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7 Sep 09 | Re: Insight into infancy of humungous project

You probably don’t know about A Storehouse of Knowledge. It’s one of the web’s innumerable small wikis - sites based on the same software as Wikipedia that anyone can edit. You get wikis about all kinds of things, and A Storehouse of Knowledge’s particular niche is that it’s a 'biblical' encyclopedia - like a version of Wikipedia for people who take the Bible literally.

Eamonn Holmes

According to ASK’s statistics page, it currently has 37 active users. Wikipedia has 148,009. So, biblical views aside, I suppose that ASK must provide a reasonably close approximation of what Wikipedia might have been like when it first started - it’s like a village to Wikipedia’s oily megalopolis. If you were so inclined, you could probably get to know everyone who had an account (unlike Wikipedia you need to create an account before you can change anything, but it doesn’t take long to do). They get fewer than 100 edits a day, so they probably only need a couple of moderators to keep a lookout for wags who might insert false information and subtle jokes. And perhaps most excitingly, the site currently has very little content (eg no article on hat or car or fish or trapeze or Portugal), so whatever topic you’re interested in, YOU can create the page on it! That way, if/when the site gets really big, YOUR input will be read by millions!

Now, some people might be put off by the biblical literalism aspect of the site, but if you think about it, that only impinges on a minority of topics. The Bible doesn’t have a view on cars, trapezes or Portugal, and says very little about hats or fish. Provided you steer clear of topics like Elijah and Heaven, the only effect it has is that you occasionally come across a raging argument between Evo Christians and uppity unbelievers telling them all about Dawkins this and evolution that and blah blah blah. Which provides a certain extra spice.

So if you missed Wikipedia the first time round - if you think you could have written a better article about say the Buzzcocks than the one Wikipedia already has - then sorry, ASK already has a page on the Buzzcocks too. But if you want to write a page about the Knack or the 13th Floor Elevators or the Rolling Stones, the floor is yours. What are you waiting for?

Thanks to Garry Knight for the pic. Licence here.

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