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INFSCI 2955: Special Topics
The Social Web

(Spring 2010, CRN 29346)

[ Formal Data | Syllabus | Tools | Wiki | CourseWeb ]

Course Tools


The key tool for the course is the Pitt CourseWeb powered by Blackboard Course Management System, a product of Blackboard, Inc. You need to have Pitt University Computer Account to login to CourseInfo site. Use Account Managament Page to check the status of your account. We will use CourseWeb for several kinds of communication during this course. This site will also provide details on your homeworks and projects.

Class Wiki

Class Wiki is a dedicated Wiki installation, which we will use to collaboratively create structured course offprint. A course schedule and a brief outline of all topics as well as links to most interesting resources are posted there. For you, this is the place to post the results of your system study project.


LinkedIn, one of the most popular social networking systems, will be used as a social networking component for the course. Its goal is to help you to learn a bit about each other, while exploring typical features of this group of systems. Create an account (if you do not have one yet), join our class group , and, if you wish, add your instructor and classmates as your connections.


BibSonomy is a unique social tagging system, which allows you to collect, share, and tag both Web links and research papers. It is a kind of del.icio.us and CiteULike in one. It also has almost any feature that a social tagging system may have and provides a great case to study this kind of systems. We will use Bibsonomy to share interesting links (to blogposts, news articles, videos, pictures, comics, etc.) related to the course. Every week you are expected to find and post to BibSonomy 3 useful resources related to either topics discussed in class. Post to Social_Web group and tag. Use your own tags, as well as a topic tag provided for each topic. One of the tags should be Lecture-X where X is the lecture number. Check resources posted by others and add it to your own library. This will be considered as voting for resources. Most popular resources will be reposted on class Wiki


Wordpress is a Web Log (blog) system. We will use it to maintain a class blog, which we will serve as a place to discuss mandatory readings and course topics. Post a brief reflection to the two assigned reading papers, which you read. Check what other posted, comment on their posts. You are also welcome to comment on PhD students notes posted in their blogs.


CoMeT is a social tagging systems for sharing information about research talks and colloqua. The goal of using this system in our course is to practice sharing and tagging an another context and explore the issue of participation rewards. Creare your account. Find and post 2 research talks per week. Share it with your friends and see how many users will benefit form your sharing. Attend one of these colloquia during course duration and post your feedback to the class Blog.


Eventur is an interesting combination of several social systems - a social tagging systems to share events in Pittsburgh area, a social networking system, and a trust-based social recommender. Find and post 2 new cultural events per week. Connect with your friends and try to engage your social connections. Visit one of the events posted by you (or anyone else) and post a feedback on Eventur site. Pittsburgh has a lot to offer beyond your classroom. Go social, as the course itself.

Copyright © 2010 Peter Brusilovsky
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