This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. (Learn how and when to remove these template messages)(Learn how and when to remove this template message)
An online encyclopedia is an encyclopedia accessible through the internet, such as Wikipedia. The idea to build a free encyclopedia using the Internet can be traced at least to the 1994 Interpedia proposal; it was planned as an encyclopedia on the Internet to which everyone could contribute materials. The project never left the planning stage and was overtaken by a key branch of old printed encyclopedias.
Digitization of old content
There are a lot of old encyclopaedia and dictionaries of national biographies on Wikisource both in English and other languages. The completion of these encyclopaedias vary and the quality of the content varies from proof read, to poor quality text with many optical character recognition (OCR) errors.
Many encyclopaedias are available at the Internet Archive. Although the original text is viewable the machine readable text is often poor with may OCR errors.
In January 1995, Project Gutenberg started to publish the ASCII text of the Encyclopædia Britannica, 11th edition (1911), but disagreement about the method halted the work after the first volume. For trademark reasons this has been published as the Gutenberg Encyclopedia. Project Gutenberg has restarted work on digitising and proofreading this encyclopedia; as of June 2005 it had not yet been published. Meanwhile, in the face of competition from rivals such as Encarta, the latest Britannica was digitized by its publishers, and sold first as a CD-ROM and later as an online service.#
Creation of new content
Another related branch of activity is the creation of new, free contents on a volunteer basis. In 1991, the participants of the Usenet newsgroup alt.fan.douglas-adams started a project to produce a real version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a fictional encyclopedia used in the works of Douglas Adams. It became known as Project Galactic Guide. Although it originally aimed to contain only real, factual articles, policy was changed to allow and encourage semi-real and unreal articles as well. Project Galactic Guide contains over 1700 articles, but no new articles have been added since 2000; this is probably partly due to the founding of h2g2, a more official project along similar lines.
- "LoveToKnow Classic Encyclopedia". Archived from the original on 21 September 2001.
- "Easton's Bible Dictionary by Easton". Archived from the original on 2003-08-03. Retrieved 2003-06-18.
- "Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001". Archived from the original on 2002-02-05. Retrieved 2002-02-05.
- "alt.fan.douglas-adams". Groups.google.com. Retrieved 2013-09-18.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Internet encyclopedias.|