Wikipedia Gets First Desktop Redesign In A Decade To Make Site More Welcoming
By Alexa Heah, 19 Jan 2023
After a decade of depicting the same, grayscale homepage, Wikipedia is finally getting its first major redesign; though, unlike most rebranding efforts, this was done as subtly as possible in order to keep the website as familiar to users as possible.
At first glance, it doesn’t seem much of the encyclopedia’s desktop view has changed, but look closer, and you’ll notice the updated page eliminates some of the most common hassles while surfing through its millions of articles.
Wikimedia Foundation, which runs the site, says the new interface comes just after the English version’s 22nd birthday, and “prioritizes usability and modernizes the Wikipedia experience to make it easier for everyone to access, explore, and share knowledge.”
Foremost, a new sticky header allows users to quickly access the search and article sections of the page, while the search function in itself has been upgraded to show images and descriptions as you type in your query.
In addition, the site has now made it easier to switch between languages, and has a handy table of contents to the left of an article’s page to help you navigate among the numerous sections more swiftly.
According to TechCrunch, there are some minor tweaks that could possibly go unnoticed. For example, pages have included a collapsible sidebar that allows readers to remove unnecessary distractions when browsing a page. The default font is now larger, too.
This updated look is currently rolling out for users of Wikipedia around the globe, and is already available to 300 of its 318 active languages. As more and more people gain access to the internet, the site hopes its new look will help meet the needs of the “next generation of internet users.”
“The Wikipedia desktop update is one of the major improvements the Wikimedia Foundation is making to help people easily access the world’s knowledge,” sums up Selena Deckelmann, Chief Product and Technology Officer at Wikimedia Foundation.
“In support of our mission to make sure every person on the planet has free and equitable access to knowledge, regardless of where they live or where they are from,” she added.
[via Engadget, TechCrunch, and Wikimedia Foundation, cover image via Rafael Henrique | Dreamstime.com]
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