Archive for January, 2008
There’s a wonderful article in an old Business Week by Diego Rodriguez (of Ideo fame) called Happiness and the art of innovation:
“people who are led with an eye toward flow really don’t need to be “managed” at all”
“So the next time someone says, “We need a strategy to become more innovative,” respond with this question: “How can we make individuals happy in their work?”
Steven Pinker considers the question in The Moral Instinct in the NY Times magazine.
Mother Teresa was the very embodiment of saintliness: white-clad, sad-eyed, ascetic and often photographed with the wretched of the earth. Gates is a nerd’s nerd and the world’s richest man, as likely to enter heaven as the proverbial camel squeezing through the needle’s eye.
myExperiment reminded me of Connotea, as an example of the way the scientific community adopts Web 2.0 ideas with enthusiasm but makes use of the greater structure in the scientific information space.
Connotea is essentially Delicious for scientists. The main functional difference is that when you bookmark a page from a number of sites (Nature, PubMed, Amazon) Connotea will automatically fetch additional bibliographic information. But really difference is the skew of the communities interests.
At an IASummit a few years back, one of the panels opened with the thought “would you still use Delicious if your gran did”, presumably trying to tap into the fear that your gran might start polluting the links for ‘apple’ with pie and strudel recipes.
Football fans, classic historians and internet geeks might irritate each other with their ‘ajax’ links. In fact, classic historians would probably get on everyone’s nerves.
Connetea’s top tags include biotech, gm crops, evolution and insect resistence.
And ‘celebrity’. Perhaps the world of scientists is not so different after all?
myExperiment is for scientists “to share, re-use and repurpose experiments”. It makes me feel a little Web 2.0 queasy. An Open Source beta, built in Ruby on Rails, supporting Creative Commons licenses, complete with wiki, tags, openid, bookmarklets, and a restful API.
Oddly one of the FAQs is ‘why not use Facebook?’. Did someone seriously suggest that?
The BBC is rather unusually funded but I’ve never actually read the Royal Charter before. The Queen’s feelings about Tessa Jowell were surprising:
“AND WHEREAS the period of incorporation of the BBC under the 1996 Charter will expire on the 31st December 2006 and it has been represented to Us by Our right trusty and well beloved Counsellor Tessa Jowell, Our Principal Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, that it is expedient that the BBC should be continued for the period ending on the 31st December 2016″
Of more practical use perhaps was the definition of ‘licence fee payer’ which was surprisingly relaxed:
“57. The meaning of “licence fee payer”
In this Charter, a reference to a “licence fee payer” is not to be taken literally but includes, not only a person to whom a TV licence is issued under section 364 of the Communications Act 2003, but also (so far as is sensible in the context) any other person in the UK who watches, listens to or uses any BBC service, or may do so or wish to do so in the future.”
“a guy in his late 50s or early 60s, decided his employees were spending too much time staring into computer screens and not enough time interacting face-to-face. He instituted a new rule: No more individual desktop PCs. Henceforth employees wanting to create files would have to get up from their stations, walk over to a special area, and complete digital tasks on shared-use computers. While at their own desks, they would work only with pencil, paper, and other analog tools—or confer with colleagues.”
Tim goes on to express his disatifaction with the Internet era:
“Heck, I really enjoyed computing in the pre-spam days, before the Internet was re-conceived as a marketing “platform” instead of a communications tool. Nevertheless, no one will be happier than me when this “digital” fad finally blows over and we can all go back to talking to each other with our voices and writing with pencils and paper like civilized people ”
Whilst I understand (and agree with) some of the sentiments surely the first step in ending this digital “fad” is to stop blogging?
Slow Down Week was brought to you by the International Institute of Not Doing Much (slogan: multitasking is a moral weakness). I forgot to mention it till it was all over but that feels in the spirit of the event.
I shall be doing very little today.
“The public’s imagination will be captured by participating in the construction of over 3,500 LEGO bricks to form a fully functioning three-metre tall wind turbine!”
Might help us meet our new EU targets for renewable energy.
More trading cards, this time celebrating the beer vendors of Wrigley Field baseball stadium.
The attributes are:
- vendor since
- location (i.e. lower right)
‘Sun Trick’ seems to be YouTube-famous for his beer opening.
Daniel Gilbert’s homepage is the fabulously named hedonic psychology laboratory within which there is a page called ‘playing’. The page has the tag line ‘frivolous linkageZ’ (he’s got a thing about Z).