Monday, December 24, 2007

2007: The Year in Review

2007 was a very exciting year at en.wikibooks. Here is a brief recap:
  • Permissions: 3 new checkusers were promoted this year, bringing the total to 5. 8 new admins were promoted, for a total of about 29. I say "about" because we have a policy of desysopping inactive administrators, and several we desysopped this year. No new bureaucrats have been promoted, we currently have 4. Some users were nominated for Oversight, but the community voted not to allow oversight access. We discussed the creation of an Arbcom, but the community voted it down.
  • Policy: A number of changes, additions, and modifications were made to our policy pages. We updated policies concerning administrators, and we also made a number of changes to our inclusion criteria. Wikijunior inclusion criteria were completely revamped.
  • Appearance: The main page of our project was discussed on many occasions, and has been fixed/updated/modified regularly. Our primary discussion area, the "staff lounge" was completely reformatted, and was renamed the "Reading Room". A new designation called "featured books" was created, and has been very successful. We now have about 62 featured books, and more are added regularly. All the old message box templates were updated by stealing the template design from Wikipedia. Thanks Wikipedia!
  • Help: The "Help" pages, which have traditionally been an eyesore, have undergone a number of edits and improvements. Additionally, a number of new help books, and an entire help bookshelf have been created.
  • Organization: We added several new namespaces, including "Wikijunior:", and "Subject:" spaces. Old manual organization schemes, including the Bookshelves are being phased out in favor of category and DPL-based organizational schemes. Mass-categorization bots and volunteer efforts have been utilized to organize books alphabetically, by Dewey Decimal and Library of Congress numbers, and by subject.
  • Logo: A long-running logo discussion was stalemated in June because of last-minute problems in the color scheme of the selected logo. A new logo selection process was started in October and is expected to continue into 2008. A discussion has also been started to select the first official logo for Wikijunior.
  • Milestones: In 2007, we crossed some important milestones: 1 million edits, 90,000 total pages, 25,000 non-stub book pages, 8,000 uploaded media files, 60,000 user accounts. Some people estimate that we now have more then 5000 books, although this number is difficult to count accurately because old books are not always properly linked and categorized.
  • Donations: Wikibooks received a number of book donations, including 24 e-books from the United Nations.
  • Bots: A number of bots, automated and semiautomated clients, and other tools have been added to our roster for handling various tasks. Among these are page, book, and image categorization, discussion archiving, discussion aggregation, and other repetitive tasks. Several wikibooks users have adopted AWB and Pywikipediabot for various purposes. A bot policy was drafted and discussed, but never fully accepted.
This certainly isn't an exhaustive list of things that happened, only what I can remember and what I can easily find in the archives. It was, however, a very interesting year for Wikibooks, and I am hopeful that 2008 is even better.

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