Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Parts 16 and 17: Wikis

Over the years, I've used wikis in a variety of applications. When I became a consultant three years ago, my first client, Ramius Corp., asked me to participate in their development wiki. While their wiki worked very well for the company and it's software developers, I found it difficult to use and not very intuitive.

More recently, at the George Street Coop, I participated in a documentation project that used a wiki very much like Wikipedia's interface. Again, it was a case of needing good documentation and directions for users to follow because the interface isn't intuitive, nor does it follow HTML conventions.

As far as the assignment for class goes, I sent a request to join the PLCMC Learning 2.0 wiki, and am awaiting the approval so that I can add this blog to the list.

Having managed many large and small online communities for IEEE, I can tell you from experience that wikis are an online collaborative tool, but not an online community. It works best with engineers and technical folks, although many modern organizations have tools like Sharepoint and the now-nonexistent Groove (a personal favorite scooped up by Microsoft) to work collaboratively very easily.

Now, with online, opensource solutions such as Google Docs, it's even easier to collaboratively edit and create for free in real-time with full version control.


  1. I think this is a good point about them not creating a community.... and the wiki is not set up correctly anymore - I'll talk about it in class...


Thanks so much for including your thoughts here. I value your input.