Geek / Technical General

Wikis and Collective Knowledge

Wikis are great resources for collective knowledge. Wikis are counter to the culture in which copyright and patent laws encourage scarcity and “mine vs yours” debates. When everyone in the world is involved in a project, you would think it would break down, but they don’t. You would think that defacement would be a huge problem, but it isn’t. Most defacements are caught within minutes on Wikipedia, for instance. Anyone can make changes, but anyone can revert changes as well.

Wikis are great because anyone can make changes. Something missing? Add it! Spot an error? Fix it yourself! It’s open source hacking, but you don’t have to know how to program to participate. You just have to know how to write. It’s been used to document things publicly, such as software projects, but it is also used privately. Supposedly The New York Times used an internal Wiki for its staff.

I’ve contributed to a few Wikis, and I know more changes have been made since then by others. Post a comment and let me know what your favorite Wikis are!

General wikis:
Wikipedia: the free, online encyclopedia
Wike-Wiki: documentation on using Wine
Wiki Science: a Wiki about Wikis?
A Wiki in the Desert: about the game A Tale in the Desert

Game Dev:
Game Programming Wiki
Indie Wiki
Game Programmer’s Wiki
UnrealWiki: about the Unreal Engine

GCC Wiki: about the Gnu Compiler Collection

KDE Wiki: about the popular, open source desktop
Gentoo Linux Wiki: all about the popular Gnu/Linux distro Wiki: learn all about Linux