Tag Archives: wikipedia

Commons Picture of the Year

Every year, the Wiki­me­dia Found­a­tion – the par­ent organ­isa­tion of many well-loved pro­jects, such as Wiki­pe­dia, Wiktion­ary, Wikiquote and Wikiversity – runs the Com­mons Pic­ture of the Year com­pet­i­tion.

The aim of the com­pet­i­tion is to identi­fy “the best freely-licensed images from those that dur­ing the year have been awar­ded Fea­tured pic­ture status”; an accol­ade awar­ded by the com­munity indic­at­ing that a pic­ture is one of the finest released into the com­mons.

With the first round of vot­ing due to end on the 4th of May, the Fifth Annu­al Wiki­me­dia Com­mons Pic­ture of the Year com­pet­i­tion has now star­ted. If you’re eli­gible, get vot­ing: the win­ners and run­ners-up from pre­vi­ous years (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009) are abso­lutely breath­tak­ing and this year is sure to be no dif­fer­ent.

The Statistics of Wikipedia’s Fundraising Campaign

Yes­ter­day, 15th Janu­ary 2011, Wiki­pe­dia cel­eb­rated its tenth birth­day. Just over two weeks before, Wiki­pe­dia was also cel­eb­rat­ing the close of its 2010 fun­drais­ing cam­paign where over six­teen mil­lion dol­lars was raised from over half a mil­lion donors in just fifty days.

The 2010 cam­paign was billed as being data-driv­en, with the Wiki­pe­dia volun­teers “test­ing mes­sages, ban­ners, and land­ing pages & doing it all with an eye on integ­rity in data ana­lys­is”.

Nat­ur­ally, all of the test data, ana­lyses and find­ings are avail­able, provid­ing a fas­cin­at­ing over­view of Wiki­pe­di­a’s large-scale and effect­ive cam­paign. Of par­tic­u­lar interest:

If you’re ever involved in any form of fun­drais­ing (online or off), this data­set is essen­tial reading–as will the planned “Fun­drais­ing Style Guide” that I hope will be released soon.

My favour­ite ban­ner, which got elim­in­ated toward the begin­ning of the cam­paign has to be:

One day people will look back and won­der what it was like not to know.

And if you’re inter­ested in what Jimmy Wales had to say about his face been fea­tured on almost every Wiki­pe­dia page for the dur­a­tion of the cam­paign, BBC’s recent pro­file on the Wiki­pe­dia founder will sat­is­fy your interest.

via @zambonini

List of Thought Processes

Thoughts – or spe­cific­ally the men­tal pro­cesses enabling us to think – allow beings to be con­scious, to make decisions, and to ima­gine. Thoughts are what define us as indi­vidu­als.

This list of thought pro­cesses is a (big) list of think­ing styles, meth­ods of think­ing (think­ing skills), and types of thought. When you have some spare time, it’s worth per­us­ing.

I’m soon to read Six Think­ing Hats, and I believe this could be an invalu­able resource once I have the motiv­a­tion to improve my own think­ing pro­cesses. This book looks like it may be inter­est­ing too.

Pre­vi­ous lists this week: List of Cog­nit­ive Biases, List of Logic­al Fal­la­cies, List(s) of Unsolved Prob­lems, List of Com­mon Mis­con­cep­tions

List of Common Misconceptions

The list of com­mon mis­con­cep­tions includes this cla­ri­fic­a­tion:

The word “the­ory” in “the the­ory of evol­u­tion” does not imply doubt in main­stream sci­ence about the valid­ity of this the­ory; the words “the­ory” and “hypo­thes­is” are not the same in a sci­entif­ic con­text (see Evol­u­tion as the­ory and fact). A sci­entif­ic the­ory is a set of prin­ciples which, via logic­al deduc­tion, explains the obser­va­tions in nature. The same logic­al deduc­tions can be made to pre­dict obser­va­tions before they are made. The the­ory describ­ing how evol­u­tion occurs is a “the­ory” in the same sense as the the­ory of grav­ity or the the­ory of relativ­ity.