The design of tools for cooperative work


In the diversity of tools for tasks in group and cooperative work, the concept of wiki Web is gaining momentum, as said the following article:


 


'Wiki' May Alter How Employees Work Together


http://online.wsj.com/article_email/0,,SB109105974578777189-IhjgoNhlad3oZ2tbYGIb66Fm4,00.html


 


An essential characteristic in this concept, expressed in the design goals [1] of the inventor (Ward Cunningham) is communities arise based on trust: a wiki Web is a site that is modified by anyone of its users, period.


 


In contrast to other tools used for other things and have their own context, where there is the "omnipotent administrator" who dictates who can express ideas and who can not, determining “permissions” and coercing what others can do and not do in a system which key aim is to assure control; straightening up the actual picture of a fascist and totalitarian system. (Exaggeration! Which has intention to be a joke; my ability to tell jokes definitively needs improvement).


 


Nonetheless, what in reality is obtained from such a system is no more than "illusion of control" because of the stimulus the system conveys for the human spirit to break rules and beat limits. Therefore, a tool like wiki Web, whose logic of design contemplates aspects of the human nature, is very unattractive for pernicious hackers and according to experience, is almost immune to “security holes”.


 


Of course, everything should be taken in context, which I specify in the first paragraph of this post; and tries to invigorate a fundamental pattern of design: "one size does not fit all".


 


[1] http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?WikiDesignPrinciples


 

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