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What is Wikispore good for?

The garden of Wikispore bears 4 types of fruits:

  1. wiki farm for growing specialized Spores as subject areas and new (text and/or media) wiki forms/ wiki-making methods
  2. narrative base for Wikidata topics Wikisprout that don't fit inside other Wikimedia Foundation wikis
  3. knowledge repository for different types of knowledge, such as oral and visual), and using primary sources
  4. testing ground for tentative sister projects with access to Wikimedia infrastructure

What is Wikispore not for?

Wikispore is not meant to:

  • Duplicate content or functionality of other Wikimedia projects, or host inappropriate forking
  • Have content that is incompatible with the Wikimedia licencing (copyrighted)
  • Have high-tech experimentation for its own sake; instead we primarily experiment with content/social structures
  • Large scale tests such as mass creation of wiki pages by bots
  • Violate privacy or allow bad behavior

Where is the Wikispore site? Who runs it?

Wikispore is hosted on Wikimedia Cloud Services, as an experimental and supplementary space to its Wikimedia sister projects. It is run by the same Wikimedia Foundation that runs Wikipedia.

It is integrated into the Wikimedia community and ecosystem, so that users can use their existing Wikimedia accounts and link out to Wikispore as a narrative base for Wikidata and as a supplement for topics too specialized to fit inside Wikipedia.

How are sub-projects separated?

Sub-projects on wikispore have their own name spaces, called Spores. The Spore is shown as a prefix on page names such as the "Geo:" or "Bio:" or "Art:" or "Org:" prefixes. Generally the wikilinks by pages in a name space are to other pages in that same name space. These are sometimes called Spores. New Spores can be proposed by the community. Some may evolve to have their own wikis and become sister projects.

It is our custom to avoid putting content pages in the main (article) name space. Instead they should put in these project name spaces. It is okay to get this wrong at the beginning, and move the pages later.

How can I search Wikispore?

Searching can be tricky because of the many sub-projects. You can use the Search Wikispore box to look for information in the main "trunk" of Wikispore, just as normal. However, you will find that a simple search misses information that is within a particular Spore (for example, searching for George Gregory). You can accomplish this by clicking on the "Everything" link to search all pages, after the first search comes back empty. Or if you know the Spore name, prefix it to the search term. Using the same example, a search for bio: George Gregory gives a result, whereas a search for art: George Gregory doesn't.

Why the name "Wikispore"?

Some might ask, why such a weird name? First, thank you for noticing. Second, the word "spore" is monosyllabic and multilingual, from the ancient Greek word σπορά spora, meaning "seed, sowing", and is ideal for a wiki farm. Therefore Wikispore has adopted a botanical theme, befitting the crucial role of spores in germinating nature.

Why is "Wikispore" a project?

Most Wikimedia sister projects have been created in the first years of its existence and the last one ( already more then decade ago... Meanwhile where few attempts to innovate forms/content managed to gain any significant traction, let alone support or resources to experiment and pilot run *(with Abstract Wikipedia, as honorable exception that proves that rule). Wikispore could help bridge that innovation gap. For more details and support check the proposal page on meta:Wikispore.

How can I migrate my wiki here?

If you have existing content from a MediaWiki wiki, it's easy to import using the Special:Import feature. If you need this solution, please ask an administrator on the Greenhouse. If you have text in some other format and need help turning it into MediaWiki text, you can also ask for help there. Please be aware that content must be appropriately licensed as Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0 or more liberal like CC-zero/Public Domain.

How can I backup and export content from here?

Exporting content can be done by anyone via Special:Export, unlike importing which requires permissions. If you require large amounts of pages that would make manual exports cumbersome, a database dump could be made by an admin. You can request help with exporting at the Greenhouse.

How do Wikisporeans communicate?

We have Talk pages here. We also have two Telegram groups for messaging, a large one for anyone with an interest, and a Wikispore-tech group focused on how it runs. Starting in the fall of 2022 we have been having weekly or monthly meetings by zoom or google meet too. These are open-house or salon-type meetings, sometimes with an agenda but sometimes just conversation.

How safe and sustainable is content hosting here?

As an experimental and test project, Wikispore is subject to a possibility of deletion. If Wikispore graduates from this stage, the data here would be durable and it will be copied and archived in several places. If the project were shut down, we could export data (see below) and it could be hosted on another MediaWiki wiki.