NOTE: This is a full archive for the Project Community: You & The World (2012) please see the main site for the most up to date information.


Design principles for online Communities

Throughout this course I’ve seen many different online communities, in all forms and sizes, with many different goals and subjects.

All of these communities have something in common: in one way or another they facilitate a gathering of people with a similar goal or idea. Whatever the community your looking at, the core thing a community means to the people in it is the specialized facilitation to perfectly nurture their needs in order to reach their goal.

The more successful a community is at facilitating those specialized needs the more popularity it will gain. Therefor a good community, to me, is a place where not only one idea or goal is the basis for that community but multiple goals or idea’s get a place.

That’s why social networks are so powerful they give everyone the possibility to create their own space and share their own ideas and goals, but still every one is at a social network to “socialize” (a common goal) but Facebook for instance now offers several other services such as group pages file sharing event pages etc.

These services attract people with a different goal to the site as well, for instance they might want to keep track of the latest party’s or maybe they want to collaborate with a group in a informal way.

In conclusion, by the end of this course I feel i have gained a greater insight online communities their troubles and solutions, big networks are mostly powerful because of numbers and small communities might be very powerful as well because of the focus on 1 idea or goal. 

Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Design challenges and Online Communities

What if I had a Design challenge which I needed help on? Where could I find the best support and creative thoughts. There so many platforms out there which all provide for a different audience.

So having made that conclusion, I’d look at what kind of project I have on my hands and try to find a fitting platform for the problem I’m dealing with. Some choices are pretty straight forward. For instance you’ll probably get the largest audience via facebook since it has the largest community.

But maybe I’m dealing with a technical problem? I’m might try to go to which have loads of different DIY projects and a great community to help you out, although forums do great as well they are focused slightly more on a specific subject.

On the other hand I could be having a funding problem, in which case the obvious way to go is a crowd funding site like Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

Finally collaboration works great on basecamp or google docs.

In the end every problem has a different solution, which is not strange since each and every problem is different. Though if you want to reach the full potential of your project you shouldn’t stick to one platform.

If I had a project I’d make sure it was available on a lot of platforms, so as to reach a wider platform, more and wider range of feedback and convenient for most any situation. Defining it more closely: a basis in Facebook (which everyone uses daily) a crowdfunded part to define and/or create a market with buying customers. And a blog! Especially the blog is important, since you can change the way in looks to fit you project, you can get feedback easily, and make it feel more personal.

Tagged with: , , , , , , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

It’s a team effort, individually as well

Since I started IDE many things have happend, I learned a great deal. Not only about the course subjects but also about group dynamics, preferences and compromise.

I felt that since I joined the course somewhat later, I couldn’t do anything. My group certainly helped me out of that feeling quickly and I’m glad that they did. We evaluated each others characteristics and used them as best we could.

Returning to what I learned, compromise is not always a bad thing, as long as you don’t lose the essence of what you’re trying to achieve, it a great way to combine different points of you into a singular action (eg answering questions and creating reports)

But compromise can be a bad thing very much so as well, I dislike the fact that we have to compromise because of technology such as google hangouts, at the moment you start trying to solve issue’s technology is creating you’re not solving the problems you tried to solve in the first place, or it severely limits your time to do it. As a result the found solutions are not as optimal as they could have been and most likely stick to being drafts, which is a shame.

Finally writing this makes me wonder about adjusting to technology or other hurdles which might hold up the process of problem solving. I feel as though every hurdle needs a certain adjustment time in order to get all the nooks and crannies out. These hurdles might reoccur depending on how well the group is adjusted to it.

You might like to compare it to domino’s whenever you add another stone in between the last one is less likely to drop. Only when every stone is perfectly placed the entire chain of communication will run smoothly, but if you try to hasten it the next time you might slack at placing one stone and although it worked the last time it might not work the second time. This goes on until you have enough experience to tell if every stone is placed right. 

Which ends this analogy and brings me back to teamwork, if everyone takes responsibility for only one part they are less likely to make a small mistake and the chain will probably run smoother. 

Tagged with: , , , , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Facilitating / Facilitation

It’s only when you start thinking about facilitating that you understand and see how much is being facilitated and how much you facilitate yourself. This is because I feel facilitating is a natural urge, the means to share information and the means to come to common ground on understanding each other.

Earlier today I saw a great documentary about creativity which Bart Hoekstra shared on facebook. It got me thinking about how creativity and spreading of idea works and how it got so much faster and easier in the past decade.

Technology facilitating has become one of the most important ways to share knowledge so that others can in their turn share their knowledge and so on.

If you take this principle to university as is happening, you take away regular ways of education but inspire the students to share great things with each other which in turn leads them to picking up way more knowledge than they would passively learning. In such a case it doesn’t matter that we deviate from the subject matter sometimes because it’s not useless information.

I feel it’s like additive learning, you keep picking up pieces and bits and it confuses you sometimes, but it also challenges you to complete the jigsaw and combine al these pieces into a new piece to complete a bigger jigsaw.

Facilitating others and others facilitating will keep on being of the most important aspects of learning, for without it initiative and infecting others with ideas is lost. Werther it’s trough technological, physical or mental interaction it’ll stay.

Tagged with: , , , , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Tools of the trade

First of I feel I am getting better at this blogging thing, if there is such a thing as getting better at blogging.

This one sentence already explains a lot about my behaviour towards tools and selecting them. I never expected to blogging, ever! Well that sort of changed over the course of the last 2 weeks. To me blogging wasn’t a tool I felt I neither needed nor wanted. But since the start of this course the need was suddenly there so the barrier was taken away, in this case the tool was chosen for me, but with the option of linking from another blogging site.

Since I knew nothing I relied on what given as the best tool and started using it, and whilst using this tool I haven’t run into any problems inconveniences or barriers that keep me from using this tool for my needs. But if I feel my needs exceed the possibilities of a certain tool, I’ll search for another tool.

This goes for any of the tools I use, for example youtube, I used to use it a lot but at a certain point I found out that if I want to listen my favourite type of music youtube just didn’t suit me. I really dislike making play-lists and I hate breaks in between songs. So I turned to Soundcloud where up and coming DJ’s post their entire sets which I can listen without brakes. I still use youtube but my needs diversified so my tools had to aswell.

So yes I select my tools according to my preferences, nonetheless if someone recommends another tool to me I’ll never be shy to try it, since having loads of possibilities to solve a certain problem is always better than having to stick to one or two solutions which limit the outcome.

Tagged with: , , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Group dynamics and what not

As Vasilis already said in his blog and I Quote:

“I have no idea what i’m doing”

Well goes just the same for me, rolled in late in the middle of week 3 having absolutely no clue as to what or where or how to do anything. Luckily our group was great at picking up where they left of and getting us up to speed with what they did so far.

Still I found it hard to grasp the main idea of the project, but since then some time has past and I read trough the entire project community site, and I feel I am getting the hang of it.

On top of that I feel our group will do great, since we are working together quite fluently, although there’s always room for improvement.

Tagged with:
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Me and my networks

Internet is one of the quickest ways to gather information, so I use it. But luckily Internet and it’s interactions don’t stop there it would be a damn shame. Networks are easily created and maintained via internet, but it doesn’t necessarily mean I interact with each of them every day or even week.

Most of the maintaining I do involves checking up on what other have been doing lately and what events are coming up, I rarely post on facebook, though I do chat regularly. I think I use facebook this way since I feel it doesn’t need my shout-outs to keep rolling and do what it does best connecting people. I prefer a clutter-less facebook, just let the things know that are important to you and not every fart or burp.

Because of this I am also active in a few other networks such as forums in which your own input is required to feel part of the interaction. This is a place where initiatives feel less like a hype, as they might feel on places like facebook. And since the users don’t really know each other there are no barriers for constructive criticism.

So you could say I have a split internet personality but I feel great being an internet schizo since it gives me the opportunity to show more of myself that I would be able to on one network.

Tagged with: , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger

Learning from communities for innovation design

Innovation and Design are two very wide notions, they are easily explained but much less easy understood. Luckily you don’t need to understand them completely to make use of them.

A Great example to me are community sourced ideas, pages that combine a great idea with loads of others or give one person with a great idea the backing/support he or she needs to continue. I hope I can one day be of assistance by adding to an existing idea or solution, or coming up with a solution for something.

The greatest thing though about most of these community (actually all of them) people collaborate out of free will, this unforced collaboration makes idea creation and elaboration so much easier. Compromises or adaptations -to the existing idea- are more easily made since someone started the project to get feedback and suggestions and is will to use these things.

And most of all these innovations are a group effort, so no one will claim or want to claim single right to the solution, evading troublesome things as patent wars etc.

I do not only want to learn from these online communities but I want to add something I feel is useful or even useless(to me) and hope I is useful for someone else.

Tagged with: , , , , ,
Posted in All Students, Group 6, Idea Networks
This was originally published at Nout Hogesteeger