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Wikis Suit Up For The Office

Internet startup Socialtext leads the charge toward the adoption of firewall-protected wikis
Every day, businesses face the challenges of facilitating collaboration and making information accessible. Many Web technologies have promised easier collaboration, and now wikis, Web sites that can be edited by anyone with permission, are delivering on that promise. Internet startup Socialtext is among the companies leading the adoption of firewall-protected wikis.

Socialtext

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Can your employees handle wikis?
Socialtext's hosted apps and appliances let companies and their employees publish documents among a series of Web sites while controlling access to that information. One customer, European investment bank Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein, is replacing its entire intranet with a Socialtext wiki for 7,000 global employees. Socialtext CEO Ross Mayfield says his software can decrease E-mail volume by a third and accelerate project development cycles by a quarter.

But wikis require extensive trust. Socialtext doesn't know any examples of employees acting in bad faith with its wikis, Mayfield says.

JotSpot, which counts Disney among its customers, also has a powerful wiki platform for business. It lets companies integrate wikis with Microsoft Office and build apps such as a collaborative spreadsheet program within wikis. Several open source alternatives such as TWiki also have sizable development communities.

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