January 28, 2002

I discovered long ago that

I discovered long ago that long, uninterrupted blocks of time are more productive than time that's continually interrupted by the distractions of email, ringing phones, and conversation. On the drive from Berkeley to Santa Clara this afternoon, one person said she simply cut off her phone when she needed peace. Another cuts off her computer to avoid email part of each morning. I realized that I'd fallen back into old habits, grabbing the phone whenever it rings, complusively checking for email, and hopping from one project to another. That's crazy. Tomorrow I'll see what it's like to go phoneless for a while and to forget email for the first three hours ot the day.

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Developing a Winning Marketing Plan

Developing a Winning Marketing Plan by William A. Cohen 1987

I wanted to contrast a traditional marketing mix to what I'd put together in today's networked world. The Albany Library could offer only this book.

Developing...Plan is over the hill. Published 1987. A surface skim of the topic.

Cohen cautions us to use only one typist to prepare the plan. (Typist?) Customer relationship management, product obsolescence, offshore competition, time-based competition, etc. --- not mentioned. Save your money. I'm sorry I took this one home.

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January 24, 2002

The acceleration of time is

The acceleration of time is a major factor driving my blogging.

When I started opening up and sharing what was shaping up in my head five or six years ago, it seemed incredible to be able to put ideas into a web page every now and then.

Now it's as if things decay much faster. The stream of business flows faster. Last month's revelations are old hat. People want to know what happened yesterday. Or two hours ago. Hence, the immediacy of blogging is a winner.

InternetTime.com is a knowledgebase of legacy content. That's great for newbies and researchers. It doesn't speak to people who want to keep up and be in the know. I'm going to shift the focus at InternetTime.com more to blogging and less to static pages. I'll need some metatags to be able to retrieve things with a search engine. Because they are chronological, most blogs aren't very hot at retrieval. How often do you see a search button instead of "archives?"

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January 23, 2002


INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE - Concepts & Issues is a marvellous page of links about knowledge organization, metadata, and user-centered design. This is take hours to digest, all of it fun.

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A fellow Meta-Learning Lab member,

A fellow Meta-Learning Lab member, Claudia L, is exploring concept maps, both as a learning tool and an aspect of her work in second-order cybernetics. We talked about the topic on the drive back to Berkeley after the January meeting of eLearning Forum.

Concept maps are cool. They appear to be mind maps on steroids. For one thing, the links themselves are labeled, e.g. X leads to Y, X includes Y, X hinges on Y, etc. Also, it's more natural for a node to have multiple antecedents. NASAs concept maps for the Mars expedition are the front-end for an incredible amount of information: papers, links, second-level maps, etc.

What a nifty tool. I will explore using concept maps in internettime.com.

More info at: The Institute for the Interdisciplinary Study of Human & Machine Cognition (IHMC) was founded by the Florida legislature in 1990 as an interdisciplinary research unit of the University of West Florida. Since that time, IHMC has grown into a well-respected research institute with over 70 researchers investigating a broad range of topics related to understanding cognition in both humans and machines with a particular emphasis on building computational tools to leverage and amplify human cognitive and perceptual capacities.

Posted by Jay Cross at 01:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 20, 2002

The Wealth of Knowledge: Intellectual

The Wealth of Knowledge: Intellectual Capital and the Twenty-first Century Organization
by Thomas A. Stewart

I am really looking forward to this book. Intellectual Capital was a breakthrough book, easy to read but astounding in its power. At first, the title intimidated me. How wrong could I be. Figures that a lucid Fortune reporter would write something quite understandable.

    When he searched for "intellectual capital" on the web five years ago, the seventh item brought up by a search engine was, "Rome is the intellectual capital of Italy."

    Hammering obsolete accounting for the nonsense it is, he points out that, "Management also has no place in traditional economics--economists simply leave it out, as if all management is the same and ocunts for nothing." (Bravo!)

    Regarding fads, "Too often, companies lurched into knowledge management, e-commerce, and other Information Age management ideas before they had business reasons for their actions."

    "It is time, once and for all, to drive a stake through the heart of traditional accounting, which is draining the life from business."

"We have come a long way toward understading how to turn knowledge into intellecutal capital, and how to use intellectual capital to increase the prosperity of our companies and countries, and add to the richness of our lives. Hurry up, please. It's time."

That's a journey I want to be part of.

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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
by Dave Eggers

Amazon's review says:

    At the age of 22, Eggers became both an orphan and a "single mother" when his parents died within five months of one another of unrelated cancers. In the ensuing sibling division of labor, Dave is appointed unofficial guardian of his 8-year-old brother, Christopher. The two live together in semi-squalor, decaying food and sports equipment scattered about, while Eggers worries obsessively about child-welfare authorities, molesting babysitters, and his own health. His child-rearing strategy swings between making his brother's upbringing manically fun and performing bizarre developmental experiments on him. (Case in point: his idea of suitable bedtime reading is John Hersey's Hiroshima.)

Dave Eggers takes us on a tour of what's going through his head, usually something along the lines of "God I sing great in the shower" or "Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. The babysitter is probably cutting my brother into tiny chunks and preparing to roast them, with onions, on the barbeque. Fuck." Dave's inner dialogue sounds real. It's so rare to encounter what's really going through one's mind. I recall sitting on the floor of my dorm room sophmore year at Princeton, taking apart a broken stereo receiver just for the hell of it. When a roommate asked what I was doing, I explained that I was dismantling the guidance system of a Nazi submarine and I had to get it done before it launched its torpedos. Dave would share something like that. Fuck yes.

I read A Heartbreaking Work because of a personal connection. When Dave and his brother Christopher's parents die, they move to Berkeley. Christopher ("Toph") enrolls at Black Pine Circle school. In my son Austin's class. Uta remembers Dave, Toph, and their sister Beth. At first they share a house a couple of blocks from here. Dave and Toph shoot baskets at the hoop three minutes from my house. They walk the streets I walk. Dave talked about an Open House at Black Pine that I attended, too. Cue "It's a small world after all."

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January 19, 2002

The Atlas of Experience by

The Atlas of Experience
by Louise Van Swaaij, Jean Klare, David Winner

Great example of how visuals show relationships and get the mind's wheels to turning.

I love this book. I don't read it so much as savor it.

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January 18, 2002

Just fooling around during a

Just fooling around during a break...

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Yesterday I had an inspiring

Yesterday I had an inspiring meeting with David Sibbett, founder of The Grove.
David Sibbett
David Sibbett

David, Sherrin Bennett, and I had one of those marvellous, flowing conversations that seems to take place on several levels at once. The Grove's work is tres cool. Mine is...conceptual, e.g.,

Group graphics is a new medium, one Davidís been exploring for years. Itís panoramic. Itís public listening rather than public speaking. It starts with reflection, reversing the normal mode of presentation. It mirrors where we are. Three factors separate group graphics from other media:

    1. Participation, not talking. Visually unfolding
    2. Systems thinking, holistic approach.
    3. Provides a group memory, persistent.

The three of us are going to put together an eLearning Forum session on visual learning for April 20.

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January 15, 2002

Time-Reversed Human Experience: Experimental Evidence

Time-Reversed Human Experience: Experimental Evidence and Implications


Let's revisit the philosophy of Hume.

"People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion." Albert Einstein

The effects considered here involve information flowing backward in time. This worries some philosophers because they imagine that time-reversals necessarily evoke logical paradoxes.

These implications are, of course, heresies of the first order.

I believe...the implications of all this are sufficiently remote from engrained ways of thinking that the first reaction to this work will be confidence that it is wrong. The second reaction will be horror that it may be right. The third will be reassurance that it is obvious.

Jay's take on this: Don't hold your breath waiting for this to happen.

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