Wikipedia founder's computer and website front page auctioned

The prestigious Christie's launched a personal computer that Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales used when the electronic encyclopedia was launched 20 years ago, in addition to the front page of the famous site in the digital "NFT" format.


The computer was displayed at Christie's headquarters in Rockefeller Center in New York, a red "iMac" that Jimmy Wales was using "as a personal computer for development and research operations when the site was launched on January 15, 2001," according to a statement by the auction house.


Peter Clarant, a specialist in books and publications at Christie's, told AFP that the auction includes a digital piece in the "NFT" format approved to document the authenticity of digital products, "created by Jimmy Wales and showing what Wikipedia looked like when he created it and launched its front page, with the phrase + Hello world +." .


Christie's notes that the JPEG page will be interactive and the buyer can "edit" it to "recreate the Wikipedia building experience" and then "return to its original state using a timer".


In the statement, Jimmy Wales said that a portion of the proceeds from the auction will be used to fund his project WT.SOCIAL, "a decentralized, non-commercial social network free of ads, tracking, data collection and misinformation."


WT.Social describes itself on its homepage as a "non-toxic social network".


Both pieces are on sale online through December 15, starting at $100 each, but Christie's hopes to sell them for "hundreds of thousands of dollars," according to Peter Clarant.

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