I have previously written about WikiDashboard working on the live English Wikipedia. WikiDashboard is some software that puts a small overlay — a dashboard — over the top of each wiki page (for a MediaWiki that has it installed/enabled/where you choose to use it). It gives you visuals on who has edited that page over time, and has graphics that let you figure out when the page has been heavily edited. It is an extremely useful tool in making a quick critical analysis of the history of Wikipedia articles, for example.
I received an email from John of the Bering Strait School District (BSSD) OpenContent Initiative who told me they are using WikiDasboard live on their site Currwikulum:
The Palo Alto folks have been great, and as from what we have been told, we are the first implementation “in the wild” of their WikiDashboard tool.
We will be collecting data on how teachers, students and administrators use this in a collaborative curriculum development process.
We are still tweaking it…it will default to “invisible” unless clicked after we are done debugging.
I am a bit sceptical about the benefit of having WikiDashboard, as it stands, “on” all the time; it is rather bulky. Making it less intrusive sounds like a great step towards making it a real “every day” tool, and that can only be good for increasing the general public’s ability to scrutinise and understand the wiki way. Getting data back about how it is used will also be awesome!
I recently returned from the chapters meeting in Berlin. In no small feat of people engineering, participants from every chapter made it to the meeting. Now there’s tons I’d love to follow up on, including blog posts. Watch this space…
I’ve fixed the default setting now that we are done bug testing, and the WikiDashboard is now available to toggle on and off on any page.
I’ve blogged a bit about how we are using it in our Currwikulum Model here:
Thanks for the mention, and we will share our data as the project goes on!
— John Concilus · 14. April 2009, 07:53
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