supernova 07: clay shirky's "provocations"

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Clay starts by showing a photo of a Shinto shrine that has been rebuilt exactly many times over 1300 years. UNESCO won’t certify it as a 1300-year-old building--because it has been rebuilt over and over again. This is an example of them prioritizing "solidity of edifice, not solidity of process."

He then compares it to a conversation fifteen years ago with AT&T, trying to convince them that Perl was an appropriate tool for development. When asked where the support came from, he responded that "we get our support from a community"--which to them sounded a bit like “we get our Thursdays from a banana."

Money quote on this from Clay: "They didn't care that it didn't work in practice, because they'd already decided it didn't work in theory."

Perl, he says, is a Shinto shrine. It exists because people love it and care for it.

Best line of the day: Our tools turn love into a renewable building material.

Best predictor of longevity for anything—do the people who like it take care of it?

Linux gets rebuilt every night, by people who don't want it to wither away.

Until recently, the radius and half-life of our affection has been limited. In the past, little things could be done with love, but big things required money. Now, big things can be done with love.

Later in the discussion, Clay says the communication process (Delphi, etc) is a kind of a mcguffin. The bringing people together and getting them to talk to each other is the important piece. Denise argues that "the process needs to come to a conclusion that gives the decision maker what they need to make a decision" (and that they resolve conflict).

An audience member asks if there is there social software we can deploy to fix problems with cross-cultural communication snafus? Denise: "Expedia." (nice)

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This page contains a single entry by Liz Lawley published on June 21, 2007 12:55 PM.

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