Monday, December 17, 2007

Google Knol aims at Wikipedia: Do you think so?

Google is testing a new tool called Knol, which allows any person to write on a topic they know just like wikipedia. Many are seeing it as an attempt aimed at Wikipedia. But I think Google is not aiming at wikipedia, rather it is just creating a new avenue to display its advertisements, which accounts to more than 90% of its revenues.

The key idea behind the knol project is to highlight authors. Books
have authors' names right on the cover, news articles have bylines,
scientific articles always have authors -- but somehow the web evolved
without a strong standard to keep authors names highlighted.

I don't see any competition to wikipedia in this. Because blogs are already doing just the same thing. Only author can edit a knol, just like in blogs. You can suggest changes by putting a comment again just like a blog. The authors who really care will care to keep the page updated whether it is a knol or a blog. Then what is the difference between a blog and knol. Apart from its wiki style interface, setting a knol may be a little easier than setting a blog with no control on page design.

I will go to wikipedia because those pages will mostly be accurate (some knols which are written by good authors might click, but these will be very few). Since wikipedia pages are owned by everyone, everyone willing to update the page to keep it up to date. We can't expect the same in Knol, moreover author has to check the suggestions and change the page.

Just it is an attempt by Google to create a pile of information for showing its advertisements, nothing else.

Please share your views.

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