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When I first encountered PBwiki, its claim was that it made setting up a wiki as easy as making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (hence the PB in the name). That claim wasn’t too far off the mark.

Of the three services discussed in this article, PBwiki most closely resembles a wiki as many people know it. You start off with a front page that acts as a home page. You can customize the front page with, say, links to other pages in your wiki.

Building a new page is easy. You just click the New Page button. You’re presented with several templates to use—such as a to-do list, a photo gallery, and an article repository—or you can opt for no template at all.

While you need to use wiki markup to format your pages, you’ll quickly learn the markup that you need. You can add some basic formatting, however, using a toolbar that’s available when you edit a page. And you can preview a page before saving it, just to make sure that it looks the way you want it to look (see Figure 3).

Figure 3

Figure 3 A PBwiki page being edited, with the preview turned on.

PBwiki has a number of collaboration features. It supports an unlimited number of comments for each wiki page. You can also share your wiki pages with other people. When collaborating, it’s sometimes necessary to share files. Instead of emailing the files, you can upload them to your PBwiki.

While not as simple as LittleWiki, PBwiki is still fairly easy to use. On top of that, it can scale to your needs. A free account offers you basic features. You can also get paid accounts, costing anywhere from $5 to $20 a month, that offer other features such as the ability to host your wiki on your own web site rather than at the PBwiki site. Another paid feature is the ability to assign permissions to users; for example, allowing some users only to read a wiki page, and others to edit it.

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