a research blog: open source, open process.

This research blog has been setup to assist me in preparing for my second doctoral exam. This blog will hopefully afford me a space where the scholarly content of my reading list can interact with popular culture as well as my thoughts and experiences. In addition, this blog will help semantically organize the information I’ll be gathering, processing and interpreting, and provide a forum for public engagement. My examination committee, colleagues, faculty and general blog visitors will be able to observe a graphical representation of my exam preparation process and even participate in that process if they so choose (by commenting on posts or posting their own thoughts – and perhaps more ways will follow…).

I’ve spent the past month developing this research blog, and while its not complete (in fact it’ll never be ‘complete’ as it will only evolve as my needs and the demands of the exam change) the basic design and infrastructure is ready t ogo. A number of features have already been modified and/or added to the blog such as a dynamic glossary (so I can build definitions over time), a photo gallery (so I can incorporate and respond to visual data), and a way for me to txt message & email my thoughts directly to the blog.

First, publicness provides a model for all students and faculty for their own work. Second, each of these events is a forum for ideas stimulating both to faculty and to students. Third, an open process enhances Program culture by providing links between students at different levels as well as between students and faculty who are not otherwise directly involved on a committee.

– Environmental Psychology Program Handbook
Section 6: “On the Opennes of Procedures.”

NML (2.0?) :: The future of our blog

This post has been imported from the NML Research Blog…

Lately I’ve been trying to resist the trend of slapping “2.0″ on to the end of everything, but I couldn’t help myself this time. 2.0 or Web 2.0, as many of you may know, is a term developed by the folks over at O’rielly (read more about it here) to symbolize the next generation of online social software and services that aim to promote collaboration and sharing.

The reason I bring this up, is that this blog (a web 2.0 software) would perhaps function better as a place for communicating and collaborating with those outside the NML. Up until now we have tried to create a community blog, a place where we could interact in and outside of the lab with each other. Yet we all interact with each other quite frequently in meatspace, making the act of translating those interactions into cyberspace both unnecessary and time consuming. So why not use this blog to do something we can not currently do? Such as communicate with the public, with others in the CUNY community who are not officially affiliated with the NML, with other new media labs & organizations etc… In addition, many of us have side projects and personal web sites – individually they can be hard to find in cyberspace but by promoting them collaboratively in one space (this space) it greatly increases the visibility of our individual projects. I don’t know if many of you have googled your name recently, but chances are your NML blog author page appears in the first page of results (and this is only the result of very little activity).

I’ve begun to add new features to the blog, such as technorati and tags – two things which will help to increase the visiblity and findablity of our blog in cyberspace. I’ve also (in an attempt to afford ways of communicating other than just blogging) added a Flickr stream so that we can steam photos and images along the bottom of the screen (i’ll circulate info about uploading photos to the stream at our next meeting). What do you all think of these features? Are there any other features we should be adding that would help us communicate in different ways with the public?

Also, I’d like to create accounts for people like Kimon Keramidas (ITP Program) & Michael Oman-Reagan (Mac Support), two people who are frequently working in the the NML or with NMLers. What do you all think of creating accounts for guest bloggers, so that we can interact with them through the blog? Is there anyone else we should include?

It would be great if everyone could comment on this post, your feedback is essential.

See you all at the next NML meeting!

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