This will be new to some and old dirt to others, but we have some exciting news! As you may know, our man in Florida, Hampton Catlin, has been working on an iPhone application called iPedia (formerly iWik) which takes your Wikipedia queries and makes the results look downright beautiful compared to the the markup that Wikipedia serves to iPhone users. This started off as a fun personal project that Hampton built in about three days on a dare from his friend, but it has become a runaway success as we've watched it sell over 70,000 copies for $1 apiece on the Apple iTunes Application Store.
You can listen to Hampton discuss some of the backstory behind its development over on MobileOrchard.
Hampton alluded to some ongoing conversations with Wikimedia, the organization which oversees the development of Wikipedia and its associated projects. The outcome of these meetings is totally awesome: Wikimedia have agreed to acquire iPedia and rebrand it as simply “Wikipedia”, making it the new official Wikipedia iPhone application.
There’s more! Hampton has been retained by Wikimedia to provide support for application users over the next year and beyond, in the capacity of their new Mobile Development Lead. What this means is that Hampton is going to be playing a major role in Wikimedia’s future mobile strategy. He’ll be building an open source community around this project, which will hopefully spawn similar developments for platforms like Google Android, Blackberry, Symbian and others.
Never fear, Hampton is still part of the Unspace team. We’re on board to help out however we can, and we’ll let you know more details as we find out ourselves. This is all a dream come true for Hampton, who has always been a huge Wikipedia fan. We are really proud.