What’s the world’s favorite resource for all things informational and educational? Wikipedia! The primary reason is that anyone–and we mean anyone–can create, modify, and maintain entries on Wikipedia, based on a wiki. Wikis are software that let users collaborate online leading to a final product that’s worked on by more than one author.
Wikipedia is a website that allows the visitors themselves to easily add, remove, and otherwise edit and change available content, typically without the need for registration. This ease of interaction and operation makes a wiki an effective tool for mass collaborative authoring. The term wiki also can refer to the collaborative software itself (wiki engine) that facilitates the operation of such a Web site, or to certain specific wiki sites, including the computer science site (the original wiki) WikiWikiWeb and on-line encyclopedias such as Wikipedia. -Wikipedia
There are a bunch of wikis online and these are meant for various purposes. While the original intent of wikis was to collaborate on editing programming code, wikis are today used for just about anything from writing novels, to writing film and television episode recaps, to encyclopedias.
“Wiki” is a Hawaiian word for “fast,” and this is how the first wiki was envisioned to be–for fast editing. Wiki can sometimes be interpreted as a backronym “what i know is,” representing the way people store and exchange information on wikis.
Wikis are usually editable with their own wiki markup language, which involves simple use of punctuation, spacing and other easy-to-understand means for formatting, as opposed to HTML tags that the untrained eye could rarely understand.
Wikis also record a history of editions, so people will know who changed what, and this lets editors revert to recent versions if new versions are found out to be unacceptable. Vandalism is a problem with wikis, but the way editions can easily be undone can be considered adequate “soft” security. Some wiki software also give the editors the ability to lock certain entries for edition by only a select few.