Who is Andy Roberts?

I am a blogger and wiki-er, an explainer, researcher, musician, online community professional with both a technical and creative background. I work from home in London, UK and hope to move permanently onto a narrow boat in a couple of years. I’ve been fascinated by online groups for ten years, joined hundreds, started many, facilitate a few, but I don’t always fit in easily with norms and expectations so I’m active on my own spaces as much as others. I love WordPress and MediaWiki.

What is this DARnet blog all about?

DARnet blog is a vehicle for tracking my journey through internet life, as well as a shop window into my work and learning. It adapts and changes as do I, so the content can be somewhat random or clearly focussed, depending on the period. My main theme is the process of change, particularly in the context of distributed communities of practice, using the method of action research and applying the theory of social objects. I’m trying to tell the world that these amazing ‘new’ phenomena are governed by universal laws of change, although complex, can be understood and guided to some extent, and are every bit as real and human as offline communities. Because I am situated in the UK, you will also find posts related to some topical news and events and my participation in the vibrant London internet startup and social media scene. Homeworking and changing the nature of work is at the forefront through my work with pajamanation, and there’s a separate page for my acoustic music making.

Why Does Your Blog Exist?

I published a post about this in response to a challenge to write myblog story

How Does Your Blog Work?

Sometimes I don’t post for a week, sometimes twice or more in a day. Comments are open and encouraged with no registration required. Upon commenting, you get a chance to subscribe by email to future comments on that post, so a that a conversation may ensue.

Who Is Your Audience?

I hope the blog is of interest to anybody who knows me through the various social networking events and sites, to facilitators and moderators, geeks and homeworkers, newbies and net veterans, at home and abroad. I read three hundred RSS feeds daily but my blogroll only contains links which have some relevence to the DARnet blog, mainly individuals. As far as I know I’m the only blogger writing about communities of practice combined with action research, object orientated sociality and a dash of marxist dialectics. I’m passionate that good theory is important, and try to communicate my ideas in a clearly understandable manner with an informal yet grammatically correct style.

Why Should I Subscribe to Your Blog?

If you subscribe for a long enough period, you will receive unique insights and discoveries, technology tips and developments as well as an unfolding story about the new web entrepreneur lifestyle. All written in an accessible style with illustrative but not gratuitous graphics, and occasional podcast or video.


I also write an occasional newsletter which contains some extra stuff that doesn’t get published on the blog here, or in the RSS.

A few significant posts from the archive

Andy Roberts Elsewhere

My Andy Roberts Google+ Profile page is a good jumping off point.

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12 Responses to About

  1. I stumbled across your blog when I was studying the stats for my own blog. Someone had found my blog from a Google search about Jansen’s Strandbeests, and your blog came up in the same search results, so I figured I’d have a look. My blog is called GigantiCo. I think you may find it of interest.


  2. Rob Oresteen says:

    Hi – I was wondering if you could tell me how I can get the “share this” little green widget. I’ve seen this on many blogs and I like it.



    I saw your post over at BR 2.0

  3. Andy Roberts says:

    Rob, it’s a wordpress plugin called “share this” by Alex King


  4. Kate Olson says:

    Andy –

    Heard through the grapevine you’re doing the 31 day challenge with Sarah, Jess, and I. True? If so, glad to be doing this with great people! If not, sorry for the mistake πŸ™‚

    • Andy Roberts says:

      Hi Kate,
      Well yes, it’s true πŸ™‚ I read Sarah’s comment at the “better blog ning group” and decided I’d like to join in at this time if that’s OK.
      Actually I already started a little project on my own but the opportunity to work through the 31daychallenge with others has got to be more fun than “First Person Research”.

      ( Have I completed day one by replying to you here? πŸ™‚ )

  5. Bev Trayner says:

    No suggestions. I’m just trawling your brilliant About page for ideas for my own new webpage. Feeling a bit daunted.

  6. Andy Roberts says:

    Thanks for dropping by Bev, let me know if you’d like a quick appraisal when your new site is ready for testing.

  7. Bev Trayner says:

    Thanks. Will do.

  8. Constantine says:

    Are you by any chance the Andy Roberts who played in the band for a revue called “Stewed Irish” at the Traverse, Edinburgh Festival 1965? Then at the arts Theatre in ondon? You may perhaps remember one of the actors, Gog.
    I passed by a restaurant in Hove which does live music on Thursdays, and the name “Andy Roberts” was on a list of musicians who play there. this set me to thinking..”can it be?” and then “I’d really like to see him again”. I have tried facebook, but you can’t be contacted direct on that. If you are not the Andy Roberts I hope you are, then I apologise for this message. If you are that AR, do get in touch. Gog

  9. Dale Lingram says:

    Hello Andy
    I’d like to use a photo of yours I found here: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Royal_Arsenal_Cooperative_Society_Ltd.jpg. Please may I (it’s not for profit). Also, please can you tell me where this building is? The RACS had many stores across south London and I am attempting to track them all down.
    There’s no fire, but it relates to a proposal to demolish another RACS store elsewhere so if you can come back to me sooner rather than later, that would be most helpful.

    • Andy Roberts says:

      Hello Dale,

      Yes, you are welcome. That photo of mine has been scraped by wikimedia from Flickr, it was taken in 2004 in South Woolwich, London. As far as I know the building is still there, it’s something of a historic icon for the cooperative movement.


      Royal Arsenal Cooperative Society Ltd

      There you can download the original, and view the creative commons license which means that you are free to use the picture but you must attribute it to me, and if possible link back to me here.

      Good luck with the conservation campaign.

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