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Task force/Offline

From Strategic Planning

Relevant Wikimedia-pedia Articles

Participants should be sure they're familiar with the relevant background material. They should also work to identify gaps and collect and summarize more information as it becomes available.


Recommendations should follow Template:Recommendations. The following are stub pages for this task force's recommendations:


There are five billion people worldwide who don't have internet access, many who could potentially benefit from access to the information in the Wikimedia projects. The core of Wikimedia's activities will always be online, because of the centrality of open participation and sharing to our work, but we also want to make Wikimedia material available to people who are not internet-connected. There have been many offline Wikimedia projects, but none has achieved substantial impact. The goal of this task force is to develop a strategy for enabling transformatively greater usage of the Wikimedia project material offline, by people who do not have access to the internet. It should develop 2-4 recommendations by January 12, 2010.

The task force should develop answers to the following questions:

  1. "How many more people will use Wikipedia etc. if we do this?"
  2. What are the delivery mechanisms that are likely to drive an increase in offline readership? Who are the organizations and entities currently doing this work?
  3. What 2-4 major strategic opportunities for investment would help to transformatively increase Wikimedia's readership among the five billion people who don't have internet access? Which languages and regions are top priority?
  4. What tools and support are necessary to make those strategies work?
  5. Who is needed to support this strategy (e.g., Wikimedia Foundation, chapters, individual volunteers, external non-profit and for-profit partners), and what do they need to do?
  6. Offline usage of the Wikimedia material inherently makes participation difficult. Are there ways to overcome this challenge, to enable offline readers of the Wikimedia projects to also make contributions?


Offline encompasses a lot of different aspects for wikimedia. I think it is helpful to break these out. Inevitably there is a lot of overlap, like format / reader / search.



  • Categorisation: The UDC discussion
  • Static browseable Indexes
  • Index built to support search

Data formats

  • CD / DVD of plain uncompressed HTML / Graphics
  • Archive version of above - like tgz or zip (Do we care about HTML compression if we are carrying pictures (which will dwarf the text?)
  • ZIM file format


  • Generic browser
  • Okawix - reader for ZIM files (in the future; currently supports Zeno files)
  • Server - delivers pages to browser


  • Single PC
  • Small offline network - like a school
  • /Cellphone Targeting cellphones for WP 1.0

Task force pages

Proposals related to the work of this task force (unfiltered list)

Proposals related to automating article access

Proposals related to languages/linguistics

Proposals related to offline use

Proposals related to standardizing content

Template:Task Force Toolkit


Please, add the newest note at the top.

  • The fifth IRC meeting is scheduled for 18:00 UTC, Tuesday December 15th (note slightly later time), and it will discuss the content (besides WP) of offline releases. Walkerma 17:30, 14 December 2009 (UTC)
  • The fourth IRC meeting is scheduled for 17:00 UTC, Thursday December 10th. Walkerma 04:11, 10 December 2009 (UTC)
  • The third IRC meeting is scheduled for 17:00 UTC, Tuesday December 1st. Walkerma 23:01, 28 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Second IRC meeting is scheduled for 17:00 UTC, Nov 24th --He!ko 19:45, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Note, the log is here.
  • First IRC meeting is scheduled for 17:00 UTC, Nov 10th --He!ko 16:53, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Note, the log is here.