Accumulation, control and contingency: A critical review of intellectual property rights’ ‘piracy’, by Yiannis Mylonas. First Monday, Volume 16, Number 12 - 5 December 2011
Abstract: This article problematizes piracy a) as a hegemonic discourse and technology of control, aiming to securitize late capitalist accumulation; b) as a practice developed by the multitudes that is compatible to post–Fordist mode of production and to neoliberal norms; and, c) as resistance to dominant mode of late capitalist production, distribution and consumption of immaterial goods. The article addresses and criticizes capitalism’s ‘organic’ and strategic colonization of fundamental social commons, such as culture, intellectual goods, as well as human creativity and communication, by looking at the ideological, institutional and material processes that reproduce the capitalist ‘machine’. This paper concludes by considering the possibility of overcoming the capitalist approach to commons, through the politicization of IPR as well as through the connection of the problem they pose to broader social perspectives, confronting capitalism — in its post political disguises — politically.
Back to the “wall”: How to use Facebook in the college classroom, by Caroline Lego Muñoz and Terri Towner. First Monday, Volume 16, Number 12 - 5 December 2011
Abstract: The evolving world of the Internet — blogs, podcasts, wikis, social networks — offers instructors and students radically new ways to research, communicate, and learn. Integrating these Internet tools into the college classroom, however, is not an easy task. Therefore, the purpose of this article is to examine the role of social networking in education and demonstrate how social network sites (SNS) can be used in a college classroom setting. To do this, existing research relating to SNS and education is discussed, and the primary advantages and disadvantages of using SNS in the classroom are explored. Most importantly, specific instructions and guidelines to follow when implementing SNS (i.e., Facebook) within the college classroom are provided. Specifically, we show that multiple types of Facebook course integration options are available to instructors. It is concluded that SNS, such as Facebook, can be appropriately and effectively used in an academic setting if proper guidelines are established and implemented.
Understanding collaboration in Wikipedia, by Royce Kimmons. First Monday, Volume 16, Number 12 - 5 December 2011
Abstract: Wikipedia stands as an undeniable success in online participation and collaboration. However, previous attempts at studying collaboration within Wikipedia have focused on simple metrics like rigor (i.e., the number of revisions in an article’s revision history) and diversity (i.e., the number of authors that have contributed to a given article) or have made generalizations about collaboration within Wikipedia based upon the content validity of a few select articles. By looking more closely at metrics associated with each extant Wikipedia article (N=3,427,236) along with all revisions (N=225,226,370), this study attempts to understand what collaboration within Wikipedia actually looks like under the surface. Findings suggest that typical Wikipedia articles are not rigorous, in a collaborative sense, and do not reflect much diversity in the construction of content and macro–structural writing, leading to the conclusion that most articles in Wikipedia are not reflective of the collaborative efforts of the community but, rather, represent the work of relatively few contributors.
MIT is developing an online educational platform that will be open-source, largely free, and let users outside of MIT earn certificates for completing Institute-caliber courses online. MIT hopes the initiative, internally dubbed “MITx,” will change the way students learn on-campus — by incorporating elements of MITx into existing curricula — and push MIT’s educational reach beyond campus borders in a way the current OpenCourseWare (OCW) cannot.
According to MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif, who has been leading the project, “It’s safe to say that MIT faculty want to offer students the best residential education. Nowadays, it looks like more and more, that’s going to mean integrating online technologies into the campus experience.”
By doing “knowledge transfer” online through MITx, says Reif, “students come to a classroom or lab to do more of the enriching experiences they come to a campus for.” With MITx as the basis for teaching on campus, he says, MIT anticipates other types of learning that cannot be done online will increase, like laboratories and UROP, among other faculty-student “face-to-face” interactions …
Users will have the option of getting an MITx “certificate” by successfully completing a course online, though it will cost a “modest” fee, says Reif. Otherwise, they may use the service free-of-charge.
“If you’re taking a course, if you’re just exploring, you want to learn by yourself, and you don’t really care that [you] can show a piece of paper that says you learned, that’s free,” says Reif …
Plantéense el siguiente panorama: últimamente, el crecimiento se ha basado en un fuerte auge de la construcción, impulsado por una escalada de los precios inmobiliarios, y muestra todos los signos clásicos de una burbuja. El crédito ha crecido rápidamente, pero gran parte de ese crecimiento no ha venido a través de la banca tradicional, sino más bien a través de una banca en la sombra, no regulada, que no está sometida a la supervisión del Gobierno ni está apoyada por avales oficiales. Ahora, la burbuja se está pinchando, y hay verdaderas razones para temer una crisis financiera y económica.
¿Estoy describiendo Japón a finales de la década de 1980? ¿O estoy describiendo EE UU en 2007? Podría ser. Pero ahora estoy hablando de China …
Ahora es evidente que la burbuja está pinchándose. ¿Cuánto daño hará a la economía china y al mundo?
Algunos analistas dicen que no nos preocupemos, que China tiene líderes fuertes e inteligentes que harán lo que sea necesario para hacer frente a una recesión. La idea implícita, aunque no se suela expresar, es que China puede hacer lo que haga falta, porque no tiene que preocuparse de exquisiteces democráticas.
Sin embargo, a mí me parece que del dicho al hecho hay mucho trecho. Después de todo, recuerdo muy bien haber oído declaraciones similares sobre Japón en la década de los ochenta, cuando los brillantes burócratas del Ministerio de Finanzas, supuestamente, tenían todo bajo control. Y más tarde oímos afirmaciones de que EE UU no repetiría jamás los errores que llevaron a la década perdida de Japón, cuando, en realidad, estamos haciéndolo incluso peor que Japón.
Por si sirve de algo, las declaraciones sobre la política económica de las autoridades chinas no me parecen especialmente lúcidas. En concreto, la forma en que China ha estado agrediendo a los extranjeros -entre otras cosas, imponiendo una tarifa punitiva a las importaciones de automóviles fabricados en EE UU que no va a hacer nada para ayudar a su economía, pero que servirá para envenenar las relaciones comerciales- no es propia de un Gobierno maduro que sabe lo que hace.
Y los casos de los que se tiene conocimiento dan a entender que aunque el Gobierno de China no esté constreñido por el Estado de derecho, sí lo está por la omnipresente corrupción, que significa que lo que sucede de hecho en el plano local puede tener poco que ver con lo que se ordena en Pekín …
… Para poder predecir la democratización de China, se necesitan varias cosas (además de algo de osadía). Primero se necesita un marco analítico en el que pueda encajar esa predicción. Sin duda, la teoría de los “cisnes negros” popularizada por Nicholas Taleb nos permite dar un primer paso: como comprobara EE UU el fatídico 11-S, demasiado a menudo confundimos lo altamente improbable con lo imposible. En otras palabras: no descontemos el poder de las cosas que desconocemos.
Lo segundo que se necesita es “conectar los puntos”. Es lo que también falló en EE UU el 11-S cuando nadie fue capaz de unir los puntos que conectaban informaciones fragmentarias. Retrospectivamente, se vio que toda la información estaba encima de la mesa, pero que nadie fue capaz de interpretarla correctamente. Esto significa que nuestros déficits no suelen ser de información, sino cognitivos, y que tenemos suficientes datos, incluso demasiados, pero pocas o inadecuadas herramientas para interpretarlos.
En el caso de China, el número de puntos es tan numeroso que merece la pena comenzar a pensar en cómo se podrían conectar. Hay un punto evidente llamado Ai Weiwei. Cuando un artista crítico de renombre internacional es detenido, incomunicado y humillado durante 49 días sin que se conozcan los cargos, sin derecho a un abogado y es finalmente acusado de un burdo delito fiscal, sabemos que el sistema tiene un problema. No uno, sino bastantes, como atestigua Liu Xiaobo …
Los billetes que han aterrizado en el patio de la casa de Ai Weiwei para ayudarle a pagar su multa son otro de esos puntos, como lo es que un régimen aparentemente tan poderoso se ponga tan nervioso que llegue a suprimir de Google la palabra “jazmín”. Los habitantes de la ciudad de Wukan, que se han levantado tras morir bajo custodia policial en extrañas circunstancias el líder de sus protestas contra las expropiaciones ilegales, son otro punto a conectar. Como lo son las miles de personas que viajan a Pekín acogiéndose a una tradición peticionaria para pedir justicia y son apaleadas y deportadas …
Brazil closed November 2011 with 236 million mobile access activations – a 19.51% growth year-on-year, the Brazilian national telecom agency Anatel reports. Out of these lines, 38.83 million are 3G terminals, it adds.
This is quite a feat, considering that the country ‘only’ has approximately 195 million inhabitants. In other words, there are more mobile lines than people in Brazil; the country’s teledensity, as it is called, amounts to 120.81%. That’s a rate that has increased almost 2 percent in the last three months alone, demonstrating the huge growth potential of telecom in the country…
Prototyping in Public Servicesdescribes an approach that can be used to help develop new and innovative services by testing ideas out early in the development cycle.
NESTA has produced a guide for policymakers, strategy leads, heads of service, commissioners and anyone else in a public service looking for new methodologies that can help them to better meet the needs of their communities. It sits alongside the Prototyping Framework: A guide to prototyping new ideaswhich provides examples of activities that can happen at different stages of a prototyping project.
The guide and toolkit are early outputs from our prototyping work and are based on work NESTA and its partners have been doing with several local authorities and third sector organisations. We will continue to learn about prototyping as an approach that can be used to develop public services, through our practical programmes.
Science fiction never imagined Google, but it certainly imagined computers that would advise us what to do. HAL 9000, in “2001: A Space Odyssey,” will forever come to mind, his advice, we assume, eminently reliable — before his malfunction. But HAL was a discrete entity, a genie in a bottle, something we imagined owning or being assigned. Google is a distributed entity, a two-way membrane, a game-changing tool on the order of the equally handy flint hand ax, with which we chop our way through the very densest thickets of information. Google is all of those things, and a very large and powerful corporation to boot.
We have yet to take Google’s measure. We’ve seen nothing like it before, and we already perceive much of our world through it. We would all very much like to be sagely and reliably advised by our own private genie; we would like the genie to make the world more transparent, more easily navigable. Google does that for us: it makes everything in the world accessible to everyone, and everyone accessible to the world. But we see everyone looking in, and blame Google.
we are its unpaid content-providers, in one way or another. We generate product for Google, our every search a minuscule contribution. Google is made of us, a sort of coral reef of human minds and their products. …
We never imagined that artificial intelligence would be like this. We imagined discrete entities. Genies. We also seldom imagined (in spite of ample evidence) that emergent technologies would leave legislation in the dust, yet they do. In a world characterized by technologically driven change, we necessarily legislate after the fact, perpetually scrambling to catch up, while the core architectures of the future, increasingly, are erected by entities like Google.
Cyberspace, not so long ago, was a specific elsewhere, one we visited periodically, peering into it from the familiar physical world. Now cyberspace has everted. Turned itself inside out. Colonized the physical. Making Google a central and evolving structural unit not only of the architecture of cyberspace, but of the world. This is the sort of thing that empires and nation-states did, before. But empires and nation-states weren’t organs of global human perception. They had their many eyes, certainly, but they didn’t constitute a single multiplex eye for the entire human species.
A critical part of any ethnographic/design research project is recruiting the right participants for the study – they are the foundation on which the research is built. The default way of recruiting in the commercial research space is to use recruiting agencies to help connect the researcher with relevant participants – generating a list that is often fleshed out by contacts from the team’s extended social network. The ideal recruiting agency list-of-potential-participants contains hundreds of millions of entries and document every aspect of potential participant’s lives – what they are doing, who they are doing it with, the causes they feel passionate about, the brands they connect with, the music they listen to, the places they go – and all updated in real time. Thanks to social networking sites like Weibo, Facebook, Orkut and Mixithis ‘ideal list’ already exists, and comes with a built in mechanism – their advertising platform to engage participants and proximate participants to opt into the study.
The ability to recruit through extended social networks has always been an important part of the researcher’s toolkit – with varying degrees of success depending on the focus of the participants’ profiles, the physical and spiritual distance between the study location and the team, and the breadth of the team’s extended network. The internet has made the planet smaller, social networks more apparent – making remote studies that much easier to run. Today the tools to rapidly and consistently reach and screen participants in any part of the globe are in the hands of every internet connected researcher. My estimate is that 80 to 90% of current recruiting for design research/ethnographic studies (excluding focus groups) that is currently placed through recruiting agencies could from a skill and work-flow perspective, be carried out in-house. This internalising of an otherwise outsourced practice has a couple of costs, which in most cases are easily outweighed by numerous benefits.
De entre las múltiples revoluciones que Internet trae consigo, el e-commerce, el comercio a través de la Red, es una de las más importantes económica y socialmente. Aunque nuestro país no esté a la cabeza en esta faceta -como no lo está prácticamente en ninguna que tenga que ver con el entorno digital-, se estima que este año los españoles habremos gastado 9.400 millones de euros (el 3,5% del total del gasto comercial) en compras online. Estamos lejos, por supuesto, de EE UU (en volumen, 15 veces el de España), pero también lo estamos de países del entorno de la UE como Reino Unido (seis veces más en volumen y un peso relativo más de tres veces superior), Francia, Suecia o Alemania. Solo Italia, entre las grandes economías europeas, tiene un peso relativo del comercio online similar (aunque ligeramente superior) al de España (Online Trends 2011, www.retailresearch.org).
… el comercio es un elemento de estructuración del espacio social de importancia difícil de exagerar. Cerremos un momento los ojos y despojemos al paisaje urbano que nos resulte más familiar del ingrediente comercial. Una ciudad sin tiendas, sin escaparates, sin más luces al anochecer que las del alumbrado público y las de los bares… Lo que queda es una película de ciencia-ficción, una de esas distopías al estilo de Blade Runner o Fahrenheit 451 con empleados de logística en lugar de replicantes o quemadores de libros. Repuestos del horror, imaginémonos a nosotros mismos reducidos a una experiencia de consumidor que no tiene más interlocutor que la pantalla del ordenador, la tableta o el smartphone. Da un poquito de escalofrío ¿no? …
Five centuries before Facebook and the Arab spring, social media helped bring about the Reformation.
Mubarak and Leo X, the anciens régimes
IT IS a familiar-sounding tale: after decades of simmering discontent a new form of media gives opponents of an authoritarian regime a way to express their views, register their solidarity and co-ordinate their actions. The protesters’ message spreads virally through social networks, making it impossible to suppress and highlighting the extent of public support for revolution. The combination of improved publishing technology and social networks is a catalyst for social change where previous efforts had failed.
That’s what happened in the Arab spring. It’s also what happened during the Reformation, nearly 500 years ago, when Martin Luther and his allies took the new media of their day—pamphlets, ballads and woodcuts—and circulated them through social networks to promote their message of religious reform.
Scholars have long debated the relative importance of printed media, oral transmission and images in rallying popular support for the Reformation. Some have championed the central role of printing, a relatively new technology at the time. Opponents of this view emphasise the importance of preaching and other forms of oral transmission. More recently historians have highlighted the role of media as a means of social signalling and co-ordinating public opinion in the Reformation.
Now the internet offers a new perspective on this long-running debate, namely that the important factor was not the printing press itself (which had been around since the 1450s), but the wider system of media sharing along social networks—what is called “social media” today. Luther, like the Arab revolutionaries, grasped the dynamics of this new media environment very quickly, and saw how it could spread his message.
The relationship between teaching and research goes to the heart of the meaning and purpose of higher education. The fundamentalist view of the university is that teaching which is not based on research carried out by academics and students is not higher education. The first modern European university, established by Wilhelm von Humboldt in Berlin in 1810, was designed with research and teaching closely aligned. Students and teachers worked together. This model was developed to facilitate the production of new knowledge, against the dogmatic scholasticism of the medieval university, and to establish the “idea of the university” as the highest level of what a society knows about itself as a progressive political project.
The idea of the university as a progressive political project was further radicalised by the students and their teachers in 1968. In Paris and around the world the elitist exclusion of students was challenged by undergraduates who claimed that research is “something that anyone can do”, a claim they supported by publishing work that revealed not just the crisis in higher education but the crisis of society in general. The ongoing student protests in the UK and around the world are at their most compelling when they provide a critical response not simply to cuts in funding but to the debate about the future of higher education. This means discussing the idea of the university as part of a wider debate relating to issues of who has the resources to produce new knowledge, who owns that knowledge and what it is used for beyond the confines of campus life.
The slogan “Student as producer” is derived from an article written by the Marxist intellectual Walter Benjamin in Germany in the 1930s. In it he made a series of suggestions as to how radical intellectuals should act in a time of social crisis. This included finding ways to enable students, readers, and audiences to become teachers, writers and actors – as producers of their own cultural and intellectual products. The wider political point was for passive consumers of culture and knowledge to transform themselves into the subjects rather than simply the objects of history and to recognise themselves in a social world of their own design.
In a moment when higher education is in crisis, and in a context where the crisis of institutions is part of a much wider crisis at the level of global society, a critical engagement with the notion of student as producer, based on Benjamin’s progressive programme for action, seems like the right place from which to be reinventing the undergraduate curriculum.
The way to improve the student learning experience is not to treat students as consumers nor to claim, as the white paper on higher education does, that students lie at the “heart of the system”. It is rather by recognising that universities are about the expansive production of knowledge and meaning and that this can best be achieved by students and academics working collaboratively on research projects inside and outside the curriculum.
A tiny number of ideas can go a long way, as we’ve seen. And the Internet makes that more and more likely. What’s happening is that we might, in fact, be at a time in our history where we’re being domesticated by these great big societal things, such as Facebook and the Internet. We’re being domesticated by them, because fewer and fewer and fewer of us have to be innovators to get by. And so, in the cold calculus of evolution by natural selection, at no greater time in history than ever before, copiers are probably doing better than innovators. Because innovation is extraordinarily hard. My worry is that we could be moving in that direction, towards becoming more and more sort of docile copiers.
… se apresentam em espetáculos públicos, em forma de cortejo, onde representam um enredo, ao som de um samba-enredo, acompanhado por uma bateria; seus componentes - que podem ser algumas centenas ou até milhares…
… o desfile de cada escola de samba é um trabalho totalmente da comunidade. Muito além de um grupo musical, as escolas tornaram se associações de bairro que cobrem a problemática social das comunidades que elas representam (tais como recursos educacionais e de cuidados médicos).
“A business plan is a document investors make you write that they don’t read.”
Steve Blank, The Four Steps to the Epiphany
Based on Alex Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas, optimized for Lean Startups:
Fast: Compared to writing a business plan which can take several weeks or months, you can outline multiple possible business models on a canvas in one afternoon.
Portable: A single page business model is much easier to share with others which means it will be read by more people and also more frequently updated.
Concise: Lean canvas forces you to distill the essence of your product. You have 30 seconds to grab the attention of an investor over a metaphorical elevator ride, and 8 seconds to grab the attention of a customer on your landing page.
Effective: Whether you’re pitching investors or giving an update to your team or board, Lean Canvas’ built-in presenter tools allow you to effectively document and communicate your progress.
… reverse innovation, este modelo invierte el proceso habitual de creación y comercialización de productos de una empresa, lo que implica desarrollar productos en y para los mercados emergentes y adaptarlos después a las economías más avanzadas.
"La reverse innovation es el proceso contrario a la glocalización, que parte de una concepción global de un producto para adaptarlo después a un mercado local y que es lo que se ha estado haciendo en Estados Unidos y Europa. Ambas estrategias son necesarias en el seno de las multinacionales porque cada una responde a nichos, situaciones y oportunidades de negocios y mercados diferentes. Es necesario que convivan”
Un año más desde gencat blog presentan las predicciones para 2012 sobre Administración y redes sociales.
1. Incremento de los concursos de aplicaciones a partir de datos públicos. Especial atención a las aplicaciones relacionadas con el transporte público.
2. Adaptación a web móvil, y navegación por tabletas de las webs municipales. Así como sus versiones para Facebook.
3. Primeras iniciativas de información a partir de los canales de Messenger y WhatsApp. Información instantánea y directa agrupada por intereses y / o personalizada.
4. Integración del Códigos QR en grandes equipamientos, edificios públicos y espacios singulares.
5. Ampliación de grandes zonas wifi en espacios públicos, con especial atención a las zonas deportivas o espacios sociales.
6. Twitter como canal de referencia para emergencias, avisos, señalizaciones, etc. Las etiquetas que se utilizan habitualmente generarán auténticas comunidades de usuarios agrupados por intereses.
7. Smarts cities en smart citizens. El concepto de ciudades inteligentes evolucionará hacia el de ciudadanos inteligentes, favoreciendo propuestas de innovación de abajo a arriba.
8. Plataformas municipales para la participación ciudadana. Para aprovechar la iniciativa de los ciudadanos, la administración ofrecerá y dinamizará plataformas para que la creatividad para encontrar soluciones tecnológicas a los nuevos retos tenga espacios donde hacerlo.
Understanding reality with data, changing personal habits. Using open source technologies, like Arduino-based sensor units or mobile apps, data-citizens will be able to gather their own real-time data regarding issues they are really concerned about, such as air quality, noise levels, street deficiencies, plagues, etc. All data will be shared in open public repositories, like Pachube, available for everyone. Long term data archival will allow citizens to gain a better understanding of the urban environment and to improve their daily personal habits.
Collective intelligence and critical mass. Social Cohesion. Once there is a critical mass of participants, distributed citizen sensor networks will reveal new emerging patterns that will lead to a collective intelligence. Citizens will soon become aware of the political power of data and they will begin to get organized in local work groups to develop new strategies to improve their neighbourhoods. The massive adoption of sensors will bring their price down, allowing anyone to participate in the extension of this smart city data layer, regardless of their income.
Renovation of the Social Contract. Collective emerging actions. Involvement and commitment will be part of a new social contract in which the rights and obligations of the citizens and the institutions will be redefined. The maintenance and development of local resources will be delegated to neighbours that will feel engaged in the improvement of the urban ecosystem. Alarm warnings will not be accounted for in an isolated way; an holistic approach based upon data modelling will provide a global solution taking into account all the gathered data. Open data governance and accountability will be enforced through civil actions. The mission of local institutions will consist in supporting these local processes and developing long term plans.
Conclusion: A more sustainable and democratic city. By the year 2020, citizens will participate in direct democratic processes at a local scale to transform the city into a more sustainable and efficient environment. Data will enable new uses of public spaces offering streamlined solutions. People will feel highly engaged towards their neighbours and surroundings in contrast to their previously detached postures. The success of radically open transparent processes will constitute a genuine milestone in the transformation of 21st century public institutions.
Launching the Innovation Renaissance (Amzn link, B&N for Nook, also iTunes) my new e-book from TED books is now available! How can we increase innovation? I look at patents, prizes, education, immigration, regulation, trade and other levers of innovation policy. Here’s a brief description:
Unemployment, fear, and fitful growth tell us that the economy is stagnating. The recession, however, is just the tip of iceberg. We have deeper problems. Most importantly, the rate of innovation is down. Patents, which were designed to promote the progress of science and the useful arts, have instead become weapons in a war for competitive advantage with innovation as collateral damage. College, once a foundation for innovation, has been oversold. We have more students in college than ever before, for example, but fewer science majors. Regulations, passed with the best of intentions, have spread like kudzu and now impede progress to everyone’s detriment. Launching the Innovation Renaissance isa fast-paced look at the levers of innovation policy that explains why innovation has slowed and how we can accelerate innovation and build a 21st century economy.
… The Mobile Gastfreundschaft (mobile hospitality) comprises a kitchen unit with sink and gas hob, a separate sideboard and a long table with stools. They’re made from standard sections of timber and each structure has a wheel at one end like a wheelbarrow …
… son esas deficiencias y esas carencias las que constituyen un enorme potencial para un desarrollo futuro aún más próspero. Si Brasil es capaz de continuar con la política neoliberal que impusieron en el país primero el sociólogo Fernando Henrique Cardoso y después el exsindicalista, Luis Inácio Lula da Silva, junto con potentes políticas sociales, sin caer en tentaciones de cuño exageradamente estatalistas y nacionalistas, sus desafíos de hoy, sus retrasos y sus nuevas exigencias, van a constituir la fuerza de su nuevo ciclo de desarrollo…
Abstract: Ethnography is never mere description, rather it is a theory of describing that has always been controversial as to the what and how thus inspiring a dynamic intellectual process. The process has been methodologically eclectic and innovative, governed by both consensual and outdated rules. Throughout more than hundred years of Anglo-American ethnography, observation has been combined with a wide variety of theoretical outlooks from structured-functionalist to critical writings.
Abstract: What are the contours of such “knowledge” that does double duty both as a public good or commons and as a source of individual empowerment and liberty? This article offers an analysis of the epistemological organisation of the “knowledge economy” by shooting ethnographic work on Free Software through a playful trompe l‘oeil of Roy Wagner‘s classic piece on Daribi kinship. It offers a preliminary template for thinking of Euro- American knowledge as itself a trompe l’oeil device.
… The Internet, on the other hand, was designed and deployed by small groups of researchers following the credo of one of its chief architects, David Clark: “rough consensus and running code.” Its early standards — uncomplicated, consensual — were stewarded by small organizations that resisted permission or authority. And they won: The Internet Protocol on which every connected device relies was a triumph of distributed innovation over centralized expertise.
The ethos of the Internet is that everyone should have the freedom to connect, to innovate, to program, without asking permission. No one can know the whole of the network, and by design it cannot be centrally controlled. This network was intended to be decentralized, its assets widely distributed. Today most innovation springs from small groups at its “edges.”
This technical strategy has led to the creation of a gigantic network of far-flung innovators who develop standards with one another and share the products of their work in the form of free and open-source software. The architecture of the Internet and its abundance of free software and components has driven down the cost of manufacturing, distribution and collaboration — of innovation. It used to cost millions of dollars to start a software company. Today, for little or no money, entrepreneurs are able to develop and release a “minimum viable product” and test it with real users on the Internet before they have to raise any money from investors.
I don’t think education is about centralized instruction anymore; rather, it is the process establishing oneself as a node in a broad network of distributed creativity.
… Hay que situar la emancipación desde una perspectiva espacial que implica pensar “desde abajo” y desde una perspectiva temporal que pone en primer plano la tendencia que aspira a que todo aquello común, que hoy sólo compartimos a un nivel virtual y técnico, se convierta en algo actual y político. Y para esto hay que pensar, como experimento, las figuras actuales de la subjetividad.
La primera es la del hombre endeudado, aquel trabajador precario que queda preso del crédito casi de por vida, reducido a una suerte de servidumbre por deudas. A esto corresponde la “renta” del capitalismo actual y la resistencia es decir “no pago”, como una forma multitudinaria del rechazo y, a la vez, de apropiación de la riqueza común. Luego, el hombre mediatizado, que reemplaza a la vieja noción de alienación para dar cuenta del sometimiento a los dispositivos de comunicación, que esconden la inteligencia humana, la verdad común de la comunicación, bajo formas nuevas de control. En tercer lugar, el hombre asegurado es aquel obsesionado por la seguridad de su propiedad, por el riesgo de su vida, por el miedo a la pobreza. Finalmente, el hombre representado, que podemos decir que es el núcleo del problema de la emancipación.
I’m now thinking about a larger issue still. If placebo medicine can induce people to release hidden healing resources, are there other ways in which the cultural environment can “give permission” to people to come out of their shells and to do things they wouldn’t have done in the past? Can cultural signals encourage people to reveal sides of their personality or faculties that they wouldn’t have dared to reveal in the past? Or for that matter can culture block them? There’s good reason to think this is in fact our history.