Lawrence Busch | “Standards: Recipes for Reality” (MP3 audio) | July 15, 2011 | Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics (FARE), University of Guelph March 16, 2012Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
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Dr. Lawrence Busch [in] his book “Standards: Recipes for Reality.” … argues that standards play a central role in constructing reality. We discuss this argument in general and examine the important role that standards play in contemporary agriculture. In this context we discuss the system of standards, certifications, and accreditation that, in part, shape our economy. Dr. Busch also provides guidelines for developing fair, equitable, and effective standards.
Dr. Lawrence Busch is University Distinguished Professor in the Center for the Study of Standards in Society in the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. More details about him and his forthcoming book can be found at http://mitpress.mit.edu/catalog/item/default.asp?ttype=2&tid=12691
Lawrence Busch | “Standards: Recipes for Reality” (MP3 audio) | July 15, 2011 | Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics (FARE), University of Guelph at http://fare.uoguelph.ca/FARE-talk/index.html#recipes.
David Sloan Wilson, “The Psychopathic Chicken (and Other Lessons of Evolution)” (MP3 audio) | August 27, 2008 | Culture Snob March 16, 2012Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
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[David Sloan] Wilson, a distinguished professor of biology and anthropology at Binghamton University in Binghamton, New York, is one of the primary advocates for an interdisciplinary application of the principles of evolution — the idea that Charles Darwin’s theory has much to tell us about humans and their cultures. He created his university’s Evolution Studies program and would like to see other colleges and universities embrace evolution similarly. “It’s sort of become my mission to incorporate this into higher education,” Wilson said last week in a phone interview.
His goal is first to make evolution accessible (and acceptable) by showing how the theory can be used to explain human behavior — a sensitive subject that had been largely off-limits until the past two decades.
He lays out his premise at the outset of Evolution for Everyone:
“This is a book of tall claims about evolution: that it can become uncontroversial; that the basic principles are easy to learn; that everyone should want to learn them, once their implications are understood; that evolution and religion, those old enemies who currently occupy opposite corners of human thought, can be brought harmoniously together.”
The aim of the desert-island morality example, then, is to see Darwin’s theory in human practice. As Wilson explains, it’s critical for people to understand that evolution isn’t just biology. It can explain why altruism exists in society against the apparent self-interest of its individual members.
“If you can’t address an issue like that,” he said, “then nobody’s going to accept the theory of evolution.”
David Sloan Wilson, “The Psychopathic Chicken (and Other Lessons of Evolution)” (MP3 audio) | August 27, 2008 | Culture Snob http://www.culturesnob.net/2008/08/psychopathic-chicken/
David Weinberger | “Too Big to Know: How the new dimensions of information are transforming business — and life” (MP3 audio) | November 30, 2011 | School of Information, U.C. Berkeley March 15, 2012Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
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Systems designed around information scarcity and inaccessibility in the agricultural and industrial ages are giving way to a world of abundance in information so easily accessible.
… our old system of knowledge was based around the limitations of paper, a disconnected, expensive medium that managed a world that was too big to know by cutting down on what we had to deal with. There were of course advantages to that, but they came at the cost of throwing out most of what the world was trying to tell us.
In the new knowledge ecology, knowledge takes on the properties of its new medium, the Net. That means knowledge has become huge, it’s connected, and it embraces disagreement and differences. The key is to think about knowledge not as a set of content but as a network: the smartest person in the room is now the room itself. Then the question is, how can you build, maintain, and nurture a smart network?
David Weinberger is one of the most respected thought-leaders at the intersection of technology, business, and society. He is a co-author of the bestselling book, The Cluetrain Manifesto — which InformationWeek called “the most important business book since In Search of Excellence” — and is the author of Everything is Miscellaneous and Small Pieces Loosely Joined.
Weinberger’s new book, Too Big to Know, explores how the networking of knowledge is transforming expertise and decision-making in business, government, education, and science.
David Weinberger | “Too Big to Know: How the new dimensions of information are transforming business — and life” (MP3 audio) | November 30, 2011 | School of Information, U.C. Berkeley http://www.ischool.berkeley.edu/newsandevents/events/distinguishedlectures/davidweinberger.
Andy Piper | MQ Telemetry Transport (MQTT) (MP3 audio) | January 9, 2012 | Technometria with Phil Windley, itconversations.org March 15, 2012Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
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MQTT, now an open standard under Eclipse, opens up the Machine to Machine Internet, similar to how HTTP as opened up documents.
As stated on the MQTT website, MQ Telemetry Transport “is a machine-to-machine (M2M)/”Internet of Things” connectivity protocol.” Meant to be used remotely particularly when bandwidth is at a premium, it can be used in both mobile and dial-up situations. Developed as part of his work at IBM, Andy Piper discusses the project, including its concepts and background. He also reviews examples of its use and reviews future development plans.
Andy Piper is widely known as a Social Bridgebuilder and speaker, and is a Consulting IT Specialist working for IBM Software Group, currently based in the UK but with a worldwide scope and remit. He is an enabler, a synthesiser, a connector, and a community-builder.
Andy is probably best known online as a “social bridgebuilder” spanning a number of different areas of technology and interest. His weblog The Lost Outpost reflects the diversity of his skills and interests: development, design, communications, everything social, community building, marketing, gaming and digital imaging. He co-hosts the weekly Dogear Nation podcast (search for it on iTunes), is a leading member of IBM Hursley’s eightbar community, one of the organisers of Home Camp, and a committee member, organiser and former speaker at Digital Surrey.
Andy Piper | MQ Telemetry Transport (MQTT) | January 9, 2012 | Technometria with Phil Windley, itconversations.org http://itc.conversationsnetwork.org/shows/detail5153.html.
Geoffrey West, Mathieu Levefre, Carlo Ratti, “Thinking Cities” documentary (web video) | Networked Society series | Ericsson February 27, 2012Posted by daviding in Talk Video Streaming.
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Why do people want to live in cities? What are the impacts as ICT simultaneously rises? Geoffrey West, Mathieu Levefre, Carlo Ratti.
Thinking Cities documentary | Feb. 16, 2012 | ericsson.com at http://www.ericsson.com/networkedsociety/video/56/ (duration 18 minutes)
Thinking Cities deals with one of the most dramatic societal trends happening today: urbanization. The world population is expected to soar to more than 9 billion people by 2050, with roughly 70 percent living in cities. At the same time, Information Communications Technology (ICT) is extending its reach. These parallel trends are intersecting at a time in which the world faces serious economic, environmental, and social challenges in achieving a more sustainable development.
Thinking Cities explores the challenges and opportunities of urbanization in the Networked Society together with leading city thinkers including Geoffrey West, physicist and professor at Santa Fe Institute; Mathieu Lefevre of New Cities Foundation and Carlo Ratti, Director of MIT Senseable City Lab.
Originally surfaced as “Watch A Fascinating Short Film On How Cities Will Drive Global Change” | Morgan Clendaniel | Feb. 20, 2012 | Fast Co.Exist at Watch A Fascinating Short Film On How Cities Will Drive Global Change | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation.
“There’s an enormous realization of the importance of cities. That is true for business, it’s true for government, it’s true for civil society.” So says one of the speakers in Thinking Cities (made by Ericsson as part of their Networked Society series), which you can watch above. As Geoffrey West, a scientist who studies cities, notes in the film, cities are the cause of many of the world’s problems, but are also hubs of innovation that are going to drive the solutions.
Thinking Cities features thought leaders like West, a physicist and professor at Santa Fe Institute; Mathieu Lefevre of New Cities Foundation; and Carlo Ratti, Director of MIT’s Senseable City Lab speaking on what the city means for the future while we take a tour of some of the most innovative smart city projects–from tracking trash to tagging potholes–that are going on in the world today.
Take a look. As one city evangelist says: “The city’s role is to make as easy as possible for people … to live in a smart and sustainable way.” They also tend to make their residents happier. For these and countless other reasons enumerated in the video, cities are the living area of the future. Now it’s time to make them worth the hype.
Ian Morris, “Why the West Rules – For Now” (MP3 audio), Long Now Foundation, 2011/04/13 November 7, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
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Social development as biology, sociology and geography … and historically, regional differences especially from the geography.
Morris has devised a quantitative “social development index” based on evaluating a civilization’s energy capture, organization (size of largest cities), information management, and war-making capability. (The details of his method are online here.) When you graph human progress since the last ice age 15,000 years ago, the results show that the West led for all the millennia up till the 6th century CE, fell behind for 1,200 years, then leapt ahead again up to the present day. (The “West” for Morris is the civilizational core that developed agriculture and then cities and empires in the eastern Mediterranean, later spreading across Europe and North America. The “East” is China.)
Geography determines how and when regions develop, but new societal capabilities keep redefining what geography means. At first agriculture was limited to regions with reliable rainfall, but once societies grew able to manage large-scale irrigation, the empires of parched regions like Mesopotamia and Egypt could take off, and their rivers became trade routes. The vast steppes of north-central Asia long separated Western and Eastern empires, but once their riches became worth plundering, mounted nomads from the steppes invaded repeatedly, defeating the agrarian armies and carrying germs that unleashed waves of epidemics.
The West had the advantage of a trade highway in the Mediterranean that wasn’t matched in the East until the 6th century, when the Sui emperors built the Grand Canal 1,500 miles long linking north and south China. Everything then changed with the invention of ocean-going ships and guns in the 13th and 14th centuries.
Interview with Nora Bateson (web video) | Raffaele Cascone | Agenzia Radicale | youtube.com October 25, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Video Streaming.
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Interview by Raffaele Cascone with Nora Bateson, daughter of Gregory Bateson
William Patry | Law Is Not a Business Solution (MP3 audio) | Tools of Change Conference | 2010/02/23 October 7, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
Tags: copyright, innovation
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Businesses should be oriented towards providing customers (and society) with products and services that they want, as opposed to using copyright to preserve legacies.
Controversy over the use of copyright law has been at the center of the whole digital revolution and William Patry, who has been working in this field for 25 years has a number of observations on the essence of this controversy. Using the law to solve business problems makes for a loss of respect for the legal system as regulation has become a shield to protect the status quo from competition.
Patry explores the phenomenom of regulatory capitalism, where incumbents with the resources and an understanding of how to play the game, simply want to outlaw their competitors and criminalize their behavior. However, he says you can’t sue consumers into buying from you and copyright laws don’t create economic value.
Patry worries the United States is losing its collective purpose, its fire and determination to succeed as copyright laws become a tool to deceive ourselves into believing we can avoid stagnation and eliminate the natural product cycle rather than innovating and putting consumers first. The fear of the marketplace, as a dynamic process, pushes copyright development rather than managerial innovation.
via William Patry | Law Is Not a Business Solution, IT Conversations
Comment on Getting better at working at the office | sacha chua :: living an awesome life September 29, 2011Posted by daviding in Uncategorized.
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@sachac While working, I find jazz better than classical music to keep me energized. On web radio, I like The Grooveyard at http://www.jazz.fm/player/streams/index.htm , the Jazz Music Stream at http://www.cbc.ca/radio/ or Attention Span Radio on Live365 http://www.live365.com/stations/bamman
I find the sounds of the office distracting: the white noise of airconditioning, people’s conversations, the clackety-clack of lots of fast typists in one place…
I find that listening to music with words interferes with programming or writing. Classical music is nice, but background conversations come through during the soft parts.
“Prophets of Doom: Michael Ruppert, Nathan Hagens, John Cronin, James Howard Kuntsler, Hugo De Garis, Robert Gleason”, History Channel (video), 2011/01 September 18, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Video Streaming.
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The general public may not want to hear about dystopian futures. Six scientists and investigative journalists gave their perspectives, and then discussed the most impending risks. I watched a rerun on the History Channel (Canada), and note alternative sources.
In the 94 minute show, investigative journalist Michael Ruppert, economist Dr. Nathan Hagens, author John Cronin, investigative journalist/author James Howard Kuntsler, computer scientist Dr. Hugo De Garis, and executive editor Robert Gleason came together to discuss some of the greatest threats to the future of the United States, including economic collapse, water shortages/contamination, peak oil, species dominance by self-aware robots, and nuclear terrorism.
In addition to the summary described in the link above, The Independent Report. emphasizes the impacts of peak oil and debt.
Tags: bill reed, permaculture, sibbesborg, sustainability
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On a post at the Systems Community of Inquiry, Tiina Merikoski asked for comments on a blog post on Aalto Sustainable Communities, linking to Bill Reid’s presentation on the launch of the competition on the design of the Sibbesborg community. While watching this, I took notes.
This digest was created in real-time watching the web video, based on the speaker’s presentation(s) and comments from the audience. The content should not be viewed as an official transcript of the web video, but only as an interpretation by a single individual. Lapses, grammatical errors, and typing mistakes may not have been corrected. Questions about content should be directed to the originator. The digest has been made available for purposes of scholarship, by David Ing.
- Bill Reed, Regenesis, Inc http://regenesisgroup.com , Integrative Design Collaborative http://integrativedesign.net
Brief: the area of development must regarded as a whole
Slide: Framework for the Whole of Sustainability
Technical System Design (red area, more energy required) to Living System Design (green area, less energy required, a whole systems approach)
- Conventional: we build our buildings just one step better than breaking the law
- Green: less bad, energy savings, carbon neutrality
- Sustainable: 100% energy savings, but this is impossible
- People equate carbon neutrality with sustainability too often
- A slower way to die
- Straining the environment less is a slower way to die
- Not much hope
General brief: Gluing indicators together creating a whole … impossible
- Can’t glue pieces of life together
Alvar Aalto: Nothing is as dangerous in architecture as dealing with separate problems
Pieces of Green do not equal sustainability
Masanobu Fukuoka, One Straw Revolution: An object seen in isolation from the whole is not the real thing
Need to shift from looking at objects to looking at relationships
What is a whole, and how do we work with this concept?
What are we sustaining with sustainability?
Audience response: life itself, and possibilities for the next generation
Question: how do we go about doing that?
More efficient energy, clean water, is all important
(referring to first slide framework), Hunter Lovins: all working on the red area does is give us time to work on the green area
Think about the concepts of life, not just efficient transportation, green roofs, energy production
Life equals evolution
Humberto Maturana, describes life is process of becoming
NASA, life in the Genesis project, is the process of imperfect replication
Look at what we’re designing, who we’re designing, and the process of what we are becoming
One way to look at life is to to work with something that is manageable
Can’t have a sustainable building, it’s not living
- An object is not sustainable, because it’s not living
What life requires is working in place, e.g. a watershed, or a community in a watershed, is manageable
- A community doesn’t have boundaries, but yet it does have boundaries
- No line: water, energies, sunlight, soil, animals, people move constantly around boundaries
- Life isn’t an object, but it is an organism
- When looking at organisms, look at relationships and processes
Life is nested
- Even the client / team … in building/infrastructure system … in watershed/ecological system … in social/community ecological system
- No economics: not an end of themselves, just an indicator of healthy or unhealthy flow
- Making economics a purpose is a mistake
Not what this place is, but who this place is
- Describing a person’s physical characteristics doesn’t really describe the person
- Yet that’s the way we describe land
- A better description: relationships, family, dog in the street — gives more data
Let’s start looking at places as who
Example: Same process for cities and rural areas
To understand a place, understand its vocation
Jamie Lerner, architecture/mayor/governor Brasil: every city needs a vocation
A place with a purpose?
Land as a living organism shifts worldview
Mountaints, Three Sisters, Teton Range, Idaho/Wyoming
- Farmland by alluvial stream, Mahogany Creek
- Cleft in middle of mountain: watershed for Mahogany Creek
Developer wanted to put 1000 homes on this farmland
- We believe that humans are part of nature
- Aboriginal groups have word for one life, we divide them
- Past, present and future
- Teton River
- Faint ghost lines of rivers: remnant streams
- Soils map
- When farmers came 1000 years ago, they dammed the creek and took 100% of water to farm the fields
Most farming is bad: agricultural and shelter is how we’re killing the planet: agricultural systems and building systems
- How do we heal the earth, through those two systems?
- We need to change the nature of our farming, and our community building
Was looking for patterns of life
- When farmers blocked the stream, they disconnected the Teton River from the big whole mountains, destroying 3 ecosystems
- 1. Teton River: salmon and trout couldn’t breed
- 2. Farmed the prairie savannah, cut up into sections, preventing the water from flowing down, so beaver, otter, megafauna moose moved away
- Just like hydrological cycle, there’s a nutrient cycle: water takes things downhill, nutrients take things back by fish, insects, birds, megafauna carrying back upstream
- 3. Without fish and animals moving upstream, the Big Hole mountains are now dying
- Even were going to avoid 1000 homes, we will have still destroyed 3 ecosystems
- The nature of the place doesn’t say to maintain the place (it looks green, but it’s not)
- Living bridge between the Teton River and the Big Hole Mountains
With developers, said that this is correct
- Redesigned the homes into tight wedges
- Won’t be home there, but they would have only used 10% of water in the area, enabling the habitat quarters to be restored
Humans have a role to play to heal the planet
Places are unique living organisms
- Have purpose
- Have vocation, calling
- Whether plains, Paris, New York City
- They’re all nested systems
- How to work with them in an intelligent way: patterns, not from data
- Patterns tell us
Every place has a distinctiveness, an essence that identifies them
Working in Baja California, most people think it’s a desert, but 400 years ago it was a scrub oak forest, destroyed by European farming techniques, we could bring it back
Stories hold evolutionary potential
Iriquois seven generation thinking
- Not seven generations in the future, it’s three generations in the past, the present, and three generations into the future
- How we’ve evolved, how we’ve destroyed, and how we can recover
Evolutionary potential, Santa Fe New Mexico
In white human settlers memory, there has been no water on this site
- Water as an activating source for life
Fellow who bought this ranch was going to restore it
- Planted native species
- Got rid of grazing animal
- Planted arroyos to stop erosion
- Called it a day, to let nature take its course
Then heard about permaculturalists (e.g. Bill Lawson), they took a systems approach, looking not only at its existence, but also its potential, in three areas:
- 1. Meteorological conditions: 10 to 12 inches of rain per year, 100 inches of evaporation, means it’s a desert, no surprise, it’s been that way for 5000 years
- 2. Geologic conditions: Soil samples from arroyos, under 4 to 5 centimeters, found rich humus, which could only have come from the bottom of ponds, a head-scratchers
- 3. Cultural conditions: Looking farther out, went 50 to 60 miles out to a town in Colorado, found some old diaries: Wild Bill Williams had come down to trap beaver — beaver in the desert, a double head-scratcher
- First inclination to bring back beaver, but beaver don’t feed on yucca and prickly pear
- Best they could do, was to imitate the pattern of the beaver: they build dams
- They put up 12 1-metre earth dams, and with 18 months, there was a permanent running stream
How did the water come back?
- Came back because it does snow and rain
- Putting up the pattern of beaver knew
- Instead of water shooting off evaporating, dams can recharge the water table
- A stream is an elevated water table
- A permanent running stream on site: the beginning of regeneration, create anew, borne of new spirit
- Every farmer in the valley has been inspired by this
- Have the potential to heal the planet
- If we have the will and understanding, can heal in 18 months if we participate with nature on its own terms
Farm fields slide
Story: Brattleboro Food Coop, Vermont, wanted to be a green grocery store
Food is coming from far away: New Zealand, California, Chile
- If there’s a truckers’ strike, grocery store will not be sustainable
Farms in the area had been abandoned because of poor soil from overfarming, overgrazing, and lumber extraction
Grocery store became an agriculture and soil extension service, to teach people
- How farm their land, restore forest, restore watershed, can their own food, hunters to dress their meat
- Bank/credit union to helpo farmers restablish farm
All they wanted was a grocery store
- But any activity, in a city or a grocery store, can be a catalyst for greater geographic health
But hadn’t worked with the community
Dimensions of the whole
1. Developing of the right mind: to see how life is working
2. Systems of the place: includes economics, in the social system
3. Value added processes: how does life add value, otherwise, aren’t participating in evolution
Can’t look at life as if it’s an organization chart
U.S. army chart of Afghan force
- Stop thinking mechanically
Living systems are really complex, have to work from patterns
Life is dynamic and evolving, not mechanical
- It’s not a what, it’s who
- Requires an interative process, including all parties, issues and nature
Humans have a positive role to play
- Better than feeling guilty
- Humans aren’t bad
- Time to reunderstand
- Not living lightly with the land, but living fully with the land
Patterns are how to hold wholes
- Building the capabilility to build it, love it, tend it
Need a storying process: hold past, present future
- Engage community
- Parables make the complex comprehensible
- Time for restorying
If you want to build a ship, don’t herd people together to collect wood, and don’t assign them tasks and work, but instead teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea
How to approach our task of Sipoo? The who? Participation workshops, wandering site, reading materials?
- Fairly simple process
- Don’t hold big meetings, get loudmouths
- Have kitchen table conversations with small groups of people to learn the community
- Gather data, although it’s not sufficient, could be a waste of time
- Client had spent 10 years and $10M gathering a room of data, data isn’t understanding
- Want tracking skills, animal tracking through woods, not just one piece of data, but two or three corroborrating views
- Looking for 10,000 foot view, repeatable patterns of data
- Can do this in 2 weeks, if have the skills sets
- Systems ecologists and systems biologists, permaculturalists can get a handle, trackers are best
- Tracking people, data, how life works, how life has worked in the past
- e.g. looking as a child, a teenager, as a young adult
Comment: approach of 3 generations back and 3 generations forward. Sibbesborg has a history and a future
- Have to take in the good and the bad
Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, “Forgetting in a digital age” (MP3 audio), CBC Spark Plus, 2009/09/22 January 10, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
Tags: digital, forgetting, memory
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The advent of social media has presented an opportunity and challenge of information that persists practically forever.
Perfect, comprehensive digital memory denies human beings the ability to grow, to change, and to evolve over time. That is deeply worrying.
In his new book, Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age, Viktor Mayer-Schönberger argues that forgetting is a natural human process, and that digital technology and cheap storage are creating all sorts of problems, from an assault on privacy, to an inability to make decisions.
Delete looks at the surprising phenomenon of perfect remembering in the digital age, and reveals why we must reintroduce our capacity to forget. Digital technology empowers us as never before, yet it has unforeseen consequences as well. Potentially humiliating content on Facebook is enshrined in cyberspace for future employers to see. Google remembers everything we’ve searched for and when. The digital realm remembers what is sometimes better forgotten, and this has profound implications for us all.
This morning, Nora interviewed Viktor about forgetting in a digital age.
Chris Sacca, “Innovation at Google, and post-Google” (MP3 audio), Principled Innovation, 2009/03/03 January 10, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
Tags: google, innovation
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Google now has enough history that it’s developed its own style of innovation, which gets carried with its alumni.
In late January, Chris Sacca, former head of special projects for Google, spoke at ASAE & The Center’s Technology Conference in Washington, DC.
[....] We had our conversation this morning, and it was certainly well worth the wait.As a big fan of (and small investor in) Google, I was fascinated by Chris’s insider insights on the drivers of Google’s success, and the company’s approach to innovation. We also talked about Twitter (Chris is an investor and advisor), and some of the other new technologies and endeavors with which he is involved in his post-Google career.
Chris’s closing piece of advice to association leaders, what I describe in the podcast as taking personal responsibility for making innovation happen, is spot on. Pay very close attention to what he has to say, and not just at the end.
Brian Cathcart, “Is Google Killing General Knowledge?” (MP3 audio), CBC Spark Plus, 2009/09/28 January 10, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
Tags: general knowledge, google
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Will access to the world’s information over the Internet result in the decline of human knowledge?
Quick! Can you name the first five prime numbers? Or the atomic weight of Xenon? Or the phases of meiosis? Can you do it without consulting the web?
Brian Cathcart is professor of journalism at Kingston University, and recently, he wrote an article called “Is Google Killing General Knowledge?” In it, he wonders how on-demand access to information changes our relationship to facts:
I teach undergraduates, and I am prepared to bet that many other teachers have found themselves wondering whether they are seeing this force at work. The average student [...] seems not to value general knowledge. If asked a factual question, they will usually click on a search engine without a second thought. Actually knowing the fact, committing it to memory, does not seem to be a consideration.
Last week, Nora interviewed Brian Cathcart about this phenomenon.
Tags: open, texbooks
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Textbooks generally become obsolete, so is there a better way to produce and distribute them?
… about the future of textbooks — if traditional hard-bound books might someday be replaced be electronic editions, or if the industry might go the way of music and movies, with many people downloading pirated versions from peer-to-peer services like Bittorrent.
Nora talked to Eric Frank, the co-founder of one company that’s trying to reinvent the textbook publishing industry. The company is called Flat World Knowledge, and it publishes “open textbooks” which are free works that can be edited, updated, and remixed into custom course materials.” These open textbooks are free to read online, but if you want, say, a printed copy or an audio version, you’ll have to pay.
Sander van der Leeuw, “The Archaeology of Innovation” (MP3 audio), Longnow Foundation, 2009/11/18 January 9, 2011Posted by daviding in Talk Audio Download.
Tags: archeology, innovation, technology
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Innovation goes back to the dawn of human beings, but can we continue to rely on technological advances to solve our problems?
Are we the first civilization to try and innovate our way out of climate change? How have past societies engineered sustainable solutions to a shifting world?
Sander van der Leeuw, Director of the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University and External Faculty Member of the Santa Fe Institute, has spent his career studying these questions.
At his Seminar van der Leeuw will be exploring this research into the past, as well as its application to our current global predicament.
Tags: comparative, economic development, history
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Some of the best ways to understand economics is via economic history.
Peter Blair Henry of Stanford University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about economic development.
Henry compares and contrasts the policy and growth experience of Barbados and Jamaica. Both became independent of England in the 1960s, so both inherited similar institutions. But each pursued different policies with very different results.
Henry discusses the implications of this near-natural experiment for growth generally and the importance of macroeconomic policy for achieving prosperity.
The conversation closes with a discussion of Henry’s research on stock market reactions as a measure of policy’s effectiveness.
Tags: economics, global economy
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Economists who recognize that they may be part of the problem are a rarity.
John Perkins, Author, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man and Hoodwinked
Economic hit man Perkins has confessed the sins of predatory politicians and analyzed the reasons for the current meltdown. A reformed economist, he warns that returning to our “normal” blueprints for the global economy would prove disastrous.
This program was recoded in front of a live audience at the Commonwealth Club of California on November 18, 2009.