Category Archives: Social Software

Micro Loans with Kiva

Yesterday Markus Strohmaier pointed me towards Kiva, a microloan page. I think this is a great way to help people!

Choose an Entrepreneur, Lend, Get Repaid

The below diagram shows briefly how money gets from you to an entrepreneur, and back.

1) Lenders like you browse profiles of entrepreneurs in need, and choose someone to lend to. When they lend, using PayPal or their credit cards, Kiva collects the funds and then passes them along to one of our microfinance partners worldwide.

2) Kiva’s microfinance partners distribute the loan funds to the selected entrepreneur. Often, our partners also provide training and other assistance to maximize the entrepreneur’s chances of success.

3) Over time, the entrepreneur repays their loan. Repayment and other updates are posted on Kiva and emailed to lenders who wish to receive them.

4) When lenders get their money back, they can re-lend to someone else in need, donate their funds to Kiva (to cover operational expenses), or withdraw their funds.

via Kiva – How Kiva Works.

My Presentation @ Barcamp Senza Confini

Today the barcamp senza confini started. The organization was a charm, everything went perfect (kudos go to Georg Holzer and the whole team). The first day was great and I heard of a lot of interesting ideas and talked to a lot of interesting people. For myself I chose a short slot and I did the presentation on “Popularity, Power Laws and Interestingness” mentioned in the last post. Although a bit technical I hope I managed to describe some basic concepts as well as my idea. However for later review, here are my slides:

Barcamp Feb. ’08: Possible Topics

Barcamp in Klagenfurt takes place on Feb. 2nd-3rd 8th 2008. That means to me: Time to think about possible topics. As I had some lively discussions about Wikipedia lately and my last Barcamp talk was about wisdom of the crowds I’ve got several ideas in this direction:

  • Who’s right? Case James Surowiecki vs. Scott Adams … While Surowiecki wrote a book about the “Wisdom of the Crowds” Scott Adams said: “You cannot underestimate general stupidity“.
  • Wisdom of the Krauts: Is the German Wikipedia better? Some always say the Germans are better at generating truthful content. This would be a shoot-out 🙂
  • My Internet is always right or “The Citing of the Herds” … Why you should should not rely on the internet as single information source. Unlike the intuitive bet this is not (only) aimed at Wikipedia, but includes also Google Scholar, Springerlink, ACM and

Nokia MOSH: Social Networking & Multimedia

mosh.pngRecently I got an invitation to Nokia MOSH, a new social networking, social bookmarking and sharing and multimedia platform of Nokia. Within MOSH one can share videos, images and audio files, which then can be collectred by other members and viewed online as well as on Nokia mobile devices. Furthermore one can share and collect application (e.g. for your mobile phone), games (also for mobile devices) and documents (mostly hyperlinks as far as I found out).

The actual platform looks good, but does not feel very ‘handy’ yet – maybe due to its closed beta status 😀 I didn’t get the mobile app to work with my N70 yet (server was down/unreachable as I trued) but I think it may be a fine communications and entertainment platform for Nokia mobile phones. I also really appreciate the applications and games sharing thing, so one can finally get some recommendations of other users instead of surfing different sellers sites in search for fine S60 apps.

If you want to try it out yourself just drop me a line and I’ll invite you to MOSH as the feature is there. I don’t know if the invites will be instantly, but I can try at least 😉

Update: Techcrunch also published a post on Mosh.  They also describe how to get in:

… just type “ALLACCESS” into the box on the landing page

Barcamp Vienna Sep. 07: Time and Location

In September 2007 the next BarCamp in Vienna, AT, takes place. After some Wiki based un-organisation the location and date seems fixed now: It’s in the Microsoft Office Vienna, on 29th-30th of September. Find more information here (as always – in German). If you plan to attend put your name in the list here.

I definitely plan to go there. If you want to meet … same as always, drop me a line 😀

YouTube Mobile

screenshot-realplayer-video3gp-1.pngAround last weekend the YouTube mobile interface was opened. As I’ve paid for a 100 MB / month never really using more than 20 for mails and some chatting I really had to test it 😀

The interface is clean and simple. It works like a charm with the Opera mobile browser (not the Opera Mini, I haven’t tried with this also with Opera Mini – tested by Daniel Goldman, thx to Daniel) . The videos are provided with RTSP in 3GP format. So one can also watch the videos using Realplayer (see screenshot). Some further information on the used streaming format: The video I tested was encoded with 40 kbps with H263. Taking a look at the RTSP communication reveals that there is a Darwin Streaming Server working:

Received PLAY response: RTSP/1.0 200 OK
Server: DSS/5.5.3 (Build/489.12; Platform/Linux; Release/Darwin; )

The only thing about mobile YouTube: You’ll need an UMTS connection or better 😉

Social Software Workshop at ECSCW 07

Many many workshops have been centred around the topic: What can social software do for us / SMEs / companies / education etc. This workshop on contrary focuses on “What is missing in Social Software? Current collaborative practices in social software”, which I interpret as “What can we do for Social Software?”.

In my opinion this a a very interesting topic. Currently most people have experienced social software as “working phenomenon” and try to adopt it to their needs. Bit we should also focus on means and constraints to keep the phenomenon running.

The workshop takes places in context of the 10th European Conference on Computer Supported Co-Operative Work in Limerick, Ireland. The ECSCW 07 is on Sept. 24th-28th, so the workshop will also be around this date. More information here.