Everyone's an expert

Putting information into the hands of the people was among the original, lofty aims of the Internet. We may have lost sight of that amid the forests of e-boutiques, subscription-only sites and corporate blather. But an online encyclopedia—where all entries are written, maintained and vetted by Web surfers themselves—is trying to recapture those early, democratic ideals. Called Wikipedia.org (wiki means "superfast" in Hawaiian and is also the name of the collaborative software upon which the site is built), the encyclopedia features more than 700,000 hypertexted articles on everything from "Anthrax (band)" to "Zeppelin." That's more listings than Britannica.com, Encarta.com...

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