Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Excellent! Ray Ozzie is talking about one of my favorite papers by a guy named Granovetter's called the "Strength of Weak Ties" which talks about how weak ties between distant nodes are more valuable than the strong ties within tight groups. I can go on for hours about this idea, but Ray also talk about another VERY important thing that I think we're all thinking about. Are blogs an extension of email and can blogs get rid of spam, most email, bulletin boards and all sorts of things in one huge P2P swoop! That WOULD be cool.

Ray Ozzie
Jon, your talk about mail brings up a discussion that I had with someone lately about email, linking, and transparency. One of the unfortunate aspects about "googling email" is that there are really no inbound links except those that can be reverse engineered through threading. But in social systems, those are the "strong ties" - the obvious relationships. What is more interesting, I believe, are the "weak ties" that would emerge if people outside of your social group started pointing into an interesting message of yours. (Weak Ties are precisely why I read blogs!!) Imagine the field day that Google could have if 1) all email files had access controls removed, and 2) people started surfing each others' email messages.

Unrealistic, right? Well, think again. Why have we grown so accustomed to the social norm that email should be private? Think about it. Start small. And remember that your company owns your inbox and outbox. What if all engineers within a company were given a new email address when they started, and were told "just use it for business" and "please note that everything that you do in email is in public view. In order to prevent embarassing moments, please keep matters of your personal privacy OUT of your assigned email box; use Groove for private matters. Oh, and by the way, here are the URLs of all of your team members' mailboxes, in case you care. Oh, and by the way, here's a site where you Google across all of them. Oh, also, I should mention that we never delete any email, by policy."

OK. We're getting serious now... ;-p We've just set up the Official Neoteny Blogging Team (as in the Jamaican Bobsled Team), the first blogging team in Japan that we know of. We're going to get serious about messing around with stuff like using mobile phones, recruiting interesting bloggers, trying to build a photo album/blog, integrating IM and lots of other cool things. If you know of or run a cool service like that we can integrate, let me know. I'll be integrating stuff into my site as we get it going. Also, if you have have a cool blog idea that you would like hosted or would like to participate or contribute in some way let me know.

When I first told Jun that "neoteny" meant the retention of childlike attributes in adulthood, he told me he thought it meant giant tadpoles. Iwrote an entry earlier about the meaning of Neoteny.

Since then, the business press has been using the word to discuss leadership. There is a great piece from Harvard Business School about it. I'm glad I have ;-)

HBS Working Knowledge
Are Business Schools Really Important "Crucibles of Leadership?"
HBSWK Pub. Date: Sep 30, 2002

by Jim Heskett

The new book Geeks and Geezers by Warren Bennis and Robert Thomas, argues that all the leaders they studied, whether "geeks" (under thirty) or "geezers" (over seventy), have the ability to engage others in shared meaning; a distinctive and compelling voice; a sense of integrity; and "neoteny," a trait that makes them "addicted to life" and able to recruit protectors, nurturers, and believers through a long and productive leadership career.


Think... think...
I was supposed to see Lawrence Lessig a few weeks ago, but he cancelled the meeting because he was busy preparing his argument for the U.S. Supreme Court. I forgive you Lawrence. ;-) This is a very important case for the future of copyright. As the digital world and all of our blogging and links show that copyright is less important when everything is live, the copyright manufacturers are trying to push the law in the other direction. All hands on deck to prevent a serious step backwards in the way we think about information.

1790.gifI am doing my part in Japan organizing study groups and lecturing, but the US laws always tend to be "globalized" so I think the real battlefield is the US at this point.

This site collects material related to the constitutional challenge of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, which extended by 20 years both existing copyrights and future copyrights.

Eric Eldred is the lead plaintiff on the case (for other plaintiffs, click here), and on May 20, 2002, opening briefs were filed in the Supreme Court. Arguments will be heard October 9th, 2002, and a decision is expected next spring. Watch here for the latest news, and click on "how you can help" to join our (e) campaign.

Saw this on Scripting News.

Larry Lessig admits it: he’s nervous.

Marc's Voice
Here's one kind of a Multimedia Conversation

This is how it started....I created a series of posts related to various AOL T-W issues. These posts prompted responses, counter arguments and related statements from several different bloggers.

Each point and counter-point can now be revisted - with viewers adding their own synopsis, opinions and counter-points - at anytime. Anyone can come into a 'conversation' - at any point in the conversatiin - at any time.

But what makes it a 'multimedia conversation?'

HHhhhhmmm - let's see.......

Click here to see the actual multimedia conversation.

Just one thought...

The problem I see with the current blog format is that it still has to sort of end up making sense in one place. Shouldn't each block of text or multimedia only have to exist in one place. One of our guys says we need "text src". Basically, what I want is a way to embed stuff from other people's sites or a way to just cluster little windows into other people's sites instead of having to write all the links up in a story. I really like your format/style Marc, but two things. I still have to click on the links and jump to the sites and YOU still have to write some redundant content. It would seem better if you could really just open little windows and arrange them, adding only your own stuff...

Or am I dreaming?

Marc Canter
From: "Marc Canter"
To: "Joichi Ito"
Subject: RE: Design review - feedback requested
Date: Mon, 7 Oct 2002 16:02:30 -0700


Ted nelson called that 'transclusion' and Marc Barot has that working NOW! So what you're asking for is to 'transclude' other sites, or chunks of info - and build it INTO the conversations.

YES! We got that working NOW!


I just received - and I think he were cc:ed (and the rest of the recipient list - oooops) this from Marc Barot:

Marc Barot
From an interface point of view, I would like the links not to disrupt the flow by replacing the current window's content, instead sliding neatly in place, below their calling paragraph. Sure - that would be a formatting option. I think they'll be a bunch of different ways to 'view' this stuff - including entirely in an outline form. Launching second windows, different sized titles, doing 2 way links, trackback, occluding images, media embedding - the issues go on and on. But I had to start somewhere :-)

We have these investor types who actually are getting serious - so me spelling out - in umpteenth details - was what spurred me onto this 'mockup'

[[[Marc's insert here - I think everyone will end up with their own formatting solution which works. We may find that easily going back (maybe gesturally based) between display formats - is the way to go. CERTAINLY we'll have to make it obvious and intuitive how one can CHANGE and adjust the way the conversation is displayed (and we'll need lots of pre-fabbed display solutions - as well.)

It's clear from the first five comments I've received - that EVERYONE has their OWN idea as to what works. In less than an hour I received almost 10 reply's - out of a list of 30+ That's 33% interest level!

So this to me - defines a system which can flexibly display:
- linked pages
- transcluded entries (from elsewhere)
- media
- faces
- some sort of an outline structure
- even collapse unto itself - allowing readers to compartmentalize sections....

And ties to:
- IM - email
- Outlining
- Blogging
- your PIM info
- your media (stored in your private cloud)
- your Home LAN (and your traveling cyber existence)
- and your devices

is in order.

This is what "Hubbie" would output. I think you can see how the activieOutliner (or WebOutliner as Doug refers to it) is along the trajectory towards Hubbie.

[[[Marc's insert here - "Hubbie" is the code-name for our big magilla-cutty product, WebOutliner is a first step, on-line outliner that..... well you can imagine. WebOutliner will also be part of a Radio 'sweet suite' collection of tools and customizable Home Page. We then will investigate creating 'sweet suites' of add-ons for Blogger, LiveJournal, Moveable Type, Grey Matter.

We think integrating blogging with media with your Home LAN is key. We'll start our concentric circles strategy with bloggers and move out from there towards the Home LAN owners who have devices........]]]]]]

I know I'm an outline nut, but I really appreciate the ability to keep everything in perspective, that is within the same flow of conversation.

Certo (that's Italian for 'sure!')

[[[Marc's insert here - or in Japanese they say "Gam baht ai - Kurd usai!"

This is why I love 'elision' (those collapsable paragraphs with a wedge) and 'transclusion' (insertion of the linked contents in place).

ah yes, yet another new term........

[[[Marc's insert here - Marc Barot has true transclusion working on activieOutliner - RIGHT NOW! So expect translcusion in these conversations - FOR SURE!

From a structural point of view, I guess we can achieve this with any kind of Xpath explorable, XML hierarchical structure as the supporting format. OMPL, with more specialized attributes, comes to mind. So does RSS for referred conversations.

think GIANT XML OPML extension........

[[[Marc's insert here - the original usage of the term 'MacroMedia' was as our own compound document architecture.]]]]]]



and even more Marcs

Marc Barrot
IT Consultant
Precision IT Management,Inc