Brian Lamb - Wide Open Spaces Notes

Wide Open Spaces

-in '99, Berners-Lee looks back over prev decade and laments cuz wanted Web to be interactive space where everybody can edit

-started saying 'interactive' and then read in media that "Web was great cuz was 'interactive'"…only meant could click button

-Berners-Lee meant something else.

-glorified TV channel.

-Berners-Lee thought people would browse web pages and edit them as part of process.

-now have read-only web browsers - his idea didn't fizzle - is more active than ever

-Web /in Web

-anarchic breed of pages - 'wikis'

-(my n.- opinion - difficulty w/ reading/topics and no where to go for answers - deleted).


1. anyone can change anything - quick

-reading and editing combined.

-signature of wiki - link at bottom, "Edit text of this page."

2. Wikis use simplified hypertext markup.

-HTML stripped to simplest elements.

-linking is simple.

3. Wiki page titles mashed together.

-allow for quick page creation and automatic, markup-free links between pages.

-promotes more linking.

4. Content is ego-less, time-less and never finished. (tad bit of bullshit here)

-anonymity not required but is common

-page ownership/authorship radically altered.

-content cloning - acceptable.

-not organized chronolog like blogs - organized by content, by links in and out

-entries unpolished and w/ gaps

-wikis fall on continuum of these.


-wide-open ethic contrasts big time w/ traditional standard groupware and collaborative systems.

-access restriction, rigidly defined workflows and structures anathema to wiki developers.

-shared online sketchpads

-spaces for brainstorming

-perpetually updated lists/collections of links

-informal bulletin board

-aggregate - gravel pit.

-manage projects (U of British Columbia) and meetings

-Career services - store and organize content for majro new job posting and career development site.

-planning technoculture conference

-to teach grad course on technologies for writing.

-users decided for themselves how wiki would fulfill objectives.

-open systems - beyond departmental or organizational limits.

-Smart Genes - open sourced novel - accepts best edits and suggestions into published novel.

-THE STANDARD OBJECTION - editing is quarreling w/ writers.

-if can edit my text, can ruin it.

-Soft Security - analogy - doors to homes all unlocked and any can enter - no robbing cuz neighbors all out on porches to visit,gossip.

-soft security relies on community instead technology to enforce order.

-analogy to water - bends under attack and rushes in from all sides. -influence and encourage, not control/enforce -strong over time, but adaptable to any shape.

-open environment encourages participation and strong sense of common purpose.

-ratio fixers to breakers is high.

Shirky - wiki in hands healthy community works -wiki in hands of indifferent community fails.

-blathering and shit about conflicts on wikipedia. -i hate this writer - point is that evolution toward stability, in spite of hot contention over points, tends to happen.

-wiki has little trouble remaining stable as long as people see value in existence of it.

-use other things besides soft security to protect - can be hosted from behind firewall.

-password protection, private spaces, IP banning, and other hard security.

-so, first objections are lack of hard security and lack of privacy.

-next is typical absence of explicit organizing structure.

-most accustomed to hierarchical organization and directed navigation - 'where is everything?-

-feel lost -

-supposed to be way they are - blather about sacrifice user functionality when design creates function. I hate this shit.

Wikis are ugly - cool to do ridiculously easy collaborative document editing - but, still effin' ugly.

-blah, blah….wide-open, anything-goes spirit of wikis evokes original spirit of I-net?????-you mean the I-net that was first developed by the government as a security measure and was controlled by the deparment of defense??? THAT original spirit???

-ugly makes people go away cuz is boring.

-true - writing is boring - writing is not what I am wired to do. -not my skill-set- not my talent - is hard, hard, work that takes huge effort and does NOT offer me any sort of aesthetic/creative satisfaction.

-can use CSS - cascading style sheets to dress them up more.

-Wikis at the U's - WikiFish at Auburn U.

-student based wiki as method of checks and balances.

-hard-assed, rebellious ambiance/reputation with main page that says, those who do not wish to "edit, erase, enhance, beautify, dullify, nullify, derange, arrange, or simply change" wiki space should accept the fact that they will always be complacent and easily controlled.

-most common use is to support writing instruction.

-teaching of writing skills???? in a class of those majoring in writing? dream on….

-promote close reading, revision and tracking of drafs

-discourage product oriented writing..whatever

-ease students into writing for public consumption.

-bingo…..I'm never doing that.

-wrong class for me!!!!!!!

-"blah, blah….foster development of writing skills - and also prove to be invaluable for teaching rhetoric of emergent technologies -

teach network literacy.

-writing in distributed, collaborative environment.

-when the hell am I gonna write in a distributed, collaborative environment? never.

-jolt students outta conventional individualistic, closed writing of essays only ever seen by prof's.

-tracking work done on a wiki is logistical nightmare.

-for wiki to work, participants need to be in control of content.

-gotta give it over fully

-challenging social norms and practices of the course.

-Lamb blathers - so, to be effective, teacher has to back off. Then, cannot actually tell who contributes and how…but, still enthralled with the wiki as a teaching tool.

-could be, it works, I'm simply beyond giving a shit after wading through all of this.

-wikis in higher ed threatened by intellectual property issues -

-Public Domain policy says that any contributor to wiki space surrenders all copyright.

-Primarily public domain - assumes public domain policy unless individ says otherwise.

-copy left - others can use content and make derivative works - but all copies and works released under same license as original.

-Second Copyright Impossibility Theorem - 'every copyright policy will be incompatible w/ at least one other copyright policy in at least one direction. Will happen even when all parties desire copyright policies to be compatible.

Technical considerations - as users apply more and more, come to depend on wiki.

-increase in user expectations.

-site crash and haven't backed up info.

-only one piece -

the relative simplicity, empowered users, bottom-up organization -

-also describes other technologies.

-blogs, communities linked by RSS