Reply Sun 25 May, 2008 07:21 pm
What do you really think of Wikipedia, is it a joke or an unseen tool?
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Aristoddler
 
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Reply Sun 25 May, 2008 09:08 pm
@philosopherqueen,
I thought of it as a great tool until Stephen Colbert tried to get the nation to change elephants into gods by editing Wiki to death.

You can no longer edit the page for elephants on Wiki because of Stephen Colbert.

I still see it as a useful tool as long as you cross reference everything you see on it.
Vasska
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 May, 2008 01:58 am
@Aristoddler,
I use Wikipedia daily to look up things, but never really put all my trust in it.
Just like Aristoddler i found that Wikipedia is (to) prone to vandalism.
de budding
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 May, 2008 05:54 am
@Vasska,
It is a tool, just one that needs another tool in order to be useful- like a nail needs a hammer any wiki needs critical consideration when being read. There are plenty of references and citations and if there isn't any or very few there will be a warning at the top of the article, also a warning is issued if any one suggests the content maybe misleading, out of context etc.

Dan.
Aristoddler
 
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Reply Mon 26 May, 2008 09:07 am
@de budding,
Like I said, it's good to use to start a launching pad for research but other than that, it's not the most reliable source of info out there.
But it's a heck of a lot better than Ask Jeeves.
Foldstein
 
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Reply Mon 26 May, 2008 09:21 am
@Aristoddler,
I think Vikipedia is a great project and I believe that one day Vikipedia will reach its aims. Don't forget, Vikipedia doesn't guarantee you about the content of the information which it gives you because it is a product of collective work.
de budding
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 May, 2008 09:32 am
@Foldstein,
Both your comments suggest that there is a standard of knowledge the Wikipedia falls short of...

'one day Vikipedia will reach its aims'
'it's not the most reliable source '

What is it missing? The references are there to the 'official' opinions that people seem to prefer and if you insist on having information that requires no critical consideration I assume you don't read the papers or listen to any who can't offer citations when they are talking to you about a casual subject.

In history we do not regard propaganda as incorect or useless information because it is biased, we critically analyse it and work out in what ways it is biased and then deduce something unique from that. We can then see what messages Nazi Germany was forcing upon its citizens by recognising the propaganda as biased, this in turn can lead us towards insights into the motives and thinking of such leaders.

What makes knowledge 'reliable' anyways?

Dan.
BeatsMeWhy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Jul, 2008 03:44 am
@de budding,
I'd say that if ever knowledge is properly ordered and classified, the optimal way to treat it will be something far more ressembling a wiki than any other thing I know...
Theaetetus
 
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Reply Wed 30 Jul, 2008 08:05 am
@BeatsMeWhy,
The beauty of the Wikipedia is that it continually gets better. Users write, check, edit, and thus improve the quality of wikis. Rather than having "experts" write the encyclopedia those with a working knowledge of the information do. Thus--if nothing else--the potential is there for best possible encyclopedia.
Deftil
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Jul, 2008 12:09 am
@Theaetetus,
Quote:
A study in 2005 suggested that Wikipedia came close to the level of accuracy of and had a similar rate for "serious errors".

Reliability of Wikipedia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

If you can count on wikipedia information on how reliabel wikipedia is!

Overall, it seems fairly reliable and it's an extremely convenient and handy tool. It's constantly updated which is a great feature of it. Something interesting happens one day, it's recorded in wikipedia the next day. Amazing diversity of information there as well.
Vasska
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Jul, 2008 12:45 am
@Deftil,
Deftil wrote:
Reliability of Wikipedia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

If you can count on wikipedia information on how reliabel wikipedia is!

Overall, it seems fairly reliable and it's an extremely convenient and handy tool. It's constantly updated which is a great feature of it. Something interesting happens one day, it's recorded in wikipedia the next day. Amazing diversity of information there as well.


Within 16 hours of the release of Harry Potter book 7 (Deadly Hallows) a 7 page Wikipedia page was added detailing the book in great detail and all other forms of information. People at Wikipedia sometimes are crazy.
0 Replies
 
Aedes
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Aug, 2008 10:29 pm
@Deftil,
If you can't tolerate errors, then the only reference you can count on is primary source material. And if you're suspect of a topic review like Wikipedia, you can always use other reviews to corroborate it.

Wikipedia is convenient and comprehensive. I am not going to use it for something that I need to know professionally, but it's perfectly fine for things that interest me.
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2008 12:50 am
@Aedes,
That's my feeling about Wikipedia. I can browse other online resources - and there are many. Wikipedia is, at the very least, a great place to start as a hobbyist.
0 Replies
 
TheRedMenace
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Aug, 2008 04:06 pm
@Deftil,
I believe it's a reliable source. If you change anything to false it will be checked and if found false changed back. It gives all the sources to where they found it and thus is all true.


But I do love going to the Korean War site and everytime it says America lost or it was the only war we lost I say IT WAS A TIE!!! haha. They eventually locked it though.
Poseidon
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Oct, 2008 04:46 pm
@TheRedMenace,
I prefer google and yahoo.
They have a more diverse set of opinions, even if proportionally, the false info is greater.
Ultimately you have to decide if something is logical, so a resource that is too accurate is more likely to get you believing it when it is wrong.

The best way to tell a lie is to surround it with truth.
jgweed
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Oct, 2008 05:45 pm
@Poseidon,
If the articles and entries are taken with care, Wikipedia serves as a useful source for general knowledge. Now that there are more controls in place in the writing and editing process, the chances for errors (from many people including often contradictory information) and purposeful disfigurement have been reduced.

The discussions behind many of the major articles are transparent and at the same time there for the curious or the serious researcher to review.

However, because the entries are works in progress, one can never be sure (unless one has some prior knowledge about the subject) the entry's current state and whether or not it has been reviewed and developed sufficiently to warrant consideration as a "neutral" and acceptable discussion.

The continued self-criticism has been extremely beneficial and has drastically improved the quality and reliability of Wikipedia's centents.An important example may be read by following the link below:

Neutral point of view--draft - Meta
0 Replies
 
Aphoric
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2008 12:23 am
@de budding,
de_budding;14370 wrote:
It is a tool, just one that needs another tool in order to be useful- like a nail needs a hammer any wiki needs critical consideration when being read. There are plenty of references and citations and if there isn't any or very few there will be a warning at the top of the article, also a warning is issued if any one suggests the content maybe misleading, out of context etc.

Dan.


decree.

My med-micro teach won't let us use wikipedia as a source when researching articles because it's not credible. IMO, it's plenty credible as long as one can discern whether a certain fact is reliable based on whether it's been cited or not.
Khethil
 
  1  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2008 03:32 am
@philosopherqueen,
Wikipedia annoys me, but I can't deny it (as a source) has value. I do have concerns about its credibility at times, but information on which I'm going to act - or invest - gets verified from external sources. So yea; for what it is, it's good.

... not sure why it annoys me; perhaps the old school coming out? Prejudice? Hmm
Theaetetus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2008 08:23 am
@Khethil,
Khethil wrote:
Wikipedia annoys me, but I can't deny it (as a source) has value. I do have concerns about its credibility at times, but information on which I'm going to act - or invest - gets verified from external sources. So yea; for what it is, it's good.

... not sure why it annoys me; perhaps the old school coming out? Prejudice? Hmm


The reason why Wikipedia can rag on my nerves is because it is another tool that helps reduce meaningful human contact. One upon a time people had to go to libraries thus increasing their chances of sharing a moment with fellow humans. Sure it is convenient, but at some people convenience becomes a problem.
0 Replies
 
Poseidon
 
  1  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2008 08:59 am
@Aphoric,
Aphoric wrote:
decree.

My med-micro teach won't let us use wikipedia as a source when researching articles because it's not credible. IMO, it's plenty credible as long as one can discern whether a certain fact is reliable based on whether it's been cited or not.

pft

Thats just plainly wrong.
How can anyone decide that an entire resource cannot be used? Sounds like that person has a very narrow way of thinking. A critical analysis of a wrong point of view is the only way of getting a better point of view.

No resource is error proof.
0 Replies
 
 

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