Monday, June 22, 2009

Five Ways to Visually Explore Wikipedia

When used properly, Wikipedia can be a good place for students to start researching and exploring a topic. But, not every student enjoys reading and clicking on links embedded in an article. Fortunately, there are some good tools that those students can use to visually explore Wikipedia's contents. Here are five ways that students can visually explore Wikipedia.

Nibipedia is the result of matching Wikipedia entries to YouTube videos. Here is how it works, search for a video and while you're watching that video you will see links to related Wikipedia content as well as more related videos.

Navify is a mash-up of Wikipedia, Flickr, and YouTube. Like Nibipedia, Navify attempts to match videos and images to Wikipedia articles. To use Navify, simply enter a search term just as you would on Wikipedia. The results of your search will be shown in a three tab display of Wikipedia article, related images, and related videos.

Fotopedia is a service that matches photos to Wikipedia articles. The matching aspect is similar to that of Navify. What makes Fotopedia different is all of the images are contributed by the community of users and matched to articles by users of Fotopedia. To contribute to Fotopedia you have to register, but to just browse the images and articles doesn't require registration.

EyePlorer is a reference search engine that takes your original search term then displays related terms in a circle around your original search term. Clicking on each related term reveals more information from Wikipedia about that term. If the information is something that you want to save for later use, you can drag the information onto your EyePlorer notebook.

Placeopedia is a website that provides additional context for Wikipedia entries through Google Maps. Placeopedia connects Wikipedia articles with their locations. Click on any placemark on Placeopedia's map and you will be linked to a Wikipedia article about that place.

Here are some related resources that may be of interest to you:
Wikimapia - Wikipedia on a Map
Concharto - Atlas Meets Wiki
Googlepedia - Google and Wikipedia Side by Side
Simple English Wikipedia