Home MindTouch Aims To Transform Wiki

MindTouch Aims To Transform Wiki

On Friday I viewed a demo of
the latest version of the Deki Wiki product from

, with Co- Founders Steve Bjorn and Aaron Fulkerson. The latest upcoming release, called “Deki Wiki Hayes”, is described as a wiki and platform for developing collaborative web applications. The company says it’s similar to CMS web frameworks like Drupal, Mambo, Joomla and DotNetNuke, but a wiki in nature.

In a sense MindTouch is
transforming the Wiki, from the Web’s best collaborative authoring tool into an
open source service platform with a Wiki heart. Their Deki Wiki Hayes release is
perhaps the most extendable Wiki tool available today. The product is OS and programming
language agnostic. Deki Wiki Hayes
allows developers, administrators and users to create or integrate Wiki
capability into web apps.

Hayes for Developers

We talked a great deal about terms like the semantic-web,
aggregation, and interconnectivity. Wiki Hayes allows all users to benefit from
nearly any Web service with Wiki style and simplicity. From a developmental standpoint Wiki Hayes
adds both flexibility and standardization to new or existing services. Here is the short list for key features
that aid users and developers:

  • Language Agnostic ‚Äì Programmers can use any language
    and interface with Hayes
  • Bi-Directional API ‚Äì Allows developers to add Wiki
    capability to existing applications
  • LDAP/AD Integration ‚Äì Utilize existing user
    directories and authentication
  • Multiple Skinning Support ‚Äì Customization
    flexibility and simplicity
  • Files and Tagging ‚Äì Versioning, indexing for search
    with category and chrono-tagging
  • Permissions ‚Äì Pages, groups, spaces and other full
    page level authorizations
  • Media Support ‚Äì Page level attachments, rich media
    support and image gallery
  • Platform Independence ‚Äì Linux, Solaris, MacOSX,
    Windows or Unix via Mono or .Net
  • Lucene Search ‚Äì Enterprise class search tool
    searches indexed pages, file types and tags

Mindtouch has current deployments at Microsoft, BP,
Stanford University and many others around the world. Transforming the simplicity and popularity of the Deki Wiki
into a value added service platform aids developers by providing a more
powerful, flexible and enjoyable downstream product for their clients.

Example of a nice Deki Wiki build

Hayes for Administrators

The big advantage to local administrators is the simplicity
and flexibility of Wiki collaboration. Deki Wika Hayes also simplifies
permissions and web extensions for users of any technical skill level. The
Bi-Directional API function allows cross platform mixing and blending of
services and enhanced control  for administrators. In essence, anything the Deki Wiki can do
is easily done by the site admin. Aggregating content, graphing, extension
authentication and dozens of other features are resident out-of-the-box features
for the Hayes release.

Editor and navigation of the Wiki hierarchy

Hayes for Users

Deki Wiki Hayes allows end users to participate on an unparalleled scale. Users can create, customize and utilize Deki Wikis and services like Flickr or
YouTube without even learning Wiki markup. The WYSIWYG editor is the heart of
the UI and has the power of a light word processor. Deki Hayes doesn’t use
non-standard markup language, so users can simple copy and paste from office
docs. or web pages. The editor also toggles between plain text and XHTML for
experienced users. In short, any user can enhance existing services, create rich
pages, find and organize content, communicate and aggregate content with
‚Äúsimpler than Wiki‚Ä? ease.

Sandbox creation I started for a project – note Digg widget  


Mindtouch has done a fantastic job of creating a platform that simplifies
and/or integrates the development, administration and end use of a wide range of
Web entities. Wikis are one of the most widely used and flexible
conduits for collaboration we have, and Deki Wiki tools add  even
more connectivity between the people from end to end. The Hayes release and the tools I tested are
not ‚Äúdrop dead‚Ä? simple as far as discoverability goes, but extensive
documentation is available and the learning curve is not overly steep. Ease of
use for programmers, HTML users and Wiki aficionados should be a snap, and even
I was able to turn one of my projects into a Deki Wiki easily. Hayes will be
released today or Wednesday, but you can get a head start at

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