How is information in Wikipedia structured?

Articles in Wikipedia can contain quite a bit of structured information. For example articles typically belong to one or more categories, and many pages such as biographies or world events will contain date information.

Take a look at David Bowie’s biography page as an example.

In the Infobox on the right hand side of the page are a number of key pieces of date information, and if you scroll to the bottom of the page you will see a large number of categories.

Histropedia is a tool that builds interactive timelines using this information.

By NavinoEvans (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Build a timeline based on Wikipedia categories

  1. Open Histropedia
  2. Click Start Exploring Timelines
  3. Type David Bowie into the search box at the top
  4. Select David Bowie filmography and Histropedia will build a timeline
  5. Type David Bowie into the search box again, and choose David Bowie albums
  6. Click Merge – now you have two timelines together.

You can add in more information based on other Wikipedia categories to build up whatever timelines you like. For example you could combine ‘Albert Einstein’ and ’20th century conflicts’ to build a timelines that shows the events Einstein lived through.

Bonus Prize (sorry – no prize!)

Why did I choose David Bowie as an example?

More Reading

(By Creator:Sebastian C. Adams [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons)