It is interesting that I am writing a piece on a platform that exists on the premise of networking through Q&A and information sharing. Thus, the title has a much deeper meaning.
As a computer and mobile technology generation knee deep in the ever growing pursuit of networking, the competition is fierce for advancing niche communities and getting the attention of investors and customers. In a social networking environment, who are the true “customers”. That is you and I. The bloggers, the wall posters, the group organizers, and the passive communicator. For each piece of information we share about ourselves, HAL 3000 is running an algorithm and compiling information on our interests, lifestyle, social status and personality traits. Right now, as you read this, a virtual robotic profile is being created on you based on these hash tags, the theme of this blog and how you mapped your way to this site.
“I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do.” – HAL 3000 (2001 A Space Odyssey)
As the complexity of the technology begins to overwhelm us, it is becoming more essential to make the tools user friendly to the common man, woman and child. Then again the youngest generation is more advanced than the Baby Boomers, Generation X and Generation Y. Take your local or national daily periodical for example. Most newspapers are written at a 4th grade reading level or below providing short summarized commentary in their respective pieces. There is a reason behind that very strategic decision and that is simplicity and ease to the targeted audience. That is not a negative commentary on society, but the acceptance that there is a full and diverse range of readers that pick up the newspapers daily.
What is Quora?
Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. The most important thing is to have each question page become the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about the question.
Quora is focused on the principles of:
Continuously improving knowledge sharing
Organized and targeted populations
What makes a website about asking and responding to questions, the future of social crowd sourcing?
First, each profile provides the option to create widget links to Facebook, Twitter and your blog. Once someone follows you or responds to one of their questions, you will see their name, avatar and immediate links to their other key social networking accounts. Within 30 seconds, I can follow back, follow and review their last ten tweets and add them as a Facebook connection. To date, I have added nearly 70 people on Facebook from Quora and not one decline. The primary reason is that the people that follow you or respond have similar backgrounds or interests based on the topic matter that they are drawn to.
Next, when you pose a question, based on key words and phrases, the system will tell you all the potentially similar questions that have already been asked and answered.
Each profile provides a summary of the type of content that the individual is sharing or researching to gives you a better feel on whether this person can have value in your pursuit of continued knowledge.
As an active member, you have the ability to follow questions. You are not required to answer a question to see what others are saying.
What if I see a question that I feel is important to others but they are not registered on Quora? You have the ability to share your question on Twitter, Facebook or an instant blog post.
The bottom line is that Quora is the most effective tool I have seen for linking up like people with like interests to the key social network and providing an avenue for deep discussion, research and resolutions.
Whether you want to know why Darth Vader’s electronics system never malfunctioned or what the five year revenue generating strategy is for Microsoft, Quora is here to answer your inquiry and connect you with the world. From coast to coast, ocean to ocean, one thing is certain, we love knowledge. That principle will not change.