What is a Wiki?
- Easy to use
- Simple syntax (don't need to know HTML)
- Anyone can make changes -- no more waiting for the Webmaster to get around to your requested changes.
- Many free and open source options
- Flexible and extensible
- Too open -- "I don't want someone changing my writing!"
- Vandalism and spam
- No "credit"
- Intellectual property issues
How Libraries Can Use Wikis With Their Patrons
- Community Wiki
- Subject Guide Wiki
- Biz Wiki (Ohio University)
- [www.libraryforlife.org/subjectguides/index.php/Main_Page SJCPL's Subject Guides](St. Joseph County Public Library)
- Wikify the OPAC
- Patrons annotating the catalog -- see Open WorldCat for an example.
- Wiki as Courseware
How Librarians Can Use Wikis for Knowledge Sharing and Collaboration
- Staff Intranet
- Collaborative Document Development
- Reference Wiki
- Collective Knowledge Base
- Planning Space for Conferences, Meetings, etc.
- Group Projects
So You Want To Build a Wiki: Important Considerations
Where Will Your Wiki Live?
DIY Wikis (hosted on your server, installed by you)
Check out the Wiki Matrix to compare wikis side-by-side.
Hosted Wikis/Wiki Farms (your wiki on another company's servers)
- PBWiki (free)
- Schtuff (free)
- SeedWiki (free)
- Wikispaces (free)
- SocialText (enterprise wiki)
Check out the List of wiki farms in the Wikipedia.
Important Things to Consider When Choosing Wiki Software
- Programming language
- Ease of installation
- Ease of use
- Version control
- Ability to hold discussions
- Ability to change look
- Spam prevention
Getting People On Board
- Have a specific purpose
- To structure or not to structure?
- Be explicit.
- Actively prevent spam.
See my advice for building a successfull wiki at ALA Wiki: What I learned and what I’m doing with it (on my blog) and So You Want to Build a Wiki? (from WebJunction).