Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

We had a joint dinner tonight with Enjin01, a group of cultural leaders that I co-founded and the Cultural Design Forum, where many of the people from Enjin01 had defected from. We talked about possibly merging the groups back again. There was a basic disagreement. The Cultural Design Forum wanted to continue to have big annual meetings and basically talk about stuff to the public. Enjin01 has seminars, but Saigusa-san explained that we are pro-actively trying to pushing reform forward.

I drove Saigusa-san home and I told him that it was time to be active, not just vocal. I remember I said something similar at dinner last night, but this is such a unique time in Japanese history... When I am in San Francisco, it is almost boring because they let you do anything you want. This horrible government, the pressure and the oppression give me a sense of purpose. It is almost exhillerating. It is the same feeling I have when I watch movies about revolutions. I am not an anarchist, but maybe I enjoy anarchy. There is such an opportunity to create value and impact history when stuff is so screwed up... I really think that good timing, the Internet and some organizational skills might wake up the Japanese people. This is possibly a once in a century opportunity to see an awakening of a country...

Or maybe I'm being too optimistic. Well, it is probably not a bad thing to be optimistic when everyone is running the other direction...

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I had asked Gosuke to ghost write a short article for the Tokyo Shimbun (newspaper) based on a discussion with me. It was about the problems with the National ID. (I DID review it.) Then, I was asked to write an blurb in a book about the National ID so I asked Gosuke to add some more of my thoughts to the aritcle and we gave it to the publisher. Before I knew it, with the mere contribution of a 2 page ghost-written article, I was the co-author of the book, my name on the front of the book as if I had done something important. Luckily, the co-author is Yoshiko Sakurai who I respect deepy. All of the royalties go to the protest movement. So, I guess some people are trying to make sure I don't look too co-opted by the government. ;-)

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I'm blogging this a bit late, but Marko, Ilkka, Shu and Martti from Nokia Ventures Organization visited last week. We talked about the future. Their mission is to do a lot of long term thinking about Nokia. I blabbed about blogs, privacy and all of the other things I love. Howard was the one that got us hooked up. Marko worked on setting up Aula, a project in Finland that I love. I had met Jryi and some others from Aula when they visited Tokyo and have been a fan ever since. Aula is this great space in Finland that is kind of a new space/community/incubator... You should go look at their site to learn more.


Marko Ahtisaari was born in Helsinki, Finland and grew up in Helsinki, Dar es Salaam and New York. He studied economics, philosophy and music at Columbia University in the City of New York where he subsequently lectured in logic, philosophy of economics and the history of thought. He went on to be the leader of the mobile practice at the design consultancy Satama Interactive. Currently Marko works in the Nokia Ventures Organization. In the in-between moments he makes music.

Tallking to Marko reminded me of talking to Jyri which involved getting really excited and a feeling sorry that we ran out of time. Marko's team at Nokia gets to do some really long term thinking and we all agreed blogs on mobile phones made sense.

I tried to get them to increase priority on privacy.

Marko Ahtisaari

I suppose public persons, whether by choice or accident, don’t have the luxury of the distinction between what Joi Ito calls entifying and identifying (following Roger Clarke). Talking to Joi has convinced me to start thinking harder about privacy.

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Today will probably be Kara, Megan and Louie's last night in Tokyo. They invited me out to dinner. We ate at the Monsoon Cafe in Asabu Jyuban that is owned by Global Dining. Jun is on the board of Global Dining and Hasegawa-san, an amazing guy that I truely respect runs Global Dining...

Kawashima-san from the Japan Society (they sponsored Kara's trip), Megan's friend Takemura-san (an architect), Brett from AOL and Neerja Neeraj, the CEO of imaHima joined as well. I had been hearing about Neerja Neeraj from Howard and others and it was great to finally meet him. He was an extremely friendly and straight forward guy. I'm going to see if he can help me get this blog mobile phone enabled...

Brett knows Howard and Justin... What an extremely small world...

Neerja did the IM for i-mode for AOL and it launches the day after tomorrow. I saw a demo. It looks REALLY cool. It's probably the first real IM running on i-mode.

Jane wrote in the last item about self-censorship. Well, this morning I had a good chance to test it out.

I had added a comment to the last entry about a wild night last night. It had some pretty graphic stuff like Takemoto-san giving Jun a big kiss, and was a BIT too much, so I deleted it.

Obviously I was more drunk than I thought. It had the tell-tale bad spelling. Some of the worst emails I've ever sent were sent when I had had too much to drink. The REALLY SCARY thing is that you can really think you are sober when you writing these stupid things. Last night I remember thinking about whether it was appropriate and trying to figure out how drunk I was. Well, whatever I thought, I was wrong. ;-o

So now I've just discovered another interesting thing about blogs. Unless someone copies and saves or crawles and caches your entry, you have a little time to delete it before it becomes final. This is better than email where once you hit send, it's sent.

So, I apologize to anyone who read my last comment and thought it was in bad taste. On the other hand, I apologize to those who didn't read it and are now wondering what it said. ;-)