Out now: GLAM on Tour film; Looking back: WMDE discussion rounds 2014
Out now: GLAM on Tour film
GLAM on Tour film: How do cooperations between Wikipedians and cultural institutions work?
During the last GLAM on Tour station in the city of brilon (see project page), WMDE had a film produced that illustrates how cultural heritage institutions and Wikipedians can benefit from working together. The film, by now called up nearly 5000 times, gives a voice to longterm Wikipedians, volunteers and the director of the museum Haus Hövener and shows both interested Wikipedians and newbies and staff of cultural institutions, what they can expect from a cooperation, how an edit-a-thon looks like and which outcomes might be of interest. Feel free to add subtitles and share this as an inspiration for more GLAM cooperations.
Wikimedia discussion rounds 2014
Audience at WMDE discussion salon in Berlin, By Agnieszka Krolik [CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Last year, WMDE organised two regular discussion rounds. "Monsters of Law" discusses the legal framework for free knowledge. Experts from law offices or legal departments of cultural institutions give short insights of theire topics and discuss them with the audience, community members and other interested people. See videos and summaries (in german) on the website. "The ABC of free knowledge" is a salon in the tradition of European literary salons of the 19th century. People discuss cultural issues that are connected with free knowledge from different perspectives to illustrate how many areas of everyday living are connected with free knowledge, in one way or another. For example, experts of different professions talked about the book- and the music industry in the digital world, the renaissance of commoning as a concept and memory culture in the internet world. All events, including videos, pictures and summaries can be seen on the Website (in german). Next year, both discussion formats will be continued.
New wanted articles and aids for editing
BEIC focus shifted to text for a month
In December, the partnership with BEIC has continued. The "traditional" activities like addition of files have slowed down, while a survey of the suitable articles and images was ongoing. Uploads on Wikimedia Commons will resume in January for the selected authors and works.
This month, the focus has instead been on text contributions. In particular, Wikimedia Italia's wikimedian in residence, Federico Leva, has polished Zotero, a tool for conversion between citation formats used also by Citoid. Adding references to resources of BEIC (and many other libraries) is already much easier, but further improvements are being made as the tool is used within BEIC; code has been published in GitHub and is under review.
Additionally, almost a hundred articles have been created in the Italian Wikipedia, about missing "BEIC authors". The articles were in good part about mathematicians and science people of the 16th, 17th and 18th century, translated and adapted from English, French and German Wikipedia (and many others). The new articles are typically filling blatant holes and red links and have already attracted further contributions from users of the relevant WikiProjects. BEIC collaborators have reached about 3000 global edits on Wikimedia projects.
With these two efforts, we hope to help editors spread free knowledge on important topics and on library resources of all the countries and languages.
Seminar at the NTNU University Museum: uploading images to Wikimedia Commons
Seminar at the NTNU University Museum
In December 2014 Wikimedia Norge and the NTNU University Museum invited museums, libraries and archives in the region of Trondheim to a seminar about how and why to share images on Wikimedia Commons. A representative from the Arts Counsil Norway opened the seminar. The NTNU University Museum is one of six university museums in Norway and is a part of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NTNU. The collection includes everything from southern Sami artefacts to medieval coins to living plant collections in botanical gardens.
-The NTNU University Museum is determined to increase the public’s opportunity to see and share our photos. For almost 250 years we’ve been showing people cool stuff from all over, but they’ve had to come to the museum. Now we want to bring the museum to them, says Head of communication at NTNU University Museum, Tove Eivindsen.
-We see Wikimedia Commons as a great fit for what we’re hoping to do. We want to share our knowledge, our photos and our excitement about the wonderful worlds of biology and archaeology. What better place to do that than the Commons?
The NTNU University Museum, in the city of Trondheim
One of the two specimens of giant squid found at Hemne i 1896. Photo: NTNU Museum of Natural history and Archaology
The Norwegian National Museum of Justice
One of the participants at the seminar mentioned above was the Norwegian National Museum of Justice. Their exhibitions are related to the Norwegian criminal justice system and the history of law and order from the 17th century until today. The museum also has a collection from the occupation period, 1940–45. The museum have few employees, so they were very interested in the possibility of getting some help in sharing their collection on Wikipedia. A request for help were posted on Wikimedia Norges facebook page. The result? 3 community members have contacted the museum and hopefully they can help the museum staff with writing articles about objects from their collection and uploading images to Wikimedia Commons.
The National Museum of Justice Norway, in the city of Trondheim
Objects used for executions on display at the museum. Foto: Ola A. Vistnes.
Edit-a-thon about Spanish scientists in six museums
First edit-a-thon about Spanish scientists
On November 13th and 14th, Wikimedia Spain, with six science museums in five different Spanish cities, organized an edit-a-thon about Spanish scientists and inventors. It was a collaboration with FECYT (Fundación Española para la Ciencia y la Tecnología) and the museums that participated in that activity were: MUNCYT (La Coruña), MUNCYT (Alcobendas, Madrid), Museo de la Ciencia in Valladolid, Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales (Madrid), Casa de las Ciencias (Logroño) and Casa de la Ciencia (Seville). More than 20 wikipedians worked as volunteers in those different museums. There were different activities and the edit-a-thon will run on Saturday and in some museums also on Sunday. More than 50 editors wrote on Wikipedia, and a similar amount who didn't write attended the edit-a-thon and the talks. More than 20 new articles were created, 200 kb added and near 750 edits done in more than 100 articles. In adition, FECYT freely shared 104 portraits of Spanish scientists on Wikimedia Commons.
Edit-a-thon in Valladolid
Edit-a-thon in Alcobendas (Madrid)
On November 20th, IPES Elkartea, with the support of Wikimedia Spain, organized the first edt-a-thon about women writers from Navarre in Pamplona. The objective of the edit-a-thon was to reduce the gender gap and to promote the gender-neutral language. The participants were mainly women writers.
Going for Gold, map tagging and Histropedia
Royal Society of Chemistry
Andy Mabbett's residency at the Royal Society of Chemistry is ongoing.
The big news this month was the donation of 100 "RSC Gold" accounts, for use by project editors wishing to use RSC journal content, including full archives, and published databases, to expand articles on chemistry-related topics. Please visit en:Wikipedia:RSC Gold for details, to check eligibility, and to request an account.
The first batch of RSC staff received editor training. New articles included Dominic Tildesley (RSC President), Wilfrid Hickinbottom, Hickinbottom Award, and Danish Chemical Society, with Dan Eley expanded. At an event later the same day, Andy managed to photograph Dominic and record his voice, as well as those of other current and potential article subjects. Further voice files, for other chemists, were extracted from past RSC podcasts and released by the Society under an open licence.
See the project diary and the blog (aimed at non-Wikipedians) for other news.
In a joint effort with OpenStreetMap and the British Library 29,304 of the million images that the BL had released from old books were tagged as maps or ground plans between Friday 31 October and Sunday 28th December 2014. They are now being geocoded prior to being uploaded onto Wikimedia Commons.
To remind ourselves that the Wikimedia movement has an increasing number of uses beyond Wikipedia we invited the Histropedia team to tell us about their use of the information that we are compiling.
By co-founders Navino Evans and Sean McBirnie
Histropedia is a project making use of Wikipedia and Wikidata to build a timeline(s) for everything in history. The goal is to create a new and interactive way to explore history and to visualise the amazing work that has been done by the Wikimedia community.
The GLAM initiative has many benefits to the project, one of the most important being the availability of images that can be used to represent historical events. The inclusion of images on the events cards that make up the timelines is a very important part of the vision as it gives a much quicker and visual way to identify and compare the events.
Presently any image that is on a Wikipedia article can be selected to represent the corresponding event, and any user of Histropedia can change the selected image. The main image used in the article is not always the most appropriate for the event card, so the more images that are freely available, the better chance of users finding the perfect image to represent the historical event.
There are also additional features planned that will further increase the benefit of GLAM media for our project. For example, we plan to build a Commons viewer that will allow the images themselves to appear as events on the timeline. The images could either be pinned to the time they were added to commons, when they were taken/created or to the time in history that the image depicts. For example this would allow a user to see images of a person or monument at different times in history.
As well as improving the visual aspect of Histropedia, any increase in available data within Wikipedia and Wikidata will be of immense benefit to our goal of displaying everything in history. There are still lots of important events that are not properly recorded, for example ancient artefacts, historical publications, and artwork. The more data relating to these historically important items that is freely available for re-use, the more comprehensive and useful Histropedia will become.
We hope this project can play a role in highlighting the importance of openly licensed content for the future of free knowledge, and demonstrate that donation of such content can have an impact far beyond the Wikimedia projects they are initially released to.
- This section contributed by Eoin, the latest of our photographers to visit the Tank Museum.
Malkara Tank Destroyer (cutout)
Sherman Crab Mine Clearer
Museums are just full of old stuff! Well The Tank Museum in Bovington, Dorset is certainly cram packed with old items, but these items were tools developed by man to destroy man.
I am not a pacifist, indeed I have a military background. Yet seeing these tools of death, which are such excellent examples of engineering, lying dormant, in such high concentration is still emotive. A real up and down experience.
The visit was triggered by Jonathan of Wikimedia UK offering free tickets. Living in Scotland did not deter me from volunteering - anything for a freebie - the trip was shoehorned between volunteering at Goodwood and visiting in Torquay.
I am not a naturally skilled photographer but knowing some of the theory and taking lots of images helps. My focus is usually back at the computer using tools to manipulate and extract the best from what sometimes is a less than perfect image.
The Wikimedia UK at The Tank Museum campaign appears to be a success as several other photographers had beaten me to it - indeed one was there the week before. Curiously the same photos were coming out of the campaign - the distinctive exhibits, well placed and well lit were the ones each one of us independently photographed. Jonathan had tried to get the likes of Milhist people to assist in compiling lists of desired images. However I personally found it difficult to correlate that table to navigating almost a hectare of tank filled floor space.
The camera used was a dated Olympus E-420, standard 14-42mm lens, no flash, no tripod. Images recorded in camera in Olympus RAW format.
As to the tools used back at the computer I use Ubuntu Linux as my operating systems which can be expanded with innumerable graphics programs. For general work GIMP is a very powerful open source equivalent of Photoshop. Also UFRaw and Hugin Panorama.
I am grateful to Wikimedia for opening up this channel for me to focus some work. Hopefully my donated material can help someone else.
Bovington's mind boggling reserve collection; a warehouse FULL of old military vehicles or all shapes, sizes and nationalities.
Things have been pretty quiet in Yorkshire over Christmas but will hopefully ramp up soon. One development is an experimental talk-page template to work in parallel with the GLAM Directory Pilot. The idea is to create a uniform template to attract editors from GLAM-related articles to the directory pages that help them find resources and get in touch with WiRs and active curators/museum staff. Any suggestions regarding design or polishes of the template syntax are very welcome.
- The Bodleian Library and Wikimedia UK are delighted to announce that the Bodleian is advertising a job in Oxford for a Wikimedian in Residence
Wikidata for cultural heritage
How does Wikidata fit into GLAM contexts?
Last month, the Wikidata for research proposal was presented as part of the Open Access report. It has been developed further throughout December and is due to be submitted to the EU on January 14.
The proposal brings together a consortium of 7 European institutions in order to integrate research workflows and data with Wikidata. The project consists of 5 workpackages (Coordination and management/ Semantic mapping/ Integrating research resources with Wikidata/ Enabling the use of Wikidata in research contexts/ Dissemination and stakeholder engagement), and one of the tasks in the fourth one is "Wikidata for cultural heritage", in which the partners – particularly Europeana and the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin – plan to explore how Wikidata could be integrated with workflows at heritage institutions.
The consortium is building a network of Associate partners that are interested in exploring Wikidata-related activities. Like the proposal, the network has a strong GLAM component, with the libraries of the ETH in Zürich and of the
Ruđer Bošković Institute in Zagreb being represented as well as the York Museum Trust. The network is intended to grow until and well beyond this submission deadline and to nurture discipline-specific or national/ regional follow-up projects in close collaboration with the dedicated WikiProject Wikidata for research.