Keith D Swenson#

JSPWiki is brilliant. I downloaded, installed, and was running a few minutes. An impressive list of features. Keep up the good work.

My newest wiki is at:

Now I have about 6 months experience with it. I run it on my laptop so I can take it everywhere I go. I use it to organize information. Alas, I am the only contributor (because it is connected to a network only occasionally). Is it still a wiki if it is single user?

Why bother with a wiki if I am the only contributor? I like the simplistic formatting. It has every text style I need (bullets, headers, italics, links, that is about it). I particularly like that there is no hidden formatting that it impossible to get rid of, which is why I have given up on the WYSIWYG editors. The page files are text and searchable (I search my notes occasionally). I make pages on groups that I am involved in, and I use the Weblog capability to add notes with a particular timestamp on them. I take the HTML formatted and paste into HTML email for sending to others.

Any solution for tabular data? I am wondering.

The only change I made to the templates was to color the left column background slightly so that it is distinct from the main text. I think this makes it more readable.

Suggestion to new users: turn on UTF-8 and don't look back. Gives you full Unicode support for essentially free. Your text files are UTF-8 encoded, but this does not matter unless you are editing them a lot independently with a non UTF-8 editor, but I have not yet ever seen the need for that yet.

There is an interesting dilemma keeping notes in a wiki: privacy. Many wikis are devoted to public discussions (as they were designed for) but unless you are an exhibitionist raw notes are best kept private. It might be easy to implement access control, but then where does this all lead to when the point of a wiki is to make it easy to share?

I use JSPWiki as a private organisation, note-keeping, and information collection tool, too. You will be able to share pages you explicitly mark as editable or readable by other users. You're probably right: it's not quite a Wiki any more, but that's no problem: I, for one, am quite happy with a horribly mangled, mutated, and perverted private wiki tool. Take a look at the latest CVS version of JSPWiki for some authentication features. (If figuring it out isn't easy, I probably should write some documentation - drop me a hint.) --ebu

Synchronization: I keep three synchronized copies of all the wiki pages: (1) on the laptop, (2) on my desktop at work, and (3) on my desktop at home. I do this primarily for backup reasons, but it does make my notes available when I don't have my laptop. I have servers in all three places. So far I have not had any edit conflicts (edit the same page on two different servers). I have given some thought to marking pages to make them editable only on particular servers. A simple scheme: mark the page with the server that can edit it. On server A, you can change it to be editable on Server B, and it is only editable there once the newest file is synchronized there. So you can "give" a page from one server to another. Of course, you would need a "take" method where you risk an edit conflict for emergencies.

Then there is controlled synchronization: everything stays on the laptop, while most (but not all) of the files have a copy on the desktop at work. Toyed with this a while. Avoiding name conflict among non -synchronized pages within the synchronized ones is the biggest problem.

You may want to take a look at Unison or rsync. Basically, you should be able to do updates on any wiki, run unison, and be up to date on all. (I need to check my facts here, though.) The only problem would be when the same file was edited in different locations; easy in public wikis, but perhaps not a problem with a private wiki tool. --ebu
For file synchronization and all other file management I use Total Commander Highly recommended - Keith

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« This page (revision-22) was last changed on 30-Dec-2006 11:20 by KeithSwenson