Shazam for conferences?
we are going to change the way scientists work; we are going to change the way scientists share information; we are going to change the way expert attention itself is allocated, developing new methods for connecting people, for organizing people, for leveraging people’s skills. They will be redirected, organized, and amplified. The result will speed up the rate at which discoveries are made, not in one small corner of science, but across all of science.
(And if you want to share your ideas on how we are going to make this happen, then please do consider submitting to TELSci2.0!)
The reasons why science will change, IMHO, are very similar to the reasons why music has changed: as we’ve moved from scarcity to abundance, we need to change how we relate to our material. The solution to the explosion of publications is not going to be faster reading 😉
One practical idea I’ve been contemplating lately is that of a ‘Shazam for conferences’. Many of you will be familiar with the Shazam application for music. Basically, it allows you to record 10-15 seconds of an arbitrary song. The application sends that sample to its server and back comes a response that identifies the song, the artist, the album it comes from, etc. Pretty neat, and I’ve discovered quite a few songs this way.
But the real beauty of Shazam, for me, is that it makes it effortless to buy the song (from iTunes), see the clip (on Youtube), tweet that you like it, discover other people in your physical neighborhood who love the song or send an email to your friends to let them know about the song. Effortless, yes, as in 1-click-away…
Now imagine that we would have a tool like that for conferences: you are sitting in the audience, record 10 seconds of the speaker (or, take a picture of a semacode displayed at the side). You then send this off and the reply identifies the speaker, includes a link to his home page, his twitter account, his blog, his publication list, his slideshare account (where you would find the slides he is presenting), a comments page to leave public comments on his presentation, a way to share information about the talk with your colleagues, a template message to blog your comments on his talk on your own blog, with the slides already embedded, etc. You could say – and you would be right – that we can do all of these things already today. But the point is that such an application would make this effortless, as in 1-click-away…
What do you think? Would you like such a tool? Do you know of a similar tool? Do you have a better idea?