Community: A Proposal

One of the things I keep thinking I’d like to see is more people from my area and interest range blogging. By this I mean more Physics (at Surrey or at least at University) and more communication between them. Ideally, I’d also like a bunch of people who already blog to be more confident about publicising what they do, and encourage more sharing of other people’s work. One thing that I think people might ideally understand better is that sharing other blogs a lot won’t distract people from your own writing, and that readers don’t automatically know about the blogs you know about. It’s really good for everyone involved to share posts, and generally being active will get people more interested in joining that community, so it may well end up helping us encourage more people to start!

So what I’m saying is that it would be nice to get the Physics blogging community at Surrey to be a bit more well networked. All the things that the people around here are doing are great individually, but it would be great to try and support newer bloggers and try and share some readers around. I would like to suggest a small project to start off with.

My idea is this: a short question is proposed – something broad but science related, and open to interpretation. Several people join in and write – say – 200 words in response. These answers are then collated into a single post, giving each author a section and a link to their site. The post is then published by one person, and the publisher changes each time.  All the writers shout about the post as much as possible. The aim could be to publish once a month, or maybe once every fortnight.

The advantage I see in having quite a broad question is that each person can choose to interpret it in a way that suits them – that way there’s a nice large room for variation and interest.

If you’re interested in joining this experiment and want to know more, just shoot me a message on Twitter (@Stooveth) or leave a message in the comments below. I’m also looking for suggestions for a name for the project, as well as potential questions.

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About stoove

A physicist, researcher, and gamesman. Likes to think about the mathematics and mechanics behind all sorts of different things, and writing up the thoughts for you to read. A competent programmer, enjoys public speaking and mechanical keyboards. Has opinions which might even change from time to time.
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2 Responses to Community: A Proposal

  1. Hi Steve,
    I hope the project works, but for me blogging is something I fit in as and when the mood strikes and I have a moment to write something. I’m not looking to turn it in to anything more structured than that, so I can’t see myself joining such a scheme.

    • stoove says:

      Thanks for the response and I think you’ve raised some sensible concerns. However, let me try to convince you.

      The idea was never meant to be either a commitment or a big investment of time. Let me explain: firstly, participation each month would be entirely voluntary. If the mood didn’t strike, or you didn’t like the starting point or you didn’t have time, nobody will get upset and nobody will try to force you to write something. Even if I get only two takers in a month (including myself), I’ll be going ahead with it. Your participation as and when you think is good would be great to have, but if you register your interest and never actually write anything, nobody’s going to worry about it.

      As for effort and time investment: I thought that keeping the length short (200 words *maximum*) and the frequency quite low (once a month) would mean it’s not a big investment to make. This is also useful because hopefully we’ll get 4 or 5 participants some weeks, making for quite a long post together. Of course the other benefit of doing it only once a month is that there is hopefully plenty of time for inspiration or mood to strike for everyone. I notice, for example, that you often publish many posts in one month (better than I manage!), so in comparison less than 200 words seems small.

      So if you’re interested, please do say so. As I said, it’s not a commitment and if it doesn’t work out for you then there’s nothing to worry about. Hopefully I’ve convinced you that it’s worth a try!

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