Wiki is a platform that allow anyone to quickly edit web pages. Repeat after me: anyone & quick.
I doubt that you don’t know Wikipedia. Yes, it is the most successful Wiki instance today.
To know more of Wiki, please see the following video:
Potential problems with Wikis
The fact that information can be quickly edited by anyone is the primary reason why wikis grow like weeds instead of carefully tended gardens.
Large scale wikis become chaotic and disorganized
Multiple collaboration means no one owns anything — organization comes from someone having a vested interest to organize and maintain.
Information is hard to navigate consistently because there is no unifying vision to the structure.
Large scale wikis turn into a flat hierarchy of documents with no hierarchy.
It is hard to import information into a wiki from other sources.
It is hard to export information out of wikis (eg: RSS feeds).
5 ways to build effective Wikis
1. Make it Search-intelligent
Make URLs human-readable permalinks
2. Manage Version Control
Version control for every change
Rollbacks of edits
Notifications, watch lists and logs
Discussions of changes
3. Enable Information Management
Refactor and maintain information
Document management: attachments (documents, images, media…) should be treated the same as pages when it comes to search and version control.
Provide import/export functionalities to standard-compliant format (XML).
4. Build an Organization that best supports
Wikis are not built to be used in top-down organizational hierarchy. However, all-are-equal model lurks serious problems. Click here to read more of the story…
We shall see if Larry Sanger’s experiment of Citizendium will make it more effective.
5. Develop a Process
Building Wikis is one activity of knowledge management. Knowledge management process should be developed, especially in tightly-organized groups, to support this.
Wikis are effective if built and managed the right way, and let’s.