Steven Berlin Johnson

Trending Sources

Anatomy Of An Idea

Steven Berlin Johnson

The subject matter of the book is not all that important here, but suffice it to say that I am currently working on an introductory bit that contrasts old, bureaucratic models of state organization with some new network structures that are currently on the rise. Scott, about the methods of state organization and control in modern history, and so within a matter of minutes, I was reading it on the Kindle iPad app. People often ask me about my research techniques.

eBook 119

Introducing Findings

Steven Berlin Johnson

During my college years, I lost a semester trying to build an epic Hypercard stack called "Curriculum" that would help me organize all my notes for the courses that I had stopped attending because I was too busy building the software. (Oh, In the next few months, we plan on expanding the ways in which you can organize and navigate through your findings. (We I have been dreaming about new tools that would help me capture what I was reading for almost as long I have been reading.

eBook 104

The Glass Box And The Commonplace Book

Steven Berlin Johnson

The web is bursting with organizations that recognize the importance of textual productivity, many of them explicitly trying to imagine what journalism is going to look like in this new world.

Introducing Future Perfect

Steven Berlin Johnson

That subtitle gives some sense of the book’s specific subject matter, though the primary theme of the book was more abstract: it was an examination of self-organizing systems, like city neighborhoods or ant colonies, systems that lacked traditional leadership structures or command hierarchies but that nonetheless managed to solve complex problems.

What Peer Progressives Really Believe

Steven Berlin Johnson

The deep roots of the idea date back to reading Jane Jacobs on the “organized complexity” of the city in my twenties, which ultimately led to my arguments for decentralization in my 2001 book Emergence. If you have patience for this kind of online debate, The New Republic is now running my extended response to Evgeny Morozov's review (along with a new response from him).

Old Growth Media And The Future Of News

Steven Berlin Johnson

And so when that time of the month rolled around, I’d organize my week around regular check-ins at College Hill to see if a shipment of MacWorlds had landed on their magazine rack. Let me be clear: traditional news organizations were an important part of the 2008 ecosystem, no doubt about it.

News 46

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Can We Please Kill This Meme Now

Steven Berlin Johnson

Whats the organizing principle? There are two primary elements to this situation: first, the random stumbling across of something unexpected thanks to the alphabetical organization of the reference book (and the lack of digital search tools), and then this process of being led to other interesting words or topics thanks to that original swerve.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: The Invention Of Air

Steven Berlin Johnson

So in a way Priestley lies at the very beginning of the ecosystems view of the world: the air we breathe is not some inevitable fact of life on earth, but something manufactured as part of a wider system by other organisms on the planet.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: David Brooks, Deconstructed

Steven Berlin Johnson

Think of the environmental movement itself -- which runs through a lot of those Urban Baby and Babble conversations about disposable diapers and organic baby food.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: The Shanghai Surprise: Urban Planning Is Sexy!

Steven Berlin Johnson

But you can't self-organize a subway system. stevenberlinjohnson.com « Introducing Appify | Main The Shanghai Surprise: Urban Planning Is Sexy!   I'm writing this on the plane flying back after a ten day trip circumnavigating the globe.

Brian Eno Renames My Book

Steven Berlin Johnson

Two nights ago in London, Brian Eno and I did the second in what I hope will be a long series of public conversations at the wonderful ICA.

Deep Structure

Steven Berlin Johnson

The logical, but less interesting way would just be to create a bunch of chapters organized by discipline: great ideas in the arts, in science, in nature. For a while, I contemplated organizing by different scales, given the book's Long Zoom approach: a chapter on creativity inside the brain, on the screen, in your immediate work environment, in your city.

Tour Dates for "Where Good Ideas Come From"

Steven Berlin Johnson

Organized in partnership with the University of Chicago Booth School of Management Alumni Association). The folks at Riverhead have put together a great tour for Where Good Ideas Come From. It's going to be a busy October, but it should also be a lot of fun. Here are the details for now; I will update as new events get added. Washington, D.C. Tuesday, October 5, 7:00 PM. Politics & Prose. 5015 Connecticut Ave NW. Washington, DC 20008. 202-364-1919.   Seattle, WA.

Introducing Appify

Steven Berlin Johnson

In the simplest sense, it's an alternative directory and discussion site for apps (on multiple platforms), but John has given it a typically ingenious structure: the site is organized around questions, with specific apps suggested by the community as answers.

Does Apple Think Multitasking Is A Bug Not A Feature? And Other Questions.

Steven Berlin Johnson

In the application-centric model, you were constantly lugging organs into other operating rooms and then dragging them back. I wrote a little essay for Time.com on the iPad launch (and the reactions to it.) Here's the opening riff: If you time-traveled back to 1995, and asked the leading futurists of that time where our machines were soon to take us, you might well have heard just as much rhapsodizing about document-centric interfaces as that about hypertext and the World Wide Web.

CNN Invests in Outside.In

Steven Berlin Johnson

For Publishers platform, which is now used by more than a hundred news organizations around the country. Having such a respected news organization as a partner and investor is obviously a big deal for us. I've been saying for a while now that for outside.in , 2009 has been the year of building platforms. We spent the first months of the year building out our Outside.in

stevenberlinjohnson.com:

Steven Berlin Johnson

stevenberlinjohnson.com « Delicious | Main | » So my wife and I were sitting around trying to figure out that classic puzzle of the self-organizing, unplanned urban economy: where the best Christmas trees are being sold this year. (In

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Vertical Ascent

Steven Berlin Johnson

stevenberlinjohnson.com « The Huddled Masses | Main | » Vertical Ascent My other favorite example of Hong Kong’s insane vertical organization: on my last night there, we went to a spectacular restaurant called Aqua on top of a 28-story building in Kowloon.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Radical New Innovation at Outside.in: Search!

Steven Berlin Johnson

stevenberlinjohnson.com « The Times Tears Down The Wall | Main | Ghost Map in paper (and more!) » Radical New Innovation at Outside.in: Search! Forgot to mention that we finally restored search to outside.in.

Skim and Plunge

Steven Berlin Johnson

I think of our present situation as somewhat analogous to the mass migration from the country to the city that started several centuries ago in Europe: the bustle and stimulation and diversity of urban life made it harder to enjoy the slower, organic pleasures of rural living. The editors at Yale University Press were nice enough to invite me to edit this year's edition of Best Technology Writing.

OIP and the news ecosystem

Steven Berlin Johnson

for Publishers , a suite of tools for organizing and curating hyperlocal news pages for US cities and towns. Today's an exciting day at outside.in : we're rolling out the beta release of Outside.in There's a great post from our CEO Mark Josephson here explaining the service and the vision behind it. A few months ago I gave a talk at SXSW talking about the ways in which the news business was moving towards an ecosystem model.

Old Growth Media, The Aftermath

Steven Berlin Johnson

David Crow looked at the speech in the context of Canadian news organizations : Steven Johnson gave a great talk at SxSW about the recent history of publishing and distribution of news. His vision includes a role for organizations like CBC and other traditional media outlets.

Bill Clinton On The Invention Of Air

Steven Berlin Johnson

If you don't know how to organize and evaluate, construct an argument, get from A to Z, what you know in your head doesn't amount to a hill of beans. A few weeks after the book tour for The Invention of Air started to wind down, I got an email from an old friend who had spent some time with Bill Clinton at Davos. It was a quick note to report that Clinton had apparently spontaneously brought up my book in conversation, and had said some nice things about it.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Large Is Smart

Steven Berlin Johnson

stevenberlinjohnson.com « Long Zoom Interview | Main | » Large Is Smart Jason pointed me to this amazing-sounding study on the whole metaphor of cities as biological organisms. Key graph from the coverage is this: What they found were some general correlations of size and resource consumption that more or less fit the biological organism metaphor, meaning as the city grew in size it required less energy (resources) to sustain it in a proportion called sublinear scaling.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Walking Londons Bridges

Steven Berlin Johnson

the question I have for you is when you say simple units what exactly is so simple about ant or any organisms? The unit i have choosen for my self organizing system is base on a helix which isn't considered a simple element.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Ghost Map Reviews: The First Round

Steven Berlin Johnson

I particularly loved this ending bit, where theres a very nice connection back to Emergence : In his previous book, "Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software," Johnson brilliantly posited ideas about the organization of systems from the bottom up.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Will She Stay or Will She Go?

Steven Berlin Johnson

It´s a research about the viability of a new social web net for solidary purposes, by interconnecting non-governmental organizations, citizens, public and private companies, etc. stevenberlinjohnson.com « Unintended Consequences, part 57. Main | The Invention Of Air » Will She Stay or Will She Go?

stevenberlinjohnson.com: One Last Colbert Item

Steven Berlin Johnson

Most who work for the UN are so used to its dysfunctionality that they have NO idea how sick the organization is or they are unwilling to come forward because UN labor laws and protections are abysmal. Create a new organization that can truly make the world a better place.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Radar Is Live

Steven Berlin Johnson

discussions, and Twitter tweets, and organizing them all both around specific places and topics. stevenberlinjohnson.com « | Main | George Will: SBJ Says Beer Is Good For You » Radar Is Live Im really excited to report that we launched Radar today, the most significant addition to outside.in since we first put up our alpha site 20 months ago. The list of cool things you can do with Radar is long, but I think the basic premise is pretty simple and intuitive.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Uploading My Library

Steven Berlin Johnson

Its also erratically organized within each letter -- once I got all the Bs together, I had a hard time finding the energy to put the Brs after the Bos.

stevenberlinjohnson.com:

Steven Berlin Johnson

What Dharma was studying was the behavior every Lost fanatic engages in: the human imperative to organize seemingly random details into some kind of order.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Outside.in and The Washington Post

Steven Berlin Johnson

Secondly, were not just geographically organizing the blogger content -- were organizing the Posts content. stevenberlinjohnson.com « New Hampshire | Main | Outside.In Lets People Use The Internet To Communicate With Each Other! » Outside.in and The Washington Post This morning we announced our new partnership with the Washington Post: our buzzmaps for the DC area are now live on the Post site.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: The Huddled Masses

Steven Berlin Johnson

It was one of those stranger-in-a-strange-land sights where you know there’s some organizing principle at work, but you can’t for the life of you figure out what it is.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Apple Opens Up

Steven Berlin Johnson

Also, the term is "organic milk," not "Web 2.0 stevenberlinjohnson.com « | Main | Literary Style By The Numbers » Apple Opens Up It struck me yesterday reading Steve Jobs personal note about plans for third-party apps on the iPhone that the most telling thing about the announcement was the opening five-word phrase: Let me just say it: We want native third party applications on the iPhone, and we plan to have an SDK in developers’ hands in February.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Apple: Consumer Unfriendly

Steven Berlin Johnson

The iPhone has generated a hurricane of hype, and organizations like this group are trying to take advantage of it for their own PR purposes. stevenberlinjohnson.com « Two Hours With The iPhone | Main | » Apple: Consumer Unfriendly What a bizarre Joe Nocera Times piece about the lack of a removable battery in the iPhone.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Five Thoughts On The Nintendo Wii

Steven Berlin Johnson

What strikes you immediately playing Wii Sports -- and particularly Tennis -- is this feeling of fluidity, the feeling that subtle, organic shifts in your bodys motion will lead to different results onscreen. stevenberlinjohnson.com « Outside.in and Feedburner | Main | The Atomic Wall » Five Thoughts On The Nintendo Wii 1. Playing Wii Sports Tennis for the first time was the most revelatory, breakthrough gaming experience Ive had since I first saw Myst in the mid 90s.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Real America

Steven Berlin Johnson

We do in fact live in a divided nation, but states are not the organizing principle we should use in thinking about the split. The relationship between city and country is a sort of second-level social contract: both forms of organization are necessary to the whole society, and depend upon each other.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Introducing Outside.in

Steven Berlin Johnson

With help from you -- suggesting and tagging neighborhood data, and suggesting ways that we can better organize the web geographically -- we think outside.in One thing both blogs and traditional newspapers share is that they are organized around time, with the latest news given priority. stevenberlinjohnson.com « West Coast People | Main | Digging outside.in » Introducing Outside.in So its an exciting time around here at SBJ headquarters.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: The Ghost Maps first review

Steven Berlin Johnson

Johnson weaves in overlapping ideas about the growth of civilization, the organization of cities, and evolution to thrilling effect. stevenberlinjohnson.com « Is There An iTV In Our Future? Main | » The Ghost Maps first review Publishers Weekly has generally given me nice reviews over the years, but the review theyve just published for The Ghost Map is the best yet -- one of those reviews that hits on all the themes that are important to you as an author.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Five Things All Sane People Agree On About Blogs And Mainstream Journalism (So Can We Stop Talking About Them Now?)

Steven Berlin Johnson

By looking for connections between different topics and different news organizations, they can add value. This is definitely an important role, but supplanting a press agency on no budget and organization is simply not realistic at the moment. Despite the fact, our brains are designed to absorb and process so much in real time - we have become aware of advertising etc, constantly attacking our nervous and sensory organs - and we have blocked a lot out.