How do you spark excitement about computer programming among preteen girls?
“Make me a Hunger Games arena.”
That’s the challenge Kate Miller presented to a group of middle schoolers during last summer’s Penn Girls in Engineering, Math & Science Camp (GEMS) at the University of Pennsylvania, where Miller is a sophomore bioengineering major.
Using Kodu, a visual programming language from Microsoft Research that makes it easy for students to create games, characters, and landscapes, the girls quickly dived into the task of creating a physical environment that drew on their shared interest in popular culture.
FUSE Labs at Microsoft Research is seeking interns for 2014. For these positions, we are looking for graduate students from Computer Science, Information Science, Design, Media Studies, Social Science, and other fields with a focus on social computing and social media.
FUSE Labs is a research and development lab at Microsoft Research focused on the design, study, and development of socio-technical systems. We are a uniquely multidisciplinary team where you have the opportunity to work with developers, designers, and other researchers interested in building systems and studying them critically. Our goals are to contribute to the academic community as well as to invent the next generation of social technologies. Some of the topics that are currently of interest for FUSE Labs are civic media, creative collaboration, informal learning, communities of interest, hyperlocal media, information visualization, and machine learning applied to social data. That said, we are open to a diversity of methodologies.
Last year, Gilad Lotan and I spent some time analyzing the #YoSoy132 protests in Mexico using data from Twitter. Several articles and even books about #YoSoy132 have come out since. For example, De Mauleón wrote an excellent piece for Nexos (in Spanish) that resembled some of our own analysis. Sadly, Gilad and I got busy and abandoned the project, but after this recent conversation, we decided to dig out our notes and post them here in the event that they might be useful for others.
The rise and fall of the “Mexican Spring”
Exactly a year ago, in December 2012, the newly elected Mexican President Peña Nieto took office amid violent protests. As early as May 2012, a number of massive student protests against the then candidate Peña gained a lot of attention on social media, both inside and outside Mexico. The Occupy movement and the international press called these protests the Mexican Spring for its similarities with other “hashtagged” protests. In our analysis, we only focused on the first few months of the protests. Today, #YoSoy132 is only a shadow of what it was, but during the election it was able to accomplish several important victories, including the organization of an online presidential debate (broadcast on YouTube), and the introduction of the issue of media monopolies and media bias to the forefront of the political discussion.
We focused on the origin and spread of the #YoSoy132 student protests by lookign at Twitter trending topics, follower connections, and the content of the tweets. We found that despite the common assumption that the movement appeared “out of the blue,” after an incident involving a candidate’s visit to a university, we can actually trace the movement’s gestation to several months before the trigger incident. Additionally, we found that despite the attempts to link the movement to traditional political groups, i.e. a political party, the movement actually activated typically disconnected groups of people across the political and class spectrum.
Poster in support of #YoSoy132 posted on the Occupy website
We’re combining two FUSE projects, Socl and Kodu (better together, like peanut butter and chocolate!) Kodu is our newest creation experience on Socl. Besides collages, Picotales, BLINKs, and video parties, you can now invent your own games using a simple, visual programming language. Anyone can create with Kodu, whether you’re a kid or kid at heart! Explore worlds from the community on the Socl Kodu channel.
Motivated by the disappearance of local newspapers, this past summer, we started to explore new ways of supporting community news production through collaborative writing tools. The first incarnation of this is NewsPad, a system for neighborhood communities to collaboratively to report on local events such as festivals and town hall meetings.
One of the first challenges we encountered when testing NewsPad in the wild, was the difficulty of bootstrapping these collective action efforts to produce even lightweight articles in the form of lists, also referred to as listicles.
We decided to explore this challenge using on-demand, location-based labor through TaskRabbit. We were able to produce articles about the events in under an hour, and for less than $100. Here we share some of initial reflections after running a few experiments.
SoDaPop had its first formal meetup on Nov 7. More than 60 people attended to talk about social data and action. People from academia, industry, startups, news media, and government showed up. There were also 8 ignite presentations, wine, cheese, and a lot of fun. The organizers, who came from FUSE Labs and UW, included: Shelly Farnham, Robert Mason, David McDonald, Joshua Blumenstock, and Andres Monroy-Hernandez. Here are 13 things we learned from this lively and multidisciplinary gathering.
Multilingual Interactions through Machine Translation—Numbers from Socl
For the past two years, social media platforms have been rolling out machine translation, enabling multilingual interactions. However, the people interacting in these platforms often know each other already, and have a language in common (i.e., friends). But what happens when machine translation is used to facilitate interactions among strangers, who perhaps have common interests but not a common language?
How often do these types of multilingual interactions occur? Ethan Zuckerman posed a similar question when wondering what the numbers were for machine translations, in the context of a discussion about the challenges of having people pay attention to content outside their immediate reach.
With that in mind, we decided to look into some numbers using data from our own social media platform: Socl, which started offering machine translation since last year. Socl, like Twitter, often brings strangers together who might not speak the same language, example:
This coming Thursday, Ryan Acton, a computational sociology professor at UMass Amherst, is coming to give a talk on his work investigating “digital traces” online. Ryan has been studying network dynamics on websites such as epinions.com, and last.fm. For example, he’s been analyzing group formation around concerts advertised in last.fm and built an R package called scrapeR to collect data directly from R.
Travel awards for students to present civic media projects at the iConference '14 in Berlin
FUSE Labs, in collaboration with the iConference, is offering a $3,000 travel award for each team selected to participate in the 2014 Social Media Expo in Berlin. Teams must be from one of the member institutions. More info here.
The teams need to submit a 4-page paper along with a video, that incorporate user research, design, prototyping, and/or system evaluation around topics such as:
Collecting and evaluating big social data
Statistical/algorithmic work for detecting and summarizing societal patterns
Visualization of societal patterns
Designing for large scale collective action
Supporting emergent, community-based civic activities in addition to direct governmental involvement
Next week we have Alex Schulz from the Technical University of Darmstadt who will giving a talk about his work on using social media data along with machine learning, and semantic dictionaries (i.e., WordNet), to automatically detect small scale incidents, such as car crashes, shootings, and fires.
I saw Alex present a paper co-authored with Petar Ristoski at ICWSM during a really interesting workshop titled When the City Meets the Citizen. In that paper they analyzed Twitter data from Seattle and Memphis. One of their findings was that average citizens (labeled I and blue in the figure below) were often the first to report shootings (53% of the time), much earlier than other people that one would expect such as Emergency Management Organzations (EMO), journalists/bloggers devoted to emergencies (EMJ), general journalists/bloggers, or other types of governmental and non-governmental organizations (ORG).
The 3 things you can learn about your neighborhood using Whooly
Along with my colleagues Shelly Farnham, and Michal Lahav—and our interns Yuheng Hu, Emma Spiro, and Nate Matias—we have been exploring ways of discovering and fostering latent neighborhood information to help people understand what’s happening in their local communities.
As part of this research, we have created Whooly an experimental mobile website that discovers and highlights neighborhood-specific information on Twitter in real-time. The system is focused, for now, on various neighborhoods of the Seattle metro area (King County to be specific). Whooly automatically discovers, extracts and summarizes hyperlocal Twitter content from these communities based on mentions of local neighborhoods and relevant keywords from tweets and profiles. One can think of Whooly as a neighborhood Twitter client.
Talk Announcement — Narrating with Networks: Making Sense of Event Log Data with Socio-Technical Trajectories — Fri 8/16
Brian Keegan is visiting us from Northeastern University to talk about his work studying a wide range of networks: from Wikipedia, to Twitter, to MMGO’s. One of his areas of research that I find most fascinating is the use of network science to understand how people react to breaking news events such as natural disasters, accidents, and crimes. For example, in one of his recent studies, he and his colleagues found that most of the Wikipedia articles about breaking news had a cohesive group of editors that “coalesced” in less than 24 hrs (compared to a year for other types articles!), and these articles attracted journalist-like Wikipedians who specialize in reporting breaking news events. Here is a plot where they showed this:
Breaking news events are in red, articles about recent but non-breaking news events are in blue, and articles about historical events are in green. The x-axis is time and the y-axis is the number of articles in the giant component.
Talk Announcement: Art and Audience Participation - Mon 8/12
Next week, we have Luis Blackaller visiting us from USC and WemoLab. He will be talking about a couple three different awesome projects he has worked on at the intersection of art and social computing:
The Tiny Icon Factory is a tool and gallery for the anonymous creation of black and white low resolution icons. With over 200,000 anonymous and uncensored contributions in under two years, The Tiny Icon Factory is an ongoing exploration of creative expression.
PictureXS was an anonymous picture aggregator. It featured an embedded tracing tool, a self-regulated censorship system, and tags. Before it was turned off in January 2011, PictureXS had collected over 30,000 pictures, 1000 drawings and 500,000 tags, reporting activity from across the world.
OpenStudio (2005 to 2008) was a pioneering experiment in creativity, collaboration & commerce. Participants created and sold artwork in an online marketplace using an embedded drawing tool and virtual currency.
Overcoming the Filter Bubble with User Interface Design
How can we create designs that help us overcome the biases in our awareness of news? Today at Microsoft Research, Elena Agapie talked about political memes and her user interface experiments to measure user bias in what we click. These biases in behaviour sometimes get reinforced by our computer systems to form what Eli Pariser calls The Filter Bubble.
I first got to know Elena during her MS in computer science at Harvard University. Her work in the last few years has focused on:
Making Data Useful: Inspiring Projects from the Microsoft Design Expo 2013
(today we had the Microsoft Design Expo. These livenotes are a raw, as-it-happened record of the presentations)
We live in a world alive with sensors and data. The big data, sensor networks and transparency movements have left us with a supply-side glut of potential useful free data that is lying fallow. How can we use this to improve life, local community and the world at large? Today, the Microsoft Design Expo, part of the annual Faculty Summit, showcased projects along this theme from design students at:
Technische Universiteit (TU) Eindhoven
Carnegie Mellon University
National Institute of Design
Universidad Iberoamericana, Design Department
UCLA, Design Media Arts,
New York University, Interactive Telecommunications Program
More than a million Brazilians have joined protests in over 100 cities throughout Brazil in the past few weeks. Since their early beginning as a “Revolta do Busão” (Bus rebellion) to reduce bus fares, the protests now include a much larger set of issues faced by Brazilian society. Protesters are angry about corruption and inequality. They’re also frustrated about the cost of hosting the upcoming World Cup and Olympic Games in light of economic disparity and lack of high quality basic services. Yesterday, as Brazil defeated Spain to win the Confederations Cup final, police clashed with protesters near Maracana stadium for the second timein two weeks.
Can we augment and enhance crowd behaviour using automated systems?
Hi! I’m Nathan, a summer intern at FUSE from the MIT Media Lab where I’m a PhD student. When we’re not posting adorable Blinks and supercut video parties to So.cl, FUSE is also a research group that asks questions about the future of social experience online.
Two weeks ago, we received a visit from Tim Hwang, who gave a talk on the role that bots may come to play in social networks. Here’s what he shared with us (you can watch the video here).
Socl now offers a set of simple, fun “create experiences” that make it even easier to express and share ideas with people worldwide – from rich visual collages to short animated media and memes, there’s even more ways to create, collect and share stuff you love – on Socl, and other social networks.
Welcoming FUSE Lab's 2013 social computing interns
We are really excited to have a group of five talented graduate students working with us this summer. We explicitly looked to bring people across different disciplines and backgrounds together, from sociology, to digital fabrication, to computer science.
This summer, Emma, Nate, Erin, Yuheng, and Ilwon will be working on projects that relate to the use and design of social technologies to support civic action and community building activities, both online and offline, digital and tangible.
Here’s a bit more about them:
Emma S. Spiro is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of California, Irvine. She studies online communication and information-related behaviors in the context of emergencies and disaster events. Her work also explores the structure and dynamics of interpersonal and organizational networks in both online and offline environments. Emma will be joining the faculty at the University of Washington Information School this coming fall.
J. Nathan Matias is a graduate student at the MIT Media Lab. He collaborates on technology and communities which empower people to become more creative, more effective, and more informed. Coming from a background of tech and charity startups, he currently researches cooperation across diversity at the MIT Center for Civic Media. He also co-facilitates @1book140, The Atlantic’s Twitter book club. (blog) (portfolio)
Erin Smith is a current student at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, focusing on digital fabrication and physical computing. She comes from a background in construction and design for film and television and has a particular interest in sustainable, playful, design. She studied at the Yestermorrow sustainable Design/Build school and has promoted ecological awareness through Isabella Rossellini’s series “Green Porno”, and Al Gore’s “Climate Reality Project.”
Yuheng Hu is a PhD student at Arizona State University. His area of research is computational social science. More specifically, he has developed algorithms and systems to mine, analyze and make sense of large-scale, time-varying, heterogeneous social behavior as manifested via user-generated contents on the web. His current research focuses on how online social activity can be harnessed to support civic engagement. His work has appeared in scientific venues including CHI, ICWSM, AAAI, IJCAI, ICDE, and TKDE..
Ilwon Yoon is a student at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, focusing on designing social platform and mobile app and game development. He comes from a background in fine art, concentrating on storytelling with diverse mediums and the theme of his work explores how online technologies impact on the behavior of people in real life. He is currently working on designing health-related online game that interacts with self-quantified data.
Plan Your Next Dream Vacation with Help from the Socl Community!
Do you ever get the urge to travel around the world? With Socl you can discover new and exotic destinations by creating collages about the places you would like to visit. Let your mind wander and dream big. For instance, one of our community members Barney Pear recently did a collage about Venice, Italy
Discovering Different Perspectives on Socl By Riffing
One of the best features on Socl is riffing. Sometimes when new users come on the site and see a riff, they think it is like a Retweet on Twitter. But it is totally different. Look at it as expanding from an idea. It could be something similar, related or totally different.
Here is one example from a riff between three users on Socl including myself.
Fizaah Faiyaz did a post on “balconies”. It is a very colorful post with beautiful balconies looking from the outside.
Many people talk to their plants. But what if those plants were able to talk back?
That’s the premise behind Botanicalls, a project to enable communications between plants and people. A sensor network provides the flora the ability to call and text people to request assistance, such as “I need water,” or “Not sure if it was you, but someone gave me a drink—I feel great!”
It’s a fascinating, precocious venture, one featured on the TODAY show on May 7 as part of a discussion about home technologies. It’s also a window into the work of Kati London, one of the driving forces behind Botanicalls and the newest member of FUSE Labs at Microsoft Research.
We’re pleased to announce that you can become the moderator of your favorite collections and collect with your friends - Socl collections are sure to be even better than ever!
Now, every collection has at least one moderator who comes from the Socl community. Moderators have the ability to edit the title, description and tags of a collection. Moderators may also remove inappropriate or off topic posts from a collection at their discretion.
You can become a collection moderator in a variety of ways. If you create a “Me” Collection, you are the moderator. You can also invite moderators to join you in contributing to the collection (those invited will receive a notification that they’ve been invited to moderate which they can choose to accept or decline), essentially creating an “Us” Collection.
In the case of “Everyone” Collections, the original creator is designated moderator, but from that point on moderator designation is based on active participation in the collection. Active participants in a collection can eventually replace original moderators based on participation in and contribution to the quality of that collection.
With the addition of Collection Moderators, we are now offering a third type of Collection – “Us” Collections. Now you can invite others to moderate a collection with you; you can also decide if you would like that collection to be visible to everyone or only your co-contributors.
As always, please let us know what you think and happy making!
Today we made it even easier to share the Socl love… Now you can easily share any Socl post to more of your favorite social networks, such as Pinterest and Tumblr.
Simply click “share” at the base of a post you’d like to share… Below and left is a lovely post made by our own Cheri Walters. I used the new share feature to include this post in my Tumblr blog (top right) and on my “Love Love Love” Pinterest Board (bottom left).
For those of you that don’t know, FUSE Labs is also the home of Kodu Game Lab. Kodu is a complete 3D game development environment designed to let kids create their own 3D games. Kodu is built around a custom visual programming language that makes it easy for everyone to learn how to program.
The new version of Kodu includes lots of new features, here’s the highlights:
Touch is now supported as an input method. You can also build games that use touch to control your characters.
We have a bunch of new characters all focused on making water games. Heading the list is Octo. Like a real octopus he can squirt ink and camouflage himself.
Programmable control for some of the world settings: you can now change the sky color and lighting effects via programming. The transitions can either be instant or you can have them happen over time. Whatever works best for your game.
Programmable control of some character settings: you can change a character’s size or max speed on the fly now. Like the world settings you can control how quickly this change happens.
The focus on water characters isn’t by accident. We’re also announcing the Imagine Cup Kodu Challenge where the theme is exploring the relationships between water and people. This is a chance for game developers ages 9 to 18 to compete in a world wide competition. Oh, and the winners get some cash, too.
For the Socl faithful, we thought we’d create a brief Q and A regarding the Spring 2013 release.
What happened to Interests?
Socl Interests have been merged into Collections. Collections can now be curated by an group (formerly Interest) or an individual.
I can’t find a Collection for one of the Interests I followed - what happened?
It is possible that the Interest did not meet the activity level required to be merged into a Collection or was not in keeping with the Socl terms of service. If you feel an Interest is missing in error, please let us know via Socl Public Feedback and we’ll look into it.
How do I tag posts now?
Tagging of posts is now done at the collection level. All the posts in a collection now carry the same consistent tags, aiding our ability to surface related content in the other parts of Socl and reducing the chance of tag misuse.
What are some of the other new features in the Spring 2013 release of Socl?
For a summary of the Spring 2013 release, see our blog post announcing the update.
…we partnered with Microsoft Research’s FUSE Labs, creators of a Bing-powered technology called So.cl, and built a special area of this research platform for TEDActive attendees, available at TED.so.cl. Here, conference-goers can assemble images, research links, videos, and text into collages that express their reactions and associations around the TED Talks. Once completed, attendees can share their collages not only with those at the conference, but with anyone who wishes to view the real-time, online feed.
Well over 100 Socl collages have been posted thus far… We at FUSE Labs are delighted by this novel use of Socl and hope you enjoy the posts!
Profile Settings, Invite Friends & Useful Links On Socl
Recently, Brianna Camarda, one of our Community Managers, shared some of the new features on Socl. Today, I am going to go over some of the settings and links that are located right below your avatar or your profile image. To access, simply hover over your picture on the top right corner. You will then see a drop down menu.
Clicking on "me" will show all the posts you have created and will show the URL of your user. This is useful if you want to share the link to any of your friends as an easy way to find you on Socl.
"Sign out" is simply logging out.
"Settings" will lead you to a page to add an avatar picture or change to a different one than your Facebook picture if you logged in with Facebook. All you need to do is copy paste the URL or highlight the link of the image and click on CTRL C where the image is stored, then CTRL V in the space provided on Socl. For example, I uploaded my avatar to Photobucket, a free image editing and storage site. You can use any other one you like. It is better not to use a link that has used a URL shortener.
The nickname is what will appear as the name on your posts. This can be changed at any time and is different than the URL of your profile when you click “me”.
Below that, create a short description about you like your interests, what you work in or where you live. This really helps to gain followers easily. Finally, one of the new features is the ability to add links from your other social networks including your website.
"About" is a great resource page that includes frequently asked questions, including screenshots of many of the features offered like riffing, video parties, interests and collections.
"Help" will provide you with links to this blog and to the interest “socl tips” which we have tagged many posts to answer many of your questions. If you find “socl tips” overwhelming, type “getting started” on the Interest tab for more beginner tips.
"Terms" is the agreement between you and Microsoft Corporation that you agreed to when signing up for using Socl.
"Privacy" is Microsoft Socl privacy statement.
"Invite" leads you to a link to invite your friends to join Socl via Facebook, Twitter or Email.
And finally, “socl bookmarklet" leads you to a page with instructions on how to add the bookmarklet so you can easily share articles, news or any links on Socl. As a tip, when you do share a link, take the time to add a commentary below the link and tell the community why you are sharing that link. Just adding link after link to your profile without engagement or commentary is not the best way to get interaction on Socl.
In the same way, when you share a collage, adding your commentary enhances your post even if it is a few words. You can see my post about this tip here.
I hope you truly enjoy your experience on Socl and look forward to seeing your creative posts! And if at any time you get stuck, feel free to ask the community. Someone is usually there to assist you.
One of the best things that I enjoy about Socl is the discovery of new things. Today I posted a collage of people with painted red faces. It turned out that one of the images was about an Indian Ritual dating back 1000 years.(See image bottom left.)
Now, I would have never known about this ritual unless this a member of the Socl community from India, Vattavila, pointed it out.
And he created a post about the ritual called Theyyam which he says embraces almost all of the caste systems in India. I thought that was super interesting!
So today I learned more about the Indian history and culture through my random posting of red painted faces. That is Socl, a place to be surprised and discover through not only your search, but by other users knowledge. And with all the cultures from around the world who are online all the time on Socl, we have great perspectives in a flash.
It has been really great to see how Socl users have taken ownership of their community. The site is designed to be intuitive, but just like any new experience it helps if there is someone around to give a little tour. As a community manager my favorite moments are helping new users achieve their first "a-ha"Socl moments, but nothing gives me greater pride than seeing a how-to post created by one of our very own community members Adam Rifai.
“Off the Radar” - Social Computing Symposium 2013 Videos
Last week we held our ninth annual Social Computing Symposium on the topic: “Off the Radar.” Inspired by Clive Thompson’s closing talk from 2012, we focused on populations and topics we forget to discuss, often hiding in plain sight. Our goal with the event is to bring together a small group of diverse people to help inspire and shed light on novel ideas and trends in the area of social.
& thanks to the stellar folks who made this all happen: danah Boyd, Liz Lawley, Clay Shirky, Brady Forrest, Clive Thompson, Tom Coates, Anil Dash, Gabriella Coleman, John Borthwick, Baratunde Thurston, Tricia Wang and NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Department.
We only wish we could include more people, so sharing out the recorded videos of many of the presentations. Here are all the talks, some really amazing ones- and the agenda below. Enjoy!
Take Your Discovery to the Next Level - How to Use Socl Interests in 5 Easy Steps
Socl Interests allow you to deepen your connection with the people and ideas that matter most to you. In this post you will learn how to use Socl Interests in five easy steps. Let’s get started!
1. Socl Interests defined
Socl Interests are public groups organized around post content. When you create a post, all you have to do is tag it with an interest name (an existing interest, or a new one you start). Your post will then be added to that Interest. Some of the popular interests on Socl are dreams, music, photography, math in nature and best of socl.
2. Tag your Interests
First create a collage post using the green post creator tool bar at the top of your page. You will see that I created a post on Van Gogh, and then tagged it as art. Because I have tagged my post as art it will now be added to the Art Interest Page. Simple.
3. Access your Interests
To view the Interests you follow simply:
4. Search the Interests of others
Want to learn about another person’s Interests? Simply visit their profile, then click on their Interests tab located under their avatar. This is especially useful when determining if you would like to follow someone. You will see in the above example that I have visited Brianna’s profile and can now click on her personal Interests tab.
5. Access the Interests of the entire Socl community
You can also click Interests in the main navigation at any time to access all available Socl Interests. I find this especially useful when trying to think of new ideas for my next collage post. I also find new and interesting people this way.
Your passions are unique and exciting and we want to help you celebrate them. We hope you enjoy Socl Interests!
Have you ever received a postcard scrawled with a joyful “wish you were here”? Consider this blog post just such an invitation. After the unveiling of the latest and greatest version of Socl earlier this month, we definitely wish you were here (if you aren’t already).
Before there was social networking or status updates there were postcards. Back in the not-so-distant past, to convey a quippy visual sentiment to friends and family meant writing a few lines on the back of a stamped picture and sending it via post. Of course, now we have sites like Socl to serve as a kind of modern day postcard, albeit a much faster and more dynamic version. Now Socl lets users build posts from many different sources easily and elegantly, as this “postcard” from Nikos (comprised of vintage Holiday postcards) demonstrates.
There are many seasonally inspired conversations happening on the new Socl. Come share your story.
We’re excited to provide you with a new way to express yourself on Socl – Collections.
Collections are personally curated sets of posts. To create a collection, simply:
click on ‘collect’ at the base of any post
give the collection a name (or add the post to one of your existing collections)
view your collections from your Me page
You can create as many collections as you like, and of course you can follow collections created by others. You’re the curator! What will you collect today? We can’t wait to see…and as always, let us know what you think.
We recently rolled out a ‘fresh’ Socl. Many changes were made to the design of Socl, in large part due to feedback received from you - the Socl community. Over the coming days we’ll be highlighting a few of the more notable changes, starting today with some options available on the “Me” page.
On your Me page, you’ll find quick and easy ways to connect with other Socl’izers and see new messages and follows. From the “people” tab on your Me page you can use the filter bar to easily see who you follow, who’s following you, and find your facebook friends - if they’re not on Socl yet, why not invite them?
Another helpful tab found on your Me page is the “conversations” tab. Here you can keep track of ongoing conversations with other users and engage in a deeper dialogue that extends over time. You can use the filter bar to move between seeing only exchanged messages or your conversations (which include all your activity around posts, such as likes and comments as well). It’s exciting to see how conversations unfold.
If you find yourself inspired to make a post based on some insightful message, you can “riff” off the conversation right from this page, as happened here with Wall-e's message.
We’re excited to know what you think! Come give the new Socl a whirl and let us know your feedback. Watch this space for more tours of the new UI coming later this week! We’ve got lots to show you.
As you may know, Socl began as an experiment in social search for students and learning. Over the past several months, we’ve watched Socl evolve into a place where people connect over shared interests expressed through beautiful post collages.
We appreciate your continued feedback which is helping us to gain more insight every day and improve how we can all communicate, learn and share our everyday lives. We’ve been busy redesigning Socl to match how you’re using it, and starting today, we’d like you to give the new Socl a spin at www.so.cl and let us know what you think.
Socl is a website with users from all across the globe. The site does have an in-line translation feature, but what makes a joke funny often times doesn’t lend itself to jumping languages easily. Either you get it or you don’t.
That’s exactly what happened in a post by Marc on Socl. Even he was at a loss for words (in English) as to why the image he was sharing from a Dutch insurance company was funny.
As I was looking at the picture, a sudden flash of childhood memory came back to me involving an old holiday tradition centered around reindeer visiting for the holidays. I did a bit of Socl searching and discovered my memory was about a Dutch tradition called Sinterklass. My mother’s family is part Dutch, and as a child our family would align our shoes by the door and fill them with carrots on the night of December 4th. The next morning, the carrots would be gone - or left with big bite marks in them - and small presents would appear! Of course I shared my findings in a Socl post.
From an esoteric Dutch-centric humorous picture straight to reconnecting with family traditions. This is what I love about Socl. It moves just as a great conversation does, navigating through time and space, connected by threads as wild and innovative as imagination itself. Come discover what waits to be remembered on Socl.
En este tutorial, les muestro como agregar un enlace en una entrada en Socl con varias fotos del enlace. En la parte donde digo “hago click” en 1:16 minutos del video, estoy refieriendo al ingreso en el teclado.
American Thanksgiving is right around the corner. It’s the time of year when people dust off those “famous family recipes” for mimosa salad, potatoes au gratin, creamed onions and mashed potatoes. And, I’m sure some of us still serve canned cranberries at the holiday table, no matter how fancy and labor intensive all the other dishes end up. The image is so iconic, much like a de-frocked Warhol soup can. I decided to make a Socl post exploring this shape.
It struck me that people probably don’t know how easy it is to make delicious home made cranberry sauce. There really is no need to serve the canned cranberry jelly, unless your family is fond of it for nostalgic reasons. Making your own cranberry sauce is ridiculously simple. You can make it days ahead of time and keep it in the refrigerator. It only takes about ten minutes on the stove. My favorite versions include citrus zest, kumquats, and spiced apple cider instead of water. It’s a slightly modified version of the recipe found at myrecipes.com. I riffed of the canned jelly post to share with the Socl community the difference between store bought and home made.
Click the image above to be transported to the post, read my favorite cranberry sauce recipe, and hopefully share some of your favorite Thanksgiving recipes with the Socl community!
Aqui les presento unos consejos para mejorar su perfil en Socl. Es importante para que otros usuarios puedan conocerlos mas y como Socl es una red social, ayuda para conseguir mas seguidores y en la interacción.
Hot Dialog, Cool Colors- Help Create the Longest Riff Conversation on Socl
An exciting Riffing conversation is happening right now on Socl, which you are cordially invited to join! I will fill you in on what’s happened so far, and hope to find you on Socl adding your voice to the ongoing exchange.
Breakfast, the first meal of the day. You may not be all the way awake yet, you might eat it on the run, or sitting at the kitchen table waiting for the coffee to kick in. It is the meal that’s widely viewed as the foundation of the day, but now it seems that it can be the most magical and whimsical of all the meals as well. Check out this clever Socl post by user Cédric Hoareau
Surrealism + Cereal = Cerealism! These photographs let us imagine breakfast in a whole new light. Here is another post on the same subject by Jim Buchan
It seems that every time I explore Socl I find new artistic examples of what can happen when we think outside the box…the cereal box in this case! Come poke around on Socl and see what other clever re-awakenings our users are coming up with.
Riff en Socl es expander una idea con una similar o en cualquier forma creativa que le venga a su mente. En este video les muestro como hacer un Riff. La entrada la pueden ver aqui: Fotografia Blanco y Negra
I have a confession to make. I’m a total wine geek. I love meeting wine makers and listening to them talk passionately about their craft. I love how the nuance of region and climate can intimately affect the taste of the wine in your glass. I also enjoy reaching out to the Socl community to gain wine knowledge, because many people on Socl live close to some of the world’s most exciting wine regions.
I had a conversation this past week with João Castelo from Portugal. João began with a post about food which quickly led into a discussion about Port wine.
We also talked about local Portuguese foods, the Duoro region, and our favorite wine producers.
I’ve dreamed of visiting the steep terraces of the Duoro but have yet to visit. Talking to someone who has been there helped create a new connection for me to one of the most stunning vineyard sites in the world.
Socl hosts regular discussions about wine if you would like to join the conversation. Make sure to tag your posts with ‘wine’ and follow the wine interest group by typing in ‘wine’ in the Search Interests bar in the left-hand column.
Over the past few weeks, Socl has been abuzz with chatter about electing the next president of the United States. Well, today is the big day and voters are sharing their experiences and feelings throughout the process! The interest group “US Elections" is in full swing. I created a post sharing my personal feelings on the whole situation:
It’s not my first time at the rodeo, and I know how stressful it can be to spend the day watching results roll in. Voting is an important part of a democratic process, and I sometimes worry we don’t participate enough as a collective. You can imagine my relief and joy when I checked the newsfeed a short time ago and saw this post from first time voter and Socl user Elizabeth Thiry:
From one voter to another, I thank you Elizabeth for reminding me that we are all in this together. Now if you will excuse me, I have some lipstick to go put on. :-)
Free association exercises are a great way to get creative energy flowing on new or existing ideas. Giving your mind permission to map connections without having to logically account for why can be a powerful tool in any creative discipline. No matter what medium you create in, sometimes ideas just need a little wiggle room to come to life in a space where logic and judgment are forced to sit down and be quiet for a spell. Socl is just such a space! By using the “riff” feature you can create a string of ideas that can flow endlessly and effortlessly, with input from other creative users. For example, take this post titled “hacking” that uses the classic Matrix image:
That image inspired user 塩之入 太 to riff with this delightful collection of imagery:
We just jumped between two seemingly dissimilar worlds, yet through the simple and immediate power of imagery we are shown exactly where the connection lies. Binary data streams and bamboo forests, who knew you had so much in common!
Giving ourselves this kind of creative license can spark new ideas or give life to old concepts gathering dust on the shelf. Socl is the perfect whiteboard for mapping new creative territory. Go riff crazy, create as many as you wish, be tangential and wild. Don’t worry about keeping track of where things are going or where they came from, because at the end of the creative session you can click “view all riffs” and map it all back from start to finish. Getting lost in the creative world of riffing on Socl could be just the thing you need to find that next inspiration.
How the Socl Community has United Against Hurricane Sandy
This has been a monumental week for our Socl friends living on the US East Coast. They have braved Hurricane Sandy, aka Frakenstorm, with tremendous courage. Many are still without power, but the Socl community has created a collection of well wishes, images and news coverage by using the interest page feature in anticipation for their return.
To add to the discussion, use the tag feature when creating your posts. The tag for this topic is ‘hurricanesandy’ - all one word. Be sure to check back to the Explore Page often to catch the latest trending topics.
We look forward to the return of our East Coast friends on Socl once they’ve regained power, and hope they are doing well. Until then, they are in our thoughts and prayers.
How Socl is Spreading the Love and Breaking Down Cultural Barriers
Several years ago while living in France I asked my Parisian friends to name the first thing that came to mind when thinking about the United States. The words most of them used were ‘big military power’. I find that to be sad- there are so many wonderful, amazing people living in this country. Though, I would probably think the same if I was in their shoes. I know because I’ve been led to believe certain things about other cultures due to the narrow focus of the media, and I’m thrilled to look beyond these boundaries.
I celebrated my birthday last week and Mohsen Sadeghi from Tehran, Iran was kind enough to wish me a happy birthday. What a gift! Without Socl, this interaction would likely not have happened due to the tumultuous history our two countries have shared.
Socl helps breaks down the walls that divide us, and opens the possibility to let our commonalities shine. What part of the world would you like to reach out to? We hope to see you on Socl soon!