Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Google launches Knol Beta to all !

A short time ago, Google announced that Knol, the initiative first mentioned in December with "authoritative articles about specific subjects", is now open to everyone.

I tried logging in a short time ago and my 'credentials' came right up (and then I decided to write here instead :)

Knol had been seen as a potential competitor to sites such as Wikipedia, and more-recently Mahalo but has been pretty much under wraps until early today.

As many of you know, I've been a pretty strong critic of Wikipedia, and the never-ending commercial gaming that goes on there, even after they added the no-follow tags. At least in the spaces that I watch, Wikipedia continues to get hammered by people looking to disassemble good articles for personal gain. Really sad, as the idea was great.

There appears to be a pretty good rulebook in place for the Knol launch. I did scan some of the articles and they did contain a few commercial links but they were relevant.

Does Google's timing have anything to do with Microsoft's recent acquisition of Powerset?

Will it have an effect on Mahalo or Wikipedia?

I'll let you decide.

We already have and (and others).

Regardless, Knol does look pretty cool so far.   Check it out here.

Update 1 - 3:05 PM ET : In an apparent strong launch, Google has taken the announcement to their Blogger Buzz as well.

Update 2 - 8 AM ET Jul 24: Google Blogoscoped now has two in-depth articles on Knol that are more in depth here and if you need more, you can always read one of these (The gang's all here :)