User:Dovi

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"Wikisource—The Free Library!"


It seems I have the historic distinction of being the second user registered here at en.wikisource on September 11, 2005, the day that it opened. This was just 48 minutes after the the very first user registered himself, namely our bureaucrat Zhaladshar, who certainly deserves the honor for everything he did to make this website a reality!

September 11th is a date with terrible connotations, but facts are facts—that was the day en.wikisource was created by Brion Vibber, along with several other languages. Perhaps it is fitting that we began to build something positive and wonderful precisely on the anniversary of a day associated with terror.

Hebrew · עברית[edit]

Past Activities[edit]

English Wikisource[edit]

Summary of my contributions

In the past, I was deeply involved in assisting with the setting up of language domains, including major contributions to the early infrastructure of this English Wikisource in its first few months (beginning in September, 2005). For instance, I had the pleasure of making the edit that created the very first original Main Page for English Wikisource (replacing the one that had been copied from wikisource.org). That edit also introduced the slogan "The Free Library" which I was one of the first people to suggest and actually use. "The Free Library" has rightfully become the slogan of Wikisource in 70 languages so far. But more recently I've been tossing around some additional, lighter slogans such as:


"Wikisource—The Wiki for Bookworms"


"Wikisource—The Booklover's Wiki"


I was an administrator here at the English Wikisource from the time it was founded until January 2008, when I voluntarily stepped down due to lack of time and the inability to make more than a few contributions per year. I still do some administrative upkeep at the Wikisource Multilingual portal and coordination wiki (where I am an administrator). There I helped revamp the languages listings that appear on the Main Page. I also created a table of translations for "Wikisource – The Free Library" that now lists many dozens of languages (including all 50+ subdomains).

Finally, on a technical level, I spearheaded the development of Extension:Labeled Section Transclusion, an extension to the Wikimedia software that allows the flexible support needed to present the same text in many different useful formats. I first proposed this here at the English Wikisource. I especially hope that this feature will foster collaboration for pre-modern texts in multilingual and annotated versions. It has been used extensively at Hebrew Wikisource for quite some time.

Hebrew Wikisource[edit]

Before the English subdomain I spearheaded the creation of Hebrew Wikisource, which was the very first Wikisource language domain (August, 2004). Since then, it continues to give me great pleasure to watch the numerous languages that are now up and running well, without any more need for assistance.

Currently[edit]

In more recent years (since the end of 2006) I have contributed a few some classic Judaic texts to English Wikisource, but my primary activity has been at the Hebrew Wikisource, which I had the honor to found in August, 2004, and where I serve as one of the bureaucrats.

As time goes on, Hebrew Wikisource has become ever more active, and that is where I spend most of my time now. Despite the activity, extra manpower is still more crucial there than here. But I'm still happy to be involved here at English Wikisource when a useful contribution comes up.

The following are some of my major projects there since 2004.

Arukh ha-Shulhan[edit]

Beginning in June, 2006, I edited and formatted major sections of the classic halakhic compendium called Aruch HaShulchan (text), day-by-day and chapter-by-chapter (the entire work contains 1,705 chapters or simanim). This involves a tremendous amount of typing and editing, and even some research. It is the first example of an extremely useful Judaic text at Hebrew Wikisource that is not available anywhere else on the web, and a strong example of the potential power of Wikisource for readers of Hebrew.

Sefer ha-Middot (Orhot Zaddikim)[edit]

I have completed a full draft of this classic medieval ethical work that is edited, punctuated, formatted, and includes hyperlinks to sources and parallels. The text has been partially corrected according to new evidence from manuscripts.

In addition, the original internal arrangement of the book into chapters has been reconstructed in a parallel edition based on manuscript evidence.

Maimonides' Introduction to Helek[edit]

Edited and formatted based on a Hebrew translation from the Arabic.

Miqra according to the Mesorah[edit]

This three-year project is now nearing completion, although there will always be improvements to be made and enhancements to be added:

Future projects[edit]

In the future I hope to produce highly accurate, vocalized and useful student versions of Rashi's commentary on the Torah (and megillot), Targum Onkelos, and then perhaps Targum Yonatan on Nevi'im.

Future[edit]

In the future, what interests me most is creating a flexible multilingual infrastructure for classical texts. The idea would be to allow multiple presentations of multiple versions/translations in each language, linked to parallel multiple versions in other languages. To my mind, the great advantages of Wikisource as a library are:

  1. It allows the presentation of the same individual text in many different ways and formats.
  2. It facilitates multilingual collaborations around texts.

It is these two possibilities that make Wikisource more than just a convenient dumping ground for the texts themselves (though that too is useful).

Though I am currently mostly involved with medieval and modern texts (the majority in Hebrew), the most prominent example of such multilingual collaboration is surely the Bible. If Harry Potter wasn't copyrighted it would be strong competition...

In other matters, I think that the stable versions feature will be of extraordinary importance to Wikisource, perhaps even more so than for Wikipedia. I hope to be of assistance in its future implementation here. It is already a requested feature for Hebrew Wikisource.

I disagree with those who see stable versions as just another anti-vandalism tool. In reality it goes far beyond that: It makes the entire war against vandalism obsolete! It assures users not just that our texts are policed, but that the approved version they are reading is authoritative and not subject to vandalism at all. In this way it also allows the project to expand without worrying about the maintainability of large numbers of texts. In my opinion, implementation is one of the wisest decisions that could be made for the future of Wikisource, improving both day-to-day interactions by editors and public perception.

Articles about Wikisource[edit]

Software extensions for Wikisource[edit]

Personal Sandbox and useful stuff[edit]

Useful Code[edit]

To switch typing direction from LTR to RTL and back again, first click in the edit area to put to cursor there, and then press LEFT-Ctrl and RIGHT-Shift. For instructions in Hebrew see here.

<nowiki>[...]</nowiki>

<u>[...]</u>

<poem>[...]</poem>

<u>

</u>

<div dir="RTL">[...]</div>

<div dir="LTR">[...]</div>

<קטע התחלה=א/> ... <קטע סוף=א/>

<section begin=x/> ... <section end=x/>

{{#section:article|chapter1}}

<center>[...]</center>

<big><big><big><big>[...]</big></big></big></big>

<small><small><small>[...]</small></small></small>

<span style='font-size:120%;'>

<span id="{{{1}}} חזור"/>

<span style='font-size:60%;' id="{{{1}}} חזור">

</span>

<span id="{{{1}}}-סק"/>

<span id="נושאי כלים"/>

[[Image:Alice in Wonderland.djvu|thumb|Alice in Wonderland, page 9|page=9]]

[[תמונה:AHS YD A1 (1-28).djvu|thumb|ערוך השולחן יורה דעה סימן א (המהדורה המקורית)|page=3]]