Monday, March 7, 2011

Wikipedia Game

In 2001, Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger launched the website Wikipedia, a free, collaborative encyclopedia for the internet. Since that time, Wikipedia has become the most popular online reference work and, as of this moment, ranks eighth among all websites in terms of daily traffic. Wikipedia is one of the greatest examples of our time for demonstrating the power that democracy and technology (i.e., the internet) can exercise in concert with each other.

One of Wikipedia's most amazing tools is its capability for revealing interconnectedness. This is shown no better than in the "Wikipedia Game," a challenge of sorts that has penetrated popular culture. The objective of the game is to get from a designated start page to a designated finishing page, in as few clicks as possible. For instance, I can get from the Baltic Sea to Mushroom in seven clicks (Baltic Sea --> Isostasy --> Gravitation, Newton, Leibniz, Biology, Drosphila melanogaster, Mushroom). Can you do better?

Cyberspace is a small world, after all, but in a sea of information each of is captain of his own ship. So, go get your Magellan on and explore the uncharted frontier!