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Dave Thomas, OOPSLA, 2008/09/11 December 23, 2008

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OOPLSA is a conference with a significant history that maintains relevance today.

A true pioneer of the industry and one of the original creator of the OOPSLA conference talks about what OOPSLA means to him and what goes on during and importantly after hours at the conference… Dave mentions why he continues to attend regularly and why he thinks there are still lots more industry can learn about leading edge OO research and vice versa.

ACM OOPSLA 2008

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Paul Collier, “The Bottom Billion”, Econtalk, 2008/01/28 December 23, 2008

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Lifting poor economics out of the depths has complications that we often don’t consider in the first world.

Paul Collier of Oxford University talks about the ideas in his recent book, The Bottom Billion, an analysis of why the poorest countries in the world fail to grow. He talks about conflict, natural resources, being landlocked, and bad governance, four factors he identifies as causes of the desperate poverty and stagnation in the countries where 1/6 of the world’s poorest peoples live.

Collier on the Bottom Billion | EconTalk | Library of Economics and Liberty

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Wes Jackson, “”The Necessity and Possibility of an Agriculture where Nature is the Measure”, Colorado College, 2005/04/27 December 23, 2008

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Agriculture has become so industrial, that modern society has almost forgotten that plants grow naturally.

In 2005, Wes Jackson was named by the Smithsonian Institution as one of 35 people who made a difference.

Farming, in Jackson’s view, is humanity’s original sin. This fall from grace occurred around 10,000 years ago, when people first started gathering and planting the seeds of annual grasses, such as wild wheat and barley. “That was probably the first moment when we began to erode the ecological capital of the soil,” he says. “It’s when humans first started withdrawing the earth’s nonrenewable resources.” As he sees it, fossil-fuel dependency, environmental pollution, overpopulation and global warming are all extensions of the path humans took when they first started tilling the soil. “It wasn’t intentional. It didn’t require a chamber of commerce or the devil to make us do it—we just did it.”

35 Who Made a Difference: Wes Jackson | People & Places | Smithsonian Magazine

This 2005 lecture at Colorado College provokes thoughts.

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Bob Sutor, “Remarks on the IBM Standards Principles”, sutor.com, 2008/09/29 December 23, 2008

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Commentary on the formal announcement of the IBM Standards

… responses to the publication of the IBM Standards Principles. As I hoped, they raised some issues and started some debates. [....]

The principles themselves are meant to be taken as a whole and are written, I think, in a positive, constructive way. [...]

These principles demonstrate IBM’s continued and expanded support for open standards, as well as the importance they hold for our customers. We are strengthening our commitment to open standards and the value they bring to all.

Remarks on the IBM Standards Principles | Blog | Bob Sutor

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Mohan Sawhney, “The Global Brain”, Principled Innovation, 2008/01/18 December 23, 2008

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Innovation can be different in a global network.

Network-centric innovation is an open and collaborative approach that supplants the closed, firm-centered strategies with which we are all more familiar. These more traditional methods no longer serve organizations well in a Web-enabled world when the raw materials of innovation, especially ideas and talent, are more mobile and widely distributed than ever.

[...] Professor Sawhney questions some of the traditional assumptions of innovation, and elaborates on the meaning of network-centric innovation, making the point that it’s not just about innovating with customers, but creating innovation ecosystems. He describes the various nodes of IBM’s innovation ecosystem, and this got me thinking about the innovation ecosystems for associations.

Principled Innovation LLC » P.I. Podcast: Interview with Mohanbir Sawhney

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Mike Munger, “Nature of the Firm”, Econtalk, 2008/01/14 December 23, 2008

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Why do firms exist?

Mike Munger, of Duke University, talks about why firms exist. If prices and markets work so well (and they do) in steering economic resources, then why does so much economic activity take place within organizations that use command-and-control, top-down, centralized structures called firms?

Within a firm, most of the goods and services that the workers use are given away rather than allocated by prices–computer services, legal services and almost everything else is not handed out by competition but by fiat, decided by a boss. A firm, the lynchpin of capitalism, is run like something akin to a centrally planned economy.

Munger’s answer, drawing on work of Ronald Coase, is a fascinating look at the often unseen costs of making various types of economic decisions. The result is a set of fascinating insights into why firms exist and why they do what they do.

Munger on the Nature of the Firm | EconTalk | Library of Economics and Liberty

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Art Kleiner, “NeuroLeadership and Disruptive Change”, Total Picture Radio, 2008/11/17 December 18, 2008

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One of the biggest challenges organizations encounter is how to thrive when faced with constant, disruptive change. The study of neuroscience has provided us with a deeper understanding of why people find change so unsettling. It offers valuable insight into the way people approach new tasks or manage upheaval and helps us understand how the human brain utilizes mental resources to deal with ambiguity, resolve conflict, or find creative solutions to complex problems.

Neuroscience can help organizations become more effective in how they manage change, which should increase organizational productivity and employee satisfaction. A groundbreaking article on NeuroLeadership was published in the Summer 2006 issue of strategy+business, written by David Rock and Jeffrey Schwartz, titled “The Neuroscience of Leadership.” Peter Clayton, producer/host of Total Picture Radio, spoke with Art Kleiner at the NeuroLeadership Summit in New York City.

Art Kleiner – strategy+business | TotalPicture Radio

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Juilio Ojeda-Zapata, “Twitter Means Business and Then Some”, Marketing Edge, 2008/10/17 December 18, 2008

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One part chat room, one part instant messenger, and one part blog, the microblogging platform Twitter has gained in credibility and usefulness among businesses and journalists. I don’t want to say popularity, although it has 3.2 million users, because this word is less meaningful. Useful is how the author of a new book Twitter Means Business, Juilio Ojeda-Zapata, shares his insights from his upcoming book.

At its core Ojeda, believes Twitter helps build relationships, and relationships underscore business in many ways. A journalist to his core, Ojeda has been with the St. Paul Pioneer Press since 1987 and a technology writer for more than a decade. In this podcast, he walks through his personal journey on Twitter and it was his second look at the platform that got him hooked.

According to Ojeda, Twitter is an alternative means to get a reporter’s attention in a non-intrusive way. I have found it is an excellent to learn more about a reporter’s interests, immediate and long-term projects, and how they interact with the Twitter community.

Two ways to learn who is on Twitter is to search key words in either Tweetscan http://www.tweetscan.com or search.twitter.com or browse through TwitterPacks, a wiki dedicated to allowing individuals to list by a variety of categories. For example, there is a Twitter public media category

Marketing Edge

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Janos Sztipanovits, “Cyber-Physical Systems”, OOPLSA, 2008/09/10 December 18, 2008

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Professor Sztipanovits from Nashville’s own Vanderbilt University gives a preview of his up coming OOPSLA keynote on “Cyber-Physical Systems.”

A relatively new concept that asks whether there are some higher level abstractions to design itself. Domain-specific modeling and languages allow an abstraction of a domain, however, can we go even higher? Can we go meta on the meta of DSMs/DSLs? This line of thinking leads to understanding the systems themselves, their potential compositional characteristics or lack thereof, the advantages to be gained or loss, and of course how to deal with system integration issues as well as quality and certification.

Sztipanovits is not simply abstractly thinking about cyber-physical systems but also relates the concepts to real-world application examples in avionics, VLSI design, and the automotive industry. He believes that the perfect storm is forming that will change how we perform engineering activities. Whether they be electrical, mechanical, or aeronautical.

Sztipanovits’s keynote promises to bring you to another plane of engineering consciousness and inspiration.

OOPSLA 2008

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Bruce Yandle, “Tragedy of the Commons and the Implications for Environmental Regulation”, Econtalk, 2007/10/29 December 18, 2008

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Bruce Yandle of Clemson University and George Mason University’s Mercatus Center looks at the tragedy of the commons and the various ways that people have avoided the overuse of resources that are held in common. Examples discussed include fisheries, roads, rivers and the air.

Yandle talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the historical use of norms, cooperative ventures such as incorporating a river, the common law, and top-down command-and-control regulation to reduce air and water pollution.

Bruce Yandle Archives | EconTalk | Library of Economics and Liberty

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Henry Dotson and Tim Bohn, “Case Study: Leveraging Model Driven Systems Development Methodology, IBM Rational Tools, and Industry Standards for Complex System Modeling”, Rational Software Development Conference 2008/06/02 December 18, 2008

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Case Study: Leveraging Model Driven Systems Development Methodology,
IBM Rational Tools, and Industry Standards for Complex System Modeling
Monday, June 2, 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Henry Dotson, Senior Systems Engineer, Southern California Edison

Tim Bohn, Global Community of Practice Leader – Solution Architecture, IBM Rational software

How do companies effectively perform systems engineering best practices on a complex system of systems with limited resources?

This session presents how Southern California Edison (SCE) is using the Model Driven Systems Development (MDSD) methodology and standardized utility industry domain models to develop the Edison SmartConnect System. Through this system, the company is enabling the most sweeping change in the way SCE and its customers manage electricity use in Edison’s 120-year history.

Presenters discuss why they chose MDSD, how they leveraged existing models, and the productivity realized using this approach.

Rational Software Development Conference 2008

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Daniel Levitin, “This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession”, Quirks & Quarks, 2006/12/09 December 18, 2008

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Dr. Daniel Levitin has gone from being a session musician and music producer working with world-famous recording artists to an academic
career in neuroscience. The connection between the two is his fascination with the way that music works in the brain.

In his new book, This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession, he explores how humans seem to be adapted specifically for music. Music activates the pleasure centres in ways similar to drugs, food and sex. The patterns and features of music are also perceived in special ways by our brains, distinct from ordinary sounds. This explains some of what we find attractive in things like the patterns of notes in an octave, musical harmony and complex rhythm.

Dr. Daniel Levitin is a professor in the department of Psychology, and Bell chair in the Psychology of Electronic Communication at McGill University.
CBC Radio | Quirks & Quarks | December 9, 2006

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Amit Singh, “Mac OS X Internals”, Technometria, 2007/05/01 December 18, 2008

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The book Mac OS X Internals describes the architecture and design of Apple’s operating system. The book is targeted at anybody who is curious about Mac OS X and has a system-level interest in operating systems. At a very high (and simplistic) level, the book appeals to both those who use Mac OS X, and also those who do not. The book’s author Amit Singh, Manager of Macintosh Engineering for Google, joins Phil and Scott in a discussion of both his book and MacFUSE, a Mac version of the FUSE specification.

They first talk about Amit’s background, particularly how he came to write his book. This book is an ambitious attempt to cover the modern operating system of Mac OS X in substantial breadth and depth in one volume. They review how OS X evolved from earlier Apple operating systems, as well as misconceptions about OS X, as well as an assessment of where both Apple and other operating systems are likely to go from here. The second part of the talk is a review of the status of MacFUSE, a Mac version of the FUSE specification for creating file systems in user space instead of in the kernel.

Amit Singh is Manager of Macintosh Engineering at Google and author of the book, Mac OS X Internals. Previously he was a researcher at the IBM Almaden Research Center in San Jose, California, where he worked on operating systems, virtualization, and computer security. Prior to joining IBM, he worked for a Silicon Valley startup that did cutting-edge work in the virtualization of operating systems. He was also a Member of Technical Staff in the Information Sciences Research Center at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey, where he worked on operating systems, networking, and quality of service.

IT Conversations | Technometria with Phil Windley | Amit Singh

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David Heenan, “Flight Capital”, Written Voices, 2005/05/29 December 18, 2008

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For centuries, the brain drain has worked in our favor. The United States has always attracted talented immigrants who created wealth and intellectual capital for their adopted nation.

Today, more than half of the Ph.D.s working here are foreign born; so are nearly half the physicists, computer scientists, and mathematicians. Immigrant brainpower has never shone brighter. There’s just one problem: Now it’s going home.

Flight Capital is the first comprehensive study of why the best and brightest in America are leaving, and what it means for the future. Analyzing the global battle for top talent, David Heenan finds that, from Iceland to India, countries are pursuing bold initiatives to lure knowledge workers away from the United States. And post-9/11 immigration restrictions have seriously affected our ability to replace them.

David Heenan, a former senior executive with Citigroup and Jardine Matheson, is a trustee for the Estate of James Campbell, one of the nation’s largest landowners. He has taught at the Wharton School, the Columbia Graduate School of Business, and the University of Hawaii.

Written Voices

Read an excerpt

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Daryl Shing and Tim Bohn, “An Enterprise Architecture Approach to Modeling Complex Systems”, Rational Software Development Conference 2007/06/12 December 18, 2008

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BDM06 General
An Enterprise Architecture Approach to Modeling Complex Systems
Tuesday, June 12, 9:45 am – 10:45 am

Daryl Shing, Mgr., Enterprise Architecture, ERCOT

Tim Bohn, Reg. Practice Lead – Systems & Software Process, IBM Rational software

This session outline how ERCOT is using the Model-Driven System Development (MDSD) approach to redesign the Texas Power Market, a large system of interconnected systems. ERCOT calls this model SoSA (System of Systems Architecture).

The presentation covers why ERCOT selected SoSA, how it helps the company address system architecture and cross-system integration concerns, the challenges with building large enterprise models, what companies do once they have an enterprise SoSA model, and how this approach is used to engage the organization in the design process by making models more visual.

Rational Software Development Conference 2007

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John Ralston Saul, “A Fair Country”, Mike Powell Fanclub, 2008/10/20 December 15, 2008

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John Ralston Saul speaks on his latest writing, where Canada has been shaped not only by the English and French heritages, but also the Metis. He was interviewed by Mike Powell.

Saul is an excellent author: he creates prose that is engaging and interesting, drawing the reader in even if regardless of whether they buy the argument. That’s at least where I am- A Fair Country, at least in the first third, is a book about the origins of Canada’s political culture. There are a couple of broad thoughts as to how Canada’s political culture was formed: the first looks at ideas being imported by people that come to the country (so, the loyalists brought a deference to authority, as an example), the other looks to the evolution of attitudes based on events (the Act of Union forces English and French Canada to work together, producing bi-culturalism.) I tend to think the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

Saul takes a different approach: Canada, he says, is a Metis Nation, suggesting that the aboriginal influence on Canadian political culture is as important as all the rest, if not more important. Essentially, most of the modern things that we take pride in as Canadians, such as cultural cooperation, he ties back to an aboriginal influence, with more or less a straight line.

Mike Powell Fanclub

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Nicholas Carr, “The Big Switch”, Spark, 2008/02/01 December 15, 2008

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Nicholas Carr was provocative in his writing on IT Doesn’t Matter. Some of these trends are extended in his current work.

Nicholas Carr sent shock waves through the tech sector with his last book, Does IT Matter. He’s back with a new book called The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, From Edison to Google.

He draws a powerful analogy between the history of electricity and the future of computing. He argues that just as the turn of the last century brought a huge shift in electricity production, we’re on the verge of a sea change in the way we use computers. Electricity went from being something individual factories generated for their use, to a centralized utility powering whole cities. Now, computing is moving from something that happens on the hard drive of your computer, to something that happens remotely on server farms. Right now, maybe it’s just your Facebook profile and your Gmail account that live online, but in the future, all your information, and your software, may live online.

The Big Switch is about the massive changes this move to what’s called ‘cloud computing’ may have. For Carr, its effects go beyond the business of technology. Just as electrification changed North American life profoundly, the ‘big switch’ will change economics, culture, and society, raising questions about security, privacy and more.

Spark | CBC Radio | The Big Switch: Interview with Nicholas Carr

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Karen Stephenson, “A Quantum Theory of Trust”, North American NeuroLeadership Summit, 2008/12/03 December 6, 2008

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I’ve had seen Karen Stephenson speak some years at at IBM Palisades, so I was interested to hear an update from her.

Karen Stephenson shares her decades of experience in quantitative social network analysis, explaining how the measurement of relationships reveals general principles and patterns that can be seen across organizations. Diagramming the build-up and breakdown of trust networks gives insight for diagnosing management problems, and, better yet, opens the door to designing more innovative models to face our modern challenges.

Trusted networks do not exist in org charts. Considering the mass-layoffs many companies are facing today, they are in danger of losing the working knowledge of their organizations.

Professor Stephenson’s concept, which she calls the “quantum theory of trust,” explains not just how to recognize the collective cognitive capability of organizations, but how to cultivate and increase it. She is the most visible member (particularly in business circles) of a small but growing academic field called social network analysis. Originally derived from the complex math used to explain subatomic physics, it is being used to understand and manage the ineffable forces of human interaction within an organization’s walls — particularly those forces that can’t be captured in formal structures, such as pay scales and reporting relationships, but that implicitly govern the fate of every enterprise.

Karen Stephenson – NeuroLeadership Summit | TotalPicture Radio

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David Heenan, “America is Losing its Minds”, Talk Zone, 2008/08/22 December 6, 2008

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I’m most familiar with David Heenan as a coauthor with Howard Perlmutter, some decades ago. I was curious where his research interests evolved.

David Heenan is an expert on globalization, and author of Flight Capital. He tells us about a new trend in America: brilliant immigrants who earn their educations in science and technology in the U.S., then return to their homelands. He talks about the reasons why the best and brightest are leaving and what this means for the future.

TalkZone InfoTrak : America’s Brain Drain

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John Ralston Saul, People For Education Conference, 2007/11/03 December 6, 2008

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John Ralston Saul presents some interesting anecdotes about public school education. In Canada, how many supreme court judges had a public school education, rather than a private school education?

“…The concept of Public Education which we believe in and which we defend and which more than defending, we want to build, is really born in this country in the 1840’s… Louis Lafontaine said ‘Education is the first public good that a government can confer on its people.'”

John Ralston Saul Keynote, People for Education

MP3 audio, Part 1 (00:00 – 10:00 min.)

MP3 audio, Part 2 (10:00 – 20:00 min.)

MP3 audio, Part 3 (20:00 – 30:00 min.)

MP3 audio, Part 4 (30:00 – 40:00 min.)

MP3 audio, Part 5 (40:00 – 50:00 min.)

MP3 audio, Part 6 (50:00 – 55:00 min.)

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