By Stephen Downes
November 25, 2003

Social Software Reader
Nice list of useful readings on the topic of social software. Seb's faves from this list include Stowe Boyd: Are you ready for Social Software, GBN/Shirky: Social Software and the Next Big Phase of the Internet, Lee Bryant: Smarter, Simpler, Social, and the SocialSoftware page on Meatball Wiki. By Ross Mayfield, Ross Mayfield's Weblog, November 24, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

The End of RSS
Good article that points to a problem with RSS and makes a pitch for some sanity. The problem is this: "If your feed works, if you are successful in attracting subscriptions on a global scale, if you do it right, you are doomed [because] everyone subscribes to a small file on your site. The critical word there is 'everyone'." Now of course, content syndication doesn't work if nobody syndicates the content! The way RSS is supposed to work is that a website is accessed by a small number of harvesters; these harvesters, in turn, feed to people who have a specialized interest in a topic. But if people subscribe to individual feeds, rather than aggregated (and syndicated) feeds, then "it is like having a permanent listing on the front page of SlashDot." Such a situation should never happen. You should not need to hit an individual feed once an hour. "In fact, you may not need my feed at all if this aggregator buddy's feed has collected my posts with other opensource hippie sites and can provide you with a composite feed where the news is hourly different instead of my lazy two-days-maybe publishing cycle." Via Seb (who had a good day today). By Gary Lawrence Murphy, Teledyn, November 24, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Between (the new) Wikpedia and (the old) Enclyclopedia Britannica. Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words, or more. Via Seb. By Unknown, Alexa, November 25, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Integrating DRM with P2P Networks: Enabling the Future of Online Content Business Models
This is a very interesting little paper with wider implications. First, some background. I have written an extended comment on my website. By Bill Rosenblatt, DRM Watch, November 18, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

EdBlogger Reflections
Good coverage and many photos of the recent EdBlogger conference at Galileo High School in San Francisco. There was an unteresting undercurrent of dissent, exemplified by comments like "Learning objects. (This is a sentence; read objects as a verb)" and "Relationships are tough to put in a repository." More discussion on the same topic from Nancy Peralta, Dan Mitchell, and Will Richardson. Also see this aggregate blog of the conference as a whole. By Jay Cross, Internet Time, November 23, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2003 Stephen Downes
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