What you wiki is what you get

If you're thinking about creating a wiki page -- a Web resource that you or others can edit -- check out the newly-released Wetpaint, which features the most user-friendly interface for a wiki that I've seen so far.

Wetpaint is a hosted wiki, like JotSpot. It allows you to set up a page on any topic you want, and then let other people add to it or improve it. But unlike the famous Wikipedia (and some other commercial wiki tools), when you want to edit a Wetpaint site, you do it in a what-you-see-is-what-you-get interface. You don't have to use command codes or oddball formatting that can make it hard to see the changes you're making.

Wetpaint is not the first WYSIWYG hosted wiki tool, but it is slightly slicker (prettier and simpler to use) than Jotspot, which also has a WYSIWYG editing tool, and it's much easier to get into than pbwiki or Wikia, which do not. Wetpaint also has several design templates you can apply. Most higher-end wiki services, like Jotspot for example, have no templates but do offer more capability and features. Jotspot, for instance, has applications, like a contact manager and a spreadsheet, you can install into your wiki.

I created my own Wetpaint wiki in just a few minutes.

TechCrunch notes that Wetpaint appears to be targeted straight at consumers. There are already some consumer-focused wikis posted, on topics ranging from pregnancy to the Xbox 360. Despite its consumer focus, the service does offer some interesting navigational features, like a feature that lets you quickly find pages in a wiki based on tags.

But in Wetpaint there's no way to dive into page's formatting code, so you can't do complex or advanced formatting. Advanced users will want more control. Wetpaint is not for advanced users, though. With its focus on design and its freedom from formatting codes, it is the wiki creation tool for the masses.

 

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