Whether its the recent launches of the iphone3.0 software , microsoft’s search engine ‘bing’ (nice travel pics), twitter on the cover of TIME magazine , or the giants of the digital world’s with the unveiling of googlewave ; there’s little doubt about the recession-defying buzz around the on-going revolution in the way we communicate, work and play via the web.
And I’d like to think we’ve all learnt a little bit about online communities and the evolution of the web over the last three years. So with plans and ideas developing for the next level of Tribewanted online (I’m calling it Tribewanted 2.0) I took myself along – in person – to a digital conference in London yesterday.
Here’s the top five things I took away from the experts:
1. “Use small feature set, and large API” Doug Richard
No this was not a reference to our boat captain! API stands for application programming interface, which basically means if Tribewanted had an API – other web developers could build off the back of our website and add new features etc…
What Doug the Dragon is advising here, is that when you start your digital venture, you should focus on not making what you offer complex in terms of features, but allow others to take your basic features and turn them into something much bigger. Twitter is a great example – its feature simply asks: ‘what are you doing?’ The API has turned it into a 1000 new desktop and mobile platforms.
2. “hashtag us to appear on the twitterfall”
hash (# like you find on your mobile) and tag (when you label something online like a picture of your mate on facebook) are used on twitter as a way of creating easy new searches for certain events.
Twitterfall is simply where the hashtag search your looking for will appear in a cascading waterfall effect.
So, at the ‘being digital event’ where I learnt this, the hashtag was #bde, which if you search for on twitter you will see all the comments that were made at yesterdays event by the participants.
Useful? Yes, if you want to track the buzz and feedback around events, no if you want to ignore your audience.
3. “The internet is geographic – its all about the data”
Mobile location technology fascinates me. Using your data connected to your location to discover a place, especially urban areas will continue to grow. Check Rumbble
4. “Twitter was the communication we didn’t realise we needed until it existed.”
Brilliant for networking and getting the news and content you’re interested in fed directly to you. Makes newspapers more and more (apart from looking at nice pictures) obsolete.
5. “Digital ideas: last seen, most loved”
There is a trend, especially in investment into online ventures that the last seen – ie the newest – tends to get the most love, attention, finance. This is fashion, but shows you that you continually need to be ready to keep your content and brand and community moving.
Now back to the real API – our boat captain. He should be here in ten days and I’m sure he won’t be the least bit concerned by any application programming interface. Thank god.
What does all this sexy tech mean for the tribe? Well if we were starting again now I don’t think we would have put as much time and money into building a bespoke community online, and would be focusing more on sharing the sites development (just as we do on Vorovoro) – maybe via an API. Open ID (logging into any social network with one ID) is going to make multiple community memberships a lot easier to manage and allow niche communities like us to hopefully thrive.
I’ve also just re-connected (via Twitter) with global gossip , a travellers internet provider, who are bringing faster services to Fiji. Let’s hope they can help us replace Vodafone’s sluggish service on Vorovoro, or at the very least in Labasa.
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…and finally, if you want to see what the minority report is like in real life then check this amazing film out.