Violinwiki was conceived on December 8, 2015, that is the day when an idea of "Wikipedia of Violin" first occurred to the Violinwiki founder. True, there are articles concerning the violin on Wikipedia but Wikipedia is a general encyclopaedia with different notability and scope. Violinwiki is a specialized wiki with only one topic, the violin and quite a few articles that exist on Violinwiki are outside the notability and scope of Wikipedia. The Violinwiki scope and the long term targets of Violinwiki are described in Violinwiki:Scope and Violinwiki:Aims.
The next two weeks were spent by the sketches and initial analysis and deciding which software to use for the wiki. It all boiled down to the two candidates, Dokuwiki and Mediawiki. The target was the lightweight server with the fastest possible response, nothing is more annoying for the reader or the writer than long response from the server.
Initially Dokuwiki was chosen and before the end of the year the first vanilla version with a few test pages was running on XAMPP (Apache Friends) and Dokuwiki on Windows 7 notebook.
In January a deeper analysis was done and the system tests were run on the development Linux server and Dokuwiki. The results of the system testing showed that while Dokuwiki was good software useful for technical writing, it would be insufficient for the future needs of Violinwiki. Meanwhile the choice was done for the web server software, Lighttpd, Nginx and Apache were considered, in the end Apache was chosen; while not the most lightweight, it is the most thoroughly documented and highly configurable.
Unlike Dokuwiki, which is file based, Mediawiki needs database. MariaDB was chosen because it was open source and the most scalable. On February 9 the system tests started again, checking the software and available Mediawiki extensions.
On February 7 the test and production servers were initially leased for one year.
On February 25 the installation of the operating system on the test server started; the production server was kept offline.
Installation and configuration of OS, MariaDB, Apache, Mediawiki and other necessary software packages on the test server was soon completed. The tests and the configuration of the Violinwiki itself could have been started.
The initial plan was to launch Violinwiki in March but that had to be postponed. The delay was caused by the help files; their number grew and grew and finally their creation took more than six weeks; though Mediawiki public domain help files were of great help they still had to be customized.
On Jun 10 the production server was switched on and the installation of OS, MariaDB, Apache and all other software packages started. It was successfully completed and the migration of data from the development and test servers was done as well. Finally all the access data from the test server were processed (the test server was online from day one and quite a few attackers and spam bots showed their presence) and the production firewall was configured accordingly on the production server. The production server was behind the closed firewall from its switch on and that was opened for the rest of the world on June 29.
The rest is history ... in Recent Changes.
Violinwiki was launched on June 29. The infrastructure was fully ready but it was almost an empty shell; there was little user content in the main namespace yet. During the next three months the initial content in the Main namespace, categories and templates were created.
- The Violinwiki statistics at birth
MediaWiki is the configuration namespace, Help and Project (Violinwiki) contain help and guidelines, User is user and user pages namespace and File contains uploaded files. Template is the namespace for the useful templates, Categories contains all the project categories and Main is the contents namespace.
- Violinwiki statistics one month after launch
Violinwiki reached 100 articles on 14 July 2016, 15 days after launch.
- Violinwiki statistics two months after launch
- Violinwiki statistics three months after launch
Violinwiki reached 200 articles on 17 September 2016.
From now on, further monthly Violinwiki statistics such as the Main namespace growth, number of edits, individual namespace growth and overall growth can be found on the Statistics page.
In December 2016 Violinwiki reached six months of age, no longer a defenceless newborn, already a toddler with all the capabilities for further development and growth. Most major areas of violin knowledge have portal pages so that the editors can develop these areas further in details, quite a few templates making life easier for the editors have been created.
- Violinwiki reached 500 articles on 21 February 2017.
- Violinwiki reached 1000 articles on 10 April 2017.
Violinwiki has had Patreon, Twitter and Facebook accounts and Youtube channel established for the fundraising purposes in April and May.
The main efforts in May are to establish the sufficient support base for the community financing of the Violinwiki project and establishment of the non-profit entity.
Mobile view extension was implemented, Violinwiki is now accessible both on desktop and mobile devices.
The mobile view is disabled temporarily, upstream development.
June 28, 2017: the first Yearly report was issued.
February, 2019: experiment with the public financing has been closed and Violinwiki remains privately maintained project. Facebook and Twitter pages remain active, Patreon is no longer used or valid link for Violinwiki. Currently Violinwiki has over 1500 pages.