TalossaWiki went live on 1 June 201 2, featuring a plain main page the stated simply, "MediaWiki has been successfully installed." Thirty months later, the wiki has become one of the central institutions of the country, serving not only as Talossa's central law depository and list of records, but also as a collective memory and as a promotional resource. These achievements have made the wiki one of the biggest successes in Talossan history, a success made all the better by the fact that it is a non-partisan collaboration by dozens of contributors.
Currently, the wiki has over eight hundred content pages, supplemented by six hundred media files (pictures and audio) and over five thousand background pages (discussions and templates). Some of these pages are epic in scope, such as the extensive history article or the Digest of Laws, while others offer the odd bit of information about one quirk o another ofTalossa's many facets.
This content has all been produced by the seventy-five citizens who are registered contributors with the wiki. That's over a third of the population, although a majority of content has been contributed by a dozen of the most enthusiastic citizens.
Thanks to the efforts of these dedicated writers, TalossaWiki has received 5.4 million pageviews since its inception, a staggering feat that reflects not only how many strngers are just interested in Talossan cutlure, but also how many citizens rely on the wiki as a matter of course. The Scribery keeps every law up-to-date on the wiki, and ordinary citizens track their accomplishments and keep their elected officials accountable with the wiki pages.
There is an amazingly complete record of all manner of information on the site. In many respects, records about who had held which office had previously been published on kingdomoftalossa.net, but this was only thanks to the Herculean efforts of a few individuals such as the Baron Hooligan and His Majesty, who spent long hours maintaining these lists and laws. The wiki has allowed this task to be spread among any number of people with a few spare minutes.
There have been challenges along the way. No one involved with the project at the beginning had any experience administering a wiki, and it was only luck and dedication that kept the site growing in its first year. Even more significantly, a software upgrade of remarkable scope became necessary even as it threatened to crash the whole project. Even with three dedicated government officials spending hours on the upgrade, it still took the site down for a full week.
These challenges surmounted, though, there appears to be nothing but smooth sailing on the horizon for TalossaWiki. The people at the helm now have years of experience, and the accumulated efforts of the past thirty months have provided the site with a formidable specialized architecture, allowing contributors to supply Talossan-language pronunciations, list prices in louise and bence, and to refer to dozens of other richly-written articles for further reading. Perhaps the only real question remaining about the future of the project is: considering how big it is already, is there any more room to grow?
Home » Davinescu » history » Issue #16 » news » "Challenges and Successes from Two-and-a-Half Years," by Sir Alexandreu Davinescu
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