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In the first year of its existence, over 20,000 encyclopedia entries were created – a rate of over 1,500 articles per month.
On Friday 30 August 2002, the article count reached 40,000.
Including all language editions, Wikipedia has over 45 million articles, Crucially, Stallman's concept specifically included the idea that no central organization should control editing.
This characteristic was in stark contrast to contemporary digital encyclopedias such as Microsoft Encarta, Encyclopædia Britannica, and even Bomis's Nupedia, which was Wikipedia's direct predecessor.
Sanger thought a wiki would be a good platform to use, and proposed on the Nupedia mailing list that a wiki based upon Use Mod Wiki (then v. Under the subject "Let's make a wiki", he wrote: No, this is not an indecent proposal. Jimmy Wales thinks that many people might find the idea objectionable, but I think not...
As to Nupedia's use of a wiki, this is the ULTIMATE "open" and simple format for developing content.
The bandwidth and server (located in San Diego) used for these initial projects were donated by Bomis.
Many former Bomis employees later contributed content to the encyclopedia: notably Tim Shell, co-founder and later CEO of Bomis, and programmer Jason Richey.
The development of the World Wide Web led to many attempts to develop internet encyclopedia projects.
In 2001, the license for Nupedia was changed to GFDL, and Wales and Sanger launched Wikipedia using the concept and technology of a wiki pioneered in 1995 by Ward Cunningham.
Initially, Wikipedia was intended to complement Nupedia, an online encyclopedia project edited solely by experts, by providing additional draft articles and ideas for it.
Its first major mainstream media coverage was in the New York Times on Thursday 20 September 2001.
The project gained its 1,000th article around Monday 12 February 2001, and reached 10,000 articles around 7 September.