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Meeting notes Attendees:

  • Nuria
  • David Hardcastle from Alexa

Alexa usage of Wikipedia

Wikipedia service

Example: > "Alexa: Wikipedia white house" (and Alexa reads the White House Wikipedia page to you.)

They pull api and locally cache results, consume an edit feed, and bust cache after 5 minutes of an edit (they observed that is the time after which edits become stable).

Fact service

Example: > "Alexa: What is the capital of Paris"

Wikipedia's content is part of the knowledge graph that gets built in order to answer these questions. This is done async and because of Wikipedia's reputation as a reliable source, it ranks high in terms of trust, so the info is used more than it might be for other sources. Wikidata infoboxes are used to answer this type of question.

Images are also displayed on occasion and this work is more tricky, as they have to be aware of licensing for those, they have a licensing module that chooses images with licenses that Alexa can show.


Alexa wants to be a good web citizen and they try to cache as much as possible on their end so they end up using our resources minimally. The company that did this work was a startup called "ebi" that Amazon bought. User agent on API calls should be "edbi" or "alexa".