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Posts tagged ‘groups’

Introducing ‘People’

colorful crowd celebrate cheer experience

Have you ever heard the expression “people make the experience?” It’s a pretty self-explanatory idiom used to express how in certain cases what and where you are doing something is less important that who you’re doing it with.  It’s a tribute to the mindset that anything can be enjoyed –from waiting in line at the DMV or getting stuck out in a rainstorm—when you’re with the right people.

It’s a sentiment I share and I think it’s one that most people would agree with. For one, it’s something I think everyone can relate to. I think everyone has had an experience that has been improved just by being with a group of fun friends.  On a deeper level, I think it’s the people themselves that create a great community.

To illustrate this, just imagine being a part of a community that sounds really interesting, like ping pong, for example. Now think about how that community of ping pong players would be different if you didn’t get along with the rest of the people or thought they were boring. Ping pong is a ton of fun (at least to me), but with the wrong people it’s just as unexciting and undesirable as a tax auditing community (no offense to the tax auditors out there).

Worse, you might begin to see this ping pong community as nothing more than a responsibility you have to organize events you don’t want to go to and coordinate plans with people you don’t want to see.  You could lose sight of the love you had for ping pong and the reason you joined in the first place.  To create an awesome community the setting needs to be right and there’s no better way to create an awesome environment that to get great people together.

This is one of the reasons high school and college students can take trips abroad and have a fantastic time if they like the people they’re with. It’s why Rick felt so at home during his trip to Spain and why Noah and I have developed a love for Austin.  It’s people.

So over the next few months we want to celebrate and recognize the importance of great people in communities. We’re going to be taking a closer look at what makes individuals importance in the scope of communities and how people are the ones who breathe life into our world.  Stay tuned!!

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How Education Changes The World

five inspired childreen smiling education

Education is society’s absolute greatest resource – it is the foundation for every possible future we could ever hope for. Education for job training, for the future of the economy. Education for knowledge, for the future of academia. Education for teaching, for the future of thought. All of these things combine themselves in our schools and outside of them to educate us.

Schools aren’t just about academics, though. It’s not all just reading and writing and arithmetic. Learning to develop social skills, work together, and adapt to new ideas is what gives people the spark of innovation and ideas to create the future. Schools teach us to learn how to learn, and therefore learn how to create and change the future. Schools are like little incubators, preparing for the future and unlocking the great power of the mind in each and every one of us.

But there are some things you can’t learn in school. There are some lessons learned from teachers without degrees, outside of classrooms. And each of us becomes teachers in our own ways, passing on our stories, knowledge, and values to other whether we mean to or not. You not only learn something every day, but you teach something every day, too. This is what OurPangea can accomplish on a large scale. By bringing people together to teach one another and share in a universal education to improve the future and present, OurPangea seeks to provide ways for education to flourish and for communities of learning to thrive in an unprecedented new era of technology.

We have gathered the accumulation of knowledge across thousands of years all leading to today, and every day we must step into the future with this knowledge and with the mindset of learning and growing to make this future better than our history ever could have dreamed to be. This is why education is important and necessary for the continued survival of society – in schools or outside of them, of academics or philosophy, the education brings us the knowledge we need to hope for and create the future we desire.

Using OurPangea Within Our Small Communities

community gathering together diversity

Among the easiest ways to construct a community is by sharing a living space. This can be abstracted all the way out to cities, states, and nations. But it’s not uncommon also for smaller communities to be the most saturated with thriving culture and identity. With OurPangea’s innovative system of networking hyper-local communities, these shared living spaces can connect and interactively these individual cultures together.

I grew up in a small neighborhood called Lamar Park, just off the edge of Corpus Christi Bay, in South Texas. My neighborhood consisted of friends, pets, families, events, adventures and everything one could ask for in a small community. We had community Christmas caroling, 4th of July barbeques, garage sales, carpools, and much more. We created our community based on our shared living space. Every community in the world has the same story. Each of them has created their unique cultures and traditions based on the communication and connection of the people within them.

But a neighborhood is only one way of sharing a living space. More structured living spaces with offices and front desks would have the perfect opportunity to utilize the community organization OurPangea brings. An apartment office could coordinate its communities for the events and social gatherings they hold and the notices they send. Residence advisors could use OurPangea to connect and foster an environment of collaboration for students. An apartment complex or a university residence hall could quickly use OurPangea to create a sense of belonging and networking to the residents within by sharing their common ground with one another. In all cases, OurPangea acts as a springboard for community discussion, gathering, and connection.

The foundation of any community starts with a shared characteristic among its members. OurPangea’s organizational system will organize its communities by these traits, helping individuals come together and share in these communities. Neighborhoods, apartment complexes, and residence halls are the keystones in OurPangea’s vision. By creating communities of shared locations, shared interests, and shared topics, we will create “neighborhoods” that transcend our traditional notions of what a community should be, while at the same time bringing together and sharing all the communities that are.

The Power of a Community Network

One of the most common responses we come across when trying to introduce someone to OurPangea.com is the confusion and automatic association with current social networks.  There’s always the inevitable, “Oh, so it’s like [insert social network here].”  In truth, there are a lot of similarities between social networking and Community Networking, but they are not one and the same.  Community Networking is the next step of online networks – taking the proven tools and structure of social networks and combining that with additional networking models, optimizing it for community use.

OurPangea replicates the complex structure of our real-life relationships and therefore lets you interact with your group in a more true-to-life way.  The Community Network not only gives you, the individual user, the ability to define yourself online and connect with other users, it gives this ability to entire communities as well. However – and this distinction is important – it’s not about segmenting the different circles in your network, it‘s about defining the different networks you have, finding where they overlap, and discovering new people and things you’ll love. It creates a living snapshot of our collective cultures to create a window for cross-community transparency, understanding, and collaboration.

When you become a member of OurPangea, you’ll be associated with your location based on the zip code or city you enter on registration.  From there you can find all the various communities, groups, and activities that are around you.  For example, if you’re looking to volunteer in a shelter but don’t have the time to scour the entire Internet to find all of the opportunities in the community, OurPangea makes it easy to find out about all the different groups you can join that are nearby – or in a different location if that is what you want.  If what you’re looking for isn’t on OurPangea, go ahead and create a new group!

So how are groups and communities different from other sites?  OurPangea is specifically designed for communities and groups.  What we mean by this is the quality of on-site engagement and value gained from OurPangea doesn’t decline after you leave the individual-user level. Group tools aren’t a band-aid meant to complement the individuals using the site, this is an effective and dedicated tool that makes group the focus and promotes strong collaboration to improve your group and community experience for yourself and all members.

Within your groups you can do more than just send mass-messages and create events; you can also create projects, assign tasks, and send custom communication to specific group segments – even giving you the ability to hold elections online for a seamless transfer of leadership.

OurPangea is grounded in the notion that we are all visionaries, and together there is no limit to what we can do.  Come together with the rest of your community and see what’s possible.

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