Archive for the ‘General Information’ Category
I went to see the new movie Terminator Salvation the other night, and I have to say, it was quite the action-packed whizbang smash summer blockbuster! The SWE:SLE ratio (that is, the ratio of scenes-with-explosions to scenes-lacking-explosions) is about as high as you’ll get in a modern motion picture - and that’s saying a lot, these days. However, plot-wise, the movie made little sense. Of course I wasn’t really expecting it to, but it would be unfair to potential viewers to simply not mention it. Frankly, based on the results of this film, I’m guessing that the next installment of the franchise will be entitled Terminator Management Training Challenge.
Despite the plot-related issues, I still enjoyed the movie. Two things struck me about it in particular: First, this is the first major R-rated action film I’ve seen in, quite literally, months that doesn’t include a shot of someone throwing up. These “puke-shots” have become more common than kissing scenes, and nobody seems to know why. Hopefully, Terminator Salvation will be part of a new vanguard of artistically original and cutting-edge films that manage to somehow keep audiences awake for two hours with no vomit imagery whatsoever. And, as an added bonus, there’s no need for anyone to add Terminator Salvation to the International Emetophobia Society’s always-useful searchable puke-shot film list. What a time-saver!
The other thing that struck me about Terminator Salvation, and more importantly for our purposes here at The Wikipedia Review, is how much Skynet - the evil AI-based global network bent on destroying the human race using time-travelling robot assassins who look like Austrian body-builders - has come to resemble Wikipedia. Read the rest of this entry »
This post was submitted to the forum by The Review’s resident Gadfly, Dan Tobias.
The Wikipedia hierarchy (at least on en-wp), from lowest to highest:
- Bogeymen / Arch-Enemies / The Antichrist
- Very Banned Users
- Normal Banned Users
- Blocked Users (supposedly distinct from Banned Users, even if nobody can actually put their finger solidly on the definition of the distinction)
- Users under some limited sanction
- Users with some real or imagined connection to an Evil Attack Site but who are inexplicably not banned or blocked or sanctioned anyway
- Anon IPs
- Recently created accounts
- Established accounts that haven’t done anything, positive or negative, attracting the attention of the inside clique
- Editors with a high edit count, featured article creation, and other achievements, if they’re not too politically incorrect
- Bureaucrats, Checkusers, and other users with superpowers
- Ruling Clique Outer Circle (hangers-on with some friendship with the top cliqueistas)
- Ruling Clique Inner Circle (leaders of the sooper sekrit lists)
- Jimbo (though his influence seems to be waning, so he might fall off the top of the pyramid ultimately)
(However, the composition of those Ruling Clique Inner and Outer Circles is greatly in flux these days.)
In case you haven’t been keeping track, The Wikipedia Review blog was deleted on June 3rd after it was targeted by a nasty “zero-hour” SQL-injection attack, apparently emanating from China (though there’s no way to know for sure, of course - this is the internet, after all). The attack took advantage of a security vulnerability here in WordPress, so because we’re very cautious and paranoid about that sort of thing, we decided to wait until a newer, safer version was released before restoring it. WordPress 2.6 was released on July 15, but of course we had to wait an additional two weeks in case any new bug reports appeared, which would hopefully be accompanied by patches or other updates.
Oh, come on, who am I fooling? I was just lazy. I’m ridiculously lazy - always have been. The fact is, I hate dealing with web applications. Debugging and tweaking takes waaaay longer on the web than it does on the desktop, even if you’re using a local development server. And these PHP-scripted systems are invariably a mess, no matter how you slice it… Sure, WordPress is better than most, but it’s still a crap shoot as to whether you’re going to get any of it working in a reasonable amount of time. When I upgraded this installation we lost all of our categories, for example. Turns out the database now calls them “Terms,” and they’re organized into a “Taxonomy.” Great! Read the rest of this entry »
“If people can write a functional open source operating system, there is no reason why they can’t write an encyclopaedia.”
This comparison keeps turning up, and while it sounds reasonable on a sloganeering level, its fundamentally wrong.
The driver for the development of Linux is real and pressing - the movement of mass computing to a monolithic, corporately-controlled standard is stiflingly unhealthy, and OSS breeds diversity and invention. Particularly, had LAMP [Editors note: Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP] not been created, a lot of the web innovation of the last decade likely wouldn’t have happened. Good-quality developers were drawn to OSS for good reasons, and established a decent level of governance because you just can’t engineer software without it. Because the technically incompetent don’t last long, Linux benefits from a virtuous circle: better software = more users = more developers = better software.
This post was submitted to the Wikipedia Review forum in February 2008 by the Reviewer “Dogbiscuit”:
Dogbiscuit: Not so long ago, Gomi did a pretty good summary of what was wrong with Wikipedia (enshrined in blogland now). In recent posts, there have been some observations about why this is a problem. I’m sure others can put this in more learned ways, but I would like to set it out in simple terms, for public consumption.
Clearly, the context is that Wikipedia is omnipresent on the Internet, but I thought it would be useful to enumerate why this concerns me, or us. I don’t think it is simply a matter for academic accuracy, but a wider concern about the ability to misinform on a wider scale.
With all this talk of “Attack sites” and BADSITES on WP, and descriptions of The Review getting thrown about on the ARBCOM pages, it seems like a good time to go and examine the Top ten most viewed threads in The Review’s back catalogue. Though this thread should probably be in the Wikipedia Review Review section, so as not to disappoint our non-signed up members, this one goes out for free on the top section. Read the rest of this entry »
Thanks to Somey, we are now allowing multiple authors to this “blog” (Wikipedia Review: Opinions and Editorials). To register, you can click on the “Register” link on the left of this page; then it will ask you for your preferred username and e-mail address. You will then automatically be sent a password. We then get a request to add you as an author, and if approved you can then post in this “blog.” I get to be the second author here, so given that I don’t really have anything else to say right now, I thought that I would say this.
Welcome to blog.wikipediareview.com!
This is our first so-called blog entry. Some of us (well, me) prefer the term “editorial,” simply because it sounds nicer than “blog,” which sounds more like something that someone might do as a result of severe indigestion.
At the time of this writing, Wikipedia Review has existed for about 17 months. During that time, Wikipedia has grown into one of the most popular and extensive websites in the world, with global reach, versions in dozens of languages, tens of thousands of regular contributors, near-constant media attention, and literally hundreds of other websites using, or “scraping,” its content. (To be fair, it was already quite popular and extensive when we started.) Read the rest of this entry »