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Healthcamp Toronto September 16, 2009

Posted by peterjmurray in conference, health informatics, unconference.

Peter is at his first healthcamp/barcamp, here in Toronto. A lot of interesting, enthusiastic people here to look at a wide variety of issues. The formal website for the event, which will have summaries, conversations, links, etc is at http://www.socialtext.net/hctoronto/index.cgi?healthcamptoronto

A lot of the major conversation will be via Twitter – search using #hcTO

I am here to learn what these events are all about, how they work, etc., and what benefits there can be out of them.

UPDATE: 17 Sept. Healthcamp Toronto was an interesting experience; @carlosrizo and all his colleagues at the Innovation Cell did a great job of organising and running it – and of trying to capture all the conversations, which is a difficult task. It wil be interesting to see the various analyses that come out of it. Having been involved in running quite a few similarly semi-structured workshops etc. in the past, I appreciate the challenges of trying to get away from talking heads and monologues and death by powerpoint, etc.

The idea of having a ‘wall’ where people could post what they wanted to discuss in sessions worked well; although requires you to think quickly and try to grasp what the session ‘leader’ is looking to explore. A lot of the session notes, together with video clips and photos are on the website; I recommend you to go and explore that. A few ideas/issues I picked up from the sessions I went to:

  • how do we bring people without technical skills into using online tools? – how do we overcome some of digital divides?
  • will social networking tools become part of people’s normal social landscape in the future, and so these become ‘non-issues’ in the future?
  • there were many differing views of the value of content on some online discussion areas – some suggest low value (too much ‘noise’), some report studies that give high value/accurate information (more accurate information often in areas for more specific/specialised diseases).
  • do we need filtering of information, or does the good material rise and stay, and the dross fall away (via crowdsourcing etc)?
  • what do we mean by Web 3.0 and what will it mean for health? (search Twitter for comments here).

The discussion 'grid'


Welcome to healthcamp - the rules of healthcamp ....


A Healthcamp Wordle from live analysis of tweets



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