Saturday, December 31, 2005

My Brain in the Times - a nice start to '06

Jim Fallows, usually an author and writer for the Atlantic Monthly, has long had a column in the New York Times called "Techno Files."

It looks like his job at the Atlantic is getting bigger, so today is his last Techno Files piece. After writing about a Mac collaborative writing tool called NoteShare (here, but not yet unveiled), he mentioned a few things he wishes he'd gotten to in the Times column. One of them is my online Brain. Here's the paragraph:, a site created by the consultant Jerry Michalski, which shows the possibilities that lurk in a program called the Brain. Mr. Michalski has used this program to store everything he has noticed or thought about over the last decade. The results are more intriguing than practical, but intriguing they are. (link)
Not quite sure how the shortcut URL I sent him became the name of my online Brain -- quite possibly an editor's hand in there -- but there it is, a really nice start to 2006 nonetheless.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Taking some unexpected points of view

Or, as Sean Savage puts it in his clever post, "context is everything."

Savage's assignment for a UC Berkeley course is to "propose a typology of the functions, origin and duration, size and density of social networks, based upon your own experience."

What's fun is that he plays out "your own experience" from three different and unusual points of view. To wit:
Sean's great synthesis pulls together Dawkins' ideas of the selfish gene, various great works on corporate power and technology run amok, and many more. It also reminds me of how fragile we are, yet how resilient. And how these powerful new forces are reshaping our worlds.

Other perspectives I'd love to see include:
Novel species empathy. A key skill.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Help build a wiki for Non-Violent Communication

Today and Wednesday, John Abbe (who is currently in Sri Lanka) and some of his colleagues are organizing an online wiki-raising.

The topic they're focusing on is NVC: Non-Violent Communication. I'm a fan, but no expert, so I look forward to learning about NVC.

Join us at noon EST in the NVC wiki and its real-time companion chats.

Online mini-conference on CoPs and Web 2.0

CPsquare will shortly host an online mini-conference that will examine how a few categories of new, "Web 2.0" tools are affecting the dynamics of communities of practice. I'll be helping out a little as a guest thinker.

The mini-conference runs January 3-31 online, punctuated by conference-call discussions. Nancy White blogged about it here; the conference details are over here.

What is Web 2.0? Read O'Reilly's explanation. For some neat lists of Web 2.0 apps that's sure to kill an hour or two, head here, here and here. What are communities of practice? Start here.

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