Wikis and Libraries: A Winning Combination Darlene Fichter University of Saskatchewan

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  • Wikis and Libraries: A Winning CombinationDarlene FichterUniversity of Saskatchewan April 18. 2006

    Darlene FichterPhoto by: rolobeetle Some rights reserved.

    OverviewCollaboration & communicationWikisHow do they workWhat are some of the benefitsBlogs and wikis, what to use when

    QuestionsWhat is your primary role at your organization?Reference/Instructional Librarian Library ITS (web developer, systems librarian)Library managerCollections or Cataloguing or Digital ProjectsOtherAre you interested in using wikis for:Subject pagesInternal project or team workDocumentationPersonal web publishingConferenceIntranetDont knowDo you contribute to a wiki?Does your organization use:BlogsWikisRSS feeds

    Poll: Committees and TeamsHow many groups do you belong to? None one to two three to five More than 5How do you share information?EmailMailing listShared file serverBBSIMWhat are some of the limitations?

    What if Reduce email overloadHave an archive of the work done to dateBuild a knowledge base auto-magicallyHave an easy way to write reports, documents, policies, and procedures together

    Technologies Enabling Online CollaborationDozens:Discussion forumsEmailInstant messagingNewsgroupsWebcastsWeb conferencingWeblogsTeam roomsText messaging/wirelessRSSWikiExpertise locationFOAF

    What is a Wiki?Web application invented by Ward Cunningham in 1994 that allows anyone to add content and anyone to edit it. Its a tool for collaboration, really, we dont know quite what it is but its a fun way of communicating asynchronously across the network.Wiki means quick in Hawaiian

    Wiki CharacteristicsIntended to be simple so you can focus on the writing, not the mechanics and syntaxNo HTML know-how required

    Wikis: Collections of PagesMain PageContact UsElectronicVirtualediteditediteditWiki pages look like web pagesAnyone with a web browser can read a wiki site

    Illustrations adapted from Guillaume du Gardier. What is a wiki? June 2, 2005

    Click, Write and Saveediteditsave...KMWorld 2005KMWorld 2005Anyone with a web browser can edit a wiki siteAnyone can undo any change at any time

    Creating New PagesMake a new page by typing the name in CamelCase, aka WikiNameTitle NewName editeditNewNameClick on any WikiName to see pages that link to it

    Wiki Design PrinciplesOpenness and trust if a page is incomplete or inaccurate anyone can edit itIncremental pages can cite other pages, even those not yet writtenObservableyou can see the changes being madeOrganicsite structure is up to everyone, and it will evolve and changeMore principlesWiki Design Principles and Trust

    Wiki Examples:

    Wikipedia: Recent Changes

    Time Lapse London Bombing

    Wikipedia: Viewing History

    Wikipedia: Talk Page

    Wiki GardenersPerson who goes around tidying up the wiki, pruning, editing, organizing, and cleaning upUsually liked and respected

    On a library wiki, you might want to assign this role.

    Wikis: Professional Knowledge Repositories

    Wikis: Conference

    Library Web Site: Wiki Subject Guide

    SCJPL: Subject Guides

    SCJPL: Subject Guides

    SCJPL: Discussion Pages

    Coralville Public Library: Lets Write!

    Library Web Site Built With a Wiki

    Tour: Library WikisInternal usesStaff IntranetProjectsEvent planningIT documentationHelpdesk

    Library Intranet

    Library Intranet

    Library Information Technology Services Wiki


    Internal Wikis in LibrariesCollaborative writing (projects, teams developing procedures, policies, plans)Meeting notes and reportsShared knowledge repository

    Simple Case Study: Event PlanningHosted Wiki:

    WYSIWYG Editor

    What Pages Have Changed?

    See What Changed

    Single Page or Side by Side

    Wiki (Jotspot) Anatomy: FeaturesAttach a FileImport WordEmailsSend an EmailMake a commentInvite usersChanges via RSSSearch

    Event Planning and Support (Password protected)

    Wiki Reactions Well, I wasn't sure about that wiki (sounded like something from Star Wars), but I decided to try it out. It is fabulous! Every conference should have one.

    Gail Curry, UNBC

    Conference / Wiki SupportParticipants signed up for wifi, dine-arounds, connected with each other before the eventShared notes during the presentation and uploaded slidesEvaluated the workshop

    Wiki Roadmap*Install wiki software on web server Plan rollout and content Build the initial structurePopulate initial content with early adopters Initial rollout with smaller group Train and coach users Do not underestimate inertia and time *Peter Theony, Wiki Based Collaboration the initial structure

    Practical TipsHave a championNew way of thinking, paradigm shift from Intranet, webmaster or CMS (content management system)Choose the right features:Attach filesAccess controlVersion controlEase of use: make sure add a page is self evidentMatch look and feelAlert and post via email to wiki

    Tools to Help You ChooseWiki Matrix Emma Tonkins charts in Making the Case for a Wiki. Ariadne, January 2005

    Weblogs and Wikis Face OffPhoto Credit: Pascal Vuylsteker CC Attribution 2.5

    WikisWeblogsGroup voice

    Unstructured, organic

    Anyone edits

    Fluid medium: change any time

    Better management: versions, rollback and change log, syndicate changes

    Less familiarIndividual voice

    Default is by date, reverse chronological

    Anyone comments

    Post medium like email (comment, reply, comment, )

    Edits arent tracked usually, new items are syndicated

    More familiar

    Wiki BrainstormThink about collaborative/team activities in your organization and library.

    Identify 2 or 3 areas where a wiki web would help with collaboration.

    Identify the biggest obstacles and how you might overcome them.

    Wiki SummaryWikis help support collaborationTools are simple, quick and inexpensiveThey belong in our collaboration toolboxOur workplaces are diverseDiverse usersDiverse needsDiverse software choices

    More ResourcesWiki Bibliography & Links