"Meanwhile, as we near the 20th anniversary of wiki software, its inventor Ward Cunningham is busily reimagining his creation. I’ve written a lot lately about his new federated wiki, an implementation of the wiki idea that values a chorus of voices. In the federated wiki you fork pages of interest and may edit them. If you do, your changes may or may not be noticed. If they are noticed they may or may not be merged. But they belong to the network graph that grows around the page. They are discoverable. In Federated Education: New Directions in Digital Collaboration, Mike Caulfield offers this key insight about federated wiki: Wiki is a relentless consensus engine. That’s useful. But here’s the thing. You want the consensus engine, eventually. But you don’t want it at first."
"Max Ogden, a Code for America fellow who has advised Cunningham, tells Wired. It (the federated wiki, VL) enables dissent. "Wikipedia forces you to give up your own perspective," Ogden says. There are issues that no one will agree on, but with the federated wiki model, everyone can have their own version of controversial pages. "And they're all linked together, so you can still explore them like a wiki.""
Here's a vision for the smallest federated wiki: "My 2006 InfoWorld article said, by the way, Here’s the best definition of the universal canvas: ‘Most people would prefer a single, unified environment that adapts to whichever environment they are working in, moves transparently between local and remote services and applications, and is largely device-independent — a kind of universal canvas for the Internet Age.’ You might expect to find that definition in a Google white paper from 2006. Ironically, it comes from a Microsoft white paper from 2000, announcing a “Next Generation Internet” initiative called .NET."