Hey, Berlin is packed with interesting web 2.0 folks, and obviously most of the people from the BarCamp stay the extra days too. And while I really enjoy discussing and mingling, organized discussions in workshops have benefits too. So I’ve decided to spend my monday checking in ‘an out of a couple of workshops …
Monday morning I will start off attending Stowes workshop on Building Social Applications
Despite the widespread adoption of social applications (social networking, file sharing, instant messaging, and blogs, to name only the most well-known) creating applications that foster social interaction is hard. It is altogether too easy to approach application development from an information management mindset and miss the greater social context: people interacting to accomplish personal aims, exploring their identity through social groups, and working in online marketplaces. It is these three contexts – personal, group, and market – that form three complementary and distinct tiers of social applications. Users may opt to use an application for very personal reasons – signing up for a web filing sharing service to transfer a file to a colleague – but they become consistent users, and invite others to use the application, because of the social dimension: how well does the application support the users’ needs for social integration?
Effective social applications bring people into the foreground by making the social dimension intuitive and natural, and integrating information flow into the social. Information architecture must take a back seat to social architecture.
This workshop explores the principles of successful social applications, and presents a Social Architecture approach to model new – or remodel existing – applications. Examples of well-designed and successful social applications – including Flickr, Last.fm, Facebook, and Upcoming.org – are explored in the search for general characteristics and recurring design motifs. A number of badly designed sites are contrasted with “well-socialized” alternatives.
The workshop includes two group activities to explore the application of the approach in small team settings.
And if I get the chance, I will also try to get into this workshop by Scott Hirsch, founder of Management Innovation Group (MIG):
Be Like the Internet – Collaborative, Disruptive, Networked!
After five years of working with major telecoms and media companies to understand where to play and how to win in a business environment that seems to re-invent itself every few months, we’ve come to learn what separates the companies that succeed in the networked economy from those that have been left in its wake. The key to identifying the strategies and business models that withstand the next wave of disruptive hype requires getting honest about the real assets you bring to the table and finding ways to work with the network instead of fighting the changes it represents. This means explicitly changing the way you work and collaborate to set direction, scope opportunity, and build capabilities to rapidly assess business changes and react to them … or choose not to react. Whether you’re from a large corporation or a consultancy (or even a start-up still searching for a business model), this workshop will provide new frameworks and mindsets that you can immediately put to use to understand your opportunities in a web2.0 world.