The Problem with Wikis

Using Writeboard has reminded me of what I don’t like about wikis.

The nice thing about most types of content management system is that you only have to worry about one piece of information one time. For example, in this blogging software we use here (Textpattern), I create an article, click the Save button, and I’m done. Any links that are involved, such as the ones along the right side that link to past articles, are taken care of automatically. No duplication of effort.

With a wiki, you have to enter info twice, at least. It’s not a big deal, but it does matter. To create an article in my wiki, I typically type a CamelCase word (mixed upper and lower case letters) to indicate that I want to link to a new article. I click on that CamelCase word, and I’m led to a page to create a new article. If I want to link from multiple places, I have to remember how I spelled that CamelCase word, and a link is created.

Having to put that much thought into adding a piece of information to a wiki is quite a detriment to its utility. I almost never use our wiki anymore, we already use Writeboard every day.

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