Wiki as a KM Tool


In my past 3 months at Illumine (which is a Knowledge Lab), one of the first thing that struck me was their emphasis on models. More importantly knowledge models … instead of focusing on how the knowledge flowing in the system (which what most of the KM tools focus on), the company focused on the model in which that knowledge was generated, distributed and improved. Interestingly, the organization themselves have a very loose KM in place. Right now it is basically a samba share of different folders. It’s that simple.

In an attempt to make sense out of the zillions of files on my current project, I decided to explore some interesting ways to ingest this content into a system. Immediately, Mediawiki came to mind. This is what Wikipedia is made out of.

The How

Installation was easy, you download the tarball from here. You extract it into your hosting space, and follow the simple and easy-to-use instructions in the setup wizard. Voila!! You will have a working wiki!

But that is the easy part,

The Cons

  1. Structuring the Wiki becomes ARPITA (A-Real-Pain-In-The-Ass) ps – on a side note, I feel sad for all the Arpitas in the world
  2. Writing and creating the wiki content is also difficult since you have to stick to the wiki syntax
  3. It is not as free fall a structure as you can think it to be
  4. n00bs do not want to contribute to the Wiki, they only want information, which means that you are writing wiki content all the time

Despite these issues, I still liked the idea of a wiki and am currently having my own personal wiki, because of

The Pros

  1. A personal wiki becomes a KM meme, where you just ingest content and the sense and navigation emerges after a period of time
  2. The final product looks smashing, helps me sort through the content
  3. This becomes a documentation and KT process for me as well (not that I am looking for replacements!!)
  4. The wiki can be scaled to my team members using the Discussion spaces, and it will also then clarify my knowledge meme

What do you think?