Indian ‘agricultural wikipedia’ launched

Scientists in India have launched an ‘agricultural wikipedia’, agropedia.

The site “aims to disseminate crop- and region-specific information to farmers and agricultural extension workers — who communicate agricultural information and research findings to farmers — and provide information for students and researchers”, according to a release on SciDev Net.

I just visited the site out of curiosity (I had to search on Google to find it, as there was no URL in the release), and was confronted with this opening statement:

“agropedia is an agriculture knowledge repository of universal meta models and localized content for a variety of users with appropriate interfaces built in collaborative mode in multiple languages.”

Wow! They must have a very different kind of extension agent from the ones I am familiar with. That sentence stopped me stone dead.

The idea is great, but I think this site has a long way to go before it is likely to prove useful. I did not find it intuitive to use, and often down-right offputting. For example, click on the link for ‘Knowledge Models’ and you get a table listing crops with four columns, headed “20081218″ and “20090113″ (under a heading of PDF), and 20081218″ and “20090113″ (under a heading JPEG). With a little thought one can guess these are the ‘dates’ of the Knowledge Models behind the PDF and JPG icons. But what do those dates represent?

If one goes to ‘Extension Materials’ and clicks on ‘Dos and Don’ts’, one is confronted by a nine-cell table with the names of the crops covered in the agropedia. Click on chickpea, for example, and one gets a page that says:

<quote>

Chickpea

Chickpea

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4 Responses to Indian ‘agricultural wikipedia’ launched

  1. Dear agropedia user,
    Thanks for using agropedia and pointing out the issues.
    The answer to your question is ‘Knowledge Models-Date stamp’ 20081218 – This is 18th Dec 2008 and then Knowledge Models were revised on 20090113- which is 13th January 2009, So precisely said both the datestamps represents Models revisions.

    Another point was the link to Dos and Don’ts under Extension Material section:The page you are talking about is the landing page for crop in dos and don’ts : U need to click on the crop name(In this case its ‘Chickpea’) to the content related to that.

    If you still have problem using the site, please contact us.

    Thanks,
    Meeta

  2. famerdin says:

    I am a scientist who is working on social networking since long time. But I did not see any difference between other agricultural websites and agropedia. Content are of poor quality and many of them are copy paste type. And want to know about validity of the content. That if I use content from agropedia practice and have loss who is going to pay for it. Can I claim for it from agropedia. Again most of the contents a see are generated only by few people. i think they are experts. But who are they where they are located and what is the validity of their expertise. I shall be obliged for the ansewrs to the queries.

  3. sugathac says:

    Dear agropedia user,

    The contents in agropedia are semantically cataloged- which makes it different from the other agricultural websites. Secondly, can you please point out as which content you found to be copy paste. You will have to register yourself to the agropedia website and then only you can access the user profile of the experts who upload the contents.

    Thanks
    Sugatha

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