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Tuesday, August 20, 2002
Peter Merholz interview with social network researcher Valdis Krebs

This interview appeared shortly before I began k-logging, but I figured I needed to link to it somewhere. "Valdis Krebs is the proprietor of, a site devoted to issues of social networks and organizational dynamics, and the creator of InFlow, a software tool designed to depict social networks.

[...] For folks looking for more information on Social Network Analysis, I suggest Peter Morville's introductory article, which is written in the context of knowledge management and information architecture.

And Valdis highly recommends Ronald Burt's "The Network of Social Capital," though at 93 pages, it's a commitment."

Lots of interesting looking links in Morville's article. The third comment on the interview links to More Slashdot discussion of a Jon Udell SNA article (Seeing and Tuning Social Networks).

What do you think? []  links to this post    3:10:56 PM  
The Glass Bead Game again shows up in my news aggregator

Hot on the heels of this kuro5hin story...

HipBone is fascinating. I'm enthralled by the possibilities, playing with either a 12-year-old over breakfast or an old friend over beer, and each game being a challenge and a revelation. (Perhaps I dream too much.)

HipBone. The game of HipBone is one of the only games I know of that has is both successfully patterned after Herman Hesse's "Glass Bead Game" and fun. The rules are:"Two players play a game by each naming an idea in turn to one of the ten positions on the board. [DeepFUN Weblog]

Now, if someone would like to see about making a Groove Workspace version, or an equivalent P2P system, where you could plug text, graphics, or a link onto a spot on a shared HipBone board. (Oops—already the beginnings of this discussion on the HipBone site?) [Ron Lusk]

Further reading: in Myst-like Universities, Oxford-like Games?, HipBone discusses the possible convergence of education and gaming.

What do you think? []  links to this post    10:16:12 AM  
Andersja: How to get more readers to your weblog

Lots of good ideas in there.
What do you think? []  links to this post    9:58:37 AM  
Newton at Play

"I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me". [DeepFUN Weblog]
What do you think? []  links to this post    9:48:22 AM  

Playfulness and Creativity. Here's an excerpt from Persona, a site devoted to self-hypnosis. "In order to create, play must be an indispensable ingredient in your life; that is, often you will need to play with materials, concepts, perspectives, and to direct yourself away from those things that are real-to fantasize. [DeepFUN Weblog]
What do you think? []  links to this post    9:46:58 AM  
How to pitch a weblogger

How to pitch a blogger. [Blogging Alone]

It's interesting to see weblogs from the perspective of public relations/marketing types. "Publicists have long sought means for reaching highly targeted audiences, including media reps, in order to drive buzz about their clients. With the kind of traffic and targeting that any of the aforementioned sites generate, topic-specific blogs can fit the bill. [...] Blogs are a new medium and, therefore, require a new approach. It is crucial not to spam bloggers and to be aware of their likes and dislikes before you drop them a line. Canned, conventional pitch letters can be seen as offensive."

And, might I add, they *will* backfire.

What do you think? []  links to this post    8:54:52 AM  

Timothy Leary. "Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition." [Quotes of the Day]
What do you think? []  links to this post    8:36:53 AM  

Introducing the Collaborative Media Foundation. As most of you remember, about two months ago I announced a plan for the future of K5 which centered on converting the site's legal structure from a for-profit corporation into a nonprofit one. You responded with unbelievable generosity and support, and contributed enough money for me to continue to be employed by K5 for at least six months, and make the plan happen. It's past time for a report on what I've been up to, and where the plan stands now, so here it is. []
What do you think? []  links to this post    8:28:27 AM  
The natural progression for knowledge: from K-logs to well structured forms

I spoke of four klogging roles last week: catalyst, coach, armorer, practice leader. Matt Mower advocates the the role of "Intranet Editor". [...] Roland Tanglao builds on this: [...]

K-Log => (FAQ or other knowlegebase article) => directory.  

Practice Leader is probably the closest to a dedicated multi-author editor. Summarizing work in a field, showing the aggregate progress and useful threads. Structuring knowledge into FAQs or other KM systems may be a natural progression, especially as klogging tools and KM tools build bridges.

Entropy, bad.

Fighting entropy, expensive, slow. 

Self-review is a powerful tool for learning. Going over my own posts for the past week, month, and quarter has shown patterns I missed, ideas I was skirting but never wrote outright. It reinforced brief social connections, blogs to which I linked to and people with whom I briefly corresponded. It takes concentrated time and effort. It helps me to print out all the pages on my blog for that period; something about shuffling through paper.

Folks are trying hard to automate this work. Summarizers. Cluster analysis. Text to Structure converters. Taxonomy systems.

But the expert author of the original content is often the best judge of relevance. [a klog apart]

Phil has a point here. But I'm afraid that even expert authors are seldom able to fight entropy in the manner described, unless they have plenty of time and motivation to do synthetic work. In the academic world the ratio of resesarch paper authors to survey/textbook authors is perhaps 50:1. But in time, as the overall quantity of knowledge grows and grows, ultimately almost everyone will feel lost and the usefulness of "mappers" ought to be better recognized.

What do you think? []  links to this post    8:18:51 AM  
The uncertain fate of PubSCIENCE

The most comprehensive story to date is by Marydee Ojala in today's Information Today. [FOS News]

From the story: "PubSCIENCE launched in October 1999 with the mission of providing free Web search capabilities for journal article abstracts and citations in the physical sciences. Reading the abstract is free, but hyperlinking to the full text generally involves paying for the article. The collection contains over 1,200 journal titles from 35 publishers [...] Since its inception, PubSCIENCE has been a target. Database producers and some scholarly publishers felt threatened by the free availability of peer-reviewed scientific information."

What do you think? []  links to this post    8:04:48 AM  

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