Sat.Apr 03, 2010 - Fri.Apr 09, 2010

The collapse of complicated business models

Harold Jarche

Clay Shirky, in the collapse of complex business models , notes: Bureaucracies temporarily reverse the Second Law of Thermodynamics. In a bureaucracy, it’s easier to make a process more complex than to make it simpler, and easier to create a new burden than kill an old one. The premise of his article is that successful organizations and industries become more complex over time and are unable to embrace new ways of doing things, which at the onset are much simpler.

Origins of Cynefin: By any other name would (it) smell as sweet?

Dave Snowden

A very confusing thing happened today. Google alert and a few friends pointed to this interesting post by Harold Jarche.

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Social Learning Tools Should Not be Separate from Enterprise 2.0

Tony Karrer

With the recent launch of InGenius by SkillSoft, I believe it’s time again to raise a pretty important question: Where do Social Learning Tools belong? Should they be coupled with your LMS or other learning-specific tools? Or should they be separated? Or ????

DNA is information, not intellectual property

George Siemens

Intellectual property considerations in biology are one of the more worrying trends currently being negotiated in business and in the legal system. A court recently ruled that DNA is information, not intellectual property. Whether this holds as it moves through the court system in the US is unclear. But the impact of life patents (literally) is already being felt: “There are about 40,000 patents that currently protect some 20 percent of the human genome&#.

Five Barriers to Effective Learning in Organisations

Charles Jennings

Very few of us would argue with the proposition that a lot of organisational learning and development activity is sub-optimal to the extent that it provides little value to participants and their organisations.

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Personal Knowledge: Transmission or Induction?

Stephen Downes: Half an Hour

I'm going to use an oversimplified example from electricity to make a point. I still think there is a deficiency in the personal knowledge management model being discussed in various quarters. Let me see if I can tease it out with the following discussion.

Helicopter Parents Revisited - LD Students in College and Graduate School

Eide Neurolearning

From TR Miles' Dyslexia at College : "From our discussions with dyslexic students we have noticed that many of them have had at least one person as a 'prop' during their school career.

May 6th, Red fly the banners oh

Dave Snowden

The first General Election that I remember is in 1964 when I was the Labour Party candidate in the mock election at Ysgol Bryn Coch. It was my primary school and I remember the first year in the old school in its Glanrafon Road site before we moved to a modern building in Bryn Coch Lane.

Hacker Attack (Help!)

Jay Cross

For support, I rely on the kindness of strangers. That may be you. Hackers are polluting this blog and When I search for a prior post, I often find nothing but names of drugs repeated again and again as both title and content. I click…and get back to the original post.

Centennial Park

Stephen Downes: Half an Hour

Andrea and I went for a nice walk in Centennial Park today, where everything was coming back to life. Enjoy our visit


Informal learning: the real deal. Free.

Jay Cross's Informal Learning

I nformal Learning has been getting a lot of buzz lately. Many vendors claim to offer informal learning, or even “informal learning management&# without having changed anything beyond the words in their advertising. Read this scathing commentary by Peter Casebow , Jane Hart , and Harold Jarche.

Abrogation not assumption

Dave Snowden

I made the point yesterday that many of the tools and practices used within the HR function are focused on abrogation rather than assumption of responsibility. In a comment to that entry Dylan suggested that the phrase needed unstitching so I thought I would get the process started.

Dan Gillmor on what’s wrong with the iPad

David Weinberger

Dan Gillmor has a terrific piece that looks at what’s worrisome about the iPad and its fawning embrace by the very media that hope to be saved by it


Coloring Outside the Wireframe: 3 Tips to Integrating Visual Design in the UX Field

Adaptive Path

When I interviewed at Adaptive Path a few months ago I was asked a barrage of tough questions. But when the tables turned and I got to ask AP-ers my questions I was interested in one thing in particular: “What do you see as the role of a visual designer at a UX company?” I got a variety of answers and a few very long pauses.

Learning in the wild

George Siemens

I have a love/hate relationship with my brain. I’m rarely ever clear on an issue as context always messes up what exists. Something can be useful in one context, and completely useless in another. An idea can make sense in one discussion and yet be confusing in another. For example, I work in a formal higher education environment. I see the value that a structured course has for newcomers to a field. A course provides a scaffolded encounter with new concepts and ideas.

Architecture not application

Dave Snowden

I've been thinking and reading around the subjects of architecture and design recently. I have been arguing for some time in the context of software that we need to focus on broad architectures into which objects (people and software) and be placed, evolve, mutate and form time to time die. I'm increasingly starting to take that idea across into wider organisational design. It fits in with the complexity theme of partial and mutable constraints.

[2b2k] Mr. Denham’s defense of child chimney sweeps

David Weinberger

From the summary of the remarks in 1819 of a Mr. Denham during the British House of Commons debate of a bill that would have limited the use of young boys as chimney sweeps — as young as four years old, stuck into chimneys 7″ square for up to six hours at a time [ source ]. How many modern arguments can you spot?

Brands are boring

Doc Searls

And “social media&# i s a crock. Brands are boring because they’re not human. They’re companies. And, despite recent Supreme Court decisions to the contrary, companies are not human. They are abstractions that make business possible. Businesses are necessary to thriving economies and working civilizations. They are comprised of human beings and therefore have human qualities. But they are not themselves human.

A generation growing up with touch technology

George Siemens

Gartner (a Swahili term meaning “first we will make you give us a bunch of data to register for our site and then we’ll charge you a few thousand dollars for simple research reports&# ) is jumping on the touch mania that will continue to grow as more companies release their tablets/slates stating that “50% of the computers purchased for children will have touchscreens by 2015″ I can certainly understand the value of touch over keyboard and mouse interfaces.

The Austin studio is growing

Adaptive Path

About 2 years ago, we opened a studio in Austin, TX. As with many things Adaptive Path does, it was a bit of an experiment and a prototype — we needed to try it out in order to figure out how it would work. We’ve been working quietly and diligently to realize the potential of this new team ever since. Our efforts have been extremely successful. When we talk to people about our studio, they often wonder what it’s like to work with Adaptive Path in Austin.

Pixels, the movie

David Weinberger

I love this video , by Patrick Jean (via BoingBoing

The Autumn of Silicon Valley

Kevin Wheeler

This recent video from the PBS NEWSHOUR about Silicon Valley tells the story of how creativity is so hard to hold on to and how what we were is what we want to be. It was in the 1960s that the valley transitioned from “The Valley of

ipad luddites

George Siemens

The best way to draw attention to yourself online is to gain a sense of the way in which a particular topic is trending and then write an extreme opposite view of it. Enter, ipad luddites : What these folks are ranting against, or at least gnashing their teeth over, is progress – or, more precisely, progress that goes down a path they don’t approve of.

Blog Post: Lectures, lecterns and bullshit

David Gurteen

By David Gurteen Jeff Jarvis does not like the one-way lecture format of the TED conferences. He thinks it is bullshit and of course I totally agree! It reminds him of the classroom and the industrial age educational system where the one and only right answer comes from the lectern which I would like to see burnt ! Read the comments on his post, most people agree (but not all) and despair of the educational system!

Reclassifying broadband

David Weinberger

I was less depressed than I would have expected about yesterday’s ruling that the FCC does not have the authority to tell Comcast to let us do what we want with our Internet. In part, that’s because I was expecting to lose. In part it’s because this battle is far, far from over. There’s the possibility of an appeal (although the 3:0 decision seems pretty definite), Congressional action, or reclassifying the Internet.

UX Week 2010 – iPad apps, Information Visualization, Facebook, and more!

Adaptive Path

Hooboy! The UX Week 2010 program is definitely heating up. Here are some people we’ve just lined up, who will be joining us August 24-27 in San Francisco: Michael Wesch. Perhaps still best known for his “The Machine is Us/ing Us&# YouTube video, Michael has since continued to lead the way in thinking about anthropology, education, and new technologies. Check out his collection of great YouTube videos.

Five Barriers to Effective Learning in Organizations

George Siemens

Charles Jennings argues that “learning and development activity is sub-optimal to the extent that it provides little value to participants and their organisations&#. He then goes on to detail five barriers leaders need to think about “when starting out to transform their learning operations&#. A colleague at University of Manitoba used to state that early change initiatives requires reformers to “walk through open doors&# rather than trying to break through walls.

Failure of Creative Commons Licenses

Tony Karrer

As part of last month’s big question Open Content in Workplace Learning? , I’ve been trying to find out more about specific answers to Creative Commons Use in For-Profit Company eLearning. I was contacted by someone out of the Creative Commons organization, but in going back and forth with them, we realized that I was looking for legal interpretations which they clearly can’t do. They are there to help set up the licenses. But that said, it also shows a failure of the current licenses.

[berkman] Christian Sandvig on the future of TV

David Weinberger

Christian Sandvig is giving a Berkman lunchtime talk called “The Television Cannot Be Revolutionized.&# [ NOTE : I am live-blogging, making mistakes, getting things wrong, leaving things out, not spellpchecking. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK and do not assume this is an accurate reflection of Christian's talk. ]. He begins by crediting Gil Scott Heron for the title. He says he’s looking for a research agenda for studying TV, especially three bottlenecks: distribution, search, and genre.

Blog Post: Life is just about doing stuff!

David Gurteen

By David Gurteen This comment from Steve Jobs ( via my friend David Pottinger ) in a great article by Stephen Fry on the Launch of the iPad: “I don’t think of my life as a career. I do stuff. I respond to stuff. That’s not a career — it’s a life!” really resonates with me. I like the concept of just "doing stuff" - love that fuzzy word "stuff".

Networked Learning: Groups, Networks

George Siemens

The Networked Learning Conference 2010 is hosting another hot seat. This time, Etienne Wenger starts the conversation by asking about the distinction between groups/communities/networks. The ensuing discussion will be a valuable resource for CCK10 this fall…

A 21st Century Magical Mystery Tour

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Isaac Newton laid down the foundations for what we now call classical mechanics with the publication of his Principia Mathematica in 1687, where his Laws of Motion , where first articulated. Ever since, our scientific understanding of the world around us has been based on classical mechanics, - “a set of physical laws governing and mathematically describing the motion of bodies and aggregates of bodies geometrically distributed within a certain boundary under the action of a system of forces.”

Shirky’s myth of complexity

David Weinberger

Clay Shirky has given us a surprising number of Internet myths. And by this I mean not falsehoods but the opposite: Broad, illuminating ways of making sense of what’s going on. For example, Clay’s post about the power law distribution of links in the blogosphere (based on research by Cameron Marlow ) changed how we view authority, fame, and success in the Web ecosystem, and provided the structure within which Chris Anderson could point to the Long Tail.

Blog Post: Blogging and tweeting from the recent HKKMS Conference in Hong Kong

David Gurteen

By David Gurteen I recently spoke at the HKKMS Conference in Hong Kong. Kim Sbarcea did a great job of blogging the conference and caught most speakers including my talk Making KM Projects Work. You can find my slides here. Dave Snowden also posted an item on the conference and there was a lot of good tweeting going on mainly from Bill Proudfit. I also ran a post-conference Knowledge Cafe Masterclass - slides here and photos here.