We’re happy to showcase an ever-growing library of more than 2,300 Knowledge Cards, but it’s hard to imagine how it would have been possible without the dedicated efforts of our Knowledge Experts–like Anastasia Romanova, who graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration this year from Fordham University.
I recently talked to Anastasia, who just returned from a sojourn to Russia, to shed some light on what appealed to her about Citelighter, why she enjoys creating Knowledge Cards, what the process was like to first start creating the cards, their value to viewers, and potential applications.
What initially attracted you to Citelighter and how did you learn about us?
I first saw an ad for a Knowledge Expert position on my college job posting site. The position sounded interesting by itself (creating projects on the topics you choose – awesome!), but the selling point for me was that Citelighter was a startup. Both of my parents are entrepreneurs and have founded several companies over the period of their careers, so I know how hard–but also how inspiring–it can be. That’s why I wanted to be a part of Citelighter.
When you were putting together your first Knowledge Cards, what were the main challenges? What was your thought process like for creating them in the most logical way possible?
I am not going to lie: my first Knowledge Card (Austrian Economics, I think it was) took me about four hours. Looking back now, that’s way too long! But I wanted to be very precise about each fact I captured, and I wanted these facts arranged in a certain way, so that they read as a whole article. Now, I realize that that is not necessary. A Knowledge Card should, of course, look like an article, but what people are really looking for is a collection of citations from very different sources, in different formats, offering different takes on the matter, that they can use in order to create their own project.
In what ways do you think Knowledge Cards stand out from Wikipedia or other forms of learning?
Knowledge Cards are not wiki articles that tell you everything there is to know (important or not) about the subject you are interested in. They are more like guides. They tell you, ‘Look! Here is a fascinating fact about what you’re researching. Follow the link to find out more.’ Yeah, you’ll get a picture of the subject just by glancing over the Knowledge Card, but you’ll also want to click on the sources, you’ll want to find out more. A Knowledge Card doesn’t do your work for you, it encourages and makes it easier for you to do it yourself.
How did you become interested in producing the Knowledge Cards you’re responsible for? An inherent passion for the subject areas you chose, or curiosity that developed along the way?
I think I’ve dabbled in over fifteen different categories. I started with economics and business, simply because it was my major, I knew that stuff, so I thought it’d be easier to do them. But then I moved on to music and history and art and literature and poetry and fashion and… the list goes on. Basically, anything that gets my attention gets a Knowledge Card. Sometimes it’s something I like and want to share with the world, sometimes it’s something I’ve never heard before and want to learn more about. A lot of times, actually, I get an idea for a topic by seeing something interesting while researching for an entirely different Knowledge Card.
Given all the time you’ve spent on Knowledge Cards, do you think there might be interesting ways to further develop or expand on them that could make them more useful?
I definitely think that communication between Knowledge Experts and users is the way to go. When you create a Knowledge Card, you get to know the subject pretty well, and so can give advice on it and the best way to utilize the sources cited. I’m glad that the team is already working on it.
Another thing, I suppose, would be to let the users tag their projects to the related Knowledge Cards, so that others can get an access to a wide range of citations.
But, honestly, there is almost a limitless list of possibilities for Knowledge Cards, and that’s what makes being a Knowledge Expert so exciting for me!
Citelighter PR Director