Expanding its efforts at providing software that helps users create and post their own materials online, Google Inc. has acquired JotSpot Inc., a California startup that develops online collaboration tools known as wikis. The integration of JotSpot into Google's suite of free online applications could encourage the use of wikis among schools, some observers say.

The announcement came Oct. 31 through separate postings at Google's and JotSpot's web journals. Terms were not disclosed.

JotSpot Chief Executive Joe Kraus said JotSpot would be able to tap into the internet search leader's large user base and robust data centers, which


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