So yesterday the ‘Your Freedom‘ site launched by Nick Clegg got ALOT of attention and is likely to continue to keep the guys at Delib busy coping with the insane levels of traffic its been getting for some time.
Whether you agree with the aim of the project or not it is a big step into the limelight for ‘digital engagement’ leaving behind the murky world of early adopters perhaps forever 🙂
On a personal note it was kind of gratifying for me to see the platform being used get that kind of attention. Back in the early months of 2007 I pitched an idea within JISC for a Q&A web app that was inspired by the long gone now Amazon Askville. I had all sorts of what I thought were clever ideas for it (though in fact most were pretty much just pinched from other successful sites at the time!) JISC was just starting to dip its toe into the social web at the time and I was lucky enough to get some funding and commissioned Delib to build what became known as JISC Answers.
It was built on top of Plone and used entirely open source elements and we hosted it locally at Netsight so it was an all-Bristol production! At the time I was pretty proud of what was achieved and became a big fan of Delib who did great work on the project. As it happened JISC Answers really never took off – it got caught up in some internal issues and missed its moment for a proper launch and has just kind of stagnated ever since despite a couple of attempts to kick start it again. Its still live but has more than its share of cobwebs.
However the codebase of JISC Answers evolved into Delib Dialogue which is the platform powering ‘Your Freedom’ so even if my initial ideas never really found an audience this at least proves that they weren’t entirely stupid. Obviously things have moved on miles since 2007 but its nice to see my initial idea all grown up!
I do often find my way back to the whole Q&A app idea – it was the heart of the work I did at Jiva as well and the Tutorhub site they have built has taken the concept to a whole new level.
I don’t really get to do this sort of thinking/playing anymore with my current role so it is nice to remember times when I got to actually be a little creative with my thinking..