The BOTs that run Wikipedia.
While bosses and teachers might dub it as an unreliable website, Wikipedia’s popularity is undeniable. Today, Wikipedia has 299 different language versions, more than 32.5 million active editors and an average 600 new articles a day just on the English Wikipedia site. It’s safe to say, since its launch in January 2001 by tech entrepreneurs Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger, Wikipedia has shaken up the internet.
Enter The Bots
Bot, short for “software robot”, is an automated tool developed by contributors to carry out specific duties. Currently, there are a total of 1601 bots working for Wikipedia carrying out different responsibilities.
He told that there are a lot of times when someone goes to a Wikipedia page and defames it. With the amount of traffic on the website, it becomes really annoying and difficult for those who maintain those pages to continuously make changes to the pages.
“So one logical kind of protection [was] to have a bot that can detect these attacks.”, stated Nickerson.
According to the study, 10% of all the activities on the website are done by bots.
The study conducted by the researchers divided the bots into 9 categories according to their roles and responsibilities assigned to them. The categories are explained below:
- Generator – Responsible for generating redirect pages and pages based on other sources.
- Fixer – Responsible for fixing links, content, files and parameters in template/category/infobox
- Connector – Responsible for connecting Wikipedia with other Wikis and sites.
- Tagger – Responsible for tagging article status, article assessment, Wiki projects, multimedia status.
- Clerk – Responsible for updating statistics, documenting user data, updating maintenance pages and delivering article alert.
- Archiver – Responsible for archiving content and cleaning up the sandbox.
- Protector – Responsible for identifying violations, spams and vandalisms.
- Advisor – Responsible for providing suggestions for wiki projects and users. It also greets new users.
- Notifier – Responsible for sending notifications to users.