Wikicamp to draw techies from across the country

A group of enthusiastic techies in Chennai will host Wikicamp, an ‘Unconference’ on the online phenomenon that is Wikipedia, on Sunday at Tidel Park on the I.T. Highway.

And rubbing shoulders with them be Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia and president of Wikipedia foundation.

Wikipedia is a free content, online encyclopedia that has over six million articles in 250 languages, including 1.6 million in its English edition. Online users create and monitor the content.

Knowledge Foundation, a non-profit organization of technologists, entrepreneurs, professionals and artisans across the country, is organizing Sunday’s ‘Unconference,’ which will shun the organized structure of conferences: there will be no single organizer scheduling the day’s events; the sessions will be driven and created by participants; and normally, at the end of the event, everything will fall into place. S. Kiruba Shankar, an organizer, says unconferences can be magical in their impact.

He has seen it happen before- the ‘Blogcamp’ in September that brought together 350 bloggers from across the country was hailed a big success.

“Not many events,” Mr. Kiruba Shankar says, “focus on voluntary, open-source initiatives on the Web. The Wikicamp is a result of that yearning. It is entirely voluntary and even the small registration fee we collect (Rs.200) is purely for organisational needs.”

The organisers used a wiki,, to promote the event. More than 350 persons from across the country have registered to participate.

Extra bed

Since the entire camp is organised on a voluntary basis, a few participants in Chennai even came forward to offer “an extra bed” in their homes to the visiting participants through the wiki “”.

Mr. Kiruba Shankar was pleasantly surprised when Mr. Wales opted to stay at his home. In his profile on, he had mentioned: “I live in a small house with my family.

Our house may be small but our heart is big. We have both wired broadband and Wifi.”


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