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Sunday, April 03, 2005

Social Software & Enterprises

Lee Brynat of Headshift Moments makes a recent presentation on how the new "social software" can help scale communities of interest at very low cost. Lee makes some powerful and clear point in his presentation. Excerpts with edits and my comments added:

1. Social networks are at the heart of social enterprise – so called "social software" can make it easier to build and scale these networks in support of collective action.
2. Social computing is not new; social software is a welcome return to the core purpose of the net: connecting people.
3. Online social networks are emerging as a core infrastructural element - a kind of organisational immune system - that can support distributed, values-based communal activity.

Lee defines social software as:
- Simple, easy to use tools and services using open standards
- Aim to create social affordances through network effects
- Augment, not replace, human interaction
- Model of networked individualism

Lee's approach towards implementation and his general guidlines are indeed insightful - he says:
- A balanced approach of networked individualism and free-style group forming can unleash dialogue and collective action
- Manage feeds, not items: informal weblogs, feed aggregation and bottom-up metadata can help solve the content problem
- Online social networking works best for a specific common purpose, not for its own sake
- Engage with people on their own terms and build the network person by person, group by group
- Embrace rather than deny complexity: "Small pieces, loosely joined" is more resilient than command and control.The full presentation is available here. Lee also goes on to provide suggestions for implement social software within enteprises.A good presentation with lot of details - I particularly liked Lee's emphasis on flexible metadata models and total aggregation and syndication.Lee is spot on when he talks about IT department as an impediment - by focussing on Classic IT barriers to action
- Overformality and inflexibility of systems, preference for centralised command and control software

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
"All views expressed are my personal views are not related in any way to my employer"