Small Things Created, Forgotten Yet Thriving.

Back in late 2004/early 2005 I was quite involved in Wikipedia, especially in the aviation sections. I spent six or eight months contributing here and there, then moved onto other projects and gradually became a “former” Wikipedia contributor, pretty much.

Fast forward two and a half years. Seeing a typo in a Wikipedia article I was reading, I log in to change it (for the first time in years, literallly) and the yellow message bar pops up – there are "new" comments on my user page. It’s a comment from 2005, asking about the E6B article I’d started – the first and (I think) only original page I’d ever created on WIkipedia.

I’d forgotten the page, but many hands had carried it on. What had been a very modest page of a few paragraphs and a couple of links was now a full-fledged Wikipedia article, with photos, diagrams, formulae, and far more about the E6B than I knew when I started the page, or know now! The History section of the page shows a steady quantity of edits and addtions in the past two and a half years. There’s even a few sentences in there that survive (I think) from my original version of the page.

This might sound daft, but I’m slightly awed and humbled by this little discovery. Personal proof (the best kind) that open-contribution style projects can lead to pretty cool things, far greater than originally imagined by their creators.

Haven’t a clue what an E6B Flight Computer is? Go read the article!