Delimiter launches Aussie tech ‘Wikipedia’


I think I speak for everyone when I say that Wikipedia simply rocks. I use it on a daily basis for researching the background to articles, looking up obscure Japanese anime references or even digging deep into the history of 4chan.

Actually, yuck, on that last one.

But there are plenty of things that Wikipedia doesn’t rock for. For example, if you wanted to work out when the chief executive of Fujitsu Australia and New Zealand, Rod Vawdrey, was appointed to the role, Wikipedia probably couldn’t tell you.

Likewise, if you wanted to dig deep into the history of the corporate jet operated by Denis Mackenzie over at Darwin-based IT services group CSG, you’d have to go elsewhere. And don’t even get me started on how little of the real history of Australia’s telecommunications sector can be found on Wikipedia’s pages.

That’s why today, Delimiter is launching an alternative.

We’re not going to try to kill Wikipedia, nor would we want to. Instead, we’re going to follow in Wikipedia’s footsteps. This morning we launched a public Wiki site that will solely cover Australia’s technology sector — its personalities, companies, issues and memes.

Already, we have more coverage than Wikipedia in some areas — such as the history of Vawdrey’s stewardship of Fujitsu in Australia.

Now, it should be obvious given Wikipedia’s own history, that Delimiter won’t be able to do this alone.

So we’re hoping that companies and individuals in Australia’s technology sector — and that includes the enterprise IT, telco, consumer technology and video gaming verticals — will help us out by editing entries on the new Delimiter Wiki, particularly about themselves, so that we can build a bigger base of knowledge.

All of the content on the Delimiter Wiki will be available under a Creative Commons licence, so you shouldn’t be worried that Delimiter is going to somehow take all of the content people contribute and run off and make buckets of cash with it.

It will stay on the web for perpetuity and (hopefully) become an increasingly valuable resource for Australia’s technology sector, although, as with Wikipedia, we ask that people take a common sense approach to the information contained within its pages — if it gets vandalised, some of the info may not be quite accurate.

We are only planning to use images on the Delimiter Wiki that are public domain (for example, have been released for use by the press) or that we believe we can use under fair use provisions (such as company logos). But if you see an image on the site that you don’t think we should be using, just contact us and explain the situation.

As always, if you have questions or worries about how to contribute to or use the Delimiter Wiki, please drop me a line directly at

We would particularly welcome suggestions as to how we could tweak MediaWiki, the Wiki software we are using — it seems a bit hard for the average user to use, and we still haven’t worked out how to fix the the capitalisation in iiNet’s page, for example.

Image credit: Delimiter


  1. Fantastic idea. I’m often looking for obscure technical information about specific Australian individuals or companies. If I can think of any area I can help contribute with I’ll certainly pitch in.

    • Cheers, Simon, much appreciated! I particularly want to generate wiki pages on individuals — chief information officers, the heads of technology companies and so on. Most of the product information is available overseas etc. But it’s Australian personalities that I have seen most interest in and that I’m most interested in myself.

      Of course I expect pages like the one on the internet filter to get a lot of attention ;)

    • No Matt, I’m not going to re-create LinkedIn :) LinkedIn has nowhere near the flexibility of a Wiki. I am going to build an Australian tech sector-specific Wiki with functionality like Wikipedia :)

    • Why not? Because the people in Wikiland have this idea that some knowledge isn’t worth knowing… and it’s absurd. For example, there used to be a page on every single Pokemon character. They were incredibly detailed and as well written as any other article. They were all deleted because apparently it’s not worthy knowledge. There are plenty of other examples regarding real people/things that not enough people know about, but I can’t remember any.

      • That Pokemon deletion seems draconian, Jimmetry, and a perfect example of why there should be multiple Wikis out there and not just one overarching Wikipedia controlled by one organisation … after all, isn’t one of the strengths of the internet that it rejects this kind of system?

        There are already quite a few edits going on at the Delimiter Wiki today since launch … multiply a few dozen edits a week and a few new pages by 5 years and you get a massive database quite specific to Australian ICT. If Wikipedia chooses to mirror the Delimiter Wiki content — all well and good! That’s data redundancy and giving people options.

        On the internet all viewpoints can be legitimately represented.

      • Yep, a good example recently was Cyanogen (Android). He was deemed too unimportant to have a wikipedia entry. It took a role call to get enough people to convince the gazillion moderators on Wikipedia that Cyanogen was relevant.

  2. Seems a little bit underdone for release – I apparently have the opportunity/right to write the privacy policy. The community can only be trusted so far…

    • I’m consulting with a lawyer on that stuff now Paul — but don’t worry, I will have industry-standard terms and conditions — I anticipate very similar to Wikipedia’s.

      • The thing I was getting at was more the fact I could write/edit the policy rather than that they didn’t exist. I suppose I had two issues – how identified are comments if someone wanted to trash someone & a purely site security issue of whether world+dog can write/edit the wiki’s security policy. That said I’m in favour of the idea of a local history/who’s who

        • Ah, I hadn’t thought about that Paul. That’s a very good point. I think I am mainly a believer in there being a “benevolent dictator” on this sort of stuff, due to the necessity to take care of legal issues, but I’m extremely happy for anyone to work on a privacy policy for the site, which we can then take to lawyers, if they want to. Either just post it on the site, or email

  3. I believe there are technical issues with naming wiki pages in lowercase.
    Some info from wikipedia:

    Also you might want to get the URL rewriting going to allow search engines to display friendly names in the URL, you can then go from to something like Check out the howto from MediaWiki:

    Maybe even a new URL dedicated to your wiki?

    Awesome idea and keep up the good work!

    • Cheers for the well wishes Adam!

      I have looked at those technical issues … currently working on a Wikipedia-esque fix involving templates. I don’t know why this is so hard for MediaWiki to understand that their current system is completely borked, but I hope to have this figured out eventually.

      Same with the URL re-writing. I use MediaTemple hosting (shared grid) which apparently complicates things a deal, but there is a fix on the MediaTemple forums that I am planning to imlpement shortly. I did consider a new URL altogether, but it ended up being more hassle than it was worth for now ;) I may take that path a bit later — especially if the community growing up around the Wiki wants it. Ultimately it’s going to be the community that is going to guide this one.

  4. This is an area I’m interested in, all too often wikipedia is very generalised about subjects I’m interested in.

    Are you looking at putting up historical information about the evolution of the computer industry in Australia. I know there are a lot of people still around that could contribute to this. (Australian Computer Museum Society for one).

    Other projects such a CIRAC and the QPSX group have almost disappeared into obscurity, it would be nice to get some of this recorded somewhere efore it’s all forgotten.

    • hey Bruce,

      I would love to see as much historical information about the evolution of the Australian computer industry up on Delimiter Wiki as possible — this is exactly the sort of material I am interested in.

      I agree about getting that stuff up there before it’s forgotten — let me know if there is anything I can do to help.

  5. Perfect… now we can track just how much damage to the IT and Technology sector Mr Conroy is doing.

  6. Bizarre… a wiki that is unable to be edited.

    Well that is a serious waste of time. I was going to contribute with some of my knowledge dating back to the mid eighties, but don’t think I’ll bother now, even if it becomes unlocked in the future.

    Excellent idea,
    Failure on the delivery and follow through.

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