Wikipedia co-founder to test quality control idea

Jimmy Wales said a new quality control program for Wikipedia will undergo testing.

A way to ensure better quality control on Wikipedia entries by color coding edits to red flag potentially dubious content will be tested on some smaller sites in the Wikia community to determine its effectiveness, the co-founder of Wikipedia said Sunday.

The color coding idea comes from Luca de Alfaro, an associate professor at University of California, Santa Cruz and is aimed at erasing doubts about the reliability of entries on Wikipedia by its all-volunteer team. It's a huge task. The program will analyze Wikipedia's entire editing history, 2 million pages and over 40 million edits on the English language site alone, and each contributor will be ranked for reliability. Wikipedia entries that stand the test of time, without revision, will improve the reputation of a contributor. Contributors with a history of postings that require corrections are flagged as untrustworthy. The program calculates the reputation by working from a contributor's history of edits.

The co-founder of Wikipedia said it was one of the most exciting ideas he'd heard at Wikimania 2007 in Taipei.

"I thought that was really cool, and we're going to do a test," said Jimmy Wales, adding that he'll have to see how the program works under testing before deciding whether to use it on Wikipedia.

"You roll out a new quality control feature, especially on English-language Wikipedia, that's a huge thing to do. The whole world's watching. It's a massive community. If it leads to problems, it's a fiasco, so it's nice that we have a small community [Wikia] where we can test it," he added.

Florence Nibart-Devouard, chair of the board of trustees at the Wikimedia Foundation, which runs Wikipedia, said the color-coding idea won widespread support from community members attending Wikimania 2007. "We're definitely going to support further research and development of this idea," she said.

The color-coding program could boost quality control on one of the most widely used Internet encyclopedias, and one of the most popular Web sites. The English language Wikipedia site accounts for nearly a third of all visits to U.S. educational sites, according to tracker Hitwise Pty. Ltd. It's also the second most visited site from Google searches, just after MySpace.com, due to sheer volume and the fact Wikipedia listings tend to rank high on Google search results.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Nystedt

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?