Mark Glaser has an excellent tutorial: “Micro-blogging allows you to write brief text updates about your life on the go, and send them to friends and interested observers via text messaging, instant messaging, email or the web. The most popular service is called Twitter , which was developed last year and became popular among techno-gurus at the 2007 South by Southwest Conference in Austin, Texas. Part of the magic of Twitter is that it limits you to 140 characters per post, forcing you to make pithy statements on the fly.”
Dina Mehta points to a comment by Jeremy Wagstaff which is so apt: “A blog isn’t a publication. It’s a person.”
Dan Farber writes: “Forrester analysts Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff have published a report, “Social Technographics,” ($279) that identifies six levels of participation in the realm of social media or the social Web in the U.S. based on a recent survey.”
Web Worker Daily reviews web-based mobile aggregators. “The bottom line: If it were possible to take the full browser version of Google Reader and sync it with the mobile HTML version of Bloglines, I would be a very happy camper. That said, I have to give the edge to Google Reader for the best all-around cross-platform browser feed reading experience.”
[via Thejo] Here. From the introduction:
In this report, we look at the first generation of traditional-media innovators in community engagement online. Well be talking about what worked, and what didnt, in this early round of experimentation.
If youre interested in the movement towards crowdsourcing, citizen journalism, or user generated content by traditional media organizations such as newspapers and television news programs, you’ll find information about some of the major efforts underway today.
WSJ has this interesting analogy:
Think of information as water. A library, therefore, is a lake. The information is just poured in there, as books and periodicals. Those who want to use it wander in and scoop the water out. There’s water coming in and going out, but most of it just sits there: still water, that we have to go to in order to enjoy it.
Web pages are much the same. Information is added to the lake that already exists, but for the most part it’s a pretty static, if not stagnant affair.
Email is different. There the water comes to us in buckets. Much more useful, because the water is no longer stagnant, and we don’t have to go and scoop it out ourselves. But we are still dependent on someone sending the stuff to us — filling the buckets, as it were — and we also have little control over when, how and what kind of information we receive. No surprise, then, that one of the shortcomings of email is that we find ourselves receiving lots of waste water — spam — along with the potable stuff.
If information is water, surely there must be a way to pipe to our house just the kind of water we need, when and where we want it? This is RSS: a way to deliver information to us in a way that suits us. RSS is the piping and the faucets that let us order and manage that information flow.
FeedBurner provides an overview. One stats: “The top 4 aggregators as measured by clicks – My Yahoo!, Google Reader/Personalized Homepage, Bloglines and Netvibes – account for 95% of all web aggregator clicks to FeedBurner publisher’s content.”
Paul DiPerna has an interview with Howard Rheingold:
What is happening now has to do with not only the expanded capabilities of individuals, but the new forms of collective action that people will inevitably concoct with the technological platforms and the media that are built on those platforms. The action is on multiple levels simultaneously, just as it is in biology. Now, it’s the individual technology, the technical network, the application layer, the psychological, social, economic layers. In biology, it was the cellular, organ, organism, ecosystem layering.
Danny Sullivan has a Q&A with Gabe Rivera, Creator of Techmeme, a site I check daily.
Q. Is Techmeme an echo chamber, just showing blogs commenting about blogs commenting about blogs? Does Techmeme feed into that echo chamber? Or how do you break apart the conversations on a particular topic into sub-conversations or topics?
Clearly Techmeme creates superficial incentives for “echo chamber” participation, yet I don’t see clear evidence that this makes things noticeably worse. I still like to trot out the example of the day my site launched. eBay’s acquisition of Skype became one of those huge story clusters, and this was hours before Techmeme [then tech.memeorandum] was publicly launched, i.e. before anyone believed they could get on the site by linking to stories.
EirePreneur writes: “My predictions for 2007 were dominated by Google Reader because it’s one of the products best placed to dominate the Read/Write web. The addition of support for tagging and link blogging were the warning shots but the coming months will see Reader evolve into a fully fledged Reader/Writer (let’s call it ReWriter). Google ReWriter is the first product that will tie the major pieces of the Read/Write web together – RSS/ATOM (feeds), OPML, Social-Bookmarking/Tagging (folksonomies), Attention and Microformats.”
Robin Good has compiled a list. “RSS tools and services play an increasingly important role in the effort to effectively aggregate, syndicate, market and distribute online content.”
Howard Rheingold: “The tools for cultural production and distribution are in the pockets of 14 year olds. This does not guarantee that they will do the hard work of democratic self-governance: the tools that enable the free circulation of information and communication of opinion are necessary but not sufficient for the formation of public opinion. Ask yourself this question: Which kind of population seems more likely to become actively engaged in civic affairs a population of passive consumers, sitting slackjawed in their darkened rooms, soaking in mass-manufactured culture that is broadcast by a few to an audience of many, or a world of creators who might be misinformed or ill-intentioned, but in any case are actively engaged in producing as well as consuming cultural products? Recent polls indicate that a majority of today’s youth the “digital natives” for whom laptops and wireless Internet connections are part of the environment, like electricity and running water have created as well as consumed online content. I think this bodes well for the possibility that they will take the repair of the world into their own hands, instead of turning away from civic issues, or turning to nihilistic destruction.”
From Duncan Riley. Among them: “Its sad to note that there has been no great innovation in the blogosphere since the successful uptake of WordPress some 2-3 years ago. Of course, WordPress success itself is a quirk of history, being in the right place at the right time, particularly as SixApart imposed fees on its user base. But where in the past, every year bought great innovation, from GreyMatter to MovableType to WordPress, and others in between, the last few years have been a barren wasteland of conformity and similarity. Whether 2007 will provide a great new innovation of blogging is, I suppose, best left to conjecture, but word that AOL may release Blogsmith in one form or another offers some hope. Surely, amongst the masses of VC funding and startups a company exists that will revolutionise blogging for us all once again.”
[via Atanu] The Bayesian Heresy has a compilation of the favourite economics blogs of 2006.