Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning
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Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning
Collective intelligence is a shared or group intelligence involving knowledge creation and flow. Pooled brainpower emerges from the collaboration and learning actions of a community of connected individuals empowered by social media, participatory tools, and mobile platforms.
Curated by Huey O'Brien
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YouTube is testing a new auto-generated playlist feature called YouTube Mix to aid in video discovery

YouTube is testing a new auto-generated playlist feature called YouTube Mix to aid in video discovery | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |

YouTube is experimenting with a new feature designed to help users better discover videos and channels on its site. Called “YouTube Mix”, it’s an auto-generated playlist that will display suggested videos based on what you’re reading.


While the video service already has suggested videos displayed in the right-hand sidebar of each page, YouTube Mix offers users the ability to watch 50 videos continuously that it thinks they’ll be interested in. No additional work needed to click through each video one by one to watch it.


Each playlist features up to 50 videos, but YouTube says that once all of those videos have been watched, an additional 50 will be shown, showing users more content that they are interested in. Just like a music playlist, users can shuffle videos, place it on repeat, or skip around to specific videos they wish to see.

Kamakshi Rajagopal's comment, April 23, 2013 5:23 PM
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Five Ways Social Media Has Forever Changed the Way We Work

Five Ways Social Media Has Forever Changed the Way We Work | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |

Collective intelligence

Organizations have the ability to leverage the experience and wisdom of an entire workforce to solve a problem or identify an opportunity instead of just relying on a specific team. After speaking at a conference recently someone from a large oil and gas company told me how they couldn't solve a problem of a drill melting at extremely hot temperatures. They posed the problem on their collaborative platform for the thousands of other employees to try to solve and received a solution which was worth over a billion dollars.



Being able to come across a person or piece of information that can be used to improve a situation is a valuable thing. Organizations who deploy collaborative solutions greatly improve the chances of this happening. Employees have the ability to discover information which they can contribute to in a positive way. Lowe's Home Improvement saw this first hand when an employee asked for more of a product to be delivered to a store which other stores were not selling much of. Eventually this employee shared a demo she was doing at one of her stores to sell out of the product and other locations quickly followed. This employee who was asking for additional product happened to share her demo which resulted in over a million dollars in additional revenue.


Easy to find people and information

Email and static intranets are the default forms of communication and collaboration within many organizations. This leads to around 25-30 percent of an employees work week spent in front of email and a large amount of duplicated content. Enterprise collaboration platforms have enabled a much more effective way to find people and information. A way which is self-sufficient (meaning you don't need to ask anyone for anything) and empowering to the employees.


Anyone can be a leader and employees have a voice

When most employees think of a leader at their company they typically think of an executive. Social media has changed what it means to be a leader. Employees now have a voice where they can share their ideas for anyone within the company to see and read. These employees have the ability to become leaders in their own right on any topic that they care about. One of the world's largest consulting firms in the world (hundreds of thousands of employees around the world) has seen this happen first hand where junior and mid-level employees have the most widely followed internal blogs in the company. These employees are not executives but they are leaders with a voice that everyone listens to.


Transparency and flatness

Most organizations in the world are hierarchical and not transparent. It's analogous to climbing a ladder where only the first few rungs are visible and the rest are hidden. This is changing and many organizations are no longer using this as the way to work. Employees (including managers and executives) are now sharing what they are working on, how they are feeling, who they are meeting with, and what is happening with their department or the company as a whole in a discoverable and public way. There is greater insight for employees to understand not just what is happening in their organization but how their individual contributions are impacting something greater. 

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Twitter expands the Discover tab to deliver more relevant tweets

Twitter expands the Discover tab to deliver more relevant tweets | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |

First launched in December, and upgraded last May, the Discover feature will now deliver a steady stream of rich-media tweets that are intended to be relevant to individual users. 


Twitter today unveiled the latest iteration of its Discover tab, a move it said will show users a steady stream of tweets deemed relevant to them.  The company first launched the Discover feature on last December, aiming to "bring you essential information from the Web [and in] May, we added stronger signals and a new design that made it more personal for you with better stories and tweets from people you know."

And in a blog post this morning, Twitter wrote that "Now we're improving Discover again: When you visit the Discover tab on, you'll see a continuous stream of tweets, which automatically expand to show you the most relevant stories and most engaging photos."  A quick look at the new tab revealed a string of tweets under the rubric, "What's happening now, tailored for you."

The trick, of course, is for Twitter to match peoples' actual interests with relevant tweets. But if it works, it could be a smart way for users to find new people to follow, and information important to them.  Twitter said it will be rolling out the new Discover feature to users "gradually."

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AppHero Raises $1.8 Million For App Recommendation Service Which Learns Your Interests From Facebook

AppHero Raises $1.8 Million For App Recommendation Service Which Learns Your Interests From Facebook | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |
Following Apple's acquisition of Chomp, the app search and discovery business continues to heat up.


App Hero is building an app recommendation service that helps users find new applications to try by analyzing their historical activity and their social data. It also includes a friending functionality so users can see which apps their friends are installing and recommending.


At first glance, this setup sounds very similar to what the mobile app recommendation platform Crosswalk is currently doing. Like AppHero, Crosswalk keeps track of your apps and allows you to recommend your favorite ones to others. And it does a better job at figuring out your interests than iTunes Genius does, in my opinion.


However, while Crosswalk taps into Facebook (and other services) to discover which of your friends are on the platform, AppHero takes a different route – it actually uses your Facebook data to help it make its recommendations.


A recent high school graduate, Satok started AppHero in May 2011, finding inspiration in the untapped potential of mobile technology. “These devices are capable of so much, and people are under-utilizing them,” he says. “I’ve been thinking about how we can deliver the most value to consumers, and it led down this path of thinking about the space of personalization.”


He thinks that AppHero is a better tool for app discovery than an app search site because search is only great when you already know what you’re looking for. “But people don’t know what they don’t know,” he says. As for the comparisons with Crosswalk and the like, he claims the big differentiator is the underlying intelligence in AppHero. Not only does the service understand “who someone is and what they’re like,” Satok says, it also learns more about them over time by tracking their Facebook social data (think: updated location, marital status, likes etc.) and activity (e.g., geo-location, app downloads and likes/dislikes).

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Salesforce adds tagging and topic experts to its Chatter enterprise social network

Salesforce adds tagging and topic experts to its Chatter enterprise social network | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning | is updating its enterprise social network called Chatter in a way that enables companies to tap into the interest graph. Chatter now features “Topics and Expertise”, integrating useful information they find from their social channels into the product to help them better discover insights, identify experts, and even find related resources.


Adding Topics and Expertise to Chatter


Joining existing features such as Recommendations, Similar Files, and Search, on Chatter is Topics and Expertise. Through this, users can analyze and categorize information within the Salesforce platform. The company says that the new Chatter will “seamlessly connect related experts, files, groups, and other information, all on a single topic page.”


How it works is that a user will log into Chatter and add a post to to the News Feed and can then apply tags to have it assigned to a specific topic. Salesforce has created an algorithm that will look at all posts to suggest specific topics that the user could assign to it. Users do not need to stick with the suggested tags and can create their own to apply to the post.


Once a topic tag has been added, that specific post will be linked to a Topic page, similar to what you might find on Wikipedia or perhaps even on Facebook Pages. Think about a Topic page as the catch all about that specific issue — so if someone posts something noteworthy in Chatter about, say, The Next Web, the system’s algorithm would automatically generate a related page. Users can go to the page and view all the relevant posts with the appropriate topic tag aggregated in one spot.


In addition, Topic pages include a list of top influencers so that users will know who has been sharing the most about the specific topic within the company. By clicking on a specific person, users can learn more about them on their Chatter profile page, along with topics that they are influential about, where they work, their interests, and more.

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The next move in enterprise social is enterprise scrapbooks

The next move in enterprise social is enterprise scrapbooks | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |

We’ve watched so many ideas move from the consumer world to the workplace in the past several years. Search, iPhones, apps, and social networks have all become standard in the enterprise. The consumerization of IT has had a major impact on the the working world and there’s no reason to believe it is over. So where does it go next?




Here’s one likely direction…social ‘scrapbooks’ are already an established way to discover and display a consumer’s interests in digital format. Users can find others who share their passions and can give and take content that builds out each others’ boards.  This ‘pinboard’ model has proven immensely popular in a short time and now 10′s of millions of consumers are users. Pinterest is a well-known example, but there are others like PinchIt that take a geographic approach to digital scrapbooks. This is a rapid growth area that will be interesting to see develop.


And it makes sense. There’s something very satisfying about being ‘represented’ by the things we are passionate about. Go to any tech company, or any company for that matter, and notice the creativity applied just to the cubicle as people strive to personalize even their own workspace. Using a digital scrapbook is a logical next step.


Talking to PinchIt cofounder Aneel Ranadive, he says, “In the consumer space, we’ve created a product that provides for social scrapbooking. It allows people to discover and collect things they’re interested in. We see that the same rules apply to the enterprise where employees discover and capture relevant details about their company, their customers and their work through an interface that’s very easy to pick up. This is a content collaboration tool that is fun to use and helps people to be more productive than traditional platforms.”


It’s a different thing


When asked if this idea competes with other social media tools, Ranadive points out that, “Enterprise social networking tools are great for ongoing communication. We offer content collaboration and discovery via the scrapbook. It’s a different thing.” In the same way that Pinchit organizes consumers around cities, their product allows organizations to align around geographies or functions. Where it gets especially interesting is the gamification that PinchIt uses that allows the users with the most influence to be branded as a “tastemaker”. The same concept applies to the working world but with other terms to describe the most influential workers., like “dealmaker”.

And it doesn’t stop with the pinboard. By using search, workers can find other employees that share the same interest, whether that be a technology, work function, customer, product or project.

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Updated Readability for iOS boosts content discovery with ‘Top Reads’ and ‘Longform Picks’ features

Updated Readability for iOS boosts content discovery with ‘Top Reads’ and ‘Longform Picks’ features | Collective Intelligence & Distance Learning |
Social reading application Readability has added a series of updates to its iOS app and version 1.1.0 includes features that massively boost content discovery, while improvements ...


The service has added two aggregated reading lists — ‘Top Reads’ and ‘Longform Picks’ — which give Readability users an interesting new mechanism to find new content and articles, and the two lists are easily summoned via a menu at any time


Top Reads is a selection of the most popular articles on the service — though it isn’t exactly clear how it is populated, perhaps by the number times each article is read or favourited — while Longform Picks is a collection of interesting reads, that looks to be curated by the Readability team.


It’s worth noting that, at this time, the new reading lists don’t appear to sync with the top read list but, nonetheless, they are a nice addition to help stumble upon new content.


Readability 1.1.0 also includes a ‘time-to-read’ display, to help make Top Reads and Longform Picks visible to users, while the team says that it has made improvements to sync reading lists faster.

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