Community Win: KISS the Wiki Ninja

Most of you know the KISS-principle, although some of you rather link it to the Ninja like painted rock band.
It usually stands for "keep it stupid simple", "keep it short and simple", "keep it simple sir", "keep it super simple", ..."keep it simple and straightforward" or "keep it simple and sincere".


In fact it comes down to the "Less is more" approach, which should be one of the core principles when developing and maintaining your Wiki articles.

Keep it simply structured

Most Wiki articles start small but quickly grow to a more elaborated document.
It's a good practice to build some structure from the beginning.

A basic structure can include

- [TOC] tag to get an idea of the content at first sight
- introduction to explain what the article is about
- Chapters (with header layout), to build the TOC
- References ("See also" section), References help to build credibility and provide additional information from other sources.

Keep it simply structured

Although a fancy layout is attractive and nice, keep it limited.
The more complex the layout, the higher the risk that other contributers scramble your article.

Don't go extreme on colours and exotic fonts...

Use tables only when really needed, don't box your article with tables.

Kick in swiftly and straightforward

Don't hesitate to start an article when you feel there is a need for it.
If you have information to share, give it a go!

If you think, for whatever reason, that the article has no reason to exist anymore, you can clean it and mark is as "candidate for deletion".
Or ping the WIki moderator Ninjas directly to remove it.

Keep information shared and social

In one of my recent Wiki blog posts I mentioned the fair use and privacy rights.

Be fair. if you publish copyrighted information, refer to the proper source and make sure it's ok to publish it.
When you publish to the Wiki, be aware that your article can be edited by other contributes.

Keep invisibility simple and sincere

A while Ana Paula devoted an interesting article on "The Principle of Invisibility", see Wiki Life: The Principle of Invisibility.

"Who" should receive the biggest highlight in an article?
In a Wiki it is article itself and the information it contains.

 "When editing a page, main namespace articles should not be signed, because the article is a shared work, based on the contributions of many people, and one editor should not be singled out above others." (from Wikipedia: Signatures)


[Ka-jah Shakaah!]
The Security & Identity Ninja.

Peter Geelen
Premier Field Engineer - Security & Identity at Microsoft

Comments (5)
  1. I agree to keep it very simple in structure IF you don't have any content. It's a little lame to return to a bunch of articles two years later with all sorts of sections laid out and zero content! If you're going to get very detailed in your structure, then you should also try to build a team to help you fill it out, rather than abandoning it.

  2. Excellent Peter!

    I agree with you too!

    I was thinking of my articles: How i facilitate the insertion of content through other authors.

    In fact, when creating an article, we need to think that he should keep himself alive (regardless of the author).

  3. Ana,

    This is the quote of my month: "In fact, when creating an article, we need to think that he should keep himself alive (regardless of the author)."

    Simply, clever and it resumes all the work of wiki in few words !

  4. Meaning that the article is like a person who survives off the contributions of Wiki revisors? Hmm. Should we give our articles names? Like George.

  5. anonymouscommenter says:

    Anyone who got sucked into TechNet Wiki and started writing articles, is familiar with the online editor

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