So it's pretty clear that I'm talking myself into moving forward on Querki, the true next-gen wiki that I've been gradually designing, and I've largely talked myself into starting from scratch. At the core, it's very different from ordinary wikis -- a sort of hybrid between an OO database and a wiki -- and I have a clear idea of what that wants to look like. But it's also clear that, if this is going to be a serious tool for general use (which is the objective), it will also eventually need the various bells and whistles that folks expect of a real, enterprise-grade wiki these days. And that means that this is more than a one-man project.
Which leaves me with the slightly daunting prospect of creating an open source community. I have only the vaguest idea of where to start. I figure that I'll probably build the initial skeleton of the system myself (starting after the game runs in March, and I have some time again), but once that's put together I really need to puzzle out how to attract a good group to work with me on this. I'm also going to have to learn how to steer the thing appropriately -- how to let the other contributors have their heads without letting the thing dissolve into a puddle of ill-designed goo.
It's an exciting prospect, but *quite* scary. I've worked with plenty of software projects over the years, but my experience with open source is pretty tangential. If anyone has any pointers on how one kickstarts a project like this, I'd be interested to hear them. (And if anyone might want in on the project, do speak up! It'll be the middle of next year before it all begins coming together, but I'm starting to get my ducks in a row now, and it would be encouraging to know that there are programmers interested in helping out...)