Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Halley suggested that we all need a day of silence to hear our own voice. I'm going to be on a plane for most of it, but I'm going silent in a few hours for 24 hours. No email, no blogging, nothing. Just a gray marble stone to keep me company. Halley has begun her silence already. When I come out silence hopefully I'll have something interesting to share. ;-)

Having some mail problems. If you sent email in the last few hours, please send again. I am now forwarding to a variety of mailboxes so even if you get a bounce, it's likely I'll be getting it in one of my other mailboxes. I'll let you know when it's all working again.

I can't believe it's been a year since I went to Brainstorm 2002. Brainstorm 2002 was one of the best conferences I went to last year. Brainstorms is a conference where the editors of Fortune Magazine invite 100+ people to discuss a variety of issues. I think that the 100-150 number is a very special number for conferences. It's just the right size to get a great deal of diversity, but also be small enough to allow people to get to know each other. This year, Fortune is holding the conference jointly with the Aspen Institute.

My favorite speaker last year was Shimon Peres. I blogged the event last year. I think it was the first conference I blogged live. A few quotes from my own blog.

The King of Jordan just said, "We find ourselves between Iraq and a hard place." ;-)
Shimon Peres

First, he told us that he had just received a call from the Prime Minister and that another bomb had gone off in a University...

"I have no hatred in my heart for the Palistinians."

He thinks that maybe the Palestinians may be able to build the first real Arab democracy since they are building from scratch and have watched other Arab nations and their problems.

"We are just two tragedies meeting in the same place. I hope that this doesn't turn into a third tragedy."

"I believe that the greatest liberation in the 20th century was the liberation of women."

"Since we can't build a world government, let's build a world NGO. Have the companies come together and pay insurance. Have a board of directors with members such as Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela. Totally based on volunteering. No one forcing. This may be able to handle the problems that globalization is creating."

"Television made dictatorship impossible, but it made democracy intolerable."

"What can you learn from History? Very little... History was written with red ink, wth bloodshed. We should educate our children how to imagine, not how to remember."

Some students and a Rabbi were discussing how you can tell when night is over and day has come. One student said that when you can tell the difference between a lamb and a goat, day has come. Another student said that when you can tell the difference between a fig tree and and an olive tree, the day has started. The Rabbi says, when you see and white man or a black man and you call him your brother, the day has come. When you see a rich man or a poor man and you call him your brother, the day has come.

Jack Kemp also said something like, "It doesn't matter what you know if you don't care."

If this year's conference is as interesting as last year's, I'll have a lot to blog about. I also got an OK to bring Hecklebot with me, although I haven't confirmed that there will be Internet access for us at the Aspen Institute. I'm leaving for the aiport in 5 hours. Hope to see you there or along the way.

Scoble blogs about secrets. I'm really bad at keeping secrets. That's part of the reason why I love to blog so much. I love sharing information and ideas because the feedback increases my information. I remember attending a conference on intelligence and one of the US intelligence officers said that Bill Clinton complained that he would get "top secret" reports from the CIA only to see them on CNN the next day. The value of many "top secret" documents that he couldn't talk about with anyone was quite low in a world of exceedingly fast information.

I do see the need for secrecy and as someone who is concerned about privacy and security, I think about secrecy a lot. This also ties in with the issue of who should be allowed to have secrecy and that we should limit, if possible, the secrecy of those in power in order to limit their ability to abuse power.

Liz Lawley's recently moved her blog from: www.it.rit.edu/~ell/mamamusings/ to mamamusings.net. Much nicer. She's still going through many of the problems with moving a blog. You have to make sure your permlinks don't break. Static files and images need to move over. People's blogrolls need to be updated. It's lots of work. That reminds me again why I picked the URL joi.ito.com. It is a bit egocentric, but I've gone through this URL changing process enough times now that I decided I'd pick one that I'd most likely stick with. Also, more generic names such as my "Netsurf Japan" mailing list turned into public spaces where I was no longer the owner, but more like a custodian. I decided to make the assertion this time that this blog was clearly closer to my living room than a public park. Ito.com has its problems. A lot of spam is sent with ito.com as the return address for some reason. It's also a 3 letter URL so I constantly get queries whether I'm using it. Doh.

Anyway, for all of you who are thinking of starting a blog. Think carefully about your URL. It's easy to think, "hey, I'll just give it a whirl first and see if I like it." But if you do end up liking it, you're going to be stuck with that URL. Also, be careful about where you upload images and other things. Try to keep your directory structure tidy so you can move these files easily.