Aggregation vs Curation…

Content aggregation sites use algorithms to find and link to content. Content curation is the practice of human filtering and organizing what you find interesting and useful. Eric Brown (here).

I am beginning to see a tacit change happening where I work in Ireland, in the way some teaching colleagues now deal with technology.

They are now much less concerned with Information and Communication Technology issues like, why won’t this work? or What is the best RAM for a laptop? moving towards concerns like What is the best application for? or How do I find/organise the best source of information in my subject area?

What is interesting is that the latter questions range around what is described as intelligent-filtering or in a recent posting that has got some attention from Irish users of Twitter, as curation.

Curation is not a new word but the online reality is giving new life to it.

The post in question What is Curation, and Why Does it Matter Now? answers in part by saying that the curator becomes…a genuine influencer, a node on the network that is a broker of information. People go through you to get to information, at least in the affinity category you have developed.

This is very much how I see eLearning Island develop as I attempt to create a Personal Learning Network (here) around it, supported by my use of Twitter (here) and the social (in my case educational) bookmarking site Diigo (here).

Developing an online community of practice around a blog though is challenging.

I wrote previously that blogging is a lonely pursuit at times; but very often, I find that when I meet people face to face, that they have noticed eLearning Island and that it has indeed become a node in their network!

Thanks to @fboss (Fred Boss) for pointing out a number of the links above!

One comment

  1. Catherine Cronin

    Thoughtful post, Donal – thank you. Curation is an important skill for educators, and by developing this skill we also model good practice for our students. We have recently been thinking about curation in terms of our online MScSED programme as well, in our ongoing attempts to foreground useful and relevant online resources. Thanks for your thoughts!