The Alumni Review urges us to:

Watch this space for a new and improved online version of the Alumni Review—plus the first ever searchable, Web-based Williams People—in the fall.

1) I am a big fan of the Alumni Review but am not sure that they need an improved on-line presence. What would that entail? It might be convenient to have the articles in html rather than just pdf. Perhaps some easier search functionality? Older editions on-line? I am not against those things, I just don’t see much demand for them.

2) What is the world is a “searchable, Web-based Williams People?” Again, whatever it is, I will probably make more use of it than 99.9% of Williams Alumni, so I should not complain. But I can’t even figure out what this means. Ideas?

3) What should the Alumni Review be doing? One answer is just what it is doing now. Another answer (my suggestion) is to taking over some of the functionality that EphBlog provides. The Alumni Office ought to generate an RSS feed of all the blogs maintained by Ephs, a Twitter Feed of all their tweets, a collection of all the news stories that feature Ephs and so on. All this material should be tagged by, at least, class year and, even better, area of interest, consistent with my description of the Williams Conversation.

Summary: Every thing (blog post, op-ed article, tweet) written by an Eph (students, alum, faculty, staff, local resident) is part of the Williams Conversation. If EphBlog demonstrates nothing else, it is that there is a significant demand from Ephs around the world for items of interest from that stream of information. But no Ephs wants to see every item in that stream. Instead, she wants to see all the items connected to someone from her class or all the items touching on her professional field or all the mentions of her hobby. Williams ought to collect, organize and redistribute these tidbits from the Williams Conversation. The more/better that the College does so, the less need there is for EphBlog.

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