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The paper-based book or e-book can be arranged so reading from cover to cover gradually educates the reader in the order the author feels is most effective.

The wikis I've typically seen tend to be more like a reference manual. You read a page and then it's back to the table of contents to choose another topic. They seem to lose that incremental learning approach books can rely on.

Wikis have the advantage of being kept easily up-to-date; no waiting for second edition or the release of a new PDF.

Blogs are nice in that the readers can ask for clarification of the article just read, but they tend to be a collection of random thoughts—again no structured learning path. Ideally it would be nice that a reader could click on a sentence they wanted to comment on and attach one right there.

I'm not having much luck searching and suspect I'm just missing that key phrase that anyone using such a thing knows instantly, like "authoring framework" or something.

Any clues?

Update: I've found something just about spot on here based on DocBook markup but the platform has been written by the author. See how it reads more like a book than a wiki and readers can leave comments on each paragraph.

He makes the platform freely available which is great, but it would still be good to know if there's a name for this sort of live, commentable ebook format.

update 2: Amazon ebooks allow commenting and highlighting, which anyone with (the ebook and) a kindle or kindle app can turn on public comments and highlights (ln the settings) to view them.

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closed as unclear what you're asking by Neil Fein Mar 20 at 22:39

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Are you asking if anyone knows of a system like this? Are you looking to develop it? Are you generating text for it? This site is about writing and editing, and this seems to be more of a development statement than anything else. I'm putting this on hold for now, but ping a mod if you want to edit and reopen. –  Neil Fein Mar 20 at 22:39
There is nothing inherently preventing the use of wiki culture (and software) to provide a linear teaching "narrative". E.g., see Wikibooks. Pure wiki culture does not fit as well with a larger work with a unified vision; copy editing would generally not interfere with the vision, but adding content can break the coherence of the whole (e.g., using a better [in its local context] example may hinder tweaking the example for other sections, additional exercises may change emphasis or violate the desired proportions of difficulty). –  Paul A. Clayton Mar 21 at 13:40
I'm wanting to use such a system. Thanks for pointing out Wikibooks Paul as I can see the linear teaching methodology there a lot better than many wikis I've seen. However I wouldn't be wanting readers to be able to edit, rather to make comments or raise questions that would allow me to answer and revise the work if necessary. –  jontyc Mar 22 at 5:48
I really can't explain the need any better sorry Neil so I can only assume that such a system either isn't well known or doesn't yet exist. –  jontyc Mar 22 at 5:52
Access control can be used to restrict access (e.g. this extension for mediawiki). Having discussion/talk pages be editable by anyone or by registered users might work for comments and questions (the edit history would prevent irreversible vandalization), but that is a bit kludgy. Using forum software for comments/questions (with each page or chapter having a link to a thread or room in the forum) would avoid the problem of a user editing another user's comment. Wiki software can be used just for convenient editing and history. –  Paul A. Clayton Mar 22 at 15:00

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