I will be hosting the next Beta Conversation on Wednesday, March 8th at 16:00 GMT/UTC (08:00 Pacific, 11:00 Eastern, 17:00 CET). The subject will be the topics discussed in working in perpetual beta.
This is part of a regular series of web discussion on topics I have written about in the perpetual beta series. Each session is 90 minutes long. For participant confidentiality, these sessions will not be recorded.
The format of each session is as follows:
- Presentation of the key themes
- Discussion of any questions provided by participants in advance
- Open discussion
Given the positive feedback from previous conversations, these sessions will be capped at 7 participants. This will ensure time for deeper dialogue and to address everyone’s questions. We will use the https://zoom.us/ platform.
If you are interested in applying new organizational models for the network era that optimize human learning, based on cooperation, knowledge-sharing, and transparency, then please join us. (more…)
Next month I will be facilitating a workshop at The Arts in a Digital World Summit, hosted in Montreal by the Canada Council for the Arts.
Among other things, the summit will be a chance to share knowledge, mobilize – and possibly even incubate projects. We’ll consider our digital reality as an opportunity to:
- develop innovative approaches
- re-imagine how artists and arts organizations engage with citizens
- seed collaborations within the arts community, and with other sectors.
It will bring together over 250 artistic and administrative leaders, digital experts, and strategic thinkers selected by the Canada Council to represent the vast diversity of the sector and to contribute to the testing and understanding of its new Fund for the arts in a digital world. The event will be by-invitation however many parts of it will also be accessible online.
My workshop is entitled The Arts in Perpetual Beta. This is how I describe the 90 minute session: We live in a networked world. Automation and connectivity are changing how we work and learn. How does the digital surround affect how human knowledge and creativity are shared? Join this workshop to discuss some key trends, understand knowledge networks, and critically examine the technologies we use.
I intend to focus on network thinking, machine augmentation, and the tetradic effects of technology. I’ll also talk about learning like an artist.
I would be interested in the perspectives of anyone working in or with the arts. I am especially curious how their work has changed in the past decade or so as a result of automation or connectivity.
- Has the internet been a positive force for your art?
- What do you see as major challenges to do your art or to get it known?
- Do you have a generally positive or negative outlook on the future of your art?
Today marks 13 years of blogging here, with 2,901 posts. I have just returned from 3 weeks in Europe, working with several people and organizations who first connected through my blog. Next month I will be contributing to the Arts in a Digital World Summit because the organizers found me through this blog. The ability for anyone to publish their work to a global audience is one of the most important attributes of the web and our digital world: for better and worse. In spite of the rise in fascist thinking and post-truth moments, being connected can be liberating for humanity. However, it will always be a work in progress, like democracy. I am deeply thankful for our connected world, remembering what it was like before the web, and for the many friends and colleagues I have gained over the past 13 years.
Here are a few of my thoughts on blogging over the years. (more…)
Every fortnight I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds.
“The point of modern propaganda isn’t only to misinform or push an agenda. It is to exhaust your critical thinking, to annihilate truth.” —@kasparov63
“The first truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is Fascism—ownership of Government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power.”—Franklin Roosevelt via @lisarosa
“Never react to an evil in such a way as to augment it.” —Simone Weil + “Only the good has depth that can be radical.” —Hannah Arendt via @monk51295 (more…)
Are networks the new companies? Can our markets shift from capitalism to cooperativism? Can our institutions become networks? Can any of us escape our tribal roots and become network era citizens of the world?
We still lack good network models for organizing in society. Instead, many turn back to older, and outdated organizational models, like nationalism and tribalism, in an attempt to gain some stability. But our institutions and markets will fail to deliver in a network era society because they were never designed for one.
“It seems obvious to me that an individual value proposition for an organisation or nation state that makes a promise (which in itself is an outdated industrial concept) and fails to deliver will have to cope with every customer, citizen and employee holding them to account. In real time. From *within* their own organisations; not just by the hardening of their perimeters. The recognition that individual pathways transcend organisational boundaries is a good place to start.” —Robert Pye
A network society needs networked models for organizing and for learning.
“More and more, the unit of comprehension is going to be group comprehension, where you simply have to rely on a team of others because you can’t understand it all yourself. There was a time, oh, I would say as recently as, certainly as the 18th century, when really smart people could aspire to having a fairly good understanding of just about everything … Well that’s the fragility, the hyper-fragility of civilisation right there. We could all be bounced back into the 19th century.” —Daniel Dennett
Cooperation is freely sharing with no expectation of direct compensation. It enables knowledge to flow freely. Large scale cooperation should be the dominant model in the network era, if not we may revert back to a tribal era. (more…)
In Only Humans Need Apply, the authors identify five ways that people can adapt to automation and intelligent machines. They call it ‘stepping’. I have added in parentheses the main attributes I think are needed for each option.
- Step-up: directing the machine-augmented world (creativity)
- Step-in: using machines to augment work (deep thinking)
- Step-aside: doing human work that machines are not suited for (empathy)
- Step narrowly: specializing narrowly in a field too small for augmentation (passion)
- Step forward: developing new augmentation systems (curiosity)
Have you heard the term VUCA? It comes from the 1990’s but is still in use to describe the complex and chaotic world of business, politics, and technology.
Peter Hinnsen, in The Network Always Wins, describes the antidote to VUCA as VACINE.
Every fortnight I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds. I am finishing three weeks in Europe so many of these posts reflect the interactions I had in Copenhagen, London, and Antwerp.
@umairh: “Fascism counts on you. Not on your support. But on your denial.”
@meacoopa: “every liberal democracy realizes early on there are some positions which must prima facie be aggressively excluded from public discourse … Fascism wriggles into democracies by insisting on the right to be heard, achieves critical mass, then dissolves the organs that installed it.”
@dabeard: “No science, no evidence, no truth, no democracy”
@SwiftonSecurity: “Trust me – modern information systems are a panopticon you are not qualified to defeat alone. Journalists are a very valuable resource here.”
@yonatanzunger: “Something you can do: Write down what happens in the news every day. Keeping a notebook helps remember, see trends, avoid gaslighting.”
Seth Godin: “Blogging is free. What matters is the meta-cognition of thinking about what you’re going to say…” via @dorait (more…)
This evening I will be presenting a session on Working in Perpetual Beta, at Implement Consulting in Copenhagen. I will be discussing the economic, technological, and communication shifts that are driving us to become a networked society. But as I mentioned in my last post, the Tribal form is posing a significant threat to the development of what David Ronfeldt calls a Quadriform society. This would be a society that includes Tribal, Institutional, and Market organizations, co-existing with dominant network organizations.
But at this time there are few positive network era organization examples to give inspiration to others. We are stuck between the Market and the Network era, with significant yearnings in certain sectors to go back to our insular Tribal ways. While the Tribal form may be comforting, its structure threatens the foundations of democracy. (more…)