Import:2017 Battlestar Wiki Import

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Revision as of 09:47, 5 May 2017 by Sjml (Talk | contribs) (What's Missing?)

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In early 2017, the Battlestar Wiki switched over to password-only access, and started a Patreon to help fund its continuance.

This site was made by importing the wiki via its presence on the Internet Archive, as best as possible, as much as possible. Some pages are missing because they were never archived; some never had their wiki source pages archived and so would have to be reverse engineered from the rendered HTML. About 85% of the original has been pulled in, and from all appearances, the missing 15% are far less-trafficked pages. (The Internet Archive is more likely to preserve things that have many links to them, so we got the most popular 85%.)

Why Import?

At the time the wiki went offline, I was in the process of doing a Battlestar-related research project, as part of a larger piece I'm writing, and some other work. The wiki going down was sad. I wanted it back, and I thought others might, too.

How Import?

I did this with a set of Python scripts that I wrote myself. They are... not well-written. They're horribly messy things that require commenting and un-commenting code to make work, need to be run multiple times, and take several hours to do their job. (A lot of that is due to working through the Internet Archive, along with the fact that it's actually a pretty good-sized wiki.)

Is this cool?

Legally, yes. All the content on the Battlestar Wiki was licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 3.0, with some earlier content (from when we had to go back deep in the archive) under the CC BY-NC-SA 2.5 instead. In either case, both licenses explicitly allow for re-use, sharing, and redistributing the material, provided it includes attribution (every content page on the site does), is not for commercial purposes (it is not), and is licensed similarly (it is).

Morally, I do feel a little bit uneasy about it. I know the Battlestar Wiki people worked really hard on the original site, and I understand their wanting to have some income to pay their server bills and compensate them a bit for their time. But as a knowledge base for a set of shows that is no longer on the air, they're probably not going to reach their (pretty steep) fundraising goals. I'd hate to see a great, well-maintained resource disappear from the internet because of money. Especially given all the fans and supporters who created the content only to see it go down the cyberdrain.

If any of the staff of the original Battlestar Wiki have any concerns, please reach out. My contact information can all be found at my personal website.

What's Missing?

A lot of templates, which is why many/most of the pages look janky right now. The content is in place, though, so it's most of what I needed. If you are a MediaWiki Template wizard and/or are able to get the templates or images from the original site, please share! Out of respect for the original site, I'm going to leave the default MediaWiki skin in place so it's clear that this is not an attempt to fully mimic their work or confuse people; I just want to make sure that the CC-licensed body of text is still available in a useful format.


Sjml 22:53, 2 May 2017 (PDT)