By Stephen Downes
March 11, 2004

Publishing And Delivering Video On The Web With Flash
I'm so busy today, trying to repair my referrer system, recover from a cold, learn French, upgrade DLORN, wrap up my DRM paper, see through the completion of eduSource DRM, exercise, write two papers and a column by the end of the month (and a presentation for Monday, and two more for next week), unpack from my Toronto trip, head for Quebec City tomorrow... so today's issue is a little short, OK. I have good stuff ready, so I'll try to catch up from the hotel tomorrow.

For now, lifted straight from Edu_RSS (via Kolabora): "Publishing and deployment issues to consider for your Flash project. Is it intended for a small audience on a corporate network or a vast audience on the Internet? The following resources discuss the capabilities of Macromedia Flash MX 2004 and Flash Comm." Hm. I would learn this and use it if I had the time and the software. Note, contents are on the upper left, very small. By Various Authord, Macromedia, March, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

More Firefox Search Plugins
If you use Firefox as your web browser (and you should), you may have seen the search field in the upper right. You can add your own search engines to this list by placing the search file and image to the searchplugins directory of Firefox. Brilliant. You can get an Edu_RSS search plugin here: search file and image. These are still in test mode, but won't break anything. Anyhow, this link is to a nifty little script offered by Jon Udell that enables one-click installation. By Jon Udell, March 11, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

The Dunbar Number as a Limit to Group Sizes
What is the ideal size for an online group? According to this item, somewhere in the range of 45-50 people. It's an interesting article, looking at group size in primates, weblog analyses, Ultima Online guild sizes, and more. "Anything more than this (45-50) and the group has to spend too much time "grooming" to keep group cohesion, rather then focusing on why the people want to spend the effort on that group in the first place -- say to deliver a software product, learn a technology, promote a meme, or have fun playing a game. Anything less than this and you risk losing critical mass because you don't have requisite variety." By Christopher Allen, Life With Alacrity, March 10, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Online Communities 'are old-skool' says Amy Jo
George Siemens picked up this item citing Amy Jo Kim, known for a book about online communities, suggesting that the wave of the future is centered around social networks, buddy lists and blogs. Of course, this is a change only if you felt previously that online communities were top-down creations, which while characteristic of some accounts (such as hers) is not universally believed. Still, there is a bit of a shift happening, though I would characterize it as being from centralized to decentralized communities. But we need to remember, the majority of people online do not have access to web servers, which means they will continue to rely on the larger online communities, such as LiveJournal, to take part in the new decentralized internet. By David Wilcox, Designing for Civil Society, March 11, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2004 Stephen Downes
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