Note: This press release was published at '2007/04/17'.
Wikimedia Announces the Release of Wikipedia Version 0.5 - A CD Collection of Articles from the English Wikipedia
ST. PETERSBURG, FL – The Wikimedia Foundation and Linterweb announces the release of Wikipedia Version 0.5, a compact disc collection of approximately 2,000 articles from the English Wikipedia. The project paves the way for many such collections, with larger releases planned in a variety of languages.
“We are very excited about Wikipedia Version 0.5, because it reflects the Wikimedia Foundation’s mission of making knowledge available to every human being. Not only does it provide those not connected to the world-wide web access to knowledge, but it also showcases some of the best articles created on Wikipedia,” said Florence Devouard, Wikimedia Foundation Board Chair.
Using software developed by Linterweb, Wikipedia chose articles based on criteria for quality and importance set by the community. Topics covered include, among others, geography, arts, literature, science, history, and natural sciences. Users can browse articles using a built-in search engine or by surfing navigational pages.
Martin A. Walker, a chemistry professor at the State University of New York at Potsdam, played a central role in the production of Wikipedia Version 0.5, and in setting criteria for article selection.
”Although this is only a test release, we really tried to produce something about which the Wikipedia community could feel proud of," Walker said. "We wanted to cover the major topics, while also including a selection of articles considered to be the very best of Wikipedia. These 'featured articles' aim to be well written and comprehensive, and also free from errors, bias, vandalism and marketing,” states Walker.
Wikimedia France was at the forefront of bringing the CD collection to fruition, and securing the deal with Linterweb, a French technology company. In the future, Wikimedia France also aims to produce a French language CD through Linterweb. The French/English collaboration has proved very successful, and the two groups continue to share ideas and resources.
Wikipedia Version 0.5 can be purchased at http://www.wikipediaondvd.com . In addition, distributors have been contracted to help with the sale of the CD. LinterWeb is building an affiliation program for webmasters interested in advertising for the CD http://www.regipub.com, who will be being paid back a percentage of the generated sales. Part of the proceeds will be donated to the Wikimedia Foundation. The CD will be compatible with Macintosh (Intel) OS X, Windows (back to Windows 98), and Linux.
In addition to Wikipedia Version 0.5, a DVD of Polish Wikipedia articles will be released in the next few weeks. Produced by Wikimedia Poland and Helion Co., the DVD will include 239,000 hand-checked articles and 59,000 pictures.
About the Wikimedia Foundation
The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. is a US-registered 501(c)(3) tax-deductible nonprofit charity. It runs the websites for Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects.
LinterWeb is a five year old French company, originally focused on web development, with nearly all of their work made available as open source software. Historically, LinterWeb has specialized in data mining, indexing tools, website referencing, and geographically-related information retrival. For more information, visit http://www.linterweb.fr .