How to Automate Wikipedia


  • Michael Upshall


Nowadays, Wikipedia is so ubiquitous that when you use the Web, you don’t even have to look for it – Wikipedia comes to you. It is well known that Google search is deliberately adjusted to ensure that hits from Wikipedia are shown high up in search results, in fact so high that SEO experts wonder how it is achieved. (See, for example “Why Wikipedia is top on Google: the SEO truth no-one wants to hear.”) But not so well known is the process that goes on in the background to create Wikipedia content. You may think that this work is largely manual, and there are indeed tens of thousands of enthusiastic and committed volunteers who maintain and compile Wikipedia entries, but there is also an increasing amount of automation providing ways in which the process can be speeded up, and, as you might expect, some disagreement over the best route that automation should take.

Given the scale of Wikipedia, it’s not surprising there have been attempts to speed up the process of creating the world’s largest encyclopaedia