This week I’ll be talking about the mysterious land of the wiki.
“I don’t want anyone to use Wikipedia,” the teacher would say.
“Wikipedia is not a reliable source,” they would warn.
“If anyone references Wikipedia I will fail them,” they would even threaten.
Wikipedia is easy to read, easy to understand and very easy to copy and paste. But we all know we shouldn’t. We’ve all heard the warnings, yet our first point of reference is Wikipedia. I think the main use of Wikipedia is to get your head around a subject. Most Wikipedia pages have the bear minimum you need to know to get your answer and to understand the basics of a subject.
My major issue with Wikipedia is that I have no idea who has written this info, so how do I know if I am actually receiving the right info? Personally, I always cross reference with other webpages. I don’t think I’ve ever actually been given the wrong info, so I’m not sure what all the fuss is about…
Now for the other wikis of the Internet, I feel like you use these to help yourself out, mostly when you can’t figure out how to get that song onto your ipod, or install that software or even how to put that hinge back on… but the answers to your homework questions might be out there, you never know!
I like wikis because the chance of someone else having the same problem as you, is fairly high. Nowadays, you can just type your problem in and surely someone out there will have your solution. I like to think of it as co-learning, because one day I might be able to answer someone else’s problem. But until then I will be relying on others to help me out.
The most useful wikis that I have come across are:
Want more wiki info? This article https://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/eli7004.pdf summed wikis up fairly well I thought, so check it out.
Til next week,