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December 19, 2007

36 Ideas: Teaching Web 2.0 Concepts

David Rothman and I are going to be copresenting as invited speakers on Web 2.0 and social technologies at the May 2008 Medical Library Association. We thought it would be a really interesting idea to include some audience participation exercises to illustrate fundamental social technology concepts and applications. We had a couple ideas of our own about this, and will be blogging about it (and tweeting and querying Facebook friends, etcetera).

A little over a week ago, I went to a local real-world social networking group - A2B3. A2B3 is a motley collection of geeks, tech wizards, corporate startups, educators, students, hobbyists, politicians, activists, and various other identities who gather once a week for lunch and to discuss interesting ideas. I tossed this idea out to them for starters, with a couple examples, and collected a fascinating collection of cool ideas. I hope to expand on some of these over the next few weeks and months as we develop our ideas for our presentation. In addition, hopefully, this might become a useful collection of teaching concepts for other folk.

What I give below is the scenario I provided to the group, and the notes I took of what they said. Not all of my notes make sense to me now, but those that do will turn into separate blog entries of how we envision they'll work. This is just a sampler to whet your appetites and fire up your imagination. Feel free to add more in comments!

You have a room full of people, around 100-200. You want this group to do a few exercises that would illustrate in real world terms the types of connections and interactions that social tech applications facilitate. How would you do this?


1. Who's your neighbor? (Who do you know.)
2. What's a social network? (Ribbon game)
3. FB Beacon shoutout model (a.k.a. Twitterpation)
4. Reputation networks (verify identity)
5. Playing phone (twitter relay, twitter storm)
6. What is a seminal moment?
7. How would I tag myself? (Self-sorting exercise)
8. Sort in Space (Geographic sorting)
9. Gift introductions
10. Issues of trust
11. LinkedIn Intros
12. 43 things
13. Collaboration
14. Flickr tags (photo sorting)
15. Magazine routing (items of interest)
16. Saving articles to share, ie. digg
17. Ranking and shoutouts
18. Key person who becomes link of influence (gatekeeping)
19. Use all channels available / Common ground / Conversation
20. Proximity (connection to real life)
21. Graffiti is Facebook (used to be tagging)
22. Turf relationships
23. "PlacesDowntown" (a.k.a. Twitter)
24. Pair an open source expert with novice and get them to come up with a new open source project
25. Monkeys Mixer (marriages, divorce, pair up your friends via email)
26. Critical Mass (i.e. fax machines)
27. The Ladies that Lunch (collaborative decisionmaking - refining suggestions of lunch venues)
28. What is a Flickr Topic Pool? (sorting by image prefs)
29. Gallery Night (What is an PhotoBlog?)
30. Rumors
31. Objects of Fascination
32. Organizational Nucleus
33. 57 miles (sticker + serendipitous encounters)
34. Ann Arbor Birthdays
35. Sort by: (geography); then secondary sort by (interest / skillbase / hobbies / pets / cuisine / gender / generation / ... )
36. Game Show Host (come ooonnnnn down!)

Posted by pfa at December 19, 2007 01:52 PM


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