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What’s a pingback? What’s a wiki?

I’ve been rolling along in my business, writing my blogs about business and art and a fiction novel.  I’ve been discovering new ways to work on the ‘net like using Google’s new SideWiki application [this is very cool, check it out].  I’ve met some fascinating people and made new friends.  I’m excited to get involved with some global blogging as with the Climate Change event on October 15th [if you blog, you’ll want to register].  However.  And this is a big HOWEVER.

I have a few questions and invite answers as there is no one in my immediate family who knows or can explain these things :

  • What’s’ a pingback? – the explanations I’ve read are too technical for me.  Is there anyone who speaks plain English who can explain: (a) what it is, (b) what it does, (c) the advantages, (d) how do I use pingbacks?
  • What’s a trackback? – is this the same as a pingback?  Is it just another word for pingback?  Same questions “a” through “d” as for pingbacks.
  • What’s a wiki? – why would you make one? how would you make one? what do you use them for? what is the advantage of a wiki?
  • For those who blog and you get possible comments but are flagged as possible spam, and look like just combinations of letters…what are these?  are these pingback things of some kind? should you just delete them?

Here’s a question for bloggers:

  • When you put someone’s blog on your blogroll, does this create some kind of link-back to your blog?  Should you always reciprocate? What are the advantages of a blogroll?

Writing a blog is an excellent tool for a business’ online toolbox and requires a good understanding of the ins, outs, how-tos and advantages.  Information is key and knowledge is power.

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