Help me open up my village’s local history project

Barcamp Berkshire session

This was the name of a session I ran at Barcamp Berkshire at the weekend.

It was the first time I’d proposed and run and session at a barcamp so I was pretty nervous but luckily six other people came to join me.

I’m involved in a local history project that will generate a lot of digital pictures, audio, text and reports.

The default of the project team is to put them on to a hard drive that locals can access but I really want to see how we can get all of the material online so as many people can see and use it as possible.

I ran the barcamp session as a way to pick brains and get some ideas on how to do this.

I’m so glad I ran it. As a result of the session I found out about:

It was also suggested that a great local history project is one that links the online with real life, perhaps using something like QR codes in the village so that people can access the material when they’re there.

These are all really useful ideas and I really appreciate people taking the time to come to my session.

If you’ve got other ideas for how I can open up this image, audio and text content then please leave me a comment below.

Collaborative working conference – web 2.0 session

[apologies for this being posted a bit later than it should have been]

Into the first workshop … Michelle McMahon from Ammado is asking us all about if and how we are using web 2.0.  The experiences vary from users who are passionate to users who are sceptical to people who don’t know yet if it’s for them … my only thought at the moment is that I hope that I’m not annoying anyone with my continuous tapping :-)

There’s an interesting range of what people what to get out of this session; there is talk of using web 2.0 to interact with members, to communicate internally and also to get a better general understanding of what all of these tools are and how they can be used.

So, what is web 2.0?  Web 2.0 is participatory, it is about people creating and sharing online.  At the start of the internet it was talked of as the information age, now it should be thought of as the participatory age.

An interesting thought to start the session, how do people communicate with a ketchup bottle online?

Michelle’s favourite examples of web 2.0 sites at the moment are, a Penguin site which used popular authors to create new stories online, with input from the public.  The site had the effect of raising the profile of both Penguin and the authors involved.  The second highlighted site was for the Obama ’08 campaign, rallying support of people online – the site featured an Obama ringtone .. I’m interested to hear what that sounded like.  http://worldwithoutoil.orgis a site which simulated what might happen during a global oil crisis.  For once at a conference the internet is working and Michelle is showing some footage from You Tube from the World Without Oil site.

Some of the other examples of web 2.0 in action included …

  • Organisations such as the NSPCC using fan pages on Facebook to attract supporters 
  • Ebay, working with Mission Fish to administer donations from items sold on Ebay
  • Community pages on the Ammado site for various causes, promoting calls to action through widgets which can be shared on other social networking spaces
  • The Born in September twitter campaign, raising money for Charity Water by targeting people who were born in september
  • powergramo – allowing you to create podcasts using skype
  • Kiva – a site which uses donations to fund micro loans around the world

Some of the delegates had their own experiences of web 2.0, which included …

  • Using a blog to answer questions that you’re constantly asked so that you don’t waste time repeating yourself – you can also link to other sources of useful information
  • Blogging about work which can attract local newspapers in search of a story
  • Smaller charities using free blogs (like or typepad) instead of a website, there is some of the basic functionality of websites

As with all workshops in every conference ever we started to run over time and my stomach was becoming quite vocal as lunch approached.  Michelle looked briefly at future trends affecting web 2.0, such as the increasing visibility of charity – company online relationships.

Off to lunch …

The world’s gone pet crazy

The web seems to have been going pet crazy which I find rather amusing.

I’ve been enjoying reading Beth Kanter’s posts about her (dead) dog Sadie who has her own Facebook –

Beth has also been collecting some internet dog cartoons –

The fascination with pets has led Beth to some in depth analysis of dog and cat presence on the net:

  • Flickr has 471, 092 photos tagged with dog compared with Dogbook’s 167,713 people who have the app on their profile.  I don’t have comparison of the same time period.
  • Flickr has 553, 576 photos tagged with cat compared Catbook’s 77,808 people who have the app on their profile.  Again, I don’t have comparison of the same time period.
  • Dogs are more popular on Facebook or the dog app could have been around longer.
  • Cats are more popular on Flickr or people who upload dog photos are lazy taggers.

This morning I was alerted to the Blue Cross petcasts featuring famous pet owners talking about their beloved moggies –

What a great idea to get supporters and pet lovers engaged in their campaign using new media, it would be interesting to see what affect they’ve had on donations.