Stephen Fry's is the first of many voices to be made immortal by Wikipedia

Wikipedia aims to record voices of thousands of notable figures to be stored for posterity. And the actor Stephen Fry is the first to take part.

If you thought Fry was already in your face a bit too much with Twitter, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug film, Qi, and now the new series of 24 - prepare for more. He is the first person to have his voice recorded on Wikipedia.

If you visit the self-confessed gadget lover's Wiki page you can here his dulcet tones saying: "Hello, my name is Stephen Fry, I was born in London and I’ve been in the entertainment business, well I suppose since 1981." Listen here.

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While this voice is one that many recognise, plenty of authors, athletes and scientists have probably never been heard by most. Wikipedia aims to change that with this Wikipedia Voice Into Project (WikiVIP).

The Wikimedia Commons page for the project says it was started: "So that we know what notable people sound like and how they pronounce their own names."

The BBC has agreed to openly license hundreds of small clips of notable people speaking, taken from radio programmes, which will then be edited for length and uploaded to Wikipedia.

The BBC is also working on software that could recognise these voices using the clips as a "fingerprint" - the result of which will be open source for all to use.

Matthew Postgate, controller of BBC R&D, said: "We are releasing around 500 to 1,000 short voice samples of prominent public figures to Wikimedia. We hope this will allow us to identify contributions in BBC programmes from the sound of speakers’ voices and when added to relevant Wikipedia pages these voice samples add a new dimension, allowing listeners to hear the voices of the people they're reading about."

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