I’m sitting here with Tom Stites talking about wiki maintenance, and what a pain it is. And it occurs to me that what I want in a wiki is MORE, the ultimate outliner — a program I dearly loved from when it was ThinkTank all the way up until I finally gave up on Mac OS9/Classic, which was the last thing it ran on. Nearly all my writing was done in MORE, because it allowed me to organize and re-organized hierarchies of topics, quickly and easily. It also helped me think, which is what one should be doing when one is writing stuff.
Wikis are flat. All topics are at the same level. This is fine for an encyclopedia, but lousy for, say, projects. Joint efforts such as ProjectVRM are not flat. They have topics and subtopics. These change and move around, and this is where an outliner like MORE is so handy. With a few keystrokes you can move topics up and down levels, back and forth between higher-level headings… You can hoist any single topic up and work on that as if it were a top level. You can clone a topic or a piece of text and edit it in two places at once. I could go on, but trust me: it freaking rocked. There was no faster way to think or type. Hell, I’m typing this in one of its decendents: an OPML editor, also written by Dave Winer.
Anyway, just wanted to say, here in the midst of an unrelated local conversation, that wiki that works like MORE remains on the top of my software wish list for the world. Trust me: it would make the world a much more sensible place. And make both individual and group work a helluva lot easier.