Structured Blogging,The “ Lesson”, Personal Datamining and The Knowledge Commons
December 27th, 2005

There is a lot of discussion going on in the “blogosphere” about the Structured Blogging.

The idea behind Strucutred Blogging is to make a set of standards for RSS and blog software. Here is an article describing this:

Structured blogging is an initiative to add structure to blog posts of similar content. For example, let’s say that I write a review of a piece of software on my WordPress blog and someone else writes a review in their Movable Type blog. Not only are these two posts structured differently, with the blogging platforms writing different code, but each tool has customizable templates so that the blogger can write any code they want. So even though the content is nearly the same, the probability that the code in the end results looks anything similiar is very small.

Joe Reger has also injected the idea, based upon his “datablogging” concepts, that:

In light of the two general types of data that we can log…There’s a whole set of value for bloggers centered not on the network effect… not on community… not on Web 2.0 mashups. Value centered on personal data mining.

Josh Bokardo calls this the “ Lesson“. This seems to be a natural extension of Danah Boyd’s ideas about “glocalization“. This is also very much in line with the “WebAssistant Telecommunity” approach as well.

The basic idea being that data gathering and contextualization tools start focus on the individual personal level, and that meta-data can then be aggregated from all of these individuals.

This is very close to the aggregation ideas that Surowiecki talked about in his book The Wisdom of Crowds: Aggregating knowledge, data, information, etc., from diverse group of individuals, who are working mostly seperately.

“Datamining” ourselves “democratizes” tools that were previously cost prohibitive for most people. They can also make it easier for many more people to contribute more effectively to a general “knowledge commons”. The idea of creating databases about different aspects of ourselves has actually been around for a while. Part of the core of Catherine Austin Fitts’ Solari concepts is the creation of public community databases that make hidden information and knowldge about a locale explicit and transparent. This allows people to create indexes to track the health and status of all sorts of factors that directly affect them, and their communities.

However, there is of course the issue of privacy when revealing personal info. There is also the emerging issue of defaulting to forms “Cybernetic Decision-making” as a way to deal with information overload as we create more and more digitized streams of data about our world. Eventually, we’ll have to find new ways to work together to manage all of this information.

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