It is the year 2031, and Wikipedia is celebrating its 30th birthday

While Guillaume wrote this essay in the context of work related to the 2018 revenue strategy, these scenarios about the future of our movement and our sites are almost short novels, and I find them thought-provoking and fascinating.

2031: The War of the Words; 2031: Success into oblivion; 2031: Human obsolescence.

Thinking about the future is so exciting and challenging at the same time. How do you feel after reading this page?


Feelings? Interesting scenarios, show a lot of thought, however, for me, they land more with the head than the heart.

Feeling is I am very glad I knew life before the Internet. Feeling is that many others will join me-- ready to unplug, and return to a world where people sing together, cook together, watch little kids running around for entertainment, and sit together by a fire at night. The squish of paint and clay between your fingers, the sound of a loved one reading aloud … not to be replaced by algorithms and mediated reality.

Feeling is that the public domain e-book set of the Harvard Classics is the indispensable infrastructure that will enable all of us to do as my grandfather did during the Great Depression, and complete our education ourselves-- developing insight, literacy, and the ability to question, which is key to making wise decisions, regardless of access to information or economic circumstances. Wikipedia, machine learning-- you can’t move on these sorts of info-bits effectively for wise action, unless you’ve installed some portion of the internal operating and navigation system passed down to us by the ancestors.

Scenario 3 is reminiscent of New York 2140.

– Takeaway is that greening the Wikipedia servers and making a big push towards carbon neutral operations is absolutely critical.

Going carbon neutral is critical for our brothers and sisters in Wikimedia India and Wikimedia Bangladesh, and critical for our movement-- if we don’t want to be viewed as one more energy-wasting electronic organization that contributes to extreme temperatures and weather.