07
Apr
09

More social media tips for success: digging digg

Bob Buch, the VP of biz dev at Digg spoke at Web2.0Expo and provided some good ideas that were blogged at ReadWriteWeb.

There’s more, of course, in the article, including a finding that if you unbundle the social bookmarking sites from the Share This widget, you get a lot more click-throughs on those sites, in this case Digg, Yahoo, Buzz and StumbleUpon. Hmm, interesting. And that you should hire social media experts for your company if you wnat to make the most of social media. Well, duh, but then again it must need to be said. And automatic syndication of content, as in Facebook Connect. Thanks for sharing, Bob! And RWW, too.

5 Ingredients for Social Media Success

  1. Sharing: If you love something, set it free
  2. Integration: Don’t try to do everything yourself
  3. People: People who know: ROFLCopter, LMAO, PWND, Noob
  4. Platform: One to one is now one to many
  5. Authenticity: Stay true to your core competency
07
Apr
09

Wiki tips for massive campaigns

Got a massive campaign on your agenda? Lord knows, we’ve got some massive problems, so I’ll be some massive campaigns are in the offing. And with such large scale collaborative challenges, we must consider how to scale the use of wiki’s to accommodate them and engage a passel of users.

Atlassian, one of the two or three leading proponents, developers and implementers of wiki usage, shares what it learned helping to coordinate the latest Earth Hour where cities around the world doused their lights for an hour on the same day. Here are their four lessons as posted on NetSquared:

1. Show users how to jump into a wiki

  • Users should have clear starting points on the dashboard for (1) information on starting a local campaign, (2) getting resources for an existing campaign, or (3) how to use a wiki.
  • Dedicate a column to news and how to get involved with the wiki.

2. Create intuitive page structures

  • Simplify the navigation by subject or department for easy browsing. By contrast, Earth Hour’s wiki had become jumbled over time. Information was scattered and it was quite difficult to easily drill down into information. For Earth Hour, the information architecture was reorganized under new headings. Some information was pulled to the top to make it easier to drill down into.

3. Create user guides and faq’s for non-technical users

  • With a very broad base of volunteers around the world, the wiki needed information to help out new users. Atlassian created a one-page quick start guide with child pages for specific functions in the Earth Hour wiki (e.g. ‘How do I find my Country page?’). It was written specifically for their non-technical audience and linked to the Confluence User Guide for advanced users.

4. Create a support system

  • Create a page with the most commonly asked questions and responses and allow people to add to it.
07
Apr
09

An open source approach to digital health records?

Inspired by Tim O’Reilly’s story of government beginning to adopt solutions initiated on the consumer Internet, I am trying to apply the same sort of logic to one of the more stubborn institutions in America – our beleagured, ineffective health care system.

On KevinMD’s blog he wrote recently about the inability and/or refusal of hospitals to convert to electronic health records systems.

As reported by MedPage Today, the study from the NEJM found that only 1.5 percent of hospitals surveyed had comprehensive electronic medical record systems. That’s a piss-poor adoption rate, and far lower than the dismal numbers in small office practices.

The reasons cited are no surprise to regular readers of the blog, and according to the survey, “some 30% said the return on investment was unclear, 45% pointed to maintenance costs, about 30% did not have adequate information-technology staff, and about 35% worried about physician resistance.”

Kevin says the problem is not about lack of money; that money won’t solve the problem.

The larger issue is that the current generation of digital record systems, to put it bluntly, suck.

He points to this article in the NY Times where, in turn, two recent papers are cited describing the doubts doctors express about digital health record keeping. The technology and the routines it’s based on are antiquated, “pre-Internet” in their approach. The Internet is over 30 years old. That’s beyond ridiculous.

Quoting from the NY Times article:

Instead of stimulating use of such software, they say, the government should be a rule-setting referee to encourage the development of an open software platform on which innovators could write electronic health record applications. As analogies, they point to other such software platforms — whether the Web or Apple’s iPhone software, which the company has opened to outside developers.

In the Mandl-Kohane model, a software developer with a new idea for health record features like drug allergy alerts or care guidelines could write an application, and those could be added or substituted for a similar feature.

07
Apr
09

Web Two-Oh, 5 Years On – Tim O’Reilly on stage

On blip.tv: A good talk at this year’s Web2.0 Expo.

The Web’s growing smarter and we’re adding new sensors to it. It’s not going to be all about entering data through keyboards. Sampling and machine learning will provide new possibilities. The Web is growing up, getting beyond infancy, toddlerhood and adolescence.

“Web Squared” – as exemplified by Obama’s use of technology in a world-shaping way in a new realm.

Our economy and world’s great problems have always been based on producing and consuming more, but technology follows the “do more with less” model. How can we apply Moore’s law to global problem solving?

Take techniques developed on consumer Internet and apply them to big hard problems. Build simple systems and let them evolve.

Look at Twitter model.

“We need to create more value than we capture.”

01
Apr
09

Cool entrepreneurship war stories

I’ve heard of Steve Blank but have never met him. I’m familiar with some of the companies he’s started: E.piphany, Zilog and MIPS computers. I also know SuperMac, a company he resurrected from the dead.(I did not KNOW that.)

Steve’s been cranking out some really interesting stuff on his new eponymous blog, including old stories of his time working on air defense systems in the service and in the early years of Silicon Valley. There are some great observations and teachings about startups in the articles he’s written so far. I look forward to more. He says he’ll be posting on Mondays and Thursdays until he runs out of “war stories.” Get ’em while their hot, folks.

25
Mar
09

Eric Reis Riffing on Tim O’Reilly

I consider both Eric and Tim to be among the premier teachers in the effective application of social technologies to real world uses. Lately, recognizing the dire straits we’re in on so many levels, Tim has been espousing the idea of that we “work on stuff that matters.” Meanwhile, Eric has continued sharing his valuable lessons learned as a serial entrepreneur in the digital space. One of his key teaching topics – and one that I’m finding very useful these days – is the lean startup. Last week, Eric was a guest blogger on O’Reilly Radar, where he mashed up his lean startup lessons with the stuff that matters meme. The result is well worth reading as a whole, and included some exquisite passages:

The Lean Startup is a disciplined approach to building companies that matter. It’s designed to dramatically reduce the risk associated with bringing a new product to market by building the company from the ground up for rapid iteration and learning. It requires dramatically less capital than older models, and can find profitability sooner. Most importantly, it breaks down the artificial dichotomy between pursuing the company’s vision and creating profitable value. Instead, it harnesses the power of the market in support of the company’s long-term mission.

*****

And here’s where working on something that matters to you more than money is critical. When you’re committed to something larger than yourself, every minute counts. Hype and transient success won’t keep you going. But the simple process of finding out whether or not your vision is right will. Because people who are dedicated to the truth are more likely to fail fast, learn, and try again.

*****

And here’s where working on something that matters to you more than money is critical. When you’re committed to something larger than yourself, every minute counts. Hype and transient success won’t keep you going. But the simple process of finding out whether or not your vision is right will. Because people who are dedicated to the truth are more likely to fail fast, learn, and try again.

25
Mar
09

Griff Wigley: Blog Coach

wigleyblogGriff Wigley has been in the online social biz for a long time. I first met him on the WELL around 1990, and then in person when he was in town for one of the WELL’s infamous parties. That man can dance! Since then, he’s been the project manager for Utne Reader magazine’s online Cafe Utne community and a role model for implementing online social solutions for local communities. In Northfield, Minnesota, where Griff lives, he’s founded Northfield.org – the local community portal, and since 2005 he’s been a co-host of Locally Grown, a civic-issues podcast and weblog.

Griff invented his own practices of blogging for leadership , beginning with local organizations and small businesses and expanding to the virtual weblog coaching realm with clients all in the US and overseas. Griff’s blog at Wigley & Associates carries lots of useful information about practical uses of the weblog and Twitter platforms as demonstrated by a wide range of people, from hospital administrators to educators to civic leaders. You can see how he’s been busy revamping some of his local small business blogs. He demonstrates how you can become a true craftsperson using social media.

Here are some topics from a page of Griff’s online guide to effective blogging:

Once you understand why blogging can be an important leadership tool, you’ll increasingly have more than enough ideas on what you can blog about. But there’s a bit of craft involved in knowing how to blog effectively. In this section, we explain the how.




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