Today is Wikipedias eleventh birthday. It has come a long waythe Czar remembers when it had about fifty things on it. And all were about Micronauts. Here we are, all these years later, and Wikipedia now has almost four million entries ranging from Star Trek to Dr. Who.
To be fair, the Czar remembers when the Encyclopedia Britannica was printed on a single sheet of paper; better still, the Mandarin was there at the Stepping Goose pub in London when a couple of guys cooked up the idea to write a book that had everything in it. Good idea men, he said, but lousy on research. It took a couple of editions before they hit their stride.
And to be fairer still, Wikipedia is the one source everyone loves to hate, and hates to admit they love. You know perfectly well when you need to research a fact, you go to Wikipedia first to get a feel for the facts, and then (we hope) you research in more detail elsewhere.
Wikipedia is not quite as leftist as it used to be; in fact, the site goes to great pains to purge itself of any overt bias. Read a political topic, and you think they did pretty well. Of course, read the discussion page attached to it, and you see the knives and nails come out. Its like the comments section on a Salon.com dump sometimes.
We still suffer from the citation problem perfectly summarized by xkcd. Wikipedia, as it stands today, is still prone to hacks and vandalism and incompetenceand while anyone can also correct an error, the research lazy news media might immortalize the mistake before it is caught and killed.
But overall, Wikipedia has been an interesting ride. And they could solve their funding problems in a heartbeat if they showed a single two-inch-by-two-inch advertisement on each page. They do now, begging for cash, so why not show someone elses beg. With the number of people using it, the site owners could live like kings.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.