Uber Mashup Update: Thanks Chuck Hamilton

Chuck Hamilton (aka Longg Weeks in SL) and I go a long way back. I have always enjoyed his keen insights and easygoing nature. He was kind enough to send me a very thoughtful reply to my plea for help.

Here is what he said:
To create the Uber Web 2.0/Web 3D we need to sort out all these collaboration tools and processes into some sort of participation era filter ― a blended matrix of options that we can use to weed out the tired pieces and expand the use of more evolved pieces.

Below is a sort of filter I have in mind.


This is a sort of old and new ideas/models across a time and space axis. If we started to fill this matrix out with all available options, we would see that we can not only narrow the field, but also understand what the blend of activities and approaches will be most applicable.

I feel that there will always be a blend ― a mix that makes sense in the context of our life/work/play balance. When we are collaborating and working there is always a time/space context to consider and there are different approaches that work best in each case. Certainly the spaces are converging, but we are a long way from the sort of ‘one size suits all sort of Uber landscape’ you are hoping for. Let’s embrace mixed media and just position it properly and see if that starts us down the right path.

Right on Chuck! Funnily enough a number of us at Fuqua started building this very matrix as a foundation to allow us to understand how and when to integrate/build bridges across the time/space continuum (Watch out Einstein).

Also, another fellow IBMer, and “tribe” leader for Eightbar, Ian Hughes recently pointed us to the video showing ST integration with Forterra. You can see it here:

Right around 1:37 in this demo there is a jump from 2D (Sametime Conversation) to 3D a Room in Forterra. What I am trying to figure out right now is HOW that Interface looks. Is is simply a “Go 3D” button within the Sametime Client and there is a standard issue Room on the Other End? At timestamp 3:36 one of the engineers asks the others to hold on while he brings up a chart. Again, what I am looking for is the interface that makes it intuitive do do this.

Most of what I am seeing out there, including my own initial forays into this space, it appears are all about what things look like once you get into the 3D space. At Fuqua we are coming at this from a more nuanced (I hope) perspective. 3D is but one modality and even when that modality might be optimal, there will be ACCESS issues the do not allow certain participants to “GO 3D.”

The trick here, we believe, is to create an interface that marries 2D and 3D interface taking into account the most important and value added Time/Space connections to afford more immersive and engaging collaboration. If ANYONE has seen such an interface….please do let me know.

My students in Management of Innovation and Technology this semester were tasked with evaluating the disruptive potential of 3Di for a given set of industries. The team focused on Education highlited WiloStar3D . While focused on collaborative home schooling I found this diagram useful in emphasizing all that must go on in terms of Content, Contacts and Connections (thanks to Lisa Bobbitt from Cisco for those 3C’s) around the 3D world.

Additionally, at around 1:02 timestamp, the video below starts to get into the notion of 2D meets 3D with Calendaring, Assignments etc in the 2D space…but, IMHO, we need to be a lot crisper on how this works and leverage the power of contextualizers to take maximal advantage of the small real estate we have to make things intuitively obvious and immediately actionable.

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If anyone has seen examples of flat 2D interfaces that integrate the formal learning context (Courses, Content, Deliverables) with Informal learning (Communities, Context, Conversations) while optimizing the multiple time/space technological affordances in a thoughtful way, please let me know ; )


Triangle OD Network Talk – The Demise of the Enterprise

Last week I spoke at the Triangle OD Network’s Annual Meeting. We were fortunate to have close to 100 folks show up for the meeting – a record turnout for the group.

I was asked to speak about the Demise of the Enterprise and how OD professionals need to revisit their own practices and tools in order to keep pace with changes within the enterprise.

I only had 20 minutes so I ended up, as I often do, going completely ad lib. But, just in case anyone thought I had not done my homework here is the mind map I created as I prepped for this session.

Turns out this would be a better TOC for a book than a 20 minute talk, but I had fun (and I learned) in the process and that is all that matters.

For those of you who are less visual (or don’t have a magnifying glass handy), I mostly went over my Webvolution Soapbox article from February’s Training Magazine. You can read it here (or below if you want to save a click).

Join the Training Webvolution: The Internet has changed business forever. Can learning be far behind?

Market economies typically are characterized by extended periods of stability occasionally punctuated by short unstable periods that forever alter the economic landscape. In the past, disruptive technologies such as the printing press and the steam engine were catalysts in redefining the economies of their respective eras. In the information-age economy, the Internet has emerged as the primary disruptive force of our time—driving unpredictable changes in our economy while simultaneously challenging the viability of the 20th century enterprise.

Today, we live in an innovation-focused, knowledge-enabled economy where work is increasing rapidly in complexity and velocity. Computers have migrated from being information crunchers focused on optimizing productivity to people connectors focused on creating economic value through human interaction. In this increasingly flat, transparent, and globally interconnected world, organizations or individuals that cannot change as fast as the environment within which they operate are destined to regress to a mean of mediocrity.

Internet technology makes rich exchanges possible without the need for formal structures. The nonlinear dynamics of this new information ecosystem are challenging the traditional structures of enterprise. In fact, a recent study from IBM’s Global Innovation Outlook suggests that the future might consist of a billion one-person enterprises—people who act as free agents moving freely and frequently from project to project as their skills, focus, and passion shift.

Today, people work, communicate, and learn across time zones and physical boundaries. Information no longer moves in one direction from top to bottom or from teacher to learner. Instead, information moves through time and space based on the desire and ability of individuals to interact with it—and each other—to make more effective decisions or develop keener insights. In the Webvolution era, information is the currency, individuals are the transport mechanism, and conversation is the transfer mechanism.

As the Webvolution unfolds, the scarcity paradigm that undergirds most modern economic theory is reversed. Information can be shared without being given away. If we take a positive perspective, we can conceive of the Internet as a living information ecosystem, whose central purpose is to promote learning and growth. In essence, people are represented as nodes in a pervasive and persistent network that is aware of who they are; what they are capable of doing; and, perhaps more important, what they are keenly interested in doing. Within this context, the Internet itself can be conceived of as a persistent, worldwide community of learners.

In this type of information ecosystem, the very concept of learning must be recast. Jay Cross puts it best: “Schooling has confused us into thinking learning was equivalent to pouring content into people’s heads. It’s more practical to think of learning as optimizing our networks.” Optimized human intuition networks create a meaningful context within which content can be consumed and digested to create new value.

In the Webvolution era, content may be king, but context is the kingdom. The enterprise that is able to network and tap into resource nodes to address a surfaced need within another part of the network will be able to successfully conduct business within a system primarily tuned to optimize learning and growth.

As such, the learning function’s focus and value proposition must migrate from supporting denominator management (i.e., teaching people how to do things we know how to do to cut costs), to driving numerator growth (i.e., enabling human capital to develop ideas and concepts that grow revenue). Such innovation-focused learning feeds on context and social interaction to channel human intuition toward rapid collective sensemaking around a given opportunity or issue.

In the enterprise of the future, work and learning become synonymous. At the heart of the capacity to innovate is the ability to learn. An enterprise cannot innovate without first learning something new. Thus, training professionals must focus on how to leverage the participatory Web to unleash the innovative energy that lies dormant within the existing structure of enterprise. Are you ready to join the Webvolution?

Tony’s Take on Webvolution

A while back I wrapped some text around a model that I developed with Jim Spohrer at IBM Research that tries to explain how the web is evolving and how is impacting, well, everything ; )

You can re-read that post here

Well, if a picture tells a thousand words, a movie may tells even more (especially if it is me at 2AM in some strange state between alertness and dreaming).

I originally put this piece together in Articulate but could not figure out how to publish it to WordPress (again probably due to lack of sleep). So I gave up and dropped it into Vegas, rendered it and posted on YouTube.

If anyone can get me over the hump in terms of posting Articulate files to the blog (Jay? Mark?) I would really appreciate it. I found it very user friendly to create with all the functions embedded right into PPT and the version on my desktop really does work well.

Anyway, another nine minute rant on Webvolution awaits right if you are up to it! I am going to bed at a reasonable hour for a change.

Virginia Tech Tragedy: Web 2.0 to the Rescue!

GO HOKIES! I am a proud graduate of Virginia Tech. The education I recieved there prepared me for a wonderfully exciting career at the nexus of technology and business. The friends I met there are the ones that I have held closest to my heart over the last 20 years. In fact, my roomates from sophmore year and I had already planned to meet up in Blacksburg this year for the Miami game. That encounter will no doubt take on quite a different tone given the recent news.

Most importanly, the friend I hold closest to my heart, my wife, is a fellow Hokie. We met during her sophmore year. For me, it was without-doubt a case of love at first sight. Seven years later (it took me a while to convince her about the love-at-first sight thing ; ), Theresa and I were married at the Virginia Tech chapel. The date was April 15, 1995.

Yes, in case you are wondering, this is the same chapel where you most likely saw bodies being laid out on TV the other night. In fact, my uncle called me from England because he did not put two and two together until he saw the news footage of the Chapel and called to make sure that all was well with us. He had attended our wedding 12 years ago and the light went off in his mind when he saw the images on TV.

To Theresa and I, Virginia Tech is more than simply a place on some map. It is a huge part of who we are as people. When Virginia Tech takes a hit so do we. Theresa was lucky enough to have Nikki Giovanni for English her Freshman year in college. Dr. Giovanni’s address to the Hokie faithful is nothing short of astounding. The response to her address is simply 100% Hokie Nation. Those of us from Tech will take much solace in this video.

When I first watched this short address I found myself simultaneously steeped in the emotions of deep sorrow and incredible pride. A truly eerie feeling. I was tearful because that part of me that is Virginia Tech is battered, bruised and still laying on the ground not quite sure if it wants to get up. At the same time, I am proud that there are role models like Dr. Giovanni, a passionate and powerful scholar with a gift for words. Her passion and talent as a professor makes me want to become a better guide to all the kids I have the honor teaching at NCSU. I was most proud though, to feel kinship with my fellow Hokies who responded to Dr. Giovanni’s incredible address in typical fashion…With a “Lets go Hokies” chant!

I remain saddened to know that my alma matter will always be remembered for something that could have happened anywhere, anytime, anyplace. It just happened to be Blacksburg, on the 16th of April (one day after our 12th wedding anniversay) in Norris Hall and West AJ.

Virginia Tech is so much more to so many of us than what happened there at a particular time-stamp in the relentless unfolding of time. But unfortunately, since the invention of the printing press, and the recording of opinion guised as fact, and the search of the sound byte rather than the desire to share compassion, April 16th is the one day that will continue define our incredible alma matter many years to come.

Those of us who opt to live in the land of the soundbite errantly assume that we can Grok everything from the news. Well today is a new day. The big news today is that the students up at Tech are no longer talking to reporters. Instead, they are keeping their mouths shut and handing out flyers politely asking them to go home. GO HOKIES!

In typical Hokie fashion, these wonderful, creative, resilient kids are leveraging technology like never before. They are setting up Facebook vigils. What is that you ask? Well these kids are Digital Natives. Most of the victims had a Facebook or Myspace account.

For those of you who are Digital Immigrants who dont have teenagers, this means that there is a digial place in cyberspace that these students created as the silicon-based equivalent of their carbon-based self. It is a place that the typical user goes to at least 30 times a day. It is a place where owners work to continue to personalize and hone the place to be in tune with who they really are (and sometimes who they aspire to be). In short it is their digital persona.

So, now that physical peson is gone, those who knew the victims and were connected to them via digital friend profiles are using the power of social networking to invite others to the victim’s page to hold vigil. Hundreds of thousands of students from around the world are gathering around the victim’s pages to grieve, yell, question, talk, listen, and support their fellow students. Web 2.0 has become a coping mechanism for the ills of the world. Everyone particpates, no-one delegates and it makes us feel better.

In a Web 2.0 world like this who needs journalists who just want to reduce the enormity of what happened to a shocking soundbite by using the word “Massacre” everywhere you turn?

Where is the compassion in the reporting? Why are we moving beyond being here now with these wonderful Hokies whose lives have been ripped apart, whose souls have been bared to the darkest side of humanity and whose cognitions are reeling like reeds in a hurricane of inquiry to talk about who is to blame or gun control, but never to listen, support and share in grief. Seems like Journalists need to get back to basics. Kubler-Ross anyone?

Instead the question coming from all sides is Who is to blame? My response to that is… Who the hell cares? Does finding someone to blame make this tragedy (note that I did not use the word Massacre) go away? Of course not. So, I’ll say it again. Who the hell cares where blame lies? The truth is that the past is past and gone forever. The future is uncertain and can’t be known. The present is called the present because it IS a PRESENT. A gift where humainty can dwell in synchrony to make things better for themselves and for each other. Thankfully, today’s generation seems to be more aware of this than my own and they are leveraging Web 2.0 technologies to facilitate that collaborative healing process.

So, for all of our sakes, lets all just be there now (except the journalists that is) and lets be whatever it is the Hokie Nation needs us to be to allow them to begin that increasingly important human ability to forgive and foget.

I have steered clear of mainstream media throughout the past week. If you want to experience the truth about what happened in Blacksburg the other day go to where the people who are self organizing via the use of Web 2.0 tools. There you get the raw but honest sense of what these folks are going thorugh. You also start to see just how important and neccessary Social Networking is becoming in a world that is fueled by the relentless and accelerating flow of information/media from every angle.

Thank the universe for Web 2.0. I can YouTube Dr. Giovanni and replay her address over and over again. I can experience what it felt to be there chanting “Lets Go Hokies” out loud with my wife while we are here in bed in Raleigh NC. As a digital immigrant trying desperately hard to swim up the Web 2.0 stream, I can also share in paying homage and respect to the digital personas of the wonderful students whose lives were so horribly interrupted before coming to full bloom. In doing so, Web 2.0 helps to shrink my world and makes it really personal. Long live Web 2.0.

One final note. Social networking works in the carbon-based world too. Last night we went to a Flaming Lips show with some friends. We were not in the mood but forced ourselves to go. Thank God we did. The show itself was amazing and provided a neccessary respite from the back room boys in my brain processing all this stuff. Even more amazing though, was the amount of maroon and orange at the show. I also noticed that the confetti used throughout the show was burnt orange. Coincidence perhaps…methinks not.

BTW tomorrow (Friday, April 20) is Maroon and Orange day. So, please dig into your closet and join the Hokie Nation in showing your support for the people in Blacksburg and their extended families that reach around the globe many times over.

Anyway, I ran into a guy at the bar who had a Hokie hat on. I asked him if he was a Hokie. He said no but that his wife was. He said she was too upset to attend the show, but he thought it would be a good thing to wear the hat to show his support.

It was a good thing he wore his hat. We should all wear our hats. We should all go to Facebook. We should all wear Maroon and Orange tomorrow. And finally, we should all start to leverage 2.0 techology to do what it does best: Facilitate human interaction on a scale that was previously unimaginable. If we did there may be less of the kind of crap we tend to be seing on the news every night and more of the kind of humanity and humilty we are capable of would come shining through.

Long live Web 2.0 and Long Live the HOKIES. Become part of the solution. Web 2.0 is READ-WRITE web. Focus on the latter (that means WRITE!). Get a blog, get into the conversation. There are no excuses. If an old fart like me can do it, believe me anyone can!

Plus, it makes you FEEL a whole lot better.


Virtual World and Game Change Update

I have been out on vacation then down with some crazy bug and on top of that my notes has been crashed for two days. Choosing to be off-grid for vacation was fun. Not being able to be on-grid to deal with the deluge of mail due to me being off-grid is not.

e-mail truly is a killer app. It is killing the CIO because as technology gets wiz-bangier folks love to send around flash and ppts that weigh the digital equivalent of a ton and the digital highways that the CIO must fund are stressed to the max from all the heavy traffic. More importantly, e-mail is a killer applicaiton because it is killing us humans. OK, maybe not killing us, but certainly dramatically reducing our ability to focus for any reasonable length of time. e-mail is probably the biggest contributor to the fact the most of us have been reduced to having the attention span of a nat, or a ferrett on two cappucinos.

Anyway, on to other things. Virtual Worlds Day II was great. It focused more on the meat and potatoes side of the potential for this technology. Joe Miller of Second Life was kind enough to use one of my charts to describe the evolution of the web:

A lot of folks seemed to resonate with this chart although as I mentioned in an earlier post, many well known thinkers in this field like Henry Jenkins warn against continuum charts like this. You can read more about this from my previous post on entrepreneurial capitalism here. BTW, I got a nice surprise while on vacation….A note from none other than Joe Pine of “Experience Economy” fame where he said “I recently caught up with your post on Second Life and the Experience Economy — and, yes, the former is absolutely a platform for the latter! A platform I’m increasingly enamored with for its potential. I actually think it not just a platform but a new medium for experiences.”

OK, back to task – I did mention I have ADD Right?

Upon reflection of the two days at VW, I am seeing a similar meme to what happened in Web 1.0. Back then, the SIZZLE was all about Business to Consumer (B2C) which focused on Marketing/Branding/Advertising. Remeber the Sock Puppet from Pets.com and a ton of other similar ploys to establish presence and leverage brands with little or no back-end to crazy valuations? The STEAK was in the Business to Employee (B2E) space where companies leveraged the differentiating capabilities of this technology to enable self-service for employees allowing better access and usage to information and services by employees at dramatically lower costs. Finally the SPECIAL SAUCE for Web 1.0 (and the place where the biggest bucks were made) was in the Business to Business (B2B) space.

My colleague at IBM, Peter Finn came up with the terms Intraverse and Interverse to bring a 3D flavor to the 2D concepts of intranets and internets. Metaverse is reserved for Neal Stepenson. BTW Ruben Steiger of Millions of Us had a very funny story of how he met Neal and told him that they had created the Metaverse with SecondLife…Neal’s response…”cool.” That was it, nothing more.

Coming out of the VW conference, I think that MTV is bringing a lot of Sizzle to the B2C space. That being said, it is intersting to note that they are building their Laguna Beach, The Hills and Pimp My Ride destinations on the There Platfrorm and working with Game Designers to get the production/addiction quality where they want it to be and to have more control over the worlds. In a way, Secondlife is the ultimate B2C play as the consumer is the producer (or prosumer as Tapscott would like to say). Joe Miller reckons that residents contribute over a billion dollars worth of content creation a year to SL as things stand today. That is prosumption at its wildest!

On the Business to Employee side, players like Forterra and Proton Media provide industrial grade 3D worlds built to reside behind a company’s firewall and integrate with other enterprise apps which is a core requirment to deliver value in the B2E space. Finally, Multiverse’s notion of universal browser that allows folks who use their platform to connect worlds through that browser gives us the first notion of the Interverse and is well worth keeping track of.

So when it comest to 3Di there is Sizzle, there is Steak and there is Special Sauce. We need the sizzle to create the interest, we need the steak to show how real business to employee applications can be achieved via the application of 3D technology and we will ultimately (3-4 years out according to most panelists at VW) get the special sauce that allows all of this to connect in a seamless way.

Don’t know about you all, but I got my Fork and my Steak Knife and I am ready to chow down on the 3D future!

I Love Web 2.0

The more I steep myself into the Web 2.0 and 3Di domain the more amazed I become.

Throughout today grabbing 5 minutes here and there to upload snippits and about 2 more hours this PM after everyone was in bed, I was able to put this picture/video montage together on Jumpcut:

Movie Link

Movie Thumbnail
It's Up to You!

This was literally thrown together per per Brent Schlenker and Mark Oehlert’s RIP, MIX, FEED, repeat, repeat…infinity ideas…thanks guys ; )

Take a look and let me know what you think. It is my first attempt to demonstrate the key Synthetic World Sensibilities and at the end I ask you whether you are willing to be like Neo and take the Red Pill. I need to learn how to use/import audio etc…but it is a start.

I got to get some sleep…over and out from Cary