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The Power Grid (No, Not THAT Power)

Yesterday I had the Adversity Index, today it’s the Power Grid from MediaIte. It attempts to score the power of reporters and writers, media owners, etc, by using a lot of different data points; number of TV minutes, number of Twitter followers, etc. Here’s the view as I write this:


Being mildly competitive, I have to admit I almost immediately thought – hey, this would be interesting for the SQL community. Then I remembered just how competitive many of us, and how good we are finding chinks in the rules, and started thinking I might spend a lot of time trying to un-game the system.

Would it work? What could we use for data points?

  • # of Presentations (in minutes?) (more score for bigger events?) (or attendee based?)
  • # of Blog posts/comments
  • # of Twitter followers
  • # of Books written (or how about # of words published?) (what about things like an SSC article?) (Do e-books count less or more?)
  • # of minutes of video produced
  • # of questions answered (what’s an answer?)
  • # of network connections
  • SQL Community service

See, I still like the idea! Data capture might be a challenge, but I wonder if I wouldn’t get most of it through the speaker bureau that I hope to build for PASS this year.

Of course it would be fun to try to be number one, but would it just be a game, or would it drive interest in participation that would really benefit the overall community?


I'm Andy Warren, currently a SQL Server trainer with End to End Training. Over the past few years I've been a developer, DBA, and IT Director. I was one of the original founders of SQLServerCentral.com and helped grow that community from zero to about 300k members before deciding to move on to other ventures.


Posted by Steve Jones on 17 February 2010

This would be interesting. Might be fun to let this run in real time at the Summit. See how many tweets/posts someone gets about their talks.

Posted by Jason Brimhall on 17 February 2010

I think this would be interesting.  Sometimes it takes a little competition to get people to give service.

There will be gaming involved.  I think the easiest ways to game it are through video produced, Blog posts and questions answered.  Twitter followers and network connections (define the network, I don't think facebook would qualify) are an opt-in and thus minimize the gaming but are still exposed.

If one tries to game through books or presentations - they are just gaming themselves.  As for the books/articles, I would say that quality matters.  Presentation quality should also be considered.

I don't see how somebody could game Community Service though - there might be a way.  But it is service.

Posted by Bill Nicolich on 18 February 2010

I'm a fan of insight through metadata. I just listened to a cool TED talk by Clay Shirky about collaborative frameworks like our SSC community, vs traditional institutions. He points out that the magic of the collaborative community is that it's better at capturing the small contributions from lots of people.

You look at the articles contributed here - and you see that tons of people have contributed one or two. Well, that's where the magic is at compared to a traditional institution. Institutions aren't good at producing the long tail of an effort distribution.

That said, I'm not sure your metadata would add to the collaborative magic per se, but it would still be interesting.

I think the world is waking up to the power of that's in new visualizations of data.

Posted by Andy Warren on 18 February 2010

Bill, Im with you on visualization. I see progress in that area, though often even with good visualization I'm hoping for tools that make some suggestions about what to do next!

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