20 years and Wikipedia puts its story up for auction – Books – Le livre sur la place
– Wikipedia closes its twentieth anniversary by auctioning the beginning of its history. The ‘Birth of Wikipedia’ sale in which two ‘objects’ belonging to Jimmy Wales are to be won will end on December 15 at Christie’s: the Apple iMac Strawberry computer, on which the founder with Larry Sanger of the first free online encyclopedia launched on January 15, 2001, and an NFT of the first entry, the greeting “Hello World!” Which the 55-year-old web guru put on the title page of the newborn “creature”.
The ‘non-fungible token’ preserves the layout of the original homepage whose code has never been touched until now, but there is also a dynamic element that will allow the buyer to modify page and then, if he wishes, to bring it back to how it was at the beginning. “Making it editable is the right way to artistically express that moment of potential and excitement: when you knew you could create something extraordinary or do a total flop,” Wales said: “I hope the audience will understand and react: it wasn’t mature Wikipedia today, it was Jimmy’s crazy idea on a funny January morning. At the origins of Wikipedia, Wales, a former stock trader converted to the Enlightenment cause of knowledge for all, personally monitored the encyclopedia from home, on the lookout for possible vandal interventions. When the strawberry-colored iMac became obsolete, the webmaster packed it in the original box that was included in the sale.
“It has been almost twenty years since I first wrote the words ‘Hello World!’ and even today I am amazed at the size and scope of what we have created, ”said Wales, hoping to raise enough funds for his new pilot project: WT.Social is an attempt to create a more alternative healthy. and non-toxic of existing social platforms through a decentralized, non-commercial network, free of advertising, tracking, user information collection and disinformation.
When Wikipedia came into being on January 15, 2011, no one, like Wales, knew if the “wiki” contribution mechanism, modeled on software created by programmer Ward Cunningham, would work, and if the content would be reliable. Today, the online encyclopedia has grown into the largest online source of free information, published in over 300 languages, watched by thousands of volunteers who check its content and read for free by billions of people searching information. To further ensure the reliability of the site, the Wikimedia Foundation published a global code of conduct against abuse, disinformation and manipulation of information last February.