Thanks to Karen Chichester for pointing me to Brian Solis‘ post “The Conversation Prism” categorizing different web 2.0 tools by function.

The Learning Prism

Brian’s 22 categories include:

  1. Social Bookmarks
  2. Comment and Reputation
  3. Crowdsourced Content
  4. Blog Platforms
  5. Blogs/Conversations
  6. Blog Communities
  7. Micromedia
  8. Lifestreams
  9. Specific to Twitter
  10. SMS/Voice
  11. Social Networks
  12. Niche Networks
  13. Customers Service Networks
  14. Location
  15. Video
  16. Video Aggregation
  17. Documents
  18. Events
  19. Music
  20. Wikis
  21. LiveCasting – Video and Audio
  22. Pictures

Certainly it can be both interesting and fun to track emerging technologies as they apply to learning and education, but it can also be overwhelming. It’s also easy to fall into the “tooly” camp of focusing more on tools than on learning and student engagement. This danger is not new, of course, Jamie McKenzie wrote “Toolishness is Foolishness” back in 2001. Yet we cannot ignore the tools either, and we need to recognize the natural progression we all go through as human beings when we are new to tools and their use has NOT yet become transparent.

I anticipate continuing to refine my presentation “Powerful Ingredients for Digitally Interactive Learning” in 2009, in which I attempt to distill which of these tools are essential for learning (basic ingredients in the 21st century classroom chuckwagon.)

Chuck Wagon basics

It’s also important to consider how many of the communication tools and platforms categorized here are BLOCKED in many of our schools. The realities of content filtering in our schools should provide greater motivation and incentives for all of us to demonstrate the constructive potentials of these tools. This reflects the theme of the 2008 K-12 Online Conference, “Amplifying Possibilities.” I continue to believe digital storytelling projects like “Celebrate Oklahoma Voices” offer one of the most powerful and realistic ways to make constructive headway in the struggle to win hearts and minds for digital learning engagement amidst rampant fear mongering and reactionary statements by many leaders.

For more background on this web 2.0 taxonomy, see Brian’s post “Introducing The Conversation Prism” from August 2008. My favorite quotation from that post is:

In the social economy, relationships are the new currency.

One of the most important things we can do as 21st century educators is continue to build our professional learning networks.

Creative Commons License photo credit: FAB O LENS

Who’s in your digital learning wallet today? 🙂

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2 Responses to Categorizing web 2.0 sites by function

  1. Dean Mantz says:


    Thanks for sharing creating this post and sharing the resources. These will benefit my research and materials for my own development as well as the PD sessions I offer in 2009. As always, your posts enlighten all educators wanting to further develop their knowledge in the world of technology and engagement.

  2. […] Categorizing web 2.0 sites by function » Moving at the Speed of Creativity […]

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