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Wikis vs. Microsoft Office

As much as we love the concept behind wikis, we've often wondered how they will fare when they grow from adolescence to adulthood. (Translation: Can they make money?)

It's not that that we're obsessed with greenbacks, but we've been down this road before and tend to be a tad skeptical when people say "trust me." And other than advertising, we've yet to see an obvious business strategy for the .

JotSpot CEO Joe Kraus is hoping to change all that with the second version his 2-year-old company's hosted software. Kraus too has traveled the commercialization path before, as a founder of the original portal.

"Wikis historically have been nerdy and only enabled collaboration on one kind of page--a Web page," Kraus said in a story. In an interview with Richard MacManus, he described the latest release as "wikis meets Microsoft Office."

That's good and bad news, in our opinion. The good news is that someone has a business idea for wikis, something that's always good to ensure robust development of any technology. The bad news is that JotSpot sees its future in a market long dominated by Microsoft, something that's never good to ensure even survival, let alone development.

Microsoft is already facing challenges in office software from other Web 2.0 rivals, including Google's Writely. That competition could very well extend to JotSpot as well if it intends to play seriously in the Office arena.