Namaste All and I believe it was a great start of the year for everyone.
Welcome to the Monday interview. Today we have Carsten Siemens with us who spends most of his time on the TechNet Wiki to make it more original by working on plagiarism which is easily possible when dealing with such a large community.
Let's us know the man who helps people by inciting them to be creative and contribute original content.
Mahesh : Who are you, where are you, and what do you do? What are your specialty technologies?
Carsten : I’m fascinated by computer science, mathematics, and music – and I’m unable to sort them by precedence because they depend on each other.
I studied computer science (artificial intelligence, image processing) in Germany. I have been working for Capgemini in the area of custom software development for 17 years now. As a senior technical architect I am responsible for the technical architecture and implementation of (typically large) business information systems and service-oriented application landscapes.
I feel comfortable in both “worlds”: I’m working in .NET as well as in Java projects. My friendship with .NET started with .NET 1.0. A personal highlight was my role as technical chief architect of one of Germany’s largest .NET applications.
I would like to share some thoughts about “large projects” with you:
- Terms like “large project” only address the quantity aspect. My experience is that the success of a project is driven by two other aspects: Quality and People. And I think the same applies to TechNet Wiki.
- Large projects typically require higher abstraction levels. However, every abstraction should be based on practical experience and in-depth knowledge and understanding of e.g. technologies. That’s why I’m programming selected core concepts even in the largest project.
My favorite .NET technologies are: C#, F#, ASP.NET MVC, WPF, Entity Framework, and LINQ.
In the area of mathematics my focus is on analysis and number theory. I’m also interested in the intersection of computer science and mathematics – especially in the works of Donald Knuth.
I also enjoy playing classical and Jazz guitar, and sometimes I try the piano and alto sax. For me even music is highly related to computer science and mathematics, but that’s another topic.
Mahesh : What do you do with TechNet Wiki, and how does that fit into the rest of your job?
Carsten : It can be quite hard to be up-to-date in Java and .NET technologies, when you are for example absorbed in a long lasting Java project. TechNet Wiki helps me to keep in touch with Microsoft technologies.
Mahesh : What are your big projects right now?
Carsten : I would like to focus the answer on my TechNet and personal projects. In TechNet I have to take care of two “tasks” – an easy and a hard one.
- The easy one: I’m one of the moderators for German translations.
- The hard one: I’m supporting Peter Geelen and Naomi Nosonovsky in the area of focus “Spam, Plagiarism, & Article Deletion”. Since last November I’m also supporting the pirated content scan of TechNet Guru Contributions.
Some of my personal projects:
- Visual Studio is lacking a sort feature. I recently finished a flexible VS extension for sorting. The next step should be an upload to the VS Gallery and a TechNet tutorial article.
- I’m successfully using Bing Search API in one of my personal projects. The Bing search API is not restricted – neither legally nor technically – to web applications. A TechNet article can help members of this community getting started.
- I’m a heavy user of Mathematica, a system for symbolic computation. Just for curiosity I started programming a clone of this application. Sounds useless? My motivation: It’s fun to discover Mathematica’s underlying software design by observing its behavior, and it’s a nice opportunity to work with LALR parser-generators. I started with Java, but I may portittoF# or Scala.
Mahesh : What are your favorite Wiki articles you’ve contributed?
Carsten : I would like to turn the spotlight on three articles, and the stories behind them.
In June 2013 I incidentally found some pirated article and started a mail conversation with Ed. I did some further research. Guided by random and intuition I easily found 66 plagiarisms until the beginning of July. This was the trigger for a long mail to Ed, which analyzed the findings. Ed’s answer is nicely summarized by his citation; “Holy crack!” In case you are interested in what I wrote to Ed: The article is nearly identical to my mail.
This article was written three months later. In the meantime the Community Council extended the focus area "Spam & Article Deletion" to "Spam, Plagiarism & Article Deletion" and was working on a strong framework. Improvements should be measured. This article gives facts and figures about plagiarism until the end of September 2013. Until September 485 plagiarisms were found (and the current number is 570). Handling plagiarism is an ongoing task.
Article tags are frequently changed, but due to a Wiki bug is hard to see the actual changes.
Instead it should look like this:
This article and the corresponding Gallery contribution are my “give-away” for you: it fixes this Wiki Bug.
My User Page shows the complete article list.
Mahesh : What is the difference between “plagiarism” and “pirated content”
Carsten : You can use both terms interchangeably. However, as a tag name they have different meanings:
Mahesh : What are your top 5 favorite Wiki articles?
Carsten : At the moment I’m very much focused on the topic plagiarism. I will be pleased, if the following articles help to raise the community’s awareness:
- Wiki: How to Report a TechNet Wiki Page (Ed Price)
Ed’s article is the Swiss army knife in case you want to report spam, pirated content, duplicate articles, test articles, or performance issues.
- Wiki: Types of Articles Not Appropriate for TechNet Wiki
This article of the Community Council is an excellent guideline. You can use this citation as a rule of thumb: “Do not copy other people's content to the Wiki, even if the OWNER SAID IT WAS OK.”
- Wiki: Best Practices for Giving Credit (Bruno Lewin)
This article explores the borderline between “OK” and “NOT OK”,
- Wiki: Best Practices for Source References and Quotes (Peter Geelen)
This article is currently a stub, but already helpful.
And where is the fifth article? Well, I like Sandro Pereira’s Blogpost BizTalk TechNet Wiki Articles: Can I? Or Should I?, especially his final considerations, which address the right mindset and the importance of quality.