Three adoption patterns for educational social software

I've been reading and thinking a lot lately about how to drive more adoption of the social learning platform I'm building here at BYU, https://island.byu.edu, and wanted to summarize some of the highlights of what I've learned. All of the patterns come directly from Ross Mayfield and Michael Idinopulos's writings so a big shout out to the great work they're doing at Socialtext.

Pattern 1: Launch Broad then Deep

Deploying Social Software in Universities: Go Broad then Deep

Michael Idinopolus wrote an intriguing post over on his excellent blog yesterday titled "Enterprise 2.0: Skip the Pilot."

I thought I'd repeat some of his arguments because it agrees nicely with an argument I've been formulating lately regarding deployment strategy for social learning software within higher education.

But first to his article:

In social media there's not one right answer

Great blog post that explores the advantages and disadvantages of different social media structures.

He explores when you want to follow ideas (when the community is small) or people (when the community is too big to follow everything).

He discusses the search/browse debate and concludes you need both. Different people tend toward one style or the other but both are needed for different purposes. Search is fast and takes you straight to content you're interested in. Browse, on other hand, tends to be slower but helps you understand the context and organization of the content better.

Drupal Memetracker Module -- My Google Summer of Code Application

Executive Summary

I propose to write two modules for Drupal as part of Google Summer of Code. One called memetracker and the other called machinelearningapi. The memetracker module will use algorithms in the machinelearningapi to intelligently filter and group content from designated content sources both internal and external. The module's purpose is to find and display to a community in real time the most interesting conversations and memes within the community as they emerge.