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Archive for November, 2011

Supporting an Online Community for Kids

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Recently we, the Scratch Team at MIT, were asked to come up with a list of activities we have done to support the development of the Scratch Online Community. The question was framed in the context of what needs to be done beyond the creation the technological infrastructure, i.e. a website. Here is a list of some of the things that came up in the discussion and that I think have helped engage more than half a million young people a month. Of course, each community is different, but I hope some of these ideas are useful in other similar scenarios.

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In Defense of Friction

Monday, November 21st, 2011

There is no doubt that technology has made my life much easier. I rarely share the romantic view that things were better when human beings used to do the boring tasks that machines now do. For example, I do not think there is much to gain by bringing back the old telephone operators. However, there are reasons to believe social computing systems should not automate social interactions.

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