Wikipedia:Wikipedia logos

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Wikipedia had a a series of logos before the current puzzle ball was created.

Wikipedia had a series of logos in its history before arriving at the current puzzle logo.

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On January 15, 2001, Wikipedia's first day of independent existence, Jimbo Wales used the American flag as a temporary (placeholder) logo for Wikipedia. It was not intended to be permanent. See meta:OldWikiPediaLogo for the old logo discussion.

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The first Wikipedia logo

Wikipedia's first true logo was an image that was originally submitted by Bjørn Smestad[1] for a Nupedia logo competition which took place in 2000.[2] Jimbo thought it would be a much better logo than the flag, and it remained for the next eight months, until the end of 2001. It continued to be used after this time on Special Pages, such as search results.

The logo included a quote from Euclid and his Modern Rivals by Lewis Carroll; due to the fisheye effect, only part of the text can be read.

In one respect this book is an experiment, and may chance to prove a failure: I mean that I have not thought it necessary to maintain throughout the gravity of style which scientific writers usually affect, and which has somehow come to be regarded as an ‘inseparable accident’ of scientific teaching. I never could quite see the reasonableness of this immemorial law: subjects there are, no doubt, which are in their essence too serious to admit of any lightness of treatment – but I cannot recognise Geometry as one of them. Nevertheless it will, I trust, be found that I have permitted myself a glimpse of the comic side of things only at fitting seasons, when the tired reader might well crave a moment’s breathing-space, and not on any occasion where it could endanger the continuity of the line of argument.

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The second Wikipedia logo

In November 2001, Wikipedians began suggesting new logos. A short list of 24 leading candidates was chosen in the first Wikipedia logo contest, which took place from November to December 2001. The winner was the last logo (#24), contributed by The Cunctator.

The logo included the following quote, taken from Thomas Hobbes's Leviathan, Part I, Chapter VI:

Desire to know why, and how, curiosity; such as is in no living creature but man: so that man is distinguished, not only by his reason, but also by this singular passion from other animals; in whom the appetite of food, and other pleasures of sense, by predominance, take away the care of knowing causes; which is a lust of the mind, that by a perseverance of delight in the continual and indefatigable generation of knowledge, exceedeth the short vehemence of any carnal pleasure.

International adaptations[edit]

Because of its English text, this logo was not ideal for the Wikipedias in other languages. Some wikis chose a similar design with text in their own languages (e.g. the Dutch Wikipedia). Others used the English logo but added the color of a national flag (most of the Nordic language projects, Danish, for example) or simply a translation of "The Free Encyclopedia" (e.g. German). Still others designed a completely different logo (e.g. the French Wikipedia).

The original Puzzle Ball logo (2003–2010)[edit]

The international contest[edit]

Paul Stansifer' contest-winning logo

Following a suggestion by Erik Möller, an International logo contest was conducted to find a new logo that was suitable for all languages. After a two-stage vote, a design by Paul Stansifer (formerly Paullusmagnus) won with considerable support. The English Wikipedia switched to it on September 26, 2003.

Stansifer's logo depicted a globe constructed of bevelled puzzle pieces, of multiple colors. Covered by text with links, the logo was to symbolize the continuous construction and development of the project. The logo was made in POV-ray, using a puzzle image wrapped around a sphere. The .pov file is available here.

The variants[edit]

David Friedland's puzzle ball logo.

A ratification vote was held soon after, to confirm community consensus. As a result, twelve direct adaptations of the design were created by members of the community.

One of David Friedland's (Nohat) modifications, occasionally referred to as the "silver ball", was soon chosen. The revision of Stansifer's concept removed the color and changed the overlaid text into one letter or symbol per puzzle piece. Both Friedland and Stansifer have assigned copyrights to the logo to the Wikimedia Foundation.

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Main article: Wikipedia Globe Logo
The third logo with a caption in Hoefler Text Small caps.

There was some controversy over switching the English Wikipedia to this logo due to several reasons, one of which was the fact Wikipedia's servers were flickering throughout most of the process.

Before being released to all Wikipedias, the logo was lightened up slightly.

After the John Seigenthaler Sr. Wikipedia biography controversy, a column in The Times[3] insinuated the logo as being a metaphor for the entire project. Rosemary Righter wrote "Just above the omega, at the point where, on human heads, they used to perform frontal lobotomies, bits of the jigsaw are missing."

3D versions[edit]

Although the Nohat version was made in POV-Ray (see this talk), it was merely an image projected into a sphere, with a bump map applied to provide relief and simulate separate puzzle pieces.

Attempts have been made to produce a real tridimensional object, with each puzzle piece sculpted independently, to allow alternative renderings. See Modeling the 3D Wikipedia puzzle ball - first attempts to produce the logo in Blender rendering program, and a Wikipedia Puzzle Ball Animation (prototype).

See also the thread What is on the back of the logo? at the foundation-l mailing list.

Physical versions[edit]

Puzzle ball distributed to Wikimania 2007 attendees

A very large puzzle globe, dubbed the Wikiball, featured in Wikimania 2007, depicted an approximation of the Wikipedia logo. A smaller version was distributed to the participants. The large ball was dismantled after the closing ceremony, and many participants kept a piece or more of the puzzle.

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An early attempt at deciphering the symbols on the ball. Several of these guesses were correct.
The symbols in the wikipedia logo, without the background.

The puzzle logo includes 15 letters from 15 different alphabets, many of which—but not all—represent a letter from that alphabet that most closely resembles the English "W", as in "Wikipedia". The alphabets represented are as follows:

Code2000 Armenian ini.svg
Armenian ini
(Ի)
N/A N/A N/A
Code2000 Khmer lo.svg
Khmer
(ល)
N/A Code2000 Japanese wa+i.svg
Japanese Katakana wa + i
(ワィ)[4]
Code2000 Klingon r.svg
Klingon r
()[5]
Tibetan wa + (i).svg
Tibetan wa + i
(ཝི)
Code2000 Greek omega.svg
Greek omega or omega+tonos
(Ω or Ώ)
Wikipedia's W.svg
Latin W
(W)
Code2000 Arabic yeh.svg
Arabic yeh
(ي)
Code2000 Devanagari va+i.svg
Devanagari va + i
(वि)[6]
Code2000 Chinese radical 145+5.svg
Chinese radical 145(衣)+5
(袓)
Code2000 Cyrillic i.svg
Cyrillic I or Short I
(И or Й)[7]
Hangul wi.svg
Korean Hangul wi
(위)
Code2000 Mongolian Todo I.svg
Mongolian Todo I (rotated 90 degrees)
(ᡅ)
Code2000 Kannada va+i.svg
Kannada va + i
(ವಿ)[8]
Code2000 Hebrew resh.svg
Hebrew resh
(ר)
Code2000 Thai cho ching.svg
Thai cho ching
(ฉ)

There have, over the years, been suggestions that some of these characters should be changed to reflect the actual spellings of "Wikipedia" in various languages.[9]

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The current logo with the new typeface, Linux Libertine.

In late 2009, the Wikimedia Foundation undertook to fix some errors that had been noted in the design of the puzzle globe. In particular, it did not scale well and some letters appeared distorted.[10] For the new logo, the Wikimedia Foundation defined which characters appear on the "hidden" puzzle pieces, and had a three-dimensional computer model of the globe created to allow the generation of other views.

The new logo was unveiled in May 2010. It features the new 3D rendering of the puzzle globe, with corrected characters (and the Klingon character replaced by a Geʿez character). The wordmark has been modified from the Hoefler Text font to the open-source Linux Libertine font, and the subtitle is no longer italicized.

The Wikimedia blog has more information on the unveiling, and the WMF Wiki has more detailed information on the new logo.

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N/A N/A N/A
N/A N/A N/A
N/A N/A N/A N/A Վ.svg
Armenian vev
(Վ)
N/A G.svg
Latin "vev"
(G)
Ы.svg
Cyrillic "vev"
(Ы)
N/A N/A
N/A N/A N/A Telugu va + (i).svg
Telugu va + (i)
(వి)
Khmer vo+i.svg
Khmer vo + i
(វិ)
N/A Katakana u and small i serif 1.svg
Katakana u + small i
(ウィ)
ው.svg
Gəʿəz
(ው)
N/A N/A
Javanese wa + i.svg
Javanese wa + i
(ꦮꦶ)
Gujarati va + i.svg
Gujarati va + i
(વિ)
Gothic winja.svg
Gothic

vinja
(𐍅)

60px
Latin "lxaz"
(Á)
Hoeffler É.svg
Latin E-acute
(É)
Bengali rhoshsho u.svg
Bengali short u
(উ)
Greek uc Omega.svg
Greek omega
(Ω)
Wikipedia's W.svg
Latin W
(W)
و.svg
Arabic wāw
(و)
Gurmukhi vava + sihari.svg
Gurmukhī vava + sihari
(ਵਿ)
Cyrillic Я.svg
Cyrillic ya
(Я)
Cyrillic В.svg
Cyrillic ve
(В)
Lontara w + i.svg
Lontara w + i
(ᨓᨗ)
Oriya letter wa + i.svg
Oriya wa + i
(ୱି)
Burmese v + i.svg
Burmese script v + i
(ဝီ)
वि.svg
Devanagari va + i
(वि)
維 GungSeo.svg
Traditional Chinese
(維)
Cyrillic И.svg
Cyrillic i
(И)
Hangul wi serif.svg
Hangul/Chosongul wi
(위)
used in Nahuatl wikipedia
Latin H
(H)
Laotian w + i.svg
Laotian w + i
(ວິ)
Syriac waw.svg
Syriac wāw
(ܘ)
Glagolitic vede.svg
Glagolitic vědě
(Ⰲ)
Malayalam va + short i.svg
Malayalam va + short i
(വി)
Inuktitut u.svg
Inuktitut short u
(ᐅ)
Georgian ვ.svg
Georgian vin
(ვ)
Kannada va + (i).svg
Kannada va + (i)
(ವಿ)
Hebrew vav.svg
Hebrew vav
(ו)
Thai wo waen.svg
Thai wo waen + sara i
(วิ)
Tāna vaavu + vowel i.svg
Tāna vaavu + (i)
(ވި)
Cyrillic У.svg
Cyrillic u
(У)
Tagalog wi
Tagalog Baybayin wi
(ᜏᜒ)
Hoeffler U.svg
Latin U
(U)
Mongolian wa.svg
Mongolian wa
(ᠸ)
Limbu wi
Limbu wa + i
(ᤘᤡ)
Cherokee wi.svg
Cherokee wi
(Ꮻ)
Tibetan wa + (i).svg
Tibetan wa + (i)
(ཝི)
Tamil va + (i).svg
Tamil va + (i)
(வி)
Sinhala va + i.svg
Sinhala va + i
(වි)
Hoeffler Ä.svg
Latin A-umlaut
(Ä)
Classical 典.svg
Chinese character
(典)
Tai Le wa
Tai Nüa wa
(ᥝ)
Hoeffler V.svg
Latin V
(V)
Cyrillic Д.svg
Cyrillic de
(Д)
Greek pi.svg
Greek pi
(Π)
Arabic yodh aleph.svg
Arabic yāʾ + ʾalif
(يا)
Hoeffler İ.svg
Latin dotted I
(İ)

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Tenth anniversary logo, which replaced the puzzle ball logo across Wikipedia on January 15, 2011.

On January 15, 2011, a special logo replaced the standard globe in order to mark the tenth anniversary of Wikipedia's founding. The logo depicts a single jigsaw piece, representing the addition of another piece to the puzzle.

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ Bjørn Smestad created the first Wikipedia logo according to this archived page of submitted logos from Nupedia site - as is seen in that page at the bottom "Logo ideas posted with permission of their designers. Click on a logo to go to its designer's website." Image link in that page is pointing to this archived page: "Assistant Professor Bjørn Smestad".
  2. ^ http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Mosca&diff=prev&oldid=291698049
  3. ^ Righter, Rosemary (9 December 2005). "Unreliable (adj): log on and see". Times Online. 
  4. ^ Apparently a typing error for u & small i (ウィ). This should be ウィ(pronounced as wi): (u) and (wa) are different letters. in David Friedland's puzzle ball logo is an old Japanese Kana character pronounced as wi, but this letter is not used now. See also: commons:Category:Japanese character for Wikipedia logo
  5. ^ This character is in the Private Use Area area of Unicode and may not display without the correct fonts. It is registered in the ConScript Unicode Registry, thus fonts which follow the CSUR should function correctly.
  6. ^ Due to a formatting error, the characters are reversed on the globe image, showing as (व​ि). There are problems with this in some web browsers as well.
  7. ^ Given as capital i (И) in some logos; see User talk:Nohat for more information.
  8. ^ This is a Kannada va with a i diacritic vowel on top. The diacritic was attached to the wrong place by the font used. It should have been rendered as ವಿ. See http://bachodi.wordpress.com/2007/06/30/a-typo-in-wikipedia-logo-fractures-the-kannada-too/
  9. ^ m:Talk:Errors in the Wikipedia logo
  10. ^ "brand new" about new logo

External links[edit]