There have been several good books written on the value of being able to harness the intelligence of the masses, a concept that democracy is based upon. But to actually do this is more possible now than any other time in history. Social Networks are opening up great possibilities.
As an example, Mindjet, a Mind Mapping product, has integrated the collaborative capabilities of Twitter with Brainstorming.
Although we may put this in the context of a project or some business related scenario, imagine its worth in our political and societal processes. I do not want to overreach the original intent of the Mindjet crew. But, I do see this as an example of future uses facilitating National and Global collaboration.
I have extracted an excerpt from their blog along with a diagram showing this capability. I find the opportunities presented by combining Mind Mapping with Social Networks to be intriguing.
To get started, just send a quick tweet about your topic of interest and start chatting with your Twitter network. As the ideas roll in, simply tag the tweets using our built-in map markers, or annotate them with topic notes of your own. The connector automatically organizes everything in the map, copying the tweets into categories based on the selected marker(s) and/or notes you provide. Of course, it’s a real map too, so you may also drag/drop, summarize, and collate the ideas from your brainstorm session to suit your own personal preferences.
In addition, as the ideas from your own network start rolling in, you can search all of Twitter for related conversation threads, quickly incorporating additional input from a very large community. When you come across like-minded people, you can instantly follow them from within the map and expand your social network in the process.