The HL7 Wiki reaches 2000 pages
Publication date: Mar 02, 2009
The HL7 Wiki is now of the most important tools used to support the work of HL7, an open standards development community. Initiated in 2006 by a few individual members it is now widely used and has reached 2000 pages in size.
A Wiki is a collaborative tool (see the definition of Wiki in Wikipedia, itself probably the widest known example of a Wiki) that supports the ongoing process of standards creation of the worldwide HL7 community. Pages can be viewed and edited using a simple webbrowser.
Historically the HL7 organization has used its website (as a method for the dissimination of information, as well as a repository of documents), e-mail list servers and teleconferences as its main tools to support its activities.
The figure below shows the number of file uploads (based on a representative number of HL7 committees) to the HL7 website. The increase in the number of uploads in the 2000 to 2003 timeframe can be explained by the development activities of HL7 version 3, as well as by the introduction of thrice anual ballot cycles for components of the HL7 v3 standard. From 2006 onwards the number of file uploads shows a marked decrease.
I have no doubt that this is due to the introduction of a Wiki.
A few individual members of HL7 began using a Wiki (dubbed: the 'HL7 Wiki') in early 2006. In May 2006 the Wiki had a mere 200 pages. It was hosted on a surplus server below the desk of a programmer in the Mayo clinic. In the summer of 2008 the wiki was moved, it is now hosted by HL7 itself. The figure below shows the increase in pages (according to the statistics provided by the Wiki software itself: the number of 'pages with substantive content') over the period 2006-2009.
Given that Wikis are a fairly new technology the HL7 organization at first was hesitant to embrace it. Anybody can make any changes they see fit - HL7 wondered if this had any legal issues associated with it. HL7, being an ANSI accredited standards development organization, is required to keep a persistent record of all meeting minutes - does the Wiki provide such a persistent record, or should meeting minutes be uploaded to the HL7 website? These hurdles have been overcome, and (fingers crossed) there hasn't been a single case of misuse of the HL7 wiki.
Obviously there are some laggards: the other day I received an e-mail (from someone who has been an active member in HL7 for at least 10 years) with a request for the URL of the HL7 Wiki and its username (wiki) and password (wikiwiki). Some committee co-chairs are hesitant in embracing the Wiki, others are using it as a tool to develop (and edit) the content of the HL7 standards.
The Wiki site has a username and password to prevent automated spambots from spamming the wiki. On hindsight this may not have been the best approach: having to know a username and password also scares away people, its contents won't be indexed by serach engines, and one can't provide "deep links" to pages in the wiki without also telling people what the username and password are. I'd encourage HL7 to review alternative options.
The collaborative development of standards needs to be supported by the most appropriate set of collaborative tools. The tools used will change over time; new tools may be embraced by individual members (and the HL7 community as a whole) at some future point in time.
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Index of columns:
- Advantages of online training courses (Oct 12, 2020)
- Combining the best of IHE XDS with HL7 FHIR (Jun 27, 2019)
- FHIR DevDays and the year in review (Dec 27, 2018)
- Creation and Curation of FHIR Profiles - process and governance (Dec 14, 2017)
- De Algemene Verordening Gegevensbescherming (AVG) in de zorg (Dutch, Sep 19, 2017)
- Impact of the GDPR on the use of interoperability standards (Jun 27, 2017)
- News from the FHIR DevDays in Amsterdam (Dec 15, 2016)
- Next XDS Release (Oct 27, 2016)
- Five years of FHIR (Aug 11, 2016)
- Interoperability projects in Ireland - FHIReland (Mar 14, 2016)
- 2016 FHIR Jedi Calendar (Jan 06, 2016)
- Top 10 HL7 videos watched in 2015 (Dec 24, 2015)
- Update from the trenches on CDA R2.1/R3 and HL7v2. (Oct 15, 2015)
- FHIR DevDays - UK GP System APIs (Sep 16, 2015)
- IHE XDS - testing and implementation tools (Aug 25, 2015)
- Most often implemented IHE Profiles (Jun 08, 2015)
- Why we sponsor the HL7 WGM (May 10, 2015)
- FHIR in Paris (Apr 21, 2015)
- Mapping HL7v2 messages to FHIR. (Apr 13, 2015)
- Analysis of CDA R2 testing tools - most requirements are neither tested nor respected. (Feb 13, 2015)
- HL7 and IHE in Sweden (Feb 08, 2015)
- 2015 FHIR Chiefs Calendar (Jan 07, 2015)
- The Merry FHIR Choir caroling the 12 Days of Christmas (Dec 09, 2014)
- Chicago FHIR Update (Oct 13, 2014)
- Internationalization of HL7 (Sep 25, 2014)
- New XDS Advanced training course on offer by IHE Services and IHE Academy (Jul 14, 2014)
- Recent and Future developments of the DICOM standard (Mar 06, 2014)
- Top 10 HL7 videos watched in 2013 (Jan 02, 2014)
- Report from the HL7 WGM in Cambridge (Oct 16, 2013)
- Documenting the history of HL7 (Sep 03, 2013)
- Histology Lab Device Automation using HL7 version 2 (Jul 23, 2013)
- HL7 FHIR Elevator Pitch (Jul 15, 2013)
- Interoperability Standards - the no-sales pitch (Jul 09, 2013)
- HL7 UK - new landscape, new opportunities (Jun 26, 2013)
- Validation and error correction at the IHE Connectathon (Apr 25, 2013)
- CDA Implementation Guides - (not) invented here (Apr 17, 2013)
- Usage of IHE Profiles (Feb 25, 2013)
- 10 year anniversary - Dutch Ringholm HL7 v2 training courses. (Feb 19, 2013)
- About IHE Academy and new IHE training courses (Jan 12, 2013)
- CDA implementation experiences in the UK (Dec 04, 2012)
- Musings on free HL7 IP (Oct 01, 2012)
- HL7 Connectathons (Sep 09, 2012)
- Renovate HL7 version 3 (Aug 03, 2012)
- Frequency of use of HL7 message types (Jul 24, 2012)
- Lighting the FHIR, HL7s new major interoperability standard (Jun 15, 2012)
- Reflections on the HL7 membership model - the affiliate life cycle (Dec 28, 2011)
- Thinking like an OWL reasoner (Sep 17, 2011)
- RFH (Resources for Health): HL7 version 3 taken to the next step (Aug 18, 2011)
- What's so great about the HL7 organization? (Aug 04, 2011)
- Kerndossier: een Nederlandse versie van CCD (Dutch, May 03, 2011)
- A HL7 RIMBAA update (Apr 21, 2011)
- Timezone Hotel (Mar 29, 2011)
- HL7 and openEHR are cooperating (finally) (Jan 21, 2011)
- Increasing demand for IHE training courses (Dec 18, 2010)
- Context issues with the IHE QED profile (Dec 15, 2010)
- The changing role of HL7 country organizations (Jul 16, 2010)
- Implementing HL7 version 3 - the book (May 06, 2010)
- Adding openness to a closed world (Feb 09, 2010)
- How to lower the hurdle for HL7 v3 implementers (Jan 21, 2010)
- HL7 v3 deployment statistics (Dec 17, 2009)
- There's Trouble in Paradigm (Sep 25, 2009)
- Internationalization of HL7 (Sep 24, 2009)
- HL7 UK signs deal with Ringholm to deliver HL7 v2/v3 training courses in London (Sep 17, 2009)
- The use of HL7 in South Africa (Aug 20, 2009)
- The Next Web Conference in Amsterdam (Apr 17, 2009)
- The HL7 UK AGM and RIMBAA (Apr 16, 2009)
- The HL7 Wiki reaches 2000 pages (Mar 02, 2009)
- The HL7 roadmap for CDA R3 and the CCD (Jan 17, 2009)
- HL7 Affiliates Meeting in Orlando (Jan 11, 2009)
- Swiss and Dutch HL7 News (Dec 31, 2008)
- Devices and Prizes (Nov 22, 2008)
- HL7 in Norway: a situation report (Sep 02, 2008)
- Russian whitepaper (Jul 09, 2008)
- The HL7 Interoperability Conference - IHIC 2008 (May 30, 2008)
- HL7 creates a RIM Based Application Architecture (RIMBAA) group (May 18, 2008)
- Notes from the HL7 WGM in Phoenix (May 08, 2008)
- HL7 v3 RIM based applications: an unintended side effect (Jan 19, 2008)
- Collaborative Tools (Jun 21, 2007)
- HL7 ist Pflicht in der deutschen Telematikinfrastruktur (German, Mar 16, 2007)
- HL7 based Tree inventory system (Jan 30, 2007)
- The link between HL7 and Open Source Software (Jan 06, 2007)
- Workflow Bribery (Sep 15, 2006)
- Timezones in HL7 (Jan 23, 2004)
- Controlled vocabularies: "@*%!!!" ? (Sep 01, 2003)
- Trusting the other Party (Nov 01, 2002)
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Ringholm bv is a group of European experts in the field of messaging standards and systems integration in healthcare IT.
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Rene is the Tutor-in-chief of Ringholm.