The state of being obsessed with Wiki Wiki systems
Lets see, where should I start? Lets contrast it with Web Fever
Have you ever seen one of those webpages which starts off all
enthusiatic, saying things like
This site will be updated every day
At that point, the author has what I call Web Fever
. Typically, they
will update the page for three days, then Real Life
kicks in, and the
next change contains the phrase
Oops missed a week, I'll add more next Thursday
Phew, two weeks since my last update - sorry folks, I've been too busy
If you've looked around at people's
home pages, and, unfortunately, many business pages, you'll find that
they often go through these stages, and are often not updated
again. Finally the author reaches the "website? oh yeah, I remember
setting up that". It's kind of poignant, don't you think?
If you're really lucky, the author will have battled their Web Fever
enough to include a date (with year) somewhere on the page.
So? Why am I rambling on about this? Well, just because we all know
people suffer from Web Fever
doesn't mean we can avoid it
ourselves. Sometimes you just have to accept that you will manifest
the symptoms too.
I think (because I have Wiki Wiki Fever) that there are some things
which can be done to counteract this problem.
Websites which allow other people to add the content remove the
problem from your hands. As long as there is a small pool of feverish
people around, they'll keep the site up to date.
This is (one interpretation of ) the principle behind systems which allow you to Write The Web
, such as Wiki Wiki
and Blogger Systems
My most popular website "TheDataMine", which I launced in 1994, works
on a very similar principle to Blogger sites. It allows people to add
content by filling in a web form. At the time of writing (early 2001),
I haven't touched the site myself for about 2 years, but people are
still adding stuff! It's a bit overcrowded for the metaphor it uses at
the moment, but I'm planning to convert it to a Wiki as part of a
series of experiments I'm doing in collaborative information systems.
-- Andy Pryke
- 11 Apr 2001