Monday, March 24, 2008

Twitter: The New Water Cooler

Alternate title: Twitter and Two Degrees of Separation...

When working at the office, it's common practice that the most interesting things you learn in a day, are shared at the water cooler. It makes sense then to have a Web 2.0 water cooler, and I would suggest that the best such water cooler we have is Twitter.

Note: This image is actually a flock of seagulls!

Social networking works at the water cooler, and it works on Twitter. Think about it...
You find something worth sharing... you tweet; You begin work on a new project... you tweet; You're looking for assistance with a problem... you tweet.

The power of the 'Twittersphere' became real to me last evening around 8:00 p.m. when I was 'Uptoned'! It was noon in Australia, and our southern colleagues were just beginning to consider an invitation I'd left on Al Upton's 'Order for Closure' blog post (among what now sits at over 200 comments!). Until today, that was the only place I'd posted a link to a policy development wiki that might save other students from being denied the opportunity to write on the web.

With Al's catching up on the many responses to his blog post, he encountered my suggestion, and not knowing who I was, put out the call via Twitter . It turns out, that thanks to my mini-Twitter-network, I was only two degrees of separation from Al Upton!

The evidence:
1] 7:43 p.m. EST: Al tweeted from Adelaide "Does anyone know Rodd Lucier?".
2] 7:53 p.m. EST: Sue repeated the question from Perth...
3] 7:56 p.m. Cindy picked up the connection in Calgary and emailed me directly...
4] 8:03 p.m. My inbox rang with a message from Cindy
5] 8:12 p.m. Al and I began following one another on Twitter

Tweetscan helps to tell the time-stamped story:

Twitter truly is an amazing tool for developing learning networks. The trouble is: I've now got a handful of 'twitter-mates' who will be at the water cooler while I'm sleeping!

Photo credit: Joel Bedford
Teacher 2.0 Podcast: Twitter & Two Degrees of Separation


Greg Fowler said...

Rodd: if you like Twitter, then you have to check out Snitter.

Rodd Lucier said...

I was using Thwirl, which is another Adobe Air mashup of Twitter, but I've since gone back to using my Flock sidebar to track tweets. I'll add it to my delicious links in case I change my mind again. Thanks Greg.