Konkani Wikipedia from Goa University in 6 months


PANAJI: Piles of the thick four volumes of Konkani vishwakosh or encyclopedia 
waiting to be picked up by users at the Goa University (GU) will now attain a 
modern avatar. The volumes, work on which was first started by renowned Goan 
writer and academician late Manoharrai Sardessai at GU, will not only be 
available in digitized format, but will form the base for a Konkani Wikipedia.

Goa University has become the first varsity in the country to enter into a 
creative commons licence that will allow data produced and copyrighted by an 
Indian university available to internet users and open to modification, making 
GU a champion of sorts of free knowledge. The Konkani Wikipedia is expected to 
be ready for use within six months, officials said.

The university has signed a three-year memorandum of understanding with the 
Centre for Internet and Society's Access to Knowledge Programme, which 
represents Wikipedia in India, for the Konkani Wikipedia project.

"Professors, students and anyone with expertise or love for Konkani can come 
forward to help with the project for which training will be provided. 
Information in the Konkani vishwakosh will also be updated as per the current 
developments," Vishnu Vardhan of the centre said.

The Wikipedia is the fourth most used property on the internet after Google, 
Facebook and Yahoo, which acts as an internet based encyclopedia where any of 
the users can upload new information or update or modify an existing chapter. 
The Konkani Wikipedia too will offer similar privileges to users and GU's 
Konkani department and the centre will oversee the process from the university 

"The Konkani vishwakosh covers all realms of knowledge like any other 
encyclopedia. The Konkani Wikipedia will act as a digitized repository of 
knowledge for future generations and Konkani speakers across the world. I look 
forward to the pleasure of going to the internet and clicking away to access a 
Konkani Wikipedia," GU vice-chancellor Satish Shetye said.

Shetye said that GU is glad to associate with Wikipedia which has become a 
global phenomenon and broken the monopoly of publishers and converted 
distribution of knowledge into a democratic process.

"At present, it takes time for a page with information in a regional language 
to download because they are usually found in the form of scanned pages, which 
are accessible as images and not text. The Konkani Wikipedia will make the text 
accessible as is the case of any English text on the internet," GU registrar 
Vijayendra Kamat said. tnn

The Konkani vishwakosh was created over a period of 14 years.

Edited by late Manoharrai Sardessai and later Tanaji Halarnkar. GU staffers 
Ranjan Naik, Kalpana Naik, Kanchan Mordekar, Surekha Naik, Mukesh Thali and 
Shailendra Mehta contributed to the compilation process.

Contains four large volumes of 3,632 of total pages.

Konkani vishwakosh or encyclopedia encompasses world information in a nutshell 
with special emphasis on Goa, Konkani, Goan culture, folklore, history, 
geography etc.

Wikipedia is available in 20 Indian languages including Telugu, Assamese, 
Marathi, but not in Konkani so far.

Students, professors and anyone interested in contributing to the project can 
do so by enrolling online at bit.ly/konkanivishwakosh before October 5. 


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