Thursday, June 25, 2009

Wikipedia print edition

Artist Rob Matthews has printed and bound all 2500 of Wikipedia's featured articles in one 5000-page volume. Looks rather impractical. However, if you compare it to a multi-volume encyclopedia like Encyclopaedia Britannica, it becomes clear that this Matthew's project is intended only to visualize the size of Wikipedia. The Britannica surpassed this edition already in its 2nd edition in the 1780s century, clocking in at 8595 pages in 10 volumes. Today, Britannica consists of around 30 volumes, each around 1000 pages.

Including only Wikipedia's featured articles means, on the other hand, that only the smallest amount of Wikipedia's actual content is used. Wikipedia has insanely detailed articles about, for instance, celebrities, internet phenomena, and video game characters. One noted example, from a while back, is a feature on Something Awful, ridiculing the Wikipedia page for Knuckles the Echidna (a Sonic The Hedgehog sidekick) for being longer than the pages about the internet, William Shakespeare, the internal combustion engine, and Western civilization.

Wikipedia : Rob Matthews

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