Yay! I never have to tell anyone how to install Ubuntu again. I can just send them this comic book (CC PDF).
This Issue is especially useful to power users who want to switch to Linux with Ubuntu!
Synopsis: Woody Hackett learns from his business partner, Jerome Bankwell, that they are the new owners of a documentary production studio that still uses Mastersoft, and that he will need to visit their facilities in the desert in order to teach them Ubuntu Linux. At “Interplanetary Pictures,” Woody shows their crew how to get started using the Ubuntu GUI following an installation. Guiding them through some basic software installation, Woody demonstrates to Kaori Soto and her associate Calvin Green basic ideas of GUI operation, so that they can use what they’ve learned to install other programs they might need down the road.
Well, to be honest, I never did have to tell anyone how to install Ubuntu. Just burn a CD and say “stick this in your drive and do what it says”. Still, nice art & it does run you through the history as well as basic ops in a cute way.
Malamud tells the story of Gus Giegengack. Giegengack was a printer. When FDR was elected, he was inspired to take the role of public printer. So, he walked the land, gave talks, and asked people to send him letters of endorsement. When he had about 200, he sent them to the president and got the job. Malamud is doing the same, but using the web as his stage, and as his postbox.
As he says:
So here’s my vote: the man’s actions speak. If this is how he runs his campaign, I believe him when he says he’ll reboot .gov, and the sooner the better.
I’ve been playing around with http://www.uuorld.com/wordontweet, trying different words. Of all the things I tried, the one word where the UK dominated was -
Now, what is going down in Nigeria?
Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning. If the relationship between teaching and learning were causal, i. e. if students always mastered the intended learning outcomes of a particular sequence of instruction, assessment would be superfluous. Experience and research suggest this is not the case: what is learnt can often be quite different from what is taught. Formative assessment is motivated by a concern with the elicitation of relevant information about student understanding and / or achievement, its interpretation and an exploration of how it can lead to actions that result in better learning. In the context of a policy drive towards technology-enhanced approaches to teaching and learning, the question of the role of digital technologies is key and it is the latter on which this project particularly focuses. The project and its deliverables have been informed by recent and relevant literature, in particular recent work by Black and In this work, they put forward a framework which suggests that assessment for learning their term for formative assessment can be conceptualised as consisting of a number of aspects and five key strategies. The key aspects revolve around the where the learner is going, where the learner is right now and how she can get there and examines the role played by the teacher, peers and the learner.
Tom Steinberg wants £1,000,000. And I hope he gets it. MySociety.org have been leading a quite revolution. Not only have they set up some of the most effective sites of civic empowerment, but they have also inspired other worldhackers across the world. Now they want to scale up. As Tom says, quoting David Lloyd-George: “You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps”. (I love that quote. I think I’m going to adopt it as a motto).
What’s the chasm? Surprisingly familiar. Tom knows how to make a system that “holds people’s hands through the process of lobbying for more serious changes at a local or national level” but those systems have two components: a bit of code, and a huge chunk of his time. Code is cheep, and there’s a lot of people who can do it good. Tom is unique. Its the same problem we’re facing at the Pattern Language Network. If you want your project to exceed the limits of your personal capacity, you need to take yourself out of the equation. Create systems that do not require your presence to work. And that, my friends, is expensive.
@JonathanPoole and I met at the Duke of York last night to talk about social media, collaboration, investment banking, and things we’d like to do together. Jonathan reflected on the sensation of joining twitter, and similar systems (like Yammer) and compared it to Hypomania.
I found that very powerful. First, I could definitely relate to that analogy. Consider some of the symptoms:
- pressured speech; rapid talking
- inflated self-esteem or grandiosity;
- decreased need for sleep;
- flight of ideas or the subjective experience that thoughts are racing;
- easy distractibility and attention-deficit
Sounds familiar? Well, here’s the good news:
People with hypomania are generally perceived as being energetic, euphoric, visionary, overflowing with new ideas, and sometimes over-confident and very charismatic. [...] A person in the state of hypomania might be immune to fear and doubt and have little social inhibition. People experiencing hypomania are the typical “life of the party”. They may talk to strangers easily, offer solutions to problems, and find pleasure in small activities.
Not bad. And yes, it does resonate with a lot of the behaviour I’ve seen on Twitter. But there’s a dark side as well.
- increase in psychomotor agitation; and
- steep involvement in pleasurable activities that may have a high potential for negative psycho-social or physical consequences (e.g., the person engages in unrestrained buying sprees, sexual indiscretions, or foolish business investments).
- (sometimes) emotional flattening or blunted affect.
Is this a mere analogy or is there a correlation between involvement in certain social media and a psychological condition? Could this explain why some people jump in with glee and others simply can’t be bothered? Or maybe twitter induces a sort of momentary pseudo-hypomenia? If so, will prolonged exposure lead to personality change? Either way, I see this as an important warning:
People in hypomanic episodes do not have delusions or hallucinations. They do not lose touch with reality in the sense that they know who they are and what is real. What can be a problem, however, is that they tend to overestimate their capabilities and fail to see the obvious risks involved in their ventures. For example, if they are in business, they may suddenly decide to expand in a way that is not really practical or set up schemes for which they are ill prepared.
Recently I’ve found that for me, the right way to use twitter is to uninstall any client, and instead open the twitter site for a limited time when I choose to. That allows me to modulate both the time drain and the emotional / cognitive impact. It might be that such a tactic allows me to experience the joy of “twitter-induced pseudo-hypomania” without suffering the consecuences. I simply bail out before I do something stupid. Granted, I’m probably less of a party star this way. Perhaps there’s a pattern here.
(title nods at Clay’s 2006 talk)
I couldn’t make it to Clay’s talk, but luckily, due to the snow (remember the #uksnow?) some of his interviews were canceled and he generously found some time to have coffee with Niall Winters and me.
Not surprisingly, the conversation turned to design patterns. Clay reminded us of the work he did a few years ago on moderation patterns. Sadly, the original moderation patterns wiki is down. But yay for the waybackmachine, here’s an archived copy.
There’s more than 40 patterns there, dealing with issues of digital identity and managing social dynamics for collaboration / conversation platforms. You would think that at the rate of current technology development, most of these would be obsolete. At the time they where written, nobody had heard of opensocial or OpenId. Yet they are surprisingly relevant. The reason is, that they deal with the social aspects of technology, not with the code. And as fast as technology may change – human nature is reletively stable.
Example? login with email. Have you noticed how more and more sites let you use either a username or login? The rationale for this has nothing to do with technology. Asking us to remember a user name and password for more than seven sites, give or take one, is ignoring the structure of human memory. That may be changed by technology, but marginally.
Social dynamics are much more complex than we tend to realise, which is why most social software is autistic. Its not a fault of the programmers that facebook’s friends featrue looks like this. Anyone (well, any 20 year old male) who would be asked to model the concept of friendship would come up with something similar. What we need is a serious and prolonged attempt at capturing the design patterns for social / participatory media.
But the death of the moderation patterns wiki holds a warning. Sustaining such an effort is not easy. It required institutional, personal and collaborative commitment. That, in turn, relies on the ability to show a constant stream of valuable outputs. I don’t have an answer to that, but its definitely something we’re thinking of as the pattern language network project nears the end of its life.
As for the moderation patterns themeselves, we’re looking into the options for giving them a new home. By the way, my personal favorite is use email.