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Wikidata logo
Main page of Wikidata
Web address
Commercial? No
Type of site Knowledge base, wiki
Available language(s) Multilingual
Owner Wikimedia Foundation
Created by Wikimedia community
Launched 29 October 2012 (2012-10-29)
Alexa rank Increase 24,554 (April 2014)[1]

Wikidata is a collaboratively edited knowledge base operated by the Wikimedia Foundation. It is intended to provide a common source of certain data types (for example, birth dates) which can be used by Wikimedia projects such as Wikipedia.[2][3] This is similar to the way Wikimedia Commons provides storage for media files and access to those files for all Wikimedia projects.


Three statements from Wikidata's item on the planet Mars. Values include links to other items and to Wikimedia Commons.

Wikidata is a document-oriented database, focused around items. Each item represents a topic (or an administrative page used to maintain Wikipedia) and is identified by a unique number, prefixed with the letter Q—for example, the item for the topic Politics is Q7163. This enables the basic information required to identify the topic the item covers to be translated without favouring any language.

Information is added to items by creating statements. Statements take the form of key-value pairs, with each statement consisting of a property (the key) and a value linked to the property.

Development history[edit]

The creation of the project was funded by donations from the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and Google, Inc., totaling 1.3 million.[4][5] Initial development of the project is being overseen by Wikimedia Deutschland and has been split into three phases:

  1. Centralising interlanguage links – links between Wikipedia articles about the same topic in different languages
  2. Providing a central place for infobox data for all Wikipedias
  3. Creating and updating list articles based on data in Wikidata

Phase 1[edit]

A layout of the four main components of a phase 1 Wikidata page, the label, description, aliases, and interlanguage links.
Interlanguage links in a Wikipedia article prior to Wikidata. Links in the edit box on the left, and as presented when the page is saved on the right.
Each article in this list requires its own list of links to all the other articles. The Wikidata entry for this article centralises this information.
A link to Wikidata to edit interlanguage links.
Wikidata's world

Wikidata was launched on 30 October 2012 and was the first new project of the Wikimedia Foundation since 2006.[2][6][7] At this time, only the first phase was available. This enabled items to be created and filled with basic information; a label — a name or title, aliases — alternative terms for the label, a description, and interlanguage links for Wikipedia articles about the topic.

Initially, Wikidata was a self-contained repository of interlanguage links. No Wikipedia language editions were able to access Wikidata, and therefore had to continue to maintain their own sets of interlanguage links. On 14 January 2013, the Hungarian Wikipedia became the first to enable the provision of interlanguage links via Wikidata.[8] This functionality was extended to the Hebrew and Italian Wikipedias on 30 January, the English Wikipedia on 13 February and all other Wikipedias on 6 March.[9][10][11][12] After a proposal to restrict the removal of language links from the English Wikipedia did not reach consensus,[13] automatic editors ("bots") were approved to delete them from the English Wikipedia.

Phase 2[edit]

The first aspects of the second phase were deployed on 4 February 2013, introducing statements to Wikidata entries. The values were initially limited to two data types (items and images on Wikimedia Commons), with more data types (such as coordinates and dates) to follow later. The first new type, string, was deployed on 6 March.[14]

The ability of the various language editions of Wikipedia to access data added to Wikidata as part of phase two was rolled out progressively between 27 March and 25 April 2013.[15][16]

Phase 3[edit]

Phase 3 will involve the database querying and the creation of lists based on data stored on Wikidata.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ " Site Info". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 2 April 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Wikidata (Archived at WebCite)
  3. ^ "Data Revolution for Wikipedia". Wikimedia Deutschland. March 30, 2012. Archived from the original on September 11, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  4. ^ Dickinson, Boonsri (March 30, 2012). "Paul Allen Invests In A Massive Project To Make Wikipedia Better". Business Insider. Archived from the original on September 11, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  5. ^ Perez, Sarah (March 30, 2012). "Wikipedia’s Next Big Thing: Wikidata, A Machine-Readable, User-Editable Database Funded By Google, Paul Allen And Others". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on September 11, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  6. ^ Pintscher, Lydia (October 30, 2012). " is live (with some caveats)". wikidata-l mailing list. Retrieved November 3, 2012.
  7. ^ Roth, Matthew (March 30, 2012). "The Wikipedia data revolution". Wikimedia Foundation. Archived from the original on September 11, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  8. ^ Pintscher, Lydia (14 January 2013). "First steps of Wikidata in the Hungarian Wikipedia". Wikimedia Deutschland. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  9. ^ Pintscher, Lydia. "Wikidata coming to the next two Wikipedias". Wikimedia Deutschland. Retrieved January 31, 2013. 
  10. ^ Pintscher, Lydia (13 February 2013). "Wikidata live on the English Wikipedia". Wikimedia Deutschland. Retrieved 15 February 2013. 
  11. ^ Pintscher, Lydia (6 March 2013). "Wikidata now live on all Wikipedias". Wikimedia Deutschland. Retrieved 8 March 2013. 
  12. ^ "Wikidata ist für alle Wikipedien da" (in German). Retrieved 29 January 2014. 
  13. ^ "Wikipedia talk:Wikidata interwiki RFC". March 29, 2013. Retrieved March 30, 2013. 
  14. ^ Pintscher, Lydia. "Wikidata/Status updates/2013 03 01". Wikimedia Meta-Wiki. Wikimedia Foundation. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 
  15. ^ Pintscher, Lydia (27 March 2013). "You can have all the data!". Wikimedia Deutschland. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  16. ^ "Wikidata goes live worldwide". The H. 2013-04-25. Archived from the original on 3 January 2014. 

External links[edit]