Beginner Builder series 75% done! will probably never be finished. :(

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

WikiTaxi: Be Wikiwise wherever you go.

WikiTaxi is an interesting program designed to let users download an entire wiki for offline viewing. Obviously, Wikipedia is the most well known Wiki, but WikiTaxi will work with other Wikis wonderfully. (Try saying that 5 times fast.) Check out this Wikimedia download site for a list of "all existing Wikimedia wikis", including wikis like the HomestarRunner Wiki. But be forewarned, downloading an entire Wiki is most of the time very massive. Downloading the latest dump of Wikipedia is usually around 3.5 Gigabytes, and the XML file is even bigger, once you unzip it.

So after you download your Wiki XML file, you can then "import" it to WikiTaxi. It takes a while to extract the pages and put them into a ".taxi" file, but when it's done, you'll have the entire Wiki, right there on your disk. Keep in mind, the .taxi file WILL be bigger than the XML file. I just downloaded a 4mb XML file, which expanded out to 21mb.

Here's some things that make WikiTaxi very nice:

-Search conditions: Just like google, you can search for an exact term by enclosing your search in quotes (""), include a wildcard (*), use words like "OR", and even more to help your searching.

-Find in page: Ctrl+F is the only way to access it, but it's there.

-History: It has basic Back/Forward.

-Multiple .taxi files: Another nice feature is that you're not limited to one .taxi file, which means you can have more than one Wiki, and switch between them (or run them side by side).

-Portable: Yes, WikiTaxi is indeed portable, but the size of the Wiki may put a damper on just how easy it is to take WikiTaxi anywhere.

-Tiny.....?: Again, the WikiTaxi program itself is fairly small, only 3mb, but in order to actually use the program, you have to download a wiki, which will at least end out being 12mb, so I'm going to have to say that WikiTaxi is not tiny.

There is only one thing that I can find fault with it so far:

-No images: It really makes sense. The entire Wikipedia in text-only form weighs in at 3.5GB compressed. Text is alot smaller than images, so if you had all of the images from Wikipedia as well, it could very well be up to 25GB, maybe even more (which could end out being 100GB when unpacked. So I'm not complaining, as if it should be a feature, I'm just stating a fact. If you want Wikipedia with images, WikiTaxi cannot help you there.

It really is an amazing idea. Ask anyone if having the ENTIRE Wikipedia on a flash drive would be cool, and they'd say yes. The only problem I have with it is that of updating. In order to keep WikiTaxi "Current", you'd have to download a new dump literally every day, which is absurb, considering you'd have to download a 3.5GB file, then import it, which takes like an hour. But then again, I am kind of a freak about those things. I can't stand knowing there is a newer version of something out there and not having it. If you aren't like me, and only updated occasionally, WikiTaxi could be a great tool, especially if you're going to a place that doesn't have Wifi, or even for school.

(What the heck would you tag this as?!)

*Icon for this post is by BlackEyedFish of DeviantArt. To him be the credit! Download it/Thank him there!


  1. wiki taxi.Really a unique name.Hope in future i will see more article on this website.Thanks for sharing a wonderful post.
    Airport Taxi Services

  2. kiwix is official wikipedia offline browser. its got images, it's not 100gb, at the most 10 (19 for german version), i chose wikitaxi cuz i haven't got the gigs i need for italian wikipedia...but wikitaxi should add the feature that enables the user to automatically look for images if there's an internet connection