From the peak
This week, the Signpost interviewed Skookum1 from the Mountains WikiProject.
- What motivated you to join WikiProject Mountains? What aspects of mountains interest you the most? Have you ever climbed a mountain?
- Skookum1: Mountain and mountain range articles were actually my first sally into Wikipedia, once I left the Canadian Mountain Encyclopedia/Bivouac Mountain Encyclopedia, bringing what I knew about range structures/organization into Wikipedia was an obvious course of action once I found out about this place. I guess re which mountains those in the Pacific Northwest and of course especially BC, where I'm from are the ones that interest me the most, as I know the turf well. Being from there of course I've hiked mountains, but not as an alpinist; many of the ones in my own area you can drive to the top of...
- Have you contributed to any of the project's Featured or Good Articles? What challenges are impeding the ascent of other mountain articles to Featured status?
- Skookum1: I'm not sure, maybe re FAs and GAs, I think some of the volcano ones I participated in did. Main challenge? Sources for expansion. Bivouac.com and peakbagger.com are not authoritative sources, especially the former where the siteowner makes up names to suit himself. Also name origin in many cases as BC Names does not have the resources (she's one person, I'm in semi-regular contact with on BC articles) to transfer all her historical/name origin hard copy over into that system.
- Are some continents or regions better covered than others? What can be done to improve Wikipedia's coverage of all mountains across the globe?
- Skookum1: I'd say North America and the BC/Pacific Northwest; maybe the Alps are covered in more detail and all peaks and ranges are accounted for, maybe the Himalayas too? I'd say for improving global coverage engaging the various national and regional wikiprojects would help a lot, understaffed as they are.
- Has WikiProject Mountains taken full advantage of Wikipedia's geographical coordinate system? Are there peaks, ranges, and passes that still need geolocation data?
- Skookum1: Maybe some but not on any of worked on, where if coords weren't there I added them, but mostly they were. Wikipedia should not rely on coords taken from GPS but from official sources (BC Basemap, the NGS/NTS, USGS etc.
- Does WikiProject Mountains cover mountain springs or underwater features like seamounts? Are there any ways WikiProject Mountains could partner with WikiProject Rivers and WikiProject Oceans to improve coverage of all mountain-related geological features?
- Skookum1: The area of springs and also geology/mining data is definitely in need of work/expansion. And yes, re seamounts WP:Oceans should be engaged, I'd assumed they already were. I'm not sure how WP:Rivers could fit in but WP:Waterfalls definitely – and WP:Mining and of course WP:Geology. In some cases I've pondered eg. Category:Lakes in the Coast Mountains and similar subcategories.
- Have you been involved with any other projects covering geography, geology, or ecosystems? What can be done to improve collaboration between interrelated scientific disciplines on Wikipedia?
- Skookum1: Lots; I worked quite a bit on ecozones/ecoregions and tried to deal with nomenclature problems as some of those names are not actual mountain titles, e.g. Boreal Mountains which is a Canadian ecozone.
- What are the most urgent needs of WikiProject Mountains? How can a new contributor help today?
- Skookum1: Expanding articles though if anyone has the knowledge/information access new articles even in the Pacific Northwest which is heavily covered are much in need. Both those apply to new contributor activity also. Oh, and pics where it's possible, if the new contributor or experienced editor are near the mountains/ranges an article is about.
- Anything else you'd like to add?
- Skookum1: I get accused of "walls of text" and thereby ignored, so I won't go on. Maybe more conscientious use of primary data sources rather than e.g. GPS or Googlemap coords used in place of them is an important area of concern.
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