Ethan Zuckerman writes about how a large volunteer effort was quickly mobilized on the Net. The software support was crude: wikis, databases, data chunks for manual entry by a massively parallel array of humans. The end result: fantastic. Read it and start thinking about ways to make things better.
Ethan also points out the power of posses. Amen, brother! One of my greatest treasures is the group of friends I can call on for a cause or an emergency. Social software extends that beyond the small group of people in my address book to anyone who cares to read my blog, and it makes it easier for people passing the call on to _other_ posses, other cliques, other groups through their own blogs. Very good stuff.