Online applications company Zoho has launched Zoho Wiki, a Web-based wiki tool that integrates with Zoho's entire suite of productivity applications. Zoho Wiki lets you create three different wikis, each with a custom URL and unlimited pages. What's a wiki? Well, it's an information repository that anyone with the right permission can read, write, or edit. The most famous, of course, is Wikipedia.
Wikis have lots of uses, especially in small businesses. Creating casual documentation for projects, or a knowledge base for products and services is easier to navigate in a wiki than a spreadsheet or large document. There are several other Web-based wiki tools on the market (like Wetpaint and Wikia), but none have the added benefit of sibling apps that can be embedded in pages. Did I mention all the Zoho Web office apps are free?
Authoring a new wiki page uses the same interface as Zoho's collaborative writing app, Zoho Writer. If you're unfamiliar with Zoho Writer, think Microsoft Word in your browser for free. You also can embed elements from Zoho's other apps like Sheet and Show, putting spreadsheets and presentations into your wiki if you're creating a business-oriented reference. Embedding other elements is easy and intuitive. In most cases, copy and paste will do the trick. However, I had some trouble with pasting HTML. Often times it would format peculiarly, giving links giant header text. Aside from a few quirks, the WYSIWYG approach to editing is great, and can make laying out information very efficient.
Creating one of your three wiki sites brings up customization options like color schemes and privacy controls. Once you've got those set, you can begin creating your very own compendium of information. You can create three types of wiki projects with Zoho: public, private, or group. The latter is especially useful if you're working collaboratively. At any point you can change the permission settings to control which users have access to your wikis.
I like how Zoho is developing its suite of Web-based software. New Web applications keep rolling out, while Zoho continues to focus on improving existing tools. Zoho Wiki is the only recent release that's caught my attention and is an app that brings it all together. While the other Zoho apps have been useful on their own, Wiki lets you build projects that are truly massive in their reach without having to use or buy other products.