Wiki… The Perfect Online Collaboration Tool

In the Hawaiian language, Wiki means “quick.” It has also been interpreted as the backronym for “What I know is,” describing the knowledge contribution, storage and exchange function. And in the high-tech world of Internet communications, a wiki is simply a type of website that allows users to easily add and edit content. It’s the perfect online collaboration tool.

In essence, wiki is a simplification of the process of creating HTML web pages combined with a system that records each individual change that occurs over time, so that at any time, a page can be reverted to any of its previous states. A wiki system may also provide various tools that allow the user community to easily monitor the constantly changing state of the wiki and discuss the issues that emerge in trying to achieve a general consensus about wiki content. Wiki content can also be misleading as users may add incorrect information to the Wiki page.

Some wikis will allow completely unrestricted access so that people are able to contribute to the site without necessarily having to undergo a process of 'registration' as had usually been required by various other types of interactive websites such as Internet forums or chat sites.

Like many simple concepts, "open editing" has some profound and subtle effects on Wiki usage. Allowing everyday users to create and edit any page in a Web site is exciting in that it encourages democratic use of the Web and promotes content composition by non-technical users.

The addictive quality of a Wiki is that making pages is as simple as making a link to them. If they don't yet exist, the page link will be followed by a hyperlinked question mark; follow that link and you can define the new page. With this setup, you can update and create pages from anywhere there is a web browser handy.

Need to know the definition of another word? Try the wikipedia or the wiktionary! They’re all over the Internet and they’re yours for the browsing.


Melissa Data

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