Monday, May 23, 2011

A little self promotion - Web Creds..

I was thinking it might be a good idea to archive all the websites I have worked on, developed, etc. Some of the sites still work, some were abandoned, some I'm proud of and some I would rather forget. Nevertheless, I have never claimed to be a designer, but rather a php/mysql ninja, capable of integrating different technologies, and an SEO genius.
  • TinyGoneBig (Newest Project) -
  • Hopelink -
  • Whitman County Democrats -
  • The Public Sphere Project -
  • The Global Plant Sciences Initiative -

  • Interconnection (not sure if the PHP/MySQL is still in use, but not my design) -
Of course there are a lot more projects that I have worked on in the past 7 years (Jesus, it has been that long!!!), but many of them are defunct, archived somewhere in cyberspace (hopefully never to be seen But overall, these are some of more interesting projects. Not to mention, I think each project highlights specific expertise that I've acquired.

For example, the Hopelink site makes heavy use of (SEO) Google Analytics, AdSense, Meta-tags, etc. I worked hard to increase traffic and visibility of the site and the organization. Web traffic doubled since I was there, and it has doubled twice over since I left (4+ years ago).

The GPSI site, and more recently the TinyGoneBig project, gave me a crash course in building social networking platforms for business and community collaboration. And so on...

Almost an entire year... Research Almost Done!!!

It has been nearly a year since I have posted on this blog. Lots of things have gone on these past few months. Much of my time has been devoted to my research, finishing up my PhD and looking for gainful employment. With the PhD winding down, and the research track I have chosen, this blog space may be more relevant to my work than ever.

For one, I'm working on a software project that is being used to conduct content and social network analysis of food bloggers in cyberspace. The idea behind the project is to gain a better understanding of food discourse in cyberspace. In particular, I'm looking at dominant themes among alternative agri-food movements (AAFMs). Basically, the software is a webcrawler and screenscraper that searches, indexes and records data from publicly available blogs that publish content about: Local Food, Food Sovereignty, Slow Food, Organic Food, Community Food Security, Sustainable Cooking, Sustainable Agriculture, etc. Currently, the code is pretty crude, but it works! I'm developing the project in PHP/MYSQL and will be adding a slick UI the employs some cool AJAX stuff.

Aside from geeking out on building the software, several research questions are directing this inquiry:
  1. Does the blogosphere reflect current trends among food shoppers? In other words, are the main themes expressed by food bloggers, the same themes that are influencing shifting consumer choice with respect to local and organic foods?

  2. Does food discourse in cyberspace reflect the social and geographical context of place? For instance, I suggest that CSAs and Slowfood might be more relevant themes in say, Berkeley CA. Whereas, food sovereignty might be more relevant theme in say, inner-city Detroit.

  3. And finally, I want to ask the question as to whether there are multiple food movements, or one food movement with variations depending on social and geographic context.

Using consumer survey data collected this last fall (2010), together with US Census data and the information gathered through the software, I anticipate being able to offer a new perspective on some of interesting debates in current agri-food scholarship. Anyway, things are moving fast and I hope to have all data analyzed, papers written and dissertation completed by October of this year!