This Information Week article has a quote that stopped me in my tracks.

And the biggest problem: wiki sprawl. SocialText has a search function, but it’s so easy to create a new wiki page, people do that rather than look for one that exists to build on.

At first I was intrigued and impressed by the innovation of Angel.com and then I realized instead of cluttering up their own hard drives these employees were cluttering up the world wide web by doing what people do.

The Angels.com wiki has people recreating the wheel rather than searching for blueprint so that they can improve the design.  Why is it so easy to just create a new file?  Is it because the keywords/taxonomy are so inaccurate that they just don’t trigger recognition for the normal user?

I applaud Angel.com for their encouragement of creativity, on-demand training and instant customer service provided by the wiki.  This is truly innovative but will information overload kill the innovation?   Would Angel.com benefit from a strong structure of information categories so that the blueprints could be accessed for ultimate design perfection?

Planning with top-down structure is beneficial.  Searching through too many tags and not finding just the right one results in yet another tag and the benefit of collaboration is in danger.

Note:  This post is a thought essay based upon a quick review of the first page of Angel.com and the Information Week article, specifically the quote included.  Any inaccuracies in what Angel.com truly has in place are unintended and I welcome corrections to this post in the comments field.