Google recently launched DataWiki in Google Labs. According to Google, DataWiki is "A wiki for structured data." According to this entry on DataWiki, the concept developed out of Google's experiences creating Person Finder during the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Google developers saw a need for the rapid creation of systems for sharing structured data.
This sounds pretty similar to FluidDB, which has been described as "a hosted database with the heart of a wiki." FluidDB's Nicholas H.Tollervey was kind enough to explain how the two projects are different.
DataWiki is designed to quickly create simple databases for specific uses - like People Finder. FluidDB is creating a massive database of "everything."
The primary differences between the two projects, according to Tollervey, are:
- Structure: DataWiki pages conform to a specific pre-defined structure. "In FluidDB we don't impose schema on our users and individual things are
- represented by objects rather than entries on a list," Tollervey says.
- Validation: DataWiki doesn't seem to offer any sort of access controls for its pages. FluidDB has a permissions system to control which users are able to use specific tags or namespaces.
- Search: You can only search a specific DataWiki page. In FluidDB, you can search across all the datasets that you have read permission for.