Mumbai To Host The First Ever National WikiConference In India

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he Mumbai Wikipedia Community and the Wikimedia Chapter, India are hosting the first ever WikiConference in Mumbai, India! And to grace the occasion we will see none other than, the founder, open-source evangelist and Chairman Emeritus of Wikimedia foundation – Jimmy Wales. The Conference will have a distinct Indian flavour and deal primarily with issues relating to India on Wikipedia, English and Indic language Wikipedia projects in the country, possible partnerships and collaborations and the WikiCommunity editing on these issues, whether in India or abroad.

The event will be a three day extravaganza, to be held from November 18th to the 20th, 2011 and the venue for this prestigious event is no less in stature when it comes to knowledge – the Convocation Hall, University of Mumbai, Fort Campus with the apt iconic Rajabhai tower as its backdrop. Arjuna Rao Chavala, President, Wikimedia chapter said "We look forward to organising the conference on an annual basis to bring together Indian Wikipedians from 20+ Indian language projects to share learnings and best practices. The event will help catalyze contributors in building Knowledge Society through free and open education projects."

Speaking on the occasion, Pranav Curumsey, Chairperson, Organizing Committee, WikiConference India said, “It gives us great pleasure to be hosting such a phenomenal conference in India. The conference aims to promote the vision of the founder Mr. Wales, 'Imagine a world in which every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge.' It is very encouraging to see ad-free participation showing a keen interest in attending this conference confirming our belief that India is free knowledge ready.”

The event will see thousands of Wikipedians from all over the country pouring in for sessions covering topics such as 'Usage of Ajax and Jquery in Wiki' in Technology to 'WikiBhasha : Our Experiences with Multilingual Content' in Enterprise  to 'WikiWomenWeb: Bridging the Gender Gap' to ' Legal Aspects of Wiki Culture'.  There is also a live 'Editathon' session made possible with Wifi facility within the campus grounds. Another interesting addition is the 'Hackathon' that will be simultaneously held at the Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture (MACCIA), Kala Ghoda.

Moksh Juneja, Secretary, Organising Committee, WikiConference India added, “The conference aims to serve as an annual platform for all Indian Wikipedians to meet and share their views, discuss challenges and exchange useful tips and best practices. We have been overwhelmed with the ad-free participation across India where we received 7000 plus entries for scholarships and 550 plus papers were submitted to be presented at the WikiConference India.”

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