User:Base/Wikimania/Reports/2015

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I call it a report but it is rather the listing of everything that I remember from Wikimania :)

The startEdit

The wikimania has started for me with a Scholarship party on July 15th (I have arrived just that evening). I was able to finally see users Vogone, DerHexer, SPQRobin and some other IRL.

ThursdayEdit

The following day I have gone to Hackathon. After taking a look on what people are doing I have encountered とある白い猫, one of guys whose username was familiar to me for a long time :) He and others were sitting by a table titled with a scary for non-programmer me thing "artificial intelligence". Fortunately I was reassured that there is work to be done even for not that technical users. I found myself working on translating the labels wikiproject into Ukrainian Wikipedia. At the moment there's still work to be done for me on this so that was definitely a useful encounter.

Then I have attended Yurik's presentation of his Graphs and Maps and other visualization stuff based on Vega. Went there thanks to his invitation during the breakfast. That was a good chance since though I have already seen the extension I was too lazy to take a good look on it before. I really hope that now when I saw some use-cases of the thing I'll manage to start working on creating templates based on the extension in the wikis I'm active in.

After the lunch I decided to take a look at Educational Pre-conference. I must admit it was a disappointment. Half the time was spent on translation from Spanish and WTF from English to Spanish. Wasn't the conference supposed to be for just people who speak English? I don't get it. With all these translations taking time it was really hard to get the point of people's comments. The practices mentioned by people were interesting but…

Back on hackathon I talked to lang team about Content translation lack of code mode and with Amir about ukwiki will to turn down fallback (this talk was repeated several times during the 'mania).

Went to a table with local guys where talked to a guy who is doing indigenous language preservation stuff in Mexico as well as collaborating with guys doing the same in Poland and other countries. Then talked to local guys who are newbies in wikimedia movement (joined about 2 weeks ago as per that moment, were interested about movement because of wikimania). Guys were about en-1 and we spoke about Ukraine and a little bit about Mexico mostly rather than about hacking.

OpeningEdit

The main programme started with a controversial statement by Iván about Wikimanía speaking Spanish this year. Well indeed it was but not like it was a welcome thing actually. Then we had Lila explaining wikimedians what wikimedians are (as if they don't know) and saying some gibberish about growing wine or apple garden or whatever. Perhaps I'm too little of philosopher and missed some very smart and deep sense but it sounded like essence of uselessness to me. Then instead of Mayor of Mexico we had some guys and girls dancing a national dance. Well it looked nice though I'd rather hear the Mayor.

Finalizing SUL sessionEdit

Was an interesting session though not useful in terms of learning something other than confirming that first you need to check how a program works and only then run it. Some funny examples of problems encountered while finalizing were shown. Fun I believe was the main point of the session so it was successful I'd say.

Next sessionEdit

I'm titling it like this because what I was intending to go to was about "The Effect of Blocking IP Editing: Evidence from Wikia" but what I found was a talk about the Gender Gap. Quite surprised I double checked the programme confirming that there's no talk about Gender Gap at the nearby time. After some while I guessed that it's actually "State of Wikimedia Scholarship 2014-2015" still running. Unfortunately I failed to adjust to this wave fast enough. Unexpectedly started the actual thing I came to. The data provided were interesting though it AFAIU kinda random analysis of random wikis on Wikia probably most of them in English. IIRC it was shown that both useful and harmful contributions rate falls when IP editing disabled on them, but the latter drops more. Well interesting, perhaps it would be nice example in some discussion though I hope I'll find the session materials so that can study them more carefully.

Next was user:Spiritia's talk about #100wikidays. As I already knew what it is since two of my friends are the challenge surviving victims I wasn't interested in the session so I left. Having seen the presentation afterwards I guess that it wasn't very useful anyways.

Failed to be on time to any other session. Lunched.

Show Me the Money - Here's your Global Financial ReportEdit

Showed summarized reports of chapters. Only of chapters without WMF and other affiliates mostly so the information was just a piece of a big whole. Not like it is too useful this way. The guy presenting had nothing to do with fundraising so the main issue to me which is that we literally lie to donors about where we spend money to was left without answer. The fundraising guys were pointed to me, but they were deeply in conversations and I decided to leave them be.

Failures that made us better: A brief history of the Wikimedia Foundation as a learning organizationEdit

A listing of some very old failures Wikimedia movement encountered in the old past. As was pointed by Ата they didn't show any ongoing problems. The whole thing would be interesting for guys deeply in love with history of wiki, but then these guys are usually good at excavating old archives, blog posts and other stuff. Another problem was that I constantly had a feeling that the Speaker speaks French (and I'm fr-0). IDK was it really French accent or it just felt like it but it was really really hard to distinguish words in some passages.


Wikipedian in Residence in the National Library of Israel - How can a success story be a failure?Edit

It was an interesting question raised. The guys had a successful GLAM project in terms of the goals they set beforehand and which were approved by the Foundation. But, after that the project was called a failure since all the stuff they were doing didn't actually resulted in some self-sustaining thing. It is an interesting question whether game rules of such kind could be changed while playing.

Pitfalls, Protocols and Prior Planning: a Panel on Making the Most of the Education ProgramEdit

Well as most WMF moderated sessions it was a bright one. All these Education guys in brand new T-shirts. But.. All these microreports pointing pitfalls and protocols were so tiny. Hardly it is possible to compile anything useful of all it. Essence it is good sometimes but for some stuff details are important. As a sidenote, another thing I liked about WMF moderated stuff (though wasn't present in all of the sessions) was beginning with definitions of words used in title so that all people were sure to understand it in one way. English words tend to have rather too many meanings.

WikiMiniAtlas - the interactive world map for WikipediaEdit

Well it was definitely a Tech talk. I must admit that most of it was out of my league. Though it was understandable mostly still for me it was frustrating to listen about all that map rendering process since I'm not able to do the same. Besides that part there was also some actually practically showing how it works. Too bad that it is impossible to use that stuff as a base for Yurik's new Map thing since it uses some handmade and outdated engine. I do hope that Yurik keeps the promise of supporting functionality of the WMA. Don't want to see just another WMF duplicate of a working thing with cut functionality.

Education meetupEdit

After I left the previous session and found the meetup which was in another room than the 2 variants provided in programme and on its page, there wasn't much happening. Guys were just talking in small groups while having some refreshments and snacks. I followed the example. Found myself talking mostly not about Education (which partly is good since I'm not involved in the thing anyways) but discussing Lila's speech and stuff.


Social eventsEdit

Failed attempt to visit Museum of Anthropology with then forsaken promise to postpone it to Sunday evening. Though with this kinda bitter thing the evening was good but not productive in terms of improving as a wikimedian.

Wikimania Discussion Room 2Edit

Talk about Wikidata had one good thing for me is that it actually showed me a good example of an article with a whole infobox being filled with Wikidata data. w:South Pole Telescope (to be fixed, might be it was northern xD). The issues raised were of little interest especially from the perspective of me as a uk and ru wikis user. We have more important things to worry about like grammar cases. And then Yurik's question disgrounds me. Hey didn't you have a chance to talk to Wikidata guys before Wikimanía?

BLP talk kinda saddened me because people do discuss it, it is a serious issue for so many people and they strive to work with it delicately. While in ukwiki we have a full anarchy in it. Just makes an example of how long is the way ukwiki has ahead to develop.

Afterwards I become aware that on parallel session about wikidata there were t-shirts give out. Well not like I need a t-shirt much but it's kinda makes sad when with that much talks about wikidata I chose a wrong one xD kinda envy more fortunate guys :)

A Hitchhiker's Guide through Creative Commons photographyEdit

A single experience of an alive guy who works professionally as a photographer and releases his photos under a CC license. A nice experience, a nice guy. Though title was louder and I expected more than that. Could be a good example in some discussions, perhaps would be useful in Wikinews or in Wiki Loves Something in future.

How to do GuerillaGLAMEdit

Non-copyright Restrictions on Free Knowledge?Edit

Re-use of Wiki Loves Monuments photos as a hurdle raceEdit

Interesting - yes? Useful - maybe. A guy told about a single project of using WLM images for making calendar he made. Told about issues he faced like lack of English descriptions. Proposed some solutions which are more focused on actually doing stuff like that rather than getting maximum of free pictures (like what I opposed in his proposals was an idea of enforcing photographers to add an English descriptions to the files. Well I understand that on Wikimania most of us were with English knowledge. Unfortunately that is the same as judging about internet usage from a survey on the Internet.)


OpenStreetMap workshopEdit

It was shameful for me session. I went to OSM session and realised that I am not even registered on OSM. Got it fixed and was learning its features practically rather then listening to the speaker most of the time I was there.

Do you feel heard? A Community Liaisons RoundtableEdit

A session of not resonating with expectations. What I expected was actually speaking about some problems *via* liaisons. What it was was speaking about liaisons themselves. Well they are nice guys in communication and the discussion was quite enjoyable, a point I mentioned (that liaisons should use ways community is used to use like Skype of FB chats rather then someone's idea that we've got to centralize all the communication in one place). But well all that system is so wrong in my opinion. WMF got that far from community and now uses that artificial bridges rather then natural connections to hear community. I wasn't in any mood to raise that much big question so just went the way it was going.

Making Translated Screenshots With No EffortEdit

Yet another interesting but useless thing. I really enjoyed the session but there is no way it could be used somehow. What I actually expected from the title was something like a showcase how to make screenshots fastly. What I got was description of browser automatisation which automatically updates screenshots in VE and CT guides in all the langueges they are translated into. It does not yet support updating screenshots with inserting them into PDFs (like all these books for noobs). Well now I know who to ask if I would need it is it an outcome? If it is then nice :)

Ask the DevelopersEdit

Quite chaotic session with random questions being asked. There is no way I could summarize it all. But there was a good outcome. In my question I mentioned a stalled bug I reported in February and was approached by a user (a shame on me I didn't even remember his nick) who took care of it.

Podemos! How Videos are bringing Wikimedia to the next LevelEdit

Different kinds of video related projects and different definitions of what a video is were shown. Some statistics on video usage in English Wikipedia articles were provided. The one thing that interested me was the videos for the deaf "voicing" articles in a sign language. It may occur that that is pointless, they might just as well read, but it happens that their native language is actually a sign language and it is much easier for them to understand stuff in it.

Different cultures of Wikipedias: how major projects differ in perceiving qualityEdit

Well I decided to stay on this session not lastly because I wanted to take a look at Pundit who was quite popular amongst Ukrainian electorate on this years's election (I wasn't that much agitated about a virtually inactive steward). Well that was one of the kind of the interesing but useless sessions. Some nice statistics were shown, I asked some clarifying questions which were interesting for me and got satisfying answers on them. Unfortunately I see no way this all study could be used somehow. It is just an interesting thing to look at.

Making it Count: Programs Evaluation 2015Edit

It was a peak of shock to me. After a presentation which I got rather badly - too much numbers to be learned in such a fast way there started a practical part. My team was to plan organization of WLM-like contest in fictional country Discolandia for the first time there. I am perhaps not the productivemost but member of several years' editions of WLM and WLE in Ukraine. Another guys was from South African team. Well there indeed was a female person who it seems didn't have the experience. Aaaand the WMF female person, who IMO was supposed to teach us something, didn't know anything too (well she had some idea about WLM but only from reports). Thus the session turned to something like teaching a WMF stafferess how to organize a WLM contest. Not kind of work I expected to do on Wikimania. There was another team but full of these emotions and too eager to left (the session took over 15+ extra minutes I believe) I got little what they were doing.