From Usenet to CoWebs: Interacting with Social Information Spaces / Edition 1

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This book provides an overview of interfaces to social information spaces, illustrated by several contemporary systems including Usenet News and CoWebs. Beginning with a general outline of those systems and a history of Usenet News, it looks at the problems of exploring virtual communities and distributed information systems, and of finding information in electronic environments. It outlines the successes and failures of traditional approaches like information filtering, collaborative filtering and information retrieval, and assesses new approaches such as visualisations of social processes and social navigation. Among the key questions covered are:
• What aspects of an online group are important to its participants?
• How can the specific characteristics of a social information space be used to improve the design of the interface? From Usenet to CoWebs will be essential reading for practitioners working on information spaces, conferencing systems, virtual communities and innovative interfaces to information spaces. It will also provide useful background reading for anyone studying or researching in these areas.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
From the reviews:

"Lueg and Fisher have put together a strong collection of papers, some new, some previously published, about Usenet and related technologies. The strength of this book is its multiple perspectives on Usenet newsgroups, covering topics such as its political history, analyses of its social structure, and methods for extracting information from it."

This review is by MIT's Judith Donath and can be found in New Media & Society, Volume 6, Issue 3, June 2004.

"Lueg and Fisher have put together a strong collection of papers … about Usenet and related technologies. The strength of this book is its multiple perspectives on Usenet newsgroups, covering topics such as its political history, analyses of its social structure, and methods for extracting information from it. … is most successful as a techno-social volume about Usenet and similar discussion lists. … This volume … will be of special interest to interface designers and researchers studying online social behaviour." (Judith Donath, New Media & Society, Vol. 6 (3), 2004)

"The book is really about something much more engaging that the title implies, and academics, researchers and teachers … will find much of what is written here of value. … It is about social spaces and social interactions on the Internet. … this book is a valuable read and I’d recommend it to anyone with a practical or research driven interest in the design, development and implementation of online spaces for social interactions." (Martyn Wild, Educational Technology and Society, Vol. 6 (4), 2003)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781852335328
  • Publisher: Springer London
  • Publication date: 1/17/2003
  • Series: Computer Supported Cooperative Work Series
  • Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 262
  • Product dimensions: 9.21 (w) x 6.14 (h) x 0.58 (d)

Table of Contents

Part I. Introduction to Online Studies and Usenet: Studying Social Information Spaces; "A Standing Wave in the Web of Our Communications": Usenet and the Socio-Technical Construction of Cyberspace Values.- Part II. Studying Spaces: Measures and Maps of Usenet; The Dynamics of Mass Interaction; Conversation Map: A Content-Based Usenet Newsgroup Browser; Silent Participants: Getting to Know Lurkers Better.- Part III. Enhancing Spaces: Computer Mediated Communication Among Teams: What are "Teams" and how are they "Virtual"?; CoWeb - Experiences with Collaborative Web Spaces; From PHOAKS to TopicShop: Experiments in Social data Mining; GroupLens for Usenet: Experiences in Applying Collaborative Filtering to a Social Information System; Exploring Interaction and Participation to Support Information Seeking in a Social Information Space.- Appendix.

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