Grants talk:Project/Luctari/Wikimedia Augment

Active discussions

Change status to 'proposed' to submit for 8/2/16 Project Grants deadlineEdit

Dear Luctari,

Please note that if you intend to submit this proposal for the August 2 deadline of the current round of Project Grants, you must change the status from draft to proposed. If you have any questions, our final proposal clinic is from 1600-1700 UTC on August 2.


--Marti (WMF) (talk) 05:10, 2 August 2016 (UTC)


Interesting idea. --Jura1 (talk) 17:40, 14 August 2016 (UTC)

Some commentsEdit

  • The first section does not clearly state the problem that the project is supposed to solve or what issue it seeks to address. In particular it is not clear what the augmented really means in the context of Wikimedia projects?
  • The project goal of "encouraging wikimedia participation by gamifying the system via Augmented Reality" is extremely broad and unspecific. The applicant is advised to select a more specific goal. It is also not clear what metrics will be collected.
  • Generally what the applicant proposes is very ambitious and complex. However the proposal provides little specific information about how all these augmented really functionality will be realized beyond "a basic proof-of-concept interface utilizing javascript".
  • There is little information about the community engagement. A talk is mentioned but it is not clear where it will delivered. There are also several workshop planned but it is not whether they are going to online or offline, where and when they will be held.
  • The proposed software is quite complex. Therefore maintaining it in a working condition (sustainability) may a problem.
  • No verifiable measures of success are provided.
  • The applicant does not provide any verifiable information about their background, about what projects they completed in the past and about their Wikimedia experience. In fact, their Wikimedia experience appears to be quite limited.
  • In my opinion, in the current form the project can not be funded.

Ruslik (talk) 20:14, 16 August 2016 (UTC)


  • Please explain how the first section is lacking. I believe it very clearly provides this information. The specifics of what augmented really means in terms of wikimedia projects is not appropriate for that section (because it is too technical). "This will be done by leveraging existing systems and data as much as possible, including P625 properties and so on." is the part that explains this, and could use some elaboration but I need to know how and where. I tried to get guidance on IRC several times and no one was ever around to help, not even during the scheduled times listed on the main page.
  • It is not broad at all. It is in fact as specific as is possible for this subject matter. What we are talking about is utilizing existing articles and meta-data, and creating a new user interface for interacting with it. The interface is compact and simple code-wise (the prototype javascript mentioned). Everything can be done utilizing the existing datasets on wikimedia platforms. In fact, the only addition at all from a technical standpoint on the wikimedia servers would be to serve up an additional static javascript file under certain circumstances to instantiate the interface. This singular javascript file will probably be under 100k code when all is said and done.
  • It is not complex, but it is difficult to explain. The best way is to see it, unfortunately, it requires a non-trivial amount of work to make something that you can see (you'd have to do 90% of the real thing just to make a mock-up, because that's how "simple" it is)
  • The talk is still in the planning stages, looking for a venue. Workshops will be mixed online/offline, both can participate in a very real and practical way, unlike most wikimedia workshops, which are extremely limited in their outreach and diversity. The workshops will be held if and only if the grant is funded, else there is no point, so how can they already be scheduled?
  • The proposed software is actually quite simple, and utilizes W3C standard APIs. Maintenance will not be required, but will be easy for anyone with basic javascript skills to attempt.
  • Verifyable measures of success are mentioned, we will simply count the number of people that decide to use the new interface, the number of edits made, the number of new pages, and all of the regular metrics (because this solution covers the existing wikimedia software, it simply adds a new way of actuating it).
  • Background is covered under participants section. It is true wikimedia experience is limited. I don't see how that is relevant. Requiring it pro forma breeds only bigotry and exclusionism.
  • I believe it could easily be made ready, with a little bit of guidance. I have been trying very hard to wade through these very unnecessarily thick waters, but it has been an entirely uphill solo battle just to even figure out the process.
--Luctari (talk) 02:09, 17 August 2016 (UTC)
The problem is that I do not understand for you are proposing. How is the reality going to be augmented? What do you want to do? To put a Pokemon in the editing window? Ruslik (talk) 16:35, 17 August 2016 (UTC)
Augmented reality at its very core consists of a live view of the world overlaid with digital assets. So a person can walk around their neighborhood and when they get near a historical landmark, the information for that landmark will appear, for example it's page or anything else associated with the same or nearby P625. One of the biggest sources of new data will probably be people adding new P625's to already existing pages that are missing the linkage.
--Luctari (talk) 21:33, 17 August 2016 (UTC)
You mean that you want to create a smartphone app that shows information about objects in a pop-up windows overlapped with the objects themselves when the camera is pointed to the said object? Ruslik (talk) 09:27, 20 August 2016 (UTC)
On many modern phones it can be done without an 'app', and for those that can't the gap can be bridged with a simple Cordova stub. But yes, you have the core of the idea.--Luctari (talk) 22:35, 20 August 2016 (UTC)
So, you want to create a cross-platform HTML5/javascript based application? Where is it going to be hosted? You should understand that from what you wrote in your project application is absolutely not clear what you want to do. It should be re-written in more accessible ans simpler terms. Ruslik (talk) 17:48, 22 August 2016 (UTC)
Yes. It says this in the proposal under activities: "I will first implement a basic proof-of-concept interface utilizing javascript. I will hold several workshops throughout the year to get feedback from the community and refine the interface. By the end of 1 year a fully functional interface will exist that will be able to edit on all of the existing wikimedia properties, complete with Game mechanics that encourage wikimedia values.". I will add my earlier response to your other question: "the only addition at all from a technical standpoint on the wikimedia servers would be to serve up an additional static javascript file under certain circumstances to instantiate the interface. This singular javascript file will probably be under 100k code when all is said and done." This file would become part of the wikimedia software after the end of the year. During the prototype stage I will host it on my own scratch servers and transition to official servers whenever it is convenient for the bureaucracy; whatever works. I will add the information from this discussion to the proposal. Is that all? Seems like very minor stuff.--Luctari (talk) 18:37, 22 August 2016 (UTC)
Why do you think that the software should be able to edit all Wikimedia projects? What does it do with Wikisource or Wikidictionary? ChristianKl (talk) 17:48, 21 September 2016 (UTC)
How do you plan to know which articles / items to display if they have no coordinates in Wikimedia projects ? Léna (talk) 10:11, 29 August 2016 (UTC)
As mentioned one of the biggest additions of data will be people adding these coordinates. Once this software exists, we could, at no cost, run a little promotion by adding a scoring category of who added the most coordinates to, let's say, famous people's birthplaces. People would then, for the fun of competition, be motivated to add more data to the wikimedia dataset. As far as the interface itself is concerned, the prototype will have just a very basic search capability. So if you're standing in front of something that you know has a wikipedia page, but it isn't showing up in your augment, you'd hit a + button which would have search function, you'd find the page and then with one final click add the data. This is much easier than trying to do it the current way, which, go ahead as an exercise, try and figure out how to do on your own. :-) it's not easy. But with Wikimedia Augment, it will be easy. This is the value.--Luctari (talk) 05:37, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
I forgot to mention, in addition to the prototype, any feedback from the workshops will be taken into account and so new methods of adding, searching, and finding relevant linkages will come about directly from user feedback.--Luctari (talk) 06:09, 1 September 2016 (UTC)


Could you detail more your budget, including :

  • Number of hours of work expected
  • Travel expenses (estimate)
  • Supplies (test cellphones...)
  • Software licences
  • Insurances (if you work from home) or co-working space rent (if not)

Thanks ! Léna (talk) 14:16, 26 August 2016 (UTC)

I must insist that the entire budget, $100,000 USD, is to pay for my time. Well, you could call it 'time', but really it is to pay to keep my personal status quo (living costs), and without it, the project would be impossible. I simply cannot donate my time, I wouldn't survive. There is also in fact an exception for software projects (eligibility point number 4), so I don't think this should be an issue.
For the number of hours of work expected, I have updated the proposal Activities section with this information. As far as total hours, you should know that this is a project that I am very passionate about and whether I do it for wikimedia or find some way to do it independantly, I will spend as much time on it as my survival allows and as much as fate asks of me. I think the whole reason why technologies such as this aren't more commonplace is because of the rigidity of thought in our productivity process. The number of hours, the number of meetings, the travel (so old world), none of this adds to productivity, getting the actual job done. It's just trying to micromanage it and you strangle any creativity and productivity out of it in the process. When I plan to sweep my porch, I don't 'budget' a number of minutes, I just do it when I think I have enough time, and when I wouldn't be using that time for something better. I don't execute a specific number of strokes, or use a specific technique, I sweep the broom and use visual feedback to guage effectiveness, then vary my technique if necessary.
As far as expenses toward making the project a reality, I have assets at my disposal already for the project. I will utilize these as necessary, again, as much is as needed to meet my commitments of making the project a reality. I am very frugal. Here is how I would handle each of the mentioned expenditures:
  • Test cellphones- There are emulators available for Android devices that are completely free. If Apple wanted to be in on the game, they are a for-profit company, they could make it easy for me. If they don't make it easy for me, why is it on me to try and support them, and make them profits? Additionally, if people at the workshops already have a huge variety of devices, then there is my testing and feedback. I will also have a project page where people will be able to interact via social media to voice their opinions, provide feedback, and heck some might want to even donate their favorite device to make sure it is supported.
  • Software licenses- I think this is antithetical to the wikimedia mission of having all of human knowledge be free and accessible to everyone. The only licenses ever used by anyone should be FLOSS. Call me a radical, but that's what it takes to complete the Mission.
  • Travel- I don't waste money on things like travel. Travel makes even less sense in a digital world, while talking about digital assets. It would be like a phone company conducting meetings by carrier pidgeon. If you have a contact in a distant land, then that contact can set up a vid-chat. It can be done on libre servers without even using a proprietary service for signaling (shame on you wikimedia for using Google Talk).
  • Work space- This is an on-going 'status quo' expense for me, and is one of the reasons I must be paid for my time. I will continue to pay for it 'out of my own pocket'.
  • Project page/social media, test servers, teleconferencing, etc-- These are all in my wheelhouse already, and again will be 'donated' 'out of my own pocket' as needed (based on my expert opinion in the matter).
I hope this explains things and helps put you at ease, and that my philosophical bent does not come off as rude. --Luctari (talk) 17:06, 1 September 2016 (UTC)

Further ExplanationEdit

Hi Luctari, We are appreciate you taking sometime to put together this grant and we are happy to help you address the problem you have identified. However i will be much delighted if you can help me with the following to better understand your reason for the grant:

  • I will appreciate if you clearly state what problem you wish to address and how you intend to do this, in a step by step process (a users' or layman's perspective)
  • I will be glad to know who/whom you have shared this idea with already and what they think?
  • It will be refreshing to know you background and experience in building such a program (previous work) and (or) even your experience on Wikimedia projects.
  • Could you also help me with a breakdown of what your budget entails?

I will humbly advice that you probably start a discussion on the subject just to get feedback on whether people are looking forward to such a project in the near. Sometimes ideas may come rushing and seem to be the best way to go, but i can tell you for sure that, its only the users that determine the pace and should they not be ready for it, all this may become a white elephant. Thanks --Flixtey (talk) 12:12, 28 August 2016 (UTC)

I have made several updates to the proposal based on your feedback. See also my response to Léna above.
I have shared this idea with a number of friends and colleagues, as well as at a few hacker/maker social mixers, and the feedback has been very positive. In fact, many are delighted at the idea that wikimedia will become more accessible to them in terms of how they like to interact with technology. Indeed there is more excitement from the young, and a bit of skepticism from the older crowd. The skepticism is aimed not at the idea itself, but more at the idea that wikimedia would ever fund such a grant. I myself am cautiously optimistic. :-) Nearly everyone said they would happily be beta testers.
My experience in this specific area is almost entirely academic. As I mention in the proposal, I've spent many hours researching the topic. The only thing left to do is to bring the research to fruition. If I had the resources (to pay for my basic living expenses while I worked on it), I would simply do it as a standalone project. It in fact would be a heck of a lot less work and far more functional sooner to create a whole new semantic database for it (wikimedia has semantics bolted on after the fact), but that isn't what the Wikimedia Foundation would need, and wouldn't immediately make use of the amazing dataset that wikimedia already has. The idea itself isn't really something that is compatible with a for-profit business model, so really it's just an idea waiting for a visionary with a purse.
--Luctari (talk) 17:44, 1 September 2016 (UTC)

Eligibility confirmed, round 1 2016Edit

This Project Grants proposal is under review!

We've confirmed your proposal is eligible for round 1 2016 review. Please feel free to ask questions and make changes to this proposal as discussions continue during this community comments period.

The committee's formal review for round 1 2016 begins on 24 August 2016, and grants will be announced in October. See the schedule for more details.

Questions? Contact us.

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 18:03, 23 August 2016 (UTC)

Ironic considerationsEdit

One of the ironies of this proposal, is the fact that it is one to make it easier for people to edit/contribute. The people that think it is hard to contribute will likely also find it very off-putting to edit this proposal to add an endorsement. I have gotten feedback from multiple parties saying as much. I myself wouldn't even be able to find this proposal page again if I didn't have it bookmarked. --Luctari (talk) 19:26, 5 September 2016 (UTC)

To me this sounds passive aggressive. That means I'm put of of the proposal. That style of communicating also suggest that coordination with other stakeholders might not go down well. ChristianKl (talk) 17:41, 21 September 2016 (UTC)

Aggregated feedback from the committee for Wikimedia AugmentEdit

Scoring rubric Score
(A) Impact potential
  • Does it have the potential to increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects, either in terms of content, contributors, or both?
  • Does it have the potential for online impact?
  • Can it be sustained, scaled, or adapted elsewhere after the grant ends?
(B) Community engagement
  • Does it have a specific target community and plan to engage it often?
  • Does it have community support?
(C) Ability to execute
  • Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?
  • Is the budget realistic/efficient ?
  • Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?
(D) Measures of success
  • Are there both quantitative and qualitative measures of success?
  • Are they realistic?
  • Can they be measured?
Additional comments from the Committee:
  • Augmented reality applications are a significant area of potential impact for the Wikimedia movement, which can build on existing models of engagement developed as part of the various QR code installation programs and similar efforts. However, the proposal does not provide a coherent explanation for how the proposed technology development will achieve either online or offline impact or what exactly the technology will ultimately do.
  • The proposal is based on extremely attractive idea of using augmented reality to help users get information about objects of interest. If implemented in the form of mobile apps it can be groundbreaking.
  • It’s a great project I would like to see come to being, but I would like to reduce the level of risk (how it impacts usage) by seeing it work on a smaller scale before fully supporting
  • The idea itself is good , but I am concerned about how the tool will be hosted, maintained, etc.
  • The proposed work is entirely innovative, and represents significant, high-risk technology development. The lack of detail in the proposal makes it difficult to effectively evaluate the degree of risk involved or the degree to which these risks have been mitigated.
  • The project is innovative but it doesn't develop a clear approach to the solution of a problem.
  • If successful, this would be great. Of course, existing editors would end up complaining about the "pokemon editors."
  • It certainly takes an innovative approach to solving the problem of matching information to objects and its potential impact is greater than risks. In principle, success can be measured but the proposal itself lacks clear goals and have no realistic measures of success. The budget is not detailed enough.
  • I am concerned that the risks are extremely high compared to potential impact. We already have Special:Nearby and WLM apps, both are not well-known enough and not used enough. There is no guarantee this expensive piece of software will not have the same fate.
  • The budget is lacking in detail, and appears high given that a single individual is to be employed; the effective labor rate is ~50 USD/hour, which is significantly higher than the typical rate of ~25 USD/hour used on prior IEG grants and similar programs that paid participants.
  • I need more information to assess the developer’s experience and qualifications.
  • I can guess that author has relevant experience in the field of virtual reality but they are very new to Wikimedia so it is unclear if they understand the projects well enough to be successful.
  • I do not see any particular evidence of community support or community engagement and there is not clear plan for future engagement.
  • I would like to see a survey of users regarding the project.
  • The idea of developing an augmented reality technology for Wikipedia is interesting and a potential area where grant funding could be used. However, the proposal needs significant expansion, particularly in terms of describing the specific function of the technology and its impact on the Wikimedia movement and projects, before it could be funded.
  • A smaller grant to develop a demo would help to mitigate risks.
  • The grantee is willing to work and made some changes based on advices given. I feel like this is something that is interesting and will be glad to see it happen but will be more convinced if we could see a prototype of what this could look like and (or) how it will work. Albeit the amount requested is huge I will be more willing to give out a grant like this, only if I am about 80% certain the grantee can make this happen and even see in reality how it works. We should drastically reduce the grant for the grantee to build a prototype for just a page or two in Wikipedia, to showcase how it can scale up to other projects.
  • I would suggest the author consider a similar project for Open Street Map where it would be more appropriate and potentially much more impactful.

This project has not been selected for a Project Grant at this time.

We love that you took the chance to creatively improve the Wikimedia movement. The committee has reviewed this proposal and not recommended it for funding, but we hope you'll continue to engage in the program. Please drop by the IdeaLab to share and refine future ideas!

Next steps:

  1. Visit the IdeaLab to continue developing this idea and share any new ideas you may have.
  2. To reapply with this project in the future, please make updates based on the feedback provided in this round before resubmitting it for review in a new round.
  3. Check the schedule for the next open call to submit proposals - we look forward to helping you apply for a grant in a future round.

Questions? Contact us.

How does your project differ form WikiShootMeEdit

WikiShootMe already provides a way to display Wikidata items on a map. How does what you propose differ from WikiShootMe? ChristianKl (talk) 17:39, 21 September 2016 (UTC)

Relationship to existing AppsEdit

We already have Wikipedia Apps. The Wikipedia android app for example has >100000000 downloads. How does this proposal play with them? If you think that you build an App that's separate from the existing Apps why do you think it's not good to integrate with the existing apps? ChristianKl (talk) 17:46, 21 September 2016 (UTC)

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