Friday, December 16, 2005

Elgg as Digital Lifestyle Aggregator (With Learning Goals!)

Writing this post reminded me how well Elgg has integrated many of these ideas already. When they launched the "resources" section, I was thinking of it as a very lightweight aggregator for pulling in outside newsfeeds like I do in Bloglines. But then last week it hit me that the most obvious use for it in the context of the "personal learning landscape" was to put my own feeds in there -- using it as a way to collect the content I have distributed all over the web in Flickr, Webjay, 43 Things, my blogs, comments on other blogs, etc -- and suddenly my Elgg account is feeling like a more integrated representation of my online life.

It's not very flexible because I can't yet control how to display all the stuff that gets pulled in there. So you get photos of my kids and songs I'm listening to mixed in with my learning goals and musings on, all glued together in one big chronological sequence (broken into chunks of 25 entries per page). Still, tons of potential for new ways of connecting learning and learners in a system with that kind of functionality.

The other thing the Elggmeisters added a while back was shared goals as part of user profiles. So if you look at my profile, you'll see that one of my goals is to visit Japan. Clicking the link from my profile takes me to a page listing all of the other users who share that same goal. I think the integration of learning (and other) goals with social software and e-portfolios could be huge. Looks like lots of exciting things happening with Elgg these days, which isn't surprising.

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