RE: Getting started with wiki?

Subject: RE: Getting started with wiki?
From: "Joe Malin" <jmalin -at- tuvox -dot- com>
To: "Julie Stickler" <jstickler -at- gmail -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 15 Feb 2006 13:44:37 -0800

Wikis can be useful tools. Wikipedia is one of the prime examples.

Wikipedia illustrates the potential shortcomings of a wiki; it has been
criticized for being inaccurate. Wikis often lack the authentication and
authorization tools that protect content.

Wikipedia also illustrates the most important part of a wiki:
moderation/editing. An unmoderated, unedited wiki will quickly devolve
into a morass of unorganized pages with excessive duplication. I have
seen at least one internal wiki exhibit this behavior.

Wikis have other unfortunate features as well. The "quick" method of
creating and linking pagesleads to strange page names and, conversely,
text strings that are misinterpreted as page names. By default, wikis
come with their own unique and idiosyncratic page markup which may be
hard to learn, especially for those who are proficient HTML coders. Wiki
content is stored in a database, which means that external content is
not always easy to include.

Have you considered Plone? I am working on a knowledge base/discussion
system based on Plone. I find it more useful for collaboration and
information sharing than an ordinary wiki. It too has some drawbacks,
but at least it was designed to be a "site building" and content
management tool.

Above all, I suggest that one must analyze ones needs first, before
choosing any particular tool.

Joe Malin
Technical Writer
jmalin -at- tuvox -dot- com
The views expressed in this document are those of the sender, and do not
necessarily reflect those of TuVox, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+jmalin=tuvox -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+jmalin=tuvox -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf
Of Julie Stickler
Sent: Wednesday, February 15, 2006 12:20 PM
Subject: Getting started with wiki?

Hello all,
I'm trying to learn about wikis. Is there anyone on the list who is
using a wiki as a collaboration tool for creating documentation?
Does anyone have any experience setting up a wiki from scratch? Could
you point me towards any good references for creating/setting up a wiki?
Any best practices or things to avoid that you want to share?

Many thanks!
Julie Stickler
Senior Technical Writer


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