I read about it a few days ago, forgot about, found it again. A wiki engine in four lines of Perl. It used to be available from Casey West’s Website.

It looks ugly since both backlinks and edit box are part of the output. But then again that also makes it totally easy to use...

use CGI':all';path_info=~/\w+/;$_=`grep -l $& *`.h1($&).escapeHTML$t=param(t)
||`dd<$&`;open F,">$&";print F$t;s/htt\S+|([A-Z]\w+){2,}/a{href,$&},$&/eg;
print header,pre"$_<form>",submit,textarea t,$t,9,70


  1. Automatic link back
  2. Linking of WikiWords
  3. Linking of URLs

In all fairness, let me list the non-features:

  1. No recent changes
  2. No version history
  3. No inlined images
  4. No text formatting rules

Later I found another very small one, in eleven lines of Python. It looks better than the four lines of Perl above, because backlink search only happens when you click on the title, and editing a page only happens when you click on the edit link.

It even has lists! No old versions and no recent changes, of course.

import re,os,cgi;d,h=os.listdir('.'),'<a href=wy?';p,e,g,s=tuple(map(cgi.parse(
).get,'pegs'));f=lambda s:reduce(lambda s,(r,q):re.sub('(?m)'+r,q,s),(('\r','')
,('([A-Z][a-z]+){2,}',lambda m:('%s'+h+'e=%s>?</a>',h+'g=%s>%s</a>')[
in d]%((,)*2)),('^{{$','<ul>'),('^# ','<li>'),('^}}$','</ul>'),('(ht\
tp:[^<>"\s]+)',h[:-3]+r'\1>\1</a>'),('\n\n','<p>')),s);o,g=lambda y:(y in d and
cgi.escape(open(y).read()))or'',(g or p and[open(p[0].strip('./'),'w').write(s[
0])or p[0]]or[0])[0];print'Content-Type:text/html\n\n'+(s and', '.join([f(n)for
n in d if s[0]in o(n)])or'')+(e and'<form action=wy?p=%s method=POST><textarea\
 name=s rows=8 cols=50>%s</textarea><input type=submit></form>'%(e[0],o(e[0]))
or'')+(g and'<h1>%ss=%s>%s</a>,%se=%s>edit</a></h1>'%(h,g,g,h,g)+f(o(g))or'')

The author is Sean B. Palmer, has worked on other small wikis – Wikke used PHP, bash, and Javascript.

See Shortest Wiki Contest.

The parser I use for Oddmuse has been inspired by TinyWiki.

Based on the very small wiki above, I wrote one that has only the textarea and uses CSS to hide the borders. It needs some javascript to make doubleclicking a word a link or something.

use CGI':all';
($n=path_info)=~s|.*/||;               # pagename
($t=param(t)||`dd</tmp/$n`)=~s|\n+$||; # text received or read
open F,">/tmp/$n"; print F"$t\n"; close F; # save every time
print header,h1($n),'<form>',textarea({-name=>t,-default=>$t,


Here’s an attempt at some javascript that doesn’t work:

use CGI':all';
($n=path_info)=~s|.*/||;               # pagename
($t=param(t)||`dd</tmp/$n`)=~s|\n+$||; # text received or read
open F,">/tmp/$n"; print F"$t\n"; close F; # save every time
<script type="text/javascript">//<![CDATA[
function go() {
  window.location = 'http://localhost/cgi-bin/' + window.getSelection();
print header,$JSCRIPT,h1($n),'<form>',
submit('Save'), submit({-name=>'Go',-onmousedown=>'go()'})


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