Welsh City Monmouth has officially been crowned the first ‘Wikipedia Town’. Titled Monmouthpedia, the large-scale project’s aim is to use QR codes strategically placed around the town to create a unique visitor experience.
Everything worth knowing about such as places, people, artifacts and plants will be assigned a QR code that when viewed through a smart phone or tablet device will retrieve the relevant information from Wikipedia; a great example of how digital media is enhancing real-world experiences.
Monmouthpedia is a collaboration between Wikimedia and the Monmouthshire County Council and was launched earlier this month. According to project leader John Cummings,
Most importantly it is the individual contributors, the local community groups and people not just from Monmouth but from all over the world creating the content.
Already they have received close to 500 articles contributed from individuals and local community groups. The articles retrieved through the use of QRpedia will be displayed in the language the mobile device is configured to, opening the experience to international visitors.
The idea for the project occurred at the TEDx talk in Bristol when project leader Cummings suggested from the audience that the UK chapter use QR codes to do a whole town. Six months later and the Welsh town has over 1000 codes created on ceramic or metal plaques. The county council is committed to installing free citywide wi-fi, a first for the country of Wales to ensure the project is a success.
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