Umfundi - My Student Wiki

What is Umfundi?

Umfundi means student in isiXhosa and I am using this wiki to document my research as a post-graduate student. I need a place to capture all the artifacts I collect on my student journey and for a number of different reasons I have settled on using this wiki to do that.

The software I'm using is DokuWiki mainly because the hosting service that I'm using doesn't provide me with and database capabilities (as I am on their cheapest hosting option). DokuWiki is text based and so I can use it without the need for a database, as opposed to other maybe better wiki's like MediaWiki where a database is required. Being text based I am also able to easily extract my data and save it on my local PC in case I need to migrate to another wiki or hosting provider in the future.

DokuWiki provides all the flexibility that I need to create a research workflow that I need in order to do the research that I want to do, and the concept for Umfundi is copied from Stian Håklev, a PhD student at OISE/University of Toronto. His student DokuWiki can be found at I am grateful to him for making his student workflow open to all and for being an “open scholar”.


My research is centered around …


The concept of a citekey is really important and is a unique identifier for each article

An example of a citekey is and this will refer to


Dokuwiki allows for a number of namespaces to be created. These namespaces will be used to store many different aspects related to the citekey.

The namespaces used in the wiki are as follows:

article Articles
article:abstract Articles - Abstract
book Books

Anatomy of a page

The anatomy of a page includes the following:

  • Title
  • Citation
  • Tags
  • Notes
  • Backlinks

For a detailed explanation see anatomy of a page.


  • Masters of the fine line

Batch Files

Filename Input File Called File Description
dokuwiki.bat dokuwiki.txt bibtext.bat For each line in the input file - calls bibtext.bat to create (or update) the relevant wiki page
bibtex.bat none
category.bat none footnotes.bat
Calls footnotes to download, extract and upload the footnotes from the notes pages for: article; book; thesis
categories.bat none
Combine, extract and sort the comments from all doctypes into one file. Then create and upload the categories
footnotes.bat none none Extract all the footnotes from the notes files for a given document type