Wiki of the Month January 2015
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LISTedTECH is your portal into the world of educational technology data in higher education. In essence, it is a wiki of educational companies, products, and institutions that anyone can edit. Its main goal is to assist higher-ed institutions in getting the hard data on educational products and companies used by specific institutions.
After 2 years of running a Drupal-based site that was "wikified", the creators of LISTedTECH, Justin Menard and Simon Tokai, chose to create, in October 2014, a semantic wiki to get the community involved and participating.
This new wiki lists technologies used by higher-ed institutions across the globe as a way to better understand the products used and their selection process. In order to do this, all complimentary information about the institution is entered (such as institution type, enrollment, endowment, World rankings) You get pages of statistics about institutions (universities and colleges mainly) as well as lists of technical products used by these institutions; all of which you may compare with world rankings offered as a way to enhance correlation and understanding of the decision making process. Semantic MediaWiki is used extensively across the site (semantic forms are used in the creation of every page) to quantify product usage and characterise the institutions that use them. The extension pChart4mw is also used; a neat module that is simple to use, simple to implement and which gives a nice data visualization.
With its current 450 registered users, the community is an amalgamation of higher-ed tech employees, software providers and consultants. The site, which now boasts close to 30,000 pages, was created effectively through the use of Semantic Forms, which gave us the ability to ask our users specific questions while keeping the model simple. This also meant that we could easily compile that data into something meaningful.
Some of the information was assembled from different open data sites including Freebase and DBpedia. The other data was added manually in the last few years by the users.
LISTedTECH is what we, the creators as institution workers, have been searching for throughout our careers. It is data that offer you a glimpse into the world of education, its trends and its orientations; and most importantly it is pulling together this data into one comprehensive, visually stimulating, and interactive site.