"Wiki" and "wiki" are the accepted spelling. I only mention this so you can
maintain your cred with your SMEs.

I've been using a Wiki based on TWiki software for the past two years. I see
no problem in using one to collaborate, as long as you ensure it has these

   - Notification: unfortunately, our wiki was not set up correctly. Nearly
   all its documents were put into one "site" or "web", and the software can
   only send out notifications at the web level. Since we now have more than
   10K documents at the same level, notifications are useless. I suggest that
   you look for software that can notify at the page level, or set up some
   effective system that can notify all authors when a page changes.
   - Change tracking: our wiki does "lock" a page while someone is editing
   it, preventing simultaneous edits. Still, you will want to know what changes
   were applied when you go in to edit. Our wiki also tracks this, and can even
   back out changes.
   - Completeness: Wikis promote the idea that a document is never finished.
   Instead of abhorring this idea, you should embrace it! Within reason, allow
   continual updates to the content. In return, you get the most up-to-date and
   accurate information. You may want to set a "freeze date", and then
   highlight material that changes after that date. Don't lock down your wiki;
   you'll be throwing away one of its major advantages.
   - Responsibility: When you allow multiple people, including customers,
   SMEs, and others to edit, you have to let go somewhat. You should volunteer
   to set up templates and style guidelines. Let go of the idea that you
   control everything. Provide editorial control as a *feature* of your
   involvement. In return, you'll get much more cooperation, and overall a
   better source of information.
   - Findability: If you're going from books to online, remember that you'll
   lose much of the functionality of a TOC, and you won't really have an index.
   Make sure your wiki software has adequate search capabilities.
   - Kruft: Unless you take away the right to create pages from everyone
   except writers, your wiki will accrete "kruft" (the techie word for
   unsightly and useless junk). Be ready for this. I leave it to you to choose
   *how*. In my organization, we simply accept it as a price for "freedom of
   speech". Other wikis, like Wikipedia, maintain a somewhat tighter editorial
   control; they allow new pages but they scrutinize them closely.

These are just some of the considerations. Wikis are a great tool, but you
have to change your mindset to get the best use of them.

On Wed, Feb 25, 2009 at 1:46 PM, Richard Geiger <rcgcommunications at yahoo.com
> wrote:

> Our Honeywell doc group is currently using Frame 7.1, but we're considering
> using a wicki as a doc review "center."  Have any of you used a wicki as a
> joint-authorship medium--that is, have reviewers and/or customers actually
> collaborate on the same wicki file that eventually becomes the finished
> wicki (not Frame) document?
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