Tag Archives: wikimedia

Call for Papers: OpenSym 2014, the 10th International Symposium on Open Collaboration

OpenSym 2014, the 10th International Symposium on Open Collaboration
WikiSym 2014, the 10th International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration

August 27-29, 2014 | Berlin, Germany

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About the Conference

The 10th International Symposium on Open Collaboration (OpenSym 2014) is the premier conference on open collaboration research, including wikis and social media, Wikipedia, free, libre, and open source software, open data, open access, and IT-driven open innovation research.

OpenSym is the first conference series to bring together the different strands of open collaboration research, seeking to create synergies and inspire new research between computer scientists, social scientists, legal scholars, and everyone interested in understanding open collaboration and how it is changing the world.

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Paid vs. Volunteer Work in Open Source

Abstract: Many open source projects have long become commercial. This paper shows just how much of open source software development is paid work and how much has remained volunteer work. Using a conservative approach, we find that about 50% of all open source software development has been paid work for many years now and that many small projects are fully paid for by companies. However, we also find that any non-trivial project balances the amount of paid developer with volunteer work, and we suggest that the ratio of volunteer to paid work can serve as an indicator for the health of open source projects and aid the management of the respective communities.

Keywords: Open source software, empirical software engineering, volunteer open source, paid open source, software labor economics

Reference: Dirk Riehle, Philipp Riemer, Carsten Kolassa, Michael Schmidt. “Paid vs. Volunteer Work in Open Source.” In Proceedings of the 47th Hawaii International Conference on System Science (HICSS 2014). IEEE Press, 2014. Page 3286-3295.

The paper is available as a PDF file.

World Views Are Not Data Inconsistencies

I’m at Wikimania 2013, listening in on the WikiData session. WikiData is the Wikimedia Foundation’s attempt to go beyond prose in Wikipedia pages and provide a reference data source. An obvious problem is that any such data source needs an underlying model of the world, and that sometimes it is not only hard to gain consensus on that model, sometimes it is impossible. Basically, different world-views are simply incompatible. When asked about this fundamental problem, the audience was told that such inconsistencies are handled using multi-valued properties. Ignoring for a second, that world-views cannot be reduced to individual properties, my major point here is that world-views are not inconsistencies in the data. Different world-views are real and justified, and there will never be only one world view. The moment we all agree on one world-view, we have become the borg.

Update: Daniel Kinzler corrected me that this must be a misunderstanding: WikiData can handle multiple world views well by way of multi-valued properties.

Learning Across Open Collaboration Perspectives

I’m at WikiSym + OpenSym 2013 and happy to notice that some of the hoped-for magic is happening: A cross-polination of insights and ideas across the different disciplinary perspectives on open collaboration.

Specifically, I found that open source has developed insights of value to open access, open data, Wikipedia, etc. that have arrived only now or not yet in these communities. Two examples are non-discriminatory licenses and higher quality through openness.

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Design and Implementation of Wiki Content Transformations and Refactorings

Abstract: The organic growth of wikis requires constant attention by contributors who are willing to patrol the wiki and improve its content structure. However, most wikis still only offer textual editing and even wikis which offer WYSIWYG editing do not assist the user in restructuring the wiki. Therefore, “gardening” a wiki is a tedious and error-prone task. One of the main obstacles to assisted restructuring of wikis is the underlying content model which prohibits automatic transformations of the content. Most wikis use either a purely textual representation of content or rely on the representational HTML format. To allow rigorous definitions of transformations we use and extend a Wiki Object Model. With the Wiki Object Model installed we present a catalog of transformations and refactorings that helps users to easily and consistently evolve the content and structure of a wiki. Furthermore we propose XSLT as language for transformation specification and provide working examples of selected transformations to demonstrate that the Wiki Object Model and the transformation framework are well designed. We believe that our contribution significantly simplifies wiki “gardening” by introducing the means of effortless restructuring of articles and groups of articles. It furthermore provides an easily extensible foundation for wiki content transformations.

Keywords: Wiki, Wiki Markup, WM, Wiki Object Model, WOM, Transformation, Refactoring, XML, XSLT, Sweble

Reference: Hannes Dohrn, Dirk Riehle. “Design and Implementation of Wiki Content Transformations and Refactorings.” In Proceedings of the 9th International Symposium on Open Collaboration (WikiSym + OpenSym 2013). ACM, 2013.

The paper is available as a PDF file.

Call for Participation: WikiSym + OpenSym 2013, the 9th International Symposium on Open Collaboration

WikiSym, the 9th International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration
OpenSym, the 2013 International Symposium on Open Collaboration

August 5-7, 2013 | Hong Kong, China

Registration >> Program Overview | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Industry Tutorials

Conference Program

The conference program is led by three renowned keynote speakers: Phil Bourne, founding editor of PLOS, will talk about the era of open, Pockey Lam, of the Digital Freedom Foundation, will talk about open education, and Dario Taraborelli, of the Wikimedia Foundation, will talk about current and future Wikipedia research.

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On the Technology Behind the Wikipedia Sexism Debate on “American Women Novelists”

The English Wikipedia is currently embroiled in a debate on sexism (local copy), because of classifying female American novelists as “American Women Novelists” while leaving male American novelists in the more general category “American Novelists”, suggesting a subordinate role of female novelists. I find this debate regrettable for the apparent sexism but also interesting for the technology underlying such changes, which I would like to focus on here.

With technology, I mean bureaucratic practices, conceptual modeling of the world and Wikipedia content, and software tools to support changes to those models.

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