Your built-in Dictionary application now includes not only an excellent dictionary and thesaurus, but also instant access to Wikipedia. That means you can conduct Wikipedia searches from within any OS X Leopard application that supports Dictionary, including TextEdit, Mail, and Pages.
For the uninitiated, Wikipedia is a revolutionary online encyclopedia written, edited, and revised by its users. Though inaccurate information inevitably creeps in at times, on the whole it’s remarkably reliable. And since it’s continually updated, it’s a great source for updates on current topics that haven’t yet made their way into traditional reference books. (Note that the Wikipedia data is not stored on your computer, but is accessed via the Internet, so you need to be online to use this feature.)
Try it! Open the Dictionary application, type in a search item, and click the Wikipedia tab. Double-click on the entry that best relates to your search.
This takes you to the relevant Wikipedia page.
You don’t even need to open the Dictionary application to initiate a Wikipedia search. In a text document such as a TextEdit file or an email, just select the term you want to look up. (If it’s a single word, there’s no need to select the text —simply place the cursor on top of it.) Control-click the word or phrase (or right-click if you have a two-button mouse) and choose Look Up in Dictionary. This allows you to look up the term in the Dictionary, a Thesaurus, an Apple glossary, or Wikipedia.