[ freespace ] is an experiment in civic hacking and bringing people together.
But, how do we know if it’s working?
It turns out that with a bit of crowd-sourcing and some social network analysis (a fancy word for not-too-fancy math) we can actually test goal #2: Bringing people together.
Social network analysis allows us to view the strength of connections in a network. With it, we can empirically test if [ freespace ] bridges groups that wouldn’t otherwise have connected.
Here’s how it works:
(1) We create a google spreadsheet with each column a person’s name, and each row an affiliation or group (workplaces, communities, societies, etc). An example row might be ReAllocate, a non-profit where a few freespacers work, or The Embassy Network, a co-living house were Jessy Kate and I live.
(2) Freespacers can add their name and affiliations the google spreadsheet found here: http://bit.ly/networkingfs Let’s try to keep things alphabetical (simply add a row or column in the right spot with a ‘right click’)
(3) After adding new rows, go down to your name’s column and place a 1 in all the group / affiliation rows to which you belong. For example, I have a 1 in the Embassy Network row, but I don’t have one in ReAllocate (since I don’t work there). Only put a 1 in 1st degree connections (ex. if you’ve been to our house for dinner -> that doesn’t count).
(4) After enough of us have populated the spreadsheet we’ll run some math to see if [ freespace ] is ACTUALLY a connector.
If it is, this analysis will help us confirm one of [ freespaces ] true successes!