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#1 2008-10-20 00:12:50

benyoung
Member
Registered: 2008-10-20
Posts: 1

Need help with structured wiki selection

I am working on a project that requires use of a Wiki with the ability to incorporate structured data.  For example, I require the use of inputting structured data such as addresses, rankings, while still incorporating the unstructured Wiki text form editors for the main body content.  I see that some of the Wiki's provide the ability to incorporate structured data, but I would like some opinions on experiences so it can make the selection process easier.

Thanks!
BenYoung

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#2 2008-10-20 02:27:00

PeterThoeny
Member
From: San Jose, CA
Registered: 2005-12-14
Posts: 265
Website

Re: Need help with structured wiki selection

Consider TWiki [1] which pioneered the structured wiki [2] concept 10 years ago. Other wiki engines copied the idea, but many require you to program in PHP or Java to add structure to content. In TWiki you add structure by creating a wiki application using some wiki markup. With this you can create contact lists, call center status boards, to-do lists, inventory systems, employee handbooks, bug trackers, blog applications and more. The power of structured wiki is that you can mix structured content (form data, table data) with unstructured content (wiki content).

The basic steps to create a TWiki forms based wiki application are as follows:

1. Create a form that defines the database schema: Named form fields with type (text, date, checkboxes, select, ...) and with initial value.
2. Create a template page and attach the form to it.
3. Create a form to instantiate a new page based on that template page. A set of pages that share the same type of form build a database table.
4. Embed SQL-like queries in pages to query and format a table.

I wrote two blog posts that introduce structured wikis [3] and wiki applications [4]. The Wikis for Dummies book I co-authored [5] has step by step instructions on how to create wiki application using TWiki. You can create your own wiki applications, or if you prefer, TWIKI.NET sells ready made applications [6].

The open source TWiki entry on WikiMatrix is at http://www.wikimatrix.org/show/TWiki

-- peter.thoeny.public [at] twiki [dot] net - http://www.twiki.net/ - http://twiki.org/

[1]: http://www.twiki.net/ and http://twiki.org/
[2]: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structured_wiki - Wikipedia article on structured wiki
[3]: http://www.twiki.net/blog_2007-06-01.html - what is a structured wiki? (blog)
[4]: http://www.twiki.net/blog_2007-06-04.html - wiki applications and the long tail (blog)
[5]: http://www.amazon.com/Wikis-Dummies-Com … 0470043997 - Wikis for Dummies
[6]: http://www.twiki.net/twiki_applications.html - TWiki applications

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#3 2008-10-20 15:46:59

matt_w
Member
From: Massachusetts
Registered: 2005-12-01
Posts: 50
Website

Re: Need help with structured wiki selection

Ben,

If you're looking for something with a little more power, consider EditMe (http://www.editme.com). It offers a rich JavaScript API and a simple templating language that can be combined to create rich wiki-based applications. We've built a number of wiki-based applications that provide wiki content sharing, versioning, etc. to structured content. For an example, see http://www.freenursinghomereports.com - a wiki that manages nursing home profiles.

Cheers,
Matt


Matt Wiseley
EditMe - Edit your web.
www.editme.com

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#4 2008-10-20 23:18:31

cjtannu
Member
From: San Diego, CA
Registered: 2006-10-18
Posts: 247
Website

Re: Need help with structured wiki selection

Ben,

  Take a look at MindTouch Deki.  MindTouch Deki includes extensions for exposing data from MySQL, SQL, Access, and more.  You can create the database you want or use one that already exists and expose the data within Deki.  From there you can take it one step further and mash it up with graphs and other applications which gives a flexible dashboard within the Wiki. 

You can download MindTouch Deki here: http://wiki.mindtouch.com


Corey Ganser
Customer Support Manager
MindTouch

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