Srishti Sethi SrishAkaTux

Making Serendepity Stick

How we can help people translate short-live, online interactions into meaningful relationships?

Deep personal connections foster rich learning. Making such connections is one of the most valuable benefits of attending face-to-face conferences. Online technologies offer the opportunity to meet with more people at a fraction of the cost. However, it is more challenging to experience the immediacy of face-to-face meetings in online gatherings and virtual conversations. Forming strong ties with people at conferences is much easier offline, than online, where it is easy to get distracted and harder to reach out and connect. For my Masters thesis, I extended Unhangout, a platform for online unconferences and explored how we can help people translate short live online interactions into lasting relationships and continued learning exchanges. I investigated means to mimic some of the successful features of the offline unconferences into online Unhangout. I implemented a series of design interventions, considering three distinct phases, “Who to connect with?”, “How to connect with other participants?” and “How to stay connected after the event?”, and explored their impact on people’s behaviors and ability to form relationships with each other.

Video of Crit Day presentation