This slideshow is a good overview of the psychological approaches that apply to the design of social media sites.
At its heart it’s an eloquent argument for building on the millions of hours of social science research to design sites that motivate and engage. It also is chock full of thought provoking insights like the illustration of social engagement tools on an Amazon page or the observation that:
Personal Value Precedes Network (Social) Value!
And that design has to be both personally useful while enhancing ones social status, reputation or knowledge.
It’s a set of themes that I hope to explore during the upcoming BarCampOttawa4 in November.