Wikipedia talk:Wikipedia CD Selection

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Please could you add comments about the project or proposals about improving the next version here. Anything on animation, navigation, suitable subjects, images etc would be particularly helpful

--BozMo talk 16:12, 14 February 2008 (UTC)


Interwiki[edit]

An interwiki now exists for the online browsable copy at schools-wikipedia.org. The form of the interwiki is [[SchoolsWP:Article name]] or [[SchoolsWP:index:home]] for hand made pages such as "home" "subject.Geography" etc. Since the published DVD also contains a copy of the SOS Children website the interwiki technically works for that but there isn't a particular call to link to it on Wikipedia. --BozMo talk 05:55, 17 May 2008 (UTC)

Health and medicine selection[edit]

Hello, I have some suggestions to include in the 2008/9 Schools Wikipedia: Fever, Epilepsy, Deafness, Infection/Infectious disease, Gastroenteritis, Surgery --WS (talk) 11:28, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. I have put all these into the dbase (will update online in a day or too) but I thought infection was a bit shallow. --BozMo talk 15:45, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Given aimed at schools, probably should include the commoner conditions a child might experience (and certainly more likely to be searched for than current included Hepatorenal syndrome), such as:
I appreciate most in this list have sections needing tidying up and have section tagging, the question is how rigorous a tidying up is required - will adding a single review article as a reference and removing all the citation needed tagged items suffice ? Or do the articles really need be of say 'B' class or above, irrepespective of the "gap" in topics included ?
For targeted audiences interests: in developed countries children might wish to read about Anorexia nervosa, whilst for a worldwide perspective famine (ties in with existing Malnutrition entry), Infant mortality & Maternal death are of immense importance.
Finally I note there is no inclusion of Birth control (aka contraception) nor Sexually transmitted disease both previously rated for WP0.7 & WP1.0 inclusion, so was there any PC age-censoring limitation against these ? David Ruben Talk 18:12, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. By the way SchoolsWP:Birth control is already there? So are some others of the above. However I will go through the list. The schools wikipedia does not carry references so provided the content does not look dubious (which basically means a medical WP editor I trust says they are ok) citations tags are not critical. However "tidy up" matters and it is subjective in the end. The lowest quality article which got included because it was so core for children was SchoolsWP:Farm --BozMo talk 18:38, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, I had followed the link posted at WT:MED to the list at SchoolsWP:index:subject.Science.Biology.Health_and_medicine (I can't immediately see how the list is formulated re absence of 'Birth control' - is it manually done or via a category tagging). PS the SchoolsWP:Birth control has some ugly white spaceing into second section (the images would benefit from stacking if possible) David Ruben Talk 19:31, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Birth control is about eighth item in the left hand column at SchoolsWP:index:subject.Science.Biology.Health_and_medicine but don't worry. The white spacing varies on browser and screen size but I will have a look. --BozMo talk 20:54, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Doh ! - I'm obviously going blind :-) David Ruben Talk 22:44, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Articles are outdated[edit]

I just saw the [Lebanon article at 2008 Schools Wikipedia Selection, and I noticed that this is an outdated version. Could it be updated before the CD is released? Eklipse (talk) 12:44, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Ok. Updated on the database to version 241889584, 29 Sep 2008 23:35. This will happen online within a day or too. --BozMo talk 15:34, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Incidentally the old version was a few months old. The process of checking articles started in March, so any date back to March is likely with some articles before that where the volunteer marked "no significant change". --BozMo talk 16:01, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Ok thank you. But I'm lost through this project. Where is the page where the volunteers monitor the selected articles for changes? Eklipse (talk) 16:44, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
It was all explained here I think but we are done doing that at present. --BozMo talk 17:22, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Minor suggestion[edit]

How nice to be allowed to look over the articles beforehand, thanks. As far as I have seen, wikilinking works in these articles as it does on Wikipedia. The article 'Eye' uses the term 'totally blind', and the word 'blind' there should be linked to the article 'Blindness', IMO. --Hordaland (talk) 12:52, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. The way the process works, editorial additions like adding links are not allowed off wiki. If the article on wikipedia now has this improvement, we can update to a more recent version but to preserve NPOV etc we do not allow off-WP additions. Sorry if that seems over-fussy.--BozMo talk 15:47, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Slight rewording of a couple of sentences on the main page[edit]

"... [A]nd is very accurate but suffers vandalism. Wikipedia is not a childsafe environment (you can meet anonymous adults there) ..." I suggest rewording "is very accurate" to "develops accurate content", removing "(you can meet anonymous adults there)", and changing "not a childsafe environment" to "not necessarily a childsafe environment". Cheers, – Thomas H. Larsen 05:20, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. Will do. The WMF have asked to updated a statement about their involvement/support too so I will do those together. --BozMo talk 07:46, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

Some glaring omissions[edit]

The most glaring omission from the CD Selection is Mary Wollstonecraft, whom many characterize as the founder of feminism. This article was reviewed by the Version 1.0 Editorial Team, who ranked it as Top importance and FA quality. It was chosen for Wikipedia 0.7 and is ranked as one of the 200 most important biographies by WikiProject Biography. I cannot fathom how it would not make the cut. Other less glaring omissions include Mary Shelley and Emma Goldman, both Featured Articles. Kaldari (talk) 18:03, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

BTW, is there a master list of all the articles selected so far? For the life of me, I can't seem to find such a thing. Kaldari (talk) 18:10, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Best bet is either to type [[SchoolsWP:article name]] so SchoolsWP:Mary Wollstonecraft and see if the link hits an article or going to the title list at SchoolsWP:index:alpha which includes all pages redirecting to articles and every word in the article titles. The above is an interesting case: but please note that the DVD does not contain 200 biographies (the importance of the biography list was not rated as high for schools as the 1.0 project put it for general readers). However she looks as though she should have got in as she is pretty close to a curriculum subject aside other things.--BozMo talk 18:21, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
If you need to remove any biography articles to make room, I would suggest Mary Kingsley who is rated Mid importance and Start class. Kaldari (talk) 18:24, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Also Emma Goldman used to be in. I cannot believe that was a conscious decision, I will track the database and see. Thanks, in both cases. We have space for a couple of hundred more articles; we reserved some space for the community complaints...--BozMo talk 18:26, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Question: Why is the selection of articles biased so heavily towards British subjects? Is that intentional? Just scanning through the 'Mary' articles, I see Mary Kingsley, Mary Rose, Mary Seacole, RMS Queen Mary 2, and Mary Somerville, none of which I would imagine are even notable subjects outside of Britain. And yes, I note the irony of my suggestions being mostly British subjects :) Kaldari (talk) 18:32, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
I'm glad you reserved some space for "community complaints" :) Hopefully my complaints will be constructive at least. I'm an old hand over at Wikiproject Biography so if you would like any further assistance on vetting biography articles, just let me know. BTW, is there a certain age range we are shooting for? Kaldari (talk) 18:40, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
The intention is that the collection should not include content unsuitable for an eight year old, but that the coverage should be okay for sixth form syllabus (so up to age 18). The UK bias I am afraid is intentional: the target is for children following a UK curriculum although in practice the largest number of users are in India and South Africa (which is a loosely similar curriculum) and we do put more in for those geos. WP has a US content bias in featured articles and most of the ones we took out of the featured list were topics considered of limited interest outside the US (e.g. US national parks, whereas yes UK ones are included). Actually when I say we do not have 200 bios I meant general bios, if you include all the UK monarchs and US presidents then there are rather more. --BozMo talk 19:01, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Your advice is indeed both constructive and welcome, by the way. --BozMo talk 19:11, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
BTW most of the ones you mention like Mary Somerville are explicitly listed as topics in the National Curriculum: <quote>Expansion of trade and colonisation: the American Revolution; the Napoleonic Wars and the role of Nelson and Wellington; the development of Empire and colonial rule in India, South-East Asia or Africa; the Opium Wars in China.
Industrialisation: industrialisation in the local area; changes in agriculture and rural life; the development of legislation to improve working and living conditions; the role of scientists and inventors such as Edward Jenner, Humphry Davy, James Watt, Michael Faraday, Mary Somerville, Charles Darwin; the impact of industrialisation on cultural developments such as the works of William Hogarth, J M W Turner, Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, George Eliot; Gustav Holst, Henry Wood, William Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan.
Political changes: the abolition of slavery and the slave trade in the British Empire, and the work of reformers such as William Wilberforce and Olaudah Equiano; Chartism; the extension of the franchise; the development of political parties; relations between Ireland and Britain; the role of political leaders such as: Queen Victoria, Robert Peel, William Gladstone, Benjamin Disraeli; the role of reformers such as John Howard and Elizabeth Garret..</quote> --BozMo talk 19:36, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Ah, that explains it. Kaldari (talk) 21:19, 3 October 2008 (UTC)


The work done so far on the CD Selection is great, but I agree that the issue of bias is a real one. I think there could be a bit more US info (like 'history of the united states'), but the more significant bias is gender in various biographical categories, particularly artists (1 woman), people in computing (0), engineers (0), Human Scientists(2), Mathematicians (0), Philosophers(1), Producers(0). Its my opinion that it is of particular importance for an educational resource to err on the side of balance over notability, for the reason that the encyclopedia might act as a source that shows that women can be (profession x); right now, the impression from the selection is that women can only be entertainers or writers. The people from wikiproject Biography might be helpful in identifying notable women in the above fields. Though I haven't checked the categories closely, the same could probably be said for minorities.

A bit further into my own views, I think that the wikiproject Bio top 200 would be more suitable than the current mix which includes a number of semi-notable soccer and cricket players (?) I realize that the idea might be to anticipate what children are interested in looking at, but I still think there could be more historical figures, particularly women.

Dialectric (talk) 17:43, 10 October 2008 (UTC)

On the basis of the size of a DVD being the limit we have space for 100-300 more articles, so more suggestions are welcome. It may be we will give these away as USB drives instead of DVDs (we are trying to find a good deal somewhere) in which case there would be more space again. I have added the history of the US. Sports players is tricky: this year we took out a whole load of baseball players (who got in as featured or good articles last time) but I will look through the cricket and football players. These are two sections though where it is easy to find ethnic minorities. --BozMo talk 18:00, 10 October 2008 (UTC)
User:Kaldari has kindly offered to provide some suitable ladies to include.--BozMo talk 20:14, 10 October 2008 (UTC)
I would like to recommend Philip Larkin (But then, I would) IMHO its now of the quality it ought to be (tho it hasn't been through GA or FA) almost-instinct 13:11, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

Problems with the Disclaimer page[edit]

page WPSchools:Disclaimer contains this "The selection made be copied in its entirety for non-commercial purposes, but restrictions apply to other use of content."

I believe this is wrong since even non-commercial copying must comply with the GFDL share-alike requirements.

IANAL but I would word it like this " This selection may be copied in it's entirety for any purpose. You can even change it anyway you want provided you acknowledge wikipedia as the author of those parts we wrote and provided you agree to share your contributions with all the world. These duties are described in more detail in the GFDL license."Filceolaire (talk) 21:20, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. And not all the content is GFDL. The content includes a lot of creative commons images (as does WP). The idea with saying "in its entirety" was to imply provided copies include the local copy of the image licence pages and GNU licence. Is there anything else missing in share-alike? 99% of copies made at just people copying the entire DVD onto a machine, which as far as I can see is fine? --BozMo talk 05:39, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
What is the basis of the "non-commercial" caveat? I'm not sure such restrictions are allowed on Wikipedia content. I agree that the wording probably needs to be changed to something along the lines of "This selection may be copied in it's entirety for any purpose, so long as credit is given to the original authors and it remains licensed under the terms of the GFDL." Kaldari (talk) 19:53, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
The Wikimedia Foundation gave permission to use their logo provided that the selection was used "to put articles in the hands of children not for commercial exploitation". The only restriction on non-commercial derives from this but there was on-sale of copies on eBAY India, and "cost recovery" onsale in New Zealand and elsewhere. I would prefer it if people who wanted to exploit it commercially had to read the licences properly whereas people just wanted to copy it for schools felt comfortable. But I am more than happy to take improvements on text which is fairly unaltered since last year. --BozMo talk 20:28, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
Ah, that makes sense. In that case, I would only change the "made" to "may" :) Kaldari (talk) 20:49, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

Indexing question[edit]

Browsing the indices of the new edition at http://schools-wikipedia.org/, I noticed the "Performers and Composers" in the Music section, and "Performers and Composers" in the People section to differ somewhat. I wonder if this will be tweaked.

Well spotted. Yes they are supposed to match. I'll fix next run--BozMo talk 05:51, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

People important in one area but not in another[edit]

Is there any point in eg the Visual arts project asking for Victor Hugo (a great French novelist but an utterly minor, if keen, artist) to be removed from our POV? Ie will he stay in anyway because of the novels? Equally, the Fashion list is full of currently popular actresses who once gave their name to a clothing or make-up line. Any point in making a hit-list? Johnbod (talk) 01:47, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

Hmm. Are you sure this isn't for the Release Version series not the schools series? we don't have "fashion" as a list. --BozMo talk 05:46, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

searching the selection with (google) search[edit]

This may have been discussed in the past, but I wonder if you have considered adding a custom google search field to the front page of the web version of the CD Selection, set to search just the schools-wikipedia.org domain. http://www.google.com/coop/cse/ has a wizard to set it up. I assume that you wouldn't want ads on the search, so google gives nonprofits ad-free search if you give them a nonprofit tax id.

Dialectric (talk) 15:37, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. We use this on www.soschildrensvillages.org.uk and it works well. At present we are trying to get the Schools Wikipedia to match the DVD completely but I sense that will break because the online one is so unexpectedly popular and it may make sense to add loads more content. --BozMo talk 19:33, 16 October 2008 (UTC)


Some reactions from teachers[edit]

See [2] which is the UK gov teachers forum. At time of posting this the first three reviews were all from teachers who were site moderators and all good, especially the third one "A fantastic idea! - Many of us are well aware of the issues surrounding the use of Wikipedia. This site overcomes most of the major issues and the SOS Children team are to be congatulated. The language level is high and the classic Wikipedia layout is unlikely to prove stimulating to KS3 but for KS4 and above a potentially very useful resource. I enjoyed finding out about automatic number plate recognition." --BozMo talk 20:53, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

How do you nominate an article?[edit]

How do you nominate an article to be in the Schools Project? (As opposed to version 0.7...) Some time ago, I split off Environmental threats to the Great Barrier Reef from Great Barrier Reef, as the topic proved large enough to be viable as its own article, and since then it has expanded. My concern is that as the environmental threats section in the main article is now a summary, it's not as good for the schoolkids.-Malkinann (talk) 09:31, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

This is my question also. I want to nominate the article Anti-tobacco movement in Nazi Germany. Otolemur crassicaudatus (talk) 22:37, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
Here will do to nominate anything. A version number from a credible editor would also help. --BozMo talk 17:32, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

Tags[edit]

I am wondering if there is a tag/template for the included articles in the 2008/2009 version? Will a bot be doing this eventually? If not, I can help manually. ♫ Cricket02 (talk) 05:27, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

We don't have a bot to do it. In fact for 2007 it worked the other way around: articles which were tagged were automatically considered, it was how they were nominated. Now suggestions are only taken if they include the version number of a good version of the article and are added at Wikipedia:Wikipedia_CD_Selection/additions_and_updates but tagging articles as included is helpful as it warns people not to leave the article mid rewrite for too long. I think the {{WPCD}} tag would be ok. --BozMo talk 12:18, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Okay, cool. Thanks. I will start on that. ♫ Cricket02 (talk) 15:35, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Another question, looking for the easiest ways to navigate to included articles' talk pages. Would this be pretty reliable User:SelectionBot/0.7, or would I have to double check the released version to be sure each one is included. ♫ Cricket02 (talk) 15:55, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Nope, that list isn't reliable but I can come back with an accurate one somewhere easy when I have a couple of minutes. --BozMo talk 21:09, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Actually not easily. If you add the template, preview and click on the second link in it, it will take you to the article on the Selection if it exists. Otherwise SchoolsWP:index:alpha is an alphabetic index but it includes every word in the titles not just the titles. --BozMo talk 10:48, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

GA Reassessment of ASEAN[edit]

Hello, I am notifying all relevant projects that ASEAN has been reassessed as part of the GA Sweeps project. I have found the article to not currently meet the GA Criteria. As such I have put it on hold for one week pending edits to improve its quality. My review is here. If anyone has questions please contact me at my talk page. H1nkles (talk) 21:22, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Wind just passed FA[edit]

It's been upgraded over the past few months, and is in much better shape than it was the last time the article was updated for this project. I think it was a Start class article at that time. Thegreatdr (talk) 12:05, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

North American History[edit]

Hope this is the right place to put this. I was just wondering if there's any reason the image for the North American History section of the 2008/09 schools Wikipedia selection is of the KKK? Surely there's a whole bunch of less ominous images to represent all of North America's history? I can just imagine a whole host of kids asking their teacher "What's this?" and getting some harrowing answers, haha. NashX (talk) 23:41, 3 July 2009 (UTC)

You are welcome to propose an alternative but I would have thought that the picture itself is not too harrowing. From a European perspective the "history" of North America is very short and so harder to find themes. The KKK (and their murder of Luther) are fairly central parts of the American heritage, aren't they; the South of the US was still Apartheid until fairly recently after all? --BozMo talk 06:49, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Snow just passed GA[edit]

Just letting you all know. It took about 3 weeks to improve the article from start to GA class, and it's in much better shape now. Thegreatdr (talk) 01:15, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

For your consideration[edit]

After a bit of thought I've decided not to change the FAQ on your project page, but I strongly suggest that part of it needs rewriting. It currently states

the database program is not documented, and our "techy" guy doesn't have time to answer questions on it. [...] If you really want to try, you can have a copy but you aren't likely to get far with it.

To begin with, it's a bit of a BS answer because, unless he's some sort of Torvaldian genius, chances are, if your "techy" guy can understand it, someone else can, too. Which leads to the second problem: by saying I'm not likely to get far with it, you are essentially insulting my intelligence. I'm pretty sure I could understand and re-implement your script if I really cared to (I have no interest in it, btw). (There might be some functionality that you have access to which I would not, but then, that should be your answer in the FAQ.) Surely you can rephrase this somewhat, to render it a bit less arrogant? Just my opinion, fwiw. Eaglizard (talk) 20:37, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

how about a multi-dvd release?[edit]

of something like 30,000 articles. something like maybe 4-5 DVDs, sorted, perhaps, by curriculum. (math,science,religion,...)

including:

  • all featured articles
  • all ga+ articles of mid importance or greater
  • all b articles of high importance or greater
  • all c articles of top importance

should do the trick.

and a bot could find the avg link(hop) distance of each article from articles currently categorized by curriculum, and that can be used to determine what cd to put them on.

alternatively you could have a bot just mathematically determine how to best sort the articles out on to DVDs to minimize the probability of an inter-DVD link, and then determine a name for the individual DVDs based on that. Kevin Baastalk 16:24, 25 February 2010 (UTC)

(see Cluster_analysis) Kevin Baastalk 17:14, 25 February 2010 (UTC)
Method for calculating avg hop distance: calculate the average number of links traversed to get to an article classified as part of the subject, assuming links are traversed randomly. i.e. each link on a has a probability weight of 1/number_of_links_on_that_page. i can flesh out an algorithm if need be. Kevin Baastalk 17:00, 25 February 2010 (UTC)

Hoover Dam just passed FA[edit]

With flying colors, if such a large object can fly. Suggest it be updated for the next version.--Wehwalt (talk) 22:41, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

Thanks. I have updated it on the datebase so the new version will get taken next release --BozMo talk 06:29, 3 July 2010 (UTC)

Comparison to Citizendium[edit]

I moved the segment below to here, because I don't see the point of comparing this project to Citizendium. The number of encyclopedic sites out there is huge, so I think we should either make a comprehensive table or skip it altogether. Mikael Häggström (talk) 14:54, 15 June 2012 (UTC)

Since the launch of the 2008/9 version it has kept well above Citizendium on Alexa traffic rankings - although it was less than Citizendium for all 2009 and 2010 - (which, let's face it, is not really a very successful site) moving above with a surge at the beginning of 2011.

offline wikipedia delivery system[edit]

I have been looking at offline wikipedia , particularly http://schools-wikipedia.org with a view to provide wikipedia content on an offline basis for Ghana schools.

my view is to have a server which can deliver educational content preferably using generic components.I also think that it would be better all round if the set up to get it working is simple as possible.


I see wikipedia will work with olpc; one problem I have with olpc is that basically they are creating a brand. Sugar mainly works on specific distros, and thus that excludes other distros.


My approach is for a server for connected client pc's (the ones the children will be using) with a very simple set up of just slackware 13.37, apache-tomcat web server and MySQl.I have installed a java bridge so that php files can also be parsed by tomcat. Tomcat web server is available for many distros as is MySQL. Installed a java bridge so php files will be parsed.

Yesterday I downloaded a complete web page from the main wikipedia site which consisted of a html file, a directory of images, and also php files(in the same directory as the images).They were put into a webapps directory of tomcat .

I found that with the web server running the page parsed perfectly. This means that children on client pc's (could be windows) pointing their browser at the static ip of the pc running tomcat will enable them to access an offline encyclopedia.

If a page being parsed and displays properly has a relative url, clicking on that url will take the child to another page.

The content index seen at

Looks ok to me . For searching I have already played with a java server page that connects to a MySQl having fields of key words, and corresponding field of relative url to go to. Why make it any more complicated? Andybrookestar (talk) 18:19, 22 June 2012 (UTC)andybrookestar

How did you fix all the broken links? --BozMo talk 19:34, 24 June 2012 (UTC)

Ok my first stage was seeing if a relatively simple system of a php enabled tomcat, on slackware would parse downloaded recent main wikipedia files -they will.That at least means I can add new html files(and corresponding image directory with some php) from main wikipedia to update school download. Now i'm using utorrent to download the slightly dated schools-wikipedia-full-20081023.tar.gz online urls usually have http:// , with offline relative urls work .So when I get html files into tomcat first task will be to edit url and take out http://

Now I intend to set up a search facility probably jsp , this means I will have to go through pages and choose key words for the MySQL .Broken links will be the same for any web site making sure url link goes where its suppossed to and editing files with bluefish. I will give it a go , i think its going to be no easy task though. Andybrookestar (talk) 10:40, 25 June 2012 (UTC)