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Idealog: Virtual Wikis

I was at the Wiki Wednesday at SocialText. There was a presentation from Computer History Museum. The museum is exploring ways to create a software museum and preserve the work done so far. I went a bit late and missed the presentation but was lucky enough to catch the discussion.

One of the points of discussion was how to leverage existing resources like Wikipedia. In fact, knowledge about software is spread on the web on several wikis. Many products (mostly open source) provide their entire documentation on wikis.

While listening to the discussion, I was thinking about a concept called Virtual Wikis. If this already exists, I have not heard about it. Here are some thoughts:

  1. A virtual wiki will look like a real wiki to the user but will be based on content from multiple wikis
  2. When a user navigates virtual wiki, she will be looking at content extracted from several underlying wikis
  3. When a user adds comments or edits the wiki, the edits are sent to the underlying wikis
  4. We can use a model like WikiTrails
  5. Each virtual wiki has an active set of contributors (similar to wikipedia) to select and link relevant content
  6. We may need someĀ  tools for virtual wiki contributors
  7. The best option is to enhance an existing wiki to perform these functions

If you know of something similar, please let me know by adding comments.