Pete Forsyth (User:Peteforsyth) has been hired as Wikimedia's first Public Outreach Officer. According to the announcement, he will work on "all of the Foundation's public outreach activities, including the development of educational materials (Bookshelf Project), the development of public outreach related grant proposals and the communication of volunteer-led outreach activities to a global audience".
Moka Pantages has been hired as a communications officer at the Foundation. She will work on communications projects, reporting to Jay Walsh.
Additionally, two people, William Pietri and Howie Fung, have been hired on a contract basis to help with the deployment of Flagged Revisions on the English Wikipedia, according to a message from Erik Moeller.
German Wikipedia editor dies unexpectedly
User:Bradypus (Joachim Miesbauer), a long-time editor of the German Wikipedia, died unexpectedly on October 24 from a heart attack at the age of 38, according to reports from German Wikipedians. There is a condolences page on Wikipedia.
Bradypus had been an editor since 2004. His username came from the brown-throated Sloth (Bradypus variegatus), and he was very active in editing articles about mammals, particularly about primates. He was awarded the Zedler Medal from Wikimedia Deutschland in 2008 for his article on Ceratopsidae, a group of dinosaurs (German, English).
New version of Book tool launched
A new version of the Wikipedia Books tool (see previous story) was launched earlier this month, according to a blog post from PediaPress. The new tool launches a box at the top of the page when you click "Create a book", which then can be used to add more pages to the book by clicking the "add an article" link. Once you have a book started, you can also simply hover over an internal link to add it, via a popup interface. There is also an "add category" tool. The creator also now includes a "Suggest pages" tool, to suggest more articles for the book once you have at least one page chosen.
The tool is available to any logged-in user. More information can be found at Wikipedia:Books.
Larry Sanger's project WatchKnow formally launched last week. WatchKnow is a nonprofit project to collect, organize and enable creation of educational videos. Although the project has been going since the summer, Sanger is planning a "grassroots" launch now.