charts, diagrams, figures, graphs, images, infographics, maps, mathematics, photographs, tables, and video).

AI systems could search for existing multimedia resources when generating multimodal responses. If not retrieved, these systems could create and store new resources in Commons for subsequent reuse.

AI systems can generate source code, e.g., JavaScript and Python, which can be processed to produce multimedia resources. Such source code could accompany resources in Commons as metadata.

With respect to representing multimedia resources, a separation of style from structure, resembling the separation of CSS from HTML, could enhance the customizability and themeability of Wikipedia and other projects utilizing multimedia resources in Commons.



The primary service provided to end-users involves providing AI-generated multimodal answers to natural-language questions, with contents drawn from Wikipedia, Wikidata, and Commons, such that end-users could collaboratively modify, correct, and otherwise update these answers.

Training data[edit]

User-edited responses could be subsequently made available to AI systems as training data.

Change propagation[edit]

Subscribers might desire real-time event streams as platform contents were created, modified, corrected, or otherwise updated by AI systems and end-users.

Usage data[edit]

With usage data and related analytics, including information about which cached answers were popular or trending, editors could better prioritize which content to review.

Recommender systems[edit]

In theory, recommender systems could recommend content for individual editors to review, e.g., based on their interests.


Content moderation[edit]

Content moderation and anti-vandalism technologies could provide means of placing "guardrails" on questions, dialogues, and topics thereof.

Content protection[edit]

When Wikipedia articles about entities were protected, would responses to natural-language questions involving those entities be similarly protected?

Usage quotas[edit]

Architectures could be considered which would allow end-users to ask only a limited number of questions per interval of time.


Architectures could be considered which would allow users, in particular new users and anonymous users, to create questions which would be initially pending such that other users could collaboratively upvote them. Pending questions which accumulated enough points would be enqueued for processing.

Users who upvote pending questions could opt to receive notifications, e.g., by email, when they were processed and responded to.

Users participating appropriately in various system roles could accumulate statuses, roles, and more points with which to either obtain instant answers to their own questions or to use to upvote other users' pending questions.


Drawing from the the current draft of the 2023-2024 Wikimedia Foundation Annual Plan's product and technology objectives, this proposal intends to:

  • "Support the growth of high-quality and relevant content"
  • Encourage "the satisfaction of and support given to moderators, patrollers, and functionaries" by "acting on promising hypotheses as we engage in deeper research, including ML/AI-enabled approaches to improving workflows"
  • Enhance the exploration of "ML-enabled natural-language search experience"
  • Enhance the exploration of "the future of media-related workflows and media-rich content, starting with Commons"
  • Contribute to producing "an effective and efficient knowledge production platform"




Related projects and proposals[edit]

There have been a number of related initiatives within and outside of Wiki, showing both the interest in and challenges of this proposal.

Wiki proposal

Question-centric knowledge websites

Virtual assistants

  • Alexa is crowdsourcing answers

Proposed by[edit]

Alternative names[edit]

  • Wikiquestions
  • Wikiqna

Domain names[edit]


Mailing list links[edit]

People interested[edit]


  • ignoring that you are trying to make a ai that can answer all the worlds questions, how is this as wiki? --GTbot2007 (talk) 18:05, 16 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • As envisioned, the described wiki platform has a homepage where users type their questions. If their question has already been asked, then the user goes to an existing wiki page. Otherwise, the question is transformed and categorized, and, based on its categories or domains, one or more question-answering AI are delegated to to provide content. This machine-generated content is one or more answers for the question, each answer explained and argued for. As each answers page is wiki, users can edit them to correct and to train the AI question-answering systems. -- AdamSobieski (talk) 18:45, 16 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I think the "train the AI question-answering systems" should be firmly grounded as a tool to assist contributor in providing source and rationale in their elaboration of an answer and not a reader facing system -- SebastienDery (talk) 17:49, 3 January 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The wiki comes from that these are human curated and continually revised answers. Putting aside what AI can do, whereas Wikipedia shares knowledge with a "entity centric" lens, this would be from the entry point of a specific interrogation -- SebastienDery (talk) 17:49, 3 January 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Really? a) It's humans, and b) if the question isn't an article, you can a) make the article with the answers or b) press a button to show you related questions (using the same code that autocorrect uses). Is what your asking a genuine question? Username142857 (talk) 11:34, 1 March 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Ah! I think this is less about building a "Search" capabilities and rather offering a novel entrypoint for knowledge creation and dissemination -- SebastienDery (talk) 18:00, 3 January 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Which existing website (q&a platform) is nearest to your vision of Wikianswers? I am asking for this, because I can't imagine how this website could look like. Matlin (talk) 20:36, 28 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • What a coincidence I was also thinking about bringing q&a to wiki :D It seems like as it is the proposal is taking a strong AI centric view on what the product and process should be; wdyt of "firmly grounding AI as a tool to assist contributor in providing source and rationale in their elaboration of an answer and not a reader facing system"? If it's okay with you i would make some edits to the proposal and make it more "human centric". -- SebastienDery (talk) 18:28, 3 January 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Thank you. Yes. Enhancing the human-centricity of the project proposal sounds good. Please take care with the existing document outline as the content contains some intradocument hyperlinks. Do you mean by "not a reader-facing system" that you are envisioning that AI systems and argument technology would be tools for computer-aided document authoring instead of producing initial content in response to users' questions?
  • I'll make sure to suggest incremental changes; if you feel its eventually taking too sharp of a turn we can always create an alternate project. -- SebastienDery (talk) 12:02, 3 January 2021 (PST)
  • I'm envisioning that the power of having this being a wiki (as opposed to a tech-owned virtual assistant or a for-profit website) is that's its written by humans, revised by humans, for humans. I think a simple Wikipedia-like format would do the trick where individual pages are its own question where an answer will evolve. Codified argumentation is often too strict and cumbersome to scale, I would be concerned if we tried to build new tech on that front; the simple edit mechanism of Wiki should be enough to record the evolution of an answer and it counter arguments. If we assume this simple premise, what are the tools we can build that would accelerate contributor? I can think of a few and this is where I see AI shine! -- SebastienDery (talk) 12:05, 3 January 2021 (PST)
  • Similar to how Wikipedia and Wikidata try to maintain some parity I think a version of this project would benefit from contributing to Wikidata. Think triplets like "X is_a_paraphrrase_of Y". -- SebastienDery (talk) 12:07, 3 January 2021 (PST)
  • Thanks for this. I added "Wikidata could also be of use for storing data with respect to questions and question paraphrases." to the proposal content. In these regards, we could look at Web schemas for questions and answers for ideas. AdamSobieski (talk) 07:20, 4 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I like that the original pitch tried to be very thorough and cover a lot of topic/ideas. As it is I would suggest that we boil down to the essential as one can easily get lost in the details of the original idea. What do you folks think? -- SebastienDery (talk) 15:07, 3 January 2021 (PST)
  • We should add to the Talk page Talk:Wikianswers
  • What do you think of moving the bulk of the technical ideas to the discussion page? I think it'll help us focus the essential concepts of this proposal --SebastienDery (talk)
  • There is also the option of creating a new subpage, e.g., , with its own wiki content and discussion area. My initial thoughts are that attention to technical detail distinguishes this proposal from previous wiki Q&A proposals. Also, I think that this proposal would benefit from reviewing the most recent successful project proposal, Abstract Wikipedia, in terms of its structure and content. Perhaps we could keep the technical content on the main proposal page for now and, at some point in the future, move it to a subpage hyperlinked to from the main page? What do you think? AdamSobieski (talk) 22:28, 4 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • 100% agree on the subpage! great idea. I would be keen to move it sooner than later mostly for the reason that there's a lot of material and it feel overwhelming at first. The strategy I would adopt is "Convince me in the first 30 sec of my reading through and then I'll click and poke around if interested" -- SebastienDery (talk) 14:37, 4 January 2021 (PST)
  • Ok. I moved the technical discussion to a new subpage. What do you think about moving the user-experience discussion to its own subpage? What do you think about moving this comments section to the discussion page?
  • 100% agree on taking a leaf from Abstract Wikipedia -- SebastienDery (talk) 14:37, 4 January 2021 (PST)
  • I agree there is a need to distill what is the essence of the proposal and how/why Wiki should take it on. My intuition is that this battle will not be fought on the technology itself but rather how does it position Wiki in the knowledge space going forward. -- SebastienDery (talk) 14:37, 4 January 2021 (PST)
The project: My first was the no. But now, yes. ✍️ Dušan Kreheľ (talk) 17:51, 7 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes! I would LOVE a Wikianswers! Username142857 (talk) 11:34, 1 March 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Symbol oppose vote oversat.svg Strong oppose as Reference Desk on Wikipedia already exists. --QuickQuokka [⁠talkcontribs] 19:43, 20 March 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Don't know know (yet?) what's my opinion. But just wanted to say that this answer doesn't fit well, because there are wikis with reference desk and wikis without. As I can guess, it exists not on "Wikipedia", a wiki project that does not even there, but on "English Wikipedia", one of hundreds. IKhitron (talk) 01:13, 17 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]