2017: SklogWiki celebrates 10 years on-line


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Ludwig Boltzmann's grave, with S= k log W seen at the top. (Photo: Daderot)

SklogWiki is a wiki for anyone interested in thermodynamics, statistical mechanics and the computer simulation of simple liquids, complex fluids, and soft condensed matter. This site can be viewed as a collaborative inter- and hyper-linked electronic encyclopaedia that is instantly up-datable with the latest research results. It also serves as an important access point to the traditional peer-reviewed scientific literature.

SklogWiki derives its name from a concatenation, or portmanteau, of the word Wiki and the famous equation for entropy:

\left.S\right.=k\log W

This equation is engraved at the top of Boltzmann's headstone at the Vienna Zentralfriedhof (click on the photo to the right to see a larger view). The symbols \left.\right.\Theta \Delta ^{{{\mathrm  {cs}}}} originate from the short-hand used by James Clerk Maxwell for the word thermodynamics [1].

One of the overriding philosophies of SklogWiki is the free dissemination of technical information:

"Developed countries should foster exchanges of technical information on the principle that all countries have equal rights to full access to available information. It is increasingly necessary, in order to reduce inequalities in this field, to promote co-operative arrangements for collection, retrieval, processing and diffusion of technological information through various networks, regardless of geographical or institutional frontiers."[2]

Currently SklogWiki has 1,434 articles, in various stages of development. SklogWiki was started in February 2007 by Carl McBride and is hosted by the Simulation of Chain Molecules, Nanostructures and Polymers Group of the Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED). SklogWiki would especially like to thank the MOSSNOHO and MODELICO-CM research grants for financial assistance.

  1. For an example of this see the letter from James Clerk Maxwell to Peter Guthrie Tait dated 1 December 1873, reproduced in Cargill Gilston Knott "Life and scientific work of Peter Guthrie Tait, supplementing the two volumes of Scientific papers published in 1898 and 1900", Cambridge, University Press (1911) p. 115
  2. "Many Voices, One World: Report by the International Commission for the Study of Communication Problems", UNESCO (1980) (Part V. § 35 p. 261)