[Foundation-l] Wikis analysed

Olaf Simons olaf.simons at pierre-marteau.com
Tue Dec 14 18:15:48 UTC 2010


I am thinking of recommending a wiki database to a research project 
planned at Erfurt University. The group I have to advise is planning to 
edit late 17th and early 18th century letters of the "republic of 
letters" with the aim to reconstruct the flow of ideas and the personal 
networks that generated this flow. A wiki should be a superb tool for 
the editing process the project will have to get through. Yet I am more 
interested in tools we would later on use to analyse our data (we will 
prabably create pages of individual letters, other pages on authors and 
topics, and, of course, categories etc.).

My question is now: I have seen exploits (yet never taken any notes) 
that analysed Wikis and gave net-work structures of the interrelated 
pages and category trees. One such thing was shown here only recently:


...yet the digest given here would be too vague for our purposes. We 
would probably have to plan the entire wiki in a way that we could get 
defiinite pictures of the development of 17th century intellectual 
networks (how do they spread on the European map? Who is communicating 
with whom? Who is playing what role in the process?), and of the flow of 
topics within these networks.

Ideas of who would provide technical solutions and give advise on how to 
create such wiki in a manner that it can be analysed fruitfully, would 
be most welcome,

Olaf Simons

Gotha Research Centre, Germany
...and Germany's wikipedia

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