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Wikipedia Worries

  1. Apr 6, 2009 #1
    Everything I know about particle physics I've learned from Wikipedia articles. But since anyone can create and edit a wikipedia article, I was wondering how much faith I should put in their information.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 6, 2009 #2
    It's a good resourse to have, but you can't rely on it. For that matter, you can't rely on books or teachers either. All of these sources are prone to error. Sometimes you have to think and do research to dig out the answers for yourself. I've found many errors on Wikipedia. Some are typos, some are just misinformation from unqualified individuals and some are one viewpoint on a debatable issue.

    Seek out information from many sources both historical and current. The good thing about this type of forum is that a question presented here is going to give you a wide range of answers to guide you and give you confidence about any information you obtain.
  4. Apr 6, 2009 #3


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    Elaborating on what elect_eng said, Wikipedia is in many cases a great starting point for topics. If you want to really learn something, you're going to need a legitimate textbook and the brainpower to work through and understand it rather than just mindlessly absorb.
  5. Apr 6, 2009 #4


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    Elaborating on what Nabeshin said, wikipedia articles are going to point you in the right direction for the most part. The most important thing is, however, the citations at the bottom of a page. If a section in an article references to www.my_crazy_theory.com[/URL], you probably should be worried. My advice to people, at least when writing reports, is if you're going to use wikipedia, just go to the website/journal/article that is cited for the information you need and use it instead.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
  6. Apr 7, 2009 #5
    Thanks, you've been a lot of help.
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