Brian was an extremely knowledgeable and thoughtful man, and in his later life he found an outlet that allowed this side of him to flourish. Starting in around 2005, Brian began to edit wikipedia articles, aiming to expand the encyclopedia's coverage of polar history, which was an area of particular interest to him. Brian took the task incredibly seriously, producing academically rigourous, well-researched and thorough accounts of polar expeditions and quickly building a reputation amongst the online community as an excellent writer. Later, he broadened and wrote articles on a wide range of topics that interested him, including classical music, literature, politics and history.
Wikipedia promotes articles through a peer-review process, with the best entries recognised as 'Featured Articles' and periodically displayed on the main page. Brian has written, or significantly contributed to, a total of 106 Featured Articles - the 3rd most of any Wikipedia editor. Many of his articles are viewed tens of thousands of times per month.
Alongside these astonishing achievements, Brian fully engaged with the wikipedia mission. He reviewed articles, helped others with their projects and offered advice and opinions to anyone who sought them. He was known as fair-minded, generous and brilliantly clever, and was loved by a large community of people across the world.
Brian’s work can be viewed here:
Brian was still editing articles right up until the week before he died, receiving his last award for excellent service on the 30th November.
When his death was announced to his fellow authors and editors on Wikipedia, there was an outpouring of loving tributes to Brian from the Wikipedia community. These can be viewed here: