This week was… challenging, to put it lightly. We started a brand new topic, moving from blogs to Wikis. I thought it would be easy. I mean, I already knew how to navigate Wikipedia, and I had used a Wiki in the E-Rhetoric class last semester, so it couldn’t be much harder than that, right?
Well, not quite.
It turns out that Wikis are a part of a much more massive system than I had anticipated, and their much more varied and adaptable than the few purposes I was previously acquainted with. Basically, if you need to communicate with a group in any way, it’s possible to adapt a Wiki page to suit whatever your communication needs may be. Using a Wiki can be simple, but studying them is difficult, for the highly varied uses make the overall system a complex, or even baffling. Trying to grasp it was such an arduous task that I didn’t manage to post anything this week besides my Notes on Wikis.
I had the most trouble with some of the reading, especially Meatball Wiki and the c2 visitor’s page. With so many links and so little straightforward explanation, it was difficult for me to figure out simple things like the basic purpose of those Wikis. I think they’re for disseminating technological knowledge, but I’m not completely sure. Throughout the week I tried to simply read everything, even though I didn’t understand all of it, and try to get as much information that I DID understand out of the readings as I could. Luckily it was only the Wikis themselves that I had trouble understanding, and not the material explaining how Wikis work in general. The Wikis in Plain English video was incredibly helpful in understanding the basics for editing a Wiki and how Wikis are designed to be useful in many different situations. Brian Lamb’s article elaborated more on the social functions of Wikis and the public’s various objections, along with why those objections may or may not hold ground.
I don’t really know why this assignment gave me o much trouble. I’ve just got this general feeling of confusion floating around my head. I’m hopeful that some in-class discussion will help clear it up, or at least make specific questions more obvious to me so I can ask for clarification.