Two great free hosted wiki services

Schtuff and Writeboard provide good wiki functionality for free

The wiki market is maturing nicely with the arrival of some excellent hosted wiki services which are totally free within average levels of usage. Two of these free wikis which caught my attention are Schtuff from JanRain Inc and Writeboard from 37 signals.


Schtuff

schtuff is is a classic wiki which allows you to create a number of independent hosted spaces within it. You can invite any number of other users into each space with permissions ranging from admin to read only.

Each wiki page maintains a full history of versions with ability to revert to a previous version and to compare two versions. You can subscribe to spaces or even documents within spaces and you are notified by email and/or RSS if they are changed.

You get 3 spaces and 200MB for free and the developers say that they partly cover their costs via google ads within each space and will soon offer a paid subscription for users who need additional spaces or disk (prices not yet available).

There are some minor useability issues, such as the current inability to re-invite users or add attachments in a single operation, which reflect the newness of the product but given its functionality Schtuff is a very good choice if you are looking for a comprehensive but free wiki.


Writeboard

Another nice free wiki is Writeboard from 37signals who also do the basecamp web-based project management tool.

Writeboard allows you to create any number of writeboards (i.e shared pages) and invite users to share them.

It lacks some of the functionality of Schtuff in terms of tags and indexing but I prefer the way it manages and shows the differences between two versions of a page.

Whiteboard can also be integrated with the 37signals backpackit product (see my earlier review under The virtual road warrior software checklist).

The Writeboard user interface is clean and intuitive and provides a very nice solution for ad-hoc document collaboration between two or more people.


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I'm currenly reviewing hosted Wiki services to use on a customer project. I am a customer of 37 Signals and have used their BackPack and Basecamp applications extensively. I guess I never considered the Writeboard feature to be a Wiki since it's lacking so many of the Wiki-ish features, such as the customizable menus and WikiWord links. Used in combination with BackPack or Basecamp, they get better, but are still lacking when compared against TiddlyWiki, for example.

I gave Schtuff a quick try-out and my biggest problem with them is the inability to change the template. It's just plain ugly!

Maybe I've set my standards too high since I've immersed myself in customized TiddlyWikis for the past few weeks. Maybe Wikis are just boring and dull and that's all there is to it?

I'm going to keep searching until I find the best of both worlds.

There are a lot of other Wiki solutions. In fact most of them emerged last year.
My favorite ones are:

Wikidot.com - http://www.wikidot.com - hosted free wikis that come with a lot of features for an advanced user but not that easy

WetPaint - http://www.wetpaint.com - cute and well designed but this limits you somehow.

PBWiki - http://pbwiki.com - check out their recent WYSIWYG editor

regards - Daniel

Daniel

Many Thanks for this valuable update to what seems to be one of the most popular posts on the site.

Please feel free to keep us posted on your investigations

Ken

Another really good free wiki service which even supports many languages around the world:

Wiki-site.com - http://www.wiki-site.com - allows to open and manage
a free wiki site with the same site engine of Wikipedia (Mediawiki)

 


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