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May 12, 2006
Social Science and Design Questions
Last week Liz organized the Microsoft Research Social Computing Symposium. I shared some raw notes here, and here is a good gaming summary, but most of the activity was in a private Socialtext wiki. Among other things, Clay and danah held a session on the lingering questions in our field. This should tease out what work is already done or in progress, but I thought they may be thought provoking at the least:
Social Science Questions
* How can we measure the success of different types of online communities, and their survival and prodictivity and various criteria?
* Coates: which community software is more successful in which environments?
* What are the boundry conditions for mobile and pervasive (social) computing systems?
* To what extend, in what ways, at what rate/time scal will mobile and/or pervasive systems change the way humans interact socially?
* Do natives of social media systems have a different notion of themselves as individuals and abour their relation to broader social groups?
* What are the mechanisms that cause people to act, mark up, buy or sell bits they care about online?
* What tips people to try something, what’s enough to bring value?
* Does the “regular public” want to connect with people othey do not know? (outside the context of dating)
* What level of visual representation of the body is necessary to trigger mirror neurons
* Are the online community members of tomorrow going to be more or less participatory than today’s? And why?
* What impact do computer/video games have on the everyday habits and routines of the gamers?
* Is society becoming more or less individualized?
* How can we use the computational ability of our machines to transform communication?
* How can we get access to behavioral (server logs) and attitudinal data (survey data) from large scale worlds?
* What elements of MMOG can be adapted to web applications?
* How can we build virtual worlds/spaces where we can operate parallel servers with slightly variable rulesets?
* … so that we can change one experimental condition and obverve the response by the inhabitants?
* What are the barriers to contributing to social group ointeraction (social bookmarking, wikis)?
* …What are the steps to mitigate the barriers?
* How do we make memories portable?
* How do we use social judgement to surfae what your peers care or are interested in? What the crowd is interested in?
* How can communities support veterans going off topic together an new commers seeking topical information and connections?
What lingering questions do you have for possible research?
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