Twitter

twitter users tweet round the ashpocolypse

By on Apr 19, 2010 in BBC, citizen journalism, location based services, mobile, social software |

In a blog post yesterday, the BBC's Rory Cellan-Jones describes how stranded European air passengers have been using twitter and facebook to organise lifts home. Like no fewer than six of my Headshift colleagues, I too have been grounded by the volcanic ash cloud hanging over Europe – abandoning plans to travel on Saturday to pick up my kids who are visiting relatives in Poland. This isn't the first time I've used Twitter to solicit or provide travel information, something that the format is particularly well suited for. During a fierce snow storm last year, I was enroute to Luton Airport for a flight to Glasgow when we were told, on board the train, that all buses between the railway stop and the airport, a good 2km or so up a steep hill, had been cancelled, as had many flights. I did a quick twitter search and found someone, who coincidentally also works in the social media industry, tweeting from air side. He confirmed that they were still plowing the snow from the runway and de-icing planes. Because of his information, I continued to make my way to the airport, tweeting and posting photos as I did for the benefit of other passengers. My tweets were picked up by BBC Radio Three Counties, where I'm familiar with several journalists, and before I knew it I was doing two ways as I trudged up the snowy airport approach road with my luggage. I eventually did manage to get my flight, after having a coffee with my new friend, and made my way up to Scotland as planned. Twitter isn't going to get me a lift to Poland this time – I simply don't have the time, or inclination, to drive – but whenever or weather or transport crisis hits, it's the first place I check for details from the...

real time snow reports via twitter

By on Dec 16, 2009 in BBC, citizen journalism, journalism, location based services, mobile, newspapers, social software |

I came across this really clever use of twitter this morning as London got it's first snow flurries of the season. #uksnow Map 2.0 monitors twitter for mentions of snowfall, then plots the snow on a google map. To make best use of it, you need to use a special tweeting convention – insert #uksnow followed by a postcode and 0-10 rating (0 being nothing, 10 being a full on blizzard) – for example, #uksnow SE1 2/10. This reminds me of a pilot I set up at BBC Leicester, where we loaded some 3g mobiles with Yahoo's Zonetag and asked 5 members of the public to contribute a few weather photos each day, directly from their handset, to a flickr group that automatically fed a BBC template page. It would be interesting to see the #uksnow map displaying images from twitpic and I can imagine all sorts of uses of this – flood monitoring, disaster relief, coverage of the Olympics, etc. See the #uksnow map here:...

presentation on meaningful playfulness

By on Nov 10, 2009 in journalism, location based services, mobile, social software |

My Headshift colleague Eliot (@eliotf) pointed me towards an interesting presentation, Hiding Data, Content and Technology in Real World Games, shared by Chris Thorpe recently. I love how Chris describes layering a highly useful interface on top of play around social objects, utilising ambient data collection and injecting aspects of the real world such as physical places and objects into his message. Well worth a look: Hiding data, content and technology in real world games View more documents from Chris...

social media training course

By on Mar 13, 2009 in blogging techniques, citizen journalism, headshift, journalism, location based services, social software |

One of the best things about my job is that I have various opportunities to inform and enthuse people about the benefits of using social media tools and services to support their existing processes. In order for social media to be genuinely useful, it has to become part of a person or organisation’s everyday practice. If it’s not, then it just becomes an additional burden – something extra they have to do rather than something that helps them to achieve their goals personal or professional objectives. Readers who follow my twitter feed or dopplr updates will know that I’ve recently been traveling around the country a lot. Most of this has been to provide the 10 finalists of NESTA’s Big Green Challenge with social media training to help them use photo-sharing, video-sharing, mobile phones, social networking and blogging to inform a wider audience about their work, reach out to new supporters and likeminded groups, and to better organise their own efforts. It’s been great fun – I’ve met some wonderful people along the way, learned about some wonderful projects, and seen parts of the country I’d never otherwise have the opportunity to see. Here’s a map showing where I’ve been or will be going over the remaining few weeks of the training: View Larger Map I’ve also been authoring blog posts – a sort of beginners guide to using social media – on the Big Green Challenge Blog. Here’s an index to the posts I’ve published thus far: Introduction: social media and the whole web as your canvas Reaching new audiences with photo-sharing Sharing your videos online Getting started making google maps Taking the internet everywhere Live and direct with your mobile There are at least two more posts to come – blogging, which should appear next week, and finding and keeping track of content, which will cover social bookmarking, RSS and searching for...

my mobile journalism presentation

By on Mar 11, 2009 in BBC, blogging, blogging techniques, citizen journalism, headshift, journalism, location based services, mobile, social software | 4 comments

Slideshare doesn’t seem to like the Below you’ll find the presentation on mobile journalism I’ll be delivering to students on the MA Magazine and Newspaper Journalism course at City University, London on Thursday. The presentation looks at:     •    service providers – why do companies offer services which enable mobile content uploading and social networking?    •    citizen journalism – what motivates people to “report” what they witness; what sort of content do they create and share?    •    journalism – how are professional journalists and new organisations using mobiles?    •    tools – what tools are available for documenting and sharing content online? And at some point during the lecture I’m hoping to involve some professional mobile journalists – by mobile, of course…. mobile + journalism: get your mojo View more presentations from Robin Hamman. Download Zipped Presentation –...

bbc sport olympics map mashes up twitter, blog posts, coverage

By on Aug 15, 2008 in BBC, blogging techniques, journalism, location based services, mobile | 5 comments

When the English county of Berkshire was hit by flooding last year, Ollie Williams, then at BBC Berkshire, put together a map that mashed up BBC coverage, the location of emergency relief centres, flickr photos and youtube videos. Now Ollie’s moved to BBC Sport where’s he’s built a map for the Beijing Olympics that mashes up results, blog posts and geo-coded twitter tweets. It’s quite a nice implementation although, it could be improved with the addition of photos and video, both of which could be easily created and uploaded on the same 3G or wifi enabled mobile as the tweets are coming from. That said, this is a really good starting point for using maps as a way of navigating BBC content – something you’re bound to see more of in the future. Speaking of, James Thornett, another former BBC colleague, has a new(ish) blog called Straight to the Point which is all about mapping, location based services and the like. Well worth a...