Knol - google's social knowledge base

Google launched Knol, a social knowledge base similar to wikipedia. The idea looks very promising so I immediately jumped in to check it out.

The interface is (as usual with google) very simple and straightforward, it is very easy to write your own article in a minute.


  • great idea
  • simple (usable, easy to learn, easy to use)
  • google-integrated
  • colaboration (each article has clearly defined owners, authors and reviewers)
  • licensable (for now you can choose from (cc-attribution, cc-attrib-non-commercial, all-rights-reserved)
  • revisioning (versioning)
  • commenting
  • article summary
  • reviews (you can post reviews on anything and link to your review will show up on the original page)
  • referencing
  • adsense integration


  • no tagging? ...oh wait, there's an alternative titles field, but I think this is a bit confusing, the tagging should work more like what we're used to from other google products, e.g. mail, notebook...
  • too long and confusing urls (e.g.http://knol.google.com/k/jazzy-junggle/tagging-best-practice/8d1khziecqie/2#edit - maybe its just me and there's a way to view the article url, but i believe the addressing of the articles should be more clear to the user and/or simpler)
  • lack of semantics (defining meta tags, relations to other articles, etc.)
  • limited presentation options (styling, css, page layout, templating...)
I think Knol is on the right track but still needs a lot of work to become the only and ultimate knowledge base.

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