Engineered Systems Magazine

Editor's Note: Social Studies, Part 2

September 1, 2010

We’re revving up LinkedIn to think in tune with colleagues.

In July, I offered up our midsummer media question: What social media do you actually use for work? On the good side, our feedback mentioned Facebook and Twitter as generating useful conversations. On the other side, the entirety of this feedback came from one individual - a LEED®AP who doesn’t quite represent an adequate sample size but whose comment we will always appreciate for obvious reasons.

(Well, we also got a reply tweet from a manufacturer, but that was because they were interested in what our informal survey might’ve found out! So let’s count that as another half-vote for Twitter, I suppose.)

GETTING SYNCED

We will keep our friends on Facebook and Twitter informed with a stream of updates on newly posted items and other information; if you use those platforms, then come on by. But for reasons outlined in July, I think probably the largest chunk of you are using LinkedIn when it comes to social media for work. So we have given our presence at LinkedIn a retrofit to be more useful and inviting for your long-term participation.

What did we do? One thing you’ll notice is that at the top of the month, each feature article from the new issue will be posted as its own individual discussion topic. You can follow the link to the website, if you haven’t read it already, and then you can discuss it with other engineers in an easy-to-use environment.

You’ll find those in the Engineered Systems Magazine Open Forum. But we’ll also use that space for ongoing industry news, issues and events, etc., as posted through the month. Readers can discuss any of those as well.

The other part of this renovation involves the columns. I have made separate subgroups for all of the columns. That goes for Mark Jewell’s “Efficiency Incentives,” which runs quarterly but which is conveniently making its latest appearance in this issue. So once you join the ES group, you can read and write as much as you’d like in these column subforums as well:
  • Commissioning

  • Building Automation

  • Tomorrow’s Environment

  • Efficiency Incentives

  • Back2Basics / Facility Files
I combined that last pair since their content is coordinated as they shift from application to application. As with the feature articles, you can find links to the latest installments of those columns if that’s a convenient way for you to keep up, and then you can join any readers and/or authors who are sharing their thoughts about the content.

Engaging ES through LinkedIn has two other built-in advantages, as far as forums go. Those of you who deal with data centers and other sensitive facilities will find considerable value in keeping up with our cousin publication, Mission Critical Magazine. The data center crowd is especially, shall I say, plugged in, and MC editor Kevin Heslin provides an open forum for that lively crowd.

The other forum of note is Sustainable Solutions Engineering High-Performance Buildings. We created that one later on in the process for last spring’s event, but you can also expect significant changes and announcements there in the coming months.

HARDLY ACADEMIC

Of course, while the emphasis here is on making it easy to talk about what you’re reading in our pages, you can always start your own discussion topic in our forum, too. If you’re already a LinkedIn member, join us today. If you aren’t yet, the improved ES space there may be a bonus for you, along with the site’s other networking opportunities. Why just read when you can read, discuss, ask, and answer? ES