A Wiki for Structured Data

The product is the wikiCalc program — a web authoring tool that creates web pages. It is for creating and maintaining web pages that include data this is more than just unformatted prose, such as schedules, lists, and tables. It combines some of the ease of authoring and multi-person edit ability of a wiki with the familiar formatting and data organizing metaphor of a spreadsheet.

Starting November 9, 2005

Hmm, may be useful for a number of projects.  Download it here (link is at the bottom of the page).

PunBB: Small, Fast Forum System

PunBB is a fast and lightweight PHP-powered discussion board. It is released under the GNU General Public License. Its primary goals are to be faster, smaller and less graphically intensive as compared to other discussion boards. PunBB has fewer features than many other discussion boards, but is generally faster and outputs smaller, semantically correct XHTML-compliant pages.

PunBB – About

LII Launches Wex

Received an email this morning from my friend Tom Bruce announcing the immeadiate availability of Wex, a collaboratively-edited legal dictionary and encyclopedia built on the MediaWiki platform. Here’s a bit from the Wex FAQ:

What is Wex?
WEX is a collaboratively-edited legal dictionary and encyclopedia. It is intended for a broad audience of people we refer to as “law novices” — which at one time or another describes practically everyone, even law students and lawyers entering new areas of law. No doubt purists will be quick to point out the differences between a dictionary and an encyclopedia. We deliberately blur the distinction, as we are interested in providing objective, useful material in a range of formats.

Tom and the LII crew have seeded Wex with the lot of original content that was developed for the LII’s ‘Law About..’ legal subject area series. This looks like it will be another hit for the LII.

MSFT Memos Point to New Direction

Dave Winer posted the text of a Bill Gates email and a Ray Ozzie memo laying out a broad strategy for changing the course of MSFT. At least we now see why MSFT bought Groove: it is what Gates wants to do with MSFT and they needed the shot in the arm of an outsider (Ozzie) to get things moving. Still there is a lot of danger in trying to stop MSFT and turn it in another direction. For example, a ‘services’ company doesn’t need buildings full of developers building complex systems in near isolation from each other, so there will be a lot of internal resistance to the this new direction.

And what does the ‘product’ look like? Will Windows become a basic OS, controling the physical computer with basic file management and a single app, somne sort of uber browser that open a window to the net and all of the glorious ‘services’ that MSFT will offer? Nice idea, but a hard sell.

Finally, Ray Ozzie’s memo is worth reading in and of itself. It offers up a blue print (or even a manifesto, depending on your POV) for moving forward as the net becomes more disruptive. We are moving toward a time when all of the technologies that have been trotted out over the past 10 years will actually work, but we need to put aside the ‘been there, done that’ attitude that tends to prevade these sorts of announcements. Yes, on a certain level, everything that is in these docs is old news, but only now are we moving to a position where all of this is actually viable.