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Wikidata is a free, collaborative, multilingual, secondary database, collecting structured data to provide support for Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, the other wikis of the Wikimedia movement, and to anyone in the world.
What does this mean?
Let's look at the opening statement in more detail:
How does Wikidata work?
This diagram of a Wikidata item shows you the most important terms in Wikidata.
Wikidata is a central storage repository that can be accessed by others, such as the wikis maintained by the Wikimedia Foundation. Content loaded dynamically from Wikidata does not need to be maintained in each individual wiki project. For example, statistics, dates, locations and other common data can be centralized in Wikidata.
The Wikidata repository
Items and their data are interconnected.
The Wikidata repository consists mainly of items, each one having a label, a description and any number of aliases. Items are uniquely identified by a Q followed by a number, such as Douglas Adams (Q42).
Statements describe detailed characteristics of an Item and consist of a property and a value. Properties in Wikidata have a P followed by a number, such as with educated at (P69).
For a person, you can add a property to specify where they were educated, by specifying a value for a school. For buildings, you can assign geographic coordinates properties by specifying longitude and latitude values. Properties can also link to external databases. A property that links an item to an external database, such as an authority control database used by libraries and archives, is called an identifier. Special Sitelinks connect an item to corresponding content on client wikis, such as Wikipedia, Wikibooks or Wikiquote.
All this information can be displayed in any language, even if the data originated in a different language. When accessing these values, client wikis will show the most up-to-date data.
Douglas Adamseducated atSt John's College
Working with Wikidata
There are a number of ways to access Wikidata using built-in tools, external tools, or programming interfaces.
Where to get started
The Wikidata tours, designed for new users, are the best place to learn more about Wikidata.
Some links to get started:
How can I contribute?
Go ahead and start editing. Editing is the best way to learn about the structure and concepts of Wikidata. If you would like to gain understanding of Wikidata's concepts upfront, you may want to have a look at the help pages. If you have questions, please feel free to drop them in the project chat or contact the development team.
There is more to come
Wikidata is an ongoing project that is under active development. More data types as well as extensions will be available in the future. You can find more information about Wikidata and its ongoing development on the Wikidata page on Meta. Subscribe to the Wikidata mailing list to receive up-to-date information about the development and to participate in discussions about the future of the project.
See also
Last edited on 13 July 2021, at 08:21
All structured data from the main, Property, Lexeme, and EntitySchema namespaces is available under the Creative Commons CC0 License; text in the other namespaces is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
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