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New CTO, Britain Loves Wikipedia, Telefónica partnership, Multimedia and more

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By Phoebe, Draeco and Sage Ross

Danese Cooper hired as CTO

Danese Cooper has been hired as the Wikimedia Foundation's new Chief Technical Officer (CTO), according to an announcement by Sue Gardner. Cooper has a long history of involvement with open-source projects, leading open source projects at Sun Microsystems, then Intel, and most recently REvolution Computing.

The announcement was covered by tech news outlets, including CNET. According to User:Steven Walling, Cooper will be the only female CTO of a top-10 website. Cooper, who starts on 4 February, fills the gap left by the departure of long-time CTO Brion Vibber (see previous story).

Britain loves Wikipedia

Britain Loves Wikipedia, a drive to increase Commons photographs of British museum content, officially began on 31 January. The month-long competition and series of events began at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and will continue across the United Kingdom throughout February according to the official Wikimedia UK press release. Numerous prizes will be offered for the best photography. The event's website has more details.

Telefónica partnership

Wikimedia has signed a partnership deal with Telefónica, one of the largest mobile phone companies in the world, serving Europe and the Americas. According to the press release and press release questions and answers page, the deal will include co-branded content, including the "development of mobile & TV applications using knowledge from Wikimedia’s projects", and access to Wikipedia on mobile phones.

This is the second deal with a large multinational phone company that Wikimedia has formed, following last year's deal with Orange Telecom (see previous story). Telefónica was also a sponsor of Wikimania 2009.

Strategic planning recommendations

The recommendations developed by the various strategy project task forces have been posted. (See related story).

Multimedia usability project updates

Neil Kandalgaonkar has joined the multimedia usability team. Additionally, an update on the multimedia usability project was posted to the Wikimedia Foundation blog.

The Multimedia Usability project has also issued a call for proposals for professional usability and user experience studies of the file upload process on Wikimedia projects. The deadline for proposals is 10 February.

An office hours to discuss the project will be held on IRC on 4 February, from 16:00 to 17:00 UTC; see the office hours page for more.

Wiki conferences

Two Wikipedia-related academic conferences are coming up: WikiSym (which is being held in conjunction with Wikimania in Gdańsk, Poland from 7–9 July) and the 2nd part of the "Critical Point of View" conference (CPOV), to be held in Amsterdam, 26–27 March. WikiSym has an open call for papers, while CPOV is seeking contributions to a reader scheduled for 2011.


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