Could Wikipedia's assassin be lurking behind a Knol? Google opened up its online encyclopedia with articles—or "units of knowledge" Google calls "Knols"—to the public today, featuring major differences from its well-established rival. The pieces are written by experts and their names are highlighted, in marked contrast to the anonymous writers of Wikipedia, CNET reports. Google writers, if they choose to, will get a cut of advertising revenue.
Knol authors can close their articles to modifications by internet users, pick which changes they want to keep, or leave them wide open. The move into generating content is a new step for Google. "The ultimate goal is we want to improve search," said the head of the project.