Ultimately, the Encyclopedia will serve as an online reference source and database for every one of the 1.8 million species that are named and known on this planet, as well as all those later discovered and described.
The Encyclopedia of Life was inspired by E.O. Wilson, and specifically, his TED Prize acceptance speech where he pleas with us to pool our limited knowledge about life on Earth even as we destroy it.
On a technical note, the project’s pages include an intuitive slider that allows the user to instantly adjust their preferred knowledge level, and with it, the depth of information on the page. I know quite a few sites that could use an easily adjustable navigation like this.
I can’t locate the working example I played with earlier, but you can see what I’m talking about on the Example page.