Escaping Minimal Selves and Entertainment Cliches Through Twitter

From Paul Rosenberg at OpenLeft I headed over to Salon and Heather Havrilesky commenting on NBCs new television series “The Event”. The real problem is, we don’t care because there clearly isn’t any larger meaning guiding the action, and the only thing we know about each character is that he/she totally loves his/her fiancé/wife/husband/children sooo much that he/she would do anything to keep them safe. In a country where many viewers don’t have a lot of thoughtful or idealistic notions outside of a “love of family” – worthy though this love obviously is – this is what passes for character development and premise, over and over again.

Brain Dissection - Live - On the Internet!

While reviewing my philosophy weblog news feeds I came across a link to the live webstream of a brain dissection on the internet. H.M., a famous neuroscience patient, died a year ago. He was famous in brain studies because a surgery to cure seizures resulted in his being unable to form new memories. “He loved to converse, for example, but within 15 minutes he would tell you the same story three times, with same words and intonation, without remembering that he’d just told it,” said Suzanne Corkin, a neuroscientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who studied and followed Mr.

Fame and Analysis - Twitter, Teenagers, the Media and Morgan Stanley

I noticed a couple of reports over the last two weeks about the Morgan Stanley report by a 15-year-old intern about social media use among teenagers. I clicked through to the news article, read it quickly, and then just as quickly dismissed it. Last week I read a post by Kent Anderson at The Scholarly Kitchen on the same story. Anderson contends that the incident is an example of a gate-keeping failure at Morgan Stanley.

Twitter, Peripheral Perception, and Empathy

What if social networking and media apps such as Twitter improve our collective sense of empathy? When I joined Twitter I followed two types people, personal friends and complete strangers. The friends were neighbors or colleagues whom I met regularly in person. Sometimes I met them at school, others I met through other electronic media such as blogs. The complete strangers were celebrities, people whom I had heard of or read about.

Barter and the Exchange of Knowledge on the Web

Jon Udell’s recent remarks on apprenticeship and barter in the new economy generated a surge in my web traffic so I want to extend some of my remarks about the reception of his idea among the audience at SI. For one thing the STIET program at Michigan, which sponsored the Thursday talk, is particularly focused on the transactions enabled by electronic technology. A major problem with barter is the lack of information connecting traders.

Identity - it's in the air

Everywhere I turn this semester the topic of online identity is cropping up. A couple of discussions have either touched directly or indirectly on the problem of maintaining an online identity. My classes on recommender systems, information ethics, and copyright have all mentioned or discussed the motivations and pitfalls behind online identities. Jenny Levine at the Shifted Librarian points to a recent cover story from U.S. News that dubs itself a parent’s guide to MySpace.

Jon Udell on Apprenticeship and Barter in the New Economy

Jon Udell the lead analyst at InfoWorld came to Michigan today to share some of his ideas about online learning and exchange in the new economy. Jon runs a consistently worthwhile weblog at Infoworld that combines a number of my interests: using the web for mashing technology together (Library Lookup may be one of the first examples of a mashup before the term got common), groupware or social software, and online identity.

A Couple of Questions about Wikipedia

Two recent examples of Wikipedia confusion regarding people that I’ve read raise questions about whether Wikipedia is just reproducing the same hierarchic structure that we find everywhere else. Wikipedia has questioned the notability of Stephen Downes and engaged in a long argument over the correct capitalization of danah boyd’s name I can’t fully put my finger on why the media-centric thing bugs me, but it does. The media has decided that i’m an expert because of my knowledge in a specific domain; Wikipedia has decided that i’m notable because i’m on TV.

Sometimes It's Better to Laugh

Random fact generators are great. Via Chrononautic log I found this Bruce Schneier fact generator. A few refreshes produced these favorites: There is an otherwise featureless big black computer in Ft. Meade that has a single dial with three settings: Off, Standby, and Schneier. There is no Information Theory. Just data that Bruce Schneier allows to be quantified and transmitted on a channel. Bruce Schneier got a perfect score on his comp-sci degree.

A Pocketful of -archies

A confluence of recent readings have reintroduced me to some -archies I was familiar with and introduced some that were new to me. I’ll begin with holarchy, a term that I’ve recently encountered in [Integral Psychology]() by Ken Wilber. Wikipedia says the term originated with Arthur Koestler. I’ve read parts of his Act of Creation but don’t remember encountering the idea it that work. Wilber deploys the term to describe the way complex systems nest inside of each other.