June 12, 2006
by: jovial_cynic
I'm a big fan of the wikipedia, an online collaborative encyclopedia that allows anybody on the internet to update and add articles. I like that it's community-created and community-enforced; there's an online culture that's formed around such sites, and it's really fascinating to watch something like wikipedia grow into a useful tool for the web.

In the same thread of community-created/enforced content, I've recently stumbled up on the wikiHow site. It's similar to wikipedia in that it's a wiki -- users can make and modify pages. However, instead of an encyclopedia, it's a place to put "how-to" guides online.

The site is clearly in its infancy, and appears to be written mostly by people who are still in their infancy, but it's a fascinating concept nonetheless. I hope it catches on, because it'd be nice to have a place for all sorts of reliable how-to guides.

It also has a "random wikiHow" feature which I've added to my links on the side navigation. Like with my random blogger link, I've taken the wikiHow content and formatted it into my stylesheet. The actual link to the random wikiHow page is here.

UPDATE: I've looked through about 20 random wikiHow pages, and I haven't encountered one that's useful at all. They're all terribly written. So far, the usefulness-to-crap ratio on this site is looking pretty dismal.
np category: site


Luke said:
I do like the idea but unfortunately most of it is useless 'how-to' like how to bull$hit. C'mon give me a good how to craft an electric guitar. How to weld. How to solder. Something useful instead of junk. Hopefully it catches on and the administrators delete 96% of what's already there.
June 12, 2006

jovial_cynic said:
Seriously. Everything I've found in the randomizer is nonsense. "How to get an ex-boyfriend back," and "How to catch a greased pig" are among the more memorable ones. Bleah. I did a search for welding, and found a few things a *little* informative, but the rigid structure of the how-to pages (steps, tips, warnings...) is really stupid. I swear, some guy created this site for middle-school kids...
June 12, 2006

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