Seb's Open Research
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and social software, collected by Sébastien Paquet

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13 janvier, 2003
Weblog & Wiki Survey: Last Call

I will pick up and start analyzing the data for my knowledge sharing survey a few days from now. I figured it would be a good idea to mention it for a last time while I'm enjoying the incoming flow from Scripting News. So here's the text of the original post:

As part of my research into knowledge sharing practices, I'm conducting an online survey on two Web tools that can be used for sharing knowledge, namely, weblogs and wikis.

You would do me an immense favour if you could go and fill in the short multiple-choice questionnaires that I have prepared. Here's the weblog survey, and here's the wiki survey. Answer them in either order. If you know nothing about one of the tools, go ahead anyway - you'll be done quite early on in the corresponding questionnaire.

Note that I'm not going to hoard that data - I will publish it online when I'm done collecting.

A heartfelt thanks to VeerChand Bothra for setting up and hosting this survey on the BlogStreet weblog neighborhood analyzer and search engine site.

And if you're even more in the spirit of giving, you could help spread the word, for instance by posting the following line to your own weblog:

Sébastien Paquet is doing a survey on the usefulness of weblogs and wikis for sharing knowledge.


What do you think? []  links to this post    2:03:39 AM  

The End of 'The End of Free'. You may have read that "the end of free is near" for content on the web. There is even a high profile blog devoted to it. But I beg to differ. Consider this: The number of amateur sites and blogs far outweighs the number of heavyweights and big media content providers. In fact the amount of quality content since the wide-spread emergence of blogs is so great and continues to grow, that the actual content provided by the big players is negligible by comparison. But the story goes, that these higher quality writers still need to make a living. Sure, I'm not arguing that, but there are just as many high quality writers who have their own blogs who make money doing something else for their primary income.

And when you take the advent of smart news aggretators like Amphetadesk, it only makes the task of getting the news you need that much easier. When a site starts charging for content, the Net effect will treat such charged content as censorship and route around it. So what is my prediction? I'm predicting the opposite of other more prominent techno-pundits: 2003 will be the year of the end of "the end of free". Instead we are going to see a massive proliferation of amateur writing permeate the net in unprecendented ways. And with increasingly sophisticated filtering and search tools, we will be able to keep up with the best of the best based on our own web-of-trust and customized reputation systems. I also expect that the best writers will be able to get payed for their work through pay-pal and other voluntary tipping mechanisms. I know of several writers who have managed to get some money from the very kind and loyal readers. [infoAnarchy]

The comments to the piece are also interesting. 2003 is pretty early for this though.

What do you think? []  links to this post    1:52:18 AM  
Research and money

An Academic Resource for Microcontent. Met with Liz Lawley last week in Rochester to talk about the possibility of putting together an NSF grant... [Blog de Halavais]

Alex is thinking of

[...] an organ of communication between the traditional academic world and the blogging frontier. By this, I mean that there is a lot of excitement and experimentation already going on in the blogosphere, but the mainstream of even Internet researchers seems relatively oblivious to its niceties. The hope would be to provide tools and explanations to social scientists, but to scientists and academics who might be able to leverage these technologies to better create and disseminate knowledge.

I want to do this regardless of funding. The truth is, it can be done--as have many great projects--without funding. [...]

For some reason I really savour that last observation, though it is not completely accurate.

What do you think? []  links to this post    1:38:24 AM  

Bertrand Russell. "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." [Quotes of the Day]
What do you think? []  links to this post    1:26:36 AM  

Georg Christoph Lichtenberg. "To do just the opposite is also a form of imitation." [Quotes of the Day]
What do you think? []  links to this post    1:26:06 AM  
The role of weblogs in online community building

Lessons in Community Building: An Inquiry into the role of weblogs in online community building is the title of a very interesting thesis proposal by Nurul Asyikin bte Mohamed Razali from the National University of Singapore. And guess what, if you edit a blog, this is another researcher who needs your help. Nurul writes,

I am mainly in need of webloggers to interview. If you maintain a weblog and are interested in contributing to the ongoing dialog concerning the issues of online human behaviour in general, and virtual communities specifically, please contact me. I can be reached via ICQ (UIN: 115135696) and email.

Unfortunately, I will be unable to provide neither material nor monetary compensation in exchange for your time. I am relying solely on the goodwill of webloggers for the completion of this thesis, and I hope you can help!

What do you think? []  links to this post    1:20:47 AM  
"Down and Out" going Up and Up

Author Cory Doctorow posted his new SF novel, "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom" for free download. The results: "24 hours after launching the site from which you can download my novel for free, the book has been downloaded over 20,000 times. It's been Slashdotted, blogged to hell and back, and I've done a number of press interviews about it. What's more, the title is currently sitting at #304 in the Amazon Sales Rank. Let's call this one a success. I could not be more stoked. Damn." I can confirm his experience. I posted the entitre content of my textbook, "Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited" online in April 1997. The Web sites has had more than 2 million page views hitherto. My publisher is selling c. 3000 print copies and 400 e-books a year. The book is ranked 1000-2000 at the Not bad. [FOS News]

Well, here's one more link for you, Cory.

What do you think? []  links to this post    12:51:02 AM  

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