The slides from Aaron’s talk at OS Bridge in Portland, looking at the formats and protocols powering the indie web.
A fascinating insight into some of Tumblr’s most popular accounts:
Some posts get more than a million notes—imagine a joke whispered in biology class getting a laugh from a city the size of San Francisco.
It’ll be a real shame when Tumblr disappears.
That’s “when”, not “if”. Remember:
In 2013, Yahoo bought Tumblr.
An examination of how sites like The Session are meshing with older ideas of traditional Irish music:
There is a very interesting tension at play here – one that speaks directly to the design of new technologies. On the one hand, Irish musicians appear to be enthusiastically adopting digital media to establish a common repertoire of tunes, while on the other the actual performance of these tunes in a live session is governed by a strong etiquette that emphasizes the importance of playing by ear.
There’s an accompanying paper called Supporting Traditional Music-Making: Designing for Situated Discretion (PDF).
A wonderful sci-fi vignette from Matt.
Here’s an interesting approach to making comments more meaningful:
Instead of blindly publishing whatever people submit, we first ask them to rate the quality and civility on 3 randomly-selected comments, as well as their own. It’s a bit more work for the commenter, but the end result is a community built on trust and respect, not harassment and abuse.
I should fork this on Github and add instructions for exporting your Huffduffer data.
I hope that many of you will watch me on this journey, and follow in my wagon tracks as I leave the walled cities and strike out for the wilderness ahead.
A look back at how Twitter evolved over time, with examples of seemingly-trivial changes altering the nature of the discourse.
Kevin finishes with a timely warning for those of us building alternatives:
She can only offer you unconditional algo-love.
Perhaps that’s the purest love of all.
A lovely bit of data celebration from Ravelry on the occasion of their 4 millionth user.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if you want to see a successful example of a real social networking site, don’t look at Facebook; look at Ravelry.
Stuart nails it: the real problem with delegating identity is not what some new app will do with your identity details, it’s what the identity provider—Twitter, Google, Facebook—will do with the knowledge that you’re now using some new app.
This is why I want to use my own website as my identity provider.
Caterina Fake takes a heartfelt look at the history of online communities:
The internet is full of strangers, generous strangers who want to help you for no reason at all. Strangers post poetry and discographies and advice and essays and photos and art and diatribes. None of them are known to you, in the old-fashioned sense. But they give the internet its life and meaning.
Six months ago, Bastian wrote this fantastic vision of decentralised social web. I want to start making this a reality at the next Indie Web Camp.
Tantek steps back and offers some practical approaches to reclaiming a more open web from the increasingly tight clutches of the big dominant roach motels.
Notice that he wrote this on his own domain, not on Branch, Medium, Google+, Facebook, or any other black hole.
A great meaty piece from Cennydd, diving deep into the tricky question of context.
Another Tom Scott project:
I had to take one more quick, cheap shot — and I think a Tumblr blog is the quickest, cheapest shot it’s possible to take.
It’s all about the signalling.
This is quite an astounding piece of writing. Robert Lucky imagines the internet of things mashed up with online social networking …but this was published in 1999!
A great in-depth explanation by Aarron on why Mailchimp dropped their Facebook and Twitter log-in options. Partly it was the NASCAR problem, but the data (provided by user testing with Silverback) also brought up some interesting issues.
This starts out a bit hand-wavy with analogue nostalgia, but it wraps up with some genuinely good ideas for social software.
A good recap of the recent online/offline/does-it-really-matter discussion …although it does lend a bit too much credence to the pronouncements of that king of trolls, Nicholas Carr.
I think Derek is on to something here. Maybe online communities and profit are simply incompatible?
The bigger you go, the harder the road. Meanwhile, small, focused, and yes, exclusionary community sites flourish.
You know what? I don’t think that’s a bad thing at all.
Technology - Howard Rheingold - What the WELL’s Rise and Fall Tell Us About Online Community - The Atlantic
The history of the WELL, a truly remarkable community.
It’s worth remembering sometimes just how amazing Twitter can be.
People who don’t know us wanted to send their friendship to a 15 year old learning-disabled girl who was sad. For no reason other than their own humanity. This is a beautiful thing.
Robin Sloan compares Facebook and Google in an interesting way:
Really, Facebook is the world’s largest photo sharing site—that also happens to be a social network and a login system.
Google is getting good, really good, at building things that see the world around them and actually understand what they’re seeing.
Some sensible advice from Oliver Reichenstein. Cluttering your social media icons isn’t helping and may actively be hindering your audience.
This is kinda funny (because it’s kinda true).
A heartbreaking article about just how badly Yahoo fucked up with Flickr. It’s particularly sad coming out right as the Flickr devs roll out an improved uploader and a more liquid photo page …but it seems like band-aid development at this point.
Albert-László Barabási and Robin Dunbar are among the authors of this paper — it’s the scale-free network equivalent of the Avengers.
The Jig Is Up: Time to Get Past Facebook and Invent a New Future - Alexis Madrigal - Technology - The Atlantic
An excellent longish-zoom article by Alexis Madrigal with an eerily accurate summation of the current state of the web. Although I think that a lack of any fundamentally new paradigms could be seen as a sign of stabilisation as much as stagnation.
Glenn gives a rational thoughtful explanation of why he’s as pissed off as I am about Google’s destruction of the Social Graph API.
Google are shutting down the Social Graph API. Twunts.
I had exactly the same resistance to Instagram as Dan and I had exactly the same Yuletide conversion.
Cennydd is a gent, slow to anger. So it took a lot to get him wound up enough to write about this issue. I’m glad he did.
This post from Maciej might initially seem negative but read it through to the end: there’s a very powerful positive message.
Reminiscences of the BBSs of yesteryear that could in time be applied to the social networking sites of today.
A wonderful reminder by Kevin Kelly of the amazing interconnected world we live in, thanks to network effects.
A lovely little social experiment: you can buy a Starbucks coffee with Jonathan Stark’s card; you can also top up the card. You can track the card balance on Twitter.
Facebook will destroy your children’s brains | by Martin Robbins @mjrobbins | Science | guardian.co.uk
A pitch-perfect parody of people that peeve.
The Riegers are like emissaries from Planet Smart and we mere mortals are fortunate that they take the time to give us great articles like this.
Paul has some further thoughts on self-hosting bookmarks while trying to retain the social aspect.
Paul explains why he won’t be moving from Delicious: the social network is too valuable.
It's down for me right now, but this API from Qwerly looks like a great addition to complement Google's Social Graph API — it finds rel="me" links from a Twitter username.
Responding to Malcolm Gladwell's recent piece in the New Yorker, Jonah Lehrer argues that the strength of weak ties *does* extend to social activism.
A well-argued piece by Malcolm Gladwell on the relative pros and cons of weak-tie networks and strong-tie hierarchies ...although, as always, Gladwell relies on anecdotes more than data to make his point.
The latest creation from Simon and Nat. It's surprisingly addictive and useful — play around with it for a bit and you'll see what I mean. Lovely stuff.
Making it up so you don't have to — somewhat like my New Media Company Name generator from a few years back.
This article needs a great big "citation needed" slapped on it. Yes, people need to think about what they post on the web, but no, that stuff will not stay around "forever." If anything, the web suffers from the opposite problem: memory loss.
Live in Brighton? Like hardware hacking? Build Brighton needs your input.
Kellan outlines the bare minimum you should expect from any service that you are putting data into.
I'm going to have to start ticking things off this list.
Blaine outlines the vision for Webfinger.
A beautiful reminder.
An examination of websites behaving conversationally, including Huffduffer.
The blog of the book by Gavin Bell.
A quick way of leaving Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and MySpace. It uses the password anti-pattern but after using this, I guess you won't be needing that password again.
Some Ruby on Rails code for enhancing sign-up forms using Google's Social Graph API, inspired by Huffduffer.
An interesting take on the business models of social networking sites.
An examination of behavioural contagion in social networks.
Ficlets is back ...as Ficly. Take that, AOL: this site is just too good to roll over and die.
A nice overview of Glenn's XFN Firefox plug-in.
Dave Gorman understands Twitter. Many do not.
Tweenbots are human-dependent robots that navigate the city with the help of pedestrians they encounter. Rolling at a constant speed, in a straight line, Tweenbots have a destination displayed on a flag, and rely on people they meet to read this flag and to aim them in the right direction to reach their goal.
A person-specific portal generated using Google's Social Graph API. And it's less than 5K!
Okay, I know I said "holy freakin' crap!" the last time I linked to one of Glenn's Social Graph API experiments but now he's gone and created a Firefox plug-in: press alt-i and you can see the social graph for anyone's site. Holy freakin' crap!
danah boyd addresses the Microsoft Research Tech Fest.
Holy freaking crap! Glenn's Social Graph Explorer is bloody brilliant!
Behold the double awesomeness of Jeremy Paxman and Ben Goldacre! Susan Greenfield, alas, is simply embarrassing.
A film project about the power of mass collaboration, government and the internet.
This presentation by Steven Pemberton increases in value over time.
Glenn has created a screencast of his superb Skillswap presentation, syncing up the audio with the slides.
Anna Pickard: Why is the idea of online friendships still treated with such disdain? | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
A lovely article from Anna on friendship and the internet.
The spread of happiness, obesity and smoking habits through social networks.
Social networking for dogs through RFID. Spimy animals FTW!
Mimi Ito talks to the BBC about the findings of a report into teens geeking out online.
This sounds like Yahoo's answer to Facebook Platform for single web pages or (spit!) widgets. We'll see if the reality matches the hype. "The Yahoo! Application Platform allows you to build and launch open-social applications to the largest daily â€¦
A nice little report on community management at Flickr.
A write-up of dConstruct 2008 from the YDN crew who so kindly co-sponsored the closing party.
Magnolia's going Open Source. Soon you'll be able to host and run your own instance of the social bookmarking service.
A seriously nice recipe sharing site. Everything is creative commons licensed and everything looks delicious.
Ben has written a superb article outlining the hows and whys of distributed social networks with hCard and XFN, finishing with an inspiring call to arms.
I had a very pleasant chat on the phone with Ben Worthen from the Wall Street Journal. He likes my social buzzword generator.
My new motto is "The Social Graph is a Spherical Cow."
The Olinda has arrived. I love the physical API.
This isn't just funny, it also encapsulates a lot of the ridiculousness of Facebook interactions.
Joshua has just finished writing his book. Mazel tov! It's bound to be a good one.
As promised by Kevin Marks in the Q&A after my panel at South by Southwest, the Google Contacts API now supports OAuth. w00t!
Lee is a Twitter sceptic. Shun the unbeliever, shhuuuunnnnn!
David Recordon shares his first impressions of Google App Engine.
Aral points to what is possibly the most egregious password anti-pattern implementation yet: a new startup called Spokeo http://www.spokeo.com/public/join
Liveblogged notes from a discussion I participated in at BarCamp Brighton 2 about Social Network Portability.
A nice summary of the technologies presented at my SXSW panel.
This is great news! Brad Fitzpatrick and Kevin Marks have built a new Google API that will spider XFN links.
Andy Baio does a nice bit of investigative journalism in exposing the social network spammer hired by The Times. The internet treats crass marketing as damage and routes around it.
Chris interviews himself about portable social networks and distributed identity.
Ben Brown outlines the reasons why he left Facebook: "I think it is important to note that Facebook, though they claim to be a tool for staying connected, is actually a software tool designed *primarily* to deliver marketing messages to its audience."
Chris says that URLs are people too: "You’ve got my URL, now, tell me, what else do you really need?"
David follows up on my talk at St Paul's with cornucopia of thoughts and links that's more in-depth than the talk itself.