Wikipedia becoming a must in today’s life

Updated 18 January 2016
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Wikipedia becoming a must in today’s life

Can you imagine the world without Wikipedia? Ponder upon this question for a minute, if your answer is something else than “no, of course not!” then you must be living on a different planet, not on Earth!
It is hard to say that something has “changed the world as we know it,” but in the case of Wikipedia, it comes so easy and effortlessly, it is not an exaggeration, it transcends to the status of a fact.
The mega encyclopedia platform that is observing its 15th anniversary these days provides free access to more than 38 million articles, edited by around 80,000 volunteers, and written in 250 languages. It is a huge storage of human knowledge.
It is one of those rare platforms that started with a specific mission and ended up achieving its goal.
When Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger started it in 2001, they wanted to create something to sum all human knowledge and make it available to every single person on this planet under one condition, it should be free!
A crazy vision, some might say, but they made it. In a sense, Wikipedia could be named the only project in history in which thousands of people participated in creating it and pushing it to success. The word “wiki” has all new meaning today in the language we use, and in our understanding.
How this project financially survived throughout the years is a success story in its own. Wikipedia’s business model is strikingly unique and successful.
The website kept running based on volunteer driven donations only. The website features no ads and no sponsored articles although such an approach could have provided it with some decent money given the huge number of visitors the site is receiving on a daily basis.
“The organization has always been dead set against the idea of advertising or sponsored pages or links on the site, even though this could easily keep it afloat based on the number of visitors to the site.
But going forward, Wikipedia will keep the donor model, despite being a hard slog,” wrote Madhumita Murgia in the Telegraph.
However, Wikipedia is planning to introduce a new initiative to keep its non-for-profit model afloat; the additional money will come from a new endowment created for Wikipedia and overseen by the nonprofit Wikimedia Foundation in San Francisco, as reported by Mashable.
“The Wikimedia Endowment will start with less than $1 million donated by the estate of Jim Pacha, a software engineer who died in 2014, and then build toward a goal of accumulating $100 million by 2026. Wikipedia won’t begin drawing money from the endowment after it’s fully funded,” the report said.
It is one of those websites that defines what the whole Internet is all about; connecting, sharing, and enriching human lives. It is important for Wikipedia to stay and get bigger and better.
“We stay very mission-driven,” its co-founder, Walles says.
“One of the things that we are focused on is the idea of having an encyclopedia available to every person in the world in their own language. As you go in that direction, these (requests for money) are some of things you need to do to build that long-term dream.”


Russian scientists find defect in new heavy lift space rocket engine

Updated 18 January 2019
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Russian scientists find defect in new heavy lift space rocket engine

  • The new heavy lift space rocket is capable of carrying more than 20 tons into the orbit
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin said the project is very important for the country's defense

MOSCOW: Scientists have discovered a defect in the engines of Russia’s new flagship heavy lift space rocket that could destroy it in flight, an apparent setback to a project President Vladimir Putin has said is vital for national security.
The Angara A5, which was test-launched in 2014, is being developed to replace the Proton M as Russia’s heavy lift rocket, capable of carrying payloads bigger than 20 tons into orbit. A launch pad for the new rocket is due to open in 2021.
In July, Putin said the Angara A5 had “huge significance” for the country’s defense and called on space agency Roscosmos to work more actively on it and to meet all its deadlines.
The issue with the Angara A5 was brought to attention by scientists at rocket engine manufacturer Energomash in a paper ahead of a space conference later this month.
The paper, reported by RIA news agency on Friday and published online, said the engines of the Angara A5 could produce low frequency oscillations that could ultimately destroy the rocket.
A special valve had been fitted to mitigate the issue, but in some cases the oscillations continued, it said. Energomash did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
Russia’s space program has been dogged by mishaps in recent years, including failed cargo delivery missions into space and the aborted launch in October of the manned Soyuz mission to the International Space Station. Russia’s current heavy lift rocket, the Proton M, has had a nearly 10 percent failure rate in more than 100 launches since it entered service in 2001, creating pressure to reorganize and improve the space program.