There will be an introduction before this chapter that will, of course, lay out my key points, including the importance of audience in the first place. Since I think most professors, and my committee especially, will buy into that and wait for further explanation later, I can forgo that discussion for later in the dissertation. It will be coming right after the technical chapter anyway.
There are several key topics I want to discuss:
- history of blogging, especially its relationship to discussion forums, email lists, etc. since many comp teachers have used those forms before. I'm not sure how much I want to bring in here that is specific to comp pedagogy. We'll see how it plays out.
- how linking works and all the tools available to create links in the network--comments, trackback, rss feeds, technorati, blogpulse, blogrolls, tagging, site stats and more
- communities and conversations--a bit about power laws, perhaps--related to above, of course
- I've also been looking at a few things that are a bit more technical. I haven't read these things thoroughly, so I'm not sure how they'd fit, but they look really interesting. Anything with a term like "bursty" in it has potential. I'm planning to read those today or tomorrow, so I'll see how it fits
I don't want to scare people off, but I want to show that most of this stuff isn't rocket science and a good understanding of it really is useful. I hope I can write about this stuff in an engaging way that doesn't sound too dry and technical. So we'll see how that goes.
Let the writing begin!!