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Wikisurgery is a free surgical encyclopedia for surgeons and their patients. Contributions in the form of new articles and editing can be made by anyone at anytime anywhere in the world. The content of Wikisurgery is written collaboratively by people from all around the world.
This website is a wiki and is based on [MediaWiki v1.31.1]https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki. Anyone with access to an Internet-connected computer can edit, correct, or improve information throughout the encyclopedia, simply by clicking the "Edit This Page" link:
“Wiki: a type of website that allows users to add, remove, or otherwise edit all content very quickly and easily, sometimes without the need for registration. This ease of interaction and operation makes a wiki an effective tool for collaborative writing.”
In every article, links will guide you to associated articles, often with additional information. You are welcome to add further information, cross-references, or citations, so long as you do so within Wikisurgery's editing policies and to an appropriate standard. You do not need to fear accidentally damaging Wikisurgery when you add or improve information, as other Wikisurgeons are always around to advise or correct obvious errors if needed. Wikisurgery uses MediaWiki, encyclopedia software which is carefully designed to allow easy reversal of editorial mistakes.
Because Wikisurgery is an ongoing work to which in principle anybody can contribute, it differs from a paper-based reference source in some very important ways. In particular, older articles tend to be more comprehensive and balanced, while newer articles may still contain significant misinformation, unencyclopedic content, or vandalism. Users need to be aware of this in order to obtain valid information and avoid misinformation which has been recently added and not yet removed (see Wikisurgery:Researching with Wikisurgery for more details). However, unlike a paper reference source, Wikisurgery is completely up-to-date, with articles on topical events being created or updated within minutes or hours, rather than months or years for printed encyclopedias.
The opportunity is clear, if we utilise every individuals knowledge set built up over years of lectures, exams, training and human interaction, it can benefit everyone through the creation of a high quality shared knowledge base. Wikisurgery is more than just a depot of surgical knowledge, not just articles about facts but also articles about controversy, debates, with none of the usual editorial limits on space. Indeed we hope it will become a record of surgical thought, experience and progression.
Who is behind Wikisurgery
Wikisurgery was set-up by Surgical Associates Ltd, owners of the International Journal of Surgery. Surgical Associates Ltd helps in the administration of the site today. Dr Riaz Agha is the founder of both Surgical Associates Ltd and Wikisurgery. The site is developed by its users with a number of administrators helping to maintain order.
Dr Riaz Agha, BSc(Hons), MBBS(Hons), Founder and Managing Editor
Mr Michael Edwards FRCS, Editor
Maliha Agha BSc(Hons), MSc, Business Development Executive
International Journal of Surgery
+44 (0) 207 754 5520
December 2005 - Planning for Wikisurgery Site Begins
June 2006 - Site construction begins
July 2006 - Site undergoes Alpha Testing
August 2006 - Site undergoes Beta Testing
September 2006 - Site Launches
How Wikisurgery Differs from a Paper Encyclopedia or Textbook
Although Wikisurgery is an encyclopedia, it is not bound by the same constraints as a paper encyclopedia or even most online encyclopedias. The length, depth, and breadth of articles in Wikisurgery is virtually infinite. As Wikisurgery grows, so will computing power, storage capacity, and bandwidth. While there is a practical limit to all these at any given time, Wikisurgery is not likely to ever outgrow them.
What is great about Wikisurgery
Here is a summary list of the key benefits:
- can be updated at any time by any registered user.
- freely accessible by anyone with a computer connected to the internet
- breadth and depth of content (all surgical and allied specialties can be covered)
- any registered user can be a reader, contributor and an editor at the same time
- mass-editing might be less subjective than the conventional editing process
- people derive pleasure and validation from seeing their edits remain in place
- any fact can be noted in Wikisurgery when found and it should then always be there for later reference
- no size limits
- editability and organisation
- incorporates peer-review within a flexible and open framework
- flat hierarchy
- overall neutrality of content, whilst providing a forum for discussion and debate
- style and functionality
- timeliness and ease of editing
- vandalism can be corrected easily and swiftly
- inbuilt spell checker
- fast access to content without the need to login
- allows for the formation of a community of Wikisurgeons working collaboratively
- better for the Environment (no need to cut down any trees)
Copyright and Using Information from Wikisurgery
Unless otherwise stated on a page or article, Wikisurgery contributions are voluntarily given under the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL), which applies the legal principle known as copyleft, a way of using the copyright process to prevent information being controlled by any one person, to ensure it remains freely accessible forever.
All of the information in Wikisurgery is free for anyone to copy, modify for their own purposes, and redistribute or use as they see fit, as long as the new version grants the same freedoms to others and acknowledges the authors of the Wikisurgery article used (a credit or backlink to the original article is sufficient for this).
Copying things. Do not violate copyrights. To be safe, do not copy more than a couple of sentences of text from anywhere, and document any references you do use. You can copy material that you are sure is in the public domain, but even for public domain material you should still document your source. (note that most Web pages are not in the public domain). In fact most things written since 1st January 1978 are automatically under copyright even if they have no copyright notice or © symbol. If you think what you are contributing is in the public domain, say where you got it, either in the article or on the discussion page, and on the discussion page give the reason why you think it is in the public domain (e.g. "It was published in 1895...") If you think you are making "fair use" of copyrighted material, please put a note on the discussion page saying why you think so.
Exceptions to this copyright policy will be noted on individual pages or articles.
For further information see the text of the GNU Free Documentation License .