72 Hour “Moon Shot” like Stop the Spill Challenge

I don’t think there is a single human being on this planet who does not want to see the leak in the Gulf stopped….so why don’t we invoke Clay Shirky’s “Here Comes Everybody” mantra and get the world involved in solving it’s most urgent and important challenge?

The problem that we face TODAY cannot be solved with the same level of thinking that created it. Lets try to push this meme. My own fear is that, unlike the Financial Crisis, BP itself is too “small to solve” this problem we need a world-scale ideation and prioritization scheme to address this issue and we need it NOW!

We need those who are currently working on this issue to be prompted to think differently and those with adjacent skills to help frame the problem differently to see if there are transferrable concepts that can help stop this leak.

Imagine if all the petroleum engineers on the planet, irrespective of where they work, each dedicated two hours of serious brainstorming to this effort. What if we then mashed this up with disciplines of industrial design, architecture, fluid dynamics, and physics to land upon a plausible and immediate portfolio of potential solutions?

This is NOT a technology problem. IBM could provide their Jam technology to drive a 72 hour brainstorm and winnowing process to determine the top ten solutions (Facilitated Ideation plus Predictive Market Prioritization).

Once ideas are at the solution stage virtual team rooms can be provided to cross functional teams in a 2 Day Solution Planning Challenge to come up with project plan/budget for their proposed solution according to a standard “Top Sheet” template.

A board of experts would then review these plans and select the most likely solutions and the order in which they would be attempted.

In a nutshell we need:

      Crowdsourced ideation
      Predictive market prioritization
      Virtual collaborative solution co-creation
      Board reviewed prioritized set of plausible solutions

More importantly, all of this could be accomplished within the NEXT FIVE DAYS if we could aggregate resources and capabilities in a Web 2.0 way across industries and academia.

It is time to take a page out of Nike’s book …. we need to JUST DO IT! What may be possible in practice may take too long to vet in theory. We need the world’s biggest brainstorm here and we need it NOW!

To borrow a line from IBM current marketing campaign with a little twist, we need to leverage the smarts of the whole planet to stop the spill and we need to do it now it NOW!

Taking this approach certainly cannot hurt and most likely would help address something that will impact each and every one of us.

In the time it took you to read this, how many more thousands of gallons have spewed into the Gulf?

If you believe this idea has merit, please propagate via your SoMe channels.


What is the Uber Web 2.0/3Di Mash Up for the Eduprise?

Every spare moment this week has been devoted to investigating this question.

I come to this question having spent much time in the world of Electronic Performance Support (EPSS) and Workflow Learning and my perspective is informed by traditional Human Performance Technology (HPT) theory.

I can’t move on from that reference without sadly recognizing the passing of Geary Rummler. He truly was a giant in the field and his works were very influential on my own perspective and practice. RIP Geary.

OK, Investigating this question takes the tension of topic/content/formal versus task/context/informal we’ve been wrestling with for some time in learning/KM to the next level. It forces us to examine how Web 2.0 impacts the enterprise of the future as we migrate from database centric stocks of tagged explicit knowledge to social computing enabled flows of digitally enabled people with ability to find each other to innovate and problem solve in real time. In short, I am in a hurry to figure out the Enterprise (or Eduprise in my context) 2.0 IT infrastructure looks like…because we need to BUILD IT here at Fuqua by August of next year ; )

Mc Kinsey’s “Building the Web 2.0 Enterprise” Global Survey Results found that companies are using Web 2.0 technologies more frequently for INTERNAL purposes. Similar to its Web 1.0 cousin, it looks like the B2C period of inflated expectations has passed and we are moving to focus on pragmatic, internal applications with a focus on efficiency. Within the internal use category, the top six enterprise application areas were:

    Managing Knowledge

    Fostering Collaboration across the Community

    Enhancing Company Culture


    Developing Products or Services

    Internal Recruiting

Interestingly, as I look at analyst reports on the trends and lists of internal application areas where virtual worlds will have impact, the list is strikingly similar to those outlined above for Web 2.0.

Steve Prentice of Gartner has long maintained that the Business to Consumer Marketing focus of Virtual Worlds will retreat to the Enterprise and seek safe haven from the treacherous waters of an increasingly unpredictable market in the safe harbor of productivity focused internal applications of Collaboration and Learning.

Thinkbalm’s Erica and Sam Driver in their recent Immersive Internet report break enterprise applications into 8 High Impact use cases. They further hypothesize that these 8 use cases will array across three phases moving from Cost Savings, through Harnessing Unexpected Business Value, ultimately leading to Business Transformation.

Their time chart for how these enterprise applications array across the phases and time is shown below:


So what gives? If BOTH Web 2.0 and the Immersive Internet/3Di forecasts promise to have enterprise application in the areas of collaboration and learning, it seems to me that these emerging applications can only be a thoughtful and nuanced Mash Up of both. The trick here is figuring out what mix of what technologies for what outcomes.

Justin Bovington and his team at Rivers Run Red appear to have spotted this early. Here is a nice video that explains their Immersive Workspaces 2.0 offering developed with the Lindens:

From this overview, it is clear that much thought must go into the orchestration and coordination of digitally mediated presence, connection, conversation, sharing, presentation, co-creation, discovery etc…in order to enable a seamless 2D/3Di experience that allows people to work at a distance with mind-numbing ease.

Here at Fuqua we are right in the thick of prototyping/iterating/co-creating the Uber 2.0 Eduprise Mashup. We not only need to integrate Web 2.0 and 3Di but we also need to plug it into (or more appropriately position on top of) our existing technological infrastructure that enables the orchestration of World Class MBA programs at a distance (i.e. our LMS and LCMS).

In guiding our Itervation (Iterative Innovation that is), there are a few sources that provide direction:

FIRST is the Seven Sensibilities of Virtual worlds mentioned earlier in this blog. Our guiding premise here is to only leverage 3D where it makes a strategic and significant difference. No good doing 3D just for its own sake, much better to apply where it makes a marked and memorable impact on the end-to-end educational experience for our stakeholders.

SECOND, Erica Driver’s work at Forrester in defining the Seven Tenents of the Information Workplace have been very helpful. Here is our slightly modified version:

    Context: Today users have to make conscious decisions about when to use which tool to collaborate with others on a document or deliverable. To overcome this issue we need to clearly define what “contextualizes” and what is “contextualized.” Profile/Role, task and Connection Mechanisms will contextualize content and connections in real time around the endeavor at hand. This will lead to a more intuitive and usable immersive workspace that allows users to more rapidly get to the “Doing” rather than dealing with the overhead of planning, co-ordinating and connecting before getting to the “Doing”

    Individualized: The user (Prospect, Student, Staff, Faculty, Alum) must be at the center of the design of our next generation learning Collaboration and Learning Intuitive Learning Environment (CLIVE). The technology must adapt to the individual, not the other way around. CLIVE must have both a social/personal and personalized programmatic component. Leveraging our understanding of the Contextualizers (i.e. WHO the user is, HOW they are connected to the environment, WHERE they are in the workspace, and WHAT they are trying to do) allows CLIVE to tune the interface to the individual context and shift the burden of orchestration and coordination of resources required to accomplish a given task from the individual to the environment itself.

    Seamless: CLIVE must seamlessly integrate new Web 2.0/3Di service apps with our existing LMS/LCMS infrastructure. It must mask the complexity of back end applications and interfaces with elegant and intuitive simplicity on the front end. People must be able to invoke and act upon the information, contacts and tools they need with minimal effort. We should not burden the cognitive load of users in preparing to do work. Rather, we should provide a “draggy, droppy, clicky” environment that allows them to get on with the REAL work of collaborative co-creation.

    A consistent look and feel must be maintained across the various components assembled in the environment even when multiple back end systems are being leveraged. To the user, it should NEVER feel like they are switching back and forth between applications or telescoping up and down within a rigid navigation system to marshal resources to accomplish a task. CLIVE orients the world of content, contacts and connectivity around the user and shrinks the world to surface relevant resources to solve the task at hand.

    CLIVE must also accommodate the seamless movement back and forth between structured formal learning and unstructured collaborative peer learning in a way that both approaches are honored and activated where they are most appropriate and where the whole learning experience yields moments of synthesis for the participants that are greater than the sum of the pedagogical/technological parts. CLIVE must continuously strike the balance between structure and serendipity in the service of enriching the learning experience.

    Visual: Our mash-up should resonate visually and allow people to quickly grok content and intuit context (i.e. Tags and Social Network Representations in 2D space and avatar interactions with each other and data/models in 3D space). Traditional Web-Based navigation schemes are information-centric and thus challenged in their ability to keep pace with a user’s need to quicky scan, interpret, and act on contextually relevant information. Clearly there is an opportunity to leverage visualizations of meta-data via tag-clouds and social connectedness via Social Networking technologies have relevance here as does the opportunity to leverage the third dimension (avec ou sans avatar) to improve the “grokability” of the environment.

    Multimodal: Our system must recognize that, as Kevin Kelly so ably suggests, there is only One Machine and the Web is its OS. We need to strive to be able to accommodate all the devices that connect to the one machine in a seamless way (can we please hurry up with visualization and the cloud?) – Timestamp 3:15 to get to demo.

    Quick: Does this need explanation? Wiki is a Hawaiian word for Fast! CLIVE needs to work. CLIVE needs to work without a manual. CLIVE needs to ignite talent opportunity and passion around ideas and endeavors at an an accelerated pace, and CLIVE needs to activate the growing and incredibly talented network that is Fuqua (over 14K strong today) to address the pressing issues of our times. What am I missing, oh yes…..CLIVE needs to work YESTERDAY (OK, not yesterday, but late March at the latest).

The THIRD source of guidance for itervating CLIVE comes from Gartner’s analysis of the Business Impact of Social Computing on Higher Education. In this report, Harris and Lowendahl suggest that, “the incorporation of social software features and integration capabilities with institutional applications will become necessary to accommodate the higher education user expectations, while closing the gap between personal and institutional structures.” They go on to say, “If positioned strategically, social computing can fill a gap between the inflexible structures in place in most higher-education organizations and the chaotic personal structures that have spread across the desktops of both student and faculty.”

So CLIVE must bridge the gap between the existing enterprise infrastructure and the personal chaotic structure that has emerged to compensate for the ridgidiy and inflexibility of that enterprise infrastructure. CLIVE needs to provide an adaptive structure that allows users to CREATE, ORGANIZE, FIND AND INTERACT more intuitively. To do so CLIVE must:

    Provide Persistent Presence to allow ongoing openess for participation

    Render Content, Contacts and Connectivity that is contextualized to user role/workflow

    Organize Content, Contacts and Connectivity to reflect users current use and needs

    Encourage natural and serendipitous group formation based on location, activities and interests

    Leverage links, tags, ratings and usage to determine relevance, importance and quality

    Find content through people links and vise versa

    Dynamically update profiles based on content/tags created, involvement in interactions and aggregation of user-generated commentary,co-creation, content, filtering and organization.

The FOURTH area of inspiration for itervating on CLIVE comes from Anderew McAfee’s work on Enterprise 2.0 that I discussed in an earlier post here. Contextualizing his SLATES components to CLIVE comes out something like this:

    Search and Serendipitous Discovery trump Interface Navigation/Hierarchy. In fact, just as Thomas Friedman suggest that the world is FLAT. A core design point for our CLIVE is that the interface itself must be FLAT and that the content, contacts and connectivity elements are surfaced within that FLAT interface based on the contextual factors at play.

    Links, Tags and Extensions and Signals are the domain of User Generated Commentary, Content, Filtering, Organizing and Distribution that CLIVE must provide. The trick here is that it must work across all the underlying apps that the FLAT interface masks. How do we take all the richness of web-serviced applications, mash them up with existing enterprise platforms and allow the informal serendipity of fortuitous interaction to prevail in a system that is optimized to create a flow state for formal and informal learning and inquiry that rivals that of World of Warcraft?

    The very interesting thing about the participatory web approach is that it not only helps others find explicit knowledge but it also exposes the patterns and processes in knowledge work that others use. As McAfee says, these participatory systems make an episode of knowledge work more widely and permanently visible.

This is going to be a fun ride….anyone with any experience, advice, wisdom, counsel, please bring it on. This is new territory to be sure and none of us is as smart as all of us. Ideas and insights PLEASE.

Blogging Kevin Kelly and Others at Masie

Scattershot notes from Second City
One of the techniques I use to have students experience dialogue is to have two students build a sentence one word at a time going back and forth. That way they need to pay attention to what the other person is saying and build upon it thus establishing what David Baum would call flow.

Second City communications just did a very cool skit called Dr. Know It All, three people lined up answer audience questions one word at a time. I will be sure to incorporate this into my repertoire.

Scattershot notes from Kevin Kelly.

“TV and Phone got married and had a love child called the internet and it is improving our choices and ability to communicate.”

If we can be whoever we want to be then who do we want to be?

Wikipedia was impossible in theory but possible in practice. We can do things with the collective that we could not imagine doing before. We know we can’t do everything that way but we don’t yet know what we can’t do. Can we build an airplane that way?

Historically, knowledge came from an authority. The way we learn things is changing. We have a process called the scientific method to help us make sense of things. I think the scientific method will change particularly on how we agree on what is true. Wikipedia says “consistent opinion is true.”

How to cut through collective ignorance: Wisdom of the Crowd versus the Stupidity of Mob is a delicate balance.

Doing less things as an individual through increasing tools of socialism, but it is not socialist because it is not about making everyone the same. Increasing power of group PLUS increased individual uniqueness and freedom. Cool thing is you can increase both.

Imagine companies with open salaries and open books. Expense Reports: You can do whatever you want but every employee has the ability to review your expenses.

Not about transparency from a governance POV, but this is transparency from a social point of view. So you get to see what is appropriate and it distributes training into the very fabric of the firm.

Science progresses us faster through tools rather than theory. Invention and dissemination of tools is what drives economy.

You clue takes Innocentive model to the masses and is run on Ning.

Kevin is optimistic that we can change on the environment. Response to ills and problems caused by technology should be better technology. We can make cars that get 1000 miles a gallon. So he is optimistic about being at piece in environment.

Designer have an approach to the world and to life that is different. “Build to Think…the first thing they really do is build a very quick prototype and iterate through the process over time. Try and do things as a way of thinking. That way do becomes think.”

Failure is the most important part of learning. What you want to have are lots of little failures to keep them constant and small rather than catastrophic at end. Bring them forward and manage them as you go along.

We tend to be too cerebral in design. We need to actually do it with our hands and our heart not just our head.

How would you redesign the learning function in organization? Learning and teaching are symmetrical. You become one or the other. Get people to become better at communicating what and how they have learned themselves is key. Make everyone a teacher and you have a learning organization.

Learning is like an addiction. He spends a lot of time thinking about his learning process. He tries to appraise the process and iterates on it.

Poptimistic: came from Hollywood. Happy cheerful free-color version of the world. People are basically good, color is free, lets make people happy.

What does technology want? Dawkins did this with the “Selfish Gene.” Helpful to ask technology what it wants. It wants increased diversity, general to specific (same arc as evolution), to become more efficient, increase in complexity. Similar trajectory to live. Technology is the seventh kingdom of live. Very similar in evolution. Technology extinction is never part of the equation.

Book: The Singularity is Near – He disagrees with it but that is why it is provocative.

Place on Earth to study more: China. Not just about cheap copying.

Election Process: Voting is a small part of democracy.

Next Generation Hope: That they will treat us well. Different kind of old. Baby boomers will create a new kind of old.

Movie to Impact World Theme: Optimism leads to better behavior. In the end you have to have hope that things will be better you behave differently.

Wired: Push…end of browser. Got that totally wrong.

His next book: How should I feel about technology? Is there some way to evaluate whether it is good for us or not.

Wow…final chart. The Global Economy is like a human being. Look at financial crisis and think of it as one missed financial heartbeat across the globe:

Keynote at Masie Conference

This morning I had the pleasure of doing a keynote session with Elliott Masie. True to form we agreed to just riff…and that we did.. I think it went quite well and I had a lot of folks come up after the session to say they got something out of it.

Elliott is pulling out all the stops this year. There is an ARG (Alternate Reality Game) that David Metcalf and his crew are running called Dream Corp. Also, Ann DeMarle’s students at Champlain college are building a game in real time during the conference to deal with the issues of teleworking.

Finally, being the king of last minute, I just signed into the social networking site that the Masie folks have provided and found it to be very user friendly. Here is a screenshot of the social network view. I am the blue dot closest to the middle:

I am very much looking forward to soaking it all in and leaving with more questions than I came…that way I know I have learned something ; )

Over and out for now from Orlando.