Blog Archives

“Thank you for being late” | Thomas Friedman | Jan. 2016 | Stockholm Resilience Centre (web video)

Directly after the World Economic Forum, @tomfriedman described his upcoming book “Thank you for being late” in conversation with Johan Rockström at the Stockholm Resilience Centre. [05:45]  I was deeply influenced a year and a half ago by a book I read called The

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“Why Societies Collapse” | Joseph Tainter | 2010 | Local Future (web video)

Updating from The Collapse of Complex Societies (1988), Joseph Tainter describes sociopolitical complexity, and “what it means for us”. The talk mentions colleague Timothy F. H. Allen, but doesn’t surface the idea of complicatedness that appears in their joint publications.

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“I hate Karl Marx” | Rainer Ganahl | 2010 (web video)

I laughed out loud @KiasmaMuseum at @rainerganahl 2010 video “I hate Karl Marx”, but the humour didn’t seem to be appreciated by others. Here’s a description from the artist: For this video playing in the year 2045 Karl Marx has reincarnated as Chinese.

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John E. Kelly III | “The Future of Cognitive Computing” | Oct. 13, 2015 | IBM (web video)

From the 2015 Cognitive_ColloquiumSF, at http://research.ibm.com/cognitive-computing/#sf, there’s a video: Kelly, John E., III. 2015. The Future of Cognitive Computing. Web Video. Third Annual IBM Research Cognitive Colloquium: Augmenting Human Intelligence. Mission Bay Conference Center at USCF. research.ibm.com/cognitive-computing/#sf. Watching the video,

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Jim Spohrer | “Empowering Makers in the Cognitive Era” |Aug. 10 2015 |ICER (web video + slides)

Keynote August 2015 @JimSpohrer ACM International Computing Education Research (ICER) Conference, Omaha, Nebraska Slides available at http://www.slideshare.net/spohrer/spohrer-icer-20150810-v1. [00:00 slide 1] Doug Englebart, Augmentation theory See Douglas C. Engelbart, “Augmenting Human Intellect” A Conceptual Framework”, SRI Summary Report AFOSR-3223, October 1962

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Hajo Neis, “Battle for Life and Beauty of the Earth: Urban Architecture and (Re)Generative Process” (web video) | April 14, 2014 | U. Oregon

Hajo Neis, co-author with Christopher Alexander on his 2012 book, lectured on experiences not only with the Eishin Campus in Japan in 1985, but also other works. In this lecture Neis will report about the recently published book ‘Battle for

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The Art of the Really Long View (MP3 audio) | Peter Schwartz | Dec. 12, 2003 | Long Now Foundation

Better futures, says Peter Schwartz, means creating and having more options for the future, leaving the future better than we found it. [06:50] How do you take the really long view? What do have to do if you really want

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The Long Now, now (MP3 audio) | Brian Eno, Danny Hillis | January 21, 2014 | Long Now Foundation

The difference between long term thinking and long term planning was articulated by Danny Hillis, with Brian Eno and Stewart Brand. [61:40 Danny Hillis] Maybe the one thing I’ve learned about long term thinking is the difference between long term

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The Origins of Jams at IBM (MP3 audio) | Mike Wing | May 20, 2005 | For Immediate Release

Could an intranet could be used for culture change? Mike Wing says jams captured best practices from individuals on clever ways to get work done and create value, despite organizational complexity in a global enterprise. [27:15] The moment, that, probably

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“alphaWorks 10” (web video) | Irving Wladawsky-Berger, Rod Smith, Gina Poole | Oct. 4, 2006

Rod Smith, VP, Emerging Technologies-SWG, Gina Poole, VP, Innovation and University Relations, and Irving Wladawsky-Berger, VP, Technical Strategy and Innovation, talk about alphaWorks celebrating ten years of ushering in emerging technologies that have helped shape the technology landscape. And, as

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“Journalism as a service” (web video) | Jeff Jarvis | Dec. 11, 2014 | David Weinberger interview

Journalism is not manufacturing content, says @jeffjarvis, but instead is a service. Social journalism then becomes a new degree program in the age of the Internet. Interviewed by @dweinberger. [00:00 Jeff Jarvis] When I started writing — I look at

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“Earth Week Lecture” | Joel Salatin | April 27, 2012 | Colorado College

Feeding grain to pigs and chickens, says @JoelSalatin, is ecologically wasteful. On homesteads, pigs foraged and chickens ate kitchen scraps. Herbivore-based cultures relied on nature rather than performing the work of tillage. [24:30] In the future, we will, of necessity,

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“The Systems View of Life” (web video) |Fritjof Capra | Schumacher College | May 7, 2014

Launch of textbook by Fritjof Capra, collecting 40 years of writings with additions by coauthor Pier Luigi Luisi.  The lecture shows precise language about the science of systems, with clear references tying together research strands.  Mature systems thinkers will be reminded

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Why Architecture is needed even in Agile? (MP3 audio) | Jim Coplien | January 2011 | Business901

Scrum came out of lean and predates agile, says @jcoplien. [29:30] Everyone thinks that Scrum came out of Agile. Now wait a minute, let’s stop this for a second, because Scrum has been around since 1993 and the Agile manifesto was 2001.

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Introduction to NodeJS (web video) | Ryan Dahl | May 5, 2010 | YUI Theater

Why node.js? Blocking and non-blocking input/output is explained for novices by the Ryan Dahl, the original node.js author. There’s a clear analogy of taking a sheet of paper out of your desk, versus having to go to Los Angeles for

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Watch “IBM Design Lab – Part 2 of 2: Factoring” on YouTube

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Pounding Simplicity into Wiki (video) |Ward Cunningham | April 15, 2013 | MountainWest RubyConf 2013

Ward Cunningham describes the features in federated wiki new to the original 1994 wiki technology at the Mountain West Ruby Conference 2013. This last year I set out to do for numbers what I had done for words, give them

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“For Your Eyes Only” music and main title production (1981)

On “For Your Eyes Only”, music production reshaped Sheena Easton‘s Scottish Accent.  After I caught a bit of the James Bond movie on holiday television, I was intrigued to look into the song.  I found a version of Sheena Easton

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Interview with Pat Metheny | Bob Barker | April 24, 2013 | jazz.fm91

Risk taking in casual sessions with peers now lacks intimacy, says @PatMetheny, since observers can make every event a world premiere by recording anywhere at any time.  Private sessions are the exception rather than the rule.  In the JazzFM91 interview,

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Learning how to learn | Rodrigo Arboleda | Apr. 10 2013 | TEDxCMU

Computer programming is a way of learning to learn, says @rarboleda2, with @OLPC now releasing the XO Tablet putting Sugar on top of Android. Rodrigo Arboleda is Chairman and CEO of One Laptop Per Child Association (OLPCA), a not-for-profit entity

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Beyond this media queue
This content is syndicated to Twitter. For professional perspectives, look to Coevolving Innovations; for a photoblog, look to Reflections, Distractions.
  • Beyond the Tavistock and S-cubed legacy
    While it’s important to appreciate the systems thinking foundations laid down by the Tavistock Institute and U. Pennsylvania Social Systems Science (S3, called S-cubed) program, practically all of the original researchers are no longer with us.  Luminaries who have passed include Eric L. Trist (-1993), Fred E. Emery (-1997), and Russell L. Ackoff (-2009).  T […]
  • Socio-Technical Systems, Service Systems Science
    In order to move forward, the Systems Changes Learning Circle has taken a step backwards to appreciate the scholarly work that has come before us.  This has included the Socio-Psychological Systems, Socio-Technical Systems and Socio-Ecological Systems perspective, from the postwar Tavistock Institute for Human Relations.  The deep dive on “Causal texture, co […]
  • Causal Texture of the Environment
    For those who haven’t read the 1965 Emery and Trist article, its seems as though my colleague Doug McDavid was foresighted enough to blog a summary in 2016!  His words have always welcomed here, as Doug was a cofounder of this web site.  At the time of writing, the target audience for this piece was primarily Enterprise Architecture practitioners.   [DI] Pub […]
  • Causal texture, contextualism, contextural
    In the famous 1965 Emery and Trist article, the terms “causal texture” and “contextual environment” haven’t been entirely clear to me.  With specific meanings in the systems thinking literature, looking up definitions in the dictionary generally isn’t helpful.  Diving into the history of the uses of the words provides some insight. 1. Causal texture 2. Conte […]
  • Trist in Canada, Organizational Change, Action Learning
    Towards appreciating “action learning”, the history of open systems thinking and pioneering work in organization science, the influence of Action Learning Group — in the Faculty of Environment Studies founded in 1968 at York University (Toronto) — deserves to be resurfaced. 1. Trist in Canada 2. Environmental studies, and contextualism in organizational-chan […]
  • Remembering Doug McDavid
    The news that Doug McDavid — my friend, colleague, and one of the original cofounders of the Coevolving Innovations web site in 2006 — had passed, first came through mutual IBM contacts.  More details subsequently showed up on LinkedIn from Mike McClintock. Doug left us on May 9, while working at his desk, likely in the very earliest hours of the morning. Hi […]
  • 2020/09 Moments September 2020
    Discovering more of the neighbourhood, bicycling mostly in the mornings.
  • 2020/08 Moments August 2020
    Moderate summer temperatures in a city normally overheated with activity, residents gradually emerging as public venues opened cautiously.
  • 2020/07 Moments July 2020
    Daytimes full of new work assignment and training, evenings and weekends bicycling around downtown Toronto as it slowly reopens from pandemic.
  • 2020/06 Moments June 2020
    Most of month in Covid-19 shutdown Phase 1, so every photograph is an exterior shot. Bicycling around downtown Toronto, often exercising after sunset.
  • 2020/05 Moments May 2020
    Life at home is much the same with the pandemic sheltering-in-place directives, touring city streets on bicycle, avoiding the parks on weekends.
  • 2020/04 Moments April 2020
    Living in social isolation in our house with 5 family members, finishing off teaching courses and taking courses.
  • 1969, 1981 Emery, System Thinking: Selected Readings
    Social Systems Science graduate students in 1970s-1980s with #RussellAckoff, #EricTrist + #HasanOzbehkhan at U. Pennsylvania Wharton School were assigned the Penguin paperback #SystemsThinking reader edited by #FredEEmery, with updated editions evolving contents.
  • 1968 Buckley, “Modern Systems Research for the Behavioral Scientist: A Sourcebook”
    Resurfacing 1968 Buckley, “Modern Systems Research for the Behavioral Scientist: A Sourcebook” for interests in #SystemsThinking #SocioCybernetics #GeneralSystemsTheory #OrganizationScience . Republication in 2017 hardcopy may be more complete.
  • Wholism, reductionism (Francois, 2004)
    Proponents of #SystemsThinking often espouse holism to counter over-emphasis on reductionism. Reading some definitions from an encyclopedia positions one in the context of the other (François 2004).
  • It matters (word use)
    Saying “it doesn’t matter” or “it matters” is a common expression in everyday English. For scholarly work, I want to “keep using that word“, while ensuring it means what I want it to mean. The Oxford English Dictionary (third edition, March 2001) has three entries for “matter”. The first two entries for a noun. The […]
  • Systemic Change, Systematic Change, Systems Change (Reynolds, 2011)
    It's been challenging to find sources that specifically define two-word phrases -- i.e. "systemic change", "systematic change", "systems change" -- as opposed to loosely inferring reductively from one-word definitions in recombination. MartinReynolds @OpenUniversity clarifies uses of the phrases, with a critical eye into mo […]
  • Environmental c.f. ecological (Francois, 2004; Allen, Giampietro Little 2003)
    The term "environmental" can be mixed up with "ecological", when the meanings are different. We can look at the encyclopedia definitions (François 2004), and then compare the two in terms of applied science (i.e. engineering with (#TimothyFHAllen @MarioGiampietro and #AmandaMLittle, 2003).
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