Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Wiki SharePoint Knowledge Sharing Free Microsoft?

So many sides to consider when you are considering sharing knowledge.

I've been asked to figure out where a Wiki has advantages over SharePoint and what are weaknesses in SharePoint. The focus is around getting together what is now tribal knowledge into an easy to access and easy to maintain place. it must be searchable and have a low threshold for user entry to editing.

The company is really big on Sharepoint and it is quickly becoming the company standard for the web. Specifically, they've coded the entire intranet as one big SharePoint site.

My big argument against SharePoint has the been the high overhead of just getting in and making a new page and topic. SharePoint asks you several questions before it creates a document. Document is the generic term used in SharePoint to represent a page, which could be list or page of web parts, or an html page and so on. SharePoint also requires a sign on to the server where it resides in addition to a network sign on.

Another downside, and this may be configuration, is that SharePoint creates all pages under the root page. All pages are .aspx pages also.

On the other hand, a wiki page is stored as plane text. Pages are created on the fly, and are immediately linked from the page the link was created on. All pages are automatically browser neutral. No special permissions are required to edit or create a page, nor are there a series of questions to answer. it's as simple as create the link, click on it, and start typing.

SharePoint does have alerts. Alerts aren't RSS, they email individuals who have set that particular document to alert them when it changes. Wiki supports RSS, but since the company doesn't support RSS readers, alerts is pushed.

SharePoint has access controls. The wiki software we have doesn't appear to, but who cares, my vision is that the information is easy to get too and easy to edit. Easy is a requirement if people are going to adopt it.

Please, someone, anyone, share your thoughts on this!

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