Social Networking – The Options are Endless

Those of you who follow me on Twitter, are friends with me on Facebook or linked to me on LinkedIn will know that I am a big Twitter fan. I tweet A LOT! And often. About many different things – work-related articles, my own photography or photography in general, fell walking, etc.  I realise that different portions of that content will be of no interest to different groups of those people I’m connected to.

So, the quandary I had (and many people who have a varied web presence may also have) was how best to separate the professional content from the personal stuff.

Twitter has become the lynch pin in my Social Networking “strategy”. I can tweet direct (and in some cases automatically) from nearly all the web sites I use regularly using a variety of plug-ins to distribute the content as I see fit to…

  1. Facebook – I use an application called Selective Tweets to import my content with a hash tag of #fb into my Facebook profile.  Facebook emerged out of pure social networking.  However, it is slowly developing a business-oriented facet but this is proving difficult because of the apparent laissez faire attitude accorded 3rd party app developers when it comes to 1) users’ data; & 2) malware embedded in those same apps. Facebook doesn’t help its cause any by regularly upsetting its user base, changing the layout and the configuration of its default security settings, often in favour of those same app developers and without consulting its user base. We give so much of ourselves to that information-hungry monster and this is how we are repaid! Respectable business will always shy away from such volatile unpredictability simply because of the security risks and the personal data processing regulations involved.
  2. LinkedIn – I use the Tweets application to import my content with a hash tag of #li into my LinkedIn profile.  LinkedIn is VERY business-oriented and totally geared toward professional networking and collaboration. Though fairly formal, there’s no old boys club (that I can see) and you can extract far more business knowledge from the variety of groups available than you have to submit. Although, if you are reaping such benefits, it is human nature to put something back.
  3. Twitter has a foot firmly planted in both camps, with a genuine mix of social and commercial networking and self-promotion. Basically, your Twitter experience is entirely of your own making, i.e. not thrust upon you with the aim of controlling your entire (online) world view. Moreover, if you don’t like your current Twitterverse, changing it is so much easier to do. A new list here; some new Follows there…

I do have a Google+ profile but I’m struggling to wrap my head around how best to use it.  I think that until it acquires a critical mass of users, it’s always going to be playing catch-up but now that signing up is open to all…

So!  That’s how I do it.  I’d like to hear your thoughts on any of the above, your approach to Social Networking or if you have any other related comments…

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Sustainability in the I.T. Project Lifecycle

This was the title of a recent BCS Event in Leeds.  I’ve included some few key phrases from the information presented ostensibly to see what reaction they will generate.

We now know that the IT industry represents 2% of Carbon Dioxide  emissions worldwide, which is roughly the same as air travel.  However,  there is a case to be made for increasing the emissions from IT as this  will replace the emissions from other less sustainable activities,  primarily travel.

Sustainability is defined as “…development which meets the needs of   the present without compromising the ability of future generations to   meet their own needs…“ and is not to be confused with longevity.

Sustainability should be embedded within everything we do.

The overriding theme I took away from it was displacement borne out by the examples of success given: 1) replacing aging printers with multi-function devices; and 2) rolling out collaboration tools such as Office 2010 and Google apps.  No consideration seemed to have been given to the costs of developing the technology in the first place and bringing the product to market; the starting point always seemed to be an upgrade or newly available technology.

While the principle is admirable, the reality seems a long way off.