Futurelearn “Web Science” – Week 1

Here’s what I got to do as first course activity for my Web Science MOOC:

The Web is used by many different kinds of people across the world. In this activity, we would like you to reflect on your use of the Web, and evaluate its impact on your life.
To get a clearer view of the kind of benefit that you get from the Web, you can use the Web History Visualiser to see which sites you visit the most.
What kind of sites do you visit most?
What kinds of service do they provide you?
What interests of yours and what areas of your life is the Web involved in, or not involved in?
Can you think of a way of visualising your conclusions as a chart or diagram so that you can share it with other participants in the discussion step that follows. (Futurelearn WebScience Activity 1)

I am going to skip the Web History Visualiser and rather focus on reflecting my personal history and “relationship” with the WWW.

Fact ist: I use the web. A lot. Every day. For practically everything. Let’s begin with my job: I am an education technologist at a University of Applied Sciences. My core tasks consists of providing tools and systems to help lecturers and staff at my university organise, teach and examine classes. All those tools are web based – so no matter if I give support to users, prepare trainings for them, develop didactically challenging scenarios or fix bugs, I am online. With all my stakeholders, I mainly communicate by e-mail, but Facebook and even more Twitter are becoming more and more important channels to spread information.
Besides my job, I am doing a Master’s program (Technology&Innovation Management)…I do have real life classes three evenings a week, but needless to say, the biggest part of the actual workload happens online as well: Collaboration with fellow students (Facebook and email), research (at least starting with a scholar.google search), online articles to keep up to date in my field. Social networks, readers and mashups play a crucial role in that process of staying up to date. I recently started some “serious” tweeting…getting in touch with people from eLearning and startup communities worldwide, exchanging ideas, articles and impulses.

And of course, a large percentage of my leisure activities have at least a certain “web impact” – if only the organisation / communication is done in the shape of Facebook events, meetings point are arranged and marked on GoogleMaps, or day trips are planned fully online. In addition, I’ve relocated several times as a child, and as an adult, have lived in four different countries. Without social networking platforms, that allow one-to-one as well as many-to-many interactions, I wouldn’t be able to keep up the quantity and quality of interaction with friends I haven’t seen in years.

I tweet, I blog, I do online banking, I stream music, I play online games, I shop at Amazon and Zalando, and I mooc (assuming that the acronym may already be treated as a verb…). Indeed, I find it hard, if not impossible, to define any aspect of my life that functions completely “offline”.


I like to call this my www passport…tells you more about myself than a scan of my actual passport would 😉


About Sophie Lenz

I like: towns, books, web 2.0, web 3.0, linguistics, computer sciences, autumn, gin tonic, sarcasm, trains, Harry Potter, blogs, theories & concepts, square numbers, purple, green & turquoise, llamas, polar bears & owls, verbs & prepositions, agglutinative languages I don't like: spiders, heat, celery, handicrafts, TV, adjectives, salsa music, chickflicks, beach holidays, ironing, clubbing, motorcycles, slow people, the countryside, whiskey, talking on the phone
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