Highlights from the Wikimedia Foundation Report and the Wikimedia engineering report for February 2014, with a selection of other important events from the Wikimedia movement
Wikimedia Foundation highlights
Frank Schulenburg named executive director of the new Wiki Education Foundation, which supports Wikipedia courses in the US and Canada
The Wikipedia Education Program, where university students contribute to Wikipedia as a course assignment, began in 2010 as a pilot project run by the Wikimedia Foundation (the “Public Policy Initiative” which focused on the subject of US public policy). Since then, the program has expanded worldwide. In the United States and Canada alone, more than 6,000 students have contributed to Wikipedia as part of the program, adding the equivalent of 36,600 printed pages to Wikipedia and significantly increasing the amount of high-quality content.
The global Wikipedia Education Program will continue to be supported by the Wikimedia Foundation. But in 2012, the Wikimedia Foundation began a process to hand over cooperations with educators and institutions in the US and Canada to a new non-profit organization, the “Wiki Education Foundation“, created in late 2013. In February, the new organization appointed its first executive director: Frank Schulenburg, a long-time German Wikipedian and Commons contributor who left his position as head of the Wikimedia Foundation’s program department for the new job.
New Media Viewer: A better way to view images
The Multimedia Team invited community members to test a beta version of Media Viewer, a new tool for viewing images and other multimedia content. Currently, when a reader clicks on a thumbnail in an article, they are taken to a separate page showing the image in medium size, surrounded by a lot of text information which can be confusing. Media Viewer shows images in a larger size, as an overlay on the current page.
At the end of February, when the invitation was made, over 12,000 beta testers had already activated Media Viewer as part of the Beta Features program. The rollout of Media Viewer to the first wikis was scheduled for April.
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