creating a wiki

Creating a Wiki, or Sticking with a Blog?

creating a wikiMany months ago, I came across wikis for several of my favorite video games, only to find that there really weren't any wikis about current affairs or business topics. A couple have been started, covering things such as green politics, politics in Canada, and business in general, but none of the wikis look taken care of or look like they've been updated recently. It seems like there are many different tools out there that you can use to start a wiki, and the right tool depends on why you want the wiki and who will be using it. MediaWiki is what Wikipedia uses, but I like Wikia because you can start right away (or take over an old one) and it looks a bit more intuitive in how to use it and what you need to do. I really like the idea of creating a wiki, but for a topics like business and politics, it seems like you might be better off buying a whole bunch of books or starting a blog and then covering anything and everything possible. Although, buying books can be expensive (even if you buy only ebooks, it still adds up) and taking the blog route seems very similar to the wiki.

Difference Between Wiki and Blog

WIkipedia points out that the major difference between a blog and a wiki (I know Wikipedia isn't really a reputable source, but who better to source on this topic than the inventor of the wiki?) is that "the content is created without any defined owner or leader, and wikis have little implicit structure, allowing structure to emerge according to the needs of the users." This makes sense once a wiki is established and has a ton of readers and contributors, but any wiki that's starting out would need to have a leader and some structure, right? If no one is leading the way to start the wiki, to get a few articles up, and to tell people about the wiki, then how does anyone expect the wiki to get started and to get to a point of self-sustainability? Someone needs to be the start and the face of the new wiki until there's enough people involved to add new content, to edit existing content, and to make sure the wiki isn't trolled or that someone doesn't add an irrelevant article.

I Might Just Stick with the Blog

I don't like that wikis have a lack of leadership and structure. I understand that those are needed to make them work, and that those criteria have worked for them. But, I wouldn't want them a part of my wiki, and if they aren't a part of the wiki then it's not really a wiki. After all, the main reason I'm pursuing this is to build identity capital and to build my personal brand as someone who is well-versed in current events and politics. A wiki can't do that since it's meant to be a community as much as it is a communal resource. The wiki also only works that way if it's for a specific group of people, such as a non-profit group or a company. Then, I can attribute the wiki idea to myself as something that I contributed to a larger group (and that someone in the larger group could corroborate). Yes, I want the blog to benefit someone besides myself, but I'd also like to build a brand with it and make it the obvious go-to resource on current events, or world news, or business, or something like that. Still deciding because I'm still thinking about the brand name, mantra, positioning statement etc.

But, prepare for, yet again, a change in tone and topic (and A LOT more on this blog).

Anyone Know Anything About this Wiki Stuff?

Plants v. Zombies 2 WikiLast night, I was looking at the Rogue Legacy Wiki and the Plants Vs. Zombies 2 Wiki when I wondered if there were some awesome wikis on things other than video games. Are there wikis on politics and/or current events, so that it's a lot easier to keep up with what's happening, to sort fact from fiction, and to learn the back story behind what's happening? Are there some good wikis on business and/or marketing topics, so there's something neutral and definitive on how marketing is changing and how to use those marketing tactics effectively? I did a little bit of research, and I didn't find much at all. Most of the wikis are about video games, TV shows, movie franchises, and other pop culture things. Although, the coffee wiki only has over 284 pages. It could use a lot more.

I Want to Create Wikis Now

I want to fill in all those gaps, but I have no idea how! It's one of those things where the idea is lofty and complicated, so it needs to be boiled down. It needs to be taken one page at a time. What you probably have to do is come up with your Wiki topic, and then come up with the first 20 pages that you are going to create. As my former business coach suggested, what you have to do is make it incredibly simple. Boil the idea down into 10 action steps, and then it's not so difficult and overwhelming.

I also want to become one of those editors/contributors to Wikipedia. There's the Wikiproject Globalization that needs lots of help. If anyone needs a resume boost and wants to position themselves as having expertise as well as great communication skills, then I think becoming a Wikipedia contributor and/or part of Wikipedia project is a good idea.

Has anyone tried to do the wiki about wikis? It would be a wikiwiki :)

Full of Ideas

My fiance told me today that I am full of ideas and that I am difficult to pin down because I am very creative person who just shoot from one idea to the next. My former business coach would agree with this statement, except that she would push me to choose just one idea and to stick with that. This is very practical advice, and its advice I'm struggling to follow as I commit to the coffee review site and turning that into something special. My fiance says that because I am a lateral thinker, choosing one idea and sticking with it is nearly impossible. It's almost always going to be five ideas going at once. I wish there was a way I could just do everything in the whole wide world and help the world and all that good stuff. I wish I could do all the things that I wanted so I wouldn't have to choose; I could do it all while doing what suits my fancy.

I Looked Up Lateral Thinking

And this is what I found on the Wikipedia page:

Random Entry Idea Generating Tool: The thinker chooses an object at random, or a noun from a dictionary, and associates it with the area they are thinking about. For example, if they are thinking about how to improve a website, an object chosen at random from the environment around them might be a fax machine. A fax machine transmits images over the phone to paper. Fax machines are becoming rare. People send faxes directly to phone numbers. Perhaps this could suggest a new way to embed the website's content in emails and other sites.

Does anyone if this random entry idea generating tool exists somewhere (I Googled the search term "random entry idea generating tool and just go more about the idea and about the Edward de Bono guy)? Is there a website where I can type in my problem, and then it gives me a random item, and then I can come up with a solution based on that item? That would be so cool and if this website exists, then it would be the coolest tool ever. Is there a way I can make it if it doesn't already exist?

I also like the idea of solving global problems with fax machines. Is there a way to send faxes to a mobile number? You know, kind of like a text except you can fax a document, photo, or something larger? This might be very helpful in developing nations, where many people might have mobile phone access, but those mobile phones aren't necessarily smart phones. This method could also circumvent the need to connect to the Internet, where sending something via email or posting it online could still be difficult to access in developing nations, whether it's accessed with a smart phone or a computer (because Internet connection isn't as consistent and/or prevalent).