Tall Giants

Or, to put it elsewise: 1675: “If I have seen further [than certain other men] it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” 2007: Once you see the value of giants, it’s a small step to notice that some giants are taller than others. The tallest giants are networked communities — and they are legion. Social media is the fastest way to get access up on those shoulders, head in the Cloud. Up where the new things happen.

Dark Energies

Businesses adopting emergent media tools to canonify tacit knowledge are going to get much much more than they expect…

Dennett. Memes. Myths and their Lexical Correlates.

Daniel Dennett on memes and our mediated realities, in his recent book Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon: …it seems best to include all these replicators [computer virii and online scams/social engineering] under the rubric of memes, noting that some of them make only indirect use of human vectors, and hence are only indirectly elements of human culture. We are beginning to see this porous boundary crossed in the other direction as well: it used to be true that the differential replication of such classic memes as songs, poems and recipes depended on their winning the competition for …

From Alliance to Dalliance

One to explore later: during the 90s, there was much excitement and hype about the idea of keeping a business to its core competencies — small and lean — and developing strong alliances with other businesses to flesh out the offering. In the post-stratified, networked world of today, surely businesses should be thinking past such rigidity! From our learnings with social network structures, there is much strength in weak ties — relationships which aren’t constantly reinforced, or core to our activities, but which can be called on dynamically as and when required to achieve some specific goal. Out with Alliance! …

Documents with Tails: Blogjects

Evidently there’s a nice new ‘theory object’ neologism for the class of things of which Documents With Tails are members: blogjects. Thanks for Stephen for reminding me to read that paper.

Days Like These

Every day, I receive emails, newsletters and catalogues informing me about some small subset of the thousands of potentially interesting things on in London. If I’m really paying attention in the moment, I might actually get around to typing some of them into my ipaq and maybe even get around to booking. More usually, though, the moment that I see the information is a moment when my attention is mostly occupied with something else: looking though email for an important messsage from a client, or opening letters in the hope of finding a long-chased invoice. Most event invitations simply get …

(Not Necessarily) Talking ’Bout a Revolution

[adapted from an email exchange with Axel at SMLXL] It’s funny how bottom-up, transformative organisational change is usually portrayed as a gung-ho, networked culture youth thing… When I worked for (as it then was) Yamatake-Honeywell in Tokyo, we used to go out to places like the Nissan car factories, where the kaizen quality control systems were entirely bottom up — individual guys on the line had almost complete freedom to find ways of improving process, and the organisation had very well organised systems and communities in the corporate hierarchy to make sure that those tweaks and improvements got picked up, …