How is Knowen different from Wikipedia?
Knowen has many commonalities with Wikipedia (and its cousin wikis), which often leads to a question -- How is Knowen different?
There are several structural and philosophical differences.
On the structural side, the key feature of Knowen is that it is a structured network of pages (nodes -- in knowen-speak). The higher-level nodes represent more general concepts and their descriptions, while deeper nodes contain progressively finer details. Such hierarchical structure is intended to minimize the need to do global search in favor of finding the desired content by quickly zooming in from high level, e.g., Physics, to a specific topic of interest, e.g., Majorana Fermions in topological superconductors -- in just a few steps. The deepest levels of hierarchy belong to the cutting edge of current research.
Knowen allows building both Public and Private hierarchies. Any registered user can edit public content, while private projects are shared and developed within collaborations. The private projects can be made publicly visible by connecting them to the public hierarchy, at which point they become available for reading and commenting by public (any registered user). Private projects can also be completely “de-privatized,” fully integrating them into to the public Knowen.
Knowen’s Private Projects are a simple and effective group collaboration tool. Content can be developed within a private project through organizing content and sharing text, data, code, background material. The implicit Knowen workflow directly maps onto Iterative Scientific Method. De-privatization of Private projects is a valuable source of high quality content at the deepest levels of the public Knowen hierarchy, giving other workers in the field ample detail for follow-up research. Content can be exported in order to be converted into a journal publication.
On the “philosophical” side, Knowen encourages authors of original content to place their results into the right context, at all appropriate levels of detail. Each change is tracked in history and can be commented on and evaluated by other users. This enables granular feedback and is aimed to ensure high quality of content while providing basis for building user reputations.
List of other differences:
- Asynchronous editing, allowing saving drafts and recalling nodes from slow editors
- Intuitive Markdown editor
- Ability to follow pages, subgraphs of nodes, other users
- User profile, reputations
- Global reach
- Ability to work collectively on content
- Support of math equations