Saturday, January 23, 2010

Puzzle pieces

Just over a year ago I discovered this fascinating online world of social learning and networking. As this year begins I am humbled and awestruck by the individuals and groups with whom I now connect via the Web. This blog began as a place for me to muse about issues that concerned me. That I believe is still a piece of it, but I can see that going forward it could be more. Thinking about that is a bit scary because I am not certain I have the knowledge, skills, time or motivation to take it to a higher level.

What I do know is that in addition to Twitter and blogging, I have joined a burgeoning number of other online social activities. These are professional, civic and personal interest communities and I am trying to get my head around it all. In order to get all of these facets and connections of my life together into one manageable package, I have begun work on a Google site. Pulling together all these pieces into one place is kind of big job at the onset because, of course, one can’t just stop life while getting organized, but I am determined to give it a go. If nothing else, I will have explored how Google sites work.

Even as I go ahead with this project, I am wondering about the wisdom of collecting all the pieces of my online life together. Right now the site is not published, but I wonder what it will mean for me once I do make the completed puzzle accessible to everyone. Is there a problem with having my professional, civic and personal identities aggregated in one location? What do you think? Do you have experience can you share?

Image above created with Befuddler from this photo on Flickr.


  1. I struggle with this concept as well. On the one hand it is nice to have everything organized and accessible in one place. On the other hand, do I want all of me to be accessible. My students don't think twice about it. They have grown up in a time when there lives are accessible and they are okay with that. I grew up in a time where unless you were listed in the phonebook, you could be essentially invisible. I am still trying to strike a happy medium.

  2. I've actually chosen to keep my professional activities online separate from my personal when it comes to Twitter, Delicious, and Bloglines. I tend to look at the P in PLN as professional, not personal. It concerns me that if one were to share resources that reflected religious or political beliefs, in conjunction with professional resources, it would be too easy to have someone's opposing view of those issues cloud their views of the professional side.

  3. Kelly, I used to think it was important to stay invisible, until I realized I couldn't think of why; but you're right, finding the right place between too much and not at all is the way to go.

    Ann, I agree, I wouldn't want to mix religious and political views with professional resources. What I was thinking with the Google site would be to have three tabs: one for my haretek professional identity, one for links to my civic, non-profit activities, and one for links to my hobby networks.

    Thank you both for your input!