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Christina's LIS Rant
Thursday, March 17, 2005
  CIL2005: Wikis @ Your library

Will Richardson from Weblogg-ed

His definition: a website where anyone can edit the content at any time.

It’s an important part of the read/write web
Traditional html requires some skill
Blogging interfaces are an easy to create web content with little to no technical knowledge (about 5m active)
Podcasting and v-logging allows people to talk freely – and have a broad audience

Huge implications for schools and libraries
Internet as a notebook
Tons of capacity
Collaboration – “the social, collaborative, construction of knowledge and information”

Wiki features
Any one can edit
Recent changes
Page history (easy to revert to an older version, see how the content has evolved, see Jon Udell’s video of how wikipedia works with a particular case of a vandal)
Can include authentication
Can have notification features (RSS or e-mail)

Visits StarTrek Wiki … Demonstrates editing the page – demonstrates vandalizing the page… Nice… now everyone in the audience will feel that they should go out and vandalize a page. Does not fix it. ARGH! Discusses having faith that the page will be fixed – doesn’t encourage good wiki citizenship.

Tours wikipedia
Shows a post he made this morning
Recommends it as a starting point for research
Discusses 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake
Collective/collaborative truth (with 6k edits for the tsunami disaster)
Offshoots – wikibooks, wikitravel, etc.

Other wikis
Northern Voice conference
Bimiji (sp?) State class wiki
UIUC Library wiki
Library Association of New Zealand
U Mn, Mt. Holyoke

Why use wikis in your library
Easy to create
Small learning curve
Collaboration
Information storage
Easy retrieval
Easy tracking

Keys to success:
Effective structure
Monitor content
Page naming conventions
Active participation






 
Comments:
Wanted to practice using blogs and also comment that wiki ideas lead to wonderful creativity and creation and also rampant destruction of organized thought. If I went to a wikipidea and posted, "While we hear so much about the pope bringing down communism, we hear very little about the pope bringing down capitalism even though the pope spent just as much time criticizing capitalism" The posting would be taken down in a few days by someone who thought that was inappropriate. If I posted,"the pope supported Galileo and science by overturning Galileo's sentence in some way and also treating the creation story as metaphor and evolution as more reasonable and scientific", someone from certain parts of religious groups would take the comment down in a few minutes. Without a stable encyclopedic structure, the wiki idea becomes like chaos. Knowledge becomes subject to the most recent posting. Knowledge becomes a story told by the most active poster. If one realized that they could easily control how people thought about a topic, there might be forces that would post things just to control thought. Of course, the wiki system does allow new voices to be heard, but if you can take down other people's thoughts, then there is no a voice for others. Perhaps an improvement in the software would be maintaining all posts. I would want someone to know of John Paul's role in bringing down capitalism (just a joke) and John Paul's role in respecting evolution in the context of religion and respecting the Vatican Observatory. Voices need to be heard, but when the language is not racist, violent, hurtful, dangerously false, maybe the voices should be heard.

hope the zoo out there in baltimore is still being funded.

good day. blogs like wiki ideas certainly give people like me who like expressing views and publishing in different formats a chance to talk and discuss views.
 
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This is my blog on library and information science. I'm into Sci/Tech libraries, special libraries, personal information management, sci/tech scholarly comms.... My name is Christina Pikas and I'm a librarian in a physics, astronomy, math, computer science, and engineering library. I'm also a doctoral student at Maryland. Any opinions expressed here are strictly my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my employer or CLIS. You may reach me via e-mail at cpikas {at} gmail {dot} com.

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Christina Kirk Pikas

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