The most popular wiki in the world is Wikipedia. It has grown to be the world’s largest encyclopedia and it is managed and authored by the entire world! In 1995 when encyclopedias were being sold via cd-rom, who would have imagined that no more than 20 years later, volunteers would drive the world most popular encyclopedia’s content. For me, this is the beauty of a wiki. It is information driven by sharing and passion vs. business. Experts from all over the world share their knowledge on Wikipedia because they love their field and want to share their expertise, not because they see an opportunity to sell one million encyclopedias. Knowledge is the most precious asset on earth and wikis promote sharing this on a global scale.
If globally accepted, this type of collaborative mentality will fuel the development and improvement of professional fields across the board. This innovative process will allow companies to work more efficiently, grant educators greater access to resources, and allow students access to an abundance of information. This idea isn’t without its drawbacks though. Due to the public access for editing, inaccurate information is sometimes represented as fact. It is important when dealing with a wiki to understand the information’s sources. If it is a public wiki and has no references, it is imperative that further research be done. Many institutions only allow certain authors to contribute to information for its wiki. These authors are typically considered experts in their fields and are often published academically.
On a less informational note, wikis are a great way to simply collaborate on projects. A group of coaches working towards finalizing a practice structure for a particular season can collaborate notes remotely via a well-organized wiki. The power and potential of wikis seems to be limitless.
Thank you for reading.