Tag Archives: Flickr

two probes on blogging on the daybook

I’ve posted a couple of probes on blogging over on the Weblogs Daybook. Lovink on snark in blogging, and blogging is not in vain. I wanted to get them in front of students in the Weblogs class. From here on, I’ll post probes to this blog.

I’m also using CogDog’s flickr cc attribution helper and advice for locating CC images. What a treat. Makes me want to search for and embed images all day.

bookmarks for December 20th, 2012 through December 21st, 2012

bookmarks for August 13th, 2010 through August 15th, 2010

bookmarks for April 17th through May 26th

A catch-up post while reactivating postalicious.

notes on collecting with Brightkite

I’m down for the count today – something upper respiratory – so I’m working from home. But in keeping with my project while staying within the bounds of dry mouth and fatigue caused by the [unnamed maker of cetirizine HCI here], I’m doing something simple, and even simpleminded: reviewing my use of Brightkite as a way into using it for composing and teaching composing.

So: Some Observational Notes

Bemidji State UniversityBrightkite
A few weeks ago I made a mental observation: Keeping up in Brightkite is work. It isn’t really as simple as checking in – and even that takes a few moments. Using Brightkite – and so Twitter or any of the microblogging stuff – means stopping what I’m doing for a few moments to do something else. I can talk and walk, but I can’t easily walk and post to Brightkite.

Stopping to post is probably less an issue when at a desktop or laptop than it is when mobile. What it means is that asking someone to post means giving them time and space to make the post. A tweet or Brightkite post may be short but that doesn’t mean it’s quickly composed, or composed while multitasking.

[I’d guess that a lot of mobile posts are made on the train or bus, or while waiting for a train or bus or something else to happen. To fill time. In public.] That’s often how I use it: as a waiting game. It’s as much a habit as anything because I could simply snap a pic to my phone and work with it later. Instead, I use Brightkite. Perhaps there’s something in the communicative possibility. But this use of Brightkite isn’t really extensive. Others are.

Occasions of use: purpose driven

  • to capture a low-res pic of something interesting and fleeting
  • to capture ditto something I’m figuring others might find curious
  • to signal to others where I’m located
  • to take a visual note I’ll want to use later

Much of this use is also driven by collateral posting of the images to flickr. I don’t simply send to Brightkite for others to see; I also send the image to my own collections to use later. Again, I don’t have to use Brightkite for image collection; I have other apps that upload to flickr. Again, it’s habit more than intentional selection of the right app. Brightkite – and the communicative drive it includes – has been my pencil of choice lately.

I don’t seem to use Brightkite to take or send textual notes. I lean towards the image with Brightkite, but I don’t have to restrict myself to this.

Target Stores: Store InformationCollecting
Part of working with mobile apps is sending local data to the cloud so the sender and others can use it. Images taken with a phone are far more useful, and easier to work with, when they are moved off the phone. On the phone, they can be viewed by the owner and others physically near the owner. Off the phone, they can be manipulated, edited, reused, distributed.

Collecting doesn’t need to be purpose-driven. It can be loosely driven from behind: Just gathering up stuff that might come in handy later. But it helps if collecting is spurred on, driven extrinsically. Grades or fulfilling assignments are the usual way, but not very good for really getting interesting stuff. So, try another way.

Purposes, and Leveraging the Communicative for Collecting
Posting images and notes to a common space (flickr, a wiki, Evernote) serves (as least) two immediate purposes. The post signals that something has happened: it’s a check in, a communicative gesture of bird here or task done. The post also places the image or text in play for other uses. (This is what I’m doing when I post to Brightkite.) The communicative gesture can be a pretty strong motivator; it’s immediate, anyway – especially if the context is set up to allow others in a group (nearby or following) to respond. That is, seeing what others are up to may spur more collection.

What’s next
Try collecting stuff using alternatives to Brightkite. One of the tasks I’m skirting around is the nature of the collecting: immediate or mediated. I’ve been going straight to immediate:

  • immediate: posting directly to flickr, Brightkite
  • mediated: saving to the phone, then vetting and uploading later

Debategraph homeGathering
After that, look gathering the stuff collected. Examples:

  • gathering stuff in a notebook with annotations, decorations, commentary. Get out the moleskines, the PoGo and the ink pens. Individual. A variation this would be creating a place note book or using Diffusion Generator to frame the gathering.
  • gathering stuff in a set (flickr) or group (flickr), on a map (flickr), and by tagging (flickr). Collective. As a set of favorites.
  • how to handle notebook-like gathering on computer or online (Curio is my current fave. Can be posted to web.)
  • and draw distinctions between varieties of gathering: like a scrapbook, like a map, like a categorized list, by tagging or key content word, by time, like a mashup, like a wiki or concept map.

And then, after that, start looking at other apps and materials for mashup gathering in multiple media: concept maps, Wordle, and delicious tag clouds.

weblog projects starting up

Mr Blue Sky.jpgProjects for Weblogs and Wikis will be starting up this coming weekend. Proposals are due today, approved Friday, with any requested revisions due Monday. And in keeping with student projects, I need to start one of my own.

I’ll post regularly for the next eight weeks on Twitter, Brightkite, Tumblr, Flickr and mobile learning. There are a few blogs to monitor, blogs that have posted and are regularly posting on micro-blogging, virtual learning environments, and mobile learning

I also have a set of notes in a courses database to draw on and bring in. But one of the first steps is going to be a more thorough search of Twitter/Brightkite projects and VLEs..

Interest in Twitter is a no-brainer. But I’m also interested in the way Brightkite ties micro-blogging to physical place and how it encourages posting images of place. In a similar vein, Tumblr facilitates quick collections of images, quotes, sound, and video without the drive to comment on the material; it also allows following of friends . Flckr, too, is a collection pool that, with tagging and following, becomes a resource.

Move access to these platforms to mobile phones and we have the possibility of mobile learning.

I’m not interested in Facebook. As it become more ridden with apps and advertising, it loses its focus for teaching and learning. A messy VLE.

A title for this project? Try Hunting and Gathering Materials for Mobile Teaching and Learning. Staid? Yep. But here’s a video. A little slow paced, but it makes a solid point in the final shot, and the soundtrack is ELO. ELO on VLE. WTF. Jeff Lind and ex-partner.

rough notes on personal learning environments or how i spent my xmas vacation

PLEI spent most of my semester break messing with looking at some social networking apps and how to link them up. I was familiar with a few of them already and had been using them regularly: flickr, delicious, facebook (not so regularly), tumblr, twitter. I added brightkite, friendfeed, and ping.fm. Righ away, brightkite and friendfeed struck me as useful for what I wanted to do, and ping.fm less so. Brightkite fuses image and text and geotags them both. Friendfeed aggregates feeds to a common stream and allows connecting those feeds with others.

On the browser side, I tinkered with Flock for a day, but went back to Firefox and installed add-ons to coordinate some of my feeds; I wanted to put them in the same app if not the same frame. I’m currently working with Flickerfox, Sage-Too for rss feeds, TumblrPost, and Twitbin. I’m watching for a Brighkite add-on, but Sage-too makes it possible to put an rss Friendfeed stream in the sidebar.

I haven’t added browser-based notes, however. I’m still using the browser mainly for access to content and working with other apps like Evernote and DevonThink for collection and text production.

This catalog of web apps, social apps, and plug-ins looks geeky, I know, put there’s a point to it.

Spurred on in part by using an iPhone more and more, I started to get interested in how to pull the apps together in some kind of more or less coherent set. I got interested in creating an informal PLE.

Gloss from Wikipedia

Personal Learning Environments are systems that help learners take control of and manage their own learning. This includes providing support for learners to

* set their own learning goals

* manage their learning; managing both content and process

* communicate with others in the process of learning

and thereby achieve learning goals.

A PLE may be composed of one or more subsystems: As such it may be a desktop application, or composed of one or more web-based services.

Roughly, a PLE is a more or less hacked together system or space to work in – and that’s a pretty good idea of it, for me, for right now. My wife has a PLE for her work. It’s her studio. Al Gore has one. It’s called his office.

But PLEs extend beyond office and studio walls to include sites and sources, the devices used to access those sites and sources, and the devices used to manipulate the content of those sites and sources. Desktop computer, laptop, iPhone, mobile, digital camera … You get the idea. Hardware, software, people, content, places.

The memex was an early conception of a PLE. Englebart’s Study for the Development of Human Augmentation Techniques a 1968 overview of the idea. And his mother of all demos is an early demo of one: hardware, software, people, content, and places.

Martin Weller has a lot more to say on the matter than I do right now. Brian Lamb has posted on PLEs recently. And he’s picking up on comments made by Stephen Downes.  A Collection of PLE diagrams presents a range of visualizations about PLEs.

To my mind, proboscis.org is experimenting with informal PLEs. In their work, streets and parks and buildings become part of the PLE, which also includes other people, both present and past. Their work emphasizes the material in the environment, where learning takes place by creating and manipulating maps and boxes, and by physically and virtually annotating physical spaces. See Social Tapestries, for instance.

Creating or using a PLE of any complexity is going to demand some fluency in transliteracy.

I made some remarks on PLEs from a side angle in Wikis, Blogs, and eFolio: How wikis and weblogs trump eportfolios and No One Stop Shop. My sense of PLEs is the learner mashup rather than the prepackaged OfficeMax D2L. Having just reread these drafts and notes, it looks like the PLE is a common thread in my thinking, one that might open into a more extensive article.

More notes

I’m a late-comer to the PLE party, so a review is in order:

A PLE – VLE continuum

on the PLE

A Collection of PLE diagrams

E-learning 2.0, Stephen Downes

More later.

and we couldn’t be prouder

chinaonpetcharts.jpg

Last week, a picture of one of our cats that I posted to Flickr was selected by Purina PetCharts as one of their top 10 of the day.

We couldn’t be prouder of China, pictured left, who is a year old this month. The title of the image when Purina spotted it was “Cat on lounge.”  I changed it later to “Odalisque.”  I don’t know if the title would have made a difference in their selection.

It’s an interesting marketing strategy: Crawl picture- and video-sharing sites for images that suit the brand and incorporate the images in a daily popularity contest. I trust the images are either for open use (mine are), or the owners are contacted for permission. Purina left a comment on Flickr, which pointed me, and anyone else finding it, to the image – and to their site, of course.

It’s flattering if handled right, and Purina seems to be handling it right. Your pet (and you must be proud of it to have images posted to share) is discovered, like Norma Jean, and brought into the club, along with similar images of dogs and cats.

The trick is in the selection of images. They can’t be too serious, but they can be as cute as anything from Hallmark. Purina uses the original poster’s title, and not altering the images, just selecting them. The idea is to construct the same happy-go-lucky, insider ethos as the aggregated posters, to become one of the group.

And the real trick is to tone down the marketing on the Pet Charts site and cast the sales in the same spirit of sharing as the image sites it crawls. So they cast the site as “the definitive guide to the best pet stuff online,” and you can almost hear the verbal pause, the hedge in that informal “stuff.” It’s not “information.” It’s not advertising or products; wouldn’t want to say that. It’s “stories, videos and photos.” That’s the “stuff.” The same informal term social aggregators like to use then they are being miscellaneous. Stuff. (There are links to products, ringtones, widgets, and coupons from the Pet Charts site, but they are tucked away in the footer, another smart move in underselling.)

petchartbanner.jpg

This makes Purina (if not Nestle, who owns the site) one of us, a pet owner, not a pet food producer.

And it really does, too. That’s why this is an interesting marketing strategy. Purina has to live up to the ethos it’s defining on Pet Charts. By taking on the public role of an altruistic social pet aggregator, by providing a free Facebook for kitty and puppy, by using their web resources and expertise, Purina is committing themselves to continue to perform good deeds in public.