P2P Foundation: Researching, documenting and promoting peer to peer practices

The P2P Foundation website is a terrific resource for anyone interested in peer-to-peer practices and collaboration, both in the university and beyond.

From their mission statement:

The Foundation for P2P Alternatives proposes to be a meeting place for those who can broadly agree with the following propositions, which are also argued in the essay or book in progress, P2P and Human Evolution:

  • that technology reflects a change of consciousness towards participation, and in turn strengthens it
  • that the networked format, expressed in the specific manner of peer to peer relations, is a new form of political organizing and subjectivity, and an alternative for the political/economic order, which though it does not offer solutions per se, points the way to a variety of dialogical and self-organizing formats, i.e. it represents different processes for arriving at such solutions; it ushers in a era of “non-representational democracy”, where an increasing number of people are able to manage their social and productive life through the use of a variety of autonomous and interdependent networks and peer circles
  • that it creates a new public domain, an information commons, which should be protected and extended, especially in the domain of common knowledge creation; and that this domain, where the cost of reproducing knowledge is near zero, requires fundamental changes in the intellectual property regime, as reflected by new forms such as the free software movement
  • that the principles developed by the free software movement, in particular the General Public License, provides for models that could be used in other areas of social and productive life
  • that it reconnects with the older traditions and attempts for a more cooperative social order, but this time obviates the need for authoritarianism and centralization; it has the potential of showing that the new egalitarian digital culture, is connected to the older traditions of cooperation of the workers and peasants, and to the search for an engaged and meaningful life as expressed in one’s work, which becomes an expression of individual and collective creativity, rather than as a salaried means of survival
  • that it offers youth a vision of renewal and hope, to create a world that is more in tune with their values; that it creates a new language and discourse in tune with the new historical phase of “cognitive capitalism”; P2P is a language which every “digital youngster” can understand. However, ‘peer to peer theory’ addresses itself not just to the network-enabled and to knowledge workers, but to the whole of civil society, and to whoever agrees that the core of decision-making should be located in civil society, and not in the market or in the state.
  • it combines subjectivity (new values), intersubjectivity (new relations), objectivity (an enabling technology) and interobjectivity (new forms of organization) that mutually strengthen each other in a positive feedback loop, and it is clearly on the offensive and growing, but lacking “political self-consciousness”. It is this form of awareness that the P2P Foundation wants to promote.

NYC Income Disparity Mapped by Music & Subway Stops

Created by Brian Foo and reported at Gothamist, this is a sonic representation of income levels across three NYC boroughs mapped stop by stop along the 2 train. The music gets louder and has more complex instrumentation in wealthier locations, while poorer locations are more subdued and have fewer instruments.








NYC’s Income Gap Mapped With Music & Subway Stops

Linda M. Rodriguez (NYU) on Mapping Havana Using Thinglink

Linda M. Rodriguez, Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Art History at New York University, has posted a terrific write-up of using the tool Thinglink to map colonial Havana.

From her blog:

Initially, I wanted to use the map to help me think through urban space for an article I am writing. The article focuses on a 1791 lawsuit against a merchant of paint and hardware, and it references the three stores he operated within the walled city. Now that I’ve found their approximate locations, I want to be able to discuss them in relationship to nearby buildings and landmarks. [. . .] So as I experiment with digital humanities tools, I’m giving Thinglink a try as a way to annotate the 1798 map. Created by Jose del Río, a captain in the Spanish Royal Navy, the map depicts the coastline around Havana, the entrance to the bay, and the walled city.

Thinglink allows users to add pins and descriptions to images of archival maps, or any other image or video. There is a free version available for students and educators.


Annotating Videos Using Acclaim

Acclaim - ScreenshotAcclaim is a brand new tool that allows collaborative video editing. Content can be uploaded, embedded from sites like YouTube and Vimeo, or created on the spot using a webcam. Once the content has been added, the user can choose who else will have access to it, and then invite those users to add comments. Comments are linked to timestamps in the video, making it easy to jump back and forth to moments of interest.

See their blog for some potential uses of the tool, including this post by Alisa Gross about a lesson plan for a dance class in which the instructor, Robyn Kotte, offers targeted critique and feedback.

Maps as Expressions of a City’s Beauty

NYC by Charles LabanowskiA series of maps by Charles Labanowski, blogged at Fast Company, captures the beauty and individuality of cities through stylized rendering and careful selection of color palettes.

From Labanowski:

Maps are at the intersection of so many interesting things . . . For one, they are a beautiful combination of organic and unplanned, and inorganic and planned growth—sort of a constantly evolving, living history. They can also be emotionally evocative—whether it’s reminding you of some past experience or inspiring a desire to travel and explore a new place . . . As a canvas on which to experiment with color, maps are perfect because while all cities are different, they also all have the same general elements that can be styled in a limitless number of combinations.

Read the post and see more images at Fast Company.

Using Google Maps and RAW to Visualize an Interdisciplinary Field

In “Visualizing My Interdisciplinary Field” (part 1 and part 2),  J.J. Sylvia IV, a Ph.D. student in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media, describes using Google Maps and the web-based RAW application to create visualizations of his field.

Most of my cohort is doing work that doesn’t properly belong in any single traditional discipline. This means, first, that there aren’t that many people doing exactly the type of thing we’d like to be doing. Instead we are each drawing inspiration, methods, and ideas from a wide variety of scholars across different fields. To start this semester, we were tasked with identifying and researching the top 30 scholars we are likely to be in conversation with during our career.

One of my cohort members, and fellow HASTAC scholar Jason Buel, decided to locate these scholars visually using Google Maps. I’ve found that process to be particularly helpful, and thought it might be helpful to share the process since so many of us in HASTAC are working in interdisciplinary ways.

RAW visualization by J.J. Sylvia IV


Custom Google Map by J.J. Sylvia IV

CUNY Academic Commons Documentation

CUNY Academic Commons logoThe website for Mapping the Futures of Higher Education is built on Commons in a Box, the same infrastructures that powers CUNY Academic Commons. Because there are so many similarities in these networks, the documentation and support pages for CUNY Academic Commons may be very helpful.

  • Getting Started
  • FAQ – answers to frequently asked questions about the Commons
  • Codex – a repository for Commons documentation
  • WordPress Help! – the go-to place for bloggers with questions, and seasoned WP vets willing to share their knowledge
  • Tour

DiRT (Digital Resource Tools) Directory

DiRT LogoThe DiRT Directory is a registry of digital research tools for scholarly use. DiRT makes it easy for digital humanists and others conducting digital research to find and compare resources ranging from content management systems to music OCR, statistical analysis packages to mindmapping software.

Free, open source. Anyone can use; create an account to contribute. The team is working on integrations for Commons in a Box.