Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Harry Trott, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Stackify Blog

Related Topics: Agile Computing

Agile Computing: Article

i-Technology Viewpoint: What Are the Drivers of Social Software's Success?

Is social software more powerful than any other form of software, and if so why?

Have you subscribed yet to Dion Hinchcliffe's "Web 2.0 Blog"? Just in case you haven’t, let me say that it's a weblog very much worth while subscribing to. In a recent post for example Dion writes that it's time we start understanding the “exact underlying reasons why [social software] is so compelling” if we would want to apply it to the business world.

Check out the graphic he has shared because it will certainly help understand a thing or two. At the end of his piece, Dion asked an open question: “Do you think network effects will make social software more powerful than any other form of software?“

I thought I would venture to give my own take in trying to help find a good answer to his great question.

The short answer is: Yes, I very much think so - I think that the network effect will cause social software to eventually take over most of whatever other forms of software that may be out there.

My reasons for thinking this will happen are threefold. All three are related to those network effects as key components to make it all work out the way it was first envisioned:

Passion: There's no doubt that passion is, perhaps, one of the key network effect components that will seduce more and more people into trying out new social software, especially once it has been proven that it works from a personal perspective because then it is ready to go into the business world. In one of the comments to Dion's blog referenced above, there is talk of having reached a critical mass and I would agree with that. One of the best ways to boost and increase that critical mass is just by augmenting the passion some of those folks already have, so that it becomes contagious to get busy using that social software. That is what has happened to most of the Web 2.0 offerings that are out there, growing really fast at the moment. They are passionate about using that offering and even more they are sharing that passion with others. That would be a key connector to the business world.

Trust: This is the other most significant component of every network effect. Ee are all social creatures, but we are social creatures who need to create bonds with those around us in order to benefit from those social connections the most. One of the best ways of doing that is by having enough trust built up across the board and help spreading it around as widely as possible.

We all know that in every working business environment people are more willing to share what they know if they have a sense of trust of those with whom they are going to collaborate closer. And there's no denying that one of the most powerful options to help build up on the trust skills is by making use of social capital. In short: Social Software again. Examples so relatively simple as using different icebreakers, sharing favourite links, pictures, music, podcasts, etc. are just a few of the capabilities that social software is putting together and which help increase trust in whatever the business environment.

Involvement: Finally, to make it all work and to make social software more powerful than any other form of software, we would need to ensure that people are motivated and involved enough to want to make a difference. To want to come out, stand up and share what they know, because they actually want to do it and not because they may have been told to do so or because they may be getting in return whatever the incentive. Involvement is one other key element that will help people understand that through their passion and trust in each other they can let themselves go and get further involved with the task at hand - sharing what they know and collaborating with each other.

More Stories By Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez is an Education Specialist working in the
Community Building programme from Business Consulting Services, Learning
and Knowledge, IBM Netherlands. He has been involved with Knowledge
Management for the last six years and has developed a passion for
everything that relates to Knowledge Management and related tools,
Communities of Practice, Remote Collaboration, Social Networking and
related tools including Web 2.0 / social software. You can read and find
out much more by heading over to either one of his Internet weblogs:
http://www.elsua.net (elsua - A KM Blog) or
http://blogs.ittoolbox.com/km/elsua (elsua - The Knowledge Management
Blog).

Comments (4) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
DataPoint 03/11/06 07:25:01 AM EST

Wikipedia reminds us that the term "social software" also arose in the late nineties to describe software emerging out of alliances between programmers and social groups whose particular kinds of cultural intelligence are locked out of mainstream software.

[from Wikipedia]
"In this understanding of the term, the social is understood to also have a political and aesthetic sense, not simply acting as a kind of glue for a collection of normatively understood 'agents' whose inter-relations are formatted by software. What both positions share is an understanding that particular design decisions and the grammar of interactions made possible by each piece of software is socially significant.

As the term has become more important to the computer industry, this earlier use of the term has often been edited out of memory."

Social Software 03/09/06 07:52:14 AM EST

Anyone seen Clay Shirky's Clay grid relating increasing community freedom on the X-axis and increasing annoyingness (suscepitiblity to common group problems) on the Y? The curve was steep and sudden. As freedom grows, so does trouble.

He proposes development of a pattern language - a tool adopted from architecture for describing issues and strategies or problems and solutions without being overcontrolled.

Social Software 03/09/06 07:52:01 AM EST

Anyone seen Clay Shirky's Clay grid relating increasing community freedom on the X-axis and increasing annoyingness (suscepitiblity to common group problems) on the Y? The curve was steep and sudden. As freedom grows, so does trouble.

He proposes development of a pattern language - a tool adopted from architecture for describing issues and strategies or problems and solutions without being overcontrolled.

Web20 Is Here 03/09/06 06:47:02 AM EST

The three reasons are spot-on. Passion is all too rarely mentioned as a driver, yet it's probably the key one.

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that DXWorldExpo has been named “Global Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation is the key issue driving the global enterprise IT business. Digital Transformation is most prominent among Global 2000 enterprises and government institutions.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Me...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Secure Channels, a cybersecurity firm, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Secure Channels, Inc. offers several products and solutions to its many clients, helping them protect critical data from being compromised and access to computer networks from the unauthorized. The company develops comprehensive data encryption security strategie...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sudarshan Krishnamurthi, a Senior Manager, Business Strategy, at Cisco Systems, discussed how IT and operational technology (OT) work together, as opposed to being in separate siloes as once was traditional. Attendees learned how to fully leverage the power of IoT in their organization by bringing the two sides together and bridging the communication gap. He also looked at what good leadership must entail in order to accomplish this, and how IT managers can be the ...
Recently, WebRTC has a lot of eyes from market. The use cases of WebRTC are expanding - video chat, online education, online health care etc. Not only for human-to-human communication, but also IoT use cases such as machine to human use cases can be seen recently. One of the typical use-case is remote camera monitoring. With WebRTC, people can have interoperability and flexibility for deploying monitoring service. However, the benefit of WebRTC for IoT is not only its convenience and interopera...
There is only one world-class Cloud event on earth, and that is Cloud Expo – which returns to Silicon Valley for the 21st Cloud Expo at the Santa Clara Convention Center, October 31 - November 2, 2017. Every Global 2000 enterprise in the world is now integrating cloud computing in some form into its IT development and operations. Midsize and small businesses are also migrating to the cloud in increasing numbers. Companies are each developing their unique mix of cloud technologies and service...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
SYS-CON Events announced today that App2Cloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. App2Cloud is an online Platform, specializing in migrating legacy applications to any Cloud Providers (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud).
IoT is at the core or many Digital Transformation initiatives with the goal of re-inventing a company's business model. We all agree that collecting relevant IoT data will result in massive amounts of data needing to be stored. However, with the rapid development of IoT devices and ongoing business model transformation, we are not able to predict the volume and growth of IoT data. And with the lack of IoT history, traditional methods of IT and infrastructure planning based on the past do not app...
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. Jack Norris reviews best practices to show how companies develop, deploy, and dynamically update these applications and how this data-first...
Intelligent Automation is now one of the key business imperatives for CIOs and CISOs impacting all areas of business today. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Brian Boeggeman, VP Alliances & Partnerships at Ayehu, will talk about how business value is created and delivered through intelligent automation to today’s enterprises. The open ecosystem platform approach toward Intelligent Automation that Ayehu delivers to the market is core to enabling the creation of the self-driving enterprise.
Internet-of-Things discussions can end up either going down the consumer gadget rabbit hole or focused on the sort of data logging that industrial manufacturers have been doing forever. However, in fact, companies today are already using IoT data both to optimize their operational technology and to improve the experience of customer interactions in novel ways. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Gordon Haff, Red Hat Technology Evangelist, shared examples from a wide range of industries – including en...
Consumers increasingly expect their electronic "things" to be connected to smart phones, tablets and the Internet. When that thing happens to be a medical device, the risks and benefits of connectivity must be carefully weighed. Once the decision is made that connecting the device is beneficial, medical device manufacturers must design their products to maintain patient safety and prevent compromised personal health information in the face of cybersecurity threats. In his session at @ThingsExpo...
"We're a cybersecurity firm that specializes in engineering security solutions both at the software and hardware level. Security cannot be an after-the-fact afterthought, which is what it's become," stated Richard Blech, Chief Executive Officer at Secure Channels, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Massive Networks mission is simple. To help your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions. Improve your customer's experience with outstanding connections to your cloud.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Grape Up will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company specializing in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the U.S. and Europe, Grape Up works with a variety of customers from emergi...
Detecting internal user threats in the Big Data eco-system is challenging and cumbersome. Many organizations monitor internal usage of the Big Data eco-system using a set of alerts. This is not a scalable process given the increase in the number of alerts with the accelerating growth in data volume and user base. Organizations are increasingly leveraging machine learning to monitor only those data elements that are sensitive and critical, autonomously establish monitoring policies, and to detect...
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution and join Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader, Sergey Grebnov, in his session at @ThingsExpo, for an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
Because IoT devices are deployed in mission-critical environments more than ever before, it’s increasingly imperative they be truly smart. IoT sensors simply stockpiling data isn’t useful. IoT must be artificially and naturally intelligent in order to provide more value In his session at @ThingsExpo, John Crupi, Vice President and Engineering System Architect at Greenwave Systems, will discuss how IoT artificial intelligence (AI) can be carried out via edge analytics and machine learning techn...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...