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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Web 2.0 Tool - Great Collaboration Example

Andrew McAfee has posted about Avenue A Razorfish's (AARF) Intranet that uses Web 2.0 tools as part of information sharing:

AARF has built interfaces to the bookmarking site, the photo sharing site Flickr, and Digg, a site where members vote on the importance of news stories. All three use tags, or something close.

AARF employees have learned to add the tag 'AARF' when they come across a web page (using, a photo (Flickr), or a news story (Digg) that they think will be of interest to their colleagues. Shortly after they add this tag, the bookmark (look at the top of the box), thumbnail of the photo (middle) or headline and description of the story (bottom) show up within the AARF E2.0 Intranet. So AARF has found a fast and low-overhead way to let its employees share Internet content with each other. It's also free; these interfaces with, Flickr, and Digg require no fees and no permissions. I find this simply brilliant.

This is similar to what I suggested in eLearning Technology: Personal and Group Learning Using Web 2.0 Tools and eLearning Technology: Social Bookmarking Tricks for Group Learning

Andrew has followed up on his original post with some concerns around security. Because the tags are visible globally, then other folks can see what is being tagged with AARF. This can be problematic. With some tools, e.g., Yahoo MyWeb, you can limit the visibility of your pages (or your tags) and I'd expect that to start happening with other tools as well. This is something I've discussed before: Yahoo MyWeb better than, rollyo, for Personal / Group Learning.

Both of Andrew's posts are definitely worth reading.


Anonymous said...

We're in the planning stage of starting an informal group to study informal learning. Probably a closed group and one with a relatively fixed timeframe because we want to test a model. Given a closed group of 5-6 in a fixed timeframe, is having individual blogs and a collective wiki necessary?

Tony Karrer said...

Frank - you are right to be concerned about the overhead of adopting a couple technologies given a small group and a limited timeframe.

It's hard to know the right answer. It will certainly depend on your group.

Do they already blog? Do they have any experience with Wikis? How about Forums?

Short answer is that I don't see using individual blogs for what you describe. Overhead is too much for value.

Options I'd consider:

A. Email and Attach a Word Document with Track Changes on

-> People understand the techs, but it gets messy pretty quick and clutters the inbox.

B. Create a private Google or Yahoo Group

-> It at least will shield you from individual emails. Allows file sharing.

C. Use the group for discussion and create a private Wiki for editing a shared document.

D. Use the private wiki for both discussion and editing.

Any thoughts?