Re: Wikis (was Research database?)
From: ken (gebserspeakeasy.net)
Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2006 10:34:25 -0700 (PDT)
Eris Weaver wrote:
> Ken wrote:
>>  But the simplest I can 
>> think of at the moment would be to type it all into 
>> <wikipedia.org>.  
> 
> To which Tree replied:
> 
>> (And no offense to Ken, but Wikipedia is not the right host 
>> for what you are doing.  
> 
> Eris talking now:
> 
> Ken and Tree are both half right! Wikipedia is a specific instance of a
> wiki, and Tree is right that our cohousing-specific stuff would get kind
> of lost there. BUT Ken is on the right track, that wikis can be useful
> for organizing cohousing stuff! FrogSong has a wiki-based community
> manual with lot of our policies, committee info, etc. It is
> password-protected so I can't show it to you. But any member can go in
> and edit/update/add info.  For more info on
> wikis:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wiki
> 
> ....

Eris,

You bring up a good point, one I didn't address in my previous posts on
this topic.

You say that cohousing stuff would "get lost" on wikipedia.  That could
be remedied by the use of bookmarks or by creating a local webpage which
would provide your entire community with the equivalent of bookmarks.

One advantage of using a public resource like wikipedia is that the
world community would both benefit from and contribute to the research
your community would provide.  So if your research, say, lacks
information on the various types of concrete, this information might
well already be available in wikipedia and all you would need to do is
link to it.  Of course you could do the same in your own wiki.  But what
if the topic is more obscure and not already available on wikipedia?  If
your research is on wikipedia, some member of the world community could
notice the hole in your research and fill it with his/her expertise.  If
you have your own wiki, that expert is far less likely to find it or see
it and so too far less likely to add that contribution.

This is one of those cases where, by sharing what you have, benefits
return to you manifold.

Fundamentally, we're talking about the relative advantages and
disadvantages of the community isolating or segregating its data from
the rest of the world.


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