The New York Times reports, Forbes ASAP, Magazine of New Market, Shuts Down
"There is no market for a dedicated new-economy publication," said Monie Begley, spokeswoman for Forbes.
In remarks in August, Steve Forbes, president and editor in chief, said that the company was responding to "a fall-off that hasn't been seen since the '30's."
Drat! Forbes ASAP was one of my favorite magazines. Its special one-topic issues were absolutely wonderful; I read them all cover-to-cover. The issue on Happiness featured articles from P.J. O'Rourke, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, George Plimpton, Noall Bushnell, Lance Armstrong, John Perry Barlow, Jesse Jackson, and Christie Hefner. For me, ASAP's special issues were the timeliness of a magazine combined with the quality of a damned good book.
It's ironic that the final issue deals with feedback, since feedback from the marketplace is what's closing ASAP down.
Surrender to the self-correcting system.
It is emerging as the defining metaphor of our time. Like other great scientific phenomena discovered over the past two centuries--natural selection, genetics, relativity, nuclear fission, DNA, digital--feedback is about to burst out of the theoretical stage and into everyday life. "Feedback is what has been missing from science since Newton," says British scientist Steve Grand, who is trying to develop artificial life forms. "We thought it was a rare phenomenon--now it's hard to name anything in the universe that isn't feedback. Life itself turns out to be feedback."
We are starting to rethink science in light of feedback. It is at the heart of the most compelling new inventions. And now we are seeing the first signs that it is beginning to reorganize both corporations and national economies.
"We don't even have the words yet to describe this," says Grand. "We don't yet have the names. Before this is over, we're going to need a new mathematics, a new physics, and a new ontology of the world."
Welcome to Feedback Universe.
Mix that information in a vast shared database with mountains of data coming in about you from millions of sensors scattered across the landscape in roads, cash registers, and video cameras, and it soon will be possible to construct a virtual image of you--your tastes, interests, patterns, and perhaps even dreams--that will be almost indistinguishable from the real thing. This will be the face of retail--and probably law, education, health care, and entertainment--in the 21st century.
The classic explanation goes like this: You prick your finger, which irritates the nerve endings at the site of the wound. These inflamed nerves fire off electrical signals, which travel up the larger nerve pathways to your brain, where they are decoded as pain. The brain, itself a bundle of nerves, responds by sending a message back down a nerve path to the muscles in the finger, ordering them to contract and pull the finger away.
It appears mechanically straightforward. But the clue that it might not be so direct comes from a simple but shocking fact: In many of those nerve pathways, there are at least as many nerves heading toward the senses as there are heading away from them toward the brain. This suggests a much tighter and faster feedback loop than anyone imagined.
So what's going on? Nobody's quite sure. But one strong possibility is that even as the senses are telling the brain what they are encountering, the brain is telling them what they should be experiencing.
Grand compares this to a virtual reality system. The world is so complex that the human brain cannot deal with it directly. So instead, based on the information flowing in from the senses, the brain constructs, in real time, a simplified and weighted view of the world, one that picks out the important things from this infinite field of data. It is this vision of reality that the brain sends back out to the senses. "Brains are really billions of feedback loops," he says.
30 Poppy Lane
Berkeley, California 94708
1.510.528.3105 (office & cell)
Subscribe to this Blog
Our Infrequent Newsletter
Entries by category...
Recycled from Blogger
Internet Time Group
© 2004 Internet Time Group
Blogger Experience, Housekeeping, Something New
Demographics is destiny
Are you setting the bar high enough?
Work as Video Game
Oracle and Macromedia, Sitting in a Tree
ASTD Silicon Valley
Kingsbridge Conference Center
First Post by Email
RSS Feed for New Site
Testing ... testing ... 1...2..3
IT Doesn't Matter - Learning Does.
All blogging is political
Damn, damn, double damn
The New Religion
Wolf! Wolf! Wolf! Wolf! Wolf! Wolf!
Business Process Management (2)
Business Process Management Conference
Don't Lose a Common Sense: LISTEN
It's only natural
Go with the flow
Time Out for the Fair
Informal get-together in SF this Wednesday
Repetition, reverb, and echoes
Push vs pull
The Big Picture on ROI
New Community of Practice Forming
Training Directors Forum 2004
A Rare One-Liner
PlaNetwork LIVE 2
ASTD 2004 Leftovers
Worker Effectiveness Improvement, not KM
Jay's Talk at ASTD
Mintzberg & Cooperider
Lest ye forget
ASTD International Conference & Exposition 2004
What is Workflow Learning?
ASTD msg 1 of n
Look out, it's Outlook
Collaboration at ASTD Next Week
Tell me a story
The shortest presentation on metrics you will ever hear
Back to Blogger
The Alchemy of Growth
Very loosely coupled
E-Learning from Practice to Profit
Robin Good kicks off Competitive Edge
Emergent Learning Forum: Simulations
The Best Things in Life Are Free
Metrics and Web Services
OpEd: ROI vs. Metrics