Commonly the Web is used for retrieving information, and there is very little in the way of interaction between users. Information transfer over the Web is mostly one way, from the Webmaster, to the reader. There are a few techniques to make the Web more interactive.
One method is to add a section to the web site that gives people a form that they can fill in with appropriate information, and then submit it. These can be used for email feedback, for entry into guest books that appear on the page, as general comment forms that get saved into a database, or as more interactive things such as polls and visible comments on documents.
Another method of making the Web more interactive is by setting up customisation features for users. This can be done by storing information about how the user wants information presented to them, what information they want presented to them, and also whether they want to be alerted to new or changing information, for example being alerted by email when a web page changes.
A different method that is employed by a small number of web sites, such as WikiWiki [Cunningham], and its clones, is to make the whole web site editable by anyone. This opens up the whole site to being edited and changed by anyone (although it could be limited to a select group), and allows changes directly to the web pages.
In order to understand why co-operative authoring and user editing of content would be useful, one needs to have some understanding of the current state and sophistication of web sites. Company web sites are looked at because they have a good range of sophistication that ranges from web sites that show very little knowledge of the Internet and the Web, through to companies that use the Web to the fullest.
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