User:Yury Katkov/SMW community growth

< Yury Kaktov
Yury KaktovUser:Yury Katkov/SMW community growth

Semantic MediaWiki rocks. You can do so much things with it , it's flexible, it can be very efficient, it has great community... but why isn't SMW as popular as Drupal or Joomla? Why nobody even knows about it? I'll try to analyze that here starting from the most obvious reasons to the most controversial.

Core problems[edit]

There are actually only two problems:

The number of SMW users per months don't grow[edit]

The interest to SMW is growing less and less as you can see from this Google Trennds Plot:


The number of SMW developers and contributors don't grow[edit]

This data has been obtained from

But at least the lines of code show a steady growth, so congrats to the developers :-) --Bernhard Krabina (talk) 13:07, 24 October 2013 (CEST)

Lines of code is hardly a good metric to measure progress with. Functionality and code quality are --Jeroen De Dauw (talk) 18:23, 26 October 2013 (CEST)

Possible reasons[edit]

  • Lack of well-described promising use cases of pretty sophisticated technology.
  • Everybody think that SMW is good only for wikis. Not many people need wiki.
  • Lack of advertisement of really big successes (NYC Facets, WebPlatform)
  • To install SMW you need MW. SMW inherited all the limitations of MW: horrible markup, no WYSIWYG, no ACL, no achitecture, too Wikipedic, no good skins
  • Lack of cookbook-style articles, screencasts,
  • Too hard user documentation.
  • Lack of programmer's documentation
  • Scientific fluids and relation to the Semantic Web: unless you're applying for a grant it's a disadvantage

Target audience[edit]

  • Students and professors at universities and research centers
  • People in companies looking for an enterprise wiki
  • Consaltants looking for a flexible tool supporting their methodologies
  • Open government and open data people
  • Semantic web people

Possible actions[edit]


  • add the 2-3 minutes of introductory video to the main page
  • add logos of successfull companies that use SMW
  • Change the skin to something non-wikipedic?


  • SMWCon poster ads at universities
  • Semantic MediaWiki advertisements at universities
  • Include SMW in semantic web learning programs
  • Post ads about successfull semantic wikis (e.g. Wikis of the Months) not only to wiki communites and SW communities but also to newsgroups of problem domain
  • Publications in popular (NOT scientific) journals
  • Publications in popular web-journals and blogs: Wired, IBM developer works, habrahabr
  • shares in resources like Digg, Slashdot, delicious,