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Author: Subject: What do you think about the Wikiversity ?
brubei
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[*] posted on 5-4-2015 at 00:51
What do you think about the Wikiversity ?


Hello everyone, eight years ago a was a little student in chemistry, i learned about wikipedia and the wikiversity. This concept sounded very exiting, I wrote some articles with my basic knowledge and try to read other.
Following my studies, i did not much take attention to the wikiversity chemistry project.
Now, the wiki project have grown, but it's hard to satisfy. For example, original research or experiment support can't be dissociated to a learning project. After all this time, I imagined that is could become greater than this. It disappoint me a bit,

and you what do you think about the wikiversity or wikipedia, does anyone contribute to it or had great project ?

[Edited on 5-4-2015 by brubei]
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[*] posted on 5-4-2015 at 09:07


I think that Wikipedia is great, but on its pages that pertain to stuff that's useful to home chemists, I think it can be a bit broad and not contain enough of the specific, pointed information that's useful to us. Because of this, I started the Sciencemadness Wiki (link in my signature) with some of the other members here to try and solve that problem, and create a neat, orderly site that is more user friendly for home chemists. If you'd like to contribute, go ahead. Just read the guidelines and you'll be good to go.



Come check out the Official Sciencemadness Wiki
They're not really active right now, but here's my YouTube channel and my blog.
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blogfast25
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[*] posted on 5-4-2015 at 10:07


Although I wish you all the best with your SM wikia project, I’m not one of the faithful.

Already the phrase:

Quote:
[…] that would be particularly useful from the perspective of an amateur chemist.


… kind of baffles me. Chemistry is chemistry. For hobbyists, Wikipedia entries (errors not withstanding) are more or less ideal. So what is meant by ‘particularly useful’?

SM wikia will be a de facto ‘Wikipedia Lite’ but with far fewer entries and poor Google rankings (your pages won’t be anything near as intensely linked to as Wikipedia’s and that’s very important for high Google PageRank). Even on a fairly niche keyword like ‘beryllium’, the wikia entry is nowhere to be found in Google. Almost needless to say, the Wikipedia entry ranks #1 on page 1.

And yet another ‘database’ will only help further fragmenting the already hopelessly atomised knowledge base called Chemistry.

Finally, one could hope that SM wikia may contain less errors than its illustrious inspiration, yet what guarantees are there for such an outcome? No disrespect intended but most, if not all, contributors are amateurs! And of course, several will 'peek': into Wikipedia, that is...


[Edited on 5-4-2015 by blogfast25]




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Amos
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[*] posted on 5-4-2015 at 18:32


Blogfast25, what zts16 means is that all the information found in our wiki is specifically geared as a guide for teaching the reader to actually do the chemistry in their home or amateur lab. You won't find recommended reaction conditions, precautions, small-scale apparatus information, or really any kind of detailed procedure at all on wikipedia, not most of the time anyway.

For example, look how much information you can glean from wikipedia on the home synthesis of chloroform, versus what you find on our wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chloroform#Production
http://sciencemadness.wikia.com/wiki/Chloroform#Preparation

The wikipedia article barely even mentions the haloform reaction! Surely you can't think that the wikipedia article on chloroform is an ideal resource for someone doing our kind of work.

The SM wiki is meant for our members, it's not us trying to produce a website to get tons of views and high google rankings; I rather envisioned it as a place where SM members could go to search for information if they were unable to find it in threads here or in case our search engine wasn't accurate enough. If it's one of the articles we've gotten to and really paid a lot of attention to, the amount of information a home chemist can find there is enormous, dense, and very organized.

As for what you said about our wiki not being trustworthy because the contributors are amateurs: Nearly everyone here is an amateur! Are you going to discredit the entire site because some users might occasionally post incorrect or misleading information? Most of the wikipedia contributors (I hope) only write articles on things they have personally dealt with extensively, and thus room for error is likely limited.

Yes, the founding of a new "database" for information does further fragment the knowledge base, but good thing the members of the wiki put the information right in front of your nose for you! It's in our signatures, there are multiple threads referencing it, and more importantly, YOU personally know of it. If you want all the information to be found in the same place, go talk to the prudes at wikipedia that would rather incorporate information from vague, attention-seeking, and frequently misleading patents than from the knowledge and experience of scientists(because that's what we are) that are learning the science firsthand with the goal of knowledge itself, not grant money.

[Edited on 4-6-2015 by Amos]




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kavu
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[*] posted on 6-4-2015 at 00:58


Wikis are in general not very good for learning stuff, they are good however for quick references. The actual wikipedia is typically written and corrected by PhD students in their own fields. The information is, thus, usually correct, but the overall connections with the related work around a particular concept is not. A more holistic and also a more pedagogical way to go is to buy a book. In general books tend to explain and connect things into larger context.

[Edited on 6-4-2015 by kavu]
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blogfast25
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[*] posted on 6-4-2015 at 06:47


Quote: Originally posted by Amos  
For example, look how much information you can glean from wikipedia on the home synthesis of chloroform, versus what you find on our wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chloroform#Production
http://sciencemadness.wikia.com/wiki/Chloroform#Preparation

The wikipedia article barely even mentions the haloform reaction! Surely you can't think that the wikipedia article on chloroform is an ideal resource for someone doing our kind of work.


“Someone doing our kind of work”: your comparison implies everyone who wants some information on chloroform intends to prepare it himself. Clearly that’s not the case. And finding information on ‘haloform’ isn’t exactly taxing either: #1 is Wikipedia's entry. :D

Quote: Originally posted by Amos  

As for what you said about our wiki not being trustworthy because the contributors are amateurs: Nearly everyone here is an amateur! Are you going to discredit the entire site because some users might occasionally post incorrect or misleading information? Most of the wikipedia contributors (I hope) only write articles on things they have personally dealt with extensively, and thus room for error is likely limited.


Straw man. I didn’t say a word about ‘not being trustworthy’ or ‘discredit the entire site’. Merely that you don’t have much in place by way of quality control. And that’s a FACT.

Quote: Originally posted by Amos  

Yes, the founding of a new "database" for information does further fragment the knowledge base, but good thing the members of the wiki put the information right in front of your nose for you! It's in our signatures, there are multiple threads referencing it, and more importantly, YOU personally know of it. If you want all the information to be found in the same place, go talk to the prudes at wikipedia that would rather incorporate information from vague, attention-seeking, and frequently misleading patents than from the knowledge and experience of scientists(because that's what we are) that are learning the science firsthand with the goal of knowledge itself, not grant money.


Dear G-d, “prudes at Wikipedia”, “grant money”… can you stoop any lower?

As regards “learning the science first hand”, not all SM material has significant value, a lot of it frankly hasn’t. And decent threads often lack concise, useable write-ups and don’t have independent verification/corroboration. It’s one of the reasons why you won’t find any SM material referenced in peer reviewed literature.

Still, all the best!


[Edited on 6-4-2015 by blogfast25]




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