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Wikipedia Gears Up For Explosion In Digital Media

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the until-there-is-only-one-site-on-the-internet dept.

The Internet 141

jbrodkin writes "Wikipedia is gearing up for an explosion in digital content with new servers and storage designed to handle larger photo and video uploads. Until early 2008, the user-generated encyclopedia's primary media file server had just 2TB of total space, which was not enough to hold growing amounts of video, audio and picture files, says CTO Brian Vibber. 'For a long time, we just did not have the capacity [to handle very large media files],' he says. Wikipedia has raised media storage from 2TB to 48TB and the limit on file uploads from 20MB to 100MB. Ultimately, Wikipedia wants to eliminate any practical size limits on uploads, potentially allowing users to post feature length, high-quality videos. 'The limits will get bigger and bigger to where it will be relatively easy for someone who has a legitimate need to upload a two-hour video of good quality,' Vibber says."

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141 comments

I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will be (3, Interesting)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26455807)

The Wiki project represents the best and worst that's in us. I wonder if people will start trying to archive classic shows on there like they do on youtube. :)

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (3, Insightful)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456171)

I doubt it, due to copyrights. The expiration on copyright is so long that they'd have little to legally archive.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456261)

long... stupid, stupid long...

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (2)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458849)

Long bought and paid for bribed long...

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (4, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456787)

That doesn't prevent there from being a rather significant pool [archive.org] of classic media. Take the old Superman cartoons as an example. They all fell into public domain long before they could be grandfathered back into existence. Thus just about anyone who wants to host them, edit them, use them in a new work, or otherwise make use of those old films is able to do so. Also, some of those films are likely to be new works that are gifted into the Creative Commons in the same way the Wikipedia article text is. Think of a shark in its natural environment, a tour of a famous building, or even a re-enactment of a historical battle.

There's even work that's been done to show how Wikipedia might use the HTML5 tag if and when it becomes widely deployed. (See this page [opera.com] for a dev version of Opera and 2 example Wikipedia pages that support & fallback content.) Despite the seeming incongruity of allowing videos inside Wikipedia pages, the demos shown is actually quite natural.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457893)

"Think of a shark in its natural environment, a tour of a famous building, or even a re-enactment of a historical battle."

You just described "Sharks with lasers" ... I think

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (3, Insightful)

dedazo (737510) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456375)

Their main problem is going to be making sure that none of the stuff people upload violates any copyright and conforms to their free/non-free usage guidelines. There are only so many user-generated videos that could find a place in an encyclopedia, so I assume most of what they'll see will be ripped from other places.

They spend enormous amounts of time "patrolling" uploaded images, placing them on special categories for later review and so on. And the processes in place don't help, either. The last time I tried the upload page for an image from the Cassini mission I was pretty much blown away how complicated it is to figure out how to tag a file to avoid having it be deleted on sight, even though the use permissions from the copyright owner were pretty clear.

If the Wikipedia bureaucracy is bad now, just wait for the Video Upload Patrol Group to form up. Oh the humanity.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (4, Funny)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456459)

I eagerly await the update to this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_positions [wikipedia.org]

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456735)

this list is irrelevant; I didn't find the Alabama hot pocket nor the angry dragon.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458515)

Remember, you are free to edit that page and add any omissions that you feel are necessary for completeness.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

F3V0H1B (1313103) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456909)

Wow that made my day.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457329)

How will video make the problem any worse than it already is with images or text?

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (2, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456409)

We already have archive.org for anything out of copyright, or freely redistributable. There are even full length features available.

My question is how exactly is a 2 hour movie going to fit in with the mission of Wikipedia. They're intended to be an encyclopedia, not a movie download service. It would make sense to link to clips of films in the article on John Williams or Spike Lee or whoever, but all you need is a clip, not the whole film.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

TorKlingberg (599697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456477)

A 2 hour movie would probably not be used in Wikipedia itself but some other Wikimedia foundation project.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (2, Informative)

legirons (809082) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456955)

We already have archive.org for anything out of copyright, or freely redistributable.

Not for long - The Internet Watch Foundation [wikimedia.org] have just blocked archive.org [theregister.co.uk] to all UK population.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (2, Interesting)

Hogwash McFly (678207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458099)

Why the focus on 'movies'? There are many situations in which an article about a particular subject could be improved through the use of a high-quality, feature-length educational video. Wouldn't the article for the Amen Break [wikipedia.org] be more interesting if this video [garagespin.com] appeared on the page, right there in the sidebar? To borrow your example, you wouldn't have a Spike Lee film, but a documentary about him, fleshing out the details in the article and offering insight that text alone can't provide. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a moving picture must be worth millions.

Of course, you open up a whole can of worms in the editing battle side of things. Tug-of-wars over text has proved bad enough, let alone people arguing over weasel words and unsupported claims in a thirty minute documentary.

Re:I can only imagine how bad the edit wars will b (1)

severoon (536737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458225)

I don't understand how it makes sense to arbitrarily place limits on the form of wikipedia content. Maybe I don't understand how a particular type of content could be used, but that's my problem. I wouldn't want to deprive the entire world of potentially valuable information because I'm ignorant about something. (And who knows, maybe I can remedy that ignorance by checking out the relevant wikipedia movie on it.)

Youtube? (4, Interesting)

Anthony_Cargile (1336739) | more than 5 years ago | (#26455819)

Why don't they instead just allow linking to youtube videos without the WP nazis removing them? Sure they can upgrade storage size, but if they start storing videos everyone wants to see, then you're looking at youtube-sized bandwidth bills (or lack thereof) ensuing. It makes more sense to me, at least. [citation needed]

Re:Youtube? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456029)

Because:

  • youtube videos tend to look like ass
  • youtube videos aren't downloadable
  • youtube is inherently tied to flash (not an open technology)

Re:Youtube? (5, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456145)

And youtube may withdraw them or restrict their audience at any time.

Re:Youtube? (1)

Necroman (61604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456599)

  • Youtube can stream videos as "High Quality", which look a lot better than the default. More on High-Quality Youtube videos [jimmyr.com] .
  • There are many ways to download Youtube videos. Standalone programs, Greasemonkey scripts, Firefox addons. Though, I wish they would add a "download" button. But I doubt they will do that so they can keep attracting people back to their site.
  • The codec that flash uses to play is playable outside of flash. The VLC player has the ability to play .flv files. But you are correct that it is not a totally open-source format. It should also noted that some of the high-quality videos you download from Youtube will be H.264 (mp4) rather than FLV.

Re:Youtube? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456737)

The fact that if I don't have a flash plugin I have to resort to downloading FLV/mp4 from a sketchy website (or download binaries if you happen to be using a platform or architecture that is supported) is hardly a convincing argument to not using an open video format that can be played straight off in a browser.

Re:Youtube? (1)

Cajun Hell (725246) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457521)

youtube videos aren't downloadable

Huh? They were all downloadable last time I checked (a few months ago, I guess). Got a link to a not-downloadable one?

Re:Youtube? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26458723)

See a download link anywhere on the youtube site?

One word (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456053)

BitTorrent

Re:One word (2, Informative)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456167)

BitTorrent doesn't work well with unpopular information.

Re:One word (1)

ElSupreme (1217088) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456387)

But it would work if Wikipedia alwasy was seeding said information.

And actually doing it this way would go a long way to help legitimize (in many peoples minds) BitTorrent. Not to mention help with bandwidth.

Re:Youtube? (1, Interesting)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456133)

Because:

a) they probably want to ensure the content will be there in future, when they go to sell the Wikipedia 2009/10/so-on DVD Snapshots.

b) Their future split-your-video-into-one-thousand-segments and demand-more-formal-acting-and-citations-for-all-segments tools won't work with youtube.

p.s.: Mods: Yes, this is harsh. No, it's not serious. Yes, it's semi-serious.

Re:Youtube? (4, Insightful)

Eil (82413) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458625)

Why don't they instead just allow linking to youtube videos without the WP nazis removing them?

First, presumably the article probably means Wikimedia Commons [wikimedia.org] rather than Wikipedia itself. That said, one of Wikipedia's biggest goals is to have all media content as open and accessible as possible. They accept only free, open, and unencumbered file formats [wikimedia.org] .

YouTube is pretty much the exact opposite of Wikipedia. That is, you cannot download the content for your own use or to redistribute it, there is no open source software that can easily view YouTube content, there is no intelligent discussion of said content (only "omfg americas r soooo dumb"), and nobody except YouTube employees are allowed to express an opinion on whether or not the content is suitable for deletion. And finally, there is no certification that the content being viewed is in the public domain or is being used within the bounds of fair use.

Re:Youtube? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26458769)

Know what I hear? "I'm a wikipedia nazi who enforces the rules no matter how retarded they are! Especially cites in the South Park episode articles since cultural references must be cited no matter how obvious/needed! I'm important and my unpaid contributions to an internet project make me a better person!"

Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (3, Funny)

prgrmr (568806) | more than 5 years ago | (#26455867)

Do you have a large video but don't want to consume your desktop hard drive with it? Just write an article about it and post it all to Wikipedia.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26455929)

And it'll get speedy-deleted on grounds of notability, original research, etc - and you won't have a video anymore.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (1)

prgrmr (568806) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456249)

Very most likely, but that's not going to stop people from attempting it.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (2, Interesting)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456389)

And it'll get speedy-deleted on grounds of notability, original research, etc - and you won't have a video anymore.

Does anything on Wikipedia ever really get deleted?
I thought the Mods and Admins had full access to deleted pages.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456777)

Does anything on Wikipedia ever really get deleted?

Perhaps not. [dbatley.com]

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (2, Insightful)

Simetrical (1047518) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458885)

Does anything on Wikipedia ever really get deleted? I thought the Mods and Admins had full access to deleted pages.

Yep, that's generally true. Anyone who can delete things can also undelete things, and there are lots of people who can do both: over 1600 [wikipedia.org] on the English Wikipedia, 250 [wikimedia.org] on the Wikimedia Commons -- any administrator. Hypothetically a sysop would be able to use Wikipedia as a private file store this way, since views of deleted content aren't logged, but that's probably not worth it. :)

If you upload something that even the admins shouldn't see, generally an "OMG lawsuit" kind of thing like personal information, you can get your revision oversighted [wikimedia.org] -- still stored, but only restorable by someone with shell access [wikimedia.org] . This doesn't currently work for uploads, though, as far as I know.

Actually, though, deletion of files was permanent for a long time, until a couple of years ago [wikimedia.org] . This created a fun doomsday scenario where a rogue or compromised sysop account could run a script to delete all images on Wikipedia unrecoverably. I don't think backups were kept then either, so they'd have to be manually gotten back from mirrors and things like that. Fun stuff. Part of the new hardware setup uses ZFS snapshots to back up the files now, from what I've been told, although I haven't worked with that directly.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (1)

hobbit (5915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456419)

Wiki entries are not deleted -- they're still there in the history.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (3, Funny)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456127)

[citation needed]

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (0, Troll)

Mex (191941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456219)

Good luck getting it to stay for long, the Wikipedia Nazis will happily erase it in a second.

Re:Wikipedia=new on-line data repository (1)

log1385 (1199377) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456897)

That may very well be, but I could still see people using this just like yousendit. If you want your to send your friend an 80MB video, post it and let him download it before it gets deleted.

Hahaha. Typical. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26455869)

Wikipedia, as a nonprofit, is no different from any other dumbass venture-backed company.

"Hey we just collected $6MM, and we're heading into Great Depression II. What should we do?"

"Why don't we spend all of it as quickly as we can, then beg for more in a few months?"

"Genius! Give that man a raise!"

Re:Hahaha. Typical. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26455991)

Hey, if I had 6 million million dollars, I wouldn't hesitate to blow a few thousand on hard drives either.

But, seriously: if you become irrelevant, it doesn't matter how financially smart you are, you can say bye-bye.

Bigger (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456009)

Bigger is not always better [goatse.fr] .

Whatever happened with google sponsorship? (1)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456183)

I thought there was a deal in the works for google to host wikipedia and solve the storage problem once and for all.

I know the wikinauts hate the idea of google text ads, control freak purists that they be. But wasn't the google offer independent of ads?

Re:Whatever happened with google sponsorship? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456315)

No, just a rumour. Google never sponsored anything about Wikimedia other than the occasional party at the annual conference. Yahoo!, on the other hand, has been hosting a Wikipedia data room within their data centre in Seoul since 2004/5-ish. Just goes to show how inaccurate these Interweb thingies are. :-)

Wikipedia = The Internet (5, Insightful)

neoform (551705) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456195)

Seriously, half the pages I view on a daily basis these days are wikipedia pages. Any time I want to learn about something, it's the first place I go.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (1, Insightful)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456421)

Any time I want to learn about something, it's the first place I go.

I sincerely hope it's not the last place you go. The "facts" you get from wikipedia won't teach you much. (Unless you are a psycholgist studying how power can warp some people on the internet, or an accountant studying Jimbo Wales creative expense accounting. (I noticed after their last scrounge for cash, there was a big thank you from Jimmy Wales banner -- now, that was ironically funny)).

Here's a test. Pick a subject that you are expert in, or even have a good passing knowledge of -- any subject, pick a few even. Go to the wikipedia page on that topic, and you will find inconsistencies, inaccuracies, conjecture, missing information and sometimes downright lies.

Now, tell me what you think you are learning? If any page on a subject you know about is flawed, what possible merit is a page on a subject you don't know about? All you will learn is flawed info.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (4, Insightful)

geobeck (924637) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456743)

Any time I want to learn about something, it's the first place I go.

I sincerely hope it's not the last place you go.

That's the key. I agree with the previous poster; Wikipedia is a great place to start your online research. But of course I never quote the Wikipedia article itself (except for minor things like atomic weights and other easily-verifiable data). A well-written Wikipedia article is a speedy link to a collection of journals, newspaper articles, and primary sources.

Conversely, of course, a poorly-written Wikipedia article is a speedy link to a collection of 'authoritative' blogs, home pages and fringe websites.

Wikipedia is a great research tool for anyone who knows how to perform research.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456861)

That is one reason that the only thing I do on Wikipedia is to add pictures.

Then you don't even have to read the articles, and there is less room for error in a picture.

Plus, I don't write very good English.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457113)

Wikipedia is a fantastic resource when used correctly. When looking for information go to the Wikipedia article and read it for a cursory introduction to get your brain around the concept, then scroll down to the sources and read them for the facts.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (2, Insightful)

quintessentialk (926161) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457467)

Here's a test. Pick a subject that you are expert in, or even have a good passing knowledge of -- any subject, pick a few even. Go to the wikipedia page on that topic, and you will find inconsistencies, inaccuracies, conjecture, missing information and sometimes downright lies.

I've found Wikipedia to be very accurate on topics in mathematics, physics, basic chemisry, and other 'nerdy but not controversial' topics (especially as a general reference for formulas, constants, and methods). When I've examined articles on topics about which I'm especially familiar I've found that writing quality and organization are pretty good indicators of accuracy. I assume that applies broadly.

That's not the point, though. You're absolutely right that wikipedia shouldn't be the final source for anything critically important (with few exceptions). But it is good enough for most casual (entertainment) tasks, and even many professional ones, assuming you work with hard sciences.

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (0, Flamebait)

dziban303 (540095) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457853)

Here's a test. Pick a subject that you are expert in, or even have a good passing knowledge of -- any subject, pick a few even. Go to the wikipedia page on that topic, and you will find inconsistencies, inaccuracies, conjecture, missing information and sometimes downright lies.

Yeah, unlike supercilious trolls such as yourself, some of us like to contribute our knowledge to the rest of the world by fixing poorly written articles, getting the facts straight and providing citations. That's the point of Wikipedia. As it grows, its accuracy and scope improves.

Every time some clown says Wikipedia is horribly inaccurate, I ask for an example. Show me where it says Charlemagne was born in 1972, or where it says that Abraham Lincoln invented the lightbulb. So what inaccuracy are you referring to? What downright lie?

The followup is, if you can show me an example, why is it still there? Why didn't you fix it?

Jerk.

Wikipedia Search = Sucky (5, Insightful)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457077)

Any time I want to learn about something, it's the first place I go.

It's the second place I go, because the Wikipedia Search "feature" sucks unless you know exactly what you're looking for. If only Wikipedia would either fix their broken "search" or simply integrate Google search into it?

Re:Wikipedia Search = Sucky (2, Insightful)

Cowmonaut (989226) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457355)

How about you just google it in the first place? Chances are the wiki entry is the top search result ANYWAYS. And really, their search isn't bad. You just have to know what the subject is called and be willing to scroll down to see the "possible matches". The article your looking for is probably in the top 5....

Re:Wikipedia Search = Sucky (1)

Jherek Carnelian (831679) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458243)

That's what he said. Wikipedia is the 2nd place he goes because google is the first.

Re:Wikipedia Search = Sucky (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457381)

I go to google, and the first place it sends me is Wikipedia

I agree Wikipedia's search is horrible.

Re:Wikipedia Search = Sucky (1)

quintessentialk (926161) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457541)

because the Wikipedia Search "feature" sucks unless you know exactly what you're looking for

I feel strongly enough to throw in a 'me too.'

The wikipedia search feature is dreadful, but as others have pointed out, Google's is pretty good. I'll usually append or prepend the phrase 'wiki'. E.g.: 'wiki paw-paw' or 'wiki radiant intensity'.

Re:Wikipedia Search = Sucky (3, Informative)

Simetrical (1047518) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458933)

There have been major improvements to search lately, thanks pretty much solely to the volunteer work of Robert Stojnic (rainman). You might want to try it out again. Still probably not quite up to Google levels in some ways, given the difference in budget of some billions of dollars versus ~$0, but it has better relevance than before and a lot more nice features now (e.g., "did you mean").

Re:Wikipedia = The Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26459007)

It's funny, as a math grad student I my professors often suggesting to just wikipedia definitions for an alternative explanation.

legitimate need? (3, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456211)

"legitimate need to upload a two-hour video of good quality"

Who gets to define legitimate?

Re:legitimate need? (3, Insightful)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456433)

The same people who determine whether a given paragraph legitimately deserves to remain in a Wikipedia article: the community of volunteer contributors.

For better or worse, the people deciding what videos should be kept and which should be deleted will be those who are involved and passionate about Wikipedia. If you think Wikipedia is doing overall a good job so far, then presumably you expect them to make good decisions about what videos are worthwhile. If you think Wikipedia is overall doing a poor job, then presumably you expect them to make poor and/or capricious choices with respect to video.

Re:legitimate need? (2, Informative)

Simetrical (1047518) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458983)

Actually, most of these uploads should go to the Wikimedia Commons [wikimedia.org] , not Wikipedia proper. Files uploaded to Commons can be used on any Wikimedia site, including any language of Wikipedia, Wiktionary, etc. Files uploaded to the English Wikipedia can only be used on the English Wikipedia. The Commons admins [wikimedia.org] are largely a different group of people from the English Wikipedia admins [wikipedia.org] , although there's some overlap. Adminship is given out on a per-project basis; only a few dozen stewards [wikimedia.org] have any privileges across projects.

Re:legitimate need? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456595)

*Is* there a legitimate use for such a beast? What film/video is so special that dedicating space equivalent to thousands of pictures and hundreds of thousands of text pages is worth it? For a few minutes or seconds makes sense.

Re:legitimate need? (1)

Mishotaki (957104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456637)

what i'm wondering is the crappy quality that a 100mb, 2hour long video file will be...

Re:legitimate need? (1)

SeePage87 (923251) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456879)

"legitimate need to upload a two-hour video of good quality"

Who gets to define legitimate?

I do. It amazes me how long it takes some people to catch on.

Re:legitimate need? (1)

quintessentialk (926161) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457601)

"legitimate need to upload a two-hour video of good quality" Who gets to define legitimate?

As others have pointed out, 'The Community.' But I have a hard time believing something of that length could possibly be appropriate for an encyclopedia article. Then again, that applies to be existing wikipedia articles....

Typo (2, Insightful)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456243)

Unlike my name, Vibber's is spelled BriOn.

I have a great idea! (1)

stonedcat (80201) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456285)

Wikipornia

P2P (1)

vlad_petric (94134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456313)

IMHO, what they really need is a good P2P protocol to handle streaming media. Storage is not nearly as much of a problem as the bandwidth required. A 1 TB hdd can be had for 100$. 5-way replication - 500$. Still peanuts compared to the cost of actually serving it.

I forsee a new job at Wikipedia... (4, Insightful)

GPLDAN (732269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456349)

...video editor

Am I going to the Wikipedia page on France, and watching a video, complete with caption in *My* language, of France - like a mini-documentary or travel brochure or promo? Who produces that? Who edits it? Is there a standard narrator? Can we get that guy with the cool voice that does Frontline to do them all? Will they have any standards in how they are produced? How they are credited?

There is a fundamental and critical difference between Youtube, which is a Bazaar, and Wikipedia, which is a Cathedral - to brazenly steal Eric Raymond's title.

A video on say France is the authoritative video on the subject. Unlike say a picture, which may be used or copied with permission that may show a city or a map, videos require much more work. Will Oliver Stone get to do the video for George W Bush? Will it be like the BMW series with Clive Owen, having a bunch of guest directors? Can we have Marty Scorsese do the video for New York City?

Multimedia is cool, but it opens up alot of problems.

Commons? (2, Informative)

JeffSh (71237) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456353)

Sounds pretty dumb to me. Media should be at Wikimedia commons, not in Wikipedia proper.

Maybe that's what he means, but I didn't RTFA.

960 TByte should be enough (0, Flamebait)

janwedekind (778872) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456439)

960 TByte / 1500E+6 internet users = 640 kByte
That ought to be enough for anybody.

But. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26456449)

Despite all this this "storage", you are still not "notable" [wikipedia.org] . "CSD A7" is your usual fate, so they don't even have to "AFD" or "PROD" you anymore. [here is your citation needed] [wikipedia.org]

For example of the notabillity double standards (known WP:OTHERCRAPEXISTS [wikipedia.org] in "wikispeak"): Wikipedia has over 100,000 articles in volapuk [wikipedia.org] which is a dead conlang which was generated by a bot, but won't let have us an article about the pokemon called "Mudkip". (using the so i herd you like mudkips "meme" as "proof" that it is not "notable".

Also Wikipedia is vandalmania for "featuring" "4chan" today [4chan.org] Seethe "Random" board, aka "/b/" to see what I mean if you are a "newfag" in 4chanspeak.

A chance for .ogg to shine (3, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456457)

These developments offer a chance for the open source .ogg/theora format to shine.

While folks at Illiminable [illiminable.com] have done a good job of providing a codec to play .ogg files within Windows Media Player, I hope this can be available by default.

That is, you attempt to play an .ogg/theora file and the system provides a opportunity to download and install/setup the plugin by default on systems without the ability to play .ogg/theora files.

Re:A chance for .ogg to shine (4, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456669)

Except that theora isn't all that good. Yes it is free but the quality isn't as good as many other codecs out there. I wish that Dirac would get more attention as a codec.

Re:A chance for .ogg to shine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457875)

The people who designed Wikipedia's media player had similar thoughts. Guess how many times a regular Flash player (like YouTube's) has crashed for me? Zero. How many times Wikipedia's player has crashed my browser? About a dozen, until I stopped trying to use it at all. But at least they're using a feel-good free format, so it's okay, I suppose.

Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (5, Insightful)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456469)

This is out of scope for Wikipedia. It sounds like this should be an entirely separate project. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. Encyclopedias should not have video:

I don't mean that because traditional encyclopedias did not have video, but because it doesn't fit with the type of content that an encyclopedia presents. It is similar to how newspapers should not have video. Wikipedia is not a teaching tool. It is not meant to provide functional examples. It is a starting point: a dictionary-style explanatory description.

An entry on the Hindenburg does not need a video of the Hindenburg disaster. It needs technical specifications, historically accurate statements of what happened, and a link to a museum who DOES house the video.

An entry on Calculus needs a historic description and a mathematical overview. Not a 2-hour lecture.

Now --- that doesn't mean that a video repository is not a good project. I think that would be awesome. Youtube kinda has that, but it has garbage thrown in. But maybe Wikipedia is not the place for it.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (5, Insightful)

JPortal (857107) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456603)

I don't see why that's outside the scope of Wikipedia. A video of the disaster could fall under "historically accurate [depiction] of what happened."
I agree that lectures would be a bad idea, but some full-length videos are very informative and useful for research purposes.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456899)

This is out of scope for Wikipedia. It sounds like this should be an entirely separate project. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. Encyclopedias should not have video:

Why? Just cause you say so? The wiki folks already enjoy deleting as many articles they can, so I'm sure you can work with them to delete as many videos as you can.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (1)

geniice (1336589) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457287)

Articles with videos in have been on wikipedia for some time for example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tank#History [wikipedia.org] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cartesian_diver#Experiment_description [wikipedia.org] when encyclopedias moved from books to CDs back in the 90s they did have videos (not many but I doubt there is a past encyclopedia with anything close to the number of pictures wikipedia has). While encyclopedic videos are not easy they are certianly posible.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (1)

AndyCh (1153959) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457435)

Yeah! And when they put pictures in newspapers as well that just got in the way of the text. And this kind of thing http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AU8PId_6xec [youtube.com] (YouTube.com) is a pointless waste of resources. I'd rather read 250 words on the nature of light.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (2, Insightful)

jubei (89485) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457481)

Videos can be especially helpful when used to describe motions and processes. Things like engine cycles, swarming behavior, and traffic patterns would be good subjects for videos.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457695)

This is out of scope for Wikipedia. It sounds like this should be an entirely separate project. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. Encyclopedias should not have video:

...why not?

An entry on the Hindenburg does not need a video of the Hindenburg disaster.

I'd say "citation needed", but I think "steaming pile of bullshit" is more appropriate. Of course it doesn't NEED it, but then, it doesn't need a picture, either, right? Can always link to some other site. Or even much text, background and so on - why not just give a general overview in a paragraph or two, and then link to museums etc. that will provide detailed explanations?

I think it'd make just as much sense as your claim that there's no "need" for a video, and it's about the same kind of ass-pull, too, the same kind of not-actually-providing-a-reason-but-merely-repeating-the-claim.

Anyhow, why not just inform the Wikipedia guys of all this? I'm sure they'll see the error of their ways immediately when confronted with your brilliant reasoning.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457921)

Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, yes; however, Wikimedia Commons [wikimedia.org] is "A database of freely usable media files to which anyone can contribute." Wikiversity [wikiversity.org] is "a Wikimedia Foundation project devoted to learning resources, learning projects, and research for use in all levels, types, and styles of education from pre-school to university, including professional training and informal learning." Wikibooks [wikibooks.org] can definitely use functional examples.

Wikipedia isn't necessarily going to have audio and video; it may just link to Wikimedia Commons.

In all reality, the title of this article itself is kind of poor. It should really say "Wikimedia Gears Up For Explosion In Digital Media".

Posting anonymous because I can't remember my password.

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (1)

General Wesc (59919) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457941)

I suspect the article is misleading in saying 'Wikipedia'. It should probably say 'WikiMedia' (Wikipedia + Wiktionary + WikiBooks + WikiSources + WikiQuote + WikiMedia Commons (and this one is particularly relevant) + probably more).

Re:Too much of a burden on Wikipedia (2, Interesting)

Thaelon (250687) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458137)

An entry on the Hindenburg does not need a video of the Hindenburg disaster.

I disagree. I think that's a perfect example of an article that needs video. In my mind the video starts when something goes visibly wrong to the point that it's a pile of stationary, yet flaming wreckage on the ground and that's it.

Contrast this with typical American TV that is so fucking full of filler like commentary and "dramatic" camera movements that I can't watch it anymore. Like "World's Most Dangerous Police Chases" and the like. There's like 3 minutes of worthy video padded with 3-10 repetitions and 21 minutes of inane blathering no one cares about. The kind of stuff that is invariably absent on youtube renditions - even those taken from the show.

I think there are exceptional cases where a video is warranted, but they should be extremely short. No commentary whatsoever. Text is a better format for it.

This turned out to be a kind of exploratory essay, and I apologize, but I guess the conclusion is: Yes wikipedia should have video, but only in exceptional cases, and keep it as short as possible, and no speaking.

Lastly, I expect Wikipedia's video posting rules to cite this post.*

*Warning: do not attempt to read this sentence without a sense of humor.

Finally (2, Interesting)

dimethylxanthine (946092) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456515)

The children of Africa will be able to appreciate such artistically rich works as Andres Serrano's [wikipedia.org] photograph of a crucifix submerged in urine, Barbara Kruger [wikipedia.org] 's accusatory slogans (useful in politics class across Zimbabwe?) and Robert Mapplethorpe [wikipedia.org] 's self-portrait featuring a whip protruding from his anus.

Only 2TB !!! (1)

ElSupreme (1217088) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456549)

Wikipedia is only 2TB total??? I mean I could run a mirror from my home server. After I delete my TiVoed stuff that is. I am amazed how much information 2TB actually is then. Wikipedia is an endless supply of (hersay) information.

Re:Only 2TB !!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457049)

This is interesting to me as well. I recently bought two 1.5TB hard drives and put them in RAID-0 (For 3TB). With Moore's law and rapidly increasing hard capacities: petabytes, exabytes, zettabyte and even the yottabyte will be in reach. It's the digital Great Wall of China!

Also, the "SD-XC" standard that was recently announced will also be interesting as they try to put the 2TB on an SD card(!)

This is going to be what YouTube was supposed tobe (2, Interesting)

DelgadoRandom (1452893) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456639)

Instead of just wading through a billion "OMG Kid FAILS at Suzuki ghost-ride in front of hott!!!" videos mismarked as news, people can actually get to the most representative and informative feeds on emerging issues. Like a public newsroom.

Wiki content fascists will reduce storage need (1)

brooke618 (846765) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456811)

The self-appointed content fascists on Wikipedia should result in a great reduction in the amount of storage needed. I like Wikipedia, find it to be extremely useful, and use it a lot -- but I have nearly given up on adding images to it, as there are too many idiots who delete legitimate images, citing an interpretation of some regulation or other, but being completely wrong about it. It takes too much effort to argue back and forth with them. I imagine that it will be even worse for video. You'll need 20 pages of justification and a mathematical proof of its correctness and suitability, or some ass will eventually delete it.

Re:Wiki content fascists will reduce storage need (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456935)

The self-appointed content fascists on Wikipedia should result in a great reduction in the amount of storage needed.

Agreed. Why does the wikipedia need more storage, when their main focus seems to be deleting other peoples articles?

You'd think they would "upgrade" to smaller disks not bigger disks. Move the whole think to a single small SD card or something.

Who will pay for this ? (4, Insightful)

eulernet (1132389) | more than 5 years ago | (#26456867)

If they increase the storage, it means that the traffic will explode.
Who will pay for the bandwidth ?
This year, it was 6 millions of dollars, but with videos, at least 10 times this amount will be needed.
Does this mean that ads will appear ?

Re:Who will pay for this ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26458535)

"ATP is the Microsoft of your body- it gets you where you want to go!"

You learn something new everyday... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26457269)

Here I am, going around all these years thinking that all content on the internet was digital. Looks like the jokes on me.

Well Im off to Wikipedia to find some analog media. Maybe tomorrow I can find some media that is biological. That would be sweet.

How about offering images for download again? (2, Interesting)

harmonica (29841) | more than 5 years ago | (#26457615)

It's been 18 months [wikipedia.org] since Wikipedia provided bulk downloads of image data. That may not be a priority for most people, but offering everything for download is essential for an open project in my opinion. Add all new images of a month to YYYYMM.tar and offer that as a torrent.

AWESOME for education! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26458047)

Imagine how many more poor 3rd world nation kids we could attract to Wikipedia once people start uploading some adult videos...you know, to demonstrate and safe and proper mating practices. This will make a huge impact on the AIDS problem in Africa. I just hope those classmatePCs and OLPC notebooks will be able to display the videos in accurate 32bit color and original resolution. I just hated those old educational videos that are blurry and fuzzy!

Great. (1)

Super Jamie (779597) | more than 5 years ago | (#26458145)

Awesome, now they'll have more content than ever to mark as "not notable" and delete!
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