31 May, 2007

Wikis: The Development of a Wikipedia Page

I've heard people criticise Wikipedia a lot, mainly in academic circles because staff don't like the fact Wikipedia pages get referenced by students in essays.

That's fair enough, but I find it incredibly useful as a starting point for looking into topics. Yet I've heard people sitting near me in academic conferences, go into quiet rants when it's been mentioned at the front.

John Udell has created a very interesting screencast about the development of a particular Wikipedia page. I love the way that showing the development of the page puts it in context, and I think that it would help anyone appreciate better how Wikipedia and wikis in general work and should be used.

Before you watch the screencast be aware that 'naughty words' appear on the page from time-to-time :) Wikipedia Screencast (Via: Weblogged)

1 comment:

hesitant scribe said...

Peter, you make a good point about Wiki being a useful starting place, and we, as academics, probably shouldn't be so quick to dismiss it. I do tell my students not to reference Wiki in essays, like I tell them not to reference Spark Notes and similar, but I also tell them that it is a sound place to begin if you haven't a clue about something, and very often will lead to more suitable material such as journals and texts that they can and should use!