Wikipedia Hits 1.5 Million English Articles

Posted Nov 25, 2006

Yesterday, Wikipedia announced that they have hit 1.5 million articles generated by users providing the open source articles in the English language. “Wikipedia was launched as an English language project on January 15, 2001, as a complement to the expert-written and now defunct Nupedia [source]. The current total article count is roughly 5 million.

Wikipedia started as a complementary website for Nupedia, an online encyclopedia founded on March 9, 2000 by Bomis Inc., a company in which the co-founders of Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger, were a part of. On January 10, 2001, Larry Sanger proposed on the Nupedia mailing list to create a wiki alongside Nupedia. Under the subject “Let’s make a wiki”, he wrote:

No, this is not an indecent proposal. It’s an idea to add a little feature to Nupedia. Jimmy Wales thinks that many people might find the idea objectionable, but I think not. (â?¦) As to Nupedia’s use of a wiki, this is the ULTIMATE “open” and simple format for developing content. We have occasionally bandied about ideas for simpler, more open projects to either replace or supplement Nupedia. It seems to me wikis can be implemented practically instantly, need very little maintenance, and in general are very low-risk. They’re also a potentially great source for content. So there’s little downside, as far as I can determine.

Wikipedia runs itself on in-house created software called MediaWiki which is an open source system coded in PHP and MySQL. The funding for Wikipedia is through the Wikimedia Foundation and 4th quarter 2005 costs for Wikipedia was $321,000 comprised mostly from the cost of hardware.

Recently China had removed a ban on Wikipedia, but has started providing full access to the site again. China had banned Wikipedia for about a year.

Earlier Pulse 2.0 wrote an article about Larry Sanger preparing to launch a Wikipedia rival called Citizendium.