Social Media Mashups


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'Mary Hodder with her PowerBook' published on Flickr by Laughing Squid
Blogs, Wikis, Ning, Facebook! So many tools, so little time! How can we link then together to create useful, personalised learning spaces?

This section will assist you in drawing the social media threads together to create either a learning environment for your students or a personalised learning environment for professional development and sharing. These techniques are often referred to as Mashups. It includes the following information:

  1. What is a Social Media Mashup?
  2. Why Mashups?
  3. Creating Your Own Mashup
  4. Examples: Mashups for Learing and Teaching
  5. Further Information on Mashups
  6. What's Next?


Activities for this topic


Learners who are completing the Social Networking Course should refer to the Moodle site for more information about the activities provided:
  • Activity 27: Mashing It Up!

Resources to support this topic:


The following resources have been developed to support this topic:


1. What is a Social Media Mashup?
2. Why Mashups?
3. Creating Your Own Mashup
4. Examples: Mashups for Learing and Teaching
5. Further Information on Mashups
6. What's Next?


What is a Social Media Mashup?

Mashups are hybrid web applications that take features from one application (like Flickr) and mash it up with another (like a mapping program). Wikipedia offers a slightly more detailed explanation.


Why create a mashup?
  • To bring applications together.
  • To enhance an existing source of data.
  • To improve usability.
  • To make a web page more dynamic and engaging.

A simple explanation of a mashup - “when something like a song, picture, map or piece of text is digitised (copied or scanned so a computer can ‘read’ it), it is relatively easily to mix and mash it together with another digitised thing. The results can be entertaining and fun, but mashups can also help represent complex and seemingly unrelated data in new and interesting ways”.
Another popular mashup tool is Google maps.Have a look at this example from the British Library called London: a life in Google maps
Paul Hagon (web designer at the National Library of Australia – you might have seen him at Information Online or VALA?) has created mashups using Google Street View and Flickr. This application displays historic images from Flickr Commons and compares them with their respective modern day Google street view locations- see Then and Now: Historic New York images from New York Public Library using Flickr and Google Street view.
In November 2009 there was a mashup competition to create mashups using freely available government information- you might want to look at the website and check out some of the winning entries

How are mashups created?
David Berlind from ZDNet shows how mashups are created [from 2007, but there are more mashups out there than ever!].


Why Create a Social Media Mashup?

  • To bring applications, content and tools together.
  • To enhance an existing source of data.
  • To improve usability.
  • To make a web page more dynamic and engaging.

Activity:


  • Read about mashups and try some of the Flickr mashups for yourself.
  • What do you think? Blog it!
And finally, this was the video that opened the recent VALA conference in Melbourne. What do you think??


Resources:

Check out the Mashup08 Presentation




Check out the Mashup08 Slides by jokay below. You can also access the Elluminate Session Recording from this session on the Australian Flexible Learning Framework's website.







Click Mashups Demo demonstration

I like this simple explanation of a mashup - “when something like a song, picture, map or piece of text is digitised (copied or scanned so a computer can ‘read’ it), it is relatively easily to mix and mash it together with another digitised thing. The results can be entertaining and fun, but mashups can also help represent complex and seemingly unrelated data in new and interesting ways”.
Another popular mashup tool is Google maps.Have a look at this example from the British Library called London: a life in Google maps


Creating a Personalised Learning Environment (PLE)


Check out the video below by a 7th Grade Science student which demonstrates how she has created a PLE to support her Science studies