Exploring Networks of Communities: July 6-24, 2009

Learn Together Collaboratory Introduction

Re: Networks of Online Communities

by Diego E. Leal Fonseca -
Number of replies: 0
Hi Barbara!

I really like the idea of meta networks/communities, because that's a way (in my view) to solve some of the linguistic mess :D that I've seen in my own exploration. I mentioned in my presentation that we're using in Spanish a word that means both 'grid' and 'network', that's why I like the idea of 'meta', because suggests something that could be on top of existing structures...

The slides that Paul mentions are part of a document describing a possible system (in our case, focused on personal content management), to integrate different computer systems, representing both communities and information sources, which I talked about in the Spanish online session.

One of the issues that appeared during the online session was if there was a need to have a centralized system to manage the different pieces of an educator's online presence, and who should be in charge of such a system (even more, if governments have any responsibility about it).

The importance of having some kind of diagram, like you say, came up during the Spanish session, too. I'm afraid there was some impression that the things I was talking about were in some way 'autonomous', but it's clear that such a system is part of a bigger context. I agree that having a graphical representation could definitely help to identify information flows, actors, and different interaction patterns that would have a huge impact in the design of an information system supporting a meta network/community.

Now, seems to me that such a representation will be very different depending on the local context. The picture for LTC will be very different for the one that I would draw for our case in Colombia, and even the purpose of the meta network/community have an important impact. For example, are we talking about a network of communities, or a network of repositories?

It's clear to me, at this point, the usefulness of Social Network Analysis techniques to model our community environments... And my feeling is that there's a lot of work to do in that area, at least here in Colombia.

All this discussion brings to my mind how these structures are needed as the complexity of our information environment grows... :) So it's an emergent issue, that will bring (as we're seeing) lots of new questions and challenges. so let´s keep discussing them! :D

By the way, thanks for that link!

Best,

Diego