Term used to describe a searchable database of bugs and issues with a system or piece of software. The normal way for a knowledge base to be created is to take old support issues (i.e. bug or defect requests) and "promote" or archive them into a knowledge base article.

The thinking behind making a knowledge base available to the public is that the customers will search for the solution to their problems before hassling the always overstretched technical support team. However, the knowledge base will often be hidden in the depths of an unusable website, defeating the whole object of putting the thing there in the first place.

A good example of a knowledge base is Microsoft's, at http://support.microsoft.com/

In its broadest sense, any repository of information. A filing cabinet full of text could be considered a knowledge base. However, usually "knowledge base" means a computer-accessible system of knowledge (as opposed to mere facts), consisting of some set of terms standing for concepts, together with a heap of relations among those terms that (hopefully) capture the meaning of the terms.

Everything2 is one example of a knowledge base.
Cyc is another.
Corporate thesauri are also good examples of impoverished, but definitely machine-accessible, knowledge bases. Unlike Roget's Thesaurus (see Introduction to Roget's Thesaurus 1972), these thesauri organize words in a generalization hierarchy, and support crosslinks among words.

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