December 20, 2013

Silk – Published What You Know

Everybody is an expert at something. Silk provides its users with a way to share their knowledge with a worldwide audience. The web-based application offers DIY tools that people can use to publish their own “collections,” complete with graphs, maps, databases, and other features that serve as a way to add structure to complex sets of information.

Silk is a platform that can be used in an infinite number of ways. Whether you’re looking to share your knowledge of Parisian bookstores, create a guide to restaurants in Munich, rate the best home coffee makers or visualize the debt of American college students, Silk has developed tools that can make the publishing process easier. Create a Silk website using the Silk sites made by other users as inspiration, then add your first “collection” in your dashboard. Make pages to go in your collection, and add content to those pages. Where Silk really stands out is in the maps, tables and charts that you can build using your own sets of data. Add the type of media content that best reflects your topic, and publish your site for the world to see. Other people with Silk accounts can sign up to “follow” your website and get notifications whenever your content is updated.

Teams can also use Silk as a private knowledge base and project management tool. Quickly turn a spreadsheet into a shareable website, develop an internal knowledge base or develop a database that you can share with selected vendors and business partners. Silk is an excellent solution for any group that needs a private and secure way to share information online.

Practical Uses:

  • Create a guide to Parisian bookstores
  • Publish a data-based journalism project for the world to see
  • Develop your own crowd sources databases
  • Quickly turn a spreadsheet into an interactive map

Insider Tips:

  • Use the bookmarklet tool to add content to your Silk site from any website you’re visiting
  • Invite colleagues to help create your custom Silk website
  • Embed your Silk visualization into a website or blog
  • Users can create educational portfolios using Silk’s DIY tools

What we liked:

  • Silk provides people with an intuitive way to structure large amounts of content
  • Users can create and publish interactive graphs
  • Groups can privately share large data sets within their organizations
  • The maps that people create with Silk can be embedded on other blogs and websites

What we didn’t like:

  • Spreadsheets need to be in CSV format before they can be uploaded to Silk


Company Info:

  • Launched: April 2011
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Founded by: Salar al Khafaji and Lon Boonen
  • Web site:


  • Free

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