Here are all of the tech-related posts for NCDD Austin.

Thoughts on Technology from Taylor Willingham    


A few thoughts and insights on how technology can knit us together leading up to, during and after the conference…

1. Standard tagging: Through standard tagging, we can easily see each other’s content uploaded on Flickr, Blogs and elsewhere. For example, last August a Texas Forums co-hosted an event with the League of Technical Voters called We Are All Actors. People took photos that they uploaded to their own site on Flick and they wrote blogs. But no matter where they posted content, they tagged it WAAA2007. So on Flickr, you can see everyone’s photos at: You could do the same for blogs if you tag them with Technorati tags.

2. Real time feedback: Twitter was used heavily at SXSW Interactive here in Austin to give real time feedback during sessions. I was there with a couple of colleagues and was able to see what they were doing and what they thought about the presentations they were attending. If I was in a session that wasn’t working for me, I could easily vote with my feet and go where something cool was happening. (OK presenters may not like that, but we DO want to make sure everyone gets what they want from the conference, right?) Also, you can get instant answers to questions. For example, I recently wondered (twittered, actually) about the difference between and within less than five minutes, I had two responses. I use twitterific so I get messages on my desktop as soon as the come in. (This is also one way I get good recipes, consumer guidance, referrals, etc.)

3. Drive traffic to blogs. I follow a very prolific blogger who writes for several blogs and a podcaster. Through the magic of microblogging (that’s what Twitter really is) I get one sentence from them along with a “tinyurl” If I’m too busy, then I can save it as a favorite.

For example:

Tom Parish tparish Posted my podcast with Dr. Nicolas Horney on “In Search of IT Agility” at

4. Lots of people prefer the microblogging of twitter. (See: Below is snapshot of Twitterific and posting by David Cohn – someone I’ve never met, but who found me and found that we share similar interests.

5. You can send direct messages to people through twitter – much easier than e-mail AND it doesn’t clutter things up. You might think that being limited to 140 characters is a bad thing. OH NO! It’s a VERY good thing. Twitter combines the best of e-mail and instant messaging. If people don’t have computers or can’t afford the wireless (it’s not free at the Renaissance, is it?) they can still participate with their phones – there will be plenty of people with computers on hand to sign them up.

6. Spontaneous meetings. Many of the geeks I hang out with in Austin (and elsewhere) don’t make appointments. They go to a coffee shop or bar, Twitter their location and people spontaneously show up. That’s how we all found each other at SXSW. Imagine you’ve just come from a stimulating session and want to keep talking about what you learned. You post a twitter with the topic and your location and people can join you. Think “Technologically facilitated Open Space”.

7. Mobile technology: Twitter works with cell phones – both receiving and sending. No need to be online.

8. Instant updates of changes: A speaker gets sick? You’re in a room that you thought would have a flip chart, but it doesn’t? Post a notice. “Workshop A cancelled.” or “Any flip charts not being used? I could use one in Serenade Room” Response: “not using the one in Serendipity Room. Sending it over to you.” Everyone tied into Twitter is empowered to contribute to the conference.

So the real power isn’t in how many people are following you, but in how many people are connected and ABLE to connect with Twitter! I knew about the NCDD twitter NOT from this e-mail, but because Tim Bonneman twittered that he had just joined. I joined immediately, then I got this e-mail. But it took me 24 hours to respond and now I have to make a decision about where to file it! E-mail and RSS feeds are just too cumbersome any more.

Find similar posts: Technology

Introducing “NCDD Headlines”    


NCDD Headlines is our new, regularly updated collection of dialogue and deliberation news headlines, announcements from the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation and useful links to online resources served via Email, RSS or Twitter from the co-founders of NCDD, Sandy Heierbacher & Andy Fluke.

As part of its initiative to highlight useful web tools for the dialogue and deliberation community, NCDD has set up an online “stream of d&d news headlines” leveraging the power of the web tools Twitter (a micro-blogging tool) and (a social bookmarking tool) to quickly and easily serve the latest news and announcements to the dialogue and deliberation community in short, accessible headlines.

NCDD Headlines can be subscribed to in several ways. Twitter users simple need to follow our Twitter stream. However, if you don’t use Twitter, you can subscribe to NCDD Headlines by email. Finally, if you use an rss feed reader, you can use the NCDD Headlines feed.

UPDATE: I posted a short essay on why I set this up over on my personal site, Thirteen Pennies.

UPDATE TWO: The Twitter Headlines project didn’t work out as well as hoped, but it will continue through my personal Twitter feed, @andyfluke. I posted an explanation over on my personal site, Thirteen Pennies.

Find similar posts: NCDD2008, Technology

How Can We Address the Major Challenges Facing our Field?    

For the next couple of months, members of the 2008 conference planning team and members of the greater dialogue and deliberation community are coming together at to conduct an important experiment. We will be working together, using an online platform for dialogue, deliberation, and action planning, to determine how we can make progress on seven major challenges facing our community.

The seven challenges we’d like to address emerged from the first three NCDD conferences, and it is our hope that we will tackle these challenges in creative, collaborative ways – at, before, and after the fourth NCDD conference in Austin this October. The challenges focus on questions we face as a community, like “how can we talk about this work in a more accessible way?” and “how can we embed dialogue and deliberation in systems like schools, organizations and government?” Our online dialogue at CivicEvolution will help us decide how to best approach this daunting task, and we hope to see you there!

We will work together in three stages:

  1. Review and refine the 7 challenges and launch numerous new dialogues to further explore elements of each challenge. (Example: Ted initiates a new dialogue focused on what words and phrases appeal to young people under the “Framing this Work in an Accessible Way” challenge.)
  2. Participate in these new dialogues to explore the challenges in depth and develop common ground upon which we can propose ideas that can be further developed and incorporated into an action plan. (Example: After some online dialogue about language that is accessible to young people, Ted and Nancy decide to propose the idea to recruit 50 young people to attend NCDD Austin and engage them in dialogues and discussions on language throughout the conference.)
  3. Work together as teams to develop detailed proposals for accomplishing the team ideas. (Example: Ted, Nancy, and several others decide on the steps it will take to move from their idea to action.)

Below are more details about the three stages and some how-to info you can refer to as needed. (more…)

“NCDD2008″ is the Official Tag    

Tag Art

For those who missed it in earlier conversations, NCDD2008 is the official tag for the conference and should be used wherever appropriate, whether it be for personal blog posts, photos on Flickr, Tweets or Pownces, Social Bookmarking or any other online reference. Thanks to both Jerry Michalski and Tim Bonnemann for pointing this out again.

Follow-up: I made some suggestions above of where we can use this tag, but I would love to hear more. If you have ideas of other places we can use the tag, please share them in the comments. :-)

Find similar posts: Logistics, NCDD2008, Technology

Goals for the NCDD 2008 Tech Team    

An example of high technology!

Sandy and I sat down last week and went over all the things that we would like to see happen technology-wise leading up to and during the next conference. What we put together is a wish list… some things should be easy to implement, while other things will take dedicated volunteers to make happen. By clicking on the more link below, you will find the notes from that conversation which I’ve expanded with my ow thoughts. If you are interested in technology, regardless of your level of experience, I would really appreciate it if you looked over these notes to see if there are any projects you might be interested in getting involved with. I would also love it if you could add (or respond to) any questions, comments or other feedback in this post’s comments. Thanks!


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