Come on in, the water’s fine! There’s a growing group of educators, researchers, librarians, and technologists listed in the IndieWeb wiki. And here’s the start of a list on Micro.blog.
I remember thinking over a decade ago how valuable it would be if researchers kept open notebooks (aka digital commonplace books) like the one Kimberly Hirsh outlines in her article . I’d give my right arm to have a dozen people in research areas I’m interested in doing this very thing!
The best I could hope for back in 2008, and part of why I created the @JohnsHopkins Twitter handle, was that researchers would discover Twitter and be doing the types of things that some of the Johns Hopkins professors outlined in this recent article are now finally doing. It seems sad that it has taken over a decade and this article is really only highlighting the bleeding edge of the broader academic scene now. While what they’re doing is a great start, I think they really aren’t going far enough. They aren’t doing their audiences as much service as they could because there’s only so much that Twitter allows in terms of depth of ideas and expressiveness. It would be far better if they were doing this sort of work from their own websites and more directly interacting with their colleagues on the open web. The only value that Twitter is giving them is a veneer of reach to a broader audience, but they’re also opening themselves up to bigger attacks as is described in the article.
In addition to Kimberly’s example, another related area of potential innovation would be moving the journal clubs run by many research groups and labs online and opening them up. Want to open up science? Then let’s really do it! By bookmarking a variety of articles on their own websites, various members could be aggregated to contribute to a larger group, which could then use their own websites with protocols like Webmention or even simple tools like Hypothes.is to guide and participate in larger online conversations to move science communication along at an even faster pace. Greg McVerry and I have experimented in taking some of these tools into the classroom in the past.
If you think about it, arXiv and other preprint servers are really just journal clubs writ large. The problem is that they’re only communicating in one direction by aggregating the initial content, but they’re dramatically failing their audiences in that they aren’t facilitating or aggregating any open discussion around that content. As a result, the largest portion of their true value is still locked away in the individual brains of their readers rather than as commentary or even sentence level highlights and annotations on particular pieces out in the open. Often is the time that I’ll tweet about an interesting article only to receive a (lucky) reply that the results have been debunked, yet that information is almost never disclosed in or around the journal article (especially online) where it certainly belongs. Academic publishers are not only gouging us financially by siloing their content, they’re failing us far worse than most realize.
Another idea: Can’t get a journal of negative results to publish your latest research failure? Why not post a note or article on your own website to help out future researchers? (or even demonstrate to your students that not everything always works out?)
Naturally having aggregation services like indieweb.xyz, building planets, using OPML subscriptions, or the coming wave of feed readers could make a lot of these things easier, but we’re already right on the cusp for people who are willing to take a shot for doing this type of research online on their own websites and out in the open.
Want to try out some of the above? I’m happy to help (gratis) researchers who’d like to experiment in the area to get themselves set up. Just send me a note or give me a call.
Introductions and Keynote: Connected Learning & the IndieWeb by Kimberly Hirsh
at Southern Connecticut State University, Davis Hall, 501 Crescent Avenue, 06515 New Haven, Connecticut.
I had joined a tad late this morning and only watched the YouTube stream instead of joining the Google Hangout channel.
I wanted to rewatch the entire opening to see Kimberly Hirsh’s keynote a second time. I almost feel bad that she gave it remotely so that she couldn’t experience the direct feedback and adulation of people watching it live. Of course the benefit of a streamed version is that I got to watch it bleary-eyed in my pajamas (because of the time difference between New Haven and Los Angeles) and it will live on for others to watch and enjoy long into the future.
Congratulations Kimberly! And thanks again for taking the time to talk to all of us.
Welcome to the IndieWeb! It’s great to see another scholar join the club and potentially be using it for education/research purposes.
It may be a stretch of timezones, but IndieWebCamp New Haven is this weekend; I suspect there will be some discussion of using IndieWeb within education. Kimberly Hirsh, a doctoral student in information and library science, will be giving the keynote and I heard it will have an education related bent.
There are a bunch of us WordPressers around if you need any help/hints or need sites to look at for potential inspiration. Feel free to reach out if you need any help.
It’s not exactly an implementation of Webmention, but I was interested to find that there’s a tool from Hypothes.is that will show you (all?) the annotations (and replies) on your website.
https://jonudell.info/h/facet/ and then enter the appropriate domain name followed by
/* as a wildcard to search.
- Aaron Davis: https://jonudell.info/h/facet/?wildcard_uri=https%3A%2F%2Freadwriterespond.com%2F*&max=50
- Ian O’Byrne: https://jonudell.info/h/facet/?wildcard_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwiobyrne.com%2F*&max=50
Now wouldn’t it be cool if this were available in the main UI? Perhaps if there were a button for “Site notes” or highlights? This may be unwieldy for the New York Times, but could be reasonable and very useful for smaller personal and/or academic based websites.
I’m planning on proposing an OER or other book related session at the upcoming IndieWebCamp New Haven next weekend. If you’re interested or want to propose other ideas for #DoOO or #EdTech, I hope you’ll join us either in-person or remotely.
Not sure what to expect at a camp? Here are some additional details for both in-person and remote attendance.
Domains 2019 is a two-day conference on 2019-06-10 - 2019-06-11 geared toward Indieweb for Education, A Domain of One's Own, and EdTech spaces. Sessions will focus on learning tools, data ownership, IndieWeb, containers and the cloud, privacy and surveillance, accessibility, and art. It will be held at 21c Museum Hotel in Durham, North Carolina, USA
Please visit https://domains.reclaimhosting.com/register/ to register for the conference.
Notice the indie web sessions at this conference geared toward the education crowd.
The bookmarking service CiteULike is shutting down on March 30, 2019 after a 15 year run. While some may turn to yet-another-silo or walled garden I highly recommend going IndieWeb and owning all of your own bookmarks on your own website.
I’ve been doing this for several years now and it gives me a lot more control over how much meta data I can add, change, or modify as I see fit. Let me know if I can help you do something similar.
Ken, congratulations on IndieWebifying and welcome to the club! It’s nice to see another educator tinkering around in the IndieWeb space which I often think of as very similar to the Domain of One’s Own space, but with another useful layer of helpful technology on top.
If you haven’t come across it, there is a wiki page for IndieWeb for Education with some documentation about some of our experimentation and help for others. Feel free to add yourself to the examples and add to the page to help out the community.
Let us know if we can be of any help.
Back to the Future
The “First Post” on this blog was back in 2013 but I’ve had a presence on the web since the 1990s. My first page would have been one that I had as a graduate student at the University of Washington (1993-1995). In fact one of the early (and extremely popular) web search engi...
This article presents an excellent point. I also see a lot of what I would call IndieWeb philosophy bubbling up within this argument, and perhaps the edtech space could benefit from some of their ideas, set up, and design? If you like, we could take the analogy IndieWeb:Social Silos::Educational Technology:Learning Management Systems and extend it.
Much like the demise of the innovation on the web and within the blogosphere as the result of the commodification of social media by silo corporations like Facebook, Twitter, and others around 2006, the technology space in education has become too addicted to corporate products and services. Many of these services cover some broad functionality, but they have generally either slowed down or quit innovating, quit competing with each other, are often charging exorbitant prices, and frequently doing unethical things with the data they receive from their users. The major difference between the two spaces is that Big Social Media is doing it on a much bigger scale and making a lot more money and creating greater damage as a result.
Instead, let me make some recommendations to thought leaders in the space for more humanistic and holistic remedy. Follow the general philosophies and principles of the IndieWeb movement. Dump (or at least gradually move away from) your corporately built LMS and start building one of your own. Ideally, open source what you build so that others can improve it and build upon it. In the end, you, your classes, your departments, and your institutions will be all the stronger for it. You can have more direct control over your own data (and that of your students, which deserves to be treated more ethically). You can build smaller independent pieces that are interchangeable and inter-operable. The small pieces may also allow new unpredictable functionalities when put together. You can build to make better user interfaces, better functionality, and get what you’d like to have instead of just what you’re given.
Sure, doing this may be somewhat uncomfortable in the near term, but many hands over many institutions, building and crafting a variety of solutions will result in a much better and more robust product–and one that we all can “own” and benefit from. By open sourcing, many hands will make light work. Imagine what the state of online learning, Open Educational Resources (OER), and open pedagogy would look like if the hundreds of institutions had put all of their LMS related funding over the past decade into even a handful of open source programmers instead of corporately controlled interests?
Already within the article, there is a short list of potential solutions one could look to as LMS replacements. Those that are open source are literally crying out to not only be used, but to be improved upon so that everyone can benefit from those improvements. Other related options might include
For solid examples of what can be accomplished, we can also look toward individual developers like Stephen Downes and projects like gRSShopper or Alan Levine and his many open source repositories. There are also individuals like Greg McVerry, who is using free and opensource content management systems like WordPress and WithKnown to push the envelope of what is possible with classroom interactions using simple internet protocols like Webmention, Micropub, WebSub, and bleeding edge readers using MicroSub, and Robin DeRosa, who is creating her own OER materials. These are just a few of thousands of individuals hacking away at small, but discrete problems and then helping out others.
At the higher end we can see broad movements like A Domain of One’s Own (DoOO), which empowers students students and faculty by giving them their own domain names and hosting as well as web-based tools to leverage these benefits. (I often look at the DoOO movement as IndieWeb for Education, but without as much emphasis on building for oneself.)
There are even ethical companies like Reclaim Hosting who are doing some excellent and tremendous work in the DoOO space. The benefit of the way these systems are built and maintained however, is that should Reclaim cease offering their excellent support, benefits, and add-ons, individuals or institutions could relatively easily take all of their data and applications and move them to another provider. This provides a massive incentive for service companies to continue iterating and improving on their work as well as the services they offer. Sadly, some of these mechanisms don’t exist this way within much of the corporate LMS space. But they certainly could and should.
For those who are interested, feel free to do some research into some of these areas and tools. Join the DoOO or IndieWeb.org communities. Build your own tools, give feedback to developers of opensource projects to help them improve. Give them some of your time and resources to make these communities and spaces better and stronger over time. Feel free to join the IndieWeb chat to meet folks virtually and discuss these ideas, or use the IndieWeb wiki (the IndieWeb for Education page is an excellent place to start) to not only read, but to contribute back ideas, tools, links, and resources for others. (The wiki has a CC0 license.)
I’m always happy to help people begin to find their way in some of these resources if they need it to get started.
I like that idea. Perhaps between the models for news.IndieWeb.org and Kicks Condor’s indiweb.xyz, we could create a syndicatable (pre-print) academic journal that allows sorting by top level academic disciplines.
I don’t recall though, are either of them open source, or do we need to re-build by hand?