Google Knol goes live, Wikipedia hardly quaking in its boots
Knol provides a place to find information about topics ranging from lung cancer to toilet clogs. What makes it different from Wikipedia is that while any user can suggest alterations to articles, the original author gets to decide whether or not to include those changes. In theory, this will help prevent people who don't know what they're talking about from ripping apart an article from an authority on a topic. In practice, since anyone can write an article on any topic, whether they know what they're talking about or not, it could be even harder to find reliable information on Knol than Wikipedia.
Knol's saving grace might be that users can write multiple articles on the same topic. So if you think you know how to build a better mouse trap than the 20 other writers who have published their own methods, you can write your own article. Readers can then rank stories so hopefully only the most accurate and/or helpful "knols" will find their way to the top of the pile.
Creating a Knol is fairly straightforward. You just sign in with your Google account and start writing. You can also import documents create in Microsoft Word, Excel, PDF or TXT file.
[via Official Google Blog]