Monday, October 26, 2009

The significance of Twitter in search

The fact that search (Google/Bing) is opening up to Twitter is very significant. Why? because group forming is all about opening up the silo.
Blogs have remained the least silo'd form of user publishing up until now. You don't have to be a member of '' to read this blog, find it's outpourings or (crucially) respond to it (me).

User-publishing = expression of our metadata.
Expression of our metadata = ways in which others who share the same issues/concerns/passions as us can find us. This is critical for group forming.

Remember each extra node on a network doubles its value.

So being able to find one more person expressing, through their metadata, the same stuff you are expressing means one extra node on your network - with the doubling of opportunity to solve your shared problem that (potentially) equates to.

The realtime nature of twitter amplifies the potential for action -and therefore value. (connecting with those who care enough about the same thing you do right now, enough to drop everything to help you fix it, has great value).

But Twitter is/was a silo. You had to be participating to find each other. But if search can fix that - the tweets escape the silo. You can attract even more connections because your metadata escapes the silo. More nodes can be added to more networks.

Search can add a lot of value still - something Facebook should pay a little attention. Use its internal search and you get the impression of getting a scant view of silos within silos within silos. So much metadata trapped - so many connections failing to be made.

Believe in open.

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The rate of change is so rapid it's difficult for one person to keep up to speed. Let's pool our thoughts, share our reactions and, who knows, even reach some shared conclusions worth arriving at?