Strange Attractor

I blogged this on Strange Attractor before Kev and I went off on hols, but thought it was worth cross posting.

Lloyd Davis, Leisa Reichelt and I have been spending a lot of time plotting just lately, and the result of our machinations was the creation, at midnight in a semi-derelict Gothic mansion and with the help of a bolt of lightening, of Fruitful Seminars. The three of us will be putting on a number of day-long seminars on various Web 2.0 subjects over the next few months, starting on 27 June with my session, Making Social Tools Ubiquitous:

Many companies have heard that social tools, such as wikis and blogs, can help them improve communications, increase collaboration and nurture innovation. As the best of breed tools are often open source, it is easy and cheap to experiment with pilot projects. But what do you do if you don’t get the level of engagement you’d like? And how do you progress from a small-scale pilot to widespread adoption?

This seminar, run by social media expert Suw Charman-Anderson, will take a practical look at the adoption of social tools within enterprise. During the day you will be lead through each stage of Suw’s renowned social media adoption strategy and will have the opportunity to discuss your own specific issues with the group. You will have access to one of the UK’s best known social media consultants in an intimate setting – with no more than 9 people attending – that will allow you to get the very most out of the day. By the end of the seminar you will have a clear set of next steps to take apply to your own blogs or wikis.

Perfect for CXO executives, managers, and social media practitioners who want to know how to foster widespread adoption of social tools in the enterprise. Perhaps you have already installed some blogs or wikis for internal communications and collaboration, but aren’t getting the take-up you had hoped for; or have successfully completed a pilot and want to roll-out to the rest of the company.

We’re keeping the sessions very small, with a maximum of nine people attending each one, so that everyone has the opportunity to fully take part in discussions. Sessions will be quite practical and participants will be able to really get into the nitty gritty. I think that’s something that’s really missing from conferences and the bigger workshops – you don’t get the chance to really get down and dirty with what’s relevant to you. I want people to come away from my seminar with a really clear idea of what they are going to do next, and how they are going to do it.

Registration is already open – it’s very easy to sign up and payment can be made by PayPal or cheque/bank transfer. The fee includes lunch, tea and coffee.

We also now have a Fruitful Seminars mailing list on Google that is open to anyone to join, where we’ll keep you abreast of progress and you can let us know what you’re thinking.

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Six Apart to buy LiveJournal?

by Suw on January 5, 2005

Om Malik reports that he has learnt that Six Apart are to buy LiveJournal for 'an undisclosed sum'.

The deal is a mix of stock and cash, and could be announced sometime later this month, according to those close to the two companies. If the deal goes through, then Six Apart will become one of the largest weblog companies in the world, with nearly 6.5 million users. It also gives the company a very fighting chance against Google’s Blogger and Microsoft’s MSN Spaces

Read the rest on Strange Attractor
See also this post

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True Voice: The Business of Blogging

by Suw on December 17, 2004

You might have been wondering what I've been up to lately that's kept me so busy that my blog has had to take such a back seat. Well, there have been a few bits and pieces happening, not all related to certain cute east coast geeks.
One of the projects that I'm involved is the Corante seminar series, True Voice: The Business of Blogging. Starting on January 26 in New York, the seminars will take anyone interested in blogging in a business environment from 0 to 60 in 3.2 seconds (for values of '3.2 seconds' that equal a day).
I am writing the content for the True Voice seminars along with fellow Corante contributors Stowe Boyd and Greg Narain. In order to get a feel for the way that other business and metabloggers are thinking, we've posed 20 questions about blogging:
4. Blogging has been characterized as a ‘social medium’: what makes blogging social?
9. How can businesses and employees who blog unofficially learn to peacefully co-exist?
12. In what ways do we need to support staff bloggers in order to ensure that they can blog effectively?
16. What are the basic technical concepts necessary to understand about how blogs work?
Please do feel free to add your answers to those of Robert Scoble and Marc Canter. And if all that whets your appetite, you can reserve your place on the seminar now. See you there!

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YASN without a point (and two with)

by Suw on October 23, 2004

In 1980 a small toy invented by Erno Rubik, a Hungarian obsessed with 3D geometry, became a smash hit. The almost impossible to solve Rubik's Cube was everywhere – in the shops, on TV, in the record books, but mainly in bits on frustrated children's floors.
I, like millions of other kids, had a Rubik's Cube and I, like millions of other kids, never managed to actually solve the problem. Instead I resorted to either taking the thing apart or trying unsuccessfully to peel off the coloured plastic stuck to the cube's faces so as to rearrange the colour without rearranging the cube.
Read the rest on Strange Attractor.

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Microfame, blogs and churn rates

by Suw on October 20, 2004

Back in August (see how behind I've been with my blog reading?!) Danny O'Brien chewed on a question that is very close to being a question that's very close to my heart. Danny's questions is 'How Famous Do You Want To Be?'.

The fame question appeared in 1997. We were futzing around doing an NTK Live in Soho, and Stew Lee turned up to watch. He was very impressed with all the cabling and the recording equipment and the laptops we were using, and asked how many people were listening to the show online. Standing next to the streaming server, I could answer him instantly: maybe twenty or so (there were probably about seventy people watching the show at the venue). He looked very disappointed, and probably a bit defensively, I found myself asking him The First Question. How many people do you need to be famous for?

Read the rest on Strange Attractor

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A couple of years ago I remember coming across the Traffic street teams site and thinking that if I had more time, it'd be a cool thing to do. In short, Traffic puts together teams of people who are fans of bands willing to help promote that band in return for 'swag' – gig tickets, merchandise and other desirable stuff. It's a cheap, easy and appears to be effective.
As it happened, I didn't have time and the swag on offer was not sufficiently valuable to me that I wanted to spend hours doing the tasks required to earn it. That's no great surprise – street teams are set up appeal to students and rabid fans, not businesswomen with a new internet start-up to look after.
Read the rest on Strange Attractor.

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How many are not enough?

by Suw on September 1, 2004

Mark over at Weblog Tools Collection asks “How many posts are too many posts?” and compares a selection of blogs with different posting frequencies. He doesn’t really come to a conclusion, other than that it depends quite a bit on post length and type.
For me, it also depends on how much time I have to catch up with updated blogs and how much I enjoy reading that particular writer. When time is short, I prefer blogs that don’t update too often and avoid those that do, simply because seeing too many unread posts in my aggregator can be a bit overwhelming. Instead of thinking “Cool! Lots to read!” I think “I’m never going to get through that lot in time” and so I never start on the backlog.
Read the rest on Strange Attractor.

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Form, format and story

by Suw on August 5, 2004

When I started writing my first feature film script in July last year, I didn't have a clue what I was doing. I knew the story I wanted to tell, having lived with it lurking in my mind for over two years, but I didn't know how I should tell it. What I did was just to start writing. I could make some guesses about how I should structure the document and what it should look like, but I was really just groping about in the dark.
Read the rest on Strange Attractor

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The Guardian to launch games blog

by Suw on July 29, 2004

The Guardian, one of the few UK publications to understand blogging, is to launch a new games blog.
The blog, which will be available from Monday 2 August, will be written by Aleks Krotoski, former presenter of Channel 4's “Thumb Bandits”; Greg Howson, Guardian Online's games reviewer; and Keith Stuart, the mobile gaming expert. It will cover every game genre and every major gaming platform, including PCs, consoles, the net and mobile phones.
Read the rest at Strange Attractor.

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Lumpers and Splitters

by Suw on July 28, 2004

When Carl Linnaeus started classifying plants and animals in his taxonomic Systema Naturae, he inadvertently gave birth to two new groups of people: Lumpers and Splitters. Lumpers are the sorts of people who look for similarities between things and group them according to what features they have in common. Splitters look for differences and create new classifications for things that don’t seem to fit in an existing pigeonhole.
Read the rest on Strange Attractor.

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