Clay Shirky looks at “cognitive surplus” — the shared, online work we do with our spare brain cycles. While we're busy editing Wikipedia, posting to Ushahidi (and yes, making LOLcats), we're building a better, more cooperative world. TED Video of Talk.
About Clay Sharpey
Clay Shirky believes that new technologies enabling loose collaboration — and taking advantage of “spare” brainpower — will change the way society works. Learn more.
Core Point: Over a trillion hours a year in cognitive surplus–Internet and media tools are shifting all of us from consumption to production. We like to create; we like to share. Now we can.
This talk gets at something that could go into the proposal for Virtual Systemic Inquiry (VSI). I need to emphasize that the VSI products have civic value. That motivates participation, but we also need to make it a little more obvious and easy how to participate, in order that generosity can flow more readily from more people. That's what I was trying to get at by making projects more standardized and quick. Software can let that flow, as Shirky says. The process and products should probably be pretty in some way too, like IDEO (also LOL cats).
Recommended by Dr. Kent Myers. Eleveated by Phi Beta Iota to 6 Stars and Beyond because this book is much more readable than Wealth of Networks and captures the essence for the general reader in a manner more likely to accelerate understanding and transformation.
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as THE book to understand the fundamentals of social media collaboration
Clay Shirky captured the ethos of social media with his bookHere comes everybody. He follows that book up with one that concentrates on the fundamentals of turning our cognitive surplus into value. Cognitive Surplus provides a compelling and clear description of the fundamentals of social media and collaboration as well providing principles that are guiding developments and innovation in this space.
There are many books out there that either describe the social media phenomenon or profess to provide a `recipe' for success. Neither of these approaches can provide you with the insight needed to effectively experiment and deploy social media for the simple reason that social media is changing too fast.
The book is organized into seven chapters that outline a complete way of thinking about social media.
The central problem of our time is the failure of human organization–its failure to scale, to adapt, to assimilate.
We believe the failure stems directly from a rejection of diversity and a falsification of feedback loops–the absence of integrity.
We’ve come to the conclusion that the discord between politics and intelligence is contrived–there is no inherent opposition between politics (choice of best path for all) and intelligence (presentation of best achievable truth for all) provided ONE condition is met: integrity among the majority of individuals engaged in each.
If intelligence loses its integrity and allows itself to be politicized or worse, ignored, then intelligence fails. Similarly, if politics loses its integrity and overplays the secrecy card while also shutting out the diversity of views that are essential to achieving a sustainable consensus, then politics fails.
KENT C. MYERS is a strategic management consultant to the U.S. government.
He has worked with many intelligence, military, and other
federal clients. He has a Ph.D. in Social Systems Sciences, Wharton School. Research interests include resilience strategy, inter-organizational networks and alignment, and environmental scanning.
Since 2006 he has conducted varied strategy and research tasks for the Office of Director of National Intelligence.
In combination with the other books that I am reading this week, the first by David Perkins,Making Learning Whole, the second by Curtis Bonk, The World is Open: How Web Technology is Revolutionizing Education, this book I have read in galley form, by Dr. Kent C. Myers [strategist and process historian, a disciple of Russell L. Ackoff] with contributed chapters from a number of other individuals, gives me hope. This is an extraordinarily diplomatic and measured book, a book that can nudge even the most recalcitrant of know-it-all stake-holders toward the “aha” experience that what they are doing [doing the wrong things righter] is NOT WORKING and maybe, just maybe, they should try Reflexive Practice (or at least begin to hire people that think this way). This is *the* book that could-should lead to the first-ever Secretary General of Education, Intelligence, & Research….IMHO. The Smart Nation Act: Public Intelligence in the Public Interest, done with Congressman Rob Simmons (R-CT-02) was a proponency book. This book by Dr. Myers et al is a praxis book absolutely up there with the other 6 Star and beyond books that I recommend. As soon as I receive a printed copy, I will publish a detailed review.
AMAZON HAS THE BOOK ON SALE, $30 off from the list price of $95. As opposed as I am to the doubling of book prices, this is one book that is easily worth $65, and it is the one book I will be interested in discussing with all comers when I return to NCA in September.
Blurbs at Amazon
“An important book which illuminates, with practical and readable lessons, the path to top performance.”—Warren Bennis, Distinguished Professor of Business, University of Southern California and author of Still Surprised: A Memoir of a Life in Leadership
“A quiet but powerful critique of professions and professional education, with a glimpse of how experts could participate in open and engaged dialogue and actually help us adapt our way through today's crisis.” —Carol R. Hunter, Associate University Librarian, University of Virginia
You will do more for political reform by staying out of it and making public intelligence really work.
You are facilitating a process of public intelligence. You can be a zealous advocate of the public intelligence process, and you can seed the process with sample content, but you are subject to its rules. You, as the facilitator, are especially responsible for demonstrating appropriate behavior. You must show no bias, other than a bias toward evidence, consideration of the alternatives, and continued learning.