This past weekend I’ve been at Wikimania, an annual conference uniting and bringing together Wikipedians from all over the world. There are people from India, Italy, South Africa, Ghana, all over. There are more than 200 talks on subjects as diverse as using bots to index and update information, how to prepare and upload video you wikipedia, “How to stay out of jail and still use images from Wikimedia commons”, “which law applies to Wikipedia”, social, entrepreneurship, hacking, open culture, open street map, Wikimedia grants, crowdsourcing etc.
I’ve learned a lot about communities, massive online organizations, crowdsourcing & learning online these past days. Its been a blast. The most interesting thing to me was the Wikidata project that wants to create large open databases of information. I can’t even begin to think what myriad of applications could occur when much of the world’s open data is placed in such repositories and made accessible. I also met lots of people from all over the world. I also really enjoyed talking to the people from the Internet Archive about their projects, QR codes on interesting buildings pointing to wikipedia articles and interactive timelines of history.
Their interest in 3D printing was very high and they loved what YouMagine is doing. I have gained a lot of knowledge in licenses, copyright and sharing. I really enjoyed how open everyone was with their information and how eager they were to help us. I’ve also found what I think are some great potential partners and resources for us to help YouMagine lay the foundations for a 3D printed world.
One of the biggest eye openers for me was the diversity of those who make our wikipedia. As well as people from all over the world there were people with many different backgrounds, careers, outlooks & viewpoints. The diversity of thought was very inspiring to me. Also, there were many more tattoos than anticipated.